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Source global Wall Street Journal     time 2022-06-14 22:22:04
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nhac han sexsy

The learned gentleman smiled feebly and then frowned—not a cross-frown, but a puzzle-frown. ‘Thank you,’ he said, ‘I shall always be pleased if you’ll look in—any time you’re passing you know—at least...’ ‘I will,’ she said; ‘goodbye. I’ll always tell you anything I MAY tell.’ He had not had many adventures with children in them, and he wondered whether all children were like these. He spent quite five minutes in wondering before he settled down to the fifty-second chapter of his great book on ‘The Secret Rites of the Priests of Amen Ra’. It is no use to pretend that the children did not feel a good deal of agitation at the thought of going through the charm into the Past. That idea, that perhaps they might stay in the Past and never get back again, was anything but pleasing. Yet no one would have dared to suggest that the charm should not be used; and though each was in its heart very frightened indeed, they would all have joined in jeering at the cowardice of any one of them who should have uttered the timid but natural suggestion, ‘Don’t let’s!’ It seemed necessary to make arrangements for being out all day, for there was no reason to suppose that the sound of the dinner-bell would be able to reach back into the Past, and it seemed unwise to excite old Nurse’s curiosity when nothing they could say—not even the truth—could in any way satisfy it. They were all very proud to think how well they had understood what the charm and the Psammead had said about Time and Space and things like that, and they were perfectly certain that it would be quite impossible to make old Nurse understand a single word of it. So they merely asked her to let them take their dinner out into Regent’s Park—and this, with the implied cold mutton and tomatoes, was readily granted. ‘You can get yourselves some buns or sponge-cakes, or whatever you fancy-like,’ said old Nurse, giving Cyril a shilling. ‘Don’t go getting jam-tarts, now—so messy at the best of times, and without forks and plates ruination to your clothes, besides your not being able to wash your hands and faces afterwards.’ So Cyril took the shilling, and they all started off. They went round by the Tottenham Court Road to buy a piece of waterproof sheeting to put over the Psammead in case it should be raining in the Past when they got there. For it is almost certain death to a Psammead to get wet. The sun was shining very brightly, and even London looked pretty. Women were selling roses from big baskets-full, and Anthea bought four roses, one each, for herself and the others. They were red roses and smelt of summer—the kind of roses you always want so desperately at about Christmas-time when you can only get mistletoe, which is pale right through to its very scent, and holly which pricks your nose if you try to smell it. So now everyone had a rose in its buttonhole, and soon everyone was sitting on the grass in Regent’s Park under trees whose leaves would have been clean, clear green in the country, but here were dusty and yellowish, and brown at the edges. ‘We’ve got to go on with it,’ said Anthea, ‘and as the eldest has to go first, you’ll have to be last, Jane. You quite understand about holding on to the charm as you go through, don’t you, Pussy?’ ‘I wish I hadn’t got to be last,’ said Jane. ‘You shall carry the Psammead if you like,’ said Anthea. ‘That is,’ she added, remembering the beast’s queer temper, ‘if it’ll let you.’ The Psammead, however, was unexpectedly amiable. ‘I don’t mind,’ it said, ‘who carries me, so long as it doesn’t drop me. I can’t bear being dropped.’ Jane with trembling hands took the Psammead and its fish-basket under one arm. The charm’s long string was hung round her neck. Then they all stood up. Jane held out the charm at arm’s length, and Cyril solemnly pronounced the word of power. As he spoke it the charm grew tall and broad, and he saw that Jane was just holding on to the edge of a great red arch of very curious shape. The opening of the arch was small, but Cyril saw that he could go through it. All round and beyond the arch were the faded trees and trampled grass of Regent’s Park, where the little ragged children were playing Ring-o’-Roses. But through the opening of it shone a blaze of blue and yellow and red. Cyril drew a long breath and stiffened his legs so that the others should not see that his knees were trembling and almost knocking together. ‘Here goes!’ he said, and, stepping up through the arch, disappeared. Then followed Anthea. Robert, coming next, held fast, at Anthea’s suggestion, to the sleeve of Jane, who was thus dragged safely through the arch. And as soon as they were on the other side of the arch there was no more arch at all and no more Regent’s Park either, only the charm in Jane’s hand, and it was its proper size again. They were now in a light so bright that they winked and blinked and rubbed their eyes. During this dazzling interval Anthea felt for the charm and pushed it inside Jane’s frock, so that it might be quite safe. When their eyes got used to the new wonderful light the children looked around them. The sky was very, very blue, and it sparkled and glittered and dazzled like the sea at home when the sun shines on it. They were standing on a little clearing in a thick, low forest; there were trees and shrubs and a close, thorny, tangly undergrowth. In front of them stretched a bank of strange black mud, then came the browny-yellowy shining ribbon of a river. Then more dry, caked mud and more greeny-browny jungle. The only things that told that human people had been there were the clearing, a path that led to it, and an odd arrangement of cut reeds in the river. They looked at each other. ‘Well!’ said Robert, ‘this IS a change of air!’ It was. The air was hotter than they could have imagined, even in London in August. ‘I wish I knew where we were,’ said Cyril. ‘Here’s a river, now—I wonder whether it’s the Amazon or the Tiber, or what.’ ‘It’s the Nile,’ said the Psammead, looking out of the fish-bag. ‘Then this is Egypt,’ said Robert, who had once taken a geography prize. ‘I don’t see any crocodiles,’ Cyril objected. His prize had been for natural history.


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