That same night, having taken leave of the Minister of War, Bolkonski set of_o rejoin the army, not knowing where he would find it and fearing to b_aptured by the French on the way to Krems.
In Brunn everybody attached to the court was packing up, and the heavy baggag_as already being dispatched to Olmutz. Near Hetzelsdorf Prince Andrew struc_he high road along which the Russian army was moving with great haste and i_he greatest disorder. The road was so obstructed with carts that it wa_mpossible to get by in a carriage. Prince Andrew took a horse and a Cossac_rom a Cossack commander, and hungry and weary, making his way past th_aggage wagons, rode in search of the commander in chief and of his ow_uggage. Very sinister reports of the position of the army reached him as h_ent along, and the appearance of the troops in their disorderly fligh_onfirmed these rumors.
"Cette armee russe que l'or de l'Angleterre a transportee des extremites d_'univers, nous allons lui faire eprouver le meme sort—(le sort de l'arme_'Ulm)."[](footnotes.xml#footnote_32) He remembered these words i_onaparte's address to his army at the beginning of the campaign, and the_woke in him astonishment at the genius of his hero, a feeling of wounde_ride, and a hope of glory. "And should there be nothing left but to die?" h_hought. "Well, if need be, I shall do it no worse than others." He looke_ith disdain at the endless confused mass of detachments, carts, guns,
artillery, and again baggage wagons and vehicles of all kinds overtaking on_nother and blocking the muddy road, three and sometimes four abreast. Fro_ll sides, behind and before, as far as ear could reach, there were the rattl_f wheels, the creaking of carts and gun carriages, the tramp of horses, th_rack of whips, shouts, the urging of horses, and the swearing of soldiers,
orderlies, and officers. All along the sides of the road fallen horses were t_e seen, some flayed, some not, and broken-down carts beside which solitar_oldiers sat waiting for something, and again soldiers straggling from thei_ompanies, crowds of whom set off to the neighboring villages, or returne_rom them dragging sheep, fowls, hay, and bulging sacks. At each ascent o_escent of the road the crowds were yet denser and the din of shouting mor_ncessant. Soldiers floundering knee-deep in mud pushed the guns and wagon_hemselves. Whips cracked, hoofs slipped, traces broke, and lungs wer_trained with shouting. The officers directing the march rode backward an_orward between the carts. Their voices were but feebly heard amid the uproa_nd one saw by their faces that they despaired of the possibility of checkin_his disorder. "Here is our dear Orthodox Russian army," thought Bolkonski,
recalling Bilibin's words. Wishing to find out where the commander in chie_as, he rode up to a convoy. Directly opposite to him came a strange one-hors_ehicle, evidently rigged up by soldiers out of any available materials an_ooking like something between a cart, a cabriolet, and a caleche. A soldie_as driving, and a woman enveloped in shawls sat behind the apron under th_eather hood of the vehicle. Prince Andrew rode up and was just putting hi_uestion to a soldier when his attention was diverted by the desperate shriek_f the woman in the vehicle. An officer in charge of transport was beating th_oldier who was driving the woman's vehicle for trying to get ahead of others,
and the strokes of his whip fell on the apron of the equipage. The woma_creamed piercingly. Seeing Prince Andrew she leaned out from behind the apro_nd, waving her thin arms from under the woolen shawl, cried: "Mr. Aide-de-
camp! Mr. Aide-de-camp!… For heaven's sake… Protect me! What will become o_s? I am the wife of the doctor of the Seventh Chasseurs… . They won't let u_ass, we are left behind and have lost our people… " "I'll flatten you into _ancake!" shouted the angry officer to the soldier. "Turn back with you_lut!" "Mr. Aide-de-camp! Help me!… What does it all mean?" screamed th_octor's wife. "Kindly let this cart pass. Don't you see it's a woman?" sai_rince Andrew riding up to the officer. The officer glanced at him, an_ithout replying turned again to the soldier. "I'll teach you to push on!…
Back!" "Let them pass, I tell you!" repeated Prince Andrew, compressing hi_ips. "And who are you?" cried the officer, turning on him with tipsy rage,
"who are you? Are you in command here? Eh? I am commander here, not you! G_ack or I'll flatten you into a pancake," repeated he. This expressio_vidently pleased him. "That was a nice snub for the little aide-de-camp,"
came a voice from behind. Prince Andrew saw that the officer was in that stat_f senseless, tipsy rage when a man does not know what he is saying. He sa_hat his championship of the doctor's wife in her queer trap might expose hi_o what he dreaded more than anything in the world—to ridicule; but hi_nstinct urged him on. Before the officer finished his sentence Prince Andrew,
his face distorted with fury, rode up to him and raised his riding whip.
"Kind… ly let—them—pass!" The officer flourished his arm and hastily rod_way. "It's all the fault of these fellows on the staff that there's thi_isorder," he muttered. "Do as you like." Prince Andrew without lifting hi_yes rode hastily away from the doctor's wife, who was calling him he_eliverer, and recalling with a sense of disgust the minutest details of thi_umiliating scene he galloped on to the village where he was told that th_ommander in chief was. On reaching the village he dismounted and went to th_earest house, intending to rest if but for a moment, eat something, and tr_o sort out the stinging and tormenting thoughts that confused his mind. "Thi_s a mob of scoundrels and not an army," he was thinking as he went up to th_indow of the first house, when a familiar voice called him by name. He turne_ound. Nesvitski's handsome face looked out of the little window. Nesvitski,
moving his moist lips as he chewed something, and flourishing his arm, calle_im to enter. "Bolkonski! Bolkonski!… Don't you hear? Eh? Come quick… " h_houted. Entering the house, Prince Andrew saw Nesvitski and another adjutan_aving something to eat. They hastily turned round to him asking if he had an_ews. On their familiar faces he read agitation and alarm. This wa_articularly noticeable on Nesvitski's usually laughing countenance. "Where i_he commander in chief?" asked Bolkonski. "Here, in that house," answered th_djutant. "Well, is it true that it's peace and capitulation?" aske_esvitski. "I was going to ask you. I know nothing except that it was all _ould do to get here." "And we, my dear boy! It's terrible! I was wrong t_augh at Mack, we're getting it still worse," said Nesvitski. "But sit dow_nd have something to eat." "You won't be able to find either your baggage o_nything else now, Prince. And God only knows where your man Peter is," sai_he other adjutant. "Where are headquarters?" "We are to spend the night i_naim." "Well, I have got all I need into packs for two horses," sai_esvitski. "They've made up splendid packs for me—fit to cross the Bohemia_ountains with. It's a bad lookout, old fellow! But what's the matter wit_ou? You must be ill to shiver like that," he added, noticing that Princ_ndrew winced as at an electric shock. "It's nothing," replied Prince Andrew.
He had just remembered his recent encounter with the doctor's wife and th_onvoy officer. "What is the commander in chief doing here?" he asked. "_an't make out at all," said Nesvitski. "Well, all I can make out is tha_verything is abominable, abominable, quite abominable!" said Prince Andrew,
and he went off to the house where the commander in chief was. Passing b_utuzov's carriage and the exhausted saddle horses of his suite, with thei_ossacks who were talking loudly together, Prince Andrew entered the passage.
Kutuzov himself, he was told, was in the house with Prince Bagration an_eyrother. Weyrother was the Austrian general who had succeeded Schmidt. I_he passage little Kozlovski was squatting on his heels in front of a clerk.
The clerk, with cuffs turned up, was hastily writing at a tub turned botto_pwards. Kozlovski's face looked worn—he too had evidently not slept al_ight. He glanced at Prince Andrew and did not even nod to him. "Second line…
have you written it?" he continued dictating to the clerk. "The Kie_renadiers, Podolian… " "One can't write so fast, your honor," said the clerk,
glancing angrily and disrespectfully at Kozlovski. Through the door came th_ounds of Kutuzov's voice, excited and dissatisfied, interrupted by another,
an unfamiliar voice. From the sound of these voices, the inattentive wa_ozlovski looked at him, the disrespectful manner of the exhausted clerk, th_act that the clerk and Kozlovski were squatting on the floor by a tub so nea_o the commander in chief, and from the noisy laughter of the Cossacks holdin_he horses near the window, Prince Andrew felt that something important an_isastrous was about to happen. He turned to Kozlovski with urgent questions.
"Immediately, Prince," said Kozlovski. "Dispositions for Bagration." "Wha_bout capitulation?" "Nothing of the sort. Orders are issued for a battle."
Prince Andrew moved toward the door from whence voices were heard. Just as h_as going to open it the sounds ceased, the door opened, and Kutuzov with hi_agle nose and puffy face appeared in the doorway. Prince Andrew stood righ_n front of Kutuzov but the expression of the commander in chief's one soun_ye showed him to be so preoccupied with thoughts and anxieties as to b_blivious of his presence. He looked straight at his adjutant's face withou_ecognizing him. "Well, have you finished?" said he to Kozlovski. "One moment,
your excellency." Bagration, a gaunt middle-aged man of medium height with _irm, impassive face of Oriental type, came out after the commander in chief.
"I have the honor to present myself," repeated Prince Andrew rather loudly,
handing Kutuzov an envelope. "Ah, from Vienna? Very good. Later, later!"
Kutuzov went out into the porch with Bagration. "Well, good-by, Prince," sai_e to Bagration. "My blessing, and may Christ be with you in your grea_ndeavor!" His face suddenly softened and tears came into his eyes. With hi_eft hand he drew Bagration toward him, and with his right, on which he wore _ing, he made the sign of the cross over him with a gesture evidentl_abitual, offering his puffy cheek, but Bagration kissed him on the nec_nstead. "Christ be with you!" Kutuzov repeated and went toward his carriage.
"Get in with me," said he to Bolkonski. "Your excellency, I should like to b_f use here. Allow me to remain with Prince Bagration's detachment." "Get in,"
said Kutuzov, and noticing that Bolkonski still delayed, he added: "I nee_ood officers myself, need them myself!" They got into the carriage and drov_or a few minutes in silence. "There is still much, much before us," he said,
as if with an old man's penetration he understood all that was passing i_olkonski's mind. "If a tenth part of his detachment returns I shall than_od," he added as if speaking to himself. Prince Andrew glanced at Kutuzov'_ace only a foot distant from him and involuntarily noticed the carefull_ashed seams of the scar near his temple, where an Ismail bullet had pierce_is skull, and the empty eye socket. "Yes, he has a right to speak so calml_f those men's death," thought Bolkonski. "That is why I beg to be sent t_hat detachment," he said. Kutuzov did not reply. He seemed to have forgotte_hat he had been saying, and sat plunged in thought. Five minutes later,
gently swaying on the soft springs of the carriage, he turned to Princ_ndrew. There was not a trace of agitation on his face. With delicate irony h_uestioned Prince Andrew about the details of his interview with the Emperor,
about the remarks he had heard at court concerning the Krems affair, and abou_ome ladies they both knew.