Page:Hunger (Hamsun).djvu/319

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303
Hunger

myself into the most distressful circumstances.

As for the rest, I consigned the whole affair to the keeping of the yellowest of devils. I hadn't begged for the half-sovereign, and I had barely had it in my hand, but gave it away at once—paid it away to utterly strange people whom I would never see again. That was the sort of man I was; I always paid out to the last doit whatever I owed. If I knew Ylajali aright, neither did she regret that she had sent me the money, therefore why did I sit there working myself into a rage? To put it plainly, the least she could do was to send me half-a-sovereign now and then. The poor girl was indeed in love with me—ha! perhaps even fatally in love with me; . . . and I sat and puffed myself up with this notion. There was no doubt that she was in love with me, the poor girl.

It struck five o'clock! Again I sank under the weight of my prolonged nervous excitement. The hollow whirring in my head made itself felt anew. I stared straight ahead, kept my eyes fixed, and gazed at the chemist's under the sign of the elephant.