advocacy of the English. I presume you would not care to go even when released.”
Kulsam did not get angry. “Supposing I do not go,” she said smiling, “would you leave me behind?”
“Are you anxious for that also?” asked Dalani with growing anger.
“Who can say what is written in the book of Fate?” gravely replied Kulsam.
Dalani drew in her eyebrows, and with great vigour raised her small ﬁst aloft. She did not discharge it now but kept it in reserve. Then balancing her clenched fist like a lotus-bud behind her ear, which coming in contact with her black tresses shone like a full-blown ﬂower with the bumble-bee, said with menace in her air——
“Now look here, two days you were sent for by Amyatt—why? Mind you, speak the truth.”
“I have already told you the truth. He wanted to inquire if you felt any inconvenience. Their desire is that so long we are with them, we should live in comfort. Would to God, they do not set us free!”
“Would to God, you meet your end soon!” retorted Dalani raising her ﬁst still higher.
“If the Englishmen set us free,” said Kulsam, “we are sure to fall into the Nawab’s hands. He might pardon you if he likes, but he will never pardon me that is certain. I shouldn’t like to go to him if I could get a home elsewhere.”
Dalani dropped her anger and with a tremulous voice said, “I have no other way. If I should at all die, I would lay down my life at his feet.”
Amyatt meanwhile ordered the sepoys under his command to hold themselves in readiness. “We are not so strong here, wouldn’t it be better to take the boats near the Residency?” suggested Johnson.