The scenery certainly is most striking, and, as I have

rain and cloudtheory2023-12-07 12:15:35 3 75

I began at the beginning, and told him the story of what happened on the Kirkcaple shore. Then I spoke of my sight of him on board ship, his talk with Henriques about Blaauwildebeestefontein, and his hurried departure from Durban.

The scenery certainly is most striking, and, as I have

Captain Arcoll listened intently, and at the mention of Durban he laughed. 'You and I seem to have been running on lines which nearly touched. I thought I had grabbed my friend Laputa that night in Durban, but I was too cocksure and he slipped off. Do you know, Mr Crawfurd, you have been on the right trail long before me? When did you say you saw him at his devil-worship? Seven years ago? Then you were the first man alive to know the Reverend John in his true colours. You knew seven years ago what I only found out last year.'

The scenery certainly is most striking, and, as I have

'Well, that's my story,' I said. 'I don't know what the rising is about, but there's one other thing I can tell you. There's some kind of sacred place for the Kaffirs, and I've found out where it is.' I gave him a short account of my adventures in the Rooirand.

The scenery certainly is most striking, and, as I have

He smoked silently for a bit after I had finished. 'You've got the skeleton of the whole thing right, and you only want the filling up. And you found out everything for yourself? Colles was right; you're not wanting in intelligence, Mr Crawfurd.'

It was not much of a compliment, but I have never been more pleased in my life. This slim, grizzled man, with his wrinkled face and bright eyes, was clearly not lavish in his praise. I felt it was no small thing to have earned a word of commendation.

'And now I will tell you my story,' said Captain Arcoll. 'It is a long story, and I must begin far back. It has taken me years to decipher it, and, remember, I've been all my life at this native business. I can talk every dialect, and I have the customs of every tribe by heart. I've travelled over every mile of South Africa, and Central and East Africa too. I was in both the Matabele wars, and I've seen a heap of other fighting which never got into the papers. So what I tell you you can take as gospel, for it is knowledge that was not learned in a day.'

He puffed away, and then asked suddenly, 'Did you ever hear of Prester John?'

'The man that lived in Central Asia?' I asked, with a reminiscence of a story-book I had as a boy. 'No, no,' said Mr Wardlaw, 'he means the King of Abyssinia in the fifteenth century. I've been reading all about him. He was a Christian, and the Portuguese sent expedition after expedition to find him, but they never got there. Albuquerque wanted to make an alliance with him and capture the Holy Sepulchre.'



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