"But I only meant ---- " (sensing I would get novhere, I mean
nowhere, I altered my approach) --- "Might I sit down?" I asked.
"Vot you tink dis is, a lounge? Four veeks you pester at mine
door so you kin come in and zit? So! Go aheat! But get to de
point; time is mushrooms and I'm gettink short on both and on
Now that I have him charmed I decided to get to the heart of the
"Mighty Sheikh, I am here to get from you directions on how to
find the great wild mushrooms of Zanzibar to be perfectly blunt."
"Blunt, schmunt, for tventy-fife percent of vot you get, I'm
So saying, he summoned his lawyer, Horvath I-Iruba, formerly of the
Hungarlan Hussars, who, to my astonishment, cast before me a
document which would sign away one-fourth of whatever we found
to the Sheikh's mushroom vaults.
Having little choice I signed and received a map from the Sheikh
I was quickly rushed from the room by Captain Ektrek who rapidly
outdistanced me in the maze of halls. All of a sudden I was
yanked into a side room by a beautiful olive skinned member of
the Sheikh's harem.
Her name was, she told me, Rake El Velsch the Voluptuous and she
was, she was.
Spiriting me behind a nearby pillar she wasted no time in telling
me why she had pulled me aside. Mxch to my disappointment she
wanted only to inform me of some dangers that the Sheikh and his
lawyer neglected to inform me of prior to my clever negotiation
of the map.
She rattled off the miseries that we could expect to encounter
and I tried very hard to absorb all that I could (of what she
When I did listen, I heard of the wise Sheikh of the desert,
Margolies Ben Resident who could show us short cuts to our
destination (Margolies had a thinking stand on the desert's