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meeting in opposite directions, revealed my fears in my face, and are very ugly things to as the coxswain called out, come across. The shock we “Don't you be afraid, Mr sustained fairly started five Jackson ; I'll look after you." bolts of our main chains, and As it was impossible to get on strained several of the planks. with safety through the squall, The sail was shortened in a we determined to make for the trice, and a large hawser passed shore again. over one of the tops, and made As we neared it, I stood up fast on either side to keep the to be ready to disembark, and masts from going overboard. the Doctor's mate did likewise ;
At Plymouth my real adven- but in his anxiety to get first he tures may be said to have made a rush forwards, and as begun. The jolly - boat was he passed shoved me right over sent ashore with a hospital the gunwale into the water. party, and as I had asked leave Daniels, the coxswain, saw the to do so, I accompanied it. accident, and as the water When the men were landed, was deep, he was after me in I volunteered to remain and a moment; and despite the look after the boat. Permis- height and roughness of sion was readily accorded, but the waves, secured me and before the Doctor's mate left, brought me on land. I had he fumbled about in his pocket, some minutes in the water, and then inquired of me whether and felt half - drowned when I had brought any money from rescued, but they carried me the ship. I showed him my up to a small inn where I was two - pound note, which he quickly put into a warm bed directly “borrowed ” and then and my clothes laid out to dry. disappeared. I was delighted In the morning I was found to have a boat all to myself, curled up like a dog under the and began to pole about, never sheets in the middle of the bed dreaming of the tide, which fast asleep, and none the worse soon went out and deposited for my ducking. I was soon me helpless upon the mud. roused and dressed, and set There I remained until it came off to the boat with the Doctor's in again, and the Doctor's mate mate, who on the way patronisand boat's crew returned. It ingly informed me that after was getting dark when we paying for my night's lodging shoved off for the ship, and and giving Daniels something a squall was springing up. As in the way of a reward for havit freshened we found it diffi- ing saved my life, there was cult to make any way, and the nothing left of the two pounds. waves dashed in over the boat. Young and green as I was, I I began to feel nervous, the took all he said for gospel, and more so that the Doctor's mate agreed not to mention that he did not look as if he was pleased had kindly saved me the trouble with our position. I must have of laying out the money, should
I be asked any questions on friend the Doctor's mate and the ship.
With great fore- acquainted him of the fix I thought he enumerated a list was in. I must admit he looked of various articles in the pur- rather blank at the news, espechase of which I could always cially when I told him how account for the absence of my fickle my memory had been, money, without the slightest and that “apples " had alone necessity for revealing his share survived the wreck. I forget in the transaction. He spoke now what he called me, but so fast in order to settle the whatever it was, he instantly matter before we reached the relented and made me out an boat that I quite forgot the appropriate account of my one fictitious list, and only remem- night's expenditure. Apples bered the item “apples," upon naturally predominated, and to which he had laid some stress a most unwholesome extent, so as being a source of attraction much so, that the Captain on most fatal to the purses of sea- reading the list declined still faring youths.
to credit it, and became more As luck would have it, not inquisitive than ever. He let long after the event the Cap- me off at last with a caution, tain asked me what money I expressing also a suspicion that had on board.
there had been more hands than ‘None, sir," I replied, feel- one concerned in the mysteriing somewhat warm about the ous disappearance of the two cheeks, and conscious of the pounds. duty I owed to the Doctor's We had some queer characters mate.
in the Lapwing. Our boatswain “None ? said he. “ Did was one. A better warrant you not bring any with you officer never existed—when he to the ship?"
was sober,-nor a man more “Yes, sir.”
generally liked; but his bane “How much ?
bottle. On leaving “Two pounds."
Plymouth we took to cruising “And pray what have you off Guernsey, and were riding done with that sum already?” out a gale soon after our
“I-I bought some apples, arrival there, when the Spitfire sir," said I, getting very con- (Captain Robert Keen), an- . fused.
other man-of-war similar to “ Two pounds' worth of ourselves, dragged her anchor apples ! Nonsense, boy; im- and drifted alongside of us. possible. Now go below and We were in such close quarters make out a list of all you have that the muzzles of our guns bought with the money." got into her ports, and as we
I started off to obey him, rose and she fell, they were but deuce a bit would any- almost rent from their carthing come into my noddle but riages. Everything was in dire “apples,” so I went to my confusion, and all hands alive
save the boatswain, who, in a duct, he began to howl most fit of drunkenness, had taken piteously, and beseeched the up his position under the break Captain as he loved him to give of the quarter-deck, and in him “a dozen.” “Flog me, the presence of the Captain sir ; do, sir-I'm a scoundrel, was roaring out, “There she sir. Please give me a dozen, goes, grind away ! Look at sir.” He, like the boatswain, the there she goes.” Cap- was also a good and valuable tain Rotheram
in man when sober, and as this humour to be trifled with, and his first serious shorthad scarcely let go the flood- coming, the Captain ordered gates of his wrath upon the him to be tied to the rigging drunken boatswain, and got instead of granting his request. clear of the Spitfire, when, to I could not help thinking what the astonishment of everybody, his fate would have been under a stentorian voice from the Sir Edward Hamilton. ship commenced to hail the As the Prince of Wales was Captain of the other vessel. recruiting himself at Brighton, “ Captain Keen, sir,” shouted we were instructed to proceed he—“Captain Keen,” repeated there, and lay off to be in the voice again and again, the attendance on his Royal Highindividual addressed replying ness. Proceeding thither, we each time with fresh vigour. passed a sunken ship with her
Aren't you ashamed of your- top-gallant masts visible out self, sir?” it continued. “ Call of the water. On consequent yourself a sailor, sir ” Cap- inquiry, we were informed that
? tain Rotheram's amazement a boy had been saved out of the may be imagined as he ran wreck by some fishermen not from one place to another in long before, whose testimony vain trying to discover the afterwards went to prove that offender, shouting as he did the ship had been scuttled to 80, “I am not hailing you, gain the insurance, but not in Captain Keen ;
some sufficiently deep water. As damned blackguard whom I'll events showed,
showed, the Captain catch presently." After the had forgotten to insure his lapse of a few minutes the own neck also against the culprit was brought to light, possible consequences of his and turned out to be the villainy ; for he was convicted Captain's own servant, who, of the crime and hanged. following the boatswain's ex- When relieved from duty at ample, had been taking a drop Brighton, and during a Suntoo much, and was amusing day's cruise off Beachy Head, himself at his master's expense we ran aground upon the Soverby hailing the Spitfire from eign Shoal-an accident that the quarter-gallery of the Cap- was generally attributed by tain's cabin. When called upon the sailors to a sermon which to answer his absurd miscon- had been preached on board by a clergyman passenger. With the vessel went immediately considerable hard work and the into dock and was paid off. exertion of many ingenious Whilst occupied in getting the contrivances, we managed to ship off the Shoal, it was amusfloat her again, not, however, ing to see how some womenwithout springing a dangerous forty or fifty in number—who leak, through which it was were on board exerted themcalculated the water came in selves at the ropes. The rules at the rate of nine feet an hour. of the service were not always By unremitting labour at the stringently enforced, and Jack pumps, we kept her up long often smuggled his sweetheart enough to reach Sheerness, when on board for a short cruise.
Mr Coffin, the Commissioner about the last thing in the world at Sheerness, was an awful I should have cared to put into character in the eyes of most the hands of such a tyrant. youngsters in the Navy to My handwriting was of the whom he was known person- vilest possible description. ally or by repute, and no one Moreover, I had thoughtlessly cared to go before him twice. beguiled many an idle hour by It was my turn to wait upon scribbling all sorts of nonsense him, and I came in for a treat in its pages, adding frequently at once. Sir, you have come such remarks on general topics into my presence without a as a volatile mind might sugcocked hat in opposition to the gest to me, who was not parrules of the Lords Commis- ticularly versed in polite lansioners of the Admiralty. I guage.
I am not sure that the therefore decline to give you monotony of writing was not your pay." Captain Rotheram, occasionally broken by attempts who was present, took hold of at a higher order of art. Where my arm and led me up to an- an uncertainty existed, in some other Midshipman who sported places, about the spelling of a the article in requisition and word, I had adopted a method transferred it, pro tem, from of my own, and the whole thing his head to mine, and thus was as unfitted as could be for supplied the omission. The the inspection of such a man. Midshipman had a head as big Luckily for me, the style of again as mine, and the hat writing discouraged him from nearly proved an extinguisher; examining the subject - matter but it suited the purpose so
too minutely. One glance at far, and I returned to the Com- the first few leaves sufficed. missioner. Despite the cocked “If ever you come before me hat I was still in his clutches. again, sir, with such a book as He demanded my journal- this, I'll withhold your pay and
report you directly.” The great Admiral Earl St Vincent, who, man looked terrific, and I got perhaps from a somewhat simifarther into the cocked hat for lar temperament, not only cultirefuge, determining, as I quitted vated his intimacy, but perhis presence, to exercise my mitted him to indulge his ectalents for composition in a centricities without restraint. more private direction in future, Once on a visit to the Admiral and try to improve my “fist. he astonished his Lordship's
Mr Coffin must have been to valet one morning by letting naval men what I have heard himself out of a window, and the Proctors described as being walking off with a huge brownto undergraduates at the Uni- paper parcel under his arm. versities. He was always turn- The valet reported the circuming up when least expected, stance at breakfast.
“Oh, let and asking unpleasant ques- him alone,” replied the Earl, tions. If he caught an officer “he'll be back to dinner; in mufti, it was Your name and so he was, though he made and ship, sir ? ”and the offender no apology for his absence was invariably despatched back during the day, nor for his on board under arrest. No strange method of exit from excuse was ever allowed-go the house. He found his match back he must. With old hands at last. In a weak moment he the difficulty was easily dis- married, and was shortly afterposed of; they went to their wards turned adrift by his wife ships and said nothing about and her mother for insisting on the arrest, and to do the Com- cooking his own meals in the missioner what little justice kitchen of his mother-in-law's even “ the old gentleman him- house, and his wife never reself' may claim, he seldom turned to him. followed up his game unless The Carysfort was the next in a more than usually sour ship I joined (Captain Robert
I frame of mind.
Fanshawe), and once more,
“ere One story told of this person we parted for ever,” Mr Coffin will exhibit a feature of his and I came into collision. He coarse and eccentric nature. went on board to make an A youngster of very good family advance of pay to the officers waited on Mr Coffin, bearing and men. “Your journal, sir?"
. " from an aunt a letter of intro- he remarked the moment I duction, in which she mildly stood before him. I handed solicited Mr Coffin's interest it over, and was immediately with the Admiralty for her refused my share of the adnephew. "
“Tell your aunt, sir,” vance, and the Captain was he cried, “with my compli- admonished on the spot to ments, that I am no more to withhold all allowances until the Lords Commissioners than my handwriting had considera louse on an elephant's back.” ably improved. This depriva
He was a great friend of tion put me hors de combat VOL. CCXX.-NO. MCCCXXXIII.
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