Chapter Five

SCOTLAND AGAIN, and real Scots weather -- sad contrast to the sunny skies and spicy breezes of the tropics. On the deserted little platform of Dundonald Junction I stood in the blinding wind and rain, wondering if I should take a cab. Economy denied the cab, dignity demanded it -- not my own dignity, but that of my new position.

At length I beckoned to the red-faced cabby in the long green coat, who, from beside the one flyblown four-wheeler that graced the station exit, had been considering me for the last three minutes with a stealthy, speculative eye.

"How much to Tannochbrae village? Dr. Cameron's house."

Auld Geordie cautiously came over. None of your southern alacrity, none of that "Cab, sir!" nonsense about Geordie. He knew his worth, did old Geordie Dewar, and never sold himself for less.

"How much luggage have ye got?" he parried, though the luggage was plainly seen -- one portmanteau upon the pavement, and a small black Gladstone bag, a very new bag, which I gripped in my right hand. Then he added:

"You'll be Cameron's new assistant, I'm thinkin'?"

"Just so!"

"Two shillings to you, then -- Doctor."

He threw a cunning emphasis upon the title, but for all that I kept my head and said sternly:

"I mean the short cut." I who had never been in Tannochbrae before! "Not the long way you proposed to wander round with me!"

-40-

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