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"Captain," asked the sailor, "would it not be a good plan, before setting out, to build a canoe in which we could either ascend the river, or, if we liked, coast round the inland? It will not do to be unprovided." "Your idea is good, Pencroft," replied the engineer, "but we cannot wait for that. It would take at least a month to build a boat."

"Well, Pencroft," observed Harding, "I should much like to watch you handling a harpoon. It would be very interesting." "I am astonished," said the reporter, "to see a whale in this comparatively high latitude." "Why so, Mr. Spilett?" replied Herbert.

However, once or twice in the second week of August, the traps supplied the hunters with other animals more useful than foxes, namely, several of those small wild boars which had already been seen to the north of the lake. Pencroft had no need to ask if these beasts were eatable. He could see that by their resemblance to the pig of America and Europe.

Towards seven o'clock in the morning, the "Bonadventure," weathering the North Mandible Cape, entered the strait and glided on to the waters, so strangely enclosed in the frame of lava. "Well," said Pencroft, "this bay would make admirable roads, in which a whole fleet could lie at their ease!"

It was just at this spot that the turtle had been left. The lad even found the stones which he had used, and therefore he was certain of not being mistaken. "Well!" said Neb, "these beasts can turn themselves over, then? "It appears so," replied Herbert, who could not understand it at all, and was gazing at the stones scattered on the sand. "Well, Pencroft will be disgusted!"

"One likes to know one's neighbors," returned the sailor, who was obstinate in his idea. "Tabor Island is our neighbor, and the only one! Politeness requires us to go at least to pay a visit." "By Jove," said Spilett, "our friend Pencroft has become very particular about the proprieties all at once!"

No roughness was found either in the channel or the green sea. A long swell, which the canoe scarcely felt, as it was heavily laden, rolled regularly over the surface of the water. They pulled out about half a mile distant from the shore, that they might have a good view of Mount Franklin. Pencroft afterwards returned towards the mouth of the river.

"There is no one here," said the reporter. "No one," replied Pencroft. "It is a long time since this room has been inhabited," observed Herbert. "Yes, a very long time!" answered the reporter. "Mr. Spilett," then said Pencroft, "instead of returning on board, I think that it would be well to pass the night in this hut."

Spilett, how I admire and envy you!" cried Herbert, in a fit of very natural enthusiasm. "Well, my boy," replied the reporter, "you could have done the same." "I! with such coolness! "Imagine to yourself, Herbert, that the jaguar is only a hare, and you would fire as quietly as possible." "That is," rejoined Pencroft, "that it is not more dangerous than a hare!"

Whether we find this mysterious being or not, we shall at least have fulfilled our duty towards him." "And you, my boy, give us your opinion," said the engineer, turning to Herbert. "Oh," cried Herbert, his countenance full of animation, "how I should like to thank him, he who saved you first, and who has now saved us!" "Of course, my boy," replied Pencroft, "so would I and all of us.