Илья Франк - Английский язык с Крестным Отцом

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Английский язык с Крестным Отцом


Метод чтения Ильи Франка

Книгу подготовил Илья Франк

Mario Puzo

The Godfather

Book 2

Chapter 12

Johnny Fontane waved a casual dismissal to the manservant and said, "See you in


the morning, Billy." The colored butler bowed his way out of the huge dining room-living

room with its view of the Pacific Ocean. It was a friendly-good-bye sort of bow, not a

servant's bow, and given only because Johnny Fontane had company for dinner.

Johnny's company was a girl named Sharon Moore, a New York City Greenwich

Village girl in Hollywood to try for a small part in a movie being produced by an old

flame who had made the big time. She had visited the set while Johnny was acting in

the Woltz movie. Johnny had found her young and fresh and charming and witty, and

had asked her to come to his place for dinner that evening. His invitations to dinner

were always famous and had the force of royalty and of course she said yes.

Sharon Moore obviously expected him to come on very strong because of his

reputation, but Johnny hated the Hollywood "piece of meat" approach. He never slept

with any girl unless there was something about her he really liked. Except, of course,

sometimes when he was very drunk and found himself in bed with a girl he didn't even

remember meeting or seeing before. And now that he was thirty-five years old, divorced

once, estranged (отделен, отдален) from his second wife, with maybe a thousand

pubic scalps dangling from his belt, he simply wasn't that eager. But there, was

Мультиязыковой проект Ильи Франка

something about Sharon Moore that aroused affection in him and so he had invited her

to dinner.


He never ate much but he knew young pretty girls ambitiously starved themselves for

pretty clothes and were usually big eaters on a date so there was plenty of food on the

table. There was also plenty of liquor; champagne in a bucket, scotch, rye (хлебная

водка), brandy and liqueurs on the sideboard. Johnny served the drinks and the plates

of food already prepared. When they had finished eating he led her into the huge living

room with its glass wall that looked out onto the Pacific. He put a stack of Ella Fitzgerald

records on the hi-fi and settled on the couch with Sharon. He made a little small talk

with her, found out about what she had been like as a kid, whether she had been a

tomboy (девчонка-сорванец) or boy crazy, whether she had been homely or pretty,

lonely or gay. He always found these details touching, it always evoked the tenderness

he needed to make love.

They nestled together on the sofa, very friendly, very comfortable. He kissed her on

the lips, a cool friendly kiss, and when she kept it that way he left it that way. Outside

the huge picture window he could see the dark blue sheet of the Pacific lying flat

beneath the moonlight.

"How come you're not playing any of your records?" Sharon asked him. Her voice was

teasing. Johnny smiled at her. He was amused by her teasing him. "I'm not that

Hollywood," he said.

"Play some for me," she said. "Or sing for me. You know, like the movies. I'll bubble

up and melt all over you just like those girls do on the screen."

Johnny laughed outright. When he had been younger, he had done just such things

and the result had always been stagy (неестественный, театральный), the girls trying

to look sexy and melting, making their eyes swim with desire for an imagined fantasy

camera. He would never dream of singing to a girl now; for one thing, he hadn't sung for

months, he didn't trust his voice. For another thing, amateurs didn't realize how much

professionals depended on technical help to sound as good as they did. He could have

played his records but he felt the same shyness about hearing his youthful passionate

voice as an aging, balding man running to fat feels about showing pictures of himself as

a youth in the full bloom of manhood.

"My voice is out of shape," he said. "And honestly, I'm sick of hearing myself sing."

They both sipped their drinks. "I hear you're great in this picture," she said. "Is it true

you did it for nothing?"

"Just a token payment," Johnny said.

Мультиязыковой проект Ильи Франка

He got up to give her a refill on her brandy glass, gave her a gold-monogrammed

cigarette and flashed his lighter out to hold the light for her. She puffed on the cigarette

and sipped her drink and he sat down beside her again. His glass had considerably

more brandy in it than hers, he needed it to warm himself, to cheer himself, to charge


himself up. His situation was the reverse of the lover's usual one. He had to get himself

drunk instead of the girl. The girl was usually too willing where he was not. The last two

years had been hell on his ego, and he used this simple way to restore it, sleeping with

a young fresh girl for one night, taking her to dinner a few times, giving her an

expensive present and then brushing her off in the nicest way possible so that her

feelings wouldn't be hurt. And then they could always say they had had a thing with the

great Johnny Fontane. It wasn't true love, but you couldn't knock it if the girl was

beautiful and genuinely nice. He hated the hard, bitchy ones, the ones who screwed for

him and then rushed off to tell their friends that they'd screwed the great Johnny

Fontane, always adding that they'd had better. What amazed him more than anything

else in his career were the complaisant (обходительный, неконфликтный

[k∂m'pleız∂nt]) husbands who almost told him to his face that they forgave their wives

since it was allowed for even the most virtuous matron to be unfaithful with a great

singing and movie star like Johnny Fontane. That really floored (to floor – валить

наземь, сбивать с ног; смущать, поражать) him.

He loved Ella Fitzgerald on records. He loved that kind of clean singing, that kind of

clean phrasing. It was the only thing in life he really understood and he knew he

understood it better than anyone else on earth. Now lying back on the couch, the

brandy warming his throat, he felt a desire to sing, not music, but to phrase with the

records, yet it was something impossible to do in front of a stranger. He put his free

hand in Sharon's lap, sipping his drink from his other hand. Without any slyness but with

the sensualness of a child seeking warmth, his hand in her lap pulled up the silk of her

dress to show milky white thigh above the sheer netted gold of her stockings and as

always, despite all the women, all the years, all the familiarity, Johnny felt the fluid sticky

warmness flooding through his body at that sight. The miracle still happened, and what

would he do when that failed him as his voice had?

He was ready now. He put his drink down on the long inlaid (мозаичный,

инкрустированный) cocktail table and turned his body toward her. He was very sure,

very deliberate, and yet tender. There was nothing sly or lecherously lascivious

(похотливый, сладострастный [l∂’sıvıj∂s]) in his caresses. He kissed her on the lips

while his hands rose to her breasts. His hand fell to her warm thighs, the skin so silky to

Мультиязыковой проект Ильи Франка

his touch. Her returning kiss was warm but not passionate and he preferred it that way

right now. He hated girls who turned on all of a sudden as if their bodies were motors

galvanized into erotic pumpings by the touching of a hairy switch.

Then he did something he always did, something that had never yet failed to arouse

him. Delicately and as lightly as it was possible to do so and still feel something, he

brushed the tip of his middle finger deep down between her thighs. Some girls never


even felt that initial move toward lovemaking. Some were distracted by it, not sure it was

a physical touch because at the same time he always kissed them deeply on the mouth.

Still others seemed to suck in his finger or gobble it up (жадно есть, заглатывать) with

a pelvic (тазовый) thrust. And of course before he became famous, some girls had

slapped his face. It was his whole technique and usually it served him well enough.

Sharon's reaction was unusual. She accepted it all, the touch, the kiss, then shifted

her mouth off his, shifted her body ever so slightly back along the couch and picked up

her drink. It was a cool but definite refusal. It happened sometimes. Rarely; but it

happened. Johnny picked up his drink and lit a cigarette.

She was saying something very sweetly, very lightly. "It's not that I don't like you,

Johnny, you're much nicer than I thought you'd be. And it's not because I'm not that kind

of a girl. It's just that I have to be turned on to do it with a guy, you know what I mean?"

Johnny Fontane smiled at her. He still liked her. "And I don't turn you on?"

She was a little embarrassed. "Well, you know, when you were so great singing and

all, I was still a little kid. I sort of just missed you, I was the next generation. Honest, it's

not that I'm goody-goody (паинька). If you were a movie star I grew up on, I'd have my

panties off in a second."

He didn't like her quite so much now. She was sweet, she was witty, she was

intelligent. She hadn't fallen all over herself to screw for him or try to hustle (толкать,

пихать; добиваться чего-либо напористыми, не всегда честными действиями) him

because his connections would help her in show biz. She was really a straight kid. But

there was something else he recognized. It had happened a few times before. The girl

who went on a date with her mind all made up not to go to bed with him, no matter how

much she liked him, just so that she could tell her friends, and even more, herself, that

she had turned down a chance to screw for the great Johnny Fontane. It was something

he understood now that he was older and he wasn't angry. He just didn't like her quite

that much and he had really liked her a lot.

And now that he didn't like her quite so much, he relaxed more. He sipped his drink

and watched the Pacific Ocean. She said, "I hope you're not sore, Johnny. I guess I'm

Мультиязыковой проект Ильи Франка

being square, I guess in Hollywood a girl's supposed to put out just as casually as

kissing a beau (щеголь; здесь: кавалер [b∂u]) good night. I just haven't been around

long enough."

Johnny smiled at her and patted her cheek. His hand fell down to pull her skirt


discreetly over her rounded silken knees. "I'm not sore," he said. "It's nice having an old-

fashioned date." Not telling what he felt: the relief at not having to prove himself a great

lover, not having to live up (быть достойным /чего-либо/, тянуться) to his screened,

godlike image. Not having to listen to the girl trying to react as if he really had lived up to

that image, making more out of a very simple, routine piece of ass than it really was.

They had another drink, shared a few more cool kisses and then she decided to go.

Johnny said politely, "Can I call you for dinner some night?"

She played it frank and honest to the end. "I know you don't want to waste your time

and then get disappointed," she said. "Thanks for a wonderful evening. Someday I'll tell

my children I had supper with the great Johnny Fontane all alone in his apartment."

He smiled at her. "And that you didn't give in (уступить, сдаться)," he said. They both

laughed. "They'll never believe that," she said. And then Johnny, being a little phony

(фальшивый, притворяющийся) in his turn, said, "I'll give it to you in writing, want me

to?" She shook her head. He continued on. "Anybody doubts you, give me a buzz on

the phone, I'll straighten them right out. I'll tell them how I chased you all around the

apartment but you kept your honor. OK?"

He had, finally, been a little too cruel and he felt stricken at the hurt on her young face.

She understood that he was telling her that he hadn't tried too hard. He had taken the

sweetness of her victory away from her. Now she would feel that it had been her lack of

charm or attractiveness that had made her the victor this night. And being the girl she

was, when she told the story of how she resisted the great Johnny Fontane, she would

always have to add with a wry little smile, "Of course, he didn't try very hard." So now

taking pity on her, he said, "If you ever feel real down, give me a ring. OK? I don't have

to shack up (сожительствовать, переспать) every girl I know."

"I will," she said. She went out the door.

He was left with a long evening before him. He could have used what Jack Woltz

called the "meat factory," the stable of willing starlets, but he wanted human

companionship. He wanted to talk like a human being. He thought of his first wife,

Virginia. Now that the work on the picture was finished he would have more time for the

kids. He wanted to become part of their life again. And he worried about Virginia too.

She wasn't equipped to handle the Hollywood sharpies (sharpy – жулик, мошенник;

Мультиязыковой проект Ильи Франка

энергичный человек) who might come after her just so that they could brag about

having screwed Johnny Fontane's first wife. As far as he knew, nobody could say that

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