Keep Off This Grass -battles for gold and uranium in colonial Rhodesia

By Harry Norton and Mike Lord

Action & adventure, Crime & mystery, Historical fiction, Romance, Thriller, General fiction


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Chapter 13

As the two men came out of the house, they saw a mounted Police boy galloping towards them.
“Marpolisa omkulu (police chief)” he cried, “Abantu ububi eziningi (many evil boys) are driving off the herd boys, burning some of their huts and are now chasing off the cattle. I was not there at the time but I saw the smoke and ran toward it. As there were so many evil ones, I kept out of sight and started to crawl around to the other side to see if my brother (the other Police boy working with him) was still there or had been hurt, but I could not find him. I then ran to get the horse to come and warn you and stumbled over a Kudu-Kop boy lying in the grass, moaning. His arm had been broken and he had had many lashes. He told me that the evil ones had threatened to kill him if he tried to return to his hut.”
“Ngaki (how many) evil ones are there?”
He held up both hands three times, signifying thirty.
“They had some iron cans with them which they were banging with sticks to frighten the cattle away.”
“You did well boy, I shall remember this. We will now prepare to capture the Izigelekeeque (villains).”
“He has come from the south; how many cattle have you got down there, Tony?”
“About fifteen hundred, I reckon,”
“Let us first of all send Marpol in one car and Dick in another to try to pick up what Police boys they can find and any of your own volunteers and bring them here or, better still, assemble them on the southern road that we will be taking. “What guns have you got here?”
“I have my own rifle and two shot guns, plus the revolver in the car. The girls have a small bore shotgun as well, and we have plenty of ammunition for the lot.”
“I will telephone Umvuma to muster all the help they can lay their hands on and we will send one of your boys, Tony, to the junction that will lead them direct to the “battlefield”. You had better warn both Jack Drummond and Dave Wilson to be on their guard, please.”
“Sam, will you take Tony’s revolver and tell the girls to keep their gun loaded. Keep to the house and its immediate surrounds. We shall have to take both Marpol and Dick. I do not think that there will be any trouble here, but you must be prepared. The dogs will give you fair warning of the approach of any undesirables. Do not hesitate to shoot if in doubt. The situation should ease well before dark as armed help will not be long in arriving.”



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