Page:Hunger (Hamsun).djvu/98

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I fumbled with my hands over the white spot, and felt, to my astonishment, that it was a letter. I take it over to the window, examine as well as it is possible in the dark the badly-written letters of the address, and make out at least my own name. Ah, I thought, an answer from my landlady, forbidding me to enter the room again if I were for sneaking back.

Slowly, quite slowly I left the room, carrying my shoes in one hand, the letter in the other, and the blanket under my arm. I draw myself up, set my teeth as I tread on the creaking steps, get happily down the stairs, and stand once more at the door. I put on my shoes, take my time with the laces, sit a while quietly after I'm ready, and stare vacantly before me, holding the letter in my hand. Then I get up and go.

The flickering ray of a gas lamp gleams up the street. I make straight for the light, lean my parcel against the lamp-post and open the letter. All this with the utmost deliberation. A stream of light, as it were, darts through my breast, and I hear that I give a little cry—a meaningless sound of joy. The letter was from the editor. My story was accepted—