The Golden Silence, a sample from an ongoing Project Gutenberg’s Distributed proofreaders

Photo: Manoj Vasanth. Flickr CC

Project Gutenberg’s Distributed proofreaders

I just proofread page 266 from what seem like a VERY kitchy adventure novel about a sexy Arab camel driver trying to score :)

The book is The Golden Silence, Part 3 and 4, by Williamson, C. N, you should definitely check it out when it becomes available on Project Gutenberg :)

Here is the page:

and the thought warmed his blood. He was superstitious,
like all Arabs, and he had wanted a sign of success. Now he
had it. He longed to kiss the little fingers as they rested on
El Biod’s forehead, but he said to himself, «Patience; it
will not be long before I kiss her lips.»

«El Biod is my citadel,» he smiled to her. «Thou knowest
we have the same word for horse and citadel in Arabic? And
that is because a brave stallion is a warrior’s citadel, built on
the wind, a rampart between him and the enemy. And we
think the angels gave a horse the same heart as a man, that
he might be our friend as well as servant, and carry us on his
back to Paradise. Whether that is true or not, to-day El
Biod and I are already on the threshold of Paradise, because
we are thy guides, thy guardians through the desert which
we love.»

As he made this speech, Maïeddine watched the girl’s face
anxiously, to see whether she would resent the implication, but
she only smiled in her frank way, knowing the Arab language
to be largely the language of compliment; and he was encouraged.
Perhaps he had been over-cautious with her, he
thought; for, after all, he had no reason to believe that she
cared for any man, and as he had a record of great successes
with women, why be so timid with an unsophisticated girl?
Each day, he told himself, he would take another and longer
step forward; but for the moment he must be content. He
began to talk about the meharis and the Negroes who would
go with them and the beasts of burden.

When it was time for Victoria and M’Barka to be helped
into their bassourahs, Maïeddine would not let the Soudanese
touch the meharis. It was he who made the animals kneel,
pulling gently on the bridle attached to a ring in the left nostril
of each; and both subsided gracefully in haughty silence instead
of uttering the hideous gobbling which common camels
make when they get down and get up, or when they are loaded
or unloaded. These beasts, Guelbi and Mansour, had been

Sounds like the beginning of a wonderful and short friendship, and a hilarious short movie!

«Page 271, horny as hell, still getting nowhere». This is just pure pulp fiction, or like bad porn movie script, I love it!

ribbons, lacing the plain broken with green dayas. A few
minutes more —- incredibly few, it seemed to Victoria —- and
the dayas were deep lakes, where the water swirled and bubbled
round the trunks of young pistachio trees. A torrent poured
from the mourning sky, and there was a wild sound of marching
water, which Victoria could hear, under the haoulis which
sheltered her. No water came through them, for the arching
form of the bassour was like the roof of a tent, and the rain
poured down on either side. She peeped out, enjoying her own
comfort, while pitying Maïeddine and the Negroes; but all
three had covered their thin burnouses with immensely thick,
white, hooded cloaks, woven of sheep’s wool, and they had no
air of depression. By and by they came to an oued, which
should have been a dry, stony bed without a trickle of water;
but half an hour’s downpour had created a river, as if by black
magic; and Victoria could guess the force at which it was rushing,
by the stout resistance she felt Guelbi had to make, as he
waded through.

«A little more, and we could not have crossed,» said Maïeddine,
when they had mounted up safely on the other side of the

«Art thou not very wet and miserable?» the girl asked

«I —- miserable?» he echoed. «I —- who am privileged to
feast upon the deglet nour, in my desert?»

Victoria did not understand his metaphor, for the deglet
nour is the finest of all dates, translucent as amber, sweet
as honey, and so dear that only rich men or great marabouts
ever taste it. «The deglet nour?» she repeated, puzzled.

«Dost thou not know the saying that the smile of a beautiful
maiden is the deglet nour of Paradise, and nourishes a man’s
soul, so that he can bear any discomfort without being conscious
that he suffers?»

«I did not know that Arab men set women so high,» said
Victoria, surprised; for now the rain had stopped, suddenly as



Now on to «page 273, playing headgames, still getting nowhere» :)

As he said this he looked at her with a look which even
her simplicity could not have mistaken if she had thought of it;
but instantly the vision of Saidee came between her eyes and
his. The current of her ideas was abruptly changed. «How
many days now,» she asked suddenly, «will the journey last?»

His face fell. «Art thou tired already of this new way of
travelling, that thou askest me a question thou hast not once
asked since we started?»

«Oh no, no,» she reassured him. «I love it. I am not tired
at all. But —- I did not question thee at first because thou
didst not desire me to know thy plans, while I was still within
touch of Europeans. Thou didst not put this reason in such
words, for thou wouldst not have let me feel I had not thy full
trust. But it was natural thou shouldst not give it, when thou
hadst so little acquaintance with me, and I did not complain.
Now it is different. Even if I wished, I could neither speak
nor write to any one I ever knew. Therefore I question

«Art thou impatient for the end?» he wanted to know,

«Not impatient. I am happy. Yet I should like to count
the days, and say each night, ‘So many more times must the
sun rise and set before I see my sister.'»

«Many suns must rise and set,» Maïeddine confessed doggedly.

«But —- when first thou planned the journey, thou saidst;
‘In a fortnight thou canst send thy friends news, I hope.'»

«If I had told thee then, that it must be longer, wouldst
thou have come with me? I think not. For thou sayest I
did not wholly trust thee. How much less didst thou trust me?»

«Completely. Or I would not have put myself in thy charge.»

«Perhaps thou art convinced of that now, when thou knowest
me and Lella M’Barka, and thou hast slept in the tent of my
father, and in the houses of my friends. But I saw in thine
eyes at that time a doubt thou didst not wish to let thyself

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Av Morten Skogly

Creator of Things