1. Along the corridor came the low, hollow sound of subdued drumming. It was not tapping nor hammering; the men in the cells 380 to 402, who formed the acoustic chain and stood behind their doors like a guard of honour in the dark, brought out with deceptive resemblance the muffled solemn sound of a roll of drums, carried by the wind from the distance. ...joined the chorus by beating with both hands rhythmically against the concrete door. .... At the same time Rubashov heard to his left, at some distance still from the limits of his range of vision, the grinding of an iron door being rolled back on their slidings. The drumming to his left became slightly louder;.... A bunch of keys jangled, now the iron door was shut again; now he heard the approach of steps, accompanied by sliding and slipping noises on the tiles. The drumming to the left rose in a wave, a steady, muffled crescendo,.... The sliding and squealing sounds approached quickly, now he distinguished also a moaning and whimpering, like the whimpering of a child. The steps quickened, the drumming to the left faded slightly, to the right it swelled.
2. ...he heard only the hollow beating as of jungle tom-toms; it .... ...but the roll of drum rose, and the creaking whimpering approached. The legs trailed after, the shoes skated along on the toes, producing the squealing sound which Rubashov had heard from the distance.
3. ...the moaning and whimpering gradually faded away; it came to him only as a distant echo, consisting of three plaintive vowels; 'u-a-o'. But before they turned ... Bogrov bellowed out loudly twice, and this time Rubashov heard not only the vowels, but the whole word; it was his own name, heard it clearly: Ru-ba-shov. Then as if at a signal, silence fell.
"Rubashov, Rubashov...." That last cry was branded ineffaceably in his acoustic memory.
Arthur Koestler, Darkness at Noon, Modern Library, New York, p. 140, 141, 142.
PLACE: A prison, Russia.