Page:Biagi - The Centaurians.djvu/38

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The Centaurians

me, and I was soon bawling louder than either, my indignation roused to boiling point because they repeatedly yelled: "Hush up, boy, you don't know what you're talking about." Saxe. howled for peace, and passed around something, the flavor of which inspired deep friendship and good fellowship, and amid the jollity he declared I complimented him, always turning up at meal time. I honestly enjoyed dining with the old boys. We sat in our shirt sleeves and conversed in comfort, time no object, and the jokes numerous, whose piquancy only a wit could appreciate.

"And for twelve years," I said, finally, to no one in particular, "you people have been going on like this, easy, careless, comrades always, with the expectation of some day attaining your ambitions."

"Yes," answered Saunders, "comrades always, but not idlers. The twelve years have been mightily employed, we have made much progress toward the great end. My star, 'the star,' scintillates in the same position, been there trillions of years, but invisible because blazing away just above the colossal pivot of Earth. Astronomers have calculated pretty closely the exact position it should occupy on the astral map, but most have calculated wrong. The subject is always an incentive for much controversy, but one and all agree to the certainty of the phenomenon, and if the world revolved according to antiquated supposition—like a ball—we would be permitted to gaze upon the egg-shaped, pinkish-hued marvel. It is the twin planet. My assertions are based upon deep calculations."