CONTENTS CHAPTER I. TWOYOUNGPEOPLE,ASHIP,ANDAFISH II. AFRUIT-BASKETANDAFRIEND III. THETWOCLOCKS
IV. ONTHEQUARTER-DECK V. ANUNSUCCESSFULERRAND VI. APAIROFSHOESANDSTOCKINGS VII. KATEPLANS VIII. BENGREENWAYISCONVINCEDTHATBONNETISAPIRATE IX. DICKORYSETSFORTH X. CAPTAINCHRISTOPHERVINCE XI. BADWEATHER XII. FACETOFACE XIII. CAPTAINBONNETGOESTOCHURCH XIV. AGIRLTOTHEFRONT XV. THEGOVERNOROFJAMAICA XVI. AQUESTIONOFETIQUETTE XVII. ANORNAMENTEDBEARD XVIII. IHAVENORIGHT;IAMAPIRATE XIX. THENEWFIRSTLIEUTENANT XX. ONENORTH,ONESOUTH XXI. APROJECTEDMARRIAGE XXII. BLADETOBLADE XXIII. THEADDRESSOFTHELETTER XXIV. BELIZE XXV. WISEMR.DELAPLAINE XXVI. DICKORYSTRETCHESHISLEGS XXVII. AGIRLWHOLAUGHED XXVIII. LUCILLA'SSHIP
CHAPTERI TWOYOUNGPEOPLE,ASHIP,ANDAFISH decorativedrop-capillustration The month was September and the place was in the neighbourhood of Bridgetown, in the island of Barbadoes. The seventeenth century was not seventeenyearsold,butthegirlwhowalkedslowlydowntotheriverbankwas threeyearsitssenior.Shecarriedafishing-rodandline,andhernamewasKate Bonnet.Shewasabright-faced,quick-movingyoungperson,andapparentlydid notexpecttocatchmanyfish,forshehadnobasketinwhichtocarryawayher finnyprizes.Nor,apparently,didshehaveanybait,exceptthatwhichwasupon herhookandwhichhadbeenaffixedtherebyoneoftheservantsatherhome, notfaraway.Infact,MistressKatewastoonicelydressedandhergloveswere toocleantohavemuchtodowithfishorbait,butsheseatedherselfonalittle rock in a shady spot not far from the water and threw forth her line. Then she gazedabouther;alittleuptheriverandagooddealdowntheriver. Itwastrulyapleasantscenewhichlaybeforehereyes.Nothalfamileawaywas the bridge which gave this English settlement its name, and beyond the river werewoodsandcultivatedfields,withhereandtherealittlebitofsmoke,forit was growing late in the afternoon, when smoke meant supper. Beyond all this theland rose fromthelower groundneartheriverandthesea,interraceafter terrace, until the upper stretches of its woodlands showed clear against the eveningsky. ButMistressKateBonnetnowgazedsteadilydownthestream,beyondthetown andthebridge,andpaidnomoreattentiontothescenerythanthescenerydidto her,althoughonewasquiteasbeautifulastheother. Therewasabunchofwhiteflowersinthehatoftheyounggirl;notaverylarge one,andnotaverysmallone,butofsuchasizeasmightbeeasilyseenfromthe bridge,hadanyonehappenedtobecrossingaboutthattime.And,infact,asthe wearerofthehatandthewhiteflowersstillcontinuedtogazeatthebridge,she sawsomeonecomeoutuponitwithaquick,buoyantstep,andthenshesawhim stop and gaze steadily up the river. At this she turned her head, and her eyes
went out over the beautiful landscape and the wide terraces rising above each othertowardsthesky. Itisastonishinghowsoonafterthisayoungman,dressedinabrownsuit,and verypleasanttolookupon,camerapidlywalkingalongtheriverbank.Thiswas MasterMartinNewcombe,ayoungEnglishman,nottwoyearsfromhisnative land,andnowaprosperousfarmerontheothersideoftheriver. ItoftenhappenedthatMasterNewcombe,atthecloseofhisagriculturallabours, would put on a good suit of clothes and ride over the bridge to the town, to attendtobusinessortosocialduties,asthecasemightbe.But,sometimes,not willingtoencumberhimselfwithahorse,hewalkedoverthebridgeandstrolled orhurriedalongtheriverbank.Thiswasoneofthetimesinwhichhehurried. Hehadbeencaughtbythevisionofthebunchofwhiteflowersinthehatofthe girlwhowasseatedontherockintheshade. AsMasterNewcombesteppednear,hisspiritsrose,astheyhadnotalwaysrisen, as he approached Mistress Kate, for he perceived that, although she held the handleofherrodinherhand,theotherendofitwaslyingontheground,not veryfarawayfromthebaitandthehookwhich,itwasveryplain,hadnotbeen in the water at all. She must have been thinking of something else besides fishing,hethought.Buthedidnotdaretogoonwiththatsortofthinkinginthe way he would have liked to do it. He had not too great a belief in himself, thoughhewasverymuchinlovewithKateBonnet. "Isthisthebesttimeofdayforfishing,MasterNewcombe?"shesaid,without risingorofferinghimherhand."Formypart,Idon'tbelieveitis." He smiled as he threw his hat upon the ground. "Let me put your line a little fartherout."Andsosaying,hetooktherodfromherhandandsteppedbetween herandthebait,whichmusthavebeennowquitehotfromlyingsolonginabit ofsunshine.Herearrangedthebaitandthrewthelinefaroutintotheriver.Then hegavehertherodagain.Heseatedhimselfonthegroundnear-by. "ThisisthesecondtimeIhavebeenoverthebridgeto-day,"hesaid,"andthis morning,veryearly,Isaw,forthefirsttime,yourfather'sship,whichwaslying belowthetown.Itisafinevessel,sofarasIcanjudge,beingalandsman." "Yes,"saidshe,"andIhavebeenonboardofherandhavegonealloverher,and have seen many things which are queer and strange to me. But the strangest thingabouther,tomymind,beingalandswoman,is,thatsheshouldbelongto
myfather.Therearemanythingswhichhehasnot,whichitwouldbeeasyto believe he would like to have, but that a ship, with sails and anchors and hatchways,shouldbeoneofthesethings,itishardtoimagine." Young Newcombe thought it was impossible to imagine, but he expressed himselfdiscreetly. "Itmustbethatheisgoingtoengageintrade,"hesaid;"hashenottoldyouof hisintentions?" "Not much," said she. "He says he is going to cruise about among the islands, and when I asked him if he would take me, he laughed, and answered that he mightdoso,butthatImustneversayawordofittoMadamBonnet,forifshe heardofitshemightchangehisplans." The wicked young man found himself almost wishing that the somewhat badtemperedMadamBonnetmighthearofandchangeanyplanwhichmighttake her husband's daughter from this town, especially in a vessel; for vessels were alwaysterriblytardywhenanyonewaswaitingfortheirreturn.And,besides,it oftenhappenedthatvesselsnevercamebackatall. "Ishalltakealittletripwithhimevenifwedon'tgofar;itwouldberidiculous formyfathertoownaship,andformenevertosailinher." "That would not be so bad," said Master Martin, feeling that a short absence might be endured. Moreover, if a little pleasure trip were to be made, it was reasonable enough to suppose that other people, not belonging to the Bonnet family,mightbeaskedtosailasguests. "Whatmyfatherexpectstotradein,"saidshecontemplativelygazingbeforeher, "IamsureIdonotknow.Itcannotbehorsesorcattle,forhehasnotenoughof themtomakesuchaventureprofitable.Andastosugar-cane,oranythingfrom his farm, I am sure he has a good enough market here for all he has to sell. Certainlyhedoesnotproduceenoughtomakeitnecessaryforhimtobuyaship inordertocarrythemaway." "Itisopined,"saidMartin,"bythepeopleofthetown,thatMajorBonnetintends to become a commercial man, and to carry away to the other islands, and perhapstotheoldcountryitself,thegoodsofotherpeople." "Nowthatwouldbefine!"saidMistressKate,hereyessparkling,"forIshould then surely go with him, and would see the world, and perhaps London." And
herfaceflushedwiththeprospect. Martin'sfacedidnotflush."Butifyourfather'sshipsailedonalongvoyage,"he said, with a suspicion of apprehension, "he would not sail with her; he would sendherunderthechargeofothers." Thegirlshookherhead."Whenshesails,"saidshe,"hesailsinher.Ifyouhad heardhimtalkingasIhaveheardhim,youwouldnotdoubtthat.Andifhesails, Isail." Martin'ssoulgrewquitesad.Therewereverygoodreasonstobelievethatthis deargirlmightsailawayfromBridgetown,andfromhim.Shemightcomeback tothetown,butshemightnotcomebacktohim. "MistressKate,"saidhe,lookingveryearnestlyather,"doyouknowthatsuch speech as this makes my heart sink? You know I love you, I have told you so before.Ifyouweretosailaway,Icarenottowhatport,thisworldwouldbea blackplaceforme." "Thatislikealover,"sheexclaimedalittlepertly;"itislikethemall,everyman ofthem.Theymusthavewhattheywant,andtheymusthaveit,nomatterwho elsemaysuffer." Heroseandstoodbyher. "ButIdon'twantyoutosuffer,"hesaid."Doyouthinkitwouldbesufferingto live with one who loved you, who would spend his whole life in making you happy, who would look upon you as the chief thing in the world, and have no otherambitionthantomakehimselfworthyofyou?" Shelookedupathimwithalittlesmile. "Thatwould,doubtless,beallverypleasantforyou,"shesaid,"andinorderthat youmightbepleased,youwouldhavehergiveupsomuch.Thatisthewaywith men!Now,hereamI,bornintheveryendofthelastcentury,andhavinghad, consequently,nogoodoutofthat,andwithbutseventeenyearsinthiscentury, andmostofitpassedingirlhoodandinschool;andnow,whentheworldmight openbeforemeforalittle,hereyoucomealongandtellmeallthatyouwould liketohave,andthatyouwouldlikemetogiveup." "Butyoushouldnotthink,"saidhe,andthatwasallhesaid,foratthatmoment KateBonnetfeltalittlejerkattheendofherline,andthenagoodstrongpull.
"Ihaveafish!"shecried,andsprangtoherfeet.Then,withaswoop,shethrew into the midst of the weeds and wild flowers a struggling fish which Martin hastenedtotakefromthehook. "Afinefellow!"hecried,"andhehasarrivedjustintimetomakeadaintydish foryoursupper." "Ah,no!"shesaid,windingthelineaboutherrod;"ifIweretotakethatfishto the house, it would sorely disturb Madam Bonnet. She would object to my catchingit;shewouldobjecttohavingitpreparedforthetable;shewouldobject tohavingiteaten,whenshehadarrangedthatweshouldeatsomethingelse.No, Iwillgiveittoyou,MasterNewcombe;Isupposeinyourhouseyoucancook andeatwhatyouplease." "Yes,"saidhe;"buthowdelightfulitwouldbeifwecouldeatittogether." "Meaning,"saidshe,"thatIshouldnevereatotherfishthanthosefromthisriver. No,sir;thatmaynotbe.IhaveanotionthatthefirstforeignfishIshalleatwill befoundintheislandofJamaica,formyfathersaid,thatpossiblyhemightfirst takeatripthere,wherelivesmymother'sbrother,whomwehavenotseenfora longtime.But,asItoldyoubefore,nobodymustknowthis.AndnowImustgo tomysupper,andyoumusttakeyourshomewithyou." "AndIamsureitwillbethesweetestfish,"hesaid,"thatwasevercaughtinall thesewaters.ButIbeg,beforeyougo,youwillpromisemeonething." "Promiseyou!"saidshe,quiteloftily. "Yes," he answered; "tell me that, no matter where you go, you will not leave Bridgetownwithoutlettingmeknowofit?" "Iwillnot,indeed,"saidshe;"andifitistoJamaicawego,perhapsmyfather— but no, I don't believe he will do that. He will be too much wrapped up in his shiptowantforcompanytowhomhemustattendandtalk." "Ah!therewouldbenoneedofthat!"saidNewcombe,withalover'ssmile. Shesmiledbackathim. "Good-night!"shesaid,"andseetoitthatyoueatyourfishto-nightwhileitisso fresh."Thensheranupthewindingpathtoherhome. He stood and looked after her until she had disappeared among the shrubbery,
CHAPTERII AFRUIT-BASKETANDAFRIEND decorativedrop-capillustration MajorStedeBonnet,thefatherofKate,whosemotherhaddiedwhenthechild wasbutayearold,wasamiddle-agedEnglishmanofafairestate,intheisland of Barbadoes. He had been an officer in the army, was well educated and intelligent, and now, in vigorous middle life, had become a confirmed country gentleman.Hisherdsandhiscropswere,tohim,theprincipalthingsonearth, withtheexceptionofhisdaughter;for,althoughhehadmarriedforthesecond time,therewereagoodmanythingswhichhevaluedmorethanhiswife.Andit had therefore occasioned a good deal of surprise, and more or less small talk amonghisneighbours,thatMajorBonnetshouldwanttobuyaship.Buthehad beenasoldierinhisyouth,andsoldiersareveryapttochangetheirmannerof living,andso,ifMajorBonnethadgrowntiredofhisfarmandhaddetermined togointocommercialenterprises,itwasnot,perhaps,averyamazingthingthat amilitarymanwhohadturnedplantershouldnowturntobesomethingelse. MadamBonnethadheardoftheship,althoughshehadnotbeentoldanything aboutherstep-daughtertakingatripinher,andifshehadheardshemightnot haveobjected.Shehadregarded,inanapparentlycarelessmanner,herhusband's desiretonavigatethesea;for,nomattertowhatpointhemighthappentosail, hisshipwouldtakehimawayfromBarbadoes,andthatwouldverywellsuither. ShewasgettingtiredofMajorBonnet.Shedidnotbelievehehadeverbeena verygoodsoldier;shewaspositivelysurethathewasnotagoodfarmer;andshe hadthestrongestkindofdoubtastohisabilityasacommercialman.Butasthis newbusinesswouldfreeherfromhim,atleastforatime,shewaswellcontent; and,althoughsheshouldfeelherselfsomewhathandicappedbythepresenceof Kate,shedidnotintendtoallowthatyoungladytointerferewithherplansand purposes during the absence of the head of the house. So she went her way, saying nothing derisive about the nautical life, except what she considered it necessary for her to do, in order to maintain her superior position in the household. Major Bonnet was now very much engaged and a good deal disturbed, for he
found that projected sailing, even in one's own craft, is not always smooth sailing. He was putting his vessel in excellent order, and was fitting her out generously in the way of stores and all manner of nautical needfuls, not forgetting the guns necessary for defence in these somewhat disordered times, andhislatestendeavoursweretowardstheshippingofasuitablecrew.Seafaring menwerenotscarceintheportofBridgetown,butMajorBonnet,nowentitled tobecalled"Captain,"wasveryparticularabouthiscrew,andittookhimalong timetocollectsuitablemen. Ashewasmosttrulyalandsman,knowingnothingabouttheseaorthevarious intricatemethodsofnavigatingavesselthereupon,hewascompelledtosecurea realcaptain—onewhowouldbeabletotakechargeofthevesselandcrew,and who would do, and have done, in a thoroughly seamanlike manner, what his nominalskippershoulddesireandordain. This absolutely necessary personage had been secured almost as soon as the vesselhadbeenpurchased,beforeanyoftherestofthecrewhadsignedship's articles;anditwasunderhisgeneralsupervisionthatthestoringandequipment hadbeencarriedon.HisnamewasSamLoftus.Hewasabigmanwithagreat readinessofspeech.Therewere,perhaps,somethingshecouldnotdo,butthere seemed tobenothing thathewasnotabletotalkabout.Ashas been said,the restofthecrewcameinslowly,buttheydidcome,andMajorBonnettoldhis daughterthatwhenhehadsecuredfourmoremen,itwashisintentiontoleave port. "AndsailforJamaica?"sheexclaimed. "Oh, yes," he said, with an affectionate smile, "and I will leave you with your UncleDelaplaine,whereyoucanstaywhileImakesomelittlecruiseshereand there." "AndsoIamreallytogo?"sheexclaimed,hereyessparkling. "Reallytogo,"saidhe. "AndwhatmayIpackup?"sheasked,thinkingofherstep-mother. "Not much," he said, "not much. We will be able to find at Spanish Town somethingbraverinthewayofapparelthananythingyounowpossess.Itwillbe some days before we sail, and I shall have quietly conveyed on board such belongingsasyouneed."
Shewasveryhappy,andshelaughed. "Yourswillbeaneasilyladenship,"saidshe,"foryoutakeinwithyounogreat storeofgoodsfortraffic.ButIsupposeyoudesigntopickupyourcargoamong the islands where you cruise, and at a less cost, perchance, than it could be procuredhere?" "Yes,yes,"hesaid;"youhavehititfairly,mylittlegirl,youhavehititfairly." New annoyances now began to beset Major Bonnet. What his daughter had remarkedinpleasantry,thepeopleofthetownbegantotalkaboutunpleasantly. Herewasagood-sizedcraftabouttosetsail,withlittleornocargo,butwitha crewapparentlymuchlargerthanherrequirements,butnotyetlargeenoughfor the desires of her owner. To be sure, as Major Bonnet did not know anything about ships, he was bound to do something odd when he bought one and set forthtosailuponher,butthereweresomeoddthingswhichoughttobelooked into; and there were people who advised that the attention of the colonial authoritiesshouldbedrawntothisshipoftheirfarmertownsman.MajorBonnet had such a high reputation as a good citizen, that there were few people who thoughtitworthwhiletotroublethemselvesabouthisnewbusinessventure,but agoodmanydisagreeablethingscametotheearsofSamLoftus,whoreported themtohisemployer,anditwasagreedbetweenthemthatitwouldbewisefor themtosailassoonastheycould,eveniftheydidnotwaitforthefewmenthey hadconsideredtobeneeded. Early upon a cloudy afternoon, Major Bonnet and his daughter went out in a smallboattolookathisvessel,theSarahWilliams,whichwasthenlyingashort distancebelowthetown. "Now, Kate," said the good Major Bonnet, when they were on board, "I have fitted up a little room for you below, which I think you will find comfortable enoughduringthevoyagetoJamaica.IwilltakeyouwithmewhenIreturnto thehouse,andthenyoucanmakeupalittlepackageofclotheswhichitwillbe easytoconveytotheriverbankwhenthetimeshallcomeforyoutodepart.I cannot now say just when that time will arrive; it may be in the daytime or it maybeatnight,butitwillbesoon,andIwillgiveyougoodnotice,andIwill comeuptheriverforyouinaboat.ButnowIamverybusy,andIwillleaveyou to become acquainted with the Sarah Williams, which, for a few days, will be yourhome.Ishallbeobligedtorowovertothetownfor,perhaps,halfanhour, butBenGreenwaywillbeheretoattendtoanythingyouneeduntilIreturn."
BenGreenwaywasaScotchman,whohadforalongtimebeenMajorBonnet's mosttrustedservant.Hewasagoodfarmer,wasaptatcarpenterwork,andknew a good deal about masonry. A few months ago, any one living in that region wouldhavebeenlikelytosay,ifthesubjecthadbeenbroughtup,thatwithout BenGreenwayMajorBonnetcouldnotgetalongatall,notevenforaday,forhe dependeduponhiminsomanyways.Andyet,nowthemasteroftheestatewas about to depart, for nobody knew how long, and leave his faithful servant behind.Thereasonhegavewas,thatBencouldnotbesparedfromthefarm;but peopleingeneral,andBeninparticular,thoughtthisverypoorreasoning.Any sortofbusinesswhichmadeitnecessary forMajorBonnettoseparatehimself fromBenGreenwaywasaverypoorbusiness,andshouldnotbeenteredupon. ThedeckoftheSarahWilliamspresentedalivelysceneasKatestooduponthe littlequarter-deckandgazedforward.Thesailorswerewalkingaboutandsitting about, smoking, talking, or coiling things away. There were people from the shorewithbasketscontainingfruitandotherwaresforsale,andallstirringand newandveryinterestingtoMissKateasshestood,withherribbonsflyinginthe riverbreeze. "Who is that young fellow?" she said to Ben Greenway, who was standing by her,"theonewiththebigbasket?ItseemstomeIhaveseenhimbefore." "Oh, ay!" said Ben, "he has been on the farm. That is Dickory Charter, whose fatherwasdrownedoutfishingafewyearsago.Heisagoodlad,an'boardsall shipscomin'inorgoin'outtosellhiswares,forhismitherleansonhimnow, havingnoither." Theyouth,whoseemedtofeelthathewasbeingtalkedabout,nowwalkedaft, and held up his basket. He was a handsome youngster, lightly clad and barefooted;and,althoughnotyetfullgrown,ofastrongandactivebuild.Kate beckonedtohim,andboughtanorange. "An'howisyourmither,Dickory?"saidBen. "Rightwell,Ithankyou,"saidhe,andgazedatKate,whowasbitingaholein herorange. Then,asheturnedandwentaway,havingnoreasontoexpecttosellanything more, Kate remarked to Ben: "That is truly a fine-looking young fellow. He walkswithsuchstrengthandease,likeadeeroracat."
"That comes from no' wearin' shoes," said Ben; "but as for me, I would like bettertowearshoesan'walkmairstiffly." Nowtherecameaftasailor,whotouchedhiscapandtoldBenGreenwaythathe waswantedbelowtosuperintendthestowingsomecasesofthecaptain'sliquors. SoKate,lefttoherself,begantothinkaboutwhatsheshouldpackintoherlittle bundle.Shewouldmakeitverysmall,forthefewerthingsshetookwithherthe moreshewouldbuyatSpanishTown.Butthecontentsofherpackagedidnot requiremuchthought,andshesoonbecamealittletiredstayingtherebyherself, and therefore she was glad to see young Dickory, with his orange-basket, walkingaft. "I don't want any more oranges," she said, when he was near enough, "but perhapsyoumayhaveotherfruit?" Hecameuptoherandput downhisbasket. "Ihavebananas, butperhapsyou don'tlikethem?" "Oh,yes,Ido!"sheanswered. But, without offering to show her the fruit, Dickory continued: "There's one thingIdon'tlike,andthat'sthemenonboardyourship." "Whatdoyoumean?"sheasked,amazed. "Speaklower,"hesaid;and,ashespoke,hebethoughthimselfthatitmightbe welltoholdouttowardsheracoupleofbananas. "They're a bad, hard lot of men," he said. "I heard that from more than one person.Yououghtnottostayonthisship." "And what do you know about it, Mr. Impudence?" she asked, with brows uplifted."Isupposemyfatherknowswhatisgoodforme." "Butheisnothere,"saidDickory. Katelookedsteadfastlyathim.Hedidnotseemasruddyashehadbeen.And then she looked out upon the forward deck, and the thought came to her that whenshehadfirstnoticedthesemenithadseemedtoherthattheywere,indeed, arough,hardlot.KateBonnetwasabravegirl,butwithoutknowingwhyshe feltalittlefrightened. "YournameisDickory,isn'tit?"shesaid.
Helookedupquickly,foritpleasedhimtohearherusehisname."Indeeditis," heanswered. "Well, Dickory," said she, "I wish you would go and find Ben Greenway. I shouldliketohavehimwithmeuntilmyfathercomesback." Heturned,andthenstoppedforaninstant.Hesaidinaclearvoice:"Iwillgo andgettheshillingchanged."Andthenhehurriedaway. He was gone a long time, and Kate could not understand it. Surely the Sarah Williams was not so big a ship that it would take all this time to look for Ben Greenway. But he did come back, and his face seemed even less ruddy than whenshehadlastseenit.Hecameupclosetoher,andbeganhandlinghisfruit. "Idon'twanttofrightenyou,"hesaid,"butImusttellyouaboutthings.Icould notfindBenGreenway,andIaskedoneofthemenabouthim,feigningthathe owed me for some fruit, and the man looked at another man and laughed, and saidthathehadbeensentforinahurry,andhadgoneashoreinaboat." "Icannotbelievethat,"saidKate;"hewouldnotgoawayandleaveme." Dickorycouldnotbelieveiteither,andcouldoffernoexplanation. Katenowlookedanxiouslyoverthewatertowardsthetown,butnofatherwas tobeseen. "NowletmetellyouwhatIfoundout,"saidDickory,"youmustknowit.These men are wicked robbers. I slipped quietly among them to find out something, withmyshillinginmyhand,readytoasksomebodytochange,ifIwasnoticed." "Well,whatnext?"layingherhandonhisarm. "Oh,don'tdothat!"hesaidquickly;"bettertakeholdofabanana.Ispiedthat Big Sam, who is sailing-master, and a black-headed fellow taking their ease behindsomeboxes,smoking,andIlistenedwithallsharpness.AndSam,hesaid totheotherone—notinthesewords,butinlanguagenotfitforyoutohear— what he would like to do would be to get off on the next tide. And when the otherfellowaskedhimwhyhedidn'tgothenandleavethefool—meaningyour father—to go back to his farm, Big Sam answered, with a good many curses, thatifhecoulddoithewoulddropdowntheriverthatveryminuteandwaitat the bar until the water was high enough to cross, but that it was impossible becausetheymustnotsailuntilyourfatherhadbroughthiscash-boxonboard.It
wouldbestupidtosailwithoutthatcash-box." "Dickory,"saidshe,"Iamfrightened;Iwanttogoonshore,andIwanttosee myfatherandtellhimallthesethings." "Butthereisnoboat,"saidDickory;"everyboathaslefttheship." "Butyouhaveone,"saidshe,lookingovertheside. "Itisapoorlittlecanoe,"heanswered,"andIamafraidtheywouldnotletme takeyouaway,Ihavingnoorderstodoso." Kate was about to open her mouth to make an indignant reply, when he exclaimed,"Butherecomesaboatfromthetown;perhapsitisyourfather!" Shesprangtotherail."No,itisnot,"sheexclaimed;"itholdsbutoneman,who rows." She stood, without a word, watching the approaching boat, Dickory doing the same,butkeepinghimselfoutofthegeneralview.Theboatcamealongsideand theoarsmanhandedupanote,whichwaspresentlybroughttoKatebyBigSam, youngDickoryCharterhavinginthemeantimeslippedbelowwithhisbasket. "Anotefromyourfather,MistressBonnet,"saidthesailing-master.Andasshe readithestoodandlookeduponher. "My father tells me," said Kate, speaking decidedly but quietly, "that he will comeonboardverysoon,butIdonotwishtowaitforhim.Iwillgobacktothe town.Ihaveaffairswhichmakeitnecessaryformetoreturnimmediately.Tell themanwhobroughtthenotethatIwillgobackwithhim." BigSamraisedhiseyebrowsandhisfaceassumedalookoftrouble. "Itgrievesmegreatly,MistressBonnet,"hesaid,"butthemanhasgone.Hewas orderednottowaithere." "Shoutafterhim!"criedKate;"callhimback!" Samsteppedtotherailandlookedoverthewater."Heistoofaraway,"hesaid, "butIwilltry."Andthenheshouted,butthemanpaidnoattention,andkepton rowingtoshore. "Ithoughtitwastoofar,"hesaid,"butyourfatherwillbebacksoon;hesentthat messagetome.Andnow,fairmistress,whatcanwedoforyou?Shallitbethat
wesendyousomesupper?Or,asyourcabinisready,wouldyouprefertostep downtoitandwaitthereforyourfather?" "No,"saidshe,"Iwillwaithereformyfather.Iwantnothing." So,withabowhestrodeaway,andpresentlyDickorycameback.Shedrewnear tohimandwhispered."Dickory,"shesaid,"whatshallIdo?ShallIscreamand wavemyhandkerchief?Perhapstheymayseeandhearmefromthetown." "No,"saidDickory,"Iwouldnotdothat.Thenightiscomingon,andtheskyis cloudy.Andbesides,ifyoumakeanoise,thosefellowsmightdosomething." "Oh,Dickory,whatshallIdo?" "Youmustwaitforyourfather,"hesaid;"hemustbeheresoon,andthemoment you see him, call to him and make him take you to shore. You should both of yougetawayfromthisvesselassoonasyoucan." Foramomentthegirlreflected."Dickory,"saidshe,"Iwishyouwouldtakea messageformetoMasterMartinNewcombe.Hemaybeabletogetheretome evenbeforemyfatherarrives." DickoryCharterknewMr.Newcombe,andhehadheardwhatmanypeoplehad talked about, that he was courting Major Bonnet's daughter. The day before Dickory would not have cared who the young planter was courting, but this evening, even to his own surprise, he cared very much. He was intensely interested in Kate, and he did not desire to help Martin Newcombe to take an interestinher.Besides,hespokehonestlyashesaid:"Andwhowouldtherebe totakecareofyou?No,indeed,Iwillnotleaveyou." "Thenrowtothetown,"saidshe,"andhaveaboatsentforme." Heshookhishead."No,"hesaid,"Iwillnotleaveyou." Hereyesflashed."Youshoulddowhatyouarecommandedtodo!"andinher excitementshealmostforgottowhisper. Heshookhisheadandlefther.