Elizabeth Peters

“Stop," he ordered, in a low but compelling voice. "Do not take another step, or I fire! Dash it," he added vexedly, "does the monstrosity understand English? How absurd this is!"

"It understands the gesture, at least," I called, thrusting head and shoulders through the window. "Lucas, for pity's sake, seize it! Don't stand there deriding its linguistic inadequacies!”

Elizabeth Peters, Crocodile on the Sandbank
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Crocodile on the Sandbank (Amelia Peabody #1) Crocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth Peters
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