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“Now and then, as the tumult outside seems to be increasing, the Che-hsein writes big red characters on flat bamboo-staves and sends it out by an officer to be read to the mob; and occasionally, as he sits and listens attentively to the clamor, as though gauging the situation by the volume of the noise, he addresses himself to me with a soothing and reassuring "S-s-o, s-s-o, s-s-o, s-o.”
“The mob cannot be expected to distinguish between French and English; to the average Celestial we of the Western world are indiscriminately known as Fankwaes, or foreign devils; even to such an enlightened individual as the Che-hsein himself these divisions of the Fankwae race are but vaguely understood.”
“The worthy Che-hsein bows and scrapes and chin-chins me along this gang-plank, the bicycle is brought aboard, the six yameni-runners follow suit, and the boat is poled out into the river.”
“This question of the Che-hsein's at once reveals a gleam of explanatory light concerning the hostility of the people.”
“After satisfying himself by questioning the yameni-runners, that I am without companions or other baggage save the bicycle, the Che-hsein ferrets out a bottle of samshoo and tenders me a liberal allowance in a tea-cup.”
“As quickly as possible the Che-hsein ushers me into his own office, where he quickly proves himself a comparatively enlightened individual by arching his eyebrows and propounding the query, "French?”
“A squad of men with flaming torches, the Che-hsein, and several officials lead the way, maintaining great secrecy and quiet; stout carriers hoist the palanquin to their shoulders and follow on behind; others bring up the rear carrying the bicycle.”
“Che-hsein restrains their aggressiveness within partly governable measure; nevertheless, in spite of his presence, showers of stones are hurled into the yamen so long as I remain in sight.”
“The Che-hsein gives them their orders and delivers a letter into the hands of the officer in charge; he then bids me prepare to depart, bidding me farewell with much polite bowing and scraping, and sundry memorable "chin-chins.”
“The Che-hsein, as I believe the chief magistrate is titled, greets me while running out with his subordinates, with reassuring cries of "S-s-o, s-s-o, s-s-o, s-s-o," repeated with extraordinary rapidity between shouts of deprecation to the mob.”
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