In less than a year from the day when they had stood on the rocks at Tre'Arrdur Bay, lustily cheering as the great Atlantic liner sailed up the sea to the Mersey, Gilbert was dead and the proud ship was a wreck, sneakily destroyed.... Gilbert had left the beginning of a play behind him.
He could not get off the steamer as quickly as he wished for the number of passengers on board was very large, and he fidgeted impatiently until he was able to get ashore. "We'll send this bag on by the waggonette," Gilbert said, when they had shaken hands and congratulated each other on their healthy looks, "and walk over to Tre'Arrdur, and we'll gabble on the way.
Gilbert said something like that at Tre'Arrdur Bay when I told him that his life was of greater value than the life of ... of a clerk. I suppose, the finer a man is, the more willing he is to take his share in war, and if that's true, I'm not really a fine man. I'm simply a coward, hoarding up my life in a cupboard, like a miser hoarding up his money.
"I suppose John Marsh was sick about the gun-running in Ulster?" said Gilbert to Henry, as they approached the hotel at Tre'Arrdur Bay at which they were to stay. "No, I don't think so. He seemed to think it was rather fine of the Ulstermen to do it. You see, it's put the Government in a hole, and that pleases him. He was very mysterious in his talk, and full of hints!..."
And so, sooner than he had anticipated, he returned to Ballymartin, where "The Fennels" was finished, and there he stayed until Gilbert wrote and asked him to join him at Tre'Arrdur Bay. "You can't get much nearer to Ireland than that," he wrote: "You hop into the boat at Kingstown and hop out of it again at Holyhead and there you are!..."
They left the pier and passed through the station into the street. "Holyhead," said Gilbert, "is a good place to get drunk in! We won't linger!..." They took the lower road to Tre'Arrdur Bay because it was quieter than the upper road, and as they walked, Henry read Ninian's letter. "He seems to like South America," he said, returning the letter to Gilbert when he had finished with it.
"You won't come into the mountains with me, and you keep on telling me to clear out of Dublin!" Marsh turned to him quickly, and put his hand on his arm. "My dear Henry," he said, very gently, "you know that I don't feel like that. I thought you'd be ... I thought you'd have a happier Easter out of Dublin, that was all. That place in Wales, where you went with poor Farlow...." "Tre'Arrdur Bay?"
I wish we could have met, but it can't be helped. We must just meet when we can. It seems a very long while, doesn't it, since we were at Tre'Arrdur together? It'll be jolly to be there again when the war's over. You've no idea how interested I've become in this job, far more interested than I ever imagined I should be. And I've changed very largely in my attitude towards the War.