The steam-hammer sat as it were on the shoulders of the pile, while it dealt forth its ponderous blows on the pile-head at the rate of 80 a minute, and as the pile sank, the hammer followed it down with never relaxing activity until it was driven home to the required depth.
Ken slipped into the shadow of a pile-head, waiting his chance. His heart beat suffocatingly; his hands were very cold. Quietly he stepped under the gang-plank, swung a leg over it, drew himself aboard, and lay flat on deck beside the rail of the Celestine in a pool of shade. A man tripped over him and stumbled back with an oath. The next instant Ken was hauled up into the light of a lantern.
Phil thought. "Ken must have taken her out. How funny of him; they knew I was coming right back." She sat down on a pile-head and began humming to herself as she counted over her packages and added up her expenditure. She looked up presently, and saw Ken walking toward her. He was alone. Even then, it was a whole second before there came over her a hideous, sickening rush of fear.
It is a curious fact, that the rapid strokes of the steam-hammer evolved so much heat, that on many occasions the pile-head burst into flames during the process of driving.