"I have just sent for the doctor," said Alexey Alexandrovitch.
"I am very well; what do I want the doctor for?"
"No, the little one cries, and they say the nurse hasn't enough
"Why didn't you let me nurse her, when I begged to? Anyway"
(Alexey Alexandrovitch knew what was meant by that "anyway"),
"she's a baby, and they're killing her." She rang the bell and
ordered the baby to be brought her. "I begged to nurse her, I
wasn't allowed to, and now I'm blamed for it."
"I don't blame..."
"Yes, you do blame me! My God! why didn't I die!" And she broke
into sobs. "Forgive me, I'm nervous, I'm unjust," she said,
controlling herself, "but do go away..."
"No, it can't go on like this," Alexey Alexandrovitch said to
himself decidedly as he left his wife's room.
Never had the impossibility of his position in the world's eyes,
and his wife's hatred of him, and altogether the might of that
mysterious brutal force that guided his life against his
spiritual inclinations, and exacted conformity with its decrees
and change in his attitude to his wife, been presented to him
with such distinctness as that day. He saw clearly that all the
world and his wife expected of him something, but what exactly,
he could not make out. He felt that this was rousing in his soul
a feeling of anger destructive of his peace of mind and of all
the good of his achievement. He believed that for Anna herself
it would be better to break off all relations with Vronsky; but
if they all thought this out of the question, he was even ready
to allow these relations to be renewed, so long as the children
were not disgraced, and he was not deprived of them nor forced to
change his position. Bad as this might be, it was anyway better
than a rupture, which would put her in a hopeless and shameful
position, and deprive him of everything he cared for. But he
felt helpless; he knew beforehand that every one was against him,
and that he would not be allowed to do what seemed to him now so
natural and right, but would be forced to do what was wrong,
though it seemed the proper thing to them.