to Englishmen of a roving and adventurous disposition. Only quite recently raids organized by the apparently irrepressible Osman Digna had been successfully carried out a few miles north and south of Berber. At the moment General Hunter, with two battalions of troops, was marching along the banks of the River Atbara to hunt for Osman and his followers, but there was much speculation as to whether five-and-twenty dervish raiders were still this side of the river, and drawing their water from the wells on the Suakim road.
I was hardly prepared for this journey--one, probably, of twelve days--for my campaigning outfit, which I was compelled to leave on board my nugger on the Nile, had not yet arrived in Berber. Unfortunately, I could not wait for the gear, as the Sirdar insisted on our departure at once, for the road would be certainly insecure directly General Hunter returned from covering our right flank on the Atbara. I had no clothes but what I stood up in, and I had been more or less standing up in t