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《黎明踏浪号》第4章:凯斯宾巧施奇记

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Nert morning the Lord Bern called his guests early, and after breakfast he asked Caspian to order every man he had into full armour. "And above all," he added, "let everything be as trim and scoured as if it were the morning of the first battle in a great war between noble kings with all the world looking on." This was done; and then in three boatloads Caspian and his people, and Bern with a few of his, put out for Narrowhaven. The king's flag flew in the stern of his boat and his trumpeter was with him.第二天早上伯恩爵爷一早就来拜客。早餐后他要求凯斯斯宾下令所有的手下都披胃挂甲。"最重要的是,"他加上一句说,"把一切都弄得整整齐齐,擦得干干净净,仿佛今天早上是尊贵的国王之间当着天下人的面进行大战的头一场战役似的。"这事办好后,凯斯宾和他的手下,伯恩和他几个手下就分成三船,向狭港进发。国王的旗帜在船尾飘扬,他还随带号手。
When they reached the jetty at Narrowhaven, Caspian found a considerable crowd assembled to meet them. "This is what I sent word about last night," said Bern. "They are all friends of mine and honest people." And as soon as Caspian stepped ashore the crowd broke out into hurrahs and shouts of, "Narnia! Narnia! Long live the King." At the same moment - and this was also due to Bern's messengers - bells began ringing from many parts of the town. Then Caspian caused his banner to be advanced and his trumpet to be blown and every man drew his sword and set his face into a joyful sternness, and they marched up the street so that the street shook, and their armour shone (for it was a sunny morning) so that one could hardly look at it steadily.他们到达狭港码头时,凯斯宾看见有一大批群众聚集在那儿欢迎他们。"这就是我昨晚传话吩咐准备的,"伯恩说,
At first the only people who cheered were those who had been warned by Bern's messenger and knew what was happening and wanted it to happen. But then all the children joined in because they liked a procession and had seen very few. And then all the schoolboys joined in because they also liked processions and felt that the more noise and disturbance there was the less likely they would be to have any school that morning. And then all the old women put their heads out of doors and windows and began chattering and cheering because it was a king, and what is a governor compared with that? And all the young women joined in for the same reason and also because Caspian and Drinian and the rest were so handsome. And then all the young men came to see what the young women were looking at, so that by the time Caspian reached the castle gates, nearly the whole town was shouting; and where Gumpas sat in the castle, muddling and messing about with accounts and forms and rules and regulations, he heard the noise."他们全是我的朋友,本分人。"凯斯宾一上岸,群众就高声欢呼"纳尼亚!纳尼亚!国王万岁!"同时——这也全靠伯恩的信使的安排——镇上许多地方都钟声齐鸣。于是凯斯宾传令旗手开道,号角吹响,人人都刀剑出鞘,摆出一副欣喜的严肃神情。他们在街上齐步行进,街面都震动了,因为这天早上阳光普照,甲胄都闪闪发亮,亮得人们简直没法一直盯着。
At the castle gate Caspian's trumpeter blew a blast and cried, "Open for the King of Narnia, come to visit his trusty and wellbeloved servant the governor of the Lone Islands." In those days everything in the islands was done in a slovenly, slouching manner. Only the little postern opened, and out came a tousled fellow with a dirty old hat on his head instead of a helmet, and a rusty old pike in his hand. He blinked at the flashing figures before him. "Carn - seez - fishansy," he mumbled which was his way of saying, -"You can't see his Sufficiency"). "No interviews without 'pointments 'cept 'tween nine 'n' ten p.m. second Saturday every month."开头欢呼的只是伯恩的信使预先告知的人,他们都知道眼前情况,也巴不得有这么一天。可后来所有的儿童都加入了游行队伍,因为他们喜欢游行,这种场面又很少见过。再后来所有的学生也加入了,因为他们也喜欢游行,而且觉得那天早上外面越闹越乱,学校里越不见得会上课。再后来,老大娘都从门窗口探出头来,开始唠唠叨叨,高声欢呼了,因为这究竟是国王呢,总督哪儿比得上啊?接着所有的年轻妇女出于同样原因,也来凑热闹了,再一个原因是凯斯宾和德里宁及其他人都非常英俊。到后来所有的年轻男人也都来看看年轻妇女到底在看些什么,所以凯斯宾到达城堡大门时,几乎全城的人都在大声欢呼;冈帕斯坐在城堡里,正胡乱摆弄着一串账日、表格和条条杠杠,听到了闹声。
"Uncover before Narnia, you dog," thundered the Lord Bern, and dealt him a rap with his gauntleted hand which sent his hat flying from his head.凯斯宾的号手在城堡大门口吹响号角,大声叫道"为纳尼亚国王打开城门吧,国王来看望他忠诚可靠而受人尊敬的臣仆,孤独群岛总督了。"那年月岛上一切事物都是邋邋遢遢,懒懒散散,城门只打开小暗门,出来一个蓬头乱发,没戴头盔,只戴顶肮脏的旧帽子的家伙,手里还拿着一根生锈的旧长矛。他对着面前这些浑身金光闪闪的人直眨眼。
"'Ere? Wot's it all about?" began the doorkeeper, but no one took any notice of him. Two of Caspian's men stepped through the postern and after some struggling with bars and bolts (for everything was rusty) flung both wings of the gate wide open. Then the King and his followers strode into the courtyard. Here a number of the governor's guards were lounging about and several more (they were mostly wiping their mouths) came tumbling out of various doorways. Though their armour was in a disgraceful condition, these were fellows who might have fought if they had been led or had known what was happening; so this was the dangerous moment. Caspian gave them no time to think."带——轮——八——箭,"他咕咕哝吨说(这就是他说'‘大人不见"的腔调),”没约好一律不见,只有每个月第二个星期六晚上九点到十点才接见。"
"Where is the captain?" he asked."你这走狗,当着纳尼亚国王的面,还不快脱帽I"伯恩爵爷声如响雷吼道,一边用戴着铁护手的手打了他一巴掌,把他头上帽子也打飞了。
"I am, more or less, if you know what I mean," said a languid and rather dandified young person without any j armour at all."呢?这是咋回事?"看门人开口说,可是没人理会他。
"It is our wish," said Caspian, "that our royal visitation to our realm of the Lone Islands should, if possible, be an occasion of joy and not of terror to our loyal subjects. If it were not for that, I should have something to say about the state of your men's armour and weapons. As it is, you are pardoned. Command a cask of wine to be opened that, your men may drink our health. But at noon tomorrow I wish to see them here in this courtyard looking like men-at-arms and not like vagabonds. See to it on pain of our extreme displeasure."凯斯宾手下两个人跨过暗门,因为样样东西都生锈了,花了好一番手脚对付门闩才把两扇大门打开。于是国王和随从就大踏步走进院内。总督有不少警卫在院内闲逛,还有一些人跌跌冲冲从各个门口出来,大多数人还一边擦着嘴。虽然他们的盔甲丢人现眼,假如有人带领他们,或者知道眼前情况,倒兴许会打一仗,所以这是个危险时刻。凯斯宾不让他们有工夫多想。
The captain gaped but Bern immediately cried, "Three. cheers for the King," and the soldiers, who had understood about the cask of wine even if they understood nothing else, joined in. Caspian then ordered most of his own men to remain in the courtyard. He, with Bern and Drinian and four others, went into the hall."队长在哪儿?"他问。
Behind a table at the far end with various secretaries about him sat his Sufficiency, the Governor of the Lone Islands. Gumpas was a bilious-looking man with hair that had once been red and was now mostly grey. He glanced up as the strangers entered and then looked down at his papers saying automatically, "No interviews without appointments except between nine and ten p.m. on second Saturdays.""我多少算一个,要是你知道我意思的话。"一个没精打采的年轻人说。他打扮得花里胡哨,身上根本没有盔甲。
Caspian nodded to Bern and then stood aside. Bern and Drinian took a step forward and each seized one end of the table. They lifted it, and flung it on one side of the hall where it rolled over, scattering a cascade of letters, dossiers, ink-pots, pens, sealing-wax and documents. Then, not roughly but as firmly as if their hands were pincers of steel, they plucked Gumpas out of his chair and deposited him, facing it, about four feet away. Caspian at once sat down in the chair and laid his naked sword across his knees."我们希望,"凯斯宾说,"这次御驾亲临我们孤独群岛国土,如有可能,应当成为万民欢庆的节日,不是百姓恐怖的场合。如果不是这个缘故,我对你们兵士盔甲和武器的状况就得批评几句了。但实际上,我赦免你们了。来一桶酒,打开桶让弟兄们为我们祝酒。不过到明天中午,我希望在院内看到他们像战士,而不像流浪汉。违令者一律以触犯王上论罪。""
"My Lord," said he, fixing his eyes on Gumpas, "you have not given us quite the welcome we expected. I am the King of Narnia."队长张口结舌,可是伯恩立刻喊道"三呼国王万岁。"
"Nothing about it in the correspondence," said the governor. "Nothing in the minutes. We have not been notified of any such thing. All irregular. Happy to consider any applications-"那些兵士虽然别的什么都闹不明白,对酒桶是明白的,就一起欢呼了。于是凯斯宾命令手下大部分都留在院子里。他,带着伯恩、德里宁和其他四个走进大厅。'
"And we are come to enquire into your Sufficiency's conduct of your office," continued Caspian. "There are two points especially on which I require an explanation. Firstly I find no record that the tribute due from these Islands to the crown of Narnia has been received for about a hundred and fifty years."大厅那一头的一张桌子后面,坐着孤独群岛总督冈帕斯,周围有各种秘书。冈帕斯看上去是个坏脾气的人,头发原是红的,现在多半灰白了。一行陌生人进去时,他抬眼一看,就又埋头看着文件了,随口不假思索地说"没约好一律不见,只有每个月第二个星期六晚上九点到十点才接见。"
"That would be a question to raise at the Council next month," said Gumpas. "If anyone moves that a commission of enquiry be set up to report on the financial history of the islands at the first meeting next year, why then . . ."凯斯宾对伯恩点点头就站到一边。伯恩和德里宁上前一步,各自抓住桌子一头。他们抬起桌子一扔,桌子就滚到大厅一边了,把信件、档案、墨水缸、笔、封口蜡和公文撒得一地。于是,他们伸出手去,虽然动作不粗野,去口牢如钢钳,一把将冈帕斯从椅子里揪出来,把他揪到椅子前四英尺开外的地方。凯斯宾马上在椅子里坐下,把出鞠的剑横搁在双膝上。
"I also find it very clearly written in our laws," Caspian went on, "that if the tribute is not delivered the whole debt has to be paid by the Governor of the Lone Islands out of his private purse.""阁下,"他两眼盯着冈帕斯说,"你没有像我们预期中那样隆重欢迎我们。我们是纳尼亚的国王。"
At this Gumpas began to pay real attention. "Oh, that's quite out of the question," he said. "It is an economic impossibility - er - your Majesty must be joking.""信函中没提到这事,"总督说,"会议记录里也没有。我们没接到任何这类事的通知。完全不符合法律。凡有任何请求倒乐于考虑……”
Inside, he was wondering if there were any way of getting rid of these unwelcome visitors. Had he known that Caspian had only one ship and one ship's company with him, he would have spoken soft words for the moment, and hoped to have them all surrounded and killed during the night. But he had seen a ship of war sail down the straits yesterday and seen it signalling, as he supposed, to its consorts. He had not then known it was the King's ship for there was not wind enough to spread the flag out and make the golden lion visible, so he had waited further developments. Now he imagined that Caspian had a whole fleet at Bernstead. It would never have occurred to Gumpas that anyone would walk into Narrowhaven to take the islands with less than fifty men; it was certainly not at all the kind of thing he could imagine doing himself."我们前来调查阁下的职责行为,"凯斯宾继续说,"有两点我特别要求作出解释。首先,我在档案中查出纳尼亚国王已有一百五十年没收到这些岛屿的进贡了。"
"Secondly," said Caspian, "I want to know why you have permitted this abominable and unnatural traffic in slaves to grow up here, contrary to the ancient custom and usage of our dominions.""这个问题得在下个月提交议事会讨论,"冈帕斯说,"如果有谁提议成立一个调查委员会,在明年第一次会议上做本岛财政历史的报告,说明为什么当时……”
"Necessary, unavoidable," said his Sufficiency. "An essential part of the economic development of the islands, I assure you. Our present burst of prosperity depends on it.""我还在本国法律上看到里面写得清清楚楚,"凯斯宾接着说,"如果贡品没有及时送到,全部积欠得由孤独群岛总督的私人腰包中支付。"
"What need have you of slaves?"冈帕斯听了这话才真正留起神来。"啊,那可万万办不到,"他说,"经济上负担不起——呃——陛下定在开玩笑吧。"
"For export, your Majesty. Sell 'em to Calormen mostly; and we have other markets. We are a great centre of the trade."其实他心里倒在盘算,不知有什么法子摆脱这些不受欢迎的来客。假如他知道凯斯宾只有一条船,只带了一船人,他早就嘴上暂时先说些软话,暗地里一心想趁夜里把他们全部包围杀光了。不过昨天他看见一条战船顺着海峡开来,还看见船上打信号,他猜想是打给跟从的船的。当时他不知道这就是国王的船,因为风力不够大,旗帜飘不起来,上面的金狮像看不出,所以他就等待事情进一步发展。此刻他想象凯斯宾在伯恩斯丹有整整一支舰队。冈帕斯万万没料到居然有人带了不足五十个人就拿下了这些岛屿;当然这种事根本也不是他能想象自己动手干的。
"In other words," said Caspian, "you don't need them. Tell me what purpose they serve except to put money into the pockets of such as Pug?""其次,"凯斯宾说,"我想要知道,为什么你容许贩卖奴隶这种伤天害理的恶劣勾当在本地滋长,这违背本国领地古时的风俗习惯。"
"Your Majesty's tender years," said Gumpas, with what was meant to be a fatherly smile, "hardly make it possible that you should understand the economic problem involved. I have statistics, I have graphs, I have-""那是出于需要,不能废除的,"总督说,"我向你保证,这是本岛经济发展的命脉。本岛目前的兴衰全靠这买卖。"
"Tender as my years be," said Caspian, "I believe I understand the slave trade from within quite as well as your Sufficiency. And I do not see that it brings into the islands meat or bread or beer or wine or timber or cabbages or books or instruments of music or horses or armour or anything else worth having. But whether it does or not, it must be stopped.""你们需要奴隶干什么?”
"But that would be putting the clock back," gasped the governor. "Have you no idea of progress, of development?""陛下,出口啊。大部分卖给卡乐门;我们还有别的市场,我们是这买卖的一大中心。"
"I have seen them both in an egg," said Caspian. "We call it `Going Bad' in Narnia. This trade must stop.""换句话说,"凯斯宾说,"你不需要他们。你说说看,这些奴隶除了养肥普格这种人之外,还有什么用处?"
"I can take no responsibility for any such measure," said Gumpas."陛下还年轻,"冈帕斯摆出一副父辈的笑容说,"简直无法弄清有关的经济问题。我有统计数字,我有图表,我有…”
"Very well, then," answered Caspian, "we relieve you of your office. My Lord Bern, come here." And before Gumpas quite realized what was happening, Bern was kneeling with his hands between the King's hands and taking the oath to govern the Lone Islands in accordance with the old customs, rights, usages and laws of Narnia. And Caspian said, "I think we have had enough of governors," and made Bern a Duke, the Duke of the Lone Islands."我固然还年轻,"凯斯宾说,"可是我相信,我对奴隶买卖实质的了解同阁下一样清楚。我看这项买卖不见得给本岛带来肉类、面包、啤酒、葡萄酒、木材、白菜、书本、乐器、马匹、盔甲或任何值得一有的东西。不过,不管是否如此,这买卖必须制止。",
"As for you, my Lord," he said to Gumpas, "I forgive you your debt for the tribute. But before noon tomorrow you and yours must be out of the castle, which is now the Duke's residence.""不过,那一来就倒退了,"总督气喘吁吁说,"你不了解什么是进步,什么是发展吗?"
"Look here, this is all very well," said one of Gumpas's secretaries, "but suppose all you gentlemen stop playacting and we do a little business. The question before us really is-""我看到过进步和发展的萌芽状态,"凯斯宾说,"在纳尼亚我们称这为腐败。这项买卖必须制止。"
"The question is," said the Duke, "whether you and the rest of the rabble will leave without a flogging or with one. You may choose which you prefer.""我不能负责采取任何这类措施。"冈帕斯说。
When all this had been pleasantly settled, Caspian ordered horses, of which there were a few in the castle, though very ill-groomed and he, with Bern and Drinian and a few others, rode out into the town and made for the slave market. It was a long low building near the harbour and the scene which they found going on inside was very much like any other auction; that is to say, there was a great crowd and Pug, on a platform, was roaring out in a raucous voice:"那很好,"凯斯宾答,"我们就免你的职。伯恩爵爷,来。"冈帕斯还闹不清是怎么回事,伯恩已经跪下,双手放在国王双手间,宣誓要根据纳尼亚古时的风俗习惯、权利和法律来统治孤独群岛。凯斯宾说"我看,我们无法容忍总督了。"于是当场封伯恩为公爵,孤独群岛公爵。
"Now, gentlemen, lot twenty-three. Fine Terebinthian agricultural labourer, suitable for the mines or the galleys. Under twenty-five years of age. Not a bad tooth in his head. Good, brawny fellow. Take off his shirt, Tacks, and let the gentlemen see. There's muscle for you! Look at the chest on him. Ten crescents from the gentleman in the corner. You must be joking, sir. Fifteen! Eighteen! Eighteen is bidden for lot twenty-three. Any advance on eighteen? Twenty-one. Thank you, sir. Twenty-one is bidden-""至于你嘛,阁下,"他对冈帕斯说,"我原谅你拖欠进贡。不过明天中午前,你和你的全家都必须搬出城堡,这里现在是公爵府了。"
But Pug stopped and gaped when he saw the mail-clad figures who had clanked up to the platform."听我说,"冈帕斯的一个秘书说,"这件事好倒是好,不过如果你们诸位别再装腔作势,我们就来做笔小小的交易。我们面前的问题真是——"
"On your knees, every man of you, to the King of Narnia," said the Duke. Everyone heard the horses jingling and stamping outside and many had heard some rumour of the landing and the events at the castle. Most obeyed. Those who did not were pulled down by their neighbours. Some cheered."问题是,"公爵说,"你和你的余党是不是愿意就此一走了之,还是愿意挨顿鞭打再走。你们可以随意选择。"
"Your life is forfeit, Pug, for laying hands on our royal person yesterday," said Caspian. "But your ignorance is pardoned. The slave trade was forbidden in all our dominions quarter of an hour ago. I declare every slave in this market free."等到这一切都圆满解决,凯斯宾就下令备马,城堡里倒有几匹马,虽然喂养得不好,可是他和伯恩、德里宁,还有三两个人骑上马就进城,直奔奴隶市场。市场是港口附近一排长长的矮房子,他们看到里面的情景跟其他拍卖行都差不多,就是说,里面有一大批人,普格在平台上,沙哑的嗓子大声吼道:
He held up his hand to check the cheering of the slaves and went on, "Where are my friends?""喂,诸位爷们,二十三号货。特里宾西亚的庄稼好手,适合开矿或船上划桨。不到二十五岁。没一只坏牙。这家伙身体健康,肌肉结实。脱掉他衬衫,塔克斯,让诸位爷们看看。好一身肌肉!瞧他胸膛。角落那位爷们出十个月牙。你一定是在开玩笑吧,老爷。十五|十八l出价十八买二十三号。还有谁加价?二十一。谢谢你,老爷。出二十一。
"That dear little gel and the nice young gentleman?" said Pug with an ingratiating smile. "Why, they were snapped up at once-"普格一看见披着铠甲的入咣当咣当走向平台,顿时打住,张口结舌。
"We're here, we're here, Caspian," cried Lucy and Edmund together and, "At your service, Sire," piped Reepicheep from another corner. They had all been sold but the men who had bought them were staying to bid for other slaves and so they had not yet been taken away. The crowd parted to let the three of them out and there was great handclasping and greeting between them and Caspian. Two merchants of Calormen at once approached. The Calormen have dark faces and long beards. They wear flowing robes and orange-coloured turbans, and they are a wise, wealthy, courteous, cruel and ancient people. They bowed most politely to Caspian and paid him long compliments, all about the fountains of prosperity irrigating the gardens of prudence and virtue - and things like that - but of course what they wanted was the money they had paid."你们大家个个都向纳尼亚国王跪下。"公爵说。大家都听到外面马警丁当,蹄声。得嚼,不少人还听到登陆的传说和城堡里出的大事。多数人都听从了。那些不肯听从的都给身边的人拖住跪下了。有几个还欢呼了。;
"That is only fair, sirs," said Caspian. "Every man who has bought a slave today must have his money back. Pug, bring out your takings to the last minim." (A minim is the fortieth part of a crescent.)"普格,为了昨天你抓了我们王室成员,你要偿命,"凯斯宾说,"不过姑且原谅你无知。一刻钟前,本国所有领土也禁止奴隶买卖。我宣布本奴隶市场的每一个奴隶都自由了。"
"Does your good Majesty mean to beggar me?" whined Pug.他举起手制止奴隶的欢呼,接着问"我的朋友们在哪儿?"
"You have lived on broken hearts all your life," said Caspian, "and if you are beggared, it is better to be a beggar than a slave. But where is my other friend?""那个可爱的小妞儿和那个漂亮的小少爷吗?"普格赔着讨好的笑脸说,"哎呀,他们一下子就给人抢着买去了。。
"Oh him?" said Pug. "Oh take him and welcome. Glad to have him off my hands. I've never seen such a drug in the market in all my born days. Priced him at five crescents in the end and even so nobody'd have him. Threw him in free with other lots and still no one would have him. Wouldn't touch him. Wouldn't look at him. 'Packs, bring out Sulky.""我们在这儿呢,我们在这儿呢,凯斯宾!"露茜和爱德蒙一齐叫道。"听候你吩咐,陛下!"雷佩契普从另一个角落里尖声叫道。原来他们都卖掉了,因为买主留下来还想开价再买几个奴隶,所以他们还没给带走。人群分开一条路,让他们三个走出来,他们同凯斯宾顿时紧紧握手,相互问候。
Thus Eustace was produced, and sulky he certainly looked; for though no one would want to be sold as a slave, it is perhaps even more galling to be a sort of utility slave whom no one will buy. He walked up to Caspian and said, "I see. As usual. Been enjoying yourself somewhere while the rest of us were prisoners. I suppose you haven't even found out about the British Consul. Of course not."两个卡乐门商人立刻上前。卡乐门人长着黑脸膛,留着长胡子。他们穿着飘拂的长袍,扎着橙红色头巾,他们是聪明、富裕、谦恭而残忍的古老民族。他们极其恭敬地向凯斯宾鞠躬,对他说了长长一篇恭维话,说的全是什么繁荣昌盛的源泉灌溉贤明和德行的花园——还有类似的话——不过他们的目的当然是想收回付出的那笔钱。
That night they had a great feast in the castle of Narrowhaven and then, "Tomorrow for the beginning of our real adventures!" said Reepicheep when he had made his bows to everyone and went to bed. But it could not really be tomorrow or anything like it. For now they were preparing to leave all known lands and seas behind them and the fullest preparations had to be made. The Dawn Treader was emptied and drawn on land by eight horses over rollers and every bit of her was gone over by the most skilled shipwrights. Then she was launched again and victualled and watered as full as she could hold - that is to say for twenty-eight days. Even this, as Edmund noticed with disappointment, only gave them a fortnight's eastward sailing before they had to abandon their quest."那才公平,先生们,"凯斯宾说,"今天买下奴隶的人个个都必须收回钱。普格,把你捞到手的钱都拿出来,一滴滴都不留。"(四十个滴滴合一个月牙。
While all this was being done Caspian missed no chance of questioning all the oldest sea captains whom he could find in Narrowhaven to learn if they had any knowledge or even any rumours of land further to the east. He poured out many a flagon of the castle ale to weather-beaten men with short grey beards and clear blue eyes, and many a tall yarn he heard in return. But those who seemed the most truthful could tell of no lands beyond the Lone Islands, and many thought that if you sailed too far east you would come into the surges of a sea without lands that swirled perpetually round the rim of the world - "And that, I reckon, is where your Majesty's friends went to the bottom." The rest had only wild stories of islands inhabited by headless men, floating islands, waterspouts, and a fire that burned along the water. Only one, to Reepicheep's delight, said, "And beyond that, Aslan country. But that's beyond the end of the world and you can't get there." But when they questioned -him he could only say that he'd heard it from his father."好心的陛下存心要我变成穷光蛋吗?"普格哭诉道。
Bern could only tell them that he had seen his six companions sail away eastward and that nothing had, ever been heard of them again. He said this when he and Caspian were standing on the highest point of Avra looking down on the eastern ocean. "I've often been up here of a morning," said the Duke, "ands seen the sun come up out of the sea, and sometimes it looked as if it were only a couple of miles away. And I've wondered about my friends and wondered what there really is behind that horizon. Nothing, most likely, yet I am always half ashamed that I stayed behind. But I wish your Majesty wouldn't go. We may need your help here. This closing the slave market might make a new world; war with Calormen is what I foresee. My liege, think again.""你一辈子都靠伤天害理过日子,"凯斯宾说,"如果你成了穷光蛋的话,那也比做个奴隶强。我另外一个朋友在哪儿?"
"I have an oath, my lord Duke," said Caspian. "And anyway, what could I say to Reepicheep?""哦,他呀?"普格说,"唉,欢迎把他领回去。巴不得把他脱手呢。我有生以来,在市场里从没见过这么个卖不掉的货。最后把他定价五个月牙,这么低的价还是没人要。把他跟其他的货搭配白送,还是没人要。看都不愿看他。塔克斯,把哭丧脸带来。"

Nert morning the Lord Bern called his guests early, and after breakfast he asked Caspian to order every man he had into full armour. "And above all," he added, "let everything be as trim and scoured as if it were the morning of the first battle in a great war between noble kings with all the world looking on." This was done; and then in three boatloads Caspian and his people, and Bern with a few of his, put out for Narrowhaven. The king's flag flew in the stern of his boat and his trumpeter was with him.
When they reached the jetty at Narrowhaven, Caspian found a considerable crowd assembled to meet them. "This is what I sent word about last night," said Bern. "They are all friends of mine and honest people." And as soon as Caspian stepped ashore the crowd broke out into hurrahs and shouts of, "Narnia! Narnia! Long live the King." At the same moment - and this was also due to Bern's messengers - bells began ringing from many parts of the town. Then Caspian caused his banner to be advanced and his trumpet to be blown and every man drew his sword and set his face into a joyful sternness, and they marched up the street so that the street shook, and their armour shone (for it was a sunny morning) so that one could hardly look at it steadily.
At first the only people who cheered were those who had been warned by Bern's messenger and knew what was happening and wanted it to happen. But then all the children joined in because they liked a procession and had seen very few. And then all the schoolboys joined in because they also liked processions and felt that the more noise and disturbance there was the less likely they would be to have any school that morning. And then all the old women put their heads out of doors and windows and began chattering and cheering because it was a king, and what is a governor compared with that? And all the young women joined in for the same reason and also because Caspian and Drinian and the rest were so handsome. And then all the young men came to see what the young women were looking at, so that by the time Caspian reached the castle gates, nearly the whole town was shouting; and where Gumpas sat in the castle, muddling and messing about with accounts and forms and rules and regulations, he heard the noise.
At the castle gate Caspian's trumpeter blew a blast and cried, "Open for the King of Narnia, come to visit his trusty and wellbeloved servant the governor of the Lone Islands." In those days everything in the islands was done in a slovenly, slouching manner. Only the little postern opened, and out came a tousled fellow with a dirty old hat on his head instead of a helmet, and a rusty old pike in his hand. He blinked at the flashing figures before him. "Carn - seez - fishansy," he mumbled which was his way of saying, -"You can't see his Sufficiency"). "No interviews without 'pointments 'cept 'tween nine 'n' ten p.m. second Saturday every month."
"Uncover before Narnia, you dog," thundered the Lord Bern, and dealt him a rap with his gauntleted hand which sent his hat flying from his head.
"'Ere? Wot's it all about?" began the doorkeeper, but no one took any notice of him. Two of Caspian's men stepped through the postern and after some struggling with bars and bolts (for everything was rusty) flung both wings of the gate wide open. Then the King and his followers strode into the courtyard. Here a number of the governor's guards were lounging about and several more (they were mostly wiping their mouths) came tumbling out of various doorways. Though their armour was in a disgraceful condition, these were fellows who might have fought if they had been led or had known what was happening; so this was the dangerous moment. Caspian gave them no time to think.
"Where is the captain?" he asked.
"I am, more or less, if you know what I mean," said a languid and rather dandified young person without any j armour at all.
"It is our wish," said Caspian, "that our royal visitation to our realm of the Lone Islands should, if possible, be an occasion of joy and not of terror to our loyal subjects. If it were not for that, I should have something to say about the state of your men's armour and weapons. As it is, you are pardoned. Command a cask of wine to be opened that, your men may drink our health. But at noon tomorrow I wish to see them here in this courtyard looking like men-at-arms and not like vagabonds. See to it on pain of our extreme displeasure."
The captain gaped but Bern immediately cried, "Three. cheers for the King," and the soldiers, who had understood about the cask of wine even if they understood nothing else, joined in. Caspian then ordered most of his own men to remain in the courtyard. He, with Bern and Drinian and four others, went into the hall.
Behind a table at the far end with various secretaries about him sat his Sufficiency, the Governor of the Lone Islands. Gumpas was a bilious-looking man with hair that had once been red and was now mostly grey. He glanced up as the strangers entered and then looked down at his papers saying automatically, "No interviews without appointments except between nine and ten p.m. on second Saturdays."
Caspian nodded to Bern and then stood aside. Bern and Drinian took a step forward and each seized one end of the table. They lifted it, and flung it on one side of the hall where it rolled over, scattering a cascade of letters, dossiers, ink-pots, pens, sealing-wax and documents. Then, not roughly but as firmly as if their hands were pincers of steel, they plucked Gumpas out of his chair and deposited him, facing it, about four feet away. Caspian at once sat down in the chair and laid his naked sword across his knees.
"My Lord," said he, fixing his eyes on Gumpas, "you have not given us quite the welcome we expected. I am the King of Narnia."
"Nothing about it in the correspondence," said the governor. "Nothing in the minutes. We have not been notified of any such thing. All irregular. Happy to consider any applications-"
"And we are come to enquire into your Sufficiency's conduct of your office," continued Caspian. "There are two points especially on which I require an explanation. Firstly I find no record that the tribute due from these Islands to the crown of Narnia has been received for about a hundred and fifty years."
"That would be a question to raise at the Council next month," said Gumpas. "If anyone moves that a commission of enquiry be set up to report on the financial history of the islands at the first meeting next year, why then . . ."
"I also find it very clearly written in our laws," Caspian went on, "that if the tribute is not delivered the whole debt has to be paid by the Governor of the Lone Islands out of his private purse."
At this Gumpas began to pay real attention. "Oh, that's quite out of the question," he said. "It is an economic impossibility - er - your Majesty must be joking."
Inside, he was wondering if there were any way of getting rid of these unwelcome visitors. Had he known that Caspian had only one ship and one ship's company with him, he would have spoken soft words for the moment, and hoped to have them all surrounded and killed during the night. But he had seen a ship of war sail down the straits yesterday and seen it signalling, as he supposed, to its consorts. He had not then known it was the King's ship for there was not wind enough to spread the flag out and make the golden lion visible, so he had waited further developments. Now he imagined that Caspian had a whole fleet at Bernstead. It would never have occurred to Gumpas that anyone would walk into Narrowhaven to take the islands with less than fifty men; it was certainly not at all the kind of thing he could imagine doing himself.
"Secondly," said Caspian, "I want to know why you have permitted this abominable and unnatural traffic in slaves to grow up here, contrary to the ancient custom and usage of our dominions."
"Necessary, unavoidable," said his Sufficiency. "An essential part of the economic development of the islands, I assure you. Our present burst of prosperity depends on it."
"What need have you of slaves?"
"For export, your Majesty. Sell 'em to Calormen mostly; and we have other markets. We are a great centre of the trade."
"In other words," said Caspian, "you don't need them. Tell me what purpose they serve except to put money into the pockets of such as Pug?"
"Your Majesty's tender years," said Gumpas, with what was meant to be a fatherly smile, "hardly make it possible that you should understand the economic problem involved. I have statistics, I have graphs, I have-"
"Tender as my years be," said Caspian, "I believe I understand the slave trade from within quite as well as your Sufficiency. And I do not see that it brings into the islands meat or bread or beer or wine or timber or cabbages or books or instruments of music or horses or armour or anything else worth having. But whether it does or not, it must be stopped."
"But that would be putting the clock back," gasped the governor. "Have you no idea of progress, of development?"
"I have seen them both in an egg," said Caspian. "We call it `Going Bad' in Narnia. This trade must stop."
"I can take no responsibility for any such measure," said Gumpas.
"Very well, then," answered Caspian, "we relieve you of your office. My Lord Bern, come here." And before Gumpas quite realized what was happening, Bern was kneeling with his hands between the King's hands and taking the oath to govern the Lone Islands in accordance with the old customs, rights, usages and laws of Narnia. And Caspian said, "I think we have had enough of governors," and made Bern a Duke, the Duke of the Lone Islands.
"As for you, my Lord," he said to Gumpas, "I forgive you your debt for the tribute. But before noon tomorrow you and yours must be out of the castle, which is now the Duke's residence."
"Look here, this is all very well," said one of Gumpas's secretaries, "but suppose all you gentlemen stop playacting and we do a little business. The question before us really is-"
"The question is," said the Duke, "whether you and the rest of the rabble will leave without a flogging or with one. You may choose which you prefer."
When all this had been pleasantly settled, Caspian ordered horses, of which there were a few in the castle, though very ill-groomed and he, with Bern and Drinian and a few others, rode out into the town and made for the slave market. It was a long low building near the harbour and the scene which they found going on inside was very much like any other auction; that is to say, there was a great crowd and Pug, on a platform, was roaring out in a raucous voice:
"Now, gentlemen, lot twenty-three. Fine Terebinthian agricultural labourer, suitable for the mines or the galleys. Under twenty-five years of age. Not a bad tooth in his head. Good, brawny fellow. Take off his shirt, Tacks, and let the gentlemen see. There's muscle for you! Look at the chest on him. Ten crescents from the gentleman in the corner. You must be joking, sir. Fifteen! Eighteen! Eighteen is bidden for lot twenty-three. Any advance on eighteen? Twenty-one. Thank you, sir. Twenty-one is bidden-"
But Pug stopped and gaped when he saw the mail-clad figures who had clanked up to the platform.
"On your knees, every man of you, to the King of Narnia," said the Duke. Everyone heard the horses jingling and stamping outside and many had heard some rumour of the landing and the events at the castle. Most obeyed. Those who did not were pulled down by their neighbours. Some cheered.
"Your life is forfeit, Pug, for laying hands on our royal person yesterday," said Caspian. "But your ignorance is pardoned. The slave trade was forbidden in all our dominions quarter of an hour ago. I declare every slave in this market free."
He held up his hand to check the cheering of the slaves and went on, "Where are my friends?"
"That dear little gel and the nice young gentleman?" said Pug with an ingratiating smile. "Why, they were snapped up at once-"
"We're here, we're here, Caspian," cried Lucy and Edmund together and, "At your service, Sire," piped Reepicheep from another corner. They had all been sold but the men who had bought them were staying to bid for other slaves and so they had not yet been taken away. The crowd parted to let the three of them out and there was great handclasping and greeting between them and Caspian. Two merchants of Calormen at once approached. The Calormen have dark faces and long beards. They wear flowing robes and orange-coloured turbans, and they are a wise, wealthy, courteous, cruel and ancient people. They bowed most politely to Caspian and paid him long compliments, all about the fountains of prosperity irrigating the gardens of prudence and virtue - and things like that - but of course what they wanted was the money they had paid.
"That is only fair, sirs," said Caspian. "Every man who has bought a slave today must have his money back. Pug, bring out your takings to the last minim." (A minim is the fortieth part of a crescent.)
"Does your good Majesty mean to beggar me?" whined Pug.
"You have lived on broken hearts all your life," said Caspian, "and if you are beggared, it is better to be a beggar than a slave. But where is my other friend?"
"Oh him?" said Pug. "Oh take him and welcome. Glad to have him off my hands. I've never seen such a drug in the market in all my born days. Priced him at five crescents in the end and even so nobody'd have him. Threw him in free with other lots and still no one would have him. Wouldn't touch him. Wouldn't look at him. 'Packs, bring out Sulky."
Thus Eustace was produced, and sulky he certainly looked; for though no one would want to be sold as a slave, it is perhaps even more galling to be a sort of utility slave whom no one will buy. He walked up to Caspian and said, "I see. As usual. Been enjoying yourself somewhere while the rest of us were prisoners. I suppose you haven't even found out about the British Consul. Of course not."
That night they had a great feast in the castle of Narrowhaven and then, "Tomorrow for the beginning of our real adventures!" said Reepicheep when he had made his bows to everyone and went to bed. But it could not really be tomorrow or anything like it. For now they were preparing to leave all known lands and seas behind them and the fullest preparations had to be made. The Dawn Treader was emptied and drawn on land by eight horses over rollers and every bit of her was gone over by the most skilled shipwrights. Then she was launched again and victualled and watered as full as she could hold - that is to say for twenty-eight days. Even this, as Edmund noticed with disappointment, only gave them a fortnight's eastward sailing before they had to abandon their quest.
While all this was being done Caspian missed no chance of questioning all the oldest sea captains whom he could find in Narrowhaven to learn if they had any knowledge or even any rumours of land further to the east. He poured out many a flagon of the castle ale to weather-beaten men with short grey beards and clear blue eyes, and many a tall yarn he heard in return. But those who seemed the most truthful could tell of no lands beyond the Lone Islands, and many thought that if you sailed too far east you would come into the surges of a sea without lands that swirled perpetually round the rim of the world - "And that, I reckon, is where your Majesty's friends went to the bottom." The rest had only wild stories of islands inhabited by headless men, floating islands, waterspouts, and a fire that burned along the water. Only one, to Reepicheep's delight, said, "And beyond that, Aslan country. But that's beyond the end of the world and you can't get there." But when they questioned -him he could only say that he'd heard it from his father.
Bern could only tell them that he had seen his six companions sail away eastward and that nothing had, ever been heard of them again. He said this when he and Caspian were standing on the highest point of Avra looking down on the eastern ocean. "I've often been up here of a morning," said the Duke, "ands seen the sun come up out of the sea, and sometimes it looked as if it were only a couple of miles away. And I've wondered about my friends and wondered what there really is behind that horizon. Nothing, most likely, yet I am always half ashamed that I stayed behind. But I wish your Majesty wouldn't go. We may need your help here. This closing the slave market might make a new world; war with Calormen is what I foresee. My liege, think again."
"I have an oath, my lord Duke," said Caspian. "And anyway, what could I say to Reepicheep?"

第二天早上伯恩爵爷一早就来拜客。早餐后他要求凯斯斯宾下令所有的手下都披胃挂甲。"最重要的是,"他加上一句说,"把一切都弄得整整齐齐,擦得干干净净,仿佛今天早上是尊贵的国王之间当着天下人的面进行大战的头一场战役似的。"这事办好后,凯斯宾和他的手下,伯恩和他几个手下就分成三船,向狭港进发。国王的旗帜在船尾飘扬,他还随带号手。
他们到达狭港码头时,凯斯宾看见有一大批群众聚集在那儿欢迎他们。"这就是我昨晚传话吩咐准备的,"伯恩说,
"他们全是我的朋友,本分人。"凯斯宾一上岸,群众就高声欢呼"纳尼亚!纳尼亚!国王万岁!"同时——这也全靠伯恩的信使的安排——镇上许多地方都钟声齐鸣。于是凯斯宾传令旗手开道,号角吹响,人人都刀剑出鞘,摆出一副欣喜的严肃神情。他们在街上齐步行进,街面都震动了,因为这天早上阳光普照,甲胄都闪闪发亮,亮得人们简直没法一直盯着。
开头欢呼的只是伯恩的信使预先告知的人,他们都知道眼前情况,也巴不得有这么一天。可后来所有的儿童都加入了游行队伍,因为他们喜欢游行,这种场面又很少见过。再后来所有的学生也加入了,因为他们也喜欢游行,而且觉得那天早上外面越闹越乱,学校里越不见得会上课。再后来,老大娘都从门窗口探出头来,开始唠唠叨叨,高声欢呼了,因为这究竟是国王呢,总督哪儿比得上啊?接着所有的年轻妇女出于同样原因,也来凑热闹了,再一个原因是凯斯宾和德里宁及其他人都非常英俊。到后来所有的年轻男人也都来看看年轻妇女到底在看些什么,所以凯斯宾到达城堡大门时,几乎全城的人都在大声欢呼;冈帕斯坐在城堡里,正胡乱摆弄着一串账日、表格和条条杠杠,听到了闹声。
凯斯宾的号手在城堡大门口吹响号角,大声叫道"为纳尼亚国王打开城门吧,国王来看望他忠诚可靠而受人尊敬的臣仆,孤独群岛总督了。"那年月岛上一切事物都是邋邋遢遢,懒懒散散,城门只打开小暗门,出来一个蓬头乱发,没戴头盔,只戴顶肮脏的旧帽子的家伙,手里还拿着一根生锈的旧长矛。他对着面前这些浑身金光闪闪的人直眨眼。
"带——轮——八——箭,"他咕咕哝吨说(这就是他说'‘大人不见"的腔调),”没约好一律不见,只有每个月第二个星期六晚上九点到十点才接见。"
"你这走狗,当着纳尼亚国王的面,还不快脱帽I"伯恩爵爷声如响雷吼道,一边用戴着铁护手的手打了他一巴掌,把他头上帽子也打飞了。
"呢?这是咋回事?"看门人开口说,可是没人理会他。
凯斯宾手下两个人跨过暗门,因为样样东西都生锈了,花了好一番手脚对付门闩才把两扇大门打开。于是国王和随从就大踏步走进院内。总督有不少警卫在院内闲逛,还有一些人跌跌冲冲从各个门口出来,大多数人还一边擦着嘴。虽然他们的盔甲丢人现眼,假如有人带领他们,或者知道眼前情况,倒兴许会打一仗,所以这是个危险时刻。凯斯宾不让他们有工夫多想。
"队长在哪儿?"他问。
"我多少算一个,要是你知道我意思的话。"一个没精打采的年轻人说。他打扮得花里胡哨,身上根本没有盔甲。
"我们希望,"凯斯宾说,"这次御驾亲临我们孤独群岛国土,如有可能,应当成为万民欢庆的节日,不是百姓恐怖的场合。如果不是这个缘故,我对你们兵士盔甲和武器的状况就得批评几句了。但实际上,我赦免你们了。来一桶酒,打开桶让弟兄们为我们祝酒。不过到明天中午,我希望在院内看到他们像战士,而不像流浪汉。违令者一律以触犯王上论罪。""
队长张口结舌,可是伯恩立刻喊道"三呼国王万岁。"
那些兵士虽然别的什么都闹不明白,对酒桶是明白的,就一起欢呼了。于是凯斯宾命令手下大部分都留在院子里。他,带着伯恩、德里宁和其他四个走进大厅。'
大厅那一头的一张桌子后面,坐着孤独群岛总督冈帕斯,周围有各种秘书。冈帕斯看上去是个坏脾气的人,头发原是红的,现在多半灰白了。一行陌生人进去时,他抬眼一看,就又埋头看着文件了,随口不假思索地说"没约好一律不见,只有每个月第二个星期六晚上九点到十点才接见。"
凯斯宾对伯恩点点头就站到一边。伯恩和德里宁上前一步,各自抓住桌子一头。他们抬起桌子一扔,桌子就滚到大厅一边了,把信件、档案、墨水缸、笔、封口蜡和公文撒得一地。于是,他们伸出手去,虽然动作不粗野,去口牢如钢钳,一把将冈帕斯从椅子里揪出来,把他揪到椅子前四英尺开外的地方。凯斯宾马上在椅子里坐下,把出鞠的剑横搁在双膝上。
"阁下,"他两眼盯着冈帕斯说,"你没有像我们预期中那样隆重欢迎我们。我们是纳尼亚的国王。"
"信函中没提到这事,"总督说,"会议记录里也没有。我们没接到任何这类事的通知。完全不符合法律。凡有任何请求倒乐于考虑……”
"我们前来调查阁下的职责行为,"凯斯宾继续说,"有两点我特别要求作出解释。首先,我在档案中查出纳尼亚国王已有一百五十年没收到这些岛屿的进贡了。"
"这个问题得在下个月提交议事会讨论,"冈帕斯说,"如果有谁提议成立一个调查委员会,在明年第一次会议上做本岛财政历史的报告,说明为什么当时……”
"我还在本国法律上看到里面写得清清楚楚,"凯斯宾接着说,"如果贡品没有及时送到,全部积欠得由孤独群岛总督的私人腰包中支付。"
冈帕斯听了这话才真正留起神来。"啊,那可万万办不到,"他说,"经济上负担不起——呃——陛下定在开玩笑吧。"
其实他心里倒在盘算,不知有什么法子摆脱这些不受欢迎的来客。假如他知道凯斯宾只有一条船,只带了一船人,他早就嘴上暂时先说些软话,暗地里一心想趁夜里把他们全部包围杀光了。不过昨天他看见一条战船顺着海峡开来,还看见船上打信号,他猜想是打给跟从的船的。当时他不知道这就是国王的船,因为风力不够大,旗帜飘不起来,上面的金狮像看不出,所以他就等待事情进一步发展。此刻他想象凯斯宾在伯恩斯丹有整整一支舰队。冈帕斯万万没料到居然有人带了不足五十个人就拿下了这些岛屿;当然这种事根本也不是他能想象自己动手干的。
"其次,"凯斯宾说,"我想要知道,为什么你容许贩卖奴隶这种伤天害理的恶劣勾当在本地滋长,这违背本国领地古时的风俗习惯。"
"那是出于需要,不能废除的,"总督说,"我向你保证,这是本岛经济发展的命脉。本岛目前的兴衰全靠这买卖。"
"你们需要奴隶干什么?”
"陛下,出口啊。大部分卖给卡乐门;我们还有别的市场,我们是这买卖的一大中心。"
"换句话说,"凯斯宾说,"你不需要他们。你说说看,这些奴隶除了养肥普格这种人之外,还有什么用处?"
"陛下还年轻,"冈帕斯摆出一副父辈的笑容说,"简直无法弄清有关的经济问题。我有统计数字,我有图表,我有…”
"我固然还年轻,"凯斯宾说,"可是我相信,我对奴隶买卖实质的了解同阁下一样清楚。我看这项买卖不见得给本岛带来肉类、面包、啤酒、葡萄酒、木材、白菜、书本、乐器、马匹、盔甲或任何值得一有的东西。不过,不管是否如此,这买卖必须制止。",
"不过,那一来就倒退了,"总督气喘吁吁说,"你不了解什么是进步,什么是发展吗?"
"我看到过进步和发展的萌芽状态,"凯斯宾说,"在纳尼亚我们称这为腐败。这项买卖必须制止。"
"我不能负责采取任何这类措施。"冈帕斯说。
"那很好,"凯斯宾答,"我们就免你的职。伯恩爵爷,来。"冈帕斯还闹不清是怎么回事,伯恩已经跪下,双手放在国王双手间,宣誓要根据纳尼亚古时的风俗习惯、权利和法律来统治孤独群岛。凯斯宾说"我看,我们无法容忍总督了。"于是当场封伯恩为公爵,孤独群岛公爵。
"至于你嘛,阁下,"他对冈帕斯说,"我原谅你拖欠进贡。不过明天中午前,你和你的全家都必须搬出城堡,这里现在是公爵府了。"
"听我说,"冈帕斯的一个秘书说,"这件事好倒是好,不过如果你们诸位别再装腔作势,我们就来做笔小小的交易。我们面前的问题真是——"
"问题是,"公爵说,"你和你的余党是不是愿意就此一走了之,还是愿意挨顿鞭打再走。你们可以随意选择。"
等到这一切都圆满解决,凯斯宾就下令备马,城堡里倒有几匹马,虽然喂养得不好,可是他和伯恩、德里宁,还有三两个人骑上马就进城,直奔奴隶市场。市场是港口附近一排长长的矮房子,他们看到里面的情景跟其他拍卖行都差不多,就是说,里面有一大批人,普格在平台上,沙哑的嗓子大声吼道:
"喂,诸位爷们,二十三号货。特里宾西亚的庄稼好手,适合开矿或船上划桨。不到二十五岁。没一只坏牙。这家伙身体健康,肌肉结实。脱掉他衬衫,塔克斯,让诸位爷们看看。好一身肌肉!瞧他胸膛。角落那位爷们出十个月牙。你一定是在开玩笑吧,老爷。十五|十八l出价十八买二十三号。还有谁加价?二十一。谢谢你,老爷。出二十一。
普格一看见披着铠甲的入咣当咣当走向平台,顿时打住,张口结舌。
"你们大家个个都向纳尼亚国王跪下。"公爵说。大家都听到外面马警丁当,蹄声。得嚼,不少人还听到登陆的传说和城堡里出的大事。多数人都听从了。那些不肯听从的都给身边的人拖住跪下了。有几个还欢呼了。;
"普格,为了昨天你抓了我们王室成员,你要偿命,"凯斯宾说,"不过姑且原谅你无知。一刻钟前,本国所有领土也禁止奴隶买卖。我宣布本奴隶市场的每一个奴隶都自由了。"
他举起手制止奴隶的欢呼,接着问"我的朋友们在哪儿?"
"那个可爱的小妞儿和那个漂亮的小少爷吗?"普格赔着讨好的笑脸说,"哎呀,他们一下子就给人抢着买去了。。
"我们在这儿呢,我们在这儿呢,凯斯宾!"露茜和爱德蒙一齐叫道。"听候你吩咐,陛下!"雷佩契普从另一个角落里尖声叫道。原来他们都卖掉了,因为买主留下来还想开价再买几个奴隶,所以他们还没给带走。人群分开一条路,让他们三个走出来,他们同凯斯宾顿时紧紧握手,相互问候。
两个卡乐门商人立刻上前。卡乐门人长着黑脸膛,留着长胡子。他们穿着飘拂的长袍,扎着橙红色头巾,他们是聪明、富裕、谦恭而残忍的古老民族。他们极其恭敬地向凯斯宾鞠躬,对他说了长长一篇恭维话,说的全是什么繁荣昌盛的源泉灌溉贤明和德行的花园——还有类似的话——不过他们的目的当然是想收回付出的那笔钱。
"那才公平,先生们,"凯斯宾说,"今天买下奴隶的人个个都必须收回钱。普格,把你捞到手的钱都拿出来,一滴滴都不留。"(四十个滴滴合一个月牙。
"好心的陛下存心要我变成穷光蛋吗?"普格哭诉道。
"你一辈子都靠伤天害理过日子,"凯斯宾说,"如果你成了穷光蛋的话,那也比做个奴隶强。我另外一个朋友在哪儿?"
"哦,他呀?"普格说,"唉,欢迎把他领回去。巴不得把他脱手呢。我有生以来,在市场里从没见过这么个卖不掉的货。最后把他定价五个月牙,这么低的价还是没人要。把他跟其他的货搭配白送,还是没人要。看都不愿看他。塔克斯,把哭丧脸带来。"
尤斯塔斯就这样亮了相,果然哭丧着脸;因为虽然没人愿意给人当奴隶卖掉,不过给当成没人愿意买的粗使奴隶,也许更令人恼怒。他走近凯斯宾说"原来如此。老一套了。我们其他人当俘虏,你自己倒在什么地方逍遥自在。我看,你没打听到英国领事馆吧。当然没有。"
那天晚上,他们在狭港城堡里举行盛大宴会,宴会结束后,雷佩契普向大家鞠躬行礼,说道"明天就要开始我们真正的冒险生活了!"说完就去睡觉了。可是明天根本走不成,谈都谈不上。因为他们现在正准备离开已经探明的陆地和海面,一定得做好充分准备。黎明踏浪号出空了,搁在滚轴上,由八匹马拖上陆地,每个细小的部分都由最熟练的修船工检修。然后再下水,尽量贮足粮食和饮用水——就是说要准备用上二十八天。爱德蒙注意到尽管这样备足一切,他们也只有十四天时间可用于向东航行,此后就不得不放弃搜寻计划了,不禁大为扫兴。"
做好这一切准备工作的同时,凯斯宾又不失时机地把凡是狭港找得到的最老的船长都找来,向他们打听是否知道再往东边远航还有什么陆地,甚至道听途说也行。他把城堡里不少瓶麦酒倒出来,招待那些长着灰白短须,清澈蓝眼珠,饱经风霜的水手,听到不少海外奇谈。不过那些看上去最像说实话的水手也说不清楚孤独群岛外有陆地,许多人认为,假如你东航得太远,就会撞进一个茫茫不见陆地,波涛汹涌的大海,这些波涛不断围绕世界的边缘打转——.
"我看,那里就是陛下几个朋友卷进海底的地方。"其余的都是无稽之谈了,什么无头人居住的岛屿啊,漂浮的岛屿啊,龙卷风卷起的水柱啊,沿着海面燃烧的大火等等。只有一个人的说法使雷佩契普大为高兴,他说"在那外面就是阿斯兰的国土了。不过,那是在世界尽头的外面,你们到不了。"大家再盘问他时,他就只能说自己是从父亲那儿听来的。
伯恩只能告诉他们,当初他看见他六个伙伴向东航行,此后再也没听到他们的下落。他说这话时正和凯斯宾一起站在俯临东大洋的阿芙拉岛的最高处。"我早晨经常上这儿来,"公爵说,"看太阳从海面上升起,有时看上去仿佛只隔开两三英里。我也很想知道我朋友的下落,想知道那天边外究竟是什么地方。看来多半是什么都没有,但是我对自己留下来始终感到很不好意思。不过我希望陛下不要去。我们这里还需要你的帮助。这次取缔奴隶市场可能打开一个新天地,我预见要同卡乐门打一仗。陛下,请三思吧。"
"公爵阁下,我发过誓了,"凯斯宾说,"不管怎么说,我对雷佩契普有什么话好说呢?"

重点单词   查看全部解释    
yarn [jɑ:n]

想一想再看

n. 纱

 
contrary ['kɔntrəri]

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adj. 相反的,截然不同的
adv. 相反(

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measure ['meʒə]

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n. 措施,办法,量度,尺寸
v. 测量,量

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joyful ['dʒɔifəl]

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adj. 欢喜的,高兴的

 
consul ['kɔnsəl]

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n. 领事,(古罗马)执行官员,(1799年至1804年

 
except [ik'sept]

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vt. 除,除外
prep. & conj.

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forbidden [fə'bidn]

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adj. 被禁止的

 
tender ['tendə]

想一想再看

adj. 温柔的,嫩的,脆弱的 ,亲切的,敏感的,未成熟

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declare [di'klɛə]

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v. 宣布,声明,申报

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conduct [kən'dʌkt]

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n. 行为,举动,品行
v. 引导,指挥,管理

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