man's eyes were on Azizan's, not so much in appeal as in command. He could not move and his faded voice would never reach through the clamour, so his only safety lay in her obedience. But she shook her head, then crouched down--as if to wait till they should once more be alone--in her favourite attitude, her back against the wall, her knees drawn up to her chin, the knife still clasped in her hand ready for use. A louder roar came from without, a rattle as of bricks, mingled with cries of caution and alarm. Then gradually the blows and voices dwindled away from the ceaseless clamour of the rain and the intermittent rumblings of falling masonry, as the smallest crack widened beneath the pressure to a breach until, bit by bit, the solid walls seemed to melt away.
'Why didst thou not open the door, fool?' The words in the greater silence were just audible to the girl.
'Because I did not choose.'
Again the odd sound like a laugh came from that bent figure.
'The woman's reason. Why dids