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ways in silence and determinedly, while | Chaves began to play. In less than ten M'Gibbon threw very slowly but with ill. minutes M'Gibbon was without house or concealed impatience, gloating over each home, and at last seemed to realize his turn of the dice. Each poted down his foolhardiness for he put his hands to gains.
his head, and did not speak. At length, after a run of ill luck, the Quem tem quatro e gasta cinco, nao Scotchman's impatience culminated in a ha mister bolsa nem bolsinho” (He that hoarse cry of disappointment, and throw-bath four and spends five, hath no need ing down the dice-box, he rose, went to a of a purse), soliloquized the Portuguese side-table, and helped himself to spirits. tauntingly. The Portuguese sat with his legs stretched "Once more !" shouted M'Gibbon furi. out before him, slowly adding up w!iat he ously, and seized the dice. had won. Suddenly M'Gibbon returned The Portuguese laughed. “Your grace," to the table." Again,” he cried in Portu- he said, in his own language, "forgets guese, and pushed the box over to his that you have no house, and that you are opponent, who nodded, and began to play. as yet indebted to your humble servant to Nothing was now beard for a long time the extent of four thousand mil reis – but the almost continual rattle of the dice. enormous, to pay which you have nothAt last the Portuguese, in his turn, threw ing - nothing. Stop,” he added suddown the box, and taking up a piece of denly; and fixing his eyes on his oppopaper, added some figures to it hastily, nent as if to observe bis state closely; and threw it over to M'Gibbon, whose "yes, you have one thing and as he face paled.
leaned over the table to whisper, his eyes • Fifteen hundred mil reis !” he mur-fairly sparkled, and he lost his cool manmured to himself in English.
ner; "you have one thing, - a sua irma" “E verdade" (It is true), said the Portu. (your sister). guese.
James started to his feet; and if the James started. Fifteen hundred mil Portuguese had not been engrossed by reis in the Portuguese currency of the the thought of what he had said, he would coast was over £300 sterling; and where have surely heard the noise the listener had M'Gibbon such a sum? Yet, as the made. two talked, he gathered that there had Not that the lad had understood at once been many payments to account in goods. all that the scoundrel meant. It was only After a while the play recommenced, the as, sinking down again, he stared with Portuguese taking the whole matter light-fixed eyes through a chink between the ly, and seasoning the course of the dice rattans, and listened, that he comprewith reflections in his own language. And hended the scoundrel's idea pf playing he could afford to do so; for fortune that M Gibbon for the possession of Margaret. night went over to his side so completely, That the brother did not at once take and remained there so long, that the debt the brute by the throat astounded James; mounted up and up, until, for the second that he should hesitate even for a second time, he refused to play on, though was inexplicable to the lad; and he was MGibbon, fairly exasperated with his ill about to rise and rush forth to denounce luck, challenged him to do so, and ended the villain himself when M'Gibbon began by throwing it in his teeth that he would to speak. What he said James could not not play because he was afraid of not well catch, he spoke so low; but the inbeing paid.
terval gave the lad time to reflect that his “ Contas de perto e amigos de longe ” best policy, for Margaret's sake, at present (Short reckonings make long friends), re- was silence; so he lay still, strained every plied Chaves coolly.
nerve, and listened again. “How much is it now?" asked M Gib. “ You do not know what she will say or bon, grinding his teeth.
do," at length spoke the Portuguese, in “Quarto mil” (four thousand).
reply to the trader; "and your grace for"My house is worth the money,” re- gets you have no place for her. Mal via ao turned M Gibbon. “I will play you for fuso quando a barba nao anda em cima' it.”
(Alas for the spindle when the beard is The Portuguese was surprised in spite not over it)! “She will be better off with of his self-control. Here was a man ready me than without me;" and he laughed. to risk his credit and very means of ex- James bit his tongue to keep himself istence on the turn of the dice. Well, if quiet. The savage beast! to speak so of he were willing, he should not be dis- Margaret — his Margaret! He listened appointed. And with renewed interest again.
But the voice of the Portuguese sank up to the verandah again. He saw in the to a whisper; and after some time, the darkness that M'Gibbon was lying sound lad, to his utter dismay, saw the two men asleep in a canvas chair, but that other. deliberately set themselves to play; And wise the room appeared to be empty. now again the dice rattled in the box, as Suddenly the voice of the Portuguese the bearded scoundrels bent over the ta sounded, and James saw him bend-over ble to watch their course, by the yellow the sleeping man. light of the smoking wick, which left all “Do coiro lhe sahem as correias ” (The but the space about them in deep shad. thongs come out of bis own skin), he mut.
At last the Portuguese rose with a tered, as he looked at him; and then he triumphant smile.
turned, and James heard his footsteps as “ By G-, you shall not have her!” he went into the inner part of the house. cried M‘Gibbon, with compunction in his It was now near morning, and the lad voice, and also rising. But the Portu- got away as quickly as possible, his guese looked at him; and there was a thoughts full of alarm and rage.
He came devilry in his look which showed that he to the spot where the slave was chained, meant the chance of the dice to be kept. and turned to look at him: the man was
“ Once more,” groaned M'Gibbon, sit. dead. ting down. “I will work any debt out All was quiet at the factory when he every real of it, I will."
got back to it. Margaret was apparently “ You will give me your sister,” replied asleep, and the two guards were watchful. the Portuguese. “ Moreover, I will be But, exhausted though he was by the exliberal. You shall have five hundred in citement he had gone through, James cash for yourself, provided you leave could not rest. His inind was torn by Donde for good,” he added quickly and doubt, and he paced up and down the decidedly.
verandah for the remainder of the night. M'Gibbon's eyes glistened; the all- That instant flight was necessary for absorbing spirit of the gambler was strong Margaret's safety was distinct and clear within him.
to hiin. But how, and in what direction ? “But,” went on the Portuguese, “the Even if she could get clear away, the sta. sailor must be got rid of.”
tions along the coast belonged to Portu“Must he!”ground out James between guese, who would be certain to favor their his teeth; and then he grew cold at heart countryman Chaves. as he heard the details of a plan dastardly M'Gibbon did not return until late on in its cool brutality.
the next day, and went straight to his own “Then you will acquaint the Senhora part of the house. Of this James was Margarida with the regard of your humble glad, for by that time he had made up his servant,” concluded Chaves.
mind to a course of action, and he sought " And if - if she does not does not Margaret. He told her what he had been consent? stammered M.Gibbon, glanc- a witness of on the previous night as ing nervously at him, and stopping short. softly as possible, and tried to soothe
“What have you to do with that?” her agitation and alarm as she heard it; returned Chaves quickly: “She is not but in vain. She appealed wildly to him yours. Come, if you will leave Donde at to save her, and cast herself at his once you shall have a thousand mil reis. feet in an agony of appreliension. FearI have five hundred by me,” and he made ful of discovery, he hushed her cries and a move to leave the room.
raised her tenderly, this coarse lad M‘Gibbon did not stop him, and he and told her of his plan of escape to went away. When he had gone, the ex. Kabooka, if she would trust herself with trader rose and walked unsteadily towards him. Or would she risk an appeal to her the edge of the verandah, where James brother's better nature ? For reply, she was; and the lad had only just time to clung the closer to James, and he then and glide away into the darkness before the there bade her be ready at a moment's man put aside the blind and stood looking notice. “ It shall not cost you a thought," out into the night until the Portuguese he cried, “ if you can only bear up against returned, when he once more sat down. the fatigue." And then he gently ihrust
The blind remained on one side, and her into her room, as he heard the trader James did not dare to venture near the call loudly for him. little stream of light that shone on the " Here, you, Barker,” said that ruffian. ground; and he waited where he was un- You're due a month's notice or a month's til he saw the lamp burn low, flicker, and wages. I give you the cash, and you can then go out, when he ventured to creep go as soon as you can get away.”
James's heart gave a sudden bound. be discovered, to reach his old factory in He knew by the offer that the money of safety. He quietly summoned the head the Portuguese had been accepted, but he boat-boy, José, and bade him have his managed to stammer out an expression of crew in readiness that night, and the surprise at his own dismissal.
heavy surf-boat hauled close down to the "You must see,” returned M'Gibbon, water's edge, with mast stepped and sail "that I have done no trade here for bent; and to insure his orders being carmonths; and therefore I can't afford to ried out, he gave him a piece of cloth for keep you, and feed you. The long and each of his boys, and several yards of short of it is, I won't; and the sooner you saved list for himself, the last there was go the better. No, I've no fault to find in the factory. He then stowed away in with you; but don't you see, Jim, I'm the boat's locker with his own hands a pretty well ruined already by this d little meat, some loaves of bread, a hole," and he turned away. • You can breaker of water, and a small keg of rum have a boat and the boys to take you for the boys. Whilst he was doing this where you like,” he added, turning back. they came trooping down to the beach; And if you wish to go home, there's a and he gathered from their talk, and the steamer calling at your old place in three alertness with which they got the boat days' time. Eh, what do you say now?” ready, that they were as glad to leave
A gleam of hope sprang up suddenly Donde as himself. This, although they within James's breast. One difficulty were not natives of the place, was strange ; seemed almost dispelled — the difficully and he questioned José, who suddenly beof getting clear away. To conceal his came cautious, and would not say more joy, be pretended indifference to his own than that the captain," Jimmy Jim" dismissal ; and M'Gibbon, evidently the name James went by — did well to go pleased at the prospect of getting rid of away. him so easily, invited him into his room “Why?" asked James. to take a matabicho, or “kill the worm, José 'shrugged his shoulders, and a and even
went the length of informing light came into his black eyes, but he him, privately and in confidence, that he only grumbled, “Despacha, despacha, had sold the factory and its contents to senhor.” And with this answer James, the Portuguese, and was preparing to though puzzled, had to be content. It leave the place shortly with his sister, was so far lucky that the men were willwhich was the reason why James had to ing to go. go.
All the following day M'Gibbon did not James made no remark, but swallowed stir out of the factory, much to James's his liquor, and said he would go and look dismay, who apprehended a visit from the out the boat-boys, and give them their ra- Portuguese and what his sharp eyes tions, so that they might be able to start might discover. But as the hours wore when wanted.
on nobody came, and after his dinner the M'Gibbon consented to this, and the trader drew his chair close up to a table, two men parted on good terms, James put thereon spirits and water, and then longing in his heart to tell his late master proceeded to smoke in silence. He had what a dastardly coward he was.
not seen Margaret that day, nor had he The journey from Donde to Kabooka once asked for her. usually necessitated the use of both boat In this way he sat for some hours by and haınmock: the boat for the first part, himself, during which James kept a diswhere it was difficult to go by land on ac- creet watch upon him from outside the count of the bad character of the natives, door of the room, turning in his walk who were treacherous; and the hammock along the verandah so as to be able to for the second part, some sixty miles from eye him through the trellis-work of the a solitary station, inhabited by a Portu- upper part of the room without exciting guese, where bearers could be procured. his suspicion. James would fain have gone altogether by But M'Gibbon had none, and towards land for the sake of the increased speed; midnight his bushy red beard sank on but he hesitated, for Margaret's safety, to his breast, the pipe he had been smoking take the risk. Moreover it would be dropped from his band, and he sank backeasier to get her away in a boat with him ward in his chair asleep. After gazing at unperceived ; and he trusted to the start him for some minutes to make sure of he might have before her absence should him, James judged that now the time for
fight had arrived. Before another sun * The Coast expression for a drink.
had set it might be too late. Therefore he went softly along to Margaret's room mast, but it had broken too short off to and tapped gently at her door. She was admit of a repair that would stand the ready, and opened it at once; and though pressure of the sail, so the boys unshipped she was pale and distressed with waiting, it, and took to their oars, pulling a long, James was glad to feel that there was that slow stroke hour after hour until well in her manner, as she put her hand in towards noon, when the sun being most his, which betokened her resolution. He powerful they laid in their oars, and ate took the pillows and blankets from her greedily of the cassada meal and ground bed and then hurried her down to the nuts with which they had furnished thembeach. José and his crew at a signal fol- selves, washed down with a little water. lowed swiftly from the hut in which they James would fain have seen them eat lived, the impassive negroes luckily not something more substantial, for with the taking any particular notice of the white fall of the mast he had to depend entirely woman, to whose presence they had be. upon them for the further progress of the come accustomed. Indeed they were too | boat. He served them out a cupful of eager to be off.
rum apiece, and they fell to work again, Of late the trader had sent away most singing cheerily, as they rowed, a song of the factory servants, so there was no led by José. watch kept, and no onlooker saw the boat But as the afternoon drew to a close, launched into the water that lapped upon the vigor of their strokes, instead of inthe beach. James wished the moonlight creasing with the cooler air, died away, had not been so brilliant, but the late and James, distressed himself
, could not storm had cleared the sky.
help them. For the heat out on the He arranged the pillows in the narrow smooth rollers, at first without shade, and stern of the boat, and then, taking Mar- latterly without a breath of wind, had garet in his arms, carried her through the been almost unendurable, and even Mar. water. The boys then put their shoulder garet, though she had been sheltered by to the craft, and in a few seconds she the sail, which James had spread over the floated, and jumping into her they gave stern of the boat, lay pale and exhausted. way, silently at James's warning, but with Suddenly José cried," "Olha, Senhor!” a will, stimulated by his encouraging and pointed to the north-west, where, far promises.
away in the sky, and just above the horiIndeed, so smartly did the heavy boat zon as yet, stretched a long line of dense start forward under their strokes, that in black clouds. a quarter of an hour she was well into the It was a tornado, or rainstorm, coming neck of water that formed the opening towards them, and at any rate would give into the sea, and James, looking back, them relief; so they waited for it, the could see no sign of life or movement boat dipping its bows to the loud swell of upon the beach. So far he had been the sea. On it came, increasing in size lucky, and had no need of the rifle con- and obscuring the half of the heavens cealed beneath the blankets. Lifting the with an inky lining, and dotting the surlatter, he folded them tenderly round his face of the sea with little splashes of white companion, and she looked up into his foam, which were instantly beaten down face and thanked him sweetly - by which by sheets of hissing rain. Rapidly it he was more than satisfied. And now the caught up to the boat, and for nearly half boat, leaving the shelter of the bay, began an hour nothing could be seen overhead to feel the huge masses of sea as they and all around but the great black cloud passed beneath her, and shortly the roar, and the white tops of the waves breaking ing of the surf along the open shore of before its steady rushing wind. Then the coast was heard, and the white-crested the storm passed over to the south-east, waves were seen tumbling and bursting on having cooled the air and refreshed the the beach. But the boat's head was turned crew, who resumed their oars. seawards, and having gained a sufficient Towards the night, which was cloudy, offing, the lug.sail was set to a favorable they edged the boat near the low, barren breeze, as against a strong current run- shore of the part of the coast they were ning to the north. For the rest of the off, until the sandy beach, with the great night the boat made fair way, rolling to rolling breakers, could again be seen. the send of the waves; but just at the Then they cast a large stone, fastened to first break of day, without the slightest a rope, into the sea, which brought the warning, the mast snapped by the thwart. boat's head to the rollers, and she rode at James roused the sleeping boys, cleared ease. James did not hinder them, for he the wreck, and did his best to splice the thought the position of the boat secure
enough, and the men were so utterly done for the land journey before the noon of up that they could row no more.
the third day; but in spite of all the vigor Indeed, once anchored, they stretched the boys could put forth — and to the themselves along the bottom of the boat poor fellows' credit they rowed most and along the thwarts, and became obliv. stanchly — hour after hour dragged away, ious, wrapped in that deep sleep common and night had almost come again before to negroes. Towards midnight James, the boat, after a brief struggle with the wearied, also fell asleep. How long he sea, buried its nose in the sand of the slept he knew not; but he suddenly be beach at the base of a great bluff, shaped came conscious that he heard Margaret's in the fancied resemblance to the head of voice, which made him broad awake at a snake. James left the boys by their
He looked over the side of the craft, which they drew up on the beach, boat, and his eyes encountered a sight and gave them the remainder of the spirthat made his heart stand still. By the its in the keg; and so pleased were they light allowed by the clouds he saw that with the present, that they immediately they were surrounded on both sides by forgot all their past troubles, and set breakers - great curling masses of water, themselves down in a circle on the sand whose crests shone phosphorescent and to finish it, oblivious of him and his compale, and whose sides were moving sea- panion. caverns, until they suddenly toppled over Owing to the increasing darkness the and dissolved in long lines of white surf. arrival of the boat had not been noticed A kolemma, or sudden rise of the surf, by any one on shore, and when James had taken place with the wind, and the entered the factory, which was situated boat had drifted into too shallow water. round a corner of the great cliff that rose It was a mere chance that right ahead of out of the sea, he found it tenanted by a it there was more depth than on both single snuff-colored half-bred, with unmissides; so that, while. all around was white takable wool on his little round head, water, ahead the rollers as yet passed by which he scratched sleepily, as he wel. it unbroken.
comed James in Portuguese, evidently James perceived that the safety of the not exactly understanding where he had boat was a matter of moments, and, hold come from. ing on to the gunwale of the pitching But when this youth perceived Mar. crast, crept forward and roused the crew, garet, who had at first remained outside who leisurely took up the stone and pulled the door, his surprise knew no bounds. ahead; and so sound asleep had they He leaped clear into the air with astonbeen, that it was not until a line of foain ishment, and with difficulty recovering, rose high right before them, and a roller stood gazing at her open-mouthed. trembled for a moment, and then burst, So fair a creature, this poor half negro, nearly swamping the boat, that they half Portuguese, had never seen or dreamt seemed to realize their danger, and gave of. way with all their strength.
And she was different from the brown. But so soon as they were out of the eyed, woolly-headed mulatto girls he had peril, and into deeper water, they shipped known in his rare visits to the town of St. their oars, and prepared to let down the Paul de Loanda, or even to the ivory. stone again. He was powerless to pre tinted, black-eyed Portuguese ladies he vent them, but he resolved that the boat bad seen in that city, as, lying back in should not be allowed to drift again for their maxillas, they passed him by in the want of watching, and when she was baled streets. And, in truth, the three, as they dry he sat up in the stern-sheets with one stood in the lamplight of the rough wooden arin supporting Margaret. She had borne bungalow, made sufficiently distinct picup bravely so far, but the last shock had tures. James, tall, brown-haired, and res. been sudden; and when she chanced to olute; Margaret, pale and frightened; and look back at the wild seething sea behind in the background the short, squat figure her, which she had just escaped from, her and dun-colored face of the half-bred. heart failed her.
Never had he heard of the presence of So the second night passed, and day. the English woman on the coast, and now light, most welcome, broke again, when she stood before him. James set the crew to work, which warmed James took him by the arm and shook their stiffened limbs. He had hoped to him out of his trance, and then he became make Cobra Grande, the point of the at once all hospitality: He bustled about coast for which he aimed, and where he and roused out all his servants, and trusted to procure hammocks and bearers quickly bad the remainder of his late dic.