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傲慢与偏见中英文对照part51

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第五十一章

妹妹的婚期到了,吉英和伊丽莎白都为她担心,恐怕比妹妹自己担心得还要厉害。家里打发了一部马车到某某地方去接新夫妇,吃中饭时他们就可以来到。两位姐姐都怕他们来,尤其是吉英怕得厉害。她设身处地地想:要是丽迪雅这次丑行发生在她自己身上,她一定会感触万千,再想到妹妹心里的难受,便越发觉得不好过。

新夫妇来了。全家都集合在起居室里迎接他们。当马车停在门前的时候,班纳特太太满面堆着笑容,她丈夫却板着脸。女儿们又是惊奇又是焦急,而且十分不安。

只听得门口已经有了丽迪雅说话的声音,一会儿,门给打开了,丽迪雅跑进屋来。母亲高兴得要命,连忙走上前来欢迎她,拥抱她,一面又带着亲切的笑容把手伸给韦翰(他走在新妇后面),祝他们夫妇俩快活。班太太的话讲得那么响亮,说明了她相信他们俩一定会幸福。

然后新夫妇转身到班纳特先生跟前,他对他们可没有他太太那么热诚。只见他的脸色显得分外严峻,连嘴也不张一下。这一对年轻夫妇那种安然自得的样子,实在叫他生气。伊丽莎白觉得厌恶,连吉英也禁不住感到惊骇。丽迪雅还是丽迪雅──不安分,不害羞,撒野吵嚷,天不怕地不怕的。她从这个姐姐跟前走到那个姐姐跟前,要她们一个个恭喜她。最后大家都坐下来了,她连忙扫视了一下这间屋子,看到里面稍许有些改变,便笑着说,好久不曾到这儿来了。

韦翰更没有一点难受的样子。他的仪表一向亲切动人,要是他为人正派一些,娶亲合乎规矩一些,那么,这次来拜见岳家,他那笑容可掬、谈吐安详的样子,自然会讨人家欢喜。伊丽莎白从来不相信他竟会这样厚颜无耻,她坐下来思忖道:一个人不要起脸来可真是漫无止境。她不禁红了脸,吉英也红了脸;可是那两位当事人,别人都为他们难为情,他们自己却面不改色。

这个场合确实是不愁没有话谈。新娘和她母亲只觉得有话来不及说;韦翰凑巧坐在伊丽莎白身旁,便向她问起附近一带的熟人近况如何,问得极其和悦从容,弄得她反而不能对答如流。这一对夫妇俨然心安理得,毫无羞耻之心。他们想起过去的事,心里丝毫不觉得难受;丽迪雅又不由自主地谈到了许多事情──要是换了她姐姐们,这种事情是无论如何也说不出口的。

只听得丽迪雅大声说道:“且想想看,我已经走了三个月了!好象还只有两个星期呢;可是时间虽短,却发生了多少事情。天啊!我走的时候,的确想也没想到这次要结了婚再回来,不过我也想到:如果真就这样结了婚,倒也挺有趣的。”

父亲瞪着眼睛。吉英很难受,伊丽莎白啼笑皆非地望着丽迪雅;可是丽迪雅,凡是她不愿意知道的事,她一概不闻不问,她仍然得意洋洋地说下去:“噢,妈妈,附近的人们都知道我今天结婚了吗?我怕他们还不见得都知道;我们一路来的时候,追上了威廉·戈丁的马车,这为了要让他知道我结婚了,便把我自己车子上的一扇玻璃窗放了下来,又脱下手套,把手放在窗口,好让他看见我手上的戒指,然后我又对他点点头笑得什么似的。”

伊丽莎白实在忍无可忍了,只得站起身来跑回屋外去,一直听到她们走过穿堂,进入饭厅,她才回来。来到她们这里,又见丽迪雅急急匆匆大摇大摆走到母亲右边,一面对她的大姐姐说:“喂,吉英,这次我要坐你的位子了,你得坐到下手去,因为我已经是出了嫁的姑娘。”

丽迪雅既然从开头起就完全不觉得难为情,这时候当然更是若无其事。她反而越来越不在乎,越来兴头越高。她很想去看看腓力普太太,看看卢卡斯全家人,还要把所有的邻居都统统拜访一遍,让大家都叫她韦翰太太。吃过中饭,她立刻把结婚戒指显给希尔奶奶和其他两个女佣人看,夸耀她自己已经结了婚。

大家都回到起坐间以后,她又说道:“妈妈,你觉得我丈夫怎么样?他不是挺可爱吗?姐姐们一定都要羡慕我。但愿她们有我一半运气就好啦。谁叫她们不到白利屯去。那里才是个找丈夫的地方。真可惜,妈妈,我们没有大家一起去!”

“你讲得真对;要是照我的意见,我们早就应该一起都去。可是,丽迪雅宝贝儿,我不愿意你到那么远的地方去。你难道非去不可吗?”

“天啊!当然非去不可,那有什么关系。我真高兴极了。你和爸爸,还有姐姐们,一定要来看我们呀。我们整个冬天都住在纽卡斯尔,那儿一定会有很多舞会,而且我一定负责给姐姐们找到很好舞伴。”

“那我真是再喜欢也没有了!”母亲说。

“等你动身回家的时候,你可以让一两个姐姐留在那儿;我担保在今年冬天以内就会替她们找到丈夫。”

伊丽莎白连忙说:“谢谢你的关怀,可惜你这种找丈夫的方式,我不太欣赏。”

新夫妇只能和家里相聚十天。韦翰先生在没有离开伦敦之前就已经受到了委任,必须在两星期以内就到团部去报到。

只有班纳特太太一个人惋惜他们行期太匆促,因此她尽量抓紧时间,陪着女儿到处走亲访友,又常常在家里宴客。这些宴会大家都欢迎:没有心思的人固然愿意赴宴,有心思的人更愿意借这个机会出去解解闷。

果然不出伊丽莎白所料,韦翰对丽迪雅的恩爱比不上丽迪雅对韦翰那样深厚。从一切事实上都可以看出来,他们的私奔多半是因为丽迪雅热爱韦翰,而不是因为韦翰热爱丽迪雅,这在伊丽莎白看来,真是一件显而易见的事。至于说,他既然并不十分爱她为什么还要跟她私奔,伊丽莎白一点也不觉得奇怪,因为她断定韦翰这次为债务所逼,本来非逃跑不可;那么,象他这样一个青年,路上有一个女人陪陪他,他当然不愿错过机会。

丽迪雅太喜欢他了,她每说一句话就要叫一声亲爱的韦翰。谁也比不上他。他无论做什么事都是天下第一。她相信到了九月一日那一天,他射到的鸟一定比全国任何人都要多。

他们来到这儿没有多少时候,有一天早晨,丽迪雅跟两位姐姐坐在一起,对伊丽莎白说:

“丽萃,我还没有跟你讲起过我结婚的情形呢。我跟妈妈和别的姐姐们讲的时候,你都不在场。你难道不想要听听这场喜事是怎么办的吗?”

“不想听,真不想听,”伊丽莎白回答道:“我认为这桩事谈得不算少了。”

“哎呀!你这个人太奇怪!我一定要把经过情形告诉你。你知道,我们是在圣克利门教堂结的婚,因为韦翰住在那个教区里面。大家约定十一点钟到那儿。舅父母跟我一块儿去的,别的人都约定在教堂里碰头。唔,到了星期一早上,我真是慌张得要命。你知道,我真怕会发生什么意外,把婚期耽搁了,那我可真要发狂了。我在打扮,舅母一直不住嘴地讲呀,说呀,好象是在传道似的。她十句话我最多听进一句,你可以想象得到,我那时一心在惦记着我亲爱的韦翰。我一心想要知道。他是不是穿着他那件蓝衣服去结婚。

“唔,象平常一样,我们那天是十点钟吃早饭的。我只觉得一顿饭老是吃不完,说到这里,我得顺便告诉你,我待在舅父母那儿的一段时期,他们一直很不高兴。说来你也许不信,我虽在那儿待了两个星期,却没有出过家门一步。没有参加过一次宴会,没有一点儿消遗,真过得无聊透顶。老实说,伦敦虽然并不太热闹,不过那个小戏院还是开着。言归正传,那天马车来了,舅父却让那个名叫史桐先生的讨厌家伙叫去有事。你知道,他们俩一碰头,就不想分手。我真给吓坏了,不知道怎么是好,因这需要舅父送嫁;要是我们误了钟点,那天就结不成婚。幸亏他不到十分钟就回来了,于是我们一块儿动身。不过我后来又想起来了,要是他真给缠住了不能分身,婚期也不会延迟,因为还有达西先生可以代劳。”

伊丽莎白大惊失色,又把这话重复了一遍:“达西先生!”

“噢,是呀!他也要陪着韦翰上教堂去呢。天哪,我怎么完全给弄糊涂了!这件事我应该一字不提才对。我早已在他们面前保证不说的!不知道韦翰会怎样怪我呢?这本来应该严格保守秘密的!”

“如果是秘密,”吉英说,“那么,就请你再也不要说下去了。你放心,我决不会再追问你。”

“噢,一定不追问你,”伊丽莎白嘴上虽是这样说,心里却非常好奇。“我们决不会盘问你。”

“谢谢你们,”丽迪雅说:“要是你们问下去,我当然会把底细全部告诉你们,这一来就会叫韦翰生气。”

她这话明明是怂恿伊丽莎白问下去,伊丽莎白便只得跑开,让自己要问也无从问起。

但是,这件事是不可能不闻不问的,至少也得去打听一下。达西先生竟会参加了她妹妹的婚礼!那样一个场面,那样两个当事人,他当然万万不愿意参与,也绝对没有理由去参与。她想来想去,把各种各样古怪的念头都想到了,可还是想不出一个所以然来。她当然愿意从最好的方面去想,认为他这次是胸襟宽大,有心表示好意,可是她这种想法又未免太不切合实际。她无论如何也摸不着头脑,实在难受,于是连忙拿起一张纸,写了封短短的信给舅母,请求她把丽迪雅刚才无意中泄露出来的那句话解释一下,只要与原来保守秘密的计划能够并行不悖就是了。

她在信上写道:“你当然很容易了解到,他跟我们非亲非眷,而且跟我们家里相当陌生,竟会跟你们一同参加这次婚礼,这叫我怎么能够不想打听一下底细呢?请你立刻回信,让我把事情弄明白。如果确实如丽迪雅所说,此事非保守秘密不可,那我也只得不闻不问了。”

写完了信以后,她又自言自语地说:“亲爱的舅母,如果你不老老实实告诉我,我迫不得已,便只有千方百计地去打听了。”

且说吉英是个十二万分讲究信用的人,她无论如何也不肯把丽迪雅嘴里漏出来的话暗地里去说给伊丽莎白听。伊丽莎白很满意她这种作风。她既然已经写信去问舅母,不管回信能不能使她满意,至少在没有接到回信以前,最好不要向任何人透露心事。






Chapter 51

THEIR sister's wedding day arrived; and Jane and Elizabeth felt for her probably more than she felt for herself. The carriage was sent to meet them at ----, and they were to return in it by dinner-time. Their arrival was dreaded by the elder Miss Bennets, and Jane more especially, who gave Lydia the feelings which would have attended herself, had she been the culprit, and was wretched in the thought of what her sister must endure.
They came. The family were assembled in the breakfast room to receive them. Smiles decked the face of Mrs. Bennet as the carriage drove up to the door; her husband looked impenetrably grave; her daughters, alarmed, anxious, uneasy.
Lydia's voice was heard in the vestibule; the door was thrown open, and she ran into the room. Her mother stepped forwards, embraced her, and welcomed her with rapture; gave her hand, with an affectionate smile, to Wickham, who followed his lady; and wished them both joy with an alacrity which shewed no doubt of their happiness.

Their reception from Mr. Bennet, to whom they then turned, was not quite so cordial. His countenance rather gained in austerity; and he scarcely opened his lips. The easy assurance of the young couple, indeed, was enough to provoke him. Elizabeth was disgusted, and even Miss Bennet was shocked. Lydia was Lydia still; untamed, unabashed, wild, noisy, and fearless. She turned from sister to sister, demanding their congratulations; and when at length they all sat down, looked eagerly round the room, took notice of some little alteration in it, and observed, with a laugh, that it was a great while since she had been there.

Wickham was not at all more distressed than herself, but his manners were always so pleasing, that had his character and his marriage been exactly what they ought, his smiles and his easy address, while he claimed their relationship, would have delighted them all. Elizabeth had not before believed him quite equal to such assurance; but she sat down, resolving within herself to draw no limits in future to the impudence of an impudent man. She blushed, and Jane blushed; but the cheeks of the two who caused their confusion suffered no variation of colour.

There was no want of discourse. The bride and her mother could neither of them talk fast enough; and Wickham, who happened to sit near Elizabeth, began enquiring after his acquaintance in that neighbourhood, with a good humoured ease which she felt very unable to equal in her replies. They seemed each of them to have the happiest memories in the world. Nothing of the past was recollected with pain; and Lydia led voluntarily to subjects which her sisters would not have alluded to for the world.

"Only think of its being three months," she cried, "since I went away; it seems but a fortnight I declare; and yet there have been things enough happened in the time. Good gracious! when I went away, I am sure I had no more idea of being married till I came back again! though I thought it would be very good fun if I was."

Her father lifted up his eyes. Jane was distressed. Elizabeth looked expressively at Lydia; but she, who never heard nor saw any thing of which she chose to be insensible, gaily continued, "Oh! mamma, do the people here abouts know I am married to-day? I was afraid they might not; and we overtook William Goulding in his curricle, so I was determined he should know it, and so I let down the side-glass next to him, and took off my glove, and let my hand just rest upon the window frame, so that he might see the ring, and then I bowed and smiled like any thing."

Elizabeth could bear it no longer. She got up, and ran out of the room; and returned no more, till she heard them passing through the hall to the dining parlour. She then joined them soon enough to see Lydia, with anxious parade, walk up to her mother's right hand, and hear her say to her eldest sister, "Ah! Jane, I take your place now, and you must go lower, because I am a married woman."

It was not to be supposed that time would give Lydia that embarrassment from which she had been so wholly free at first. Her ease and good spirits increased. She longed to see Mrs. Phillips, the Lucases, and all their other neighbours, and to hear herself called "Mrs. Wickham" by each of them; and in the mean time, she went after dinner to shew her ring, and boast of being married, to Mrs. Hill and the two housemaids.

"Well, mamma," said she, when they were all returned to the breakfast room, "and what do you think of my husband? Is not he a charming man? I am sure my sisters must all envy me. I only hope they may have half my good luck. They must all go to Brighton. That is the place to get husbands. What a pity it is, mamma, we did not all go."

"Very true; and if I had my will, we should. But my dear Lydia, I don't at all like your going such a way off. Must it be so?"

"Oh, lord! yes; -- there is nothing in that. I shall like it of all things. You and papa, and my sisters, must come down and see us. We shall be at Newcastle all the winter, and I dare say there will be some balls, and I will take care to get good partners for them all."

"I should like it beyond any thing!" said her mother.

"And then when you go away, you may leave one or two of my sisters behind you; and I dare say I shall get husbands for them before the winter is over."

"I thank you for my share of the favour," said Elizabeth; "but I do not particularly like your way of getting husbands."

Their visitors were not to remain above ten days with them. Mr. Wickham had received his commission before he left London, and he was to join his regiment at the end of a fortnight.

No one but Mrs. Bennet regretted that their stay would be so short; and she made the most of the time by visiting about with her daughter, and having very frequent parties at home. These parties were acceptable to all; to avoid a family circle was even more desirable to such as did think, than such as did not.

Wickham's affection for Lydia was just what Elizabeth had expected to find it; not equal to Lydia's for him. She had scarcely needed her present observation to be satisfied, from the reason of things, that their elopement had been brought on by the strength of her love, rather than by his; and she would have wondered why, without violently caring for her, he chose to elope with her at all, had she not felt certain that his flight was rendered necessary by distress of circumstances; and if that were the case, he was not the young man to resist an opportunity of having a companion.

Lydia was exceedingly fond of him. He was her dear Wickham on every occasion; no one was to be put in competition with him. He did every thing best in the world; and she was sure he would kill more birds on the first of September, than any body else in the country.

One morning, soon after their arrival, as she was sitting with her two elder sisters, she said to Elizabeth,

"Lizzy, I never gave you an account of my wedding, I believe. You were not by, when I told mamma and the others all about it. Are not you curious to hear how it was managed?"

"No really," replied Elizabeth; "I think there cannot be too little said on the subject."

"La! You are so strange! But I must tell you how it went off. We were married, you know, at St. Clement's, because Wickham's lodgings were in that parish. And it was settled that we should all be there by eleven o'clock. My uncle and aunt and I were to go together; and the others were to meet us at the church. Well, Monday morning came, and I was in such a fuss! I was so afraid, you know, that something would happen to put it off, and then I should have gone quite distracted. And there was my aunt, all the time I was dressing, preaching and talking away just as if she was reading a sermon. However, I did not hear above one word in ten, for I was thinking, you may suppose, of my dear Wickham. I longed to know whether he would be married in his blue coat."

"Well, and so we breakfasted at ten as usual; I thought it would never be over; for, by the bye, you are to understand, that my uncle and aunt were horrid unpleasant all the time I was with them. If you'll believe me, I did not once put my foot out of doors, though I was there a fortnight. Not one party, or scheme, or any thing. To be sure London was rather thin, but, however, the Little Theatre was open. Well, and so just as the carriage came to the door, my uncle was called away upon business to that horrid man Mr. Stone. And then, you know, when once they get together, there is no end of it. Well, I was so frightened I did not know what to do, for my uncle was to give me away; and if we were beyond the hour, we could not be married all day. But, luckily, he came back again in ten minutes' time, and then we all set out. However, I recollected afterwards that if he had been prevented going, the wedding need not be put off, for Mr. Darcy might have done as well."

"Mr. Darcy!" repeated Elizabeth, in utter amazement.

"Oh, yes! -- he was to come there with Wickham, you know, But gracious me! I quite forgot! I ought not to have said a word about it. I promised them so faithfully! What will Wickham say? It was to be such a secret!"

"If it was to be secret," said Jane, "say not another word on the subject. You may depend upon my seeking no further."

"Oh! certainly," said Elizabeth, though burning with curiosity; "we will ask you no questions."

"Thank you," said Lydia, "for if you did, I should certainly tell you all, and then Wickham would be angry."

On such encouragement to ask, Elizabeth was forced to put it out of her power, by running away.

But to live in ignorance on such a point was impossible; or at least it was impossible not to try for information. Mr. Darcy had been at her sister's wedding. It was exactly a scene, and exactly among people, where he had apparently least to do, and least temptation to go. Conjectures as to the meaning of it, rapid and wild, hurried into her brain; but she was satisfied with none. Those that best pleased her, as placing his conduct in the noblest light, seemed most improbable. She could not bear such suspense; and hastily seizing a sheet of paper, wrote a short letter to her aunt, to request an explanation of what Lydia had dropt, if it were compatible with the secrecy which had been intended.

"You may readily comprehend," she added, "what my curiosity must be to know how a person unconnected with any of us, and (comparatively speaking) a stranger to our family, should have been amongst you at such a time. Pray write instantly, and let me understand it -- unless it is, for very cogent reasons, to remain in the secrecy which Lydia seems to think necessary; and then I must endeavour to be satisfied with ignorance."

"Not that I shall, though," she added to herself, as she finished the letter; "and my dear aunt, if you do not tell me in an honourable manner, I shall certainly be reduced to tricks and stratagems to find it out."

Jane's delicate sense of honour would not allow her to speak to Elizabeth privately of what Lydia had let fall; Elizabeth was glad of it; -- till it appeared whether her inquiries would receive any satisfaction, she had rather be without a confidante.
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