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下载数学答案

下载数学答案

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  • 下载数学答案
  • 下载数学答案
  • 下载数学答案

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"Well, then, very likely we shall see you out there before long, Wyatt," Captain Lister said. "Of course, it is a compliment to the regiment, but I daresay you feel it as a nuisance at present."

After crossing the bridge they made their way to the headquarters of General Doctorow, and were at once shown in. The Russian saluted: "The commander-in-chief sends his compliments to you, general, and wishes to know how things are going on, and whether you need reinforcements. He desires that you should send messengers every ten minutes acquainting him with the progress of affairs."

"I won't say as he may not have had a bit of a stick, your honour, though I did not notice it, his hands being in his pockets; anyhow, he did not try to use it."

"What is the best shooting you ever heard of?"

On the 6th of November a bitter frost set in, and the soldiers awoke chilled to the bone, and with gloomy anticipations of what would happen when the full rigour of a Russian winter was upon them. In some respects the frost was an advantage, for it hardened the roads, that were before often almost impassable from the amount of heavy traffic that had passed over them. But, upon the other hand, floating masses of ice speedily covered the rivers, rendering the work of fording them painful and difficult in the extreme. A Russian division had, on the 3rd, pressed hotly on the retreating column just as they reached the Wiazma river. A sanguinary conflict took place, the corps of the Viceroy passed through the town on its banks, and crossed the river in fair order, but that of Davoust broke and crossed in great confusion, covered by Ney's division, which retreated steadily, facing about from time to time, and repulsing the infantry attacks, but suffering heavily from the artillery. Ney set the town on fire to cover his retreat, crossed the bridges, and there stemmed the further advance of the Russians.

"Well, sir, I should say it is a sight better that they should suspect you, and you safely over in France, than that they should suspect you with you in their hands; but at any rate, you see you have no choice in the matter. You could only clear yourself by bringing me into it; though I doubt, as things have turned out, that that would help you a bit."

"It does not matter to anyone, Wyatt. I am quite willing to grant it, but for all that, I am afraid, if you stick to it, you will have to put up with a great deal of chaff, and not always of a good-natured kind."

"Yes, those bales are worth a lot of money. There is fifteen hundred pounds worth of lace in one of them. The others are silks and satins, and worth another five hundred. To-night, when we hear the signal, I and three of the Frenchmen will go up. We shall find two men there, and shall carry the bales to a place a mile and a half away, where they will be hidden until it is convenient to send them up to London, or wherever they are going to dispose of themthat is their business; ours is finished when they hand us over the money for them. They will come at eight o'clock, and at ten the lugger will be off the coast here and send a boat ashore for us. So you have got five or six hours yet, and I should say the best thing you can do is to turn in and sleep till then. There are plenty of blankets in that corner and a pile of sheep-skins that you can sleep on."

Frank worked steadily at Russian, and although he found it extremely difficult at first, soon began to make progress under his teacher, who took the greatest pains with him. He soon got over the good-tempered chaff of the subalterns of his detachment, who, finding that he was at other times always ready to join in anything going on, and was wholly unruffled by their jokes, soon gave it up. They agreed among themselves that he was a queer fellow, and allowed him to go his own way without interference. At the end of three months he was discharged from drill and riding school, and had thenceforth a great deal more time on his hands, and was able to devote three hours of a morning and two of an afternoon to Russian.

A thick mist covered the lower ground, and the advance of the French was not perceived by the enemy until they were within a short distance of its crest. Then the forty guns poured a storm of grape into the leading regiment. The survivors, cheering loudly, rushed forward at the batteries, and had almost reached them, when a heavy mass of Russian infantry flung themselves upon them with the bayonet, and after a short but desperate struggle hurled them down the hill again. The Russian cavalry charged them on the slope, and swept through their shattered ranks. Ney, ignorant that Napoleon had already left Krasnoi, and that the whole Russian army barred his way, made another effort to force a passage. He planted his twelve guns on a height above the ravines, and sent forward several companies of sappers and miners to endeavour to carry the battery again. Gallantly they made their way up the hill through a storm of fire. But the Russians again fell upon them in great force, and few indeed were enabled to make the descent of the hill and rejoin their comrades.