This bug is to make my fortune," he continued, with a triumphant smile, "to reinstate me in my family possessions.
I'd rudder not go fer trubble dat bug - you mus git him for your own self.
And will you promise me, upon your honor, that when this freak of yours is over, and the bug business (good God
cried the negro, drawing back in dismay - "what for mus tote de bug way up de tree?
Whenever the people grumbled too loudly the Bug sang a new song, and Big-Fat said it was God's word that we should kill Meat- Eaters, and Tiger-Face led us over the divide to kill and be killed.
And the Bug sang another song about men like Split-Nose, who wanted to go back, and live in trees.
Then the Bug sang again, and he sang that Split-Nose was lazy, and he sang also the 'Song of the Bees.
The Bug and I escaped, and I hid in the wildest places, and became a hunter of meat and went hungry no more.
He did not accomplish it in a day, or in a week, or in a month, or in a year; but slowly, very slowly, he learned after he had grasped the possibilities which lay in those little bugs, so that by the time he was fifteen he knew the various combinations of letters which stood for every pictured figure in the little primer and in one or two of the picture books.
He would attempt to reproduce some of the little bugs that scrambled over the pages of his books.
But he persevered for months, at such times as he was able to come to the cabin, until at last by repeated experimenting he found a position in which to hold the pencil that best permitted him to guide and control it, so that at last he could roughly reproduce any of the little bugs.
Copying the bugs taught him another thing--their number; and though he could not count as we understand it, yet he had an idea of quantity, the base of his calculations being the number of fingers upon one of his hands.