This curious and unexpected discovery, uncertain as were its indications of any identity of the person, or even of the age or sex of the person, by whom that delicate footprint was made, at once diverted his attention, from the particular care by which it had been engrossed, and started that other of the two trains of thought, which, for the last month, but especially since his singular awakening the past night, had constituted the chief burden of his mind, his increasing apprehensions for his father's safety, and his lurking but irrepressible regard for the chief's beautiful daughter, whose image, since his dream, had haunted him with a pertinacity for which a resort to reason alone would fail to account.
Down the other side and into the timber line again, directed only by a broken twig, a freshly turned bowlder, or now and then a faint suggestion of a footprint, they plunged as rapidly as they could and then through tangled brush until suddenly they came out to an old disused path.
When the Hindoos entered into possession of Gayá one of the four most sacred places of Buddhism they found the popular feeling in favour of the sacred footprint there so strong that they were obliged to incorporate the relic into their own religious system, and to attribute it to Vishnu. Thousands of Hindoo pilgrims from all parts of India now visit the shrine every year.
But besides protecting these women, he had a still more sacred duty to perform that of succoring his accomplice, if possible. He retraced his steps, passed by here once more, and the last footprint that I can discover leads in the direction of the Rue du Chateau des Rentiers.
Sometimes they would appear in troops at Sillery or Three Rivers, scared out of their forests by the sight of an Iroquois footprint; then some new terror would seize them, and drive them back to seek a hiding-place in the deepest thickets of the wilderness. Their best hunting-grounds were beset by the enemy.
When king Asoka destroyed the seven topes, intending to make eighty-four thousand, the first which he made was the great tope, more than three li to the south of this city. In front of this there is a footprint of Buddha, where a vihara has been built.
She'd soon be out if she heard a stranger prowlin' around." "As no doubt she did," agreed Kiddie. "Heard him gettin' outer the canoe," Rube conjectured. "You believe he came along in the canoe, then?" Kiddie interrogated. "Well," returned Rube, "what about the tobacco pipe an' the footprint? You haven't spotted any more footprints like that one, have you, Kiddie?"
The trail grew more intricate in the deep ferns; the friendly little footprint had vanished in this primeval wilderness. As he pushed through the gorge, he could hear at last the roar of the North Fork forcing its way through the canyon that crossed the gorge at right angles.
"To an extra bath-room," I said scornfully. "Haven't you a thumb-print, too?" "I have," he said with a smile, "and the print of a foot in a tulip bed, and a number of other things. The oddest part is, Miss Innes, that the thumb-mark is probably yours and the footprint certainly."
I found another footprint, and another leading towards the middle of the bed; and then I flung the match away, trampling the fire out in the soil. It was no use searching farther now, for I knew well there was no diamond here for us. I stepped back to the lawn, and caught Elzevir by the arm.