Now they all came up and heard these words of Lucilla.
“Yes, indeed,” said Captain Ichabod, “you may not suppose it, but your daughter and I are about to marry, and will plant sugar together. Now, I want to buy a plantation. Where is that young man who was born here, bedad?”
Dickory advanced, laughing. Here was a fine opportunity, a miraculous opportunity, of disposing of the Bonnet estate, which was part of the business which had brought him here. So he told the beaming captain that he knew of a fine plantation up the river, which he thought would suit him.
“Very good,” said Captain Ichabod. “I have a boat here; let us go and look at the place, and if it suits us I will buy it, bedad.”
So with Mrs. Mander and her husband beside her, and with Lucilla and the captain by her, the boat was rowed up the river, with Dickory and young Lena in the bow.
When the boat reached the Bonnet estate it was run up on the shore near the shady spot where Kate Bonnet had once caught a fish. Then they all stepped out upon the little beach, even the oarsmen made the boat fast and joined the party, who started to walk up to the house. Suddenly Captain Ichabod stopped and said to Mr. Mander: “I don’t think I care to walk up that hill, you know; and if you and your good wife will look over that house and cast your eyes about the place, I will buy it, if you say so: you know a good deal more about such things than I do, bedad. I suppose, of course, that will suit you?” he said to Lucilla.
It suited Lucilla exactly. They sat in the shade in the very place where Kate had sat when she saw Master Newcombe crossing the bridge.
A small boat came down the river, rowed by a young man. As he passed the old Bonnet property he carelessly cast his eyes shoreward, but his heart took no interest in what he saw there. What did it matter to him if two lovers sat there in the shade, close to the river’s brink? His sad soul now took no interest in lovers. He had just been up the river to arrange for the sale of his plantation to one of his neighbours. He had decided to leave the island of Barbadoes and to return to England.
The house suited Captain Ichabod exactly, when Mrs. Mander told him about it, and Lucilla agreed with him because she was always accustomed to trust her mother in such things.
So they all got into the boat and rowed back to Dickory’s old home, and on the way Captain Ichabod told Dickory that when they returned together to the town he would pay him for the plantation, having brought specie sufficient for the purpose.
It was a gay party in the boat as they rowed down the river; it was a gay party at the house when they reached it, and they would have all taken supper together had the Manders been prepared for such hospitality; but they were poor, having taken the place upon a short lease and having had but few returns so far. But they were all going to live at the old Bonnet place, and happiness shone over everything. It was twilight, and the two young men were about to walk down to the boat, one of them promising to come again early in the morning, when Lucilla approached Dickory.