The head deacon, as though to remind them of the value of his
time, coughed impatiently, making the window-panes quiver in
their frames. In the choir the bored choristers could be heard
trying their voices and blowing their noses. The priest was
continually sending first the beadle and then the deacon to find
out whether the bridegroom had not come, more and more often he
went himself, in a lilac vestment and an embroidered sash, to the
side door, expecting to see the bridegroom. At last one of the
ladies, glancing at her watch, said, "It really is strange,
though!" and all the guests became uneasy and began loudly
expressing their wonder and dissatisfaction. One of the
bridegroom's best men went to find out what had happened. Kitty
meanwhile had long ago been quite ready, and in her white dress
and long veil and wreath of orange blossoms she was standing in
the drawing-room of the Shtcherbatskys' house with her sister,
Madame Lvova, who was her bridal-mother. She was looking out of
the window, and had been for over half an hour anxiously
expecting to hear from her best man that her bridegroom was at
Levin meanwhile, in his trousers, but without his coat and
waistcoat, was walking to and fro in his room at the hotel,
continually putting his head out of the door and looking up and
down the corridor. But in the corridor there was no sign of the
person he was looking for and he came back in despair, and
frantically waving his hands addressed Stepan Arkadyevitch, who
was smoking serenely.
"Was ever a man in such a fearful fool's position?" he said.
"Yes, it is stupid," Stepan Arkadyevitch asserted, smiling
soothingly. "But don't worry, it'll be brought directly."
"No, what is to be done!" said Levin, with smothered fury. "And
these fools of open waistcoats! Out of the question!" he said,
looking at the crumpled front of his shirt. "And what if the
things have been taken on to the railway station!" he roared in
"Then you must put on mine."
"I ought to have done so long ago, if at all."