The glow of the first fire that began on the second of September was watche_rom the various roads by the fugitive Muscovites and by the retreatin_roops, with many different feelings.
The Rostov party spent the night at Mytishchi, fourteen miles from Moscow.
They had started so late on the first of September, the road had been s_locked by vehicles and troops, so many things had been forgotten for whic_ervants were sent back, that they had decided to spend that night at a plac_hree miles out of Moscow. The next morning they woke late and were agai_elayed so often that they only got as far as Great Mytishchi. At ten o'cloc_hat evening the Rostov family and the wounded traveling with them were al_istributed in the yards and huts of that large village. The Rostovs' servant_nd coachmen and the orderlies of the wounded officers, after attending t_heir masters, had supper, fed the horses, and came out into the porches.
In a neighboring hut lay Raevski's adjutant with a fractured wrist. The awfu_ain he suffered made him moan incessantly and piteously, and his moanin_ounded terrible in the darkness of the autumn night. He had spent the firs_ight in the same yard as the Rostovs. The countess said she had been unabl_o close her eyes on account of his moaning, and at Mytishchi she moved into _orse hut simply to be farther away from the wounded man.
In the darkness of the night one of the servants noticed, above the high bod_f a coach standing before the porch, the small glow of another fire. One glo_ad long been visible and everybody knew that it was Little Mytishch_urning—set on fire by Mamonov's Cossacks.
"But look here, brothers, there's another fire!" remarked an orderly.
All turned their attention to the glow.
"But they told us Little Mytishchi had been set on fire by Mamonov'_ossacks."
"But that's not Mytishchi, it's farther away."
"Look, it must be in Moscow!"
Two of the gazers went round to the other side of the coach and sat down o_ts steps.
"It's more to the left, why, Little Mytishchi is over there, and this is righ_n the other side."
Several men joined the first two.
"See how it's flaring," said one. "That's a fire in Moscow: either in th_ushchevski or the Rogozhski quarter."
No one replied to this remark and for some time they all gazed silently at th_preading flames of the second fire in the distance.
Old Daniel Terentich, the count's valet (as he was called), came up to th_roup and shouted at Mishka.
"What are you staring at, you good-for-nothing?… The count will be calling an_here's nobody there; go and gather the clothes together."
"I only ran out to get some water," said Mishka.
"But what do you think, Daniel Terentich? Doesn't it look as if that glow wer_n Moscow?" remarked one of the footmen.
Daniel Terentich made no reply, and again for a long time they were al_ilent. The glow spread, rising and failing, farther and farther still.
"God have mercy… . It's windy and dry… " said another voice.
"Just look! See what it's doing now. O Lord! You can even see the crow_lying. Lord have mercy on us sinners!"
"They'll put it out, no fear!"
"Who's to put it out?" Daniel Terentich, who had hitherto been silent, wa_eard to say. His voice was calm and deliberate. "Moscow it is, brothers,"
said he. "Mother Moscow, the white… " his voice faltered, and he gave way t_n old man's sob.
And it was as if they had all only waited for this to realize the significanc_or them of the glow they were watching. Sighs were heard, words of prayer,