Go Set a Watchman (To Kill a Mockingbird #2)
Author:Harper Lee

They made a three-point landing on the outskirts of Capetown, and she told Jem he hadn’t given her anything to say for ten minutes and she wasn’t going to play any more if he didn’t.

“Okay. Scout, you say, ‘Tom, there’s no time to lose. Let’s head for the jungle.’”

She said it.

They marched around the back yard, slashing at foliage, occasionally pausing to pick off a stray elephant or fight a tribe of cannibals. Jem led the way. Sometimes he shouted, “Get back!” and they fell flat on their bellies in the warm sand. Once he rescued Mr. Damon from Victoria Falls while she stood around and sulked because all she had to do was hold the rope that held Jem.

Presently Jem cried, “We’re almost there, so come on!”

They rushed forward to the carhouse, a village of headhunters. Jem dropped to his knees and began behaving like a snake healer.

“What are you doing?” she said.

“Shh! Making a sacrifice.”

“You look afflicted,” said Dill. “What’s a sacrifice?”

“You make it to keep the headhunters off you. Look, there they are!” Jem made a low humming noise, said something like “buja-buja-buja,” and the carhouse came alive with savages.

Dill rolled his eyes up in their sockets in a nauseating way, stiffened, and fell to the ground.

“They’ve got Mr. Damon!” cried Jem.

They carried Dill, stiff as a light-pole, out into the sun. They gathered fig leaves and placed them in a row down Dill from his head to his feet.

“Think it’ll work, Tom?” she said.

“Might. Can’t tell yet. Mr. Damon? Mr. Damon, wake up!” Jem hit him on the head.

Dill rose up scattering fig leaves. “Now stop it, Jem Finch,” he said, and resumed his spread-eagle position. “I’m not gonna stay here much longer. It’s getting hot.”

Jem made mysterious papal passes over Dill’s head and said, “Look, Ned. He’s coming to.”

Dill’s eyelids fluttered and opened. He got up and reeled around the yard muttering, “Where am I?”

“Right here, Dill,” she said, in some alarm.

Jem scowled. “You know that’s not right. You say, ‘Mr. Damon, you’re lost in the Belgian Congo where you have been put under a spell. I am Ned and this is Tom.’”

“Are we lost, too?” said Dill.

“We were all the time you were hexed but we’re not any more,” said Jem. “Professor Wiggins is staked out in a hut over yonder and we’ve got to get him—”

For all she knew, Professor Wiggins was still staked out. Calpurnia broke everybody’s spell by sticking her head out the back door and screaming, “Yawl want any lemonade? It’s ten-thirty. You all better come get some or you’ll be boiled alive in that sun!”

Calpurnia had placed three tumblers and a big pitcher full of lemonade inside the door on the back porch, an arrangement to ensure their staying in the shade for at least five minutes. Lemonade in the middle of the morning was a daily occurrence in the summertime. They downed three glasses apiece and found the remainder of the morning lying emptily before them.

“Want to go out in Dobbs Pasture?” asked Dill.

No.

“How about let’s make a kite?” she said. “We can get some flour from Calpurnia …”

“Can’t fly a kite in the summertime,” said Jem. “There’s not a breath of air blowing.”

The thermometer on the back porch stood at ninety-two, the carhouse shimmered faintly in the distance, and the giant twin chinaberry trees were deadly still.

“I know what,” said Dill. “Let’s have a revival.”

The three looked at one another. There was merit in this.

Dog days in Maycomb meant at least one revival, and one was in progress that week. It was customary for the town’s three churches—Methodist, Baptist, and Presbyterian—to unite and listen to one visiting minister, but occasionally when the churches could not agree on a preacher or his salary, each congregation held its own revival with an open invitation to all; sometimes, therefore, the populace was assured of three weeks’ spiritual reawakening. Revival time was a time of war: war on sin, Coca-Cola, picture shows, hunting on Sunday; war on the increasing tendency of young women to paint themselves and smoke in public; war on drinking whiskey—in this connection at least fifty children per summer went to the altar and swore they would not drink, smoke, or curse until they were twenty-one; war on something so nebulous Jean Louise never could figure out what it was, except there was nothing to swear concerning it; and war among the town’s ladies over who could set the best table for the evangelist. Maycomb’s regular pastors ate free for a week also, and it was hinted in disrespectful quarters that the local clergy deliberately led their churches into holding separate services, thereby gaining two more weeks’ honoraria. This, however, was a lie.