232 At the Back of the North Wind
In a few minutes a gentleman hailed him.
" Are you the driver of this cab?" he asked.
" Yes, sir," said Diamond, showing his badge, of which he was proud.
" You're the youngest cabman I ever saw. How am I to know you won't break all my bones?"
"I would rather break all my own," said Diamond. "But if you're afraid, never mind me; I shall soon get another fare."
"I'll risk it," said the gentleman; and, opening the door himself, he jumped in.
He was going a good distance, and soon found that Diamond got him over the ground well. Now when Diamond had only to go straight ahead, and had not to mind so much what he was about, his thoughts always turned to the riddle Mr. Raymond had set him; and this gentleman looked so clever that he fancied he must be able to read it for him. He had given up all hope of finding it out for himself, and he could not plague his father about it when he was ill. He had thought of the answer himself, but fancied it could not be the right one, for to see how it all fitted required some knowledge of physiology. So, when he reached the end of his journey, he got down very quickly, and with his head just looking in at the window, said, as the gentleman gathered his gloves and newspapers:
"Please, sir, can you tell me the meaning of a riddle?"
" You must tell me the riddle first," answered the gentleman, amused.
Diamond repeated the riddle.