“Well, so am I, but we’ll be hungrier than the bear ever was, I’m thinking, if we don’t do something to get to land,” broke in Jimmy with some irritation. “Why, Bobby, don’t you realize what it means? We’ve got no water and nothing to eat! We’ll perish of thirst and hunger if we don’t get to land! Unless a sea rises and swamps us, and then we’ll drown!”
“It does look as though we were drifting to the place I came from, but it won’t do any good to worry,” said Bobby. “Maybe when the tide turns we can do something. The wind goes down with the sun every evening, and then with the tide in our favor maybe we can make it.”
“It’ll be a good hour yet before the tide turns, and two or three hours before sundown, and where’ll we be then?” argued Jimmy, dejectedly. “I wish I could be like you, Bobby, and not worry over things the way I do.”
“Well, just remember that we did the best we could to get out of the mess after we got into it, and if we keep on doing our best that is all we can do, and worrying won’t help us any. I just feel like being thankful that you weren’t killed and we’re both here safe and sound, with an even chance that we’ll get back home all right.”
And so, paddling, drifting, sometimes silent for a long while, sometimes talking, the time passed. The land faded upon the horizon and was lost. Icebergs lay about them. Once they were startled by the thunderous roar of a monster berg in the distance as it toppled and turned upon its side, and later they felt its swell. Not far away a whale spouted.
Finally the sun set, and the wind died, and for a little while the heavens and icebergs and sea were marvelously and gloriously painted with crimson and purple and orange.
Then came the long gray twilight of the North, and at last the stars, and night, and darkness, with the icebergs, white, spectral, and coldly majestic, rising in silhouette against the distant sky, and the throbbing, restless sea, somber and black, around them.
HOW THE “GOOD AND SURE” BROUGHT TROUBLE
The two or three hours of the midsummer Labrador night were long hours for Bobby and Jimmy—the longest hours they had ever experienced. At intervals, guiding their course by the stars, they paddled, and this drove away the deadening chill that threatened to overcome them.
But at last dawn came, and with the growing light the sense of helplessness which had enveloped them during the period of darkness fell away, and to some extent Bobby’s confidence, hopefulness, and buoyancy of spirits returned, and he rallied Jimmy, also, into a better frame of mind.
“Hurrah!” shouted Bobby, at length. “See there, Jimmy!”
And Jimmy, looking, saw upon the western horizon a long, gray line.
“Why, there’s the land!” he exclaimed.
“Isn’t it great to see it again!” said Bobby.