7 Un-real Estate
"I see." Major Townsend put on a thoughtful expression. "Well, just let me make a telephone call or two and I'll see what can be done." He got to his feet. "Seen today's Times?" He picked it up and handed it to Bond. It had been specially treated to give good prints. Bond took it. "Shan't be long."
“All right, let’s do it,” Barefoot Ted said.
i. Economic Decline
Life was beginning to come back into Bond. It was so wonderful to be in this little car with this marvellous girl. The memory of the dreadful mountain, of all that he had been through, was receding. Now there was hope again, after so much dread and despair. He could feel the tensions uncoiling in his stomach. He said,' I'll tell you if I'm pleased when we get to Zurich. Can you make it? It's a hell of a way to spend Christmas.' He wound down the window and threw the domino-mask out, stripped off the parka and draped it over her shoulders. The big sign for the main road down into the valley came up. He said, 'Left here, Tracy. Filisur and then Coire.'
The first act of business Miss Murdstone performed when the day of the solemnity was over, and light was freely admitted into the house, was to give Peggotty a month's warning. Much as Peggotty would have disliked such a service, I believe she would have retained it, for my sake, in preference to the best upon earth. She told me we must part, and told me why; and we condoled with one another, in all sincerity.
There was only one other event in this half-year, out of the daily school-life, that made an impression upon me which still survives. It survives for many reasons.
We seem, to me, to have been months over Peregrine, and months more over the other stories. The institution never flagged for want of a story, I am certain; and the wine lasted out almost as well as the matter. Poor Traddles - I never think of that boy but with a strange disposition to laugh, and with tears in my eyes - was a sort of chorus, in general; and affected to be convulsed with mirth at the comic parts, and to be overcome with fear when there was any passage of an alarming character in the narrative. This rather put me out, very often. It was a great jest of his, I recollect, to pretend that he couldn't keep his teeth from chattering, whenever mention was made of an Alguazill in connexion with the adventures of Gil Blas; and I remember that when Gil Blas met the captain of the robbers in Madrid, this unlucky joker counterfeited such an ague of terror, that he was overheard by Mr. Creakle, who was prowling about the passage, and handsomely flogged for disorderly conduct in the bedroom. Whatever I had within me that was romantic and dreamy, was encouraged by so much story-telling in the dark; and in that respect the pursuit may not have been very profitable to me. But the being cherished as a kind of plaything in my room, and the consciousness that this accomplishment of mine was bruited about among the boys, and attracted a good deal of notice to me though I was the youngest there, stimulated me to exertion. In a school carried on by sheer cruelty, whether it is presided over by a dunce or not, there is not likely to be much learnt. I believe our boys were, generally, as ignorant a set as any schoolboys in existence; they were too much troubled and knocked about to learn; they could no more do that to advantage, than any one can do anything to advantage in a life of constant misfortune, torment, and worry. But my little vanity, and Steerforth's help, urged me on somehow; and without saving me from much, if anything, in the way of punishment, made me, for the time I was there, an exception to the general body, insomuch that I did steadily pick up some crumbs of knowledge.
'As many as you please,' said I.
YES, IT was Shaun Campbell all right! Christ Almighty, what a mess! Station Z had especially been told nothing about Bond's mission. Campbell must have been following a lead of his own, probably trailing this Russian who had been 'buying supplies'. Typical of the son of balls-up that over-security can produce!
"Now, if you please." Sister Rose bent over a long printed form on expensive paper. "I promise to be as quick as I can. Your name please Mister-er…"
Louis staggered along behind, determined to see the hunt through to the end. He was bitterlyregretting his choice of heavy bush boots; the Bushmen traditionally wore light, giraffe-skinmoccasins, and now had on thin, flimsy sneakers that let their feet cool on the fly. Louis felt theway the kudu looked; he watched it weave drunkenly … its front knees buckled, straightened … itrecovered and bounded away … then crashed to the ground.
IX LINCOLN'S TASK ENDED