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thriller/['θrilə]/ n. 使人激动的东西, 使人毛骨悚然的东西, 使人毛骨悚然的...

马丁·伊登(MARTIN EDEN)第四十二章

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One day Martin became aware that he was lonely. He was healthy and strong, and had nothing to do. The cessation from writing and studying, the death of Brissenden, and the estrangement from Ruth had made a big hole in his life; and his life refused to be pinned down to good living in cafes and the smoking of Egyptian cigarettes. It was true the South Seas were calling to him, but he had a feeling that the game was not yet played out in the United States. Two books were soon to be published, and he had more books that might find publication. Money could be made out of them, and he would wait and take a sackful of it into the South Seas. He knew a valley and a bay in the Marquesas that he could buy for a thousand Chili dollars. The valley ran from the horseshoe, land- locked bay to the tops of the dizzy, cloud-capped peaks and contained perhaps ten thousand acres. It was filled with tropical fruits, wild chickens, and wild pigs, with an occasional herd of wild cattle, while high up among the peaks were herds of wild goats harried by packs of wild dogs. The whole place was wild. Not a human lived in it. And he could buy it and the bay for a thousand Chili dollars.

The bay, as he remembered it, was magnificent, with water deep enough to accommodate the largest vessel afloat, and so safe that the South Pacific Directory recommended it to the best careening place for ships for hundreds of miles around. He would buy a schooner - one of those yacht-like, coppered crafts that sailed like witches - and go trading copra and pearling among the islands. He would make the valley and the bay his headquarters. He would build a patriarchal grass house like Tati's, and have it and the valley and the schooner filled with dark-skinned servitors. He would entertain there the factor of Taiohae, captains of wandering traders, and all the best of the South Pacific riffraff. He would keep open house and entertain like a prince. And he would forget the books he had opened and the world that had proved an illusion.

To do all this he must wait in California to fill the sack with money. Already it was beginning to flow in. If one of the books made a strike, it might enable him to sell the whole heap of manuscripts. Also he could collect the stories and the poems into books, and make sure of the valley and the bay and the schooner. He would never write again. Upon that he was resolved. But in the meantime, awaiting the publication of the books, he must do something more than live dazed and stupid in the sort of uncaring trance into which he had fallen.

He noted, one Sunday morning, that the Bricklayers' Picnic took place that day at Shell Mound Park, and to Shell Mound Park he went. He had been to the working-class picnics too often in his earlier life not to know what they were like, and as he entered the park he experienced a recrudescence of all the old sensations. After all, they were his kind, these working people. He had been born among them, he had lived among them, and though he had strayed for a time, it was well to come back among them.

"If it ain't Mart!" he heard some one say, and the next moment a hearty hand was on his shoulder. "Where you ben all the time? Off to sea? Come on an' have a drink."

It was the old crowd in which he found himself - the old crowd, with here and there a gap, and here and there a new face. The fellows were not bricklayers, but, as in the old days, they attended all Sunday picnics for the dancing, and the fighting, and the fun. Martin drank with them, and began to feel really human once more. He was a fool to have ever left them, he thought; and he was very certain that his sum of happiness would have been greater had he remained with them and let alone the books and the people who sat in the high places. Yet the beer seemed not so good as of yore. It didn't taste as it used to taste. Brissenden had spoiled him for steam beer, he concluded, and wondered if, after all, the books had spoiled him for companionship with these friends of his youth. He resolved that he would not be so spoiled, and he went on to the dancing pavilion. Jimmy, the plumber, he met there, in the company of a tall, blond girl who promptly forsook him for Martin.

"Gee, it's like old times," Jimmy explained to the gang that gave him the laugh as Martin and the blonde whirled away in a waltz. "An' I don't give a rap. I'm too damned glad to see 'm back. Watch 'm waltz, eh? It's like silk. Who'd blame any girl?"

But Martin restored the blonde to Jimmy, and the three of them, with half a dozen friends, watched the revolving couples and laughed and joked with one another. Everybody was glad to see Martin back. No book of his been published; he carried no fictitious value in their eyes. They liked him for himself. He felt like a prince returned from excile, and his lonely heart burgeoned in the geniality in which it bathed. He made a mad day of it, and was at his best. Also, he had money in his pockets, and, as in the old days when he returned from sea with a pay-day, he made the money fly.

Once, on the dancing-floor, he saw Lizzie Connolly go by in the arms of a young workingman; and, later, when he made the round of the pavilion, he came upon her sitting by a refreshment table. Surprise and greetings over, he led her away into the grounds, where they could talk without shouting down the music. From the instant he spoke to her, she was his. He knew it. She showed it in the proud humility of her eyes, in every caressing movement of her proudly carried body, and in the way she hung upon his speech. She was not the young girl as he had known her. She was a woman, now, and Martin noted that her wild, defiant beauty had improved, losing none of its wildness, while the defiance and the fire seemed more in control. "A beauty, a perfect beauty," he murmured admiringly under his breath. And he knew she was his, that all he had to do was to say "Come," and she would go with him over the world wherever he led.

Even as the thought flashed through his brain he received a heavy blow on the side of his head that nearly knocked him down. It was a man's fist, directed by a man so angry and in such haste that the fist had missed the jaw for which it was aimed. Martin turned as he staggered, and saw the fist coming at him in a wild swing. Quite as a matter of course he ducked, and the fist flew harmlessly past, pivoting the man who had driven it. Martin hooked with his left, landing on the pivoting man with the weight of his body behind the blow. The man went to the ground sidewise, leaped to his feet, and made a mad rush. Martin saw his passion-distorted face and wondered what could be the cause of the fellow's anger. But while he wondered, he shot in a straight left, the weight of his body behind the blow. The man went over backward and fell in a crumpled heap. Jimmy and others of the gang were running toward them.

Martin was thrilling all over. This was the old days with a vengeance, with their dancing, and their fighting, and their fun. While he kept a wary eye on his antagonist, he glanced at Lizzie. Usually the girls screamed when the fellows got to scrapping, but she had not screamed. She was looking on with bated breath, leaning slightly forward, so keen was her interest, one hand pressed to her breast, her cheek flushed, and in her eyes a great and amazed admiration.

The man had gained his feet and was struggling to escape the restraining arms that were laid on him.

"She was waitin' for me to come back!" he was proclaiming to all and sundry. "She was waitin' for me to come back, an' then that fresh guy comes buttin' in. Let go o' me, I tell yeh. I'm goin' to fix 'm."

"What's eatin' yer?" Jimmy was demanding, as he helped hold the young fellow back. "That guy's Mart Eden. He's nifty with his mits, lemme tell you that, an' he'll eat you alive if you monkey with 'm."

"He can't steal her on me that way," the other interjected.

"He licked the Flyin' Dutchman, an' you know HIM," Jimmy went on expostulating. "An' he did it in five rounds. You couldn't last a minute against him. See?"

This information seemed to have a mollifying effect, and the irate young man favored Martin with a measuring stare.

"He don't look it," he sneered; but the sneer was without passion.

"That's what the Flyin' Dutchman thought," Jimmy assured him. "Come on, now, let's get outa this. There's lots of other girls. Come on."

The young fellow allowed himself to be led away toward the pavilion, and the gang followed after him.

"Who is he?" Martin asked Lizzie. "And what's it all about, anyway?"

Already the zest of combat, which of old had been so keen and lasting, had died down, and he discovered that he was self- analytical, too much so to live, single heart and single hand, so primitive an existence.

Lizzie tossed her head.

"Oh, he's nobody," she said. "He's just ben keepin' company with me."

"I had to, you see," she explained after a pause. "I was gettin' pretty lonesome. But I never forgot." Her voice sank lower, and she looked straight before her. "I'd throw 'm down for you any time."

Martin looking at her averted face, knowing that all he had to do was to reach out his hand and pluck her, fell to pondering whether, after all, there was any real worth in refined, grammatical English, and, so, forgot to reply to her.

"You put it all over him," she said tentatively, with a laugh.

"He's a husky young fellow, though," he admitted generously. "If they hadn't taken him away, he might have given me my hands full."

"Who was that lady friend I seen you with that night?" she asked abruptly.

"Oh, just a lady friend," was his answer.

"It was a long time ago," she murmured contemplatively. "It seems like a thousand years."

But Martin went no further into the matter. He led the conversation off into other channels. They had lunch in the restaurant, where he ordered wine and expensive delicacies and afterward he danced with her and with no one but her, till she was tired. He was a good dancer, and she whirled around and around with him in a heaven of delight, her head against his shoulder, wishing that it could last forever. Later in the afternoon they strayed off among the trees, where, in the good old fashion, she sat down while he sprawled on his back, his head in her lap. He lay and dozed, while she fondled his hair, looked down on his closed eyes, and loved him without reserve. Looking up suddenly, he read the tender advertisement in her face. Her eyes fluttered down, then they opened and looked into his with soft defiance.

"I've kept straight all these years," she said, her voice so low that it was almost a whisper.

In his heart Martin knew that it was the miraculous truth. And at his heart pleaded a great temptation. It was in his power to make her happy. Denied happiness himself, why should he deny happiness to her? He could marry her and take her down with him to dwell in the grass-walled castle in the Marquesas. The desire to do it was strong, but stronger still was the imperative command of his nature not to do it. In spite of himself he was still faithful to Love. The old days of license and easy living were gone. He could not bring them back, nor could he go back to them. He was changed - how changed he had not realized until now.

"I am not a marrying man, Lizzie," he said lightly.

The hand caressing his hair paused perceptibly, then went on with the same gentle stroke. He noticed her face harden, but it was with the hardness of resolution, for still the soft color was in her cheeks and she was all glowing and melting.

"I did not mean that - " she began, then faltered. "Or anyway I don't care."

"I don't care," she repeated. "I'm proud to be your friend. I'd do anything for you. I'm made that way, I guess."

Martin sat up. He took her hand in his. He did it deliberately, with warmth but without passion; and such warmth chilled her.

"Don't let's talk about it," she said.

"You are a great and noble woman," he said. "And it is I who should be proud to know you. And I am, I am. You are a ray of light to me in a very dark world, and I've got to be straight with you, just as straight as you have been."

"I don't care whether you're straight with me or not. You could do anything with me. You could throw me in the dirt an' walk on me. An' you're the only man in the world that can," she added with a defiant flash. "I ain't taken care of myself ever since I was a kid for nothin'."

"And it's just because of that that I'm not going to," he said gently. "You are so big and generous that you challenge me to equal generousness. I'm not marrying, and I'm not - well, loving without marrying, though I've done my share of that in the past. I'm sorry I came here to-day and met you. But it can't be helped now, and I never expected it would turn out this way."

"But look here, Lizzie. I can't begin to tell you how much I like you. I do more than like you. I admire and respect you. You are magnificent, and you are magnificently good. But what's the use of words? Yet there's something I'd like to do. You've had a hard life; let me make it easy for you." (A joyous light welled into her eyes, then faded out again.) "I'm pretty sure of getting hold of some money soon - lots of it."

In that moment he abandoned the idea of the valley and the bay, the grass-walled castle and the trim, white schooner. After all, what did it matter? He could go away, as he had done so often, before the mast, on any ship bound anywhere.

"I'd like to turn it over to you. There must be something you want - to go to school or business college. You might like to study and be a stenographer. I could fix it for you. Or maybe your father and mother are living - I could set them up in a grocery store or something. Anything you want, just name it, and I can fix it for you."

She made no reply, but sat, gazing straight before her, dry-eyed and motionless, but with an ache in the throat which Martin divined so strongly that it made his own throat ache. He regretted that he had spoken. It seemed so tawdry what he had offered her - mere money - compared with what she offered him. He offered her an extraneous thing with which he could part without a pang, while she offered him herself, along with disgrace and shame, and sin, and all her hopes of heaven.

"Don't let's talk about it," she said with a catch in her voice that she changed to a cough. She stood up. "Come on, let's go home. I'm all tired out."

The day was done, and the merrymakers had nearly all departed. But as Martin and Lizzie emerged from the trees they found the gang waiting for them. Martin knew immediately the meaning of it. Trouble was brewing. The gang was his body-guard. They passed out through the gates of the park with, straggling in the rear, a second gang, the friends that Lizzie's young man had collected to avenge the loss of his lady. Several constables and special police officers, anticipating trouble, trailed along to prevent it, and herded the two gangs separately aboard the train for San Francisco. Martin told Jimmy that he would get off at Sixteenth Street Station and catch the electric car into Oakland. Lizzie was very quiet and without interest in what was impending. The train pulled in to Sixteenth Street Station, and the waiting electric car could be seen, the conductor of which was impatiently clanging the gong.

"There she is," Jimmy counselled. "Make a run for it, an' we'll hold 'em back. Now you go! Hit her up!"

The hostile gang was temporarily disconcerted by the manoeuvre, then it dashed from the train in pursuit. The staid and sober Oakland folk who sat upon the car scarcely noted the young fellow and the girl who ran for it and found a seat in front on the outside. They did not connect the couple with Jimmy, who sprang on the steps, crying to the motorman:-

"Slam on the juice, old man, and beat it outa here!"

The next moment Jimmy whirled about, and the passengers saw him land his fist on the face of a running man who was trying to board the car. But fists were landing on faces the whole length of the car. Thus, Jimmy and his gang, strung out on the long, lower steps, met the attacking gang. The car started with a great clanging of its gong, and, as Jimmy's gang drove off the last assailants, they, too, jumped off to finish the job. The car dashed on, leaving the flurry of combat far behind, and its dumfounded passengers never dreamed that the quiet young man and the pretty working-girl sitting in the corner on the outside seat had been the cause of the row.

Martin had enjoyed the fight, with a recrudescence of the old fighting thrills. But they quickly died away, and he was oppressed by a great sadness. He felt very old - centuries older than those careless, care-free young companions of his others days. He had travelled far, too far to go back. Their mode of life, which had once been his, was now distasteful to him. He was disappointed in it all. He had developed into an alien. As the steam beer had tasted raw, so their companionship seemed raw to him. He was too far removed. Too many thousands of opened books yawned between them and him. He had exiled himself. He had travelled in the vast realm of intellect until he could no longer return home. On the other hand, he was human, and his gregarious need for companionship remained unsatisfied. He had found no new home. As the gang could not understand him, as his own family could not understand him, as the bourgeoisie could not understand him, so this girl beside him, whom he honored high, could not understand him nor the honor he paid her. His sadness was not untouched with bitterness as he thought it over.

"Make it up with him," he advised Lizzie, at parting, as they stood in front of the workingman's shack in which she lived, near Sixth and Market. He referred to the young fellow whose place he had usurped that day.

"I can't - now," she said.

"Oh, go on," he said jovially. "All you have to do is whistle and he'll come running."

"I didn't mean that," she said simply.

And he knew what she had meant.

She leaned toward him as he was about to say good night. But she leaned not imperatively, not seductively, but wistfully and humbly. He was touched to the heart. His large tolerance rose up in him. He put his arms around her, and kissed her, and knew that upon his own lips rested as true a kiss as man ever received.

"My God!" she sobbed. "I could die for you. I could die for you."

She tore herself from him suddenly and ran up the steps. He felt a quick moisture in his eyes.

"Martin Eden," he communed. "You're not a brute, and you're a damn poor Nietzscheman. You'd marry her if you could and fill her quivering heart full with happiness. But you can't, you can't. And it's a damn shame."

"'A poor old tramp explains his poor old ulcers,'" he muttered, remembering his Henly. "'Life is, I think, a blunder and a shame.' It is - a blunder and a shame."

那天,马丁意识到了自己的寂寞。他身强力壮,却无所事事。写作和学习停止了,布里森登死了,露丝跟他吹了,他的生命被戳了个洞而他又不肯把生活固定在悠悠闲闲坐咖啡馆抽埃及烟的模式上。不错,南海在召唤他,但是他有一种感觉:美国的游戏还没有做完。他有两本书快要出版,还有更多的书就会找到出版的机会,还有钱可赚,他想等一等,然后带一大口袋金币到南海去。他知道玛奎撤思群岛有一个峡谷和一道海湾,用一千智利元就可以买到。那道峡谷从被陆地包围的马蹄铁形海湾开始直到白云缘绕的令人晕眩的峰顶,约有一万英亩,满是热带水果、野鸡、野猪,偶然还会出现野牛群。在山巅上还有受到一群群野狗骚扰的成群的野羊。那儿整个是渺无人烟的荒野,而他用一千智利元就能买到。

他记得那海湾,它风景壮丽,波阔水深,连最大的船只都可以非常安全地出入。《南太平洋指南》把它推荐为周围几百英里之内最好的船舶检修处。他打算买一艘大帆船——像游艇的、铜皮包裹的、驾驶起来像有巫术指挥的大帆船,用它在南海诸岛之间做椰子干生意,也采珍珠。他要把海湾和峡谷当作大本营,要修建一幢塔提家的那种草屋,让那草屋、峡谷和大帆船里满是皮肤黝黑的仆人。他要在那儿宴请泰欣黑的商务代办、往来的商船船长和南太平洋流浪汉中的头面人物。他要大宴宾客,来者不拒,像王公贵族一样。他要忘掉自己读过的书,忘掉书里那个其实是虚幻的世界。

为了办到这一切,他必须在加利福尼亚呆下去,让口袋里塞满了钱——钱已经开始汩汩地流来了。只要一本书走了红,他就可能卖掉他全部作品的手稿。他还可以把小说和诗歌编成集子出版,保证把那峡谷、海湾和大帆船买到手。他决不再写东西了,这是早已决定了的。但是在等着他的书出版的时候,他总得有点事做,不能像现在这样浑浑噩噩呆头呆脑,什么都不在乎地过日子。

有个星期天早上他听说砌砖工野餐会那天要在贝陵公园举行,就到那儿去了。他早年参加过多次工人阶级的野餐会,当然知道情况。他一走进公园,往日的快乐辛酸便重新袭来。这些劳动人民毕竟是他的同行,他是在他们之间出生和长大的,虽然曾和他们分手,但毕竟已回到了他们之中。

“这不是马丁吗?”他听见有人说,接着就有一只亲切的手落到他肩上,“你这么久到哪儿去了?出海了么?来,喝一杯。”

他发现自己又回到老朋友之间。还是那群老朋友,只是少了几个旧面孔,多了几张新面孔。有些人并不是砌砖工,但是跟以前一样来参加星期天野餐,来跳舞,打架,寻开心。马丁跟他们一起喝酒,重新觉得像个现实世界的人了。他觉得自己真傻,当初怎么会离开了他们呢?他非常肯定如果他没有去读书,没有去和那些高层人物厮混,而是一直跟这些人在一起,他会要幸福得多。但是,那啤酒的味道却似乎变了,没有从前那么可口了。他的结论是:布里森登败坏了他对高泡沫啤酒的胃口。他又在猜想,看来书本已经破坏了他跟这些少时的朋友之间的友谊。他决心不那么娇气,便到舞厅去跳舞。他在那儿遇见了水暖工吉米跟一个金头发白皮肤的高挑个儿的姑娘在一起。那姑娘一见马丁便丢下吉米,来和他跳。

“喷喷,还是跟从前一样,”马丁和那姑娘一圈一圈跳起华尔兹来,大家对吉米一笑,吉米解释道,“我才他妈妈的不在乎呢,马丁回来了,我高兴得要命。你看他跳华尔兹,滑溜溜的,像绸缎一样。难怪姑娘们喜欢他。”

但是马丁却把那金发姑娘还给了吉米。三个人便和六七个朋友站在一起,看着一对对的舞伴打旋子,彼此开着玩笑,快活着。大家看见马丁回来都很高兴。在他们眼里他并没有出版什么书,身上也没有什么虚构的价值,大家喜欢他,都只因为他本人。他觉得自己像个流放归来的王子,寂寞的心沐浴在真情实爱之间,又含苞欲放了。他狂欢极乐,表现得出类拔萃。而且,他口袋里有钱,恣意地挥霍着,就像当年出海归来刚发了工资一样。

有一回他在舞池里见到了丽齐·康诺利,一个工人正搂着她从他身边舞过;后来他在舞场里跳舞,又见她坐在一张小吃桌边。一番惊讶与招呼过去,他便领她去到草场——在那儿他们可以不必用高声谈话来压倒音乐。他刚一开始说话,她就已经成了他的人,这他很明白。她那又自卑又傲慢的眼神,她那得意扬扬的身姿的柔媚动作,她听他说话时那专注的神情,在在流露出了这一点。她再也不是他以前所认识的那个姑娘了,现在她已成了个女人。马丁注意到,她那大胆而野性的美有了进步。野性如故,但那大胆和火辣却醇和了些。“美人,绝色的美人,”马丁倾倒了,对自己低声喃喃地说。而他却明白地属于他,他只需要说一声“来”,她就会乖乖地跟随他走到天涯海角。

这些念头刚闪过,他的脑袋右面就挨了重重一击,几乎被打倒在地。那是一个男人的拳头,打得太愤怒,也太急,原想打他的腮帮,却打偏了。马丁一个趔趄,转过身子,见那拳头又狠狠飞来,便顺势一弯腰,那一拳落了空,那人身子却旋了过去,马丁左手一个勾拳,落到正旋转的人身上,拳头加上旋转力使那人侧着身子倒到了地上。那人翻身跳起,又疯狂地扑了上来。马丁看到了他那气急败坏的脸色,心里纳闷,是什么事让他这么大发脾气?可同时左手又挥出了一个直拳,全身力气都压了上去。那人往后倒地,翻了个个儿,瘫倒在那里。人群中的吉米和其他人急忙向他们跑来。

马丁全身激动。往昔的日子又回来了:寻仇结恨、跳舞、打架。说说笑笑。他一面拿眼睛盯着对手,一面看了丽齐一眼。平时一打架,女人们都会尖叫,可是丽齐没有叫,她只是身子微微前倾,大气不出地专心看着,一只手压在胸前,面色酡红,眼里放着惊讶和崇拜的光。

那人已经站起身来,挣扎着要摔脱拽住他的几条胳臂。

“她是在等我回来!”他对大家解释道,“她在等我回来,可这个新到的家伙却来插上一脚。放了我,告诉你们,我得教训他一顿。”

“你凭什么东西生气?”吉米在帮着拉架,问道,“这人是马丁·伊登,拳头厉害着呢,告诉你吧,你跟他闹别扭,他能把你活活吃了。”

“我不能让他就那么把她偷走,”对方插嘴道。

“他连荷兰飞人也吃掉了的,你总认识荷兰飞人吧,”吉米继续劝解,“他五个回合就把荷兰飞人打趴下了。你跟他干不了一分钟的,懂吗?”

这番劝告起了缓解的作用,那气冲冲的年轻人瞪大眼睛打量了马丁一会儿。

“他看起来可不像,”他冷笑了,但笑得没多大力气。

“当初荷兰飞人也是那么想的,”吉米向他保证,“好了,咱们别再提这事了。姑娘多的是,算了吧。”

那青年接受了劝告,往舞场去了,一群人跟着他。

“他是谁?”马丁问丽齐,“他这么闹是什么意思,究竟?”

毕竟当年对打架的那种强烈的、执着的狂热已经过去,他发现自己太爱做自我分析,他是再也无法像那样心地单纯、独来独往、原始野蛮地活下去了。

丽齐脑袋一甩。

“啊,他谁也不是,”她说,“不过陪陪我罢了。”

“我得有人陪着,你看,”她停了一会儿,说道,“我越来越感到寂寞,不过我从来没有忘记你。”她低下声音,眼睛直勾勾望着前面。“为了你我随时可以把他扔掉。”

马丁望着她那扭到一边的头。他明白他只需要一伸手,就可以把她揽过来。但他却沉思了:他心里只在怀疑文雅的合乎语法的英语究竟有什么真正的价值,没有答腔。

“你把他打了个落花流水,”她笑了笑,试探着说。

“不过他倒也是个结实的小伙子,”他坦率地承认,“要不是叫别人劝走了,他也能给我不小的麻烦呢。”

“那天晚上我看见你和一个女的在一起,那是谁?”她突然问道。

“啊,一个女朋友,”他答道。

“那已是很久很久以前了,”她沉思着说,“好像有一千年了呢。”

但是马丁没有接那个话碴,却把谈话引上了别的渠道。他们在餐馆吃了午饭。他叫来了酒和昂贵精美的食品,吃过便和她跳舞。他再不跟别人跳,只跟她跳,直跳到她筋疲力尽为止。他跳得很好,她跟他一圈一圈地跳着,感到天堂般地幸福。她的头偎在他肩上,恨不得无穷无尽地跳下去。下午他们钻进了树林。她在树林里坐了下来,让他按古老的良好习俗躺着,把头枕在她膝头上,摊开了四肢。他躺在那儿打盹,她用手抚摩着他的头发,低头看他闭上的眼睛,尽情地抚爱着他。他突然睁开眼一看,看出了她满脸的柔情。她的目光往下一闪,张了开来,带着不顾一切的温情直望着他的眼睛。

“我这几年一直都规规矩矩,”她说,声音很低,几乎像说悄悄话。

马丁从心里知道那是一个奇迹般的事实。一种巨大的诱惑从他心里升起。他是有能力让她幸福的。他自己虽得不到幸福,可他为什么不能让她幸福呢?他可以和她结婚,然后带她到玛奎撒思那干草打墙的堡垒去住。这个愿望很强,但更强的是他那不容分说地否定那愿望的天性。尽管他并不愿意,他仍然忠实于爱情。往日那种放纵轻狂的日子已经过去。他变了——直到现在他才知道自己的变化有多大。

“我不是结婚过日子的人,丽齐,”他淡淡地说。

那抚摩着他头发的手明显地停止了活动,然后又温柔地抚摩起来。他注意到她的脸色僵硬了,却是下定了决心的僵硬,因为她面颊上还有温柔的红晕,仍然陶醉,仍然容光焕发。

“我不是那意思,”她刚开口又犹豫了,“或者说我一向就不在乎。

“我不在乎,”她重复说,“我只要能做你的朋友,就已感到骄傲。为了你我什么事都可以做。我看这就是我天生的命。”

马丁坐起身子,抓住了她的手,勉强地,有温暖但没有热情。而那温暖却叫她心凉了。

“咱俩别谈这个了吧,”她说。

“你是个高贵的女人,很了不起,”他说,“应该是我为认识你而骄傲,而我确实感到骄傲,很骄傲。你是我漆黑一团的世界里的一线光明。我对你应当规规矩矩,就像你一向规规矩矩一样。”

“你对我规不规矩我不在乎,你可以愿对我怎么样就怎么样,在这个世界上只有你才可以这样做。你可以把我甩到地上,再踩在我身上。在这个世界上我只准你这么做,”她的眼光又问出什么都不在乎的光芒。“我从小就注意保护自己,可没有白保护。”

“正因为你如此我才不能轻率,”他温情脉脉地说,“你是个好姑娘,心地宽厚,也叫我心地宽厚。我不打算结婚,因此不打算光恋爱不结婚,虽然以前那么做过。我很抱歉今天到这里来遇见了你,可现在已经无可奈何。我从没有想到会出现这样的局面。

“可是,听我说,丽齐,我不能告诉你我开始时有多喜欢你,我不仅是喜欢,而且是佩服你,尊敬你。你非常出色,而且善良得非常出色。可是光嘴上说有什么用?不过,我还想做一件事。你生浑一直困难,我想让你过得好一些。(此时丽齐眼里闪出了欢乐的光彩,却随即暗淡了,)我有把握很快就会得到一笔钱——很多。”

在那一瞬间他已放弃了峡谷、海湾、草墙堡垒和那漂亮的白色大帆船。说到底那些东西又算得了什么?他还可以像以前一贯那样,去当水手,无论上什么船、上什么地方都行。

“我想把那钱送给你。你总想得到点什么东西吧——上中学呀,上商业学院呀,可能想学学速记吧,我都可以为你安排。也许你的父母还健在——我可以让他们开个杂货店什么的。一切都可以,你只要说出来我都可以给你办到。”

她坐着,默不作声,眼睛直勾勾地望着前面,没有眼泪,一动不动,喉头却疼痛起来,那便咽的声音能够听见,马丁猜到了,动了感情,喉头也不禁疼痛起来。他懊悔说了刚才的话。比起她向他奉献的东西,他的奉献好像太粗俗——不过是金钱罢了,那本是可以随便放弃而不关痛痒的身外之物,而她向他奉献的却是她自己,随之而来便是耻辱、难堪。罪孽,甚至是进人天堂的希望。

“不谈了吧,”她说着哽咽了,装作是咳嗽,站起身来。“算了,我们回家去吧,我太疲倦了。”

一天已经过去,寻欢作乐的人们差不多全走光了。但是马丁和丽齐走出林子时却发现有群人还在等着,马丁立即明白了那意思:快要出乱子了。那群人是他的保缥。他们一起从公园大门走了出去,而另一群人却三三两两跟在后面,那是丽齐的小伙子纠合来报复夺女友之恨的。几个警察和特别警官怕出乱子,也跟在后面,准备随时制止。然后两拨人便分别上了去旧金山的火车。马丁告诉吉米他要在十六路站下车,再转去奥克兰的电车。丽齐非常安静,对逼人而来的骚乱漠不关心。火车进了十六路站,等在那儿的电车已经在望;售票员已在不耐烦地敲着锣。

“电车已经到了,”吉米给他出主意,“冲过去,我们挡住他们。现在就走!冲上车去!”

寻仇的人群见了这局面一时不知如何是好,紧接着便下了火车冲了上来。坐在车上的清醒平静的奥克兰乘客并没有注意到有那么个小伙子和一个姑娘跑来赶车,而且在靠外的一面找到了座位;也没有把他们跟吉米联系起来,吉米已跳上踏板,向驾驶员叫着:——

“合电铡,老兄,开出去!”

紧接着吉米便猛地一旋,乘客们看见他一拳打在一个要想跳上车来的人脸上,但是沿着整个电车的一侧已有许多拳头打在了许多脸上。吉米和他的那伙人沿着长长的台阶排成了一排,迎击了进攻的人。电车在一声响亮的锣声中开动了。吉米的人赶走了最后的袭击者,又跳下车去结束战斗。电车冲向前去,把一片混乱的大打出手丢到了远处。目瞪口呆的乘客们做梦也没有想到坐在靠外的角落里座位上的那个文静的青年和漂亮的女工会是这番骚乱的原因。

马丁刚才还很欣赏这一番打斗,往日那斗殴的刺激又回到了他胸中。不过那感觉迅速消失,一种巨大的悲凉压上了他心头。他觉得自己非常老迈了——比这批无忧无虑逍遥自在的往日的游伴老了许多个世纪。他已经走得太远,再也回来不了。他们这种生活方式当年也是他的生活方式,可现在它却叫他兴味素然。他对这一切都感到失望,他已经成了个局外人。现在高泡沫啤酒已经淡而无昧,跟他们的友谊也一样淡而无味了。他和他们距离太远,在他和他们之间成千上万翻开的书本形成了巨大的鸿沟。他把自己流放了出去。他在辽阔的智慧的王国里漫游得太远,已经无法返回。可另一方面他却还是人,他群居的天性和对友谊的需求仍然渴望满足。他并没有得到新的归宿,他那帮朋友不可能了解他,他的家人不可能了解他,资产阶级不可能了解他,就是他身边这个他很尊重的姑娘也不可能了解他。她也不可能了解他对她的尊重。他思前想后,心里的悲凉之中并非没有糅合进了辛酸。

“跟他和好吧,”分手时他劝丽齐,这时他俩已来到了六号路和市场街附近她所居住的工人棚屋前。他指的是那被他侵犯了地位的青年。

“我做不到——现在做不到了,”她说。

“啊,做到吧,”他欢欢喜喜地说,“你只要吹一声口哨他就会赶快跑来的。”

“我不是那意思,”她简单地说。

他明白她的意思了。

他正打算道声晚安,她却向他偎依过来。偎依得并不迫切,也不挑逗,却是一往情深而卑躬屈节。他从心底里受到了感动。一种宽厚的容忍之情从他心底油然而生,他伸出双臂拥抱了她,吻了她,他明白那压在他唇上的吻是人类所能得到的最真诚的吻。

“我的上帝呀!”她抽泣起来,“我可以为你死去,为你死去。”

她突然从他身边挣扎开了,跑上了台阶。他限里立即感到一阵潮润。

“马丁·伊登,”他思考着,“你并不是野兽,可你是个他妈的可怜的尼采信徒。你应该娶了她的,你应该让她那颤栗的心充满幸福。可你办不到,办不到。真他妈的丢脸。”

“‘可怜的老流浪汉解释他那可怜的老溃疡说,’”他想起了他的诗人亨雷,喃喃地说道,“‘在我看来,生命是一个大错误,一种耻辱。’确实——一个大错误,一种耻辱。”
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