彼得·潘 作者:[英]詹姆斯·巴里 翻译:杨静远
PETER PAN


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    Chapter 1 PETER BREAKS THROUGH
    Chapter 1 PETER BREAKS THROUGH
    
    All children, except one, grow up. They soon know that they will grow up, and the way Wendy knew was this. One day when she was two years old she was playing in a garden, and she plucked another flower and ran with it to her mother. I suppose she must have looked rather delightful, for Mrs. Darling put her hand to her heart and cried, "Oh, why can't you remain like this for ever!" This was all that passed between them on the subject, but henceforth Wendy knew that she must grow up. You always know after you are two. Two is the beginning of the end.
    Of course they lived at 14 (their house number on their street), and until Wendy came her mother was the chief one. She was a lovely lady, with a romantic mind and such a sweet mocking mouth. Her romantic mind was like the tiny boxes, one within the other, that come from the puzzling East, however many you discover there is always one more; and her sweet mocking mouth had one kiss on it that Wendy could never get, though there is was, perfectly conspicuous in the right-hand corner.
    The way Mr. Darling won her was this: the many gentlemen who had been boys when she was a girl discovered simultaneously that they loved her, and they all ran to her house to propose to her except Mr. Darling, who took a cab and nipped in first, and so he got her. He got all of her, except the innermost box and the kiss. He never knew about the box, and in time he gave up trying for the kiss. Wendy thought Napoleon could have got it, but I can picture him trying, and then going off in a passion, slamming the door.
    Mr. Darling used to boast to Wendy that her mother not only loved him but respected him. He was one of those deep ones who know about stocks and shares. Of course no one really knows, but he quite seemed to know, and he often said stocks were up and shares were down in a way that would have made any woman respect him.
    Mrs. Darling was married in white, and at first she kept the books perfectly, almost gleefully, as if it were a game, not so much as a Brussels sprout was missing; but by and by whole cauliflowers dropped out, and instead of them there were pictures of babies without faces. She drew them when she should have been totting up. They were Mrs. Darling's guesses.
    Wendy came first, then John, then Michael.
    For a week or two after Wendy came it was doubtful whether they would be able to keep her, as she was another mouth to feed. Mr. Darling was frightfully proud of her, but he was very honourable, and he sat on the edge of Mrs. Darling's bed, holding her hand and calculating expenses, while she looked at him imploringly. She wanted to risk it, come what might, but that was not his way; his way was with a pencil and a piece of paper, and if she confused him with suggestions he had to begin at the beginning again.
    "Now don't interrupt,' he would beg of her.
    "I have one pound seventeen here, and two and six at the office; I can cut off my coffee at the office, say ten shillings, making two nine and six, with your eighteen and three makes three nine seven, with five naught naught in my cheque-book makes eight nine seven -- who is that moving? -- eight nine seven, dot and carry seven -- don't speak, my own -- and the pound you lent to that man who came to the door -- quiet, child -- dot and carry child -- there, you've done it! -- did I say nine nine seven? yes, I said nine nine seven; the question is, can we try it for a year on nine nine seven?"
    "Of course we can, George," she cried. But she was prejudiced in Wendy's favour, and he was really the grander character of the two.
    "Remember mumps," he warned her almost threateningly, and off he went again. "Mumps one pound, that is what I have put down, but I daresay it will be more like thirty shillings -- don't speak -- measles one five, German measles half a guinea, makes two fifteen six -- don't waggle your finger -- whooping-cough, say fifteen shillings" -- and so on it went, and it added up differently each time; but at last Wendy just got through, with mumps reduced to twelve six, and the two kinds of measles treated as one.
    There was the same excitement over John, and Michael had even a narrower squeak; but both were kept, and soon, you might have seen the three of them going in a row to Miss Fulsom's Kindergarten school, accompanied by their nurse.
    Mrs. Darling loved to have everything just so, and Mr. Darling had a passion for being exactly like his neighbours; so, of course, they had a nurse. As they were poor, owing to the amount of milk the children drank, this nurse was a prim Newfoundland dog, called Nana, who had belonged to no one in particular until the Darlings engaged her. She had always thought children important, however, and the Darlings had become acquainted with her in Kensington Gardens, where she spent most of her spare time peeping into perambulators, and was much hated by careless nursemaids, whom she followed to their homes and complained of to their mistresses. She proved to be quite a treasure of a nurse. How thorough she was at bath-time, and up at any moment of the night if one of her charges made the slightest cry. Of course her kennel was in the nursery. She had a genius for knowing when a cough is a thing to have no patience with and when it needs stocking around your throat. She believed to her last day in old-fashioned remedies like rhubarb leaf, and made sounds of contempt over all this new-fangled talk about germs, and so on. It was a lesson in propriety to see her escorting the children to school, walking sedately by their side when they were well behaved, and butting them back into line if they strayed. On John's footer (in England soccer was called football, "footer for short) days she never once forgot his sweater, and she usually carried an umbrella in her mouth in case of rain. There is a room in the basement of Miss Fulsom's school where the nurses wait. They sat on forms, while Nana lay on the floor, but that was the only difference. They affected to ignore her as of an inferior social status to themselves, and she despised their light talk. She resented visits to the nursery from Mrs. Darling's friends, but if they did come she first whipped off Michael's pinafore and put him into the one with blue braiding, and smoothed out Wendy and made a dash at John's hair.
    No nursery could possibly have been conducted more correctly, and Mr. Darling knew it, yet he sometimes wondered uneasily whether the neighbours talked.
    He had his position in the city to consider.
    Nana also troubled him in another way. He had sometimes a feeling that she did not admire him. "I know she admires you tremendously, George," Mrs. Darling would assure him, and then she would sign to the children to be specially nice to father. Lovely dances followed, in which the only other servant, Liza, was sometimes allowed to join. Such a midget she looked in her long skirt and maid's cap, though she had sworn, when engaged, that she would never see ten again. The gaiety of those romps! And gayest of all was Mrs. Darling, who would pirouette so wildly that all you could see of her was the kiss, and then if you had dashed at her you might have got it. There never was a simpler happier family until the coming of Peter Pan.
    Mrs. Darling first heard of Peter when she was tidying up her children's minds. It is the nightly custom of every good mother after her children are asleep to rummage in their minds and put things straight for next morning, repacking into their proper places the many articles that have wandered during the day. If you could keep awake (but of course you can't) you would see your own mother doing this, and you would find it very interesting to watch her. It is quite like tidying up drawers. You would see her on her knees, I expect, lingering humorously over some of your contents, wondering where on earth you had picked this thing up, making discoveries sweet and not so sweet, pressing this to her cheek as if it were as nice as a kitten, and hurriedly stowing that out of sight. When you wake in the morning, the naughtiness and evil passions with which you went to bed have been folded up small and placed at the bottom of your mind and on the top, beautifully aired, are spread out your prettier thoughts, ready for you to put on.
    I don't know whether you have ever seen a map of a person's mind. Doctors sometimes draw maps of other parts of you, and your own map can become intensely interesting, but catch them trying to draw a map of a child's mind, which is not only confused, but keeps going round all the time. There are zigzag lines on it, just like your temperature on a card, and these are probably roads in the island, for the Neverland is always more or less an island, with astonishing splashes of colour here and there, and coral reefs and rakish-looking craft in the offing, and savages and lonely lairs, and gnomes who are mostly tailors, and caves through which a river runs, and princes with six elder brothers, and a hut fast going to decay, and one very small old lady with a hooked nose. It would be an easy map if that were all, but there is also first day at school, religion, fathers, the round pond, needle-work, murders, hangings, verbs that take the dative, chocolate pudding day, getting into braces, say ninety-nine, three-pence for pulling out your tooth yourself, and so on, and either these are part of the island or they are another map showing through, and it is all rather confusing, especially as nothing will stand still.
    Of course the Neverlands vary a good deal. John's, for instance, had a lagoon with flamingoes flying over it at which John was shooting, while Michael, who was very small, had a flamingo with lagoons flying over it. John lived in a boat turned upside down on the sands, Michael in a wigwam, Wendy in a house of leaves deftly sewn together. John had no friends, Michael had friends at night, Wendy had a pet wolf forsaken by its parents, but on the whole the Neverlands have a family resemblance, and if they stood still in a row you could say of them that they have each other's nose, and so forth. On these magic shores children at play are for ever beaching their coracles (simple boat). We too have been there; we can still hear the sound of the surf, though we shall land no more.
    Of all delectable islands the Neverland is the snuggest and most compact, not large and sprawly, you know, with tedious distances between one adventure and another, but nicely crammed. When you play at it by day with the chairs and table-cloth, it is not in the least alarming, but in the two minutes before you go to sleep it becomes very real. That is why there are night-lights.
    Occasionally in her travels through her children's minds Mrs. Darling found things she could not understand, and of these quite the most perplexing was the word Peter. She knew of no Peter, and yet he was here and there in John and Michael's minds, while Wendy's began to be scrawled all over with him. The name stood out in bolder letters than any of the other words, and as Mrs. Darling gazed she felt that it had an oddly cocky appearance.
    "Yes, he is rather cocky," Wendy admitted with regret. Her mother had been questioning her.
    "But who is he, my pet?"
    "He is Peter Pan, you know, mother."
    At first Mrs. Darling did not know, but after thinking back into her childhood she just remembered a Peter Pan who was said to live with the fairies. There were odd stories about him, as that when children died he went part of the way with them, so that they should not be frightened. She had believed in him at the time, but now that she was married and full of sense she quite doubted whether there was any such person.
    "Besides," she said to Wendy, "he would be grown up by this time."
    "Oh no, he isn't grown up," Wendy assured her confidently, "and he is just my size." She meant that he was her size in both mind and body; she didn't know how she knew, she just knew it.
    Mrs. Darling consulted Mr. Darling, but he smiled pooh-pooh. "Mark my words," he said, "it is some nonsense Nana has been putting into their heads; just the sort of idea a dog would have. Leave it alone, and it will blow over."
    But it would not blow over and soon the troublesome boy gave Mrs. Darling quite a shock.
    Children have the strangest adventures without being troubled by them. For instance, they may remember to mention, a week after the event happened, that when they were in the wood they had met their dead father and had a game with him. It was in this casual way that Wendy one morning made a disquieting revelation. Some leaves of a tree had been found on the nursery floor, which certainly were not there when the children went to bed, and Mrs. Darling was puzzling over them when Wendy said with a tolerant smile:
    "I do believe it is that Peter again!"
    "Whatever do you mean, Wendy?"
    "It is so naughty of him not to wipe his feet," Wendy said, sighing. She was a tidy child.
    She explained in quite a matter-of-fact way that she thought Peter sometimes came to the nursery in the night and sat on the foot of her bed and played on his pipes to her. Unfortunately she never woke, so she didn't know how she knew, she just knew.
    "What nonsense you talk, precious. No one can get into the house without knocking."
    "I think he comes in by the window," she said.
    "My love, it is three floors up."
    "Were not the leaves at the foot of the window, mother?"
    It was quite true; the leaves had been found very near the window.
    Mrs. Darling did not know what to think, for it all seemed so natural to Wendy that you could not dismiss it by saying she had been dreaming.
    "My child," the mother cried, "why did you not tell me of this before?"
    "I forgot," said Wendy lightly. She was in a hurry to get her breakfast.
    Oh, surely she must have been dreaming.
    But, on the other hand, there were the leaves. Mrs. Darling examined them very carefully; they were skeleton leaves, but she was sure they did not come from any tree that grew in England. She crawled about the floor, peering at it with a candle for marks of a strange foot. She rattled the poker up the chimney and tapped the walls. She let down a tape from the window to the pavement, and it was a sheer drop of thirty feet, without so much as a spout to climb up by.
    Certainly Wendy had been dreaming.
    But Wendy had not been dreaming, as the very next night showed, the night on which the extraordinary adventures of these children may be said to have begun.
    On the night we speak of all the children were once more in bed. It happened to be Nana's evening off, and Mrs. Darling had bathed them and sung to them till one by one they had let go her hand and slid away into the land of sleep.
    All were looking so safe and cosy that she smiled at her fears now and sat down tranquilly by the fire to sew.
    It was something for Michael, who on his birthday was getting into shirts. The fire was warm, however, and the nursery dimly lit by three night-lights, and presently the sewing lay on Mrs. Darling's lap. Then her head nodded, oh, so gracefully. She was asleep. Look at the four of them, Wendy and Michael over there, John here, and Mrs. Darling by the fire. There should have been a fourth night-light.
    While she slept she had a dream. She dreamt that the Neverland had come too near and that a strange boy had broken through from it. He did not alarm her, for she thought she had seen him before in the faces of many women who have no children. Perhaps he is to be found in the faces of some mothers also. But in her dream he had rent the film that obscures the Neverland, and she saw Wendy and John and Michael peeping through the gap.
    The dream by itself would have been a trifle, but while she was dreaming the window of the nursery blew open, and a boy did drop on the floor. He was accompanied by a strange light, no bigger than your fist, which darted about the room like a living thing and I think it must have been this light that wakened Mrs. Darling.
    She started up with a cry, and saw the boy, and somehow she knew at once that he was Peter Pan. If you or I or Wendy had been there we should have seen that he was very like Mrs. Darling's kiss. He was a lovely boy, clad in skeleton leaves and the juices that ooze out of trees but the most entrancing thing about him was that he had all his first teeth. When he saw she was a grown-up, he gnashed the little pearls at her.
    
    第一章 彼得·潘闯了进来
    
    所有的孩子都要长大的,只有一个例外。所有的孩子很快都知道他们将要长大成人。温迪是这样知道的:她两岁的时候,有一天在花园里玩,她摘了一朵花,拿在手里,朝妈妈跑去。我琢磨,她那个小样儿一定是怪讨人喜欢的,因为,达林太太把手按着胸口,大声说:“要是你老是这么大该多好呵!”事情的经过就是这样。可是,打那以后,温迪就明白了,她终归是要长大的。人一过两岁就总会知道这一点的。两岁,是个结束,也是个起点。
    当然罗,他们是住在门牌十四号的那所宅子里,在温迪来到世上以前,妈妈自然是家中主要人物。她是个招人喜欢的太太,一脑子的幻想;还有一张甜甜的、喜欢逗弄人的嘴。她那爱幻想的脑子,就像从神奇的东方来的那些小盒子,一个套一个,不管你打开了多少,里面总还藏着一个。她那张甜甜的、逗弄人的嘴,老是挂着一个温迪得不到的吻,可那吻明明就在那儿,就在右边的嘴角上挂着。
    达林先生是这样赢得他太太的:她还是个女孩的时候,周围有好些男孩,他们长成大人以后,忽然一齐发现他们爱上了她,于是他们都跑着拥进她家向她求婚;只有达林先生的做法不同,他雇了一辆马车,抢在他们头里来到她家里,于是就赢得了她。达林先生得到了她的一切,只是没有得到她那些小盒子最里面的一只和那个吻。那只小盒子他从来也不知道,那个吻他渐渐地也不再想去求得了。温迪心想,兴许拿破仑能得到那个吻,不过据我估摸,拿破仑必定试图求吻来着,可是过后却怒气冲冲地甩门而去。
    达林先生时常向温迪夸口说,她妈妈不光爱他,而且敬重他。他是一个学问高深的人,懂得股票和红利什么的。当然啦,这些事谁也搞不清,可达林先生像是挺懂行的,他老是说,股票上涨了,红利下跌了。他说得那么头头是道,就像随便哪个女人都得佩服他。
    达林太太结婚时,穿一身雪白的嫁衣。起初,她把家用账记得一丝不苟,甚至很开心,像玩游戏一样,连一个小菜芽都不漏记。可是渐渐地,整个整个的大菜花都漏掉了,账本上出现了一些没有面孔的小娃娃的图像。在她应该结账的地方,她画上了这些小娃娃。她估摸他们要来了。
    第一个来的是温迪,接着是约翰,随后是迈克尔。
    温迪出生后一两个星期,父母亲不知道能不能养活她,因为又添一张吃饭的嘴。达林先生有了温迪自然是得意非常,可他是个实实在在的人,他坐在达林太太的床沿上,握着她的手一笔一笔给她算开销账。达林太太带着央告的神情望着他。她想,不管怎么着也得冒一冒风险看,可达林先生的做法不是这样的。他的做法是拿来一支铅笔一张纸算细账。要是达林太大提意见搅乱了他,他又得从头算起。
    “好了,别插嘴了。”他央求说,
    “我这儿有一镑十七先令,在办公室还有两先令六便士;办公室的咖啡我可以取消,就算省下十先令吧,就有两镑九先令六便士。加上你的十八先令三便士,合计三镑九先令七便士,我的存折上还有五镑,总共八镑九先令七便士——是谁在那儿动?——八——九——七,小数点进位七——别说话,我亲爱的——还有你借给找上门来的那个人的一镑钱——安静点,乖乖——小数点进位,乖乖——瞧,到底让你给搅乱了——我刚才是说九——九——七来着?对了,我说的是九——九——七;问题是,我们靠这个九——九——七,能不能试试看对付它一年?”
    “我们当然能,乔治。”达林太太嚷道。她当然是偏袒温迪的,可达林先生是两人中更有能耐的一个。
    “别忘了腮腺炎,”达林先生几乎带点威胁地警告她,接着又算下去,“腮腺炎我算它一镑,不过我敢说,更大的可能要花三十先令——别说话——麻疹一镑五先令,德国麻疹半个几尼,加起来是两镑十五先令六便士——别摇手——百日咳,算十五先令。”——他继续算下去,每次算出的结果都不一样。不过最后温迪总算熬了过来,腮腺炎减到了十二先令六便士,两种麻疹并作一次处理。
    约翰生下时,也遇到同样的风波,迈克尔遇到的险情更大。不过他们两个到底都还是留下来养活了,不久你就会看见姐弟三个排成一行,由保姆陪伴着,到福尔萨姆小姐的幼儿园上学去了。
    达林太大是安于现状的,达林先生却喜欢事事都向左邻右舍看齐;所以,当然他们也得请一位保姆。由于孩子们喝的牛奶太多,他们很穷,所以,他们家的保姆只是一只严肃庄重的纽芬兰大狗,名叫娜娜。在达林夫妇雇用她以前,这狗本没有固定的主人,不过她总是把孩子看得很重的。达林一家是在肯辛顿公园里和她结识的。她闲来无事去那儿游逛,把头伸进摇篮车窥望,那些粗心大意的保姆总是讨厌她;因为她老是跟着她们回家,向她们的主人告状。她果然成了一位不可多得的好保姆。给孩子洗澡时,她是多么认真一丝不苟啊。夜里不管什么时候,她看管的孩子只要有一个轻轻地哭一声,她就一跃而起。狗舍当然是设在育儿室里。她天生有一种聪明,知道什么样的咳嗽是不可怠慢的,什么时候该用一只袜子围着脖子。她从来都相信老式的治疗方法,比如用大黄叶;听到那些什么细菌之类的新名词,她总是用鼻子不屑地哼一声。你若是看到她护送孩子上学时那种合乎礼仪的情景,真会大长见识。当孩子们规规矩矩时,她就安详地走在他们身边;要是他们乱跑乱动,她就把他们推进行列。在约翰踢足球的日子,她从不忘带着他的线衣;天要下雨的时候,她总是把伞衔在嘴里。福尔萨姆的幼儿园里,有一间地下室,保姆们就等候在那里。她们坐在长凳上,而娜娜是伏卧在地板上,不过这是唯一的不同之处。她们认为她社会地位比她们低贱,装作没把她放在眼里的样子;其实,娜娜才瞧不起她们那种无聊的闲聊呢。她很不高兴达林太太的朋友们来育儿室看望,可要是她们真的来了,她就先扯下迈克尔的围裙,给他换上那件带蓝穗子的,把温迪的衣裙抚平,匆匆梳理一下约翰的头发。
    没有一个育儿室管理得比这个更井井有条了,这一点达林先生不是不知道,不过他有时还是不免心里嘀咕,生怕街坊邻居们会背地里笑话他。
    他不能不考虑他在城里的职位。
    娜娜还在另一个方面使达林先生不安,他有时觉得娜娜不大佩服他。“我知道,她可佩服你啦,乔治。”达林太太向他担保说,然后就示意孩子们要特别敬重父亲。接着,就跳起了欢快的舞。他们唯一的另一位女仆莉莎,有时也被允许参加跳舞。莉莎穿着长裙,戴着女佣人的布帽,显得那么矮小,虽说开始雇用的时候,她一口咬定她早就过十岁了。小家伙们多快活呀!最快活的是达林太太,她踮起脚尖发狂般地飞旋,你能看到的只是她的那个吻。这时要是你扑了过去,定能得到那一吻。再也没有比他们更单纯、更快乐的家庭了,直到彼得·潘来临。
    达林太太第一次知道彼得,是在她清理孩子们的心思的时候。凡是好妈妈,晚上都有一个习惯,就是在孩子们睡着以后,搜检他们的心思,使白天弄乱了的什物各就各位,为明天早晨把一切料理停当。假如你能醒着(不过你当然不能),你就能看见你妈妈做这些事;你会发觉,留心地观看她是很有趣的。那就和整理抽屉差不多。我估摸,你会看见她跪在那儿,很有兴味地察看里面的东西,纳闷这样东西不知你是打哪儿拣到的;发现有些是可爱的,有些是不那么可爱的。把一件东西贴在她脸上,像捧着一只逗人的小猫;把另一件东西赶快收藏起来,不让人看见。你清早醒来时,临睡时揣着的那些顽皮念头和坏脾气都给叠得小小的,压在你心思的底层。而在上面,平平整整摆着你的那些美好念头,等你去穿戴打扮起来。
    我不知道你是不是见过人的心思的地图。医生有时画你身上别的部分的地图,你自己的地图会是特别有趣的。可是,要是你碰巧看到他们画一张孩子的心思地图,你就会看到,那不光是杂乱无章,而且总是绕着圈儿的。那是些曲曲折折的线条,就像你的体温表格,这大概就是岛上的道路了。因为永无乡多少就像是一个海岛。到处撒着一块块惊人的颜色。海面上露着珊瑚礁,漂着轻快的船。岛上住着野蛮人;还有荒凉的野兽洞穴;有小土神,他们多半是些裁缝;有河流穿过的岩洞;有王子和他的六个哥哥;有一间快要坍塌的茅屋;还有一位长着鹰钩鼻子的小老太太。若是只有这些,这张地图倒也不难画。但是还有呢,第一天上学校,宗教,父亲,圆水池,针线活,谋杀案,绞刑,与格动词,吃巧克力布丁的日子,穿背带裤,数到九十九,自己拔牙奖给三便士,等等。这些若不是岛上的一部分,那就是画在另一张画上的了;总之,全都是杂乱无章的。尤其是因为,没有一件东西是静止不动的。
    当然,各人的永无乡又大不一样,例如,约翰的永无乡里有一个湖泊,湖上飞着许多红鹤,约翰拿箭射它们。迈克尔呢,年纪很小,他有一只红鹤,上面飞着许多湖泊。约翰住在一只翻扣在沙滩上的船里,迈克尔住在一个印第安人的皮棚里,温迪住在一间用树叶巧妙地缝成的屋子里。约翰没有亲友,迈克尔在夜晚有亲友,温迪有一只被父母遗弃的小狼宝宝。不过总的说来,他们的永无乡都像一家人似的彼此相像。要是摆成一排,你会看到它们的五官面目大同小异。在这些神奇的海滩上,游戏的孩子们总是驾着油布小船靠岸登陆。那地方,我们其实也到过,我们如今还能听到浪涛拍岸的声音,虽然我们不再上岸。
    在所有叫人开心的岛子里,永无乡要算是最安逸、最紧凑的了。就是说,不太大,不太散,从一个奇遇到另一个奇遇,距离恰到好处,密集而十分得当。白天你用椅子和桌布玩岛上的游戏时,一点也不显得惊人;可是,在你睡着前的两分钟,它就几乎变成真的了,所以夜里要点灯。
    达林太太偶尔漫步在孩子们的心思里时,发现那里有些东西她不能理解,最叫她莫名其妙的,要算是彼得这个名字。她不认得彼得这么个人,可是在约翰和迈克尔的心思里,到处都是这个名字;温迪的心思里,更是涂满了它。这个名字的笔画比别的字都来得粗大,达林太太仔细地打量着它,觉得它傲气得有点古怪。
    她遗憾地承认说:“是的,他是有那么点傲气。”。她妈妈问她来着。
    “可他是谁呀,宝贝?”
    “他是彼得·潘,你知道的,妈妈。”
    开头达林太太不知道他,可是她回忆起童年的时候,就想起了彼得·潘。据说,他和仙子们住在一起。关于他,故事多着呢;比如说,孩子们死了,在黄泉路上,他陪着他们走一段,免得他们害怕。当时达林太太是相信的,可现在她结了婚,懂事了,就很有点怀疑,是不是真有这样一个人。
    “而且,”她告诉温迪,“到现在,他该已经长大了。”
    “噢,不,他没有长大,”温迪满有把握地告诉妈妈,“他跟我一样大。”温迪的意思是说,彼得的心和身体都和她一样大。她也不知道她是怎么知道的,反正她知道。
    达林太太和达林先生商量,达林先生只微微一笑,说:“听我的话,准是娜娜对他们胡说的,这正是一条狗才会有的念头。别管它,这股风就过去了。”
    可是这股风没有过去,不久,这个调皮捣蛋的男孩竟然使达林太太吓了一跳。
    孩子们常会遇到顶奇怪的事儿,可是毫不觉得惊恐不安。例如,事情发生了一个星期以后,他们会想起来说,他们在树林子里遇到死去的父亲,并且和他一起玩。温迪就是这样,有一天早上,她漫不经心地说出了一件叫人心神不安的事。育儿室的地板上发现有几片树叶,头天晚上孩子们上床时明明还没有;达林太太觉得这事很蹊跷,温迪却毫不在意地笑着说:
    “我相信这又是那个彼得干的!”
    “你说的是什么意思,温迪?”
    “他真淘气,玩完了也不扫地。”温迪说,叹了一口气。她是个爱整洁的孩子。
    她象真有那么回事似的解释说,她觉得彼得有时夜里来到育儿室,坐在她的床脚那头,吹笛子给她听。可惜她从来没有醒过,所以她不晓得她是怎么知道的,反正她知道。
    “你胡说些什么,宝贝!不敲门谁也进不了屋。”
    “我想他是从窗子里进来的。”温迪说。
    “亲爱的,这是三层楼呵!”
    “树叶不就是在窗子底下吗,妈妈?”
    这倒是真的;树叶就是在离窗子很近的地方发现的。
    达林太太不知该怎么想才是,因为在温迪看来,这一切都那么自然,你不能说她在做梦,把它随随便便打发掉。
    “我的孩子,”她妈妈喊道,“你为什么不早告诉我?”
    “我忘了。”温迪不在意地说,她急着要去吃早饭。
    啊,她一定是在做梦。
    可是话又说回来,树叶是明摆着的。达林太太仔细察看了这些树叶,那是些枯叶,不过她敢断定,那绝不是从英国的树上掉下来的叶子。她在地板上爬来爬去,用一支蜡烛在地上照,想看看有没有生人的脚印。她用火棍在烟囱里乱捅,敲着墙。她从窗口放下一根带子到地上,窗子的高度足足有三十英尺,墙上连一个可供攀登的喷水口都没有。
    温迪一定是在做梦。
    可是温迪并不是做梦,第二夜就看出来了,那一夜可以说是孩子们最不平凡的经历的开始。
    在我们说的那一夜,孩子们又都上床睡觉了。那天晚上,正好是娜娜休假的日子。达林太太给他们洗了澡,又给他们唱歌,直到他们一个个放开她的手,溜进了睡乡。
    一切都显得那么平安,那么舒适,达林太太不禁对自己的担心好笑,她于是静静地坐在火炉旁,缝起衣裳来。
    这是给迈克尔缝的,他过生日那天该穿上衬衫了。炉火暖融融的,育儿室里半明半暗地点着三盏夜灯。不多会儿,针线活就落到了达林太太的腿上,她的头,一个劲儿往下栽,多优美呀,她睡着了。瞧这四口子,温迪和迈克尔睡在那边,约翰睡在这边,达林太太睡在炉火旁。本来该有第四盏夜灯的。
    达林太太睡着以后做了一个梦,她梦见永无乡离得很近很近,一个陌生的男孩从那里钻了出来。男孩并没有使她感到惊讶,因为她觉得她曾在一些没有孩子的女人脸上见过他。也许在一些做母亲的脸上,也可以看到他。但是在她的梦里,那孩子把遮掩着永无乡的一层薄幕扯开了,她看到温迪、约翰和迈克尔由那道缝向里窥望。
    这个梦本来是小事一桩,可是就在她做梦的时候,育儿室的窗子忽然打开了,果真有一个男孩落到了地板上。伴随着他的,还有一团奇异的光,那光还没有你的拳头那么大,它像一个活物在房间里四处乱飞。我想,一定是那团光把达林太太惊醒了。
    她叫了一声,跳了起来,看见了那个男孩。不知怎的,她一下子就明白他就是彼得·潘。要是你或我或温迪在那儿,我们会觉得,她很像达林太大的那个吻。他是一个很可爱的男孩,穿着用干树叶和树浆做的衣裳。可是他身上最迷人的地方是他还保留了一口乳牙。他一见达林太太是个大人,就对她龇起满口珍珠般的小牙。
    

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