But, when she started off, Bond didn't follow her. Instead he swam feebly round and round like a wounded animal, in ever-increasing circles. She almost wept. What had happened to him? What had they done to him at the Castle of Death? Finally she stopped him and talked softly to him and he docilely allowed her to put her arms under his armpits and, with his head cradled between her breasts, she set off with the traditional backward leg-stroke.
But the main defence against invasion, though not against attack from the air, was a device recently invented by geneticists and biochemists in one of the great reformed Lamasseries. The character of this invention shows how strangely science was developing under the influence of will for the light. Some miles in front of the fortifications the new defences formed a belt about two miles wide and completely surrounding Tibetan territory, save for the exits and entrances of rivers. Throughout this belt the ground was impregnated to a depth of several feet with a micro-organism which had been artificially bred from a natural virus. It had a strange property. Though in one stage of’ its life-cycle this ultra-microscopic object remained deep underground in chemical reaction with certain products of vegetable decomposition, in another stage it gradually percolated towards the surface and finally drifted off into the air, to reproduce and take part in other chemical reactions before settling once more on the ground and sinking into the subsoil. In the air this virus formed an ultra-microscopic dust which would inevitably be inhaled by all animals in the infected area. From the respiratory organs it travelled to the brain. It had a startling effect on the higher brain centres. It produced a complete but temporary loss of memory and of nearly all acquired skills. Even those habits that were most long-established and familiar were seriously disturbed. Speech and walking became infantile, perception largely meaningless. Intelligence remained; but, shorn of all its acquired experience, it was like the intelligence of a bright and ignorant child. But the most striking aspect of the virus was that its influence could be almost completely resisted by minds of high intelligence and integrity that had undergone a thorough spiritual discipline. Many Tibetans, therefore, could cross the defence belt in safety so long as they kept their minds occupied with meditation, while on the journey and resisted the oppressive drowsiness which was the first symptom of disintegration.
'If you should see him first -' said I.
Luckily, the head-dunking worked. The reason I was feeling so much stronger today than I had onthe long haul over from Batopilas, I realized, was because I was running like the KalahariBushmen. I wasn’t trying to overtake the antelope; I was just keeping it in sight. What had killedme during the Batopilas hike was keeping pace with Caballo & Co. So far today, I’d onlycompeted against the racecourse, not the racers.
Mr. Dick, as I have already said, was grey-headed, and florid: I should have said all about him, in saying so, had not his head been curiously bowed - not by age; it reminded me of one of Mr. Creakle's boys' heads after a beating - and his grey eyes prominent and large, with a strange kind of watery brightness in them that made me, in combination with his vacant manner, his submission to my aunt, and his childish delight when she praised him, suspect him of being a little mad; though, if he were mad, how he came to be there puzzled me extremely. He was dressed like any other ordinary gentleman, in a loose grey morning coat and waistcoat, and white trousers; and had his watch in his fob, and his money in his pockets: which he rattled as if he were very proud of it.
Bond smiled. He reached into his inside pocket and took out the pinned sheets of paper. 'This one provided plenty of miscellaneous entertainment, sir. Perhaps you'd like to have a look at my report first. 'Fraid it's only a draft. There wasn't much time. But I can fill in anything that isn't clear.'
The next day, and the next night watch, were duplicates, with small variations, of the first. James Bond had his two more brief rendezvous, by sniperscope, with the girl, and the rest was a killing of time and a tightening of the tension that, by the time the third and final day came, was like a fog in the small room.
In the first inaugural, one of the great addresses in a noteworthy series, Lincoln presented to the attention of the leaders of the South certain very trenchant arguments against the wisdom of their course. He says of secession for the purpose of preserving the institution of slavery:
"No bid," said M. apparently unperturbed. "Double." The word came viciously out of Drax's mouth. He put down his hand and looked cruelly, scornfully at this tipsy oaf who had at last, inexplicably, fallen into his hands. "That mean you double the side-bets too?" asked Bond. "Yes," said Drax greedily. "Yes. That's what I meant."
"And then," said M matter-of-factly, "you're going to smuggle those diamonds into America, At least that's the idea. What do you think of it?"
Another curious aspect of this degenerate culture was that, along with ‘the unconscious’, reason was deified; and this in spite of the bitter condemnation of the exercise of free intelligence. But sacred reason was nothing whatever like ordinary human reasoning. It was the occult rationality of the universe, forever inaccessible to man. Everything, it was said, had in the divine view its reason. Everything followed necessarily from the divine reason. In the human sphere free intelligence was an impious attempt to probe the divine reason. The true scope for man’s own divine spark of reason was not in the free exercise of intelligence but in the pious and unquestioning study of the metaphysical arguments of the inspired scriptures.
Again her large bonnet (very disproportionate to the figure) went backwards and forwards, in her swaying of her little body to and fro; while a most gigantic bonnet rocked, in unison with it, upon the wall.
'She likes to call herself Tracy. She thinks Teresa sounds too grand.'
The Claverings, which came out in 1866 and 1867, was the last novel which I wrote for the Cornhill; and it was for this that I received the highest rate of pay that was ever accorded to me. It was the same length as Framley Parsonage, and the price was ￡2800. Whether much or little, it was offered by the proprietor of the magazine, and was paid in a single cheque.