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2 Chapter 2《猴爪》MP3音频朗读牛津书虫第1级

Chapter 2
 
  After some time Tom Morris stopped talking and Mr White said to his wife and son,'Tom was a soldier in India for twenty-one years. India is a wonderful country.'
  'Yes,'Herbert said.'I'd like to go there.'
  'Oh, Herbert!' his mother cried. She was afraid because she did not want to lose her son.
  'I wanted to go to India too,'her husband said, 'but…'
  'It's better for you here!' the soldier said quickly.
  'But you saw a lot of strange and wonderful things in India .I want to see them too one day,' Mr White said.
  The soldier put down his whisky.'No!' he cried.'Stay here !'
  Old Mr White did not stop.'But your stories were interesting, 'he said to Tom Morris.'What did you begin to say about a monkey's paw?'
  'Nothing!' Morris answered quickly.'Well…nothing important.'
  'A monkey's paw?' Mrs White said.
  'Come on, Mr Morris! Tell us about it,' Herbert said.
  Morris took his whisky in his hand, but suddenly he put it down again.Slowly he put his hand into the pocket of his coat and the White family watched him.
  'What is it? What is it?' Mrs White cried.
  Morris said nothing. He took his hand out of his pocket.The White family watched carefully—and in the soldier's hand they saw something little and dirty.
  Mrs White moved back, afraid, but her son,Herbert,took it and looked at it carefully.
  'Well,what is it?'Mr White asked his friend.
  'Look at it,' the soldier answered.'It's a little paw…a monkey's paw.'
  'A monkey's paw!'Herbert said—and he laughed.'Why do you carry a monkey's paw in your pocket,Mr Morris?' he asked the old soldier.
  'Well,you see,' Morris said,'this monkey's paw is magic!'
  Herbert laughed again, but the soldier said,'Don't laugh,boy.Remember, you're young.I'm old now and in India I saw many strange things.' He stopped talking for a minute and then he said,'This monkey's paw can do strange and wonderful things. An old Indian gave the paw to one of my friends. My friend was a soldier too. This paw is magic because it can give three wishes to three people.'
  'Wonderful!'Herbert said.
  'But these three wishes don't bring happiness,'the soldier said.'The old Indian wanted to teach us something—it's never good to want to change things.'
  'Well, did your friend have three wishes?' Herbert asked the old soldier.
  'Yes,'Morris answered quietly.'And his third and last wish was to die!'
  Mr and Mrs White listened to the story and they felt afraid, but Herbert asked,'And did he die?'
  'Yes, he did,' Morris said.' He had no family, so his things came to me when he died. The monkey's paw was with his things, but he told me about it before he died,' Tom Morris finished quietly.
  'What were his first two wishes, then?' Herbert asked. 'What did he ask for?'
  'I don't know. He didn't want to tell me,' the soldier answered.
  For a minute or two everybody was quiet, but then Herbert said,' And you, Mr Morris :did you have three wishes?'
  'Yes, I did,' Morris answered.'I was young. I wanted many things—a fast car, money… 'Morris stopped for a minute and then he said with difficulty,'My wife and my young son died in an accident in the car. Without them I didn't want the money, so, in the end, I wished to lose it. But it was too late.My wife and my child were dead.'
  The room was very quiet. The White family looked at the unhappy face of the old soldier.
  Then Mr White said,'Why do you want the paw now?You don't need it. You can give it to someone.'
  'How can I give it to someone?'the soldier said.'The monkey's paw brings unhappiness with it.'
  'Well, give it to me,' Mr White said.'Perhaps this time it…'
  'No!' Tom Morris cried.'You're my friend. I can't give it to you.'then,after a minute,he said,'I can't give it to you,but,of course you can take it from me.But remember—this monkey's paw brings unhappiness!'
  Old Mr White did not listen and he did not think.Quickly, he put out his hand, and he took the paw.
  Tom Morris looked unhappy,but Mr White did not want to wait.
  'What do I do now?' he asked his friend.
  'Yes, come on, Father, Herbert said.'Make a wish!' And he laughed.
  The soldier said nothing and Mr White asked him again,'What do I do now?'
  At first the old soldier did not answer, but in the end he said quietly,'OK. But remember! Be careful! Think before you make your wish,'
  'Yes, yes,' Mr White said.
  'Take the paw in your right hand and then make your wish, but…'tom Morris began.
  'Yes, we know,' Herbert said.'Be careful!'
  Just then old Mrs White stood up and she began to get the dinner. Her husband looked at her.Then he smiled and said to her,'Come on.Help me !What can I wish for? We need money,of course.'
  Mrs White laughed, but she thought for a minute and then she said,'Well, I'm getting old now and sometimes it's difficult to do everything.Perhaps I need four hands and not two. Yes, ask the paw to give me two more hands.'
  'OK, then,' her husband said, and he took the monkey's paw in his right hand.Everybody watched him and for a minute he waited. Then he opened his mouth to make his wish.
  Suddenly Tom Morris stood up.'Don't do it!'he cried.
  The old soldier's face was white. Herbert and his mother laughed, but Mr White looked at Tom's face.
  Old Mr White was afraid and he put the monkey's paw into his pocket.
  After a minute or two they sat down at the table and began to have dinner. The soldier told the family many strange and wonderful stories about India.They forgot the monkey's paw, and because the soldier's stories were interesting,they asked him many questions about India. When Tom Morris stood up to leave, it was very late.
  'Thank you for a very nice evening,' Morris said to the family.'And thank you for a very good dinner, 'he said to Mrs White.
  'It was a wonderful evening for us, Tom,' Old Mr White answered.'Your stories were very interesting. Our life isn't very exciting and we don't have the money to visit India, so please come again soon. You can tell us some more stories about India.'
Then the old soldier put on his coat.He said goodbye to the White family, and went out into the rain.
2
 
  不知过了多长时间,汤姆·莫里斯停止了交谈。怀特先生告诉他太太和儿子,“汤姆到印度服兵役有21年了。印度是一个非常有趣的国家。”
  “是的,”赫伯特说,“我喜欢去那儿。”
  “不,赫伯特!”他母亲惊叫起来。她非常害怕,因为她不想失去儿子。
  “我也想去印度,”她的丈夫说,“不过……”
  “对你来说,这儿很不错!”老兵很快地说。
  “你在印度看到了那么多奇怪又有趣的东西,我想有一天也能去看看。”怀特先生说。
  老兵放下威士忌。“不!”他嚷道,“别说了!”
  老怀特先生并没有停下,“你的故事很有趣,”他对汤姆·莫里斯说,“关于猴爪的事你想告诉我们什么?”
  “没什么!”莫里斯很快地回答,”真的,无关紧要。”
  “猴爪?”怀特太太惊问。
  “继续给我们讲讲吧,莫里斯先生。”赫伯特说。
  莫里斯用手拿起他的威士忌,但突然又把它放下,然后慢慢地把手伸进他的外套口袋。怀特一家看着他。
  “那是什么东西?那是什么东西?”怀特太太叫道。
  莫里斯什么也没说,他把手拿出口袋。怀特一家仔细地看着——在老兵手里他们看到了一个又小又脏的东西。
  怀特太太害怕地缩了回来,但她的儿子赫伯特却把那东西拿过来仔细地看。
  “喂,那是什么?”怀特先生问他的朋友。
  “看看吧,”老兵答道,“它是一只小爪子啊……一只猴子的爪子。”
  “猴子的爪子!”赫伯特说着大笑起来。“为什么你在口袋里带着猴爪,莫里斯先生?”他问老兵。
  “你要明白,这个猴爪是有魔力的!”莫里斯说。
  赫伯特又笑了,但老兵认真地说,“孩子,别笑了,记住,你还年轻,可我现在老啦,我曾在印度见到了很多奇怪的事情。”他停了一会儿,接着说,“这个猴爪能做奇怪而又奇妙的事情,一个印度老人把这个猴爪给了我的一位朋友,我的朋友也是一个当兵的。这猴爪有魔力是因为它能满足三个人每人提出的三个愿望。”
  “太妙了!”赫伯特说。
  “但这三个愿望并不能带来幸福。”老兵提醒说,“印度老人想告诉我们——想改变现实并不一定是好事。”
  “那么,你的朋友也有三个愿望吗?”赫伯特问老兵。
  “是的,”莫里斯静静地回答,“并且他的第三个也是最后一个愿望就是去死!”
  怀特先生和怀特太太听了这个故事感到有些害怕,赫伯特问,“他死了吗?”
  “是的,他死了,”莫里斯说,“他没有家,所以他死的时候把他的东西全给了我,猴爪是这些东西的附带品,不过他死之前就告诉过我有关猴爪的故事。”汤姆·莫里斯静静地说。
  “那么,他的头两个愿望是什么?”赫伯特追问,“他要求什么?”
  “我不知道,他不想告诉我。”老兵回答说。
  一两分钟里大家都沉默着,然而赫伯特又问,“莫里斯先生,你有三个愿望吗?”
  “是的,我有过,”莫里斯问答说,“我年轻时,我想要很多东西——一辆跑车,还有钱……”莫里斯顿了一会儿,然后很艰难地说,“我的妻子和我年轻的儿子在一次事故中丧生,没有了他们我不再想要钱,以至到最后,我希望一无所有,但为时已晚,我的妻子和孩子并不能死而复生。”
  房子里很静,怀特一家看着老兵苦楚的脸。
  接着,怀特先生问,“为什么你现在还要这个爪子呢?你不需要它,你可以把它送给别人。”
  “我怎么能送给别人呢?”老兵说,“猴爪会给拥有它的人带来痛苦。”
  “那么,给我吧,”怀特先生说,“也许这次它……”
  “不!”汤姆·莫里斯叫道,“你是我的朋友,我不能把它给你。”过了一会儿,他说,“我不能把它给你,但你可以从我身边把它拿走,不过要记住——猴爪会给你带来痛苦!”
  老怀特没有听进去也没有仔细想,很快地伸出手拿走了猴爪。
  汤姆·莫里斯看起来不高兴,但怀特先生等不及了。
  “我现在能做什么?”他问他的朋友。
  “对,这样吧,父亲,”赫伯特说,“许个愿吧!”赫伯特笑了。
  老兵什么也不说,怀特先生又问他,“我现在能做些什么呢?”
  开始,老兵什么也不回答,最后他静静地说,“好吧,但记住要小心,在你许愿之前要考虑好。”
  “行,行。”怀特先生说。
  “把猴爪拿在你右手,然后许愿,但是……”汤姆·莫里斯又开始了他那一套。
  “行了,我们知道。”赫伯特说,“要小心!”
  这时怀特太太站起来去做晚饭。她的丈夫看着她,并笑着对她说,“过来帮帮我,我能许一个什么愿呢?当然,我们需要钱。”
  怀特太太笑了起来,她想了一会儿说,“是的,我开始变老啦,有时做事情很吃力。可能我需要四只手而不是两只手,那么好吧,让猴爪多给我两只手。”
  “好吧,”她的丈夫说,他把猴爪放在右手。每个人都看着他,他等了一会儿然后张开嘴开始许愿。
  突然,汤姆·莫里斯站起来。“不要这样!”他喊道。
  老兵的脸变白了。赫伯特和他的母亲笑了起来,但怀特先生却看着汤姆的脸。
  老怀特先生害怕了,他把猴爪放进了口袋。
  一两分钟后,他们坐在桌旁开始吃晚饭。老兵告诉这一家许多有关印度的新奇的故事。他们暂时忘了猴爪,因为老兵的故事很有趣,他们问了许多有关印度的问题。当汤姆·莫里斯起来要走时,天色已经很晚了。
  “感谢有这么一个美好的夜晚,”莫里斯对这一家人道谢,“感谢有这样一顿美好的晚餐,”他对怀特太太说。
  “汤姆,对我们来说这也是一个美好的夜晚,”老怀特先生回答道,“你的故事很有趣。我们的生活很平淡,我们没有钱去印度,所以请你尽快再来,你可以告诉我们更多关于印度的故事。”
  接着老兵穿上衣服,和怀特一家道别后,他就消失在雨中。
   

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