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By George MacDonald Fraser

It’s 1868 and Sir Harry Flashman, V.C., arch-cad, amorist, cold-headed soldier, and reluctant hero, is back!

Fleeing a sequence of vengeful pursuers that comes with Mexican bandits, the French international Legion, and the relations of an infatuated Austrian good looks, Flashy is determined for someplace to take disguise. So determined, in reality, that he embarks on a deadly mystery intelligence-gathering venture to aid unfastened a gaggle of Britons being held captive via a tyrannical Abyssinian king. That project quickly becomes essentially the most recognized expeditions in British army background, and alongside the best way, in fact, are nightmare castles, brigands, massacres, rebellions, orgies, and the most endearing and such a lot deadly ladies in Africa–including a voluptuous African queen with a weak point for stalwart adventurers whom she still sometimes throws to her puppy lions–who will try out the bounds of the nice bounder’s skills for knavery, amorous intrigue, and survival.

Flashman at the March–the 12th e-book in George MacDonald Fraser’s ever-beloved, constantly scandalous Flashman Papers series–is Flashman and Fraser at their most sensible.

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Dedjaz Napier and the Basha Fallaka are crafty males who understand Uliba and her plots, and they’ll hint you and hunt you down, aye, whether you run to the Mountains of the Moon. yet unlock me and you’ll be rewarded—more funds than you’ve ever visible! Why, they’re giving fifty thousand money to Masteeat simply as a gift—” He clapped a give up my mouth, and now he used to be stuffing the gag again among my teeth—he may be unswerving to Uliba, yet he daren’t threat his gang being tempted by way of a fortune in silver. i attempted to spit it out, yet he had it certain in a trice, and that i might do not anything yet heave and roll my eyes. Then he spat in my face. “If you have been tortured for a 12 months, it'd be too gentle a punishment! you are going to have slain our royal lady—she who had enjoyed you and stood your pal! and also you imagine you should purchase me, her sworn warrior who lives merely to work out her on her rightful throne! ” He spat back, and shouted to the others to undergo me up. So we trigger once again during the evening; the rain had stopped, yet thunder used to be rumbling within the distance, with an occasional crackle of lightning within the evening sky. Then the speed was once slackening as we went up a steep ascent, and now there has been a glow forward, and a problem to which Goram spoke back, and that i used to be carried among nice boulders right into a rock-girt clearing the place an exceptional fireplace burned, and a half-score of Gallas have been resting on their guns. i used to be dropped with out rite in entrance of a seated determine, cloaked and hooded, and my nervous gaze took in lengthy and lovely legs elegantly crossed, and above them the lithe determine and good-looking face, chilly as a basilisk’s, of Uliba-Wark. there has been no hint of the fury she’d proven at our final come upon. For a protracted second she regarded down at me, with a scarcity of expression that made my pores and skin move slowly, after which she rose, shrugging off her cloak, and got here to face beside Goram, one hand on her hip, the opposite toying along with her braids. yet now not a be aware did she say, and paid no heed whilst Goram, having known as a query to a couple sentry out within the darkness, frowned and shrugged and muttered in her ear. with out taking her eyes from mine, she held out her hand, and Goram drew his knife and passed it to her, grinning. She stropped it as soon as, slowly, on her palm, and nodded, and at a be aware from Goram 3 of his ruffians seized me, on the shoulders, one on the ankles, to avoid my suffering. She signed to Goram to carry out his spear, and to my horror lower the ghastly trophies from its head, slowly and intentionally, to a thrilled murmur from the onlookers; she watched me closely, and should have visible the fear in my eyes, for the chiselled lips smiled for the 1st time, as Goram dropped to 1 knee beside me and wrenched at my waistband, attempting to tear it open. The horror of that second is with me nonetheless, and consistently could be: the hoop of grinning black faces crowding towards watch, Goram’s foul breath in my nostrils, the bestial leer of the scoundrel gripping my ankles, the data of the agonising, unspeakable abomination Uliba-Wark was once approximately to inflict on me as she positioned her ft one each side of my legs and ready to droop, knife in hand … … and past her, at the very fringe of the firelight, there seemed a determine which may purely be a father or mother angel come down from heaven to avoid wasting negative Flashy from his tormentors, for it used to be girl and lovely with flowing hair underneath its little white head-dress like a halo, bare to the waist as an avenging fury can be, with a spear raised to hurl—and it wasn’t a hallucination or imaginative and prescient conjured via superstitious funk, for she used to be letting fly with the spear, and the fellow at my ankles used to be rearing up with a shriek of mortal ache, eyes bulging and palms clutching on the bloody aspect rising from his chest, flopping ahead and spewing gore as he fell over me … which successfully bring to a halt my view of the conflict royal which was once breaking out throughout.

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