Herman was young man who lived in Saint Petersburg in Rusia. His Father had come from germany to work in rusia before Herman was born. When his father died, Herman became an officer in the Russian army.

Herman did not have much money. But many of the other officers had plenty of money. They loved to spend their evenings drinking and playing card. Some times they stayed up all night gambling.

Herman did not drink and did not playing cards. But he loved to watch the rich the young men playing cards every night. He wanted to be rich, but he did not have enough money to gamble. One of the young officers who gamblr every night was called tomsky. He often saw herman sitting at the card table and wondered why Herman never play cards.

Tomsky sat down beside herman.’Why do you never play cards?’ Tomsky asked Herman.

‘I have very little money’ Herman replied.’I cannot lost it at cards.’

‘but you sit here every night and watch us win and lose’ Tomsky said

‘yes’ Herman agreed.’I love cards very much.’

‘so, would you play cards if you win certain to win?’ Tomsky askedwith a smile.

‘Perhaps’ Herman answer slowly.

‘Perhaps not’ said Tomsky.’My grandmother, Countess anna Fedetovna, know the secret of the three winning cards. But she won’t tell anyone and she never gambles.’

Herman could not stop thinking about tomskey’s story as he walk through the snowy streets of saint Petersburg .Herman knew where Tomsky grandmother lived and decided to walk past her big house. He looked up at the large window of the house.Later, he askd one of Tomsky Frind about the girl who lived in the old countess’s house. That’s Lizavyeta Ivanovna. She went to live with old countess.

Herman made a plan to get into the old countess house. after week he wrote her a leter. And Herman gave the leter to Lizavyeta Ivanovna. She read the leter when she alone her room. And she decided to write note to Herman and return his letter. Herman had expected to answer in this way. She replied his leters and he replies becamelonger and longer.

Leter , herman watched the countess get into her carriage and drive off. He enterd the house. He ran up the stairs and went into the countess’s bedroom. Herman did not go to lizavyeta room. Herman watched from behind the red curtain. The countess sat in arm chair by the window and stared at the lamp.

The Countess looked round as herman came out from behind the curtain.

‘Don’t be afraid,’ herman said.’I won’t hurt you. I’ve came to ask you a question.’

The old women silent.

‘you know the secret of the three winning cards.’ Said Herman.’tell me the secret and I will leave you in peace.’

‘No, no’ The countess whispered. ‘I can’t tell you.’’why?’ asked Herman.the countes said nothink.

‘ you stupid old women’ herman said,’I will make you speak.’ He took pistol from the pocket.

The countess raised her hands in front of face. Her eyes continued to stare at herman, but the eyes were lifeless. Herman saw thet she was dead. The countess face was peacefull, but he was sad that she had died without telling him her secret.

That afternoon, Herman drank a lot of wine. He fell sleep his bed. He thought that someone was looking in at the window. Latter, the door opened and a women in a long white dress come in. it was the dead Countess and she had come to tell the secret of the three winning cards.

A famous gambler called chekalinsky. And Herman take him Chekalinsky house. A game was being played when they arrived. Chekalinsky was dealing cards.

And then Herman win from Chekalinsky. Herman took the money and left. The next evening herman came back again to chekalinsky house. and they started dealing. Herman has won again. Herman put the money and went out.

When Herman appared on the third evening. Everyone was excpectinghim. Army general and other important people had come to watch. Herman looked the card in his hand. He was holding the queen of spades.

As he looked at the card,the queen of spades seemed to open one eyes, and wink at him. She looked exactly like the dead countess. They were all cheering chekalinsky. He was the winer. Nobody  Herman as he turned round and walkout of the room in a daze. No one in saint Petersburg ever saw him again.

Herman went mad and was put in a hospital. He spoke the same words aver and over again. He never said anything else. ‘Three! Seven! Ace! . ..three! seven! Queen!!’