Excerpt from The Leveller
Out of the gloom of the great Isaacs Cathedral a young girl, wrapped to the teeth in furs, stole furtively, and casting an eager glance up and down the snow-covered roadway, beckoned to a passing iswostschik, who quickly responded to her order and drove up to the sidewalk.
"Wasily Ostroff, Line Four," Louboff Malkiel said briefly.
"Twenty-five kopecks, Barishnya."
The young girl shrugged her shoulders disdainfully. Bargaining is a custom and a necessity in Russia.
"Twenty-five kopecks!" she echoed. "Do you take me for the Minister of Finance? I will give you fifteen or nothing."
"Make it twenty, Barishnya meliya," pleaded the driver, as he looked down admiringly into the dazzling fairness of her lovely face. "I will take you for fifteen, but a beautiful young lady like you, I know, would not have the heart to force so close a bargain.
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