So Kate’s baggage was put on board the King and Queen, a very humble vessel considering her sounding name, and Dame Charter’s few belongings were conveyed to the vessel in Dickory’s canoe, the cottage being left in charge of a poor and well-pleased neighbour.
When the day came for sailing, our friends, with not a few of the townspeople, were gathered upon the deck, where Kate at first looked about for Dickory, not recognising at the moment the well-dressed young fellow who had taken his place. His Sunday costume became him well, and he was so bravely decked out in the matter of shoes and stockings that Kate did not recognise him.
To every one Mistress Kate Bonnet made clear that she was going to her uncle’s house in Jamaica, where she expected to meet her father; and many were the good wishes bestowed upon her. When the time drew near when the anchor should be heaved, Kate withdrew to one side with Mr. Newcombe. “You must believe,” said she kindly, “that everything between us is just as it was when we used to sit on the shady bank and look out over the ripples of the river. There will be waves instead of ripples for us to look over now, but there will be no change either the one way or the other.”
Then they shook hands fervently; more than that would have been unwarrantable.
The King and Queen dropped down the stream, and Master Newcombe stood sadly on the pier, while Kate Bonnet waved her handkerchief to him and to her friends. Dame Charter sat and smiled at the town she was leaving and at the long stretches of the river before her. She knew not to what future she was going, but her heart was uplifted at the thought that a new life was opening before her son. In her little cottage and in her little fields there was no future for him, and now to what future might he not be sailing!
As for Dickory, he knew no more of his future than the sea-birds knew what was going to happen to them; he cared no more for his future than the clouds cared whether they were moving east or west. His life was like the sparkling air in which he moved and breathed. He stood upon the deck of the vessel, with the wind filling the sails above, while at a little distance stood Kate Bonnet, her ribbons floating in the breeze. He would have been glad to sing aloud, but he knew that that would not be proper in the presence of the ladies and the captain. And so he let his heart do his singing, which was not heard, except by himself.
BEN GREENWAY IS CONVINCED THAT BONNET IS A PIRATE
“But how in the name o’ common sense did ye ever think o’ becomin’ a pirate, Master Bonnet?” said Ben Greenway as they stood together. “Ye’re so little fitted for a wicked life.”
“Out upon you, Ben Greenway!” exclaimed the captain, beginning to stride up and down the little quarter-deck. “I will let you know, that when the time comes for it, I can be as wicked as anybody.”