Page:Hunger (Hamsun).djvu/128

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devil of a fellow, eh? Five shillings! My mirth increased, and I gave way to it. Ugh! what a shocking smell of cooking there was here—a downright disgustingly strong smell of chops for dinner, phew! and I flung open the window to let out this beastly smell. "Waiter, a plate of beef!" Turning to the table—this miserable table that I was forced to support with my knees when I wrote—I bowed profoundly, and said:

"May I ask will you take a glass of wine? No? I am Tangen—Tangen, the Cabinet Minister. I—more's the pity—I was out a little late . . . the door-key." Once more my thoughts ran without rein in intricate paths. I was continually conscious that I talked at random, and yet I gave utterance to no word without hearing and understanding it. I said to myself, "Now you are talking at random again," and yet I could not help myself. It was as if one were lying awake, and yet talking in one's sleep.

My head was light, without pain and without pressure, and my mood was unshadowed. It sailed away with me, and I made no effort.

"Come in! Yes, only come right in! As