In his endless pedigree, reckoning deities by decimals, innumerable kings, and scores of great heroes, chiefs, and priests. Nor in person, did he belie his origin. No far-descended dwarf was he, the least of a receding race. He stood like a palm tree; about whose acanthus capital droops not more gracefully the silken fringes, than Media's locks upon his noble brow.
On the eve of embarking, we were accompanied to the beach by Borabolla; who, with his own hand, suspended from the shark's mouth of Media's canoe, three red-ripe bunches of plantains, a farewell gift to his guests. Though he spoke not a word, Jarl was long in taking leave. His eyes seemed to say, I will see you no more.
But blow before us, all ye winds; give us a lively blast, good clarion; rally round us all our wits; and be this voyage full gayly sailed, for Yillah will yet be found." Valapee, or the Isle of Yams, being within plain sight of Media's dominions, we were not very long in drawing nigh to its shores.
And thus, as Media had promised, we voyaged in state. To crown all, seated sideways in the high, open shark's-mouth of our prow was a little dwarf of a boy, one of Media's pages, a red conch-shell, bugle-wise suspended at his side. Among various other offices, it was the duty of little Vee-Vee to announce the advent of his master, upon drawing near to the islands in our route.
Therefore, three canoes were selected from his own royal fleet. One for ourselves, and a trio of companions whom he purposed introducing to my notice; the rest were reserved for attendants. Thanks to Media's taste and heedfulness, the strangers above mentioned proved truly acceptable.
With many salams, the strangers were ushered into my presence by an old white-haired servitor of Media's, who with a parting conge murmured, "From Queen Hautia," then departed. Surprised, I stood mute, and welcomed them. The first, with many smiles and blandishments, waved before me a many-tinted Iris: the flag-flower streaming with pennons.
King Media announced the advent of the sun, by rustling at my bower's eaves in person. A repast was spread in an adjoining arbor, which Media's pages had smoothed for our reception, and where his subordinate chiefs were in attendance. Here we reclined upon mats.
Instead, then, of being struck with the audacity of endeavoring to palm myself off as a god the way in which the thing first impressed me I now perceived that I might be a god as much as I pleased, and yet not whisk a lion's tail after all at least on that special account. As for Media's reception, its graciousness was not wholly owing to the divine character imputed to me.
It has been said, that the opening in the groves where was situated Media's city, was elevated above the surrounding plains. Hence was commanded a broad reach of prospect. Far and wide was deep low-sobbing repose of man and nature. The groves were motionless; and in the meadows, like goblins, the shadows advanced and retreated.
When I chose, I was completely undisturbed in my arbor; an ukase of Media's forbidding indiscriminate intrusion. But thrice in the day came a garrulous old man with my viands. Thus sequestered, however, I could not entirely elude the pryings of the people of the neighboring islands; who often passed by, slowly paddling, and earnestly regarding my retreat.