He set about to drill them in certain military tactics, and they, believing him to be a god whom no enemy could overthrow, obeyed his slightest command. Under his direction breastworks were thrown up along the western hills, trenches were dug, and hundreds of huge boulders were carried to the summits overlooking the pass, through which the enemy must come in order to reach the only opening in the guerdon of the hills. It was his plan to roll these boulders from the steep crests into the narrow valley below just as the invaders charged through, wreaking not only disaster but disorder among them, no matter how large their force. There was really but one means of access by land to the rock-guarded region, and it was here that he worked the hardest during the fourth week of their stay among the savages.
He was working for his own and her safety and freedom. In Ridgehunt they were idols; in the hands of the unknown foe their fate might be the cruel reverse. Pride in the man who was to lead their brown friends to victory swelled in the heart of the fair Briton, crowding back the occasional fear that he might be conquered or slain. She had settled upon the course to pursue in case there was a battle and her protector fell. A dagger made from the iron-like wood used by the natives in the manufacture of spears and knives hung on the wall of her room. When he died, so should she, by her own hand.
Gradually they began to grasp the meaning of certain words in the native language. Hugh was able after many days to decide that the natives knew nothing of the outside world and, furthermore, that no ships came into that part of the sea on account of the immense number of hidden reefs. The island on which they had been cast bore a name which sounded so much like Nedra that they spelled it in that way. In course of time she christened the spots of interest about her. Her list of good English names for this utterly heathen community covered such places as Velvet Valley, Hamilton Hills, Shadburn Rapids, Ridgeway River, Veath Forest and others. Ridgeway gave name to the temple in which the natives paid homage to them. He called it Tennys Court.
Her room in the remodelled temple was a source of great delight to Lady Tennys. It was furnished luxuriously. There were couches, pillows, tables, chairs, tiger-skin rugs, and—window curtains. A door opened into her newly constructed bath pool, and she had salt or fresh water, as she chose. The pool was deep and clay lined and her women attendants were models of the bath after a few days. She learned the language much easier than Hugh. He was highly edified when she told him that his new name was Izor—never uttered without touching the head to the ground. Her name was also Izor, but she blushed readily when he addressed her as Mrs. Izor—without the grand curtsey. The five spearmen were in reality priests, and they were called Mozzos. She also learned that the chief who found them on the rock was no other than the mighty King Pootoo and that he had fifty wives. She knew the names of her women, of many children and of the leading men in the village.