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by Rudyard Kipling

Kim Chapter 10 Summary


  • Kim keeps going on adventures with Mahbub Ali when Mahbub Ali is near Lucknow, and spends Christmas break with Lurgan learning more about the religions of India and taking care of himself on the road.
  • The next Christmas, Kim practices his mapmaking skills with Mahbub Ali in the city of Jeysalmir (now Jaisalmer).
  • As a gift, Mahbub Ali gives Kim a new set of clothes—and a .45 revolver.
  • Kim is absolutely thrilled, but he can't bring the gun to St. Xavier's with him, so he asks Mahbub Ali to keep it for him for now.
  • A few weeks later, Mahbub Ali goes to Creighton to say that Kim is ready to join them in their work.
  • Creighton feels a little bad—isn't Kim only sixteen? (Actually, he's seventeen.)
  • But Mahbub Ali worries that if he spends any longer in school, he'll lose the skills that make him so valuable.
  • Mahbub Ali suggests that they let Kim travel with his old friend, the lama.
  • Creighton agrees to pull Kim out of school and to send him to Mahbub Ali and Lurgan to prepare for life on the road for the next six months.
  • Kim really could not be happier to be out of school forever.
  • Mahbub Ali warns Kim that he has six months of traveling to prove himself before he can be a real Secret Service agent, but Kim is just excited to be in some real-world clothes and outside of school.

Bon Voyage (Don't Mind Us While We Give You An Exorcism)

  • Mahbub Ali takes him to a blind woman named Huneefa to prepare him for the road.
  • Kim is deeply confused: what is this woman going to do to help?
  • She lights some incense that makes Kim feel drowsy; eventually, he passes out.
  • While Kim is unconscious, Huneefa paints symbols and does rituals for his protection.
  • Mahbub Ali and the Babu are both present during these rituals, and Mahbub Ali believes that this will help keep Kim safe on his quest.
  • After Huneefa is finished, Mahbub Ali takes off, but he leaves Kim in the care of the Babu.
  • When Kim wakes up the next day, the Babu gives him a disguise to wear as a disciple of the lama.
  • The Babu plans to go with Kim to Benares on the train.
  • The Babu points out that Kim now has a silver amulet around his neck—it's from Huneefa.
  • This amulet is the mark of the Sat Bhai, an old, extinct cult… but the Babu has published papers saying the cult is still alive.
  • In fact, this whole thing is his invention—it's the Babu's way of making sure that the different employees of the British Secret Service in India can recognize each other.
  • He also makes Kim repeat a series of code sentences.
  • Then the Babu sets off and Kim inspects his new costume as the disciple of the lama.
  • His gun is tucked in his robes, he's got some money in his belt, and everything is perfect.

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