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would take a terrible vengeance, and that utter destruction would fall on them and on their house. Urged thus by their manager, the Seths went down to their guards, and by threats, persuasions, and some display of force they succeeded at length in inducing the men to abandon their design.
It was this that caused the confusion in the house, I had noticed, the delay in the arrival of the escort, and the agitation of the Seths themselves during their interview with me. Disappointed thus in their intention to murder us all on the terrace, the guards next proposed to kill me and Mr. Joyce as we left the house. They had arranged to cut us down as we stooped to pass through the small doorway in the barricade. It was to prevent their doing so that the Seths had insisted on accompanying us to the street, and lest the men should follow us that they sent some of their most trustworthy servants to see us safely out of the city.
THE FIRST THREE DAYS.
My brother's room was small, and rendered still smaller by curtains which partitioned off a space at the end. This space my brother had kindly made over to A-and the children. The rest was so crammed with furniture that there was hardly space to move. The first congratulations over, I retired behind the curtain to change my native dress for an English suit I had brought with me in a bundle. Tea was then made, and while drinking it I gave an outline of my adventures, and was told in return what had occurred at Agra. But I could make out little, except that there had been a battle, and that they had all come into the fort. From the appearance of the room I concluded that they had come in in some confusion.
Having drunk our tea my brother and I went out to enable the Ayahs to dress the children. My brother had some business to attend to-I returned to the enclosure to look after my horse. I found him in a sorry condition. He had broken loose from the palisade, and begun fighting with one of the other horses. With much difficulty he had been captured. He was now secured by a rope, and covered with mud and bruises, none of which, however, proved serious. With the help of an officer I got permission to have him picketed in a better situation on
the river side of the fort, and this done I returned to my brother's room, where I found them all dressed and waiting for breakfast. We waited long, and then my brother went out to make inquiries. He returned with the information that the meal would not be ready for another hour. While waiting and chatting I happened to mention my companions at Muttra, and that they were descending the river in a boat. My brother inquired if I had warned the battery, and I learnt, to my horror, that the artillerymen had received orders to fire on any native boat seen approaching. I hurried off to find the officer. My brother did not know who he was or where were his quarters, but he gave me some general directions as to where he thought I might obtain information.
I passed through the archway, and soon lost myself in a maze of courts and passages. All were full of people, chiefly natives and half-castes. None could tell me the way to the battery, or give me any information about the officer who was in charge of it. I wandered about making inquiries for nearly an hour, and then had to return unsuccessful, and found them just sitting down to breakfast. The meal consisted of only rice and lentils, and a small piece of cold meat. There was neither bread nor butter, nor had we even milk to our tea. My brother explained that there was no food to be got beyond what little they had brought in with them. He added that the delay in the arrival of the breakfast had arisen from the difficulty of finding a place to prepare it in.
We had hardly despatched our simple viands, when we heard a sound of firing, and some one ran in to say that the fort was being attacked, and that we were all to hurry off to the ramparts. My brother seized his gun, I took mine, and we ran through the archway and joined
a crowd of people, who had issued from the adjoining courts. Arrived at the ramparts, we could see nothing. The battlements were too high to look over, and only the distant country could be seen through the loopholes, but from below came the sound of musketry, heavy and continuous. We went on to the nearest bastion, where, by climbing on an embrasure, we could look down on the ditch and the outer defences.
The firing proceeded from the palisaded enclosure where I had entered. A number of English soldiers and men out of uniform were shooting through the openings between the stakes, and a crowd were standing behind them looking on. The shots were not returned, and, as far as we could see, there was no enemy. Someone suggested that they might be concealed among the ravines, which seemed probable. But just then an officer came up in great indignation, and told us that the soldiers were firing only for their own amusement. The objects aimed at appeared to be a donkey and a flock of vultures. These we now regarded with interest. The donkey went on grazing, and the vultures, gorged with the flesh of some dead sheep lying near, sat placid. The badness of the shooting surprised us, till someone arrived from below and explained it. He informed us that the soldiers were all very drunk.
Presently an order came from the General to stop the firing. It did not receive much attention. Those who were tired of the amusement left off. The rest continued it till the afternoon.
With my brother's assistance I now succeeded in finding my way to the battery, and procured an order that the boat was not to be fired at. This matter disposed of, I proceeded to take possession of the quarters assigned These were a room nearly over my brother's apart
ment, and of about the same size. I found it filled with soldiers' boxes and bedsteads, for the range of buildings had been used hitherto as a magazine for commissariat stores. The fort was full of natives. I hired some, and with the assistance also of two English soldiers by noon I had got the things removed and the room cleaned. I let two of the bedsteads remain, and contrived to borrow a mat, a child's cot, two chairs, and a small table, and then we moved in. I was puzzled what to do with the boxes and the rest of the bedsteads, for I could find no one to take charge of them; so I left them on the pavement, and in the course of the afternoon different people, who I suppose had need of them, carried them away.
The cleaning the room and removing the bedsteads had made me very hot and dusty; I was anxious to wash, but we had no water. Someone informed me that there was a well just outside the archway; but before drawing the water it was necessary to procure some utensil to hold it. I set out in search of some can or a jar. Chance directed me to a place where I found a cart laden with the large tin cans supplied to soldiers, each the size of a pail. Near the cart an English sergeant was standing. I inquired of him who could give me leave to take a He answered that he did not know, and in my place would not waste time in ascertaining, adding, with a smile, that if I wanted a can I had better do like the rest, and take one.' I took the hint and carried off two. I was none too soon: when I next passed by the cart was empty.
The cans provided, I now went in search of the water. The well was in an open space, not very far from the entrance to our square. The space was covered with carts and gun-carriages, and the ground in a condition beyond description. It was literally covered with filth and