The 'Lady Maud': schooner yacht, Volume 2

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Page 51 - and the poor thing again burst into tears, and cried and sobbed most piteously. Sir Mordaunt was just the man to be affected by a woman's tears ; and while she cried, he kept his face hung, and his features worked as if he would cry too. Miss Tuke, by way of diverting all this sorrow, led the poor young widow to tell her story to Sir Mordaunt. I thought at first that this was like putting her on the rack, but speedily saw that it did her good to talk of her troubles. She had only been married a...
Page 70 - You see she vanishes at the sight of a woman," said I, wanting to see a smile upon my companion's face. But my joke missed fire. Her thoughts were evidently fathoms below me— with the corpse of her husband, I dare say, and I saw a tear drop with the flash of a diamond from her eyes into the sea. Just at that moment one of the mastiffs came up to us, and rubbed her hand with its cold moist snout. She cried out, and recoiled a yard, with as much stately horror as ever I saw in a tragedy actress....
Page 97 - The sky was cloudless, but the rich azure of the zenith lightened as it drew towards the horizon, until it was nearly as pale as silver where it met the deep ; and in the fiery-hot air the ocean boundary waved as though a mountainous swell were rolling around. Suddenly the fellow who was steering called to Purchase. I turned, and saw him pointing over the starboard bow of the schooner, and getting up to look, I immediately perceived the smoke of a steamer, but very faint and like the blue thread...
Page 57 - ... be realized. Any young fellow who has been boxed up for some weeks with a pretty girl in a vessel will understand what I mean. A man rarely falls seriously in love with a girl at sea. He plays round and round the emotion, warms himself by it, and enjoys its light ; but he seldom or never burns his wings. He waits till he gets ashore to do that. The steady earth helps him to concentrate himself. At sea the tumblification keeps him diffused. For that half-hour, however, I managed to do very well...
Page 65 - Brookes, she might forget her vows should the conversation drift towards her sufferings and widowed and destitute condition — for I suppose you know that her husband's death leaves her penniless ? — and it is my duty as medical adviser to protect Lady Brookes against all risks of further " capsizals,
Page 19 - ... had speared us with his trident, and was forking us aloft ; and the fellows who tugged at the oars, missing the water, swept the blades through the air, and fell head over heels off the thwarts. Yet this very accident was probably the saving of us ; for the weight of the men being in the bottom of the boat kept her keel in the water, though as that sea ran roaring away under her a vertical line would have cut through her two gun-wales. After rowing a certain distance, I put the boat's head round...
Page 99 - Pui chase should know," said I. " Purchase !" he called. " I want that steamer stopped, that we may ask her captain's permission to send the three men to her — that is, if she is going home. How shall we stop her ?" "How shall we stop her, sir?" wheezed the old fellow, giving me a piratical glance, as if he guessed there was some trick of mine in that question. " Why, it's a case of distress ; so halfmast the ensign, jack down." It was plain from this that the man knew nothing about ship's signals,...
Page 2 - ... the wreck by going to leeward of her, had settled down on the port tack, and was jerking along her weather leeches shivering, and her sharp nose biting an opening through the short, black, foamtopped surges. It seemed a pity to be cruising about after a kind of phantom ship when we could have laid our course at nine knots an hour, and made perhaps a fair run out of these humbugging latitudes. But there was too much humanity, though based methought on a somewhat airy foundation, in my friend's...
Page 52 - ... to her narrative as kept us all hearkening with rapt attention to her round and fluent accents, made passionately plaintive by the horrors of her memory. I think I see the picture now : Lady Brookes, watching the speaker, with her black eyes all ashine, and her hands tightly folded, and her lips compressed, and her brows gathered ; Miss Tuke, full of sympathy and wonder and fear ; Sir Mordaunt, supporting himself by the table, balancing his tall figure to the heavy lurches, smoothing down his...
Page 99 - ... mast and square yards above the horizon ; and soon after the whole hull drew up, though to the naked eye she was a mere speck upon the very verge of the mighty surface of blue sea, upon which the sunshine gleamed and faded with the sinking and rising of the light swell, like the fluctuating lustre in a moving sheet of shot silk. It was now seen that she was heading dead for us, and Sir Mordaunt sent his niece below to tell Lady Brookes that a steamer was coming our way. ' How shall we convey...

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