Mr. Micawber sat in his elbow-chair, with his eyebrows raised; half receiving and half repudiating Mrs. Micawber's views as they were stated, but very sensible of their foresight.
They had pressed forward thus far without any doubt that their venture would lead to a fortifying of the struggling human spirit by intercourse with a vaster but essentially kindred spiritual reality. Over a period of many generations many great saints and thousands of devoted followers, spurred by this hope, had passed through the testing fires of discipline, had ventured into strange and icy spheres of spiritual experience, had gathered signs and intimations of a glory still to be revealed, had borne witness to their fellow men. And now at last the heirs to all this great treasure and greater promise, having gathered all their strength for the final assault on the locked door of mystery, had prized it open only to glimpse an incomprehensible horror, and to fall back in dismay.
Both brothers tee-heed reassuringly. "No, no, Major. That of course is out of the question. But"-the smiles held constant-"if you cannot recall the provenance of these fine bars, perhaps you would have no objections if we were to undertake an assay. There are methods of determining the exact fineness of such bars. My brother and I are competent in these methods. If you would care to leave these with us and perhaps come back after lunch...?"
Hitherto there had been two possible ventures open to the human race. One was the romantic scientist’s ideal of developing communication between the planetary systems, so as to create a galaxy-wide community of intelligent worlds. The other, which assumed that man’s proper business must always be with man, was the classical aim of the intensive development of man’s present home and culture.
"Shall we go straight on?" he asked. "No point in cutting." M. smiled across at Bond. The same thought was in both their minds. So Drax wanted to keep the deal. Bond shrugged his shoulders.
"Nice-looking job," commented the range officer. "Never seen a body like that on a Continental. Have it made specially?"
'Did he die in the hospital?'
The fingers of Scaramanga's right hand crawled imperceptibly sideways across his face, inch by inch, centimetre by centimetre. They got to his ear and stopped. The drone of the Lathi prayer never altered its slow, lulling tempo.
"Yes, I see. It all seems idiotic to my generation. Like playing that old game 'Attaque,' really. We need some more Jack Kennedys. It's all these old people about. They ought to hand the world over to younger people who haven't got the idea of war stuck in their subconscious. As if it were the only solution. Like beating children. It's much the same thing. It's all out of date-Stone Age stuff."