"How do you know there aren't such things as dragons?" Now he had made her really angry. "Nobody lives on this end of the island. One could easily have survived here. Anyway, what do you think you know about animals and things? I've lived with snakes and things since I was a child. Alone. Have you ever seen a praying mantis eat her husband after they've made love? Have you ever seen the mongoose dance? Or an octopus dance? How long is a humming bird's tongue? Have you ever had a pet snake that wore a bell round its neck and rang it to wake you? Have you seen a scorpion get sunstroke and kill itself with its own sting? Have you seen the carpet of flowers under the sea at night? Do you know that a John Crow can smell a dead lizard a mile away…?" The girl had fired these questions like scornful jabs with a rapier. Now she stopped, out of breath. She said hopelessly, "Oh, you're just city folk like all the rest." Bond said, "Honey, now look here. You know these things. I can't help it that I live in towns. I'd like to know about your things too. I just haven't had that sort of life. I know other things instead. Like…" Bond searched his mind. He couldn't think of anything as interesting as hers. He finished lamely, "Like for instance that this Chinaman is going to be more interested in your visit this time. This time he's going to try and stop you getting away." He paused and added. "And me for the matter of that."'
'Is he - is Mr. Dick - I ask because I don't know, aunt - is he at all out of his mind, then?' I stammered; for I felt I was on dangerous ground.
Since this was written the Commission on the law of copyright has sat and made its report. With the great body of it I agree, and could serve no reader by alluding here at length to matters which are discussed there. But in regard to this question of international copyright with the United States, I think that we were incorrect in the expression of an opinion that fair justice — or justice approaching to fairness — is now done by American publishers to English authors by payments made by them for early sheets. I have just found that ￡20 was paid to my publisher in England for the use of the early sheets of a novel for which I received ￡1600 in England. When asked why he accepted so little, he assured me that the firm with whom he dealt would not give more. “Why not go to another firm?” I asked. No other firm would give a dollar, because no other firm would care to run counter to that great firm which had assumed to itself the right of publishing my books. I soon after received a copy of my own novel in the American form, and found that it was published for 7 1/2d. That a great sale was expected can be argued from the fact that without a great sale the paper and printing necessary for the republication of a three-volume novel could not be supplied. Many thousand copies must have been sold. But from these the author received not one shilling. I need hardly point out that the sum of ￡20 would not do more than compensate the publisher for his trouble in making the bargain. The publisher here no doubt might have refused to supply the early sheets, but he had no means of exacting a higher price than that offered. I mention the circumstance here because it has been boasted, on behalf of the American publishers, that though there is no international copyright, they deal so liberally with English authors as to make it unnecessary that the English author should be so protected. With the fact of the ￡2
Kissy said, 'Not much longer. And you have rowed well.' She gestured to the right, to where the rest of the Ama fleet was spread out over the ocean. 'With us, it is first come first served with the sites we choose. Today we can get out as far as a shoal most of us know of, and we shall have it to ourselves. There the seaweed is thick on the rocks and that is what the awabi feed on. It is deep, about forty feet, but I can stay down for almost a minute, long enough to pick up two, three awabi if I can find them. That is just a matter of luck in feeling about with the hands among the seaweed, for you rarely see the shells. You only feel them and dislodge them with this,' she tapped her angular pick. 'After a while I shall have to rest. Then perhaps you would like to go down. Yes? They tell me you are a good swimmer and I have brought a pair of my father's goggles. These bulbs at the sides,' she showed him, 'have to be squeezed to equalize the pressure between the glasses and the eyes. You will perhaps not be able to stay down long to begin with. But you will learn quickly. How long will you be staying on Kuro?'
'So what are you going to do about it?'
"Of course, my dear fellow." He made a move to get up, his lighter ready.
“I don’t get it,” Alan said. “Don’t I want a longer stride, not a shorter one?”