Page:Germ Growers.djvu/82

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77
AMONG THE BLACKS.

which never fail to upset me. He let the lid of one eye fall completely, the other eye remaining wide open, and not a wrinkle in his face. A loud laugh would have spoiled the fun, and might even have been dangerous, but I saved myself with a fit of coughing. After the levee Bomero told off two men to have charge of the saddle. And for the next few days Jack and I walked, each of us, half the march, and rode the other. Once only during these twelve days did I see anything to give me any special uneasiness. One evening we camped a little earlier than usual and I noticed that Gioro was watched and dogged by two very ill-looking fellows whom I had noticed as being in some sort leaders. They stepped behind a clump of trees as he was passing, and as he returned they hid themselves again while he passed. I mentioned this to Gioro and he proved to be aware of their hostility. They were big men, he said, in the tribe, but Bomero was the biggest of all the men, and he was Gioro's friend.

About the morning of the twelfth day there was some trouble. We had come to a point where it was necessary to leave the course of one creek and to strike that of another. But a very destructive fire had passed over the place, followed, as it seemed, by heavy rains, and the track was quite obliterated. Certain trees also