The dining-room of SORIN'S house. Doors open out of it to the right and left. A table
stands in the centre of the room. Trunks and boxes encumber the floor, and preparations
for departure are evident. TRIGORIN is sitting at a table eating his breakfast, and
MASHA is standing beside him.
MASHA. I am telling you all these things because you write books and they may be
useful to you. I tell you honestly, I should not have lived another day if he had wounded
himself fatally. Yet I am courageous; I have decided to tear this love of mine out of my
heart by the roots.
TRIGORIN. How will you do it?
MASHA. By marrying Medviedenko.
TRIGORIN. The school-teacher?
TRIGORIN. I don't see the necessity for that.
MASHA. Oh, if you knew what it is to love without hope for years and years, to wait for
ever for something that will never come! I shall not marry for love, but marriage will at
least be a change, and will bring new cares to deaden the memories of the past. Shall we
have another drink?
TRIGORIN. Haven't you had enough?
MASHA. Fiddlesticks! [She fills a glass] Don't look at me with that expression on your
face. Women drink oftener than you imagine, but most of them do it in secret, and not
openly, as I do. They do indeed, and it is always either vodka or brandy. [They touch
glasses] To your good health! You are so easy to get on with that I am sorry to see you
go. [They drink.]
TRIGORIN. And I am sorry to leave.
MASHA. You should ask her to stay.
TRIGORIN. She would not do that now. Her son has been behaving outrageously. First
he attempted suicide, and now I hear he is going to challenge me to a duel, though what
his provocation may be I can't imagine. He is always sulking and sneering and preaching
about a new form of art, as if the field of art were not large enough to accommodate both
old and new without the necessity of jostling.