who was showing herself to be truest of friends to us, however, she may have behaved to the impassioned lover in the novel. Then I added: "Keep it up, Good; I can't remember any more poetry. Curse away! there's a good fellow."
Good responded nobly to the tax upon his inventive faculties. Never before had I the faintest conception of the breadth and depth and height of a naval officer's objurgatory powers. For ten minutes he went on without stopping, and he scarcely ever repeated himself.
Meanwhile the dark ring crept on. Strange and unholy shadows encroached upon the sunlight, an ominous quiet filled the place, the birds chirped out frightened notes and then were still; only the cocks began to crow.
On, yet on, crept the ring of darkness; it was now more than half over the reddening orb. The air grew thick and dusky. On, yet on, till we could scarcely see the fierce faces of the group before us. No sound now rose from the spectators, and Good stopped swearing.
"The sun is dying - the wizards have killed the sun," yelled out the boy Scragga at last. "We shall all die in the dark," and, animated by fear or fury, or both, he lifted his spear and drove it with all his force at Sir Henry's broad chest. But he had forgotten the mail shirts that the king had given us, and which we wore beneath our clothing. The steel rebounded harmless, and before he could repeat the blow Sir Henry had snatched the spear from his hand and sent it straight through him. He dropped dead.
At the sight, and driven mad with fear at the gathering gloom, the companies of girls broke up in wild confusion and ran screeching for the gateways. Nor did the panic stop there. The king himself, followed by the guard, some of the chiefs, and Gagool, who hobbled away after them with marvellous alacrity, fled for the huts, so that in another minute or so ourselves, the would-be victim, Foulata, Infadoos, and some of the chiefs who had interviewed us on the previous night, were left alone upon the scene with the dead body of Scragga.
"Now, chiefs," I said, "we have given you the sign. If ye are satisfied, let us fly swiftly to the place ye spoke of. The charm cannot now be stopped. It will work for an hour. Let us take advantage of the darkness."
"Come," said Infadoos, turning to go, an example which was followed by the awed chiefs, ourselves, and the girl Foulata, whom Good took by the hand.