Page:Hunger (Hamsun).djvu/255

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239
Hunger

I would indeed be green! "There, be quiet! No bosh! Live king and country!"

She fought and struggled against me with unusual strength—far too strongly to only do so from coyness. I happened, as if inadvertently, to knock over the light, so that it went out. She made a despairing struggle—gave vent at last to a little whimper.

"No, not that—oh, not that! If you like, you may rather kiss me on my breast, oh, dear, kind . . . "

I stopped instantly. Her words sounded so terrified, so helpless, I was struck to the heart. She meant to offer me a compensation by giving me leave to kiss her breast! How charming, how charmingly naïve. I could have fallen down and knelt before her.

"But, dear pretty one," I said, completely bewildered, "I don't understand . . . I really can't conceive what sort of a game this is . . . "

She rose, lit the candle again with trembling hands. I leant back on the sofa and did nothing. What would happen now? I was in reality very ill at ease.

She cast a look over at the clock on the wall, and started.

"Ugh, the girl will soon come now!" she