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But Narayan Singh strode into the breach. "The Lion's jackals slept," he announced in a voice of righteous indignation. "There was none to give our great Sheikh Jimgrim as much as Allah's blessing. Nevertheless, he sends these presents." Without answering that Ali Higg clapped his hands twice, and a woman came around the corner from a near-by cave.

The jamadar with the fingers of his two hands clasped to his forehead in obeisance, declared: "If I, Ajeet Singh, tell that which is not true, Mother Kali, may thy wrath fall upon me and my family." Then Hodson shifted the black goddess and let it remain upon a corner of his table, surmising that the sight of it would help. "Speak, now," the Resident commanded; and the Jamadar proceeded.

They rode regretfully, as men who missed their squadron leader, and who, in spite of a message from him, would have better loved to see him riding on their flank. But Ranjoor Singh stepped out into the road, and the right-end man of the front four recognized him.

Moreover, Khem Singh was old, and anise-seed brandy was scarce, and he had left his silver cooking-pots in Fort Amara with his nice warm bedding, and the gentleman with the gold pince-nez was told by those who had employed him that Khem Singh as a popular leader was not worth the money paid. 'Great is the mercy of these fools of English! said Khem Singh when the situation was put before him.

He turned out the guard, and the particular troop sergeant with whom he wished to speak not being on duty, he ordered him sent for. Ten minutes later the sergeant came, still yawning, from his cot. "Come over here, Arjan Singh," he called, thinking fast and furiously as he led the way.

The walls were garrisoned by the loyal guard, the disappointed Sher Singh quartering himself with his followers in the house of a reluctant Armenian near at hand, and Gerrard and Charteris spent an arduous night in getting up from the secret treasury an amount sufficient to fulfil their obligations.

It was all Narayan Singh could stand, for Ali Baba and his gang laughed derisively, and no true son of the East can endure to be laughed at. "Let that mother of snakes beware!" he growled in my ear; and as it turned out in the end, he did not forget the grudge he owed her.

The regiment took its full share in the work that followed the relief of Lucknow, portions being attached to each of the flying columns which scoured Oude, defeated Kunwer Singh, and drove the rebels before them wherever they encountered them. In the beginning of February the vacancies in the ranks were filled up by a draft from England.

The Rani assented to this, though with reluctance; but when Gerrard proceeded to say that the first person approached must be Sher Singh, and that the Rani's peace-offering to him must be the fief of Adamkot, she refused to hear another word, and when he persisted, intimated that the audience was at an end. He took out his watch.

And hang on to life he did, in defiance of mortal pain, with a tenacity worthy of his bull-dog jaw. At the foot of the kotal, Desmond called a halt; and the rearguard under Hira Singh closed up, to hold the enemy in check, that the guns and wounded might get over in safety before the position should be finally abandoned. And now began the toughest bit of fighting the day had yet seen.