Bang had been unable to speak from excess of astonishment; but the skipper and I, finding there was no help for it, had followed Campana's example, and kept pace with him in our peeling, so that by the time he disappeared, we were ready to topple into our quatres, which we accordingly did, and by this time we were both at full length, with our heads cased each in one of Don Ricardo's silk nightcaps, contemplating Bang's appearance, as he sat in disconsolate mood in his chair at the head of the table, with the fag end of a cigar in the corner of his cheek.
By this time it was broad daylight, and Wagtail, Gelid, and Bang, were all three on deck, performing their morning ablutions. As for myself, I was well forward, near the long gun. Pegtop, Mr Bang's black valet, came up to me. "Please, Massa Captain, can you spare me any muskets?" "Any muskets?" said I; "why, half a dozen if you choose." "De wery number my massa told me to hax for.
As for the city, to assume our friend Mr Bang's mode of description, it was shaped like a tadpole, the body representing the city, and the suburb the tail; or a stewpan, the city and its fortifications being the pan, while the handle, tending obliquely towards us, was the Raval, or long street, extending Savannahward, without the walls.
"My good friends we are in a scrape here what is to be done? a melancholy affair altogether." Bang's curiosity here fairly got the better of him.
I say, Mr Cringle, do you see him piping away there" and there he was, sure enough, still gurgling through the wild cane with his black guardian, whose province it was to have removed the poultice, sound asleep, snoring in the huge chair at Bang's head, wherein he had established himself, while the candle at his patient's cheek was flickering in the socket.
My jaw dropped I was thunderstruck Bang's eye met mine "Murder!" quoth Bang, so soon as his astonishment let him collect breath enough, "and here I have been for two whole days practising Spanish, to my great improvement no doubt, upon a Scotchman how Edified he must have been!"
"Cuidado," said Don Ricardo; "let me manage" and he got a small tube of wild cane, which he stuck into Bang's mouth, through a hole in the poultice cloth, and set a negro servant to watch that it did not sink into his gullet, as he fell asleep, and with instructions to take the poultice off whenever the pain abated; and there he lay on his back, whistling through this artificial beak, like a sick snipe.
But all this time the devil a thing drinkable was there before we males, but goblets of pure cold water. Bang's "mucho mucho" even failed him, for he had only in his modesty got a thimbleful of brandy to qualify the olla podrida.
But Mr Bang's natural good breeding, and knowledge of the world, instantly recalled him to time and circumstances; and when the young officer looked at him, regarding him with some surprise, he bowed, and invited him, in the best French he could muster, to drink wine.
"I longed to see the Isles that gem, Old Ocean's purple diadem, I sought by turns, and saw them all." The puncture in Mr Bang's neck from the boarding pike was not very deep, still it was an ugly lacerated wound; and if The had not to use his own phrase, been somewhat bullnecked, there is no saying what the consequences might have been.