The Hound of the Baskervilles L3
Hugo's friends fetched their horses and followed him. There were thirteen of them. After a mile or two they passed an old farmer and asked him if he had seen Sir Hugo and the hounds. The man looked half mad with fear and spoke with difficulty.(1) He said that he had seen the girl and the hounds running close behind her. Sir Hugo had been riding just behind the hounds. 'But I have seen more than that,' the old man said. 'Behind Sir Hugo I saw a huge and terrible hound running silently. May God keep me safe from that hound of hell.'
The thirteen men laughed at the old man and rode on. But their laughter soon stopped when they saw Sir Hugo's horse running wildly towards them without a rider.
The thirteen men moved closer together as they rode on. They were suddenly afraid. Over the moor they went until, at last, they caught up with the hounds.(2)
Everyone in the county knew that the Baskerville hounds were brave and strong. But now they were standing at the head of a deep valley in the moor with their ears and tails down. They were very frightened. Hugo's friends stopped. Most of them would not go on, but three were brave enough to go down into the valley.
The valley had a wide flat floor. In the middle of the flat ground stood two great stones. They had stood there for thousands of years. The moon was shining brightly on the great stones, and between them, on the flat ground, lay the girl. She had fallen there, dead of fear and exhaustion.(3) Sir Hugo's body was lying near her. But it was not the sight of Sir Hugo or the girl that filled the men with fear. It was the sight of the huge animal that was standing over Sir Hugo. Its teeth were at his throat. It was a great black creature that looked like a hound. But it was larger than any hound they had ever seen.
As they watched, it tore out Hugo Baskerville's throat.(4) Then it turned towards them. Its eyes were burning brightly. Its body shone with a strange light. Blood ran from its mouth. The men screamed and kicked their horses. They rode back up the valley as fast as they could go. Later that night one died from the horror he had seen.(5) The other two were mad for the rest of their lives.
That was the first time the Hound appeared, my sons. It has been seen many times since then, and many of the Baskervilles have died in strange and terrible ways. Because of this I warn you not to cross the moors at night. The Devil finds it easy to do his work when the world is dark.
1. half 半，半……（用于形容词前，表示强调或夸张非常，极其）
half the price 半价
and a half 强调
That was a meal and a half!
He was half dead with exhaustion.
He was only half aware of what was happening.
2. catch up (with) 赶上，达到（标准、水平等）
catch up with/on 补做，赶做
If you miss a lot of classes, it’s very difficult to catch up.
At the moment our technology is more advanced, but other countries are catching up with us.
Students seize every minute to catch up on some sleep.
3. exhaustion 精疲力竭，疲惫不堪
I’ve exhausted myself with all that cleaning.
People suffer from heat exhaustion in the summer.
4. tear out 撕开，撕掉
The children were all in tears.
A couple of pages had been torn out of the book.
He bent down and split his trousers.
5. die from/of... 死于……
pass away 死亡（euphemism 委婉语）
...not with sb. 不在了
die of natural causes
He died from/of a heart attack.
Michael Jackson passed away long ago.
Michael Jackson is not with us anymore.