Power of the Sword
Half-brothers and blood enemies, Manfred and Shasa are caught up in a savage war to seize the sword of power in their land. The story follows them through two decades of South African history, telling of their rivalry in a deadly struggle.
of nothing but when they would next be allowed to drink. She kept glancing at her wrist-watch, convincing herself that it had stopped, that she had forgotten to wind it, that at any moment Blaine would lift his arm to halt the column and they could unscrew the stoppers on the water bottles. Nobody spoke from choice. All orders were terse and monosyllabic, every word an effort. ‘I won’t be the first to give in,’ Centaine decided grimly, and then she was alarmed that the thought had even occurred
to step up their performance or visit them with all kinds of retribution. Yet by the end of the first week Manfred had subtly but permanently rearranged the pecking order amongst the younger members of the household. He had quelled the Bierman girls’ first furtive but concerted attempts at mockery with a steady implacable stare from his yellow eyes, and they retreated in twittering consternation. Over the school books it was different. His cousins were all dedicated scholars, with the benefit
terms, no bargains, but had simply given without asking in return. Rather than demanding she had given him quittance; it was she who had insisted that no other person should be hurt by their happiness. Freely she had heaped upon him all the sweets of her love without asking the smallest price, not the gold band and vows of marriage, not even promises or assurances, and he had offered nothing. Until this moment there had been nothing for him to give her in repayment. On the other hand he had been
back — find them.’ But Moses shook his head. ‘They are scattered like the seeds of the grass; there is no way to mark their fall. No, my brother, we are prisoners in this coach. We cannot go back. The diamonds are lost for ever.’ Hendrick sat quietly, with his tongue exploring his shattered mouth, running it over the jagged stumps of his front teeth; considering his brother’s cold logic. Moses waited quietly. This time he would give no orders, point no direction, no matter how subtle. Hendrick
shaken hands. ‘What have you found so far?’ ‘Nothing, Minister.’ The inspector shook his head. ‘We have checked over six hundred cases of rifles. It’s a time-consuming job. But so far everything seems to be in order.’ ‘How many cases in the stores?’ ‘Nine hundred and eighty.’ ‘So you have checked over half.’ Blaine shook his head. ‘Let’s go and have a look anyway.’ He settled his hat on his head and buttoned his overcoat to the neck for there was a cold wind sweeping across the airstrip,