“I wonder you don’t see scores of devils in your dreams!” —Tchitchikov, trans. D. J. Hogarth
Tchitchikov awoke from the grasp of a dark dream. And what are dreams, but the dull shadows of our living world? They seem extraordinary in comparison to our reality, but I contend otherwise, that they are merely ordinary in comparison to the fantastical nature of our intricate lives. Tchitchikov’s dream was a fantastical one, and an entirely realistic one, as such: he’d dreamt that a candidate for representative offered him intoxicants and blackmail.