CAPTAIN NEMO'S THUNDERBOLT
WE looked at the edge of the forest without rising, my hand stopping in the action of putting it to my mouth, Ned Land's completing its office.
"Stones do not fall from the sky," remarked Conseil, "or they would merit the name of aerolites."
A second stone, carefully aimed, that made a savoury pigeon's leg fall from Conseil's hand, gave still more weight to his observation. We all three arose, shouldered our guns, and were ready to reply to any attack.
"Are they apes?" cried Ned Land.
"Very nearly--they are savages."
"To the boat!" I said, hurrying to the sea.
It was indeed necessary to beat a retreat, for about twenty natives armed with bows and slings, appeared on the skirts of a copse that masked the horizon to the right, hardly a hundred steps from us.
Our boat was moored about sixty feet from us. The savages approached us, not running, but making hostile demonstrations. Stones and arrows fell thickly.
Ned Land had not wished to leave his provisions; and, in spite of his imminent danger, his pig on one side, and kangaroos on