The Adventures of Akbar eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 138 pages of information about The Adventures of Akbar.
days, cut off even from news of the others.  Until one day, just when the sentry was eating his mid-day meal, he heard a violent barking, and by swinging himself up by the bars of the tiny shaft of the well he could just get a glimpse of Tumbu on the steps.  Why had he come?  Perhaps he had been sent; if so he would come again at the same time.  All that night Foster-father lay awake, feverishly wondering what Tumbu had meant, and all the next morning, having no means of telling the time, he waited and waited anxiously, until, just as he was beginning to give up hope, the familiar bark echoed down the well, and there was good old Tumbu on the steps!  So he must have been sent by some one; and therefore some one must be alive and desire him to know the fact.

In truth, both his wife, Foster-mother, and Head-nurse had been racking their brains how to find out where either the Heir-to-Empire or Foster-father were imprisoned until little Bija had said, “Tell Tumbu to seek for them.  If you show him Mirak’s cap and say, ‘Go seek,’ he will go.”

And so he did; but it was a long, long time before he found out where Mirak had hidden himself, for he had gone to the big palace in a litter, and so had left no trace.  Then little Bija came to the rescue once more.

“You say, Foster-mother, that you feel sure that Down must have gone away to keep Mirak company.  Now she can’t be prisoned, ’cos cats won’t be caught unless they want to be caught, and she doesn’t want to be, of course.  So she must be going about, so why don’t you tell Tumbu to seek for Down; then we should find where Mirak was.”

“But we haven’t got anything of Down’s to show him,” argued Foster-mother.  And that was a puzzler.

At last Head-nurse said, “I believe all cats have the same smell, else why do all dogs go after all cats?  At any rate, it would be worth trying.”

So they got a fine, large, handsome white cat in the bazaar, and said to Tumbu, “Go seek!” And then there was the most awful scrimmage that ever was seen.  Tumbu was after the cat in a second, and the cat jumped for protection on Head-nurse, and Head-nurse howled, while Tumbu deafened everybody by yowls; for the cat had caught him on the nose!  Peace was not restored till pussy had made her escape back to the bazaar through the window.

“That was not a success,” sighed poor Head-nurse as she put herself tidy; but after all it was not such a failure, since, either from putting two and two together, or by mere chance, Tumbu appeared the very next day barking and frolicking after his usual fashion when he wanted them to go out, and then led them straight to a lonely corner of the palace garden, whence, looking upwards, they could plainly see Down seated on a narrow window sill.  And the next moment, hearing the familiar bark, who should pop his head out of the window but Roy!

“All’s well,” he whispered rapidly seeing them below him; then withdrew his head swiftly.  For he had determined never by anything or in any way to risk being sent away from the little Heir-to-Empire.

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The Adventures of Akbar from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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