He rode up swiftly and slid from his horse without speaking. Jake resembled his brother in appearance, but his face was sterner and his eyes keener. He had been made a bold, determined man by the pressure of harsher circumstances. He shook his brother by the hand in self-contained fashion. "Wal, Dan'l, I'm right glad you got h'yer safe.
Dar wa'n't much ob dat pesky spotted ripenin' up jes a plant h'yer an' anodder dar, all in 'mong de green, but jest about a good barnfull in tollable fa'r patches, an' den anodder comin' right on atter it. I'll hev it full agin an' fire up by to-morrer evenin'." "Do you hang it right up after cutting?" asked the officer. "Wal, we mout do so.
"Nimbus, dar's a heap ob cullud folks libbin' jes one way an' anudder from dis yer Red Wing cross-roads." "Co'se dey is, an' dat's de berry reason I'se sot my heart on yer habbin' a shop right h'yer. Yer shore ter git de wuk ob de whole country roun', an' der's mo' cullud folks right up an' down de creek an' de ribber h'yer dan ennywhar hereabouts dat I knows on."
"Wal, now, I don't know dat, not edzactly." "How old do you think twenty-one?" "Oh, la, yes; more nor dat, Cap'." "Born where?" "Right h'yer in Horsford, sah." "What is your name?" "Nimbus." "Nimbus what?" asked the officer, looking up. "Nimbus nothin', sah; jes' straight along Nimbus." "Well, but " said the officer, looking puzzled, "you must have some sort of surname."
There was a timorous rap upon the window of Hesden Le Moyne's sleeping-room in the middle of the night, and, waking, he heard his name called in a low, cautious voice. "Who is there?" he asked. "Sh sh! Don't talk so loud, Marse Hesden. Please come out h'yer a minnit, won't yer?"
It was past midnight of the day succeeding the meeting, when Nimbus was awakened by a call at his front gate. Opening the door he called out: "Who's dar?" "Nobody but jes we uns, Bre'er Nimbus," replied the unmistakable voice of Berry. "H'yer we is, bag an' baggage, traps an' calamities, jest ez I tole yer. Call off yer dogs, ef yer please, an' come an' 'scort us in as yer promised.
"Yes, I'se changed, ob co'se; but not as you hez, Bre'er 'Liab. Dis h'yer ole shell hez changed. Nimbus couldn't tote yer roun' like he used. I'se hed a hard time a hard time, 'Liab, an' I ain't nuffin' like de man, I used ter be; but I hain't changed inside like you hez. I'se jes de same ole Nimbus dat I allus wuz jes de same, only kinder broke down in sperrit, Bre'er 'Liab.
"Yus; the buggy and the colts." "Is he goin' to take his girl?" Will blushed a little, and John roared. "Yes, I'm goin'-" "Is Aggie your girl?" "H'yer! h'yer! young man," called John, "you're gettin' personal." "Well, set up," said Nettie, and with a good deal of clatter they drew around the cheerful table.
How I gwine ter know what's in dat paper, hey? Does you read all de papers yer signs, Squar' Nimbus? Not much, I reckons; but den you keeps de minister right h'yer ter han' tu read 'em for ye. Can't all ob us afford dat, Bre'er Nimbus." "Yah, yah, dat's so!" "Good for you, Berry!" from the crowd.
"Wal, dey manage to fotch Berry inter it widout sending him a letter all to hissef, alter all," said that worthy, when Eliab, with pale lips, but a firm voice, had finished reading the paper. "Ben done 'spectin' dat, all de time sence I come h'yer, Cousin Nimbus.