It was Heron who had called out and, as he marched forward between his two attendants, he cleft the air before him with a thin cane in time to their steps.
Stephen, his tongue cleaving to his palate, bowed his head, praying with his heart.
But the notes were long and shrill and whirring, unlike the cry of vermin, falling a third or a fourth and trilled as the flying beaks clove the air.
Not so faintly now as they come near the bridge; and in a moment, as they pass the darkened windows, the silence is cloven by alarm as by an arrow.
An instant of wild flight had delivered him and the cry of triumph which his lips withheld cleft his brain.
A rim of the young moon cleft the pale waste of skyline, the rim of a silver hoop embedded in grey sand; and the tide was flowing in fast to the land with a low whisper of her waves, islanding a few last figures in distant pools.