The Lottery Ticket
The Lottery Ticket
Inan Bismark, a middle -class man lived with his wife on an income of twelve thousand a month and was very well satisfied with this a lot, sat down on the sofa after supper and started reading the newspaper.
'I forgot to take a look at the newspaper today,' his wife said to him as she cleared the table.' Look and see whether the list of drawing is there.'
'yes. It is,' said Ivan;'but hasn't your ticket lapsed?'
'Nah,I take interest in tuesday.'
'What is the number?'
'Series 9,499,number 26.'
'All right...We will look...9,499 and 26.'
Ivan had no faith in loterry luck, and would not,as a rule, have consented to look at the list of winning numbers,but now,as he had nothing else to do and the newspaper was before his eyes,he passed his fingers downwards along the column of numbers. And immediately,as though in mockery of his scepticism,no further than the second line from the top his eyes caught the number 9,499! Unable to believe his eyes he hurriedly dropped the newspaer on his knees without looking to the number of the ticket, and,just as though someone had given him a douche of cold water, he felt a agreeable chill in the pit of his stomach; tingling and terrible and sweet.
'Masha,9,499 is there!' he said in a hollow voice.
His wife looked at his ashtonished and panic-stricken face and realised that he was not joking.
'9,499?' she asked ,turning pale and dropping the folded tablecloth on the table .
'Yes, yes... It's really there!'
'And the number of ticket?'
'Oh yes! The number of the ticket too. But stay... Wait! No, I say!
Anyway, the number of our series is there! Anyway, you uderstand...'
Looking at his wife, Ivan gave a broad, senseless smile, like a baby when a bright object is shown. His wife smilled too; it was pleasant to her as to him that he only mentioned the series, and did not try to find out the winning ticket. To torment and tantalize oneself with hopes of possible fortune is so sweet,so thrilling!
'It is our series,' said Ivan, after a long silence, 'so there is a probability that we have won. It's only a probability but there it is!'
'Well, now look!'
'Wait a little.We have plenty of time to be disappointed. It's on the second line from the top,so the prize is seventy-five lakhs . That's not money, but power, capital! And in a minute I shall look at the list,and there--26! Eh? I say what if we had really won?'
The husband and the wife began laughing and staring at one another in silence. The possibility of winning bewildered them; they could not have said, they could have not dreamed and they needed that seventy-five lakhs, for what they would buy, where they would go. They thought only of the figures 9,499 and 75,0000 and pictured them in the imagination,while somehow they could not think of the happines itself which was not possible.
Ivan, holding the paper in his hand, walked several time from corner to corner, only when he had recoverd from the first impression he began dreaming a little.
'And if we have won,' he said - 'why, it will be a new life ,it will be a
Tranformation! The ticket is yours, but if it were mine I should have built a summer villa,and besides, it would always bring an income.'
And then thinking of the same thing Ivan went to his room but as soon as he said about the villa Masha went into deep thought and she went to sleep but she could not sleep and she told her husband 'what if we buy a small mansion in italy with the beach side facing?'
Ivan said, 'what are you speaking? Do you even know what is the starting price of a mansion?'
'Forget it, just sleep already. It's too late.'
And he slept but Masha couldn't do that.
The next day Masha was not at home, some of her clothes and passport were missing. He thought, did she go abroad no he didn't believe it.
But her both passport ad clothes are missing but just in some seconds, something attracted his eyes.
It was the list of lucky tickets and he again checked it and forgot of Masha and then he found the winner was number 46! Not 26! Then suddenly it struck his mind that Masha was not around and the thought she had left for Italy and he was continuosly trying to call her but it was switched off. Now he was sure that she had left for Italy and as soon as he was leaving for the airport, Masha was at the elevator and he asked Masha 'where have you been?'
'I had gone to give some of my clothes to the washer man,' said Masha.
'And what about the passport?' said Ivan.
'I had gone to renew my passport as it was to be expired the next month,' said Masha.
'Ohh, I thought you had gone to Italy as you said the last night!' said Ivan.
'And do you know the lucky ticket was not of us, it was for the number 46 and not 26!' Ivan continued.
'Ohh we lost a great opportunity!... Better luck next time!' said Masha.
'Yeah, better luck next time... Ok, I am starving. Can you serve me breakfast as soon as possible?' said Ivan.