He did not know from whom this messenger came, but he believed him. Resolved not to remain where a message from the viceroy could reach him, Taher Pacha took another road, and, before another messenger could reach him, Taher entered Cairo with his army. The uproar in the streets, the shouting of the soldiers as they greeted their friends, announced to the viceroy what had taken place. And in great wrath he learned from the defterdar, who came running to the viceroy in despair, that his fears were only too well founded.
Yes, it was as he expected. The soldiers had not gone to their barracks; Taher had not come to seek repose in his house, but to demand his and his soldiers' pay. "We are in rags, and starving; we need shoes and clothes. Give us our pay, that we may satisfy our hunger and clothe ourselves!"
"But how am I to pay them?" said the defterdar, addressing the viceroy in anxious tones. "Our coffers are empty, and all resources exhausted. I know not what to do or where to turn."
The viceroy sat gazing at him gloomily. Suddenly a thought seemed to occur to him; his countenance brightened. "Mohammed Ali is shrewd and fertile in resources. We must apply to him. He will help us out of our difficulty. He is thoughtful, cool, and resolute. True, he assumed a hostile attitude toward me a few days ago, but he must be reconciled.
He must be prevented from uniting with Taher. The two united would be a fearful combination against me."
He instructs the defterdar to go in person to Mohammed Ali to request him to come to the viceroy. "We cannot pay the troops, but we can find enough to pay the general's salary."
Cousrouf Pacha takes from his own private funds ten purses of gold- pieces. He carries them himself to the apartment in which be intends to receive the sarechsme.
In the mean while the minister of finance had, in accordance with the viceroy's instructions, repaired with great haste to the palace in which the sarechsme resided. A body of Albanian soldiers were encamped about the palace. They called themselves the body-guard of the sarechsme. The heart of the finance minister throbbed with dismay when he beheld their daring, resolute faces.
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