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Sixpence

Sixpence - раздел Связь, Предлагаемое пособие разработано для развития навыков опосредованного перевода и устной речи слушателей программы дополнительного профессионального образования «Переводчик в сфере профессиональной коммуникации» Children Are Unaccountable Little Creatures. Why Should A Small Boy Like Dick...

Children are unaccountable little creatures. Why should a small boy like Dicky, good as gold as a rule, sensitive, affectionate, obedient, and, mar­vellously sensible for his age, have moods when, without the slightest warning, he suddenly went "mad dog," as his sisters called it, and there was no doing anything with him?

"Dicky, come here! Come here, sir, at once! Do you hear your mother calling you? Dicky!"

But Dicky wouldn't come. Oh, he heard right enough. A clear, ringing little laugh was his only reply. And away he flew; hiding, running through the uncut hay on the lawn, dashing past the wood-shed, making a rush for the kitchen garden, and there dodging, peering at his mother from behind the mossy apple trunks, and leaping up and down like a wild Indian.

It had begun at tea-time. While Dicky's mother and Mrs. Spears, who was spending the afternoon with her, were quietly sitting over their sewing in the drawing-room, this, according to the servant girl, was what had happened at the children's tea. They were eating their first bread and butter as nicely and quietly as you please, and the servant girl had just poured out the milk and water, when Dicky had suddenly seized the bread plate, put it upside down on his head, and clutched the bread knife.

"Look at me!" he shouted.

His startled sisters looked, and before the ser­vant girl could get there, the bread plate wobbled, slid, flew to the floor, and broke into shivers. At this awful point the little girls lifted up their voices and shrieked their loudest.

"Mother, come and look what he's done!"

"Dicky's broke a great big plate!"

"Come and stop him, mother!"

You can imagine how mother came flying. But she was too late. Dicky has leapt out of his chair, run through the french windows on to the veranda, and, well—there she stood—popping her thimble on and off, helpless. What could she do? She couldn't chase after the child. She couldn't stalk Dicky among the apples and damsons. That would be too undignified. It was more than annoying, it was exasperating. Especially as Mrs. Spears, Mrs. Spears of all people, whose two boys were so exem­plary, was waiting for her in the drawing-room.

"Very well, Dicky," she cried, "I shall have to think of some way of punishing you."

"I don't care," sounded the high little voice, and again there came that ringing laugh. The child was quite beside himself...

"Oh, Mrs. Spears, I don't know how to apolo­gise for leaving you by yourself like this."

"It's quite all right, Mrs. Bendall," said Mrs. Spears, in her soft, sugary voice, and raising her eyebrows in the way she had. She seemed to smile to herself as she stroked the gathers. "These little things will happen from time to time. I only hope it was nothing serious."

"It was Dicky," said Mrs. Bendall, looking rather helplessly for her only fine needle. And she explained the whole affair to Mrs. Spears. "And the worst of it is, I don't know how to cure him. Nothing when he's in that mood seems to have the slightest effect on him."

Mrs. Spears opened her pale eyes. "Not even a whipping?" said she.

But Mrs. Bendall, threading her needle, pursed up her lips. "We never have whipped the children," she said. "The girls never seem to have needed it. And Dicky is such a baby, and the only boy. Somehow..."

"Oh, my dear," said Mrs. Spears, and she laid her sewing down. "I don't wonder Dicky has these little outbreaks. You don't mind my saying so? But I'm sure you make a great mistake in trying to bring up children without whipping them. Nothing really takes its place. And I speak from experi­ence, my dear. I used to try gentler measures"— Mrs. Spears drew in her breath with a little hissing sound—"soaping the boys' tongues, for instance, with yellow soap, or making them stand on the table for the whole of Saturday afternoon. But no, believe me," said Mrs. Spears, "there is nothing, there is nothing like handing them over to their father."

Mrs. Bendall in her heart of hearts was dread­fully shocked to hear of that yellow soap. But Mrs. Spears seemed to take it so much for granted, that 2. she did too.

"Their father," she said. "Then you don't whip them yourself?"

"Never." Mrs. Spears seemed quite shocked at the idea. "I don't think it's the mother's place to whip the children. It's the duty of the father. And, besides, he impresses them so much more."

"Yes, I can imagine that," said Mrs. Bendall faintly.

"Now my two boys," Mrs. Spears smiled kind­ly, encouragingly, at Mrs. Bendall, "would behave just like Dicky if they were not afraid to. As it is..."

"Oh, your boys are perfect little models," cried Mrs. Bendall.

They were. Quieter, better-behaved little boys, in the presence of grown-ups, could not be found. In fact, Mrs. Spears' callers often made the remark that you never would have known that there was a child in the house. There wasn't—very often.

In the front hall, under a large picture of fat, cheery old monks fishing by the riverside, there was a thick, dark horse-whip that had belonged to Mr. Spears' father. And for some reason the boys preferred to play out of sight of this, behind the dog-kennel or in the tool-house, or round about the dustbin.

"It's such a mistake," sighed Mrs. Spears, breathing softly, as she folded her work, "to be weak with children when they are little. It's such a sad mistake, and one so easy to make. It's so unfair to the child. That is what one has to remem­ber. Now Dicky's little escapade this afternoon seemed to me as though he'd done it on purpose. It was the child's way of showing you that he needed a whipping."

"Do you really think so?" Mrs. Bendall was a weak little thing, and this impressed her very much.

"I do; I fell sure of it. And a sharp reminder now and then," cried Mrs. Spears in quite a professional manner, "administered by the father, will save you so much trouble in the future. Believe me, my dear." She put her dry, cold hand over Mrs. Bendall's.

"I shall speak to Edward the moment he comes in," said Dicky's mother firmly.

The children had gone to bed before the garden gate banged and Dicky's father staggered up the steep concrete steps carrying his bicycle. It had been a bad day at the office. He was hot, dusty, tired out.

But by this time Mrs. Bendall had become quite excited over the new plan, and she opened the door to him herself.

"Oh, Edward, I'm so thankful you have come home," she cried.

"Why, what's happened?" Edward lowered the bicycle and took off his hat. A red angry pucker showed where the brim had pressed. "What's up?"

"Come—come into the drawing-room," said Mrs. Bendall, speaking very fast. "I simply can't tell you how naughty Dicky has been. You have no idea—you can't have at the office all day—how a child of that age can behave. He's been simply dreadful. I have no control over him—none. I've tried everything, Edward, but it's all no use. The only thing to do," she finished breathlessly, "is to whip him—is for you to whip him, Edward."

In the corner of the drawing-room there was a what-not, and on the top shelf stood a brown china bear with a painted tongue. It seemed in the shad­ow to be grinning at Dicky's father, to be saying, "Hooray, this is what you've come home to!"

"But why on earth should I start whipping him?" said Edward, staring at the bear. "We've never done it before."

"Because," said his wife, "don't you see, it's the only thing to do. I can't control the child..." Her words flew from her lips. They beat round him, beat round his tired head. "We can't possibly afford a nurse. The servant girl has more than enough to do. And his naughtiness is beyond words. You don't understand, Edward; you can't, you're at the office all day."

The bear poked out his tongue. The scolding voice went on. Edward sank into a chair.

"What am I to beat him with?" he said weakly.

"Your slipper, of course," said his wife. And she knelt down to untie his dusty shoes.

"Oh, Edward," she wailed, "you've still got your cycling clips on in the drawing-room. No, really—"

"Here, that's enough." Edward nearly pushed her away. "Give me that slipper."

He went up the stairs. He felt like a man in a dark net. And now he wanted to beat Dicky. Yes, damn it, he wanted to beat something. My God, what a life! The dust was still in his hot eyes, his arms felt heavy.

He pushed open the door of Dicky's slip of a room. Dicky was standing in the middle of the floor in his night-shirt. At the sight of him Edward's heart gave a warm throb of rage.

"Well, Dicky, you know what I've come for," said Edward.

Dicky made no reply.

"I've come to give you a whipping."

No answer.

"Lift up your night-shirt."

At that Dicky looked up. He flushed a deep pink. "Must I?" he whispered.

"Come on, now. Be quick about it," said Edward, and, grasping the slipper, he gave Dicky three hard slaps.

"There, that'll teach you to behave properly to your mother."

Dicky stood there, hanging his head.

"Look sharp and get into bed," said his father.

Still he did not move. But a shaking voice said, "I've not done my teeth yet, Daddy."

"Eh, what's that?"

Dicky looked up. His lips were quivering, but his eyes were dry. He hadn't made a sound or shed a tear. Only he swallowed and said huskily, "I haven't done my teeth, Daddy."

But at the sight of that little face Edward turned, and, not knowing what he was doing, he bolted J from the room, down the stairs, and out into the garden. Good God! What had he done? He strode along and hid in the shadow of the pear tree by the hedge. Whipped Dicky—whipped his little man with a slipper—and what the devil for? He didn't even know. Suddenly he barged into his room— and there was the little chap in his night-shirt. Dicky's father groaned and held on to the hedge. And he didn't cry. Never a tear. If only he'd cried or got angry. But that "Daddy"! And again he heard the quivering whisper. Forgiving like that without a word. But he'd never forgive himself—never. Coward! Fool! Brute! And suddenly he remem­bered the time when Dicky had fallen off his knee and sprained his wrist while they were playing together. He hadn't cried then, either. And that was the little hero he had just whipped.

Something's got to be done about this, thought Edward. He strode back to the house, up the stairs, into Dicky's room. The little boy was lying in bed. In the half-light his dark head, with the square fringe, showed plain against the pale pillow. He was lying quite still, and even now he wasn't cry­ing. Edward shut the door and leaned against it. What he wanted to do was to kneel down by Dicky's bed and cry himself and beg to be forgiv­en. But, of course, one can't do that sort of thing. He felt awkward, and his heart was wrung.

"Not asleep yet, Dicky?" he said lightly.

"No, Daddy."

Edward came over and sat on his boy's bed, and Dicky looked at him through his long lashes.

"Nothing the matter, little chap, is there?" said Edward, half whispering.

"No-o, Daddy," came from Dicky.

Edward put out his hand, and carefully he took Dicky's hot little paw.

"You—you mustn't think any more of what hap­pened just now, little man," he said huskily. "See? That's all over now. That's forgotten. That's never going to happen again. See?"

"Yes, Daddy."

"So the thing to do now is to buck up, little chap," said Edward, "and to smile." And he tried himself an extraordinary trembling apology for a smile. "To forget all about it—to—eh? Little man... Old boy..."

Dicky lay as before. This was terrible. Dicky's father sprang up and went over to the window. It was nearly dark in the garden. The servant girl had run out, and she was snatching, twitching some white clothes off the bushes and piling them over her arm. But in the boundless sky the evening star shone, and a big gum tree, black against the pale glow, moved its long leaves softly. All this he saw, while he felt in his trousers pocket for his money. Bringing it out, he chose a new sixpence and went back to Dicky.

"Here you are, little chap. Buy yourself some­thing," said Edward softly, laying the sixpence on Dicky's pillow.

But could even that—could even a whole six­pence—blot out what had been?

 

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Предлагаемое пособие разработано для развития навыков опосредованного перевода и устной речи слушателей программы дополнительного профессионального образования «Переводчик в сфере профессиональной коммуникации»

От авторов.. Предлагаемое пособие разработано для развития навыков опосредованного перевода и устной речи слушателей программы дополнительного профессионального..

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Contents
ABOUT THE AUTHOR……………………………………………………….. BLISS…………………………………………………………………………... PICTURES…………………………

About the author
New Zealand's most famous writer was closely associated with D.H. Lawrence and something of a rival of Virginia Woolf. Mansfield's creative years were burdened with loneliness, illness, jealousy, a

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column. Find sentences with these words in the story
1. open and sincere in expression; straightforward. bliss 2. to carry out or fulfill the command, order, or instruction.

Match one of the following adjectives to each description
frank passionate curious amused distressed dreadful collected mysterious absurd extravagant bored a) A …………… person has strong romantic or sexual feelings and expresses them in thei

Pictures
Eight o'clock in the morning. Miss Ada Moss lay in a black iron bedstead, staring up at the ceiling. Her room, a Bloomsbury top-floor back,

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column. Find sentences with these words in the story
1. not having a clear shape. to take trouble 2. to smile widely at somebody. to give no sign

Sun and Moon
In the afternoon the chairs came, a whole big cart full of little gold ones with their legs in the air. And then the flowers came. When you

Find the English equivalents to the following words or phrases and use them in the sentences of your own
1.to behave in a particular way in order to make other people believe smth that is not true. at any rate 2.to be annoyed or quite angr

Life of Ma Parker
When the literary gentleman, whose flat old Ma* Parker cleaned every Tuesday, opened the door to her that morning, he asked after her grands

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column. Find sentences with these words in the story
1. to be concerned or interested. to be a success 2. mental or emotional unhappiness or distress. to overcome

Marriage a la Mode
On his way to the station William remembered with a fresh pang of disappointment that he was taking nothing down to the kiddies. Poor little

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column. Find sentences with these words in the story
1.to take care of. to settle something 2. to lead or move, as to a course of action, by influence or persuasion. to fish

Miss Brill
Although it was so brilliantly fine—the blue sky powdered with gold and the great spots of light like white wine splashed over the Jardins P

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column. Find sentences with these words in the story
1.futile; useless. to decide on smth 2.being familiar with smth so that it no longer seems new or strange to you.

Her First Ball
Exactly when the ball began Leila would have found it hard to say. Perhaps her first real partner was the cab. It did not matter that she shared the cab with the Sheridan girls and their brother. S

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column. Find sentences with these words in the story
1. to like smth or like to do smth, to be willing to do smth weird 2.not happy or smiling; looking very serious

Match one of the following adjectives to each description
ashamed exciting surprising terrified shy gloomy

Speak on or write an essay about your assessment of the story and your impressions of it
The Lady's Maid Eleven o 'clock. A knock at the door. ...I hope I haven't disturbed you, madam. You weren't asleep—were you? But I've just given my lady her tea,

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column. Find sentences with these words in the story
1. to do one’s hair to cheat smb 2.full of extreme anger, raging to feel inclined to do smth

The Fly
"Y'are very snug in here," piped old Mr. Woodifield, and he peered out of the great, green-leather arm-chair by his friend the boss's desk as a baby peers out of its pram. His talk was ov

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column. Find sentences with these words in the story
1. to have a useful effect: to help smb. to be over 2. to meet or find something by chance. to make a nuisance

The Tiredness of Rosabel
At the corner of Oxford Circus Rosabel bought a bunch of violets, and that was practically the rea­son why she had so little tea—for a scone

Comprehension Check
a) What did Rosabel do to earn her living? b) What was her mood when she was returning home? c) What means did the author use to describe Rosabel’s tiredness? d) What had

Speak on or write an essay about your assessment of the story and your impressions of it
  The Little Girl To the little girl he was a figure to be feared and avoided. Every morning befo

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column. Find sentences with these words in the story
1.an unusually large person properly 2.to search or examine thoroughly to give smth up

Put in the missing prepositions
I looked … the apartment where I had spent most … my life. The window was open and sounds … the street mixed … the talk show … the radio that my mother always kept … It seemed that she had even tur

Pension Seguin
The servant who opened the door was twin sis­ter to that efficient and hideous creature bearing a soup tureen into the First French Picture. Her round red face shone like freshly washed china. She

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column
1. very likely to be influenced, harmed or affected by smth. immense 2. to suggest that smth is true or that you feel or think

Late at Night
(Virginia is seated by the fire. Her outdoor things are thrown on a chair; her boots are faintly steaming in the fender). Virginia (laying the letter down): I don't like this letter at all

Comprehension Check
a) What kind of letter did Virginia receive? b) Why did she consider it offensive? c) Why did Sunday evenings have a special effect on the woman? d) What are Virginia’s t

Match the following definitions in the left column with the words in the right column. Find sentences with these words in the story
1. to make smb able to avoid doing smth difficult or unpleasant. to have moods 2. to deliberately try to forget an unpleasant m

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