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The Gambler by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
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(for you must know that I belonged to the General's suite). So
far as I could see, the party had already gained some notoriety
in the place, which had come to look upon the General as a
Russian nobleman of great wealth. Indeed, even before luncheon
he charged me, among other things, to get two thousand-franc
notes changed for him at the hotel counter, which put us in a
position to be thought millionaires at all events for a week!
Later, I was about to take Mischa and Nadia for a walk when a
summons reached me from the staircase that I must attend the
General. He began by deigning to inquire of me where I was going
to take the children; and as he did so, I could see that he
failed to look me in the eyes. He WANTED to do so, but each time
was met by me with such a fixed, disrespectful stare that he
desisted in confusion. In pompous language, however, which
jumbled one sentence into another, and at length grew
disconnected, he gave me to understand that I was to lead the
children altogether away from the Casino, and out into the park.
Finally his anger exploded, and he added sharply:

"I suppose you would like to take them to the Casino to play
roulette? Well, excuse my speaking so plainly, but I know how
addicted you are to gambling. Though I am not your mentor, nor
wish to be, at least I have a right to require that you shall
not actually compromise me."

"I have no money for gambling," I quietly replied.

"But you will soon be in receipt of some," retorted the
General, reddening a little as he dived into his writing desk
and applied himself to a memorandum book. From it he saw that he
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