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Luck at the Diamond Fields by Belgrave

Produced by Nick Hodson of London, England

Luck at the Diamond Fields By Dalrymple J. Belgrave Published by Ward and Downey, 12 York Street, Covent Garden, London. This edition dated 1887.

Luck at the Diamond Fields, by Dalrymple J. Belgrave.

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________________________________________________________________________ LUCK AT THE DIAMOND FIELDS, BY DALRYMPLE J. BELGRAVE.

Story 1.

A TALE OF THE KIMBERLEY COACH.

Chapter One.

The coach to the Diamond Fields was just starting from the Beaufort West railway-station, and the passengers who were destined to travel over hundreds of miles of burnt-up veldt together, to be jolted over water-courses, choked in dust-storms, and suffer the many discomforts and annoyances of South African travel in each other's society, were eyeing one another distrustfully.

The feeling uppermost in the minds of several of them was that they were very likely to become not a little tired of one another before they reached the iron town of Kimberley.

With one or two exceptions they were old residents on the Diamond Fields, returning after a trip home to Europe or to the Colony, and therefore they knew each other very well, at least by sight. Their acquaintanceship as a rule made them look forward with all the more distaste to the idea of spending some days in the same coach.

There were ten passengers, and Kate Gray, a soft, refined-looking English girl who was travelling by herself, and whose black dress suggested that she was equally alone in her journey through life, shrunk into the corner of the coach with a half shudder, and thought that her fellow-passengers were a singularly unprepossessing lot. She had tried to make light in anticipation of the annoyances in store for her; but now they were forced upon her, and she felt uncomfortable and out of heart. She had lived for two years in South Africa, and though she had had great sorrow, none of those rougher experiences of colonial life had come in her way which it now seemed likely enough that she was destined soon to meet with. She was the daughter of a retired army officer, who, believing much in his business capacity and power to make money, had put his all when he left the army into an ostrich farm in the Cape Colony, and had taken his daughter out with him. Their life had been a pleasant one enough for some time. The farm was a pretty place. They were not very far off Capetown, and they had pleasant neighbours within reach.

Unfortunately the farm was not suited to ostriches. The wretched birds refused to thrive and increase. They showed a wayward ingenuity in hunting


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