When they rose from table, Levin would have liked to follow Kitty
into the drawing room; but he was afraid she might dislike this,
as too obviously paying her attention. He remained in the little
ring of men, taking part in the general conversation, and without
looking at Kitty, he was aware of her movements, her looks, and
the place where she was in the drawing room.
He did at once, and without the smallest effort, keep the promise
he had made her--always to think well of all men, and to like
everyone always. The conversation fell on the village commune,
in which Pestsov saw a sort of special principle, called by him
the choral principle. Levin did not agree with Pestsov, nor with
his brother, who had a special attitude of his own, both
admitting and not admitting the significance of the Russian
commune. But he talked to them, simply trying to reconcile and
soften their differences. He was not in the least interested in
what he said himself, and even less so in what they said; all he
wanted was that they and everyone should be happy and contented.
He knew now the one thing of importance; and that one thing was
at first there, in the drawing room, and then began moving across
and came to a standstill at the door. Without turning round he
felt the eyes fixed on him, and the smile, and he could not help
turning round. She was standing in the doorway with
Shtcherbatsky, looking at him.
"I thought you were going towards the piano," said he, going up
to her. "That's something I miss in the country--music."
"No; we only came to fetch you and thank you," she said,
rewarding him with a smile that was like a gift, "for coming.
What do they want to argue for? No one ever convinces anyone,
"Yes; that's true," said Levin; "it generally happens that one
argues warmly simply because one can't make out what one's
opponent wants to prove."