“Base villain!” exclaimed the Captain, “if your life was worth it, I-yes, I would think no more of taking it—you fish blooded vagabond! First attempt to make free with my poor wife, and then aggravate me by declaring your innocence!” Being a man of great strength, the captain got his wife out from under the major, whose blood was running freely, and set her upon her feet, in an almost fainting condition. The affair, though singularly desperate, was but the work of a minute; and when I reached the deck, the “Two Marys” was in the wind, Captain Luke was consoling his wife, the pig was running about the deck in great tribulation, and my companion in pursuit of fame lay weltering in his gore. Even old Battle had given out signs of alarm, and such was the state of confusion prevailing on board, that it required no small stock of courage to bring matters to a requisite understanding. I stooped over the major to ascertain exactly how many bones were broken, and as I did so, Captain Luke commanded that he be thrown into the sea.
“Yes, and let his traps follow, for I verily believe his pig possessed of the devil, who has thrown an evil spell over the wind, of which we have scarce had a fair puff since we left,” he exclaimed.
Hearing this command, the major began at once to give out signs of returning consciousness, and whispered that though he had received grievous damage to his head, and seriously believed there was not a whole bone in his body, he thought he might yet be sufficiently restored to settle his worldly concerns. Indeed he had during his whole life made it a point never to shut the door against life, but to so nurse the remaining vitality as to make it take its longest run, so that one’s days in the land be as long as possible.
Which treats of what took place when the cause was explained.
Almost the first words spoken by the recovering woman were, “Husband, now that I have collected my senses, and come to remember how it all happened, I feel you have done grievous wrong to the poor man, for truly it was no fault of his.”
“Fault of his!” exclaimed the captain, interrupting her in surprise. “Pray, whose fault was it then? Did I not see him with my eyes, and in his shirt? The devil take me but if it was you who seduced such an ill begotten thing, I will soon wash my hands of such a wife, though she had borne me a score or more of children.”