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That red mark on my forefinger shows how he strained at the leash. My knees are still dusty. I remember creeping along the wall in the room where the white Tuareg were playing at dice. That was the minute after King Hiram had leapt past them. After that ... oh, Morhange and Antinea.... And then?" I recalled nothing more. I recalled nothing more.

On her head was the great gold pschent of Egyptian gods and kings; emeralds, the national stone of the Tuareg, were set in it, tracing and retracing her name in Tifinar characters. A red satin schenti, embroidered in golden lotus, enveloped her like the casket of a jewel. At her feet, lay an ebony scepter, headed with a trident.

"I learned, therefore, from Denys, not only that the central part of Atlantis, the cradle and home of the dynasty of Neptune, had not sunk in the disaster described by Plato as engulfing the rest of the Atlantide isle, but also that it corresponded to the Tuareg Ahaggar, and that, in this Ahaggar, at least in his time, the noble dynasty of Neptune was supposed to be still existent.

If I felt a vague uneasiness at not seeing him again, it was not because of a desire to know that he was well and safe. "Well and safe, I knew him to be, moreover. The Tuareg slaves of Antinea's household were certainly not very communicative. The women were hardly more loquacious.

When we had come up even with it we saw that it was a man in the long dark blue robes of the Tuareg. "Give me your hand," said Morhange, "and brace yourself against a rock, hard." He was very, very strong. In an instant, as if it were child's play, he had brought the body ashore. "He is still alive," he pronounced with satisfaction. "Now it is a question of getting him to the grotto.

"The grottos with the inscriptions are three-days' march southward in the mountains. At first, the road is rather rough. But farther on, it turns, and you gain Timissao very easily. There are good wells where the Tuareg Taitoqs, who are friendly to the French, come to water their camels." "And you know the road well?" He shrugged his shoulders. His eyes had a scornful smile.

"Well," said Ceghéir-ben-Cheikh, "you must not rejoin the road from Timissao to Timbuctoo until you are four hundred miles from here toward Iferouane, or better still, at the spring of Telemsi. That is the boundary between the Tuareg of Ahaggar and the Awellimiden Tuareg." The little voice of Tanit-Zerga broke in: "It was the Awellimiden Tuareg who massacred my people and carried me into slavery.

At seeing us, the men drew together, alert, on the defensive. Eg-Anteouen turned to us and said: "Eggali Tuareg." We went toward them. They were handsome men, those Eggali, the largest Tuareg whom I ever have seen. With unexpected swiftness they drew aside from the well, leaving it to us. Eg-Anteouen spoke a few words to them.

In the dimmest part of the room, under a kind of arch lit by the mauve rays from a dozen incense-lamps, four women lay on a heap of many-colored cushions and rare white Persian rugs. I recognized the first three as Tuareg women, of a splendid regular beauty, dressed in magnificent robes of white silk embroidered in gold. The fourth, very dark skinned, almost negroid, seemed younger.

"'What child? "'Our child ... our child. "'Ah! That is so. Why, you will have to put it down to profit and loss. I am even convinced that Sheik Ahmed will find that it resembles him. "'You can turn everything into a joke, she said between laughing and crying. "The next morning, at the same hour, the Marseilles express carried away the five Tuareg and Clémentine.

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