Mokroye is fifteen miles away, but Andrei’s troika is going so fast that they make it in an hour and fifteen minutes. Dmitri’s soul is troubled and yearns for Grushenka. There was a moment when he thought of stopping Andrei, getting out of the carriage, and killing himself. However, the closer he came to his goal and the more he thought of Grushenka, all “terrible phantoms” faded from his heart.
The troika in this scene parallels the symbolic troika that will be mentioned in Ippolit Kirillovich’s speech. If the troika is symbolic of Russia’s progress, determined by those driving the carriage forward, Dmitri is someone who forebodes ruin.
After an hour, Dmitri asks Andrei about the possibility of everyone being asleep. He prompts Andrei to go faster. Andrei says it’s possible that everyone’s gone to Plastunov’s inn to play cards. He points ahead to “a solid black mass of buildings” with his whip, announcing that they are arriving in Mokroye—a city of only two thousand. When they look at the windows of Plastunov’s inn, they see that the windows are lit; everyone is awake.
Dmitri wants Andrei to go faster so that he can reach Grushenka before she goes to sleep. Dmitri is excited to get to Mokroye—the site of his last spree with Grushenka, and a place that becomes associated with his pleasure-seeking and freedom from the burdens imposed by his father.
Dmitri jumps out of the cart just as the innkeeper, Trifon Borisich, peers out from the porch. He is a “robust man of medium height.” Dmitri asks right away where Grushenka is. Borisich says that she’s staying at the inn with some visitors, including a Pole. One of the other people present is Maximov, who’s been going around with Pyotr Fomich Kalgonov. The innkeeper reports that Grushenka is bored with her officer. Dmitri sends Borisich to get some people who can play music for him and the group inside, saying he’s willing to pay two hundred roubles.
It's possible that Trifon Borisich mentions the officer and how Grushenka is responding to him to stir up jealousy in Dmitri, who he knows has a relationship with Grushenka. Trifon Borisich is an opportunist. He knows that Dmitri will spend money to aid him in seducing Grushenka, which he does by ordering musicians and dancers.
Trifon Borisich leads Dmitri inside and first puts Dmitri in a dark corner, where he can watch the company undetected. Grushenka is sitting at the end of the table, in an armchair, beside Pyotr Fomich, who is saying something to Maximov. On a chair, by the wall, Dmitri sees some stranger—a “plumpish, broad-faced little man.” His companion is “exceedingly tall.” Dmitri walks into the blue room to join them, and Grushenka notices him first.
Trifon Borisich gives Dmitri the opportunity to survey the room so that Dmitri can observe his competition. The Pole doesn’t sound particularly attractive. Dostoevsky sets up a rather comic-looking duo between the petite “pan” and his extremely tall companion, as though to make them seem even more ridiculous and the scene more surreal.