Whatever passed between the flag-officer and Captain Battleton, nothing at all was said among the officers about the decision the commander of the Vernon had been obliged to make when he accepted your cousin as the genuine Christopher Passford, ordered to the command of the Bronx.
He may have drunk too much wine or whiskey recently, though he certainly was not in liquor when he came on board." "How is your patient, Dr. Connelly?" asked Captain Battleton, joining them at this moment. "About the same the last time I saw him. He ate all the toast I sent to him, and seemed to enjoy it. I don't think he is in a dangerous condition," replied the surgeon. "I am glad to hear it.
"That is immaterial," added Captain Battleton, as Corny left the cabin to procure the document. "Have you a copy of your report, Lieutenant Passford?" He pointed to Christy. "I have, captain; and it is in my own handwriting," replied the officer addressed. "Produce it, if you please."
Flint," said the commander, as soon as the executive officer appeared on the deck; and the call of the boatswain's mate sounded through the vessel. "I came on board to pay my respects to you, Captain Passford," said Captain Battleton of the Vernon, who had been waiting for him. "Things have changed since I last saw you.
"I beg your pardon, Captain Battleton, but I have not been in any stateroom, sick or well, on board of the Vernon, and I respectfully suggest that it was quite impossible for you to have called upon me this morning, or at any other time," Christy interposed, very pleasantly, though quite as perplexed as the commander. "Of course I shall not raise an issue as to your veracity, Mr.
"But can you not recall some event or circumstance which will throw some light on the mystery?" persisted Dr. Connelly. "I can; but I have not had time to consider any events or circumstances, and it would not be treating Captain Battleton with proper respect to submit a string of crude conjectures to him." At this moment the captain appeared in the gangway, and interrupted the conversation.
"I was hardly called upon to decide anything, for the matter in doubt had been settled by the commander of the Vernon before it came to my knowledge; but I agreed with him that the commission ought to settle the point. Are you not the officer presented to me by Captain Battleton, Captain Passford?" asked the commodore, gazing earnestly into the face of Christy. "I am not, sir." "You are not!
The captain was evidently weary of the investigation, and nothing but the commission seemed to throw any reliable light upon the claim of either one or the other. "Any further questions, Mr. Salisbury?" asked the captain, bestowing a bored look upon the executive officer. "Nothing more, Captain Battleton." "Dr. Connelly?" "Nothing, captain."
"Looking at you more closely, I see that you are not my patient, and you will excuse me for giving you a headache. But you resemble my patient very closely," added the doctor. "I did not answer your question, Mr. Passford," interposed Captain Battleton. "In an hour we will settle the question." Christy seated himself and began to consider the strange situation.
"Horatio Passford," replied Christy with a smile. "Where does he live?" "At Bonnydale, on the Hudson." "Permit me, Captain Battleton," interposed Mr. Salisbury; and the commander nodded his acquiescence. "Is Bonnydale the name of the town or city in which your father lives, Mr. Passford?" "It is the name of my father's place," answered Christy, using the same words that Corny had.