Page:Germ Growers.djvu/55

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meeting-place might be; and on this depended in my judgment the practicability of the scheme. But at least, I thought, if the black fellows were friendly we might, under Gioro's guidance and protection, see a good deal of strange life and return home in a few days by the way we came. As far as I could gather, Gioro was the only one of his tribe that had ever seen a white man, although they had often heard of them, and curiosity rather than fear seemed to have been for some time the dominant feeling about them. But quite lately, for some reason or other, their fear began to exceed their curiosity.

The cause of this change was evidently something that had happened in the far west; some encounter with white men as Jack and I thought at first. But we had reason afterwards, as you will hear, to think that we were mistaken.

One evening I said to Gioro, "When did you see your people last?" He looked at the stars, and I knew he was going to be exact. Then he said, "One year."

"Did you tell Bomero then about the white men?"

"Yes, tell Bomero. Bomero never see white man."

"What did Bomero say?"

"Bomero say, white man all same dibble dibble."

"But Bomero never saw dibble dibble?"