Isle o' Dreams
by Frederick F. Moore
ISLE O' DREAMS
[Illustration: Come up closer so I can look into the boat,
ISLE O' DREAMS
FREDERICK F. MOORE
The Devil's Admiral, The Sailor Girl, Etc.
RALPH PALLEN COLEMAN
Garden City New York
DOUBLEDAY, PAGE &COMPANY
COPYRIGHT, 1917, 1920, BY
DOUBLEDAY, PAGE &COMPANY
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, INCLUDING THAT OF
TRANSLATION INTO FOREIGN LANGUAGES,
INCLUDING THE SCANDINAVIAN
MANILA FROM AMOY
DINSHAW TELLS OF
PULLS A LONG BOW
GOES CRUISING IN
JARROW DOES AND
CHAPTER VI. MR.
WHERE HE SLEEPS
TRASK HAS A TALK
WITH DOC BIRD
HOW THE SCHOONER
ARRIVED OFF THE
ADMITS HE IS
CHAPTER XI. MR.
PETH DOES MOST
TRASK MAKES A
WHAT HAPPENED TO
DOC AND THE
WANTED AND WHAT
CHAPTER XV. AN
END AND A
ISLE O' DREAMS
CHAPTER I. ROBERT TRASK ARRIVES IN
MANILA FROM AMOY
As the tubby little China Coast steamer marched up Manila Bay, Trask
stood under the bridge on the skimpy promenade deck and waited
impatiently for the doctor's boat to come alongside. He was the only
white passenger among a motley lot of Chinese merchants and half-castes
of varied hues, and he was glad the passage was at an end.
He had made the trip with a Finnish skipper, disconcertingly
cross-eyed, a Lascar mate who looked like a pirate and had a voice like
a school-girl, a purser addicted to the piccolo late at night, and
fellow-passengers who jabbered interminably about nothing at all in
half a dozen languages. So Trask regarded the spires and red roofs of
Manila with the hungry eyes of a man who has been separated from
civilization and his own kind too many days to remember.
Before the steamer anchored, Trask saw the Taming passing out
for Hong Kong, white moustaches of foam at her forefoot and her decks
alive with men and women. She was as smart as a big liner.
But he looked away from her to the Luneta and the villa-like Bay
View Hotel, white and stately, at the lip of the bay. That was his
goal, for he had promised Marjorie Locke he would be in Manila the day
before, and he was now a day late.
The customs boarding officer took him ashore with his bags and
graciously allowed him to depart in a quilez, after holding his
baggage for examination. Trask went whirling up Calle San Fernando,
through Plaza Oriente, Calle Rosario, Plaza Moraga, over the Bridge of
Spain and into shady Bazumbayan Drive, skirting the moat of the Walled
City. It was a roundabout way but the quickest, for the cochero
made his ponies travel at a good clip for a double fare.
The rig shot across the baking Luneta, and ere it had come to a full
stop before the Bay View Trask was out and into the darkened hall of
the tourist headquarters of the Philippine capital.
The place appeared deserted except for a sleepy muchacho, who
staggered out from some palms, looking for the new guest's baggage.
Have you got an outside room? demanded Trask of the drowsing
English clerk behind the railing, as he pulled the register toward him
and scanned the open page.
I say! Mr. Trask!
The young man looked up. Correct, he said. Where did we?
I'm Wilkins, sir, G. O. H., Colombo. You were there last year, sir,
in from Singapore. You had an argument with a 'rickshaw man. I was
managing the bar at the time.
Sure enough, Wilkins! How d'ye do! and Trask extended a hand which
Wilkins shook with fervour, striking a bell with the other for the
Two stone gingers with a finger of Scotch, said Wilkins. Fine
room on the bay-side, Mr. Trask. And you'll find it quiet enough.
It does look quiet for you, said Trask, as he wrote his name in
the register and took off his helmet. It was plain that the tropics had
put their mark upon him, for in contrast to the deep tan of burnt umber
over cheeks and chin, the upper part of his forehead showed a white
band of skin, the helmet line of the veteran traveller in low
latitudes. His black eyes were embedded in nests of tiny wrinkles, the
tropical squint, which no mere griffin ever has as a passport.
Yes, sir, said Wilkins. The China boat cleaned the place up this
morning. Not a tripper left.
No? cried Trask, with sudden concern. He turned to the register
again and flopped back the pages. You must have a man here named
Locke, an American, travelling with his daughter.
Gone, said Wilkins. Left on the Taming to catch the
Pacific Mail at Hong Kong.
If that isn't my blooming luck! moaned Trask, shutting the
register with a slam and turning his back to the desk, a picture of
Yes, sir, continued Wilkins, coming out from behind his barrier,
the Lockes left here Friday for Dagupan, to be back in time to sail
this noon. They must have caught the Taming. I sent their spare
trunks down this morning to be held for Mr. Locke. He wasn't to come
back here, but go right aboard from the morning train. Friends of
Yes. We were shipmates from Honolulu coming out, three months
Very respectable people, said Wilkins. I understand Mr. Locke's
I imagine so, replied Trask, despondently. It was hard luck, for
he had managed to take a month's vacation for no other purpose than to
meet Marjorie Locke for a few days in Manila and here he was, like a
man marooned, with nothing to do, and the Lockes out in the China Sea,
bound for the States.
But why shouldn't they go? thought Trask. The fact that he was
secretly in love with Marjorie Locke, and had allowed himself to
believe that she rather liked him, was no reason why she should wait in
Manila merely because he had told her that he expected to be in that
city on a certain date.
Oh, that reminds me! said Wilkins suddenly, as he ran in behind
the railing again. Look here! I've a letter for you. Been here a
couple of days, never struck me at the time it was you, never dawned on
me until I saw you at the desk, then I remembered your name.
Mail for me? asked Trask. Why, nobody knows I'm in Manila. I'm
supposed to be up in Korea.
Not mail, precisely, sir. It was left here a few days ago.
Who left it? Trask was suddenly hopeful.
Can't say, sir. I found it on the desk. Rather mysterious, you
know. I'd say it was He paused, to rifle the letter-rack.
If you don't mind, sir, I'd say it was queer, rather extraordinary
circumstance. Now where could I have put it?
How was it queer? Don't keep me on the grid. What about it?
The fact is, said Wilkins, I'd consider it a bit irregular. The
backing was done with a typewriter, but the paperI'd say the envelope
was business, but not house stationary. It struck me that way, if you
don't mind my saying it. Quite involuntary on my part, but natural,
sir, considering the name looked familiar. Of course, I never
remembered you in connection with Colombo until I'd seen your face
Certainly, certainly, said Trask, impatiently.
Stupid of me not to think of it before, went on Wilkins, musingly.
We hotel men get to notice things, and I shouldn't like to be so slow
as a usual thing withAh, here it is! Got in among the steamer
Trask reached across for the letter. It was a large, square envelope
of a bulky woven paper. On it was typed in purple:
Mr. Robert Trask. Consolidated Mines Syndicate.
To be called for.
The letters of the words were topped by a faint and blurry purple
line, showing that the heavy envelope had undergone troubles by being
rolled into a typewriter.
Excuse me, said Trask. He tore it open just as the bar-boy
appeared with a tray decorated with stone ginger jars and glasses. The
DEAR MR. TRASK:
Thank you so much for the flowers you sent me at the King
Edward in Hong Kong. They were lovely. So sorry we shan't see
you again. I remember you said you'd be in Manila the tenth of
this month. Dad has changed his plans and wants to get back
home, so we leave Manila by the Taming on the eleventh.
are going up to Dagupan by train and will reach Manila to sail
by noon. So, if you do get to Manila on the tenth, I think it
would be jolly to see you on board. We'll go directly from the
station to the tender. I'll address this on the machine, so
it'll look most businesslike, for Mr. Wilkins, the clerk, is
prone to gossip. Thank you again for your kindness in Hong
Kong and your many kindnesses to Dad and me on board the
Trask, smiling broadly, put the letter into his pocket.
That must be good news, sir. Hope it is. Shall we go out on the big
veranda for our nip? Cooler out there.
What? Yes, certainly, said Trask, reminded of where he was as he
looked up to see the bar-boy standing beside him and Wilkins waiting.
In spite of the fact that the letter was ample proof that Miss Locke
was gone, it had put his head in a whirl. At least she hadn't
forgotten. He followed Wilkins.
You look quite bucked up now, said Wilkins, as he pulled out a
chair beside a marble-topped table.
I do feel better, admitted Trask. Just the same, I'm bitterly
disappointed. No doubt I'm ungrateful, but I've played in rotten luck.
You expected to meet the Lockes? suggested Wilkins. Too bad.
Yes, said Trask, and taking a glass from the bar-boy, sat down.
Here's luck and a long stay, sir, said Wilkins.
Thanks. But Trask was rather listless and tired, frankly bored by
the clerk. He stared out over the sickle curve of the bay along the
Cavite shore, where a line of white beach made a barrier between the
water and the green jungle. The red-roofed buildings of Cavite lay out
on the end of the sickle like a clutter of bleached bones cast up by
The bay lay like a great shining shield before him, blazing with
millions of mirrors that danced on the shoulders of the sleek and lazy
swells, lifting in the sun-dazzle from the entrance, some twenty-five
Trask looked at his watch. It was well after one, the hour when men
take shelter from the sun in cafés to talk over prolonged tiffins and
wait for the heat of mid-day to wane.
A hush had fallen over the city, like the lull which precedes the
breaking of a typhoon, a panting sort of hush. Heat waves rose from the
bare expanse of the Luneta like siroccos from the nether regions, and
the palm trees of the Malecon Drive, seen through the shimmering air,
appeared to dance like souls in torture.
Beyond the Luneta the tawny walls of the city fairly cracked with
the heat, and over them could be seen the sea of roofs of the
intra-mural section, the heart of Manila, inside its ancient bastions.
Spires rose from the ruck of low buildings like dead trees denuded of
their branches. Down the bay a streamer of smoke hung over the Bataan
hills, the last vestige of the outward-bound Taming, a sort of
farewell pennant left behind to tell that she was driving jauntily
toward Hong Kong.
It'll be cooler in an hour, ventured Wilkins.
If you'll order a rig for me, said Trask, I'll roll down to the
customs house and see about my baggage.
How about tiffin, sir?
Good idea. I'll have it with you. Never mind the rig now. By the
way, I heard some gossip coming down. Did you ever hear of a man named
Dinshaw? A sailor?
Looney Dinshaw? Raw-ther! He's a joke.
How a joke?
Oh, the poor old blighter, he sells pictures which he paints
himself. They're pictures of an island he says he was wrecked on,
that's full of gold. Comes up here and sells 'em to trippers.
But the island? persisted Trask. There was a Swede yarning with
the skipper, but they wouldn't let me hear.
Dinshaw's loco, said Wilkins. Lost his ship on this island
three or four years ago. It's somewhere up the north coast. He was
taken off by a Jap fisher crew blown down from the Rykukus. He lost his
ship right enough, and his mind with it. To hear him talk you'd think
it was solid gold.
Solid gold is what I'm hunting for when I'm working, said Trask
with a smile. I'd like to look into this business.
There's plenty who's looked into it, sir, but they can't get
anything but babble out of the old fellow. He thinks everybody wants to
Where can I find him?
In the Sailors' Home, kept by Prayerful Jones in Calle San
Fernando, a charity place for sailors on the beach. I say, you're not
Indeed I am. Not that I expect to find a solid gold island, but if
it's off the coast of Luzon it might give me a lead to something up in
the mountains. The Igorrotes find some gold up in the rivers and I've
heard the rocks were mighty heavy. May be iron pyrites, or it may be
the real thing.
I can have him up here, suggested Wilkins. Just drop a word over
the 'phone to Prayerful Jones. Nobody need know what it's about. I'll
hint he may sell a picture.
Shoot! said Trask. I've got a month to kill, and some money to
gamble on my own hook. I may take a flyer on it, if I can get anything
definite out of this Dinshaw.
You'll have half the waterfront on your heels if you let it out
that you're taking Dinshaw to his island. Plenty would go if he'd tell
'em where it is, but they want to skin him.
Then we'll keep it mum! Hello! Who's coming?
He heard the rattle of hoofs and looked across the Luneta to see a
victoria whirl out of Bagumbayan Drive. It was occupied by a man in a
pongee suit and a young woman in white with a blue parasol which rose
above the rig like a porcelain minaret.
The Lockes! cried Wilkins.
Hush! said Trask. Don't say a word about me. I'll surprise 'em!
He picked up a copy of the Cablenews from the table and hid
himself behind its ample pages.
We'll stick right here until the next boat, he heard Locke saying
as the victoria stopped. I'd like to see somebody pry me loose from
Trask looked over the top of his paper to see Marjorie Locke, in
duck skirt and linen coat, climb down from the victoria. Her hair was
as yellow as her wide-brimmed sailor and her eyes as blue as her
parasol. She was laughing gaily as she mounted the stoop.
You missed the boat! exclaimed Wilkins, as he came out.
Missed it forty miles! said Locke, taking off his floppy Bangkok
hat and using a handkerchief on his face as though it were a blotter.
His nose was peeled from sunburn, but his round and rubicund face
fairly oozed good humour.
Your luggageI sent it, sir, said Wilkins.
Hang the luggage! I'll have a soda bath right away. I've got the
prickly heat so bad I feel like a human pincushion!
Yes, sir, said Wilkins.
Be game, Dad! You always told me you liked the tropics.
So I doat home in the winter time. I believe you knew we'd miss
that boat, Marge. I'm wise! You want to see where Magellan landed and
where Legaspi gasped.
I can't say you're a born tourist, said his daughter.
Yes, I am. Just now I'd start for the North Pole. Wow! Those
Spanish fellows sure liked a hot climate when they went out to take up
land! Whoof! I'd give a lot for ten cubic feet of 'Frisco fog right
now! Turn the blowers on in our rooms, Wilkins, and say, aim mine at
the bath water. Well, look who's here! If that isn't Trask I'll
Mr. Trask! cried Miss Locke. How jolly! Fancy meeting you!
Fancy meeting him! exclaimed Locke, derisively. It's a frameup,
that's what it is, a frameup on me and my prickly heat!
Trask climbed out from behind his paper and stood up, bowing and
I'm sorry you missed your boatalmost, he said.
Oh, shucks! said Locke, taking his hand and pulling him forward.
I don't give a whoop. Marge, I'll bet forty dollars you knew that
Dagupan train wouldn't catch the Taming!
Don't be absurd, Dad. We're so glad to meet you again, Mr. Trask.
We were stupid about the train, but
You'll have to excuse me, said her father, I hear the bath going.
Wilkins! Feed us tiffin till we're blue in the face, and he
disappeared into the sala.
And there isn't a boat to connect with the Pacific Mail for
twenty-six days, said Trask. I'm on a vacation.
You know so much about Manila, too, she said. But we may go on
the Thursday boat.
The Thursday boat?
If there's a Thursday boat, I'll wreck it, said Trask, and clapped
his hands for the muchacho.
CHAPTER II. DINSHAW TELLS OF HIS
Here, said Locke, comes Rip Van Winklewithout his dog.
A beggar! whispered Marjorie, looking past Trask. Poor old man!
Trask turned from the table, and saw at the end of the veranda an
old man approaching with a package under his arm. He looked like a
vagabond, in khaki trousers with the bottoms fringed by tatters through
which showed his bare ankles; pitiful old cloth shoes; a patched coat
of white drill with frogging across the front such as Chinese mess boys
wear; and a battered, rimless straw hat. He drew near the table with
weary feet, hesitatingly and dazed, as though he had lost his way,
peering about like an owl thrust into the light of mid-day from a
Why, it must be Captain Dinshaw! said Trask.
The old man stopped ten feet from the trio and lifting his head like
a hound who has taken scent, gazed at them suspiciously. Then he smiled
toothlessly and swung off his bowl of a hat with a grand air.
Aye, sir, he said, in a weak but shrill voice. Cap'n Dinshaw,
late of the bark, James B. Wetherall, lost in a typhoon an' Lord
ha' mercy on us!
This is a shame! said Locke, in a cautious whisper to Trask, as he
leaned back in his grass chair to light a cigar. I hate to see a white
man like that in this country.
He looks hungry, said Marjorie. Dad, call the boy!
It's an interesting case, said Trask. I want you to hear him.
Wilkins had him up so I could talk to him. He's got an island.
Would the lady buy a picter? inquired Dinshaw, with a little bow.
Hand painted by myself, out of my head, from my own recollections. A
good suvverner. He began to unwrap his flat parcel.
Come over here and sit down, said Locke, rising, and pushing
forward a chair. You ought to have something to drink and a bite to
eat. Shouldn't be out in sun like this with that sort of headgear.
Dinshaw muttered a thanks, and dropped into the chair, his thin,
wrinkled face drawing into a queer smile. He let the package fall
across his knees, and his hat dropped from his trembling fingers. He
stroked a tuft of whisker under his chin.
I don't mind the heat, but the soup's bad, he remarked.
Here's the boy, said Trask. Now what's it to be?
Eh! Oh, Ah Wing! That boy knows me. A tot of gin with a stinger,
and thank you kindly. A master should go with his ship, and he touched
his sparse white hair which showed his scalp, and nodded his head,
staring out over the bay as if in a reverie. The colour was bleached
out of his failing eyes and they had a habit of roving about
unsteadily, a quality common in old sailors and probably acquired in a
lifetime of watching heaving seas.
Bring some more of the fish, and a big cup of coffee, said Trask,
as Ah Wing grinned and turned to go.
So you sell pictures, encouraged Marjorie. And paint them
Aye, ma'am. All hands lost but myselfpiled up on a reef of this
island. A master should go with his ship. He clutched at his parcel
and began tearing off the string.
Picters o' my island. I allus was a painter, he continued, if I
did foller the sea. Why, in my bark, the Wetherall it was, I had
fancy picters on the bulkheads an' gold linin' over the white but she
got in a twistin' jimmycane, such as we have in these waters. Thar's my
He held up one canvas, a foot high and two feet wide, tacked over a
piece of board. It was a gaudy representation of an island wrought with
pathetic lack of skill. There was a conical peak at the left end
smeared with a slash of purple, and over it a very red and very round
sun. The land sloped away from the peak to the other end of the island,
and was lost in a white streak extending seaward, the the bony finger
of a skeleton, marking a reef clothed with fuzzy breakers. A rocky
ledge ran down to where the reef began and a big gray stone stood up
abruptly, giving the island the appearance of a bluff-bowed vessel, and
under it, a triangular patch of beach. Near the rock were four palm
trees. One bent over at a sharp angle, as if it had been partly
uprooted, and its moppy fronds almost trailed in the still water of a
pool formed by a second reef, not so clearly defined, which ran
parallel with the land. Except inside this natural basin the whole
shore of the island was wreathed by white rollers and behind the shore
line was a fringe of vividly green jungle.
Oh, isn't that splendid! exclaimed Marjorie.
It's a work o' art, that's what everybody says, remarked the old
man with a show of pride.
What do you call the island? asked Locke.
The name don't matter, sir. 'Dinshaw's Island' they call it
hereabouts, in honour o' the fact I was wrecked on it. Blown off my
course in a typhoon at night and went smash into this reef ye see here.
I was washed out o' the riggin', an' when I come to I was on the beach
here, wreckage all round, an' the sun shinin' bright as a whiffet, an'
me all beat out an' water-logged. Right there it was, and he put his
thumb on a spot near the rock.
Is it a big island? asked Trask.
Not in the way ye might think. Big enough as it goes, but it ain't
the size what counts, and he broke into a cackling laugh, wagging his
head, as if he held the secret of a great joke.
Where is it? asked Locke.
Thar's lots as would like to know, sir, said Dinshaw, gravely.
But I ain't in the way o' tellin', not until I can see my way clear to
It is near the mainland of Luzon? asked Trask.
Dinshaw turned quickly and peered at him suspiciously, pursing his
It is, he said, finally.
I don't see any other land in the picture, ventured Trask,
scanning the canvas with more care.
Ye bet ye don't! snapped Dinshaw, with sudden asperity. I left
that out so they can't find it. Lots as would like to find Dinshaw's
island, young man, but I'm savin' it for myself. Jarrow said he'd take
me, but he never did. He wants to go steal it himself. I know. I know.
They can't fool me, if I am old.
Steal your island? asked Marjorie. Why, how could anybody steal
What's on it? whispered Dinshaw.
Oh, ho, said Locke. Then there's something on it, is there? Now
we're interesting! Treasure, I suppose.
Gold on it, piped Dinshaw, with childish simplicity. Gold enough
to make us all rich. Gold enough to ballast a hundred ships!
Ye see that reef? Well, I lay in that bight thar, an' the sun come
out. The eye o' the storm it was, and after awhile it come on to blow
again, as is the custom with twisters. When the weather cleared again,
I don't know how long it was, I crawled down and overhauled the
flotsam. There was part of Number One boat, with a beaker o' water an'
a ham from the cabin stores. Later, I found my mate, Seth Colburn. He
was dead. He'd sailed with me all his life, come from down Eastport
way, and a smart man he was, too, at figgers. I dug his grave with my
bare hands in this patch o' sand, right there under the ridge, and it
was all yaller, shinin' in the sun, as it run through my fingers. All
glittery an' soft, like corn meal. That island's full o' it, I'm
tellin' ye! It'll make us all rich! His voice rose, and quavered with
Locke looked at Trask questioningly.
Here, said Trask, passing Dinshaw the glass which the bar-boy
brought. Drink this.
Jarrow said he'd take me, gasped Dinshaw after he had drunk.
Who's Jarrow? asked Trask.
Oh, he's got a schooner, said Dinshaw.
So your island is full of gold, said Locke, with a skeptical wink
for the benefit of Trask and Marjorie. And you sell pictures of it,
Aye, gold. An' Seth Colburn's buried in it. He'd laugh if he knew.
But Jarrow'll take me some day, an' when he does, I'll go back to
Yarmouth an' build a big house, all snug an' shipshape, with a piazza
like the quarter-deck of a frigate, an' a garden with petunias,
an'an'have good soup for supper. I fed my crew better'n Prayerful
Jones does, an' I tell him so every day. Them that sailed with Cap'n
Dinshaw had duff twice a week with raisins in it, sir, an' Wes' Injia
Marjorie passed Dinshaw a plate of sandwiches and served him with a
cup of coffee. Trask drew aside, and Locke followed him.
This is right in your line, said Locke.
I've a mind to investigate it, said Trask. Heard some talk about
it on my way down from Amoy.
Sounds fishy to me, said Locke. I believe he's off his head.
That's what they say here. Wilkins was telling me about him.
You think there's gold there?
Possibly. The formation of the ledge looks promising. He may have
run into a deposit washed out by the sea, merely a pocket, but
significant. You see, if the ledge in the picture is a continuation of
a crest from the mainland, I might follow up the lead on Luzon. There
is gold out here but the country hasn't been properly prospected, owing
to the troubles with the natives. I'd like to look things over on my
own hook. Of course the company would go in on it with me. I've always
wanted to come here but my chief never thought much of it. So I'm on a
vacation, and what I find for myself I'll be able to swing. If Dinshaw
You'd get yourself into a tangle with him, said Locke. He'd most
likely go around telling folks you wanted to steal his island if you
talked with him about it.
I'll go slowly and I may get his confidence after awhile.
Well, I wish you luck, said Locke. I'm going to make the Thursday
I wasn't thinking of going on this trip for a couple of weeks,
Trask hastened to say.
Hong Kong for mine, said Locke.
Dad! Come here, please, called Marjorie. Captain Dinshaw wants to
go to his island. It seems to me that you men who are looking for
something to do might help him out.
I'll give him ten pesos for one of those pictures, said
The other for me at the same price, said Trask.
Stingies! cried Marjorie. If I were a man, I'd go find his
Perhaps I will, said Trask.
None of this Count of Monte Cristo stuff for me, said Locke, as he
laid down a bill before Dinshaw. Say, captain, I'll tell you what I'll
do, I'll pay your passage home first class if you'll go so that you can
get back to your relatives. Now you can't say I'm a piker, Marge.
Ten pesos! whispered Dinshaw, staring at the bill. Thank
ye kindly, sir. I'll make ye all rich.
But how about going home? said Locke. I'll fix you up with some
clothes. This is no place for an old man like you.
Home! said Dinshaw. I'm at the Sailors' Home.
But you ought to be back in the States.
I'm goin' back to my island, that's what, insisted Dinshaw.
Jarrow said he'd take me.
Dad, you said I could go anywhere I wanted on this trip, pouted
Where do you want to go, Miss Trinkets?
I think it would be gorgeous fun to find this island. I've never
done anything romantic in my life, and I've always wanted to elope, or
something. I'll run away with a drummer in a bandor something like
that, if I have to go home without finding an islanda tropical
island, with a wreck, tooand sailors buried on itand gold! I'm for
Not so strong as I am for a touch of cool weather, laughed Locke.
That reminds me, it's time for another soda
But Locke disappeared into the hall, laughing, saying something
about Timbuctoo and other places he would not care to visit.
And he's finding fault about having to live in tourist hotels and
listen to bored guides! And here's a chance to get off the main
stamping ground, as he calls it, and help a poor old man.
We don't like to get far from the comforts of civilization, after
all, said Trask. But I don't know of anything I'd rather do than take
you and your father cruising.
I wish there wasn't any old Thursday boat, wailed Marjorie. We
might argue him into going if we had more time.
You've got to miss that Thursday boat, declared Trask. We ought
to be able to kidnap him or something.
What's the name? asked Dinshaw, rising from the table and putting
on his hat.
Locke, said Marjorie. Mr. Locke. You come up again to-morrow and
I'll have to paint another picter, said Dinshaw.
Here, said Trask. You take this one with you, and bring it back
to-morrow, when I'll pay you twenty pesos for it. That'll give
you an excuse for coming back. And don't say a word to anybody.
Locke, murmured Dinshaw. Mr. Locke.
You ought to eat some more, said Marjorie.
Can't stop, said Dinshaw, gathering up the other picture, which he
had not unwrapped. Can't wait for the tide. I'll go see Jarrow. He
said he'd take me.
Now look here, said Trask. Don't you say a word to anybody.
Understand? Don't tell anybody!
I'm a clam, sir, a clam, said Dinshaw, solemnly, and blinking his
eyes at the sun which assailed him from the bare Luneta, he hurried
down the steps and hastened away.
Poor old duffer, said Trask.
We've got to help him find his island, said Marjorie. I'll tell
you what to do. Dad wants to get up to Hong Kong because there's a man
at the King Edward he can beat at billiards.
What's that got to do with it? asked Trask, vaguely.
You're a regular man! she retorted. Can't you see? Can you play
A little, admitted Trask.
Come up to our rooms and have tea, she said. Then you get Dad
into a game of billiards, play as well as you can andlose.
A whale of an idea! exclaimed Trask.
And don't say anything more about the island, warned Marjorie.
Dad's stubborn, but he's easy to handle. We'll act as if we didn't
care a whoop about this Dinshaw businessuntil we miss the Thursday
boat. Then we'll give him no rest. But remember, I'm for the Thursday
boat. That's just to throw him off his guard. He's a dear old Dad, but
sometimes he's balky.
CHAPTER III. CAPTAIN DINSHAW PULLS A
Below the customs house in Manila, close to the embankment of the
Pasig River, on the Binondo side, opposite Fort Santiago and the Walled
City, there is an ancient adobe building thatched with nipa. Its
narrow door opens on the waterfront. High and narrow windows, devoid of
glass or shell, are mere slits cut through the walls. Seen from the
river, they have a striking resemblance to the gun-ports of an ancient
This place is known to sailormen the world over as The Cuartel and
probably takes its name from the fact that it was a sort of block house
used by the Spanish, to hold the approaches to the river. It stands at
the head of a narrow little street which twists back into the native
quarter of Tondo, and affords a haven for the mixed population which
labours on the Molecoolies, seamen, Chinese mess boys, Tagalog
cargadores, Lascar serangs, stalwart Sikh watchmen from the
hemp and sugar godowns, squat Germans in white suits with
pencils stuck in their sun helmets and wearing amber-coloured
spectacles. British clerks with cargo lists, customs brokers, barking
mates with blasphemous vocabularies, Scotch mechanics with parched
throats, and all the underlings who have to do with ships and their
Here they all gather for their tipple and gossip, easy at
friendships and quick at quarrels. They babble of things which their
employers would have kept secret, their tongues limbered by drams from
square-shouldered greenish bottles, Dutch as dykes, which line the
shelves behind the bar.
The Cuartel is owned by a black man from Batavia who calls himself
Vanderzee. His mother was a Kling. He was berth-deck cook of a gunboat,
by his own report, and Jack o' the Dust in a river monitor up China
way. That's all anybody seems to know about him, and it is suspected
that he has his own reasons for keeping a clove hitch on his tongue
There are legends about fortunes which have been made out of bits of
news gleaned from conversations before the bar of the Cuartel. The
lampman of a Blackpool tramp remarked over his peg of rum that his
skipper liked smoked eels for breakfast and was taking on a cargo of
best steaming coal for Kamrangh Bay. This knowledge enabled Togo to
destroy the Baltic fleet in the Tushima Straits. And a stevedore made
something like a million dollars out of a cargo of canned salmon by
hearing some cockney give his theory about how the blockade could be
run to Port Arthur.
Vanderzee made some of his profits out of a little room at the far
end of his bar, where a man could sit hidden by tawny tapa
curtains rove on a bamboo pole, and have privacy while he heard what
was being said at the bar. The room had a marble-topped table and two
Two men were inside of an afternoon, playing at cribbage. One was
short and heavily built, with powerful shoulders threatening to break
through the seams of his white drill jacket. His black hair was clipped
close to his skull, making his ears appear to stick out amazingly. He
had black moustaches which grew down over his mouth, masking it. His
face was brown and rough hewn. A straw hat, curled up into a grotesque
shape, lay at his feet like some distorted bivalve. Its owner had an
air of authority about him, even a touch of dominance in the way he
scanned his cards or moved the pegs in the board. When his arm went out
to the table, it moved with a ponderous steadiness. His brown and hairy
hand had the slow, powerful sweep of a derrick-boom.
His companion was thin and angular, quick-eyed and nervous in his
movements, as though he moved on a gear of higher speed than his
opponent in the game. He crouched over the table when he shuffled the
cards or played them, without lifting his elbows from the table, in the
fashion of a jealous dog with a bone. He wore a blue cap with a
polished black visor, tilted back on his head, giving him a rakish,
devil-may-care aspect. His long and lean face, cut with wrinkles, was
twisted into a sly grin, as if he thought he had the advantage of the
The tapa curtains were closed. The alcove was lighted from
two of the narrow windows, cut so high in the wall that they gave no
view of the Mole and the street outside unless a man were to climb on a
chair and get his shoulders on a level with the bamboo rafters, where
the tiny lizards prowled in the dust and hunted flies.
The roar of the docks surged through dull and confused, a medley of
clanking hatch-covers, complaining tackle, deep-throated protests of
donkey-engines, outlandish commands from stevedores, and the yelps of
high-strung little tugs bossing the lighters.
Vanderzee pottered at his books behind the bar, smoking a china
pipe. His watchful eye was on his Chinese boy polishing the brasswork
of the taps. The last of the noon idlers had gone, and the door leading
to the Mole was shut against the hot breeze lifting from the sun's
glare on the river.
Then a beam of light whipped across the floor with a shuffle of feet
on the stone steps outside. Captain Dinshaw tottered in, gasping for
breath and shaking with excitement.
Van! he cried, weakly, making for the bar. I'm rich!
The black man grunted, and put his pipe in his mouth, staring past
Dinshaw at the door as if he expected to see a pursuing party burst in
and attack the old man, who seemed spent from running.
Who's der drouble? he growled. For v'y you roon?
I've hauled the wind! cried Dinshaw, dropping his parcel on the
bar, and throwing up his hands in a gesture of wild delight.
My luck's turned! I'm a rich man, I tell ye!
Vell, remarked Vanderzee with stolid calm. If you puy a monkey in
some oder blaces, don'd pring him here to me. You vant me droubles to
haff der bolice mit, hey? A few trinks you get, der sun your het in,
unddronk der Cuartel in und my license I loose maype.
I'll make ye rich! persisted Dinshaw, in his high-pitched,
quivering voice, and giving no heed to the admonitions of the black man
and not in the least disconcerted by the lack of welcome. I'm goin' to
Der more kvicker, der more petter, said Vanderzee, and humped his
shoulders up with a convulsive shrug. Maype you prink it back und
anchor it off der lighthouse, hey?
Jarrow'll take me in the Nuestra, continued Dinshaw, now as
if talking to himself. I'll be rich and have good soup for supper.
I've got the tide this time, an' no mistake. It's turned for me, as I
allus said it would, and Jarrow'll head out for my island. I tell ye,
man, it's all settled. Have ye seen Jarrow?
Charrow petter nod see you. Crassy you iss.
He'll want to see me, an' don't forget, said Dinshaw, wagging his
head. Jarrow's the man for me and
The tapa curtains were thrust aside violently, and the short,
squat man with clipped hair stood between them, glowering, one hand
gripped into a fist, and the other holding the swaying fabric.
What's this of me and the Nuestra? he roared. His
moustaches puffed out at each word, and his jaw lifted to a pugnacious
angle as he threw back his head. He screwed up his eyes into a sort of
malevolent grin which did not extend below the bridge of his nose.
Dinshaw blinked at him for a minute, taken aback by the picture of
this man, who seemed about to charge into the room after him.
You said you'd go, said Dinshaw.
You lay off this blasted chin-chin about me and my schooner! raged
Jarrow. I've heard enough of it!
But I'm in soundin's, cap'n. We're bound out in the Nuestra
for the island! We're goin
Git out! snapped Jarrow, and clumping out into the room, lifted a
hairy fist at the old man. But Dinshaw held his ground, and as
Vanderzee cried out to take care, the captain merely pushed the old man
back with a snort of rage.
But it's all settled, I tell ye! insisted Dinshaw. Hard and fast.
We're to go
Then go! snarled Jarrow. Go jump off the Mole, and give me some
rest and quiet. I got other things to 'tend to. How'm I to git a
charter for the Nuestra, with you and yer slack jaw runnin' wild
up and down the waterfront tellin' all hands and the ship's cook I'm
goin' to yer blasted island in my schooner? Hop in the river, but keep
clear o' me and mine! Won't have it from ye!
Der sun his het in, said Vanderzee, with a significant nod toward
Dinshaw. He wanted to avoid trouble. He iss crassy.
The tall, thin man now parted the curtains and came out, his long
legs moving stiffly across the floor. He glanced at Dinshaw with a
sneering, wicked eye and sniffed contemptuously. He gave the twisted
straw hat to Jarrow, who pulled it open and clamped it over his clipped
skull. They both turned to the bar.
Ye said ye'd go, piped Dinshaw. Ye allus said ye'd take me, an'
now's the chance. I ain't goin' to stay with Prayerful Jones no more.
I'm goin to pack my dunnage an' take it aboard the Nuestra.
There ye go! cried Jarrow, swinging toward him, and extending a
brawny arm wrathfully. Ye make fast to me like a devilfish! That's the
tune ye've been singin' for years! 'Said ye'd go!' Same old
story! Why, I
He paused, as if at a loss for words to express his disgust, and
pulled a cigar from his pocket. He bit the end from it with a twisting
motion of his head. The tall man sighed wearily.
Ach! said Vanderzee. No harm. Who iss to giff mind to vat he say?
He iss crassy.
There's a-plenty to give mind to it, snarled Jarrow. Didn't I
lose a charter last dry season to bring wood from Mindoro? What with
this booby-bird goin' round Manila with word I'm to take the Nuestra
to his fool island, who's to want my boat? Here I am now, lookin' to
sign up a gover'ment hay charter, and he'll put me high and dry if this
word is passed along again. I won't have it. I'll see the police.
Can't ye let me tell? began Dinshaw.
Come along of me, Peth, said Jarrow. The angular man, who had
arranged the upper part of his body in such manner that the bar
afforded possibilities for rest, unfolded himself and moved toward his
I'll make ye all rich, wailed Dinshaw.
You'll cost me a pretty penny, that's what! exploded Jarrow,
turning back from the door. I never said I'd take ye, and ye can git
that out of yer fool head! Here I am, kickin' my heels around port and
my schooner feedin' barnacles off the breakwater, all 'cause ye've got
somethin' chafin' yer top-hamper. I won't stand for it no more.
But I got a man to take us, pleaded Dinshaw, going after him. A
man said he'd charter the Nuestra and we'd all go. Two men and a
lady it was, up at the
Oh, I've heard enough of yer cock-and-bull yarns, retorted Jarrow,
who was not averse to freeing his mind on Dinshaw. What the devil do
ye want to make fast to me fer! I don't want ye traversin' round
charterin' my schooner and me. Makin' jokes for the loafers up on the
canal. Ye done that once before, and ye'll do it again. I'll have the
police on ye! It's about time Prayerful Jones was shut of lettin' loose
his bums and lunatics on us folks with property.
No harm, said Vanderzee, soothingly.
I say it is harm! I'm hailed whurever I go about this business of
the old un's island, Van! Just 'cause I've got a schooner, it's Jarrow,
Jarrow, Jarrow! I'd look fine and smart cruisin' round for a P. D.
island, wouldn't I? Now tell me that?
It's a lie! cried Dinshaw. Them geodetic youngsters didn't look
for my island, an' what's more, they wouldn't know it if they found it.
That's why they come back with a 'Position Doubtful' report. Think I'm
goin' to let them young whippersnappers know about my island so they
can find it? Find it! I can find it with a bone quadrant and
Find Tophet! yelled Jarrow, and turned to the door.
Look here! shouted Dinshaw, reaching into his pocket and fishing
out the bill he got from Locke for his picture. I can prove it! Here's
money, planked down, and more where it comes from. I'm to go, I tell
ye, an' if ye don't want none of it, I'll see Hood about a boat. I
thought ye was a friend of mine, Jarrow, so I come to ye. This man I
got could buy your old schooner and a hundred like her, an' never miss
the money. He asked for a boat and I said Jarrow, an' when the young
lady asked who's to skipper it, I said Jarrow's the man, an' Peth for
mate, an' he sung out for me to bring ye up to the tavern an' sign the
charter. I'll say no moreI'll see Hood.
What's this? demanded Jarrow, turning back to stare at the bill.
Vanderzee leaned over the bar, and Peth craned his neck forward,
maintaining his eternal grin. They had never seen Dinshaw with so much
Money! piped Dinshaw, triumphantly.
Has he gone plumb loco? asked Jarrow, looking at Vanderzee.
Dot money ain'd crassy, said the black man.
Where'd ye git it? asked Jarrow, reluctantly gentle.
A rich man at the Bay Viewwith a young lady and a young man in a
helmet. I told 'em about the Wetherall and they give me this
money to buy clothes, and sent me on the run for you. They want to go
to the Golden Isle. I better see what Hood's got for charter.
You better stay right here, said Jarrow, pushing Dinshaw back
toward the bar. I'm goin' to look into this.
I'll see Hood, persisted Dinshaw.
Luff! commanded Jarrow, holding out his arms to head Dinshaw off
from the door. You'll see me! You've been usin' me and my schooner
long enough, and if there's anything in this yarn of yours, it's mine.
Who's this man?
He's a rich man, and he'll take us, said Dinshaw.
I'd believe ye sooner if ye said ye saw pink elephants, said
Jarrow. Git down to cases. What's his name?
Money talks, suggested Vanderzee.
Moonshine! declared Peth.
His name's Locke, said Dinshaw. Will ye go, Jarrow? I'll make ye
Now what did this Locke man say? demanded Jarrow. I don't want
any ravin's. I want facts, straight out, so you come up into the wind.
What'd he say?
He said to look sharp about it, said Dinshaw, blinking at Jarrow,
a trifle confused at being questioned. Stores and crewright away,
and be ready to sail in a day's time. We don't want no soldierin' on
the job. It's to be up hook and away and look lively. You'll have to
move navy style, Jarrow. You know me.
Thinks I'm foremast in his brig, said Jarrow, with a leer at
You better cut over across the river, said Dinshaw, and tell him
you're ready and you'll have the Nuestra alongside the Mole by
dark to take on stores, or he'll have another boat. He said somethin'
about knowin' a man out here who had a yacht, comin' down from Japan.
Smoke, said Peth.
I wonder, remarked Jarrow, scratching his head. Sure ye didn't
lift that ten-peso bill from Prayerful Jones? I'll be bugs
myself if I listen to you.
Hood'll listen, said Dinshaw, crisply, and made a new effort to
reach the door.
Vhy don'd you to der Pay Few go? suggested Vanderzee.
Jarrow looked at himself. I'd have to shift my duds, he said, and
I ain't for huntin' sharks' eggs on Looney's say. What ye think, Peth?
Shall we fill up that way?
I ain't no hand for them swells, said Peth. You go, cap'n, an'
I'll stand by down here with Dinshaw.
Vait! said Vanderzee, holding up a black hand. Vot's der name?
Locke! He stepped into a tiny office behind the bar. They heard him
asking the clerk at the Bay View if there was a man named Locke staying
there. In an instant he was back again, grinning.
Iss! he exclaimed. So soon I know, I hang opp.
Well, said Jarrow, who was still in doubt as to what he should do,
that's somethin' to know. Maybe some rich tourist did fall for
Peth went back to the bar and leaned against it as if he had made up
his mind not to move until Jarrow reached some decision.
By the Mighty Nelson, I've got a twist in my chains to take a run
over to the hotel!
Shoot, said Peth, displaying more interest than he had at any time
since Dinshaw had arrived.
Come along, Peth, said Jarrow. I'll git into some fresh duds, and
you brail yerself up to look smart, and we'll drift over in a
carromata. Will you wait here, Dinshaw?
I'll wait, Jarrow, I'll wait. Tell him I sent ye, and he'll know.
It's all settled right enough if you lay alongside and make fast, and
no time lost.
See that he don't git away, Jarrow whispered to Vanderzee. I
can't take no chances with thisand keep him quietin there.
Pointing to the alcove, Jarrow slipped out through the door,
followed by Peth, close at heel, like a well-trained dog behind his
It's this way, said Jarrow, as they made their way between the
bales and barrels among the workers on the Mole. Maybe Looney give 'em
hot shot about this island and they're keen to go, thinkin' there's
bunches of gold there, which I know ain't so. But it don't matter if we
git a charter at fifty a day or so, and drag it out into a couple of
We'll want our own crew, suggested Peth.
Bevins, said Jarrow.
Shope, said Peth.
And Doc Bird for steward, and Shanghai Tom ships as cook.
Right. Ye leave it to me, and if there's anything in it, I'll have
all hands come dark.
I ain't hatchin' no chickens on what Looney said, cautioned
Jarrow, but if there's a man who's lit up on Looney's island-o'-gold
yarn, it ain't my way to throw sand in his eyes. And if we do find gold
that's two tails to the cat. We'll take things as they lay.
CHAPTER IV. CAPTAIN JARROW GOES
CRUISING IN STRANGE WATERS
Captain Jarrow and Mr. Peth were driven across the Bridge of Spain
and up Bagumbayan Drive past the Walled City in a carromata, and
disembarked from the native rig at the edge of the Luneta, whence they
proceeded to the Bay View Hotel.
Jarrow wore a new white suit, squeaky French shoes of yellow hue,
and an aura of perfumed soap. Mr. Peth felt uncomfortably respectable
in blue serge and a shirt with a starched collar.
I might ha' stayed back, grumbled Peth, as they mounted the stoop
of the deserted veranda.
You lay a course for the bar while I brace the gent at the office,
said Jarrow. Don't have nothin' to say.
Mr. Peth measured the veranda with his long legs and disappeared
into the bar, while Jarrow squeaked his way into the palms and velvet
grandeur of the sala, waving away the boy who came to inquire
about his baggage.
Yes, sir, said Wilkins, rising from behind the railed desk.
You got a man here named Locke, asserted Jarrow, seizing the
railing as if to brace himself against a shock.
Right-o, said Wilkins. Name, please? He reached for the room
Jarrow was taken aback at the thought of being so abruptly thrust
before a stranger he could not see. He had no plan for a telephone
conversation as preliminary to a meeting and was averse to having his
name bandied about by the clerk.
You can say, he suggested, it's a friend of Captain Dinshaw's,
who's come to have a word with himstrictly private.
Wilkins pressed a button, and after a few seconds announced: Mr.
Locke, there's a gentleman here to see you from Captain Dinshaw. He
wants to speak to you privately.
Put him on the wire, said Locke. Hello! I guess you've got the
No, sir, said Jarrow. I was sent to see you. I'm from Captain
Don't know him, said Locke. What's it about?
The island, said Jarrow, still cautious.
Island! Oh, yes, the old fellow with the picture. All right, come
Jarrow was soon before the door of the Lockes' suite and was ushered
into a room which overlooked the bay, the windows open and the awnings
down. He saw a young woman seated before a small table covered with tea
things, and a tall young man standing near by. Mr. Locke stood just
inside the door, but what warmed Jarrow's heart and bolstered his
courage was a picture of Dinshaw's island which lay on a divan. There
was the proof that the old captain had talked with these people.
Locke regarded his visitor with a puzzled air, but concealed his
surprise. The stranger seemed to him to be strangely furtive and
sinister, standing in the half-light, ears twitching, a clipped skull
thrust forward on a short neck like the head of a turtle pushing out
from a shell.
I didn't get your name, sir, said Locke, in a friendly way, to
save his guest embarrassment.
Jarrow's my name. I got a wreckin' business. You ask anybody in
Manila about me.
And you say Dinshaw sent you?
Yes, sir. I take it you've had a talk with him.
So I have.
Then it's all right. Understand he mentioned me.
You are Captain Jarrow? And you have a schooner? asked Trask.
Jarrow! exclaimed Marjorie. Of course! Don't you remember, Dad?
Captain Dinshaw told us about Captain Jarrow.
Oh, yes, yes, said Locke. You're the man he said would go to his
island. This is my daughter, Miss Marjorieand Mr. Trask.
Jarrow ducked his head. Locke had introduced the others more for the
purpose of gaining time to study this hulking, limp-kneed man who stood
before him like a gorilla crouched for a spring and squeezing a soft
straw hat into a shapeless lump in his hands.
Won't you sit down? asked Locke, and took his hat. Jarrow allowed
himself to sink carefully into a gold-backed chair of doubtful strength
Perhaps you'll take a cup of tea, suggested Marjorie.
No, thanks, ma'am. I don't eat nothin' much between meals. See
you've been buyin' some of the old cap'n's pictures. He's a oddity, but
there's gold on that island of his, right enough.
Think so? asked Trask.
Know so. Scads of it. He brung back samples in his pockets. I've
told him time and time again I'd go to his island, and what's more, I
would ha', only I don't own all my schooner. It's been busy up to now
with gover'ment workhay for the cavalry posts down south. But now I'm
ready, and if I can arrange a charter, I'll cut the rate to the bone,
just to help Dinshawsay sixty-five a day, gold. He looked at Locke
I don't know much about such things, said Locke, vaguely.
Well, a hundred a day is the usual rate, went on Jarrow, but I'll
make it special just to help the old man.
I hope you're well repaid, said Locke. If there is gold
Gold! exclaimed Jarrow. Mr. Locke, ye're in on a good thing, if
you'll let me say a word about it.
I'm a little bit mixed up on this thing, said Locke, with an
amused smile at Trask. You know more about the proposition than I do,
captain. Of course, Captain Dinshaw talked with Mr. Trask
I hope I ain't put my foot in anything, broke in Jarrow. I
thought from what Dinshaw said Mr. Trask here knew all about it.
Mr. Trask knows as much about it as I do, and more, said Locke.
Say whatever you like.
Then it's all right, said Jarrow, obviously relieved. 'Tain't a
piece of business I'd want to tell Tom, Dick, and Harry, if I had the
weather on it like you have. I'm above board in my dealin's. You ask
anybody in Manila about Captain Jarrow, the wrecker. But I thought for
a minute I'd let the cat out of the bag.
No damage done, said Locke. As I understand it, you intend to go
to this island of Dinshaw's.
We're so glad to hear it, Captain Jarrow, said Marjorie. It will
surely make the old man happy.
Thank ye, ma'am. I want to kind o' apologize for jammin' myself in
like this, but I'm a frank man.
Jarrow paused, and throwing one foot over a knee, stroked the seams
of his new French shoes with the tips of his fingers.
Of course, he resumed, Captain Dinshaw and me, we're thick as
three in a bed. Ask anybody in Manila if I ain't been doin' my best to
go to his island. I've offered to take him to his island, time and time
again, but he wouldn't hear it, 'cause he knew I was makin' money with
the Nuestrathat's my schooner, the Nuestra Señora del
Rosariome and Peth, my mate, we own it with others. In the
wreckin' business it's touch and go. You got to be on the spot, and
there ain't been any too many wrecks out this way lately. Let me go
away for a week or two on this island business, and I'd likely lose
somethin' good. But with somebody to kind o' go in on the deal, I'd
split even at sixty-five dollars a day. I'd be some out of pocket, if
there wa'n't much gold there, but I look for findin' it in a big way.
It's a open and shut proposition.
It sounds interesting, said Locke, getting more puzzled as to why
Jarrow should call on him to take him into his confidence regarding
plans about Dinshaw's island.
There's big money in it, said Jarrow.
May I ask why you think so, Captain Jarrow? inquired Trask.
Jarrow turned to Trask in surprise. The question was appallingly
direct, and Trask's tone was crisp and business-like.
I know it, said Jarrow, uncomfortably aware of being pinned down
to definite information.
But I don't understand why you should take the trouble to tell us
about your proposed trip, said Locke.
How? Jarrow's head snapped up suddenly and his eyes opened in a
wide stare at Locke.
What is the purpose of this interview? demanded Locke. There
seems to be some sort of mistake.
Jarrow put his foot down slowly and sucked his moustache in between
his lips. His ears twitched and his head ducked forward as he made a
swallowing movement with his throat.
How's that again? he whispered, as if he had lost his voice.
From what you've said, captain, I gather you believe I have
something to do with the matter of the island.
Jarrow blew his moustache and gave a suppressed sigh of agony.
Whywhy, Dinshawhe told me you wanted me and my schooner to go
to his island!
Trask laughed outright in spite of his effort to keep still, and
Marjorie gave an exclamation of amazement. Locke could only stare at
Told you I wanted your schooner! He certainly is crazy! Most absurd
thing I ever heard of!
Mr. Peth, my mate, he's below now, said Jarrow.
Then you are going? asked Trask.
Am I goin'? retorted Jarrow. No! I can't go on my own hook. I
thought you folks was goin'that's what I'm here for.
It's all a mistake, said Locke. We had no intention of misleading
the old man.
It will be a terrible disappointment to him, said Marjorie. It's
a ghastly mistake if poor old Captain Dinshaw really believes we told
him we'd go.
We bought his picture out of charity, said Locke. Mr. Trask here
is a mining man, and was interested in his story, but we haven't any
more idea of going to this gold island than we have of going to the
moon. My daughter and I are leaving the day after to-morrow for Hong
Kong to connect with the Pacific Mail. We were going this morning, but
missed the Taming.
This'll just about kill old man Dinshaw, said Jarrow.
He's so pathetic, said Marjorie. I'm sorry if we've done anything
to disappoint him. I'll always feel guilty about it. Just what did he
say, Captain Jarrow?
Why, ma'am, he comes runnin' down to the Cuartel not an hour ago,
all excited up about you people. 'Jarrow,' he says to me, 'I've got a
party who'll go to my island if they can git your schoonerand yours
is the only one to be had for love or money. I know you'll lose on it,
seein's you got a new gover'ment hay charter comin' your way, but can't
you strain a p'int for an old friend? If you don't stand by me, the
chance is gone.'
'Cap'n Dinshaw,' says I to him, 'I'll stand by if I can be any
help, lose money or no. If me and my schooner's what you need, why,
she's lyin' off the breakwater, and I'm your man.' And Peth, my mate,
he speaks up, and says to him: 'Dinny, don't you fret none, but leave
it to Jarrow. He's the man to tie to if ye need help.'
So we lays a course for up here. When he hears of this, it'll just
about kill him dead, sure. Happened the same way once before, and he
was laid up in the Civil Hospital for a month with brain fever. He
ain't as strong now as he was then, neither. If I had the capital, I'd
go in on my own, but I'm up to my ears in debt, and as I said, I'd just
about split even at sixty-five dollars a day. But I can't go it alone.
The old man he'll just fade away and die, if you don't mind my puttin'
in my oar about it. When he gits these idees about somebody goin' to
his island, and then it falls through, he moans and moans
Oh, Dad, I wish something could be done! cried Marjorie. I'll
never forgive myself if we go away from here and leave that old man
grieving! She looked at Trask and caught a twinkle in his eye.
Well, I'll send him back to the States if you feel that way about
it, said Locke.
He won't go, said Jarrow. We've all tried to send him home. I
offered to buy his ticket some time back, but he's got this island on
Where is the island? asked Trask. I understand it isn't far.
Oh, up the coast a piece, said Jarrow. Take a week, say, to go
and come back.
A week! said Locke. I had an idea it was a long way off.
Shucks! said Jarrow. No great shakes of a ways. With favourin'
winds, a week would do it easy. Of course, if a man wanted to spend a
lot of time there, diggin' around, that's a cat of another colour. But
with a couple of days to look the place over in good shape, ten days
would do it easy.
Dad, why can't we go? asked Marjorie. Just to make Dinshaw happy!
You said I might go any place I wanted to on this trip.
You mean to tell me you want to go schoonering around out in this
country, Marge? Locke was astounded.
It would be great fun.
Great guns! said Locke. Don't you know a schooner isn't what a
liner is? You can't have suites and stewards and fancy things to eat.
You'll find it comfortable enough on the Nuestra, said
Jarrow, his hopes rising. A good Chink cook, a coloured steward, all
hands a room to theirselves. All Cap'n Dinshaw needs is a mouthful of
sea-air an' a deck under his feet. There's a whallopin' lot of gold
there, too, or I miss stays. I know nobody believes him, but they
didn't believe Columbus. I can't guarantee
I'll go, said Trask, if we can make the right sort of a deal.
If you go, I'm in on it, declared Locke.
Oh, Dad, you're a brick! I knew you'd go!
Trask took Locke aside, to confer privately. I want you to come,
Mr. Locke, he said, but I don't want to have you stand an expense
which may be a dead loss
I won't go unless I can stand half, said Locke.
Very well, but I'd rather not appear in the matter as the leader,
because if I did, the newspapers would find out who I am and make it
appear that my company was backing Dinshaw. I haven't authority to go
on this trip, and if it turned out badly, a failure would be credited
against the Consolidated, and it's a very conservative company. Here's
a thousand dollars. Will you draw checks against it at your bank? And
I'll go as your guest?
Certainly, said Locke. I have an account current at the Chinese
bank, which was to be transferred to Hong Kong, but I'll hold it here.
All right. You give Jarrow a check as an advance and to buy
supplies. We'll close the deal right now.
CHAPTER V. JARROW DOES AND SAYS QUEER
Mr. Peth was slinking about the bar like a leopard on a still hunt
when Captain Jarrow returned from his conference which resulted in a
tentative charter of the Nuestra Señora del Rosario, with
himself as master and Peth as mate.
Jarrow was in a state bordering between exhaltation at his success
and collapse over the narrow margin by which he had put through a deal
which at one time appeared as elusive as a chimera.
Give me a Picon, and make it strong, said Jarrow to the bar-boy,
disregarding Peth, while he scrubbed his face with a handkerchief.
Hook up? asked Peth, edging along the bar until he had an elbow
against Jarrow's side.
Mighty Nelson! whispered Jarrow. It was a lee shore, and no
mistake. Looney lied.
Lied! whispered Peth.
They never told him they wanted us, continued Jarrow, with due
caution, glancing about the deserted bar. But I put it through.
They're swells and no mistake.
Then it's a go, skipper?
We get out in the morning. It's to be quiet. We clear for Vigan
with passengers. Take rock ballast this afternoon, and git stores
aboard. Locke give me free rein for everything needed, and I'm to draw
on him at the Hong Kong-Shanghai bank. We ought to clean up. Pipe down,
here's the dude clerk.
You saw Mr. Locke? asked Wilkins, with a genial air, as he came in
from the office, consumed with curiosity.
Oh, yes, said Jarrow. He's a nice man.
Raw-ther, said Wilkins.
I hear he's rich, said Jarrow.
Wilkins smiled knowingly. Millions, he said.
Peth looked at Jarrow quickly, and whistled faintly through his
I guess you know me, said Jarrow. I been up here a few times now
and then on business.
You're a Manila man, aren't you? asked Wilkins. I don't place
your name but your face is familiar.
I'm Captain Jarrow, head of the Inter-Island Wreckin' Company. I
got a big business, in a way. Everybody knows me in my line. I'm the
man who done the divin' for the gover'ment.
Oh, yes, said Wilkins.
I'd like for you to say a good word for me, if it falls your way,
to this Mr. Lockeand Trask.
Sure, said Wilkins.
Who does this Mr. Trask happen to be? asked Jarrow.
Mining man, said Wilkins.
Yes, he was talking with Looney Dinshaw. Seems he came out here
from China to look after the island. I knew him down in Colombo, when I
managed a hotel.
Lookin' for the island! exclaimed Jarrow. That's news to me.
I thought maybe that's why you called, said Wilkins.
Well, maybe I didn't and maybe I did. I have to keep a closed
mouth. But if you'll say a word for me to these peoplereliable and
all thatI may put somethin' your way sometime.
I'll have a gin, said Peth.
Glad to do what I can, sir, said Wilkins. Support home industry,
that's always been my motto. If I'm asked, I'll say the right sort of
Good for you, said Jarrow. This is Mr. Peth, my mate. We got to
slide, and waving his hand at Wilkins, Jarrow walked toward the
veranda while Peth gulped his gin and trailed after him with alacrity.
The mate overtook the captain as the latter headed across the Luneta
toward Malecon Drive, where the great king palms offered shade from the
Jarrow marched along, with head down, staring at the gravel. He gave
no heed to Peth, who overtook him and fell in beside him.
Millions, said Peth, presently.
You ain't got the brains of a goose, Peth.
What's the row? demanded Peth.
Can't you hear millions spoke of without actin' like a blasted
whistlin' buoy? demanded Jarrow, savagely.
I was took aback, said Peth.
Took aback! This ain't no business for a man who's got to blow off
steam in public the minute he sniffs somethin' good! Things like that
might bust up the whole businessand sixty a day in it!
I don't see what I done, skipper, whined Peth.
You done enough. Couldn't you see what I was drivin' at? You ain't
got half an eye. That dude clerk, he can fix us solid with them people.
What if he got an idea we was out to make money off 'em? This Locke'll
go askin' that feller, so I had to prime him. Lucky he didn't notice
your fidgets when he spoke of millions.
You go make a mountain out of it, said Peth, as they turned into
the Malecon and proceeded toward the river.
Peth, you better not cross the bows of these people till we're
ready for sea.
Peth turned his sharp face toward the captain and looked down on him
with searching eyes, a trifle startled. He turned away and spat
viciously. I won't bite 'em, he growled.
They might bite you. We can't reckon on what these swells'll cotton
to in a deal like this.
Aint I big enough dude?
You ain't got no diplomacy.
Peth gritted his teeth gently. Don't ye want me for mate? he
demanded, with a poor attempt to conceal his wrath.
What's the matter of you? asked Jarrow, looking at him in
You that's sayin' it. You talk like I'm a horned toad or somethin',
to set folks on the run the minute they clap eyes on me.
Have sense, cautioned Jarrow. We got a lot to do come sundown.
Have sense. I'm the brain's, ain't I?
So you say, cap'n.
I got my own meanin's. What if this Trask and the girl come down
aboard this evenin' to look things over, and they don't like your looks
What's my looks got to do with it? Ain't I dressed up?
Yes, good enough for me, but maybe not for them. They'll put a hole
in our copper plates, charter or no charter, if they take a dislike to
you. We can't take no chances.
Might as well see me first as last.
Oh, no. Plenty of reasons for 'em comin' about on the whole
business and leavin' us high and dry, except for the advance. They hop
aboard a linerwhat then?
Got to see me some time.
Sure! Once to sea, they'll take things as they find 'em. But it's
touch and go with us until we clear the bay, and don't forget that for
What they want? Sody water gents for a crew?
Whatever they want, they'll have it, them swells.
Then I ain't gallant enough for the likes o' you and this charter
party, I take it, said Peth, his anger rising.
I ain't findin' no fault with you myself, Peth. All I'm gallied
about is what the others'll think. You're goin' mate, of course
Thanks, said Peth, curtly. You talk like I was ship's boy, not
owner of an eighth of the Nuestra. Who helped you salve her? Who
like to broke his back doin' of it? Peth did, that's who. Now he ain't
good enough, once ye make fast to a millionaire.
You talk like an old mitten with the thumb brailed up, said
Where was this millionaire feller when ye wanted a man to stand by
and raise the Nuestra, I'd like?
Belay that! said Jarrow. I'm talkin' for yer own good. There's
money in this cruise for both of us. I got my own reasons, and that's
enough. I'd look smart cuttin' you out of things, wouldn't I?
Well, all I can say, cap'n, ye don't need to take me mate if ye
don't want to.
Steady as she goes, said Jarrow, taking him by his arm. You're
mate, and I never had it my mind ye wouldn't go mate.
All right, all right, growled Peth, shaking himself free. I ain't
goin' to fuss none. I don't want to be gammin' around with swells, no
ways. But if I thought ye wanted to beach me
Oh, git that out of yer head. You've got to git the crew together
and I got to see Prayerful Jones afore Dinshaw gits back. Then I'll git
the old man aboard and keep his jaw close to the wind. We got to run
this thing on some basis. You'll find Doc Bird cookin' in a civilian
mess out Malate way. We got to have him.
Will Doc cut loose from a shore berth for what looks like a v'yage
He'll cut loose from anything if he knows I want him, said Jarrow,
in a tone significant of no doubts about the matter. He's to be aboard
in the mornin'to-night would be better. When we git our ballast we'll
lay out in the stream again. It's safer from talk.
From folks nosin' around. We can't have none of the crew hangin'
'longshore, ginnin' up. I'll fix the clearance myself, and see the
But I'm to have who I want for'ard, said Peth.
That's it. You know who we want.
They hailed a banca and were rowed across the river, making a
landing over a tier of cascos.
I'll go over to the Cuartel and pass the word for the men and do a
little lookin' myself, said Peth.
Keep Dinshaw there half an hour, suggested Jarrow.
Peth looked at him suspiciously.
What's the game?
Never mind me or the game.
I seem to be kind o' out on the aidge o' things, growled the mate.
You keep Dinshaw from shootin' off his face, that's all you got to
do, and don't let Van know how things swung at the Bay View. I'm goin'
to keep this business under gratin's.
You don't need to fret, said Peth. I ain't fixin' to break
nothin' out, and he tracked away to the Cuartel, weaving in and out
among the litter of goods on the Mole.
Jarrow stood and watched him disappear into the Cuartel. I ain't
never had no luck with him, he remarked. I hope he breaks his fool
neck, that's what I hope. He'll mess things up for me yit.
CHAPTER VI. MR. PETH IS PARTICULAR
ABOUT WHERE HE SLEEPS
Early in the morning, when Manila was turning over for another nap,
a victoria from the Bay View took Locke, Trask, and Marjorie over the
Bridge of Spain and through Plaza Moraga to the landing steps, where
the tug which was to take the Nuestra Señora del Rosario to sea
was waiting to put the voyagers aboard the schooner. The Nuestra
was at anchor down the bay.
As they got out of the carriage a black man hopped ashore from the
tug and made for their baggage.
I'm Doc Bird, the steward, he said. I reckon yo' all is fo' Cap'n
We are, said Locke. Is everything ready?
Never gon' be no readier, sir, said the steward, who looked smart
in a suit of white and a jaunty cap. Instead of a shirt, he wore a
gaudy cotton sweater with stripes running athwart his body, red and
blue, after the manner of a convict's clothes.
Then we're off, said Locke, as he helped Marjorie aboard, while
Trask superintended the job of getting their bags aboard, at which task
the native crew of the tug assisted the steward.
In a minute they were heading down the river. As they cleared the
old transport docks they made out the Nuestra well off the
breakwater, her brown, bare masts rising like spires from her black
hull, and the morning sun glinting from a strip of brass on her
taffrail. They could see busy figures aboard, and as they drew nearer
Captain Jarrow appeared on the poop-deck smoking a cigar. He was all in
white, his queer cockle-shell straw hat fastened to a button of his
coat by a cord.
They had visited the schooner the night before, under the pilotage
of Jarrow, before Locke had signed the agreement which was practically
a charter, at sixty dollars a day. She had six rooms in her main cabin
in addition to the galley and lazarette, and while they were small,
they were comfortable enough and satisfactory.
No one was aboard during the brief visit, but Mr. Bevins, the second
mate, and one man of the crew. Bevins's manners were ingratiating and
he wore a constant smile, due more to some defect of his facial muscles
than chronic geniality. The other man was a big fellow with much
tattooing on his hands and wrists. Captain Jarrow summoned him to the
cabin door and introduced him as Shope, who was to go b'sun.
There's Captain Dinshaw! cried Marjorie, as the patron
steered the tug to come alongside.
Dinshaw had popped up over the starboard bulwark, and watched the
tug maneuver with critical eye.
And all dressed up, said Trask, smiling, as he observed that
Dinshaw wore a white suit and sported an official-looking cap with a
The old man shore thinks he's the skipper, remarked Doc Bird.
How's that? asked Locke.
He's a-bossin' everybody, replied the steward. Thinks he's in his
old brig what he lost on his island.
The old dear! said Marjorie. Isn't he pathetic? He looks
Dinshaw stood with his hands on the bulwark, and looked down at the
tug, his head askew like an observant fowl.
Don't scratch the paint! he shouted to the patron of the
tug. Mind what ye're at!
Paint! laughed Locke. Couldn't hurt that paint with a crowbar.
Glad to see ye in good time, Mr. Locke, called Jarrow, and then
stepped back to escape the smoke from the tug's funnel, calling to Peth
to see that the ladder was put over.
After a deal of fussing and bawling on the part of the tug's crew,
she was nestled alongside the schooner, and Jarrow was at the rail to
assist them over the side.
I told ye I'd go, said Dinshaw, proudly, taking off his cap to
Marjorie as she jumped down to the deck. This lady knows, and she
wanted to go to my island. Thank ye, ma'am! Good mornin'.
Indeed I do want to go, laughed Marjorie. And I hope we'll find
your island, too, captain.
Thank ye, ma'am. We'll find it right enough, and with a hasty bow
he waddled forward importantly, to oversee the getting of the anchor
and the passing of the towing hawser.
But the tug remained alongside after Locke and Trask had climbed
over into the waist and the baggage was transferred by Doc Bird.
Oh, said Jarrow, as the patron mounted the ladder and
grinned at them, hat in hand, this boy wants his towage.
How much? asked Locke, taking out a large roll of yellow American
I'd give him a check, advised Jarrow, if you've got your book.
All right, said Locke, and he followed Jarrow into the cabin while
Trask and Marjorie went to the poop-deck. The Nuestra looked
clean as a pin and fresh as a maker's model. Her decks had been
scrubbed until the caulking in the seams looked like lines of black
paint on old ivory. Her standing rigging had been newly tarred, her
bright work polished, and the water casks lashed in the waist had their
hoops painted a bright yellow, not yet dry. New hemp hung in the
belaying pins. The roof of the cabin, covered by a tarpaulin, gleamed
with oil and yellow paint. She had been scrubbed and freshened until
she had quite the aspect of a yacht.
This beats waiting around Hong Kong, said Marjorie, as they stood
looking forward. She looked quite nautical in a suit of white duck and
a yachting cap pinned to her flaxen hair. Trask thought she appeared
entrancingly healthy and out of doors.
It's going to be a jolly fine trip, said Trask. I hope you'll
enjoy it one hundredth as much as I do.
But gold-mine hunting is no novelty to you, she said.
It's the first time I've actually gone to sea in search of a gold
mine. And there are other reasons which make this trip unique.
You are absurdly reticent, Mr. Trask.
Under the circumstances it would be unfair to state the facts in
their blunt simplicity, he retorted, with a smile.
You mean father and me?
Mostly you, and he moved forward abruptly to tell Doc Bird to put
his bags in his room.
Locke and Jarrow came out of the main cabin and paid off the
patron of the tug.
Well, we're off, said Locke, coming aft, as Jarrow went forward to
oversee the getting of the anchor and the passing of the hawser. Bevins
came aft presently and took the wheel, and in a few minutes the
Nuestra started down the bay at the end of her leash.
Well under way, Jarrow called Peth to the main cabin and introduced
him to Marjorie, Locke, and Trask, who had been summoned below for the
assignment of their rooms.
Peth stood in the doorway and bowed, looking quite smart and
respectable in clean dungarees, and though he said nothing but How de
do, he gave the impression of affability mixed with shyness. He missed
no detail of Trask's clothing, and seemed to measure the young man's
strength as he looked him up and down.
Now, Miss Locke, you'll have this room aft, to port, next is Mr.
Locke, and then Mr. Trask. Then comes the cabin stores. I'll be aft to
starboard, Mr. Peth and Captain Dinshaw next, the cook and the steward,
and the galley
If ye don't mind, cap'n, interrupted Peth, I'd not want to bunk
with the old man. I got to be up and around nights.
All right, said Jarrow. There are two bunks in Mr. Trask's room
here. Maybe you wouldn't find it out of the way if Mr. Peth took the
Not at all, said Trask. I'll sleep soundly enough.
My gear's in there now, said Peth, and he went out on deck.
I'd git my stuff all opened up and stowed while we're in the bay,
suggested Jarrow. There may be a swell on outside, and then it's goin'
to be hot below as the sun climbs. Tom! How's that coffee comin' on?
The fat Chinese cook looked out from the galley, a white cap on his
head and an apron tied about him. He grinned pleasantly, and replied
that the coffee was on the fire.
We had breakfast, said Locke.
I'd take a nip of coffee, said Jarrow. Now then, here's Doc Bird
to help open your gear. Anything you want, ask for it, and you, Doc,
keep an eye out to make all hands comfortable. I got to go up now.
Trask followed the captain up the companion and left Marjorie and
her father below, until he was called to have his coffee. When they
went on deck again Corregidor Island was astern, rising out of the
channel like a derelict battleship.
To starboard, close aboard beyond the stretch of sun-dazzled sea,
was the coast of Bataan, with the brown fuzzy mountains behind
Mariveles shouldering into the sky. Point Luzon marked the limit of the
land over the starboard bow, and on the port side the shining China Sea
reached away to the horizon.
The jib and foresail were already set although the tug had not cast
off. Soon they began to fill, and as Peth bawled to the tug, the hawser
was dropped, and tooting a farewell, the little boat swung in a wide
arc and headed back for Manila.
Peth came aft and routed Doc Bird from under the mainsail boom where
the steward sat peeling potatoes. Dinshaw kept moving about, repeating
the orders of the mate, or talking to himself.
The crew were all white, in accordance with the orders of Locke, who
had declared that he did not want to undertake the voyage with natives
The breeze from landward died as the main was being set, and the
Nuestra began to roll gently as she fell off. For a few minutes she
threatened to follow the tug back to Manila, with many lurches and
angry snappings of blocks.
We'll git a clinkin' good breeze from the south'ard when we're off
the land, said Jarrow, glancing aloft to the windvane on the mizzen
truck. It was flopping about like a dead fish on a gaff.
Before long the foresail began to fret its sheets, and Bevins got
her head to seaward. Then there came from astern a hot, puffy breeze,
and the schooner stood out on a port tack, curvetting prettily as her
sails were trimmed and filled.
One of the crew, hailed as Pennock, now came aft and took the wheel,
and Bevins went forward. Captain Dinshaw went into the cabin, and
looking down, Trask could see him bent over the table, sucking a stub
of a pencil and studying a sheet of paper.
What's the bearin' and distance of Point Luzon? he called up the
Jarrow looked at Locke and smiled.
Northwest, five miles, called Jarrow, after a look at the compass
and the land.
What course ye steerin'?
Variation, one degree east, remarked Dinshaw, and went back to his
figuring, talking to himself and scratching his head. From his conduct
since sailing it was obvious that he intended to hold himself aloof
from the rest of the party.
Thinks he's navigatin', whispered Jarrow, with a wink to Trask.
He looks a lot better than he did, said Locke. Has more colour
and walks with more vigour.
Good eatin', said Jarrow. He perked right up the minute he come
aboard. Acts like he's master. Don't do no harm, only Mr. Peth gits
rubbed the wrong way sometimes. I say, if the old man gits any fun out
of thinkin' it's his own schooner, what's the odds?
How did you come out on getting anything certain about the position
of his island? asked Locke. From what you said last night it was a
Oh, we know where we're goin' right enough, said Jarrow.
Then he's given you some more data?
We ain't goin' on his say-so. He give me the leaf out of his old
log, with his noon position the day before he was lifted off his course
by the typhoon.
Is that enough?
We ought to run slap into his island. It's one of the Capones, off
the Zambales coast. There's a whole flock of 'em, but the one I figure
on stands out from the rest, from what I've worked.
Wilkins, at the hotel, was telling me the geodetic people couldn't
find the island.
Wilkins? Jarrow turned and looked at Locke intently. Oh, yes. Did
he say anything about me?
Yes, he spoke very highly of you.
Well, it's this way, said Jarrow, after a thoughtful pause. The
old man didn't give 'em the right position. He said he'd piled up near
one of the Sisters, just to the south'ard of the Little Sister, to be
exact. But that's more'n sixty miles north of where the Wetherall
struck. Ye see, the old man didn't want nobody to find the island if he
couldn't go himself. But he's all right now.
Peth came up the weather side of the poop, and seeing the trio with
the captain, turned abruptly to go forward again.
Did you want to see me, Mr. Peth? called Jarrow.
The mate stopped, and pushing his cap to the back of his head,
grumbled an assent.
What about? asked Jarrow, leaning his elbows on the top of the
I wanted to speak private, said Peth, grumblingly.
Well, sing out, said Jarrow.
Thought I'd speak to ye about where I'd bunk, sir, said Peth.
Didn't we settle that? demanded Jarrow, with considerable
Not to my tastes, said the mate.
What's the trouble?
I thought I'd take my gear out, if it's all the same to you, sir.
Out of that room, sir.
Where'd ye want to bunk?
I thought I'd bunk for'ard. Bevins is with the men
Well, you're the mate, said Jarrow. Ye don't want to be with the
crew, do ye?
I thought mebbe if I moved for'ard I wouldn't be in the way.
Nobody's said anything 'bout ye bein' in the way, said Jarrow,
with rising temper.
I'd be a heap more comfortable, sir, insisted Peth.
I won't be at all disturbed, said Trask, getting out of his deck
chair so that he could see Peth.
I reckon I'd rather be for'ard, repeated the mate, doggedly.
Captain Dinshaw came up through the companion, and started toward
Peth, glaring at the mate.
What's this? What's this? cried Dinshaw.
Better keep quiet, sir, and let me handle it, said Jarrow in a low
tone. Then to Peth: If ye think ye'll be more comfortable for'ard,
Peth, why, that's your lookout. We'll let it stand that way till we
talk it over and
Bad for discipline to have the mate for'ard with the crew, shouted
Dinshaw. Ye'll stay with the afterguard, Mr. Peth. I'm master here.
Who is skipper, anyhow? demanded Peth.
I'm skipper, said Jarrow. No use of gittin' excited up this way.
Captain Dinshaw, ye'll please me if ye go below. Now we'll go for'ard
and talk this over, Mr. Peth. I won't have no disputin' aboard me. He
hurried after Peth, and they went forward of the foremast, talking in
Captain Dinshaw! said Locke, as the old man started to descend the
stairs to the cabin.
Dad! warned Marjorie. Don't hurt his feelings.
Yes, sir, said Dinshaw.
Don't you want to go to your island? asked Locke, gently.
Then we can't have this sort of thing, or I'll turn back to Manila.
Captain Jarrow is in command.
I know now, sir, said Dinshaw, rubbing his forehead with his hand,
as if to brush away something which affected his vision. It's all
clear in my head, sirI git kind o' dreamy, sir.
All right, said Locke. You'd better go down and keep out of the
sun. It's all right this time, but you know we must not have a division
of authority. Captain Jarrow is master.
Very good, sir. And Dinshaw, somewhat crestfallen, went below.
I merely wanted to take a hand in things, said Locke. Better for
me to chip the old man and keep him quiet than for Jarrow to give him
And I'm as well satisfied that Mr. Peth is going to live in the
forecastle, if that's a measure of his temper, said Trask, who was
more annoyed by the mate's request than he allowed the Lockes to see.
I didn't like his looks from the first, said Marjorie.
Oh, things'll get shaken down, said Locke. But I'll give Jarrow
to understand that we don't want to hear any more quarrels.
Trask and Marjorie left their chairs on the lee side of the poop,
and leaned against the rail, the better to see what was taking place
forward, where they could hear Jarrow and Peth in quiet argument. From
their gestures it was plain that in spite of Jarrow's pleas Peth was
Pennock, the man at the wheel, gave no sign that he had heard any of
the conversation aft, but stared over the top of the cabin trunk,
glancing aloft now and then at the sails, and watching the compass. The
crew were busy wetting down the decks, having swept them after clearing
a litter of rope and boxes.
Soon Captain Jarrow came back, looking red and flustered, his cigar
out and badly chewed. He made an attempt to light it, but gave up the
attempt and threw it over the side.
I'm sorry to see this happen, Mr. Locke, said Jarrow finally, as
if he felt that he must say something to restore a pleasant status.
You know I've half a mind to put back to Manila and throw him
ashore, said Locke, severely. We're here for pleasure, Captain
Jarrow, and we can't have any such scenes. My daughter's worried.
Oh, Mr Peth's all right, said Jarrow. His bark's worse'n his
bite. He feels a little awkward with you folks aboard, that's all. It
was the old man scraped him.
I've already chipped the old man about it, said Locke. I wish
you'd let the matter drop. What did Mr. Peth decide to do?
He's set on bunkin' with the men, said Jarrow.
All right, then, he can mess with the men, said Locke. We won't
have him aft at all.
All right, said Jarrow, and fell to pacing the weather side of the
poop, his hands clasped behind his back.
In a few minutes Peth came clumping down the waist and, calling two
of the crew, went into the main cabin. There was a banging of doors,
heard above the clatter of Shanghai Tom's chopping tray, and then Peth
went forward, carrying clothes under both arms, followed by two men
with his sea-chest.
The schooner was bowling along now at a good rate, marching away
from the land steadily, and making little leeway. Trask went below,
ostensibly to have his bag unpacked, but really to have a talk with Doc
Bird. Also, he had an automatic pistol which he thought he would get
out and clean. He suspected that it would do no harm to have it known
that there were weapons among the passengers.
CHAPTER VII. TRASK HAS A TALK WITH
Calling Doc Bird from the galley, Trask set about putting his things
in order in his room, and sent the steward inside to open the biggest
bag, which was secured with straps.
I reckon we better take this out, sir, suggested Doc, as he made
an effort to get the straps loose. He found it hard to work in the
narrow little room.
No, said Trask, open it in here. He stood in the doorway, and
let the door rest against his back, holding it partly closed with one
hand. It was his purpose to keep Doc shut in, and so be able to
question him without being overheard.
Mighty hard to open, said Doc, down on his knees, struggling with
the straps. It was hot in the room, and rather dark, as the deadlight
to the poop-deck was fogged by sea water.
You're new to the schooner, aren't you? asked Trask.
Yassir. I jus' shipped fo' the roun' trip.
How long have you known Mr. Peth? Trask kept his voice low, and
bent down to Doc.
Yassir. I know Mr. Peth. I know him fo' a long time.
Have you sailed with him before?
Yassir. I been along with Cap'n Jarrow an' Mr. Peth off an' on six
years. Got a key fo' this hyar satchel?
It isn't locked. Just press the lock to the left.
You mighty ca'less with yo' possessions, said Doc with a chuckle.
What sort of a man is Mr. Peth?
Catch me with my stuff sailin' around loose. Some o' these hyar
native trash go'n walk off wid you, bag an' baggage, if you don' watch
Why do you suppose Mr. Peth wanted to move out of here?
Oh, he's just kind o' techy.
How do you mean?
Kind o' uppish. He don' git along wid nobody, nohow, Mr. Peth
He's been with Captain Jarrow a long time, hasn't he?
Doc turned his head sidewise and looked at Trask, and then looked
out into the main cabin, as if to make sure no one was listening before
he went on.
A lion an' a lamb, he said, in a scared whisper.
And Peth's the lion?
Yassir, you got it. Peth, he'd fight with his own gran'mother, that
man. Argue en argue en argue. He ain't fixin' to hurt nobody when he
talks, but when he stops talkin'excuse me!
What does he do when he stops talking?
If ol' Doc Bird's on the lan'scape, he hunts a hole an' he crawls
in when Mr. Peth he begins to act up.
You mean you're afraid of him?
Not exac'ly what you'd go an' call 'fraid, but I don' take no
chances. He chuckled again, and wagged his head. He could not
manipulate the lock to get the bag open, and Trask reached down and
showed him how it was done.
Then you consider Mr. Peth a dangerous man?
He sho' is.
How is he dangerous?
Well, Mr. Trask, I don' lak' to go an' say nothin' agin a man,
'specially when he's matin' round a boat what I'm in.
Oh, I suppose he's rough with a sailor if it suits his fancy, said
Trask, convinced now that Doc was merely making talk, and telling a
yarn simply to impress him.
He wouldn't look twice to hang somethin' on a man's haid, Mr. Peth
wouldn't. I done saw him stab a man once, not no sailorman, neither,
stab him right in the back o' the neck with one o' these hyar Sweden
knives with a ring on the handle. He was a planter down Zamboanga way,
an' a genelman like you, in white clothes. He come sassin' round Mr.
Peth on the pier. He won't sass 'round no mo', mos' certain.
Fol-de-rol, said Trask. You're trying to make him out a bad man.
I want to know something about him.
Ain't I tellin' of ye? asked Doc. Who all can tell ye, if I don'?
Reckon that Zamboanga planter's gwine come back to life jes' fo'
talkin' purposes, Mr. Trask?
But he and Captain Jarrow must get along if they've been together
for several years.
Git along, man! Them two don' git along, not the way we-all say it.
Mr. Peth an' de cap'n? Huh! Them two git along smooth as a houn' dawg
in a brier patch.
They quarrel a lot, eh?
Fight ain' no name fer it. Mr. Peth he owns part of this hyar
schooner, an' Cap'n Jarrow he wants fer to git him out. I look for him
to drap Mr. Peth over the side some fine nightif Mr. Peth don' drap
Then that's why Mr. Peth didn't want to sleep aft here?
Mos' doubtless. He pick up his traps an' go. Mr. Peth he done ship
de crew. Yo' don' reckon he picked out Cap'n Jarrow's Sunday friends,
does ye? No, suh. Mr. Peth, he knows what he's a-doin' of. He looks to
be with his own friends when he goes for'ard.
Well, that's a nice arrangement, to have the mate in with the crew
and opposed to the captain.
Won't do no harm thataway, said Doc with much assurance.
I reckon Cap'n Jarrow's got some friends along.
I suppose you side with the captain, eh?
I mos' certain do. Old Doc Bird knows whar his bread is buttered,
an' he keeps right close alongside de skipper.
Mr. Peth knows that?
Mr. Peth never gits no chance to fergit it. An' the cook, he ain'
got no use fo' Mr. Peth.
He better not go argufyin' with Shanghai Tom.
Why not? What could the cook do?
Do? Doc looked up and rolled his eyes, listened a second to make
sure the cook was busy in the galley, and then went on: Do? He'd let a
meat axe in him. Yo' jes' want to stand clear if yo' see Mr. Peth an'
Tom lookin' crossways at each other. My goodness, Mr. Trask, yo' sho'
got a powerful lot of stuff in this grip-sack!
Yes, it's tightly packed. Take the stuff out and put it in the
upper bunk. I'll use the lower. So Peth and Jarrow fight. Do you mean
to tell me there's always fighting? That it amounts to anything more
Fight! Lord-amighty! Them two! They'd rather fight en a yaller dawg
likes fo' to worry a hambone. Not out an' out strakin', but jes' kind
o' pickin' en a pickin'; insultin' like. But Mr. Peth he's makin' to do
somebody hurt some time.
Let 'em fight, said Trask, and he began to help Doc hand out the
clothing from the bag which the steward stowed above. When the bag was
partly empty Trask opened a leather pocket that was fitted to one of
the compartments. He gave an exclamation of surprise as he found it
empty. It was in this pocket that his automatic revolver was ordinarily
What's the matter? asked Doc.
Oh, nothing. I've misplaced something, that's all.
Yo' don' reckon Mr. Locke'll go an' git skeered 'count o' Mr.
Peth's carryin' on, does ye?
I don't believe anybody in this party is very scared of Mr. Peth.
Now, Miss Locke, she's a powerful nice lady. I knows quality folks
the minute I comes across 'em. Now yo', Mr. Trask, is all off yo'
What do you mean?
Yo' all ain' no business fo' mixin' in with a ship full o' low-down
rakin's an' scrapin's like we got aboard hyar.
You mean Captain Jarrow and Mr. Peth?
Crew, said Doc.
What about the crew?
You mean the crew can't be trusted?
Honest enough, sho'ly, but they ain't in yo' all's set. Now I know
quality folks, an' when I sot eyes on yo' all, I like fo' to throwed a
fit. Huh! 'Ristocrats ain' no business hoppin' along in a boat like
this. I go fo' to know 'ristocrats when I sees 'em. I was a pantry man
in a Suezer.
But this isn't any tea-party to which the crew are invited.
Huh! Don' yo' go fo' to fool yo' self.
Oh, fiddlesticks! said Trask. What are you trying to do? Make me
afraid of everybody in the schooner?
Doc scratched his woolly head and rolled his eyes.
I ain't got nothin' mo' fo' to say, he declared, with an air of
Doc was getting a trifle too chummy to suit Trask, and he thought it
high time to bring the discussion to a close. While he felt Doc might
be valuable as a friend and an ally, the garrulous steward might prove
to be dangerous as a gossip. Trask feared that he had made a mistake by
discussing the ship's affairs with him, so he gave the black man a
generous tip and dismissed him with a caution against repeating
anything that had been said.
If yo' go to need any advice, Mr. Trask, jes' yo' call on me, he
whispered as he went out. I don't let nothin' what might come in handy
slip by me.
Thanks, said Trask, who realized that this was a direct offer to
turn spy against Captain Jarrow and Peth. He did not care to enter into
any sort of an arrangement yet felt that it would be wise to retain
friendly relations with the steward.
If I pick up anything, Mr. Trask, I'll put a bug in yo' ear.
All right, said Trask. But I don't favour your spying on anybody
for my sake. You're merely to let me know in case anything goes on that
I should know, which relates to the safety of all hands.
Oh, I ain' go'n to do no snoopin', said Doc, with one of his
peculiar chuckles. But I looks fer carryin's on.
I don't want you gossiping, said Trask. Doc was promising to
become something of a nuisance.
Yassir, said the steward, and went away to the galley.
Trask now gave his complete attention to emptying the bag which
should have contained the pistol. He made a careful search. But the
pistol was gone and he was sure he had packed it that morning at the
hotel, together with two boxes of ammunition.
So he ransacked every possible place where the pistol could be
misplaced among his effects. But after going through two smaller bags,
and shaking out every bit of clothing, even to folding up the sheets
and blankets on both bunks, he was sure the pistol was gone.
So far as Trask knew, the only person besides Doc Bird to cross the
threshold of his room was Peth. But the mate had been there only a few
minutes. Whoever the thief was, he apparently had gone through the bag
looking for arms, for nothing else had been disturbed. And it must have
taken some time to open the straps and put them back in place, for the
leather was stiff and the buckles difficult to manage. Trask had found
the ends of the straps tucked in under the leather bands, just as he
had fixed them himself at the hotel.
Besides, to get the pistol and ammunition the leather pocket had to
be opened, and Trask had found the flap back in place and buckled down.
Likewise, the bag had been opened before his own eyes by Doc Bird, and
he had stood over the steward while it was unpacked.
Doc couldn't have known the pistol was there, for immediately the
bag was opened he stood up and let Trask pass out the contents. Peth
had been in the room probably fifteen minutes, and part of that time
two of the crew were with him.
Trask knew it would be unfair to charge Peth with the theft of the
pistol, or to question the mate about it, and to report his loss to
Jarrow might precipitate more trouble on top of the ill-feeling which
had already cropped out aboard the schooner.
So he decided to wait and take the matter up at a time more
convenient for an investigation.
Trask left his room and went out on deck as if nothing had happened
to arouse his suspicions against anybody in the vessel. But he had an
idea that Peth might know what had become of the automatic pistol.
CHAPTER VIII. HOW THE SCHOONER
ARRIVED OFF THE ISLAND
Trask found Captain Jarrow pacing the weather side of the poop-deck
when he went up. The captain seemed to be in ill-humour, as if his tilt
with Peth had not been settled to his liking, and his attitude that of
shame for having lost his face so soon with his passengers.
He nodded pleasantly to Trask, who observed that his bronzed face
appeared flushed with anger. There was a savage glint in his eye in
spite of his silent geniality.
Trask leaned against the taffrail, waiting to see if Jarrow would
speak, and if the captain's mood warranted it, intended to report the
loss of his pistol.
Locke and Marjorie were in deck chairs around the cabin on the lee
side, sheltered from sun and wind to some degree by the sail over their
But Jarrow said nothing, continuing to pace from the break of the
poop and aft, ignoring Trask, but keeping a watchful eye on the man at
the helm and the sails. His manner indicated that he did not wish to
engage in conversation, but preferred to consider matters which
required careful thought.
Dinshaw was standing at the port bulwark abreast of the mainmast,
gazing out over the sea in a reflective way, and looking quite forlorn
and chastened. The crew, in skylarking style, were drawing water over
the side with buckets and throwing it down the deck from forward, so
that Dinshaw frequently had to pull himself up on the bulwark to avoid
having his feet wet.
This gaiety forward was in striking contrast to the sense of gloom
which had come over the after part of the schooner. Not that any one
was suffering any discomforts from the fact that Jarrow had clashed
with the mate, unless it were Jarrow himself, but Peth's irascibility
had checked the holiday air with which the schooner's company had put
to sea. But the crew had suddenly become gleeful, as if the quarrel
between master and mate had provided a great joke.
Peth was walking about forward, in bare feet, growling out a word
now and then, and obviously going to great pains not to look aft. When
his back was turned from them the sailors indulged in grins and
back-slappings and other rough demonstrations of their knowledge that
the afterguard were not on agreeable terms.
This prankish mood of the crew was shown in their efforts to make
Dinshaw uncomfortable. It was plain to Trask that they wanted to arouse
the old man's ire, or pick on him in a sneaking way, to let him know
that he had lost his previous standing with them. It was all
undoubtedly meant to have petty revenge on him for the way he had been
lording it about before Peth had quarrelled with Jarrow. They seemed to
have an idea that because Peth had come forward, they could show the
old captain disrespect.
In a way it was all harmless enough, yet Trask felt that neither
Peth nor Jarrow should allow such lax discipline. Dinshaw belonged aft,
and for that reason to treat him with contumely was a reflection on
everybody aft. But Trask thought that it was no time to call the
captain's attention to what was going on, partly because Dinshaw should
have remained aft while such work was being done, and partly because a
criticism from Jarrow would undoubtedly cause a renewal of the row that
should be allowed to blow over.
The crew's jeering attitude was soon brought out in another manner
while Trask remained near the captain. Doc Bird went to the lee side to
throw over some refuse from the galley, and before he could make his
escape back to the galley one of the men, whom Trask knew to be Shope,
hurled a bucket of water in such fashion that Doc's legs were wet.
The steward said something which Trask did not understand, but which
must have been suitable to the occasion, for Shope took anger at once,
and advanced on the negro threateningly. But Doc ran back to the
galley, and his voice, raised in remonstrance, could be heard as he
expressed opinions to Shanghai Tom about Shope.
If there had been no trouble in the schooner Trask would have
thought nothing of the incident, and might have enjoyed it as a
harmless joke. But he saw that the crew seemed to be openly
antagonistic to all hands aft, for the others joined in open laughter
at the discomfiture of the steward. And what was more significant, Peth
and Jarrow saw what happened, but both ignored it. The crew were
evidently taking advantage of the relations between master and mate,
and seemed bent on stirring up fresh discord.
In a few minutes Jarrow went below, without looking at Trask, and
from the set of his jaw Trask knew that his anger was growing.
Presently he heard Jarrow talking in a gruff way to Doc Bird, and the
latter's whining and conciliatory voice in argument.
I don't want no back slack from the likes o' you, Jarrow said, and
Trask went around to where Locke and Marjorie were sitting, and with
his back against the side of the cabin trunk, sat and chatted.
At lunch time Captain Jarrow joined them at table, and made special
efforts to renew the good-fellowship of the schooner, chiefly by a
careful avoidance of any mention of Peth. He made jokes and told
stories and except for a wicked look now and then at Doc Bird, was very
jolly and agreeable, so that he made a decidedly good impression on
Locke and Marjorie. But Trask had some doubts of his natural affability
and was inclined toward the belief that Jarrow was hardly so angelic as
he painted himself.
Dinshaw did not appear at table. On investigation it was found that
the old man was in the waist boat taking a nap and he was not
Peth came aft shortly, and while Marjorie, Trask, and Locke played
cards at the cabin table, Jarrow and the mate had a long, low-toned
conference, which ended by Jarrow's coming down and going to his room.
Everything's all right, he said to Locke, with a vigorous wink,
and pointed up the companion with his thumb.
You mean he comes back? asked Locke.
No, sir, he stays for'ard, but it's all smoothed out. He ain't a
bad sort when ye rub him the right way, and thereupon disappeared for
his afternoon sleep.
When the card party broke up, and the trio went to the poop-deck,
Peth was all smiles, and arranged their chairs on the starboard side.
But Locke practically ignored him, except to be officially pleasant, as
it had been agreed that unless the mate asked permission to come aft
again his status should be exactly like that of the crew. So far as
Trask could judge, Peth seemed perfectly agreeable to that arrangement,
and once he had given formal assistance, went back to the weather side,
and kept to himself.
Dinshaw crawled out from his nook in the waist boat, rubbed his
eyes, and looked about him in a dazed sort of way, and then went into
the cabin to wheedle Doc Bird out of a meal after which he hid himself
away in his room and remained there until dinner.
Well, said Jarrow, as he watched Doc Bird light the cabin lamp.
We ought to raise the island some time before noon if this breeze
Good enough, said Locke. But I can't say I'm in any particular
hurry to get anywhere. I've had the best rest and loaf to-day I've had
in a long time.
We've certainly walked along, said Trask.
Oh, the old gal can go, said Jarrow, proudly. Mr. Peth has kept
her diggin' along. We've logged near ten knots steady. I never looked
to march like we have. If we keep it up through the night, we ought to
have supper the next time at anchor.
Then Captain Dinshaw and I'll be able to start our prospecting
early, said Trask, with a nod at the old captain.
I can take ye right to the place, said Dinshaw, eagerly. Ye won't
have no trouble to find gold with me along.
You people better draw up an agreement as to who's to have all this
gold, said Locke, with a waggish smile. Suppose we fill this schooner
up with yellow stuff? Who owns it?
Share and share alike, suggested Dinshaw. I'll make ye all rich.
You mean me and all hands? asked Jarrow. Trask looked to Dinshaw
for a reply, a trifle surprised at Jarrow's question, for of course the
schooner's crew could claim no share of anything, as Jarrow was being
paid for his part in the expedition and was taking no chances of being
out of pocket if the island proved to be a fiasco.
No, sir, said Dinshaw, a little ruffled. What's you and all hands
got to do with this v'yage, outside of doin' yer duty?
Can't ye take a little joke? demanded Jarrow, with a wry grin.
Think we're goin' to run away with yer island?
Dinshaw became confused at this, and stared at the others
helplessly. Marjorie spoke up and reassured the old man that no one
wanted to cheat him out of what was his, and he went on eating,
But Jarrow's sharpness put an end to the pleasant relations which
had been resumed. In a few minutes he found an excuse to leave the
table and did not come back.
We certainly have joined a happy family, said Locke. If it wasn't
that we were so near to this island, I'd be for turning the schooner
Oh, Dad! said Marjorie. Don't take it so seriously! I want to see
So do I, but I hate to hear everybody aboard barking at everybody
else. First it's Mr. Peth, and now the captain's on his high horse.
They're not being paid to perform like a box of wild-cats, and I'll
inform Captain Jarrow to that effect before long if things don't
He wants to steal my island! whispered Dinshaw.
Doc Bird, who was serving the coffee, started visibly, and looked at
Dinshaw in amazement.
What's that? asked Locke, and Trask and Marjorie turned to the old
Jarrow and Peth want to steal my island and have all the gold,
insisted Dinshaw, his face tragic.
Steward, give my compliments to Captain Jarrow and tell him I'd
speak to him, said Locke.
I wouldn't do that, cautioned Trask. Let's see what this is
about. I don't think it's wise to jump at conclusions. What makes you
think they're going to steal your island?
Call the cap'n, sir? asked Doc, on his way to the companion.
Never mind, said Locke.
What reason have you for believing that Jarrow and Peth want to
steal your gold, captain? asked Trask, gently.
I know, said Dinshaw, wagging his head.
How do you know?
II dreamed it. I was asleep out there in the long boat and heard
We can't very well blame Jarrow for what you dream, said Locke,
relieved that there was nothing more substantial to Dinshaw's charges
than a dream.
I didn't dream it, said Dinshaw, with sudden conviction. I heard
'em talk. Jarrow said if there was gold on the island, he and Peth was
to have it for themselves.
Doc chuckled, and showed his teeth in a broad smile, with a sly wink
He talks in his sleep, whispered Doc into Trask's ear, as he bent
over to remove a plate.
Don't you worry, said Locke. Nobody's going to cheat you, and I'm
here to see that they don't. But I'd keep quiet about my dreams, if I
wanted to go on to the island, or we'll be back in Manila in three
shakes of a lamb's tail.
Very good, sir, said Dinshaw.
Trask was between two minds to tell Locke that his pistol had been
stolen, for while he placed little credence in what Dinshaw had said,
he began to wonder if there wasn't something going on aboard the
schooner that promised trouble. What if Dinshaw had not been dreaming
after all? Suppose Peth and Jarrow were plotting to play all hands
But it would be silly to abandon the voyage just as they were about
to arrive at the island, and while undoubtedly there had been gossip
and conjecture about the island, it was quite possible that if Dinshaw
had overheard some light talk, he had misinterpreted its import.
Trask knew that Locke's attitude was now such that if he reported
the theft of the pistol, Locke would decline to go forward another
mile, an idea which Trask could not bring himself to consider for
various reasons, the most important being that he did not want to say
farewell to Marjorie Locke and see her sail away to the United States.
And as there being any actual danger from Jarrow and Peth, other
than such as might result from a serious quarrel between the two, he
considered a piece of absurdity.
As Trask thought the thing over later in the evening, however, he
realized that his own deductions and desires were selfish, and that
after all he could not assume the entire responsibility for Marjorie's
safety. He knew it was only fair to take Locke into his confidence
regarding what had happened.
So, getting Locke below in the cabin while the others were on deck,
Trask told Locke that his pistol was missing. But Locke treated the
matter lightly, and said he did not believe it could have any
significance. It was his opinion that the weapon had been stolen by
some of the crew, and he rather suspected Doc Bird. He said he would
speak to the captain about it after they arrived at the island, and
that the steward's quarters should be searched and Doc questioned, but
he doubted the advisability of making what he called a rumpus about it
now, especially as Marjorie might be worried and he wanted her to get a
good night's sleep.
Trask let the business rest there and went up with Locke again to
enjoy the brilliant moonlight and listen to the impromptu concert which
the crew had begun with a mouth organ and a flute.
Even Peth joined in the fun, and unbent to the extent of whistling
some popular airs of the sad and sentimental variety with many trills
Doc's part in the evening's entertainment was a buck-and-wing dance
of a most violent sort, and when he had finished, Jarrow told him to
serve all hands with a tot of rum.
Everybody went to bed in the best of spirits, and for the first time
since leaving Manila it appeared that the whole ship's company was
Trask left his room door open, and was awakened several times during
the night. It seemed to him that the wind had shifted, and that there
was much tacking, for all night there was running about on deck, and
thumping of blocks. At least a dozen times he heard Jarrow bawling to
Go about, and Peth's voice from the bows yelling Hard alee, and the
jibs being handled to the accompaniment of shivering sails and the
lurch of the schooner as she stood on a new board.
All aft slept late, and were not about for breakfast until well past
eight o'clock, when they found Doc Bird grinning like an ebony monkey.
What the devil was all the stock-yards noise about last night?
demanded Locke, as he came out of his room and went to the door to look
forward, searching the horizon ahead.
Shorely broke my bones, sir, said Doc. We been a sawin' up an'
down all night, but the old man he kep' on his close spite o' wind an'
I thought we were turning over several times, said Marjorie, as
she took her place at table.
Blowed lak' she never blowed befo', opined Doc. But we done come
What do you mean? asked Locke.
Didn' yo' see the islan'?
There was an exodus to the deck at this, but although the trio
searched the rim of the sky they could not make out a sign of land. The
schooner was sailing close into the wind, which had abated into a
steady though stiff breeze, and she was pitching over the swells with
an even, rocking movement.
Doc grinned and pointed over the port bow, and Jarrow came down from
the poop, smiling proudly.
There's our island, he said.
Trask managed to pick it up, but the others could not see it, and
went back to breakfast. Trask soon followed, observing that Shope was
in the fore crosstrees studying the distant speck with a glass.
We ought to be up to it by night, said Jarrow.
Night! said Trask, surprised.
Perhaps before dark, said Jarrow, a trifle disconcerted at Trask's
manner. I don't look to hold this wind all day.
But we seem to be making good time, said Trask.
Not so good as ye'd think, replied Jarrow. She's kickin' up her
heels and makin' a great fuss about it, maybe six knots now, and enough
leeway to choke an ox.
With that he went up and in a few minutes put the schooner on the
other tack, but this time she was not sailing into the wind nearly so
closely as she had been, and was now headed so that if she held her
course, she would clear the island by several miles and leave it to
Trask said nothing, but suspected that Jarrow was killing time,
especially as the schooner did not go about for a couple of hours, and
then on such a sharp angle with her former course that but few miles
were gained in approaching the island.
Dinshaw spent the morning pottering over a chart in great
excitement, and his manner indicated that he wanted to be left to
All day they tacked up and down, Jarrow explaining that there might
be reefs about, although there wasn't a spot of broken water in sight
even with the heavy sea that was running after the night's blow.
At one time Trask thought the delay in getting on was due to Peth,
for the mate was most deliberate in going about, and it was half an
hour after the order had been given to put the schooner on a new tack
before Peth got down his jib and shouted for a lee helm.
It was near sundown before they had the island within three miles,
whereupon Jarrow so manoeuvred that they ran straight in for it, and
came to anchor in its lee, behind a reef which ran to the south of and
almost parallel with it.
By this time it was apparent to all that the island was the one they
were seeking. It stood up out of the sea, green and fresh, except for
the single peak, which was dun brown.
Dinshaw declared that this was it, and pointed out the reef which he
had painted into his picture, which showed like a white ridge over the
It was here the Wetherall struck, he said.
But the four palm trees, and the big rock, said Trask; I don't
Ah ha! said Dinshaw, slyly. I put them in to fool folks. There
ain't no palm trees like them I painted.
Jarrow looked disgustedly at him, and gave orders to Peth to have
the dinghy lowered.
Are we going ashore now? asked Marjorie.
No, ma'am, said Jarrow. We can't trust the weather in a hole like
this. May have to wear and git out. All hands stick close aboard
In the morning, said Trask.
In the mornin, echoed Dinshaw, but he seemed disappointed and
scarcely able to wait for the time of going ashore.
Trask got out his prospecting bag, and after supper they all sat on
the poop and talked and joked about what was in store for them the next
dayall except Dinshaw, who, like a child, had gone to bed early, that
morning would come the quicker.
Then Jarrow followed suit. Locke, Trask, and Marjorie remained for
an hour's chat in the darkness after which Trask was left to himself to
finish his cigar.
Good luck, Mr. Trask, Marjorie had whispered, as she went down the
companion, and he touched her hand playfully.
He remained in his deck chair for some time, with only the friendly
glow of his cigar to keep him company, wondering how it would all end.
For all his impatience to get to the island, now that it was lying
there within stone's throw behind the whisper of the waves washing its
beach, he was sorry they had arrived so soon. For if there should be no
gold on the island, it would be a case of turning back, and a couple of
days more would see them in Manila, and Marjorie Locke homeward bound
with her father. But if there should be gold! Well, that might give
this voyage a new aspect, it might alter his own fortunes in such way
that he could tell Marjorie Locke that he loved her.
Of course, if Dinshaw's discovery proved to be only a pocket, or no
gold at all, that would put an end to things. But if there was gold in
quantities that would pay for mining it, his own share might be a good
stake in life. His future hung on the old man's story, that is his
future considered with Marjorie Locke, and Trask had now come to the
point of not being able to consider his own future alone, although he
did not realize that wholly. It was a thought he kept in the back of
his mind for fear it might turn out to be only a dream.
He threw his cigar into the sea, and stood up suddenly. There was a
queer noise from the break of the poop. It sounded as if someone who
had been startled had fled. He did not move for several minutes. Then
it came back to him that there were other things to consider besides
the success of this venture in gold and his future with Marjorie Locke.
The schooner was quiet, ominously quiet. The queer noise had jarred
his nerves, and now he began to wonder if there was not some menace
about the decks.
He heard the main shrouds creak as if someone were going aloft and
then a rustle like a whispered caution.
Without a warning, he turned and stepped abruptly into the shaft of
light which came up through the companion, and went below to his room,
where he shut himself in.
Whatever he did, he knew it would have to be carried on with all
caution. He would have to meet sneaking and spying with the same
tactics, but he was determined to keep watch throughout the night.
CHAPTER IX. TRASK UNDERTAKES A
Trask was more worried than he liked to admit, even to himself.
While he had nothing tangible in the way of suspicion, he disliked the
manner in which events had shaped themselves, or had been shaped by
From the time they had raised the island, Trask had seen on the part
of Jarrow a decided reluctance to arrive at anchorage before dark.
There was no doubt about it. He had allowed the schooner to lag when
she could have been driven ahead. Whether this was due to Jarrow's
deliberate contrivance, or was the result of a tacit acceptance of
Peth's dilatory ways in seamanship, Trask had no means of determining
with accuracy. He could only draw conclusions.
It might have been that Jarrow was willing to overlook Peth's delays
in order to avoid bringing on a new argument with the mate. And Jarrow
might have been wise to avoid a resumption of trouble, for, as Peth had
been openly insolent and had carried a chip on his shoulder all the way
from Manila, it was just as well that the captain did not give him the
satisfaction of a row.
But Trask blamed Jarrow for being too complacent in small things,
which had encouraged Peth to insubordination. It would have been far
better if the mate had been brought into place with a sharp and short
encounter which would determine just who was master, than to continue
strained relations which only allowed Peth to smoulder and feed his
rising anger with growls and grumbles in the hearing of the crew.
There was no doubt that Jarrow was trying to smooth things out and
avoid a direct clash. He dreaded unpleasantness in the presence of
Locke. But to Trask the obvious delay in coming up to the island was
only a small part of his growing fears that the situation aboard the
schooner was worse than a mere temporary ill-feeling between the
captain and the mate.
A decided change had come over the crew. They were strangely quiet,
and when Trask or Locke or Marjorie came in sight, the men were full of
covert looks and signals to each other with their hands for caution and
There was a feeling of tension, a sudden stiffening of demeanour
once the anchor was down. It was not so much expressed as shown by
repression. There was a soberness of purpose in the most trifling
details of their duties, as if a crisis long expected had arrived.
This change in manner was best exemplified by Doc Bird. Trask had
noticed that when serving the table he had a way of looking over his
shoulder suddenly, or taking on a look of scared intentness at any
unexpected sounds from the deck or in the cabin. Doc had become
strangely alert, watchful of everybody, and nervous to the point of
sudden shivering attacks. Trask ascribed Doc's actions to an
unexplained coolness which had sprung up between the steward and
Shanghai Tom, although it was quite possible Doc was aware of something
of the nature which had given Trask a sense of disquiet, this
undercurrent of insincerity, of hidden meanings, of an evil spirit
lurking under the friendly relations of Jarrow and Dinshaw with the
trio who had come seeking the island.
Considering these matters, Trask undressed and put on his pajamas.
Then he opened the door of his room, and rolled into his bunk,
purposely accentuating the creaking of the boards under his mattress so
that any listener might be assured he had turned in for the night.
The hole cut in the upper part of Jarrow's door was open and dark.
The captain, to all appearances, had gone to sleep, but Trask had plans
for the night and did not care to take chances at having them upset.
There was a mild snoring from Dinshaw's room and despite the chafing
of the schooner's gear and the patter of the water under her counter,
she seemed deathly quiet after the interminable groaning of her timbers
during the passage from Manila.
The swinging lamp over the cabin table was burning dimly, waves of
its light washing into Trask's room like the lifting of a lazy tide,
and whirling grotesque shadows up and down the bulkhead.
The lighted lamp stood in the way of Trask's carrying out his plan.
He wished he had found some excuse for putting it out earlier. But he
had not realized that it was to be left burning. He wanted to go out
and do a little reconnoitering, but as the door of the main cabin
leading forward was open, he had no way of leaving the cabin without
being seen from the forecastle.
It was from the forecastle that he hoped to get some inkling of how
the crew was getting on. Immediately after the anchor was down Trask
observed that the crew had gone below, and, except for an occasional
gruff call, or a joking sally, nothing had been seen or heard from
Trask was confident they had not turned in to sleep. There had been
sounds of rough gaiety, promptly subdued, and a few bars of music on a
mouth organ, checked abruptly. The scuttle had been closed, and Trask
thought it queer that there should be a desire to shut themselves up,
for while the evening was cool enough in the open, the temperature
arose in a stifling way at any shutting off of the air currents.
Trask would have thought nothing of it if the crew had openly
quarrelled, or engaged in skylarking, or had sat around and smoked and
chatted quietly. But they appeared ominously furtive. And Trask knew
that if there was anything sinister behind their skulking, Peth must
have a hand in whatever was going on.
The lamp must be disposed of in a manner not to attract the
attention of either the crew or those aft. He first thought of calling
softly to Doc Bird and asking him to put out the light. But if Doc
demurred, or declared that the light could not be extinguished except
by order of Jarrow, Trask would have called attention to his own wishes
and his plan would be balked.
Besides, Doc would undoubtedly want to talk, and Jarrow would
thereby be disturbed and become watchful, and all hands aft be roused.
If the light were put out at Trask's request, and later he was found
prowling on deck, he could no longer maintain his character of being a
person without suspicion of anything amiss aboard.
But if he put the light out himself, he could offer the plea that it
prevented him from sleeping, and the same excuse could be given if he
were later found outside for a little fresh air. If any of the crew did
resent his presence forward, he would have proof that they were wary of
being spied upon. That, if nothing more, would indicate to him that his
suspicions were well founded.
He got out of his bunk with great care and struck a match. Then he
stepped boldly into the cabin and turned down the lamp until the wick
snuffed out the flame. With the match still burning in his hand, he
went back to his room, thus establishing for any watcher the fact that
he had returned to bed after the lamp was extinguished.
Waiting a while to make sure there would be no investigation as to
why the light went out, he crawled out over the coaming of the door of
his room. It was necessary that he keep low, for he was not sure
whether there was one of the crew on watch aft. To any one looking
through the cabin from the companionway Trask would be visible against
the lantern hanging from a forestay if he walked erect in crossing the
Gaining the outer deck, he stood clear of the doorway and hugged the
forward bulkhead of the cabin trunk, taking care not to mask the
forward port-hole of the galley with his back. If Doc Bird had heard
him crawling out, he might be of an inquiring turn of mind, in his
present panicky condition, and explore with a knife through the open
Trask had in the jacket pocket of his pajamas matches and
cigarettes, so that in case he were challenged he could assume a
careless manner by preparing to have a smoke, and at the same time
illuminate the face of any one he encountered.
He moved forward along the starboard bulwark, feeling his way with
his bare feet, taking great pains not to stumble over any obstacle. He
could make out the loom of the island over the starboard quarter, a
black spot focussed in the all-pervading blackness of the night.
Everything seemed to give promise of secrecy for him. The rasp of the
boom-jaws, the swishing of coiled ropes on the pin-rails, and the
chirping creak of the shrouds as the schooner bobbed and rolled on the
lulling swells, concealed the slight sounds of his advance.
He stopped and looked aft every few steps, listening for noises in
the cabin. He could see the faint outline of the mizzen boom and the
upper edge of the cabin. His eyes, better adjusted now to the gloom,
saw a black shape over the cabin roof. It startled him for a second,
for he thought it might be Jarrow peering toward him, until he knew it
for a roll of canvas which had been left there to spread as awning.
He went on, stopping when he felt the well of the deck rise as he
approached the forecastle. Presently he saw a tiny point of light flare
up and die away. Then he caught the spicy aroma of a native cigarette
in the soft air charged with the acrid smell of new hemp, the resinous
odour of the deck seams, the sweet reek of opium smoked by forgotten
crews and the earthy flavour of the jungles close at hand.
The thought came to him that perhaps it was he who was exotic in the
schooner. It might be for this reason that he was too ready to mistake
normal things as evidences of a menace which did not exist. He wondered
if this fact might not well account for the formless fears he had felt
about Peth and the crew. Like a person who wakes in the night, to find
the windows where they shouldn't be, his judgment, too, might be at
fault, and affairs far better than he thought them.
Trask had no worries for himself. The pursuit of gold in
untrammelled parts of the world was his business, and at times danger
was but the thrill which went with the game. He knew that if he were
the only passenger in the schooner he would very likely be in his bunk
asleep instead of hunting trouble.
But he felt a responsibility. This wild project of taking a young
woman in a schooner, with a crew of men who had all the outer aspects
of rascals, and a mild madman, to hunt an island, was largely his own
fault and Trask now realized it.
Locke was far too credulous, or rather incredulous. Like most
Americans who have lived quiet lives and attended to their own
business, he lacked imagination for dangerous possibilities in the
motives of others. Such adventures as he had had were out of books, and
he had taken it for granted that what he read was always improbable and
impossible. Such people never believe in danger until they have a
revolver thrust into their faces. And Locke had come aboard the
schooner with a roll of yellow-backed bills so big that he could hold
in his hand more wealth than all the ship's company together could earn
in a year of honest labour.
Trask almost wished he had declined to go in with Locke on the trip
to the island. He had been quite too easy-going about it all himself,
neglecting to take precautions about Jarrow and the crew because he had
been reluctant to forego the pleasure of Miss Marjorie's company. Trask
had been exiled so long in far corners of the globe that he was
strongly averse to giving up a single hour to business details which he
might have with the American girl.
Then he knew that to tell Locke he did not care to go to the island
and later to go by himself would have been sneakingly selfish. Now that
they were embarked on the venture, he felt that he must do all he
possibly could for the protection of his companions. He wished that he
had demanded an investigation when he found his pistol missing. He
moved forward with careful steps, knowing that there must be a man
sitting on the forecastle head facing toward him, else he could not
have seen the light from the cigarette.
The foremast and the boom were faintly visible in relief against the
lighter shade of the sky, and knowing he might be seen above the
bulwark, Trask moved away from the edge of the schooner, and drew near
the base of the foremast, which offered better concealment. He was now
but a few feet from the forecastle scuttle and could see it outlined by
a dim pencilling of light. Voices reached him, but he was not able to
distinguish any words.
Presently he heard wary footsteps ahead, and saw a figure rise up
and go into the bows, marked by a faint, comet-like streak of light
which must be the man's cigarette. The spot of light disappeared for a
second and reappeared again in a swift, descending arc cut off by the
bows. The smoker had thrown away his cigarette.
For several minutes Trask watched and listened. The man on the
forecastle head coughed gently, and then came clumping aft, dropped to
the main deck with a smack of bare feet, and drew the scuttle aside, to
put his head and shoulders down.
It's all right! Trask heard him whisper, hoarsely. He recognized
him as Shope. The light coming up through the scuttle illuminated the
foremast above Trask's head in a manner disconcerting. Trask ducked
down under the boom.
All was silence below, and then the creaking of the steps leading
up, and the light below went out. There were sounds of men coming on
deck, known to Trask by the rattle of the scuttle as incautious
shoulders rasped it coming out, making the board rattle in its grooves.
There was a conference in guarded whispers, and someone started aft
along the starboard side. Trask could make him out as he passed, and
after he had disappeared against the blackness made by the fore
bulkhead of the cabin there was a peculiar rattle along the deck in his
Trask was now thoroughly alarmed. The crew could not be out on deck
whispering and moving about with such secrecy with any good intent
toward those who had made the voyage possible.
The rattle along the deck continued, and dropping to his hands and
knees, Trask crawled to the starboard side. He encountered a small,
hard line, like a lead-line, being paid out from the forecastle and
carried aft by the man who had passed. Trask put his hand upon it and
let it run through his fingers for a second.
There came a slight patter of rain and Trask made his way toward the
cabin, not so much to avoid a wetting, as to be where he could alarm
Jarrow and Locke if there appeared to be any necessity to investigate
the actions of the crew.
It was all rather absurd, he thought. There was nothing especially
sinister about sailors carrying a line aft. To demand what it was about
and make himself known would only serve to make him ridiculous if the
explanation proved to be the carrying out of some legitimate duty.
Being quiet, with the vessel at anchor, was hardly to be condemned. And
if it turned out that the crew were preparing trouble it was no time to
show that they were being watched unless the danger were imminent.
He stepped into the galley and felt along the bulkhead for the row
of knives he had seen in their leathern pockets. He pulled out a large
one, judging its size by the thickness of its handle. It was a
Dinshaw was still breathing musically. So far as Trask could tell,
all hands in the cabin were asleep. He passed through with great care,
smiling at the figure he would cut if he were challenged and found with
a great knife in his hands sneaking about the cabin. He, rather than
the crew, would be held guilty of some dangerous intention against the
safety of the schooner.
The rain was now striking the cabin roof with sweeping gusts. It was
not a heavy downpour, but a threat of more to come, the weak advance
guard of an approaching deluge.
Ascending the companion, he put his head out far enough to see a
shape moving at the taffrail, evidently a man bent over some task. Then
it moved away to starboard, slowly, and Trask heard a gentle blowing,
as one might make in clearing the nostrils of rain.
Trask now felt rather ashamed of himself. Instead of an attack on
the cabin, the man who had come aft had gone about his business and
departed. There was nothing to be alarmed about in that, surely.
So Trask went to the forward door and looked out on deck, putting
the knife away in the galley without, however, attempting to insert it
in the leather sheath. Then he stood in the doorway, and listened.
The man could be seen moving along the starboard side slowly. Trask
caught a foreign sound, a gurgle which he at first mistook for rain
water running from the scuppers. But the deck was scarcely wet and,
besides, the sound was to starboard. Water running off would go to
port, for the schooner was heeled a little in that direction.
Soon there was a rasping along the hull, and emboldened by the fact
that the man who had brought the line aft was now well forward, Trask
stepped to the bulwark and looked over the side.
At first he could see nothing in the blackness below, but a new
flurry of rain came, and the drops striking the water hissingly made it
slightly luminous, outlining a dark, formless mass close to the side of
the schooner. It moved forward slowly, its progress coincident with the
movement of the man going along the rail. Trask could see his head and
shoulders against the fog-like sheen of the water over the bows.
At once the whole affair was made plain to Trask. The dinghy, which
had been lowered from the after davits when the Nuestra
anchored, was being stolen! The crew were pulling it forward by the
line which the man had taken aft, and this man was keeping the boat
clear of the schooner's side. The line evidently had been made fast to
the dinghy's painter.
Here, indeed, was something which gave every appearance of being
underhand work. With the Golden Isle only a few hundred yards distant,
and all hands to go ashore in the morning, there could be no other
reason for stealing the dinghy than a plan to visit the island under
cover of darkness. The plan foreshadowed treachery. The crew sought
some knowledge which they wanted before the other members of the
expedition could be aware of conditions on the island.
Trask saw at once the purpose of the crew, although he had no way of
knowing how they intended to gain any advantage to themselves unless
they contemplated abandoning the Nuestra, or destroying it and
those remaining aboard. He had no doubt the scheme was to learn whether
or not there was gold, and so to act, in the event they found it in
great quantities, that they would be assured of having it for
It was a wild idea, this going out in the night to hunt gold. But it
was plain that the cupidity of the crew had been aroused by the
prospect of a shining, yellow beach. But what was to Trask far more
important, and fraught with danger to Marjorie, Locke, Dinshaw, Jarrow,
and himself, was the knowledge that Peth, if not the leader of the
enterprise, at least must be aware of what was taking place.
The rain came on now with steady, monotonous force, turning the sea
into a boiling cauldron. Trask, drenched in the first minutes of the
downpour, remained where he was, crouching under the bulwark with his
head high enough to get the bulwark forward against the gray luminosity
of the beaten water.
So concealed, if it could be called concealment, in the darkness of
the schooner, he saw four figures go over the side, and heard them
fumbling in the dinghy. They pushed off gently and rowed away in the
direction of the island, amid the muffled click of oars. Before
proceeding but a few yards the boat was lost to him in the welter of
steaming water and all-enveloping blackness.
Trask suffered from a chill, but he remained where he was, wondering
what could, or should, be done. Jarrow must be warned. The sky now
turned lighter, being relieved of its burdened clouds, and the rain
began to fall off, until it was merely a gentle trickle.
Dripping like a water spaniel returning to the shore, Trask turned
in to the door of the main cabin, planning to rid himself of his wet
clothing, get into some dry garments, and call Jarrow.
As he felt his way into the deeper gloom he heard a movement close
at hand, and stopped, leaning against the bulkhead, just abaft of the
galley. He saw that the light from outside marked the cabin door as a
great rectangle in which a moving form could easily be seen from the
Who's that? came a whisper.
Who are you? demanded Trask, whispering, but more boldly, and with
something of defiance in his tone.
Doc Bird, Mr. Trask, came the answer. Fo' the lan' sake, what yo'
all doin' out in the rain, man?
Keep quiet, said Trask, unpleasantly aware of rivulets racing down
his heels. He followed the bulkhead straight aft, conscious that Bird
was in the doorway of the cook's room, past Dinshaw's room, to the door
of Jarrow's, which he opened softly.
Captain Jarrow! he called, in a low voice. Captain Jarrow!
There was no reply. He listened for the regular breathing of the
sleeping captain. Then he went inside and felt along Jarrow's bunk. The
sheet was rumpled and thrown back but Jarrow was not there.
CHAPTER X. CAPTAIN JARROW ADMITS HE
IS SUSPICIOUS OF PETH
Trask went to his room at once, and stripping off his wet pajamas,
dressed hurriedly. His discovery that Jarrow was missing seemed to
verify his suspicions that the captain was not playing fair. His
absence from his room was the most alarming thing which had happened
yet aboard the Nuestra, and, as Trask saw it, the fact pointed
to a betrayal of trust.
But the young man decided he would withhold any decision regarding
the captain until the latter had a chance to explain why the crew
should put off in a boat in the night, and why Jarrow was not in his
cabin. There might be a reason for it all which would be perfectly
plausible, if not convincing of the captain's good intentions.
Doc came to the door of his room, and whispered: Yo' all want the
lamp goin', Mr. Trask?
No, said Trask. You go to bed and keep still. He felt that the
steward was inordinately curious about the visit to the captain's room
and why Trask was walking about outside.
Cap'n Jarrow, he's gone for'ard, offered Doc, still standing in
the frame of the door, barely perceptible.
Forward! whispered Trask, surprised. This news meant one of two
explanations for what he had seenthe business was legitimate, and
under the direction of Jarrow, or Jarrow was involved with the crew in
whatever treachery was afoot.
Yassir, continued Doc. He's got all hands messin' 'round at
somethin'. I reckon the old man he looks for it to come on to blow.
I see, said Trask. Well, I'm going out. Maybe I can be of some
help. Keep quiet, or you'll wake everybody up.
Doc withdrew from the door, and Trask heard him shuffling to his own
room, expressing some opinion in a whisper which Trask could not make
out, except that it was to the effect that he hadn't started this
walkin' round like ha'nts in the middle of the night.
Trask went on deck and moved forward boldly. The squall which had
passed left the air fresh and cool, and the sky was not so black,
although the schooner was still in gloom. But her bulwarks were more
clearly defined against the water, and Trask could see a figure on the
starboard bow which looked like a man standing and peering in the
direction of the island.
Who's that? came Jarrow's voice as Trask drew near. His voice was
low and cautious.
Can't sleep, said Trask. What's going on?
Storm wake ye up?
Not exactly. I've been wakeful since I went to my room.
Guess we woke ye up.
Well, I've heard considerable movement, and it made me curious.
How long ye been out?
I was out when it first rained.
Oh, then it was you!
I? I don't understand.
Loafin' along the rail.
Yes, I stood there for awhile.
Thought you was one of the men soldierin' on the job.
I saw a boat put off.
Yes, said Jarrow, as if neither the boat nor the fact that Trask
had seen it was of any interest to him.
What's up? asked Trask.
Jarrow made no reply, but stepped off the forecastle head with a
noise of wet, swishing oilskins, and fumbled for a minute. Then the
lantern in the forestay bobbed down and up, and he came back to where
Presently the captain struck a match, and twisted his head to one
side to light a cigar, his eyes peering at him over the flame.
Didn't do much good to keep quiet so you could sleep, said Jarrow,
grinning into the flame. Then he puffed hard at the cigar.
Naturally, I'm filled with expectation about the island, said
Trask. He knew Jarrow was none too cordial, and seemed bent on showing
disapproval of Trask's being abroad.
You better git some sleep, said Jarrow.
Do you look for bad weather? asked Trask.
Yes, said Jarrow, with sudden heartiness. I look for anything in
these latitudes at this season. At ten o'clock the barometer showed a
disturbance of the diurnal range. It's below maximum.
Maybe. But I'm takin' no chances. I've got the crew out with a
kedge anchor, up in that channel behind the reef, to haul in there if
things look bad. Lie snug as a bug in a rug. That reef's a natural
Then the boat took out a kedge?
Did Mr. Peth go, too?
Why, yes, Mr. Peth he's out there. He's got an anchor laid out in
the boat, to buoy it. He's sounding along inside the reef. We'll take a
hawser out in the mornin', but if the weather falls, we can make fast
right away. He'll run a heavin' line from the buoy so we can find it in
the dark. I take it you're satisfied, Mr. Trask?
Satisfied? Certainly. Trask was surprised at the sharpness and
obvious animus in Jarrow's question. His tone, despite the fact that he
spoke scarcely above a whisper, carried a sneer. Trask was on the point
of asking Jarrow if he had ever questioned his methods of navigation or
seamanship, but he held his tongue for it was no time to precipitate a
Trask suspected that Jarrow had overheard him in some remark about
the delay of the schooner getting up to the island, or had caught
disapproval in his manner that afternoon. It was natural enough for a
sailing master to resent the slightest implication that he was not
efficient, and Trask was not so much concerned with Jarrow's hidden
meaning on that score as with his covert acknowledgment that he had
been watchful of Trask's attitude. It was something to know that Jarrow
was keen enough to divine the fact that Trask was secretly critical.
I guess you thought we was slow in makin' anchorage, suggested
This abruptness in reaching the very subject which Trask was
considering made him wary of the captain. It was plainly a bid for an
expression of Trask's ideas. Jarrow was angling for Trask's opinion to
learn whether he might be easily misled, or perhaps ascertain if
Trask's coming out to investigate now was part of his general feeling
that Jarrow was not to be trusted.
Well, naturally, said Trask, after a moment's hesitation, we were
anxious to get here as soon as possible, yet we realized that you had
to take precautions.
Can't take no chances with this kind of a bottom, said Jarrow.
Might be easy to git in through them coral patches, but I've got to
know how to git out, and how to git out under the worst conditions.
Some of them patches probably break with the least little sea on. If I
had to beat out against a head wind in the dark, I don't want to pile
up on breakers with
Jarrow stopped to listen. The sound of oars came to their ears off
toward the black shape of the island.
You better git some sleep, said Jarrow.
All right, said Trask. Good-night, captain.
Good-night, sir. And don't you be worried none about noises out
here. I'm a-lookin' after things.
Did you think I was worried? asked Trask, stopping.
This was apparently a poser for Jarrow, who took his cigar out of
his mouth, and was a full minute in framing a reply. Trask would have
given a good deal to see his face.
I didn't take you that way, said Jarrow.
Trask went back beside him. The young man felt that it was a mistake
to allow Jarrow to dismiss him as he had, with the curt suggestion that
he go back to bed.
Then I want to assure you, said Trask, speaking slowly and in a
tone intended to carry conviction of just how he felt, that I'm not
the worrying kind, Captain Jarrow. And if Mr. Peth gets to acting up,
I'm prepared to deal with him myself.
Oh, hush! said Jarrow, in a low whisper. We can't have any talk
like that for'ard here.
I don't care who hears me, went on Trask, determined to carry out
his bluff. I've been out on deck for quite a while, and to be frank, I
didn't like the idea of a boat going off this way. If it's your plan to
kedge, and you think it is necessary, all right. I'm not a sailor. But
I do know you haven't got Mr. Peth or the crew very well in hand, so
Hush up, Mr. Trask, for God's sake! implored Jarrow, stepping over
to Trask and putting his hand on his arm. There is trouble brewing,
but I don't know what it's about. I'm holdin' things off till the
mornin'. I don't look for nothin' to come of it.
Trouble? What sort of trouble? demanded Trask, amazed at the
I don't know, admitted Jarrow. May be everythin' and nothin'.
It's that Peth's too thick with the crew, and it's bad when a mate gits
to standin' out with the fo'c's'le agin the master.
Do you want me to understand that it'smutiny?
I said I don't know what it is, Mr. Trask.
How about Bevins? Is he in on it, too?
All hands. They're off there in the dinghy now, and I don't know
what they're up to.
So you're not putting out a kedge?
No, sir. That was to git you back to your bunk. I was out on deck
before you was, and Peth sneaked the dinghy. I suppose they've got some
fool idea that there's a lot of gold on the island, and
Jarrow broke off and said no more. Trask thought he had heard
something and waited for him to go on, but after a long pause the
captain did not seem inclined to say anything more, but took long pulls
on his cigar, which he kept shaded from the sea behind his hand.
Trask's mind worked rapidly. If anything, the truth from Jarrow that
there was danger from Peth and the crew had steadied him, and while he
realized his helpless position if Jarrow were deceiving him, he at
least had proof of a desperate situation aboard the schooner.
What do you think they would do if they found gold on the island,
Don't ask me. Might come back and burn the Nuestra.
Sounds interesting, said Trask.
Mebbe you think I'm jokin' of you? said Jarrow.
Not at all. I wouldn't put murder beyond that lot. There's
something I've wanted to tell you since we left Manila, but I didn't
want to do anybody an injustice.
Somebody stole one of my automatic pistols before I'd been aboard a
quarter of an hour.
Yes. It was taken from my bag in my room.
Mighty Nelson! You should ha' told me, Mr. Trask! Who do ye think
I've every reason to suspect Mr. Peth. It was missing right after
he moved his stuff out of my room. The bag had been opened and closed
again very carefully, strapped and buckled. The man who took it had
plenty of time and wanted to make sure he wasn't suspected right away.
At least, he didn't want the loss noticed at once.
So Mr. Peth's got an automatic gun, eh? said Jarrow, rather in a
musing way, and drawing a deep breath.
I might not have missed it for days, went on Trask, but I had
I had a pair of them.
And Peth got away with both of 'em!
No, only one. I have the other, and Mr. Locke has two. I went down
to oil mine after Peth moved out, and found one gone when
Then we're all right, said Jarrow. If you and Mr. Locke brought
guns we don't need to worry. I've got a couple, myself. I guess we can
handle anything that carries away for'ard here.
Why did you move the lantern? demanded Trask.
Oh, said Jarrow, I had a mind to take it down so they couldn't
find their way back to the schooner till mornin' unless it cleared up
in good shape. But it won't clear. Smells like more rain.
I think it's a good scheme, said Trask. Let 'em stay off in the
boat. Then we'll put Peth in irons when he comes aboard in the morning
if we think he's been up to mischief, or plans trouble. We can handle
the others. We can't take any chances with Miss Locke aboard.
You're right! said Jarrow. I'll douse the glim and let 'em stay.
If they want to cut up any didoes we can work the Nuestra back
to Manila ourselves and the government'll take care of 'em for us.
Jarrow clumped down off the forecastle head and lowered the lantern,
clapped his sou'wester over it, and snuffed the flame out between his
fingers. Trask observed the grimness of his face as the light played on
it during the brief instant the lantern was coming down and the
determined set of his jaw as his teeth gripped the cigar.
They stood in the darkness, silent for a few minutes, listening, and
caught again the rattle of oars in locks at quite a distance. The boat
seemed to be moving about cautiously, feeling its way in behind the
I can't make out what the devil they're up to, said Jarrow in a
grumbling sort of whisper. Peth never did have much sense. Sometimes
I've thought he was clean out of his head.
Then you've had doubts about him since we left Manila?
No, can't say's I have. I don't pay no attention to his tantrums
gene'lly. He's up and he's down, just how he feels. But he picked this
crew from a lot of his old shipmates so they'll stand by him if he's
set on makin' trouble, and he knows it. I didn't like the looks of
things to-day, so I kept my weather eye peeled. He lowered the dinghy
on his own, without sayin' a word to me, and I smelled a rat, so I kept
watch. I didn't want to git you folks scared up, so when you come out I
thought I'd pass it off and wait to see what their game was. I wouldn't
say nothin' to Mr. Locke 'bout it, and I'll see what's to be done come
Do you think they'll make a fight if you don't let 'em aboard?
Wouldn't do no good if they did. We can keep 'em off, now that you
and Mr. Locke have guns. They can't live on air. You ought to try to
git some sleep.
I'll stick it out with you.
Ain't no use of us two standin' watch all night. You'll be all beat
out to-morrow night, and with things like they are, you won't git no
chance to sleep to-morrow. If they come back, I'll call you in time to
have the weather on 'em.
Jarrow's advice sounded sensible enough. With the crew out in a boat
there was little imminent danger, and Trask felt that it would be wise
to remain aft, for if the crew suspected their game was known they
might attempt to board the schooner from the stern. They would probably
interpret the disappearance of the riding light as discovery aboard the
schooner that they were missed and their treachery revealed to the
heads of the expedition.
So Trask decided to go back to his room, even if he did not sleep,
and being assured by Jarrow that immediately there was any sign of the
boat he would be called, he made his way aft and went to bed fully
dressed except for his shoes.
He had scarcely rolled into his bunk before he heard cautious
footsteps in the cabin, and Doc Bird came scratching at his door.
I reckon somethin's powerful wrong, Mr. Trask, he whispered.
You get out of here and go to bed, said Trask. And don't show a
light for any reason until you have orders to.
I got to be up early to make flapjack batter fo' yo' all, was
Doc's reply. I reckon I'll have to have a light in the galley and the
fire goin' right smart long befo' the chickens is crowin' fo' day.
Trask knew it would do no good to get out of patience with Doc, for
he was incorrigibly persistent and friendly in the face of any rebuff.
Don't make any fire or light any lamps until you're told to, Trask
reiterated. And for heaven's sake, let me and everybody else get some
sleep. Get some for yourself. Run along.
Oh, don't yo' fret none fo' me, Mr. Trask. I'm a regular squinch
owl, and he chuckled audibly, as if his ability to do without sleep
were a rare joke.
I'm not, retorted Trask, and rolled over significantly.
You don't reckon Mr. Peth he's actin' up none, do ye? The skipper
he goes walkin' 'round like he had somethin' wearin' down on his mind.
You better ask him, Doc, said Trask.
Huh! Ketch me goin' out and confabbin' around with the ol' man!
He'd shore hang somethin' on mah haid. Mr. Trask, 'fo' God, I can't git
no sleep when I'm a-worried. It all kind o' makes my skin go all crawly
when there's somethin' projectin' around and I don't know of it. Yo'
shore there ain't nothin' bad nohow?
There will be, if you don't get out of that door! Go bring some
Doc gurgled with a suppressed chuckle, and went to the galley, where
he could be heard pulling a cork in the dark. He was back in a minute,
and handed a glass in to Trask, who sat up to take it and drink.
If somebody hadn't a-swiped that gun o' yourn, I would take no
bother of it if Mr. Peth gits contrary with
I've got another gun, said Trask. And Mr. Locke has two.
Doc was silent for a time, as if he were pondering the matter.
Yo' all shore come a-lookin' for b'ar, he opined, taking the glass
which Trask thrust out at him. But yo' all don't need to be squirmish
about Mr. Peth. If he goes to act up, I'll settle his hash.
Doc chuckled again.
I know how to handle that low-down trash, he whispered,
tragically. I'd drap somethin' in his tea. Good-night, Mr. Trask.
Good-night, Doc. Don't make a light.
No, sah, and the steward crept away to his bunk, leaving Trask
staring up into the dark, turning over the situation in his mind, and
waiting for the dawn.
CHAPTER XI. MR. PETH DOES MOST
Trask was up at dawn, and slipping out on deck, saw Jarrow sitting
on the forecastle head, drinking coffee, a plate of biscuits beside
him, while he kept watch on the island.
Doc stuck his head out of the galley. Coffee, Mr. Trask? he
Trask went back and stood in the door while he scanned the shore of
the island. The sun had come out of the sea, red and bleary, and from
the jungle came the calls of birds and the shrill cry of a parrot
evidently in distress about something in the brush.
There was not a sign of the dinghy. The schooner lay still in a pool
of colourful water, the coral and weeds on the bottom in plain view,
some of the swaying plants magnified by refraction. There was no air
stirring, and from the far end of the island a morning haze was rising
like smoke from flats which appeared to be salt marshes.
Trask filled the basin at the water butt and washed his sticky face.
Doc, who evidently was astir before the cook, became emboldened by the
fact that Trask was up, and rattled the dishes in the galley with
recklessness. Trask cautioned him when he came out with the cup and
proffered the impromptu breakfast.
Have you heard anything? he asked, as the steward stood beside
him, loath to go back to his duties.
Me? Lordy, no, Mr. Trask! We been just lak' a buryin' ground! It
gives me the creeps to have things so daid.
Seen anything of the boat?
Boat? Doc rolled his eyes, puzzled.
Go in and get breakfast, said Trask, passing the cup back, and
went along forward to learn what Jarrow had to report.
Not a sight of 'em, said the captain, who appeared to be as fresh
as if he had slept all night.
That's queer, said Trask. I thought they'd try to sneak back
during the night. What can they be up to? You don't think they've
abandoned us entirely?
Now ye got me, said Jarrow. I guess Peth's crazy in his head.
He's got 'em all buggy on this gold business, far's I can see. All
right, let 'em stick to Peth.
But they'll starve, said Trask. Suppose they did find gold in
piles? What good would it do them? They'd have to beg to be taken back
aboard here, wouldn't they?
Jarrow blew into his coffee, gulped some of it, and raised his eyes
in utter dejection to look over at the island. The schooner lay with
her head to the northeast in response to a current that came around the
northern end of the island and almost parallel with it.
When people are out of their heads, no knowin' what they'll do,
declared Jarrow. Peth, he's always for makin' money in heaps. He can't
see beyond his nose. Now I'm for goin' safe and sure. You ain't got no
idea how he's bothered me off and on for the last couple years. But I
had to humour himhe owns an eighth of the Nuestra.
He can't have much sense if he thinks gold's to be sacked up and
carted away, said Trask. Here's Mr. Locke.
Looks like this ought to be a good place to fish, said Locke,
coming forward. He was wearing an old suit of white, but had on tan
shoes, as if he expected to go walking, and a shirt open at the neck.
His nose was peeled from sunburn, and he stroked it gently.
What's going on? he demanded, seeing that Jarrow and Trask were
serious-faced, each waiting for the other to speak. He looked about the
The devil to pay, said Jarrow.
Crew's gone, said Trask.
Crew! Gone! Where?
Jumped the ship in the night with the dinghy, said Jarrow.
Say, what's the joke? inquired Locke, blankly. You two look as
though there was to be a hanging. Come onspring it!
I wish it were a joke, said Trask.
The truth is, Mr. Peth and the crew left last night with the small
Gone to a dance, or something, I suppose, said Locke, still in
doubt about the motives of the captain and Trask.
Maybe, said Jarrow, wearily rising, to yawn into the sun's face.
Locke stared at Trask, and finally realized that he was serious.
Gone to the island? he asked.
Mainland's over there, said Jarrow, turning and pointing over the
starboard quarter. You got two guesses. I'll bet on the island.
Trask now looked in the direction indicated by the captain and saw a
low-lying ridge, barely perceptible in the morning sun, lifting out of
the horizon. It was merely a dark streak against the edge of the sea's
brilliance, dividing sky and water.
Well, that's a fine note, said Locke. What do they think they're
getting paid for? To go away on marine picnics?
If they come lookin' for pay, we're lucky, said Jarrow.
Now, captain, let's get down to cases, began Locke, with a look at
Trask which indicated that he was done with temporizing with Jarrow.
What are you going to do?
Jarrow looked at him quickly, as if surprised, and made a grimace.
What do ye expect me to do? he demanded, with a show of temper in
We'll start for Manila in an hour unless the crew's back aboard.
Can't you give 'em a signal of some sort?
Sure, said Jarrow. I can run the Blue Peter to the fore truck.
I'm ready to go nowif you'll start whistlin' for a wind. He wet the
tip of his finger on his tongue and held it up.
You take it all-fired calm, said Locke. What's the idea? Are you
going to sit down and wait for the crew to make up their minds to
They've probably gone to the island to find gold, said Trask, who
realized that Locke had not grasped the situation fully. It looks as
if they won't attempt to come back.
Oh, that's the game, is it?
Looks like it, said Jarrow.
Very well, said Locke, grimly. I'll look to you, Captain Jarrow,
to carry out the terms of our agreement.
What ye drivin' at? demanded Jarrow.
This: Your pay by the day for schooner and crew is for a definite
purposeto visit this island for exploration purposes, and to have in
our employ a certain number of men. If we have to go back to Manila
without accomplishing the business, or lie around waiting on the crew,
it'll be out of your pocket. It's up to you, captain.
You say I don't git no money at all if we have to go back?
Jarrow's colour heightened, and his eyes flashed angrily, but he held a
certain restraint over his voice.
What I say and what I mean.
There ain't no law that compels a master to guarantee against
mutiny, said Jarrow, and began to chew a biscuit reflectively.
My mates have jumped ship with the crew. That's mutiny.
You expect them to make trouble for us?
I look for anything with that gang, said Jarrow. Peth he's a bad
one when he gits started. So are all them chaps with him. But as I see
it, they'll be back here in no time. If they don't find gold we'll have
'em back on our hands. So there ain't no great hurt done.
But if they do find gold? suggested Locke.
They might walk on gold and not know it, said Trask. If they are
looking for a fortune in fifteen minutes, I doubt if they'll find it,
and they'll like the looks of this schooner pretty well.
My idea exactly, said Jarrow, with a grin. We might as well take
this as a joke. If they ain't back by the time we have breakfast, I'll
take a run over to shore in the long boat and see 'bout huntin' 'em up.
You folks go aft, and let me handle it. I'll see it smoothed over. We
don't want to start back for Manila short-handed if we can help it.
What's the odds, if they are a passel o' fools?
Perhaps you're right, said Locke. It wouldn't look very well for
us if we went back to Manila and left them here.
I'll tell you what you do, captain, said Trask. Take a run
ashore, as you said, and bring me back a bucket of that sand.
I thought yould like to go over with me, said Jarrow.
No, I'll stick by the schooner until this hitch with the crew is
Maybe Mr. Locke'll want to go?
Not for me, said Locke. Marjorie'll want to go when I do, and I
don't want to have anything said about what's turned up. You take
I'll need two men to row, objected Jarrow. I might take the old
fellow and the cook.
We'll keep the cook, said Trask. We can spare Doc Bird better.
Jarrow agreed, and suggested that he start at once, so Doc Bird was
called and told to summon Dinshaw, and they set about throwing off the
gripes of the waist boat and got it over the side with jury tackle in
I'll take a look about and see if we can find where they made a
landin', said Jarrow.
You'd better come right back, this trip, said Trask. It's
important that I get some of that sand under the microscope or cook a
little of it.
Cook it? asked Jarrow, puzzled.
Certainly. I'll be able to tell in fifteen minutes whether there's
a sign of gold on that beach.
Dinshaw came out, in great glee over an immediate landing on his
island, and could scarcely be restrained from climbing over the side
and into the boat long enough to have his coffee.
As the final preparations were being made for the departure of the
boat, Marjorie appeared, clad in khaki, with a short skirt and heavy
I'm all ready, she cried, thinking that everybody was embarking.
We're not going yet, said Locke. The crew's ashore, and the
captain's going to do a little reconnoitering before we leave the
schooner. We'll go right after breakfast, though, if everything's all
Doc was all agrin, and regarded the early trip ashore in the nature
of a lark, and cast aside his white coat, to help row in his
resplendent sweater, while the cook went about laying the table for
breakfast, his round yellow face devoid of any interest in what was
It was decided that Dinshaw should steer, which tickled him
mightily, and Captain Jarrow plied an oar himself.
Keep a good look-out, warned Jarrow, as they shoved off and began
to pull toward the land.
You bet we will, said Trask, gaily. Don't go above high-water
mark for that sand, but fill the bucket from any dark spots you can
Captain Dinshaw'll simply die of joy, said Marjorie. I'd hoped we
might all go together and see him land.
You'd better put your hat on, Marge, or you'll have a skinned
nose, said her father. We'll be right in to breakfast.
There's some hocus-pocus about this, whispered Trask, as he and
Locke moved forward for a private talk.
What do you make of it?
Jarrow's in on the deal with the crew. That's why I wanted him out
of the way for awhile so we could figure things out. I believe that
Dinshaw did hear them say they intended to steal his island. Peth or
Jarrow got my gun, but Jarrow thinks we've three more between us. I
told him last night you had two. He wants to get us separated.
Good Lord! exclaimed Locke, aghast. You can't mean they want to
put us out of the way!
I wish I knew what they wanted to do, said Trask, speaking
rapidly, and keeping his eyes on the boat which was making good headway
toward the shore. But I believe we're in serious danger, and I don't
see now what's to be done.
Jarrow is a fool, said Locke.
More of a rogue. He's far more clever than we realize. I'm sure now
he signalled to Peth last night with the lantern, when I was out here
trying to see what the crew were about with the dinghy.
Then you knew it last night?
Yes. I found Jarrow out here on the forecastle head. First he lit a
cigar, which I suspect was a caution, then he shook the lantern,
probably to indicate that their absence was discovered, and then he put
the lantern out. He said it was so they couldn't find their way back in
the dark, but now I'm sure it indicated that not only was the party
known to be gone, but that their motives were suspected. What's more,
I'm sure he's had Doc Bird spying on usat least on me. Just as sure
as I move that black is at my heels, as full of questions as a rose is
of thorns. We want to be mighty careful with the cook, too.
We're sure in a pickle, said Locke. If there were any wind I'd be
for getting out now and leaving Jarrow and all hands.
My idea, too. But you'll notice he has the schooner well in behind
the barrier reef, and unless we had a ripping good breeze, we'd pile
up, or one of the boats would overtake us before we'd have the jib set.
Of course, if we got out, it would be easy enough to make for the
mainland, or with good weather keep down the coast until we reached
some town or came up with some vessel. But as it stands, we've got to
play the game out with Jarrow.
What the dickens he expects to do, or make out of this sort of
performing is beyond me, said Locke.
Probably find a lot of gold and send us back to Manila in the hope
of cheating Dinshaw out of it. I expect they'll be disappointed if it's
gold in any great quantity they're after.
But why should he and Peth be plotting together when they're at
outs? asked Locke.
It may be that Jarrow favours Peth's scheme, and now wants to get
in with him. I don't doubt they could make up their differences if it
came to a question of hoodwinking us.
Oh, sure. I don't know whether this is all funny or dangerous but
we seem to be in the hands of a lot of fools, and that's no joke. If it
wasn't for Marge, I wouldn't worry.
Dad! Aren't you two coming to breakfast? Marjorie called from the
door of the cabin, and then seeing the boat approaching the shore, went
to the bulwark and watched them make a landing.
They saw Doc jump out and pull the boat up on the shingle a few
feet, and Jarrow hopped out after him. Dinshaw could be seen crawling
forward, and went into the water up to his knees and ran up the beach
to fall forward and plunge both hands into the sand in an ecstasy of
joy. Those in the schooner could hear his high-pitched voice as he
Then they saw him talking with Jarrow, and pointing to seaward over
the reef, and evidently going over the details of how he came ashore
from the Wetherall, and where the bark struck.
Doc stood near by, listening, and kicking the sand with one foot.
Jarrow made a gesture to him, and the steward went back to the boat and
brought a bucket, which he began to fill with sand close to the water's
Jarrow put his hands up to his face, to make a trumpet, and called
loudly for Mr. Peth several times. His voice was thrown back from the
hill over the water in long-drawn echoes that died away in the murmur
of the gentle surf breaking on the other side of the point and along
the backbone of the main reef.
For all the world like paging a gorilla, chuckled Locke. They went
aft and stood by Marjorie, and Shanghai Tom looked out from the cabin
door, white-capped and white-aproned, and a trifle bored.
Jarrow moved up nearer the rim of the jungle, and was rendered
almost invisible to those on the schooner against the glittering white
Doc put his bucket in the boat, and stood by the bow, looking after
the captain. Once he turned toward the schooner, and waved his hand.
Dinshaw was moving toward the point slowly, head bent, making a careful
examination of the shore, stooping now and then to pick up a handful of
sand and let it run through his fingers.
Lookover beyond Captain Dinshawin the brush! said Marjorie,
A figure in blue emerged cautiously from the tangle of green
shrubbery some hundred yards to the right of JarrowPeth, in a suit of
dungarees. He stepped out into the sand and stood with his arms akimbo,
watching Jarrow, who was looking in the other direction.
Presently Jarrow turned and saw Peth, and started toward him slowly,
apparently in some doubt as to the attitude of the mate toward him.
When he had advanced to within twenty feet of Peth he stopped, and from
his gestures, he seemed to be talking. At times he looked over his
shoulder toward Dinshaw, and pointed out to the schooner as if ordering
the mate to return on board.
Peth kicked the sand but made no move to obey. Jarrow drew nearer,
and his hands became more eloquent, as if he were arguing with Peth to
bring the crew back and return to duty. Dinshaw, now well up to the
point, went on with his explorations, and gave no heed to Jarrow and
Peth, if, indeed, he had seen them at all.
Jarrow turned to the shore and called something, and Doc went across
and stood near by while the pair continued their conversation. Dinshaw
heard the summons, and looked back, but had no interest in what was
going on, for he resumed his trudging, stopping frequently to look
about him as if searching for some landmark.
The parley between Peth and Jarrow lasted several minutes, and then
other heads and shoulders appeared in the brush, peering out. Jarrow's
voice, raised threateningly, reached those in the schooner in a
rumbling sort of growl, although they could not distinguish his words.
He appeared to be exasperated that his crew should stand about in the
jungle and refuse to obey his orders.
Finally Jarrow waved his hand to Doc, and turned to follow the
steward, when Peth ran forward, and stepped between Jarrow and Doc. He
whipped out a pistol and pointed it at the captain.
The others came out of the brush at this, and Doc took to his heels,
running for the boat like a deer.
Jarrow put his hands up, and roared out something angrily to the
effect that he'd settle this business if it cost him his life, and as
the crew closed in around him he shouted wildly toward the schooner:
Doc reached the long boat and making frantic efforts to push it off
finally got it afloat, and with an oar shoved it into deep water and
began to scull it out rapidly, making a zigzag course for the schooner.
Can you beat it? demanded Locke. They've taken Jarrow prisoner!
Now we are in for it!
CHAPTER XII. TRASK MAKES A DISCOVERY
The crazy fools! exclaimed Trask, as he saw Jarrow being hustled
into the jungle by the crew. What sort of game do you suppose this is?
Have they all gone mad?
Mutiny! said Marjorie. Why should they mutiny?
Search me, said her father, disgustedly. We seem to have brought
a fine pack of maniacs with us.
They could see Dinshaw exploring the beach, apparently oblivious of
what had happened, or careless of the quarrels which Jarrow and Peth
might have, so long as he was on his beloved island.
So the watchers in the schooner gave their attention to Doc, who
continued to drive the long boat ahead jerkily, working as though he
expected to be pursued from ashore and prevented from gaining the
What was that all about? demanded Trask, as the steward, breathing
hard and to every appearance terror-stricken, brought the long boat
alongside the schooner.
Lordy me! he gasped, his eyes white and rolling. They shore
messed up things this yer time! He quit sculling and stood up in the
stern of the boat, allowing it to make the distance which separated it
from the schooner by its own momentum.
But what did they say? demanded Locke.
It's Mr. Peth, said Doc, and turning, looked ashore. He's got the
skipper up a tree. Ah tell yo' all that man Peth, he's a danger!
Yassir! He made the boat fast, and scrambled up the ladder and over
Now, said Trask, tell us everything that you heard.
Mr. Trask, fo' Gawd, if you'll slip me a gun, I'll go back en blow
dat man's haid off'n his neck! Mr. Peth he don't need to think he's
goin' do no foolin' round with me, no, suh! I'm jest as mean as anybody
when I'm stirred up, en I'm mad to mah marrer! If I'd had a gun
You're more of a sprinter than a shooter, if I'm any judge, said
Locke. Never mind what you'll do. What did you hear?
Well, suh, said Doc, scratching his head, I was a just sort of
circulatin' 'round when I filled that bucket. I wanted to see what Mr.
Peth was projectin' about wid the skipper, so I jest aidged up, closer
en closer, when the cap'n he call me to shuffle along.
They was a-talkin', kind o' low lak'. Mr. Peth he was a-sayin' how
they all been fooled 'cause there ain't no gold on the island nohow.
How they done dug en dug, but nary any gold. And Mr. Peth he 'lowed he
was there for gold, and not a-gitten' any, he was goin' to be paid, en
paid big, en all hands wanted a batch o' money. He said nobody comin'
back here nohow, en how Jarrow'll have to stay there with 'em ontil
they was paid.
De old man he 'lowed he ain't no bank on wheels, and Mr. Peth he
say back he don't care whar de money come f'om, he's gwine have it, en
he slash up wid a gun en say to come along, en come quick. Then the
others come out o' de woods, lookin' mighty mad, en I says to mahse'f,
'Doc Bird, this ain't no place for you to be circulatin' 'round, not if
yo' wants fo' to die of old age,' so I jump fo' de boat.
So it's a hold-up, said Locke, looking at Trask.
You've got it, said Trask. They set out to get gold, and can't
find it. Now they think we'll pay them a good price to get out.
We'll get out without any help from them, said Locke.
You better not go pullin' up no anchors in this pocket, advised
Doc, as he saw Locke look over the bows speculatively. Yo' all would
go smack on that yer reef, the way the tide's got a set.
How much do they want? asked Marjorie, who was more amused than
worried at the way things had turned out.
You'll have to ask Mr. Peth, said Doc.
You get in the boat and go back ashore and get Dinshaw, said
Trask. If you see any of the crew, simply say we'll take the matter of
paying them extra under advisement when we know what their idea is.
Mr. Trask, said Doc, solemnly, I'll go back if you give me a gun.
I ain't 'fraid of no man what stands on two laigs if I got shootin'
things. But I ain't goin' back with my bar' hands, for Dinshaw nor the
'Postle Paul, no, suh!
Oh, you want a gun, eh? said Trask. I'll bet you couldn't hit the
island from here with a gun.
Show me the gun, said Doc, eagerly. I was in the army, if yo' all
want to know. I got medals, yes, suh!
All right, said Trask. Go in and serve breakfast and I'll give
you a gun. Then we'll see what you can do.
Doc made for the cabin, and Shanghai Tom followed him, to whisper in
the galley about what had happened.
We'll be in in a minute, said Trask, and with a knowing smile
Marjorie left the deck. Trask and Locke strolled forward.
What do you think of it? asked the older man.
It's a mad scheme on the face of it, said Trask. That's why I
wouldn't undertake to say how it will turn out. But there's one thing
I'm sure of.
The steward is crooked. He's too anxious to find out how many guns
we have and too anxious to go back ashore. He's a spy.
Then we wouldn't be wise to attempt to get the schooner out with
his help, suggested Locke.
He doesn't want us to try it, that's plain, said Trask. I've an
idea to test him out. It'll take a little time, but we might as well
set out to see who's who in this crowd.
That gang ashore'll try to get back here, said Locke, looking over
at the island. They can't live on sand and water.
Come to breakfast, said Trask. Just leave things to me, and talk
about our guns. We've got to give the impression that we're a young
They passed into the cabin, and Trask took the occasion to slip into
the galley while Doc and Tom were absent, and lifting out an old
rat-tail file, which the cook used to sharpen his knives on, slipped it
up the sleeve of his jacket.
They sent Doc out on deck to keep watch and Trask ordered him to get
the bucket of sand out of the boat.
Don't you feel worried about this, Miss Trinkets, said Locke, as
Marjorie looked up doubtful.
Do you think it's serious, Dad? she asked.
Serious! Not at all! We'll get out of here as soon as there's a
breath of air, and leave that wild lot to themselves.
But poor old Dinshaw, she said, and Captain Jarrowwhat's to
become of them?
We'll have to get Dinshaw, of course, said Trask. I'll take Doc
and go for him at once with the boat. He drank his coffee hastily, and
went out on deck. He disappeared into the forecastle and was below for
Do you think you ought to risk going ashore? asked Locke, when
Trask returned with the bucket of sand.
I don't believe they'll bother me, said Trask, and calling to Tom
to bring him a frying pan, he measured out two or three cupfuls of sand
and spread it carefully in the pan.
Then, to the amazement of all of them, he put the pan on the galley
fire, and calling Doc, told him to watch the sand, and when it got well
heated, to call him.
Cookin' sand! exclaimed Doc, with a suspicious look at Trask. Ah
never did hear of such a thing! What fo' yo' doin' it, Mr. Trask? He
made no attempt to conceal the fact that he doubted the young man's
I believe there's gold in it, said Trask, simply. And if there
is, we'll find it by heating the sand and then cooling it with water
quickly. See those dark grains? The heat will melt the gold which you
can't see, and run it together, and then the cold water cracks away the
shell of sand, and your gold particle can be washed out.
Beats me! declared Doc, scratching his woolly head, but he went to
the galley with renewed interest to watch the strange dish which Trask
Don't stir it, said Trask. Let it get good and sizzling.
Yo' goin' cook de whole islan' in a fry pan? asked Doc.
If there's a hundred dollars' worth of gold in a bushel of sand,
don't you think it would pay? asked Trask, as he went out.
Some cookin'! declared Doc.
Trask now searched Jarrow's cabin in the hope of finding some sort
of firearm, but there was neither pistol nor rifle. So he took the
captain's spy-glass, a cumbersome, old-fashioned tube, and went on the
poop deck to look the island over.
But the only living thing in sight was Dinshaw, busy scooping up
sand with his hands, and building what appeared to be sand forts. The
old man was working out near the point, close to the water's edge,
piling up sand like a harvester getting ready for the work of gathering
a crop. Mound after mound he made, in a long furrow on a line with the
shore, just above the rim of the tide.
I believe he is crazy, said Marjorie, as she looked through the
glass. Can it be possible he thinks that sand is gold?
That's been my suspicion for quite awhile, said Trask.
Locke began to laugh. We are the prize boobs, he said, if we've
come here because a cracked old man thinks a beach is solid gold. We
might have known he was out from the way he talked.
Anyway, it's lots of fun, asserted Marjorie. Think of it! A real
mutiny, a lunatic, sand that's supposed to be gold
Marge, you're a hard-shell optimist, chided her father. Don't you
realize that we're in danger? That a storm, or a dozen things
I rather enjoy it, Dad. I've always wanted to do something that was
more exciting than playing tennis. I'm glad I came.
Trask looked at her and grinned. As she stood against the rail,
spying out the land through an ancient glass, seeking some sign of a
crew of piratical tendencies, he couldn't help thinking that this
slender young woman with the yellow hair coiled under a canvas hat
really was thrilled by the possibility of danger.
By George! You do like it! he said, admiringly.
I'm only a little bit scared, she confessed.
Mr. Trask, yo' better take a look at this mess, Doc called up the
companion. He betrayed his suppressed excitement in his voice, and when
Trask went down, followed by the others, the steward's hands were
trembling and his eyes snapping with the spirit of discovery which
possessed him. He might have been a scientist making a test which
promised to realize lifelong dreams and labours.
Fine! It's fairly glowing! said Trask, as he passed a hand over
the dish of sand.
They all pressed around him as he took a bottle of water from Doc
and dashed the liquid into the sand. There was a cloud of steam and a
Now, said Trask, pass me that wooden chopping bowl, and he
dumped the wet sand out into the bowl, and laid it on the cabin table.
Bring me another pan, he called, and more water.
He began twisting the bowl with a rotary motion, and when Doc
arrived with the pan, nursed the sand out into it, and as the last of
the sand went over the lip of the bowl, ran out on deck into the sun,
and examined the bottom of the wooden bowl.
Lordy me! gasped Doc, leaning over Trask's shoulder. Look at the
The wet bowl was shot with tiny points of yellow, which caught the
Gold! exclaimed Marjorie.
By thunder! cried Locke. Dinshaw's right!
Gold without a doubt, said Trask, and turned to see Shanghai Tom
staring into the bowl, his eyes fairly popping out of his head at this
magical cookery which transformed a sea-beach into glittering wealth.
Trask resumed the washing, and in a few minutes had as much of the
yellow powder as he could hold in the hollow of a palm.
Man alive! remarked the gleeful Doc. I reckon we better take this
yere island apart, right down level to the water!
There's millions on it, declared Trask. When four cups of sand
will assay that much gold, consider what's in a mile of beach like
It's a new one on me, said Locke. I never saw such a thing in my
life andHello! Here's the boat coming out!
They ran to the rail, and looking shoreward, saw the dinghy, with
two men rowing it, and Peth and Jarrow sitting in the stern sheets.
They were heading straight for the schooner.
CHAPTER XIII. WHAT HAPPENED TO DOC
AND THE DINGHY
Those aboard the Nuestra watched the dinghy for a minute as
it came on, the sunlight flashing from the oars. Two men were still on
the beach, far up to the left, with their hands to their eyes, watching
the progress of the boat.
Now what's the game? asked Locke.
It looks like a boarding party, said Trask. If they wanted to
come back and behave themselves, they'd all come. Get those dishes out
of sight. They may manage to get aboard in spite of all we can do, but
we've got to bluff 'em.
We can't let 'em aboard, declared Locke.
Trask moved forward and mounted the forecastle, followed by Locke.
Hello, you! called Trask.
The rowers ceased their work, and with suspended oars allowed the
dinghy to drift on.
It's all right, said Jarrow. They want to put me aboard for a
You can't come alongside, warned Trask. We'll shoot if you
attempt to come close, and he put his hand to his hip pocket and
pulled out his silver cigarette case, taking care that the sun hit the
But they want to put me back aboard for a talk about how things
stand, insisted Jarrow. You'll let me come, won't ye?
Not with that gang, said Trask. Let 'em take you ashore, and get
up the beach. Then I'll come for you with the long boat.
Jarrow made some suggestion to Peth, but the mate shook his head.
He says I come aboard now, this way, or not at all, said Jarrow.
You better let me tell you how the land lays.
Nobody gets aboard here until Captain Dinshaw is brought back,
said Trask. And I'll take one man of the crew. The rest of 'em can
stay here and starve for all I care. It's their own funeral. They had
no business deserting the schooner.
But I'm master, and that's my schooner, and I'm to say what's to be
done, said Jarrow. If you try to do that, it's piracy. I can't help
it if the men refuse duty. All I can do is the best I can for the
safety of my passengers, and if you don't let me do that, I wash my
hands of ye.
You'll find your schooner in Manila, declared Trask. I've told
you how to go about getting aboard.
I can't do what they won't let me, whined Jarrow.
What do they want? demanded Trask.
The boat now had no way on her, and had swung broadside to the
schooner, about a hundred yards off.
They want a bonus, said Jarrow.
What sort of bonus?
Extra wages to work the schooner back to Manila.
We won't have 'em work the schooner back to Manila at any price.
You can't git back yourself, Mr. Trask. Can't git out of this
place. It's dangerous. You'll lose her.
We'd rather take the chance of losing the schooner than have that
cut-throat crew back here, I'll tell you that. They've made their bed,
now they can sleep in it.
Be I goin' to lose all I got out of this? wailed Jarrow. If
you'll let 'em put me aboard, it'll come out all right.
They can have the island. We don't want it, said Trask.
There ain't no gold, said Peth.
I know it, said Trask. Could have told you in fifteen minutes, if
you hadn't wanted to cheat Dinshaw out of it.
We wouldn't a-come if we'd knowed this was a sell, said Peth.
Weren't you paid to come?
He ain't got no gun, yelled Doc. The island is full o' gold,
cap'n. Yo' got to cook it an'
Trask turned to see the steward waving his hands at the rail, and
ran toward him in rage, telling him to be still.
Don' you lay han's on me! yelled Doc, backing away to where
Shanghai Tom stood. Behind the pair was Marjorie.
So you're in with 'em, eh? sneered Trask.
I'm in fo' mahse'f! declared Doc, lowering his head and regarding
Trask from under his brows. He put his hand in his pocket. Keep away,
w'ite man, or I'll do yo'all hurt!
Trask walked straight for the steward, who pulled out a pistol.
My gun! cried Trask, stopping. Marjorie uttered a cry of dismay as
she saw the steward raise his hand.
I can shoot, warned Doc. Come on! Come on! he yelled, waving his
hand to the dinghy. I got 'em!
Trask heard the splash of oars, and saw out of the corner of his eye
that the boat was coming ahead swiftly. He was about to hurl himself at
the steward when he saw Shanghai Tom reach over Doc's shoulder and
grasp the weapon. Doc turned to resist the cook, but Tom bent him
sidewise, wrenched the pistol from his hand so that it fell to the
deck, and lifted Doc against the bulwark. Then catching the steward's
legs, he threw him over, head first, into the sea.
Good for you! shouted Trask, and leaping forward, grabbed up his
revolver and aimed it at the boat. Stop! he shouted. Stop this
minute or I'll fire!
The rowers looked over their shoulders, and seeing that Trask had
them covered, backed water furiously despite the shouts of Peth to go
Doc came up blowing, and began to swim toward the dinghy without
further ado. Jarrow now yelled to the rowers to keep backing, and when
Peth roared at him to shut his head, the captain, taking advantage of
the confusion, stood up and leaped into the water and began swimming to
the schooner quite as fast as Doc swam away from it.
Let me aboard! cried Jarrow.
All right, said Trask. Come on! and he came, with an awkward,
splashing, overhand stroke, like some queer fish with one curved fin
out of the water.
The rowers stopped backing and watched the two swimmers, as if not
sure just what to do. Peth seemed inclined to wait and see how things
turned out before making for shore. He evidently had abandoned any
desire he had to get aboard the schooner by force.
Jarrow came floundering along, and managed to reach up and grasp the
stern of the long boat, when he pulled himself up and climbed in. He
stood dripping, dashing the water out of his eyes, and regarded the
Get out! he bawled, shaking his fist. Ye can go to the devil, the
whole lot of ye!
Peth made no reply, but spoke to the rowers, and the dinghy turned
slowly and headed for the island, but waited for Doc to get alongside,
when they helped him aboard, and made off rapidly.
Them blastered scoundrels! raged Jarrow, as he rubbed his hands
down over his shirt to squeeze out the water. I lost my hat.
Better come aboard, captain, said Trask. Have you a gun?
I wish I had, declared Jarrow, wrathfully. I'd a-let daylight
through that fool of a Peth! See the game they run on me ashore?
We did, said Locke. You were lucky to get away.
By the Mighty Nelson! declared Jarrow, as he clambered over the
side and hurled a shower of water around him like a halo as he landed
on the bone-white deck. I never did see such a passel o' fools! Plumb
bugs on gold! They think 'cause there ain't any we're to put a young
fortune in their hands! I'll have the coast guard on 'em, that's what,
and land every man of 'em in Bilibid for life!
Then you're for getting out? asked Trask.
You bet I am! Think I want to hang around and palaver with a set of
pirates that'd stick a gun in my face and tell me where I git off? Not
much! What's that Doc pulled on you?
A gun, said Trask. And my own. He had it all the time.
Well, I'll be jiggered! declared Jarrow, staring at the weapon
which Trask still held in his hand. He's a nice one!
A smooth article, said Trask. He fooled me, all right. If it
hadn't been for Tom He looked around, but Tom had disappeared into
I'm sure the steward would have shot you, said Marjorie, who had
regained her composure, and now stood beside Trask.
Looked like it was all off to me, said Locke. We'll have to
square things with that Chink.
What's this? asked Jarrow, looking at the pan and bowl, and the
sand on the deck. Been lookin' for gold?
Tried some of it, said Trask.
Find any? asked Jarrow, with quick interest.
No, said Trask, and Locke appeared startled, but said nothing.
I better git into some dry duds, said Jarrow. As soon as there's
a capful of wind, we'll see what we can do about gittin' out of this
hole, unless you want to go prospectin' ashore, Mr. Trask.
Not with those fellows there, said Trask, looking over to where
the boat was making a landing far up the beach. The other two men came
down to meet the boat's crew, and there was a lively conference.
But we can't go and leave poor old Dinshaw, said Marjorie.
Jarrow looked at Trask questioningly.
How about it? he asked. Are we goin' to hang around and take
chances just to pick up the old un?
We can't leave Dinshaw, said Trask. We've got to get him before
we think of leaving.
You can suit yerself, said Jarrow. I'm for gittin' out. They
won't hurt him. Soon's we're gone, they'll all make over for the
mainland. They've got some canned meat and hard bread. They took a lot
of stuff with 'em last night.
Jarrow departed for his room, leaving a wet trail behind him.
He's all right, whispered Locke. If we can get Dinshaw, we're
fixed up to leave.
We'll keep an eye on the captain just the same, said Trask. I
rather think he's had all he wants of Peth and the crew, even if he was
going to stand in with them at one time.
Oh, I guess he's straight enough, said Locke. But you didn't tell
him about that gold.
He was keen about what you'd found, said Marjorie. I suppose he
didn't understand what the steward said.
Trask laughed, and leaning over to Locke, whispered: There wasn't
any gold in the sand.
No gold? said Locke, staring at him.
No. The 'gold' was just some brass filings I made in the forecastle
out of an old brass cleat that was hanging on a nail in my room for a
clothes hook, and he took from his pocket the piece of metal and
displayed the groove he had cut in it with the file.
What the dickens did you do that for? asked Locke.
To see if Doc would stand in with the crew, although I didn't
expect it would result in his pulling a gun on me. I thought that if he
was against us, he'd try to get back ashore with the news. Now if they
think the island is full of gold, they'll be content to stay there and
not bother us. But I didn't want to fool Jarrow. He might not be so
anxious to leave, if he had what he thought to be proof that there was
plenty of gold.
Oh, I'm sorry, said Marjorie. I'd hoped that Dinshaw's dream had
Had me going all right, said Locke.
Before long Jarrow came out, in dry clothing, smacking his lips
after a drink, and lighted a long cigar.
Now, he began, how're we to git Looney Dinshaw back?
Go for him with the boat, said Trask.
You come along? suggested the captain.
I'll stick by the schooner, said Trask.
Then I'll take the cook.
Not unless the cook wants to go of his own accord, was Trask's
reply. I'm not going to ask Tom to do anything.
Want me to go alone? asked the captain, in surprise.
I suggest that you row up toward the point, and call Dinshaw down
to you. You can get him easy enough, and I'll stand watch here to see
that you're not headed off by the dinghy.
Jarrow said nothing to this, but went aft for his glass, and studied
the group far up the beach. The sailors were gathering wood from the
jungle, and making a pile about halfway between the edge of the forest
and the water.
In a few minutes a curl of white smoke was rising from the pile they
Gittin' a meal ready, was Jarrow's comment, and he went into the
cabin where Shanghai Tom was setting the table.
Doc is making a fire to melt some gold on his own account, said
Trask to Locke and Marjorie. I wish him luck. Dinshaw is still piling
sand into little dunes up near the point.
CHAPTER XIV. WHAT JARROW WANTED AND
WHAT HE GOT
Captain Jarrow spent an hour or two loafing about the schooner and
swearing under his breath as he regarded the shore, where the crew was
going through mysterious incantations.
But Trask understood that Doc was initiating them into the mysteries
of smelting out gold from sand. To all appearances, it was utterly
devoid of anything approaching gold.
Finally, after a conference with Locke and Marjorie, Trask put
before the captain the matter of bringing Dinshaw back. But Jarrow was
inclined to be sulky about it. He objected to having it put up to him
to bring the fool aboard, as he expressed it.
None of us will leave the schooner under the circumstances,
But I want the cook, said Jarrow. Trask had joined him on the
forecastle and the others remained in the cabin.
The cook stays right here with us, said Trask. I don't intend to
take a chance at losing another man.
You don't seem to look on me as worth much, said Jarrow, as he
gazed at the column of smoke which rose straight in the air and hung
over the island like a volcanic vapour, spreading out into a
If Peth was willing to put you on board, I don't see that he'd
interfere with you if you went ashore, said Trask. As I see it, you
can pull over, get Dinshaw, and come back. You don't need to go near
that gang on the beach.
Can't ye let me have the gun?
No. Trask walked away from Jarrow, satisfied that the captain
would take no action so long as there was a possibility of continuing
Not long afterward, while the three in the cabin were playing cards
and Tom was preparing lunch, Jarrow came shambling aft, and without a
word went over the side and into the long boat. When Trask went out on
deck the captain was pulling slowly for the shore, making a course to
land near where Dinshaw was toiling in the broiling sun at his sand
All hands deserted the cabin to see what would happen. As the boat
approached the beach, Doc was seen to leave those about the fire, and
proceed toward Dinshaw, with the avowed purpose of heading the captain
Jarrow made his way leisurely, and ran the boat on the shingle. He
stood watching Doc and waiting for him, and when the steward had come
close and stopped as if in doubt as to what the captain's attitude
would be, Jarrow beckoned him on with a peremptory gesture.
There was a parley, which ended with Doc returning to the fire, and
then Jarrow approached Dinshaw. The old man looked up and waved his
hand as if pointing out the result of his labours.
Jarrow kicked the sand, and got down to examine it. Then he said
something to Dinshaw, and the latter got up and followed him obediently
to the boat. Soon they were heading back for the schooner, Dinshaw
serving an oar.
What's the news? asked Trask, as the boat drew near.
They want to come back, said Jarrow. Peth sends word that if
you'll take 'em, they'll return to duty if you'll call it square. Seems
like they've tried a wrinkle of burnin' the sand to git gold, but it
won't work, an' they're plumb disgusted.
We won't take Peth's word about anything, said Trask.
I guess they got a belly full o' this business, was Jarrow's
comment as he brought the boat alongside. You make a mistake not to
take 'em up. We'd be in a bad hole here if it come on to blow hard. Ye
better let me signal 'em back.
Trask said nothing to this, but helped Dinshaw over the side. The
old man seemed utterly spent, and appeared to be in a daze from the
sun. He looked about as if he had seen none of them before, and smiled,
whispering something about gold, holding up his hands and looking at
He thinks the sand is gold, said Jarrow. I looked it over and
it's no more gold than I am.
Marjorie spoke to Dinshaw, but he merely blinked at her, and she
took him away to the cabin and gave him food and drink.
What's this Doc said about you cookin' gold out of sand? asked
Brass filings, said Trask, promptly, and took some of the
particles from his trousers pocket and dumped them into Jarrow's palm.
Had my suspicions of him, and wanted to see if he'd give me a double
cross. And he has the nerve to want to come back!
Jarrow grinned and examined the grains of brass, and with a remark
that it was all a crazy business, announced his intention of getting
Call me, Mr. Trask, if this calm breaks, and we'll git out. I'm
Dinshaw had suffered a sort of collapse, or coma, and he was put to
bed likewise. Trask managed to get up an awning, and out on deck, where
they could keep watch on shore, they lunched in comparative comfort.
Locke, now satisfied that the whole venture was a mad sort of lark,
took it all in jocular mood, and chaffed Marjorie about her desire to
go adventuring in the tropics. But Trask knew that he had been much
more worried than either himself or Marjorie, and that his sallies were
the result of his relief from strain about how things would turn out
Shanghai Tom had become the pet of the trio, and while he maintained
his outward imperturbability, it was evident that he was quite proud of
his exploit in overcoming and disposing of the treacherous Doc Bird.
Trask had promised him a reward on their return to Manila, at which he
had remarked, Me no catchum for cash, and shook his head. The
Chinaman either from pique at the crew's total disregard of him in
their plans or from a real liking for the passengers themselves had
lined himself up on the side of the Lockes and Trask.
The crew deserted their fire and took to the jungle, leaving a pile
of smouldering ashes on the sand, and during the afternoon there was
nothing to be seen of them. The dinghy was in plain sight, pulled up on
the beach, just beyond where they had essayed their attempts at
reducing ore by the cooking method.
Trask managed to get a nap lying in a steamer chair under his
improvised awning, for it was agreed that if they had to remain at
their anchorage for the night, he would have to share a watch with
In spite of the captain's evident desire to abandon the crew to
their fate, Trask still had a lurking suspicion that Jarrow was more in
sympathy with Peth's demands for extra money than his heated language
against the mate implied. And the young man was determined that he
would not relax his vigilance once Jarrow was on deck again. So while
he slept, Locke sat in the doorway of the cabin and read while Marjorie
played solitaire under a corner of the awning and kept a watch toward
Jarrow appeared late in the afternoon, and was rather morose and
silent. He went out on the forecastle and smoked, scanning the sea and
sky and complaining to himself that there was no wind. The sea was as
smooth as a field of liquid metal, great glassy swells extending to the
horizon all round, glinting in the sun. The heat was oppressive until
the sun dropped to the sea's rim, when dark wind patches made their
appearance to the southward on the surface of the ocean. But still the
While the sky and sea were yet suffused with crimson from the sun's
afterglow Jarrow came aft, and without a word to any one, or even a
look, went on the poop, going up the port side.
Marjorie went in and peeped into Dinshaw's room. The old man was
sleeping, breathing gently, but lying like a man utterly exhausted,
flat on his back in his bunk.
As she came out on deck, where Trask and Locke sat watching the sea
and reconciling themselves to another night aboard the schooner in the
bight of the reef, Jarrow's voice came over the cabin trunk in a low
growl as he cleared his throat.
We better talk this thing over, he suggested.
All right, captain, said Locke. Suppose you come down here.
Jarrow appeared at the starboard break of the poop, his hands on his
hips, a cigar aslant in his mouth. He gave the trio a critical glance,
and turned his head toward the island.
Not much chance to get out to-night, began Locke. Do you look for
I don't look for nothin', said the captain, without looking at
Locke. I been thinkin' this thing over, he said presently, chewing
his words with his cigar. I'm out of pocket on this deal.
How do you mean? asked Locke, with a startled glance at Trask. He
had detected a belligerent note in the captain's voice.
Just this, said Jarrow, with sudden vehemence, slapping his hand
down on the cabin roof, and turning a savage visage at the three
sitting below him: I come on this trip lookin' to make a piece o'
money. I figured there'd be a couple of weeks here at the leastyou'd
go lookin' for gold, an' maybe find it, an' I'd git a look-in. Now ye
want to skip out for Manila again. Where do I git off?
Trask sprang to his feet, his face scarlet with rage.
You sit down, young feller, said Jarrow, holding up a hand for
attention. Don't go off half-cocked.
What's the meaning of this? demanded Locke. His back was to
Jarrow, and he did not get up.
Trask stood glaring at Jarrow with trembling lips and set jaw. The
captain pushed his cap back on his head and puffed a couple of times at
his cigar before he spoke.
I mean you can't git out of here, wind or no wind, without me. And
what's more, ye won't go when I do but ye'll pay me for my time, and
I'll make it fair enough.
You're in with Peth! exclaimed Trask, and made a move toward his
I'm in with Peth, admitted Jarrow. He didn't work it just the way
I wanted, but now it's come to a show down. This schooner is for sale
for twenty thousand dollars. I guess that's fair enough, seein' the jam
ye're in, and the young lady along.
I've half a mind to take a shot at you, said Trask.
Go ahead and shoot, said Jarrow. That's my chance. I'll risk it.
But you've got to handle the rest of the crew before mornin', don't
Twenty thousand dollars, said Locke, musingly, and looked at
Marjorie, who stared at Jarrow as if she could not believe her ears.
My price, said Jarrow. I thought I'd say somethin' about it
before the boys come out. They'll be makin' along out this way in a few
minutes. It'll save messin' things up to reach a bargain before they
The first man that tries to come aboard began Trask.
You can't kill 'em all, said Jarrow, grinning. Oh, it's cheap at
the price. You'll find it a lot more comfortable to see this thing the
way it lays. You shoot me, and it's all off with ye. The boys'll just
have to boat off down the coast and say ye was lost with the schooner.
That's easy enough.
You're a murderin' scoundrel, said Locke, quietly.
I'm out for the coin, said Jarrow. Work with me, and it'll be all
Sit down, Mr. Trask, said Locke. We might as well go about this
in a business way.
Now ye're talkin', said Jarrow.
What's your proposition? asked Locke. Tom! Bring me my
I'm sellin' the schooner for twenty thousand. I left word in Manila
at your bank that you had a mind to buy, an' you'd pay ten thousand.
That's a fair price. My bank thinks ye're goin to buy, too, so that's
another ten. I won't have no trouble cashin' two checks on you. I
cashed your checks in both banks before we left, and they're sort o'
trained to it.
You're playing a dangerous game, said Locke. Do I understand
you're to put us down in Manila and then go up to the banks and cash
checks on me?
No, said Jarrow. You stay here on the island, hid away. If I
don't git the money, it's you who's playin' a dangerous game.
But how are we to get away from here? asked Locke.
We'll send the schooner back, after we've had time to git clear of
Manila. May be five or six days after we git our money, but I'll send
it right enough. Of course, I could ask more, an' take a wide chance,
but I ain't hoggin' things. It ought to be worth gittin' out without
trouble for you folks. And ye'll git some of yer money back out o' this
old wagon. Say the word, an' I'll signal the boys to come back, all
peaceful, an' no shootin'. If ye don't want to take it my way, I'm done
talkin'. The others look for fight, an' Peth's got my gun's well's his
own. So, if you want fireworks, it ain't my funeral.
I'll take you up, said Locke, as he reached for his cigar-case.
You'll let us have Tomand what we need?
Everything ye want, said Jarrow, with satisfaction. Only don't
come no didoes with me or the checks. If I ain't here to tell Peth it's
all right when he comes alongside, he'll cut loose on ye in the dark.
I'm giving you my word that we'll play fair, as you call it. You'll
get your checks, and all I ask is fair play in return.
My way o' lookin' at it, said Jarrow. I thought you'd find it a
open an' shut game, an' I spoke as I did so's you'd have time to pack
an' stow the boats, if ye don't want to stay aboard to-night. But there
ain't no call for you leavin' here 'less we git a wind.
We'll take that up later, said Locke.
I'd like a letter from you, as how ye've bought the schooner, said
Jarrow. Ye can say's ye've decided to remain here, and I'm to attend
to some things in Manila, so's it'll look natural like.
As you say, said Locke. If you'll fetch my coat, I'll write out a
checkthe checks. And my pen's with the book.
I'll bring some paper, said Jarrow, with a glance at Trask. If
you don't mind, unload your gun, and give me the ca'tridges. I'll turn
'em over to ye when ye leave for the island. How's that?
I'll compromise, said Trask. Suppose Miss Locke keeps the gun?
You'd hardly expect Miss Locke to shoot you in the back, would you?
I'll take the ca'tridges, said Jarrow, coming down and holding out
his hand. I ain't figurin' on anybody changin' their mind, but it'll
be better to make sure.
Give him what he wants, said Locke. We'll play the game as the
So Trask took out the magazine, and removed the cartridge from the
chamber of the pistol and surrendered the ammunition.
Jarrow went into his room for the paper, and they heard him fumbling
in the little bulkhead desk.
No use arguing with a man when he's got the drop on you, said
Locke. If it wasn't for Miss Trinkets, here, it might be different.
But I'd rather pay up than see anybody hurt.
Trask sat with his empty pistol across his knees, thoroughly
dejected, staring out over the blood-red sea. Already a star, close to
the horizon, had popped out, and the top of the island was gathering
I was a fool ever to take you people on such a wild-goose chase,
said Trask. I'll have to pay you back every dollar of this, Mr.
Pay nothing, said Locke.
I'm the one to blame, Dad, said Marjorie, laying her hand on his
arm. She was quite white, but she smiled faintly. And you can't blame
yourself, Mr. Trask. It was all my plan from the first, Dad. We plotted
to inveigle you into coming to the island, at least I abetted Mr.
Trask, and I'm glad I came.
I'm satisfied said Locke, with a whimsical smile, and before
he could go on he was interrupted by a scream of rage inside the cabin.
They all sprang up as Tom dashed from the galley and looked into the
captain's cabin. They saw the white form of the Chinese against the
dark interior, and heard a terrific struggle going on, with the sound
of shoes being hammered against the bulkhead.
As the three pressed in to look over Tom's shoulder Dinshaw leaped
from the deck of the captain's cabin, and yelling like mad, ran up the
companion and dived over the taffrail.
Trask ran after him in time to hear him splash into the water, and
turning to come through the cabin for the long boat, heard Jarrow
sobbing on the deck, and crawling about, or so it seemed, for the
captain's arms were moving like a swimmer's although he was making no
progress forward. And as he struggled, he gave gasping cries.
What's happened? cried Locke.
He killum cap'n, said Shanghai Tom, and stooping down, picked up a
knife. It was a long knife from the galley rack.
Marjorie ran from the cabin, overcome with horror, and Trask
followed, with the intention of getting the long boat away to save
Dinshaw. But as he paused, poised on the bulwark to jump down into the
boat, he looked aft. There was no trace of Dinshaw.
Go to the taffrail and look, he called to Marjorie. She hastened
to the poop-deck while he got the boat off, which swung with the tide,
and drifted aft as he paddled with the big oar, standing in the stern.
For an instant there was a white object visible against the dark
water, as if a fish had broken the surface. Whatever it was, it was
being swept away swiftly by the tide. Before Trask could reach the spot
where it had appeared, the water was smoothed out in a steely sheen.
Dinshaw had been whirled away to the coral depths below.
It was growing dark as Trask rowed back. As he came alongside the
schooner he saw Locke standing beside Marjorie.
Dead, said Locke.
From shore there came a confused chorus of cries. Trask listened,
and across the darkening waters he saw a white spot drifting out
slowly, and then in the evening hush heard the clatter of oars.
The cartridges! he cried. They're coming out, Peth and the
others. With Jarrow dead, we've a fight on our hands!
He leaped over the bulwark, and dashed into Jarrow's cabin, to
regain the ammunition he had surrendered. A blazing match revealed
Jarrow lying on his back, his face distorted and spotted. Trask found
the cartridges loose in the captain's coat pocket, and hurried out of
CHAPTER XV. AN END AND A BEGINNING
A red moon rose out of the sea, and threw a fiery trail over the
heaving wastes that reached to the schooner's side. Her hull and masts
stood out in bold relief like a vessel in silhouette before the glare
of a volcano.
Trask, Locke, and Shanghai Tom stood on the starboard side abreast
of the foremast where they could see over the bows and still be in a
position to resist from either side when the crew attempted to board.
Locke had a pair of iron belaying pins, and while Tom had a similar
weapon, he also had a galley knife. Marjorie stood just outside the
cabin door, where she could retreat inside and protect herself against
The boat came forward slowly and cautiously, now only a dark spot on
the water, still covered by the gloom of the island. The crew
apparently hoped to get close without alarming those aboard.
We'll let them come on, and then give it to them without warning,
said Trask. I'll hold my fire until they're right under us. Keep low,
so they can't see our heads.
Watching over the bulwark, Trask saw the boat come out of the
island's shadow into the moonlight. He expected a dash once the boat
was exposed, for it would be useless to attempt to sneak up on the
schooner if any watch were kept.
But the rowers came on leisurely. It might be that they supposed
Jarrow would be the only one on watch and would allow them to get
alongside before their proximity was suspected by Trask and Locke.
I can't see but three, whispered Locke.
Others may be hidden, said Trask. Or they've decided to cut their
party in two, to intercept anybody who got away to the island.
We can handle three, all right, said Locke, with some relief.
They'll walk right into a trap.
They probably figured Jarrow would have things fixed for them by
the time they arrived, by having some of us out of the way. It isn't
possible that they could know what's happened to him, remarked Trask.
The boat came on slowly and silently, the oars working steadily but
with little noise of locks. It headed for the starboard side, and came
up within a dozen yards of the bow abreast of it. Then the oars were
held, backing slowly.
Aboard there! came a low, hoarse voice. Trask and his friends
There was an exchange of whispers. Then the oars backed water
quietly, to check the way and overcome the tide.
Aboard there! This time it was louder, and Trask knew it was not
the voice of Peth.
Hello! he answered, gruffly, speaking as he thought Jarrow might
if he were waiting for his treacherous crew to seize the schooner.
Who's that? asked the voice. It was more cautious, and apparently
worried. After a pause: Is it Mr. Trask?
Yes, replied Trask boldly. There was something hopeful in the tone
of the other. If it had been Peth, Trask would not have admitted his
Then it's all right, said the other. I'm Bevins. Where's the
In his room asleep, answered Trask, still cautious, and not to be
fooled into telling the truth. If they expected Jarrow, it would puzzle
them to be told the captain was not there to meet them.
Look out for him, said Bevins, hastily. He's fixin' to do for ye.
We've run away from Mr. Peth. Shope and Pennock are here with me. We
don't want no trouble. We want to come back aboard for duty. But have
an eye out for the skipper. He's lookin' for Mr. Peth to come out, but
we got the dinghy.
We stood in with him for gold, said another voice, pleadingly.
But when it come to makin' trouble for you folks, we ain't for it.
Come up closer so I can look into the boat, commanded Trask.
You better lock the skipper in his room, said Bevins. We don't
want to come aboard if he's going to make a row. He's a slick one, and
he thought we stood in with himthought we'd come out with Mr. Peth to
put you ashore, but we give 'em the dishMr. Peth and the nigger. You
better git the skipper or he'll be down on ye.
They pulled the boat in, and under Trask's orders walked about the
bottom, to prove that there was no one lying hidden under their feet.
You may come aboard, Bevins, said Trask finally. But the others
stay where they are a few minutes. If they attempt to rush, they'll get
Git the skipper before I come, begged Bevins. Git him while he's
asleep. Don't take no chances. He's up to maroon ye all.
We've got the skipper, said Trask, grimly. Don't worry about him.
He is dead.
There were exclamations of surprise and joy from the boat.
Ye done for him? No foolin'? asked Bevins.
No doubt about it. Come aboard and see for yourself.
Ye won't make no trouble for us for what we done if we come for
Not if you help us get back to Manila, and make no more trouble.
We don't want no trouble, honest to Gawd! said Shope.
Mr. Peth he got us to go ashore just for fun, said Bevins. I know
we had no call for doin' of it but he said we'd be back in the mornin'.
Said the skipper give orders for it.
We'll call it square if you men turn to, said Trask. But if
there's any more trouble the first man to start it, follows Jarrow.
You'll have to understand that before you come aboard. We're all armed
and you'll have to be searched.
That's fair, said Bevins. I'll come first. I ain't got no arms.
They worked the boat aft to where the pilot-ladder was and Bevins
came up. Trask searched him from head to toe while Locke and Tom kept
watch on the others in the dinghy.
Trask believed that Bevins was telling the truth. His warning about
the captain and his reluctance to come aboard until he was assured that
Jarrow could do no harm were convincing. If the three in the boat had
been in league with Jarrow, it was improbable that they would tell
Trask that the captain was a menace.
Bevins then asked to see Jarrow. So Trask sent him aft and gave him
matches to examine the captain's room. He came back presently, and with
considerable satisfaction assured his companions that they need have no
further fear of the skipper.
Marjorie came forward to her father, and finding that instead of a
battle they were safer than ever, she began to cry softly.
Bevins now advised that it was necessary to keep a sharp lookout
toward shore. He was afraid that Peth and Doc would make some attempt
to get out to the schooner.
Shanghai Tom went to the galley and prepared a meal for the three
who had returned. After shutting the door of Jarrow's room the cabin
lamp was lighted, as if in defiance of the two ashore and to prove that
all was well aboard the schooner.
Shope was given coffee and a cigar and put on watch, while all hands
joined in a meal in the cabin. Bevins went over the whole story of how
Mr. Peth had held up the captain ashore, but that it was all to mislead
those in the schooner, and how after taking to the brush the captain
had told them his plans for making a nice pot of money out of the
expedition, they having found no gold.
Doc had been in with Jarrow and Peth from the first. He had been
told to play the spy, but he had kept secret his theft of the pistol
from Trask's bag, a circumstance which puzzled Jarrow. The captain
taxed Peth with having made a blunder so early in the game, and it was
not until Doc had declared himself as the dinghy approached the
schooner with Jarrow and his men that the secret of who had the pistol
Doc had been told to return with the long boat after Jarrow was held
up by Peth, and announce the captain's capture. When the captain came
out again it was with the intention of getting aboard the schooner and
putting Trask, Locke, and Marjorie ashore.
Jarrow had planned that the party which went ashore in the night
would get back in the morning before they were discovered, but when
Trask learned of the secret departure, Jarrow had signalled them to
remain ashore, by means of the lantern in the forerigging.
If the crew had got back aboard the schooner without having aroused
any suspicions, it was Jarrow's intention to get his three passengers
on the island, and then demand checks, leaving them there while he took
the schooner back to Manila and got the money.
Bevins, Shope, and Pennock had no idea of what had been planned
until Jarrow told the whole plot ashore. Then it came out that Peth's
refusal to sleep aft was arranged by Jarrow and Peth to make it appear
that they were at odds. The demand for money was to be made ostensibly
by Peth, Jarrow always pretending that he was in the power of the crew.
Doc's report of how Trask had cooked gold out of the sand had set
them all to burning sand, but when they found no gold after cooling the
sand, Peth and Doc had quarrelled, the mate calling the steward names
and charging him with being as crazy as Dinshaw. Peth doubted Doc's
story of Trask finding gold at all. Doc had been chased by Peth, and in
escaping from the mate's fury, the steward, being barefoot, had burned
his feet so badly that he couldn't walk, having run into some of the
So Doc was to have been left behind in the night attack on the
schooner, and it was due to his disability that the trio was able to
steal the dinghy. Bevins said that Doc had once killed a man, and
Jarrow knew about it, with the result that the captain held the Negro
under his control.
During the night they heard Peth halloing to the schooner, calling
for Jarrow, but they gave no answer. Peth continued to call, like a dog
baying the great moon which wheeled overhead, until along toward dawn,
when the fire on the beach flared up for a while and then died.
Before daylight there was a nervous stir of air, and the sun rose on
a cloud from the north. The breeze freshened, and Bevins, now in
command, got the anchor, and under jib and reefed foresail they headed
out for the sea.
Jarrow's room having been cleared early in the night, and the
captain wrapped in old canvas, the body was dropped overboard as they
passed clear of the reefs, Trask saying from memory as much as he could
remember of the service for burials at sea.
Through the glass Trask saw a white figure watching them from the
edge of the jungle as they drove southward for Manila before a steady
wind from the northeast.
Marjorie, who had slept after midnight, leaned against the taffrail
with Trask, watching Shope and Pennock trimming the sails. Bevins had
the wheel but Locke was asleep below, having remained up all night.
Poor old Captain Dinshaw, said Marjorie. He'll never have his big
house with good soup for supper.
Perhaps it's just as well, replied Trask. He was too old and
pitifully crazy ever to enjoy anything. It's likely he would have
suffered more if he'd never come to his island. And he might have
killed somebody not so deserving of the fate he meted out to Jarrow.
I suppose you'll come back and really look for gold when we're
gone, she said.
He looked at her.
No more of that island for me, he said. The government will most
likely send a boat to get Mr. Peth and Doc but I wouldn't come back
here if the island were all gold.
Why not? she asked, somewhat surprised.
Because it meant great peril for you. I would not care to have
those terrible dangers recalled. I want to think of you as safe and
happy. But there's one thing about it all which gives me satisfaction.
You'll never forget me!
Why, Mr. Trask, of course I won't! What a silly thing to say!
You might if it hadn't been for what we've been through in this
schooner. He looked out over the sea.
I hardly think so, she said, smiling at him. Of course, you
didn't understand what a joke Dad was going to play on Jarrow about the
What joke! demanded Trask, turning to her.
Dad's balance at the International in Manila is only about four
Then it might have been anything but a joke if Jarrow had come on
for the money and didn't get it, said Trask. But I suppose the bank
would have allowed an overdraft.
There couldn't be any overdraft. That four thousand is all the cash
we've got in the world. Dad's supposed to be rich, but he isn't. We
have only a little fruit ranch in Southern California. We've been
saving up for ten years for this trip around the world, since mother
died. Jarrow would have found himself in trouble if he had attempted to
cash those checks.
I thought your father was a millionaire?
There is a man named Locke who has millions in California, but he
is not a relative of ours.
Glad to hear it! cried Trask. By George, I'm glad to hear it!
Glad that we're not rich! Why, Mr. Trask!
I'mI'm going back to the States, he announced. On the same boat
you do, if you don't mind.
You've changed your plans?
Yes. I'm going to quit mine-scouting out in these God-forsaken ends
of the earth, and get back to where there's civilization. I think I'll
buy a fruit ranch in Southern California. I've got enough capital. And
what mining I do, I'll do it in California.
She scanned his face, amazed at what he was saying, and startled at
Come below, and I'll tell you about it, he said, and she went down
Marjorie, he said, seeing that Shanghai Tom was out of sight in
the galley, and her father's door was closed, I've been in love with
you since that first night in the Manchuria. But I
thoughtwell, I thought you had millions!
Wilkins told everybody we were rich. She put her hand on his arm
so gently that he could scarcely feel its weight. Ilove you. I was
sure of it when Doc aimed that revolver at you.
He swept her into his arms.
Thank God you missed the Hong Kong boat, he said.
I really wanted to see you again, she confessed.
But you were going home.
It was I who made Dad miss the Taming. Anyway, I didn't tell
him we'd have to get the morning train from Dagupan.
For that I'm going to kiss you again, said Trask. And he did.
Immediately on the arrival of the Nuestra Señora del Rosario
at Manila the coastguard cutter Candelaria sailed for Dinshaw's
island. Peth and Doc Bird, seeing the steamer approaching, attempted to
leave the island on an uncompleted raft, which broke up with them, and
both were drowned, Doc clinging to the mate when they were thrown into
The next Hong Kong boat left Manila with Mr. Locke and Mr. and Mrs.
Robert Trask among the passengers.
Shanghai Tom opened a Chinese restaurant in Manila with the capital
provided by Locke and Trask as a reward for his bravery in disarming
Trask declares that his days of hunting gold are over. Locke says
that there is no longer a lure for him in tropical islands, and Mrs.
Trask vows that all the romance there is between Cancer and Capricorn
can be claimed by any one who wants it, for she is happy enough on the
west coast of the United States of America, with the picture of
Dinshaw's island hanging in the Trask bungalow.
THE COUNTRY LIFE PRESS GARDEN CITY, N. Y.