"I only wish to read the firman to Cousrouf myself."
"Let it be as you desire, sarechsme. If you ask this as a reward for your faithful services, it is a petty one indeed; you are, however, I believe, soon to receive a much greater one. When Courschid enters Cairo, he will appoint you a pacha of two tails."
Mohammed hastily averted his face, and made no reply. No one should see that the intelligence made him rejoice.
The fruit is ripe and ready to fall; the time for action has come.
On the following morning, a body of soldiers marches out and surrounds the quarter of the city in which the Mameluke beys reside.
Bardissi and Ismail have both left the citadel, and now dwell in the city. There they can live more comfortably and conveniently than up in the citadel; and the Mameluke beys are in the habit of attaching more importance to their comfort than the rest of the world. The quarter in which they reside is completely surrounded by soldiers. They do not notice it, however; these grand gentlemen are taking their ease in their palaces.
Bardissi is in his harem. He has consoled himself for Sitta Nefysseh's cruelty and coldness; the beautiful Georgian and Circassian slaves that throng his harem well know how to make him forget the past with their songs and dances, their sweet words and soft looks.
There he lies on his cushions, gazing dreamily at their dancing.
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