rash exploit had been accomplished; and for an hour Passepartout laughed
gaily at his success. Sir Francis pressed the worthy fellow's hand, and
his master said, "Well done!" which, from him, was high commendation; to
which Passepartout replied that all the credit of the affair belonged to
Mr. Fogg. As for him, he had only been struck with a "queer" idea; and
he laughed to think that for a few moments he, Passepartout, the ex-gymnast,
ex-sergeant fireman, had been the spouse of a charming woman, a venerable,
embalmed rajah! As for the young Indian woman, she had been unconscious
throughout of what was passing, and now, wrapped up in a travelling-blanket,
was reposing in one of the howdahs.
thanks to the skilful guidance of the Parsee, was advancing rapidly through
the still darksome forest, and, an hour after leaving the pagoda, had crossed
a vast plain. They made a halt at seven o'clock, the young woman being
still in a state of complete prostration. The guide made her drink a little
brandy and water, but the drowsiness which stupefied her could not yet
be shaken off. Sir Francis, who was familiar with the effects of the intoxication
produced by the fumes of hemp, reassured his companions on her account.
But he was more disturbed at the prospect of her future fate. He told Phileas
Fogg that, should Aouda remain in India, she would inevitably fall again
into the hands of her executioners. These fanatics were scattered throughout
the county, and would, despite the English police, recover their victim
at Madras, Bombay, or Calcutta. She would only be safe by quitting India
Fogg replied that he would reflect upon the matter.
at Allahabad was reached about ten o'clock, and, the interrupted line of
railway being resumed, would enable them to reach Calcutta in less than
twenty-four hours. Phileas Fogg would thus be able to arrive in time to
take the steamer which left Calcutta the next day, October 25th, at noon,
for Hong Kong.
woman was placed in one of the waiting-rooms of the station, whilst Passepartout
was charged with purchasing for her various articles of toilet, a dress,
shawl, and some furs; for which his master gave him unlimited credit. Passepartout
started off forthwith, and found himself in the streets of Allahabad, that
is, the City of God, one of the most venerated in India, being built at
the junction of the two sacred rivers, Ganges and Jumna, the waters of
which attract pilgrims from every part of the peninsula. The Ganges, according
to the legends of the Ramayana, rises in heaven, whence, owing to Brahma's
agency, it descends to the earth.
made it a point, as he made his purchases, to take a good look at the city.
It was formerly defended by a noble fort, which has since become a state
prison; its commerce has dwindled away, and Passepartout in vain looked
about him for such a bazaar as he used to frequent in Regent Street. At
last he came upon an elderly, crusty Jew, who sold second-hand articles,
and from whom he purchased a dress of Scotch stuff, a large mantle, and
a fine otter-skin pelisse, for which he did not hesitate to pay seventy-five
pounds. He then returned triumphantly to the station.
to which the priests of Pillaji had subjected Aouda began gradually to
yield, and she became more herself, so that her fine eyes resumed all their
soft Indian expression.
poet-king, Ucaf Uddaul, celebrates the charms of the queen of Ahmehnagara,
he speaks thus:
tresses, divided in two parts, encircle the harmonious contour of her white
and delicate cheeks, brilliant in their glow and freshness. Her ebony brows
have the form and charm of the bow of Kama, the god of love, and beneath
her long silken lashes the purest reflections and a celestial light swim,
as in the sacred lakes of Himalaya, in the black pupils of her great clear
eyes. Her teeth, fine, equal, and white, glitter between her smiling lips
like dewdrops in a passion-flower's half-enveloped breast. Her delicately
formed ears, her vermilion hands, her little feet, curved and tender as
the lotus-bud, glitter with the brilliancy of the loveliest pearls of Ceylon,
the most dazzling diamonds of Golconda. Her narrow and supple waist, which
a hand may clasp around, sets forth the outline of her rounded figure and
the beauty of her bosom, where youth in its flower displays the wealth
of its treasures; and beneath the silken folds of her tunic she seems to
have been modelled in pure silver by the godlike hand of Vicvarcarma, the
enough to say, without applying this poetical rhapsody to Aouda, that she
was a charming woman, in all the European acceptation of the phrase. She
spoke English with great purity, and the guide had not exaggerated in saying
that the young Parsee had been transformed by her bringing up.
was about to start from Allahabad, and Mr. Fogg proceeded to pay the guide
the price agreed upon for his service, and not a farthing more; which astonished
Passepartout, who remembered all that his master owed to the guide's devotion.
He had, indeed, risked his life in the adventure at Pillaji, and, if he
should be caught afterwards by the Indians, he would with difficulty escape
their vengeance. Kiouni, also, must be disposed of. What should be done
with the elephant, which had been so dearly purchased? Phileas Fogg had
already determined this question.
said he to the guide, "you have been serviceable and devoted. I have paid
for your service, but not for your devotion. Would you like to have this
elephant? He is yours."
honour is giving me a fortune!" cried he.
him, guide," returned Mr. Fogg, "and I shall still be your debtor."
exclaimed Passepartout. "Take him, friend. Kiouni is a brave and faithful
beast." And, going up to the elephant, he gave him several lumps of sugar,
saying, "Here, Kiouni, here, here."
grunted out his satisfaction, and, clasping Passepartout around the waist
with his trunk, lifted him as high as his head. Passepartout, not in the
least alarmed, caressed the animal, which replaced him gently on the ground.
Phileas Fogg, Sir Francis Cromarty, and Passepartout, installed in a carriage
with Aouda, who had the best seat, were whirling at full speed towards
Benares. It was a run of eighty miles, and was accomplished in two hours.
During the journey, the young woman fully recovered her senses. What was
her astonishment to find herself in this carriage, on the railway, dressed
in European habiliments, and with travellers who were quite strangers to
her! Her companions first set about fully reviving her with a little liquor,
and then Sir Francis narrated to her what had passed, dwelling upon the
courage with which Phileas Fogg had not hesitated to risk his life to save
her, and recounting the happy sequel of the venture, the result of Passepartout's
rash idea. Mr. Fogg said nothing; while Passepartout, abashed, kept repeating
that "it wasn't worth telling."
pathetically thanked her deliverers, rather with tears than words; her
fine eyes interpreted her gratitude better than her lips. Then, as her
thoughts strayed back to the scene of the sacrifice, and recalled the dangers
which still menaced her, she shuddered with terror.
Fogg understood what was passing in Aouda's mind, and offered, in order
to reassure her, to escort her to Hong Kong, where she might remain safely
until the affair was hushed up—an offer which she eagerly and gratefully
accepted. She had, it seems, a Parsee relation, who was one of the principal
merchants of Hong Kong, which is wholly an English city, though on an island
on the Chinese coast.
twelve the train stopped at Benares. The Brahmin legends assert that this
city is built on the site of the ancient Casi, which, like Mahomet's tomb,
was once suspended between heaven and earth; though the Benares of to-day,
which the Orientalists call the Athens of India, stands quite unpoetically
on the solid earth, Passepartout caught glimpses of its brick houses and
clay huts, giving an aspect of desolation to the place, as the train entered
was Sir Francis Cromarty's destination, the troops he was rejoining being
encamped some miles northward of the city. He bade adieu to Phileas Fogg,
wishing him all success, and expressing the hope that he would come that
way again in a less original but more profitable fashion. Mr. Fogg lightly
pressed him by the hand. The parting of Aouda, who did not forget what
she owed to Sir Francis, betrayed more warmth; and, as for Passepartout,
he received a hearty shake of the hand from the gallant general.
on leaving Benares, passed for a while along the valley of the Ganges.
Through the windows of their carriage the travellers had glimpses of the
diversified landscape of Behar, with its mountains clothed in verdure,
its fields of barley, wheat, and corn, its jungles peopled with green alligators,
its neat villages, and its still thickly-leaved forests. Elephants were
bathing in the waters of the sacred river, and groups of Indians, despite
the advanced season and chilly air, were performing solemnly their pious
ablutions. These were fervent Brahmins, the bitterest foes of Buddhism,
their deities being Vishnu, the solar god, Shiva, the divine impersonation
of natural forces, and Brahma, the supreme ruler of priests and legislators.
What would these divinities think of India, anglicised as it is to-day,
with steamers whistling and scudding along the Ganges, frightening the
gulls which float upon its surface, the turtles swarming along its banks,
and the faithful dwelling upon its borders?
passed before their eyes like a flash, save when the steam concealed it
fitfully from the view; the travellers could scarcely discern the fort
of Chupenie, twenty miles south-westward from Benares, the ancient stronghold
of the rajahs of Behar; or Ghazipur and its famous rose-water factories;
or the tomb of Lord Cornwallis, rising on the left bank of the Ganges;
the fortified town of Buxar, or Patna, a large manufacturing and trading-place,
where is held the principal opium market of India; or Monghir, a more than
European town, for it is as English as Manchester or Birmingham, with its
iron foundries, edgetool factories, and high chimneys puffing clouds of
black smoke heavenward.
came on; the train passed on at full speed, in the midst of the roaring
of the tigers, bears, and wolves which fled before the locomotive; and
the marvels of Bengal, Golconda ruined Gour, Murshedabad, the ancient capital,
Burdwan, Hugly, and the French town of Chandernagor, where Passepartout
would have been proud to see his country's flag flying, were hidden from
their view in the darkness.
was reached at seven in the morning, and the packet left for Hong Kong
at noon; so that Phileas Fogg had five hours before him.
to his journal, he was due at Calcutta on the 25th of October, and that
was the exact date of his actual arrival. He was therefore neither behind-hand
nor ahead of time. The two days gained between London and Bombay had been
lost, as has been seen, in the journey across India. But it is not to be
supposed that Phileas Fogg regretted them.