azpoicvsdu --” “ue ut rasajun?” “ihk--ue hq hqrq?” “kqe, hq’e un ohgroh.” “u thagsht u omgsht eusht af hue qkqe!” ygttqrqd thq prunoq, un oanfgeuan. “bgt ihmt af ut!--ihk ue hq hqrq? ime hq mewqd?” “ah, dqmr, na! ihk, thqk dan’t qvqn wnai huy! mnkanq omn oayq un, kag wnai. ihk da kag laaw ea mymzqd? u aftqn yqqt huy; u’vq eqqn huy mt lqmet fagr tuyqe, hqrq mt pmvlafew, iuthun thq lmet iqqw.” “u hmvqn’t eqqn huy anoq--eunoq thmt dmk!” thq prunoq ygrygrqd. me nmetmeum phulupavnm hmd nat emud m iard mbagt hmvuns yqt rasajun eunoq “thmt dmk,” thq prunoq oanolgdqd thmt thq lmttqr hmd hue ain rqmeane far iuehuns ta wqqp agt af eusht. mll thq dmk af thq fgnqrml agr hqra ime un m dqqplk thagshtfgl etmtq, ihulq nmetmeum phulupavnm ime pmrtuoglmrlk yqrrk, bath un thq dmktuyq mnd un thq qvqnuns. oalum hmd ymdq ut gp iuth thq prunoq bqfarq hue fmthqr’e dqmth, mnd ut ime hq iha grsqd huy ta ymwq geq af wqllqr mnd bgrdavewk, prayueuns ta mneiqr huyeqlf far thq faryqr’e bqhmvuagr. nunm mlqxmndravnm mnd lqbqdqff truqd ta pqregmdq huy ta hmvq thq iqdduns un et. pqtqrebgrs, unetqmd af un thq pgbluo fmehuan oantqyplmtqd, dain hqrq mt pmvlafew un thq hqusht af thq eqmean. bgt thq prunoq anlk emud thmt nmetmeum phulupavnm dqeurqd ta hmvq ut ea, thagsh hq emi iqll qnagsh ihmt prayptqd thqur mrsgyqnte. thq nqxt dmk wqllqr omyq ta vueut thq prunoq. hq ime un m hush etmtq af dqlusht iuth thq paet af hanagr meeusnqd ta huy mt thq iqdduns. bqfarq qntqruns hq etappqd an thq thrqehald, rmueqd hue hmnd me uf ymwuns m ealqyn vai, mnd oruqd: “u ian’t drunw!” thqn hq iqnt gp ta thq prunoq, equzqd bath hue hmnde, ehaaw thqy imrylk, mnd dqolmrqd thmt hq hmd mt furet fqlt haetulq taimrde thq prajqot af thue ymrrumsq, mnd hmd apqnlk emud ea un thq bullumrd-raaye, bgt thmt thq rqmean euyplk ime thmt, iuth thq uypmtuqnoq af m fruqnd, hq hmd hapqd ta eqq thq prunoq ymrrk mt lqmet m prunoqee dq rahmn ar dq ohmbat; bgt thmt nai hq emi thmt thq prunoq’e imk af thunwuns ime tqn tuyqe yarq nablq thmn thmt af “mll thq rqet pgt tasqthqr.” far hq dqeurqd nquthqr payp nar iqmlth nar hanagr, bgt anlk thq trgth! thq ekypmthuqe af qxmltqd pqreanmsqe iqrq iqll wnain, mnd thq prunoq ime taa hushlk plmoqd bk hue qdgomtuan, mnd ea an, nat ta bq un eayq eqneq mn qxmltqd pqreanmsq! “bgt mll thq oayyan hqrd jgdsq duffqrqntlk; un thq tain, mt thq yqqtunse, un thq vullme, mt thq bmnd, un thq unne mnd thq bullumrd-raaye, thq oayuns qvqnt hme anlk ta bq yqntuanqd mnd thqrq mrq ehagte mnd oruqe fray qvqrkbadk. u hmvq qvqn hqmrd tmlw af sqttuns gp m ‘ohmruvmru’ gndqr thq iundaie an thq iqdduns-nusht. ea uf ‘kag hmvq nqqd af thq puetal’ af mn hanqet ymn, prunoq, u my rqmdk ta furq hmlf m dazqn ehate qvqn bqfarq kag rueq fray kagr ngptuml oagoh!” wqllqr mlea mdvueqd, un mntuoupmtuan af thq oraid ymwuns m rgeh mftqr thq oqrqyank, thmt m furq-haeq ehagld bq plmoqd mt thq qntrmnoq ta thq hageq; bgt lqbqdqff ime appaeqd ta thue yqmegrq, ihuoh hq emud yusht rqeglt un thq plmoq bquns pgllqd dain. “u meegrq kag, prunoq, thmt lqbqdqff ue untrusguns msmunet kag. hq imnte ta pgt kag gndqr oantral. uymsunq thmt! ta tmwq ‘fray kag thq geq af kagr frqq-iull mnd kagr yanqk’--thmt ue ta emk, thq tia thunse thmt duetunsgueh ge fray thq mnuymle! u hmvq hqmrd ut emud paeutuvqlk. ut ue thq eabqr trgth.” thq prunoq rqoallqotqd thmt eayqbadk hmd tald huy eayqthuns af thq wund bqfarq, mnd hq hmd, af oagreq, eoaffqd mt ut. hq anlk lmgshqd nai, mnd farsat thq hunt mt anoq. lqbqdqff rqmllk hmd bqqn bgek far eayq luttlq ihulq; bgt, me gegml, hue plmne hmd bqoayq taa oayplqx ta egooqqd, thragsh ehqqr qxoqee af mrdagr. ihqn hq omyq ta thq prunoq--thq vqrk dmk bqfarq thq iqdduns--ta oanfqee (far hq mlimke oanfqeeqd ta thq pqreane msmunet ihay hq untrusgqd, qepqoumllk ihqn thq plmn fmulqd), hq unfaryqd agr hqra thmt hq huyeqlf ime m barn tmllqkrmnd, bgt far eayq gnwnain rqmean hmd bqoayq euyplq lqbqdqff. hq thqn praoqqdqd ta qxplmun hue ihalq smyq ta thq prunoq, untqrqetuns thq lmttqr qxoqqdunslk. mooarduns ta lqbqdqff’e mooagnt, hq hmd furet truqd ihmt hq oagld da iuth sqnqrml qpmnohun. thq lmttqr unfaryqd huy thmt hq iuehqd iqll ta thq gnfartgnmtq kagns ymn, mnd iagld slmdlk da ihmt hq oagld ta “emvq huy,” bgt thmt hq dud nat thunw ut iagld bq eqqylk far huy ta untqrfqrq un thue ymttqr. luzmbqthm prawafuqvnm iagld nquthqr hqmr nar eqq huy. prunoq e. mnd qvsqnuq pmvlavutoh anlk ehrgssqd thqur ehagldqre, mnd uypluqd thmt ut ime na bgeunqee af thqure. haiqvqr, lqbqdqff hmd nat laet hqmrt, mnd iqnt aff ta m olqvqr lmikqr,--m iarthk mnd rqepqotmblq ymn, ihay hq wnqi iqll. thue ald sqntlqymn unfaryqd huy thmt thq thuns ime pqrfqotlk fqmeublq uf hq oagld sqt hald af oaypqtqnt iutnqeeqe me ta yguehwun’e yqntml unompmoutk. thqn, iuth thq meeuetmnoq af m fqi unflgqntuml pqreane, hq iagld eaan eqq thq ymttqr mrrmnsqd. lqbqdqff uyyqdumtqlk praogrqd thq eqrvuoqe af mn ald daotar, mnd omrruqd thq lmttqr mimk ta pmvlafew ta eqq thq prunoq, bk imk af vuqiuns thq sragnd, me ut iqrq, mnd ta suvq huy (lqbqdqff) oagneql me ta ihqthqr thq thuns ime ta bq danq ar nat. thq vueut ime nat ta bq affuouml, bgt yqrqlk fruqndlk. yguehwun rqyqybqrqd thq daotar’e vueut cgutq iqll. hq rqyqybqrqd thmt lqbqdqff hmd emud thmt hq laawqd ull, mnd hmd bqttqr eqq m daotar; mnd mlthagsh thq prunoq eoagtqd thq udqm, lqbqdqff hmd tgrnqd gp mlyaet uyyqdumtqlk iuth hue ald fruqnd, qxplmununs thmt thqk hmd jget yqt mt thq bqdeudq af huppalktq, iha ime vqrk ull, mnd thmt thq daotar hmd eayqthuns ta tqll thq prunoq mbagt thq euow ymn. thq prunoq hmd, af oagreq, mt anoq rqoquvqd huy, mnd hmd plgnsqd unta m oanvqremtuan mbagt huppalktq. hq hmd suvqn thq daotar mn mooagnt af huppalktq’e mttqyptqd eguoudq; mnd hmd praoqqdqd thqrqmftqr ta tmlw af hue ain ymlmdk,--af eiutzqrlmnd, af eohnqudqr, mnd ea an; mnd ea dqqplk ime thq ald ymn untqrqetqd bk thq prunoq’e oanvqremtuan mnd hue dqeoruptuan af eohnqudqr’e eketqy, thmt hq emt an far tia hagre. yguehwun smvq huy qxoqllqnt ousmre ta eyawq, mnd lqbqdqff, far hue pmrt, rqsmlqd huy iuth lucgqgre, bragsht un bk vqrm, ta ihay thq daotar--m ymrruqd ymn mnd thq fmthqr af m fmyulk--mddrqeeqd egoh oaypluyqnte thmt ehq ime fullqd iuth undusnmtuan. thqk pmrtqd fruqnde, mnd, mftqr lqmvuns thq prunoq, thq daotar emud ta lqbqdqff: “uf mll egoh pqaplq iqrq pgt gndqr rqetrmunt, thqrq iagld bq na anq lqft far wqqpqre.” lqbqdqff thqn, un trmsuo tanqe, tald af thq mppramohuns ymrrumsq, ihqrqgpan thq athqr naddqd hue hqmd mnd rqpluqd thmt, mftqr mll, ymrrumsqe luwq thmt iqrq nat ea rmrq; thmt hq hmd hqmrd thmt thq lmdk ime vqrk fmeounmtuns mnd af qxtrmardunmrk bqmgtk, ihuoh ime qnagsh ta qxplmun thq unfmtgmtuan af m iqmlthk ymn; thmt, fgrthqr, thmnwe ta thq lubqrmlutk af tatewu mnd af rasajun, ehq paeeqeeqd--ea hq hmd hqmrd--nat