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Av schuhe lily - 1 april 2011 08:02

That which hath so closely engaged my mind, in seeking to the Lord forinstruction, is, whether, after the full information I have had of theoppression which the slaves lie under who raise the West India produce, which Ihave gained by reading a caution and warning to Great Britain and her colonies,written by Anthony Benezet, it is right for me to take passage in a vesselemployed in the West India trade."To trade freely with oppressors without labouring to dissuade them from suchunkind treatment, and to seek for gain by such traffic, tends, I believe, tomake them more easy respecting their conduct than they would be, if the causeof universal righteousness was humbly and firmly attended to by those ingeneral with whom they have commerce; and that complaint of the Lord by hisprophet, "They have strengthened the hands of the wicked," hath very oftenrevived in my mind. I may here add some circumstances which occurred to mebefore I had any prospect of a visit there. David longed for some water in awell beyond an army of Philistines who were at war with Israel, and some of his men, to please him, ventured their lives in passing through this army, andbrought that water."It doth not appear that the Israelites were then scarce of water, but ratherthat David gave way to delicacy of taste; and having reflected on the danger towhich these men had been exposed, he considered this water as their blood, andhis heart smote him that he could not drink it, but he poured it out to theLord. The oppression of the slaves which I have seen in several journeyssouthward on this continent, and the report of their treatment in the WestIndies, have deeply affected me, and a care to live in the spirit of peace andminister no just cause of offence to my fellow-creatures having from time totime livingly revived in my mind, I have for some years past declined togratify my palate with those sugars."I do not censure my brethren in these things, but I believe the Father ofMercies, to whom all mankind by creation are equally related, hath heard thegroans of this oppressed people, and that He is preparing some to have a tenderfeeling of their condition. Trading in, or the frequent use of any produceknown to be raised by the labour of those who are under such lamentableoppression, hath appeared to be a subject which may hereafter require the moreserious consideration of the humble followers of Christ, the Prince of Peace."After long and mournful exercise I am now free to mention how things haveopened in my mind, with desires that, if it may please the Lord further to openHis will to any of His children in this matter, they may faithfully follow Himin such further manifestation.

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TWELFTH of Third Month, 1769. -- Having for some years past dieted myself onaccount of illness and weakness of body, and not having ability to travel byland as heretofore, I was at times favoured to look with awfulness towards theLord, before whom are all my ways, who alone hath the power of life and death,and to feel thankfulness raised in me for this His fatherly chastisement,believing that if I was truly humbled under it all would work for good. Whileunder this bodily weakness, my mind was at times exercised for my fellow-creatures in the West Indies, and I grew jealous over myself lest thedisagreeableness of the prospect should hinder me from obediently attendingthereto; for, though I knew not that the Lord required me to go there, yet Ibelieved that resignation was now called for in that respect. Feeling a dangerof not being wholly devoted to Him, I was frequently engaged to watch untoprayer that I might be preserved; and upwards of a year having passed, as I oneday walked in a solitary wood, my mind being covered with awfulness, cries wereraised in me to my merciful Father, that He would graciously keep me infaithfulness; and it then settled on my mind, as a duty, to open my conditionto Friends at our Monthly Meeting, which I did soon after, as follows: -"An exercise hath attended me for some time past, and of late hath been moreweighty upon me, which is, that I believe it is required of me to be resignedto go on a visit to some parts of the West Indies."In the Quarterly and General Spring Meetings I found no clearness to expressanything further than that I believed resignation herein was required of me.Having obtained certificates from all the said meetings, I felt like asojourner at my outward habitation, and kept free from worldly encumbrances,and I was often bowed in spirit before the Lord, with inward breathings to Himthat I might be rightly directed. I may here note that the circumstance beforerelated of my having, when young, joined with another executor in selling anegro lad till he might attain the age of thirty years, was now the cause ofmuch sorrow to me; and, after having settled matters relating to this youth, Iprovided a sea-store and bed, and things for the voyage. Hearing of a vessellikely to sail from Philadelphia for Barbadoes, I spake with one of the ownersat Burlington, and soon after went to Philadelphia on purpose to speak to himagain. He told me there was a Friend in town who was part owner of the saidvessel. I felt no inclination to speak with the latter, but returned home.Awhile after I took leave of my family, and, going to Philadelphia, had someweighty conversation with the first-mentioned owner, and showed him a writing,as follows: -"On the 25th of Eleventh Month, 1769, as an exercise with respect to a visitto Barbadoes hath been weighty on my mind, I may express some of the trials which have attended me, under which I have at times rejoiced that I have feltmy own self-will subjected."Some years ago I retailed rum, sugar, and molasses, the fruits of the labourof slaves, but had not then much concern about them save only that the rummight be used in moderation; nor was this concern so weightily attended to as Inow believe it ought to have been. Having of late years been further informedrespecting the oppression too generally exercised in these islands, andthinking often on the dangers there are in connections of interest andfellowship with the works of darkness (Eph. v. 11), I have felt an increasingconcern to be wholly given up to the leadings of the Holy Spirit, and it hathseemed right that my small gain from this branch of trade should be applied inpromoting righteousness on the earth. This was the first motion towards a visitto Barbadoes. I believed also that part of my outward substance should beapplied in paying my passage, if I went, and providing things in a lowly wayfor my subsistence; but when the time drew near in which I believed it requiredof me to be in readiness, a difficulty arose which hath been a continual trialfor some months past, under which I have, with abasement of mind from day today, sought the Lord for instruction, having often had a feeling of thecondition of one formerly, who bewailed himself because the Lord hid His facefrom him. During these exercises my heart hath often been contrite, and I havehad a tender feeling of the temptations of my fellow-creatures, labouring underexpensive customs not agreeable to the simplicity that 'there is in Christ' (2Cor. ii. 3), and sometimes in the renewings of gospel love I have been helpedto minister to others.

ANNONS
Av schuhe lily - 30 mars 2011 09:10

A dozen paces in front of the Warders, a row of women stood by their horses' heads, the cowls of their cloaks thrown back. He could count them, now. Fourteen. Fourteen Aes Sedai. They must be. Tall and short, slender and plump, dark and fair, hair cut short or long, hanging loose down their backs or braided, their clothes were as different as the Warders' were, in as many cuts and colors as there were women. Yet they, too, had a sameness, one that was only obvious when they stood together like this. To a woman, they seemed ageless. From this distance he would have called them all young, but closer he knew they would be like Moiraine. Young-seeming yet not, smooth-skinned but with faces too mature for youth, eyes too knowing.Closer? Fool! I'm too close already! Burn me, I should have gone the long way.He pressed on toward his goal, another iron-bound door at the far end of the court, but he could not stop looking.Calmly the Aes Sedai ignored the onlookers and kept their attention on the curtained palanquin, now in the center of the courtyard. The horses bearing it held as still as if ostlers stood at their harness, but there was only one tall woman beside the palanquin, her face an Aes Sedai's face, and she paid no mind to the horses. The staff she held upright before her with both hands was as tall as she, the gilded flame capping it standing above her eyes.Lord Agelmar faced the palanquin from the far end of the court, bluff and square and face unreadable. His high-collared coat of dark blue bore the three running red foxes of the House Jagad as well as the stooping black hawk of Shienar. Beside him stood Ronan, age-withered but still tall; three foxes carved from red avatine topped the tall staff the shambayan bore.Ronan was Elansu's equal in ordering the keep, shambayan and shatayan, but Elansu left little for him except ceremonies and acting as Lord Agelmar's secretary. Both men's topknots were snow-white.All of them-the Warders, the Aes Sedai, the Lord of Fal Dara, and his shambayan-stood as still as stone. The watching crowd seemed to hold its breath. Despite himself, Rand slowed.Suddenly Ronan rapped his staff loudly three times on the broad paving stones, calling into the silence, "Who comes here? Who comes here? Who comes here?"The woman beside the palanquin tapped her staff three times in reply. "The Watcher of the Seals. The Flame of Tar Valon. The Amyrlin Seat."

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A peal of trumpets rolled through the arrowslits, trumpets calling the fanfare from outside the walls, trumpets answering from the keep towers."I'll pick out the stitching when I get a chance," he muttered. He had seen women picking out embroidery when they had made a mistake or changed their mind on the pattern, and it did not look very hard.The rest of the clothes - most of them, in fact - he stuffed back into the wardrobe. No need to leave evidence of flight to be found by the first person to poke a head in after he went.Still frowning, he knelt beside his bed. The tiled platforms on which the beds rested were stoves, where a small fire damped down to burn all night could keep the bed warm through the worst night in a Shienaran winter. The nights were still cooler than he was used to this time of year, but blankets were enough for warmth now. Pulling open the firebox door, he took out a bundle he could not leave behind. He was glad Elansu had not thought anyone would keep clothes in there.Setting the bundle atop the blankets, he untied one end and partially unfolded it. A gleeman's cloak, turned inside out to hide the hundreds of patches that covered it, patches in every size and color imaginable. The cloak itself was sound enough; the patches were a gleeman's badge. Had been a gleeman's badge.Inside nestled two hard leather cases. The larger held a harp, which he never touched. The harp was never meant for a farmer's clumsy fingers, boy. The other, long and slim, contained the gold-and-silver chased flute he had used to earn his supper and bed more than once since leaving home. Thom Merrilin had taught him to play that flute, before the gleeman died. Rand could never touch it without remembering Thom, with his sharp blue eyes and his long white mustaches, shoving the bundled cloak into his hands and shouting for him to run. And then Thom had run himself, knives appearing magically in his hands as if he were performing, to face the Myrddraal that was coming to kill them.With a shiver, he redid the bundle. "That's all over with." Thinking of the wind on the tower top, he added, "Strange things happen this close to the Blight." He was not sure he believed it, not the way Lan had apparently meant it. In any case, even without the Amyrlin Seat, it was past time for him to be gone from Fal Dara.Shrugging into the coat he had kept out-it was a deep, dark green, and made him think of the forests at home, Tam's Westwood farm where he had grown up, and the Waterwood where he had learned to swim-he buckled the heron-mark sword to his waist and hung his quiver, bristling with arrows, on the other side. His unstrung bow stood propped in the corner with Mat's and Perrin's, the stave two hands taller than he was. He had made it himself since coming to Fal Dara, and besides him, only Lan and Perrin could draw it. Stuffing his blanketroll and his new cloak through the loops on his bundles, he slung the pair from his left shoulder, tossed his saddlebags atop the cords, and grabbed the bow. Leave the swordarm free, he thought. Make them think I'm dangerous. Maybe somebody will.Cracking the door revealed the hall all but empty; one liveried servant dashed by, but he never so much as glanced at Rand. As soon as the man's rapid footfalls faded, Rand slipped out into the corridor.He tried to walk naturally, casually, but with saddlebags on his shoulder and bundles on his back, he knew he looked like what he was, a man setting out on a journey and not meaning to come back. The trumpets called again, sounding fainter here inside the keep.

ANNONS
Av schuhe lily - 30 mars 2011 09:05

She swept a deep curtsy and said formally, "As you called me, Mother, so have I come." The Amyrlin extended her hand, and Moiraine kissed her Great Serpent ring, no different from that of any other Aes Sedai. Rising, she made her tone more conversational, but not too much so. She was aware of the Keeper standing behind her, beside the door. "I hope you had a pleasant journey, Mother."The Amyrlin had been born in Tear, of a simple fisherman's family, not a noble House, and her name was Siuan Sanche, though very few had used that name, or even thought of it, in the ten years since she had been raised from the Hall of the Tower. She was the Amyrlin Seat; that was the whole of it. The broad stole on her shoulders was striped in the colors of the seven Ajahs; the Amyrlin was of all Ajahs and of none. She was only of medium height, and handsome rather than beautiful, but her face held a strength that had been there before her elevation, the strength of the girl who had survived the streets of the Maule, Tear's port district, and her clear blue gaze had made kings and queens, and even the Captain Commander of the Children of the Light, drop their eyes. Her own eyes were strained, now, and there was a new tightness to her mouth."We called the winds to speed our vessels up the Erinin, Daughter, and even turned the currents to our aid." The Amyrlin's voice was deep, and sad. "I have seen the flooding we caused in villages along the river, and the Light only knows what we have done to the weather. We will not have endeared ourselves by the damage we've done and the crops we may have ruined. All to reach here as quickly as possible." Her eyes strayed to the ornate golden cube, and she half lifted a hand as if to touch it, but when she spoke it was to say, "Elaida is in Tar Valon, Daughter. She came with Elayne and Gawyn."Moiraine was conscious of Leane standing to one side, quiet as always in the presence of the Amyrlin. But watching, and listening. "I am surprised, Mother," she said carefully. "This is no time for Morgase to be without Aes Sedai counsel." Morgase was one of the few rulers to openly admit to an Aes Sedai councilor; almost all had one, but few admitted it."Elaida insisted, Daughter, and queen or not, I doubt Morgase is a match for Elaida in a contest of wills. In any case, perhaps this time she did not wish to be. Elayne has potential. More than I have ever seen before. Already she shows progress. The Red sisters are swollen up like puff-fish with it. I don't think the girl leans to their way of thinking, but she is, young, and there is no telling. Even if they don't manage to bend her, it will make little difference. Elayne could well be the most powerful Aes Sedai in a thousand years, and it is the Red Ajah who found her. They have gained much status in the Hall from the girl.""I have two young women with me in Fal Dara, Mother," Moiraine said. "Both from the Two Rivers, where the blood of Manetheren still runs strong, though they do not even remember there was once a land called Manetheren. The old blood sings, Mother, and it sings loudly in the Two Rivers. Egwene, a village girl, is at least as strong as Elayne. I have seen the Daughter-Heir, and I know. As for the other, Nynaeve was the Wisdom in their village, yet she is little more than a girl herself. It says something of her that the women of her village chose her Wisdom at her age. Once she gains conscious control of what she now does without knowing, she will be as strong as any in Tar Valon. With training, she will shine like a bonfire beside the candles of Elayne and Egwene. And there is no chance these two will choose the Red. They are amused by men, exasperated by them, but they do like them. They will easily counter whatever influence the Red Ajah gains in the White Tower from finding Elayne."

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Of course not." Amalisa smiled back. The strength evident in her brother's face was in hers, too, and no less for the softer line of cheek and jaw. There were those who said that as hard and renowned a fighter as Agelmar was, he was no better than an even match for his sister. "But with the Amyrlin Seat here . . . . When King Easar visits Fal Dara, in private I call him Magami, Little Uncle, as I did when I was a child and he gave me rides on his shoulder, but in public it must be different."Anaiya tsked. "Sometimes formality is necessary, but men often make more of it than they must. Please, call me Anaiya, and I will call you Amalisa, if I may."From the corner of her eye, Moiraine saw Egwene, far down the side hall, disappearing hurriedly around a corner. A stooped shape in a leather jerkin, head down and arms loaded with bundles, shambled at her heels. Moiraine permitted herself a small smile, quickly masked. If the girl shows as much initiative in Tar Valon, she thought wryly, she will sit in the Amyrlin Seat one day. If she can learn to control that initiative. If there is an Amyrlin Seat left on which to sit.When she turned her attention back to the others, Liandrin was speaking.". . . and I would welcome the chance to learn more of your land." She wore a smile, open and almost girlish, and her voice was friendly.Moiraine schooled her face to stillness as Amalisa extended an invitation to join her and her ladies in her private garden, and Liandrin accepted warmly. Liandrin made few friends, and none outside the Red Ajah. Certainly never outside the Aes Sedai. She would sooner make friends with a man, or a Trolloc. Moiraine was not sure Liandrin saw much difference between men and Trollocs. She was not sure any of the Red Ajah did.Anaiya explained that just now they must attend the Amyrlin Seat. "Of course," Amalisa said. "The Light illumine her, and the Creator shelter her. But later, then." She stood straight and bowed her head as they left her.Moiraine studied Liandrin as they walked, never looking at her directly. The honey-haired Aes Sedai was staring straight ahead, rosebud lips pursed thoughtfully. She appeared to have forgotten Moiraine and Anaiya both. What is she up to?Anaiya seemed not to have noticed anything out of the ordinary, but then she always managed to accept people both as they were and as they wanted to be. It constantly amazed Moiraine that Anaiya dealt as well as she did in the White Tower, but those who were devious always seemed to take her openness and honesty, her acceptance of everyone, as cunning devices. They were always caught completely off balance when she turned out to mean what she said and say what she meant. Too, she had a way of seeing to the heart of things. And of accepting what she saw. Now she blithely resumed speaking of the news."The word from Andor is both good and bad. The street riots in Caemlyn died down with the coming of spring, but there is still talk, too much talk, blaming the Queen, and Tar Valon as well, for the long winter. Morgase holds her throne less securely than she did last year, but she holds it still, and will so long as Gareth Bryne is Captain-General of the Queen's Guards. And the Lady Elayne, the Daughter-Heir, and her brother, the Lord Gawyn, have come safely to Tar Valon for their training. There was some fear in the White Tower that the custom would be broken.""Not while Morgase has breath in her body," Moiraine said.Liandrin gave a little start, as if she had just awakened. "Pray that she continues to have breath. The Daughter-Heir's party was followed to the River Erinin by the Children of the Light. To the very bridges to Tar Valon. More still camp outside Caemlyn, for the chance of mischief, and inside Caemlyn still are those who listen.""Perhaps it is time Morgase learned a little caution," Anaiya sighed. "The world is becoming more dangerous every day, even for a queen. Perhaps especially for a queen. She was ever headstrong. I remember when she came to Tar Valon as a girl. She did not have the ability to become a full sister, and it rankled in her. Sometimes I think she pushes her daughter because of that, whatever the girl chooses."Moiraine sniffed disdainfully. "Elayne was born with the spark in her; it was not a matter of choosing. Morgase would not risk letting the girl die from lack of training if all the Whitecloaks in Amadicia were camped outside Caemlyn. She would command Gareth Byrne and the Queen's Guards to cut a path through them to Tar Valon, and Gareth Byrne would do it if he had to do it alone." But she still must keep the full extent of the girl's potential secret. Would the people of Andor knowingly accept Elayne on the Lion Throne after Morgase if they knew? Not just a queen trained in Tar Valon according to custom, but a full Aes Sedai? In all of recorded history there had been only a handful of queens with the right to be called Aes Sedai, and the few who let it be known had all lived to regret it. She felt a touch of sadness. But too much was afoot to spare aid, or even worry, for one land and one throne. "What else, Anaiya?"

Av schuhe lily - 30 mars 2011 09:00

he demanded when he caught his breath. "Those are my clothes!" One of the women sniffed and poked a finger through a tear in the sleeve of his only coat, then added it to the pile on the floor.Another, a black-haired woman with a big ring of keys at her waist, set her eyes on him. That was Elansu, shatayan of the keep. He thought of the sharp-faced woman as a housekeeper, though the house she kept was a fortress and scores of servants did her bidding. "Moiraine Sedai said all of your clothes are worn out, and the Lady Amalisa had new made to give you. Just keep out of our way," she added firmly, "and we will be done the quicker." There were few men the shatayan could not bully into doing as she wished-some said even Lord Agelmar-and she plainly did not expect any trouble with one man young enough to be her son.He swallowed what he had been going to say; there was no time for arguing. The Amyrlin Seat could be sending for him at any minute. "Honor to the Lady Amalisa for her gift," he managed, after the Shienaran way, "and honor to you, Elansu Shatayan. Please, convey my words to the Lady Amalisa, and tell her I said, heart and soul to serve." That ought to satisfy the Shienaran love of ceremony for both women. "But now if you'll pardon me, I want to change.""That is well," Elansu said comfortably. "Moiraine Sedai said to remove all the old. Every stitch. Smallclothes, too." Several of the women eyed him sideways. None of them made a move toward the door.He bit his cheek to keep from laughing hysterically. Many ways were different in Shienar from what he was used to, and there were some to which he would never become accustomed if he lived forever. He had taken to bathing in the small hours of the morning, when the big, tiled pools were empty of people, after he discovered that at any other time a woman might well climb into the water with him. It could be a scullion or the Lady Amalisa, Lord Agelmar's sister herself-the baths were one place in Shienar where there was no rank-expecting him to scrub her back in return for the same favor, asking him why his face was so red, had he taken too much sun? They had soon learned to recognize his blushes for what they were, and not a woman in the keep but seemed fascinated by them.I might be dead or worse in another hour, and they're waiting to see me blush!He cleared his throat. "If you'll wait outside, I will pass the rest out to you. On my honor."One of the women gave a soft chortle, and even Elansu's lips twitched, but the shatayan nodded and directed the other women to gather up the bundles they had made. She was the last to leave, and she paused in the doorway to add, "The boots, too. Moiraine Sedai said everything."He opened his mouth, then closed it again. His boots, at least, were certainly still good, made by Alwyn al'Van, the cobbler back in Emond's Field, and well broken in and comfortable. But if giving up his boots would make the shatayan leave him alone so he could go, he would give her the boots, and anything else she wanted. He had no time. "Yes. Yes, of course. On my honor." He pushed on the door, forcing her out.Alone, he dropped onto his bed to tug off his boots-they were still good, a little worn, the leather cracked here and there, but still wearable and well broken-in to fit his feet-then hastily stripped off, piling everything atop the boots, and washed at the basin just as quickly. The water was cold; the water was always cold in the men's apartments.

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The strongroom was looted," Ingtar said wearily. "They did not take much, except for the Horn. What they could stuff in their pockets. I wish they had taken everything else and left that. Ronan is dead, and the watchmen he had guarding the strongroom." His voice became quiet. "When I was a boy, Ronan held Jehaan Tower with twenty men against a thousand Trollocs. He did not go down easily, though. The old man had blood on his dagger. No man can ask more than that." He was silent for a moment. "They came in through the Dog Gate, and left the same way. We put an end to fifty or more, but too many escaped. Trollocs! We've never before had Trollocs inside the keep. Never!""How could they get in through the Dog Gate, Ingtar? One man could stop a hundred there. And all the gates were barred." He shifted uneasily, remembering why. "The guards would not have opened it to let anybody in.""Their throats were cut," Ingtar said. "Both good men, and yet they were butchered like pigs. It was done from inside. Someone killed them, then opened the gate. Someone who could get close to them without suspicion. Someone they knew."Rand lookd at the empty cell where Padan Fain had been. "But that means . . . ""Yes. There are Darkfriends inside Fal Dara. Or were. We will soon know if that's the case. Kajin is checking now to see if anyone is missing. Peace! Treachery in Fal Dara keep!" Scowling, he looked around the dungeon, at the men waiting for him. They all had swords, worn over feastday clothes, and some had helmets. "We aren't doing any good here. Out! Everyone!" Rand joined the withdrawal. Ingtar tapped Rand's jerkin. "What is this? Have you decided to become a stableman?""It's a long story," Rand said. "Too long to tell here. Maybe some other time." Maybe never, if I'm lucky. Maybe I can escape in all this confusion. No, I can't. Not until I know Egwene's all right. And Mat. Light, what will happen to him without the dagger? "I suppose Lord Agelmar's doubled the guard on all the gates.""Tripled," Ingtar said in tones of satisfaction. "No one will pass those gates, from inside or out. As soon as Lord Agelmar heard what had happened, he ordered that no one was to be allowed to leave the keep without his personal permission."As soon as he heard . . . ? "Ingtar, what about before? What about the earlier order keeping everyone in?""Earlier order? What earlier order? Rand, the keep was not closed until Lord Agelmar heard of this. Someone told you wrong."Rand shook his head slowly. Neither Ragan nor Tema would have made up something like that. And even if the Amyrlin Seat had given the order, Ingtar would have to know of it. So who? And how? He glanced sideways at Ingtar, wondering if the Shienaran was lying. You really are going mad if you suspect Ingtar.They were in the dungeon guardroom, now. The severed heads and the pieces of the guards had been removed, though there were still red smears on the table and damp patches in the straw to show where they had been. Two Aes Sedai were there, placid-looking women with brown-fringed shawls, studying the words scrawled on the walls, careless of what their skirts dragged through in the straw. Each had an inkpot in a writing-case hung at her belt and was making notes in a small book with a pen. They never even glanced at the men trooping through."Look here, Verin," one of them said, pointing to a section of stone covered with lines of Trolloc script. "This looks interesting."The other hurried over, picking up reddish stains on her skirt. "Yes, I see. A much better hand than the rest. Not a Trolloc. Very interesting." She began writing in her book, looking up every so often to read the angular letters on the wall.Rand hurried out. Even if they had not been Aes Sedai, he would not have wanted to remain in the same room with anyone who thought reading Trolloc script written in human blood was "interesting."Ingtar and his men stalked on ahead, intent on their duties. Rand dawdled, wondering where he could go now. Getting back into the women's apartments would not be easy without Egwene to help. Light, let her be all right. Moiraine said she'd be all right.Lan found him before he reached the first stairs leading up. "You can go back to your room, if you want, sheepherder. Moiraine had your things fetched from Egwene's room and taken to yours.""How did she know... ?"

Av schuhe lily - 30 mars 2011 08:53

Lights darted through the night-cloaked keep like fireflies, lamps and torches dashing here and there. Some went to the outer walls and towers, but most of those that he could see milled through the garden below and the one courtyard he could just glimpse part of. Whatever had caused the alarm was inside the keep. The bells fell silent, unmasking the shouts of men, but he could not make out what they were calling.If it isn't for me . . . . "Egwene," he said suddenly. If she's still alive, if there's any evil, it's supposed to come to me.Nynaeve turned from looking through another arrowslit. "What?""Egwene." He crossed the room in quick strides and snatched his sword and scabbard free of the bundle. Light, it's supposed to hurt me, not her. "She's in the dungeon with Fain. What if he's loose somehow?"She caught him at the door, grabbing his arm. She was not as tall as his shoulder, but she held on like iron. "Don't be a worse goat-brained fool than you've already been, Rand al'Thor. Even if this doesn't have anything to do with you, the women are looking for something! Light, man, this is the women's apartments. There will be Aes Sedai out there in the halls, likely as not. Egwene will be all right. She was going to take Mat and Perrin with her. Even if she met trouble, they would look after her.""What if she couldn't find them, Nynaeve? Egwene would never let that stop her. She would go alone, the same as you, and you know it. Light, I told her Fain is dangerous! Burn me, I told her!" Pulling free, he jerked open the door and dashed out. Light burn me, it's supposed to hurt me!A woman screamed at the sight of him, in a laborer's coarse shirt and jerkin with a sword in his hand. Even invited, men did not go armed in the women's apartments unless the keep was under attack. Women filled the corridor, serving women in the black-and-gold, ladies of the keep in silks and laces, women in embroidered shawls with long fringes, all talking loudly at the same time, all demanding to know what was happening. Crying children clung to skirts everywhere. He plunged through them, dodging where he could, muttering apologies to those he shouldered aside, trying to ignore their startled stares.One of the women in a shawl turned to go back into her room, and he saw the back of her shawl, saw the gleaming white teardrop in the middle of her back. Suddenly he recognized faces he had seen in the outer courtyard. Aes Sedai, staring at him in alarm, now.

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For a moment Nynaeve did not answer. Instead she fussed with her skeins of yarn. Finally she said, "I am not sure. One of the serving women came a little while ago. To turn down the bed, she said. As if Egwene would be going to sleep already, with the feast for the Amyrlin tonight. I sent her away; she didn't see you.""Nobody turns your bed down for you in the men's quarters." She gave him a level look, one that would have set him stammering a year ago. He shook his head. "They wouldn't use the maids to look for me, Nynaeve.""When I went to the buttery for a cup of milk earlier, there were too many women in the halls. Those who are attending the feast should have been getting dressed, and the others should either have been helping them or getting ready to serve, or to . . . " She frowned worriedly. "There's more than enough work for everybody with the Amyrlin here. And they were not just here in the women's apartments. I saw the Lady Amalisa herself coming out of a storeroom near the buttery with her face all over dust. ""That's ridiculous. Why would she be part of a search? Or any of the women, for that matter. They'd be using Lord Agelmar's soldiers, and the Warders. And the Aes Sedai. They must just be doing something for the feast. Burn me if I know what a Shienaran feast takes.""You are a woolhead, sometimes, Rand. The men I saw didn't know what the women were doing either. I heard some of them complaining about having to do all the work by themselves. I know it makes no sense that they were looking for you. None of the Aes Sedai seemed to be taking any interest. But Amalisa was not readying herself for the feast by dirtying her dress in a storeroom. They were looking for something, something important. Even if she began right after I saw her, she would barely have time to bathe and change. Speaking of which, if Egwene doesn't come back soon, she'll have to choose between changing and being late."For the first time, he realized that Nynaeve was not wearing the Two Rivers woolens he was used to. Her dress was pale blue silk, embroidered in snowdrop blossoms around the neck and down the sleeves. Each blossom centered on a small pearl, and her belt was tooled in silver, with a silver buckle set with pearls. He had never seen her in anything like that. Even feastday clothes back home might not match it."You're going to the feast?""Of course. Even if Moiraine had not said I should, I would never let her think I was . . . ." Her eyes lit up fiercely for a moment, and he knew what she meant. Nynaeve would never let anyone think she was afraid, even if she was. Certainly not Moiraine, and especially not Lan. He hoped she did not know he was aware of her feelings for the Warder.After a moment her gaze softened as it fell on the sleeve of her dress. "The Lady Amalisa gave me this," she said so softly he wondered if she was speaking to herself. She stroked the silk with her fingers, outlining the embroidered flowers, smiling, lost in thought."It's very pretty on you, Nynaeve. You're pretty tonight." He winced as soon as he said it. Any Wisdom was touchy about her authority, but Nynaeve was touchier than most. The Women's Circle back home had always looked over her shoulder because she was young, and maybe because she was pretty, and her fights with the Mayor and the Village Council had been the stuff of stories.She jerked her hand away from the embroidery and glared at him, brows lowering. He spoke quickly to forestall her."They can't keep the gates barred forever. Once they are opened, I will be gone, and the Aes Sedai will never find me. Perrin says there are places in the Black Hills and the Caralain Grass you can go for days without seeing a soul. Maybe-maybe I can figure out what to do about . . . " He shrugged uncomfortably. There was no need to say it, not to her. "And if I can't, there'll be no one to hurt."Nynaeve was silent for a moment, then she said slowly, "I am not so sure, Rand. I can't say you look like more than another village boy to me, but Moiraine insists you are ta'veren, and I don't think she believes the Wheel is finished with you. The Dark One seems - ""Shai'tan is dead," he said harshly, and abruptly the room seemed to lurch. He grabbed his head as waves of dizziness sloshed through him.

Av schuhe lily - 29 mars 2011 07:52

He himself had visited abandoned cities at home only on a few wonderful anddreadful occasionS, and then his teachers had stopped having him do so,grokking that he was not strong enough for such experience. Careful questions to Jill and Dorcas, the answers of which he then related towhat he had read, enabled him to grok in part enough to relieve his mindsotnewbat the city was very young; it had been founded only a little over twoEarth centuries ago. Since Earth time units had no real flavor for him, heconverted to Martian years and Martian numbers years (3^4 + 3^3 = 108Martian years).Terrifying and beautiful! Why, these people must even now be preparing toabandon the city to its thoughts before it shattered under the strain andbecame not. And yet, by mere time, the city was only an egg. Mike looked forward to returning to Washington in a century or two to walk itsempty streets and try to grow close to its endless pain and beauty, grokkingthirstily until he was Washington and the city was himself-if he were strongenough by then. Then he firmly filed the thought away as he knew that hemust grow and grow and grow before he would be able to praise and cherishthe city’s mighty anguish. The Greyhound driver swung far east at one point in response to a temporaryrerouting of unscheduled traffic (caused, unknown to Mike, by Mike’s ownpresence)~ and Mike, for the first time, saw the sea. Jill had to point it out to him and tell him that it was water, and Dorcas addedthat it was the Atlantic Ocean and traced the shore line on the map. Mike wasnot ignorant: he had known since he was a nestling that the planet nextnearer the Sun was almost covered with the water of life and lately he hadlearned that these people accepted this lavish richness casually. He hadeven taken, unassisted, the much more difficult hurdle of grokking at last theMartian orthodoxy that the water ceremony did not require water, that waterwas merely symbol for the essence beautiful but not indispensable. But, like many a human still virgin toward some major human experience,Mike discovered that knowing a fact in the abstract was not at all the samething as experiencing its physical reality; the sight of the Atlantic Ocean filledhim with such awe that Jill squeezed him and said sharply, .Stop it, Mike!Don’t you dare!“Mike chopped off his emotion and stored it away for later use. Then he staredat the ocean, stretching out to an unimaginably distant horizon, and tried tomeasure its size in his mind until his head was buzzing with threes andpowers of threes and superpowers of powers. As they landed Jubal called out, .Now remember, girls, form a square aroundhim and don’t be at all backward about planting a heel in an instep or jabbingan elbow into some oaf’s solar plexus. Anne, I realize you’ll be wearing yourcloak but that’s no reason not to step on a foot if you’re crowded. Or is it?“.Quit fretting, Boss; nobody crowds a Witness-but I’m wearing spike heelsand I weigh more than you do.“.Okay. Duke, you know what to do-but get Larry back here with the bus assoon as possible. I don’t know when I’ll need it.“.I grok it, Boss. Quit jittering.“.I’ll jitter as I please. Let’s go.“ Harshaw, the four girls with Mike, and Caxtongot out; the bus took off at once. To Harshaw’s mixed relief andapprehension the landing flat was not crowded with newsmen.But it was far from empty. A man picked him out at once, stepped brisklyforward and said heartily, .Dr. Harshaw? I’m Tom Bradley, senior executiveassistant to the Secretary General. You are to go directly to Mr. Douglas’

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Jubal leaned over Gillian and said softly, .It worked. He’s safe.“.Ben?“.Yes. He’ll be here soon.“.Oh, Jubal!“ She started to bawl.He took her shoulders. .Stop it,“ he said firmly. .Go inside and lock your dooruntil you get control of yourself. This is not for the press.“.Yes, Jubal. Yes, Boss.“.That’s better. Go cry in your pillow, then wash your face.“ He went on out tothe pool. .Quiet everybody! Quite! I have an announcement to make. We’veenjoyed having you-but the party is over.“.Boo!“.Toss him in the pool, somebody. I’ve got work to do early tomorrow morning,I’m an old man and I need my rest, And so does my family. Please leavequietly and as quickly as possible. Black coffee for any who need it-but that’sall. Duke, cork those bottles. Girls, clear the food away.“There was minor grumbling, but the more responsible quieted theircolleagues. In ten minutes they were alone.In twenty minutes Ben Caxton arrived. The S.S officer commanding thecourier car silently accepted Harshaw’s signature and thumb print on aprepared receipt, then left at once while Jill continued to sob on Ben’sshoulder.Jubal looked him over in the light from the pool. .Ben, you’re a mess. I hearyou’ve been drunk for a week-and you look it.“Ben cursed, fluently and well, while continuing to pat Jill’s back..’M drunk, awri’-but haven’ had a drink.“.What happened?“.I don’t know. I don’t know!“An hour later Ben’s stomach had been pumped out (alcohol and gastricjuices, no food); Jubal had given him shots to offset alcohol and barbiturates;he was bathed, shaved, dressed in clean clothes that did not fit him, had metthe Man from Mars, and was sketchily brought up to date, while ingestingmilk and bland food.But he was unable to bring them up to date. For Ben, the past week had nothappened-he had become unconscious in a taxicab in Washington; he hadbeen shaken into drunken wakefulness two hours earlier. .Of course I knowwhat happened. They kept me doped and in a completely dark room . . . andwrung rue out. I vaguely remember some of it. But I can’t prove anything.And there’s the village Jefe and the madam of this dive they took me to-plus,I’m sure, plenty of other witnesses-.tO swear just how this gringo spent histime. And there’s nothing I can do about it.“.Then don’t fight it,“ Jubal advised. .Relax and be happy.“.The hell I will! I’ll get that-..Tut, tut! You’ve won, Ben. And you’re alive ... which I would have given longodds against, earlier today. Douglas is going to do exactly what we want himto-and smile and like it.“.I want to talk about that. I think-..I think you’re going to bed. Now. With a glass of warm milk to conceal OldDoe Harshaw’s Secret Ingredient for secret drinkers.“Shortly thereafter Caxton was in bed and beginning to snore. Jubal wasputtering around, heading for bed himself, and encountered Anne in theupper hall. He shook his head tiredly. .Quite a day, lass.“.Yes, quite. I wouldn’t have missed it ... and I don’t want to repeat it. You goto bed, Boss.“.In a moment. Anne, tell me something. What’s so special about the waythat lad kisses?“Anne looked dreamy and then dimpled. .You should have tried it when heinvited you to.“.I’m too old to change my ways. But I’m interested in everything about theboy. Is this actually something different, too?“Anne pondered it. .Yes.“.How?“.Mike gives a kiss his whole attention.“.Oh, rats! I do myself. Or did.“Anne shook her head. .No. Some men try to. I’ve been kissed by men whodid a very good job of it indeed. But they don’t really give kissing a womantheir whole attention. They can’t No matter how hard they try, some parts oftheir minds are on something else. Missing the last bus, maybe-Or how theirchances are for making the gal-Or their own techniques in kissing-Or maybeworry about their jobs, or money, or will husband or papa or the neighborscatch on. Or something. Now Mike doesn’t have any technique . . . but whenMike kisses you he isn’t doing anything else. Not anything. You’re his wholeuniverse for that moment and the moment is eternal because he doesn’thave any plans and he isn’t going anywhere. Just kissing you.“ She shivered..A woman notices. It’s overwhelming.“.Hmm-.

Av schuhe lily - 29 mars 2011 07:47

Would I swindle you with a Fair Witness at my elbow? Yes, I would, ifnecessary. But I’m not forcing this interview on you. Matter of fact, we shouldwait and tie in Argus and Trans-Planet.“.Jubal! You can’t do this to me.“.And I won’t. The agreement with all of you was to monitor what the camerassaw . . . when I signalled. And use it if it was newsworthy. But! didn’t promisenot to give out interviews in addition to that-and New World can have thisinterview, oh, say thirty minutes ahead of Argus and Trans-P . . . if you wantit.“ Jubal added, .Not only did you loan us all the equipment for the tie-in, butyou’ve been very helpful personally, Tom. I can’t express how helpful you’vebeen.“.You mean, uh, that telephone number?“.Correct!“.And it got results?“.It did. But no questions about that, Tom. Not on the air. Ask me privatelynextyear.“.Oh, I wouldn’t think of it. You keep your lip buttoned and I’ll keep mine. Nowdon’t go away-..One more thing. That spool of messages you’re holding for me against thesame signal. Make damn sure they don’t go out. Send them back to me.“.Eh? All right, all right-I’ve been keeping them in my desk, you were so fussyabout it. Jubal, I’ve got a camera on this phone screen right now. Can westart?“.Shoot.“.And I’m going to do this one myself!“ Mackenzie turned his face away andapparently looked at the camera. .flash news! This is your NWNW reporteron the spot while its hot! The Man from Mars has just phoned you right herein your local station and wants to talk to you! Cut. Monitor, insert flash-newsplug and acknowledgment to sponsor. Jubal, anything special I should askhim?“.Don’t ask him questions about South America-he’s not a tourist. Swimmingis your safest subject. You can ask me about his future plans.“.Okay. End of cut. Friends, you are now face to face and voice to voice withValentine Michael Smith, the Man from Mars! As NWNW, always first with theburst, told you earlier, Mr. Smith has just returned from his solitary retreathigh in the Andes-and we welcome him back! Wave to your friends, Mr.Smith-.(.Wave at the telephone, son. Smile and wave at it.“).Thank you, Valentine Michael Smith. We’re all happy to see you looking sohealthy and tan. I understand that you have been gathering strength bylearning to swim?“.Boss! Visitors. Or something.“.Cut before interruption-after the word .swim.’ What the hell, Juhal?“.I’ll have to see. Jill, ride herd on Mike again-it might be GeneralQuarters.“But it was not. It was the NWNW mobile stereovision unit landing- and againrose bushes were damaged-Larry returning from phoning Mackenzie fromthe village, and Duke, returning. Mackenzie decided to finish the flat black &white interview quickly, since he was now assured of depth and color throughhis mobile unit, and in the meantime its technical crew could check thetrouble with the equipment on loan to Jubal. Larry and Duke went with them.

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Dorcas, I want your help in a scientific experiment.“.Boss, I am not a guinea pig! You go to hell.“.In due course, I shall. Don’t be difficult, girl; Mike has no communicablediseases, or I wouldn’t let him use the pool-which reminds me: Miriam, whenLarry gets back, tell him I want the pool drained and refilled tonight-we’rethrough with murkiness, Well, Dorcas?“.How do you know it would be our first time?“ .Mmm, there’s that. Mike, haveyou ever kissed Dorcas?“.No, Jubal. Only today did I learn that Dorcas is my water brother.“.She is?“.Yes. Dorcas and Anne and Miriam and Larry. They are your waterbrothers, my brother Jubal.“.Mmm, yes. Correct in essence.“.Yes. It is essence, the grokking-not sharing of water. I speak rightly?“.Very rightly, Mike.“.They are your water brothers.“ Mike paused to think words. .In catenativeassemblage, they are my brothers.“ Mike looked at Dorcas. .For brothers,growing-closer is good. But I did not know.“Jubal said, .Well, Dorcas?“.Huh? Oh, Heavens! Boss, you’re the world’s worst tease. But Mike isn’tteasing. He’s sweet.“ She walked up to him, stood on tiptoes, and held up herarms. .Kiss me, Mike.“Mike did. For some seconds they .grew closer.“Dorcas fainted.Jubal spotted it and kept her from falling, Mike being far too inexperienced tocope with it. Then Jill had to speak sharply to Mike to keep him fromtrembling into withdrawal when he saw what had happened to Dorcas.Luckily Dorcas came out of it shortly and was able to reassure Mike that shewas all right, that she had indeed .grown closer“ and would happily growcloser again-but she needed to catch her breath. .Whew!“Miriam had watched round-eyed. .I wonder if I dare risk it?“Anne said, .By seniority, please. Boss, are you through with me as aWitness?“.For the time being, at least.“.Then hold my cloak.“ She slipped out of it. .Want to bet on it?“.Which way?“.I’ll give you seven-to-two I don’! faint-but I wouldn’t mind losing.“.Done.“.Dollars, not hundreds. Mike dear ... let’s grow lots closer.“In time Anne was forced to give up through simple hypoxia, although Mike,with his Martian training, could have gone without oxygen much longer. Shegasped for air and said, .I don’t think I was Set just right. Boss, I’m going togive you another chance for your money.“She started to offer her face again but Miriam tapped her on theshoulder. .Out.“.Don’t be so eager.“.’Out,’ I said. The foot of the line for you, wench,“ Miriam insisted.Front!“Miriam looked around. .Boss, can’t you see I’m busy?“.All right, all right! But get out of the pickup angle-I’ll answer the phonemyself.“.Honest, I didn’t even hear it.“.Obviously. But for a while we’ve got to pretend to a modicum of dignityaround here-it might be the Secretary General. So get out of range.“But it was Mr. Mackenzie. .Jubal, what in the devil is going on?“.Trouble?“.A short while ago I got a wild phone call from a young man claiming to speakfor you who urged me to drop everything and get cracking, because you’vefinally got something for me. Since I had already ordered a mobile unit toyour place-. .Never got here.“.I know. They called in, after wandering around somewhere north of you. Ourdespatcher straightened them out and they should be there any momentnow. I tried twice to call you and your circuit was busy. What have I missed?“.Nothing yet.“ Jubal considered it. Damnation, he should have had someonemonitor the babble box. Had Douglas actually made that news release? WasDouglas committed? Or would a new passel of cops show up? While the kidsplayed post office! Jubal, you’re getting senile. .I’m not sure that there’s goingto be, just yet. Has there been anything special in the way of a news flashthis past hour?“.Why, no-oh, one item: the Palace announced that the Man from Mars hadreturned north and was vacationing in the-Jubal! Are you mixed up in that?“.Just a moment. Mike, come to the phone. Anne, grab your robe.“.Got it, Boss.“.Mr. Mackenzie-meet the Man from Mars.“Mackenzie’s jaw dropped, then his professional reflexes came to his aid. .Hold it. Just hold it right there and let me get a camera on this! We’ll pick itup in flat, right off the phone-and we’ll repeat in stereo just as quick as thosejokers of mine get there. Jubal, I’m safe on this? You wouldn’t- You wouldn’t-.

Av schuhe lily - 29 mars 2011 07:43

In fact, we shall insist on it.“.Ridiculous!“.Possibly. But I serve my client as I think best. If we reach agreementaffecting the Man from Mars and the planet which is his home, I want everyperson on this planet to have opportunity to know exactly how it was doneand what was agreed. Contrariwise, if we fail to agree, people must hear howand where the talks broke down. There will be no star chamber proceedings,Mr. Secretary.“.Damn it, man, I wasn’t speaking of a star chamber and you know it! I simplymeant quiet, orderly talks without our elbows being jostled!“.Then let the press in, sir, through their cameras and microphones but withtheir feet and elbows outside. Which reminds me-we will be interviewed, myclient and I, over one of the networks later today-and I shall announce thatwe want full publicity on these coming talks.“.What? You mustn’t give out interviews now-why, that’s contrary to the wholespirit of this discussion.“.I can’t see that it is. We won’t discuss this private conversation, of coursebutare you suggesting that a private citizen must have your permission tospeak to the press?“.No, of course not, but-. .I’m afraid it’s too late, in any case. The arrangements have all been madeand the only way you could stop it now would be by sending more carloads ofyour thugs-with or without warrants. But I’m afraid they would be too late,even so. My only reason for mentioning it is that it occurs to me that youmight wish to give out a news release-in advance of this coming interviewtellingthe public that the Man from Mars has returned from his retreat in theAndes . . . and is now vacationing in the Poconos. So as to avoid anypossible appearance that the government was taken by surprise. You followme?“.I follow you-quite well.“ The Secretary General stared silently at Harshaw forseveral moments, then said, .Please wait.“ He left the screen entirely.Harshaw motioned Larry to him while he reached up with his other hand andcovered the telephone’s sound pickup. .Look, son,“ he whispered, .with thattransceiver out I’m bluffing on a busted flush. I don’t know whether he’s left toissue that news release I suggested . . . or has gone to set the dogs on usagain while he keeps me tied up on the phone. And I won’t know, either way.You high tail it out of here, get Tom Mackenzie on the phone, and tell himthat if be doesn’t get the setup here working at once, he’s going to miss thebiggest story since the Fall of Troy. Then be careful coming home-there maybe cops crawling out of the cracks.“.Got it. But how do I call Mackenzie?“.Uh-. Douglas was just sitting back down on screen. .Speak to Miriam.Git.“.Dr Harshaw, I took your suggestion. A news release much as you worded it. . . plus a few substantiating details.“ Douglas smiled warmly in a goodsimulation of his homespun public persona. .And there is no use in halfmeasures. I can see that, if you insist on publicity, there is no way to stopyou, foolish as it is to hold exploratory talks in public. So I added to therelease that the administration had arranged to discuss future interplanetaryrelations with the Man from Mars-as soon as he had rested from his trip-andwould do so publicly . . . quite publicly.“ His smile became chilly and hestopped looking like good old Joe Douglas.Harshaw grinned jovially, in honest admiration-why, the old thief hadmanaged to roll with the punch and turn a defeat into a coup for theadministration. .That’s just perfect, Mr. Secretary! Much better if such matterscome officially from the government. We’ll back you right down the line!“.Thank you. Now about this Caxton person- Letting the press in does notapply to him. He can Sit at home, watch it over stereovision, and make up hislies from that-and no doubt he will. But he will not be present at the talks. I’msorry. No.“.Then there will be no talks. Mr. Secretary, no matter what you have toldthe press.“.I don’t believe you understand me, Counsellor. This man is offensive to me.

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You and your, uh, client will be my guests at the Palace. I’ll send my yacht topick you up. Can you be ready in an hour?“Harshaw shook his head. .Thank you, Mr. Secretary. But that won’t benecessary. We’ll sleep here . . . and when it comes time to meet I’ll dig up adog sled, or something. No need to send your yacht.“Mr. Douglas frowned. .Come, Doctor! As you yourself pointed out, theseconversations will be quasi-diplomatic in nature. In proffering proper protocolI have, in effect, conceded this. Therefore I must be allowed to provide officialhospitality.“.Well, sir, I might point out that my client has had entirely too much officialhospitality already-he had the Devil’s own time getting shut of it.“Douglas’ face became rigid. .Sir, are you implying-..I’m not implying anything. I’m simply saying that Smith has been throughquite a lot and is not used to high-level ceremony. He’ll sleep sounder here,where he feels at home. And so shall I. I am a crochety old man, sir, and Iprefer my own bed. Or I might point out that our talks may break down andmy client and I would be forced to look elsewhere-in which case I would findit embarrassing to be a guest under your roof.“The Secretary General looked very grim. .Threats again. I thought youtrusted me, sir? And I distinctly heard you say that you were .ready tonegotiate.’“.I do trust you, sir.“ (-about as far as I could throw a fit!) .And we are indeedready to negotiate. But I use .negotiate’ in its original sense, not in this new-fangled meaning of .appeasement.’ However, we intend to be reasonable.But we can’t start talks at once in any case; we’re shy one factor and wemust wait. How long, I don’t know.“.What do you mean?“.We expect the administration to be represented at these talks by whateverdelegation you choose-and we have the same privilege.“.Surely. But let’s keep it small. I shall handle this myself, with only anassistant or two. The Solicitor General, I think . . . and our experts in spacelaw. But to transact business you require a small group-the smaller thebetter.“.Most certainly. Our group will be small Smith himself-myself-I’ll bring aFair Witness-..Oh, come now!“.A Witness does not slow things up. I suggest you retain one also. We’ll haveone or two others perhaps-but we lack one key man. I have firm instructionsfrom my client that a fellow named Ben Caxton must be present . . . and Ican’t find the beggar.“Jubal, having spent hours of most complex maneuvering in order to toss inthis one remark, now waited with his best poker face to see what wouldhappen. Douglas stared at him. 0 .Ben Caxton?’ Surely you don’t mean thatcheap winchell?“.The Ben Caxton I refer to is a newspaperman. He has a column with oneof the syndicates.“.Absolutely out of the question!“Harshaw shook his head. .Then that’s all, Mr. Secretary. My instructions arefirm and give me no leeway. I’m sorry to have wasted your time. I beg to beexcused now.“ He reached out as if to switch off the phone..Hold it.“.Sir?“.Don’t cut that circuit; I’m not through speaking to you!“.I most humbly beg the Secretary General’s pardon. We will, of course, waituntil he excuses us.“.Yes, yes, but never mind the formality. Doctor, do you read the tripe thatcomes out of this Capitol labeled as news?“.Good Heavens, not“.I wish I didn’t have to. It’s preposterous to talk about having a journalistpresent at these talks in any case. We’ll let them in later, after everything issettled. But even if we were to have any of them present, Caxton would notbe one of them. The man is utterly poisonous . . . a keyhole sniffer of theworst sort.“.Mr. Secretary, we have no objection to the full glare of publicity throughout.

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