Herriot thrust his head down the hatch once during the morning and as he caught the sickening stench of the place he called the two boys, who had been up forward helping the patching. "Here, young 'uns, get below and clean up," he ordered sharply, and handed each lad a bucket and a deck-brush. They filled the buckets and went below reluctantly.
"I see that blockade running has its dangers as well as privateering," said Beardsley's agent, as he sprang over the rail and seized the captain's hand. "The Hattie is cut up pretty badly, but the Osprey was never touched. Been in a fight?" "Well, no, not much of a fight, because we uns didn't have nothing to fight with. But the schooner ran through a pretty tol'able heavy fire, I tell you."
All the tree-climbers arose respectfully, saluted, and a tall, cadaverous-looking, long-haired, coon-skin-capped leader advanced, took the general by the hand, and slowly drawled, "Ginrul, the red niggers air skulkin' yender to the river, waitin' to chaw up you uns tonight.
"En eat yo' supper. I ain' done projeckin' 'bout dis freedom business. How we uns gwine ter be free 'less Marse Scoville stay yere en kep us free?" "Zany guv me my supper en " "Dar now, I ain' no mo' 'count. Zany gobble you aready. I des stick ter my chimbly corner." "Howdy, Aunt Jinkey," cried Scoville, coming in briskly. "Well, you see I'm back again as I promised."
Scanty food and constant anxiety had told terribly on his delicate constitution. But when he saw his father, and heard that he had been set free, and declared innocent, a new life seemed to come into him. "I shall get well now, father," he said; "I feel I shall only my head's so bad where the blow came that I can't think much. But that doesn't matter now; you'll look after the little 'uns.
"Ef it be you uns as takes the aigs," she murmured thoughtfully, "a kittle o' bilin' water to yer backs ain't none too bad fer ye! But ef it be only my old herrin'-tub ye're after, then bilin' water's too ha'sh!" In the end, the weapon she decided upon was the big tin pepper-pot, well loaded. Through the twilight, while the yard was all in shadow, Mrs.
She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that Ibrahim, Wazir to King Shamikh, took him a body of his retainers and, accompanied by the Minister of King Dirbas, set out seeking Uns al-Wujud. And as often as they fell in with wild Arabs or others they asked of the youth, saying, "Tell us have ye seen a man whose name is so and so and his semblance thus and thus?"
Shepherd's holy calling and spiritual appearance stood him in small stead here; and the blackest interpretation was put on the matter of the visit. "Nice things you'll be up to, the pair of you oh, my aunt!" ejaculated Maria. "I think it's beastly risky her going at all," filled in Kate Horner, gobbling a little; for her upper lip overhung the lower. "These saints are oftenest bad 'uns."
All's up you can't make nor mend; it's to save your neck that I'm a-speaking, and if one of the wild 'uns knew it, where 'ud I be, Tom now tell me, where 'ud I be?"
"One of us must get Bob Pretty up 'ere to-morrow night and stand 'im a pint, or p'r'aps two pints," he ses. "While he's here two other chaps must 'ave a row close by his 'ouse and pretend to fight. Mrs. Pretty and the young 'uns are sure to run out to look at it, and while they are out another chap can go in quiet-like and get the hamper."