A day or two later Hamlin met Mrs. Browning face to face on the street. He rushed up to her with a joyful cry of “O Rose!” whereupon she drew her skirts around her so that they would not touch him, and walked by.
Not long after, Jenvie met Browning and addressed him joyously. Jack looked him steadily in the face for a moment and then walked on.
These were unhappy days for the old men. Something had fallen on their homes worse than a funeral, and in their souls the fear of the coming of Sedgwick became a perpetual haunting specter before their eyes. Stetson joined in their apprehensions, and then he realized besides that if he had ruined Jack, still Jack had married Rose.
But as the days grew into weeks, they began to have hope. They made two or three investments that gave them quick returns and large profits. Success begets confidence. The men on change began to look upon them as rising bankers; deposits increased heavily, and so many enterprises were offered them to promote, that, without using a dollar of their own means, their commissions began to be enormous.
“We are on the rising tide,” said Jenvie.
“Indeed we are,” said Hamlin. “If the suit comes now, we can settle without any business or domestic scandal.”
“It is nothing to make money when a man once gets a start,” said Jenvie, “but I would be glad to be fully reconciled with my wife and child.”
A trip to Africa.
Sedgwick and Jordan, with only now and then a few words of conversation, reached the coast and embarked on the channel steamer. A fresh wind was blowing, and the craft was shamefully unsteady.
“It must uv been heah, Jim, whar ther original mustang learned his cussedness,” said Jordan. “See how ther steam devil performs, startin’ up ez tho’ it meant to climb a wave and then without er provercation rollin’ half way over and all ther time shakin hisself an’ makin’ things thet uncomfortable thet ther man aboard, while sayin’ nothin’, wishes all ther time he’d never tackled ther brute. Didn’t ther useter call ther sea, ‘Mare?’ I know why, she were a mustang shor.”
Sedgwick’s face kindled with the ghost of a laugh, and he agreed that Jordan’s theory was not a bad one.
“But, Jim,” said Jordan, “this war er famous old place after all.”
“Yes,” said Sedgwick; “history has compiled some of its wonderful pages right here. We are where the Great Armada sailed, the souls of those on board believing they were going to make the conquest of England. Here is where Howard gave that fleet its first blow; here is where Howard and Drake sent their fire ships to play havoc with the hostile fleet. A great place indeed! But it was only 300 years ago that Howard and Drake performed their part; before their day many a fleet swept over this watery way; the Crusaders crossed here; before