A DANGEROUS GAME
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I am to follow, armed only with a pistol of the smallest caliber and range. If my quarry eludes me for three whole days, he wins the game. If I find him "--the general smiled--" he loses. He need not play that game if he doesn't wish to.
If he does not wish to hunt, I turn him over to Ivan. Ivan once had the honor of serving as official knouter to the Great White Czar, and he has his own ideas of sport. Invariably, Mr. Rainsford, invariably they choose the hunt. Then he added, hastily: "I don't wish you to think me a braggart, Mr. Many of them afford only the most elementary sort of problem. Occasionally I strike a tartar.
One almost did win. I eventually had to use the dogs.
Steve Bruce is playing a dangerous game by shifting this season's shortcomings on to his players
I'll show you. The lights from the windows sent a flickering illumination that made grotesque patterns on the courtyard below, and Rainsford could see moving about there a dozen or so huge black shapes; as they turned toward him, their eyes glittered greenly. If anyone should try to get into my house--or out of it--something extremely regrettable would occur to him.
Will you come with me to the library? I'm really not feeling well. You need a good, restful night's sleep. Tomorrow you'll feel like a new man, I'll wager. Then we'll hunt, eh? I've one rather promising prospect--" Rainsford was hurrying from the room. He looks resourceful--Well, good night, Mr. Rainsford; I hope you have a good night's rest. He lay, eyes wide open. Once he thought he heard stealthy steps in the corridor outside his room.
He sought to throw open the door; it would not open. He went to the window and looked out.
His room was high up in one of the towers. The lights of the chateau were out now, and it was dark and silent; but there was a fragment of sallow moon, and by its wan light he could see, dimly, the courtyard. There, weaving in and out in the pattern of shadow, were black, noiseless forms; the hounds heard him at the window and looked up, expectantly, with their green eyes.
Rainsford went back to the bed and lay down.
TVNZ's Sunday – A Dangerous Game
By many methods he tried to put himself to sleep. He had achieved a doze when, just as morning began to come, he heard, far off in the jungle, the faint report of a pistol. General Zaroff did not appear until luncheon. He was dressed faultlessly in the tweeds of a country squire. He was solicitous about the state of Rainsford's health. I am worried, Mr. Last night I detected traces of my old complaint. The fellow lost his head. He made a straight trail that offered no problems at all. That's the trouble with these sailors; they have dull brains to begin with, and they do not know how to get about in the woods.
They do excessively stupid and obvious things. It's most annoying. Will you have another glass of Chablis, Mr. You've had no hunting--" "I wish to go today," said Rainsford. He saw the dead black eyes of the general on him, studying him. General Zaroff's face suddenly brightened. He filled Rainsford's glass with venerable Chablis from a dusty bottle. But may I not venture to suggest that you will find my idea of sport more diverting than Ivan's? This is really an inspiration. I drink to a foeman worthy of my steel - at last.
Your woodcraft against mine. Your strength and stamina against mine. Outdoor chess! And the stake is not without value, eh? Of course you, in turn, must agree to say nothing of your visit here. But why discuss that now? Three days hence we can discuss it over a bottle of Veuve Cliquot, unless Then a businesslike air animated him.
I suggest you wear moccasins; they leave a poorer trail. I suggest, too, that you avoid the big swamp in the southeast corner of the island. We call it Death Swamp. There's quicksand there.
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One foolish fellow tried it. The deplorable part of it was that Lazarus followed him. You can imagine my feelings, Mr. I loved Lazarus; he was the finest hound in my pack. Well, I must beg you to excuse me now. I always' take a siesta after lunch. You'll hardly have time for a nap, I fear. You'll want to start, no doubt.
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I shall not follow till dusk. Hunting at night is so much more exciting than by day, don't you think? Au revoir, Mr. Rainsford, au revoir. From another door came Ivan. Under one arm he carried khaki hunting clothes, a haversack of food, a leather sheath containing a long-bladed hunting knife; his right hand rested on a cocked revolver thrust in the crimson sash about his waist. Rainsford had fought his way through the bush for two hours. I must keep my nerve," he said through tight teeth. He had not been entirely clearheaded when the chateau gates snapped shut behind him.
His whole idea at first was to put distance between himself and General Zaroff; and, to this end, he had plunged along, spurred on by the sharp rowers of something very like panic. Now he had got a grip on himself, had stopped, and was taking stock of himself and the situation. He saw that straight flight was futile; inevitably it would bring him face to face with the sea.
He was in a picture with a frame of water, and his operations, clearly, must take place within that frame. He executed a series of intricate loops; he doubled on his trail again and again, recalling all the lore of the fox hunt, and all the dodges of the fox. Night found him leg-weary, with hands and face lashed by the branches, on a thickly wooded ridge.
He knew it would be insane to blunder on through the dark, even if he had the strength. His need for rest was imperative and he thought, "I have played the fox, now I must play the cat of the fable. Rest brought him new confidence and almost a feeling of security.