“Bill Lee, does you mean for to say as dem boys run down de French steamah in dat ar’ boat?”
“Not dat. Not zackly.”
“‘Cause, ef you does, I jes’ want to say I’s been down a-lookin’ at her, and she ain’t even snubbed her bowsprit.”
A GREAT MANY THINGS GETTING READY TO COME!
The newspapers from the city brought full accounts of the stranding of the “Prudhomme,” and of the safety of her passengers and cargo.
The several editors seemed to differ widely in their opinions relating to the whole affair; but there must have been some twist in the mind of the one who excused everybody on the ground that “no pilot, however skilful, could work his compass correctly in so dense a fog as that.”
None of them had any thing whatever to say of the performances of “The Swallow.” The yacht had been every bit as well handled as the great steamship; but then, she had reached her port in safety, and she was such a little thing, after all.
Whatever excitement there had been in the village died out as soon as it was known that the boys were safe; and a good many people began to wonder why they had been so much upset about it, anyhow.
Mrs. Lee herself, the very next morning, so far recovered her peace of mind as to “wonder wot Dab Kinzer’s goin’ to do wid all de money he got for dem bluefish.”
“I isn’t goin’ to ask him,” said Dick. “He’s capt’in.”
As for Dab himself, he did an immense amount of useful sleeping, that first night; but when he awoke in the morning he shortly made a discovery, and the other boys soon made another. Dab’s was, that all the long hours of daylight and darkness, while he held the tiller of “The Swallow,” he had been thinking as well as steering. He had therefore been growing very fast, and would be sure to show it, sooner or later.
Ford and Frank found that Dab had forgotten nothing he had said about learning how to box, and how to talk French; but he did not say a word to them about another important thing. He talked enough, to be sure; but a great, original idea was beginning to take form in his mind, and he was not quite ready yet to mention it to any one.
“I guess,” he muttered more than once, “I’d better wait till Ham comes home, and talk to him about it.”
As for Frank Harley, Mr. Foster had readily volunteered to visit the steamship-office in the city, with him, that next day, and see that every thing necessary was done with reference to the safe delivery of his baggage. At the same time, of course, Mrs. Foster wrote to her sister Mrs. Hart, giving a full account of all that had happened, but saying that she meant to keep Frank as her own guest for a while, if Mrs. Hart did not seriously object.
That letter made something of a sensation in the Hart family. Neither Mrs. Hart nor her husband thought of making any objection; for, to tell the truth, it came to them as a welcome relief.