Camels, horses, mules, and donkeys had been watered and fed, and the men had disposed of an early breakfast of cocoa or tea, coarse biscuit, and tinned meat. Infantry and artillery had made sure of their full supply of ammunition, and the reserve was handy to draw more from. Tommy Atkins carried 100 rounds of the new hollow-nosed Lee-Metford cartridges.
I found a few hollow-nosed bullets, too, expanding like the Dum-Dum. The effect of such a bullet was seen on the hat of some poor fellow in the Light Horse. There was a tiny hole on one side, but the further side was all rent to pieces. I hear some "express" sporting bullets have also been taken to the Intelligence Office, but I have not seen them.
"What is it?" "Oh! don't know. Devil and all, perhaps. Come on, Major, before it catch us." "I don't think it will catch anyone just at present. Devil or not hollow-nosed bullets don't agree with it. Shall I give it another, Jeekie?" and he lifted the pistol. "No, no, Major, don't play tomfool," and Jeekie grabbed him by the arm and dragged him away.
Even the dum-dum does not invariably "set up" on striking an object. For the Omdurman Campaign a new hollow-nosed bullet was issued for the Lee-Metfords. So far as I was able to judge, it generally spread on hitting, and made a deadly wound, tearing away bone and flesh at the point of exit.
"Yes, Captain," answered Quick; "but everything is quite ready, including those brutes, to judge by the noise they make, excepting perhaps Samuel Quick, who never felt less ready for anything in his life. Now then, Pussy, run out that ladder. Here's your rifle, Captain, and six reload clips of cartridges, five hollow-nosed bullets in each.