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Chapter 11 The Excitement of Bilbil the Goat

  • Our story must now return to one of our characters whom we have been forced t_eglect. The temper of Bilbil the goat was not sweet under any circumstances,
  • and whenever he had a grievance he was inclined to be quite grumpy. So, whe_is master settled down in the palace of King Gos for a quiet life with th_oy Prince, and passed his time in playing checkers and eating and otherwis_njoying himself, he had no use whatever for Bilbil, and shut the goat in a_pstairs room to prevent his wandering through the city and quarreling wit_he citizens. But this Bilbil did not like at all. He became very cross an_isagreeable at being left alone and he did not speak nicely to the servant_ho came to bring him food; therefore those people decided not to wait upo_im any more, resenting his conversation and not liking to be scolded by _ean, scraggly goat, even though it belonged to a conqueror. The servants kep_way from the room and Bilbil grew more hungry and more angry every hour. H_ried to eat the rugs and ornaments, but found them not at all nourishing.
  • There was no grass to be had unless he escaped from the palace.
  • When Queen Cor came to capture Inga and Rinkitink, both the prisoners were s_illed with despair at their own misfortune that they gave no thought whateve_o the goat, who was left in his room. Nor did Bilbil know anything of th_hanged fortunes of his comrades until he heard shouts and boisterous laughte_n the courtyard below. Looking out of a window, with the intention o_ebuking those who dared thus to disturb him, Bilbil saw the courtyard quit_illed with warriors and knew from this that the palace had in some way agai_allen into the hands of the enemy.
  • Now, although Bilbil was often exceedingly disagreeable to King Rinkitink, a_ell as to the Prince, and sometimes used harsh words in addressing them, h_as intelligent enough to know them to be his friends, and to know that Kin_os and his people were his foes. In sudden anger, provoked by the sight o_he warriors and the knowledge that he was in the power of the dangerous me_f Regos, Bilbil butted his head against the door of his room and burst i_pen. Then he ran to the head of the staircase and saw King Gos coming up th_tairs followed by a long line of his chief captains and warriors.
  • The goat lowered his head, trembling with rage and excitement, and just as th_ing reached the top stair the animal dashed forward and butted His Majesty s_iercely that the big and powerful King, who did not expect an attack, double_p and tumbled backward. His great weight knocked over the man just behind hi_nd he in turn struck the next warrior and upset him, so that in an instan_he whole line of Bilbil's foes was tumbling heels over head to the bottom o_he stairs, where they piled up in a heap, struggling and shouting and in th_ixup hitting one another with their fists, until every man of them wa_ruised and sore.
  • Finally King Gos scrambled out of the heap and rushed up the stairs again,
  • very angry indeed. Bilbil was ready for him and a second time butted the Kin_own the stairs; but now the goat also lost his balance and followed the King,
  • landing full upon the confused heap of soldiers. Then he kicked out s_iciously with his heels that he soon freed himself and dashed out of th_oorway of the palace.
  • "Stop him!" cried King Gos, running after.
  • But the goat was now so wild and excited that it was not safe for anyone t_tand in his way. None of the men were armed and when one or two tried to hea_ff the goat, Bilbil sent them sprawling upon the ground. Most of th_arriors, however, were wise enough not to attempt to interfere with hi_light.
  • Coursing down the street, Bilbil found himself approaching the bridge of boat_nd without pausing to think where it might lead him he crossed over an_roceeded on his way. A few moments later a great stone building blocked hi_ath. It was the palace of Queen Cor, and seeing the gates of the courtyar_tanding wide open, Bilbil rushed through them without slackening his speed.