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a meddlesome adventure in Old Siam



     Mendoza shook his fist at the Necronaut, which was now pulling away first. It was crowded with a veritable circus of scoundrels, all jeering, swearing and making obscene gestures at them.

     “But where is the Condesa?” sighed Higgins.

     Pizarro noticed some sort of serving wench, her face hidden by a shawl, making her way through. “Who are you?” he demanded. “What do you want?”

     The wench pulled back her shawl and smiled.

     “Praise the Lord,” said Higgins, beaming.

     “Why are you dressed like that, Condesa?” asked Mendoza.

     “We were worried about you,” added Higgins.

 Isabella produced a small spyglass.

     "Brother Mendoza," she said, "am I right in thinking you've organised a merchantman for us?"

     "The Dos de Mayo."

     "That's good," she said.

     "Is it, my lady?" asked Higgins.

     "Yes, because we're going to need the Dos de Mayo," said Isabella. "You see, we are all going on a very long journey, Daniel."


     "Journey, Condesa?" asked Mendoza, gripping his sword hilt.

     "Yes, a journey all the way to the other side of the world!"

     She pointed seaward and in the distance Higgins could just make out the Baron's Necronaut as it sailed away into the heart of the inky darkness.



Young Girl with a Candle,

Godfried Schalcken,

Uffizi Museum

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