"Indeed!" said the major, with a supercilious look.
"Allow me to express my surprise," resumed the captain, "at seeing you installed as commanding officer upon what I have always understood to be Spanish soil. May I demand your claim to your position?"
"My claim is that of first occupant."
"But do you not think that the party of Spaniards now resident with me may at some future time assert a prior right to the proprietorship?"
"I think not, Captain Servadac."
"But why not?" persisted the captain.
"Because these very Spaniards have, by formal contract, made over Ceuta, in its integrity, to the British government."
Servadac uttered an exclamation of surprise.