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As winter drew on, Mollie became more and more troublesome. She was late for work every morning and excused herself by saying that she had overslept, and she complained of mysterious pains, although her appetite was excellent. On every kind of pretext she would run away from work and go to the drinking pool, where she would stand foolishly gazing at her own reflection in the water. But there were also rumours of something more serious. One day, as Mollie strolled blithely into the yard, flirting her long tail and chewing at a stalk of hay, Clover took her aside.

"Mollie," she said, "I have something very serious to say to you. This morning I saw you looking over the hedge that divides Animal Farm from Foxwood. One of Mr. Pilkington's men was standing on the other side of the hedge. And--I was a long way away, but I am almost certain I saw this--he was talking to you and you were allowing him to stroke your nose. What does that mean, Mollie?"

"He didn't! I wasn't! It isn't true!" cried Mollie, beginning to prance about and paw the ground.

"Mollie! Look me in the face. Do you give me your word of honour that that man was not stroking your nose?"

"It isn't true!" repeated Mollie, but she could not look Clover in the face, and the next moment she took to her heels and galloped away into the field.

A thought struck Clover. Without saying anything to the others, she went to Mollie's stall and turned over the straw with her hoof. Hidden under the straw was a little pile of lump sugar and several bunches of ribbon of different colours.

Three days later Mollie disappeared. For some weeks nothing was known of her whereabouts, then the pigeons reported that they had seen her on the other side of Willingdon. She was between the shafts of a smart dogcart painted red and black, which was standing outside a public-house. A fat red-faced man in check breeches and gaiters, who looked like a publican, was stroking her nose and feeding her with sugar. Her coat was newly clipped and she wore a scarlet ribbon round her forelock. She appeared to be enjoying herself, so the pigeons said. None of the animals ever mentioned Mollie again.

In January there came bitterly hard weather. The earth was like iron, and nothing could be done in the fields. Many meetings were held in the big barn, and the pigs occupied themselves with planning out the work of the coming season. It had come to be accepted that the pigs, who were manifestly cleverer than the other animals, should decide all questions of farm policy, though their decisions had to be ratified by a majority vote. This arrangement would have worked well enough if it had not been for the disputes between Snowball and Napoleon. These two disagreed at every point where disagreement was possible. If one of them suggested sowing a bigger acreage with barley, the other was certain to demand a bigger acreage of oats, and if one of them said that such and such a field was just right for cabbages, the other would declare that it was useless for anything except roots. Each had his own following, and there were some violent debates. At the Meetings Snowball often won over the majority by his brilliant speeches, but Napoleon was better at canvassing support for himself in between times. He was especially successful with the sheep. Of late the sheep had taken to bleating "Four legs good, two legs bad" both in and out of season, and they often interrupted the Meeting with this. It was noticed that they were especially liable to break into "Four legs good, two legs bad" at crucial moments in Snowball's speeches. Snowball had made a close study of some back numbers of the 'Farmer and Stockbreeder' which he had found in the farmhouse, and was full of plans for innovations and improvements. He talked learnedly about field drains, silage, and basic slag, and had worked out a complicated scheme for all the animals to drop their dung directly in the fields, at a different spot every day, to save the labour of cartage. Napoleon produced no schemes of his own, but said quietly that Snowball's would come to nothing, and seemed to be biding his time. But of all their controversies, none was so bitter as the one that took place over the windmill.

In the long pasture, not far from the farm buildings, there was a small knoll which was the highest point on the farm. After surveying the ground, Snowball declared that this was just the place for a windmill, which could be made to operate a dynamo and supply the farm with electrical power. This would light the stalls and warm them in winter, and would also run a circular saw, a chaff-cutter, a mangel-slicer, and an electric milking machine. The animals had never heard of anything of this kind before (for the farm was an old-fashioned one and had only the most primitive machinery), and they listened in astonishment while Snowball conjured up pictures of fantastic machines which would do their work for them while they grazed at their ease in the fields or improved their minds with reading and conversation.

Within a few weeks Snowball's plans for the windmill were fully worked out. The mechanical details came mostly from three books which had belonged to Mr. Jones--'One Thousand Useful Things to Do About the House', 'Every Man His Own Bricklayer', and 'Electricity for Beginners'. Snowball used as his study a shed which had once been used for incubators and had a smooth wooden floor, suitable for drawing on. He was closeted there for hours at a time. With his books held open by a stone, and with a piece of chalk gripped between the knuckles of his trotter, he would move rapidly to and fro, drawing in line after line and uttering little whimpers of excitement. Gradually the plans grew into a complicated mass of cranks and cog-wheels, covering more than half the floor, which the other animals found completely unintelligible but very impressive. All of them came to look at Snowball's drawings at least once a day. Even the hens and ducks came, and were at pains not to tread on the chalk marks. Only Napoleon held aloof. He had declared himself against the windmill from the start. One day, however, he arrived unexpectedly to examine the plans. He walked heavily round the shed, looked closely at every detail of the plans and snuffed at them once or twice, then stood for a little while contemplating them out of the corner of his eye; then suddenly he lifted his leg, urinated over the plans, and walked out without uttering a word.

The whole farm was deeply divided on the subject of the windmill. Snowball did not deny that to build it would be a difficult business. Stone would have to be carried and built up into walls, then the sails would have to be made and after that there would be need for dynamos and cables. (How these were to be procured, Snowball did not say.) But he maintained that it could all be done in a year. And thereafter, he declared, so much labour would be saved that the animals would only need to work three days a week. Napoleon, on the other hand, argued that the great need of the moment was to increase food production, and that if they wasted time on the windmill they would all starve to death. The animals formed themselves into two factions under the slogan, "Vote for Snowball and the three-day week" and "Vote for Napoleon and the full manger." Benjamin was the only animal who did not side with either faction. He refused to believe either that food would become more plentiful or that the windmill would save work. Windmill or no windmill, he said, life would go on as it had always gone on--that is, badly.

Apart from the disputes over the windmill, there was the question of the defence of the farm. It was fully realised that though the human beings had been defeated in the Battle of the Cowshed they might make another and more determined attempt to recapture the farm and reinstate Mr. Jones. They had all the more reason for doing so because the news of their defeat had spread across the countryside and made the animals on the neighbouring farms more restive than ever. As usual, Snowball and Napoleon were in disagreement. According to Napoleon, what the animals must do was to procure firearms and train themselves in the use of them. According to Snowball, they must send out more and more pigeons and stir up rebellion among the animals on the other farms. The one argued that if they could not defend themselves they were bound to be conquered, the other argued that if rebellions happened everywhere they would have no need to defend themselves. The animals listened first to Napoleon, then to Snowball, and could not make up their minds which was right; indeed, they always found themselves in agreement with the one who was speaking at the moment.

At last the day came when Snowball's plans were completed. At the Meeting on the following Sunday the question of whether or not to begin work on the windmill was to be put to the vote. When the animals had assembled in the big barn, Snowball stood up and, though occasionally interrupted by bleating from the sheep, set forth his reasons for advocating the building of the windmill. Then Napoleon stood up to reply. He said very quietly that the windmill was nonsense and that he advised nobody to vote for it, and promptly sat down again; he had spoken for barely thirty seconds, and seemed almost indifferent as to the effect he produced. At this Snowball sprang to his feet, and shouting down the sheep, who had begun bleating again, broke into a passionate appeal in favour of the windmill. Until now the animals had been about equally divided in their sympathies, but in a moment Snowball's eloquence had carried them away. In glowing sentences he painted a picture of Animal Farm as it might be when sordid labour was lifted from the animals' backs. His imagination had now run far beyond chaff-cutters and turnip-slicers. Electricity, he said, could operate threshing machines, ploughs, harrows, rollers, and reapers and binders, besides supplying every stall with its own electric light, hot and cold water, and an electric heater. By the time he had finished speaking, there was no doubt as to which way the vote would go. But just at this moment Napoleon stood up and, casting a peculiar sidelong look at Snowball, uttered a high-pitched whimper of a kind no one had ever heard him utter before.

At this there was a terrible baying sound outside, and nine enormous dogs wearing brass-studded collars came bounding into the barn. They dashed straight for Snowball, who only sprang from his place just in time to escape their snapping jaws. In a moment he was out of the door and they were after him. Too amazed and frightened to speak, all the animals crowded through the door to watch the chase. Snowball was racing across the long pasture that led to the road. He was running as only a pig can run, but the dogs were close on his heels. Suddenly he slipped and it seemed certain that they had him. Then he was up again, running faster than ever, then the dogs were gaining on him again. One of them all but closed his jaws on Snowball's tail, but Snowball whisked it free just in time. Then he put on an extra spurt and, with a few inches to spare, slipped through a hole in the hedge and was seen no more.

Silent and terrified, the animals crept back into the barn. In a moment the dogs came bounding back. At first no one had been able to imagine where these creatures came from, but the problem was soon solved: they were the puppies whom Napoleon had taken away from their mothers and reared privately. Though not yet full-grown, they were huge dogs, and as fierce-looking as wolves. They kept close to Napoleon. It was noticed that they wagged their tails to him in the same way as the other dogs had been used to do to Mr. Jones.

Napoleon, with the dogs following him, now mounted on to the raised portion of the floor where Major had previously stood to deliver his speech. He announced that from now on the Sunday-morning Meetings would come to an end. They were unnecessary, he said, and wasted time. In future all questions relating to the working of the farm would be settled by a special committee of pigs, presided over by himself. These would meet in private and afterwards communicate their decisions to the others. The animals would still assemble on Sunday mornings to salute the flag, sing 'Beasts of England', and receive their orders for the week; but there would be no more debates.

In spite of the shock that Snowball's expulsion had given them, the animals were dismayed by this announcement. Several of them would have protested if they could have found the right arguments. Even Boxer was vaguely troubled. He set his ears back, shook his forelock several times, and tried hard to marshal his thoughts; but in the end he could not think of anything to say. Some of the pigs themselves, however, were more articulate. Four young porkers in the front row uttered shrill squeals of disapproval, and all four of them sprang to their feet and began speaking at once. But suddenly the dogs sitting round Napoleon let out deep, menacing growls, and the pigs fell silent and sat down again. Then the sheep broke out into a tremendous bleating of "Four legs good, two legs bad!" which went on for nearly a quarter of an hour and put an end to any chance of discussion.

Afterwards Squealer was sent round the farm to explain the new arrangement to the others.

"Comrades," he said, "I trust that every animal here appreciates the sacrifice that Comrade Napoleon has made in taking this extra labour upon himself. Do not imagine, comrades, that leadership is a pleasure! On the contrary, it is a deep and heavy responsibility. No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be? Suppose you had decided to follow Snowball, with his moonshine of windmills -- Snowball, who, as we now know, was no better than a criminal?"

"He fought bravely at the Battle of the Cowshed," said somebody.

"Bravery is not enough," said Squealer. "Loyalty and obedience are more important. And as to the Battle of the Cowshed, I believe the time will come when we shall find that Snowball's part in it was much exaggerated. Discipline, comrades, iron discipline! That is the watchword for today. One false step, and our enemies would be upon us. Surely, comrades, you do not want Jones back?"

Once again this argument was unanswerable. Certainly the animals did not want Jones back; if the holding of debates on Sunday mornings was liable to bring him back, then the debates must stop. Boxer, who had now had time to think things over, voiced the general feeling by saying: "If Comrade Napoleon says it, it must be right." And from then on he adopted the maxim, "Napoleon is always right," in addition to his private motto of "I will work harder."

By this time the weather had broken and the spring ploughing had begun. The shed where Snowball had drawn his plans of the windmill had been shut up and it was assumed that the plans had been rubbed off the floor. Every Sunday morning at ten o'clock the animals assembled in the big barn to

receive their orders for the week. The skull of old Major, now clean of flesh, had been disinterred from the orchard and set up on a stump at the foot of the flagstaff, beside the gun. After the hoisting of the flag, the animals were required to file past the skull in a reverent manner before entering the barn. Nowadays they did not sit all together as they had done in the past. Napoleon, with Squealer and another pig named Minimus, who had a remarkable gift for composing songs and poems, sat on the front of the raised platform, with the nine young dogs forming a semicircle round them, and the other pigs sitting behind. The rest of the animals sat facing them in the main body of the barn. Napoleon read out the orders for the week in a gruff soldierly style, and after a single singing of 'Beasts of England', all the animals dispersed.

On the third Sunday after Snowball's expulsion, the animals were somewhat surprised to hear Napoleon announce that the windmill was to be built after all. He did not give any reason for having changed his mind, but merely warned the animals that this extra task would mean very hard work, it might even be necessary to reduce their rations. The plans, however, had all been prepared, down to the last detail. A special committee of pigs had been at work upon them for the past three weeks. The building of the windmill, with various other improvements, was expected to take two years.

That evening Squealer explained privately to the other animals that Napoleon had never in reality been opposed to the windmill. On the contrary, it was he who had advocated it in the beginning, and the plan which Snowball had drawn on the floor of the incubator shed had actually been stolen from among Napoleon's papers. The windmill was, in fact, Napoleon's own creation. Why, then, asked somebody, had he spoken so strongly against it? Here Squealer looked very sly. That, he said, was Comrade Napoleon's cunning. He had SEEMED to oppose the windmill, simply as a manoeuvre to get rid of Snowball, who was a dangerous character and a bad influence. Now that Snowball was out of the way, the plan could go forward without his interference. This, said Squealer, was something called tactics. He repeated a number of times, "Tactics, comrades, tactics!" skipping round and whisking his tail with a merry laugh. The animals were not certain what the word meant, but Squealer spoke so persuasively, and the three dogs who happened to be with him growled so threateningly, that they accepted his explanation without further questions.

冬天快要到了,莫丽变得越来越讨厌。她每天早上干活总要迟到,而且总为自己开脱说她睡过头了,她还常常诉说一些不可思议的病痛,不过,她的食欲却很旺盛。她会找出种种借口逃避干活而跑到饮水池边,呆呆地站在那儿,凝视着她在水中的倒影。但还有一些传闻,说起来比这更严重一些。有一天,当莫丽边晃悠着她的长尾巴边嚼着一根草根,乐悠悠的闲逛到院子里时,克拉弗把她拉到一旁。

“莫丽”,她说,“我有件非常要紧的事要对你说,今天早晨,我看见你在查看那段隔开动物庄园和福克斯伍德庄园的树篱时,有一个皮尔金顿先生的伙计正站在树篱的另一边。尽管我离得很远,但我敢肯定我看见他在对你说话,你还让他摸你的鼻子。这是怎么回事,莫丽?”

“他没摸!我没让!这不是真的!”莫丽大声嚷着,抬起前蹄子搔着地。

“莫丽!看着我,你能向我发誓,那人不是在摸你的鼻子。”

“这不是真的!”莫丽重复道,但却不敢正视克拉弗。然后,她朝着田野飞奔而去,逃之夭夭。

克拉弗心中闪过一个念头。谁也没有打招呼,她就跑到莫丽的厩棚里,用蹄子翻开一堆草。草下竟藏着一堆方糖和几条不同颜色的饰带。

三天后,莫丽不见了,好几个星期下落不明。后来鸽子报告说他们曾在威灵顿那边见到过她,当时,她正被驾在一辆单驾马车上,那辆车很时髦,漆得有红有黑,停在一个客栈外面。有个红脸膛的胖子,身穿方格子马裤和高筒靴,象是客栈老板,边抚摸着她的鼻子边给她喂糖。她的毛发修剪一新,额毛上还佩戴着一条鲜红的饰带。所以鸽子说,她显得自鸣得意。从此以后,动物们再也不提她了。

一月份,天气极其恶劣。田地好象铁板一样,什么活都干不成。倒是在大谷仓里召开了很多会议,猪忙于筹划下一季度的工作。他们明显比其它动物聪明,也就自然而然地该对庄园里所有的大政方针做出决定,尽管他们的决策还得通过大多数表决同意后才有效。本来,要是斯诺鲍和拿破仑相互之间不闹别扭,整个程序会进行得很顺利。可是在每一个论点上,他们俩一有可能便要抬杠。如果其中一个建议用更大面积播种大麦,另一个则肯定要求用更大面积播种燕麦;如果一个说某某地方最适宜种卷心菜,另一个就会声称那里非种薯类不可,不然就是废地一块。他们俩都有自己的追随者,相互之间还有一些激烈的争辩。在大会议上,斯诺鲍能言善辩,令绝大多数动物心诚口服。而拿破仑更擅长在会议上休息时为争取到支持游说拉票。在羊那儿,他尤其成功。后来,不管适时不适时,羊都在咩咩地叫着“四条腿好,两条腿坏”,并经常借此来捣乱大会议。而且,大家注意到了,越是斯诺鲍的讲演讲到关键处,他们就越有可能插进“四条腿好,两条腿坏”的咩咩声。斯诺鲍曾在庄主院里找到一些过期的《农场主和畜牧业者》杂志,并对此作过深入的研究,装了满脑子的革新和发明设想。他谈起什么农田排水、什么饲料保鲜、什么碱性炉渣,学究气十足。他还设计出一个复杂的系统,可以把动物每天在不同地方拉的粪便直接通到地里,以节省运送的劳力。拿破仑自己无所贡献,却拐弯抹角地说斯诺鲍的这些东西最终将会是一场空,看起来他是在走着瞧了。但是在他们所有的争吵中,最为激烈的莫过于关于风车一事的争辩。

在狭长的大牧场上,离庄园里的窝棚不远的地方,有一座小山包,那是庄园里的制高点。斯诺鲍在勘察过那地方之后,宣布说那里是建造风车最合适的地方。这风车可用来带动发电机,从而可为庄园提供电力。也就可以使窝棚里用上电灯并在冬天取暖,还可以带动圆锯、铡草机、切片机和电动挤奶机。动物们以前还从未听说过任何这类事情(因为这是一座老式的庄园,只有一台非常原始的机器)。当斯诺鲍绘声绘色地描述着那些奇妙的机器的情景时,说那些机器可以在他们悠闲地在地里吃草时,在他们修养心性而读书或聊天时为他们干活,动物们都听呆了。

不出几个星期,斯诺鲍为风车作的设计方案就全部拟订好了。机械方面的详细资料大多取自于《对居室要做的1000件益事》、《自己做自己的瓦工》和《电学入门》三本书,这三本书原来也是琼斯先生的。斯诺鲍把一间小棚作为他的工作室,那间小棚曾是孵卵棚,里面铺着光滑的木制地板,地板上适宜于画图。他在那里闭门不出,一干就是几个小时。他把打开的书用石块压着,蹄子的两趾间夹着一截粉笔,麻利地来回走动,一边发出带点兴奋的哼哧声,一边画着一道接一道的线条。渐渐地,设计图深入到有大量曲柄和齿轮的复杂部分,图面覆盖了大半个地板,这在其他动物看来简直太深奥了,但印象却非常深刻。他们每天至少要来一次,看看斯诺鲍作图。就连鸡和鸭子也来,而且为了不踩踏粉笔线还格外小心谨慎。惟独拿破仑回避着。一开始,他就声言反对风车。然而有一天,出乎意料,他也来检查设计图了。他沉闷不语地在棚子里绕来绕去,仔细查看设计图上的每一处细节,偶尔还冲着它们从鼻子里哼哼一两声,然后乜斜着眼睛,站在一旁往图上打量一阵子,突然,他抬起腿来,对着图撒了一泡尿,接了一声不吭,扬长而去。

整个庄园在风车一事上截然地分裂开了。斯诺鲍毫不否认修建它是一项繁重的事业,需要采石并筑成墙,还得制造叶片,另外还需要发电机和电缆(至于这些如何兑现,斯诺鲍当时没说)。但他坚持认为这项工程可在一年内完成。而且还宣称,建成之后将会因此节省大量的劳力,以至于动物们每周只需要干三天活。另一方面,拿破仑却争辩说,当前最急需的是增加食料生产,而如果他们在风车上浪费时间,他们全都会饿死的。在“拥护斯诺鲍和每周三日工作制”和“拥护拿破仑和食料满槽制”的不同口号下,动物们形成了两派,本杰明是唯一一个两边都不沾的动物。他既不相信什么食料会更充足,也不相信什么风车会节省劳力。他说,有没有风车无所谓,生活会继续下去的,一如既往,也就是说总有不足之处。

除了风车争执之外,还有一个关于庄园的防御问题。尽管人在牛棚大战中被击溃了,但他们为夺回庄园并使琼斯先生复辟,会发动一次更凶狠的进犯,这是千真万确的事。进一步说,因为他们受到挫败的消息已经传遍了整个国家,使得附近庄园的动物比以前更难驾驭了,他们也就更有理由这样干了。可是斯诺鲍和拿破仑又照例发生了分歧。根据拿破仑的意见,动物们的当务之急是设法武装起来,并自我训练使用武器。而按斯诺鲍的说法,他们应该放出越来越多的鸽子,到其他庄园的动物中煽动造反。一个说如不自卫就无异于坐以待毙;另一个则说如果造反四起,他们就断无自卫的必要。动物们先听了拿破仑的,又听了斯诺鲍的,竟不能确定谁是谁非。实际上,他们总是发现,讲话的是谁,他们就会同意谁的。

终于熬到了这一天,斯诺鲍的设计图完成了。在紧接着的星期天大会议上,是否开工建造风车的议题将要付诸表决,当动物们在大谷仓里集合完毕,斯诺鲍站了起来,尽管不时被羊的咩咩声打断,他还是提出了他热衷于建造风车的缘由。接着,拿破仑站起来反驳,他非常隐讳地说风车是瞎折腾,劝告大家不要支持它,就又猛地坐了下去。他斤斤讲了不到半分钟,似乎显得有点说不说都一个样。这时,斯诺鲍跳了起来,喝住了又要咩咩乱叫的羊,慷慨陈词,呼吁大家对风车给予支持。在这之前,动物们因各有所好,基本上是平均地分成两派,但在顷刻之间,斯诺鲍的雄辩口才就说得他们服服贴贴。他用热烈的语言,描述着当动物们摆脱了沉重的劳动时动物庄园的景象。他的设想此时早已远远超出了铡草机和切萝卜机。他说,电能带动脱粒机、犁、耙、碾子、收割机和捆扎机,除此之外,还能给每一个窝棚里提供电灯、热水或凉水,以及电炉等等。他讲演完后,表决会何去何从已经很明显了。就在这个关头,拿破仑站起来,怪模怪样地瞥了斯诺鲍一眼,把了一声尖细的口哨,这样的口哨声以前没有一个动物听到他打过。

这时,从外面传来一阵凶狠的汪汪叫声,紧接着,九条强壮的狗,戴着镶有青铜饰钉的项圈,跳进大仓谷里来,径直扑向斯诺鲍。就在斯诺鲍要被咬上的最后一刻,他才跳起来,一下跑到门外,于是狗就在后面追。动物们都吓呆了,个个张口结舌。他们挤到门外注视着这场追逐。斯诺鲍飞奔着穿过通向大路的牧场,他使出浑身解数拼命地跑着。而狗已经接近他的后蹄子。突然间,他滑倒了,眼看着就要被他们逮住。可他又重新起来,跑得更快了。狗又一次赶上去,其中一条狗几乎就要咬住斯诺鲍的尾巴了,幸而斯诺鲍及时甩开了尾巴。接着他又一个冲刺,和狗不过一步之差,从树篱中的一个缺口窜了出去,再也看不到了。

动物们惊愕地爬回大谷仓。不一会儿,那些狗又汪汪地叫着跑回来。刚开始时,动物们都想不出这些家伙是从哪儿来的,但问题很快就弄明白了:他们正是早先被拿破仑从他们的母亲身边带走的那些狗崽子,被拿破仑偷偷地养着。他们尽管还没有完全长大,但个头都不小,看上去凶得象狼。大家都注意到,他们始终紧挨着拿破仑,对他摆着尾巴。那姿势,竟和别的狗过去对琼斯先生的做法一模一样。

这时,拿破仑在狗的尾随下,登上那个当年麦哲发表演讲的凸台,并宣布,从今以后,星期天早晨的大会议就此告终。他说,那些会议毫无必要,又浪费时间。此后一切有关庄园工作的议题,将有一个由猪组成的特别委员会定夺,这个委员会由他亲自统管。他们将在私下碰头,然后把有关决策传达给其他动物。动物们仍要在星期天早晨集合,向庄园的旗帜致敬,唱“英格兰兽”,并接受下一周的工作任务。但再也不搞什么辩论了。

本来,斯诺鲍被逐已经对他们刺激不小了,但他们更为这个通告感到惊愕。有几个动物想要抗议,却可惜没有找到合适的辩词。甚至鲍克瑟也感到茫然不解,他支起耳朵,抖动几下额毛,费力地想理出个头绪,结果没想出任何可说的话。然而,有些猪倒十分清醒,四只在前排的小肉猪不以为然地尖声叫着,当即都跳起来准备发言。但突然间,围坐在拿破仑身旁的那群狗发出一阵阴森恐怖的咆哮,于是,他们便沉默不语,重新坐了下去。接着,羊又声音响亮地咩咩叫起“四条腿好,两条腿坏!”一直持续了一刻钟,从而,所有讨论一下的希望也付诸东流了。

 

后来,斯奎拉受命在庄园里兜了一圈,就这个新的安排向动物作一解释。

“同志们”,他说,“我希望每一位在这儿的动物,会对拿破仑同志为承担这些额外的劳动所作的牺牲而感激的。同志们,不要以为当领导是一种享受!恰恰相反,它是一项艰深而繁重的职责。没有谁能比拿破仑同志更坚信所有动物一律平等。他也确实很想让大家自己为自己作主。可是,万一你们失策了,那么同志们,我们会怎样呢?要是你们决定按斯诺鲍的风车梦想跟从了他会怎样呢?斯诺鲍这家伙,就我们现在所知,不比一个坏蛋强多少。”

“他在牛棚大战中作战很勇敢”,有个动物说了一句。

“勇敢是不够的”,斯奎拉说,“忠诚和服从更为重要。就牛棚大战而言,我相信我们最终会有一天发现斯诺鲍的作用被吹得太大了。纪律,同志们,铁的纪律!这是我们今天的口号。一步走错,我们的仇敌便会来颠覆我们。同志们,你们肯定不想让琼斯回来吧?”

这番论证同样是无可辩驳的。毫无疑问,动物们害怕琼斯回来;如果星期天早晨召集的辩论有导致他回来的可能,那么辩论就应该停止。鲍克瑟细细琢磨了好一阵子,说了句“如果这是拿破仑同志说,那就一定没错”,以此来表达他的整个感受。并且从此以后,他又用“拿破仑同志永远正确”这句格言,作为对他个人的座右铭“我要更加努力工作”的补充。

到了天气变暖,春耕已经开始的时候。那间斯诺鲍用来画风车设计图的小棚还一直被封着,大家想象着那些设计图早已从地板上擦掉了。每星期天早晨十点钟,动物们聚集在大谷仓,接受他们下一周的工作任务。如今,老麦哲的那个风干了肉的颅骨,也已经从果园脚下挖了出来,驾在旗杆下的一个木墩上,位于枪的一侧。升旗之后,动物们要按规定恭恭敬敬地列队经过那个颅骨,然后才走进大谷仓。近来,他们还没有像早先那样全坐在一起过。拿破仑同斯奎拉和另一个叫梅尼缪斯的猪,共同坐在前台。这个梅尼缪斯具有非凡的天赋,擅于谱曲作诗。九条年轻的狗围着它们成半圆形坐着。其他猪坐在后台。别的动物面对着他们坐在大谷仓中间。拿破仑用一种粗暴的军人风格,宣读对下一周的安排,随后只唱了一遍“英格兰兽”,所有的动物就解散了。

斯诺鲍被逐后的第三个星期天,拿破仑宣布要建造风车,动物们听到这个消息,终究有些吃惊。而拿破仑没有为改变主意讲述任何理由,只是简单地告诫动物们,那项额外的任务将意味着非常艰苦的劳动:也许有必要缩减他们的食料。然而,设计图已全部筹备好,并已经进入最后的细节部分。一个由猪组成的特别委员会为此在过去三周内一直工作着。风车的修建,加上其他一些各种各样的改进,预期要两年时间。

当天晚上,斯奎拉私下对其他动物解释说,拿破仑从来没有真正反对过风车。相反,正是由他最初做的建议。那个斯诺鲍画在孵卵棚地板上的设计图,实际上是他早先从拿破仑的笔记中剽窃的。事实上,风车是拿破仑自己的创造。于是,有的动物问道,为什么他曾说它的坏话说得那么厉害?在这一点上,斯奎拉显得非常圆滑。他说,这是拿破仑同志的老练,他装作反对风车,那只是一个计谋,目的在于驱除斯诺鲍这个隐患,这个坏东西。既然现在斯诺鲍已经溜掉了,计划也就能在没有斯诺鲍妨碍的情况下顺利进行了。斯奎拉说,这就是所谓的策略,他重复了好几遍,“策略,同志们,策略!”还一边带着欢快的笑声,一边甩动着尾巴,活蹦乱跳。动物们吃不准这些话的含意,可是斯奎拉讲的如此富有说服力,加上赶巧了有三条狗和他在一起,又是那样气势汹汹的狂叫着,因而他们没有进一步再问什么,就接受了他的解释。