Delcarte and Taylor came up a moment later, and the three of us worked over the fellow, hoping to revive him that he might tell us what had happened, and what had become of the others. My first thought was prompted by the sight I had recently had of the savage native. The little party had evidently been surprised, and in the attack Thirty-six had been wounded and the others taken prisoners. The thought was almost like a physical blow in the face--it stunned me. Victory in the hands of these abysmal brutes! It was frightful. I almost shook poor Thirty-six in my efforts to revive him.
I explained my theory to the others, and then Delcarte shattered it by a single movement of the hand. He drew aside the lion's skin that covered half of the Grabritin's breast, revealing a neat, round hole in Thirty-six's chest-- a hole that could have been made by no other weapon than a rifle. anal beads for sale
"Snider!" I exclaimed. Delcarte nodded. At about the same time the eyelids of the wounded man fluttered, and raised. He looked up at us, and very slowly the light of consciousness returned to his eyes.
"What happened, Thirty-six?" I asked him. clitoris stimulators
He tried to reply, but the effort caused him to cough, bringing about a hemorrhage of the lungs and again he fell back exhausted. For several long minutes he lay as one dead, then in an almost inaudible whisper he spoke.
"Snider--" He paused, tried to speak again, raised a hand, and pointed down-river. "They--went--back," and then he shuddered convulsively and died.
None of us voiced his belief. But I think they were all alike: Victory and Snider had stolen the launch, and deserted us.
We stood there, grouped about the body of the dead Grabritin, looking futilely down the river to where it made an abrupt curve to the west, a quarter of a mile below us, and was lost to sight, as though we expected to see the truant returning to us with our precious launch--the thing that meant life or death to us in this unfriendly, savage world.
I felt, rather than saw, Taylor turn his eyes slowly toward my profile, and, as mine swung to meet them, the expression upon his face recalled me to my duty and responsibility as an officer.