The Brothers Karamazov

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Maid #1

Lise is very ill.  I heard her tell Alexei Karamazov about a dream.  She said, “Ah, I’ll tell you a funny dream of mine:  sometimes I have a dream about devils, it seems to be night, I’m in my room with a candle, and suddenly there are devils everywhere, in all corners, and under the tables, and they open the door, and outside the door there’s a crowd of them, and they want to come in and grab me.  And they’re coming close, they’re about to grab me.  But I suddenly cross myself and they all draw back, afraid, only they don’t quite go away, they stand by the door and in the corners, waiting.  And suddenly I have a terrible desire to start abusing God out loud, and so I start abusing him, and they suddenly rush at me again in a crowd, they’re so glad, and they’re grabbing me again, and I suddenly cross myself again – and they all draw back.  It’s such terrible fun; it takes my breath away.”    And here is the strangest part:  Alexei told her that he’s had the same dream! (583) What do you think it means, this dream, and that Alexei shares it with Lise?

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