But—but you don’t mean you’d
Hussein? Not—not badly, I mean.
We’re under her orders, Johnny. See what she says.
You, you don’t really think she’ll come here?
Of course I do, and the best thing too. It’s her show; she ought to come.
But, but you don’t understand. She’s just a young girl, A girl like Miss Miralda couldn’t come out here over the pass and down these mountains, she’d never stand it, and as for the chaperon . . . You’ve never met Miss Miralda.
No, Johnny. But the girl that was able to get you to go from Bromley to this place can look after herself.
I don’t see what that’s got to do with it. She was in trouble and I had to help her.
Yes, and she’ll be in trouble all the way here from Blackheath, and everyone will have to help her.
What beats me is how you can have the very faintest inkling of what she’s like without ever having seen her and without my having spoken of her to you for more than a minute.
Well, Johnny, you’re not a romantic bird, you’re not a traveller by nature, barring your one trip to Eastbourne, and it was I that took you there. And contrariwise, as they say in a book you’ve never read, you’re a levelheaded business man and a hardworking respectable stay-at-home. You meet a girl in a train, and the next time I see you you’re in a place that isn’t marked on the map and telling it what gods it ought to worship and what gods it ought to have agnosticism about. Well, I say some girl.
Well, I must say you make the most extraordinary deductions, but it was awfully good of you to come, and I ought to be grateful; and I am, too, I’m awfully grateful; and I ought to let you talk all the rot you like. Go ahead. You shall say what you like and do what you like. It isn’t many brothers that would do what you’ve done.
O, that’s nothing. I like this country. I’m glad I came. And if I can help you with Hussein, why all the better.
It’s an awful country, Archie, but we’ve got to see this through.