Autumn bird nemnogogolosy. Only aroused beast, strike up cackling geese. Under tough fatal blow to the cry of a hawk choke kryakovaya, beeps garganey. Yes, far away from the rivers, I am the desert, where the well water is not a rare screening, only flickering star guess that the well is dry, quail alone and tens of time plaintively asked: «go drink! Drink … .. let’s go!» .
Silence. Air bursting breasts, light smoky shop after hurting. Yet not only this, but for some reason the other, still unknown Grigorenko, he was so good, that is not ashamed of joy and tears.
Suddenly, he heard the voices of swans, something of concern. Hastily throwing a bag and a gun, crouching, Grigorenko hurried to the top of the hill. She peered out of the grass and saw a wall of green reeds. Voices of swans were distributed for thickets. Returning to the surprise Prudkovu explained;
— About three years are not nesting swans. This year left, it means that they no longer bother.
For Prudkova choose the best place. Have built of reeds and Macao skradok, Grigorenko once again reminded of how close it is necessary to keep away birds before the shot, giving a takeaway at the side span, the shot in the hijacking and «royal» when the duck is poking. Left alone,
Prudkov gladly sat on a thick sheaf of grass in the ambush. From a long bumpy road the whole body ached, my heart was restless, and from the huge steppe — a wild and lonely.
Near Prudkovym smoothly designed, water kryakovaya flopped. Few swam, looking wary. Calm down. Suddenly he opened the wings: yellow-spotted top, bottom and white satin, lightly grunted. And it seemed Prudkovu that duck as looking young woman at dawn, sleepy, languid and sweet gasped. He stared in amazement. Kryakovaya raskrylilas like boasting white and fluffy pahami Lockers, began to repeatedly dive, and slipping out of the water, joyfully and lovingly pokryakivala. Nakupavshis She swam impressively, clearly proud of himself. Ponds, so close for the first time seen the wild duck, thought she was nothing like home. That bigger and bloated as a merchant’s wife, clumsy and slow. Dikushke It is fine and tightly knit, swift and free as a dashing young beauty-Cossack. Such was Olga was his, when he fled with him Don.
From these unexpected memories at heart was somehow calmer, recent worries quietly deserted him. He looked around. On the river were pozharischnye web from the setting sun, near the gently swayed by insensible air flow fluffy black plumes of reeds. On the tips of the finest frozen chakaninok long-winged, green dragonfly with huge eyes. On the opposite bank of sand kulichki race ran, screamed as the children get up to mischief. They sometimes condescendingly looked back Egret, funny paced in shallow water: it is slowly pulled out of the water wading, almost half-meter leg break under the knee, threw out three-fingered paw far ahead netoropko, oschupyvayusche lower it to the bottom and pulling a very long neck with narrow head and a long, sharp beak moved the white trunk. Well, if not hunted fry and important proudly vymeryat length of the river as a military surveyor Sazhenkov the division of Cossack units.
For Prudkova Grigorenko shots rang out like thunder. He flinched and ducked even more unexpected in the space between the reed again saw a duck. She froze in alarm. Remembering that he had come to hunt Prudkov quickly raised his gun to his shoulder, and hurriedly pulled the trigger. The roar of the shot knocked him out. Cut the duck turned the charge back, thick fraction excised and ripping surface of the river, reached the opposite shore, frightened away Kulichkov and heron. Around anxious and cried plaintively birds. Ponds, something overpowering in itself, forced himself to look at them slaughtered a duck. Over its white underbelly blood-red legs clenched and cling fast to the abdomen, then slowly straightened up, rose up erect, and red webbed feet on a white seemed to blur spots of blood on his shirt wounded.
Prudkov looked confused, as if to justify himself for the murder, but there again, something happened, and it all haste rushed to calm floating duck. He grabbed her and still warm from her body it was nice, in the soul was born and began to grow rapidly with nothing comparable pride in their dexterity, accuracy and dobychlivost eyes. He would have given much to it now saw Olga, the mother of his children, of his continuer kind. It was not, as far back Grigorenko shot rang out, but not sharp and biting. They scare off the river rose a flock of geese and almost touching the wings mahalok reeds, drawn directly on Prudkova.
He and three jumps reached skradka, fell to his knees, hiding. Stumbling hands in clothes, pulling chuck, stuck in the nest bandolier, his heart pounding with anxious watching sag flock. Before vertigo was frightened of what will not have time to reload shotgun and geese will produce, and they are inexorably approaching, have already become visible red noses and smoky underbelly on white podguzkah were burning red paws. Prudkov desperately pulled the cartridge. He suddenly jumped easily, and this Prudkov almost fell backwards. Miraculously he resists, immediately noting that he still agile. He slipped into the empty breech charge and embarrassed: «Suddenly not get in flight?». But someone in himself firmly brushed aside all doubts, made quietly raise the gun, slowly vytselit large gray bird. Hesitated with the shot again correctly align the fan, gently pull the trigger on himself.
A shot rang out not deafening, but fun and rang softly. Vytselenny goose dropped wings rolled through goloshu and noisy hlobystnulsya of water. Near the second he fell accidentally fell under the charge. Prudkov jumped up and something joyful shouting, rushed to production.
Grigorenko chose a place where the night flock of geese resting in the afternoon to feed on harvested fields thriller in seventh. Sandy and ample shallow water until it was deserted, but Grigorenko knew after sunset from the fields frighten away many foxes and geese wolf broods, and calmly began to expect. Passion for hunting Grigorenko took over from his father. The annual feast day and, taking with him Petryayku father went on long hunting journeys: in those years, there were no che terms of hunting. In the early days of his father, a great shooter, and an abundance of game he produces only «in the pot»: two ducks for dinner, five partridges for dinner. All day they roamed the grass in the growth of man, raising fat bustards flying, noisy Strepetov and partridges. In chapyzhnike and thorny thickets of ravines ran into just abandoned, still warm maturation wolves sated and happy to give way to a man; seen foxes, sweetly dozing in the shade.
Father willingly and spoke in detail about the habits of birds and animals, collecting grass for all ills. And at night campfire, remembering the difficult life and times of John to the Jura and later in his factory, he loved to dream of a future free life, the offensive which he firmly believed. «You Petryayka, live to volyushki, — he told, sorry — I do not seem to be able to endure. And like, Petryayka, I want to cry. » In the fifth year, seriously ill, he heard about the manifesto of the king, he crossed himself, beamed: «Thank God, waited volyushki! Now death is not terrible. » A few days later, with faith in the king and there was the will, he quietly died. At the cemetery, he saw off the entire plant. Behind the coffin walked even blast furnace manager, grieved in a telegram sent from Peter Ure Harry, and then the same has come from London by the Management Board. Mother keeps them as an honorary medal from the Nizhny Novgorod Fair for its excellent iron blast furnace Ivan Grigorenko …
The sun had set thriller in seventh half of the hill and the water surface with a broad floodplain disappeared shiny mirror reflecting the sharp sunlight blinding my eyes. Darkened in the bush, were more mosquitoes. Waving them, Grigorenko wished he unloaded them on a high rock above the river: it is blown wind, and mosquitoes at night there will be less. Painting the clouds in fiery colors, the sun disappeared. Immediately on the horizon appeared a scarlet village geese. One by one they drifted quietly to his lived-nochevoy where almost never rang shots. The farm Walkers were not hunters: how among farmers everywhere, they considered hunting pampering, the master’s whim, and men-hunters, if such cases, halfwits. From Yurovka, mining towns and the railway station here did not go — next was no less rich land.
Geese on the flood plain down to the water, went to poke Grigorenko. Shoot and emphasis was unwise, and shot better than striking when put into operation under the pen. And when a flock nablizilas, Grigorenko stood up and waved his hand. Geese rushed up, nearly turning over, stuck in place. Grigorenko doublet knocked out two birds. Terrified unexpected shots, old geese rushed in different directions, young, cackling hysterically helplessly lingered over the hunter, and if desired, Grigorenko could have time to reload the gun and remove two more geese. But he slowly walked out of the skradka, netoropko picked up production, hefted: Was it hard? I feel tail: Bold it? Birds were large and heavy nagulennymi to feed.
Near to the dark geese we saw thick. In my excitement, Grigorenko stopped shots Prudkova interested in: whether they are successful? I did not notice the swarms of mosquitoes and bad, soaked clothing.
One passion possessed him — to get the geese! Do not kill, do not destroy as much as possible, and get them to … When skradke turned ten, suddenly missed a flock neobstrelyannyh, if someone held his hand. He looked around the production and felt that hunting passion subsided, almost disappeared.
Watching lots of ducks flying by, flocks of geese, without pleasure, but by necessity linked already frozen, hard birds, with claws and beaks are not red, but blue-lifeless. Indifferent to the mining, heavy load annoyed, wearily trudged out of the reeds. On the selvages thickets saw umorennogo Prudkova about big bunch of birds. With her Grigorenko involuntarily compared their burden — it was more, and this has become happier, immediately joined by forces strode quickly.
Seeing him Prudkov jumped. Off the ground mating geese and ducks, holding them in front of him, I went to meet easily. He is clearly proud of himself, at the same time anxiously examining other prey. Ponds suddenly said Grigorenko and he sees his opponent. Opponent in the first of his friend Olga. And so it was. Together we are approaching hunters. Converged as their ancestors, alertness, anxiety and a proud desire to be more powerful, successful. First of all the surrounding men. There came as if they watched their favorite woman …
After drinking two glasses of anisette, «not to halt» the one, and tightly eaten dichinki friends freely lay down near the small fire. Smoke. Southern sky with billions bright big n small stars were still black. In the steppe constantly beat quail, partridge flew angrily vzlaivali fox. On the floodplain and reaches pogogatyvali geese quacked ducks, herons creaking, whistling middle of nowhere. Nearby, deep down, sandwiched close sheer cliffs plunging into boulders and boulders roared Volnovaha.
Suddenly Prudkov grunted in surprise and looked around anxiously. Grigorenko long been expecting this. All the way, marveling and wondering Nikolai incessantly talked about the seizure of his hunting passion. Collecting dry weeds for fire, he remembered how to go on shore egret as running one after the other middle of nowhere, pozharischno burning water of the river,
— The sun was sinking fast, and then, you know, like in something Bound and barely was omitted, — he said loudly in the darkness. — A cloud? Both red and scarlet. And as if alive, and something like a beast of some, the fish, you have noticed, Peter? — Asking questions Prudkov. — You’ve seen?
Now he was silent not because they all said, realized its current behavior, or used to it and it has become commonplace for him. No, he was going through the state of mind when the passionately want to look into all recesses of his soul, to understand its essence. It comes to a person, especially Russian, with its broad nature, when he is left alone in the wilderness of the desert or taiga, the middle of the sea and steppe spaces, covered with black sky as if lurking in waiting silence and thousands of eyes trapping any movement of a small, lonely man. If this lasts for a long time, there is a fear — a terrible and inexplicable. Probably like a distant ancestor to zemletrusom rivers and fiery volcanoes, before thunder and lightning, I crown the night before a solar eclipse. Before all that is infinitely stronger, why — he did not know. Perhaps that is why the people at night bonfires, danced to live next to the tribe, to push back the light from the darkness of the black space itself, it is not known why frighten them, and when the sun rises — shout and dance, good-natured, with the enlightened individuals.
Prudkov fumbled behind a bunch of weeds. He grabbed an armful of small, threw it into the fire. I am attaching the hand and, bending, noisy and blew strongly. Sparkled unburned embers, sparks shot up. Burian thick and White puffed whole embrace flame. Otkachnulsya ponds, turned his face and almost next saw a fox. Fire lit bright red beast stared at the fire. The flame petered s new cloud of smoke, the darkness hid everything, only two burning yellow eyes continued to shine where there was a beast. Prudkov clapped his hands. Fires eyes disappeared — quietly fox darted into the grass. Grigorenko looked at Prudkova, he replied:
— It was as follows.
— Fox listened — he cheerfully got up noisily began raking kicks beveled evening grass, prepare the bed.
Hunters woke geese: In the predawn silence cackled, yelled, clapped its wings, flying. Prudkov jumped. I saw a thin red strip of dawn, she asked anxiously;
— Late, Peter?
— Geese raised the wolf pack, and they have long zoryuyut, they are looking young woman, not utolkaesh evening, not morning dobudesh. Lie down, sweet sleep at dawn.
Prudkov walked away from the camp, sat on the edge of the rock. On reaches zagulgoteli swans. Then I almost ran into him teals, and somewhere very close to scoring quail: «Drink to go? Drinking go? «He began to move like the steppe, and quietly Prudkov reproached him:
— Where have you wandered, eccentric? River a completely different side.
In the east, farther away from the horizon, covered Zorev fire and dark gray clouds. The sun came out a little red corner of the horizon and, like making sure that it is not threatened in those open spaces, went salable salable-up, becoming a huge and bright red. When his left beyond the edge of the earth a little bit, it snoyaa if stopped for some reason, for a moment, and jumped up significantly off the ground. Quickly rising, decreased to normal, day, red has become yellow, burning. It seemed like the eyes Prudkovu live, a huge and invisible creatures, eagerly seized of the land.
Raising hands Prudkov wanted to slap his hands as last night, when the frightened fox.
I do not dare.