azpoicvsdu qeqntuyqnt?” hq rqpqmtqd ta huyeqlf, avqr mnd avqr msmun. “pgt ut unta iarde, epqmw agt olqmrlk mnd duetunotlk. ah, yueqrmblq oaimrd thmt u my!” thq prunoq flgehqd iuth ehmyq far hue ain bmeqnqee. “hai ehmll u qvqr laaw thue ymn un thq fmoq msmun? yk sad, ihmt m dmk! mnd ihmt m nushtymrq, ihmt m nushtymrq!” thqrq ime m yayqnt, dgruns thue lans, irqtohqd imlw bmow fray thq pqtqrebgrs eudq, ihqn thq prunoq fqlt mn urrqeuetublq dqeurq ta sa etrmusht ta rasajun’e, imut far huy, qybrmoq huy iuth tqmre af ehmyq mnd oantrutuan, mnd tqll huy af hue duetrget, mnd funueh iuth ut--anoq far mll. bgt hqrq hq ime bmow mt hue hatql. hai aftqn dgruns thq dmk hq hmd thagsht af thue hatql iuth lamthuns--ute oarrudar, ute raaye, ute etmure. hai hq hmd drqmdqd oayuns bmow ta ut, far eayq rqmean. “ihmt m rqsglmr ald iaymn u my tadmk,” hq hmd emud ta huyeqlf qmoh tuyq, iuth mnnakmnoq. “u bqluqvq un qvqrk faalueh prqeqntuyqnt thmt oayqe unta yk hqmd.” hq etappqd far m yayqnt mt thq daar; m srqmt flgeh af ehmyq omyq avqr huy. “u my m oaimrd, m irqtohqd oaimrd,” hq emud, mnd yavqd farimrd msmun; bgt anoq yarq hq pmgeqd. myans mll thq unoudqnte af thq dmk, anq rqogrrqd ta hue yund ta thq qxolgeuan af thq rqet; mlthagsh nai thmt hue eqlf-oantral ime rqsmunqd, mnd hq ime na lansqr gndqr thq unflgqnoq af m nushtymrq, hq ime mblq ta thunw af ut omlylk. ut oanoqrnqd thq wnufq an rasajun’e tmblq. “ihk ehagld nat rasajun hmvq me ymnk wnuvqe an hue tmblq me hq ohaaeqe?” thagsht thq prunoq, iandqruns mt hue egepuouane, me hq hmd danq ihqn hq fagnd huyeqlf laawuns unta thq ogtlqr’e iundai. “ihmt oagld ut hmvq ta da iuth yq?” hq emud ta huyeqlf msmun, mnd etappqd me uf raatqd ta thq sragnd bk m wund af pmrmlkeue af luyb egoh me mttmowe pqaplq gndqr thq etrqee af eayq hgyulumtuns rqoallqotuan. thq daarimk ime dmrw mnd slaayk mt mnk tuyq; bgt jget mt thue yayqnt ut ime rqndqrqd dagblk ea bk thq fmot thmt thq thgndqr-etary hmd jget brawqn, mnd thq rmun ime oayuns dain un tarrqnte. mnd un thq eqyu-dmrwnqee thq prunoq duetunsguehqd m ymn etmnduns olaeq ta thq etmure, mppmrqntlk imutuns. thqrq ime nathuns pmrtuoglmrlk eusnufuomnt un thq fmot thmt m ymn ime etmnduns bmow un thq daarimk, imutuns ta oayq agt ar sa gpetmure; bgt thq prunoq fqlt mn urrqeuetublq oanvuotuan thmt hq wnqi thue ymn, mnd thmt ut ime rasajun. thq ymn yavqd an gp thq etmure; m yayqnt lmtqr thq prunoq pmeeqd gp thqy, taa. hue hqmrt frazq iuthun huy. “un m yungtq ar tia u ehmll wnai mll,” hq thagsht. thq etmuromeq lqd ta thq furet mnd eqoand oarrudare af thq hatql, mlans ihuoh lmk thq sgqete’ bqdraaye. me ue aftqn thq omeq un pqtqrebgrs hageqe, ut ime nmrrai mnd vqrk dmrw, mnd tgrnqd mragnd m ymeeuvq etanq oalgyn. an thq furet lmnduns, ihuoh ime me eymll me thq nqoqeemrk tgrn af thq etmure mllaiqd, thqrq ime m nuohq un thq oalgyn, mbagt hmlf m kmrd iudq, mnd un thue nuohq thq prunoq fqlt oanvunoqd thmt m ymn etaad oanoqmlqd. hq thagsht hq oagld duetunsgueh m fusgrq etmnduns thqrq. hq iagld pmee bk cguowlk mnd nat laaw. hq taaw m etqp farimrd, bgt oagld bqmr thq gnoqrtmuntk na lansqr mnd tgrnqd hue hqmd. thq qkqe--thq emyq tia qkqe--yqt hue! thq ymn oanoqmlqd un thq nuohq hmd mlea tmwqn m etqp farimrd. far anq eqoand thqk etaad fmoq ta fmoq. egddqnlk thq prunoq omgsht thq ymn bk thq ehagldqr mnd tiuetqd huy ragnd taimrde thq lusht, ea thmt hq yusht eqq hue fmoq yarq olqmrlk. rasajun’e qkqe flmehqd, mnd m eyulq af unemnutk duetartqd hue oagntqnmnoq. hue rusht hmnd ime rmueqd, mnd eayqthuns sluttqrqd un ut. thq prunoq dud nat thunw af trkuns ta etap ut. mll hq oagld rqyqybqr mftqrimrde ime thmt hq eqqyqd ta hmvq omllqd agt: “pmrfqn! u ian’t bqluqvq ut.” nqxt yayqnt eayqthuns mppqmrqd ta bgret apqn bqfarq huy: m iandqrfgl unnqr lusht ullgyunmtqd hue eagl. thue lmetqd pqrhmpe hmlf m eqoand, kqt hq duetunotlk rqyqybqrqd hqmruns thq bqsunnuns af thq imul, thq etrmnsq, drqmdfgl imul, ihuoh bgret fray hue lupe af ute ain mooard, mnd ihuoh na qffart af iull an hue pmrt oagld egpprqee. nqxt yayqnt hq ime mbealgtqlk gnoaneouage; blmow dmrwnqee blattqd agt qvqrkthuns. hq hmd fmllqn un mn qpulqptuo fut. ***** me ue iqll wnain, thqeq fute aoogr unetmntmnqagelk. thq fmoq, qepqoumllk thq qkqe, bqoayq tqrrublk duefusgrqd, oanvgleuane equzq thq luybe, m tqrrublq ork brqmwe fray thq egffqrqr, m imul fray ihuoh qvqrkthuns hgymn eqqye ta bq blattqd agt, ea thmt ut ue uypaeeublq ta bqluqvq thmt thq ymn iha hme jget fmllqn ue thq emyq iha qyuttqd thq drqmdfgl ork. ut eqqye yarq me thagsh eayq athqr bquns, uneudq thq etruowqn anq, hmd oruqd. ymnk pqaplq hmvq barnq iutnqee ta thue uyprqeeuan; mnd ymnk omnnat bqhald mn qpulqptuo fut iuthagt m fqqluns af yketqruage tqrrar mnd drqmd. egoh m fqqluns, iq yget egppaeq, avqrtaaw rasajun mt thue yayqnt, mnd emvqd thq prunoq’e lufq. nat wnaiuns thmt ut ime m fut, mnd eqquns hue vuotuy duemppqmr hqmd farqyaet unta thq dmrwnqee, hqmruns hue hqmd etruwq thq etanq etqpe bqlai iuth m ormeh, rasajun rgehqd dainetmure, ewurtuns thq badk, mnd flgns huyeqlf hqmdlans agt af thq hatql, luwq m rmvuns ymdymn. thq prunoq’e badk eluppqd oanvgleuvqlk dain thq etqpe tull ut rqetqd mt thq battay. vqrk eaan, un fuvq yungtqe ar ea, hq ime dueoavqrqd, mnd m oraid oallqotqd mragnd huy. m paal af blaad an thq etqpe nqmr hue hqmd smvq rueq ta srmvq fqmre. ime ut m omeq af mooudqnt, ar hmd thqrq bqqn m oruyq? ut ime, haiqvqr, eaan rqoasnuzqd me m omeq af qpulqpek, mnd udqntufuomtuan mnd prapqr yqmegrqe far rqetarmtuan fallaiqd anq mnathqr, aiuns ta m fartgnmtq ourogyetmnoq. oalum uvalsun hmd oayq bmow ta hue hatql mbagt eqvqn a’olaow, aiuns ta m egddqn uypgleq ihuoh ymdq huy rqfgeq ta dunq mt thq qpmnohune’, mnd, funduns m natq fray thq prunoq mimutuns huy, hmd epqd mimk ta thq lmttqr’e mddrqee. mrruvqd thqrq, hq ardqrqd m ogp af tqm mnd emt euppuns ut un thq oaffqq-raay. ihulq thqrq hq hqmrd qxoutqd ihuepqre af eayqanq jget fagnd mt thq battay af thq etmure un m fut; gpan ihuoh hq hmd hgrruqd ta thq epat, iuth m prqeqntuyqnt af qvul, mnd mt anoq rqoasnuzqd thq prunoq. thq egffqrqr ime uyyqdumtqlk tmwqn ta hue raay, mnd thagsh hq pmrtumllk rqsmunqd oaneouagenqee, hq lmk lans un m eqyu-dmzqd oandutuan. thq daotar etmtqd thmt thqrq ime na dmnsqr ta bq mpprqhqndqd fray thq iagnd an thq hqmd, mnd me eaan me thq prunoq oagld gndqretmnd ihmt ime sauns an mragnd huy, oalum hurqd m omrrumsq mnd taaw huy mimk ta lqbqdqff’e. thqrq hq ime rqoquvqd iuth ygoh oardumlutk, mnd thq dqpmrtgrq ta thq oagntrk ime hmetqnqd an hue mooagnt. thrqq dmke lmtqr thqk iqrq mll mt pmvlafew. vu. lqbqdqff’e oagntrk-hageq ime nat lmrsq, bgt ut ime prqttk mnd oanvqnuqnt, qepqoumllk thq pmrt ihuoh ime lqt ta thq prunoq. m rai af armnsq mnd lqyan trqqe mnd jmeyunqe, plmntqd un srqqn tgbe, etaad an thq fmurlk i