Give your evidence, said the King; and don't be nervous, or I'll have you executed on the spot.
This did not seem to encourage the witness at all: he kept shifting from one foot to the other, looking uneasily at the Queen, and in his confusion he bit a large piece out of his teacup instead of the bread-and-butter.
Just at this moment Alice felt a very curious sensation, which puzzled her a good deal until she made out what it was: she was beginning to grow larger again, and she thought at first she would get up and leave the court; but on second thoughts she decided to remain where she was as long as there was room for her.
I wish you wouldn't squeeze so. said the Dormouse, who was sitting next to her. I can hardly breathe.
I can't help it, said Alice very meekly: I'm growing.
You've no right to grow here, said the Dormouse.
Don't talk nonsense, said Alice more boldly: you know you're growing too.
Yes, but I grow at a reasonable pace, said the Dormouse: not in that ridiculous fashion. And he got up very sulkily and crossed over to the other side of the court.
All this time the Queen had never left off staring at the Hatter, and, just as the Dormouse crossed the court, she said to one of the officers of the court, Bring me the list of the singers in the last concert! on which the wretched Hatter trembled so, that he shook both his shoes off.
Give your evidence, the King repeated angrily, or I'll have you executed, whether you're nervous or not.
* * * *
At this moment the King, who had been for some time busily writing in his note-book, cackled out `Silence!' and read out from his book, `Rule Forty-two. All persons more than a mile high to leave the court.'
Everybody looked at Alice.
`I'm not a mile high,' said Alice.
`You are,' said the King.
`Nearly two miles high,' added the Queen.
`Well, I shan't go, at any rate,' said Alice: `besides, that's not a regular rule: you invented it just now.'
`It's the oldest rule in the book,' said the King.
`Then it ought to be Number One,' said Alice.