“Have they got snow around them?” asked Sweetclover.
“Why, no, that’s so,” said Jackie Tar.
“Where else?” asked the Villain.
“We can go down to the South Pole,” said Jackie Tar. At which Kernel Cob began to laugh.
“You don’t expect to find any snow at the South Pole, do you?” he asked.
“Why not?” said Jackie Tar.
“It’ll be too hot,” answered Kernel Cob.
And it took about half an hour to explain to him how it got colder the farther south you went, after you crossed the equator.
So they set sail for the South Pole.
And after they had sailed for a couple of days and nights, there suddenly arose a great hurricane.
The wind raged and their tiny raft was blown clear out of the water.
“I hope I may never have to go to sea again,” said the Villain. “And I wouldn’t much care, if I fell into the water and were drowned.”
But he clung to the mast just the same, for everybody loves to live no matter how miserable they may be, because they always hope that things will be better.
Soon a bit of land was seen, and you may be sure that when they saw that there was a great shout of joy, especially from the Villain.
Toward this they steered and in a little while Jackie Tar, who had been watching very closely, cried out that it was Venice.
And they sailed toward Venice, which, as you know, is a city in Italy, and is built on a number of little islands and the streets are nearly all of water.
“I think it is silly to go on,” said Sweetclover, “for we know that Jackie and Peggs’ motheranfather are not here, but somewhere in the mines.”
“That’s so,” said Kernel Cob, “Let’s turn ’round and sail for the South Pole again.”
“Please don’t,” said the Villain, “I couldn’t stand it. Isn’t there some way that we can get to the South Pole by walking?”
“Not that I know of,” said Jackie Tar, “unless you were a crab and crawled along the bottom of the ocean.”
“Very well,” said the Villain. “I’ll try not to complain.”
“Cheer up,” said Kernel Cob, “all our troubles are over,” and so he thought, for the sea wasn’t any rougher than the water in a bath tub.
But often when you think there isn’t anything going to happen, that’s just the time when it does.
You see the raft had been blown about a great deal, so it wasn’t very strange that the pieces of wood had come apart here and there.
The first they knew of their danger, the piece of wood that Sweetclover had been sitting on broke loose from the rest of the raft and began to float away and Kernel Cob jumped into the water to save her.
He caught the piece of wood with so much strength that he toppled Sweetclover over into the water, and then he lost his head, I mean not really his head, you know, but only that he got excited and let go of the stick.