The Adventures Harry Richmond — Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 809 pages of information about The Adventures Harry Richmond — Complete.
some before I fell into a state of semi-insensibility.  As in a trance I heard Temple’s moans, and the captain’s voice across the gusty wind, and the forlorn crunching of the ship down great waves.  The captain’s figure was sometimes stooping over us, more great-coats were piled on us; sometimes the wind whistled thinner than one fancies the shrieks of creatures dead of starvation and restless, that spend their souls in a shriek as long as they can hold it on, say nursery-maids; the ship made a truce with the waters and grunted; we took two or three playful blows, we were drenched with spray, uphill we laboured, we caught the moon in a net of rigging, away we plunged; we mounted to plunge again and again.  I reproached the vessel in argument for some imaginary inconsistency.  Memory was like a heavy barrel on my breast, rolling with the sea.



Captain Welsh soon conquered us.  The latest meal we had eaten was on the frosty common under the fir-trees.  After a tremendous fast, with sea-sickness supervening, the eggs and bacon, and pleasant benevolent-smelling tea on the captain’s table were things not to be resisted by two healthy boys who had previously stripped and faced buckets of maddening ice-cold salt-water, dashed at us by a jolly sailor.  An open mind for new impressions came with the warmth of our clothes.  We ate, bearing within us the souls of injured innocents; nevertheless, we were thankful, and, to the captain’s grace, a long one, we bowed heads decently.  It was a glorious breakfast, for which land and sea had prepared us in about equal degrees:  I confess, my feelings when I jumped out of the cabin were almost those of one born afresh to life and understanding.  Temple and I took counsel.  We agreed that sulking would be ridiculous, unmanly, ungentlemanly.  The captain had us fast, as if we were under a lion’s paw; he was evidently a well-meaning man, a fanatic deluded concerning our characters:  the barque Priscilla was bound for a German port, and should arrive there in a few days,—­why not run the voyage merrily since we were treated with kindness?  Neither the squire nor Temple’s father could complain of our conduct; we were simply victims of an error that was assisting us to a knowledge of the world, a youth’s proper ambition.  ‘And we’re not going to be starved,’ said Temple.

I smiled, thinking I perceived the reason why I had failed in my oration over-night; so I determined that on no future occasion would I let pride stand in the way of provender.  Breakfast had completely transformed us We held it due to ourselves that we should demand explanations from Joseph Double, the mate, and then, after hearing him, furnish them with a cordial alacrity to which we might have attached unlimited credence had he not protested against our dreaming him to have supplied hot rum-and-water on board, we wrote our names and addresses in the captain’s log-book, and immediately asked permission to go to the mast-head.

Project Gutenberg
The Adventures Harry Richmond — Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
Follow Us on Facebook