Just outside Senga to the north, in open country, stands a great walled zareba, and the space enclosed is the nearest approach to the Garden of Eden which this wicked world can produce. The Zoological Gardens of Cairo and Khartum replenish their cages from Senga. But there are no cages at Senga, and only the honey-badger lives in a tub with a chain round his neck, like a bull-dog.
A honey-badger came timorously creeping, his feet shuffling the fallen leaves, peered at the strange figures of the men, and, at the move of an arm, fled scurrying through the stillness with the noise of some great creature. Suddenly the jungle was stilled, even from the voice of the rasping cicadae; the leaves had ceased to whisper, for the wind had hushed.
It looked as if the worn fangs of the lion failed to make his hold on the wonderful, leathern, loose armor of the little honey-badger, and that he bungled the stroke of his terrible paw. Be that as it may, the honey-badger certainly went straight in, right under the lion's guard, right under the lion, and rearing, he bit home, and hung like a living spanner.
Even when a jackal, or it might have been a honey-badger, slipped across the road in front, a drifting shadow, the Turcoman only rattled the snaffle-bit in his teeth, cocked his ears, and then blew a breath of disdain from his big nostrils.
The result was rather curious it was also the ratel, or honey-badger, who had nothing at all to do with rats, but everything to do with honey, and was self-evidently more than three-parts badger. "Kru-tshee! Kru-tshee-chlk!
That was the magic word the bird, who was a honey-guide by name, had shouted to the ratel, who was a honey-badger, you remember; and honey-bees they were that made the air delirious.