of Issus of which Issus herself does not dream."
"What do you mean?"
"I laboured with the other slaves a year since in the remodelling of
these subterranean galleries, and at that time we found below these an
ancient system of corridors and chambers that had been sealed up for
ages. The blacks in charge of the work explored them, taking several
of us along to do whatever work there might be occasion for. I know
the entire system perfectly.
"There are miles of corridors honeycombing the ground beneath the
gardens and the temple itself, and there is one passage that leads down
to and connects with the lower regions that open on the water shaft
that gives passage to Omean.
"If we can reach the submarine undetected we may yet make the sea in
which there are many islands where the blacks never go. There we may
live for a time, and who knows what may transpire to aid us to escape?"
He had spoken all in a low whisper, evidently fearing spying ears even
here, and so I answered him in the same subdued tone.
"Lead back to Shador, my friend," I whispered. "Xodar, the black, is
there. We were to attempt our escape together, so I cannot desert him."
"No," said the boy, "one cannot desert a friend. It were better to be
recaptured ourselves than that."
Then he commenced groping his way about the floor of the dark chamber
searching for the trap that led to the corridors beneath. At length he
summoned me by a low, "S-s-t," and I crept toward the sound of his
voice to find him kneeling on the brink of an opening in the floor.
"There is a drop here of about ten feet," he whispered. "Hang by your
hands and you will alight safely on a level floor of soft sand."
Very quietly I lowered myself from the inky cell above into the inky
pit below. So utterly dark was it that we could not see our hands at
an inch from our noses. Never, I think, have I known such complete
absence of light as existed in the pits of Issus.
For an instant I hung in mid air. There is a strange sensation
connected with an experience of that nature which is quite difficult to
describe. When the feet tread empty air and the distance below is
shrouded in darkness there is a feeling akin to panic at the thought of
releasing the hold and taking the plunge into unknown depths.
He had managed to coax old Brus, the gardener, into letting him have the key to the little postern gate on the plea that he wished to indulge in a midnight escapade, hinting broadly of a fair lady who was to be the partner of his adventure, and, what was more to the point with Brus, at the same time slipping a couple of golden zecchins into the gardener's palm.Page 9
" "Right you sound, old mole," said De Vac, smiling, "would that I might learn to reason by your wondrous logic; methinks it might stand me in good stead before I be much older.Page 13
Concealing the child beneath the other articles of clothing, he pushed off from the bank, and, rowing close to the shore, hastened down the Thames toward the old dock where, the previous night, he had concealed his skiff.Page 30
Sometimes the old man accompanied.Page 33
Have at you, sir knights of the great filth and the mighty stink!" and with drawn sword he vaulted over the table and fell upon the surprised leader.Page 34
It was evident that the wounded man was in no danger, so Norman of Torn ordered the others to assist him into the hut, where they found Red Shandy sitting propped against the wall while the good father poured the contents of a flagon down his eager throat.Page 37
"'S death, but he be more a king than Henry himself.Page 41
"What quarrel have I with the King or the gentry? They have quarrel enough with me it is true, but, nathless, I do not know why I should have hated them so before I was old enough to know how rotten they really are.Page 45
They rode for many miles in silence when suddenly she turned, saying: "You take your time, Sir Knight, in answering my query.Page 60
"Ho, ho!" she croaked.Page 81
I love you, and be ye prince or scullion, you may have me, if you can find the means to take me.Page 84
Beside those whom we have met, there was Don Piedro Castro y Pensilo of Spain; Baron of Cobarth of Germany, and Sir John Mandecote of England.Page 95
"I know this old pile.Page 96
Here the girl felt with swift fingers the edge of the molding.Page 101
" "Give us horses, and let two of the men ride behind us," said the chief.Page 114
turn loose upon her fair breast the beasts of hell who know no law or order or decency other than that which I enforce.Page 122
This party had scarcely left the city behind them ere they fell into the hands of the baronial troops.Page 134
Directly he heard a low challenge from one of his sentries, who presently appeared escorting a lackey.Page 140
And turning, he led from the hall, closely followed by De Montfort, the King, Prince Philip and the others.Page 141
" "Come, come," cried the King.