While the appearance of the shop and the announcement of theprice paid per week operated very much as a blow to Carrie'sfancy, the fact that work of any kind was offered after so rude around of experience was gratifying. She could not begin tobelieve that she would take the place, modest as her aspirationswere. She had been used to better than that. Her mere experienceand the free out-of-door life of the country caused her nature torevolt at such confinement. Dirt had never been her share. Hersister's flat was clean. This place was grimy and low, the girlswere careless and hardened. They must be bad-minded and hearted,she imagined. Still, a place had been offered her. SurelyChicago was not so bad if she could find one place in one day.She might find another and better later.。， Carrie smiled and smiled.
Caroline, or Sister Carrie, as she had been half affectionatelytermed by the family, was possessed of a mind rudimentary in itspower of observation and analysis. Self-interest with her washigh, but not strong. It was, nevertheless, her guidingcharacteristic. Warm with the fancies of youth, pretty with theinsipid prettiness of the formative period, possessed of a figurepromising eventual shapeliness and an eye alight with certainnative intelligence, she was a fair example of the middleAmerican class--two generations removed from the emigrant. Bookswere beyond her interest--knowledge a sealed book. In theintuitive graces she was still crude. She could scarcely tossher head gracefully. Her hands were almost ineffectual. Thefeet, though small, were set flatly. And yet she was interestedin her charms, quick to understand the keener pleasures of life,ambitious to gain in material things. A half-equipped littleknight she was, venturing to reconnoitre the mysterious city anddreaming wild dreams of some vague, far-off supremacy, whichshould make it prey and subject--the proper penitent, grovellingat a woman's slipper.。， "He works way down at the stock-yards," explained Minnie, "sohe's got to get up at half-past five."
"Why, hello, Charlie, old man," said Hurstwood, as Drouet came inthat evening about eight o'clock. "How goes it?" The room wascrowded.。， "You're so kind," said Carrie, feeling the goodness of suchattention in her strange situation.
On Saturday Carrie went out by herself--first toward the river,which interested her, and then back along Jackson Street, whichwas then lined by the pretty houses and fine lawns whichsubsequently caused it to be made into a boulevard. She wasstruck with the evidences of wealth, although there was, perhaps,not a person on the street worth more than a hundred thousanddollars. She was glad to be out of the flat, because already shefelt that it was a narrow, humdrum place, and that interest andjoy lay elsewhere. Her thoughts now were of a more liberalcharacter, and she punctuated them with speculations as to thewhereabouts of Drouet. She was not sure but that he might callanyhow Monday night, and, while she felt a little disturbed atthe possibility, there was, nevertheless, just the shade of awish that he would.。， "What is it you want?" he inquired.
On the second floor were the managerial offices, to which, aftersome inquiry, she was now directed. There she found other girlsahead of her, applicants like herself, but with more of thatself-satisfied and independent air which experience of the citylends; girls who scrutinised her in a painful manner. After await of perhaps three-quarters of an hour, she was called inturn.。，
He looked down at his paper and shook his head negatively.。， She sat with Minnie, in the kitchen, holding the baby until itbegan to cry. Then she walked and sang to it, until Hanson,disturbed in his reading, came and took it. A pleasant side tohis nature came out here. He was patient. One could see that hewas very much wrapped up in his offspring.
Into this important commercial region the timid Carrie went. Shewalked east along Van Buren Street through a region of lesseningimportance, until it deteriorated into a mass of shanties andcoal-yards, and finally verged upon the river. She walkedbravely forward, led by an honest desire to find employment anddelayed at every step by the interest of the unfolding scene, anda sense of helplessness amid so much evidence of power and forcewhich she did not understand. These vast buildings, what werethey? These strange energies and huge interests, for whatpurposes were they there? She could have understood the meaningof a little stone-cutter's yard at Columbia City, carving littlepieces of marble for individual use, but when the yards of somehuge stone corporation came into view, filled with spur tracksand flat cars, transpierced by docks from the river and traversedoverhead by immense trundling cranes of wood and steel, it lostall significance in her little world.。， When Carrie saw how they looked upon her proposition, she gaineda still clearer feeling of their way of life. It weighed on her,but took no definite form of opposition.
， "What are you going to do to-night?"。， Carrie realised the change of affectional atmosphere at once.Amid all the maze, uproar, and novelty she felt cold realitytaking her by the hand. No world of light and merriment. Noround of amusement. Her sister carried with her most of thegrimness of shift and toil.