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Now I wish you could sit down by my side and tell me all about it. I think preaching was always my greatest pleasure; and in my dreams now I think I am oftenest going to preach. People try to sum up the good that life is to them. I think it lies most in activity. Bartol, and that grand soul, Clarke, discussed it much. To the Same. May 13, 1878.

Then darkness took him; and thinking it was death, Bart felt only numb, regretful failure. I've failed, we'll always fail. The Lhari were right all long. But we tried! By God, we tried! "Bartol?" A gentle hand, cat claws retracted, came down on his shoulder. Ringg bent over him. Good-natured rebuke was in his voice.

The dice, quoth Bridlegoose, of sentences at law, decrees, and peremptory judgments, Alea Judiciorum, whereof is written, Per Doct. 26. qu. 2. cap. sort. l. nec emptio ff. de contrahend. empt. l. quod debetur. ff. de pecul. et ibi Bartol., and which your worships do, as well as I, use, in this glorious sovereign court of yours.

"You fool," said Vorongil to the Mentorian, in disgust, "why didn't you tell him what the medics had done for him? Easy, Bartol!" The old Lhari's arm tightened around his shoulder. "I thought they'd told you. Somebody come here and give the youngster a hand."

"Well, Bart Steele, alias Bartol son of Berihun," said one old Lhari, "what have you to say for yourself?" Bart stood silent, not moving. What could he say that would not reveal how desperately alone, how young and foolish and frightened he felt? All his brave resolutions seemed to drain away before their old, gnomish faces.

Let us never again fear to face the unknown, trusting that the Mind of All Knowledge still has many surprises in store for all the living. "I think I admire courage more than anything there is, Bartol. Who else could have dared it? Doesn't it make you proud to be a Lhari?" Bart had felt profoundly moved; now he snapped back to awareness of who he was and what he was doing.

Are you sunstruck?" Bart stopped cold. Never once had it crossed his mind what he would say to Vorongil or how he would make the captain believe his story, without revealing Montano. He started to hold up his badge, realized the Lhari captain could not see color, and dropped it again, while Vorongil bent over to pick up the fallen gun. "Are you sunstruck or mad, Bartol? What's this babble?"

She did not ask why he wanted it, and stopped him when he would have told her. "I'd rather not know." She looked very small and very scared, and Bart wished he could comfort her, but he knew she would shrink from him, repelled and horrified by his Lhari skin, hair, claws. Yet she reached for his hand, gripping it hard in her own dainty one. "Bartol, be careful," she whispered, then stopped.

But consider that such men as Martineau, Bartol, Stebbins, Ames, and Abbot are mainly on that side, and that it will not do to cast about scornful or pitying words concerning such. As to I give him up to you, for I don't like his writing any better than you do. I think the great Exposition which you are soon to see may give you a liberalizing hint.

And if he succeeded, Vega Interplanet could spread from star to star, a mighty memorial to Rupert Steele. One day Vorongil sent for him. "Bartol," he said, and his voice was not unkind, "you and Ringg have always been good friends, so don't be angry about this. He's worried about you says you spend all your spare time in your bunk growling at him. Is there anything the matter, feathertop?"