128 THE LION AND THE UNICORN..
" Dear me, no ! " said the King. " What an idea!"
" Would you------be good enough," Alice panted
out, after running a little further, " to stop a minute------just to get-----one's breath again?"
"I'm good enough," the King said, "only I'm not strong enough. You see, a minute goes by so fearfully quick. You might as well try to stop a Bandersnatch!"
Alice had no more breath for talking, so they trotted on in silence, till they came in sight of a great crowd, in the middle of which the Lion and Unicorn were fighting. They were in such a cloud of dust, that at first Alice could not make out which was which: but she soon managed to distinguish the Unicorn by his horn.
They placed themselves close to where Hatta, the other Messenger, was standing watching the fight, with a cup of tea in one hand and a piece of bread-and-butter in the other.
"He's only just put of prison, and he hadn't finished his tea when he was sent in," Haigha whispered to Alice: " and they only gave them
oyster-shells in there------so you see he's very
hungry and thirsty. How are you, dear child ? " he went on, putting his arm affectionately round Hatta's neck.