64.THE FIRST DAY'S BATTLE
Bhishma, in his turn, killed Sveta's horses and charioteer. There upon, they hurled javelins at one another and fought on. Sveta took a mace, and swinging it, sent it at Bhishma's car which was smashed to pieces. But the grandsire, even before the mace dashed against the chariot, had anticipated it and jumped down. From the ground he pulled the string of his bow to his ear and sent a fatal arrow at Sveta. Sveta was struck and fell dead. Duhsasana blew his horn and danced in joy. This was followed by a great attack on the Pandava army by Bhishma. The Pandava forces suffered greatly on the first day of the battle. Dharmaputra was seized with apprehension, and Duryodhana's joy was unbounded. The brothers came to Krishna and were engaged in anxious consultations. "Chief among Bharatas," said Krishna to Yudhishthira, "do not fear. God has blessed you with valiant brothers. Why should you entertain any doubts? There is Satyaki and there are Virata, Drupada and Dhrishtadyumna, besides myself. What reason is there for you to be dejected? Do you forget that Sikhandin is awaiting for his predestined victim Bhishma?" Thus did Krishna comfort Yudhishthira.