“What is wrong, Dick?” she asked.
“Oh, nothing much, Dora. I merely made Dan Baxter promise to keep his distance in the future.”
“Did you have a fight?”
“It didn’t amount to much. He had to give in pretty quickly.”
“Oh, Dick!” She caught his arm.
“I won’t have him annoying you, or the others, Dora.”
“You are so good!” she whispered.
Supper was ready, and they sat down, leaving Jack Lesher still in the hammock. They had nearly finished when Dan Baxter came shuffling along.
“Do you want some supper?” asked Dick. “If you do, come on.”
“I don’t want anything more to-night,” growled the bully, and sat down beside Jack Lesher.
It was rather an uncomfortable evening. The thoughts of each of the party were busy. At the first opportunity Dick called old Jerry to one side.
“Jerry, we must watch those two fellows closely,” he said.
“Right ye are, Dick.”
“I am afraid Lesher will be ugly when he wakes up.”
“More’n likely, lad—he always was on board ship. The drink gives him an awful temper.”
“I am, going to put the liquor where he can’t get it.”
“He’ll make ye give it to him.”
“Will he? Just you wait and see,” replied Dick firmly.
It was decided to let Lesher rest in the hammock all night. Baxter was given a cot in the living room of the house. Soon all had retired, and the camp was quiet for the night.
Dan Baxter was the first to stir in the morning. His cuts smarted so he could not sleep, and he walked out to bathe them and put on some salve Nellie had generously turned over to him. He found Jack Lesher stirring.
“Hullo!” grumbled the mate, sitting up and yawning. “Where am I?”
“Don’t you know we struck camp?” answered Baxter.
“Oh, yes, I remember now. Got some good liquor, too. Where is that bottle?”
“You emptied it, Lesher.”
“Did I? Too bad! I’ll have to find another. Where are the girls?”
“Asleep in the house, and so are Dick Rover and old Jerry Tolman.”
“What of Cap’n Blossom and them other Rover boys?”
“They are not expected back for several days.”
“Humph! Say, I feel bad, I do. I must have something to brace me up.”
“You’d better not disturb them, Lesher. They are mighty stiff-necked since they landed here.”
“What do you mean?”
“They gave me to understand yesterday that they were going to run things to suit themselves. They are not going to let us interfere in anything.”
“I like that!” The mate yawned again, rose, and stretched himself. “Baxter, do you know where they keep the liquor?”
“I’m bound to have what I want. Didn’t it all come from the Golden Wave, and aint I the first mate of that craft?”
“To be sure you are, Lesher.”