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3. III. A CHANGE OF MASTERS (continued)
Their arms and necks were encircled by many ornaments of metal--silver predominating--and on their tunics were sewn the heads of tiny reptiles in odd and rather artistic designs. They talked among themselves as they marched along on either side of us, but in a language which I perceived differed from that employed by our fellow prisoners. When they addressed the latter they used what appeared to be a third language, and which I later learned is a mongrel tongue rather analogous to the Pidgin-English of the Chinese coolie.
How far we marched I have no conception, nor has Perry. Both of us were asleep much of the time for hours before a halt was called--then we dropped in our tracks. I say "for hours," but how may one measure time where time does not exist! When our march commenced the sun stood at zenith. When we halted our shadows still pointed toward nadir. Whether an instant or an eternity of earthly time elapsed who may say. That march may have occupied nine years and eleven months of the ten years that I spent in the inner world, or it may have been accomplished in the fraction of a second--I cannot tell. But this I do know that since you have told me that ten years have elapsed since I departed from this earth I have lost all respect for time--I am commencing to doubt that such a thing exists other than in the weak, finite mind of man.
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