Find today’s 1965 word story here here: http://www.chekhovshorts.com/stories/113.html
This is a first person point of view/slice of life story told from an honest, good intentioned adolescent taking communion and giving confession. The tone seems innocent throughout with “nearly nine” year old boy trying to be a good Christian, even making amends with this his archenemy and knucklebone thief, Mitka. But I think Chekhov is trying to make a point about the boy not knowing his father’s name or his own surname. The story ends with the line: “I will certainly marry a woman like that, but remembering that getting married is shameful...” While I get that the boy is a bastard and he probably has been told by his mother that marriage is shameful so she can save face with her son, I imagine the impact must have been more poignant to a 19th Century Russian audience.