Page:Hunger (Hamsun).djvu/310

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didn't touch anything; I only just sat here on the chair. . . ."

"Yes, yes; there was no harm in that," said the man. "What the devil does it matter? Let the man alone; he——"

By this time I had reached the end of the stairs. All at once I got furious with this fat, swollen woman, who followed close to my heels to get rid of me quickly, and I stood quiet a moment with the worst abusive epithets on my tongue ready to sling at her. But I bethought myself in time, and held my peace, if only out of gratitude to the stranger man, who followed her, and would have to hear them. She trod close on my heels, railing incessantly, and my anger increased with every step I took.

We reached the yard below. I walked very slowly, still debating whether I would not have it out with her. I was at this moment completely blinded with rage, and I searched for the worst word—an expression that would strike her dead on the spot, like a kick in her stomach. A commissionaire passes me at the entrance. He touches his hat; I take no notice; he applies to her; and I hear that he inquires for me, but I do not turn round.