Chapter 6

           TheChestnutTreewasalmostempty. Arayofsunlightslantingthroughawindowfellondustytable-tops. Itwasthelonelyhouroffifteen. Atinnymusictrickledfromthetelescreens. 

           Winstonsatinhisusualcorner,gazingintoanemptyglass. Nowandagainheglancedupatavastfacewhicheyedhimfromtheoppositewall. BIGBROTHERISWATCHINGYOU,thecaptionsaid. Unbidden,awaitercameandfilledhisglassupwithVictoryGin,shakingintoitafewdropsfromanotherbottlewithaquillthroughthecork. Itwassaccharineflavouredwithcloves,thespecialityofthecafe. 

           Winstonwaslisteningtothetelescreen. Atpresentonlymusicwascomingoutofit,buttherewasapossibilitythatatanymomenttheremightbeaspecialbulletinfromtheMinistryofPeace. ThenewsfromtheAfricanfrontwasdisquietingintheextreme. Onandoffhehadbeenworryingaboutitallday. AEurasianarmy(OceaniawasatwarwithEurasia: OceaniahadalwaysbeenatwarwithEurasia)wasmovingsouthwardatterrifyingspeed. Themid-daybulletinhadnotmentionedanydefinitearea,butitwasprobablethatalreadythemouthoftheCongowasabattlefield. BrazzavilleandLeopoldvillewereindanger. Onedidnothavetolookatthemaptoseewhatitmeant. ItwasnotmerelyaquestionoflosingCentralAfrica: forthefirsttimeinthewholewar,theterritoryofOceaniaitselfwasmenaced. 

           Aviolentemotion,notfearexactlybutasortofundifferentiatedexcitement,flaredupinhim,thenfadedagain. Hestoppedthinkingaboutthewar. Inthesedayshecouldneverfixhismindonanyonesubjectformorethanafewmomentsatatime. Hepickeduphisglassanddraineditatagulp. Asalways,theginmadehimshudderandevenretchslightly. Thestuffwashorrible. 

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