Act III - Scene III

[Anna Andreyevna and Marya Antonovna.]

ANNA: Now, Mashenka, we must attend to our toilet. He's a metropolitan swell and God forbid that he should make fun of us. You put on your blue dress with the little flounces. It's the most becoming.

MARYA: The idea, mamma! The blue dress! I can't bear it. Liapkin-Tiapkin's wife wears blue and so does Zemlianika's daughter. I'd rather wear my flowered dress.

ANNA: Your flowered dress! Of course, just to be contrary. You'll look lots better in blue because I'm going to wear my dun-colored dress. I love dun-color.

MARYA: Oh, mamma, it isn't a bit becoming to you.

ANNA: What, dun-color isn't becoming to me?

MARYA: No, not a bit. I'm positive it isn't. One's eyes must be quite dark to go with dun-color.

ANNA: That's nice! And aren't my eyes dark? They are as dark as can be. What nonsense you talk! How can they be anything but dark when I always draw the queen of clubs.

MARYA: Why, mamma, you are more like the queen of hearts.

ANNA: Nonsense! Perfect nonsense! I never was a queen of hearts. [She goes out hurriedly with Marya and speaks behind the scenes.] The ideas she gets into her head! Queen of hearts! Heavens! What do you think of that?

[As they go out, a door opens through which Mishka sweeps dirt on to the stage. Osip enters from another door with a valise on his head.]