Throughout the building rang the sounds of smashing wood, furious blows of steel upon wood, and high above the din arose the laugh of Elias Droom. In two minutes, the guillotine lay in chips and splinters about the room destroyed even as it was on the point of destroying him. Dropping back against the wall, wet with perspiration, a triumphant grin upon his face, Elias surveyed the wreckage.
At Srinagar, a native fête had been in progress, and the howling of men and din of tom-toms had somewhat marred the harmony of their arrival. But it was all interesting, like an absorbing fairy-tale, she said, but quite unreal. She felt sure it couldn't be true. Ralph had been disgusted with the hubbub and confusion.
A dozen more men and they would have split like a wedge through the Mormon mass. Above the din of battle Nathaniel's voice rose in thundering shouts to the men in the sea, and close beside him he heard Neil shrieking out a name between his blows. Like demons they fought straight ahead, slashing with their knives. The Mormon line was thinning.
So you see why I say the ladies will have a plenty of music to dance to." And sure enough, as soon as it commenced growing dark the din commenced, and there was no sleep for anyone in that camp until nearly daylight the next morning. A number of times that night I went out perhaps fifty yards from the wagons and saw them running in every direction.
I echoed, scarcely understanding, for knowing how little the poor love their children, I had asked William no questions about the baby. "Didn't you know his missis had a kid?" "Yes, but that is no excuse for William's staying away from his sick wife," I answered, sharply. A baby in such a home as William's, I reflected, must be trying, but still . Besides his class can sleep through any din.
The thing that many of us want most in the present grayness and din of the world is some one to play with, or if the word "play" is not quite the right word, some one with whom we can work with freedom and self-expressiveness and joy. Nine men out of ten one meets to-day talk with one as it were with their watches in their hands.
I was discovered of course and lifted into a wheel chair and taken down in the lift to the Padre's room, where all the W.A.A.C.s were already assembled. Our guns were blazing away quite heartily, the "London front" having recently been strengthened. Just as I got down, the back wheel of my chair collapsed, which was cheering! We sat there for some time listening to the din.
"Thrice hath this holy day been profaned by the foot of the stranger, and well may it be doubted whether we live not under an evil agency." "Arm, men of the Wish-Ton-Wish! arm, and to your defences!" A cry arose without, that seemed to circle the whole valley; and then a thousand whoops rolled out of the arches of the forest, and appeared to meet in one hostile din above the devoted hamlet.
Above this din, which was really not so great as it seemed to the overwrought nerves of the three men who had sat looking at each other for the last forty minutes, there came the unmistakable rattle of machine-guns, which at first was distant and light in volume, but with incredible rapidity increased until it was a roar that seemed like a great wave rolling up from the southern part of the city.
Two hundred black fellows were on us at once, shouting like devils, and sending down their spears upon us like rain. I heard the Doctor's voice, above all the infernal din, crying "Viva! Swords, my boys; take your swords!"