“You need a vast amount of cheering up, David, little giant!” exclaimed Dalzell.
“Oh, I guess not,” smiled Dave Darrin quietly, adding to himself, under his breath:
“I carry my own good cheer with me, now.”
Lightly his hand touched a breast pocket that carried the latest, sweetest likeness of Miss Belle Meade.
One journey by rail is much like another to the traveler who pays little heed to the scenery.
At the journey’s end two well-rested midshipmen joined the throng of others at Crabtown.
DAN RECEIVES A FEARFUL FACER
“Oh, you heap!” sighed Dan Dalzell dismally.
He sat in his chair, in their new quarters in Bancroft Hall, United States Naval Academy, gazing in mock despair at the pile of new books that he had just drawn.
These text-books contained the subjects in which a midshipman is required to qualify in his second academic year.
“Been through the books for a first look?” called Dave from behind his own study table.
“Some of ’em,” admitted Dalzell. “I’m afraid to glance into the others.”
“I’ve looked in all of my books,” continued Darrin, “and I’ve just come to a startling conclusion.”
“I’m inclined to believe that I have received a complete set of text-books for the first and second classes.”
“No such luck!” grunted Dan, getting up and going over to his chum. “Let me see if you got all the books I did.”
Before Dave could prevent it, Dan started a determined over-tossing of the book pile. As he did so, Dan suddenly uncovered a photograph from which a fair, sweet, laughing face gazed up at him.
“Oh, I beg a million pardons, Dave, old boy!” cried Dalzell.
“You needn’t,” came Dave’s frank answer. “I’m proud of that treasure and of all it means to me.”
“And I’m glad for you, David, little giant.”
Their hands met in hearty clasp, and that was all that was said on that subject at the time.
“But, seriously,” Dan grumbled on, after a while, “I’m aghast at what an exacting government expects and demands that we shall know. Just look over the list—mechanical drawing and mechanical processes, analytical geometry, calculus, physics, chemistry, English literature, French and Spanish, integral calculus, spherical trigonometry, stereographic projection and United States Naval history! David, my boy, by the end of this year we’ll know more than college professors do.”
“Aren’t you getting a big head, Danny?” queried Darrin, looking up with a smile.
“I am,” assented Dalzell, “and I admit it. Why, man alive, one has to have a big head here. No small head would contain all that the Academic Board insists on crowding into it.”
By the time that the chums had attended the first section recitations on the following day, their despair was increased.