“Very well, then, by all means give him the temporary rank of boatswain on board the Camille, and you can appoint the other as boatswain’s mate.” “Thank you, sir! I am very much obliged. It would be difficult to find two better men.” In ten minutes Will was attired in a midshipman’s uniform, and his two companions, to their great relief, in the clothes of British seamen.
In another three weeks Will was able to leave the sick bay, and on the morning he was discharged from the sick list he found by his hammock two suits of midshipman’s uniform, a full dress and a working suit, together with a pile of shirts and underclothing of all kinds, and two or three pairs of shoes.
The bearded one swore, but the corporal and his two marines stood at the rail with their rifles ready, waiting only the midshipman’s order to aim and fire. Eph allowed the “Farnum” to fall back a little way. Then he exerted himself to show his best in seamanship as he ran the submarine up to board the sloop by the starboard quarter. The two boats barely touched. Mr.
The hostility upon the part of the admiralty and government extended to those who had borne part in his glorious exploits at sea, and Lieutenant Embleton was put on half-pay after the action of the Impérieuse against the French fleet, and found himself without any prospect of future employment, and without even a chance of obtaining a nomination for his son to a midshipman’s berth.
The first proved too bad for even a midshipman’s palate; and the ham, when the cover and sawdust were taken away, was animated by nondescripts, and only half of it eatable. I was tried by a court of inquiry by my messmates for want of discernment, and found guilty; and the Yankee who had cheated us was sentenced to be hanged, but as he was out of sight, the penalty was not carried into execution.
“Three days would be sufficient,” Embleton said, with a smile. “Naval outfitters are not so busy as they used to be, and would furnish an admiral’s kit, if necessary, in that time. Is there any particular uniform, sir?” “No, it is something like our own; and if you rig him out in an ordinary midshipman’s uniform that will be good enough. Thank goodness, this weary waiting is over.
It is a poor trade, though as long as it’s war-time there is excitement enough to make up for the shortness of the pay. However, as I have told you many a time, there is no chance whatever of my getting you a midshipman’s berth.
At this period I had served my six years within a few months, when the captain sent for me, and told me he intended sending me on board the flag-ship on promotion. “I send you there,” added he, “beforehand, that you may have the opportunity of becoming known to the commander-in-chief, that at the expiration of your time you may be more immediately under his notice and be sure of your promotion.” I thanked him sincerely for his kind intention, and the following morning behold me, bed and traps, ensconced in the starboard midshipman’s berth—one of the darkest holes of a cockpit I ever was yet in—on board the Queen, a ninety-eight gun ship.
Returns to his ship—Capture of a French schooner—An episode with two American sloops of war—Return to Port Royal—Attacked a second time by yellow fever—Seize and burn a Spanish gunboat—Return to Port Royal—Wetting a midshipman’s commission—Ordered home with a convoy—Pathetic farewells with mulatto washerwomen.