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nor I have any thing to do with them; they will be attended to by Doctor Johnson; but I've explained that matter before. As soon as things can be arranged—in a day or two, at farthest —you will go to sea for a three months' cruise, touching here, at the end of it, for your captain. Let me hear a good report of you, now, when you come back. At present, you will continue lying off and on the harbor. I will send you fresh provisions as soon as I can get them. There: I've nothing more to say; go forward to your stations."
And, without another word, he wheeled round to descend into the cabin. But hardly had he concluded, before the incensed men were dancing about him on every side, and calling upon him to lend an ear. Each one for himself denied the legality of what he proposed to do; insisted upon the necessity for taking the ship in; and finally gave him to understand, roughly and roundly, that go to sea in her they would not.
In the midst of this mutinous uproar, the alarmed consul stood fast by the scuttle. His tactics had been decided upon beforehand; indeed, they must have been concerted ashore, between him and the captain; for all he said, as he now hurried below, was, "Go forward, men; I'm through with you: you should have mentioned these matters before: my arrangements are concluded: go forward, I say; I've nothing more to say to you." And, drawing over the slide of the scuttle, he disappeared.
Upon the very point of following him down, the attention of the exasperated seamen was called off to a party who had just then taken the recreant Bungs in hand. Amid a shower of kicks and cuffs, the traitor was borne along to the forecastle, where—I forbear to relate what followed.
THE CONSUL'S DEPARTURE.
During the scenes just described, Doctor Johnson was engaged in examining the sick; of whom, as it turned out, all but two were to remain in the ship. He had evidently received his cue from Wilson.
One of the last called below into the cabin, just as the quarter-deck gathering dispersed, I came on deck quite incensed. My lameness, which, to tell the truth, was now much better, was put down as, in a great measure, affected; and my name was on the list of those who would be fit for any duty in a day or two. This was enough. As for Doctor Long Ghost, the shore physician, instead of extending to him any professional sympathy, had treated him very cavalierly. To a certain extent, therefore, we were now both bent on making common cause with the sailors.
I must explain myself here. All we wanted was to have the ship snugly anchored in Papeetee Bay; entertaining no doubt that, could this be done, it would in some way or other peaceably lead to our emancipation. "Without a downright mutiny, there was but one way to accomplish this: to induce the men to refuse all further duty, unless it were to work the vessel in. The only difficulty lay in restraining them within proper bounds. Nor was it without certain misgivings, that I found myself so situated, that I must necessarily link myself, however guardedly, with such a desperate company; and in an enterprise too, of which it was hard to conjecture what might be the result. But any thing like neutrality was out of the question; and unconditional submission was equally so.
On going forward, we found them ten times more tumultuous than ever. After again restoring some degree of tranquillity, we once more urged our plan of quietly refusing duty, and awaiting the result. At first, few would hear of it; but in the end, a good number were convinced by our representations. Others held out. Nor were those who thought with us, in all things to be controlled.
Upon Wilson's coming on deck to enter his boat, he was beset on all sides; and, for a moment, I thought the ship would be seized before his very eyes.
"Nothing more to say to you, men; my arrangements are made. Go forward, where you belong. I'll take no insolence;" and, in a tremor, Wilson hurried over the side in the midst of a volley of execrations.
Shortly after his departure, the mate ordered the cook and steward into his boat; and saying that he was going to see how the captain did, left us, as before, under the charge of Bembo.
At this time we were lying becalmed, pretty close in with the land (having gone about again), our main-topsail flapping against the mast with every roll.
The departure of the consul and Jermin was followed by a scene absolutely indescribable. The sailors ran about deck like madmen; Bembo, all the while, leaning against the taffrail by himself, smoking his heathenish stone pipe, and never interfering.
The cooper, who that morning had got himself into a fluid of an exceedingly high temperature, now did his best to regain the favor of the crew. "Without distinction of party," he called upon all hands to step up, and partake of the contents of his bucket.
But it was quite plain that, before offering to intoxicate others, he had taken the wise precaution of getting well tipsy himself. He was now once more happy in the affection of his shipmates, who, one and all, pronounced him sound to the kelson.
The Pisco soon told j and, with great difficulty, we restrained a party in the very act of breaking into the after-hold in pursuit of more.
All manner of pranks were now played.
"Mast-head, there! what d'ye see V9 bawled Beauty, hailing the main-truck through an enormous copper tunnel. "Stand by for stays," roared Flash Jack, hauling off with the cook's axe, at the fastenings of the main-stay. "Looky out for 'quails!" shrieked the Portuguese, Antone, darting a handspike through the cabin sky-light. And "Heave round cheerly, men," sung out Navy Bob, dancing a hornpipe on the forecastle.
THE SECOND NIGHT OFF PAPEETEE.
Toward sunset, the mate came off, singing merrily, in the stern of his boat; and in attempting to climb up the side, succeeded in going plump into the water. He was rescued by the steward, and carried across the deck with many moving expressions of love for his bearer. Tumbled into the quarterboat, he soon fell asleep, and waking about midnight, somewhat sobered, went forward among the men. Here, to prepare for what follows, we must leave him for a moment.
It was now plain enough, that Jermin was by no means unwilling to take the Julia to sea; indeed, there was nothing he so much desired; though what his reasons were, seeing our situation, we could only conjecture. Nevertheless, so it was; and having counted much upon his rough popularity with the men to reconcile them to a short cruise under him, he had consequently been disappointed in their behavior. Still, thinking that they would take a different view of the matter, when they came to know what fine times he had in store for them, he resolved upon trying a little persuasion.
So on going forward, he put his head down the forecastle scuttle, and hailed us all quite cordially, inviting us down into the cabin; where, he said, he had something to make merry withal. Nothing loth, we went; and throwing ourselves along the transom, waited for the steward to serve us.
As the can circulated, Jermin, leaning on the table and occupying the captain's arm-chair secured to the deck, opened his