فصل 07

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فصل 07

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متن انگلیسی فصل

CHAPTER SEVEN

Spy School

Kim began to walk up the street to look for Lurgan Sahib’s shop. He felt very important: he was now a Sahib. He saw a little Indian boy about ten years old sitting under a lamppost.

‘Where is Mr Lurgan’s shop?’ Kim asked him.

The boy took Kim to a shop with a veranda on the street. The door was open.

‘He has arrived,’ said the little boy, very quietly. Kim felt that Lurgan Sahib had sent the boy to bring him here.

Kim went into the building and saw a man with a black beard wearing a green shade over his eyes. He was sitting at a table. With incredible quickness he was putting shiny pearls on a string.

‘Seventy-nine, eighty, eighty-one,’ the man counted to himself, and then he took off his green shade and stared at Kim. The pupils of his eyes became very large and then very small, as if he controlled them. Kim had seen a magician do this in Lahore so he was not frightened.

‘Do not be afraid,’ said Lurgan Sahib suddenly.

‘Why should I be afraid?’ replied Kim.

‘You will sleep here tonight, and stay with me until it is time to go again to Lucknow. It is an order.’

‘It is an order,’ Kim repeated. ‘But where will I sleep?’

‘Here in this room,’ Lurgan Sahib pointed to the dark room behind him.

‘Fine,’ said Kim calmly. ‘Now?’

Lurgan Sahib nodded and held a lamp above his head. Kim could now see the Tibetan devil masks on the walls together with many other frightening masks, swords and knives. Kim had already seen many of these objects in the Lahore Museum. He also saw the little boy sitting under the table. He had a smile on his face.

‘I think Lurgan Sahib wants to make me afraid. And I am sure that devil boy under the table wants to see me afraid,’ he thought. ‘This place,’ he said aloud, ‘is like a Wonder House. Where is my bed? And you, little boy, stop smiling because I will beat you in the morning!’

When Kim woke up the next morning, Lurgan Sahib was looking down at him. The man offered Kim his hand.

‘Shake hands, O’Hara,’ he said.

Kim looked at him carefully. He was a Sahib because he wore Sahib clothing. But the accent of his Hindustani was perfect and his English was not at all like a Sahib.

‘I am sorry you cannot beat my boy this morning. He says he will kill you with a knife or poison. He is jealous. He has just tried to kill me with poison. You must help with the breakfast. He is almost too jealous to trust, just now.’

‘Well,’ Kim thought, ‘a Sahib from England would make a big fuss about this story of jealousy. But Lurgan Sahib said it very calmly, as calmly as Mahbub talks about his dangerous travels in Afghanistan.’

Lurgan walked to the other end of the veranda to fill up a water jar.

‘Do you want a drink?’ Lurgan asked.

Kim nodded. Lurgan Sahib, who was fifteen feet away, put his hand on the jar. In the very next moment it was next to Kim’s elbow, and it was completely full.

‘Wah!’ said Kim in complete amazement. ‘That is magic!’ Lurgan smiled - he liked the compliment.

‘Throw it back,’ Lurgan said.

‘It will break,’ said Kim.

‘Throw it back!’

Kim threw it in the direction of Lurgan. It fell on the ground and broke into fifty pieces.

‘I said it would break,’ said Kim.

‘It isn’t important,’ said Lurgan. ‘Look at the largest piece.’

The largest piece had a little water in it and sparkled in the light. Lurgan Sahib came and put his hand on the back of Kim’s neck and whispered, ‘Look! It will come together again, piece by piece. First the big piece will join itself to two other pieces on the right and the left - on the right and the left. Look!’

Lurgan held Kim very lightly and delicately, but Kim could not move at all. Now he saw one piece where there had been three small pieces. And above this large piece he could now vaguely see the shape of the entire jar, but the jar had been broken. He had seen it break into pieces on the floor.

‘Look! It is coming together again,’ said Lurgan Sahib.

Kim began to fight this illusion. Before he had thought in Hindustani, but now he began say to himself the multiplication table in English!

‘Look! It is coming together again,’ whispered Lurgan Sahib.

‘The jar was broken into many pieces,’ thought Kim in English, ‘and two times three is six, and three times three is nine and four times three is twelve…’

Kim continued repeating the multiplication table and gradually the vague shape of the jar disappeared and only the broken pieces remained.

‘Look! Is it coming together again?’ asked Lurgan Sahib.

‘No,’ answered Kim, ‘it is still broken. There are still pieces on the floor, like before. It is broken. It is still broken.’

Then Kim finally pulled away from Lurgan.

‘Was that more magic?’ asked Kim.

‘No, it was not magic,’ answered Lurgan. ‘It was a test, and, I am very happy with you. Very, very happy. You are the first to resist, the first that did not see the illusion.’

Lurgan sat down at the table. They heard the little boy crying.

‘Ah! It is you! You are so jealous. Will you try to poison me again?’ asked Lurgan.

‘Never, never! No!’ cried the boy.

‘And will you try to kill this other boy?’ asked Lurgan.

‘No, never!’ cried the boy.

‘What do you think he will do,’ Lurgan suddenly asked Kim.

‘I don’t know,’ answered Kim. ‘But why does he want to poison you?’

‘Because he likes me so much. He is jealous because he thinks I prefer you to him,’ explained Lurgan.

‘Oh, please send him away!’ cried the boy.

‘Not yet,’ said Lurgan. ‘He will go away in a little bit. But now he is at school, and you will be his teacher. Play the Game of the Jewels against him. I will keep score.’

The little boy ran and got a box filled with jewels. Lurgan took out fifteen jewels and put them on the table in front of Kim.

‘What is the game?’ asked Kim.

‘You must look at the jewels. You can even touch them if you want,’ explained the boy. ‘You can look at them as long as you want - I will only need a moment! Then you must cover them with a piece of paper, and describe them all to Lurgan Sahib.’

Kim looked carefully at the jewels, and was able to describe thirteen of them. But the little boy was much better. When his turn came, he looked for a half a minute at his jewels, and then described them all in the greatest possible detail. They played several times and each time the boy was much better than Kim.

‘Is the boy better than you?’ asked Lurgan.

‘Yes, certainly,’ said Kim.

‘Good,’ said Lurgan, ‘then he will teach you now.’

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