The challenge



W e had our friends, like the clown left the counselors Wicke and inhibitor at a well-occupied table in the elegant restaurant of the Hoftraiteurs. There were still several friends together. Her conversation was, of course, Henriette. Vicky, who could not hear the name call without his perishable accident to remember, stole offside, got pen, ink and paper from one of the waiters, and wrote the letter and essay that we read in the previous chapter. But before he sent him off, he read him in the company pretending he had just taken him out of his apartment. Of course he found general applause, so that Wicke almost praised his star, whose influence had made him a writer in this way. He was then handed over to the waiter who took over the care. Through Wicke’s lecture the conversation had turned to the criticisms of the day, and anyone who had read the last leaflets of various kinds found that they were apparently divided into two parties, one of which deliberately malicious attacks on Henrietta, the other against them vigorously shielded and defended. The editor of the man-shy, the professor Ruhwitz, must have been bribed in the opinion of the society apparently, in order to turn Wickes criticism so disgracefully to Henrietten’s calamity.

“But who could,” asked Counselor Rath, “have occasion to do so?” “How?” Wicke came in, “can you still doubt? I bet it was the jealous Caroline! “” You’re right, “cried the well-known Colonel Lieutenant, who was also present,” I was with her for a moment before I went to see Henrietta, when she could barely suppress their anger. I purposely teased her a little by lifting Henrietten to heaven, and every time she started on her own and one of her roles, I jumped off and came back to Henriette’s merits. You see, the little jealous pretty person almost cried with annoyance. “” Delicious, “called a man not yet known to us, name of Hayfish”(also a maeceness of the theater and Jerusalemitic descent) on honor, dear lieutenant-colonel, delicately. I would like to be there. But tomorrow I want to go there and do it like that. One must show the overbearing singers that one can drop them off as a favor. She has been my Goddess long enough; Tomorrow she will have to swallow bitter pills instead of frankincense! “A young, pale man, who had been sitting alone at a table without speaking, stood now up and approached the somewhat loud speaker. The buffoon recognized him and whispered, “See the corpse that forms Carolinens shadow; it is her pale admirer. Well, if he has heard your speech, and he does not turn red like a boiled crab, then I experience a moor pale, like the stony guest. “Indeed, a faint redness of displeasure covered the cheeks of the pale, haggard youth. He seemed doubtful as to whether or not he should approach the company, but at last, as one of them made a sudden decision, he made a turn, and went straight to the table, and spoke as follows:

“My lords! Here I just hear some very improper and indecent speeches which offend a lady whom they all know. I do not know which of you said it, but hereby I explain to you that, if you can not undeniably prove what you have said, I think the speakers are men without honor. But if they could prove it, I still have to do with the way they feel about a lady behind her back speak, speak for low and under the dignity of a man of estate. After that you have to comply. I am a Roman, my name is Agrippinus Coloniensis’My apartment is in the Rossmariengaße.’ With these words he strode proudly out the door. The society sat with open mouth, and did not know what to say. At last Hayfisch began to ask timidly, “Did any of us say anything that might offend the Lord?” “That I did not know,” replied Rath Vick. The lieutenant lieutenant looked most annoyed and did not say a word. During this break, several gentlemen entered, recognizing everyone at first sight on their faces for critics. They were among other caterpillars Bach , the editor of Quark , the poet and criticasters Schillibold Avecça , Rennstein , Ruhwitz , Puckbulz , Huhn and others; they seemed in the liveliest conversation with each other, sat down at a somewhat remote table and demanded wine. One would certainly not have been able to understand much of their conversation, if not in the first society so deep silence would have occurred. So one heard the following from time to time:

Quark. That will make you look, dear Rennstein, believe me; especially if you, dear Schillibold, and you, the dear chick, do not deprive us of your assistance.

Schillibold Avecça. Of course! We do not hold a party, but we want to give vent to our humor.

Chicken. I’m in the brain like champagne! If only I had air for all thoughts!

Quark. I feel the same way! Ha, how will that lift the newspaper! I refute myself ten times, and always coarser. Yes, I would be able to and I told myself Injurien, and even sued myself at the Court of Appeals.

Rennstein. Quark! the thought is precious. What if, on the other hand, I turned the tide, praising myself more and more in a half-dozen anti-criticisms, and always blaming my modesty?

Tracked Bach. Good as well! Only not so advantageous for the paragraph; bitter criticism lures the amount. Nothing could have been better for me than the assignment Caroline gave me.

Ruhwitz. Well, we serve her, but let us not deny the right to serve the other as well. Listen, I can think of something! I have a little epigram on both. You must give each one a question of price, to whom they sign their name, and the signed name could always contain a sharp satirical answer, e. Example: Henriette asks and signs.

Price question.

Who likes to sing with everyone in the bet?

Henriette.

Caroline answers.

Price question.

Who draws a good face to evil games?

Caroline.

Puckbulz. Nice; I can think of one too.

Price question.

Who pays well for praising sonnets?

Henriette.

Price question.

Who would like to be the first on stage?

Caroline.

Price question.

Chicken. Who is, I ask, the cunning coquette?

Henriette.

Price question.

Do you know the angry lovely Cocquine?

Caroline.

Quark. Ha! Ha! Ha! Let’s just ponder, so we bring out a dozen! – But quiet, I think we’re being listened to.

They spoke softer now, because the other table had really become attentive. Rennstein stroked his mustache and adjusted his glasses, Raupenbach took a pinch, Quark smiled and rolled his eyes, halfway to the sky, Puckbulz coughed, Schillibold got up and walked over the carpet on top of each other. They wanted to give the appearance as if they had not made any eager conversation. The deep silence that prevailed since the challenge at the other table was now first again reasonably interrupted. The lieutenant-lieutenant said: “Gentlemen, I’ve thought about it. We can not ignore the pale man’s speech. Apparently he was angry at what we, namely myself, Herr Rath Wicke, and our friend Hayfisch had said about Carolinen. We must therefore discuss all three with him and with us. “” Of course, “cried the buffoon! “Wicke, I’m your second. We want to make the pale pale! “But Wicke sat dumb and anxious, and Hayfish trembled on all limbs. When the buffoon remarked, he continued: “Look, this is male, children, that the wrath makes you so pale, and you can not bring forth a word of anger. Yes, we want to see what the pale one will say, if the Hayfish fears him! but hear, spare the poor man. Love drives him to madness. Consider his relatives and relatives, who are already so saddened by the boy’s aberration; how would they not grieve only if he were mutilated, or even dead in the square? “” Well, my lords, “interrupted the Colonel Lieutenant, “when do we go to the Challenger? I am of the opinion that tomorrow it must happen early in the morning, and in a collective way. I’ll pick you up at seven, since I’ll have to pass them to get to Rossmaringaße. Are you satisfied with that? “” Yes, Best, “they both stammered, looking up sadly.

The buffoon just wanted to give vent to his mocking mood when Lord Monday came in with a noise, and looked around the room, and then he went into the adjoining room, and so on, to the farthest room. From there he returned to the room where our friends were sitting and asked, “Sirs, did any of you possibly see Count Klammheim of W.?” “Dear Lord,” replied the Colonel Lieutenant is yes, I’m told, only expected in six weeks. You mean the one who is to come here as chargé d’affaires from W …? “” Of course, “cried the lord. “But Goddam knows how to do it, half an hour ago I receive a letter from our little Henriette, where I was planning to spend the evening, brought to me by a servant of the count, who also wore the livery, which I wore from W.” know exactly. He was sealed with the Count’s coat of arms, and he writes to me that he has just arrived and at once has affairs of the utmost importance to discuss with me. I should meet him at the farm trainer, from there we wanted to go to the prince together. Of course, I open my arms full of excitement, – alone, whom I do not meet, is my earl Klammheim, and from whom no one wants to know anything is, Goddam, again the count! So I do not know the hell,

“Now, if he Ew. Glory, “replied the buffoon,” so I thought you were waiting for him here, and did not disdain to sit down at our table. “The Lord accepted the invitation sat down and began: “Goddam, I am most annoyed. I was so in the train with the little ones! I wanted to bet that I would finish today. So alone with her in the closet, in the evening, the lamp was not burning too bright, I the Lord, she the singer, I assure you, gentlemen, that I was about to storm when the devil was the cursed servant of the Count Klammheim brought about. But now I have another plan. With the visits one comes to nothing. I think that you have to arrange country parties, balls, and the like, and the opportunity is always better. “” Of course, of course, “said the buffoon,” it is always better that you wait for the opportunity than it takes for violence. “The Lord did not notice, as a foreigner, the allusion by the proverbial saying, but the others laughed. He was attracted to the relationship in general, and his expression made him laugh as well, not unlike a satyr. “But to come back to the country party,” he said, “how would it be if the gentlemen take my suggestion tomorrow? We invite the beautiful Henriette to drive to Strahlheim. There we make a water ride, maybe a bal champêtre , then of course, more ladies have to be invited to it, we play small games in the open air, z. B. Haschens, hiding, stop,Tire u. s. and it would have to go with the devil, if one were not to allow a rural freedom on such a part! What do you think, gentlemen? “Everyone thought the suggestion was excellent; Only the lieutenant-colonel said that perhaps he had business to keep him, Rath Wicke and Herr von Hayfisch. The last two cut as sour faces as if they had bitten on crab apples. But the lieutenant-colonel seemed so damned serious of the Roman’s challenge that they did not see how they could get away with it. There were still some conversations about the way in which one could enjoy the pleasure that was to come; one agreed on this and that, how one wanted to drive, to ride horses, to have dinner, more, so that at last it became quite late. The Count Klammheim, however, had not come, and the Lord finally thought it best to drive home, in which the other gentlemen followed his example.

Vicky had a sleepless night, and the Hayfish would have liked to dive into the nearest sea, if only the damned duel could have been wiped out of the way of things. But things could not be changed, so he had to bite the sour apple. At seven o’clock the lieutenant-colonel knocked on his door. He had already dressed to conceal the fact that, in spite of the warm summertime, he had put on three pairs of under-garments, one of which was thick boulder, and an equal number of woolen night-squirts. With equal care he had wrapped a thick silk cloth around his neck and tied a tie over it, which was stronger than a Homeric shield ofnine bullskins. He would gladly have put on a wadded wig if he had one. In these stomach-warming suits he followed the lieutenant-colonel, who today in uniform appeared, although he usually never did otherwise than in a blue tuxedo. They called Wicke off. He approached them pale, apparently also dressed with caution. “Dear friends,” he said, “I really do not know whether it is right that we, public servants of reputation, should risk our lives against so young a man,who in the despair of unhappy love can be the devil himself in fencing. The land right is pronounced against the duelists. I am truly in a state of genuine conscience! “” Very true! “Affirmed Hayfisch,” I too disagree with my conscience, for I have religion, and this forbids me to be hostile to my neighbor. “” Donnerwetter, “continued the lieutenant-colonel, “I do not strike myself for a spas, for I am an old fellow, but excuses, gentlemen, I will not permit. Either come with me or I’ll tell you in public- “” Yes, my dear, “interrupted Wicke interrupting,” we only said one opinion. We are ready! No one thinks of excuses. I analyzed only the sad necessity. “-” Here he lives, “cried the lieutenant-colonel,” let us go up. “They climbed the stairs and entered. Agrippinus sat on the sofa with a miniature painting in his hand, which he sighed. Before him, the coffee was still untouched, writing materials were on the left side of the table, on the right was a lady’s glove. Some pieces of the document on a chair were densely dusted, a sign that they had not been touched for a long time. Begun sonnets were seen spreading like sand on the floorboard. Everything betrayed the lovers and poets. When he saw the strangers enter, he slowly got up solemnly from his seat and asked for her request. The lieutenant-colonel informed him, saying that he had expected to send him secondaries; but he is ready at any time. Whereupon the lieutenant-colonel declared that he was by no means in accordance with the laws of honor, when three came up against one, and proposed to him by the lot to choose who should strike, shoot, or sting with him. This happened, the Loos fell on Hayfisch. vetch He jumped and swore that he was sorry that he should not be the fighter. Hayfisch believed it as much as he wanted, but found the lottery terrible. It was agreed that there should be a duel on the bat. It was sent to a doctor, to a cart, and to a second to Agrippinus. The first two arrived in fifteen minutes, the latter soon afterwards. The doctor was a tall man with black hair, dark eyes, high forehead, and a lively, almost dark red complexion; He spoke slowly but determinedly, and in his dark olive-colored coat he had something impressive. Hayfisch rejoiced that he had nothing to do with him. The second of our Agrippinus, on the other hand, was almost as pale as he, much narrower in face and longer in shape. But some curly brown hair and a cheerful look gave him a dainty look. He seemed to like managing his job and behaved accurately and punctually. Both were countrymen of the pale. In two carriages the two parties drove to Strahlheim, where the duel is going on at onceshould. The lieutenant-colonel and Vickie were the second of the petty-minded adversary, who, however, sought to show all possible composure. Rayheim was an hour from the residence on the shore of the broader stream there. Opposite the village was another pleasant patch, behind which a dark alder bush spread. This one had been designated for the battleground, and sat down, after one had descended in beam home, over there with a small Nachen over. On a grassy patch that provided a solid level ground for the fencers, the scale was taken and everything prepared for battle. The lieutenant-colonel had, I must say, proposed this place, because he hoped that he would still share in the part of the land that had been arranged for today; otherwise it was not the most common place to undertake such activities. The fighters now removed their skirts and stepped on the scale. Hayfisch plucked his neckband up to his lower lip, trying to hide his ears in it. In the hat that was put on, he carefully put his big pockets cloth and then pressed the filzenen helmet deep in the face. Agrippinus, who was more used to the cause than the Maecen from the East, stood cold on the scale without suspecting either fear or anger. The seconds, on the other hand, smiled as they saw the high ridge Hayfish had girded around his neck, and the doctor remarked, “The gentleman seems to have the rose or the goat-peter, because he keeps himself so warm. Now they lay down; the Maecen trembled like the leaves of the alders behind him, with which the wind played. The blades were tied, the first blow happened. Hayfisch, who otherwise did not fight badly, tried only to cover himself and ducked his head like a duck in the light of the weather. “Hell, sir! Shut up! “Shouted his second, the lieutenant-colonel, “You can have the felt centner wisely cut from the lid, and your forelock will also make a hustle next.” At this speech Hayfisch wanted to turn out, like Falstaff, and led his blade with a half-closed eye to a mighty prank, by a good step forward on the right foot. But The consequence of this blind enthusiasm was that Maecen was a bit too angled, and on the grass, which was a bit slippery from a morning rain, slipped out and fell forward on his opponent. The latter had struck out at a speed, and now he struck the Hebrew over his back as far as the place where he loses his honest name, so that the vest and thigh-shrouding robe burst from each other, and the subcutis, consisting of a woolen one Kamisol and yellow reed leg shells, became visible in an elongated ritz. But the Roman came out worse, because the awkward Fallende slipped his upper arm with the bat in the fall, and, half stitch, half bump, hit the blade of the hip, and penetrated quite deep into the flesh. The seconds shrieked! Hayfish roared for help, Agrippinus cursed: Damned bad luck. The doctor jumped in and examined the wound of the Roman; she was not dangerous, but prevented him from fencing, and so the fight had to be abolished, although the referee did not judge him . After Agrippinus was joined, the slashed Maecen approached him and said: “Doctor, please have the kindness and see if I am wounded; it could be, I have a wound and I would like to bleed to death. “Everyone laughed and the doctor explained,” No, sir, yoursWounds exceed my art; a tailor has to join them. Although we surgeons sew, too, a slot as long as yours needs a more skillful hand. “That ended the duel. They sat down again on the boat and drove to Strahlheim. Hayfisch, who did not wish to repeat the play, asked the Roman to ask Wicke if he would not accept satisfaction. He declared that if Hayfisch wanted to explain in writing that he had not wounded him in the first place, secondly he would take back everything he had said against Carolinen and, thirdly, he promised never again to set foot above Caroline’s threshold again. The Maecenus agreed to everything, wrote down the file, had the wound sutured, and the matter was thus abolished. It was reconciled, and a breakfast in beam home should be the seal of the new covenant.

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