"Well, I put him in our wagon for the present, Dan."
"He needn't think he's goin' to stay there. Doesn't matter for this morning, but he'11 have to shift when we camp. That lad has got to learn where he belongs now. Well, hop in, Polly—time we were off."
His words were carried clearly to the children inside the carvan. Hugh's scared face moved Mrs. Dan to pity as she entered.
"Well, we're off, Hugh," she said, briskly. "Nita, you take him to look out of the window."
The two children knelt on the seat below the window, and for a little while Hugh forgot his anxieties. It was a scene that became familiar enough to him afterwards, yet it never lost all its fascination in his eyes. All the vehicles were ready, their horses in the shafts, the elephants harnessed to the wild-beast cages. Every driver was in his seat, waiting for the word to start. It was like a little fleet that floated about the world on wheels, pausing to drop anchor here and there, but never finding a real home port. And the caravans were like ships that swayed and rocked on the green billows of the uneven field: tall wooden ships, gayly painted, and carrying a strange cargo. Big Dan, the Admiral of the Fleet, huge and dark-faced, with his sweeping black mustache, was no trim sailor, certainly. But he needed only a scarlet handkerchief knotted about his head and a sash stuck with cutlasses and pistols to make him the most magnificent of pirate chiefs. Hugh had no difficulty in seeing him make prisoners walk the plank.