"Heart of Darkness"
by Joseph Conrad

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     Then he began again, assuring me Mr. Kurtz was the best agent he had, an exceptional man, of the greatest importance to the Company; therefore I could understand his anxiety. He was, he said, "very, very uneasy."

     Certainly he fidgeted on his chair a good deal, exclaimed, "Ah, Mr. Kurtz!" broke the stick of sealing-wax and seemed dumbfounded by the accident. Next thing he wanted to know "how long it would take to" . . . I interrupted him again. Being hungry, you know, and kept on my feet too. I was getting savage.

     "How can I tell?" I said. "I haven't even seen the wreck yet -- some months, no doubt."


     All this talk seemed to me so futile.

     "Some months," he said. "Well, let us say three months before we can make a start. Yes. That ought to do the affair."

     I flung out of his hut (he lived all alone in a clay hut with a sort of verandah) muttering to myself my opinion of him. He was a chattering idiot. Afterwards I took it back when it was borne in upon me startlingly with what extreme nicety he had estimated the time requisite for the "affair."

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