Pressing on after taking the first of the three villages that 'block' the pass into Nepal, the party and their motley 'army' make camp about 10 miles short of the next village. After an 'early' start (during which Elsbeth sets off for an early morning hunt and returns with 'breakfast') they approach the village, in the widest part of the U-shaped valley.
They are assailed by snipers from thickets a few hundred yards away to both the right and left, and Gladstone instantly charges his horses to the left to clear the snipers, Wallace leads the footmen to the right thicket. They are engaged in searching the thickets when two dozen horsemen charge directly from the village - along the path and straight into the 'baggage train' where Hamilton and Lady Elsbeth await. The two sharp-shooters cause great loss to the charging tribesmen, but they are eventually overrun, with Lady Elsbeth darting off to the side at the last moment - hoping to be followed by her maid and Hamilton. Her maid's horsemanship isn't up to it and Hamilton has to pause to slap it into a gallop before charging after it on his fine arab stallion.
Hamilton's good offices are repayed by him receivng an ugly stabbing wound through his side from a charging tribesman. The three are chased - very closely - towards Wallaces men. On seeing the attack, Wallace has lead his men charging back to help, he carries the attack back to releive the baggage train and servants, but is not in time to avoid a slaughter of many of their camp followers, cooks, medics and porters and servants.
With Gladstone's aid they quickly dispatch the villagers, and take control of the village. Hamilton, Lady Elsbeth and her maid return to see to their staff, and only then do the ladies notice Hamilton has actually passed out in the saddle through loss of blood. Only his natural balance and footsure horse are keepign him upright. They stich the wound and tend him as best as they are able, eventually transferring him to the largest house in the village which has become the temporary 'base'. The village is taken and has been deserted by the villagers.
That night as the party rest it becomes apparent that Hamilton is very poorly indeed, Wallace decides to take action and manages to get his body taken to a quiet stable, with only Wallace & Hamiltons' fine arab stallion. Working carefully so as not to alarm the two bodyguards at the door Wallace performs a messy and unnatural ceremony learnt in his travels on the Dark Continent. He is just completing the bloody affair when Elsbeth comes to see how he is getting on. Wallace urgently tidies up (jumping in the horse trough and ripping off his bloodied shirt) but is unable to forestall her, she witnesses the indecent moment with the bloody body of Hamilton and the phallus of the fine stallion. Wallace stammers out an excuse about Todgers having a deranged moment of weakness and de-tackling his horse - which he's been known to do in the past hence the 'todgers' nickname, she retires shocked. Wallace is very pleased to see Hamilton's miraculous return to fine fettle, which calms down the two anxious bodyguards and sets a fire in the stable to cover the 'worst' of the events.
Hamilton has made a startling recovery, and is almost 'too hearty' and full of vigour. The following day he negotiates the surrender of the last village and it's subjugation to the tribe of his cousin, including the taking of a couple of 'hostages' to be married to / cared for by his own family in Bombay.
The party make haste into Nepal, where they are 'met' at the border by an escort, and taken to a remote mountain palace. They are met with due (though in Hamiltons's case minimal) ceremony and taken to rooms to freshen-ip. Wallace is pleased to find that he know his room attendant well, and re-makes his intimate aquaintance with his favourite of MarhariniLakshmi s handmaidens.
That evening they are entertained by the chamberlain - no sign of Marharini yet, and are joined by LeiutenantJamesOutram, who takes a quiet moment to explain to Wallace that the Marharini has some vital information that they need to 'tease' out of her - and to watch out for her handmainden as she is actually head of security and very ruthless.