Ould Mother Sheehy sat down of a heap an' began playin' wid the cups. "Thin you're a well-matched pair," she sez very thick. "For he's the biggest rogue that iver spoiled the queen's shoe-leather" an' "I'm off, Judy," sez I. "Ye should not talk nonsinse to your mother. Get her to bed, girl." "Nonsinse!" sez the ould woman, prickin' up her ears like a cat an' grippin' the table-edge.

Ould Mother Sheehy sat down of a heap an' began playin' wid the cups. 'Thin you're a well-matched pair, she sez, very thick. 'For he's the biggest rogue that iver spoiled the queen's shoe-leather, an' "'I'm off, Judy, sez I. 'Ye should not talk nonsinse to your mother. Get her to bed, girl. "'Nonsinse! sez the ould woman, prickin' up her ears like a cat an' grippin' the table-edge.

"Joke or no, you'll admit I paid them out for it. Now don't you fall into sentiments, but attend to prickin' the sausages. You know I hate a burst sausage."

"Th' wind's prickin' up a bit from th' east'rd, an' when we starts I thinks we may hoist the sails." "Yes, th' wind's prickin' up an' we'll have a fair breeze t' help us past th' Traverspine, I hopes." The landing was made. Bob and Ed each took an axe to cut into suitable lengths some of the plentiful dead wood lying right to hand, while Dick whittled some shavings and started the fire.

Fair lived with his injy ink and his prickin' needles. Kept 'em in a belt he wore and had 'em on him when the Belle Burgoyne went down and I managed to drag him on to the reef, poor chap. "'Had your call, Red, I says to him when I got him up beside me. 'I reckon you're struck for death, old man. 'I know it, says he to me.

"'Tis like a taste of the good old days, the days well nigh gone for ever; the smell of the bark fire; an' th' tang of the kinnikinick; an' the cinnamon cedars; and the air like champagne; an' the stars prickin' the crown o' the hoary old peaks like diamonds; an' the little waves lappin' an' lavin' an' whisperin' an' tellin' of the woman y' luve. An' care? Care, man?

That kinder riled me up, and I sez, "Wall, I have lived in this house with them that wuz perfect, and that is bad enough for me, without bein' one of 'em myself. For more disagreeable creeters," sez I, a prickin' my biscuit with a fork, "more disagreeable creeters I never laid eyes on."

Bime bye they lay down ag'in. 'Twant only a little while 'fore the boy felt somethin' prickin' uv him. He hollered 'n kicked ag'in. The panther he growled 'n spit 'n dumb a tree 'n sot on a limb 'n peeked over at thet queer little critter. Couldn't neither on 'em understan' it. The boy c'u'd see the eyes o' the panther 'n the dark. Shone like tew live coals eggszac'ly.

He'd great hooks in 'em sharper 'n the p'int uv a needle. An' when he was goin' t' sleep he'd run 'em out jes' like an ol' cat kind o' playfull 'n purr 'n pull. All t' once the boy felt sumthin' like a lot o' needles prickin' his back. Made him jump 'n holler like Sam Hill. The panther he spit sassy 'n riz up 'n smelt o' the ground. Didn't neither on 'em know what was the matter.

'Ho? says I, prickin' up my ears, but not choosin' to be talkative with a stranger. 'So folks have been tellin' you that story already? says I. 'Tellin me? says he. 'Why, I see'd it with my own eyes! 'Come, thinks I to myself, 'this fellow's a bra' bit of a liar, wherever he hails from. 'With my own eyes, he repeats.