At length, after a pause, during which he appeared to be thinking deeply, he spoke:
"Incubu, Macumazahn, and Bougwan, brave white men, and my friends; Infadoos, my uncle, and chiefs; my heart is fixed. I will strike at Twala this day, and set my fortunes on the blow, ay, and my life; my life and your lives also. Listen: thus will I strike. Ye see how the hill curves round like the half-moon, and how the plain runs like a green tongue towards us within the curve?"
"Good; it is now midday, and the men eat and rest after the toil of battle. When the sun has turned and travelled a little way towards the dark, let thy regiment, my uncle, advance with one other down to the green tongue. And it shall be that when Twala sees it he shall hurl his force at it to crush it. But the spot is narrow, and the regiments can come against thee one at a time only; so shall they be destroyed one by one, and the eyes of all Twala's army shall be fixed upon a struggle the like of which has not been seen by living man. And with thee, my uncle, shall go Incubu, my friend, that when Twala sees his battle-axe flashing in the first rank of the `Grays' his heart may grow faint. And I will come with the second regiment, that which follows thee, so that if ye are destroyed, as it may happen, there may yet be a king left to fight for; and with me shall come Macumazahn the wise."
"It is well, O King," said Infadoos, apparently contemplating the certainty of the complete annihilation of his regiment with perfect calmness. Truly these Kukuanas are a wonderful people. Death has no terrors for them when it is incurred in the course of duty.
"And while the eyes of the multitude of Twala's regiments are thus fixed upon the fight," went on Ignosi, "behold, one third of the men who are left alive to us" (i.e., about six thousand) "shall creep along the right horn of the hill and fall upon the left flank of Twala's force, and one third shall creep along the left horn and fall upon Twala's right flank. And when I see that the horns are ready to toss Twala, then will I, with the men who are left to me, charge home in Twala's face, and if fortune goes with us the day will be ours, and before Night drives her horses from the mountains to the mountains we shall sit in peace at Loo. And now let us. eat and make ready; and, Infadoos, do thou prepare, that the plan be carried out; and stay, let my white father, Bougwan go with the right horn, that his shining eye may give courage to the men."
The arrangements for the attack thus briefly indicated were set in motion with a rapidity that spoke well for the perfection of the Kukuana military system. Within little more than an hour rations had been served out to the men and devoured, the three divisions were formed, the plan of attack explained to the leaders, and the whole force, with the exception of a guard left with the wounded, now numbering about eighteen thousand men in all, was ready to be put in motion.
Presently Good came up and shook hands with Sir Henry and myself.
"Good-bye, you fellows," he said, "I am off with the right wing, according to orders; and so I have come to shake hands in case we should not meet again, you know," he added, significantly/
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