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The Jungle Online Book Leute The Jungle Online Book. - DescriptionSkeleton Coast: Oregon Wimmelbild Strand 4: A Novel from the Oregon Files. So I do not call ye my brothers any more, but sag [dogs], as a Online Live Casino Usa should. The former Qimiq Vanille been drafted into Kiel Gegen NГјrnberg army; that had been over ten years ago, but since The Jungle Online Book day nothing had ever been heard of him. They may have dropped him already, being tired of carrying him. They knew what the business was before them—the terrible charge of the buffalo herd against which no tiger can hope to stand. Roll and plunge! Relentless, WГјrfelspiel Phase 10, it was; all his protests, his screams, were nothing to it—it did its cruel will with him, as if his wishes, his feelings, had simply no existence at all; it cut his throat and watched him gasp out his life. I am tired to-night,—very tired with new things, Gray Brother,—but bring me the news always. They will scour the jungle for him when he is far away, and we and our children must run when the grass is set alight. All that is told here happened some time before Mowgli was turned out of Casino Age Ontario Seeonee Wolf Pack, or revenged himself on Shere Khan the tiger. They had chains which they fastened about the leg of the Ski Jump 2 hog, and the other end of the chain they hooked into one of Dsds Quoten 2021 rings upon the wheel. The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling. Table of Contents. Mowgli's Brothers Hunting-Song of the Seeonee Pack Kaa's Hunting "Tiger! Tiger!" Mowgli's Song The White Seal Lukannon "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi" Darzee's Chant Toomai of the Elephants Shiv and the Grasshopper Her Majesty's Servants Parade Song of the Camp Animals. The Jungle Book is a popular book by Rudyard Kipling. Read The Jungle Book, free online version of the book by Rudyard Kipling, on levapoteurbelge.com Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book consists of 14 parts for ease of reading. Choose the part of The Jungle Book which you want to read from the table of contents to get started. The Jungle -- Hypertext and E-Text. The Jungle by Upton Sinclair. Table of Contents. Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5 Chapter 6 Chapter 7 Chapter 8 Chapter 9 Chapter 10 Chapter Chapter 12 Chapter 13 Chapter 14 Chapter 15 Chapter 16 Chapter 17 Chapter 18 Chapter 19 Chapter 20 Chapter Chapter
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Shiv and the Grasshopper. The White Seal. Parade Song of the Camp Animals. View Comments View Review View Summary 3 Comments.
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David Dickinson Mann.. Woods Hutchinson.. Hamilton Wright Mabi.. Basil L. Mary E. George Henry Lewes.. Joseph A. And trusting and strong in faith he had gone about his business, the while a black shadow hung over him and a horrid Fate waited in his pathway.
Now suddenly it had swooped upon him, and had seized him by the leg. Relentless, remorseless, it was; all his protests, his screams, were nothing to it—it did its cruel will with him, as if his wishes, his feelings, had simply no existence at all; it cut his throat and watched him gasp out his life.
And now was one to believe that there was nowhere a god of hogs, to whom this hog personality was precious, to whom these hog squeals and agonies had a meaning?
Who would take this hog into his arms and comfort him, reward him for his work well done, and show him the meaning of his sacrifice?
The carcass hog was scooped out of the vat by machinery, and then it fell to the second floor, passing on the way through a wonderful machine with numerous scrapers, which adjusted themselves to the size and shape of the animal, and sent it out at the other end with nearly all of its bristles removed.
It was then again strung up by machinery, and sent upon another trolley ride; this time passing between two lines of men, who sat upon a raised platform, each doing a certain single thing to the carcass as it came to him.
One scraped the outside of a leg; another scraped the inside of the same leg. One with a swift stroke cut the throat; another with two swift strokes severed the head, which fell to the floor and vanished through a hole.
Another made a slit down the body; a second opened the body wider; a third with a saw cut the breastbone; a fourth loosened the entrails; a fifth pulled them out—and they also slid through a hole in the floor.
There were men to scrape each side and men to scrape the back; there were men to clean the carcass inside, to trim it and wash it. Looking down this room, one saw, creeping slowly, a line of dangling hogs a hundred yards in length; and for every yard there was a man, working as if a demon were after him.
Before the carcass was admitted here, however, it had to pass a government inspector, who sat in the doorway and felt of the glands in the neck for tuberculosis.
This government inspector did not have the manner of a man who was worked to death; he was apparently not haunted by a fear that the hog might get by him before he had finished his testing.
If you were a sociable person, he was quite willing to enter into conversation with you, and to explain to you the deadly nature of the ptomaines which are found in tubercular pork; and while he was talking with you you could hardly be so ungrateful as to notice that a dozen carcasses were passing him untouched.
Jurgis went down the line with the rest of the visitors, staring open-mouthed, lost in wonder. He had dressed hogs himself in the forest of Lithuania; but he had never expected to live to see one hog dressed by several hundred men.
It was like a wonderful poem to him, and he took it all in guilelessly—even to the conspicuous signs demanding immaculate cleanliness of the employees.
Jurgis was vexed when the cynical Jokubas translated these signs with sarcastic comments, offering to take them to the secret rooms where the spoiled meats went to be doctored.
The party descended to the next floor, where the various waste materials were treated. Here came the entrails, to be scraped and washed clean for sausage casings; men and women worked here in the midst of a sickening stench, which caused the visitors to hasten by, gasping.
In still other places men were engaged in cutting up the carcasses that had been through the chilling rooms.
His cleaver had a blade about two feet long, and he never made but one cut; he made it so neatly, too, that his implement did not smite through and dull itself—there was just enough force for a perfect cut, and no more.
So through various yawning holes there slipped to the floor below—to one room hams, to another forequarters, to another sides of pork. One might go down to this floor and see the pickling rooms, where the hams were put into vats, and the great smoke rooms, with their airtight iron doors.
In other rooms they prepared salt pork—there were whole cellars full of it, built up in great towers to the ceiling.
In yet other rooms they were putting up meats in boxes and barrels, and wrapping hams and bacon in oiled paper, sealing and labeling and sewing them.
From the doors of these rooms went men with loaded trucks, to the platform where freight cars were waiting to be filled; and one went out there and realized with a start that he had come at last to the ground floor of this enormous building.
Then the party went across the street to where they did the killing of beef—where every hour they turned four or five hundred cattle into meat.
Unlike the place they had left, all this work was done on one floor; and instead of there being one line of carcasses which moved to the workmen, there were fifteen or twenty lines, and the men moved from one to another of these.
This made a scene of intense activity, a picture of human power wonderful to watch. It was all in one great room, like a circus amphitheater, with a gallery for visitors running over the center.
Along one side of the room ran a narrow gallery, a few feet from the floor; into which gallery the cattle were driven by men with goads which gave them electric shocks.
The room echoed with the thuds in quick succession, and the stamping and kicking of the steers. There were fifteen or twenty such pens, and it was a matter of only a couple of minutes to knock fifteen or twenty cattle and roll them out.
Then once more the gates were opened, and another lot rushed in; and so out of each pen there rolled a steady stream of carcasses, which the men upon the killing beds had to get out of the way.
The manner in which they did this was something to be seen and never forgotten. They worked with furious intensity, literally upon the run—at a pace with which there is nothing to be compared except a football game.
It was all highly specialized labor, each man having his task to do; generally this would consist of only two or three specific cuts, and he would pass down the line of fifteen or twenty carcasses, making these cuts upon each.
This floor was half an inch deep with blood, in spite of the best efforts of men who kept shoveling it through holes; it must have made the floor slippery, but no one could have guessed this by watching the men at work.
The carcass hung for a few minutes to bleed; there was no time lost, however, for there were several hanging in each line, and one was always ready.
After they were through, the carcass was again swung up; and while a man with a stick examined the skin, to make sure that it had not been cut, and another rolled it up and tumbled it through one of the inevitable holes in the floor, the beef proceeded on its journey.
There were men to cut it, and men to split it, and men to gut it and scrape it clean inside. There were some with hose which threw jets of boiling water upon it, and others who removed the feet and added the final touches.
In the end, as with the hogs, the finished beef was run into the chilling room, to hang its appointed time. The visitors were taken there and shown them, all neatly hung in rows, labeled conspicuously with the tags of the government inspectors—and some, which had been killed by a special process, marked with the sign of the kosher rabbi, certifying that it was fit for sale to the orthodox.
And then the visitors were taken to the other parts of the building, to see what became of each particle of the waste material that had vanished through the floor; and to the pickling rooms, and the salting rooms, the canning rooms, and the packing rooms, where choice meat was prepared for shipping in refrigerator cars, destined to be eaten in all the four corners of civilization.
Afterward they went outside, wandering about among the mazes of buildings in which was done the work auxiliary to this great industry.
There was scarcely a thing needed in the business that Durham and Company did not make for themselves. There was a great steam power plant and an electricity plant.
There was a barrel factory, and a boiler-repair shop. There was a building to which the grease was piped, and made into soap and lard; and then there was a factory for making lard cans, and another for making soap boxes.
There was a building in which the bristles were cleaned and dried, for the making of hair cushions and such things; there was a building where the skins were dried and tanned, there was another where heads and feet were made into glue, and another where bones were made into fertilizer.
Out of the horns of the cattle they made combs, buttons, hairpins, and imitation ivory; out of the shinbones and other big bones they cut knife and toothbrush handles, and mouthpieces for pipes; out of the hoofs they cut hairpins and buttons, before they made the rest into glue.
From such things as feet, knuckles, hide clippings, and sinews came such strange and unlikely products as gelatin, isinglass, and phosphorus, bone black, shoe blacking, and bone oil.
When there was nothing else to be done with a thing, they first put it into a tank and got out of it all the tallow and grease, and then they made it into fertilizer.
All these industries were gathered into buildings near by, connected by galleries and railroads with the main establishment; and it was estimated that they had handled nearly a quarter of a billion of animals since the founding of the plant by the elder Durham a generation and more ago.
If you counted with it the other big plants—and they were now really all one—it was, so Jokubas informed them, the greatest aggregation of labor and capital ever gathered in one place.
It employed thirty thousand men; it supported directly two hundred and fifty thousand people in its neighborhood, and indirectly it supported half a million.
It sent its products to every country in the civilized world, and it furnished the food for no less than thirty million people! To all of these things our friends would listen open-mouthed—it seemed to them impossible of belief that anything so stupendous could have been devised by mortal man.
That was why to Jurgis it seemed almost profanity to speak about the place as did Jokubas, skeptically; it was a thing as tremendous as the universe—the laws and ways of its working no more than the universe to be questioned or understood.
All that a mere man could do, it seemed to Jurgis, was to take a thing like this as he found it, and do as he was told; to be given a place in it and a share in its wonderful activities was a blessing to be grateful for, as one was grateful for the sunshine and the rain.
Jurgis was even glad that he had not seen the place before meeting with his triumph, for he felt that the size of it would have overwhelmed him.
But now he had been admitted—he was a part of it all! He had the feeling that this whole huge establishment had taken him under its protection, and had become responsible for his welfare.
Promptly at seven the next morning Jurgis reported for work. He came to the door that had been pointed out to him, and there he waited for nearly two hours.
The boss had meant for him to enter, but had not said this, and so it was only when on his way out to hire another man that he came upon Jurgis.
He gave him a good cursing, but as Jurgis did not understand a word of it he did not object. He was provided with a stiff besom, such as is used by street sweepers, and it was his place to follow down the line the man who drew out the smoking entrails from the carcass of the steer; this mass was to be swept into a trap, which was then closed, so that no one might slip into it.
As Jurgis came in, the first cattle of the morning were just making their appearance; and so, with scarcely time to look about him, and none to speak to any one, he fell to work.
It was a sweltering day in July, and the place ran with steaming hot blood—one waded in it on the floor. The stench was almost overpowering, but to Jurgis it was nothing.
His whole soul was dancing with joy—he was at work at last! He was at work and earning money! All day long he was figuring to himself.
Jonas had been to have an interview with the special policeman to whom Szedvilas had introduced him, and had been taken to see several of the bosses, with the result that one had promised him a job the beginning of the next week.
And then there was Marija Berczynskas, who, fired with jealousy by the success of Jurgis, had set out upon her own responsibility to get a place.
Out of some she had been ordered with curses; but Marija was not afraid of man or devil, and asked every one she saw—visitors and strangers, or work-people like herself, and once or twice even high and lofty office personages, who stared at her as if they thought she was crazy.
In the end, however, she had reaped her reward. The painting of cans being skilled piecework, and paying as much as two dollars a day, Marija burst in upon the family with the yell of a Comanche Indian, and fell to capering about the room so as to frighten the baby almost into convulsions.
Better luck than all this could hardly have been hoped for; there was only one of them left to seek a place. Jurgis was determined that Teta Elzbieta should stay at home to keep house, and that Ona should help her.
He would not have Ona working—he was not that sort of a man, he said, and she was not that sort of a woman. It would be a strange thing if a man like him could not support the family, with the help of the board of Jonas and Marija.
He would not even hear of letting the children go to work—there were schools here in America for children, Jurgis had heard, to which they could go for nothing.
That the priest would object to these schools was something of which he had as yet no idea, and for the present his mind was made up that the children of Teta Elzbieta should have as fair a chance as any other children.
So there was only old Dede Antanas; Jurgis would have had him rest too, but he was forced to acknowledge that this was not possible, and, besides, the old man would not hear it spoken of—it was his whim to insist that he was as lively as any boy.
He had come to America as full of hope as the best of them; and now he was the chief problem that worried his son. For every one that Jurgis spoke to assured him that it was a waste of time to seek employment for the old man in Packingtown.
Szedvilas told him that the packers did not even keep the men who had grown old in their own service—to say nothing of taking on new ones.
And not only was it the rule here, it was the rule everywhere in America, so far as he knew. To satisfy Jurgis he had asked the policeman, and brought back the message that the thing was not to be thought of.
They had not told this to old Anthony, who had consequently spent the two days wandering about from one part of the yards to another, and had now come home to hear about the triumph of the others, smiling bravely and saying that it would be his turn another day.
Their good luck, they felt, had given them the right to think about a home; and sitting out on the doorstep that summer evening, they held consultation about it, and Jurgis took occasion to broach a weighty subject.
Passing down the avenue to work that morning he had seen two boys leaving an advertisement from house to house; and seeing that there were pictures upon it, Jurgis had asked for one, and had rolled it up and tucked it into his shirt.
At noontime a man with whom he had been talking had read it to him and told him a little about it, with the result that Jurgis had conceived a wild idea.
He brought out the placard, which was quite a work of art. It was nearly two feet long, printed on calendered paper, with a selection of colors so bright that they shone even in the moonlight.
The center of the placard was occupied by a house, brilliantly painted, new, and dazzling. The roof of it was of a purple hue, and trimmed with gold; the house itself was silvery, and the doors and windows red.
It was a two-story building, with a porch in front, and a very fancy scrollwork around the edges; it was complete in every tiniest detail, even the doorknob, and there was a hammock on the porch and white lace curtains in the windows.
Underneath this, in one corner, was a picture of a husband and wife in loving embrace; in the opposite corner was a cradle, with fluffy curtains drawn over it, and a smiling cherub hovering upon silver-colored wings.
Do you know that you can buy one for less than your rent? We have built thousands of homes which are now occupied by happy families. Perhaps the translator found it a difficult matter to be sentimental in a language in which a sob is known as a gukcziojimas and a smile as a nusiszypsojimas.
Over this document the family pored long, while Ona spelled out its contents. It appeared that this house contained four rooms, besides a basement, and that it might be bought for fifteen hundred dollars, the lot and all.
Of this, only three hundred dollars had to be paid down, the balance being paid at the rate of twelve dollars a month. These were frightful sums, but then they were in America, where people talked about such without fear.
They had learned that they would have to pay a rent of nine dollars a month for a flat, and there was no way of doing better, unless the family of twelve was to exist in one or two rooms, as at present.
If they paid rent, of course, they might pay forever, and be no better off; whereas, if they could only meet the extra expense in the beginning, there would at last come a time when they would not have any rent to pay for the rest of their lives.
They figured it up. There was a little left of the money belonging to Teta Elzbieta, and there was a little left to Jurgis.
Marija had about fifty dollars pinned up somewhere in her stockings, and Grandfather Anthony had part of the money he had gotten for his farm.
If they all combined, they would have enough to make the first payment; and if they had employment, so that they could be sure of the future, it might really prove the best plan.
It was, of course, not a thing even to be talked of lightly; it was a thing they would have to sift to the bottom.
And yet, on the other hand, if they were going to make the venture, the sooner they did it the better, for were they not paying rent all the time, and living in a most horrible way besides?
Jurgis was used to dirt—there was nothing could scare a man who had been with a railroad gang, where one could gather up the fleas off the floor of the sleeping room by the handful.
But that sort of thing would not do for Ona. They must have a better place of some sort soon—Jurgis said it with all the assurance of a man who had just made a dollar and fifty-seven cents in a single day.
Jurgis was at a loss to understand why, with wages as they were, so many of the people of this district should live the way they did. Marija went home, singing out loud all the way, and was just in time to join Ona and her stepmother as they were setting out to go and make inquiry concerning the house.
That evening the three made their report to the men—the thing was altogether as represented in the circular, or at any rate so the agent had said.
The houses lay to the south, about a mile and a half from the yards; they were wonderful bargains, the gentleman had assured them—personally, and for their own good.
He could do this, so he explained to them, for the reason that he had himself no interest in their sale—he was merely the agent for a company that had built them.
These were the last, and the company was going out of business, so if any one wished to take advantage of this wonderful no-rent plan, he would have to be very quick.
As a matter of fact there was just a little uncertainty as to whether there was a single house left; for the agent had taken so many people to see them, and for all he knew the company might have parted with the last.
So it had finally been arranged—and they were to go and make an inspection the following Sunday morning. That was at the rate of ten and one-half dollars a week, or forty-five a month.
Jurgis was not able to figure, except it was a very simple sum, but Ona was like lightning at such things, and she worked out the problem for the family.
Marija and Jonas were each to pay sixteen dollars a month board, and the old man insisted that he could do the same as soon as he got a place—which might be any day now.
That would make ninety-three dollars. Then Marija and Jonas were between them to take a third share in the house, which would leave only eight dollars a month for Jurgis to contribute to the payment.
So they would have eighty-five dollars a month—or, supposing that Dede Antanas did not get work at once, seventy dollars a month—which ought surely to be sufficient for the support of a family of twelve.
An hour before the time on Sunday morning the entire party set out. They had the address written on a piece of paper, which they showed to some one now and then.
It proved to be a long mile and a half, but they walked it, and half an hour or so later the agent put in an appearance.
He was a smooth and florid personage, elegantly dressed, and he spoke their language freely, which gave him a great advantage in dealing with them.
He escorted them to the house, which was one of a long row of the typical frame dwellings of the neighborhood, where architecture is a luxury that is dispensed with.
Still, it was freshly painted, and made a considerable show. It was all brand-new, so the agent told them, but he talked so incessantly that they were quite confused, and did not have time to ask many questions.
There were all sorts of things they had made up their minds to inquire about, but when the time came, they either forgot them or lacked the courage.
The other houses in the row did not seem to be new, and few of them seemed to be occupied. The house had a basement, about two feet below the street line, and a single story, about six feet above it, reached by a flight of steps.
In addition there was an attic, made by the peak of the roof, and having one small window in each end. The street in front of the house was unpaved and unlighted, and the view from it consisted of a few exactly similar houses, scattered here and there upon lots grown up with dingy brown weeds.
The house inside contained four rooms, plastered white; the basement was but a frame, the walls being unplastered and the floor not laid.
The agent explained that the houses were built that way, as the purchasers generally preferred to finish the basements to suit their own taste.
The attic was also unfinished—the family had been figuring that in case of an emergency they could rent this attic, but they found that there was not even a floor, nothing but joists, and beneath them the lath and plaster of the ceiling below.
All of this, however, did not chill their ardor as much as might have been expected, because of the volubility of the agent.
There was no end to the advantages of the house, as he set them forth, and he was not silent for an instant; he showed them everything, down to the locks on the doors and the catches on the windows, and how to work them.
He showed them the sink in the kitchen, with running water and a faucet, something which Teta Elzbieta had never in her wildest dreams hoped to possess.
After a discovery such as that it would have seemed ungrateful to find any fault, and so they tried to shut their eyes to other defects.
Still, they were peasant people, and they hung on to their money by instinct; it was quite in vain that the agent hinted at promptness—they would see, they would see, they told him, they could not decide until they had had more time.
And so they went home again, and all day and evening there was figuring and debating. It was an agony to them to have to make up their minds in a matter such as this.
They never could agree all together; there were so many arguments upon each side, and one would be obstinate, and no sooner would the rest have convinced him than it would transpire that his arguments had caused another to waver.
Once, in the evening, when they were all in harmony, and the house was as good as bought, Szedvilas came in and upset them again. Szedvilas had no use for property owning.
They would be almost sure to get into a tight place and lose all their money; and there was no end of expense that one could never foresee; and the house might be good-for-nothing from top to bottom—how was a poor man to know?
Then, too, they would swindle you with the contract—and how was a poor man to understand anything about a contract? It was all nothing but robbery, and there was no safety but in keeping out of it.
And pay rent? Ah, yes, to be sure, the other answered, that too was robbery. It was all robbery, for a poor man.
After half an hour of such depressing conversation, they had their minds quite made up that they had been saved at the brink of a precipice; but then Szedvilas went away, and Jonas, who was a sharp little man, reminded them that the delicatessen business was a failure, according to its proprietor, and that this might account for his pessimistic views.
Which, of course, reopened the subject! The controlling factor was that they could not stay where they were—they had to go somewhere. And when they gave up the house plan and decided to rent, the prospect of paying out nine dollars a month forever they found just as hard to face.
All day and all night for nearly a whole week they wrestled with the problem, and then in the end Jurgis took the responsibility. It was the kind of thing the man of the family had to decide and carry through, he told himself.
Others might have failed at it, but he was not the failing kind—he would show them how to do it. He would work all day, and all night, too, if need be; he would never rest until the house was paid for and his people had a home.
So he told them, and so in the end the decision was made. They had talked about looking at more houses before they made the purchase; but then they did not know where any more were, and they did not know any way of finding out.
The one they had seen held the sway in their thoughts; whenever they thought of themselves in a house, it was this house that they thought of.
And so they went and told the agent that they were ready to make the agreement. There were new white cotton gloves upon her hands, and as she stood staring about her she twisted them together feverishly.
It was almost too much for her--you could see the pain of too great emotion in her face, and all the tremor of her form.
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They may attack again. Stay you sssso! I am sore. Kaa, we owe thee, I think, our lives—Bagheera and I. The curve of the broken dome was above his head.
He dances like Mao the Peacock. Stand back, manling. And hide you, O Poison People. I break down the wall. Kaa looked carefully till he found a discolored crack in the marble tracery showing a weak spot, made two or three light taps with his head to get the distance, and then lifting up six feet of his body clear of the ground, sent home half a dozen full-power smashing blows, nose-first.
The screen-work broke and fell away in a cloud of dust and rubbish, and Mowgli leaped through the opening and flung himself between Baloo and Bagheera—an arm around each big neck.
But, oh, they have handled ye grievously, my Brothers! Ye bleed. Thank him according to our customs, Mowgli. Have a care, manling, that I do not mistake thee for a monkey some twilight when I have newly changed my coat.
My kill shall be thy kill if ever thou art hungry, O Kaa. I ask that I may follow when next he goes abroad. When thou art empty come to me and see if I speak the truth.
I have some skill in these [he held out his hands], and if ever thou art in a trap, I may pay the debt which I owe to thee, to Bagheera, and to Baloo, here.
Good hunting to ye all, my masters. But now go hence quickly with thy friends. Go and sleep, for the moon sets, and what follows it is not well that thou shouldst see.
The moon was sinking behind the hills and the lines of trembling monkeys huddled together on the walls and battlements looked like ragged shaky fringes of things.
Begins now the dance—the Dance of the Hunger of Kaa. Sit still and watch. He turned twice or thrice in a big circle, weaving his head from right to left.
Then he began making loops and figures of eight with his body, and soft, oozy triangles that melted into squares and five-sided figures, and coiled mounds, never resting, never hurrying, and never stopping his low humming song.
It grew darker and darker, till at last the dragging, shifting coils disappeared, but they could hear the rustle of the scales. Baloo and Bagheera stood still as stone, growling in their throats, their neck hair bristling, and Mowgli watched and wondered.
The lines of the monkeys swayed forward helplessly, and Baloo and Bagheera took one stiff step forward with them. Mowgli laid his hands on Baloo and Bagheera to get them away, and the two great beasts started as though they had been waked from a dream.
And his nose was all sore. Neither Baloo nor Bagheera will be able to hunt with pleasure for many days. For, remember, Mowgli, I, who am the Black Panther, was forced to call upon Kaa for protection, and Baloo and I were both made stupid as little birds by the Hunger Dance.
All this, man-cub, came of thy playing with the Bandar-log. But remember, Bagheera, he is very little.
But he has done mischief, and blows must be dealt now. Mowgli, hast thou anything to say? When it was all over Mowgli sneezed, and picked himself up without a word.
One of the beauties of Jungle Law is that punishment settles all scores. There is no nagging afterward. Now we must go back to the first tale. So he hurried on, keeping to the rough road that ran down the valley, and followed it at a steady jog-trot for nearly twenty miles, till he came to a country that he did not know.
The valley opened out into a great plain dotted over with rocks and cut up by ravines. At one end stood a little village, and at the other the thick jungle came down in a sweep to the grazing-grounds, and stopped there as though it had been cut off with a hoe.
All over the plain, cattle and buffaloes were grazing, and when the little boys in charge of the herds saw Mowgli they shouted and ran away, and the yellow pariah dogs that hang about every Indian village barked.
Mowgli walked on, for he was feeling hungry, and when he came to the village gate he saw the big thorn-bush that was drawn up before the gate at twilight, pushed to one side.
The man stared, and ran back up the one street of the village shouting for the priest, who was a big, fat man dressed in white, with a red and yellow mark on his forehead.
The priest came to the gate, and with him at least a hundred people, who stared and talked and shouted and pointed at Mowgli. They are the bites of wolves.
He is but a wolf-child run away from the jungle. Of course, in playing together, the cubs had often nipped Mowgli harder than they intended, and there were white scars all over his arms and legs.
But he would have been the last person in the world to call these bites, for he knew what real biting meant.
He is a handsome boy. He has eyes like red fire. By my honor, Messua, he is not unlike thy boy that was taken by the tiger.
He is thinner, but he has the very look of my boy. The priest was a clever man, and he knew that Messua was wife to the richest villager in the place.
Take the boy into thy house, my sister, and forget not to honor the priest who sees so far into the lives of men. Well, if I am a man, a man I must become.
The crowd parted as the woman beckoned Mowgli to her hut, where there was a red lacquered bedstead, a great earthen grain chest with funny raised patterns on it, half a dozen copper cooking pots, an image of a Hindu god in a little alcove, and on the wall a real looking glass, such as they sell at the country fairs.
She gave him a long drink of milk and some bread, and then she laid her hand on his head and looked into his eyes; for she thought perhaps that he might be her real son come back from the jungle where the tiger had taken him.
Mowgli was uneasy, because he had never been under a roof before. But as he looked at the thatch, he saw that he could tear it out any time if he wanted to get away, and that the window had no fastenings.
Now I am as silly and dumb as a man would be with us in the jungle. I must speak their talk. It was not for fun that he had learned while he was with the wolves to imitate the challenge of bucks in the jungle and the grunt of the little wild pig.
So, as soon as Messua pronounced a word Mowgli would imitate it almost perfectly, and before dark he had learned the names of many things in the hut.
There was a difficulty at bedtime, because Mowgli would not sleep under anything that looked so like a panther trap as that hut, and when they shut the door he went through the window.
If he is indeed sent in the place of our son he will not run away. So Mowgli stretched himself in some long, clean grass at the edge of the field, but before he had closed his eyes a soft gray nose poked him under the chin.
Thou smellest of wood smoke and cattle—altogether like a man already. Wake, Little Brother; I bring news. Now, listen. Shere Khan has gone away to hunt far off till his coat grows again, for he is badly singed.
When he returns he swears that he will lay thy bones in the Waingunga. I also have made a little promise. But news is always good.
I am tired to-night,—very tired with new things, Gray Brother,—but bring me the news always. Men will not make thee forget? I will always remember that I love thee and all in our cave.
But also I will always remember that I have been cast out of the Pack. Men are only men, Little Brother, and their talk is like the talk of frogs in a pond.
When I come down here again, I will wait for thee in the bamboos at the edge of the grazing-ground. For three months after that night Mowgli hardly ever left the village gate, he was so busy learning the ways and customs of men.
First he had to wear a cloth round him, which annoyed him horribly; and then he had to learn about money, which he did not in the least understand, and about plowing, of which he did not see the use.
Then the little children in the village made him very angry. Luckily, the Law of the Jungle had taught him to keep his temper, for in the jungle life and food depend on keeping your temper; but when they made fun of him because he would not play games or fly kites, or because he mispronounced some word, only the knowledge that it was unsportsmanlike to kill little naked cubs kept him from picking them up and breaking them in two.
He did not know his own strength in the least. In the jungle he knew he was weak compared with the beasts, but in the village people said that he was as strong as a bull.
And Mowgli had not the faintest idea of the difference that caste makes between man and man. That was very shocking, too, for the potter is a low-caste man, and his donkey is worse.
No one was more pleased than Mowgli; and that night, because he had been appointed a servant of the village, as it were, he went off to a circle that met every evening on a masonry platform under a great fig-tree.
It was the village club, and the head-man and the watchman and the barber, who knew all the gossip of the village, and old Buldeo, the village hunter, who had a Tower musket, met and smoked.
The monkeys sat and talked in the upper branches, and there was a hole under the platform where a cobra lived, and he had his little platter of milk every night because he was sacred; and the old men sat around the tree and talked, and pulled at the big huqas the water-pipes till far into the night.
They told wonderful tales of gods and men and ghosts; and Buldeo told even more wonderful ones of the ways of beasts in the jungle, till the eyes of the children sitting outside the circle bulged out of their heads.
Most of the tales were about animals, for the jungle was always at their door. The deer and the wild pig grubbed up their crops, and now and again the tiger carried off a man at twilight, within sight of the village gates.
It is the jungle brat, is it? Better still, talk not when thy elders speak. Mowgli rose to go. How, then, shall I believe the tales of ghosts and gods and goblins which he says he has seen?
The custom of most Indian villages is for a few boys to take the cattle and buffaloes out to graze in the early morning, and bring them back at night.
The very cattle that would trample a white man to death allow themselves to be banged and bullied and shouted at by children that hardly come up to their noses.
So long as the boys keep with the herds they are safe, for not even the tiger will charge a mob of cattle. But if they straggle to pick flowers or hunt lizards, they are sometimes carried off.
Mowgli went through the village street in the dawn, sitting on the back of Rama, the great herd bull. The slaty-blue buffaloes, with their long, backward-sweeping horns and savage eyes, rose out their byres, one by one, and followed him, and Mowgli made it very clear to the children with him that he was the master.
He beat the buffaloes with a long, polished bamboo, and told Kamya, one of the boys, to graze the cattle by themselves, while he went on with the buffaloes, and to be very careful not to stray away from the herd.
An Indian grazing ground is all rocks and scrub and tussocks and little ravines, among which the herds scatter and disappear. The buffaloes generally keep to the pools and muddy places, where they lie wallowing or basking in the warm mud for hours.
What is the meaning of this cattle-herding work? What news of Shere Khan? Now he has gone off again, for the game is scarce. But he means to kill thee.
When he comes back wait for me in the ravine by the dhak tree in the center of the plain. Then Mowgli picked out a shady place, and lay down and slept while the buffaloes grazed round him.
Herding in India is one of the laziest things in the world. The cattle move and crunch, and lie down, and move on again, and they do not even low.
They only grunt, and the buffaloes very seldom say anything, but get down into the muddy pools one after another, and work their way into the mud till only their noses and staring china-blue eyes show above the surface, and then they lie like logs.
The sun makes the rocks dance in the heat, and the herd children hear one kite never any more whistling almost out of sight overhead, and they know that if they died, or a cow died, that kite would sweep down, and the next kite miles away would see him drop and follow, and the next, and the next, and almost before they were dead there would be a score of hungry kites come out of nowhere.
Then they sleep and wake and sleep again, and weave little baskets of dried grass and put grasshoppers in them; or catch two praying mantises and make them fight; or string a necklace of red and black jungle nuts; or watch a lizard basking on a rock, or a snake hunting a frog near the wallows.
Then evening comes and the children call, and the buffaloes lumber up out of the sticky mud with noises like gunshots going off one after the other, and they all string across the gray plain back to the twinkling village lights.
If Shere Khan had made a false step with his lame paw up in the jungles by the Waingunga, Mowgli would have heard him in those long, still mornings.
At last a day came when he did not see Gray Brother at the signal place, and he laughed and headed the buffaloes for the ravine by the dhk tree, which was all covered with golden-red flowers.
There sat Gray Brother, every bristle on his back lifted. Mowgli frowned. Now he is telling all his wisdom to the kites, but he told me everything before I broke his back.
He is lying up now, in the big dry ravine of the Waingunga. Remember, Shere Khan could never fast, even for the sake of revenge. Fool, fool! Eaten and drunk too, and he thinks that I shall wait till he has slept!
Now, where does he lie up? If there were but ten of us we might pull him down as he lies. These buffaloes will not charge unless they wind him, and I cannot speak their language.
Can we get behind his track so that they may smell it? He would never have thought of it alone. That opens out on the plain not half a mile from here.
I can take the herd round through the jungle to the head of the ravine and then sweep down—but he would slink out at the foot. We must block that end.
Gray Brother, canst thou cut the herd in two for me? Then there lifted up a huge gray head that Mowgli knew well, and the hot air was filled with the most desolate cry of all the jungle—the hunting howl of a wolf at midday.
We have a big work in hand. Cut the herd in two, Akela. Keep the cows and calves together, and the bulls and the plow buffaloes by themselves.
In one, the cow-buffaloes stood with their calves in the center, and glared and pawed, ready, if a wolf would only stay still, to charge down and trample the life out of him.
In the other, the bulls and the young bulls snorted and stamped, but though they looked more imposing they were much less dangerous, for they had no calves to protect.
No six men could have divided the herd so neatly. Gray Brother, when we are gone, hold the cows together, and drive them into the foot of the ravine.
They charged down on him, and he ran just before them to the foot of the ravine, as Akela drove the bulls far to the left. Another charge and they are fairly started.
Careful, now—careful, Akela. A snap too much and the bulls will charge. This is wilder work than driving black-buck. Didst thou think these creatures could move so swiftly?
Swiftly turn them! Rama is mad with rage. Oh, if I could only tell him what I need of him to-day. The bulls were turned, to the right this time, and crashed into the standing thicket.
The other herd children, watching with the cattle half a mile away, hurried to the village as fast as their legs could carry them, crying that the buffaloes had gone mad and run away.
All he wanted to do was to make a big circle uphill and get at the head of the ravine, and then take the bulls down it and catch Shere Khan between the bulls and the cows; for he knew that after a meal and a full drink Shere Khan would not be in any condition to fight or to clamber up the sides of the ravine.
He was soothing the buffaloes now by voice, and Akela had dropped far to the rear, only whimpering once or twice to hurry the rear-guard.
It was a long, long circle, for they did not wish to get too near the ravine and give Shere Khan warning.
At last Mowgli rounded up the bewildered herd at the head of the ravine on a grassy patch that sloped steeply down to the ravine itself.
From that height you could see across the tops of the trees down to the plain below; but what Mowgli looked at was the sides of the ravine, and he saw with a great deal of satisfaction that they ran nearly straight up and down, while the vines and creepers that hung over them would give no foothold to a tiger who wanted to get out.
Let them breathe. I must tell Shere Khan who comes. We have him in the trap. He put his hands to his mouth and shouted down the ravine—it was almost like shouting down a tunnel—and the echoes jumped from rock to rock.
After a long time there came back the drawling, sleepy snarl of a full-fed tiger just wakened. Cattle thief, it is time to come to the Council Rock!
Down—hurry them down, Akela! Down, Rama, down! The herd paused for an instant at the edge of the slope, but Akela gave tongue in the full hunting-yell, and they pitched over one after the other, just as steamers shoot rapids, the sand and stones spurting up round them.
Once started, there was no chance of stopping, and before they were fairly in the bed of the ravine Rama winded Shere Khan and bellowed.
They knew what the business was before them—the terrible charge of the buffalo herd against which no tiger can hope to stand. Shere Khan heard the thunder of their hoofs, picked himself up, and lumbered down the ravine, looking from side to side for some way of escape, but the walls of the ravine were straight and he had to hold on, heavy with his dinner and his drink, willing to do anything rather than fight.
The herd splashed through the pool he had just left, bellowing till the narrow cut rang. Mowgli heard an answering bellow from the foot of the ravine, saw Shere Khan turn the tiger knew if the worst came to the worst it was better to meet the bulls than the cows with their calves , and then Rama tripped, stumbled, and went on again over something soft, and, with the bulls at his heels, crashed full into the other herd, while the weaker buffaloes were lifted clean off their feet by the shock of the meeting.
That charge carried both herds out into the plain, goring and stamping and snorting. Break them up. Scatter them, or they will be fighting one another.
Drive them away, Akela. Hai, Rama! Hai, hai, hai! Softly now, softly! It is all over. Shere Khan needed no more trampling.
He was dead, and the kites were coming for him already. His hide will look well on the Council Rock. We must get to work swiftly.
But it was hard work, and Mowgli slashed and tore and grunted for an hour, while the wolves lolled out their tongues, or came forward and tugged as he ordered them.
Presently a hand fell on his shoulder, and looking up he saw Buldeo with the Tower musket. The children had told the village about the buffalo stampede, and Buldeo went out angrily, only too anxious to correct Mowgli for not taking better care of the herd.
The wolves dropped out of sight as soon as they saw the man coming. Where did the buffaloes kill him? It is the Lame Tiger too, and there is a hundred rupees on his head.
Well, well, we will overlook thy letting the herd run off, and perhaps I will give thee one of the rupees of the reward when I have taken the skin to Khanhiwara.
Now it is in my mind that I need the skin for my own use. Old man, take away that fire! Thy luck and the stupidity of thy buffaloes have helped thee to this kill.
The tiger has just fed, or he would have gone twenty miles by this time. Thou canst not even skin him properly, little beggar brat, and forsooth I, Buldeo, must be told not to singe his whiskers.
Mowgli, I will not give thee one anna of the reward, but only a very big beating. Leave the carcass! Here, Akela, this man plagues me.
Thou wilt never give me one anna of the reward. There is an old war between this lame tiger and myself—a very old war, and—I have won.
To do Buldeo justice, if he had been ten years younger he would have taken his chance with Akela had he met the wolf in the woods, but a wolf who obeyed the orders of this boy who had private wars with man-eating tigers was not a common animal.
It was sorcery, magic of the worst kind, thought Buldeo, and he wondered whether the amulet round his neck would protect him.
He lay as still as still, expecting every minute to see Mowgli turn into a tiger too. I did not know that thou wast anything more than a herdsboy.
May I rise up and go away, or will thy servant tear me to pieces? Only, another time do not meddle with my game. Let him go, Akela. Buldeo hobbled away to the village as fast as he could, looking back over his shoulder in case Mowgli should change into something terrible.
When he got to the village he told a tale of magic and enchantment and sorcery that made the priest look very grave. Mowgli went on with his work, but it was nearly twilight before he and the wolves had drawn the great gay skin clear of the body.
Help me to herd them, Akela. The herd rounded up in the misty twilight, and when they got near the village Mowgli saw lights, and heard the conches and bells in the temple blowing and banging.
Half the village seemed to be waiting for him by the gate. Jungle demon! Go away! Get hence quickly or the priest will turn thee into a wolf again.
Shoot, Buldeo, shoot! Buldeo, that was thy buffalo. Last time it was because I was a man. This time it is because I am a wolf.
Let us go, Akela. They say thou art a sorcerer who can turn himself into a beast at will. I do not believe, but go away or they will kill thee.
Mowgli laughed a little short ugly laugh, for a stone had hit him in the mouth. This is one of the foolish tales they tell under the big tree at dusk.
Farewell; and run quickly, for I shall send the herd in more swiftly than their brickbats. I am no wizard, Messua.
The buffaloes were anxious enough to get to the village. Keep count, for I will do your herding no more. Fare you well, children of men, and thank Messua that I do not come in with my wolves and hunt you up and down your street.
He turned on his heel and walked away with the Lone Wolf, and as he looked up at the stars he felt happy. No, we will not hurt the village, for Messua was kind to me.
Then they banged the temple bells and blew the conches louder than ever. And Messua cried, and Buldeo embroidered the story of his adventures in the jungle, till he ended by saying that Akela stood up on his hind legs and talked like a man.
Mother Wolf walked stiffly from the cave with the cubs behind her, and her eyes glowed as she saw the skin. It is well done. Ever since Akela had been deposed, the Pack had been without a leader, hunting and fighting at their own pleasure.
But they answered the call from habit; and some of them were lame from the traps they had fallen into, and some limped from shot wounds, and some were mangy from eating bad food, and many were missing.
It was then that Mowgli made up a song that came up into his throat all by itself, and he shouted it aloud, leaping up and down on the rattling skin, and beating time with his heels till he had no more breath left, while Gray Brother and Akela howled between the verses.
Have I kept my word? Lead us again, O Man-cub, for we be sick of this lawlessness, and we would be the Free People once more. When ye are full-fed, the madness may come upon you again.