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“Why, Abdoolah,” I said, “ I'm not a | him away from his sunshine, his deserts, dun, I'm an old friend. Don't you re. bis donkeys, and who never paid him any member me? Sar-rah Bernhardt, Ger- wages, had become a very poor and dis. ran-ole-man, Missy Langtree, and all the reputable pasha indeed ? other famous Cairo donkeys."
“ Does your master usually get up Then I think he recognized me, for about one o'clock in the day?" asked I. he took the card and said, “ Master in “ Yes, sar.” beddy."
“ You shouldn't let him. It's bad for “Well, give him my card. I'll wait till hiin." he's dressed.”
“ If master lie im bed, him lie im bed; “ You stop here, sar, den.”
if bim get up, bim get up. Master know “ All right, but you needn't be fright. best; me obey.” ened.” I suppose he was, for he shut the Evidently, to hear any one speak disdoor leaving me on the wrong side. Evi. respectfully of his master kindled somedently Abdoolah carried out his injunc- thing in Abdoolah, for his eyes were no tions to the letter. He soon returned, longer meek now. this time with all his old submissiveness ** How is he?" I went on. of manner.
He pondered a moment, and then ex: “Master say come in, sar,” said he. claimed with a glitter in his eyes, “ Poor
followed him into an untidy room - a master ! lie! otch thief !” room that, as it were, reflecting the char- “ Mr. Dougal?” acter of its inhabitant, had become slip. “ Yes. Dam fellab! cheat! Scotch shod. Tobacco ashes were scattered scamp!” said Abdoolah, evidently, parrot. about it, and a dirty glass stood on the like, repeating language often heard from mantelpiece. A bookcase seemed to be his master. the only well-regulated article of furni. Here Selby called “Abdoolah !” from ture. The books were probably in the the next room, and he hurried away at the rank and file in which Mr. Havilland had summons with all speed, whilst I amused left them; all else was undergoing a proc. myself with inspecting a number of silver ess of untidy disorganization.
tankards, mugs, and goblets, trophies of There was a poor fire of dusty coal the athletic successes of Mr. Havilland, smouldering in a grate where the ashes and inscribed with his name and the nahad accumulated, which Abdoolah tried to ture of the prize. coax into a blaze. All the Oriental glow When, shortly afterwards, Selby came which at our first meeting I fancied in his into the room, I was shocked at the veins seemed to have been chilled out change in him. His eyes were bloodshot of him for lack of sunshine. When he and unsteady; there was a smell of spirits turned his eyes on me with a faint smile about him and a general atmosphere of at his want of success with the fire, they depravity. He had evidently had recourse looked very meek and soft. He coughed to the black bottle Abdoolah had just dismally, and evidently was suffering from brought him, and ai once rushed into the a cold on his chest.
midst of things. “You talk English now, Abdoolah,” “Glad, indeed, to see you,” said he: said I.
“not many chaps come Dessay “Yes, sar, talky little."
you know how doosed unlucky I've been. “ You find it cold here, don't you?” That Scotch scamp did
over the He nodded, and made a little moveinent Arcadian." with his shoulders and arins as though he Then he commenced to grumble at his were shrinking from the cold blast which ill-luck; said he was looking for some. vexed the streets without.
thing to do, and very anxious to retrieve "You should go back to Cairo,” said I. the past. Such men always are, and be.
He shook his head towards the adjoin-come even aggressively virtuous when it ing room, where there were sounds of is too late. I fear Selby's protestations some one stirring.
were not very sincere. Before I came “ Master not can't come.”
away I lent him a five-pound note in ex. Poor Abdoolah ! I wondered if any change for a cheque dated ten days after accurate conception of the real state of date. It was — not greatly to my surprise things had found its way through the thick returned to me through my bankers, cloud of Western inexperience in which he dishonored. I wrote to Selby to apprise was wrapped. Was be any longer blind him of the fact, but he did not answer my to the fact that the great pasha, with his letter, so, finally, I went to call on him, unlimited wealth, who had come and lured | and on my way there again I met Ab
doolah in a back street, about five minutes' I fear his dividends were due on the walk from Selby's abode. He was carry: Greek Kaleods; but I took advantage of ing a large silver tankard, evidently one of his contrite mood to lecture him on the Mr. Havilland's trophies.
life he was leading, whilst he continued Why, Abdoolah,” I exclaimed in sur to weep copiously. prise, “what on earth are you doing with “ What will become of you," I said, that thing?
irritated by his flaccid grief and tears “ Sell silver pot - master want money,” whose fountains had been opened by alco. he answered coolly, as though it were an hol, "if you don't make an effort to pull ordinary means of procuring it.
yourself together?” Then, remembering Selby's schooldays “S’pose I shall go to the dogs like the and my butter-scotch, I was puzzled. Cer- rest of 'em,” he said in vague despair. tainly I had thought the various silver" But I've been treated badly. Chaps to vessels belonged to Havilland, but if Selo whom I lent coin have cut me. I wouldn't by pawned them they must be his own. care if they'd paid me first. There's that Wbilst I was debating the matter in my Scotch thief Dougal, who did me over mind, feeling uncomfortably suspicious, the Arcadian, goes about swearin' I've Abdoolab crossed the road and entered a swindled bim." dingy little shop ornamented with three The gleam of anger at this recollection dull brass balls, with that air of decision helped to dry his tears. with which a man executes not unfamiliar You must give up drink,” I went on business. Meanwhile I continued my after a little pause, during which he was way to his master's and was admitted by endeavoring to dry his tears with a dirty a rusty person, who, it appeared, dis handkerchief. • My good fellow, just recharged the duties of a porter, and who fect; you'll drink yourself into the work. said “the gen'leman was in a bad way - house." worse than ever, an' that his fren's ought “I know I shall,” he replied, “or into to look after bim.”
j.j-jail, or somethin'; I'm continually I found Selby in his dressing-gown in dreaming about it. But it's my only the armchair. I could see he had been friend” — and he nodded towards the drinking heavily and continuously. The cupboard where I presume he kept the silver mugs on the sideboard were greatly black bottle - "'xcept you. And I say, diminished in number, and I guessed look here, ole man, will you lend me a where they were gone.
sov. ? I want to buy stamps to answer "Well, Selby,” said I,“ how are you?” | advertisements. Just one, you know.
" I'm a bit seedy,” said be, without | It'll make six I owe you. I can't get a rising, and fixing two fishy eyes on me. farthing till my next dividends, and then
“I've come about that little matter, you we'll square accounts.” I lent him the know,” said I, and I showed him the money, and the contact with the coin cheque he had given me.
made him a little more rational. He He looked at it as if he did not recog. thanked me warmly: pize it.
“ I dessay,” he said, " I shall get some“Whose cheque ?"
thing to do now. It's this having nothing “Yours. It was returned through the to do plays the deuce with a fellow." bank. I wrote and told you so. Don't “ You ought to get rid of that Egypyou remember?"
tian," said , “to begin with. You can't “ No, my mem'ry ain't good. Some- afford to keep him.” thing, I suppose, went wrong with my I said this to try him, for I was pretty money. It always does. I s'pose the sure Abdoolah received no wages. Sel. bank means to stick to it. Every one by's face became very dismal at this sugdoes. Ev'ry one's cheated me, and al- gestion.
“Of course I ought,” said be; “but “Well
, Selby, don't bother yourself what am I to do without him ? You can't about it. Pay me whenever it's conven think what a faithful chap be is.
looks after me like anything, and we talk At this, after a feeble effort at self.con about the Nile and things and the jolly trol, he began to cry, exactly as he used times we've had. Besides, he's fond ó' to at school.
me, and if I kicked the poor beggar out "You always were a kind fellow," he what's to become of him? He'd starve. sobbed; “I'lí p-p-pay you when I Best starve together. ge-ve-get m-m-my next dividends, “ But you should send him back to
ways have ! "
“So I will, when I can afford it; honor “Give master. Poor master! him only bright!”
me now.” Here I rose to go, and he did not seem “Well, good-bye, you gentle Mussulto regret my departure, and shuffled with man,” said 1, " and Allah bless you! If me as far as the door.
your master had only such friends as you, “Look here," he said, as we shook he would have never taken to the black hands : “if you hear of any one — an bottle you are cuddling so carefully." M.P., for instance wanting a seket'ry He smiled his plaintive smile of sub. or anything of that sort — an Oxford man, mission to the fates, and went his way
just remember me. I can without, I think, understanding too clearly refer to you for a character.” Indeed he my meaning. might!
I watched him as he glided down the " You needn't say I liquor,” he added, ugly London street, the one bright color “for I've dropt that.”
in its grey gloom, as homeless as a tropiI promised if I heard of anything likely cal bird amongst the sooty sparrows, and to suit him I would do my best, and left as unhappy. him in a somewhat more hopeful mood, Two little boys who passed him twanged for he was always inordinately sanguine."'Ullo, blackie!” after him in their pene.
A few yards down the street I met Ab- trating street boy voices, but he beeded doolah minus his silver mug, but plus a them not. black bottle and a tin of strong smoking mixture.
CHAPTER III. “ That,” said I, stopping him and frown. VIRTUE has been rewarded so persising at the black bottle, which he hugged tently for so many years in books, in famuch in the same way as a child carries a bles, and in theories generally, that it doll, and which, without any artful drap- always vexes me sorely to see it come ings of tissue paper such as respectable off so scurvily in this workaday world of grocers use, seemed a very graceless bot. ours. tle indeed — " that, Abdoolah, is your
Hilton accosted me at the club, some master's enemy.”
time after my meeting with Abdoolah, in But he shook his faded turban reproach- a mood bordering on excitement. fully.
“ What do you think,” he said, “has • No, no,” he said, with a vindictive happened to Selby?” little glint in bis eyes.
“ Rascal – Dougal What? - delirium tremens?” -dam' Scotch thief rob master."
“ No,” he answered. “ You know he Evidently the simple dark man imputed took Havilland's rooms. Well, when he all his master's misfortunes to the jour. came back the other day be wanted Selby palist.
to pay the rent. Selby couldn't, but Wouldn't you like to go home to promised to when his next dividends were Egypt, Abdoolah ?" I asked.
paid, which he said had been delayed. Yes, sar."
He turned out, however, to make room for There was a touching ring in his voice. Havilland, who found a lot of silver pots “What do you do all day?
and things he was awfully fond of bad “In the morning take care ob master; disappeared. He went round, naturally afternoon, artist model.”
in no end of a rage, to Selby, who declared " Are you paid?”
he knew nothing of the matter, so Havil. He extended his disengaged hand, land put it in the hands of the police, who erected his long black middle finger, and soon discovered they had been pledged shortened the index one to half the by a black servant in Havilland's own length.
name. The tickets were found on Ab"Me paid,” he said gravely, but proud. doolah, and the long and short of it is ly, “ like that – shilling and sixpence. that Abdoolab's been put in quod, and his Sometimes get udder tings."
case comes off to-morrow.” “ What do you do with the money?” Then I regretted that a foolish delicacy “ Master keep dat.”
had prevented my questioning Selby about I took two half-crowns and placed them the strange business on which I bad de. in bis black palm.
tected the Egyptian, and, recalling Selby's “Here's a little present for you,” I youthful indiscretions, felt pretty sure said.
Abdoolah was only his agent. I kept my “ Tank you, sar!”
own counsel, however, and went And he closed his fist on it.
morning to the police-court. I shall never “What will you do with that?"
forget the scene; it had such a comic side
to it. Yet I did not feel in the least in- | any wages, and replied, “Not recently, clined to smile. There was Selby, pale my lord,” at which the court tittered, and nervous; Havilland aggressively an. whether at the title conferred or the stategry; and Abdoolah in durance vile, but ment of the fact I cannot say. calm and dignified, with his plaintive eyes Then the magistrate summed up briefly; shifting from one to the other, only half said Abdoolah confessed to pawning the understanding what was taking place, property in question, and added with a
Selby was called. What a pitiful figure sneer - perhaps by way of a joke, and he made in the witness-box! His story, anything passes for one in a law.court deprived of the incoherence which seemed that possibly the prisoner, evidently a natural to the poor creature, was simple stranger to Western ideas, had adopted enough. He had, he informed the court, this means of paying hiinself, and ended requested his servant to put the trophies by sentencing Abdoolah to six weeks’im. of Havilland's athletic prowess out of the prisonment, with hard labor. The verdict way that they might not be damaged. was explained to the Egyptian by a very This, he thought, Abdoolah had done, but florid official, who held six fingers before to his great astonishment and grief he had his face. afterwards discovered that they had been “ Tix weeks in prison ? ” asked Abdoo. pawned. He gave Abdoolah an excellent lah, looking at the six fat red fingers. character, and with difficulty refrained “ Yes." from tears. The account was corrobo. " Den who take care ob master?” And rated by the pawnbroker's assistant, and there passed over the impenetrable calm by the policeman who had extracted the of his face a faint quiver that seemed to tickets from the pocket of Abdoolah's me almost as strange as if the apathy of baggy trousers. Selby's story contra. the sphinx were disturbed by a mysteridicted the conversation I had had with ous sigh. Abdoolah, and of which I considered it As Abdoolah, coughing dismally, was my duty to give the court an account. It led out of court by a burly official, Selby, created a visible effect, and almost caused who had been seized upon by a couple of Selby to faint. But my testimony was of distant relatives, lifted up his voice and no service to Abdoolah, for he pleaded wept. guilty.
“ To think he should have done it! Did you pawn the things ?” asked the Such an honest fellow, too!” magistrate.
I walked past the poor creature as he “Yes, sar," said he in his strange gut. was mopping his ready tears, without tak. tural voice, hoarse with a cold bad enough ing any notice of bim, convinced Abdooto keep Christians in bed.
lah was sacrificing himself for the sake of “ For whom?"
his disreputable master, who pretended “ For nobuddy."
he did not see me. A few days after I “ Did your master know ? "
heard that his relatives had placed Selby Abdoolah glanced to where his master | under the care of a medical man in France, was standing, trembling «from his loose and I never saw him again, for the treatlips to his knees, with visions of penal ment he met with was so effective that it servitude, and bread and water to increase killed him in eighteen months — probably its horrors, before his eyes.
the most satisfactory result it could have “ Master know noting 't all 'bout it," bad to all concerned but the medical replied the Egyptian emphatically. Then man. he smiled meekly, and the gleam of his white teeth seemed to shed a momentary glow over his sombre, patient face.
But: bow about Abdoolah? I confess “What did you do with the money?”my conscience has always pricked me asked the magistrate.
about him. It was certainly some one's Buy tings,” said Abdoolah promptly. duty to assist the poor fellow when he “What things ?”
came out of prison. But some one's own " I'muse me.”
little pleasures and duties far away in the “ How ?”
west country made him leave the EgypMany ways.”
tian to the care of some one else who hap. But the court could elicit no further in- pened to be somewhere else. So it came formation from Abdoolab as to his expen. to pass that Abdoolah left a small prison diture. He simply replied to repeated where he was fed and warmed for a much questions, “ Buy tings — 'muse me. wider one where he was starved and
Selby was asked if he paid his servant chilled. I never could get a very definite
story of the disasters which befell him, I cause. Then I touched him gently on the but I witnessed their result.
shoulder, and he opened his great dark I live, as I said before, in Devonshire, eyes — eyes which had become strangely on the western borders of Dartmoor. The like those of some sick animal, and which summer had been wet and squally; the lit up with hope as he beheld me. raio had been falling, I remember, inter- “ Abdoolah! Abdoolah, what are you mittently all day; but dwellers on the doing here?" I asked. moor defy the fiercest showers, and they “Me want master, sar," said he in a did not prevent me from riding into the feeble, hoarse voice, “but me sick." market town on some trivial business. "Mr. Selby's in France,” said I; “you When I was returning home through the can't go to him. Besides, he can do noihtwilight, the damp south-west wind was ing for you.” hurrying the clouds over the frowning * France dere?” he inquired, struggling Tors. They thrust their strangely con. on to his weak knees and pointing with a torted granite peaks into the haggard sky, thin, black finger towards the gleam of now and then catching stray grey flocks watery light the setting sun had left in the of wrack which lingered a moment on their stormy western sky. weather-beaten brows, and then joined “No, no,” said I gently, “it is far from again the procession of shadowy mists there, across the sea. You can't go.” which swept over the wild upland by At this.despair, like a great cloud, setwhich the road ran. There was a mur- tled on his face, and be sank back against mur of unseen waters, and the odor of the boulder, whilst I stood over him, holdpeat bogs on the damp evening air, which ing my horse's bridle. I cannot tell you have ever since in my mind been con- how out of all harmony this poor, dark nected with the figure I saw suddenly man in his dingy Oriental finery seemed through the fading light, crouching on a with the misty wilderness of granite and granite boulder by a tuft of rushes near peat bog over which the wind was making the roadside. If it had not been for the all the stiff rushes wail as it passed. The bright colors, a superstitious inoorman lonely voices of the place seemed to mock might have inistaken it for some Keltic bim as an alien and a stranger, wraith, such as my more superstitious “What do you intend to do?” I asked. neighbors still believe fit through the “Sleep nothing else,” and a sigh mists of the inoors, and whose wailing the deepest I have ever heard — quivered voices mingle with the hoarse roarings of through his weary body and seemed to
leave it the weaker. I stopped my horse and gazed at the “Yes, Abdoolah,” said I, "you shall figure, and with a strange pang recog- sleep, but at my house. Come with me, nized Abdoolah. Under the turban I saw and I will let your master know where you the gaunt, thin, black face turned towards are." mine, but the eyes were closed either from Then he shook off the lethargy creepsleep or fatigue. I dismounted and ap- ing over bim. proached him, but he did not stir from his * Master im prison den, like me?" leihargy. His loose red trousers were “No, with friends." stained with mud, his faded finery seemed “ He not steal again?' hanging about his emaciated figure like a No, no. Come; let me help you up.” wet flag over a wreck. Through the tat- “ Tank you, sar!” tered elastic-side boots, wbich matched so I helped him to struggle to his feet, ill with his Oriental garb, his poor dark and then, not without difficulty, on to my toes were visible. The thin, pinched, wiz- horse. So we started, I leading it; and ened face, the bony framework of which as we went I managed to get something had become so distinct, was a picture of like a coherent story from Abdoolah. His mute, uncomplaining misery. Poor, ill. imperfect English left much to the imag. used, helpless, generous man of the East, ination, and he had no knowledge of time what a stepdamely welcome he had met or place as a guide. On leaving jail, with with from Western civilization! Here he only a few shillings in his pocket which lay on the cold hillside, a plaything for all the chaplain had given him, he sought his the winds and waters of the moor; and, master in all his old baunis. “But noclosing his sufferiny eyes in despair, he buddy know noting - people laugh - lit. had bid them work their worst.
tle boy cry •Silly black man.' Then, I listened to his breathing, and heard aiter wandering about for some hours the ominous rattle that complications of aimlessly, he bethought himself of me. the bronchial tubes and lungs always | For some mysterious reason, he had treas.