“I will go with you, my dear young lady,” she said, “and I will not leave you until you are in your uncle’s care. And, as to my boy here—”
Now Dickory spoke from out of the blazing noontide of his countenance.
“Oh, I will go!” he cried. “I do so greatly want to see Jamaica.”
Without being noticed, his mother took him by the hand; she did not know what he might be tempted to say next.
Mr. Newcombe stood very doleful. And well he might; for if his lady-love went away in this fashion, there was good reason to suppose that he might never see her again. But Kate said no word to comfort him—for how could she in this company?—and began to talk rapidly about her preparations.
“I suppose until the ship shall sail I may stay with you?” addressing Dame Charter.
“Stay here?” exclaimed the good dame. “Of course you can stay here. We are like one family now, and we will all go on board ship together.”
Kate walked to the boat with Mr. Newcombe, he having offered to undertake her business in town and at her father’s house, and to see the owners of the King and Queen in regard to passage.
Dickory stood radiant, speaking to no one. Master Martin Newcombe was the lover of Mistress Kate Bonnet, but he, Dickory, was going with her to Jamaica!
The following days fled rapidly. Long-visaged Martin Newcombe, whose labours in behalf of his lady were truly labours of love, as their object was to help her to go where his eyes could no longer feast upon her, and from which place her voice would no longer reach him, went, with a bitter taste in his mouth, to visit Madam Bonnet, to endeavour to persuade her to deliver to her step-daughter such further belongings as that young lady was in need of.
That forsaken person was found to be only too glad to comply with this request, hoping earnestly that neither the property nor its owner should ever again be seen by her. She was in high spirits, believing that she was a much better manager of the plantation than her eccentric husband had ever been, and she had already engaged a man to take the place of Ben Greenway, who had been a sore trouble to her these many years. She was buoyed up and cheered by the belief that the changes she was making would be permanent, and that she would live and die the owner of the plantation. She alone, in all Bridgetown and vicinity, had no doubts whatever in regard to her husband’s sailing from Barbadoes in his own ship, and with a redundancy of rascality below its decks. The respectability and good reputation of Major Bonnet did not blind her eyes. She had heard him talk about the humdrum life on shore and the reckless glories of the brave buccaneers, but she had never replied to these remarks, fearing that she might feel obliged to object to them, and she did not tell him how, in late years, she had heard him talk in his sleep about standing, with brandished sword, on the deck of a pirate ship. It was her dream, that his dreams might all come true.