That is where the ball is, and there are the keen players to be met, and the glory and the hard knocks to be got.
Then the boys who are bending and watching on the outside, mark them: they are most useful players, the dodgers, who seize on the ball the moment it rolls out from amongst the chargers, and away with it across to the opposite goal.
Instantly the count and the two other players
were upon their feet.
True, chairs were provided around the tables, but few players
made use of them--more especially if there was a large attendance of the general public; since to stand allowed of a closer approach; and, therefore, of greater facilities for calculation and staking.
But it was Lady Lundie's turn to choose a second player
on her side.
The men are placed upon the board as in chess upon the first two rows next the players
At other times the players
overflowed, as it were, into the audience.
deserted the other games, and the dancing-floor was forsaken, so that all stood at last, fivescore and more, in a compact and silent group, around the poker-table.
The mingling of the public with the players
was a practice which so annoyed the haughty French actor, Baron, that to suggest to the audience the absurdity of it, he would turn his back on them for a whole act, and play to the audience on the stage.
Nicholas submitted to him, and at one moment prayed to God as he had done on the battlefield at the bridge over the Enns, and then guessed that the card that came first to hand from the crumpled heap under the table would save him, now counted the cords on his coat and took a card with that number and tried staking the total of his losses on it, then he looked round for aid from the other players
, or peered at the now cold face of Dolokhov and tried to read what was passing in his mind.
He accepted poor players
and knew how to make the best of them.
He was too eager, but he kept the players
lively with his high spirits.