“If that’s the case I’ll make Lesher tell us what happened,” cried Tom, and shook the mate roughly. “Wake up here!” he cried. “Wake up and give an account of yourself!”
IN CLOSE QUARTERS
Slowly Dick came to his senses. He remembered little or nothing, and only knew that all was dark around him, and that his head was spinning like a top.
For several minutes he remained quiet, trying to collect his thoughts. Then he sat up and passed one hand slowly over his forehead.
“Oh, how my heed aches!” he murmured.
It was fully five minutes before he felt like moving around. Then he arose and took a step forward and stumbled over old Jerry’s body.
“Oh!” he murmured, and felt of the body in the dark, “Who is this? Can it be Jerry?” he asked himself.
Then came a recollection of the cowardly attack. But what had followed was a blank, and he could not imagine where he was.
Dick remembered that he had a match safe in his pocket, and soon he made a light. By this he caught sight of a lantern in the brig and lit it. Then he bent over old Jerry, and saw that the sailor was still alive, but suffering from his treatment.
“He must have been attacked, too,” murmured Dick. The bucket of water was at hand, And he took a drink and bathed Captain Jerry’s forehead.
It was fully half an hour before the old sailor felt at all like himself. Both sat down to review the situation.
“The cowards!” said Dick. “What do you suppose they attacked us for?”
“Can’t say as to that,” replied old Jerry. “Perhaps Lesher wanted to show us he was master.”
“He’ll settle with me if I ever get out of this hole, Jerry. What place is this?”
“The lock-up of the Golden Wave. I think it used to be an oil room.”
They gazed around them, and soon discovered the can of ship’s biscuits and also the beans.
“They evidently meant to keep us prisoners for some time,” said Dick. “Hark, what is that?”
Both listened, and made out the sounds of distant thunder and heard the patter of rain on the deck.
“A storm is brewing,” said old Jerry. “It sounds as if it was putty heavy, too.”
They tried the door to the brig, but found it locked and bolted. In vain Dick kicked against it, and shoved with his shoulder. It refused to budge.
“This looks as if we’d have to stay here—at least for the present,” said Dick, with a sigh. “I must say I don’t like the prospect.”
“How long do ye calculate we’ve been here, lad?”
“There is no telling, unless by my watch.” But when he looked at the timepiece, he found that it had stopped.
They ate some of the biscuits and drank some water and rested for a while longer. Outside the wind blew furiously and they heard the rain and the waves dash in all directions. Then some water came trickling in slowly, at one corner.