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CHANDRASHEKHAR.

“Not for a single day did she eat my food or food touched hy me,” said Foster in a tone of regret. “She used to cook her own food.”

“What did she cook?” came a further question.

“Only rice,” answered Foster, “she never took anything with it except milk.”

“Did she drink water?” came a question again.

“Yes she did, but she used to draw it herself from the Ganges,” said Foster.

At this time there was a sudden sound——“boom, boom, boom.”

“What is that?” enquired the Nawab.

“What else but the English guns,” said Irfan in a melancholy tone. The English have attacked the camp.”

Suddenly people began to rush out of the tent. Again the cannon roared “boom, boom, boom.” Again and again many guns pealed together. The terrific din leapt forward in hounds. The martial music struck up and a universal huhbub filled the place. The tramp of horses, the clangour of arms, the victorious shouts of an exultant soldiery, together roared like ocean billows and a cloud of smoke covered the skies and filled the horizon. It seemed as if an unsuspecting sleeper suddenly found himself surrounded hy an angry sea with its heaving and tumultuous waters.

At once the Nawab’s ministers and servants hustled out of the camp, some to battle, some to flight. Kulsam, Chandrashekhar and Shaibalini also went out. Only the Nawab and the captive Taqui remained inside. Cannon-balls began to fall into the tent. Then the Nawab unsheathed his sword from his belt and drove it home into Taqui’s bosom. Thus did Taqui meet his end. The Nawab then went out of the tent.