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双语对照 | 书虫二级《长池村的故事》:5.妮蒂·萨金特和房子

所属教程: 牛津书虫系列 长池村的故事

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2019年04月26日

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Netty Sargent and the House

妮蒂·萨金特和房子

Netty Sargent lived with her uncle in that lonely house just outside the grounds of the squire's big house. She was a tall young woman, with black hair and dancing eyes. And she had a little laughing smile that sent all the young men wild.

妮蒂·萨金特和叔叔一起住在一座孤零零的房子里,紧挨着乡绅大宅的土地。她是个高挑的姑娘,有着一头黑发和一双闪亮的眼睛。她咯咯笑起来的时候能让所有小伙子发疯。

All the young men of that time were after her, but in the end she decided that Jasper Cliff was her favourite. He was good-looking, but he only ever thought about himself, not other people. But Netty wanted Jasper, and none of the others. Jasper liked Netty too, but he was more interested in her uncle's house.

当时所有的小伙子都在追求她,可她最后却看中了贾斯珀·克利夫。他长得不错,但老是只想着他自己,从不顾其他人。可是妮蒂就想要贾斯珀,别人都不行。贾斯珀也挺喜欢妮蒂,不过他对她叔叔的房子更感兴趣。

The house was built by Netty's great-great-grandfather, and had a garden and a little field next to it. But it was a leasehold house, because the ground belonged to the squire.

那房子是妮蒂的爷爷的爷爷建的,旁边还有一个花园和一小块田地,但建房的地是从乡绅那里租来的。

'And what happens,' Jasper asked Netty one day, 'when your uncle dies?'

“你叔叔死后那房子会怎样?”有一天贾斯珀问妮蒂。

'The house, garden and field will go back to the squire,' said Netty. 'But if Uncle pays a few pounds, he can renew the leasehold and put another name on it. Then the squire can't get the house back until that person dies.'

“房子、花园和田地都会被乡绅收回,”妮蒂说,“不过叔叔只要付几英镑,就可以续租,而且还能把租约转到另一个人名下。这样,在那个人死前,乡绅都不能把房子收回去。”

'And what is your uncle going to do?' asked Jasper.

“那你叔叔打算怎么办?”贾斯珀问。

'Oh, he's going to renew the leasehold, and put my name on it. He told me that months ago.'

“哦,他打算续约,在上面换上我的名字。他几个月前就跟我说了。”

Netty's uncle knew that it was important to renew the leasehold, because the squire was very anxious to get the house back. The squire didn't like all those little leaseholds on his ground, and he wanted to pull the house down and make it all nice and tidy.

妮蒂的叔叔知道续约这件事非常重要,因为乡绅很想把房子收回。他不喜欢自己的地盘上有零碎的小块地被租出去,而且他想把这个房子拆掉,让这周围看起来整齐漂亮。

Netty's uncle knew this very well — but he still didn't renew the leasehold. He didn't like Jasper Cliff, so perhaps he didn't like to think of Jasper marrying Netty and living in the house when he was dead.

妮蒂的叔叔非常清楚乡绅的想法——但他还没有续约。他不喜欢贾斯珀·克利夫这个人,所以他大概也不希望自己死后,贾斯珀跟妮蒂结婚一起住到这个房子里。

Every week Jasper asked Netty about the leasehold, and Netty asked her uncle, and her uncle said, 'I'll go and see the squire's agent next week.' But still nothing happened.

每个星期贾斯珀都会问妮蒂租约的事,而妮蒂又会去问她叔叔,她叔叔总是说:“我下个星期就去见乡绅的代理人。”可是,一切都还是老样子,什么进展也没有。

At last old Mr Sargent fell ill, and Jasper got tired of waiting. 'Why doesn't your uncle do it?' he asked Netty. 'I tell you, if you lose the house and ground, I won't marry you. And there's an end of it.'

最后,老萨金特先生病倒了,而贾斯珀也等得不耐烦了。“你叔叔干吗不去续约?”他问妮蒂,“我告诉你,你如果失去了那房子和田地,我是不会和你结婚的。我们俩的事就这么算了。”

Poor Nerty hurried indoors to talk to her uncle.

可怜的妮蒂赶紧回到家找她叔叔商量。

'Please do something, Uncle!' she said. 'If I don't get the house, I won't get a husband!'

“求你做点儿什么吧,叔叔!”她说,“如果我不能得到这房子,就没法结婚了!”

'And you must have Jasper, must you, my dear?'

“而你非得跟贾斯珀结婚,是吗,亲爱的孩子?”

'Yes, Uncle, I must!'

“是的,叔叔,我一定要跟他结婚!”

Old Sargent didn't want to make Netty unhappy, so he asked for a meeting with the squire's agent. The squire was very cross when he heard this. He was hoping that old Sargent would die and the leasehold would come to an end. But he had to agree to renew the leasehold if Sargent paid the money. So the squire's agent got the new papers ready for old Sargent to sign.

老萨金特不想让妮蒂伤心,于是向乡绅的代理人提出约个时间见面。乡绅听说了这件事非常生气。他原本期望老萨金特就这么死了,好让租约自动解除。但是,如果老萨金特现在付钱,那他就不得不跟他续约。于是,乡绅的代理人拟好了新的租约文件,准备拿给老萨金特签字。

By now Netty's uncle was really ill, and couldn't leave the house. The agent agreed to visit him. 'I'll come at five o'clock on Monday,' he told Netty, 'and Mr Sargent can pay the money and sign the papers then.'

妮蒂的叔叔这个时候已经病得很厉害了,根本没办法出门。代理人同意来见他。“我星期一下午5点过来,”他告诉妮蒂,“到时候萨金特先生可以交钱并且在文件上签字。”

At three o'clock on that Monday Netty brought her uncle a cup of tea. When she came in the room, her uncle gave a little cry and fell forward in his chair. Netty ran to him, but he could not speak or move. And in a few minutes, she saw that his face and hands were cold and white. He was dead, stone-cold dead.

星期一下午3点,妮蒂给她叔叔送茶。她刚进门,她叔叔就发出一声呻吟,垂下头瘫倒在椅子里。妮蒂赶忙跑过去,可他既说不出话,也动不了了。没几分钟,她就发现他的脸和手已经变得苍白冰冷。他死了,一丁点儿活气儿也没有了。

Netty was very unhappy. 'Why didn't he live two more hours?' she thought. 'Now I've lost everything — house, garden, field, and a home for myself and my lover. What am I going to do now?'

妮蒂难过极了。“他为什么不再多活两小时呢?”她想,“现在我什么都没了——房子、花园、田地,还有我和爱人的家。这下我究竟该怎么办才好?”

Then, suddenly, she knew what she had to do. It was a dark December afternoon, which was very helpful for her. First, she locked the front door. Then she moved her uncle's table in front of the fire. Her uncle's body was still in his chair, which was a big old chair on wheels. So she pushed the chair, with her uncle in it, to the table, putting the chair with its back half-turned to the window.

突然,她知道自己该怎么办了。那是一个12月的午后,天色很暗,这帮了她的大忙。首先,她锁上了前门。然后,她把她叔叔的桌子挪到了壁炉前。她叔叔还在那把老旧的大轮椅上,于是她把轮椅和她叔叔一起推到了桌子前,让轮椅的背面斜对着窗子。

On the table she put the large family Bible open in front of him, and put his finger on the page. Then she opened his eyes a little, and put his glasses on his nose. When it got dark, she lit a candle and put it on the table beside the Bible. Then she unlocked the door, and sat down to wait.

她把家里又大又厚的《圣经》放在桌子上,又把她叔叔的手指放在打开的书页上,然后把他的眼皮弄开一点儿,把眼镜架到他的鼻子上。天黑下来以后,她点了一根蜡烛,放在那本《圣经》旁边。最后,她把门锁打开,坐下来等。

When she heard the agent's knock at five o'clock, she hurried to the door.

5点,她听到代理人敲门,赶快来到门口。

'I'm sorry, sir,' she whipered, 'Uncle's so ill tonight. I'm afraid he can't see you.'

“我很抱歉,先生,”她小声说,“我叔叔今晚很不舒服,恐怕不能见你。”

The agent was not very pleased. 'So I've come out all this way for nothing, have I?'

代理人不太高兴,“那我不是白折腾了这一趟?”

'Oh, no, sir, I hope not,' said Netty. 'We can do the business about the leasehold, can't we?'

“哦,不,先生,我希望你没有白跑一趟,”妮蒂说,“租约的事情由我们来处理,这样可以吗?”

'Of course not. He must pay the money, and sign the leasehold papers in front of me. I have to be a witness.'

“当然不行,他必须交钱,然后当着我的面在租约上签字,我得当见证人。”

Netty looked worried. 'Uncle is so afraid of business things like this. His hands were shaking when I told him that you were coming today.'

妮蒂看起来很担心,“我叔叔很怕这种生意上的事情。我跟他说你今天要来的时候,他的手都在发抖。”

'Poor old man — I'm sorry for him,' said the agent. 'But he must sign the papers, and I must be a witness.'

“可怜的老人——我为他难过,”代理人说,“可他必须在文件上签字,而我也必须在一旁作证。”

'Yes, I understand that, sir,' said Netty. She thought for a minute. 'You have to see him. But can you still be a witness, sir, if he doesn't see you?'

“是的,我明白,先生,”妮蒂说着,想了想,“你必须看得到他。可如果他看不到你,你也可以当见证人吧,先生?”

'How do you mean, girl?' said the agent.

“你这话是什么意思,姑娘?”代理人问。

'Come with me a minute,' she said.

“跟我来一下。”妮蒂说。

She took him into the garden and round to the window. Inside, the agent could see, at the other end of the room, the back and side of the old man's head, and his arm. He could see the glasses on his nose, and the book and the candle on the table.

她带他走进花园,绕到窗子外面。代理人能看见房间另一头老人的后背和头、他的一只胳膊、他鼻子上的眼镜,还有桌上的书和蜡烛。

'He's reading his Bible, sir,' said Netty, in her softest, sweetest voice.

“他在读他的《圣经》,先生,”妮蒂用她最甜美轻柔的声音说。

'Yes, I see that,' said the agent. 'But nobody ever sees him in church, do they?'

“是的,我看得出来,”代理人说,“可没人见他去过教堂,不是吗?”

'No, but he loves his Bible,' said Netty. 'I think he's sleeping a little at the moment, but that's not surprising in an old man, who's so unwell. Now, sir, can you stand here at the window and watch him sign the papers? Then he won't see you, and he won't be worried and unhappy about it all. Can you do that for him, sir?'

“确实是这样,但他很喜欢他的《圣经》,”妮蒂说,“我想他这会儿在打盹儿,不过上了年纪的病人这样也不稀奇。先生,你可不可以站在这里看着他在文件上签字?这样他就不会看见你,也不会觉得难受了。你能帮他这个忙吗,先生?”

'Very well,' said the agent. He took out a cigar, lit it, and began to smoke. 'Have you got the money ready?'

“好吧,”代理人说着,掏出一支雪茄点上,抽了起来,“你把钱准备好了吗?”

'Yes,' said Netty. 'I'll bring it out.' She hurried inside, and brought out the money. The agent counted it, then gave Netty the leasehold papers.

“是的,”妮蒂说,“我这就拿出来。”她很快进屋拿来了钱。代理人清点了数目,把租约递给了妮蒂。

'Uncle's hand is very shaky now,' she said. 'And he's so sleepy. I don't think he signs his name very well.'

“我叔叔的手现在抖得厉害,”她说,“而且他困得迷糊了。我想他可能会签得不太好。”

'He doesn't have to have beautiful writing. He just has to sign,' said the agent.

“他用不着把字写得很漂亮,只要签上名字就行了。”代理人说。

'Can I hold his hand, to help him?'

“我能扶着他的手,帮他一下吗?”

'Yes, hold his hand, girl — that'll be all right.'

“可以,帮他扶着手,姑娘——这没问题。”

Netty went into the house, and the agent went on smoking his cigar outside the window. He saw Netty put the pen and the papers in front of her uncle, and touch his arm, and speak to him. She showed him where to write his name on the papers, and put the pen in his hand. Then she stood behind him, and held his hand. But the agent could still see a bit of his head, and he saw the old man's hand write his name on the papers.

妮蒂走进房子,代理人继续在窗外抽着雪茄。他看见妮蒂把笔和文件放在她叔叔跟前,碰了碰他的胳膊,跟他说了些什么,并把文件上要签名的地方指给他看,又把笔放到他手里。然后,她站到他身后,扶住了他的手。不过,代理人还是能看到一点儿老人的头,也看到老人的手在文件上签了字。

Then Netty came out and gave the papers to the agent, and the agent signed his name as witness. He gave her the paper signed by the squire, and left.

之后,妮蒂出来把文件交给代理人,代理人作为见证人也在上面签了字。最后,他把乡绅签好字的文件递给她,就离开了。第二天早上,妮蒂告诉邻居们她叔叔夜里睡觉的时候去世了。

And the next morning Netty told the neighbours that her uncle was dead in his bed.

第二天早上,妮蒂告诉邻居们她叔叔夜里睡觉的时候去世了。

So that's how Netty Sargent lost her house and field, and got them back again — with a husband. But Jasper was a mistake as a husband. After a few years he started hitting Netty — not very hard, but it made her angry. Then she told a neighbour about the leasehold business, and the story got around. By then the old squire was dead, and the squire's son got to hear the story. But Netty was a pretty young woman, and the squire's son never did anything about it.

这就是妮蒂·萨金特失而复得房子和田地的经过——当然,她还得到了一个丈夫。不过,嫁给贾斯珀是个错误。几年以后,他开始打妮蒂——打得不厉害,但却把她惹火了。后来,她跟一个邻居说了租约的事,这件事就传开了。那个时候,老乡绅已经死了,事情传到了他儿子那里。不过,妮蒂漂亮又年轻,乡绅的儿子从没理会过这件事。

* * *

* * *

Soon the carrier's wagon came down the hill into Longpuddle, and everybody got out and went home. John Lackland's son went to find a room at the Dog and Fox. He stayed in Longpuddle for a few days, walking around, looking at things, and talking to people. Then he left, and no one saw him again.

很快,马车下了小山,进了长池村,乘客们纷纷下车回家了。约翰·拉克兰的儿子在“猎狗和狐狸”旅馆开了个房间,住了几天,到处走走看看,跟人们聊聊天,然后就离开了,从此再没有人见过他。

'Where did he go?' the schoolteacher asked Mrs Weedle in the post office one day.

“他去了哪里?”学校教师一天在邮局问维德尔太太。

'I don't know,' said Mrs Weedle. 'He didn't tell anyone. He just went.'

“我不知道,”维德尔太太说,“他没跟任何人打招呼,就这么走了。”

'Why did he come back to Longpuddle, do you think?'

“你觉得他为什么回长池村来?”

'He said he just wanted to see the place where he was a child. But perhaps he came back to get a wife, and couldn't find one. Who knows?'

“他说就是想看看小时候待过的地方。不过他也许是回来找老婆的,却没找到。谁知道呢?”

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