“Your drawings are remarkably good, considering everything,” she told him. “But how would you like for me to give you some lessons?”
“How would I like it?” Eben gasped in amazement. “You give me lessons in drawin’!”
“And why not? We shall have time, I am sure, and I have not yet forgotten all I learned.”
“Oh, it would be great! But what about dad? I’m afraid he won’t let ye. He might think it will spoil me from bein’ a captain some day. He wants me to study navigation, or something like that, which I hate.”
Before any reply could be made, a slight shock was heard against the side of the boat which startled them both. The girl sprang to her feet, and looked up the stairway. Then the sound of footsteps was heard upon the deck above.
“They are after me!” she gasped. “Oh, where can I hide?”
“Stay right here,” Eben ordered, as he leaped toward the stairs. “I’ll fix ’em.”
His foot had barely touched the first step when his father’s body bulked large in the doorway above. Instinctively Eben drew back, and stood on the defensive, with every nerve strung to the highest tension.
Slowly the captain descended, and when he had reached the bottom of the stairway he stopped and looked around. In an instant he comprehended the situation, and a twinkle appeared in his eyes as he turned them upon his son.
“Is this the way ye obey orders?” he demanded. “Didn’t I tell ye not to come near this cabin?”
“I know ye did, but that was last night,” was the surly reply. “Ye didn’t tell me to stay away this mornin’.”
The captain stared at his son for a few seconds as if he had not heard aright.
“Well, I declare!” he exclaimed. “I gave ye credit fer some brains, but I guess I was mistaken.”
“Don’t blame your son, Captain,” the girl interposed. “It was not his fault that he is here, but mine. I asked him to come.”
“Ye did! Why, I thought ye didn’t want anybody ’cept me to know of yer whereabouts.”
“But it’s different with your son here. He had to find out, anyway, you see, so it was just as well for him to do so this morning.”
“So ye waited until I got on shore, eh? H’m, I guess all gals are alike, as sly as a weasel. As soon as the old man was out of the way, you two became very chummy. Fergot everything else most likely. It’s a wonder ye weren’t paradin’ up an’ down the deck.”
“Oh, we took good care to keep out of sight,” the girl laughingly replied. “We had enough sense left for that. This is certainly a great hiding place.”
“D’ye think so, Miss? But mebbe it isn’t so good as ye imagine.”
A startled expression came into the girl’s eyes, as she turned them full upon the captain’s face.
“Thar, thar, don’t be alarmed,” the latter comforted. “I didn’t mean to frighten ye. I only wanted to warn ye, that’s all.”