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corted her to his superior, who briefly announced that she had been demanded by the King of the Creppi people, and that his master the Great Fetish had been pleased to accede to his request. So saying he handed the girl to the envoy, and another chief walked forward to inspect the girls. But the unfortunate Cudjoe, who sat as though turned into wood at the ruin of all his hopes, awoke, and screaming at the top of his voice, burst through the press and dashed to the path. No effort was made to stop him by the guard at the mountain's top or by those posted along the path. They drew aside and laughed as he rushed by. His progress could be traced in that quiet night by his shrieks, as he reached the bottom, and fled across the plain, and many a girl had been allotted and handed over before they died away in the breeze of the coming morning.

The Commissioner of the District had little sleep that night. The faint bellow of the drumming reached him. What was the precise nature of the ceremonies that were being celebrated he did not know, but he felt it an anachronism that the bloodthirsty Fetish and the British Government, at the present moment led by an up-to-date Radical, should run together, with the first the better man of the two. Though in a country where the whites numbered but a few hundreds and the blacks were counted by millions this might be inevitable, to his orderly mind it was very improper. For months past he had in secret gathered together evidence against the thing that disturbed his district.—that in truth tean his district. Wicked deeds of every kind stood to the debit of the Big Fetish. There were the dates and names of the murderers and of the victims, of the pillagers and the plundered. But from the day when the

Government had determined mainly through his urgency to strike, as his keenness increased so his weakness became more apparent. Was there one man great or small among the multitude who had so long suffered, bold enough to stand up and trust to the Government for protection? He thought not, as he walked on his verandah and lit his pipe for the tenth time, adding another match to the heap on the railing. At length tired with scheming, he lay back in the chair with the long rests, and throwing up his feet dozed off. The sky was gray, and the air chilly with the coming of the morning, when he awoke with a dim sense of having been called in his sleep.

He leant shivering on the verandah rail. A cry came up from the plain below out of the grayness, and again and yet again it was repeated. He walked along the verandah which extended right round the house, to the back where his servant was sleeping, and roused him. Together they stood listening to the call of the sufferer. The sea-breeze strengthened, the east lightened, a great white band grew broad on the horizon, and at once the sun rose crimson out of the sea. With the freshening of the wind, the cry from below was no longer audible; but as the light grew stronger, they saw the tiny figure of a man, his arms raised above his head, hurrying toward them.

"The crying man, sah." the boy whispered.

The figure disappeared in the growth at the mountain's foot.

"Go," said the Commissioner, "tell the sergeant to take his men and bring the man to me."

He saw the police emerge from their huts and slip yawning into the forest, but the morning was so misty he could not follow their movements. A narrow path had been cleared right round the bungalow, preventing the forest from encroaching on the walls, and now on to this path a figure stepped. How he did not attempt to divine, but the Commissioner knew the man from the plain was before him. The fugitive touched the wall with both hands, and began to run round and round the house, crying as he went. A bundle slung to his waist knocked against his knees. Twice he completed the circuit of the house, when there came a rush of police out of the trees.

"Don't hurt him," the Commissioner called, "bring him up here. Tell my servant to come and interpret."

Poor Cudjoe, dead beat, crouched in the verandah corner, his cut feet leaving little red marks on the white boards. Little by little he sobbed his story of the big Tail Girl and the events of the past few days. When he came to the murder of his friend and his own subsequent admission to the hill-top, he began to undo the bundle which now rested between his feet.

"Stop," the white man said, "you needn't show it to me; l understand," and Cudjoe gently laid it down.

"And so," the Commissioner said after a long pause, "neither of you got her after all?"

"No, sah," said his servant, "the King of Creppi got her."

"Why then has he come here to me? l don't know him."

"He says when he ran away from the hill last night he only tried to so away as far as he can, but when the white light come he see this house before him." The boy paused.

"Well, what then?"

"in his village, sah. they talk about you, and now he has killed his friend he curse the Fetish, so he come."

"The iron is hot," the Commissioner said to himself while he stared at Cudjoe, and then he spoke.

"There is one thing." he said, "that i must know, and there must be uo

mistake. if he wishes he may go now free as he has come. No one shall stop him. But if he answers this question, he must come with me. Did the Fetish, did the priests, know he intended to kill Koffl? You ask him first, then let the sergeant ask him before he answers."

The servant obeyed; but Cudjoe was silent, his face covered with his hands. The sergeant put the question, and the Commissioner dug his nails into his palms,—for Cudjoe jumped to his feet, and, stretching out his hands, cried aloud towards Krobo Hill.

"lt knew," said the sergeant stolidly; "he told it. He told the priest, when he asked him to let him come up, that he feared Kofi! would get her, and that he would use his head to mount the hill. The same priest he told was the one who handed the girl last night to the King of Creppi."

"And he will swear that?" "Yes, sah; it is the truth."

"Then get the hammocks and the men ready at once. Has any one followed him? But never mind that. We start in a quarter of an hour. You and your men must watch the house."

The two hammocks hurried and stumbled down the rough path on to the plain. When the hue and cry arrived, it saw from among the trees that the house was closed and a cordon of armed police drawn round it. Far across the plain two little white spots were vanishing into the distance—the tilts of the hammocks bearing the bomb which was to blow the Big Fetish of Krobo Hill sky-high.

For the Government struck, and with no light hand. Before Cudjoe had even begun to realize what he had done the force was ready, and, headed by the Governor himself, the white officers and soldiers, stiffened by a machine-gun, dragged themselves into the hills. During their march across the hot plain they met not even a solitary wayfarer. The crops, only half garnered, lay neglected, and the farms were deserted. the rustling in the grass and the waving of the high Indian corn tops only provoked a contemptuous sneer and a coarse insult hurled at the spies, from the hard men in the blue knickers and red fezzes. who followed the Prophet and would loot the holiest of temples with as little emotion as they would a sheep-pen, who marched to the loaded gun muzzle with no emotion, save when a chicken came in view behind it. So the expedition clambered up into the forest and tentatively sat down, while the way back was still open, to see whether the tribes would stand by ancient customs and usages, or respond to the cry for reform. it was one thing to march an avenging force, with the full approval of the countryside, against a common enemy, and another to force a way through a swarm of fanatical savages, defending a religion, and versed, none better, in the art of ambush; and though the result in either case would be the same, yet the Governor had his misgivings as he sat that first night in the forest. The countryside once aflame, none could tell where the blaze would stop; and an appeal for white troops might imperil a K.C. M.G. already overdue.

But he need not have feared, and probably the Big Fetish itself had no doubts whatever on the subject. it well knew how rotten it was internally, and that with the coming of the white man its days were numbered. its richness and power would only attract its enemies. Though amongst its adherents were many great and powerful men. they were few by comparison, and could not carry the people with them. The news of the advance struck more than terror into its misguided priests. No one was allowed to ascend the hill, which became the

LlVlNG AGE. VOL. XLI. 2150

scene of ghastly ceremonies and dreadful ritual; and what frantic appeals were made to the powers of darkness, and what sacrifices were offered while events still pended, were never known. For though they knew, must have known, since they themselves pulled the strings, that the whole system was a fraud, nevertheless by dint of long practice of the fraud, and the unquestioning faith of those on whom they practised, they had to a great extent become deceived by their own deception, and hoped and almost believed that the gods they knew to be falsa would come to their aid.

With the first streak of dawn, then, there came a beating of drums out of a gorge behind the camp, and the Governor's anxieties were dispelled. The countryside rose to his summons. For one man who had obtained his desire a dozen had nursed a sullen enmity. Those wedded to women who had not been up the hill joined with those who had been plundered in the matter of offerings; those who had, as they considered, given too much for some special beauty and those who had missed the one they desired, made common cause. Rival Fetishes again lifted their heads, and, above all, there was the hope of digging fingers into the money-bags to the filling of which all had contributed. The people threw the Big Fetish of Krobo Hill over with a haste most indecent, and the kings hurried to the Government's aid hot foot. Thenceforward throughout that and the two following days the native allies came {touring in. greedy for plunder, until the Governor had to send messengers out to explain that no more would be needed, and in truth that there was scarcely food enough for those who had already assembled. And the first of all to arrive with much pomp was the King of Creppi himself and his one-eyed ambassador, whom when he saw, Cudjoe would have fled from if his guards had not held him; but who was publicly turned away from the camp in full palaver with lgnonlmy by the Governor, and the contemptuous rejection of this powerful man struck further dread into the Fetish and encouraged the spirit of its former servants.

But the inhabitants of these villages who sat under the immediate shadow and protection of the gods were in a special plight. Subject to the threats and influences of the priests, hated by their neighbors, afraid to seek the protection of the Government, and not knowing to what extent they would be held responsible for the Fetish's doings, they had nowhere to go, so they gathered in under the shadow of their threatened gods. Humble and panic-stricken they sat at the base of the mountain, hoping at the best to escape utter destruction by the lightnings of the outraged gods or the death-dealing guns of the white men.

The day before the advance a grand review of all arms was held in the forest. The Hausas with their guu formed up. and in front of them the auxiliaries marched past. And never were any seven thousand men more oddly arrayed and curiously armed. Each contingent marched behind its king, who, clad for the occasion in all his golden ornaments and finery, and reclining in his state litter borne on the heads of his bearers, bowed and swung as he passed before the Governor. Many of them, hailing from the auriferous portions of the country, were, with their litters and personal paraphernalia, one mass of gleaming golden ornaments; and as the object of the expedition was to show the white man's power over the Fetish, so every king, unconscious of irony, brought his own Fetish with him for protection.

The men-at-arms, carrying flintlocks, cutlasses, and quarter-staves.

swung along with their bauds of drummers, blowers upon elephant horns, and beaters of jingles, singing and shouting their prowess, followed by their women and children who marched with them shrieking applause. Lastly came an interminable line of carriers bearing water-pots, cookingpots, stools, and all kinds of household furniture. Cudjoe, watching the review from behind his guards, felt a thrill of pride and responsibility as he saw the pomp and panoply of war, and dimly realized that he was the man who had caused these forces to be set in array, never thinking of the position he was in himself or of the Government's intention towards him, but pleased with the spectacle and charmed with the noise. it was long past dark before the last files had passed, and then the Governor, calling the kings together for the last time, summed up the whole matter and ordered that the advance should be made at daybreak. He had accomplished his purpose in that he had succeeded in arousing the whole countryside, and the fall of the Big Fetish would now be rightly attributed to the united action of an outraged people.

The sun was directly overhead when the Hausa advance-guard passed through the first of the Krobo villages. The streets were deserted and the houses empty. The auxiliaries spread locust-wise over them, but neither there nor in the other villages did even a chicken reward them. Everything had been cleared away and hidden. Compounds and houses were as bare as the sea-beach. But when they debouched from the trees and confronted the hill they saw the people crouching round the hill's foot awaiting whatever fate might befall them. They were quite quiet, but when they saw the soldiers a curious rustle and change seemed to pass over them, for men, women and children shrouded their eyes, drawing their cloths over their beads und shoulders.

But the Governor had no thoughts for such as they—his business lay in another quarter. Immediately the hill was surrounded he. with a strong escort and with Cudjoe as guide, pushed up the steep rough path, the first white man who had ever planted foot on Krobo Hill.

On the supreme summit the path ended at a large fiat stone backed by a high grass hurdle, and he halted for breath. The hilltop burned in the sun. Above the hurdle the tops of the trees of the grove rustled in the breeze, shadowless in the hot glare. Far below the auxiliaries stretched out over the plain, and beyond them again he saw the main body of Kansas and their machine-gun. He saw the sun glint on the bayonet points. Presently he was noticed, and all below stared up at him, his figure outlined sharp against the sky.

The whole scene gave a vague impression of a chapter from the Old Testament, and in furtherance of the fancy he saw, when he turned towards the sea, that a great blackness had risen out of it and was beating thunderstorm-wise towards him. He waited no longer. Krobo Hill was no place to be caught on in a belated tornado, so pushing aside the hurdle he stepped on to the rock dancing-fioor. A band of men sat in a semicircle facing him and stared stolidly at him.

Doubtless it is inevitable and right that such scenes of blood-shed should be swept away, such abodes of darkness be opened to the light, yet it must have dimly occurred to that baud of priests patiently awaiting their fate that something was wrong somewhere,—that it was a strange thing that their religion which had lasted for so long, based on the traditions of unknown and uncounted ancestors, was destined to lte swept off

the face of the earth at the coming of a newer power.

But no negro tries to resist the inevitable, and no such thoughts troubled the Governor.

At a wave of his hand the shivering Cudjoe was led forward, and the Government interpreter, placing his hand on his arm, recited at full length the story of what had happened, and when the recital was finished laid fho skull of the unlucky Koffi on the ground before him.

"Tell the priests," said the Governor, "that that token which admitted this man to the hill has also admitted the Government! Which of these men was the man he had the interview with on that night?"

Cudjoe. his hands shaking so that he seemed to be pointing at every member of the group in turn, at length identified the tall black-bearded priest, and two soldiers at a word from the Governor stepped forward; but before they could lay hands on him the old high-priest, the most dignified figure of all there assembled, rose from his seat in the centre and lifted up his arm for silence. His tall thin frame looked still taller from its long draperies, and his ornaments chinked and shone in the sun.

"Stay!" said he. "Whatever my son has done that l have done. What i have done all these have done. What is known to him is known to us all." And all the priests stood up.

"There are many and dreadful things now sworn against the priests of Krobo Hill." said the Governor, "but the knowledge of the murder of this man Koffl is sworn against one only The punishment for such a deed, if the offender is found guilty, is death. This wretched man Cudjoe has told all that he knows. He goes free, for without him it would not have been known; but he states he asked this man what he could do. and this

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