The First Visit of Beelzebub to India

Chapter XXI

The First Visit of Beelzebub to India

BEELZEBUB continued to speak as follows:

“Sitting in a Chaihana in this small town of Arguenia, I once overheard a conversation among several beings seated not far from me.

“They were talking and deciding when and how they should go by caravan to Pearl-land.

“Having listened to their conversation, I gathered that they intended to go there for the purpose of exchanging their ‘turquoises’ for what are called ‘pearls.’

“I must here, by the way, draw your attention also to the fact that your favorites of former as well as of contemporary epochs liked and still like to wear pearls and also the said turquoise, as well as many other what are called ‘precious-trinkets’ for the purpose, as they say, of ‘adorning’ their exteriors. But if you would like to know my opinion, they do so, of course instinctively, in order to offset, so to say, the ‘value-of-their-inner-insignificance.’

“At that period to which my present tale refers, the said pearls were very rare among the beings of the second Asiatic group and commanded a high price among them. But in the country Pearl-land there was at the same time a great number of these pearls, and there, on the contrary, they were very cheap, because pearls at that time were exclusively obtained only from the water-spaces surrounding that country.

“The mentioned conversation of the beings who sat near me in the Chaihana in the small town Arguenia then immediately interested me, because at that time I already had the intention of going to that same Pearl-land where the three-brained beings of the continent Ashhark of the third group bred.