Title: A Railway Story (also known as On The Journey)
Date Read: 15th March 2010
Available Online?: YES (although read for this review was the David Coward translation of the story in A Day in the Country and Other Stories (Oxford University Press)).
Briefly: While on a train from Cannes, a doctor recounts the tale of Russian Countess Marie Baranow, who had a rather odd encounter aboard a train travelling from Russia to France. It was a meeting which would stay with her for the rest of her life.
Afterthoughts: This is not a bad little tale from Maupassant. Oddly I’ve seen it listed on a couple of websites as a horror story, but it is anything but that. Mysterious it certainly is, but the crux of the story is more to do with unrequited love than anything else.
Notable Quote: But all of a sudden a breath of cold air struck her in the face. She raised her head in surprise. The door had swung open. The Countess Marie in desperation, brusquely threw a shawl over the money which was spread on her knees, and waited. Some seconds passed, then a man appeared, bareheaded, wounded in the hand, panting, in evening dress. He shut the door again, sat down, looked at his neighbour with glittering eyes, then wrapped a handkerchief round his wrist, from which the blood was flowing.
*Story read as part of my Devouring De Maupassant reading challenge.