Мартин Иден

Chapter 24

           Martinaddedhisdebtsandfoundthathewaspossessedofatotalcreditinalltheworldoffourteendollarsandeighty-fivecents. Hewasupwithhistype-writerrent,butheestimatedthathecouldgettwomonths’creditonthat,whichwouldbeeightdollars. Whenthatoccurred,hewouldhaveexhaustedallpossiblecredit. 

           Thelastpurchasefromthefruitstorehadbeenasackofpotatoes,andforaweekhehadpotatoes,andnothingbutpotatoes,threetimesaday. AnoccasionaldinneratRuth’shelpedtokeepstrengthinhisbody,thoughhefoundittantalizingenoughtorefusefurtherhelpingwhenhisappetitewasragingatsightofsomuchfoodspreadbeforeit. Nowandagain,thoughafflictedwithsecretshame,hedroppedinathissister’satmeal-timeandateasmuchashedaredmorethanhedaredattheMorsetable. 

           Daybydayheworkedon,anddaybydaythepostmandeliveredtohimrejectedmanuscripts. Hehadnomoneyforstamps,sothemanuscriptsaccumulatedinaheapunderthetable. Cameadaywhenforfortyhourshehadnottastedfood. HecouldnothopeforamealatRuth’s,forshewasawaytoSanRafaelonatwoweeks’visit; andforveryshame’ssakehecouldnotgotohissister’s. Tocapmisfortune,thepostman,inhisafternoonround,broughthimfivereturnedmanuscripts. ThenitwasthatMartinworehisovercoatdownintoOakland,andcamebackwithoutit,butwithfivedollarstinklinginhispocket. 

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