Levin remembered that when Nikolay had been in the devout stage,
the period of fasts and monks and church services, when he was
seeking in religion a support and a curb for his passionate
temperament, everyone, far from encouraging him, had jeered at
him, and he, too, with the others. They had teased him, called
him Noah and Monk; and, when he had broken out, no one had helped
him, but everyone had turned away from him with horror and
Levin felt that, in spite of all the ugliness of his life, his
brother Nikolay, in his soul, in the very depths of his soul, was
no more in the wrong than the people who despised him. He was
not to blame for having been born with his unbridled temperament
and his somehow limited intelligence. But he had always wanted
to be good. "I will tell him everything, without reserve, and I
will make him speak without reserve, too, and I'll show him that
I love him, and so understand him," Levin resolved to himself,
as, towards eleven o'clock, he reached the hotel of which he had
"At the top, 12 and 13," the porter answered Levin's inquiry.
"Sure to be at home."
The door of No. 12 was half open, and there came out into the
streak of light thick fumes of cheap, poor tobacco, and the sound
of a voice, unknown to Levin; but he knew at once that his
brother was there; he heard his cough.
As he went in the door, the unknown voice was saying:
"It all depends with how much judgment and knowledge the thing's
Konstantin Levin looked in at the door, and saw that the speaker
was a young man with an immense shock of hair, wearing a Russian
jerkin, and that a pockmarked woman in a woolen gown, without
collar or cuffs, was sitting on the sofa. His brother was not to
be seen. Konstantin felt a sharp pang at his heart at the
thought of the strange company in which his brother spent his
life. No one had heard him, and Konstantin, taking off his
galoshes, listened to what the gentleman in the jerkin was
saying. He was speaking of some enterprise.