Harry Escombe

Harry Collingwood

Harry Escombe, by Harry Collingwood

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Title: Harry Escombe A Tale of Adventure in Peru
Author: Harry Collingwood
Illustrator: Victor Prout
Release Date: April 13, 2007 [EBook #21066]
Language: English
Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1

Produced by Nick Hodson of London, England

Harry Escombe A Tale of Adventure in Peru
By Harry Collingwood _______________________________________________________________________Harry Escombe is a young apprentice in a civil engineer's office. The firm has received a contract to survey and built a railway line in Peru. Harry is chosen to go, and is informed that if he does well in the work the future for him is pretty bright.
But there is a fly in the ointment. The man in charge of the project is about as nasty as anyone can be: his character is beautifully depicted throughout the book. He makes Harry do a piece of surveying in an unnecessarily dangerous manner, as a result of which he falls down a precipice from which he cannot be rescued, and is therefore written off as dead.
But he was indeed rescued. He was taken to a house where he remained in a coma for some time. Then he is thought to be a re-incarnation of The Inca, and taken by Indians to their own city, where he is worshipped as a god. This could be quite embarrassing if you found yourself in this situation, as you'd be unable to perform miracles, and do the things a deity might be expected to do. However, Harry managed rather well. But eventually he manages to escape from the situation, and to return to his home in England. ______________________________________________________________________HARRY ESCOMBE A TALE OF ADVENTURE IN PERU
The hour was noon, the month chill October; and the occupants--a round dozen in number--of Sir Philip Swinburne's drawing office were more or less busily pursuing their vocation of preparing drawings and tracings, taking out quantities, preparing estimates, and, in short, executing the several duties of a civil engineers' draughtsman as well as they could in a temperature of 35กใ Fahrenheit, and in an atmosphere surcharged with smoke from a flue that refused to draw--when the door communicating with the chief draughtsman's room opened and the head of Mr Richards, the occupant of that apartment, protruded through the aperture. At the sound of the opening door the draughtsmen, who were acquainted with Mr Richards's ways, glanced up with one accord from their work, and the eye of one of them was promptly caught by Mr Richards, who, raising a beckoning finger, remarked:
"Escombe, I want you," and immediately retired.
Thereupon Escombe, the individual addressed, carefully wiped his drawing pen upon a duster, methodically laid the instrument in its proper place in the instrument case, closed the latter, and, descending from his high stool, made his way into the chief draughtsman's room, closing the door behind him. He did this with some little trepidation; for these private interviews with his chief were more often than not of a distinctly unpleasant character, having reference to some stupid blunder in a calculation, some oversight in the preparation of a drawing, or something of a similar nature calling for sharp rebuke; and as the lad-- he was but seventeen--accomplished the short journey from one room to the other he rapidly reviewed his most recent work, and endeavoured to decide in which job he was most likely to have made a mistake. But before he could arrive at a decision on this point he was in the presence of Mr Richards, and a single glance at the chief draughtsman's face--now that it could be seen clearly and unveiled by a pall of smoke--sufficed to assure Harry Escombe that in this case at least he had nothing in the nature of censure to fear. For Mr Richards's face was beaming with satisfaction, and a large atlas lay open upon the desk at which he stood.
"Sit down, Escombe," remarked the dreaded potentate as he pointed to a chair.
Escombe seated himself; and then ensued a silence of a full minute's duration. The potentate seemed to be meditating how to begin. At length--
"How long have you been with us, Escombe?" he enquired, hoisting himself onto a stool as he put the question.
"A little over two years," answered Escombe. "I signed my articles with Sir Philip on the first of September the year before last, and came on duty the next day."
"Two years!" ejaculated Mr Richards. "I did not think it had been so long as that. But time flies when one is
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