had attacked the English boats. Therefore if he released the Begum there would be no further difﬁculty. He made up his mind to leave Dalani on the shore.
“Do you see that small boat coming in our rear?” faltered Foster as he drew Dalani’s attention to it.
“Yes, I do,” answered Dalani.
“That is a boat belonging to your people, and it is coming to your rescue,” said Foster.
Had Foster really any ground for thinking so? His diseased imagination was the only ground. He mistook a piece of rope for a snake. If Dalani had carefully thought over the matter she would have at once found reason for doubt. But the mere mention of the coveted thing is enough to make one lose his head, and blinded hope is reason defeated. Duped by hope, Dalani readily fell in with the idea and said :
“If that be so, then why don’t you transfer us to that boat, we will give you plenty of money.”
“I cannot do that,” said Foster, “if they once capture my boat, they are sure to kill me.”
“I will stop them,” said Dalani.
“They would not listen to you. The people of your country have no respect for a lady’s request,” said Foster.
In her eagerness, Dalani lost her reason. She never thought of untoward possibilities; she never thought what she would do if the vessel turned out to be a private boat. That it might not belong to the Nawab’s Government, never struck her mind. Her impatience stranded her in a dangerous situation and she said, “In that case you can drop us on the shore and then follow your way.”
Foster joyfully agreed to the proposal and ordered the boat to pull for the shore.