Robinson Crusoe - In Words of One Syllable
by Mary Godolphin
Previous Part     1  2
Home - Random Browse

I took with me as large a store of tools, clothes, and such like goods as I had room for, and men of skill in all kinds of trades, to live in the isle. When we set sail, we had a fair wind for some time, but one night the mate, who was at the watch, told me he saw a flash of fire, and heard a gun go off. At this we all ran on deck, from whence we saw a great light, and as there was no land that way, we knew that it must be some ship on fire at sea, which could not be far off, for we heard the sound of the gun.

The wind was still fair, so we made our way for the point where we saw the light, and in half an hour, it was but too plain that a large ship was on fire in the midst of the broad sea. I gave the word to fire off five guns, and we then lay by, to wait till break of day. But in the dead of the night, the ship blew up in the air, the flames shot forth, and what there was left of the ship sank. We hung out lights, and our guns kept up a fire all night long, to let the crew know that there was help at hand.

At eight o'clock the next day we found, by the aid of the glass, that two of the ship's boats were out at sea, quite full of men. They had seen us, and had done their best to make us see them, and in half an hour we came up with them.

It would be a hard task for me to set forth in words the scene which took place in my ship, when the poor French folk (for such they were) came on board. As to grief and fear, these are soon told—sighs, tears, and groans make up the sum of them—but such a cause of joy as this was, in sooth, too much for them to bear, weak and all but dead as they were.

Some would send up shouts of joy that rent the sky; some would cry and wring their hands as if in the depths of grief; some would dance, laugh, and sing; not a few were dumb, sick, faint, in a swoon, or half mad; and two or three were seen to give thanks to God.

In this strange group, there was a young French priest who did his best to soothe those round him, and I saw him go up to some of the crew, and say to them, "Why do you scream, and tear your hair, and wring your hands, my men? Let your joy be free and full, give it full range and scope, but leave off this trick of the hands, and lift them up in praise; let your voice swell out, not in screams, but in hymns of thanks to God, who has brought you out of so great a strait, for this will add peace to your joy."

The next day, they were all in a right frame of mind, so I gave them what stores I could spare, and put them on board a ship that we met with on her way to France, all save five who, with the priest, had a wish to join me.

But we had not set sail long, when we fell in with a ship that had been blown out to sea by a storm, and had lost her masts; and, worse than all, her crew had not had an ounce of meat or bread for ten days. I gave them all some food, which they ate like wolves in the snow, but I thought it best to check them, as I had fears that so much all at once would cause the death of some of them.

There were a youth and a young girl in the ship who the mate said he thought must be dead, but he had not had the heart to go near them, for the food was all gone. I found that they were faint for the want of it, and as it were in the jaws of death; but in a short time they both got well, and as they had no wish to go back to their ship, I took them with me. So now I had eight more on board my ship, than I had when I first set out.

In three months from the time when I left home, I came in sight of my isle, and I brought the ship safe up, by the side of the creek, which was near my old house.

I went up to Friday, to ask if he knew where he was. He took a look round him, and soon, with a clap of the hands, said "O yes! O there! O yes! O there!" Bye and bye, he set up a dance with such wild glee, that it was as much as I could do to keep him on deck. "Well, what think you, Friday?" said I; "shall we find those whom we left still here?—Shall we see poor old Jaf?" He stood quite mute for a while, but when I spoke of old Jaf (whose son Friday was), the tears ran down his face, and the poor soul was as sad as could be. "No, no," said he, "no more, no, no more."

As we caught sight of some men at the top of the hill, I gave word to fire three guns, to show that we were friends, and soon we saw smoke rise from the side of the creek. I then went on shore in a boat, with the priest and Friday, and hung out a white flag of peace. The first man I cast my eyes on at the creek, was my old friend Carl, who, when I was last on the isle, had been brought here in bonds.

I gave strict charge to the men in the boat not to go on shore, but Friday could not be kept back, for with his quick eye he had caught sight of old Jaf. It brought the tears to our eyes to see his joy when he met the old man. He gave him a kiss, took him up in his arms, set him down in the shade, then stood a short way off to look at him, as one would look at a work of art, then felt him with his hand, and all this time he was in full talk, and told him, one by one, all the strange tales of what he had seen since they had last met.

As to my friend Carl, he came up to me, and with much warmth shook my hands, and then took me to my old house, which he now gave up to me. I could no more have found the place, than if I had not been there at all. The rows of trees stood so thick and close, that the house could not be got at, save by such blind ways as none but those who made them could find out. "Why have you built all these forts?" said I. Carl told me that he felt sure I should say there was much need of them, when I heard how they had spent their time since they had come to the isle.

He brought twelve men to the spot where I stood, and said, "Sir, all these men owe their lives to you." Then, one by one, they came up to me, not as if they had been the mere crew of a ship, but like men of rank who had come to kiss the hand of their king.

The first thing was to bear all that had been done in the isle since I had left it. But I must first state that, when we were on the point to set sail from the isle, a feud sprang up on board our ship, which we could not put down, till we had laid two of the men in chains. The next day, these two men stole each of them a gun and some small arms, and took the ship's boat, and ran off with it to join the three bad men on shore.

As soon as I found this out, I sent the long-boat on shore, with twelve men and the mate, and off they went to seek the two who had left the ship. But their search was in vain, nor could they find one of the rest, for they had all fled to the woods when they saw the boat. We had now lost five of the crew, but the three first were so much worse than the last two, that in a few days they sent them out of doors, and would have no more to do with them, nor would they for a long while give them food to eat.

So the two poor men had to live as well as they could by hard work, and they set up their tents on the north shore of the isle, to be out of the way of the wild men, who were wont to land on the east side. Here they built them two huts, one to lodge in, and one to lay up their stores in; and the men from Spain gave them some corn for seed, as well as some peas which I had left them. They soon learned to dig, and plant, and hedge in their land, in the mode which I had set for them, and in short, to lead good lives, so that I shall now call them the "two good men."

But when the three bad men saw, this, they were full of spite, and came one day to tease and vex them. They told them that the isle was their own, and that no one else had a right to build on it, if they did not pay rent. The two good men thought at first that they were in jest, and told them to come and sit down, and see what fine homes they had built, and say what rent they would ask.

But one of the three said they should soon see that they were not in jest, and took a torch in his hand, and put it to the roof of the but, and would have set it on fire, had not one of the two good men trod the fire out with his feet. The bad man was in such a rage at this, that he ran at him with a pole he had in his hand, and this brought on a fight, the end of which was that the three men had to stand off. But in a short time they came back, and trod down the corn, and shot the goats and young kids, which the poor men had got to bring up tame for their store.

One day when the two men were out, they came to their home, and said, "Ha! there's the nest, but the birds are flown." They then set to work to pull down both the huts, and left not a stick, nor scarce a sign on the ground to show where the tents had stood. They tore up, too, all the goods and stock that they could find, and when they had done this, they told it all to the men of Spain, and said, "You, sirs, shall have the same sauce, if you do not mend your ways."

They then fell to blows and hard words, but Carl had them bound in cords, and took their arms from them. The men of Spain then said they would do them no harm, and if they would live at peace they would help them, and that they should live with them as they had done till that time, but they could not give them back their arms for three or four months.

One night Carl—whom I shall call "the chief," as he took the lead of all the rest—felt a great weight on his mind, and could get no sleep, though he was quite well in health. He lay still for some time, but as he, did not feel at case, he got up, and took a look out. But as it was too dark to see far, and he heard no noise, he went back to his bed. Still it was all one, he could not sleep; and though he knew not why, his thoughts would give him no rest.

He then woke up one of his friends, and told him how it had been with him. "Say you so?" said he "What if there should be some bad plot at work near us!" They then set off to the top of the hill, where I was wont to go, and from thence they saw the light of a fire, quite a short way from them, and heard the sounds of men, not of one or two, but of a great crowd. We need not doubt that the chief and the man with him now ran back at once, to tell all the rest what they had seen; and when they heard the news, they could not be kept close where they were, but must all run out to see how things stood.

At last they thought that the best thing to do would be, while it was dark, to send old Jaf out as a spy, to learn who they were, and what they meant to do. When the old man had been gone an hour or two, he brought word back that he had been in the midst of the foes, though they had not seen him, and that they were in two sets or tribes who were at war, and had come there to fight. And so it was, for in a short time they heard the noise of the fight, which went on for two hours, and at the end, with three loud shouts or screams, they left the isle in their boats. Thus my friends were set free from all their fears, and saw no more of their wild foes for some time.

One day a whim took the three bad men that they would go to the main land, from whence the wild men came, and try if they could not seize some of them, and bring them home as slaves, so as to make them do the hard part of their work for them. The chief gave them all the arms and stores that they could want, and a large boat to go in, but when they bade them "God speed," no one thought that they would find their way back to the isle. But lo! in three weeks and a day, they did in truth come back. One of the two good men was the first to catch sight of them, and tell the news to his friends.

The men said that they had found the land in two days, and that the wild men gave them roots and fish to eat, and were so kind as to bring down eight slaves to take back with them, three of whom were men and five were girls. So they gave their good hosts an axe, an old key, and a knife, and brought off the slaves in their boat to the isle. As the chief and his friends did not care to wed the young girls, the five men who had been the crew of Paul's ship drew lots for choice, so that each had a wife, and the three men slaves were set to work for the two good men, though there was not much for them to do.

But one of them ran off to the woods, and they could not hear of him more. They had good cause to think that he found his way home, as in three or four weeks some wild men came to the isle, and when they had had their feast and dance, they went off in two days' time. So my friends might well fear that if this slave got safe home, he would be sure to tell the wild men that they were in the isle, and in what part of it they might be found. And so it came to pass, for in less than two months, six boats of wild men, with eight or ten men in each boat, came to the north side of the isle, where they had not been known to come up to that time.

The foe had brought their boats to land, not more than a mile from the tent of the two good men, and it was there that the slave who had run off had been kept. These men had the good luck to see the boats when they were a long way off, so that it took them quite an hour from that time to reach the shore.

My friends now had to think how that hour was to be spent. The first thing they did was to bind the two slaves that were left, and to take their wives, and as much of their stores as they could, to some dark place in the woods. They then sent a third slave to the chief and his men, to tell them the news, and to ask for help.

They had not gone far in the woods, when they saw, to their great grief and rage, that their huts were in flames, and that the wild men ran to and fro, like beasts in search of prey. But still our men went on, and did not halt, till they came to a thick part of the wood, where the large trunk of an old tree stood, and in this tree they both took their post. But they had not been there long, when two of the wild men ran that way, and they saw three more, and then five more, who all ran the same way, as if they knew where they were.

Our two poor men made up their minds to let the first two pass, and then take the three and the five in line, as they came up, but to fire at one at a time, as the first shot might chance to hit all three.

So the man who was to fire put three or four balls in his gun, and from a hole in the tree, took a sure aim, and stood still till the three wild men came so near that he could not miss them. They soon saw that one of these three was the slave that had fled from them, as they both knew him well, and they made up their minds that they would kill him, though they should both fire.

At the first shot two of the wild men fell dead, and the third had a graze on his arm, and though not much hurt, sat down on the ground with loud screams and yells. When the five men who came next, heard the sound of the gun and the slave's cries, they stood still at first, as if they were struck dumb with fright. So our two men both shot off their guns in the midst of them, and then ran up and bound them safe with cords.

They then went to the thick part of the wood, where they had put their wives and slaves, to see if all were safe there, and to their joy they found that though the wild men had been quite near them, they had not found them out. While they were here, the chief and his men came up, and told them that the rest had gone to take care of my old house and grove, in case the troop of wild men should spread so far that way.

They then went back to the burnt huts, and when they came in sight of the shore, they found that their foes had all gone out to sea. So they set to work to build up their huts, and as all the men in the isle lent them their aid, they were soon in a way to thrive once more. For five or six months they saw no more of the wild men. But one day a large fleet of more than a score of boats came in sight, full of men who had bows, darts, clubs, swords, and such like arms of war, and our friends were all in great fear.

As they came at dusk, and at the East side of the isle, our men had the whole night to think of what they should do. And as they knew that the most safe way was to hide and lie in wait, they first of all took down the huts which were built for the two good men, and drove their goats to the cave, for they thought the wild men would go straight there as soon as it was day, and play the old game.

The next day they took up their post with all their force at the wood, near the home of the two men, to wait for the foe. They gave no guns to the slaves, but each of them had a long staff with a spike at the end of it, and by his side an axe. There were two of the wives who could not be kept back, but would go out and fight with bows and darts.

The wild men came on with a bold and fierce mien, not in a line, but all in crowds here and there, to the point were our men lay in wait for them. When they were so near as to be in range of the guns, our men shot at them right and left with five or six balls in each charge. As the foe came up in close crowds, they fell dead on all sides, and most of those that they did not kill were much hurt, so that great fear and dread came on them all.

Our men then fell on them from three points with the butt end of their guns, swords, and staves, and did their work so well that the wild men set up a loud shriek, and flew for their lives to the woods and hills, with all the speed that fear and swift feet could help them to do. As our men did not care to chase them, they got to the shore where they had come to land and where the boats lay.

But their rout was not yet at an end, for it blew a great storm that day from the sea, so that they could not put off. And as the storm went on all that night, when the tide came up, the surge of the sea drove most of their boats so high on the shore, that they could not be got off save with great toil, and the force of the waves on the beach broke some of them to bits.

At break of day, our men went forth to find them, and when they saw the state of things, they got some dry wood from a dead tree, and set their boats on fire. When the foe saw this, they ran all through the isle with loud cries, as if they were mad, so that our men did not know at first what to do with them, for they trod all the corn down with their feet, and tore up the vines just as the grapes were ripe, and did a great deal of harm.

At last they brought old Jaf to them, to tell them how kind they would be to them, that they would save their lives, and give them part of the isle to live in, if they would keep in their own bounds, and that they should have corn to plant, and should make it grow for their bread. They were but too glad to have such good terms of peace, and they soon learnt to make all kinds of work with canes, wood, and sticks, such as chairs, stools, and beds, and this they did with great skill when they were once taught.

From this time till I came back to the isle my friends saw no more wild men. I now told the chief that I had not come to take off his men, but to bring more, and to give them all such things as they would want to guard their homes from foes, and cheer up their hearts.

The next day I made a grand feast for them all, and the ship's cook and mate came on shore to dress it. We brought out our rounds of salt beef and pork, a bowl of punch, some beer, and French wines; and Carl gave the cooks five whole kids to roast, three of which were sent to the crew on board ship, that they, on their part, might feast on fresh meat from shore.

I gave each of the men a shirt, a coat, a hat, and a pair of shoes, and I need not say how glad they were to meet with gifts so new to them. Then I brought out the tools, of which each man had a spade, a rake, an axe, a crow, a saw, a knife and such like things as well as arms, and all that they could want for the use of them.

As I saw there was a kind will on all sides, I now took on shore the youth and the maid whom we had brought from the ship that we met on her way to France. The girl had been well brought up, and all the crew had a good word for her. As they both had a wish to be left on the isle, I gave them each a plot of ground, on which they had tents and barns built.

I had brought out with me five men to live here, one of whom could turn his hand to all sorts of things, so I gave him the name of "Jack of all Trades."

One day the French priest came to ask if I would leave my man Friday here, for through him, he said, he could talk to the black men in their own tongue, and teach them the things of God. "Need I add," said he, "that it was for this cause that I came here?" I felt that I could not part with my man Friday for the whole world, so I told the priest that if I could have made up my mind to leave him here, I was quite sure that Friday would not part from me.

When I had seen that all things were in a good state on the isle, I set to work to put my ship to rights, to go home once more. One day, as I was on my way to it, the youth whom I had brought from the ship that was burnt, came up to me, and said, "Sir, you have brought a priest with you, and while you are here, we want him to wed two of us."

I made a guess that one of these must be the maid that I had brought to the isle, and that it was the wish of the young man to make her his wife. I spoke to him with some warmth in my tone, and bade him turn it well in his mind first, as the girl was not in the same rank of life as he had been brought up in. But he said, with a smile, that I had made a wrong guess, for it was "Jack of all Trades" that he had come to plead for. It gave me great joy to hear this, as the maid was as good a girl as could be, and I thought well of Jack; so on that day I gave her to him. They were to have a large piece of ground to grow their crops on, with a house to live in, and sheds for their goats.

The isle was now set out in this way: all the west end was left waste, so that if the wild men should land on it, they might come and go, and hurt no one. My old house I gave to the chief, with all its woods, which now spread out as far as the creek, and the south end was for the white men and their wives.

It struck me that there was one gift which I had not thought of, and that was the book of God's Word, which I knew would give to those who could feel the words in it, fresh strength for their work, and grace to bear the ills of life.

Now that I had been in the isle quite a month, I once more set sail on the fifth day of May; and all my friends told me that they should stay there till I came to fetch them.

When we had been out three days, though the sea was smooth and calm, we saw that it was quite black on the land side; and as we knew not what to make of it, I sent the chief mate up the main mast to find out with his glass what it could be. He said it was a fleet of scores and scores of small boats, full of wild men who came fast at us with fierce looks.

As soon as we got near them, I gave word to furl all sails and stop the ship, and as there was nought to fear from them but fire, to get the boats out and man them both well, and so wait for them to come up.

In this way we lay by for them, and in a short time they came up with us; but as I thought they would try to row round and so close us in, I told the men in the boats not to let them come too near. This, though we did not mean it, brought us to a fight with them, and they shot a cloud of darts at our boats. We did not fire at them, yet in half an hour they went back out to sea, and then came straight to us, till we were so near that they could hear us speak.

I bade my men keep close, so as to be safe from their darts if they should shoot, and get out the guns. I then sent Friday on deck, to call out to them in their own tongue and ask what they meant. It may be that they did not know what he said, but as soon as he spoke to them I heard him cry out that they would shoot. This was too true, for they let fly a thick cloud of darts, and to my great grief poor Friday fell dead, for there was no one else in their sight. He was shot with three darts, and three more fell quite near him, so good was their aim.

I was so mad with rage at the loss of my dear Friday, that I bade the men load five guns with small shot, and four with large, and we gave them such a fierce fire that in all their lives they could not have seen one like it. Then a rare scene met our eyes: dread and fear came on them all, for their boats, which were small, were split and sunk—three or four by one shot. The men who were not dead had to swim, and those who had wounds were left to sink, for all the rest got off as fast as they could. Our boat took up one poor man who had to swim for his life, when the rest had fled for the space of half an hour. In three hours' time, we could not see more than three or four of their boats, and as a breeze sprang up we set sail.

At first the man whom we took on board would not eat or speak, and we all had fears lest he should pine to death. But when we had taught him to say a few words, he told us that his friends—the wild men-had come out with their kin to have a great fight, and that all they meant was to make us look at the grand sight. So it was for this that poor Friday fell! He who had been as good and true to me as man could be! And now in deep grief I must take my leave of him.

We went on with a fair wind to All Saints' Bay, and here I found a sloop that I had brought with me from home, that I might send men and stores for the use of my friends in the isle. I taught the mate how to find the place, and when he came back, I found that he had done so with ease.

One of our crew had a great wish to go with the sloop, and live on the isle, if the chief would give him land to plant. So I told him he should go by all means, and gave him the wild man for his slave. I found, too, that a man who had come with his wife and child and three slaves, to hide from the king of Spain, would like to go, if he could have some land there, though he had but a small stock to take with him; so I put them all on board the sloop, and saw them safe out of the bay, on their way to the isle. With them I sent three milch cows, five calves, a horse and a colt, all of which, as I heard, went safe and sound.

I have now no more to say of my isle, as I had left it for the last time, but my life in lands no less far from home was not yet at an end. From the Bay of All Saints we went straight to the Cape of Good Hope. Here I made up my mind to part from the ship in which I had come from the Isle, and with two of the crew to stay on land, and leave the rest to go on their way. I soon made friends with some men from France, as well as from my own land, and two Jews, who had come out to the Cape to trade.

As I found that some goods which I had brought with me from home were worth a great deal, I made a large sum by the sale of them. When we had been at the Cape of Good Hope for nine months, we thought that the best thing we could do would be to hire a ship, and sail to the Spice Isles, to buy cloves, so we got a ship, and men to work her, and set out. When we had bought and sold our goods in the course of trade, we came back, and then set out once more; so that, in short, as we went from port to port, to and fro, I spent, from first to last, six years in this part of the world.

At length we thought we would go and seek new scenes where we could get fresh gains. And a strange set of men we at last fell in with, as you who read this tale will say when you look at the print in front of this page.

When we had put on shore, we made friends with a man who got us a large house, built with canes, and a small kind of hut of the same near it. It had a high fence of canes round it to keep out thieves, of whom, it seems, there are not a few in that land. The name of the town was Ching, and we found that the fair or mart which was kept there would not be held for three or four months. So we sent our ship back to the Cape, as we meant to stay in this part of the world for some time, and go from place to place to see what sort of a land it was, and then come back to the fair at Ching.

We first went to a town which it was well worth our while to see, and which must have been, as near as I can guess, quite in the heart of this land. It was built with straight streets which ran in cross lines.

But I must own, when I came home to the place of my birth, I was much struck to hear my friends say such fine things of the wealth and trade of these parts of the world, for I saw and knew that the men were a mere herd or crowd of mean slaves. What is their trade to ours, or to that of France and Spain? What are their ports, with a few junks and barks, to our grand fleets? One of our large ships of war would sink all their ships, one line of French troops would beat all their horse, and the same may be said of their ports, which would not stand for one month such a siege as we could bring to bear on them.

In three weeks more we came to their chief town. When we had laid in a large stock of tea, shawls, fans, raw silks, and such like goods, we set out for the north. As we knew we should run all kinds of risks on our way, we took with us a strong force to act as a guard, and to keep us from the wild hordes who rove from place to place all through the land. Some of our men were Scots, who had come out to trade here, and had great wealth, and I was glad to join them, as it was by no means the first time that they had been here.

We took five guides with us, and we all put our coin in one purse, to buy food on the way, and to pay the men who took charge of us. One of us we chose out for our chief, to take the lead in case we should have to fight for our lives; and when the time came, we had no small need of him. On the sides of all the roads, we saw men who made pots, cups, pans, and such like ware, out of a kind of earth, which is, in fact, the chief trade in this part of the world.

One thing, the guide said he would show me, that was not to be seen in all the world else (and this, in good sooth, I could not sneer at, as I had done at most of the things I had seen here), and this was a house that was built of a kind of ware, such as most plates and cups are made of. "How big is it?" said I, "can we take it on the back of a horse?" "On a horse!" said the guide, "why, two score of men live in it." He then took us to it, and I found that it was in truth a large house, built with lath and the best ware that can be made out of earth. The sun shone hot on the walls, which were quite white, hard, and smooth as glass, with forms on them in blue paint. On the walls of the rooms were small square tiles of the best ware, with red, blue, and green paint of all shades and hues, in rare forms, done in good taste; and as they use the same kind of earth to join the tiles with, you could not see where the tiles met. The floors of the rooms were made of the same ware, and as strong as those we have at home; and the same may be said of the roofs, but they were of a dark shade. If we had had more time to spare, I should have been glad to have seen more of this house, for there were the ponds for the fish, the walks, the yards, and courts, which were all made in the same way. This odd sight kept me from my friends for two hours, and when I had come up to them, I had to pay a fine to our chief, as they had to wait so long.

In two days more we came to the Great Wall, which was made as a fort to keep the whole land safe,—and a great work it is. It goes in a long track for miles and miles, where the rocks are so high and steep that no foe could climb them; or, if they did, no wall could stop them. The Great Wall is as thick as it is high, and it turns and winds in all sorts of ways.

We now saw, for the first time, some troops of the hordes I spoke of, who rove from place to place, to rob and kill all whom they meet with. They know no real mode of war, or skill in fight. Each has a poor lean horse, which is not fit to do good work. Our chief gave some of us leave to go out and hunt as they call it, and what was it but to hunt sheep! These sheep are wild and swift of foot, but they will not run far, and you are sure of sport when you start in the chase. They go in flocks of a score, or two, and like true sheep, keep close when they fly. In this sort of chase it was our hap to meet with some two score of the wild hordes, but what sort of prey they had come to hunt I know not. As soon as they saw us, one of them blew some loud notes on a kind of horn, with a sound that was quite new to me. We all thought this was to call their friends round them, and so it was, for in a short time a fresh troop of the same size came to join them; and they were all, as far as we could judge, a mile off. One of the Scots was with us, and as soon as he heard the horn, he told us that we must lose no time, but draw up in line, and charge them at once. We told him we would, if he would take the lead.

They stood still, and cast a wild gaze at us, like a mere crowd, drawn up in no line; but as soon as they saw us come at them, they let fly their darts, which did not hit us, for though their aim was true, they fell short of us. We now came to a halt to fire at them, and then went at full speed to fall on them sword in hand, for so the bold Scot that led us, told us to do.

As soon as we came up to them, they fled right and left. The sole stand made was by three of them, who had a kind of short sword in their hands, and bows on their backs, and who did all they could to call all the rest back to them. The brave Scot rode close up to them, and with his gun threw one off his horse, shot the next, and the third ran off, and this was the end of our fight. All the bad luck we met with, was that the sheep that we had in chase got off. We had not a man hurt, but as for the foe, five of them were dead, and not a few had wounds, while the rest fled at the mere noise of our guns.

Thus we went on our way from town to town, and now and then met some of these wild hordes, whom we had to fight and I need not add that each time we had the best of the fray. At last we made our way to the chief town of the North Seas at the end of a year, five months and three days, from the time when we left Ching. When I had been there six weeks, and had bought some more goods; I took ship and set sail for the land of my birth, which I had left, this time, for ten years, nine months and three days.

And now I must bring this tale of my life to a close, while at the age of three score years and twelve, I feel that the day is at hand, when I shall go forth on that sea of peace and love, which has no waves or shores but those of bliss that knows no end.


Previous Part     1  2
Home - Random Browse