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Dark Angle(翻译连载十六)

(2010-06-17 14:46:42)
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小说

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分类: UNCLE赵&他国际事务部的同事们

So my uncle Steenie changed the subject – more dexterously than the rest of my family, but he changed it nonetheless. That night there were storms and slammed doors downstairs, and Uncle Steeine became so upset he had to be helped up to bed by my father and William. The next morning he departed, early, so I never received my jar of violet cream, and I discovered no more on the subject of Constance.

 

For several months nothing happened: Charlotte contracted measles; her party was canceled; her mother took her to Switzerland for a period of convalescence. Christmas came and went, and it was not until January of the new year, 1938, that I saw Charlotte again.

 

I was invited to her house for tea, alone – an honor never accorded me before. To my surprise I was invited again the following week; the week after that there was most pressing invitation to join Charlotte and her friends on an expedition to see a London pantomime.

 

就这样Steenie叔叔巧妙地改变了话题——我的家人里没有谁能够像他这样。那一晚下着暴雨,楼下的门被风吹得怦怦响,Steeine叔叔的情况变得非常糟糕了,他必须在我父亲和William的帮助下才能躺上床。第二天早上,他离开了我们。因此我从没有收到过我的紫罗兰面霜,而且我也再没有发现过任何关于Constance的事情。

 

几个月来没有任何事情发生:Charlotte患上了麻疹;她的聚会也取消了;她的母亲带着她去了瑞士做康复治疗。圣诞节来了又走,直到1938年1月我才又见到了Charlotte。

 

她邀请我去她家饮茶,而且还是单独邀请我一个人,以前我可是从来没有得到这种荣幸的。让我惊讶的是,在接下来的一周我再次受到邀请。又过了一周后,我又收到她最真切的邀请,邀请我与她以及她朋友们一块去观赏伦敦舞剧。

                                                   

 ——王旭

 

 

 

My stock had risen, it seemed, not just with Charlotte but with her parents also. I was no longer just a dull child from an impoverished background; I was Constance Shawcross’s godchild. I was about to visit her in New York. Quite suddenly I had acquired possibilities.

 

 

At first, I am afraid, I enjoyed this very much. I was given wings by Constance’s surrogate glamour; I took those wings and I flew. Since I knew virtually nothing about my godmother, I was free to invent. I discovered the addictions of fiction.

 

 

In the beginning I gave Constance all those attributes I myself most secretly admired: I gave her black hair and dark-blue eyes and a fiery temperament. I gave her five gray Persian cats(I love cats) and an Irish wolfhound. I made her a superlative horsewoman who rode sidesaddle to hounds. I lived at the top of one of the tallest towers in New York, overlooking the Statue of Liberty, ate roast beef three times a week, and insisted on Oxford marmalade for breakfast. All her clothes, right down to her underwear, came from Harrods.

 

我的股票升了,于是乎,不只是夏洛特,连她的父母也,也觉得我不再只是一个出身贫寒沉闷的孩子,我是康斯坦斯肖克罗斯的教子。我正准备去纽约看她。突然间,我似乎有无限可能。

 

起初,我很害怕,我很喜欢这个。我得到了康斯坦茨的翅膀,我飞了起来。因为我对我的教母几乎一无所知,我可以自由地想象。我发现了编造的瘾趣。

 

一开始,我想象康斯坦斯有这些有自己最迷恋的特征:黑头发,深蓝色的眼睛和热情的气质。她还有五个灰色波斯猫(我喜欢猫)和爱尔兰猎狼犬。她是最高级女骑师骑着赛德萨德尔猎狗。我住在纽约的最高的塔楼顶端,俯瞰自由女神像,每周3次吃烤牛肉,且早餐一定要有牛津果酱。她所有的衣服,包括内衣,都来自哈罗兹。

 

 

 

“Harrods? Are you sure, Victoria?” Charlotte’s mother had been eavesdropping on these boasts avidly, but now she looked doubtful.

 

“Well, perhaps not all of them,” I said carefully, and cast about in my mind. I thought of my aunt Maud and her reminiscences. “I think sometimes… that she goes to Paris.”

 “Oh, I feel sure she must. Schiaparelli, perhaps Chanel. There’s a picture I saw somewhere—Charlotte, where did I put that book?” Charlotte’s mother always called magazines “books,” and on that occasion a much- thumbed copy of vogue was produced. It was two years old at least. There, in my trembling hands, was the first photograph of my godmother I had ever seen. Sleek, insolently chic, she was photographed at a London party in a group that included wicked Wallis Simpson, Conrad Vickers, and the then Prince of Wales. She was gesturing, so her hand obscured her face.”

 

After that my lies became less pure. I had learned from that error about harrods, and I trimmed my image of my godmother to suite the tastes of my audience. I gave Constance several motorcars (a touch of malice there, for none was a Rolls-Royce); I gave her a yacht, a permanent suite at the Ritz, a collection of yellow diamonds, crocodile-skin luggage, silk underwear, and intimate friendship with king Farouk.

 

“哈罗兹?维多利亚你肯定吗?”夏洛特的妈妈一直在旁偷听着这些夸夸其词,但现在她看起来很怀疑这些。

 “当然,好像不全都是”,我小心地说一边想起Maud阿姨和她那些回忆。“我想有时候,她会去巴黎。”

 “哦,我肯定她会这样做。Schiaparelli或者Chanel。我看到过一张照片,夏洛特,我把那书放哪了。”夏洛特的妈妈总是把杂志叫做书。那个时候Vogue出了一期很赞的杂志,但那至少是两年前的杂志。我微微颤抖的双手捧着教母的第一张照片,那是我从未看到过的。那是在一个伦敦的派多上拍的,她在那派对上显得那么时髦和美丽,同时在那的还有顽劣的沃利斯辛普森,康拉德维克斯还有当时的威尔士王子。她正好对着镜头做手势,所以她的手挡住了她的脸。

之后我的谎言变的不那么纯粹了,我已经从刚才的哈罗兹那吸取了教训,我调整了教母在我心中的样子以适应其他听众。我让Constance拥有了几辆车,一架游艇,一间豪华酒店的长期套房,许多的黄钻,鳄鱼皮行李箱,丝质内衣以及跟Farouk王的亲密关系。

 

——许越 

 

 

I was learning fast, and most of these details I picked up either from Charlotte and her parents or from the fat and glossy magazines that lay scattered around their home—magazines that were never permitted at Winterscombe. I think I liked this Constance less than I did the Constance of her first incarnation, who lived in a tower and rode to hounds at full tilt. But my preferences were unimportant; I could see that these new details impressed my audience. When I mentioned the crocodile luggage Charlotte’s mother gave a sigh; she herself, she said in a wistful way, had admired something very similar, just the other day, at Asprey’s.

 

There were dangers—I could see that. Both Charlotte and her mother seemed alarmingly well informed about my godmother seemed to know into their everyday conversation: “Lady Diana’s dress—what did you think, Mummy?” “Oh, a teensy bit dull, not up to her usual standards.” Did they know Lady Diana? I was never quite sure, but I sensed I must be careful. Was my god mother married, for instance? Could she conceivably have been divorced? If she was divorced, that might explain her fall from favor, for my mother was adamantly opposed to divorce. I had no way of knowing, but I suspected that both Charlotte and her parents might know. They also presumably knew—as I did not—why my godmother was rich, what she did, who her parents were, where she came from.

 

我学得很快,而且多数的细节都是从夏洛特和她的父母或者那些散落在他们家的臃肿的杂志里挑出来的。我想我更喜欢前一个版本住在高塔里的Constance。但是我个人的喜好并不重要,关键是我加入的这些新细节吸引了我的听众,当我说到鳄鱼皮行李箱的时候,夏洛特的妈妈叹着气,她自己说她也很想要一件类似的东西。

但是这存在危险,我发现夏洛特还有她妈妈从我口中的教母那看到了她们日常间的一些对话:“你看戴安娜的衣服怎么样,妈?”“有点暗淡,不太适合她平常的风格。”他们知道戴安娜吗?我也不清楚,不过我感觉到我得小心些。比如,我的教母结婚了吗?她们能相信她已经离婚了吗?如果她离婚了,那可能可以解释她的失宠,因为我的母亲就坚决反对离婚。我没有办法可以知道,但我想她们俩个能知道。她们大概能推测道为什么我的教母很有钱,她做些什么,她的父母是谁,她来自哪里,而我却不能。

 

——潘玲

 

So I spun the tales of fabled godmother, but I spun them more warily,avoiding all mention of husbands or antecedents. In return for my inventions I gleaned certain facts, which I squirreled away. I learned that my godmother had been born in England but was now a naturalized American citizen. I learned that she “did up” houses, although no one explained what this involved. I leaned that she crossed the Atlantic as casually as the Channel, and adored Venice, which she visited every year. When there, she would stay nowhere but the Danieli.

“Not the Gritti. I told you, Harold,” We were sitting in their drawing room, on a shiny brocade sofa. Charlotte’s mother was drinking a martini in a frosted glass. She twirled the olive, set the glass down on a bright table of glass and chrome, and gave her husband a cold look. She turned back to me in her new apologetic way, as if I were an arbiter of taste, too, like my godmother. “We stayed at the Gritti last year, Victoria, because the Danieli was chockablock. Of course if we had had a choice… but it was such a last-minute arrangement....”

Holidays. I tensed at once, for there, of course, lay another danger: my own visit to New York. I had hoped Charlotte might have forgotten that part of my boast, but she had not. She also remembered I had given a date: this year.

But when, this year? As the weeks passed, the questions became more pressing. Charlotte returned to boarding school but as soon as the Easter holidays came around, the invitations to tea were renewed.

When, exactly, did I plan to leave? Had it been decided whether I should sail on the Aquitania or the Ile de France? Was I to travel alone, or was my godmother to visit England and collect me? Surely I could not be going to New York in the summer---no one went to New York then, and my godmother was usually in Europe.

 

因此我编织着预言中教母的传说,而且小心翼翼地讲述着,避免提及其丈夫或其他前辈。 为了回馈我的故事,作为奖赏,我得知了一些很遥远模糊的事实。我了解到我的教母生于英格兰,但现在是一个地道的美国公民。我还了解到她“整理”房间,虽然没人能解释这究竟暗指什么。她曾横跨大西洋,偶然地通过了大隧道,并且喜爱威尼斯,每年都去那里旅游。除了Danieli酒店,她哪也不去。

“不要Gritti酒店。我告诉你,哈罗兹。” 我们坐在他们客厅的一个发亮的金丝边沙发上。 夏洛特的母亲正用一个充满热雾的瓶子喝马提尼。她把弄着橄榄枝,把瓶子放在一个用玻璃和铝合金做的桌子上,瞪了她丈夫一眼。她转向我并道歉,就好像我也是一个有品味的仲裁者,就像我的教母一样。“我们去年待在Gritti酒店,因为Danieli酒店已经满员了。如果我们碰巧有机会的话。。。但这确实是一个最后时刻的安排。。。”

假期。 我警觉起来,因为,当然了,潜伏着另一个威胁: 我独自去纽约。我本希望夏洛特能忘掉我曾炫耀过的经历,但她没有。她也记起来了,我曾说过的一个日期:今年。

但是是今年什么时候呢? 时间过的飞快,这个问题也变得越来越压抑。夏洛特回学校注册,但复活节一临近,在午茶时间,这个话题又被提起来了。

我应该确定哪个具体时间呢?我坐船去吗?我独自旅行,还是在我教母去英格兰的时候稍上我? 我决不可能夏天去纽约的——没人会在那个时候去纽约的, 而且我的教母通常都待在欧洲。

                                                                    ——张帅

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