21G STORY OF THE THREE SONS OF HAL I
heard a soft voice speaking, which seemed to come from one of the watches.
' Aurora, my sister,' it whispered gently. ' Did they remember to wind you up at midnight? '
' No, dear Argentine,' was the reply. ' And you? '
'They forgot me, too,' answered the first voice, ' and it is now one o'clock, so that we shall not be able to leave our prison till to-morrow — if we are not forgotten again — then.'
'We have nothing now to do here,' said Aurora. 'We must resign ourselves to our fate — let us go.'
Filled with astonishment Neangir sat up in bed, and beheld by the light of the moon the two watches slide to the ground and roll out of the room past the cats' quarters. lie rushed towards the door and on to the staircase, but the watches slipped downstairs without his seeing them, and into the street. He tried to unlock the door and follow them, but the key refused to turn, so he gave up the chase and went back to bed.
The next day all his sorrows returned with tenfold force. He felt himself lonelier and poorer than ever, and in a fit of despair lie thrust his turban on his head, stuck his sword in his belt, and left the house determined to seek an explanation from the merchant who had sold him the silver watch.
When Neangir reached the bazaar he found the man he sought was absent from his shop, and his place filled by another Jew.
'It is my brother you want,' said he; ' we keep the shop in turn, and in turn go into the city to do our business.'
' Ah ! what business? ' cried Neangir in a fury. ' You are the brother of a scoundrel who sold me yesterday a watch that ran away in the night. But I will find it somehow, or else you shall pay for it, as you are his brother!'
' What is that you say? ' asked the Jew, around whom