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MALLOCK W.
In an enchanted island
page 45

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fore me. It was the carriage—' the good carriage '— standing at the custom-house door, with my luggage, under Scotty's direction, already being placed upon it. This singular vehicle was a battered English waggonette, which had once been black, but was now a permanent dust-colour. It_ had been adapted to its present climate by the addition of an iron framework, roofed and enclosed by curtains of pink and white diaper, which exactly resembled a patchwork of housemaid's dusters. There was a lean negro on the box, with a pair of ropes for reins, and standing in front of him were three gaunt horses abreast, whose harness, I must say, showed traces of real care, for in every part it was mended—indeed, kept together— by string. ' Perhaps, sir,' said Scotty as I approached, ' you like me come with you to Nicosia. This fellow, he not know the house.' I had been intending to make the same proposal myself to him, and was glad to find him already prepared to act on it. I climbed to my seat, in the transparent shade of the dusters ; and was beginning to wonder why we did not start, when my ear was caught by some words, which, though strangely familiar to me, I had never before heard or expected to hear in conversation. ' Όκτώ,' said Scotty's voice to some one I could not see. Then followed a murmuring, and then his voice said, ' Αέκα.' Then came '"Ει/SeKa,' and in a minute more ' ΑώΒΐκα.' It was like a page of the Eton grammar suddenly come 42 IN AN ENCHANTED ISLAND

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