Jack Tier eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 536 pages of information about Jack Tier.
of hills to throw her into shadow.  Spike ordered everything taken in but the trysail, under which the brig was left to set slowly over toward the western side of the harbour.  He now rubbed his hands with delight, and pointed out to Mulford the circumstance that the steamer kept on her course directly athwart the harbour’s mouth!  Had she seen the Swash, no doubt she would have turned into the bay also.  Nevertheless, an anxious ten minutes succeeded, during which the revenue vessel steamed fairly past, and shut in her flaming chimneys again by the eastern headlands of the estuary.

CHAPTER III.

  The western wave was all a flame,
  The day was well nigh done,
  Almost upon the western wave
  Rested the broad bright sun;
  When that strange ship drove suddenly
  Betwixt us and the sun.

The Ancient Mariner.

At that hour, on the succeeding morning, when the light of day is just beginning to chase away the shadows of night, the Molly Swash became visible within the gloom of the high land which surrounds so much of the bay of Hempstead, under easy sail, backing and filling, in order to keep within her hiding-place, until a look could be had at the state of things without.  Half an hour later, she was so near the entrance of the estuary, as to enable the look-outs aloft to ascertain that the coast was clear, when Spike ordered the helm to be put up, and the brig to be kept away to her course.  At this precise moment, Rose appeared on deck, refreshed by the sleep of a quiet night; and with cheeks tinged with a colour even more delicate than that which was now glowing in the eastern sky, and which was almost as brilliant.

“We stopped in this bit of a harbour for the night, Miss Rose, that is all;” said Spike, observing that his fair passenger was looking about her, in some little surprise, at finding the vessel so near the land, and seemingly so much out of her proper position.  “Yes, we always do that, when we first start on a v’y’ge, and before the brig gets used to travelling—­do n’t we, Mr. Mulford?”

Mr. Mulford, who knew how hopeless was the attempt to mystify Rose, as one might mystify her credulous and weak-minded aunt, and who had no disposition to deal any way but fairly by the beautiful, and in one sense now helpless young creature before him, did not see fit to make any reply.  Offend Spike he did not dare to do, more especially under present circumstances; and mislead Rose he would not do.  He affected not to hear the question, therefore, but issuing an order about the head-sails, he walked forward as if to see it executed.  Rose herself was not under as much restraint as the young mate.

“It is convenient, Captain Spike,” she coolly answered for Mulford, “to have stopping-places, for vessels that are wearied, and I remember the time when my uncle used to tell me of such matters, very much in the same vein; but, it was before I was twelve years old.”

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Jack Tier from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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