Fedia Davidovich

Fedia was getting ready to steal some butter and finally the right moment came when his wife bent over to cut off her toenail and in one quick movement he took all the butter from the butter dish and shoved it in his mouth. But when he closed the butter dish, he clinked the dish with the lid. His wife instantly stood up, and seeing the empty butter dish she pointed at it with the scissors and said with a strict voice:

- There is no butter left in the butter dish. Where is it?

Fedia looked amazed, stretched out his neck, and peeked at the butter dish.

- The butter is in your mouth, - said the wife pointing at him with the scissors.

Fedia shook his head negatively.

- Aha, - said the wife. - You can't say a word and you're shaking your head because your mouth is full of butter.

Fedia opened his eyes wide and waved his hands like he was saying: "What are you talking about, I don't know what are you talking about!". But the wife said:

- You are lying. Open you mouth.

- Hmm, - said Fedia.

- Open your mouth, - repeated his wife.

Fedia spread his fingers and mooed, like he was saying: "Oh yes, I almost forgot, I'll be right back", - and he stood up, trying to leave the room.

- Don't move! - screamed his wife.

But Fedia quickly disappeared. His wife rushed after him, but stopped at the door because she was naked, and couldn't have stepped into the corridor because she could have bumped into the other tenants of the apartment.

- He is gone, - said the wife, and sat on the sofa. - Hell!

Fedia, after walking down the corridor for a while, reached the door with a sign that said: "Entrance prohibited", opened it and walked into a room. The room was narrow and long, with a window covered with dirty paper. On the right, next to the wall, there was a dirty broken bed, and right next to the window, a table made of wooden board: with one end of the board leaning on the night table and the other on the back of a chair. There was a double shelf on the wall, with something unidentifiable on it. There was nothing else in the room except a pale man sitting on the bed, wearing a long, brown, ripped frock-coat, black pants with freshly washed feet sticking out of the bottom. The sitting man wasn't sleeping but was looking intensely at the man who just entered.

Fedia bowed, shuffled his feet, and after taking the butter out of his mouth, showed it to the sitting man.

- One and a half, - said the owner of the room without changing his pose.

- It's too little, - said Fedia.

- It's enough, - said the owner of the room.

- Well, alright then, - said Fedia and took the butter off his finger and put it on the shelf.

- Come back tomorrow morning for the money - said the man.

- Oh come on, - screamed Fedia. - I need the money now. And it is only one and a half rubbles...

- Get out, - said the man dryly, and Fedia leaved the roomed on his tiptoes, carefully closing the door after himself.


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