Page images

“ Yes, Joey Hazard! And who should up her arms. “In my glee? O my know better than you, — you who are boy, my boy!” And she sunk down the wicked cause of it all !"

on the floor by a chair, covering her "I?” stammered Joey.

face with her shawl, and drenching it O, God punish you! God requite in gusty tears. “O, we knew trouble you! You have killed him, girl, -- you together!” cried she. “ He was all I and he between you! Ah, I pray had. When he was a baby he had such Heaven

blue eyes! And his little hair crept “0, hush ! hush !” cried Joey. round my finger of itself, in its pretty “What do you mean?”

yellow curl. Geordie, Geordie, will I “I mean that my boy 's dead, never lean on your strong arm again? drowned, murdered at sea! And that will I never hear your step? What a her boy is safe — "

laugh you had ! ah, what comfort it “ Thank Heaven for that !” cried could send through me now! And you Mrs. Hazard before she thought, and suffered so ! --and I never shall know ! beginning to rock to and fro again. ah, that staggering moment, that one

“For that ? Ah, if you can! It's breath, that horror, no help. O my less, less, less than I have to be thank- darling, my boy, my boy!” And with ful for. Ah then, I came for my her head upon her knees, and her revenge, woman, - your boy killed hands along the floor, she went on him!”

wailing aloud. “Never in this world !” said Joey, Mrs. Hazard looked down at her a clutching at a seat, but feeling as though moment, and made as if she would stir for that one moment she were called her with her foot, gave a glance at the upon to asseverate the truth to God.

panic-stricken Joey, and then suddenly Mrs. Hazard sat upright and icy. stooped to Mrs. Romilly's side, lifted The little slender creature was tower- her head and laid it on her own shouling in the middle of the room, like a der, stroking it with her hard hand. flame, in her wild white wrath. When “We're mothers together, dear,” said at last Lucian's mother spoke, it was she ; “let us help one another. If with no assertion of his innocence, her you 've lost your child, I 'm likely to mind had coursed over all the possibil- lose mine. I never had one of my own. ities, and measured them; she knew I wanted one ; I'd have liked a tenhis moods and methods of old. But in der little thing that had been a part of a dull, dead, rough voice, as if she were my own self and of him, — to have held speaking into some hollow thing: my love and my life in my arms. But " How do you know that ?" said she, there was Lucian, and I just filled my sharply.

hungry heart with him. And now “How do I know it?” responded and now _" And Mrs. Hazard herthe other. “Why the winds know it self broke down, and the little woman and the waves. And men and women in her arms put up a hand to still her know it, and are babbling at the cor- sorrow in turn, and the two mingled ners of it. And four stone walls of a their tears together. prison know it!”

After that they kept Mrs. Romilly This was too much. Mrs. Hazard among them, and her fire having fallen sprung to her feet, and begun to walk to ashes, she was as eager as they for up and down. As she walked, there Lucian's acquittal, and the defence instood the woman in her way. She tended to make the fact a strong point stopped before her, glaring at her. of the argument.

“ What have I ever done to you,” “ Joey," said the Doctor, when she exclaimed Mrs. Hazard," that you had told him all this, “I am glad to see come to me now like a devil in your you quiet yourself. But you must n't glee ?

use so much control as to occasion a In my glee ?” cried she, throwing reaction by and by. Tears are secur

ity, just as fever is remedy. Stiil, I sure Mrs. Hazard would n't like it confess, I don't —

deposed that her mistress had often “O,” said Joey, turning all colors at spoken confidently to her of the time once, “I have seen Lucian.”

when the two should be one, up to the “ Seen Lucian ?”

hour of Mr. Romilly's arrival, when the “Yes. I went — to the place – one said mistress had been heard to say day. And they let me — I obtained she wished him drowned in the Red permission to go in. And when he Sea before he ever set foot in Nethsaw me, he cried out, and checked him- erby. Mr. Thurlow and others were self, and held his arms to me, - he then introduced in witness of Joey's always kissed me when he came home, volatile behavior on the night when you know,” said Joey, simply. “But Lucian was in such danger from having Mrs. Romilly was with me, and she attempted to set the Doctor across held me back. It was of no use for the bay; and how she threw herself mother to go, of course; she thinks he into Geordie's arms, walked, singing, - did it. She won't see him till — till up the hill with him, went to ride with afterward. And there were men with him next morning, and other similar him, — two lawyers. And I looked items, were all rehearsed, although not at him where I stood, and I said in a without much sarcasm and objection whisper, — I could n't speak any loud- on the part of the defence, and ruling er, —Lucian, did you kill Geordie ?' on the part of the court. The Doctor And he raised his - his eyes, and rest- was then called, as an expert, and a ed them full on mine, and his voice was person whose words were of weight, to clear and steady. “No, Joey,' said he. detail something of the incidents that And he never told a lie. Never, you had passed under his eyes, and to give know. And he and Mrs. Romilly his opinion with reference to the passpoke together; and he was so tender sions evinced by the prisoner. You and compassionate to her; and she may be sure the Doctor shortened matbelieved him. And he made me sit ters, and was as close-mouthed and down in the only chair ; and though crusty as he dared to be, and would he was thin and white, he was as smil- have said nothing at all of Lucian's ing and calm as here at home, – and disposition but for examination ; but O, shall I ever see him here again ?” on being asked if he did not consider and Joey threw her apron over her the circumstances narrated to evince a head, and ran from the room.

violent temper, subject to uncontrollable As for the rest of that scene in the

paroxysms, he was obliged to admit cell, as it really occurred, it was not that such certainly appeared to be the from Miss Joey, with her ruling pas- fact, and to declare, moreover, in reply sion actually strong in death, that the to the narrow questioning to which he Doctor learned it.

was subjected, that he believed Geor

die to be the possessor of Joey's favor, Lucian Jouvency was brought to trial and that intense jealousy existed on in the maritime court.

the part of the prisoner. And although The evidence against him was opened not an iota had been gained from him with testimony that, ever since the without questions from the prosecutmarriage of Lucian's stepmother and ing attorney himself, the Doctor retired Joey's stepfather the two children had with a crestfallen conviction that he been constantly together; that Lucian was no better than a street-corner goshad always called Joey his little wife, sip. The next witnesses were called and that Joey had appeared well con- to prove that Lucian and Geordie had tent with the arrangement till Geordie shipped together on the bark JoseRomilly appeared upon the scene ; and phine, Lucian as mate and Geordie as the small servant -- after much hesita- captain of the foretop ; that during all tion and frequent avowals that she was the voyage out the former's conduct

bad been variable, now cheerful, and over him, grim as death,-for he always now sullen ; that once, being becalmed kept the men up to the mark when on and discipline lax, there had been a duty, — but above or below they two wrestling-match between the two, be- were all there was between the deck gun perhaps in sport, but ending in and the sky, and Geordie Romilly nevsuch serious earnest that each had er trod those planks again, unless it borne the marks for a week; that the was his ghost that played in the forevoyage having been accomplished in top all the rest of the voyage ; and that less time than usual, the first mail from while he was asleep Lucian had mashome had been given them by an out- tered and made away with Geordie, he ward-bound ship ; that Lucian had re- was as ready to swear as that his own ceived no letter, but Geordie had one name was Jacky Tar. Since he could that seemed to contain a daguerreo- not swear it, it was of no consequence type, which he made off with, going how ready he was to swear it, the deforward, and then catching Lucian's fence remarked, and, inquiring as to eye as he looked back he raised his how he remembered he was asleep on hand in his prankish way, and shook that night, the witness replied that the it in the air, and immediately Lucian, cat-o-nine-tails printed it on his back growing black as a thunderbolt, had next morning ; and being asked if the seized a marline-spike in his paroxysm prisoner had been in the habit of carryof rage and flung after him, and the ing weapons, he replied that the mate spike had missed him, but struck the always wore his knife in his belt, and letter in his hand, and had gone with being without it that morning, it had it into the sea. And Geordie, with an been found for him behind a pile of oath, had sprung back at him, but Lu- cordage, where he said he had thrown cian had cried out between his set it lest he should use it. Being further teeth, " Don't tackle me now, or I shall questioned as to why the captain had kill you !” and Geordie had returned, not taken cognizance of these affairs, “ Kill and be damned! The letter was he gave answer that the captain thought from her!” And then, “Who, Geor- the mate too good an officer to lose, die ? " called a half-dozen.

and he was not capable of noticing the “From pretty Joey Hazard!” laughed occurrence, moreover, having that night he. And at that, as if her name were and the day before been rather set up. too good to be bandied, Lucian had “ Set up?" asked the counsel for the flamed up again ; he was just going be- defence, willing to badger the man a bit. low, but he came back and shook his “ Too near the wind, maybe,” said fist at Geordie, crying, “Say your the witness, unsuspiciously. “He was prayers to-night, my man! For, by very happy all the time ; but for a day God, we'll have a settlement before or two had been half-snapt, — what we morning!" Several witnesses sub- call rather over the bay." stantiated this. John Tarbox, having " Explain yourself, sir!” then been called, testified that, being “ Well, pretty tight, I should say.” very short of hands through sickness, "That would be -?" on the night following this day, he hav- A little sprung, sir,” was the puzing the helm, Geordie Romilly and one zled reply. other were called for the last watch be- “ How could one be pretty tight if fore sunrise ; that the mate, Jouvency, he were a little sprung?” had excused the other, saying he would “ By seeing double!” take his place himself; that then, it be- “ How am I to understand your ing a clear starlight night, and the ship meaning ?" sailing on a straight course, the first he “ You must be a green-hand if you knew was a bucket of salt water dashed don't know what it is to be half-seasupon him, and he saw the sun coming over!” cried Jacky Tar. " I mean the up the horizon, and the mate standing captain had been drinking!”

And having thus begun, the defence while singling out each member of the proceeded with a critical cross-exam- jury, haranguing and convincing him ination of the witness as to his nar- as he was himself convinced, bringing ration ; and the testimony against the responsibility home to each perthe prisoner, damnatory in its char- sonally, presenting the enormity of the acter although circumstantial, was con- crime in all its force, and the fatal concluded.

sequences of such fiagitiousness once The evidence for the defence was left unpunished. That done, he took brief, a few persons being summoned his seat contentedly, borrowed a leaf to swear to the prisoner's unblemished from the grave-diggers in Hamlet, and reputation hitherto, and especially as to enlivened the gloom with a jest; he had his temper and humanity. The cap- wrought out his points to his own sattain of the bark Josephine bore witness isfaction, all his solicitude ceased at that he was an invaluable officer; but once, and he was as ready to compasthe effect of what testimony he had to sionate Mrs. Hazard as Mrs. Romilly. offer was sensibly diminished by his The jury looked as solemn as if.they forced admission of the fact that he already saw the scaffold, and the senior had been, as John Tarbox had testified, counsel for the defence whispered to unable to attend to his business of sail- his junior that the case looked black as ing the ship upon the night in ques- murder. Everything now depended on tion. Testimony was then entered his own eloquence merely, and even that no noise of scuffling or contention his well-known power of making black had been heard by any on board dur- appear white must tell against the prising that time, and there rested. And oner. If Lucian understood his situwith all the current of opinion setting ation, he had manifested it by no dead with him, the prosecutor rose for his torpor, nor by any angry impatience to argument.

interrupt the speaker; and the lofty asAfter giving the reasons for the dark surance of his quiet manner remained deed, he summed up conclusively such the same, as unruffled, stately, and seevidence as he had, and then made an rene he walked from the court-room. argument that nothing less than an And there the statements and inferelaborate special plea could overcome, ences of the evening paper ceased.




something was going wrong; and from

the time of our first encounter until we ROLFSON THE MISSIONARY.

had crept into our tent to sleep, I was

conscious that the Doctor had lost 'HE reader who has followed the something of his usual gayety. He had

account of Sipsu through the last become thoughtful, and evidently a little chapter will remember that when we anxious. What it was all about I could parted with that untamable savage a not pretend to guess. shadow of suspicion hung about him. For myself, the meeting with Sipsu The mysterious circumstance of his ap- was simply a novel experience, and one pearance in the fog, at a time when all of great interest to me. It soon behunters should be at home, and his came clear, however, that our journey, subsequent behavior, led Doctor Molke undertaken for the gratification of curito believe, as was very evident, that osity, had acquired a serious aspect.

tend to say.

The Doctor's reticence puzzled me, my way in returning home, and I hope and to judge from that I might have you will not find it greatly to your inthought something particularly dread- convenience." ful was going to happen. I did not, The Doctor was really serious, after however, care to question him, seeing all! There was not the least room for that he was not inclined to talk about doubting it. the matter of his own free will, - if, in- “ By no means," I answered promptly. deed, there was anything to talk about' "It will not inconvenience me in the at all. In proportion, however, as I least.. On the contrary, the further the put this restraint upon myself, my curi- journey is prolonged the better I shall osity very naturally increased ; and how be pleased. You know I am • enlisted long after we had crawled out of our for the war,' and will see you through." fur beds I should have found myself “ Then you would not mind seeing able to keep entirely quiet I cannot pre- another of my friends ?”

“Certainly not; and if he is as interBut the Doctor spoke at last. We esting a specimen of humanity as this had just finished an excellent breakfast fur-bound barbarian friend of yours, that Adam had set out for us upon the then my debt of thanks will be doubled." flat rock where he had served the sup- * I think," replied the Doctor, " you per on the previous evening. “I have will find him quite as interesting, though been thinking," said he, “a great deal in a very different way." about the behavior of Sipsu. Ordina- “ But let me ask, is this other friend rily the fellow is lively enough, and I another savage ?” thought that I should be able to show “No, not a savage this time, but an you a simple savage in his savage re- honest gentleman”; and without furtreat, and give you one more nov- ther ado the Doctor called Adam, and elty to carry home with you. But, al- told him to prepare for starting with all though he is really acting his char- possible despatch. acter perfectly, he does not reveal the And so, after finding a luxury-loving side of it that I wanted you to see. To man, and starting a savage, I was to cut a long story short, I am pretty well seek an honest gentleman! “ Truly," convinced that he would cause trouble, thought I, “ this home of the icebergs, if he only could, to some people in whom and land of the glaciers, and realm of I have much interest. I am not sure everlasting frost, is not so bad a place of it, by any means; yet the feeling is to come to, after all ! ” and thus wonso strong upon me that I think those dering what was next going to happen, people ought to know what we have I followed the Doctor up to Sipsu's

tent, while Adam got the breakfast “Ought to know what we have seen?" ready. I repeated in my mind. “Ought to Sipsu had not once come near our know what we have seen ?-- an odd- camp, and he seemed wholly indisposed looking savage, with an odd-looking (as well he might) to have anything to boat, in an odd sort of place! That do with us. But if he was angry with is what I have seen. If the Doctor has Doctor Molke for bringing him back to seen more, then the plot thickens! If the island, why should he stay there the Doctor is serious, are we likely to nursing his wrath? why did he not have some work on hand ?” But for start off again while we were sleeping ? the life of me I could not make out I put these questions to the Doctor. what harm this skin-clad and unwashed “ That's easily explained,” was his dweller in the ice forest, called Sipsu, reply. “ He knew that he was watched, could do to anybody, or what possible or thought he was, which is pretty motive he could have for doing it. much the same, and would not risk a

“ I feel obliged, therefore," continued second humiliation and the chance of the Doctor, " to go somewhat out of being shot to boot!"


« PreviousContinue »