Page:Hunger (Hamsun).djvu/209

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193
Hunger

immediately to my head. The thought of the previous evening's adventure overwhelmed me—made me delirious. Supposing she were not to meet me on Tuesday! Supposing she were to begin to think things over, to get suspicious . . . get suspicious of what? . . . My thoughts gave a jerk and dwelt upon the money. I grew afraid; deadly afraid of myself. The theft rushed in upon me in all its details. I saw the little shop, the counter, my lean hands as I seized the money, and I pictured to myself the line of action the police would adopt when they would come to arrest me. Irons on my hands and feet; no, only on my hands; perhaps only on one hand. The dock, the clerk taking down the evidence, the scratch of his pen—perhaps he might take a new one for the occasion—his look, his threatening look. There, Herr Tangen, to the cell, the eternally dark . . .

Humph! I clenched my hands tightly to try and summon courage, walked faster and faster, and came to the market-place. There I sat down.

Now, no child's play. How in the wide world could anyone prove that I had stolen? Besides, the huckster's boy dare not give an alarm, even if it should occur to him some day