A Journey to the Interior of the Earth
When I came to myself, I was stretched in half darkness, covered with thick coats and
blankets. My uncle was watching over me, to discover the least sign of life. At my first
sigh he took my hand; when I opened my eyes he uttered a cry of joy.
"He lives! he lives!" he cried.
"Yes, I am still alive," I answered feebly.
"My dear nephew," said my uncle, pressing me to his breast, "you are saved."
I was deeply touched with the tenderness of his manner as he uttered these words, and
still more with the care with which he watched over me. But such trials were wanted to
bring out the Professor's tenderer qualities.
At this moment Hans came, he saw my hand in my uncle's, and I may safely say that
there was joy in his countenance.
"GOD DAG," said he.
"How do you do, Hans? How are you? And now, uncle, tell me where we are at the
"Tomorrow, Axel, tomorrow. Now you are too faint and weak. I have bandaged your
head with compresses which must not be disturbed. Sleep now, and tomorrow I will tell
"But do tell me what time it is, and what day."
"It is Sunday, the 8th of August, and it is ten at night. You must ask me no more
questions until the 10th."
In truth I was very weak, and my eyes involuntarily closed. I wanted a good night's rest;
and I therefore went off to sleep, with the knowledge that I had been four long days alone
in the heart of the earth.
Next morning, on awakening, I looked round me. My couch, made up of all our travelling
gear, was in a charming grotto, adorned with splendid stalactites, and the soil of which
was a fine sand. It was half light. There was no torch, no lamp, yet certain mysterious
glimpses of light came from without through a narrow opening in the grotto. I heard too a
vague and indistinct noise, something like the murmuring of waves breaking upon a
shingly shore, and at times I seemed to hear the whistling of wind.