Treasure Island

Stevenson, Robert Louis
Published: 1883
Categorie(s): Fiction, Action & Adventure
Source: Wikisource
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About Stevenson:
Robert Louis (Balfour) Stevenson (November 13, 1850–December 3,
1894), was a Scottish novelist, poet, and travel writer, and a leading rep-
resentative of Neo-romanticism in English literature. He was the man
who "seemed to pick the right word up on the point of his pen, like a
man playing spillikins", as G. K. Chesterton put it. He was also greatly
admired by many authors, including Jorge Luis Borges, Ernest Heming-
way, Rudyard Kipling and Vladimir Nabokov. Most modernist writers
dismissed him, however, because he was popular and did not write
within their narrow definition of literature. It is only recently that critics
have begun to look beyond Stevenson's popularity and allow him a place
in the canon. Source: Wikipedia
Also available on Feedbooks for Stevenson:
• Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1886)
• Kidnapped (1886)
• The Black Arrow (1884)
• Essays in the Art of Writing (1905)
• The New Arabian Nights (1882)
• A Christmas Sermon (1900)
• The Master of Ballantrae (1889)
• The Silverado Squatters (1883)
Note: This book is brought to you by Feedbooks
http://www.feedbooks.com
Strictly for personal use, do not use this file for commercial purposes.
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Part 1
The Old Buccaneer
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Chapter 1
The Old Sea-dog at the Admiral Benbow
S
quire Trelawney, Dr. Livesey, and the rest of these gentlemen hav-
ing asked me to write down the whole particulars about Treasure
Island, from the beginning to the end, keeping nothing back but the bear-
ings of the island, and that only because there is still treasure not yet lif-
ted, I take up my pen in the year of grace 17—, and go back to the time
when my father kept the Admiral Benbow inn and the brown old sea-
man with the sabre cut first took up his lodging under our roof. I remem-
ber him as if it were yesterday, as he came plodding to the inn door, his
sea-chest following behind him in a hand-barrow—a tall, strong, heavy,
nut-brown man, his tarry pigtail falling over the shoulder of his soiled
blue coat, his hands ragged and scarred, with black, broken nails, and
the sabre cut across one cheek, a dirty, livid white. I remember him look-
ing round the cover and whistling to himself as he did so, and then
breaking out in that old sea-song that he sang so often afterwards:
"Fifteen men on the dead man's chest—
Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!"
in the high, old tottering voice that seemed to have been tuned and
broken at the capstan bars. Then he rapped on the door with a bit of stick
like a handspike that he carried, and when my father appeared, called
roughly for a glass of rum. This, when it was brought to him, he drank
slowly, like a connoisseur, lingering on the taste and still looking about
him at the cliffs and up at our signboard.
"This is a handy cove," says he at length; "and a pleasant sittyated
grog-shop. Much company, mate?" My father told him no, very little
company, the more was the pity.
"Well, then," said he, "this is the berth for me. Here you, matey," he
cried to the man who trundled the barrow; "bring up alongside and help
up my chest. I'll stay here a bit," he continued. "I'm a plain man; rum and
bacon and eggs is what I want, and that head up there for to watch ships
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off. What you mought call me? You mought call me captain. Oh, I see
what you're at—there"; and he threw down three or four gold pieces on
the threshold. "You can tell me when I've worked through that," says he,
looking as fierce as a commander.
And indeed bad as his clothes were and coarsely as he spoke, he had
none of the appearance of a man who sailed before the mast, but seemed
like a mate or skipper accustomed to be obeyed or to strike. The man
who came with the barrow told us the mail had set him down the morn-
ing before at the Royal George, that he had inquired what inns there
were along the coast, and hearing ours well spoken of, I suppose, and
described as lonely, had chosen it from the others for his place of resid-
ence. And that was all we could learn of our guest.
He was a very silent man by custom. All day he hung round the cove
or upon the cliffs with a brass telescope; all evening he sat in a corner of
the parlour next the fire and drank rum and water very strong. Mostly
he would not speak when spoken to, only look up sudden and fierce and
blow through his nose like a fog-horn; and we and the people who came
about our house soon learned to let him be. Every day when he came
back from his stroll he would ask if any seafaring men had gone by
along the road. At first we thought it was the want of company of his
own kind that made him ask this question, but at last we began to see he
was desirous to avoid them. When a seaman did put up at the Admiral
Benbow (as now and then some did, making by the coast road for Bris-
tol) he would look in at him through the curtained door before he
entered the parlour; and he was always sure to be as silent as a mouse
when any such was present. For me, at least, there was no secret about
the matter, for I was, in a way, a sharer in his alarms. He had taken me
aside one day and promised me a silver fourpenny on the first of every
month if I would only keep my "weather-eye open for a seafaring man
with one leg" and let him know the moment he appeared. Often enough
when the first of the month came round and I applied to him for my
wage, he would only blow through his nose at me and stare me down,
but before the week was out he was sure to think better of it, bring me
my four-penny piece, and repeat his orders to look out for "the seafaring
man with one leg."
How that personage haunted my dreams, I need scarcely tell you. On
stormy nights, when the wind shook the four corners of the house and
the surf roared along the cove and up the cliffs, I would see him in a
thousand forms, and with a thousand diabolical expressions. Now the
leg would be cut off at the knee, now at the hip; now he was a monstrous
5
kind of a creature who had never had but the one leg, and that in the
middle of his body. To see him leap and run and pursue me over hedge
and ditch was the worst of nightmares. And altogether I paid pretty dear
for my monthly fourpenny piece, in the shape of these abominable
fancies.
But though I was so terrified by the idea of the seafaring man with one
leg, I was far less afraid of the captain himself than anybody else who
knew him. There were nights when he took a deal more rum and water
than his head would carry; and then he would sometimes sit and sing his
wicked, old, wild sea-songs, minding nobody; but sometimes he would
call for glasses round and force all the trembling company to listen to his
stories or bear a chorus to his singing. Often I have heard the house
shaking with "Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum," all the neighbours joining
in for dear life, with the fear of death upon them, and each singing
louder than the other to avoid remark. For in these fits he was the most
overriding companion ever known; he would slap his hand on the table
for silence all round; he would fly up in a passion of anger at a question,
or sometimes because none was put, and so he judged the company was
not following his story. Nor would he allow anyone to leave the inn till
he had drunk himself sleepy and reeled off to bed.
His stories were what frightened people worst of all. Dreadful stories
they were—about hanging, and walking the plank, and storms at sea,
and the Dry Tortugas, and wild deeds and places on the Spanish Main.
By his own account he must have lived his life among some of the wick-
edest men that God ever allowed upon the sea, and the language in
which he told these stories shocked our plain country people almost as
much as the crimes that he described. My father was always saying the
inn would be ruined, for people would soon cease coming there to be
tyrannized over and put down, and sent shivering to their beds; but I
really believe his presence did us good. People were frightened at the
time, but on looking back they rather liked it; it was a fine excitement in
a quiet country life, and there was even a party of the younger men who
pretended to admire him, calling him a "true sea-dog" and a "real old
salt" and such like names, and saying there was the sort of man that
made England terrible at sea.
In one way, indeed, he bade fair to ruin us, for he kept on staying
week after week, and at last month after month, so that all the money
had been long exhausted, and still my father never plucked up the heart
to insist on having more. If ever he mentioned it, the captain blew
through his nose so loudly that you might say he roared, and stared my
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poor father out of the room. I have seen him wringing his hands after
such a rebuff, and I am sure the annoyance and the terror he lived in
must have greatly hastened his early and unhappy death.
All the time he lived with us the captain made no change whatever in
his dress but to buy some stockings from a hawker. One of the cocks of
his hat having fallen down, he let it hang from that day forth, though it
was a great annoyance when it blew. I remember the appearance of his
coat, which he patched himself upstairs in his room, and which, before
the end, was nothing but patches. He never wrote or received a letter,
and he never spoke with any but the neighbours, and with these, for the
most part, only when drunk on rum. The great sea-chest none of us had
ever seen open.
He was only once crossed, and that was towards the end, when my
poor father was far gone in a decline that took him off. Dr. Livesey came
late one afternoon to see the patient, took a bit of dinner from my moth-
er, and went into the parlour to smoke a pipe until his horse should
come down from the hamlet, for we had no stabling at the old Benbow. I
followed him in, and I remember observing the contrast the neat, bright
doctor, with his powder as white as snow and his bright, black eyes and
pleasant manners, made with the coltish country folk, and above all,
with that filthy, heavy, bleared scarecrow of a pirate of ours, sitting, far
gone in rum, with his arms on the table. Suddenly he—the captain, that
is—began to pipe up his eternal song:
"Fifteen men on the dead man's chest—
Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!
Drink and the devil had done for the rest—
Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!"
At first I had supposed "the dead man's chest" to be that identical big
box of his upstairs in the front room, and the thought had been mingled
in my nightmares with that of the one-legged seafaring man. But by this
time we had all long ceased to pay any particular notice to the song; it
was new, that night, to nobody but Dr. Livesey, and on him I observed it
did not produce an agreeable effect, for he looked up for a moment quite
angrily before he went on with his talk to old Taylor, the gardener, on a
new cure for the rheumatics. In the meantime, the captain gradually
brightened up at his own music, and at last flapped his hand upon the
table before him in a way we all knew to mean silence. The voices
stopped at once, all but Dr. Livesey's; he went on as before speaking
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clear and kind and drawing briskly at his pipe between every word or
two. The captain glared at him for a while, flapped his hand again,
glared still harder, and at last broke out with a villainous, low oath,
"Silence, there, between decks!"
"Were you addressing me, sir?" says the doctor; and when the ruffian
had told him, with another oath, that this was so, "I have only one thing
to say to you, sir," replies the doctor, "that if you keep on drinking rum,
the world will soon be quit of a very dirty scoundrel!"
The old fellow's fury was awful. He sprang to his feet, drew and
opened a sailor's clasp-knife, and balancing it open on the palm of his
hand, threatened to pin the doctor to the wall.
The doctor never so much as moved. He spoke to him as before, over
his shoulder and in the same tone of voice, rather high, so that all the
room might hear, but perfectly calm and steady: "If you do not put that
knife this instant in your pocket, I promise, upon my honour, you shall
hang at the next assizes."
Then followed a battle of looks between them, but the captain soon
knuckled under, put up his weapon, and resumed his seat, grumbling
like a beaten dog.
"And now, sir," continued the doctor, "since I now know there's such a
fellow in my district, you may count I'll have an eye upon you day and
night. I'm not a doctor only; I'm a magistrate; and if I catch a breath of
complaint against you, if it's only for a piece of incivility like tonight's,
I'll take effectual means to have you hunted down and routed out of this.
Let that suffice."
Soon after, Dr. Livesey's horse came to the door and he rode away, but
the captain held his peace that evening, and for many evenings to come.
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Chapter 2
Black Dog Appears and Disappears
I
t was not very long after this that there occurred the first of the mys-
terious events that rid us at last of the captain, though not, as you will
see, of his affairs. It was a bitter cold winter, with long, hard frosts and
heavy gales; and it was plain from the first that my poor father was little
likely to see the spring. He sank daily, and my mother and I had all the
inn upon our hands, and were kept busy enough without paying much
regard to our unpleasant guest.
It was one January morning, very early—a pinching, frosty morn-
ing—the cove all grey with hoar-frost, the ripple lapping softly on the
stones, the sun still low and only touching the hilltops and shining far to
seaward. The captain had risen earlier than usual and set out down the
beach, his cutlass swinging under the broad skirts of the old blue coat,
his brass telescope under his arm, his hat tilted back upon his head. I re-
member his breath hanging like smoke in his wake as he strode off, and
the last sound I heard of him as he turned the big rock was a loud snort
of indignation, as though his mind was still running upon Dr. Livesey.
Well, mother was upstairs with father and I was laying the breakfast-
table against the captain's return when the parlour door opened and a
man stepped in on whom I had never set my eyes before. He was a pale,
tallowy creature, wanting two fingers of the left hand, and though he
wore a cutlass, he did not look much like a fighter. I had always my eye
open for seafaring men, with one leg or two, and I remember this one
puzzled me. He was not sailorly, and yet he had a smack of the sea about
him too. I asked him what was for his service, and he said he would take
rum; but as I was going out of the room to fetch it, he sat down upon a
table and motioned me to draw near. I paused where I was, with my
napkin in my hand.
"Come here, sonny," says he. "Come nearer here."
I took a step nearer.
"Is this here table for my mate Bill?" he asked with a kind of leer.
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I told him I did not know his mate Bill, and this was for a person who
stayed in our house whom we called the captain. "Well," said he, "my
mate Bill would be called the captain, as like as not. He has a cut on one
cheek and a mighty pleasant way with him, particularly in drink, has my
mate Bill. We'll put it, for argument like, that your captain has a cut on
one cheek—and we'll put it, if you like, that that cheek's the right one.
Ah, well! I told you. Now, is my mate Bill in this here house?"
I told him he was out walking.
"Which way, sonny? Which way is he gone?"
And when I had pointed out the rock and told him how the captain
was likely to return, and how soon, and answered a few other questions,
"Ah," said he, "this'll be as good as drink to my mate Bill."
The expression of his face as he said these words was not at all pleas-
ant, and I had my own reasons for thinking that the stranger was mis-
taken, even supposing he meant what he said. But it was no affair of
mine, I thought; and besides, it was difficult to know what to do. The
stranger kept hanging about just inside the inn door, peering round the
corner like a cat waiting for a mouse. Once I stepped out myself into the
road, but he immediately called me back, and as I did not obey quick
enough for his fancy, a most horrible change came over his tallowy face,
and he ordered me in with an oath that made me jump. As soon as I was
back again he returned to his former manner, half fawning, half sneer-
ing, patted me on the shoulder, told me I was a good boy and he had
taken quite a fancy to me. "I have a son of my own," said he, "as like you
as two blocks, and he's all the pride of my 'art. But the great thing for
boys is discipline, sonny—discipline. Now, if you had sailed along of
Bill, you wouldn't have stood there to be spoke to twice—not you. That
was never Bill's way, nor the way of sich as sailed with him. And here,
sure enough, is my mate Bill, with a spy-glass under his arm, bless his
old 'art, to be sure. You and me'll just go back into the parlour, sonny,
and get behind the door, and we'll give Bill a little surprise—bless his
'art, I say again.
So saying, the stranger backed along with me into the parlour and put
me behind him in the corner so that we were both hidden by the open
door. I was very uneasy and alarmed, as you may fancy, and it rather ad-
ded to my fears to observe that the stranger was certainly frightened
himself. He cleared the hilt of his cutlass and loosened the blade in the
sheath; and all the time we were waiting there he kept swallowing as if
he felt what we used to call a lump in the throat.
10
At last in strode the captain, slammed the door behind him, without
looking to the right or left, and marched straight across the room to
where his breakfast awaited him.
"Bill," said the stranger in a voice that I thought he had tried to make
bold and big.
The captain spun round on his heel and fronted us; all the brown had
gone out of his face, and even his nose was blue; he had the look of a
man who sees a ghost, or the evil one, or something worse, if anything
can be; and upon my word, I felt sorry to see him all in a moment turn so
old and sick.
"Come, Bill, you know me; you know an old shipmate, Bill, surely,"
said the stranger.
The captain made a sort of gasp.
"Black Dog!" said he.
"And who else?" returned the other, getting more at his ease. "Black
Dog as ever was, come for to see his old shipmate Billy, at the Admiral
Benbow inn. Ah, Bill, Bill, we have seen a sight of times, us two, since I
lost them two talons," holding up his mutilated hand.
"Now, look here," said the captain; "you've run me down; here I am;
well, then, speak up; what is it?"
"That's you, Bill," returned Black Dog, "you're in the right of it, Billy.
I'll have a glass of rum from this dear child here, as I've took such a lik-
ing to; and we'll sit down, if you please, and talk square, like old
shipmates."
When I returned with the rum, they were already seated on either side
of the captain's breakfast-table—Black Dog next to the door and sitting
sideways so as to have one eye on his old shipmate and one, as I
thought, on his retreat.
He bade me go and leave the door wide open. "None of your keyholes
for me, sonny," he said; and I left them together and retired into the bar.
"For a long time, though I certainly did my best to listen, I could hear
nothing but a low gattling; but at last the voices began to grow higher,
and I could pick up a word or two, mostly oaths, from the captain.
"No, no, no, no; and an end of it!" he cried once. And again, "If it comes
to swinging, swing all, say I."
Then all of a sudden there was a tremendous explosion of oaths and
other noises—the chair and table went over in a lump, a clash of steel fol-
lowed, and then a cry of pain, and the next instant I saw Black Dog in
full flight, and the captain hotly pursuing, both with drawn cutlasses,
and the former streaming blood from the left shoulder. Just at the door
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the captain aimed at the fugitive one last tremendous cut, which would
certainly have split him to the chine had it not been intercepted by our
big signboard of Admiral Benbow. You may see the notch on the lower
side of the frame to this day.
That blow was the last of the battle. Once out upon the road, Black
Dog, in spite of his wound, showed a wonderful clean pair of heels and
disappeared over the edge of the hill in half a minute. The captain, for
his part, stood staring at the signboard like a bewildered man. Then he
passed his hand over his eyes several times and at last turned back into
the house.
"Jim," says he, "rum"; and as he spoke, he reeled a little, and caught
himself with one hand against the wall.
"Are you hurt?" cried I.
"Rum," he repeated. "I must get away from here. Rum! Rum!"
I ran to fetch it, but I was quite unsteadied by all that had fallen out,
and I broke one glass and fouled the tap, and while I was still getting in
my own way, I heard a loud fall in the parlour, and running in, beheld
the captain lying full length upon the floor. At the same instant my
mother, alarmed by the cries and fighting, came running downstairs to
help me. Between us we raised his head. He was breathing very loud
and hard, but his eyes were closed and his face a horrible colour.
"Dear, deary me," cried my mother, "what a disgrace upon the house!
And your poor father sick!"
In the meantime, we had no idea what to do to help the captain, nor
any other thought but that he had got his death-hurt in the scuffle with
the stranger. I got the rum, to be sure, and tried to put it down his throat,
but his teeth were tightly shut and his jaws as strong as iron. It was a
happy relief for us when the door opened and Doctor Livesey came in,
on his visit to my father.
"Oh, doctor," we cried, "what shall we do? Where is he wounded?"
"Wounded? A fiddle-stick's end!" said the doctor. "No more wounded
than you or I. The man has had a stroke, as I warned him. Now, Mrs.
Hawkins, just you run upstairs to your husband and tell him, if possible,
nothing about it. For my part, I must do my best to save this fellow's
trebly worthless life; Jim, you get me a basin."
When I got back with the basin, the doctor had already ripped up the
captain's sleeve and exposed his great sinewy arm. It was tattooed in
several places. "Here's luck," "A fair wind," and "Billy Bones his fancy,"
were very neatly and clearly executed on the forearm; and up near the
12
shoulder there was a sketch of a gallows and a man hanging from
it—done, as I thought, with great spirit.
"Prophetic," said the doctor, touching this picture with his finger. "And
now, Master Billy Bones, if that be your name, we'll have a look at the
colour of your blood. Jim," he said, "are you afraid of blood?"
"No, sir," said I.
"Well, then," said he, "you hold the basin"; and with that he took his
lancet and opened a vein.
A great deal of blood was taken before the captain opened his eyes
and looked mistily about him. First he recognized the doctor with an un-
mistakable frown; then his glance fell upon me, and he looked relieved.
But suddenly his colour changed, and he tried to raise himself, crying,
"Where's Black Dog?"
"There is no Black Dog here," said the doctor, "except what you have
on your own back. You have been drinking rum; you have had a stroke,
precisely as I told you; and I have just, very much against my own will,
dragged you headforemost out of the grave. Now, Mr. Bones—"
"That's not my name," he interrupted.
"Much I care," returned the doctor. "It's the name of a buccaneer of my
acquaintance; and I call you by it for the sake of shortness, and what I
have to say to you is this; one glass of rum won't kill you, but if you take
one you'll take another and another, and I stake my wig if you don't
break off short, you'll die—do you understand that?—die, and go to your
own place, like the man in the Bible. Come, now, make an effort. I'll help
you to your bed for once."
Between us, with much trouble, we managed to hoist him upstairs,
and laid him on his bed, where his head fell back on the pillow as if he
were almost fainting.
"Now, mind you," said the doctor, "I clear my conscience—the name of
rum for you is death."
And with that he went off to see my father, taking me with him by the
arm.
"This is nothing," he said as soon as he had closed the door. "I have
drawn blood enough to keep him quiet awhile; he should lie for a week
where he is—that is the best thing for him and you; but another stroke
would settle him."
13
Chapter 3
The Black Spot
A
bout noon I stopped at the captain's door with some cooling drinks
and medicines. He was lying very much as we had left him, only a
little higher, and he seemed both weak and excited.
"Jim," he said, "you're the only one here that's worth anything, and you
know I've been always good to you. Never a month but I've given you a
silver fourpenny for yourself. And now you see, mate, I'm pretty low,
and deserted by all; and Jim, you'll bring me one noggin of rum, now,
won't you, matey?"
"The doctor—" I began.
But he broke in cursing the doctor, in a feeble voice but heartily.
"Doctors is all swabs," he said; "and that doctor there, why, what do he
know about seafaring men? I been in places hot as pitch, and mates
dropping round with Yellow Jack, and the blessed land a-heaving like
the sea with earthquakes—what to the doctor know of lands like
that?—and I lived on rum, I tell you. It's been meat and drink, and man
and wife, to me; and if I'm not to have my rum now I'm a poor old hulk
on a lee shore, my blood'll be on you, Jim, and that doctor swab"; and he
ran on again for a while with curses. "Look, Jim, how my fingers fidges,"
he continued in the pleading tone. "I can't keep 'em still, not I. I haven't
had a drop this blessed day. That doctor's a fool, I tell you. If I don't have
a drain o' rum, Jim, I'll have the horrors; I seen some on 'em already. I
seen old Flint in the corner there, behind you; as plain as print, I seen
him; and if I get the horrors, I'm a man that has lived rough, and I'll raise
Cain. Your doctor hisself said one glass wouldn't hurt me. I'll give you a
golden guinea for a noggin, Jim."
He was growing more and more excited, and this alarmed me for my
father, who was very low that day and needed quiet; besides, I was reas-
sured by the doctor's words, now quoted to me, and rather offended by
the offer of a bribe.
14
"I want none of your money," said I, "but what you owe my father. I'll
get you one glass, and no more."
When I brought it to him, he seized it greedily and drank it out.
"Aye, aye," said he, "that's some better, sure enough. And now, matey,
did that doctor say how long I was to lie here in this old berth?"
"A week at least," said I.
"Thunder!" he cried. "A week! I can't do that; they'd have the black
spot on me by then. The lubbers is going about to get the wind of me this
blessed moment; lubbers as couldn't keep what they got, and want to
nail what is another's. Is that seamanly behaviour, now, I want to know?
But I'm a saving soul. I never wasted good money of mine, nor lost it
neither; and I'll trick 'em again. I'm not afraid on 'em. I'll shake out an-
other reef, matey, and daddle 'em again."
As he was thus speaking, he had risen from bed with great difficulty,
holding to my shoulder with a grip that almost made me cry out, and
moving his legs like so much dead weight. His words, spirited as they
were in meaning, contrasted sadly with the weakness of the voice in
which they were uttered. He paused when he had got into a sitting posi-
tion on the edge.
"That doctor's done me," he murmured. "My ears is singing. Lay me
back."
Before I could do much to help him he had fallen back again to his
former place, where he lay for a while silent.
"Jim," he said at length, "you saw that seafaring man today?"
"Black Dog?" I asked.
"Ah! Black Dog," says he. "He's a bad un; but there's worse that put
him on. Now, if I can't get away nohow, and they tip me the black spot,
mind you, it's my old sea-chest they're after; you get on a horse—you
can, can't you? Well, then, you get on a horse, and go to—well, yes, I
will!—to that eternal doctor swab, and tell him to pipe all
hands—magistrates and sich—and he'll lay 'em aboard at the Admiral
Benbow—all old Flint's crew, man and boy, all on 'em that's left. I was
first mate, I was, old Flint's first mate, and I'm the on'y one as knows the
place. He gave it me at Savannah, when he lay a-dying, like as if I was to
now, you see. But you won't peach unless they get the black spot on me,
or unless you see that Black Dog again or a seafaring man with one leg,
Jim—him above all."
"But what is the black spot, captain?" I asked.
15
"That's a summons, mate. I'll tell you if they get that. But you keep
your weather-eye open, Jim, and I'll share with you equals, upon my
honour."
He wandered a little longer, his voice growing weaker; but soon after I
had given him his medicine, which he took like a child, with the remark,
"If ever a seaman wanted drugs, it's me," he fell at last into a heavy,
swoon-like sleep, in which I left him. What I should have done had all
gone well I do not know. Probably I should have told the whole story to
the doctor, for I was in mortal fear lest the captain should repent of his
confessions and make an end of me. But as things fell out, my poor fath-
er died quite suddenly that evening, which put all other matters on one
side. Our natural distress, the visits of the neighbours, the arranging of
the funeral, and all the work of the inn to be carried on in the meanwhile
kept me so busy that I had scarcely time to think of the captain, far less to
be afraid of him.
He got downstairs next morning, to be sure, and had his meals as usu-
al, though he ate little and had more, I am afraid, than his usual supply
of rum, for he helped himself out of the bar, scowling and blowing
through his nose, and no one dared to cross him. On the night before the
funeral he was as drunk as ever; and it was shocking, in that house of
mourning, to hear him singing away at his ugly old sea-song; but weak
as he was, we were all in the fear of death for him, and the doctor was
suddenly taken up with a case many miles away and was never near the
house after my father's death. I have said the captain was weak, and in-
deed he seemed rather to grow weaker than regain his strength. He
clambered up and down stairs, and went from the parlour to the bar and
back again, and sometimes put his nose out of doors to smell the sea,
holding on to the walls as he went for support and breathing hard and
fast like a man on a steep mountain. He never particularly addressed me,
and it is my belief he had as good as forgotten his confidences; but his
temper was more flighty, and allowing for his bodily weakness, more vi-
olent than ever. He had an alarming way now when he was drunk of
drawing his cutlass and laying it bare before him on the table. But with
all that, he minded people less and seemed shut up in his own thoughts
and rather wandering. Once, for instance, to our extreme wonder, he
piped up to a different air, a king of country love-song that he must have
learned in his youth before he had begun to follow the sea.
So things passed until, the day after the funeral, and about three
o'clock of a bitter, foggy, frosty afternoon, I was standing at the door for
a moment, full of sad thoughts about my father, when I saw someone
16
drawing slowly near along the road. He was plainly blind, for he tapped
before him with a stick and wore a great green shade over his eyes and
nose; and he was hunched, as if with age or weakness, and wore a huge
old tattered sea-cloak with a hood that made him appear positively de-
formed. I never saw in my life a more dreadful-looking figure. He
stopped a little from the inn, and raising his voice in an odd sing-song,
addressed the air in front of him, "Will any kind friend inform a poor
blind man, who has lost the precious sight of his eyes in the gracious de-
fence of his native country, England—and God bless King Ge-
orge!—where or in what part of this country he may now be?"
"You are at the Admiral Benbow, Black Hill Cove, my good man," said
I.
"I hear a voice," said he, "a young voice. Will you give me your hand,
my kind young friend, and lead me in?"
I held out my hand, and the horrible, soft-spoken, eyeless creature
gripped it in a moment like a vise. I was so much startled that I struggled
to withdraw, but the blind man pulled me close up to him with a single
action of his arm.
"Now, boy," he said, "take me in to the captain."
"Sir," said I, "upon my word I dare not."
"Oh," he sneered, "that's it! Take me in straight or I'll break your arm."
And he gave it, as he spoke, a wrench that made me cry out.
"Sir," said I, "it is for yourself I mean. The captain is not what he used
to be. He sits with a drawn cutlass. Another gentleman—"
"Come, now, march," interrupted he; and I never heard a voice so
cruel, and cold, and ugly as that blind man's. It cowed me more than the
pain, and I began to obey him at once, walking straight in at the door
and towards the parlour, where our sick old buccaneer was sitting,
dazed with rum. The blind man clung close to me, holding me in one
iron fist and leaning almost more of his weight on me than I could carry.
"Lead me straight up to him, and when I'm in view, cry out, 'Here's a
friend for you, Bill.' If you don't, I'll do this," and with that he gave me a
twitch that I thought would have made me faint. Between this and that, I
was so utterly terrified of the blind beggar that I forgot my terror of the
captain, and as I opened the parlour door, cried out the words he had
ordered in a trembling voice.
The poor captain raised his eyes, and at one look the rum went out of
him and left him staring sober. The expression of his face was not so
much of terror as of mortal sickness. He made a movement to rise, but I
do not believe he had enough force left in his body.
17
"Now, Bill, sit where you are," said the beggar. "If I can't see, I can hear
a finger stirring. Business is business. Hold out your left hand. Boy, take
his left hand by the wrist and bring it near to my right."
We both obeyed him to the letter, and I saw him pass something from
the hollow of the hand that held his stick into the palm of the captain's,
which closed upon it instantly.
"And now that's done," said the blind man; and at the words he sud-
denly left hold of me, and with incredible accuracy and nimbleness,
skipped out of the parlour and into the road, where, as I still stood mo-
tionless, I could hear his stick go tap-tap-tapping into the distance.
It was some time before either I or the captain seemed to gather our
senses, but at length, and about at the same moment, I released his wrist,
which I was still holding, and he drew in his hand and looked sharply
into the palm.
"Ten o'clock!" he cried. "Six hours. We'll do them yet," and he sprang to
his feet.
Even as he did so, he reeled, put his hand to his throat, stood swaying
for a moment, and then, with a peculiar sound, fell from his whole
height face foremost to the floor.
I ran to him at once, calling to my mother. But haste was all in vain.
The captain had been struck dead by thundering apoplexy. It is a curious
thing to understand, for I had certainly never liked the man, though of
late I had begun to pity him, but as soon as I saw that he was dead, I
burst into a flood of tears. It was the second death I had known, and the
sorrow of the first was still fresh in my heart.
18
Chapter 4
The Sea-chest
I
lost no time, of course, in telling my mother all that I knew, and per-
haps should have told her long before, and we saw ourselves at once
in a difficult and dangerous position. Some of the man's money—if he
had any—was certainly due to us, but it was not likely that our captain's
shipmates, above all the two specimens seen by me, Black Dog and the
blind beggar, would be inclined to give up their booty in payment of the
dead man's debts. The captain's order to mount at once and ride for Doc-
tor Livesey would have left my mother alone and unprotected, which
was not to be thought of. Indeed, it seemed impossible for either of us to
remain much longer in the house; the fall of coals in the kitchen grate,
the very ticking of the clock, filled us with alarms. The neighbourhood,
to our ears, seemed haunted by approaching footsteps; and what
between the dead body of the captain on the parlour floor and the
thought of that detestable blind beggar hovering near at hand and ready
to return, there were moments when, as the saying goes, I jumped in my
skin for terror. Something must speedily be resolved upon, and it oc-
curred to us at last to go forth together and seek help in the neighbour-
ing hamlet. No sooner said than done. Bare-headed as we were, we ran
out at once in the gathering evening and the frosty fog.
The hamlet lay not many hundred yards away, though out of view, on
the other side of the next cove; and what greatly encouraged me, it was
in an opposite direction from that whence the blind man had made his
appearance and whither he had presumably returned. We were not
many minutes on the road, though we sometimes stopped to lay hold of
each other and hearken. But there was no unusual sound—nothing but
the low wash of the ripple and the croaking of the inmates of the wood.
It was already candle-light when we reached the hamlet, and I shall
never forget how much I was cheered to see the yellow shine in doors
and windows; but that, as it proved, was the best of the help we were
likely to get in that quarter. For—you would have thought men would
19
have been ashamed of themselves—no soul would consent to return
with us to the Admiral Benbow. The more we told of our troubles, the
more—man, woman, and child—they clung to the shelter of their
houses. The name of Captain Flint, though it was strange to me, was well
enough known to some there and carried a great weight of terror. Some
of the men who had been to field-work on the far side of the Admiral
Benbow remembered, besides, to have seen several strangers on the
road, and taking them to be smugglers, to have bolted away; and one at
least had seen a little lugger in what we called Kitt's Hole. For that mat-
ter, anyone who was a comrade of the captain's was enough to frighten
them to death. And the short and the long of the matter was, that while
we could get several who were willing enough to ride to Dr. Livesey's,
which lay in another direction, not one would help us to defend the inn.
They say cowardice is infectious; but then argument is, on the other
hand, a great emboldener; and so when each had said his say, my moth-
er made them a speech. She would not, she declared, lose money that be-
longed to her fatherless boy; "If none of the rest of you dare," she said,
"Jim and I dare. Back we will go, the way we came, and small thanks to
you big, hulking, chicken-hearted men. We'll have that chest open, if we
die for it. And I'll thank you for that bag, Mrs. Crossley, to bring back
our lawful money in."
Of course I said I would go with my mother, and of course they all
cried out at our foolhardiness, but even then not a man would go along
with us. All they would do was to give me a loaded pistol lest we were
attacked, and to promise to have horses ready saddled in case we were
pursued on our return, while one lad was to ride forward to the doctor's
in search of armed assistance.
My heart was beating finely when we two set forth in the cold night
upon this dangerous venture. A full moon was beginning to rise and
peered redly through the upper edges of the fog, and this increased our
haste, for it was plain, before we came forth again, that all would be as
bright as day, and our departure exposed to the eyes of any watchers.
We slipped along the hedges, noiseless and swift, nor did we see or hear
anything to increase our terrors, till, to our relief, the door of the Admiral
Benbow had closed behind us.
I slipped the bolt at once, and we stood and panted for a moment in
the dark, alone in the house with the dead captain's body. Then my
mother got a candle in the bar, and holding each other's hands, we ad-
vanced into the parlour. He lay as we had left him, on his back, with his
eyes open and one arm stretched out.
20
"Draw down the blind, Jim," whispered my mother; "they might come
and watch outside. And now," said she when I had done so, "we have to
get the key off that; and who's to touch it, I should like to know!" and she
gave a kind of sob as she said the words.
I went down on my knees at once. On the floor close to his hand there
was a little round of paper, blackened on the one side. I could not doubt
that this was the Black Spot; and taking it up, I found written on the oth-
er side, in a very good, clear hand, this short message: "You have till ten
tonight."
"He had till ten, Mother," said I; and just as I said it, our old clock
began striking. This sudden noise startled us shockingly; but the news
was good, for it was only six.
"Now, Jim," she said, "that key."
I felt in his pockets, one after another. A few small coins, a thimble,
and some thread and big needles, a piece of pigtail tobacco bitten away
at the end, his gully with the crooked handle, a pocket compass, and a
tinder box were all that they contained, and I began to despair.
"Perhaps it's round his neck," suggested my mother.
Overcoming a strong repugnance, I tore open his shirt at the neck, and
there, sure enough, hanging to a bit of tarry string, which I cut with his
own gully, we found the key. At this triumph we were filled with hope
and hurried upstairs without delay to the little room where he had slept
so long and where his box had stood since the day of his arrival.
It was like any other seaman's chest on the outside, the initial "B"
burned on the top of it with a hot iron, and the corners somewhat
smashed and broken as by long, rough usage.
"Give me the key," said my mother; and though the lock was very stiff,
she had turned it and thrown back the lid in a twinkling.
A strong smell of tobacco and tar rose from the interior, but nothing
was to be seen on the top except a suit of very good clothes, carefully
brushed and folded. They had never been worn, my mother said. Under
that, the miscellany began—a quadrant, a tin canikin, several sticks of to-
bacco, two brace of very handsome pistols, a piece of bar silver, an old
Spanish watch and some other trinkets of little value and mostly of for-
eign make, a pair of compasses mounted with brass, and five or six curi-
ous West Indian shells. I have often wondered since why he should have
carried about these shells with him in his wandering, guilty, and hunted
life.
In the meantime, we had found nothing of any value but the silver and
the trinkets, and neither of these were in our way. Underneath there was
21
an old boat-cloak, whitened with sea-salt on many a harbour-bar. My
mother pulled it up with impatience, and there lay before us, the last
things in the chest, a bundle tied up in oilcloth, and looking like papers,
and a canvas bag that gave forth, at a touch, the jingle of gold.
"I'll show these rogues that I'm an honest woman," said my mother.
"I'll have my dues, and not a farthing over. Hold Mrs. Crossley's bag."
And she began to count over the amount of the captain's score from the
sailor's bag into the one that I was holding.
It was a long, difficult business, for the coins were of all countries and
sizes—doubloons, and louis d'ors, and guineas, and pieces of eight, and I
know not what besides, all shaken together at random. The guineas, too,
were about the scarcest, and it was with these only that my mother knew
how to make her count.
When we were about half-way through, I suddenly put my hand upon
her arm, for I had heard in the silent frosty air a sound that brought my
heart into my mouth—the tap-tapping of the blind man's stick upon the
frozen road. It drew nearer and nearer, while we sat holding our breath.
Then it struck sharp on the inn door, and then we could hear the handle
being turned and the bolt rattling as the wretched being tried to enter;
and then there was a long time of silence both within and without. At
last the tapping recommenced, and, to our indescribable joy and gratit-
ude, died slowly away again until it ceased to be heard. "Mother," said I,
"take the whole and let's be going," for I was sure the bolted door must
have seemed suspicious and would bring the whole hornet's nest about
our ears, though how thankful I was that I had bolted it, none could tell
who had never met that terrible blind man.
But my mother, frightened as she was, would not consent to take a
fraction more than was due to her and was obstinately unwilling to be
content with less. It was not yet seven, she said, by a long way; she knew
her rights and she would have them; and she was still arguing with me
when a little low whistle sounded a good way off upon the hill. That was
enough, and more than enough, for both of us.
"I'll take what I have," she said, jumping to her feet.
"And I'll take this to square the count," said I, picking up the oilskin
packet.
Next moment we were both groping downstairs, leaving the candle by
the empty chest; and the next we had opened the door and were in full
retreat. We had not started a moment too soon. The fog was rapidly dis-
persing; already the moon shone quite clear on the high ground on either
side; and it was only in the exact bottom of the dell and round the tavern
22
door that a thin veil still hung unbroken to conceal the first steps of our
escape. Far less than half-way to the hamlet, very little beyond the bot-
tom of the hill, we must come forth into the moonlight. Nor was this all,
for the sound of several footsteps running came already to our ears, and
as we looked back in their direction, a light tossing to and fro and still
rapidly advancing showed that one of the newcomers carried a lantern.
"My dear," said my mother suddenly, "take the money and run on. I
am going to faint."
This was certainly the end for both of us, I thought. How I cursed the
cowardice of the neighbours; how I blamed my poor mother for her hon-
esty and her greed, for her past foolhardiness and present weakness! We
were just at the little bridge, by good fortune; and I helped her, tottering
as she was, to the edge of the bank, where, sure enough, she gave a sigh
and fell on my shoulder. I do not know how I found the strength to do it
at all, and I am afraid it was roughly done, but I managed to drag her
down the bank and a little way under the arch. Farther I could not move
her, for the bridge was too low to let me do more than crawl below it. So
there we had to stay—my mother almost entirely exposed and both of us
within earshot of the inn.
23
Chapter 5
The Last of the Blind Man
M
y curiosity, in a sense, was stronger than my fear, for I could not
remain where I was, but crept back to the bank again, whence,
sheltering my head behind a bush of broom, I might command the road
before our door. I was scarcely in position ere my enemies began to ar-
rive, seven or eight of them, running hard, their feet beating out of time
along the road and the man with the lantern some paces in front. Three
men ran together, hand in hand; and I made out, even through the mist,
that the middle man of this trio was the blind beggar. The next moment
his voice showed me that I was right.
"Down with the door!" he cried.
"Aye, aye, sir!" answered two or three; and a rush was made upon the
Admiral Benbow, the lantern-bearer following; and then I could see
them pause, and hear speeches passed in a lower key, as if they were
surprised to find the door open. But the pause was brief, for the blind
man again issued his commands. His voice sounded louder and higher,
as if he were afire with eagerness and rage.
"In, in, in!" he shouted, and cursed them for their delay.
Four or five of them obeyed at once, two remaining on the road with
the formidable beggar. There was a pause, then a cry of surprise, and
then a voice shouting from the house, "Bill's dead."
But the blind man swore at them again for their delay.
"Search him, some of you shirking lubbers, and the rest of you aloft
and get the chest," he cried.
I could hear their feet rattling up our old stairs, so that the house must
have shook with it. Promptly afterwards, fresh sounds of astonishment
arose; the window of the captain's room was thrown open with a slam
and a jingle of broken glass, and a man leaned out into the moonlight,
head and shoulders, and addressed the blind beggar on the road below
him.
24
"Pew," he cried, "they've been before us. Someone's turned the chest
out alow and aloft."
"Is it there?" roared Pew.
"The money's there."
The blind man cursed the money.
"Flint's fist, I mean," he cried.
"We don't see it here nohow," returned the man.
"Here, you below there, is it on Bill?" cried the blind man again.
At that another fellow, probably him who had remained below to
search the captain's body, came to the door of the inn. "Bill's been over-
hauled a'ready," said he; "nothin' left."
"It's these people of the inn—it's that boy. I wish I had put his eyes
out!" cried the blind man, Pew. "There were no time ago—they had the
door bolted when I tried it. Scatter, lads, and find 'em."
"Sure enough, they left their glim here," said the fellow from the
window.
"Scatter and find 'em! Rout the house out!" reiterated Pew, striking
with his stick upon the road.
Then there followed a great to-do through all our old inn, heavy feet
pounding to and fro, furniture thrown over, doors kicked in, until the
very rocks re-echoed and the men came out again, one after another, on
the road and declared that we were nowhere to be found. And just the
same whistle that had alarmed my mother and myself over the dead
captain's money was once more clearly audible through the night, but
this time twice repeated. I had thought it to be the blind man's trumpet,
so to speak, summoning his crew to the assault, but I now found that it
was a signal from the hillside towards the hamlet, and from its effect
upon the buccaneers, a signal to warn them of approaching danger.
"There's Dirk again," said one. "Twice! We'll have to budge, mates."
"Budge, you skulk!" cried Pew. "Dirk was a fool and a coward from the
first—you wouldn't mind him. They must be close by; they can't be far;
you have your hands on it. Scatter and look for them, dogs! Oh, shiver
my soul," he cried, "if I had eyes!" This appeal seemed to produce some
effect, for two of the fellows began to look here and there among the
lumber, but half-heartedly, I thought, and with half an eye to their own
danger all the time, while the rest stood irresolute on the road. "You have
your hands on thousands, you fools, and you hang a leg! You'd be as rich
as kings if you could find it, and you know it's here, and you stand there
skulking. There wasn't one of you dared face Bill, and I did it—a blind
man! And I'm to lose my chance for you! I'm to be a poor, crawling
25
beggar, sponging for rum, when I might be rolling in a coach! If you had
the pluck of a weevil in a biscuit you would catch them still."
"Hang it, Pew, we've got the doubloons!" grumbled one.
"They might have hid the blessed thing," said another. "Take the Ge-
orges, Pew, and don't stand here squalling."
Squalling was the word for it; Pew's anger rose so high at these objec-
tions till at last, his passion completely taking the upper hand, he struck
at them right and left in his blindness and his stick sounded heavily on
more than one.
These, in their turn, cursed back at the blind miscreant, threatened him
in horrid terms, and tried in vain to catch the stick and wrest it from his
grasp.
This quarrel was the saving of us, for while it was still raging, another
sound came from the top of the hill on the side of the hamlet—the tramp
of horses galloping. Almost at the same time a pistol-shot, flash and re-
port, came from the hedge side. And that was plainly the last signal of
danger, for the buccaneers turned at once and ran, separating in every
direction, one seaward along the cove, one slant across the hill, and so
on, so that in half a minute not a sign of them remained but Pew. Him
they had deserted, whether in sheer panic or out of revenge for his ill
words and blows I know not; but there he remained behind, tapping up
and down the road in a frenzy, and groping and calling for his comrades.
Finally he took a wrong turn and ran a few steps past me, towards the
hamlet, crying, "Johnny, Black Dog, Dirk," and other names, "you won't
leave old Pew, mates—not old Pew!"
Just then the noise of horses topped the rise, and four or five riders
came in sight in the moonlight and swept at full gallop down the slope.
At this Pew saw his error, turned with a scream, and ran straight for
the ditch, into which he rolled. But he was on his feet again in a second
and made another dash, now utterly bewildered, right under the nearest
of the coming horses.
The rider tried to save him, but in vain. Down went Pew with a cry
that rang high into the night; and the four hoofs trampled and spurned
him and passed by. He fell on his side, then gently collapsed upon his
face and moved no more.
I leaped to my feet and hailed the riders. They were pulling up, at any
rate, horrified at the accident; and I soon saw what they were. One, tail-
ing out behind the rest, was a lad that had gone from the hamlet to Dr.
Livesey's; the rest were revenue officers, whom he had met by the way,
and with whom he had had the intelligence to return at once. Some news
26
of the lugger in Kitt's Hole had found its way to Supervisor Dance and
set him forth that night in our direction, and to that circumstance my
mother and I owed our preservation from death.
Pew was dead, stone dead. As for my mother, when we had carried
her up to the hamlet, a little cold water and salts and that soon brought
her back again, and she was none the worse for her terror, though she
still continued to deplore the balance of the money. In the meantime the
supervisor rode on, as fast as he could, to Kitt's Hole; but his men had to
dismount and grope down the dingle, leading, and sometimes support-
ing, their horses, and in continual fear of ambushes; so it was no great
matter for surprise that when they got down to the Hole the lugger was
already under way, though still close in. He hailed her. A voice replied,
telling him to keep out of the moonlight or he would get some lead in
him, and at the same time a bullet whistled close by his arm. Soon after,
the lugger doubled the point and disappeared. Mr. Dance stood there, as
he said, "like a fish out of water," and all he could do was to dispatch a
man to B——to warn the cutter. "And that," said he, "is just about as
good as nothing. They've got off clean, and there's an end. "Only," he ad-
ded, "I'm glad I trod on Master Pew's corns," for by this time he had
heard my story.
I went back with him to the Admiral Benbow, and you cannot imagine
a house in such a state of smash; the very clock had been thrown down
by these fellows in their furious hunt after my mother and myself; and
though nothing had actually been taken away except the captain's
money-bag and a little silver from the till, I could see at once that we
were ruined. Mr. Dance could make nothing of the scene.
"They got the money, you say? Well, then, Hawkins, what in fortune
were they after? More money, I suppose?"
"No, sir; not money, I think," replied I. "In fact, sir, I believe I have the
thing in my breast pocket; and to tell you the truth, I should like to get it
put in safety."
"To be sure, boy; quite right," said he. "I'll take it, if you like."
"I thought perhaps Dr. Livesey—" I began.
"Perfectly right," he interrupted very cheerily, "perfectly right—a gen-
tleman and a magistrate. And, now I come to think of it, I might as well
ride round there myself and report to him or squire. Master Pew's dead,
when all's done; not that I regret it, but he's dead, you see, and people
will make it out against an officer of his Majesty's revenue, if make it out
they can. Now, I'll tell you, Hawkins, if you like, I'll take you along."
27
I thanked him heartily for the offer, and we walked back to the hamlet
where the horses were. By the time I had told mother of my purpose
they were all in the saddle.
"Dogger," said Mr. Dance, "you have a good horse; take up this lad be-
hind you."
As soon as I was mounted, holding on to Dogger's belt, the supervisor
gave the word, and the party struck out at a bouncing trot on the road to
Dr. Livesey's house.
28
Chapter 6
The Captain's Papers
W
e rode hard all the way till we drew up before Dr. Livesey's door.
The house was all dark to the front.
Mr. Dance told me to jump down and knock, and Dogger gave me a
stirrup to descend by. The door was opened almost at once by the maid.
"Is Dr. Livesey in?" I asked.
No, she said, he had come home in the afternoon but had gone up to
the hall to dine and pass the evening with the squire. "So there we go,
boys," said Mr. Dance.
This time, as the distance was short, I did not mount, but ran with
Dogger's stirrup-leather to the lodge gates and up the long, leafless,
moonlit avenue to where the white line of the hall buildings looked on
either hand on great old gardens. Here Mr. Dance dismounted, and tak-
ing me along with him, was admitted at a word into the house.
The servant led us down a matted passage and showed us at the end
into a great library, all lined with bookcases and busts upon the top of
them, where the squire and Dr. Livesey sat, pipe in hand, on either side
of a bright fire.
I had never seen the squire so near at hand. He was a tall man, over six
feet high, and broad in proportion, and he had a bluff, rough-and-ready
face, all roughened and reddened and lined in his long travels. His eye-
brows were very black, and moved readily, and this gave him a look of
some temper, not bad, you would say, but quick and high.
"Come in, Mr. Dance," says he, very stately and condescending.
"Good evening, Dance," says the doctor with a nod. "And good even-
ing to you, friend Jim. What good wind brings you here?" The supervisor
stood up straight and stiff and told his story like a lesson; and you
should have seen how the two gentlemen leaned forward and looked at
each other, and forgot to smoke in their surprise and interest. When they
heard how my mother went back to the inn, Dr. Livesey fairly slapped
his thigh, and the squire cried "Bravo!" and broke his long pipe against
29
the grate. Long before it was done, Mr. Trelawney (that, you will remem-
ber, was the squire's name) had got up from his seat and was striding
about the room, and the doctor, as if to hear the better, had taken off his
powdered wig and sat there looking very strange indeed with his own
close-cropped black poll."
At last Mr. Dance finished the story.
"Mr. Dance," said the squire, "you are a very noble fellow. And as for
riding down that black, atrocious miscreant, I regard it as an act of vir-
tue, sir, like stamping on a cockroach. This lad Hawkins is a trump, I per-
ceive. Hawkins, will you ring that bell? Mr. Dance must have some ale."
"And so, Jim," said the doctor, "you have the thing that they were after,
have you?"
"Here it is, sir," said I, and gave him the oilskin packet.
The doctor looked it all over, as if his fingers were itching to open it;
but instead of doing that, he put it quietly in the pocket of his coat.
"Squire," said he, "when Dance has had his ale he must, of course, be
off on his Majesty's service; but I mean to keep Jim Hawkins here to
sleep at my house, and with your permission, I propose we should have
up the cold pie and let him sup."
"As you will, Livesey," said the squire; "Hawkins has earned better
than cold pie."
So a big pigeon pie was brought in and put on a sidetable, and I made
a hearty supper, for I was as hungry as a hawk, while Mr. Dance was
further complimented and at last dismissed.
"And now, squire," said the doctor.
"And now, Livesey," said the squire in the same breath.
"One at a time, one at a time," laughed Dr. Livesey. "You have heard of
this Flint, I suppose?"
"Heard of him!" cried the squire. "Heard of him, you say! He was the
bloodthirstiest buccaneer that sailed. Blackbeard was a child to Flint. The
Spaniards were so prodigiously afraid of him that, I tell you, sir, I was
sometimes proud he was an Englishman. I've seen his top-sails with
these eyes, off Trinidad, and the cowardly son of a rum-puncheon that I
sailed with put back—put back, sir, into Port of Spain."
"Well, I've heard of him myself, in England," said the doctor. "But the
point is, had he money?"
"Money!" cried the squire. "Have you heard the story? What were
these villains after but money? What do they care for but money? For
what would they risk their rascal carcasses but money?"
30
"That we shall soon know," replied the doctor. "But you are so
confoundedly hot-headed and exclamatory that I cannot get a word in.
What I want to know is this: Supposing that I have here in my pocket
some clue to where Flint buried his treasure, will that treasure amount to
much?"
"Amount, sir!" cried the squire. "It will amount to this: If we have the
clue you talk about, I fit out a ship in Bristol dock, and take you and
Hawkins here along, and I'll have that treasure if I search a year."
"Very well," said the doctor. "Now, then, if Jim is agreeable, we'll open
the packet"; and he laid it before him on the table.
The bundle was sewn together, and the doctor had to get out his in-
strument case and cut the stitches with his medical scissors. It contained
two things—a book and a sealed paper.
"First of all we'll try the book," observed the doctor.
The squire and I were both peering over his shoulder as he opened it,
for Dr. Livesey had kindly motioned me to come round from the side-
table, where I had been eating, to enjoy the sport of the search. On the
first page there were only some scraps of writing, such as a man with a
pen in his hand might make for idleness or practice. One was the same as
the tattoo mark, "Billy Bones his fancy"; then there was "Mr. W. Bones,
mate," "No more rum," "Off Palm Key he got itt," and some other
snatches, mostly single words and unintelligible. I could not help won-
dering who it was that had "got itt," and what "itt" was that he got. A
knife in his back as like as not.
"Not much instruction there," said Dr. Livesey as he passed on.
The next ten or twelve pages were filled with a curious series of
entries. There was a date at one end of the line and at the other a sum of
money, as in common account-books, but instead of explanatory writing,
only a varying number of crosses between the two. On the 12th of June,
1745, for instance, a sum of seventy pounds had plainly become due to
someone, and there was nothing but six crosses to explain the cause. In a
few cases, to be sure, the name of a place would be added, as "Offe
Caraccas," or a mere entry of latitude and longitude, as "62o 17' 20", 19o
2' 40"."
The record lasted over nearly twenty years, the amount of the separate
entries growing larger as time went on, and at the end a grand total had
been made out after five or six wrong additions, and these words appen-
ded, "Bones, his pile."
"I can't make head or tail of this," said Dr. Livesey.
31
"The thing is as clear as noonday," cried the squire. "This is the black-
hearted hound's account-book. These crosses stand for the names of
ships or towns that they sank or plundered. The sums are the scoundrel's
share, and where he feared an ambiguity, you see he added something
clearer. 'Offe Caraccas,' now; you see, here was some unhappy vessel
boarded off that coast. God help the poor souls that manned her—coral
long ago."
"Right!" said the doctor. "See what it is to be a traveller. Right! And the
amounts increase, you see, as he rose in rank."
There was little else in the volume but a few bearings of places noted
in the blank leaves towards the end and a table for reducing French, Eng-
lish, and Spanish moneys to a common value.
"Thrifty man!" cried the doctor. "He wasn't the one to be cheated."
"And now," said the squire, "for the other."
The paper had been sealed in several places with a thimble by way of
seal; the very thimble, perhaps, that I had found in the captain's pocket.
The doctor opened the seals with great care, and there fell out the map of
an island, with latitude and longitude, soundings, names of hills and
bays and inlets, and every particular that would be needed to bring a
ship to a safe anchorage upon its shores. It was about nine miles long
and five across, shaped, you might say, like a fat dragon standing up,
and had two fine land-locked harbours, and a hill in the centre part
marked "The Spy-glass." There were several additions of a later date, but
above all, three crosses of red ink—two on the north part of the island,
one in the southwest—and beside this last, in the same red ink, and in a
small, neat hand, very different from the captain's tottery characters,
these words: "Bulk of treasure here."
Over on the back the same hand had written this further information:
Tall tree, Spy-glass shoulder, bearing a point to the N. of
N.N.E. Skeleton Island E.S.E. and by E.
Ten feet.
The bar silver is in the north cache; you can find it by the trend of
the east hummock, ten fathoms
south of the black crag with the face on it. The arms are easy
found, in the sand-hill, N. point of north inlet cape, bearing E.
and a quarter N.
J.F.
32
That was all; but brief as it was, and to me incomprehensible, it filled
the squire and Dr. Livesey with delight.
"Livesey," said the squire, "you will give up this wretched practice at
once. Tomorrow I start for Bristol. In three weeks' time—three
weeks!—two weeks—ten days—we'll have the best ship, sir, and the
choicest crew in England. Hawkins shall come as cabin-boy. You'll make
a famous cabin-boy, Hawkins. You, Livesey, are ship's doctor; I am ad-
miral. We'll take Redruth, Joyce, and Hunter. We'll have favourable
winds, a quick passage, and not the least difficulty in finding the spot,
and money to eat, to roll in, to play duck and drake with ever after."
"Trelawney," said the doctor, "I'll go with you; and I'll go bail for it, so
will Jim, and be a credit to the undertaking. There's only one man I'm
afraid of."
"And who's that?" cried the squire. "Name the dog, sir!"
"You," replied the doctor; "for you cannot hold your tongue. We are
not the only men who know of this paper. These fellows who attacked
the inn tonight—bold, desperate blades, for sure—and the rest who
stayed aboard that lugger, and more, I dare say, not far off, are, one and
all, through thick and thin, bound that they'll get that money. We must
none of us go alone till we get to sea. Jim and I shall stick together in the
meanwhile; you'll take Joyce and Hunter when you ride to Bristol, and
from first to last, not one of us must breathe a word of what we've
found."
"Livesey," returned the squire, "you are always in the right of it. I'll be
as silent as the grave."
33
Part 2
The Sea Cook
34
Chapter 1
I Go to Bristol
I
t was longer than the squire imagined ere we were ready for the sea,
and none of our first plans—not even Dr. Livesey's, of keeping me
beside him—could be carried out as we intended. The doctor had to go
to London for a physician to take charge of his practice; the squire was
hard at work at Bristol; and I lived on at the hall under the charge of old
Redruth, the gamekeeper, almost a prisoner, but full of sea-dreams and
the most charming anticipations of strange islands and adventures. I
brooded by the hour together over the map, all the details of which I well
remembered. Sitting by the fire in the housekeeper's room, I approached
that island in my fancy from every possible direction; I explored every
acre of its surface; I climbed a thousand times to that tall hill they call the
Spy-glass, and from the top enjoyed the most wonderful and changing
prospects. Sometimes the isle was thick with savages, with whom we
fought, sometimes full of dangerous animals that hunted us, but in all
my fancies nothing occurred to me so strange and tragic as our actual
adventures.
So the weeks passed on, till one fine day there came a letter addressed
to Dr. Livesey, with this addition, "To be opened, in the case of his ab-
sence, by Tom Redruth or young Hawkins." Obeying this order, we
found, or rather I found—for the gamekeeper was a poor hand at read-
ing anything but print—the following important news:
Old Anchor Inn, Bristol, March 1, 17—
Dear Livesey—As I do not know whether you are at the hall or
still in London, I send this in double to both places.
The ship is bought and fitted. She lies at anchor, ready for sea.
You never imagined a sweeter schooner—a child might sail
her—two hundred tons; name, Hispaniola.
I got her through my old friend, Blandly, who has proved himself
throughout the most surprising trump. The admirable fellow lit-
erally slaved in my interest, and so, I may say, did everyone
35
in Bristol, as soon as they got wind of the port we sailed
for—treasure, I mean.
"Redruth," said I, interrupting the letter, "Dr. Livesey will not like that.
The squire has been talking, after all."
"Well, who's a better right?" growled the gamekeeper. "A pretty rum
go if squire ain't to talk for Dr. Livesey, I should think."
At that I gave up all attempts at commentary and read straight on:
Blandly himself found the Hispaniola, and by the most admirable
management got her for the merest trifle. There is a class of men
in Bristol monstrously prejudiced against Blandly. They go the
length of declaring that this honest creature would do anything
for money, that the Hispaniola belonged to him, and that he sold
it me absurdly high—the most transparent calumnies. None of
them dare, however, to deny the merits of the ship.
Wo far there was not a hitch. The workpeople, to be sure—riggers
and what not—were most annoyingly slow; but time cured that.
It was the crew that troubled me.
I wished a round score of men—in case of natives, buccaneers, or
the odious French—and I had the worry of the deuce itself to find
so much as half a dozen, till the most remarkable stroke of for-
tune brought me the very man that I required.
I was standing on the dock, when, by the merest accident, I fell in
talk with him. I found he was an old sailor, kept a public-house,
knew all the seafaring men in Bristol, had lost his health ashore,
and wanted a good berth as cook to get to sea again. He had
hobbled down there that morning, he said, to get a smell of the
salt.
I was monstrously touched—so would you have been—and, out
of pure pity, I engaged him on the spot to be ship's cook. Long
John Silver, he is called, and has lost a leg; but that I regarded as a
recommendation, since he lost it in his country's service, under
the immortal Hawke. He has no pension, Livesey. Imagine the
abominable
age we live in!
Well, sir, I thought I had only found a cook, but it was a crew I
had discovered. Between Silver and myself we got together in a
few days a company of the toughest old salts imagin-
able—not pretty to look at, but fellows, by their faces, of the most
36
indomitable spirit. I declare we could fight a frigate. Long John
even got rid of two out of the six or seven I had already engaged.
He showed me in a moment that they were just the sort of fresh-
water swabs we had to fear in an adventure of
importance.
I am in the most magnificent health and spirits, eating like a bull,
sleeping like a tree, yet I shall not enjoy a moment till I hear my
old tarpaulins tramping round the capstan. Seaward, ho! Hang
the treasure! It's the glory of the sea that has turned my head. So
now, Livesey, come post; do not lose an hour, if you respect me.
Let young Hawkins go at once to see his mother, with Redruth
for a guard; and then both come full speed to Bristol.
John Trelawney
Postscript—I did not tell you that Blandly, who, by the way, is to
send a consort after us if we don't turn up by the end of August,
had found an admirable fellow for sailing master—a stiff man,
which I regret, but in all other respects a treasure. Long John Sil-
ver unearthed a very competent man for a mate, a man named
Arrow. I have a boatswain who pipes, Livesey; so things shall go
man-o'-war fashion on board the good ship Hispaniola.
I forgot to tell you that Silver is a man of substance; I know of my
own knowledge that he has a banker's account, which has never
been overdrawn. He leaves his wife to manage the inn; and as she
is a woman of colour, a pair of old bachelors like you and I may
be excused for guessing that it is the wife, quite as much as
the health, that sends him back to roving.
J. T.
P.P.S.—Hawkins may stay one night with his mother.
J. T.
You can fancy the excitement into which that letter put me. I was half
beside myself with glee; and if ever I despised a man, it was old Tom
Redruth, who could do nothing but grumble and lament. Any of the
under-gamekeepers would gladly have changed places with him; but
such was not the squire's pleasure, and the squire's pleasure was like law
among them all. Nobody but old Redruth would have dared so much as
even to grumble.
The next morning he and I set out on foot for the Admiral Benbow,
and there I found my mother in good health and spirits. The captain,
who had so long been a cause of so much discomfort, was gone where
37
the wicked cease from troubling. The squire had had everything re-
paired, and the public rooms and the sign repainted, and had added
some furniture—above all a beautiful armchair for mother in the bar. He
had found her a boy as an apprentice also so that she should not want
help while I was gone.
It was on seeing that boy that I understood, for the first time, my situ-
ation. I had thought up to that moment of the adventures before me, not
at all of the home that I was leaving; and now, at sight of this clumsy
stranger, who was to stay here in my place beside my mother, I had my
first attack of tears. I am afraid I led that boy a dog's life, for as he was
new to the work, I had a hundred opportunities of setting him right and
putting him down, and I was not slow to profit by them. The night
passed, and the next day, after dinner, Redruth and I were afoot again
and on the road. I said good-bye to Mother and the cove where I had
lived since I was born, and the dear old Admiral Benbow—since he was
repainted, no longer quite so dear. One of my last thoughts was of the
captain, who had so often strode along the beach with his cocked hat, his
sabre-cut cheek, and his old brass telescope. Next moment we had
turned the corner and my home was out of sight.
The mail picked us up about dusk at the Royal George on the heath. I
was wedged in between Redruth and a stout old gentleman, and in spite
of the swift motion and the cold night air, I must have dozed a great deal
from the very first, and then slept like a log up hill and down dale
through stage after stage, for when I was awakened at last it was by a
punch in the ribs, and I opened my eyes to find that we were standing
still before a large building in a city street and that the day had already
broken a long time.
"Where are we?" I asked.
"Bristol," said Tom. "Get down."
Mr. Trelawney had taken up his residence at an inn far down the
docks to superintend the work upon the schooner. Thither we had now
to walk, and our way, to my great delight, lay along the quays and be-
side the great multitude of ships of all sizes and rigs and nations. In one,
sailors were singing at their work, in another there were men aloft, high
over my head, hanging to threads that seemed no thicker than a spider's.
Though I had lived by the shore all my life, I seemed never to have been
near the sea till then. The smell of tar and salt was something new. I saw
the most wonderful figureheads, that had all been far over the ocean. I
saw, besides, many old sailors, with rings in their ears, and whiskers
curled in ringlets, and tarry pigtails, and their swaggering, clumsy sea-
38
walk; and if I had seen as many kings or archbishops I could not have
been more delighted.
And I was going to sea myself, to sea in a schooner, with a piping
boatswain and pig-tailed singing seamen, to sea, bound for an unknown
island, and to seek for buried treasure!
While I was still in this delightful dream, we came suddenly in front of
a large inn and met Squire Trelawney, all dressed out like a sea-officer,
in stout blue cloth, coming out of the door with a smile on his face and a
capital imitation of a sailor's walk.
"Here you are," he cried, "and the doctor came last night from London.
Bravo! The ship's company complete!"
"Oh, sir," cried I, "when do we sail?"
"Sail!" says he. "We sail tomorrow!"
39
Chapter 2
At the Sign of the Spy-glass
W
hen I had done breakfasting the squire gave me a note addressed
to John Silver, at the sign of the Spy-glass, and told me I should
easily find the place by following the line of the docks and keeping a
bright lookout for a little tavern with a large brass telescope for sign. I set
off, overjoyed at this opportunity to see some more of the ships and sea-
men, and picked my way among a great crowd of people and carts and
bales, for the dock was now at its busiest, until I found the tavern in
question.
It was a bright enough little place of entertainment. The sign was
newly painted; the windows had neat red curtains; the floor was cleanly
sanded. There was a street on each side and an open door on both, which
made the large, low room pretty clear to see in, in spite of clouds of to-
bacco smoke.
The customers were mostly seafaring men, and they talked so loudly
that I hung at the door, almost afraid to enter.
As I was waiting, a man came out of a side room, and at a glance I was
sure he must be Long John. His left leg was cut off close by the hip, and
under the left shoulder he carried a crutch, which he managed with won-
derful dexterity, hopping about upon it like a bird. He was very tall and
strong, with a face as big as a ham—plain and pale, but intelligent and
smiling. Indeed, he seemed in the most cheerful spirits, whistling as he
moved about among the tables, with a merry word or a slap on the
shoulder for the more favoured of his guests.
Now, to tell you the truth, from the very first mention of Long John in
Squire Trelawney's letter I had taken a fear in my mind that he might
prove to be the very one-legged sailor whom I had watched for so long
at the old Benbow. But one look at the man before me was enough. I had
seen the captain, and Black Dog, and the blind man, Pew, and I thought I
knew what a buccaneer was like—a very different creature, according to
me, from this clean and pleasant-tempered landlord.
40
I plucked up courage at once, crossed the threshold, and walked right
up to the man where he stood, propped on his crutch, talking to a
customer.
"Mr. Silver, sir?" I asked, holding out the note.
"Yes, my lad," said he; "such is my name, to be sure. And who may
you be?" And then as he saw the squire's letter, he seemed to me to give
something almost like a start.
"Oh!" said he, quite loud, and offering his hand. "I see. You are our
new cabin-boy; pleased I am to see you."
And he took my hand in his large firm grasp.
Just then one of the customers at the far side rose suddenly and made
for the door. It was close by him, and he was out in the street in a mo-
ment. But his hurry had attracted my notice, and I recognized him at
glance. It was the tallow-faced man, wanting two fingers, who had come
first to the Admiral Benbow.
"Oh," I cried, "stop him! It's Black Dog!"
"I don't care two coppers who he is," cried Silver. "But he hasn't paid
his score. Harry, run and catch him."
One of the others who was nearest the door leaped up and started in
pursuit.
"If he were Admiral Hawke he shall pay his score," cried Silver; and
then, relinquishing my hand, "Who did you say he was?" he asked.
"Black what?"
"Dog, sir," said I. Has Mr. Trelawney not told you of the buccaneers?
He was one of them."
"So?" cried Silver. "In my house! Ben, run and help Harry. One of those
swabs, was he? Was that you drinking with him, Morgan? Step up here."
The man whom he called Morgan—an old, grey-haired, mahogany-
faced sailor—came forward pretty sheepishly, rolling his quid.
"Now, Morgan," said Long John very sternly, "you never clapped your
eyes on that Black—Black Dog before, did you, now?"
"Not I, sir," said Morgan with a salute.
"You didn't know his name, did you?"
"No, sir."
"By the powers, Tom Morgan, it's as good for you!" exclaimed the
landlord. "If you had been mixed up with the like of that, you would
never have put another foot in my house, you may lay to that. And what
was he saying to you?"
"I don't rightly know, sir," answered Morgan.
41
"Do you call that a head on your shoulders, or a blessed dead-eye?"
cried Long John. "Don't rightly know, don't you! Perhaps you don't hap-
pen to rightly know who you was speaking to, perhaps? Come, now,
what was he jawing—v'yages, cap'ns, ships? Pipe up! What was it?"
"We was a-talkin' of keel-hauling," answered Morgan.
"Keel-hauling, was you? And a mighty suitable thing, too, and you
may lay to that. Get back to your place for a lubber, Tom."
And then, as Morgan rolled back to his seat, Silver added to me in a
confidential whisper that was very flattering, as I thought, "He's quite an
honest man, Tom Morgan, on'y stupid. And now," he ran on again,
aloud, "let's see—Black Dog? No, I don't know the name, not I. Yet I kind
of think I've—yes, I've seen the swab. He used to come here with a blind
beggar, he used."
"That he did, you may be sure," said I. "I knew that blind man too. His
name was Pew."
"It was!" cried Silver, now quite excited. "Pew! That were his name for
certain. Ah, he looked a shark, he did! If we run down this Black Dog,
now, there'll be news for Cap'n Trelawney! Ben's a good runner; few sea-
men run better than Ben. He should run him down, hand over hand, by
the powers! He talked o' keel-hauling, did he? I'll keel-haul him!"
All the time he was jerking out these phrases he was stumping up and
down the tavern on his crutch, slapping tables with his hand, and giving
such a show of excitement as would have convinced an Old Bailey judge
or a Bow Street runner. My suspicions had been thoroughly reawakened
on finding Black Dog at the Spy-glass, and I watched the cook narrowly.
But he was too deep, and too ready, and too clever for me, and by the
time the two men had come back out of breath and confessed that they
had lost the track in a crowd, and been scolded like thieves, I would have
gone bail for the innocence of Long John Silver.
"See here, now, Hawkins," said he, "here's a blessed hard thing on a
man like me, now, ain't it? There's Cap'n Trelawney—what's he to think?
Here I have this confounded son of a Dutchman sitting in my own house
drinking of my own rum! Here you comes and tells me of it plain; and
here I let him give us all the slip before my blessed deadlights! Now,
Hawkins, you do me justice with the cap'n. You're a lad, you are, but
you're as smart as paint. I see that when you first come in. Now, here it
is: What could I do, with this old timber I hobble on? When I was an A B
master mariner I'd have come up alongside of him, hand over hand, and
broached him to in a brace of old shakes, I would; but now—"
42
And then, all of a sudden, he stopped, and his jaw dropped as though
he had remembered something.
"The score!" he burst out. "Three goes o' rum! Why, shiver my timbers,
if I hadn't forgotten my score!"
And falling on a bench, he laughed until the tears ran down his
cheeks. I could not help joining, and we laughed together, peal after peal,
until the tavern rang again.
"Why, what a precious old sea-calf I am!" he said at last, wiping his
cheeks. "You and me should get on well, Hawkins, for I'll take my davy I
should be rated ship's boy. But come now, stand by to go about. This
won't do. Dooty is dooty, messmates. I'll put on my old cockerel hat, and
step along of you to Cap'n Trelawney, and report this here affair. For
mind you, it's serious, young Hawkins; and neither you nor me's come
out of it with what I should make so bold as to call credit. Nor you
neither, says you; not smart—none of the pair of us smart. But dash my
buttons! That was a good un about my score."
And he began to laugh again, and that so heartily, that though I did
not see the joke as he did, I was again obliged to join him in his mirth.
On our little walk along the quays, he made himself the most interest-
ing companion, telling me about the different ships that we passed by,
their rig, tonnage, and nationality, explaining the work that was going
forward—how one was discharging, another taking in cargo, and a third
making ready for sea—and every now and then telling me some little an-
ecdote of ships or seamen or repeating a nautical phrase till I had learned
it perfectly. I began to see that here was one of the best of possible
shipmates.
When we got to the inn, the squire and Dr. Livesey were seated to-
gether, finishing a quart of ale with a toast in it, before they should go
aboard the schooner on a visit of inspection.
Long John told the story from first to last, with a great deal of spirit
and the most perfect truth. "That was how it were, now, weren't it,
Hawkins?" he would say, now and again, and I could always bear him
entirely out.
The two gentlemen regretted that Black Dog had got away, but we all
agreed there was nothing to be done, and after he had been complimen-
ted, Long John took up his crutch and departed.
"All hands aboard by four this afternoon," shouted the squire after
him.
"Aye, aye, sir," cried the cook, in the passage.
43
"Well, squire," said Dr. Livesey, "I don't put much faith in your discov-
eries, as a general thing; but I will say this, John Silver suits me."
"The man's a perfect trump," declared the squire.
"And now," added the doctor, "Jim may come on board with us, may
he not?"
"To be sure he may," says squire. "Take your hat, Hawkins, and we'll
see the ship."
44
Chapter 3
Powder and Arms
T
he Hispaniola lay some way out, and we went under the figure-
heads and round the sterns of many other ships, and their cables
sometimes grated underneath our keel, and sometimes swung above us.
At last, however, we got alongside, and were met and saluted as we
stepped aboard by the mate, Mr. Arrow, a brown old sailor with earrings
in his ears and a squint. He and the squire were very thick and friendly,
but I soon observed that things were not the same between Mr. Tre-
lawney and the captain.
This last was a sharp-looking man who seemed angry with everything
on board and was soon to tell us why, for we had hardly got down into
the cabin when a sailor followed us.
"Captain Smollett, sir, axing to speak with you," said he.
"I am always at the captain's orders. Show him in," said the squire.
The captain, who was close behind his messenger, entered at once and
shut the door behind him.
"Well, Captain Smollett, what have you to say? All well, I hope; all
shipshape and seaworthy?"
"Well, sir," said the captain, "better speak plain, I believe, even at the
risk of offence. I don't like this cruise; I don't like the men; and I don't
like my officer. That's short and sweet."
"Perhaps, sir, you don't like the ship?" inquired the squire, very angry,
as I could see.
"I can't speak as to that, sir, not having seen her tried," said the captain.
"She seems a clever craft; more I can't say." "Possibly, sir, you may not
like your employer, either?" says the squire.
But here Dr. Livesey cut in.
"Stay a bit," said he, "stay a bit. No use of such questions as that but to
produce ill feeling. The captain has said too much or he has said too
little, and I'm bound to say that I require an explanation of his words.
You don't, you say, like this cruise. Now, why?"
45
"I was engaged, sir, on what we call sealed orders, to sail this ship for
that gentleman where he should bid me," said the captain. "So far so
good. But now I find that every man before the mast knows more than I
do. I don't call that fair, now, do you?"
"No," said Dr. Livesey, "I don't."
"Next," said the captain, "I learn we are going after treasure—hear it
from my own hands, mind you. Now, treasure is ticklish work; I don't
like treasure voyages on any account, and I don't like them, above all,
when they are secret and when (begging your pardon, Mr. Trelawney)
the secret has been told to the parrot."
"Silver's parrot?" asked the squire.
"It's a way of speaking," said the captain. "Blabbed, I mean. It's my be-
lief neither of you gentlemen know what you are about, but I'll tell you
my way of it—life or death, and a close run."
"That is all clear, and, I dare say, true enough," replied Dr. Livesey.
"We take the risk, but we are not so ignorant as you believe us. Next, you
say you don't like the crew. Are they not good seamen?"
"I don't like them, sir," returned Captain Smollett. "And I think I
should have had the choosing of my own hands, if you go to that."
"Perhaps you should," replied the doctor. "My friend should, perhaps,
have taken you along with him; but the slight, if there be one, was unin-
tentional. And you don't like Mr. Arrow?"
"I don't, sir. I believe he's a good seaman, but he's too free with the
crew to be a good officer. A mate should keep himself to him-
self—shouldn't drink with the men before the mast!"
"Do you mean he drinks?" cried the squire.
"No, sir," replied the captain, "only that he's too familiar."
"Well, now, and the short and long of it, captain?" asked the doctor.
"Tell us what you want."
"Well, gentlemen, are you determined to go on this cruise?"
"Like iron," answered the squire.
"Very good," said the captain. "Then, as you've heard me very pa-
tiently, saying things that I could not prove, hear me a few words more.
They are putting the powder and the arms in the fore hold. Now, you
have a good place under the cabin; why not put them there?—first point.
Then, you are bringing four of your own people with you, and they tell
me some of them are to be berthed forward. Why not give them the
berths here beside the cabin?—second point."
"Any more?" asked Mr. Trelawney.
46
"One more," said the captain. "There's been too much blabbing
already."
"Far too much," agreed the doctor.
"I'll tell you what I've heard myself," continued Captain Smollett: "that
you have a map of an island, that there's crosses on the map to show
where treasure is, and that the island lies—" And then he named the lat-
itude and longitude exactly.
"I never told that," cried the squire, "to a soul!"
"The hands know it, sir," returned the captain.
"Livesey, that must have been you or Hawkins," cried the squire.
"It doesn't much matter who it was," replied the doctor. And I could
see that neither he nor the captain paid much regard to Mr. Trelawney's
protestations. Neither did I, to be sure, he was so loose a talker; yet in
this case I believe he was really right and that nobody had told the situ-
ation of the island.
"Well, gentlemen," continued the captain, "I don't know who has this
map; but I make it a point, it shall be kept secret even from me and Mr.
Arrow. Otherwise I would ask you to let me resign."
"I see," said the doctor. "You wish us to keep this matter dark and to
make a garrison of the stern part of the ship, manned with my friend's
own people, and provided with all the arms and powder on board. In
other words, you fear a mutiny."
"Sir," said Captain Smollett, "with no intention to take offence, I deny
your right to put words into my mouth. No captain, sir, would be justi-
fied in going to sea at all if he had ground enough to say that. As for Mr.
Arrow, I believe him thoroughly honest; some of the men are the same;
all may be for what I know. But I am responsible for the ship's safety and
the life of every man Jack aboard of her. I see things going, as I think, not
quite right. And I ask you to take certain precautions or let me resign my
berth. And that's all."
"Captain Smollett," began the doctor with a smile, "did ever you hear
the fable of the mountain and the mouse? You'll excuse me, I dare say,
but you remind me of that fable. When you came in here, I'll stake my
wig, you meant more than this."
"Doctor," said the captain, "you are smart. When I came in here I
meant to get discharged. I had no thought that Mr. Trelawney would
hear a word."
"No more I would," cried the squire. "Had Livesey not been here I
should have seen you to the deuce. As it is, I have heard you. I will do as
you desire, but I think the worse of you."
47
"That's as you please, sir," said the captain. "You'll find I do my duty."
And with that he took his leave.
"Trelawney," said the doctor, "contrary to all my notions, I believed
you have managed to get two honest men on board with you—that man
and John Silver."
"Silver, if you like," cried the squire; "but as for that intolerable hum-
bug, I declare I think his conduct unmanly, unsailorly, and downright
un-English."
"Well," says the doctor, "we shall see."
When we came on deck, the men had begun already to take out the
arms and powder, yo-ho-ing at their work, while the captain and Mr. Ar-
row stood by superintending.
The new arrangement was quite to my liking. The whole schooner had
been overhauled; six berths had been made astern out of what had been
the after-part of the main hold; and this set of cabins was only joined to
the galley and forecastle by a sparred passage on the port side. It had
been originally meant that the captain, Mr. Arrow, Hunter, Joyce, the
doctor, and the squire were to occupy these six berths. Now Redruth and
I were to get two of them and Mr. Arrow and the captain were to sleep
on deck in the companion, which had been enlarged on each side till you
might almost have called it a round-house. Very low it was still, of
course; but there was room to swing two hammocks, and even the mate
seemed pleased with the arrangement. Even he, perhaps, had been
doubtful as to the crew, but that is only guess, for as you shall hear, we
had not long the benefit of his opinion.
We were all hard at work, changing the powder and the berths, when
the last man or two, and Long John along with them, came off in a shore-
boat.
The cook came up the side like a monkey for cleverness, and as soon
as he saw what was doing, "So ho, mates!" says he. "What's this?"
"We're a-changing of the powder, Jack," answers one.
"Why, by the powers," cried Long John, "if we do, we'll miss the morn-
ing tide!"
"My orders!" said the captain shortly. "You may go below, my man.
Hands will want supper."
"Aye, aye, sir," answered the cook, and touching his forelock, he disap-
peared at once in the direction of his galley. "That's a good man, captain,"
said the doctor.
"Very likely, sir," replied Captain Smollett. "Easy with that,
men—easy," he ran on, to the fellows who were shifting the powder; and
48
then suddenly observing me examining the swivel we carried amidships,
a long brass nine, "Here you, ship's boy," he cried, "out o' that! Off with
you to the cook and get some work."
And then as I was hurrying off I heard him say, quite loudly, to the
doctor, "I'll have no favourites on my ship." I assure you I was quite of
the squire's way of thinking, and hated the captain deeply.
49
Chapter 4
The Voyage
A
ll that night we were in a great bustle getting things stowed in
their place, and boatfuls of the squire's friends, Mr. Blandly and
the like, coming off to wish him a good voyage and a safe return. We
never had a night at the Admiral Benbow when I had half the work; and
I was dog-tired when, a little before dawn, the boatswain sounded his
pipe and the crew began to man the capstan-bars. I might have been
twice as weary, yet I would not have left the deck, all was so new and in-
teresting to me—the brief commands, the shrill note of the whistle, the
men bustling to their places in the glimmer of the ship's lanterns.
"Now, Barbecue, tip us a stave," cried one voice.
"The old one," cried another.
"Aye, aye, mates," said Long John, who was standing by, with his
crutch under his arm, and at once broke out in the air and words I knew
so well:
"Fifteen men on the dead man's chest—"
And then the whole crew bore chorus:—
"Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!"
And at the third "Ho!" drove the bars before them with a will.
Even at that exciting moment it carried me back to the old Admiral
Benbow in a second, and I seemed to hear the voice of the captain piping
in the chorus. But soon the anchor was short up; soon it was hanging
dripping at the bows; soon the sails began to draw, and the land and
shipping to flit by on either side; and before I could lie down to snatch an
hour of slumber the Hispaniola had begun her voyage to the Isle of
Treasure.
I am not going to relate that voyage in detail. It was fairly prosperous.
The ship proved to be a good ship, the crew were capable seamen, and
the captain thoroughly understood his business. But before we came the
length of Treasure Island, two or three things had happened which re-
quire to be known.
50
Mr. Arrow, first of all, turned out even worse than the captain had
feared. He had no command among the men, and people did what they
pleased with him. But that was by no means the worst of it, for after a
day or two at sea he began to appear on deck with hazy eye, red cheeks,
stuttering tongue, and other marks of drunkenness. Time after time he
was ordered below in disgrace. Sometimes he fell and cut himself; some-
times he lay all day long in his little bunk at one side of the companion;
sometimes for a day or two he would be almost sober and attend to his
work at least passably.
In the meantime, we could never make out where he got the drink.
That was the ship's mystery. Watch him as we pleased, we could do
nothing to solve it; and when we asked him to his face, he would only
laugh if he were drunk, and if he were sober deny solemnly that he ever
tasted anything but water.
He was not only useless as an officer and a bad influence amongst the
men, but it was plain that at this rate he must soon kill himself outright,
so nobody was much surprised, nor very sorry, when one dark night,
with a head sea, he disappeared entirely and was seen no more.
"Overboard!" said the captain. "Well, gentlemen, that saves the trouble
of putting him in irons."
But there we were, without a mate; and it was necessary, of course, to
advance one of the men. The boatswain, Job Anderson, was the likeliest
man aboard, and though he kept his old title, he served in a way as mate.
Mr. Trelawney had followed the sea, and his knowledge made him very
useful, for he often took a watch himself in easy weather. And the cox-
swain, Israel Hands, was a careful, wily, old, experienced seaman who
could be trusted at a pinch with almost anything.
He was a great confidant of Long John Silver, and so the mention of
his name leads me on to speak of our ship's cook, Barbecue, as the men
called him.
Aboard ship he carried his crutch by a lanyard round his neck, to have
both hands as free as possible. It was something to see him wedge the
foot of the crutch against a bulkhead, and propped against it, yielding to
every movement of the ship, get on with his cooking like someone safe
ashore. Still more strange was it to see him in the heaviest of weather
cross the deck. He had a line or two rigged up to help him across the
widest spaces—Long John's earrings, they were called; and he would
hand himself from one place to another, now using the crutch, now trail-
ing it alongside by the lanyard, as quickly as another man could walk.
51
Yet some of the men who had sailed with him before expressed their pity
to see him so reduced.
"He's no common man, Barbecue," said the coxswain to me. "He had
good schooling in his young days and can speak like a book when so
minded; and brave—a lion's nothing alongside of Long John! I seen him
grapple four and knock their heads together—him unarmed."
All the crew respected and even obeyed him. He had a way of talking
to each and doing everybody some particular service. To me he was un-
weariedly kind, and always glad to see me in the galley, which he kept
as clean as a new pin, the dishes hanging up burnished and his parrot in
a cage in one corner.
"Come away, Hawkins," he would say; "come and have a yarn with
John. Nobody more welcome than yourself, my son. Sit you down and
hear the news. Here's Cap'n Flint—I calls my parrot Cap'n Flint, after the
famous buccaneer—here's Cap'n Flint predicting success to our v'yage.
Wasn't you, cap'n?"
And the parrot would say, with great rapidity, "Pieces of eight! Pieces
of eight! Pieces of eight!" till you wondered that it was not out of breath,
or till John threw his handkerchief over the cage.
"Now, that bird," he would say, "is, maybe, two hundred years old,
Hawkins—they live forever mostly; and if anybody's seen more wicked-
ness, it must be the devil himself. She's sailed with England, the great
Cap'n England, the pirate. She's been at Madagascar, and at Malabar,
and Surinam, and Providence, and Portobello. She was at the fishing up
of the wrecked plate ships. It's there she learned 'Pieces of eight,' and
little wonder; three hundred and fifty thousand of 'em, Hawkins! She
was at the boarding of the viceroy of the Indies out of Goa, she was; and
to look at her you would think she was a babby. But you smelt
powder—didn't you, cap'n?"
"Stand by to go about," the parrot would scream.
"Ah, she's a handsome craft, she is," the cook would say, and give her
sugar from his pocket, and then the bird would peck at the bars and
swear straight on, passing belief for wickedness. "There," John would
add, "you can't touch pitch and not be mucked, lad. Here's this poor old
innocent bird o' mine swearing blue fire, and none the wiser, you may
lay to that. She would swear the same, in a manner of speaking, before
chaplain." And John would touch his forelock with a solemn way he had
that made me think he was the best of men.
In the meantime, the squire and Captain Smollett were still on pretty
distant terms with one another. The squire made no bones about the
52
matter; he despised the captain. The captain, on his part, never spoke but
when he was spoken to, and then sharp and short and dry, and not a
word wasted. He owned, when driven into a corner, that he seemed to
have been wrong about the crew, that some of them were as brisk as he
wanted to see and all had behaved fairly well. As for the ship, he had
taken a downright fancy to her. "She'll lie a point nearer the wind than a
man has a right to expect of his own married wife, sir. But," he would
add, "all I say is, we're not home again, and I don't like the cruise."
The squire, at this, would turn away and march up and down the
deck, chin in air.
"A trifle more of that man," he would say, "and I shall explode."
We had some heavy weather, which only proved the qualities of the
Hispaniola. Every man on board seemed well content, and they must
have been hard to please if they had been otherwise, for it is my belief
there was never a ship's company so spoiled since Noah put to sea.
Double grog was going on the least excuse; there was duff on odd days,
as, for instance, if the squire heard it was any man's birthday, and always
a barrel of apples standing broached in the waist for anyone to help him-
self that had a fancy.
"Never knew good come of it yet," the captain said to Dr. Livesey.
"Spoil forecastle hands, make devils. That's my belief." But good did
come of the apple barrel, as you shall hear, for if it had not been for that,
we should have had no note of warning and might all have perished by
the hand of treachery.
This was how it came about.
We had run up the trades to get the wind of the island we were
after—I am not allowed to be more plain—and now we were running
down for it with a bright lookout day and night. It was about the last day
of our outward voyage by the largest computation; some time that night,
or at latest before noon of the morrow, we should sight the Treasure Is-
land. We were heading S.S.W. and had a steady breeze abeam and a
quiet sea. The Hispaniola rolled steadily, dipping her bowsprit now and
then with a whiff of spray. All was drawing alow and aloft; everyone
was in the bravest spirits because we were now so near an end of the
first part of our adventure.
Now, just after sundown, when all my work was over and I was on
my way to my berth, it occurred to me that I should like an apple. I ran
on deck. The watch was all forward looking out for the island. The man
at the helm was watching the luff of the sail and whistling away gently
53
to himself, and that was the only sound excepting the swish of the sea
against the bows and around the sides of the ship.
In I got bodily into the apple barrel, and found there was scarce an
apple left; but sitting down there in the dark, what with the sound of the
waters and the rocking movement of the ship, I had either fallen asleep
or was on the point of doing so when a heavy man sat down with rather
a clash close by. The barrel shook as he leaned his shoulders against it,
and I was just about to jump up when the man began to speak. It was
Silver's voice, and before I had heard a dozen words, I would not have
shown myself for all the world, but lay there, trembling and listening, in
the extreme of fear and curiosity, for from these dozen words I under-
stood that the lives of all the honest men aboard depended upon me
alone.
54
Chapter 5
What I Heard in the Apple Barrel
"N
o, not I," said Silver. "Flint was cap'n; I was quartermaster,
along of my timber leg. The same broadside I lost my leg, old
Pew lost his deadlights. It was a master surgeon, him that ampytated
me—out of college and all—Latin by the bucket, and what not; but he
was hanged like a dog, and sun-dried like the rest, at Corso Castle. That
was Roberts' men, that was, and comed of changing names to their
ships—Royal Fortune and so on. Now, what a ship was christened, so let
her stay, I says. So it was with the Cassandra, as brought us all safe home
from Malabar, after England took the viceroy of the Indies; so it was with
the old Walrus, Flint's old ship, as I've seen amuck with the red blood
and fit to sink with gold."
"Ah!" cried another voice, that of the youngest hand on board, and
evidently full of admiration. "He was the flower of the flock, was Flint!"
"Davis was a man too, by all accounts," said Silver. "I never sailed
along of him; first with England, then with Flint, that's my story; and
now here on my own account, in a manner of speaking. I laid by nine
hundred safe, from England, and two thousand after Flint. That ain't bad
for a man before the mast—all safe in bank. 'Tain't earning now, it's sav-
ing does it, you may lay to that. Where's all England's men now? I
dunno. Where's Flint's? Why, most on 'em aboard here, and glad to get
the duff—been begging before that, some on 'em. Old Pew, as had lost
his sight, and might have thought shame, spends twelve hundred pound
in a year, like a lord in Parliament. Where is he now? Well, he's dead
now and under hatches; but for two year before that, shiver my timbers,
the man was starving! He begged, and he stole, and he cut throats, and
starved at that, by the powers!"
"Well, it ain't much use, after all," said the young seaman.
"'Tain't much use for fools, you may lay to it—that, nor nothing," cried
Silver. "But now, you look here: you're young, you are, but you're as
55
smart as paint. I see that when I set my eyes on you, and I'll talk to you
like a man."
You may imagine how I felt when I heard this abominable old rogue
addressing another in the very same words of flattery as he had used to
myself. I think, if I had been able, that I would have killed him through
the barrel. Meantime, he ran on, little supposing he was overheard.
"Here it is about gentlemen of fortune. They lives rough, and they risk
swinging, but they eat and drink like fighting-cocks, and when a cruise is
done, why, it's hundreds of pounds instead of hundreds of farthings in
their pockets. Now, the most goes for rum and a good fling, and to sea
again in their shirts. But that's not the course I lay. I puts it all away,
some here, some there, and none too much anywheres, by reason of sus-
picion. I'm fifty, mark you; once back from this cruise, I set up gentleman
in earnest. Time enough too, says you. Ah, but I've lived easy in the
meantime, never denied myself o' nothing heart desires, and slep' soft
and ate dainty all my days but when at sea. And how did I begin? Before
the mast, like you!"
"Well," said the other, "but all the other money's gone now, ain't it?
You daren't show face in Bristol after this."
"Why, where might you suppose it was?" asked Silver derisively.
"At Bristol, in banks and places," answered his companion.
"It were," said the cook; "it were when we weighed anchor. But my old
missis has it all by now. And the Spy-glass is sold, lease and goodwill
and rigging; and the old girl's off to meet me. I would tell you where, for
I trust you, but it'd make jealousy among the mates."
"And can you trust your missis?" asked the other.
"Gentlemen of fortune," returned the cook, "usually trusts little among
themselves, and right they are, you may lay to it. But I have a way with
me, I have. When a mate brings a slip on his cable—one as knows me, I
mean—it won't be in the same world with old John. There was some that
was feared of Pew, and some that was feared of Flint; but Flint his own
self was feared of me. Feared he was, and proud. They was the roughest
crew afloat, was Flint's; the devil himself would have been feared to go
to sea with them. Well now, I tell you, I'm not a boasting man, and you
seen yourself how easy I keep company, but when I was quartermaster,
lambs wasn't the word for Flint's old buccaneers. Ah, you may be sure of
yourself in old John's ship."
"Well, I tell you now," replied the lad, "I didn't half a quarter like the
job till I had this talk with you, John; but there's my hand on it now."
56
"And a brave lad you were, and smart too," answered Silver, shaking
hands so heartily that all the barrel shook, "and a finer figurehead for a
gentleman of fortune I never clapped my eyes on."
By this time I had begun to understand the meaning of their terms. By
a "gentleman of fortune" they plainly meant neither more nor less than a
common pirate, and the little scene that I had overheard was the last act
in the corruption of one of the honest hands—perhaps of the last one left
aboard. But on this point I was soon to be relieved, for Silver giving a
little whistle, a third man strolled up and sat down by the party.
"Dick's square," said Silver.
"Oh, I know'd Dick was square," returned the voice of the coxswain,
Israel Hands. "He's no fool, is Dick." And he turned his quid and spat.
"But look here," he went on, "here's what I want to know, Barbecue: how
long are we a-going to stand off and on like a blessed bumboat? I've had
a'most enough o' Cap'n Smollett; he's hazed me long enough, by thun-
der! I want to go into that cabin, I do. I want their pickles and wines, and
that."
"Israel," said Silver, "your head ain't much account, nor ever was. But
you're able to hear, I reckon; leastways, your ears is big enough. Now,
here's what I say: you'll berth forward, and you'll live hard, and you'll
speak soft, and you'll keep sober till I give the word; and you may lay to
that, my son."
"Well, I don't say no, do I?" growled the coxswain. "What I say is,
when? That's what I say."
"When! By the powers!" cried Silver. "Well now, if you want to know,
I'll tell you when. The last moment I can manage, and that's when. Here's
a first-rate seaman, Cap'n Smollett, sails the blessed ship for us. Here's
this squire and doctor with a map and such—I don't know where it is, do
I? No more do you, says you. Well then, I mean this squire and doctor
shall find the stuff, and help us to get it aboard, by the powers. Then
we'll see. If I was sure of you all, sons of double Dutchmen, I'd have
Cap'n Smollett navigate us half-way back again before I struck."
"Why, we're all seamen aboard here, I should think," said the lad Dick.
"We're all forecastle hands, you mean," snapped Silver. "We can steer a
course, but who's to set one? That's what all you gentlemen split on, first
and last. If I had my way, I'd have Cap'n Smollett work us back into the
trades at least; then we'd have no blessed miscalculations and a spoonful
of water a day. But I know the sort you are. I'll finish with 'em at the is-
land, as soon's the blunt's on board, and a pity it is. But you're never
57
happy till you're drunk. Split my sides, I've a sick heart to sail with the
likes of you!"
"Easy all, Long John," cried Israel. "Who's a-crossin' of you?"
"Why, how many tall ships, think ye, now, have I seen laid aboard?
And how many brisk lads drying in the sun at Execution Dock?" cried
Silver. "And all for this same hurry and hurry and hurry. You hear me? I
seen a thing or two at sea, I have. If you would on'y lay your course, and
a p'int to windward, you would ride in carriages, you would. But not
you! I know you. You'll have your mouthful of rum tomorrow, and go
hang."
"Everybody knowed you was a kind of a chapling, John; but there's
others as could hand and steer as well as you," said Israel. "They liked a
bit o' fun, they did. They wasn't so high and dry, nohow, but took their
fling, like jolly companions every one."
"So?" says Silver. "Well, and where are they now? Pew was that sort,
and he died a beggar-man. Flint was, and he died of rum at Savannah.
Ah, they was a sweet crew, they was! On'y, where are they?"
"But," asked Dick, "when we do lay 'em athwart, what are we to do
with 'em, anyhow?"
"There's the man for me!" cried the cook admiringly. "That's what I call
business. Well, what would you think? Put 'em ashore like maroons?
That would have been England's way. Or cut 'em down like that much
pork? That would have been Flint's, or Billy Bones's."
"Billy was the man for that," said Israel. "'Dead men don't bite,' says he.
Well, he's dead now hisself; he knows the long and short on it now; and
if ever a rough hand come to port, it was Billy."
"Right you are," said Silver; "rough and ready. But mark you here, I'm
an easy man—I'm quite the gentleman, says you; but this time it's seri-
ous. Dooty is dooty, mates. I give my vote—death. When I'm in Parly-
ment and riding in my coach, I don't want none of these sea-lawyers in
the cabin a-coming home, unlooked for, like the devil at prayers. Wait is
what I say; but when the time comes, why, let her rip!"
"John," cries the coxswain, "you're a man!"
"You'll say so, Israel when you see," said Silver. "Only one thing I
claim—I claim Trelawney. I'll wring his calf's head off his body with
these hands, Dick!" he added, breaking off. "You just jump up, like a
sweet lad, and get me an apple, to wet my pipe like."
You may fancy the terror I was in! I should have leaped out and run
for it if I had found the strength, but my limbs and heart alike misgave
me. I heard Dick begin to rise, and then someone seemingly stopped
58
him, and the voice of Hands exclaimed, "Oh, stow that! Don't you get
sucking of that bilge, John. Let's have a go of the rum."
"Dick," said Silver, "I trust you. I've a gauge on the keg, mind. There's
the key; you fill a pannikin and bring it up." Terrified as I was, I could
not help thinking to myself that this must have been how Mr. Arrow got
the strong waters that destroyed him.
Dick was gone but a little while, and during his absence Israel spoke
straight on in the cook's ear. It was but a word or two that I could catch,
and yet I gathered some important news, for besides other scraps that
tended to the same purpose, this whole clause was audible: "Not another
man of them'll jine." Hence there were still faithful men on board.
When Dick returned, one after another of the trio took the pannikin
and drank—one "To luck," another with a "Here's to old Flint," and Silver
himself saying, in a kind of song, "Here's to ourselves, and hold your
luff, plenty of prizes and plenty of duff."
Just then a sort of brightness fell upon me in the barrel, and looking
up, I found the moon had risen and was silvering the mizzen-top and
shining white on the luff of the fore-sail; and almost at the same time the
voice of the lookout shouted, "Land ho!"
59
Chapter 6
Council of War
T
here was a great rush of feet across the deck. I could hear people
tumbling up from the cabin and the forecastle, and slipping in an
instant outside my barrel, I dived behind the fore-sail, made a double to-
wards the stern, and came out upon the open deck in time to join Hunter
and Dr. Livesey in the rush for the weather bow.
There all hands were already congregated. A belt of fog had lifted al-
most simultaneously with the appearance of the moon. Away to the
south-west of us we saw two low hills, about a couple of miles apart, and
rising behind one of them a third and higher hill, whose peak was still
buried in the fog. All three seemed sharp and conical in figure.
So much I saw, almost in a dream, for I had not yet recovered from my
horrid fear of a minute or two before. And then I heard the voice of Cap-
tain Smollett issuing orders. The Hispaniola was laid a couple of points
nearer the wind and now sailed a course that would just clear the island
on the east.
"And now, men," said the captain, when all was sheeted home, "has
any one of you ever seen that land ahead?"
"I have, sir," said Silver. "I've watered there with a trader I was cook
in."
"The anchorage is on the south, behind an islet, I fancy?" asked the
captain.
"Yes, sir; Skeleton Island they calls it. It were a main place for pirates
once, and a hand we had on board knowed all their names for it. That
hill to the nor'ard they calls the Fore-mast Hill; there are three hills in a
row running south'ard—fore, main, and mizzen, sir. But the
main—that's the big un, with the cloud on it—they usually calls the Spy-
glass, by reason of a lookout they kept when they was in the anchorage
cleaning, for it's there they cleaned their ships, sir, asking your pardon."
"I have a chart here," says Captain Smollett. "See if that's the place."
60
Long John's eyes burned in his head as he took the chart, but by the
fresh look of the paper I knew he was doomed to disappointment. This
was not the map we found in Billy Bones's chest, but an accurate copy,
complete in all things—names and heights and soundings—with the
single exception of the red crosses and the written notes. Sharp as must
have been his annoyance, Silver had the strength of mind to hide it.
"Yes, sir," said he, "this is the spot, to be sure, and very prettily drawed
out. Who might have done that, I wonder? The pirates were too ignorant,
I reckon. Aye, here it is: 'Capt. Kidd's Anchorage'—just the name my
shipmate called it. There's a strong current runs along the south, and
then away nor'ard up the west coast. Right you was, sir," says he, "to
haul your wind and keep the weather of the island. Leastways, if such
was your intention as to enter and careen, and there ain't no better place
for that in these waters."
"Thank you, my man," says Captain Smollett. "I'll ask you later on to
give us a help. You may go."
I was surprised at the coolness with which John avowed his know-
ledge of the island, and I own I was half-frightened when I saw him
drawing nearer to myself. He did not know, to be sure, that I had over-
heard his council from the apple barrel, and yet I had by this time taken
such a horror of his cruelty, duplicity, and power that I could scarce con-
ceal a shudder when he laid his hand upon my arm.
"Ah," says he, "this here is a sweet spot, this island—a sweet spot for a
lad to get ashore on. You'll bathe, and you'll climb trees, and you'll hunt
goats, you will; and you'll get aloft on them hills like a goat yourself.
Why, it makes me young again. I was going to forget my timber leg, I
was. It's a pleasant thing to be young and have ten toes, and you may lay
to that. When you want to go a bit of exploring, you just ask old John,
and he'll put up a snack for you to take along."
And clapping me in the friendliest way upon the shoulder, he hobbled
off forward and went below.
Captain Smollett, the squire, and Dr. Livesey were talking together on
the quarter-deck, and anxious as I was to tell them my story, I durst not
interrupt them openly. While I was still casting about in my thoughts to
find some probable excuse, Dr. Livesey called me to his side. He had left
his pipe below, and being a slave to tobacco, had meant that I should
fetch it; but as soon as I was near enough to speak and not to be over-
heard, I broke immediately, "Doctor, let me speak. Get the captain and
squire down to the cabin, and then make some pretence to send for me. I
have terrible news."
61
The doctor changed countenance a little, but next moment he was
master of himself.
"Thank you, Jim," said he quite loudly, "that was all I wanted to
know," as if he had asked me a question.
And with that he turned on his heel and rejoined the other two. They
spoke together for a little, and though none of them started, or raised his
voice, or so much as whistled, it was plain enough that Dr. Livesey had
communicated my request, for the next thing that I heard was the cap-
tain giving an order to Job Anderson, and all hands were piped on deck.
"My lads," said Captain Smollett, "I've a word to say to you. This land
that we have sighted is the place we have been sailing for. Mr. Tre-
lawney, being a very open-handed gentleman, as we all know, has just
asked me a word or two, and as I was able to tell him that every man on
board had done his duty, alow and aloft, as I never ask to see it done bet-
ter, why, he and I and the doctor are going below to the cabin to drink
your health and luck, and you'll have grog served out for you to drink
our health and luck. I'll tell you what I think of this: I think it handsome.
And if you think as I do, you'll give a good sea-cheer for the gentleman
that does it."
The cheer followed—that was a matter of course; but it rang out so full
and hearty that I confess I could hardly believe these same men were
plotting for our blood.
"One more cheer for Cap'n Smollett," cried Long John when the first
had subsided.
And this also was given with a will.
On the top of that the three gentlemen went below, and not long after,
word was sent forward that Jim Hawkins was wanted in the cabin.
I found them all three seated round the table, a bottle of Spanish wine
and some raisins before them, and the doctor smoking away, with his
wig on his lap, and that, I knew, was a sign that he was agitated. The
stern window was open, for it was a warm night, and you could see the
moon shining behind on the ship's wake.
"Now, Hawkins," said the squire, "you have something to say. Speak
up."
I did as I was bid, and as short as I could make it, told the whole de-
tails of Silver's conversation. Nobody interrupted me till I was done, nor
did any one of the three of them make so much as a movement, but they
kept their eyes upon my face from first to last.
"Jim," said Dr. Livesey, "take a seat."
62
And they made me sit down at table beside them, poured me out a
glass of wine, filled my hands with raisins, and all three, one after the
other, and each with a bow, drank my good health, and their service to
me, for my luck and courage.
"Now, captain," said the squire, "you were right, and I was wrong. I
own myself an ass, and I await your orders."
"No more an ass than I, sir," returned the captain. "I never heard of a
crew that meant to mutiny but what showed signs before, for any man
that had an eye in his head to see the mischief and take steps according.
But this crew," he added, "beats me."
"Captain," said the doctor, "with your permission, that's Silver. A very
remarkable man."
"He'd look remarkably well from a yard-arm, sir," returned the cap-
tain. "But this is talk; this don't lead to anything. I see three or four
points, and with Mr. Trelawney's permission, I'll name them."
"You, sir, are the captain. It is for you to speak," says Mr. Trelawney
grandly.
"First point," began Mr. Smollett. "We must go on, because we can't
turn back. If I gave the word to go about, they would rise at once. Second
point, we have time before us—at least until this treasure's found. Third
point, there are faithful hands. Now, sir, it's got to come to blows sooner
or later, and what I propose is to take time by the forelock, as the saying
is, and come to blows some fine day when they least expect it. We can
count, I take it, on your own home servants, Mr. Trelawney?"
"As upon myself," declared the squire.
"Three," reckoned the captain; "ourselves make seven, counting
Hawkins here. Now, about the honest hands?"
"Most likely Trelawney's own men," said the doctor; "those he had
picked up for himself before he lit on Silver."
"Nay," replied the squire. "Hands was one of mine."
"I did think I could have trusted Hands," added the captain.
"And to think that they're all Englishmen!" broke out the squire. "Sir, I
could find it in my heart to blow the ship up."
"Well, gentlemen," said the captain, "the best that I can say is not
much. We must lay to, if you please, and keep a bright lookout. It's try-
ing on a man, I know. It would be pleasanter to come to blows. But
there's no help for it till we know our men. Lay to, and whistle for a
wind, that's my view."
"Jim here," said the doctor, "can help us more than anyone. The men
are not shy with him, and Jim is a noticing lad."
63
"Hawkins, I put prodigious faith in you," added the squire.
I began to feel pretty desperate at this, for I felt altogether helpless;
and yet, by an odd train of circumstances, it was indeed through me that
safety came. In the meantime, talk as we pleased, there were only seven
out of the twenty-six on whom we knew we could rely; and out of these
seven one was a boy, so that the grown men on our side were six to their
nineteen.
64
Part 3
My Shore Adventure
65
Chapter 1
How My Shore Adventure Began
T
he appearance of the island when I came on deck next morning was
altogether changed. Although the breeze had now utterly ceased,
we had made a great deal of way during the night and were now lying
becalmed about half a mile to the south-east of the low eastern coast.
Grey-coloured woods covered a large part of the surface. This even tint
was indeed broken up by streaks of yellow sand-break in the lower
lands, and by many tall trees of the pine family, out-topping the oth-
ers—some singly, some in clumps; but the general colouring was uni-
form and sad. The hills ran up clear above the vegetation in spires of na-
ked rock. All were strangely shaped, and the Spy-glass, which was by
three or four hundred feet the tallest on the island, was likewise the
strangest in configuration, running up sheer from almost every side and
then suddenly cut off at the top like a pedestal to put a statue on.
The Hispaniola was rolling scuppers under in the ocean swell. The
booms were tearing at the blocks, the rudder was banging to and fro,
and the whole ship creaking, groaning, and jumping like a manufactory.
I had to cling tight to the backstay, and the world turned giddily before
my eyes, for though I was a good enough sailor when there was way on,
this standing still and being rolled about like a bottle was a thing I never
learned to stand without a qualm or so, above all in the morning, on an
empty stomach.
Perhaps it was this—perhaps it was the look of the island, with its
grey, melancholy woods, and wild stone spires, and the surf that we
could both see and hear foaming and thundering on the steep beach—at
least, although the sun shone bright and hot, and the shore birds were
fishing and crying all around us, and you would have thought anyone
would have been glad to get to land after being so long at sea, my heart
sank, as the saying is, into my boots; and from the first look onward, I
hated the very thought of Treasure Island.
66
We had a dreary morning's work before us, for there was no sign of
any wind, and the boats had to be got out and manned, and the ship
warped three or four miles round the corner of the island and up the nar-
row passage to the haven behind Skeleton Island. I volunteered for one
of the boats, where I had, of course, no business. The heat was swelter-
ing, and the men grumbled fiercely over their work. Anderson was in
command of my boat, and instead of keeping the crew in order, he
grumbled as loud as the worst.
"Well," he said with an oath, "it's not forever."
I thought this was a very bad sign, for up to that day the men had
gone briskly and willingly about their business; but the very sight of the
island had relaxed the cords of discipline.
All the way in, Long John stood by the steersman and conned the ship.
He knew the passage like the palm of his hand, and though the man in
the chains got everywhere more water than was down in the chart, John
never hesitated once.
"There's a strong scour with the ebb," he said, "and this here passage
has been dug out, in a manner of speaking, with a spade."
We brought up just where the anchor was in the chart, about a third of
a mile from each shore, the mainland on one side and Skeleton Island on
the other. The bottom was clean sand. The plunge of our anchor sent up
clouds of birds wheeling and crying over the woods, but in less than a
minute they were down again and all was once more silent.
The place was entirely land-locked, buried in woods, the trees coming
right down to high-water mark, the shores mostly flat, and the hilltops
standing round at a distance in a sort of amphitheatre, one here, one
there. Two little rivers, or rather two swamps, emptied out into this
pond, as you might call it; and the foliage round that part of the shore
had a kind of poisonous brightness. From the ship we could see nothing
of the house or stockade, for they were quite buried among trees; and if
it had not been for the chart on the companion, we might have been the
first that had ever anchored there since the island arose out of the seas.
There was not a breath of air moving, nor a sound but that of the surf
booming half a mile away along the beaches and against the rocks out-
side. A peculiar stagnant smell hung over the anchorage—a smell of sod-
den leaves and rotting tree trunks. I observed the doctor sniffing and
sniffing, like someone tasting a bad egg.
"I don't know about treasure," he said, "but I'll stake my wig there's
fever here."
67
If the conduct of the men had been alarming in the boat, it became
truly threatening when they had come aboard. They lay about the deck
growling together in talk. The slightest order was received with a black
look and grudgingly and carelessly obeyed. Even the honest hands must
have caught the infection, for there was not one man aboard to mend an-
other. Mutiny, it was plain, hung over us like a thunder-cloud.
And it was not only we of the cabin party who perceived the danger.
Long John was hard at work going from group to group, spending him-
self in good advice, and as for example no man could have shown a bet-
ter. He fairly outstripped himself in willingness and civility; he was all
smiles to everyone. If an order were given, John would be on his crutch
in an instant, with the cheeriest "Aye, aye, sir!" in the world; and when
there was nothing else to do, he kept up one song after another, as if to
conceal the discontent of the rest.
Of all the gloomy features of that gloomy afternoon, this obvious anxi-
ety on the part of Long John appeared the worst.
We held a council in the cabin.
"Sir," said the captain, "if I risk another order, the whole ship'll come
about our ears by the run. You see, sir, here it is. I get a rough answer, do
I not? Well, if I speak back, pikes will be going in two shakes; if I don't,
Silver will see there's something under that, and the game's up. Now,
we've only one man to rely on."
"And who is that?" asked the squire.
"Silver, sir," returned the captain; "he's as anxious as you and I to
smother things up. This is a tiff; he'd soon talk 'em out of it if he had the
chance, and what I propose to do is to give him the chance. Let's allow
the men an afternoon ashore. If they all go, why we'll fight the ship. If
they none of them go, well then, we hold the cabin, and God defend the
right. If some go, you mark my words, sir, Silver'll bring 'em aboard
again as mild as lambs."
It was so decided; loaded pistols were served out to all the sure men;
Hunter, Joyce, and Redruth were taken into our confidence and received
the news with less surprise and a better spirit than we had looked for,
and then the captain went on deck and addressed the crew.
"My lads," said he, "we've had a hot day and are all tired and out of
sorts. A turn ashore'll hurt nobody—the boats are still in the water; you
can take the gigs, and as many as please may go ashore for the afternoon.
I'll fire a gun half an hour before sundown."
I believe the silly fellows must have thought they would break their
shins over treasure as soon as they were landed, for they all came out of
68
their sulks in a moment and gave a cheer that started the echo in a far-
away hill and sent the birds once more flying and squalling round the
anchorage.
The captain was too bright to be in the way. He whipped out of sight
in a moment, leaving Silver to arrange the party, and I fancy it was as
well he did so. Had he been on deck, he could no longer so much as have
pretended not to understand the situation. It was as plain as day. Silver
was the captain, and a mighty rebellious crew he had of it. The honest
hands—and I was soon to see it proved that there were such on
board—must have been very stupid fellows. Or rather, I suppose the
truth was this, that all hands were disaffected by the example of the
ringleaders—only some more, some less; and a few, being good fellows
in the main, could neither be led nor driven any further. It is one thing to
be idle and skulk and quite another to take a ship and murder a number
of innocent men.
At last, however, the party was made up. Six fellows were to stay on
board, and the remaining thirteen, including Silver, began to embark.
Then it was that there came into my head the first of the mad notions
that contributed so much to save our lives. If six men were left by Silver,
it was plain our party could not take and fight the ship; and since only
six were left, it was equally plain that the cabin party had no present
need of my assistance. It occurred to me at once to go ashore. In a jiffy I
had slipped over the side and curled up in the fore-sheets of the nearest
boat, and almost at the same moment she shoved off.
No one took notice of me, only the bow oar saying, "Is that you, Jim?
Keep your head down." But Silver, from the other boat, looked sharply
over and called out to know if that were me; and from that moment I
began to regret what I had done.
The crews raced for the beach, but the boat I was in, having some start
and being at once the lighter and the better manned, shot far ahead of
her consort, and the bow had struck among the shore-side trees and I
had caught a branch and swung myself out and plunged into the nearest
thicket while Silver and the rest were still a hundred yards behind.
"Jim, Jim!" I heard him shouting.
But you may suppose I paid no heed; jumping, ducking, and breaking
through, I ran straight before my nose till I could run no longer.
69
Chapter 2
The First Blow
I
was so pleased at having given the slip to Long John that I began to
enjoy myself and look around me with some interest on the strange
land that I was in.
I had crossed a marshy tract full of willows, bulrushes, and odd, out-
landish, swampy trees; and I had now come out upon the skirts of an
open piece of undulating, sandy country, about a mile long, dotted with
a few pines and a great number of contorted trees, not unlike the oak in
growth, but pale in the foliage, like willows. On the far side of the open
stood one of the hills, with two quaint, craggy peaks shining vividly in
the sun.
I now felt for the first time the joy of exploration. The isle was unin-
habited; my shipmates I had left behind, and nothing lived in front of me
but dumb brutes and fowls. I turned hither and thither among the trees.
Here and there were flowering plants, unknown to me; here and there I
saw snakes, and one raised his head from a ledge of rock and hissed at
me with a noise not unlike the spinning of a top. Little did I suppose that
he was a deadly enemy and that the noise was the famous rattle.
Then I came to a long thicket of these oaklike trees—live, or evergreen,
oaks, I heard afterwards they should be called—which grew low along
the sand like brambles, the boughs curiously twisted, the foliage com-
pact, like thatch. The thicket stretched down from the top of one of the
sandy knolls, spreading and growing taller as it went, until it reached the
margin of the broad, reedy fen, through which the nearest of the little
rivers soaked its way into the anchorage. The marsh was steaming in the
strong sun, and the outline of the Spy-glass trembled through the haze.
All at once there began to go a sort of bustle among the bulrushes; a
wild duck flew up with a quack, another followed, and soon over the
whole surface of the marsh a great cloud of birds hung screaming and
circling in the air. I judged at once that some of my shipmates must be
drawing near along the borders of the fen. Nor was I deceived, for soon I
70
heard the very distant and low tones of a human voice, which, as I con-
tinued to give ear, grew steadily louder and nearer.
This put me in a great fear, and I crawled under cover of the nearest
live-oak and squatted there, hearkening, as silent as a mouse.
Another voice answered, and then the first voice, which I now recog-
nized to be Silver's, once more took up the story and ran on for a long
while in a stream, only now and again interrupted by the other. By the
sound they must have been talking earnestly, and almost fiercely; but no
distinct word came to my hearing.
At last the speakers seemed to have paused and perhaps to have sat
down, for not only did they cease to draw any nearer, but the birds
themselves began to grow more quiet and to settle again to their places
in the swamp.
And now I began to feel that I was neglecting my business, that since I
had been so foolhardy as to come ashore with these desperadoes, the
least I could do was to overhear them at their councils, and that my plain
and obvious duty was to draw as close as I could manage, under the fa-
vourable ambush of the crouching trees.
I could tell the direction of the speakers pretty exactly, not only by the
sound of their voices but by the behaviour of the few birds that still hung
in alarm above the heads of the intruders.
Crawling on all fours, I made steadily but slowly towards them, till at
last, raising my head to an aperture among the leaves, I could see clear
down into a little green dell beside the marsh, and closely set about with
trees, where Long John Silver and another of the crew stood face to face
in conversation.
The sun beat full upon them. Silver had thrown his hat beside him on
the ground, and his great, smooth, blond face, all shining with heat, was
lifted to the other man's in a kind of appeal.
"Mate," he was saying, "it's because I thinks gold dust of you—gold
dust, and you may lay to that! If I hadn't took to you like pitch, do you
think I'd have been here a-warning of you? All's up—you can't make nor
mend; it's to save your neck that I'm a-speaking, and if one of the wild
uns knew it, where'd I be, Tom—now, tell me, where'd I be?"
"Silver," said the other man—and I observed he was not only red in the
face, but spoke as hoarse as a crow, and his voice shook too, like a taut
rope—"Silver," says he, "you're old, and you're honest, or has the name
for it; and you've money too, which lots of poor sailors hasn't; and you're
brave, or I'm mistook. And will you tell me you'll let yourself be led
71
away with that kind of a mess of swabs? Not you! As sure as God sees
me, I'd sooner lose my hand. If I turn agin my dooty—"
And then all of a sudden he was interrupted by a noise. I had found
one of the honest hands—well, here, at that same moment, came news of
another. Far away out in the marsh there arose, all of a sudden, a sound
like the cry of anger, then another on the back of it; and then one horrid,
long-drawn scream. The rocks of the Spy-glass re-echoed it a score of
times; the whole troop of marsh-birds rose again, darkening heaven,
with a simultaneous whirr; and long after that death yell was still
ringing in my brain, silence had re-established its empire, and only the
rustle of the redescending birds and the boom of the distant surges dis-
turbed the languor of the afternoon.
Tom had leaped at the sound, like a horse at the spur, but Silver had
not winked an eye. He stood where he was, resting lightly on his crutch,
watching his companion like a snake about to spring.
"John!" said the sailor, stretching out his hand.
"Hands off!" cried Silver, leaping back a yard, as it seemed to me, with
the speed and security of a trained gymnast.
"Hands off, if you like, John Silver," said the other. "It's a black con-
science that can make you feared of me. But in heaven's name, tell me,
what was that?"
"That?" returned Silver, smiling away, but warier than ever, his eye a
mere pin-point in his big face, but gleaming like a crumb of glass. "That?"
Oh, I reckon that'll be Alan."
And at this point Tom flashed out like a hero.
"Alan!" he cried. "Then rest his soul for a true seaman! And as for you,
John Silver, long you've been a mate of mine, but you're mate of mine no
more. If I die like a dog, I'll die in my dooty. You've killed Alan, have
you? Kill me too, if you can. But I defies you."
And with that, this brave fellow turned his back directly on the cook
and set off walking for the beach. But he was not destined to go far. With
a cry John seized the branch of a tree, whipped the crutch out of his
armpit, and sent that uncouth missile hurtling through the air. It struck
poor Tom, point foremost, and with stunning violence, right between the
shoulders in the middle of his back. His hands flew up, he gave a sort of
gasp, and fell.
Whether he were injured much or little, none could ever tell. Like
enough, to judge from the sound, his back was broken on the spot. But
he had no time given him to recover. Silver, agile as a monkey even
without leg or crutch, was on the top of him next moment and had twice
72
buried his knife up to the hilt in that defenceless body. From my place of
ambush, I could hear him pant aloud as he struck the blows.
I do not know what it rightly is to faint, but I do know that for the next
little while the whole world swam away from before me in a whirling
mist; Silver and the birds, and the tall Spy-glass hilltop, going round and
round and topsy-turvy before my eyes, and all manner of bells ringing
and distant voices shouting in my ear.
When I came again to myself the monster had pulled himself together,
his crutch under his arm, his hat upon his head. Just before him Tom lay
motionless upon the sward; but the murderer minded him not a whit,
cleansing his blood-stained knife the while upon a wisp of grass.
Everything else was unchanged, the sun still shining mercilessly on the
steaming marsh and the tall pinnacle of the mountain, and I could scarce
persuade myself that murder had been actually done and a human life
cruelly cut short a moment since before my eyes.
But now John put his hand into his pocket, brought out a whistle, and
blew upon it several modulated blasts that rang far across the heated air.
I could not tell, of course, the meaning of the signal, but it instantly
awoke my fears. More men would be coming. I might be discovered.
They had already slain two of the honest people; after Tom and Alan,
might not I come next?
Instantly I began to extricate myself and crawl back again, with what
speed and silence I could manage, to the more open portion of the wood.
As I did so, I could hear hails coming and going between the old buccan-
eer and his comrades, and this sound of danger lent me wings. As soon
as I was clear of the thicket, I ran as I never ran before, scarce minding
the direction of my flight, so long as it led me from the murderers; and as
I ran, fear grew and grew upon me until it turned into a kind of frenzy.
Indeed, could anyone be more entirely lost than I? When the gun fired,
how should I dare to go down to the boats among those fiends, still
smoking from their crime? Would not the first of them who saw me
wring my neck like a snipe's? Would not my absence itself be an evid-
ence to them of my alarm, and therefore of my fatal knowledge? It was
all over, I thought. Good-bye to the Hispaniola; good-bye to the squire,
the doctor, and the captain! There was nothing left for me but death by
starvation or death by the hands of the mutineers.
All this while, as I say, I was still running, and without taking any no-
tice, I had drawn near to the foot of the little hill with the two peaks and
had got into a part of the island where the live-oaks grew more widely
apart and seemed more like forest trees in their bearing and dimensions.
73
Mingled with these were a few scattered pines, some fifty, some nearer
seventy, feet high. The air too smelt more freshly than down beside the
marsh. And here a fresh alarm brought me to a standstill with a thump-
ing heart.
74
Chapter 3
The Man of the Island
F
rom the side of the hill, which was here steep and stony, a spout of
gravel was dislodged and fell rattling and bounding through the
trees. My eyes turned instinctively in that direction, and I saw a figure
leap with great rapidity behind the trunk of a pine. What it was, whether
bear or man or monkey, I could in no wise tell. It seemed dark and
shaggy; more I knew not. But the terror of this new apparition brought
me to a stand.
I was now, it seemed, cut off upon both sides; behind me the murder-
ers, before me this lurking nondescript. And immediately I began to
prefer the dangers that I knew to those I knew not. Silver himself ap-
peared less terrible in contrast with this creature of the woods, and I
turned on my heel, and looking sharply behind me over my shoulder,
began to retrace my steps in the direction of the boats.
Instantly the figure reappeared, and making a wide circuit, began to
head me off. I was tired, at any rate; but had I been as fresh as when I
rose, I could see it was in vain for me to contend in speed with such an
adversary. From trunk to trunk the creature flitted like a deer, running
manlike on two legs, but unlike any man that I had ever seen, stooping
almost double as it ran. Yet a man it was, I could no longer be in doubt
about that.
I began to recall what I had heard of cannibals. I was within an ace of
calling for help. But the mere fact that he was a man, however wild, had
somewhat reassured me, and my fear of Silver began to revive in propor-
tion. I stood still, therefore, and cast about for some method of escape;
and as I was so thinking, the recollection of my pistol flashed into my
mind. As soon as I remembered I was not defenceless, courage glowed
again in my heart and I set my face resolutely for this man of the island
and walked briskly towards him.
He was concealed by this time behind another tree trunk; but he must
have been watching me closely, for as soon as I began to move in his
75
direction he reappeared and took a step to meet me. Then he hesitated,
drew back, came forward again, and at last, to my wonder and confu-
sion, threw himself on his knees and held out his clasped hands in
supplication.
At that I once more stopped.
"Who are you?" I asked.
"Ben Gunn," he answered, and his voice sounded hoarse and awk-
ward, like a rusty lock. "I'm poor Ben Gunn, I am; and I haven't spoke
with a Christian these three years."
I could now see that he was a white man like myself and that his fea-
tures were even pleasing. His skin, wherever it was exposed, was burnt
by the sun; even his lips were black, and his fair eyes looked quite start-
ling in so dark a face. Of all the beggar-men that I had seen or fancied, he
was the chief for raggedness. He was clothed with tatters of old ship's
canvas and old sea-cloth, and this extraordinary patchwork was all held
together by a system of the most various and incongruous fastenings,
brass buttons, bits of stick, and loops of tarry gaskin. About his waist he
wore an old brass-buckled leather belt, which was the one thing solid in
his whole accoutrement.
"Three years!" I cried. "Were you shipwrecked?"
"Nay, mate," said he; "marooned."
I had heard the word, and I knew it stood for a horrible kind of pun-
ishment common enough among the buccaneers, in which the offender is
put ashore with a little powder and shot and left behind on some desol-
ate and distant island.
"Marooned three years agone," he continued, "and lived on goats since
then, and berries, and oysters. Wherever a man is, says I, a man can do
for himself. But, mate, my heart is sore for Christian diet. You mightn't
happen to have a piece of cheese about you, now? No? Well, many's the
long night I've dreamed of cheese—toasted, mostly—and woke up again,
and here I were." "If ever I can get aboard again," said I, "you shall have
cheese by the stone."
All this time he had been feeling the stuff of my jacket, smoothing my
hands, looking at my boots, and generally, in the intervals of his speech,
showing a childish pleasure in the presence of a fellow creature. But at
my last words he perked up into a kind of startled slyness.
"If ever you can get aboard again, says you?" he repeated. "Why, now,
who's to hinder you?"
"Not you, I know," was my reply.
76
"And right you was," he cried. "Now you—what do you call yourself,
mate?"
"Jim," I told him.
"Jim, Jim," says he, quite pleased apparently. "Well, now, Jim, I've
lived that rough as you'd be ashamed to hear of. Now, for instance, you
wouldn't think I had had a pious mother—to look at me?" he asked.
"Why, no, not in particular," I answered.
"Ah, well," said he, "but I had—remarkable pious. And I was a civil,
pious boy, and could rattle off my catechism that fast, as you couldn't tell
one word from another. And here's what it come to, Jim, and it begun
with chuck-farthen on the blessed grave-stones! That's what it begun
with, but it went further'n that; and so my mother told me, and pre-
dicked the whole, she did, the pious woman! But it were Providence that
put me here. I've thought it all out in this here lonely island, and I'm
back on piety. You don't catch me tasting rum so much, but just a
thimbleful for luck, of course, the first chance I have. I'm bound I'll be
good, and I see the way to. And, Jim"—looking all round him and lower-
ing his voice to a whisper—"I'm rich."
I now felt sure that the poor fellow had gone crazy in his solitude, and
I suppose I must have shown the feeling in my face, for he repeated the
statement hotly: "Rich! Rich! I says. And I'll tell you what: I'll make a
man of you, Jim. Ah, Jim, you'll bless your stars, you will, you was the
first that found me!"
And at this there came suddenly a lowering shadow over his face, and
he tightened his grasp upon my hand and raised a forefinger threaten-
ingly before my eyes.
"Now, Jim, you tell me true: that ain't Flint's ship?" he asked.
At this I had a happy inspiration. I began to believe that I had found
an ally, and I answered him at once.
"It's not Flint's ship, and Flint is dead; but I'll tell you true, as you ask
me—there are some of Flint's hands aboard; worse luck for the rest of
us."
"Not a man—with one—leg?" he gasped.
"Silver?" I asked.
"Ah, Silver!" says he. "That were his name."
"He's the cook, and the ringleader too."
He was still holding me by the wrist, and at that he give it quite a
wring.
"If you was sent by Long John," he said, "I'm as good as pork, and I
know it. But where was you, do you suppose?"
77
I had made my mind up in a moment, and by way of answer told him
the whole story of our voyage and the predicament in which we found
ourselves. He heard me with the keenest interest, and when I had done
he patted me on the head.
"You're a good lad, Jim," he said; "and you're all in a clove hitch, ain't
you? Well, you just put your trust in Ben Gunn—Ben Gunn's the man to
do it. Would you think it likely, now, that your squire would prove a
liberal-minded one in case of help—him being in a clove hitch, as you
remark?"
I told him the squire was the most liberal of men.
"Aye, but you see," returned Ben Gunn, "I didn't mean giving me a
gate to keep, and a suit of livery clothes, and such; that's not my mark,
Jim. What I mean is, would he be likely to come down to the toon of, say
one thousand pounds out of money that's as good as a man's own
already?"
"I am sure he would," said I. "As it was, all hands were to share."
"And a passage home?" he added with a look of great shrewdness.
"Why," I cried, "the squire's a gentleman. And besides, if we got rid of
the others, we should want you to help work the vessel home."
"Ah," said he, "so you would." And he seemed very much relieved.
"Now, I'll tell you what," he went on. "So much I'll tell you, and no
more. I were in Flint's ship when he buried the treasure; he and six
along—six strong seamen. They was ashore nigh on a week, and us
standing off and on in the old Walrus. One fine day up went the signal,
and here come Flint by himself in a little boat, and his head done up in a
blue scarf. The sun was getting up, and mortal white he looked about the
cutwater. But, there he was, you mind, and the six all dead—dead and
buried. How he done it, not a man aboard us could make out. It was
battle, murder, and sudden death, leastways—him against six. Billy
Bones was the mate; Long John, he was quartermaster; and they asked
him where the treasure was. 'Ah,' says he, 'you can go ashore, if you like,
and stay,' he says; 'but as for the ship, she'll beat up for more, by thun-
der!' That's what he said.
"Well, I was in another ship three years back, and we sighted this is-
land. 'Boys,' said I, 'here's Flint's treasure; let's land and find it.' The cap'n
was displeased at that, but my messmates were all of a mind and landed.
Twelve days they looked for it, and every day they had the worse word
for me, until one fine morning all hands went aboard. 'As for you, Ben-
jamin Gunn,' says they, 'here's a musket,' they says, 'and a spade, and
78
pick-axe. You can stay here and find Flint's money for yourself,' they
says.
"Well, Jim, three years have I been here, and not a bite of Christian diet
from that day to this. But now, you look here; look at me. Do I look like a
man before the mast? No, says you. Nor I weren't, neither, I says."
And with that he winked and pinched me hard.
"Just you mention them words to your squire, Jim," he went on. "Nor
he weren't, neither—that's the words. Three years he were the man of
this island, light and dark, fair and rain; and sometimes he would maybe
think upon a prayer (says you), and sometimes he would maybe think of
his old mother, so be as she's alive (you'll say); but the most part of
Gunn's time (this is what you'll say)—the most part of his time was took
up with another matter. And then you'll give him a nip, like I do."
And he pinched me again in the most confidential manner.
"Then," he continued, "then you'll up, and you'll say this: Gunn is a
good man (you'll say), and he puts a precious sight more confidence—a
precious sight, mind that—in a gen'leman born than in these gen'leman
of fortune, having been one hisself."
"Well," I said, "I don't understand one word that you've been saying.
But that's neither here nor there; for how am I to get on board?"
"Ah," said he, "that's the hitch, for sure. Well, there's my boat, that I
made with my two hands. I keep her under the white rock. If the worst
come to the worst, we might try that after dark. Hi!" he broke out.
"What's that?"
For just then, although the sun had still an hour or two to run, all the
echoes of the island awoke and bellowed to the thunder of a cannon.
"They have begun to fight!" I cried. "Follow me."
And I began to run towards the anchorage, my terrors all forgotten,
while close at my side the marooned man in his goatskins trotted easily
and lightly.
"Left, left," says he; "keep to your left hand, mate Jim! Under the trees
with you! Theer's where I killed my first goat. They don't come down
here now; they're all mastheaded on them mountings for the fear of Ben-
jamin Gunn. Ah! And there's the cetemery"—cemetery, he must have
meant. "You see the mounds? I come here and prayed, nows and thens,
when I thought maybe a Sunday would be about doo. It weren't quite a
chapel, but it seemed more solemn like; and then, says you, Ben Gunn
was short-handed—no chapling, nor so much as a Bible and a flag, you
says."
So he kept talking as I ran, neither expecting nor receiving any answer.
79
The cannon-shot was followed after a considerable interval by a volley
of small arms.
Another pause, and then, not a quarter of a mile in front of me, I be-
held the Union Jack flutter in the air above a wood.
80
Part 4
The Stockade
81
Chapter 1
Narrative Continued by the Doctor: How the Ship Was
Abandoned
I
t was about half past one—three bells in the sea phrase—that the two
boats went ashore from the Hispaniola. The captain, the squire, and I
were talking matters over in the cabin. Had there been a breath of wind,
we should have fallen on the six mutineers who were left aboard with
us, slipped our cable, and away to sea. But the wind was wanting; and to
complete our helplessness, down came Hunter with the news that Jim
Hawkins had slipped into a boat and was gone ashore with the rest.
It never occurred to us to doubt Jim Hawkins, but we were alarmed
for his safety. With the men in the temper they were in, it seemed an
even chance if we should see the lad again. We ran on deck. The pitch
was bubbling in the seams; the nasty stench of the place turned me sick;
if ever a man smelt fever and dysentery, it was in that abominable an-
chorage. The six scoundrels were sitting grumbling under a sail in the
forecastle; ashore we could see the gigs made fast and a man sitting in
each, hard by where the river runs in. One of them was whistling
"Lillibullero."
Waiting was a strain, and it was decided that Hunter and I should go
ashore with the jolly-boat in quest of information. The gigs had leaned to
their right, but Hunter and I pulled straight in, in the direction of the
stockade upon the chart. The two who were left guarding their boats
seemed in a bustle at our appearance; "Lillibullero" stopped off, and I
could see the pair discussing what they ought to do. Had they gone and
told Silver, all might have turned out differently; but they had their or-
ders, I suppose, and decided to sit quietly where they were and hark
back again to "Lillibullero."
There was a slight bend in the coast, and I steered so as to put it
between us; even before we landed we had thus lost sight of the gigs. I
jumped out and came as near running as I durst, with a big silk
82
handkerchief under my hat for coolness' sake and a brace of pistols
ready primed for safety.
I had not gone a hundred yards when I reached the stockade.
This was how it was: a spring of clear water rose almost at the top of a
knoll. Well, on the knoll, and enclosing the spring, they had clapped a
stout log-house fit to hold two score of people on a pinch and loopholed
for musketry on either side. All round this they had cleared a wide
space, and then the thing was completed by a paling six feet high,
without door or opening, too strong to pull down without time and la-
bour and too open to shelter the besiegers. The people in the log-house
had them in every way; they stood quiet in shelter and shot the others
like partridges. All they wanted was a good watch and food; for, short of
a complete surprise, they might have held the place against a regiment.
What particularly took my fancy was the spring. For though we had a
good enough place of it in the cabin of the Hispaniola, with plenty of
arms and ammunition, and things to eat, and excellent wines, there had
been one thing overlooked—we had no water. I was thinking this over
when there came ringing over the island the cry of a man at the point of
death. I was not new to violent death—I have served his Royal Highness
the Duke of Cumberland, and got a wound myself at Fontenoy—but I
know my pulse went dot and carry one. "Jim Hawkins is gone," was my
first thought.
It is something to have been an old soldier, but more still to have been
a doctor. There is no time to dilly-dally in our work. And so now I made
up my mind instantly, and with no time lost returned to the shore and
jumped on board the jolly-boat.
By good fortune Hunter pulled a good oar. We made the water fly,
and the boat was soon alongside and I aboard the schooner.
I found them all shaken, as was natural. The squire was sitting down,
as white as a sheet, thinking of the harm he had led us to, the good soul!
And one of the six forecastle hands was little better.
"There's a man," says Captain Smollett, nodding towards him, "new to
this work. He came nigh-hand fainting, doctor, when he heard the cry.
Another touch of the rudder and that man would join us."
I told my plan to the captain, and between us we settled on the details
of its accomplishment.
We put old Redruth in the gallery between the cabin and the fore-
castle, with three or four loaded muskets and a mattress for protection.
Hunter brought the boat round under the stern-port, and Joyce and I set
83
to work loading her with powder tins, muskets, bags of biscuits, kegs of
pork, a cask of cognac, and my invaluable medicine chest.
In the meantime, the squire and the captain stayed on deck, and the
latter hailed the coxswain, who was the principal man aboard.
"Mr. Hands," he said, "here are two of us with a brace of pistols each. If
any one of you six make a signal of any description, that man's dead."
They were a good deal taken aback, and after a little consultation one
and all tumbled down the fore companion, thinking no doubt to take us
on the rear. But when they saw Redruth waiting for them in the sparred
galley, they went about ship at once, and a head popped out again on
deck.
"Down, dog!" cries the captain.
And the head popped back again; and we heard no more, for the time,
of these six very faint-hearted seamen.
By this time, tumbling things in as they came, we had the jolly-boat
loaded as much as we dared. Joyce and I got out through the stern-port,
and we made for shore again as fast as oars could take us.
This second trip fairly aroused the watchers along shore. "Lillibullero"
was dropped again; and just before we lost sight of them behind the little
point, one of them whipped ashore and disappeared. I had half a mind
to change my plan and destroy their boats, but I feared that Silver and
the others might be close at hand, and all might very well be lost by try-
ing for too much.
We had soon touched land in the same place as before and set to pro-
vision the block house. All three made the first journey, heavily laden,
and tossed our stores over the palisade. Then, leaving Joyce to guard
them—one man, to be sure, but with half a dozen muskets—Hunter and
I returned to the jolly-boat and loaded ourselves once more. So we pro-
ceeded without pausing to take breath, till the whole cargo was be-
stowed, when the two servants took up their position in the block house,
and I, with all my power, sculled back to the Hispaniola.
That we should have risked a second boat load seems more daring
than it really was. They had the advantage of numbers, of course, but we
had the advantage of arms. Not one of the men ashore had a musket, and
before they could get within range for pistol shooting, we flattered
ourselves we should be able to give a good account of a half-dozen at
least.
The squire was waiting for me at the stern window, all his faintness
gone from him. He caught the painter and made it fast, and we fell to
loading the boat for our very lives. Pork, powder, and biscuit was the
84
cargo, with only a musket and a cutlass apiece for the squire and me and
Redruth and the captain. The rest of the arms and powder we dropped
overboard in two fathoms and a half of water, so that we could see the
bright steel shining far below us in the sun, on the clean, sandy bottom.
By this time the tide was beginning to ebb, and the ship was swinging
round to her anchor. Voices were heard faintly halloaing in the direction
of the two gigs; and though this reassured us for Joyce and Hunter, who
were well to the eastward, it warned our party to be off.
Redruth retreated from his place in the gallery and dropped into the
boat, which we then brought round to the ship's counter, to be handier
for Captain Smollett.
"Now, men," said he, "do you hear me?"
There was no answer from the forecastle.
"It's to you, Abraham Gray—it's to you I am speaking."
Still no reply.
"Gray," resumed Mr. Smollett, a little louder, "I am leaving this ship,
and I order you to follow your captain. I know you are a good man at
bottom, and I dare say not one of the lot of you's as bad as he makes out.
I have my watch here in my hand; I give you thirty seconds to join me
in."
There was a pause.
"Come, my fine fellow," continued the captain; "don't hang so long in
stays. I'm risking my life and the lives of these good gentlemen every
second."
There was a sudden scuffle, a sound of blows, and out burst Abraham
Gray with a knife cut on the side of the cheek, and came running to the
captain like a dog to the whistle.
"I'm with you, sir," said he.
And the next moment he and the captain had dropped aboard of us,
and we had shoved off and given way. We were clear out of the ship, but
not yet ashore in our stockade.
85
Chapter 2
Narrative Continued by the Doctor: The Jolly-boat's
Last Trip
T
his fifth trip was quite different from any of the others. In the first
place, the little gallipot of a boat that we were in was gravely over-
loaded. Five grown men, and three of them—Trelawney, Redruth, and
the captain—over six feet high, was already more than she was meant to
carry. Add to that the powder, pork, and bread-bags. The gunwale was
lipping astern. Several times we shipped a little water, and my breeches
and the tails of my coat were all soaking wet before we had gone a hun-
dred yards.
The captain made us trim the boat, and we got her to lie a little more
evenly. All the same, we were afraid to breathe.
In the second place, the ebb was now making—a strong rippling cur-
rent running westward through the basin, and then south'ard and sea-
ward down the straits by which we had entered in the morning. Even
the ripples were a danger to our overloaded craft, but the worst of it was
that we were swept out of our true course and away from our proper
landing-place behind the point. If we let the current have its way we
should come ashore beside the gigs, where the pirates might appear at
any moment.
"I cannot keep her head for the stockade, sir," said I to the captain. I
was steering, while he and Redruth, two fresh men, were at the oars.
"The tide keeps washing her down. Could you pull a little stronger?"
"Not without swamping the boat," said he. "You must bear up, sir, if
you please—bear up until you see you're gaining." I tried and found by
experiment that the tide kept sweeping us westward until I had laid her
head due east, or just about right angles to the way we ought to go.
"We'll never get ashore at this rate," said I.
"If it's the only course that we can lie, sir, we must even lie it," returned
the captain. "We must keep upstream. You see, sir," he went on, "if once
we dropped to leeward of the landing-place, it's hard to say where we
86
should get ashore, besides the chance of being boarded by the gigs;
whereas, the way we go the current must slacken, and then we can
dodge back along the shore."
"The current's less a'ready, sir," said the man Gray, who was sitting in
the fore-sheets; "you can ease her off a bit."
"Thank you, my man," said I, quite as if nothing had happened, for we
had all quietly made up our minds to treat him like one of ourselves.
Suddenly the captain spoke up again, and I thought his voice was a
little changed.
"The gun!" said he.
"I have thought of that," said I, for I made sure he was thinking of a
bombardment of the fort. "They could never get the gun ashore, and if
they did, they could never haul it through the woods."
"Look astern, doctor," replied the captain.
We had entirely forgotten the long nine; and there, to our horror, were
the five rogues busy about her, getting off her jacket, as they called the
stout tarpaulin cover under which she sailed. Not only that, but it
flashed into my mind at the same moment that the round-shot and the
powder for the gun had been left behind, and a stroke with an axe would
put it all into the possession of the evil ones abroad.
"Israel was Flint's gunner," said Gray hoarsely.
At any risk, we put the boat's head direct for the landing-place. By this
time we had got so far out of the run of the current that we kept steerage
way even at our necessarily gentle rate of rowing, and I could keep her
steady for the goal. But the worst of it was that with the course I now
held we turned our broadside instead of our stern to the Hispaniola and
offered a target like a barn door.
I could hear as well as see that brandy-faced rascal Israel Hands
plumping down a round-shot on the deck.
"Who's the best shot?" asked the captain.
"Mr. Trelawney, out and away," said I.
"Mr. Trelawney, will you please pick me off one of these men, sir?
Hands, if possible," said the captain.
Trelawney was as cool as steel. He looked to the priming of his gun.
"Now," cried the captain, "easy with that gun, sir, or you'll swamp the
boat. All hands stand by to trim her when he aims."
The squire raised his gun, the rowing ceased, and we leaned over to
the other side to keep the balance, and all was so nicely contrived that
we did not ship a drop.
87
They had the gun, by this time, slewed round upon the swivel, and
Hands, who was at the muzzle with the rammer, was in consequence the
most exposed. However, we had no luck, for just as Trelawney fired,
down he stooped, the ball whistled over him, and it was one of the other
four who fell.
The cry he gave was echoed not only by his companions on board but
by a great number of voices from the shore, and looking in that direction
I saw the other pirates trooping out from among the trees and tumbling
into their places in the boats.
"Here come the gigs, sir," said I.
"Give way, then," cried the captain. "We mustn't mind if we swamp
her now. If we can't get ashore, all's up."
"Only one of the gigs is being manned, sir," I added; "the crew of the
other most likely going round by shore to cut us off."
"They'll have a hot run, sir," returned the captain. "Jack ashore, you
know. It's not them I mind; it's the round-shot. Carpet bowls! My lady's
maid couldn't miss. Tell us, squire, when you see the match, and we'll
hold water."
In the meanwhile we had been making headway at a good pace for a
boat so overloaded, and we had shipped but little water in the process.
We were now close in; thirty or forty strokes and we should beach her,
for the ebb had already disclosed a narrow belt of sand below the clus-
tering trees. The gig was no longer to be feared; the little point had
already concealed it from our eyes. The ebb-tide, which had so cruelly
delayed us, was now making reparation and delaying our assailants. The
one source of danger was the gun.
"If I durst," said the captain, "I'd stop and pick off another man."
But it was plain that they meant nothing should delay their shot. They
had never so much as looked at their fallen comrade, though he was not
dead, and I could see him trying to crawl away.
"Ready!" cried the squire.
"Hold!" cried the captain, quick as an echo.
And he and Redruth backed with a great heave that sent her stern
bodily under water. The report fell in at the same instant of time. This
was the first that Jim heard, the sound of the squire's shot not having
reached him. Where the ball passed, not one of us precisely knew, but I
fancy it must have been over our heads and that the wind of it may have
contributed to our disaster.
At any rate, the boat sank by the stern, quite gently, in three feet of wa-
ter, leaving the captain and myself, facing each other, on our feet. The
88
other three took complete headers, and came up again drenched and
bubbling.
So far there was no great harm. No lives were lost, and we could wade
ashore in safety. But there were all our stores at the bottom, and to make
things worse, only two guns out of five remained in a state for service.
Mine I had snatched from my knees and held over my head, by a sort of
instinct. As for the captain, he had carried his over his shoulder by a ban-
doleer, and like a wise man, lock uppermost. The other three had gone
down with the boat.
To add to our concern, we heard voices already drawing near us in the
woods along shore, and we had not only the danger of being cut off from
the stockade in our half-crippled state but the fear before us whether, if
Hunter and Joyce were attacked by half a dozen, they would have the
sense and conduct to stand firm. Hunter was steady, that we knew; Joyce
was a doubtful case—a pleasant, polite man for a valet and to brush
one's clothes, but not entirely fitted for a man of war.
With all this in our minds, we waded ashore as fast as we could, leav-
ing behind us the poor jolly-boat and a good half of all our powder and
provisions.
89
Chapter 3
Narrative Continued by the Doctor: End of the First
Day's Fighting
W
e made our best speed across the strip of wood that now divided
us from the stockade, and at every step we took the voices of the
buccaneers rang nearer. Soon we could hear their footfalls as they ran
and the cracking of the branches as they breasted across a bit of thicket.
I began to see we should have a brush for it in earnest and looked to
my priming.
"Captain," said I, "Trelawney is the dead shot. Give him your gun; his
own is useless."
They exchanged guns, and Trelawney, silent and cool as he had been
since the beginning of the bustle, hung a moment on his heel to see that
all was fit for service. At the same time, observing Gray to be unarmed, I
handed him my cutlass. It did all our hearts good to see him spit in his
hand, knit his brows, and make the blade sing through the air. It was
plain from every line of his body that our new hand was worth his salt.
Forty paces farther we came to the edge of the wood and saw the
stockade in front of us. We struck the enclosure about the middle of the
south side, and almost at the same time, seven mutineers—Job Ander-
son, the boatswain, at their head—appeared in full cry at the southwest-
ern corner.
They paused as if taken aback, and before they recovered, not only the
squire and I, but Hunter and Joyce from the block house, had time to fire.
The four shots came in rather a scattering volley, but they did the busi-
ness: one of the enemy actually fell, and the rest, without hesitation,
turned and plunged into the trees.
After reloading, we walked down the outside of the palisade to see to
the fallen enemy. He was stone dead—shot through the heart.
We began to rejoice over our good success when just at that moment a
pistol cracked in the bush, a ball whistled close past my ear, and poor
Tom Redruth stumbled and fell his length on the ground. Both the squire
90
and I returned the shot, but as we had nothing to aim at, it is probable
we only wasted powder. Then we reloaded and turned our attention to
poor Tom.
The captain and Gray were already examining him, and I saw with
half an eye that all was over.
I believe the readiness of our return volley had scattered the mutineers
once more, for we were suffered without further molestation to get the
poor old gamekeeper hoisted over the stockade and carried, groaning
and bleeding, into the log-house. Poor old fellow, he had not uttered one
word of surprise, complaint, fear, or even acquiescence from the very be-
ginning of our troubles till now, when we had laid him down in the log-
house to die. He had lain like a Trojan behind his mattress in the gallery;
he had followed every order silently, doggedly, and well; he was the old-
est of our party by a score of years; and now, sullen, old, serviceable ser-
vant, it was he that was to die.
The squire dropped down beside him on his knees and kissed his
hand, crying like a child.
"Be I going, doctor?" he asked.
"Tom, my man," said I, "you're going home."
"I wish I had had a lick at them with the gun first," he replied.
"Tom," said the squire, "say you forgive me, won't you?"
"Would that be respectful like, from me to you, squire?" was the an-
swer. "Howsoever, so be it, amen!"
After a little while of silence, he said he thought somebody might read
a prayer. "It's the custom, sir," he added apologetically. And not long
after, without another word, he passed away.
In the meantime the captain, whom I had observed to be wonderfully
swollen about the chest and pockets, had turned out a great many vari-
ous stores—the British colours, a Bible, a coil of stoutish rope, pen, ink,
the log-book, and pounds of tobacco. He had found a longish fir-tree ly-
ing felled and trimmed in the enclosure, and with the help of Hunter he
had set it up at the corner of the log-house where the trunks crossed and
made an angle. Then, climbing on the roof, he had with his own hand
bent and run up the colours.
This seemed mightily to relieve him. He re-entered the log-house and
set about counting up the stores as if nothing else existed. But he had an
eye on Tom's passage for all that, and as soon as all was over, came for-
ward with another flag and reverently spread it on the body.
91
"Don't you take on, sir," he said, shaking the squire's hand. "All's well
with him; no fear for a hand that's been shot down in his duty to captain
and owner. It mayn't be good divinity, but it's a fact."
Then he pulled me aside.
"Dr. Livesey," he said, "in how many weeks do you and squire expect
the consort?"
I told him it was a question not of weeks but of months, that if we
were not back by the end of August Blandly was to send to find us, but
neither sooner nor later. "You can calculate for yourself," I said.
"Why, yes," returned the captain, scratching his head; "and making a
large allowance, sir, for all the gifts of Providence, I should say we were
pretty close hauled."
"How do you mean?" I asked.
"It's a pity, sir, we lost that second load. That's what I mean," replied
the captain. "As for powder and shot, we'll do. But the rations are short,
very short—so short, Dr. Livesey, that we're perhaps as well without that
extra mouth."
And he pointed to the dead body under the flag.
Just then, with a roar and a whistle, a round-shot passed high above
the roof of the log-house and plumped far beyond us in the wood.
"Oho!" said the captain. "Blaze away! You've little enough powder
already, my lads."
At the second trial, the aim was better, and the ball descended inside
the stockade, scattering a cloud of sand but doing no further damage.
"Captain," said the squire, "the house is quite invisible from the ship. It
must be the flag they are aiming at. Would it not be wiser to take it in?"
"Strike my colours!" cried the captain. "No, sir, not I"; and as soon as he
had said the words, I think we all agreed with him. For it was not only a
piece of stout, seamanly, good feeling; it was good policy besides and
showed our enemies that we despised their cannonade.
All through the evening they kept thundering away. Ball after ball
flew over or fell short or kicked up the sand in the enclosure, but they
had to fire so high that the shot fell dead and buried itself in the soft
sand. We had no ricochet to fear, and though one popped in through the
roof of the log-house and out again through the floor, we soon got used
to that sort of horse-play and minded it no more than cricket.
"There is one good thing about all this," observed the captain; "the
wood in front of us is likely clear. The ebb has made a good while; our
stores should be uncovered. Volunteers to go and bring in pork.
92
Gray and hunter were the first to come forward. Well armed, they
stole out of the stockade, but it proved a useless mission. The mutineers
were bolder than we fancied or they put more trust in Israel's gunnery.
For four or five of them were busy carrying off our stores and wading
out with them to one of the gigs that lay close by, pulling an oar or so to
hold her steady against the current. Silver was in the stern-sheets in com-
mand; and every man of them was now provided with a musket from
some secret magazine of their own.
The captain sat down to his log, and here is the beginning of the entry:
Alexander Smollett, master;
David Livesey, ship's doctor;
Abraham Gray, carpenter's mate;
John Trelawney, owner;
John Hunter and Richard Joyce, owner's ser-
vants, landsmen—being all that is left faithful of the ship's com-
pany—with stores for ten days at short rations, came ashore this
day and flew British colours on the log-house in Treasure Island.
Thomas Redruth, owner's servant, landsman, shot by
the mutineers;
James Hawkins, cabin-boy—
And at the same time, I was wondering over poor Jim Hawkins' fate.
A hail on the land side.
"Somebody hailing us," said Hunter, who was on guard.
"Doctor! Squire! Captain! Hullo, Hunter, is that you?" came the cries.
And I ran to the door in time to see Jim Hawkins, safe and sound,
come climbing over the stockade.
93
Chapter 4
Narrative Resumed by Jim Hawkins: The Garrison in
the Stockade
A
s soon as Ben Gunn saw the colours he came to a halt, stopped me
by the arm, and sat down.
"Now," said he, "there's your friends, sure enough."
"Far more likely it's the mutineers," I answered.
"That!" he cried. "Why, in a place like this, where nobody puts in but
gen'lemen of fortune, Silver would fly the Jolly Roger, you don't make no
doubt of that. No, that's your friends. There's been blows too, and I reck-
on your friends has had the best of it; and here they are ashore in the old
stockade, as was made years and years ago by Flint. Ah, he was the man
to have a headpiece, was Flint! Barring rum, his match were never seen.
He were afraid of none, not he; on'y Silver—Silver was that genteel."
"Well," said I, "that may be so, and so be it; all the more reason that I
should hurry on and join my friends."
"Nay, mate," returned Ben, "not you. You're a good boy, or I'm mis-
took; but you're on'y a boy, all told. Now, Ben Gunn is fly. Rum wouldn't
bring me there, where you're going—not rum wouldn't, till I see your
born gen'leman and gets it on his word of honour. And you won't forget
my words; 'A precious sight (that's what you'll say), a precious sight
more confidence'—and then nips him.
And he pinched me the third time with the same air of cleverness.
"And when Ben Gunn is wanted, you know where to find him, Jim.
Just wheer you found him today. And him that comes is to have a white
thing in his hand, and he's to come alone. Oh! And you'll say this: 'Ben
Gunn,' says you, 'has reasons of his own.'"
"Well," said I, "I believe I understand. You have something to propose,
and you wish to see the squire or the doctor, and you're to be found
where I found you. Is that all?"
"And when? says you," he added. "Why, from about noon observation
to about six bells."
94
"Good," said I, "and now may I go?"
"You won't forget?" he inquired anxiously. "Precious sight, and reas-
ons of his own, says you. Reasons of his own; that's the mainstay; as
between man and man. Well, then"—still holding me—"I reckon you can
go, Jim. And, Jim, if you was to see Silver, you wouldn't go for to sell Ben
Gunn? Wild horses wouldn't draw it from you? No, says you. And if
them pirates camp ashore, Jim, what would you say but there'd be wid-
ders in the morning?"
Here he was interrupted by a loud report, and a cannonball came tear-
ing through the trees and pitched in the sand not a hundred yards from
where we two were talking. The next moment each of us had taken to his
heels in a different direction.
For a good hour to come frequent reports shook the island, and balls
kept crashing through the woods. I moved from hiding-place to hiding-
place, always pursued, or so it seemed to me, by these terrifying missiles.
But towards the end of the bombardment, though still I durst not ven-
ture in the direction of the stockade, where the balls fell oftenest, I had
begun, in a manner, to pluck up my heart again, and after a long detour
to the east, crept down among the shore-side trees.
The sun had just set, the sea breeze was rustling and tumbling in the
woods and ruffling the grey surface of the anchorage; the tide, too, was
far out, and great tracts of sand lay uncovered; the air, after the heat of
the day, chilled me through my jacket.
The Hispaniola still lay where she had anchored; but, sure enough,
there was the Jolly Roger—the black flag of piracy—flying from her
peak. Even as I looked, there came another red flash and another report
that sent the echoes clattering, and one more round-shot whistled
through the air. It was the last of the cannonade.
I lay for some time watching the bustle which succeeded the attack.
Men were demolishing something with axes on the beach near the stock-
ade—the poor jolly-boat, I afterwards discovered. Away, near the mouth
of the river, a great fire was glowing among the trees, and between that
point and the ship one of the gigs kept coming and going, the men,
whom I had seen so gloomy, shouting at the oars like children. But there
was a sound in their voices which suggested rum.
At length I thought I might return towards the stockade. I was pretty
far down on the low, sandy spit that encloses the anchorage to the east,
and is joined at half-water to Skeleton Island; and now, as I rose to my
feet, I saw, some distance further down the spit and rising from among
low bushes, an isolated rock, pretty high, and peculiarly white in colour.
95
It occurred to me that this might be the white rock of which Ben Gunn
had spoken and that some day or other a boat might be wanted and I
should know where to look for one.
Then I skirted among the woods until I had regained the rear, or
shoreward side, of the stockade, and was soon warmly welcomed by the
faithful party.
I had soon told my story and began to look about me. The log-house
was made of unsquared trunks of pine—roof, walls, and floor. The latter
stood in several places as much as a foot or a foot and a half above the
surface of the sand. There was a porch at the door, and under this porch
the little spring welled up into an artificial basin of a rather odd
kind—no other than a great ship's kettle of iron, with the bottom
knocked out, and sunk "to her bearings," as the captain said, among the
sand.
Little had been left besides the framework of the house, but in one
corner there was a stone slab laid down by way of hearth and an old
rusty iron basket to contain the fire.
The slopes of the knoll and all the inside of the stockade had been
cleared of timber to build the house, and we could see by the stumps
what a fine and lofty grove had been destroyed. Most of the soil had
been washed away or buried in drift after the removal of the trees; only
where the streamlet ran down from the kettle a thick bed of moss and
some ferns and little creeping bushes were still green among the sand.
Very close around the stockade—too close for defence, they said—the
wood still flourished high and dense, all of fir on the land side, but to-
wards the sea with a large admixture of live-oaks.
The cold evening breeze, of which I have spoken, whistled through
every chink of the rude building and sprinkled the floor with a continual
rain of fine sand. There was sand in our eyes, sand in our teeth, sand in
our suppers, sand dancing in the spring at the bottom of the kettle, for all
the world like porridge beginning to boil. Our chimney was a square
hole in the roof; it was but a little part of the smoke that found its way
out, and the rest eddied about the house and kept us coughing and pip-
ing the eye.
Add to this that Gray, the new man, had his face tied up in a bandage
for a cut he had got in breaking away from the mutineers and that poor
old Tom Redruth, still unburied, lay along the wall, stiff and stark, under
the Union Jack.
If we had been allowed to sit idle, we should all have fallen in the
blues, but Captain Smollett was never the man for that. All hands were
96
called up before him, and he divided us into watches. The doctor and
Gray and I for one; the squire, Hunter, and Joyce upon the other. Tired
though we all were, two were sent out for firewood; two more were set
to dig a grave for Redruth; the doctor was named cook; I was put sentry
at the door; and the captain himself went from one to another, keeping
up our spirits and lending a hand wherever it was wanted.
From time to time the doctor came to the door for a little air and to rest
his eyes, which were almost smoked out of his head, and whenever he
did so, he had a word for me.
"That man Smollett," he said once, "is a better man than I am. And
when I say that it means a deal, Jim."
Another time he came and was silent for a while. Then he put his head
on one side, and looked at me.
"Is this Ben Gunn a man?" he asked.
"I do not know, sir," said I. "I am not very sure whether he's sane."
"If there's any doubt about the matter, he is," returned the doctor. "A
man who has been three years biting his nails on a desert island, Jim,
can't expect to appear as sane as you or me. It doesn't lie in human
nature. Was it cheese you said he had a fancy for?"
"Yes, sir, cheese," I answered.
"Well, Jim," says he, "just see the good that comes of being dainty in
your food. You've seen my snuff-box, haven't you? And you never saw
me take snuff, the reason being that in my snuff-box I carry a piece of
Parmesan cheese—a cheese made in Italy, very nutritious. Well, that's for
Ben Gunn!"
Before supper was eaten we buried old Tom in the sand and stood
round him for a while bare-headed in the breeze. A good deal of fire-
wood had been got in, but not enough for the captain's fancy, and he
shook his head over it and told us we "must get back to this tomorrow
rather livelier." Then, when we had eaten our pork and each had a good
stiff glass of brandy grog, the three chiefs got together in a corner to dis-
cuss our prospects.
It appears they were at their wits' end what to do, the stores being so
low that we must have been starved into surrender long before help
came. But our best hope, it was decided, was to kill off the buccaneers
until they either hauled down their flag or ran away with the Hispaniola.
From nineteen they were already reduced to fifteen, two others were
wounded, and one at least—the man shot beside the gun—severely
wounded, if he were not dead. Every time we had a crack at them, we
97
were to take it, saving our own lives, with the extremest care. And be-
sides that, we had two able allies—rum and the climate.
As for the first, though we were about half a mile away, we could hear
them roaring and singing late into the night; and as for the second, the
doctor staked his wig that, camped where they were in the marsh and
unprovided with remedies, the half of them would be on their backs be-
fore a week.
"So," he added, "if we are not all shot down first they'll be glad to be
packing in the schooner. It's always a ship, and they can get to buccan-
eering again, I suppose."
"First ship that ever I lost," said Captain Smollett.
I was dead tired, as you may fancy; and when I got to sleep, which
was not till after a great deal of tossing, I slept like a log of wood.
The rest had long been up and had already breakfasted and increased
the pile of firewood by about half as much again when I was wakened by
a bustle and the sound of voices.
"Flag of truce!" I heard someone say; and then, immediately after, with
a cry of surprise, "Silver himself!"
And at that, up I jumped, and rubbing my eyes, ran to a loophole in
the wall.
98
Chapter 5
Silver's Embassy
S
ure enough, there were two men just outside the stockade, one of
them waving a white cloth, the other, no less a person than Silver
himself, standing placidly by.
It was still quite early, and the coldest morning that I think I ever was
abroad in—a chill that pierced into the marrow. The sky was bright and
cloudless overhead, and the tops of the trees shone rosily in the sun. But
where Silver stood with his lieutenant, all was still in shadow, and they
waded knee-deep in a low white vapour that had crawled during the
night out of the morass. The chill and the vapour taken together told a
poor tale of the island. It was plainly a damp, feverish, unhealthy spot.
"Keep indoors, men," said the captain. "Ten to one this is a trick."
Then he hailed the buccaneer.
"Who goes? Stand, or we fire."
"Flag of truce," cried Silver.
The captain was in the porch, keeping himself carefully out of the way
of a treacherous shot, should any be intended. He turned and spoke to
us, "Doctor's watch on the lookout. Dr. Livesey take the north side, if you
please; Jim, the east; Gray, west. The watch below, all hands to load mus-
kets. Lively, men, and careful."
And then he turned again to the mutineers.
"And what do you want with your flag of truce?" he cried.
This time it was the other man who replied.
"Cap'n Silver, sir, to come on board and make terms," he shouted.
"Cap'n Silver! Don't know him. Who's he?" cried the captain. And we
could hear him adding to himself, "Cap'n, is it? My heart, and here's
promotion!"
Long John answered for himself. "Me, sir. These poor lads have chosen
me cap'n, after your desertion, sir"—laying a particular emphasis upon
the word "desertion." "We're willing to submit, if we can come to terms,
and no bones about it. All I ask is your word, Cap'n Smollett, to let me
99
safe and sound out of this here stockade, and one minute to get out o'
shot before a gun is fired."
"My man," said Captain Smollett, "I have not the slightest desire to talk
to you. If you wish to talk to me, you can come, that's all. If there's any
treachery, it'll be on your side, and the Lord help you."
"That's enough, cap'n," shouted Long John cheerily. "A word from
you's enough. I know a gentleman, and you may lay to that."
We could see the man who carried the flag of truce attempting to hold
Silver back. Nor was that wonderful, seeing how cavalier had been the
captain's answer. But Silver laughed at him aloud and slapped him on
the back as if the idea of alarm had been absurd. Then he advanced to
the stockade, threw over his crutch, got a leg up, and with great vigour
and skill succeeded in surmounting the fence and dropping safely to the
other side.
I will confess that I was far too much taken up with what was going on
to be of the slightest use as sentry; indeed, I had already deserted my
eastern loophole and crept up behind the captain, who had now seated
himself on the threshold, with his elbows on his knees, his head in his
hands, and his eyes fixed on the water as it bubbled out of the old iron
kettle in the sand. He was whistling "Come, Lasses and Lads."
Silver had terrible hard work getting up the knoll. What with the
steepness of the incline, the thick tree stumps, and the soft sand, he and
his crutch were as helpless as a ship in stays. But he stuck to it like a man
in silence, and at last arrived before the captain, whom he saluted in the
handsomest style. He was tricked out in his best; an immense blue coat,
thick with brass buttons, hung as low as to his knees, and a fine laced hat
was set on the back of his head.
"Here you are, my man," said the captain, raising his head. "You had
better sit down."
"You ain't a-going to let me inside, cap'n?" complained Long John. "It's
a main cold morning, to be sure, sir, to sit outside upon the sand."
"Why, Silver," said the captain, "if you had pleased to be an honest
man, you might have been sitting in your galley. It's your own doing.
You're either my ship's cook—and then you were treated handsome—or
Cap'n Silver, a common mutineer and pirate, and then you can go hang!"
"Well, well, cap'n," returned the sea-cook, sitting down as he was bid-
den on the sand, "you'll have to give me a hand up again, that's all. A
sweet pretty place you have of it here. Ah, there's Jim! The top of the
morning to you, Jim. Doctor, here's my service. Why, there you all are to-
gether like a happy family, in a manner of speaking."
100
"If you have anything to say, my man, better say it," said the captain.
"Right you were, Cap'n Smollett," replied Silver. "Dooty is dooty, to be
sure. Well now, you look here, that was a good lay of yours last night. I
don't deny it was a good lay. Some of you pretty handy with a
handspike-end. And I'll not deny neither but what some of my people
was shook—maybe all was shook; maybe I was shook myself; maybe
that's why I'm here for terms. But you mark me, cap'n, it won't do twice,
by thunder! We'll have to do sentry-go and ease off a point or so on the
rum. Maybe you think we were all a sheet in the wind's eye. But I'll tell
you I was sober; I was on'y dog tired; and if I'd awoke a second sooner,
I'd 'a caught you at the act, I would. He wasn't dead when I got round to
him, not he."
"Well?" says Captain Smollett as cool as can be.
All that Silver said was a riddle to him, but you would never have
guessed it from his tone. As for me, I began to have an inkling. Ben
Gunn's last words came back to my mind. I began to suppose that he had
paid the buccaneers a visit while they all lay drunk together round their
fire, and I reckoned up with glee that we had only fourteen enemies to
deal with.
"Well, here it is," said Silver. "We want that treasure, and we'll have
it—that's our point! You would just as soon save your lives, I reckon; and
that's yours. You have a chart, haven't you?"
"That's as may be," replied the captain.
"Oh, well, you have, I know that," returned Long John. "You needn't be
so husky with a man; there ain't a particle of service in that, and you may
lay to it. What I mean is, we want your chart. Now, I never meant you no
harm, myself."
"That won't do with me, my man," interrupted the captain. "We know
exactly what you meant to do, and we don't care, for now, you see, you
can't do it."
And the captain looked at him calmly and proceeded to fill a pipe.
"If Abe Gray—" Silver broke out.
"Avast there!" cried Mr. Smollett. "Gray told me nothing, and I asked
him nothing; and what's more, I would see you and him and this whole
island blown clean out of the water into blazes first. So there's my mind
for you, my man, on that."
This little whiff of temper seemed to cool Silver down. He had been
growing nettled before, but now he pulled himself together. "Like
enough," said he. "I would set no limits to what gentlemen might
101
consider shipshape, or might not, as the case were. And seein' as how
you are about to take a pipe, cap'n, I'll make so free as do likewise."
And he filled a pipe and lighted it; and the two men sat silently
smoking for quite a while, now looking each other in the face, now stop-
ping their tobacco, now leaning forward to spit. It was as good as the
play to see them.
"Now," resumed Silver, "here it is. You give us the chart to get the
treasure by, and drop shooting poor seamen and stoving of their heads
in while asleep. You do that, and we'll offer you a choice. Either you
come aboard along of us, once the treasure shipped, and then I'll give
you my affy-davy, upon my word of honour, to clap you somewhere
safe ashore. Or if that ain't to your fancy, some of my hands being rough
and having old scores on account of hazing, then you can stay here, you
can. We'll divide stores with you, man for man; and I'll give my affy-
davy, as before to speak the first ship I sight, and send 'em here to pick
you up. Now, you'll own that's talking. Handsomer you couldn't look to
get, now you. And I hope"—raising his voice—"that all hands in this here
block house will overhaul my words, for what is spoke to one is spoke to
all."
Captain Smollett rose from his seat and knocked out the ashes of his
pipe in the palm of his left hand.
"Is that all?" he asked.
"Every last word, by thunder!" answered John. "Refuse that, and
you've seen the last of me but musket-balls."
"Very good," said the captain. "Now you'll hear me. If you'll come up
one by one, unarmed, I'll engage to clap you all in irons and take you
home to a fair trial in England. If you won't, my name is Alexander
Smollett, I've flown my sovereign's colours, and I'll see you all to Davy
Jones. You can't find the treasure. You can't sail the ship—there's not a
man among you fit to sail the ship. You can't fight us—Gray, there, got
away from five of you. Your ship's in irons, Master Silver; you're on a lee
shore, and so you'll find. I stand here and tell you so; and they're the last
good words you'll get from me, for in the name of heaven, I'll put a bul-
let in your back when next I meet you. Tramp, my lad. Bundle out of
this, please, hand over hand, and double quick."
Silver's face was a picture; his eyes started in his head with wrath. He
shook the fire out of his pipe.
"Give me a hand up!" he cried.
"Not I," returned the captain.
"Who'll give me a hand up?" he roared.
102
Not a man among us moved. Growling the foulest imprecations, he
crawled along the sand till he got hold of the porch and could hoist him-
self again upon his crutch. Then he spat into the spring.
"There!" he cried. "That's what I think of ye. Before an hour's out, I'll
stove in your old block house like a rum puncheon. Laugh, by thunder,
laugh! Before an hour's out, ye'll laugh upon the other side. Them that
die'll be the lucky ones."
And with a dreadful oath he stumbled off, ploughed down the sand,
was helped across the stockade, after four or five failures, by the man
with the flag of truce, and disappeared in an instant afterwards among
the trees.
103
Chapter 6
The Attack
A
s soon as Silver disappeared, the captain, who had been closely
watching him, turned towards the interior of the house and found
not a man of us at his post but Gray. It was the first time we had ever
seen him angry.
"Quarters!" he roared. And then, as we all slunk back to our places,
"Gray," he said, "I'll put your name in the log; you've stood by your duty
like a seaman. Mr. Trelawney, I'm surprised at you, sir. Doctor, I thought
you had worn the king's coat! If that was how you served at Fontenoy,
sir, you'd have been better in your berth."
The doctor's watch were all back at their loopholes, the rest were busy
loading the spare muskets, and everyone with a red face, you may be
certain, and a flea in his ear, as the saying is.
The captain looked on for a while in silence. Then he spoke.
"My lads," said he, "I've given Silver a broadside. I pitched it in red-hot
on purpose; and before the hour's out, as he said, we shall be boarded.
We're outnumbered, I needn't tell you that, but we fight in shelter; and a
minute ago I should have said we fought with discipline. I've no manner
of doubt that we can drub them, if you choose."
Then he went the rounds and saw, as he said, that all was clear.
On the two short sides of the house, east and west, there were only
two loopholes; on the south side where the porch was, two again; and on
the north side, five. There was a round score of muskets for the seven of
us; the firewood had been built into four piles—tables, you might
say—one about the middle of each side, and on each of these tables some
ammunition and four loaded muskets were laid ready to the hand of the
defenders. In the middle, the cutlasses lay ranged.
"Toss out the fire," said the captain; "the chill is past, and we mustn't
have smoke in our eyes."
The iron fire-basket was carried bodily out by Mr. Trelawney, and the
embers smothered among sand.
104
"Hawkins hasn't had his breakfast. Hawkins, help yourself, and back
to your post to eat it," continued Captain Smollett. "Lively, now, my lad;
you'll want it before you've done. Hunter, serve out a round of brandy to
all hands."
And while this was going on, the captain completed, in his own mind,
the plan of the defence.
"Doctor, you will take the door," he resumed. "See, and don't expose
yourself; keep within, and fire through the porch. Hunter, take the east
side, there. Joyce, you stand by the west, my man. Mr. Trelawney, you
are the best shot—you and Gray will take this long north side, with the
five loopholes; it's there the danger is. If they can get up to it and fire in
upon us through our own ports, things would begin to look dirty.
Hawkins, neither you nor I are much account at the shooting; we'll stand
by to load and bear a hand."
As the captain had said, the chill was past. As soon as the sun had
climbed above our girdle of trees, it fell with all its force upon the clear-
ing and drank up the vapours at a draught. Soon the sane was baking
and the resin melting in the logs of the block house. Jackets and coats
were flung aside, shirts thrown open at the neck and rolled up to the
shoulders; and we stood there, each at his post, in a fever of heat and
anxiety.
An hour passed away.
"Hang them!" said the captain. "This is as dull as the doldrums. Gray,
whistle for a wind."
And just at that moment came the first news of the attack.
"If you please, sir," said Joyce, "if I see anyone, am I to fire?"
"I told you so!" cried the captain.
"Thank you, sir," returned Joyce with the same quiet civility.
Nothing followed for a time, but the remark had set us all on the alert,
straining ears and eyes—the musketeers with their pieces balanced in
their hands, the captain out in the middle of the block house with his
mouth very tight and a frown on his face.
So some seconds passed, till suddenly Joyce whipped up his musket
and fired. The report had scarcely died away ere it was repeated and re-
peated from without in a scattering volley, shot behind shot, like a string
of geese, from every side of the enclosure. Several bullets struck the log-
house, but not one entered; and as the smoke cleared away and van-
ished, the stockade and the woods around it looked as quiet and empty
as before. Not a bough waved, not the gleam of a musket-barrel betrayed
the presence of our foes.
105
"Did you hit your man?" asked the captain.
"No, sir," replied Joyce. "I believe not, sir."
"Next best thing to tell the truth," muttered Captain Smollett. "Load his
gun, Hawkins. How many should say there were on your side, doctor?"
"I know precisely," said Dr. Livesey. "Three shots were fired on this
side. I saw the three flashes—two close together—one farther to the
west."
"Three!" repeated the captain. "And how many on yours, Mr.
Trelawney?"
But this was not so easily answered. There had come many from the
north—seven by the squire's computation, eight or nine according to
Gray. From the east and west only a single shot had been fired. It was
plain, therefore, that the attack would be developed from the north and
that on the other three sides we were only to be annoyed by a show of
hostilities. But Captain Smollett made no change in his arrangements. If
the mutineers succeeded in crossing the stockade, he argued, they would
take possession of any unprotected loophole and shoot us down like rats
in our own stronghold.
Nor had we much time left to us for thought. Suddenly, with a loud
huzza, a little cloud of pirates leaped from the woods on the north side
and ran straight on the stockade. At the same moment, the fire was once
more opened from the woods, and a rifle ball sang through the doorway
and knocked the doctor's musket into bits.
The boarders swarmed over the fence like monkeys. Squire and Gray
fired again and yet again; three men fell, one forwards into the enclosure,
two back on the outside. But of these, one was evidently more frightened
than hurt, for he was on his feet again in a crack and instantly disap-
peared among the trees.
Two had bit the dust, one had fled, four had made good their footing
inside our defences, while from the shelter of the woods seven or eight
men, each evidently supplied with several muskets, kept up a hot
though useless fire on the log-house.
The four who had boarded made straight before them for the building,
shouting as they ran, and the men among the trees shouted back to en-
courage them. Several shots were fired, but such was the hurry of the
marksmen that not one appears to have taken effect. In a moment, the
four pirates had swarmed up the mound and were upon us.
The head of Job Anderson, the boatswain, appeared at the middle
loophole.
"At 'em, all hands—all hands!" he roared in a voice of thunder.
106
At the same moment, another pirate grasped Hunter's musket by the
muzzle, wrenched it from his hands, plucked it through the loophole,
and with one stunning blow, laid the poor fellow senseless on the floor.
Meanwhile a third, running unharmed all around the house, appeared
suddenly in the doorway and fell with his cutlass on the doctor.
Our position was utterly reversed. A moment since we were firing, un-
der cover, at an exposed enemy; now it was we who lay uncovered and
could not return a blow.
The log-house was full of smoke, to which we owed our comparative
safety. Cries and confusion, the flashes and reports of pistol-shots, and
one loud groan rang in my ears.
"Out, lads, out, and fight 'em in the open! Cutlasses!" cried the captain.
I snatched a cutlass from the pile, and someone, at the same time
snatching another, gave me a cut across the knuckles which I hardly felt.
I dashed out of the door into the clear sunlight. Someone was close be-
hind, I knew not whom. Right in front, the doctor was pursuing his as-
sailant down the hill, and just as my eyes fell upon him, beat down his
guard and sent him sprawling on his back with a great slash across the
face.
"Round the house, lads! Round the house!" cried the captain; and even
in the hurly-burly, I perceived a change in his voice.
Mechanically, I obeyed, turned eastwards, and with my cutlass raised,
ran round the corner of the house. Next moment I was face to face with
Anderson. He roared aloud, and his hanger went up above his head,
flashing in the sunlight. I had not time to be afraid, but as the blow still
hung impending, leaped in a trice upon one side, and missing my foot in
the soft sand, rolled headlong down the slope.
When I had first sallied from the door, the other mutineers had been
already swarming up the palisade to make an end of us. One man, in a
red night-cap, with his cutlass in his mouth, had even got upon the top
and thrown a leg across. Well, so short had been the interval that when I
found my feet again all was in the same posture, the fellow with the red
night-cap still half-way over, another still just showing his head above
the top of the stockade. And yet, in this breath of time, the fight was over
and the victory was ours.
Gray, following close behind me, had cut down the big boatswain ere
he had time to recover from his last blow. Another had been shot at a
loophole in the very act of firing into the house and now lay in agony,
the pistol still smoking in his hand. A third, as I had seen, the doctor had
disposed of at a blow. Of the four who had scaled the palisade, one only
107
remained unaccounted for, and he, having left his cutlass on the field,
was now clambering out again with the fear of death upon him.
"Fire—fire from the house!" cried the doctor. "And you, lads, back into
cover."
But his words were unheeded, no shot was fired, and the last boarder
made good his escape and disappeared with the rest into the wood. In
three seconds nothing remained of the attacking party but the five who
had fallen, four on the inside and one on the outside of the palisade.
The doctor and Gray and I ran full speed for shelter. The survivors
would soon be back where they had left their muskets, and at any mo-
ment the fire might recommence.
The house was by this time somewhat cleared of smoke, and we saw
at a glance the price we had paid for victory. Hunter lay beside his loop-
hole, stunned; Joyce by his, shot through the head, never to move again;
while right in the centre, the squire was supporting the captain, one as
pale as the other.
"The captain's wounded," said Mr. Trelawney.
"Have they run?" asked Mr. Smollett.
"All that could, you may be bound," returned the doctor; "but there's
five of them will never run again."
"Five!" cried the captain. "Come, that's better. Five against three leaves
us four to nine. That's better odds than we had at starting. We were sev-
en to nineteen then, or thought we were, and that's as bad to bear."
108
Part 5
My Sea Adventure
109
Chapter 1
How My Sea Adventure Began
T
here was no return of the mutineers—not so much as another shot
out of the woods. They had "got their rations for that day," as the
captain put it, and we had the place to ourselves and a quiet time to
overhaul the wounded and get dinner. Squire and I cooked outside in
spite of the danger, and even outside we could hardly tell what we were
at, for horror of the loud groans that reached us from the doctor's
patients.
Out of the eight men who had fallen in the action, only three still
breathed—that one of the pirates who had been shot at the loophole,
Hunter, and Captain Smollett; and of these, the first two were as good as
dead; the mutineer indeed died under the doctor's knife, and Hunter, do
what we could, never recovered consciousness in this world. He lingered
all day, breathing loudly like the old buccaneer at home in his apoplectic
fit, but the bones of his chest had been crushed by the blow and his skull
fractured in falling, and some time in the following night, without sign
or sound, he went to his Maker.
As for the captain, his wounds were grievous indeed, but not danger-
ous. No organ was fatally injured. Anderson's ball—for it was Job that
shot him first—had broken his shoulder-blade and touched the lung, not
badly; the second had only torn and displaced some muscles in the calf.
He was sure to recover, the doctor said, but in the meantime, and for
weeks to come, he must not walk nor move his arm, nor so much as
speak when he could help it.
My own accidental cut across the knuckles was a flea-bite. Doctor
Livesey patched it up with plaster and pulled my ears for me into the
bargain.
After dinner the squire and the doctor sat by the captain's side awhile
in consultation; and when they had talked to their hearts' content, it be-
ing then a little past noon, the doctor took up his hat and pistols, girt on
a cutlass, put the chart in his pocket, and with a musket over his
110
shoulder crossed the palisade on the north side and set off briskly
through the trees.
Gray and I were sitting together at the far end of the block house, to be
out of earshot of our officers consulting; and Gray took his pipe out of
his mouth and fairly forgot to put it back again, so thunder-struck he
was at this occurrence.
"Why, in the name of Davy Jones," said he, "is Dr. Livesey mad?"
"Why no," says I. "He's about the last of this crew for that, I take it."
"Well, shipmate," said Gray, "mad he may not be; but if he's not, you
mark my words, I am."
"I take it," replied I, "the doctor has his idea; and if I am right, he's go-
ing now to see Ben Gunn."
I was right, as appeared later; but in the meantime, the house being
stifling hot and the little patch of sand inside the palisade ablaze with
midday sun, I began to get another thought into my head, which was not
by any means so right. What I began to do was to envy the doctor walk-
ing in the cool shadow of the woods with the birds about him and the
pleasant smell of the pines, while I sat grilling, with my clothes stuck to
the hot resin, and so much blood about me and so many poor dead bod-
ies lying all around that I took a disgust of the place that was almost as
strong as fear.
All the time I was washing out the block house, and then washing up
the things from dinner, this disgust and envy kept growing stronger and
stronger, till at last, being near a bread-bag, and no one then observing
me, I took the first step towards my escapade and filled both pockets of
my coat with biscuit.
I was a fool, if you like, and certainly I was going to do a foolish, over-
bold act; but I was determined to do it with all the precautions in my
power. These biscuits, should anything befall me, would keep me, at
least, from starving till far on in the next day.
The next thing I laid hold of was a brace of pistols, and as I already
had a powder-horn and bullets, I felt myself well supplied with arms.
As for the scheme I had in my head, it was not a bad one in itself. I was
to go down the sandy spit that divides the anchorage on the east from
the open sea, find the white rock I had observed last evening, and ascer-
tain whether it was there or not that Ben Gunn had hidden his boat, a
thing quite worth doing, as I still believe. But as I was certain I should
not be allowed to leave the enclosure, my only plan was to take French
leave and slip out when nobody was watching, and that was so bad a
111
way of doing it as made the thing itself wrong. But I was only a boy, and
I had made my mind up.
Well, as things at last fell out, I found an admirable opportunity. The
squire and Gray were busy helping the captain with his bandages, the
coast was clear, I made a bolt for it over the stockade and into the thick-
est of the trees, and before my absence was observed I was out of cry of
my companions.
This was my second folly, far worse than the first, as I left but two
sound men to guard the house; but like the first, it was a help towards
saving all of us.
I took my way straight for the east coast of the island, for I was de-
termined to go down the sea side of the spit to avoid all chance of obser-
vation from the anchorage. It was already late in the afternoon, although
still warm and sunny. As I continued to thread the tall woods, I could
hear from far before me not only the continuous thunder of the surf, but
a certain tossing of foliage and grinding of boughs which showed me the
sea breeze had set in higher than usual. Soon cool draughts of air began
to reach me, and a few steps farther I came forth into the open borders of
the grove, and saw the sea lying blue and sunny to the horizon and the
surf tumbling and tossing its foam along the beach.
I have never seen the sea quiet round Treasure Island. The sun might
blaze overhead, the air be without a breath, the surface smooth and blue,
but still these great rollers would be running along all the external coast,
thundering and thundering by day and night; and I scarce believe there
is one spot in the island where a man would be out of earshot of their
noise.
I walked along beside the surf with great enjoyment, till, thinking I
was now got far enough to the south, I took the cover of some thick
bushes and crept warily up to the ridge of the spit.
Behind me was the sea, in front the anchorage. The sea breeze, as
though it had the sooner blown itself out by its unusual violence, was
already at an end; it had been succeeded by light, variable airs from the
south and south-east, carrying great banks of fog; and the anchorage, un-
der lee of Skeleton Island, lay still and leaden as when first we entered it.
The Hispaniola, in that unbroken mirror, was exactly portrayed from the
truck to the waterline, the Jolly Roger hanging from her peak.
Alongside lay one of the gigs, Silver in the stern-sheets—him I could
always recognize—while a couple of men were leaning over the stern
bulwarks, one of them with a red cap—the very rogue that I had seen
some hours before stride-legs upon the palisade. Apparently they were
112
talking and laughing, though at that distance—upwards of a mile—I
could, of course, hear no word of what was said. All at once there began
the most horrid, unearthly screaming, which at first startled me badly,
though I had soon remembered the voice of Captain Flint and even
thought I could make out the bird by her bright plumage as she sat
perched upon her master's wrist.
Soon after, the jolly-boat shoved off and pulled for shore, and the man
with the red cap and his comrade went below by the cabin companion.
Just about the same time, the sun had gone down behind the Spy-
glass, and as the fog was collecting rapidly, it began to grow dark in
earnest. I saw I must lose no time if I were to find the boat that evening.
The white rock, visible enough above the brush, was still some eighth
of a mile further down the spit, and it took me a goodish while to get up
with it, crawling, often on all fours, among the scrub. Night had almost
come when I laid my hand on its rough sides. Right below it there was
an exceedingly small hollow of green turf, hidden by banks and a thick
underwood about knee-deep, that grew there very plentifully; and in the
centre of the dell, sure enough, a little tent of goat-skins, like what the
gipsies carry about with them in England.
I dropped into the hollow, lifted the side of the tent, and there was Ben
Gunn's boat—home-made if ever anything was home-made; a rude, lop-
sided framework of tough wood, and stretched upon that a covering of
goat-skin, with the hair inside. The thing was extremely small, even for
me, and I can hardly imagine that it could have floated with a full-sized
man. There was one thwart set as low as possible, a kind of stretcher in
the bows, and a double paddle for propulsion.
I had not then seen a coracle, such as the ancient Britons made, but I
have seen one since, and I can give you no fairer idea of Ben Gunn's boat
than by saying it was like the first and the worst coracle ever made by
man. But the great advantage of the coracle it certainly possessed, for it
was exceedingly light and portable.
Well, now that I had found the boat, you would have thought I had
had enough of truantry for once, but in the meantime I had taken anoth-
er notion and become so obstinately fond of it that I would have carried
it out, I believe, in the teeth of Captain Smollett himself. This was to slip
out under cover of the night, cut the Hispaniola adrift, and let her go
ashore where she fancied. I had quite made up my mind that the mutin-
eers, after their repulse of the morning, had nothing nearer their hearts
than to up anchor and away to sea; this, I thought, it would be a fine
113
thing to prevent, and now that I had seen how they left their watchmen
unprovided with a boat, I thought it might be done with little risk.
Down I sat to wait for darkness, and made a hearty meal of biscuit. It
was a night out of ten thousand for my purpose. The fog had now buried
all heaven. As the last rays of daylight dwindled and disappeared, abso-
lute blackness settled down on Treasure Island. And when, at last, I
shouldered the coracle and groped my way stumblingly out of the hol-
low where I had supped, there were but two points visible on the whole
anchorage.
One was the great fire on shore, by which the defeated pirates lay ca-
rousing in the swamp. The other, a mere blur of light upon the darkness,
indicated the position of the anchored ship. She had swung round to the
ebb—her bow was now towards me—the only lights on board were in
the cabin, and what I saw was merely a reflection on the fog of the strong
rays that flowed from the stern window.
The ebb had already run some time, and I had to wade through a long
belt of swampy sand, where I sank several times above the ankle, before
I came to the edge of the retreating water, and wading a little way in,
with some strength and dexterity, set my coracle, keel downwards, on
the surface.
114
Chapter 2
The Ebb-tide Runs
T
he coracle—as I had ample reason to know before I was done with
her—was a very safe boat for a person of my height and weight,
both buoyant and clever in a sea-way; but she was the most cross-
grained, lop-sided craft to manage. Do as you pleased, she always made
more leeway than anything else, and turning round and round was the
manoeuvre she was best at. Even Ben Gunn himself has admitted that
she was "queer to handle till you knew her way."
Certainly I did not know her way. She turned in every direction but
the one I was bound to go; the most part of the time we were broadside
on, and I am very sure I never should have made the ship at all but for
the tide. By good fortune, paddle as I pleased, the tide was still sweeping
me down; and there lay the Hispaniola right in the fairway, hardly to be
missed.
First she loomed before me like a blot of something yet blacker than
darkness, then her spars and hull began to take shape, and the next mo-
ment, as it seemed (for, the farther I went, the brisker grew the current of
the ebb), I was alongside of her hawser and had laid hold.
The hawser was as taut as a bowstring, and the current so strong she
pulled upon her anchor. All round the hull, in the blackness, the rippling
current bubbled and chattered like a little mountain stream. One cut with
my sea-gully and the Hispaniola would go humming down the tide.
So far so good, but it next occurred to my recollection that a taut
hawser, suddenly cut, is a thing as dangerous as a kicking horse. Ten to
one, if I were so foolhardy as to cut the Hispaniola from her anchor, I
and the coracle would be knocked clean out of the water.
This brought me to a full stop, and if fortune had not again particu-
larly favoured me, I should have had to abandon my design. But the
light airs which had begun blowing from the south-east and south had
hauled round after nightfall into the south-west. Just while I was medit-
ating, a puff came, caught the Hispaniola, and forced her up into the
115
current; and to my great joy, I felt the hawser slacken in my grasp, and
the hand by which I held it dip for a second under water.
With that I made my mind up, took out my gully, opened it with my
teeth, and cut one strand after another, till the vessel swung only by two.
Then I lay quiet, waiting to sever these last when the strain should be
once more lightened by a breath of wind.
All this time I had heard the sound of loud voices from the cabin, but
to say truth, my mind had been so entirely taken up with other thoughts
that I had scarcely given ear. Now, however, when I had nothing else to
do, I began to pay more heed.
One I recognized for the coxswain's, Israel Hands, that had been Flint's
gunner in former days. The other was, of course, my friend of the red
night-cap. Both men were plainly the worse of drink, and they were still
drinking, for even while I was listening, one of them, with a drunken cry,
opened the stern window and threw out something, which I divined to
be an empty bottle. But they were not only tipsy; it was plain that they
were furiously angry. Oaths flew like hailstones, and every now and
then there came forth such an explosion as I thought was sure to end in
blows. But each time the quarrel passed off and the voices grumbled
lower for a while, until the next crisis came and in its turn passed away
without result.
On shore, I could see the glow of the great camp-fire burning warmly
through the shore-side trees. Someone was singing, a dull, old, droning
sailor's song, with a droop and a quaver at the end of every verse, and
seemingly no end to it at all but the patience of the singer. I had heard it
on the voyage more than once and remembered these words:
"But one man of her crew alive,
What put to sea with seventy-five."
And I thought it was a ditty rather too dolefully appropriate for a com-
pany that had met such cruel losses in the morning. But, indeed, from
what I saw, all these buccaneers were as callous as the sea they sailed on.
At last the breeze came; the schooner sidled and drew nearer in the
dark; I felt the hawser slacken once more, and with a good, tough effort,
cut the last fibres through.
The breeze had but little action on the coracle, and I was almost in-
stantly swept against the bows of the Hispaniola. At the same time, the
schooner began to turn upon her heel, spinning slowly, end for end,
across the current.
I wrought like a fiend, for I expected every moment to be swamped;
and since I found I could not push the coracle directly off, I now shoved
116
straight astern. At length I was clear of my dangerous neighbour, and
just as I gave the last impulsion, my hands came across a light cord that
was trailing overboard across the stern bulwarks. Instantly I grasped it.
Why I should have done so I can hardly say. It was at first mere in-
stinct, but once I had it in my hands and found it fast, curiosity began to
get the upper hand, and I determined I should have one look through
the cabin window.
I pulled in hand over hand on the cord, and when I judged myself
near enough, rose at infinite risk to about half my height and thus com-
manded the roof and a slice of the interior of the cabin.
By this time the schooner and her little consort were gliding pretty
swiftly through the water; indeed, we had already fetched up level with
the camp-fire. The ship was talking, as sailors say, loudly, treading the
innumerable ripples with an incessant weltering splash; and until I got
my eye above the window-sill I could not comprehend why the watch-
men had taken no alarm. One glance, however, was sufficient; and it was
only one glance that I durst take from that unsteady skiff. It showed me
Hands and his companion locked together in deadly wrestle, each with a
hand upon the other's throat.
I dropped upon the thwart again, none too soon, for I was near over-
board. I could see nothing for the moment but these two furious, encrim-
soned faces swaying together under the smoky lamp, and I shut my eyes
to let them grow once more familiar with the darkness.
The endless ballad had come to an end at last, and the whole dimin-
ished company about the camp-fire had broken into the chorus I had
heard so often:
"Fifteen men on the dead man's chest—
Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!
Drink and the devil had done for the rest—
Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!"
I was just thinking how busy drink and the devil were at that very mo-
ment in the cabin of the Hispaniola, when I was surprised by a sudden
lurch of the coracle. At the same moment, she yawed sharply and
seemed to change her course. The speed in the meantime had strangely
increased.
I opened my eyes at once. All round me were little ripples, combing
over with a sharp, bristling sound and slightly phosphorescent. The His-
paniola herself, a few yards in whose wake I was still being whirled
along, seemed to stagger in her course, and I saw her spars toss a little
117
against the blackness of the night; nay, as I looked longer, I made sure
she also was wheeling to the southward.
I glanced over my shoulder, and my heart jumped against my ribs.
There, right behind me, was the glow of the camp-fire. The current had
turned at right angles, sweeping round along with it the tall schooner
and the little dancing coracle; ever quickening, ever bubbling higher,
ever muttering louder, it went spinning through the narrows for the
open sea.
Suddenly the schooner in front of me gave a violent yaw, turning, per-
haps, through twenty degrees; and almost at the same moment one
shout followed another from on board; I could hear feet pounding on the
companion ladder and I knew that the two drunkards had at last been
interrupted in their quarrel and awakened to a sense of their disaster.
I lay down flat in the bottom of that wretched skiff and devoutly re-
commended my spirit to its Maker. At the end of the straits, I made sure
we must fall into some bar of raging breakers, where all my troubles
would be ended speedily; and though I could, perhaps, bear to die, I
could not bear to look upon my fate as it approached.
So I must have lain for hours, continually beaten to and fro upon the
billows, now and again wetted with flying sprays, and never ceasing to
expect death at the next plunge. Gradually weariness grew upon me; a
numbness, an occasional stupor, fell upon my mind even in the midst of
my terrors, until sleep at last supervened and in my sea-tossed coracle I
lay and dreamed of home and the old Admiral Benbow.
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Chapter 3
The Cruise of the Coracle
I
t was broad day when I awoke and found myself tossing at the south-
west end of Treasure Island. The sun was up but was still hid from
me behind the great bulk of the Spy-glass, which on this side descended
almost to the sea in formidable cliffs.
Haulbowline Head and Mizzen-mast Hill were at my elbow, the hill
bare and dark, the head bound with cliffs forty or fifty feet high and
fringed with great masses of fallen rock. I was scarce a quarter of a mile
to seaward, and it was my first thought to paddle in and land.
That notion was soon given over. Among the fallen rocks the breakers
spouted and bellowed; loud reverberations, heavy sprays flying and fall-
ing, succeeded one another from second to second; and I saw myself, if I
ventured nearer, dashed to death upon the rough shore or spending my
strength in vain to scale the beetling crags.
Nor was that all, for crawling together on flat tables of rock or letting
themselves drop into the sea with loud reports I beheld huge slimy mon-
sters—soft snails, as it were, of incredible bigness—two or three score of
them together, making the rocks to echo with their barkings.
I have understood since that they were sea lions, and entirely harm-
less. But the look of them, added to the difficulty of the shore and the
high running of the surf, was more than enough to disgust me of that
landing-place. I felt willing rather to starve at sea than to confront such
perils.
In the meantime I had a better chance, as I supposed, before me. North
of Haulbowline Head, the land runs in a long way, leaving at low tide a
long stretch of yellow sand. To the north of that, again, there comes an-
other cape—Cape of the Woods, as it was marked upon the
chart—buried in tall green pines, which descended to the margin of the
sea.
I remembered what Silver had said about the current that sets north-
ward along the whole west coast of Treasure Island, and seeing from my
119
position that I was already under its influence, I preferred to leave
Haulbowline Head behind me and reserve my strength for an attempt to
land upon the kindlier-looking Cape of the Woods.
There was a great, smooth swell upon the sea. The wind blowing
steady and gentle from the south, there was no contrariety between that
and the current, and the billows rose and fell unbroken.
Had it been otherwise, I must long ago have perished; but as it was, it
is surprising how easily and securely my little and light boat could ride.
Often, as I still lay at the bottom and kept no more than an eye above the
gunwale, I would see a big blue summit heaving close above me; yet the
coracle would but bounce a little, dance as if on springs, and subside on
the other side into the trough as lightly as a bird.
I began after a little to grow very bold and sat up to try my skill at
paddling. But even a small change in the disposition of the weight will
produce violent changes in the behaviour of a coracle. And I had hardly
moved before the boat, giving up at once her gentle dancing movement,
ran straight down a slope of water so steep that it made me giddy, and
struck her nose, with a spout of spray, deep into the side of the next
wave.
I was drenched and terrified, and fell instantly back into my old posi-
tion, whereupon the coracle seemed to find her head again and led me as
softly as before among the billows. It was plain she was not to be in-
terfered with, and at that rate, since I could in no way influence her
course, what hope had I left of reaching land?
I began to be horribly frightened, but I kept my head, for all that. First,
moving with all care, I gradually baled out the coracle with my sea-cap;
then, getting my eye once more above the gunwale, I set myself to study
how it was she managed to slip so quietly through the rollers.
I found each wave, instead of the big, smooth glossy mountain it looks
from shore or from a vessel's deck, was for all the world like any range of
hills on dry land, full of peaks and smooth places and valleys. The cor-
acle, left to herself, turning from side to side, threaded, so to speak, her
way through these lower parts and avoided the steep slopes and higher,
toppling summits of the wave.
"Well, now," thought I to myself, "it is plain I must lie where I am and
not disturb the balance; but it is plain also that I can put the paddle over
the side and from time to time, in smooth places, give her a shove or two
towards land." No sooner thought upon than done. There I lay on my el-
bows in the most trying attitude, and every now and again gave a weak
stroke or two to turn her head to shore.
120
It was very tiring and slow work, yet I did visibly gain ground; and as
we drew near the Cape of the Woods, though I saw I must infallibly miss
that point, I had still made some hundred yards of easting. I was, indeed,
close in. I could see the cool green tree-tops swaying together in the
breeze, and I felt sure I should make the next promontory without fail.
It was high time, for I now began to be tortured with thirst. The glow
of the sun from above, its thousandfold reflection from the waves, the
sea-water that fell and dried upon me, caking my very lips with salt,
combined to make my throat burn and my brain ache. The sight of the
trees so near at hand had almost made me sick with longing, but the cur-
rent had soon carried me past the point, and as the next reach of sea
opened out, I beheld a sight that changed the nature of my thoughts.
Right in front of me, not half a mile away, I beheld the Hispaniola un-
der sail. I made sure, of course, that I should be taken; but I was so dis-
tressed for want of water that I scarce knew whether to be glad or sorry
at the thought, and long before I had come to a conclusion, surprise had
taken entire possession of my mind and I could do nothing but stare and
wonder.
The Hispaniola was under her main-sail and two jibs, and the beauti-
ful white canvas shone in the sun like snow or silver. When I first sighted
her, all her sails were drawing; she was lying a course about north-west,
and I presumed the men on board were going round the island on their
way back to the anchorage. Presently she began to fetch more and more
to the westward, so that I thought they had sighted me and were going
about in chase. At last, however, she fell right into the wind's eye, was
taken dead aback, and stood there awhile helpless, with her sails
shivering.
"Clumsy fellows," said I; "they must still be drunk as owls." And I
thought how Captain Smollett would have set them skipping.
Meanwhile the schooner gradually fell off and filled again upon an-
other tack, sailed swiftly for a minute or so, and brought up once more
dead in the wind's eye. Again and again was this repeated. To and fro,
up and down, north, south, east, and west, the Hispaniola sailed by
swoops and dashes, and at each repetition ended as she had begun, with
idly flapping canvas. It became plain to me that nobody was steering.
And if so, where were the men? Either they were dead drunk or had
deserted her, I thought, and perhaps if I could get on board I might re-
turn the vessel to her captain.
The current was bearing coracle and schooner southward at an equal
rate. As for the latter's sailing, it was so wild and intermittent, and she
121
hung each time so long in irons, that she certainly gained nothing, if she
did not even lose. If only I dared to sit up and paddle, I made sure that I
could overhaul her. The scheme had an air of adventure that inspired
me, and the thought of the water breaker beside the fore companion
doubled my growing courage.
Up I got, was welcomed almost instantly by another cloud of spray,
but this time stuck to my purpose and set myself, with all my strength
and caution, to paddle after the unsteered Hispaniola. Once I shipped a
sea so heavy that I had to stop and bail, with my heart fluttering like a
bird, but gradually I got into the way of the thing and guided my coracle
among the waves, with only now and then a blow upon her bows and a
dash of foam in my face.
I was now gaining rapidly on the schooner; I could see the brass
glisten on the tiller as it banged about, and still no soul appeared upon
her decks. I could not choose but suppose she was deserted. If not, the
men were lying drunk below, where I might batten them down, perhaps,
and do what I chose with the ship.
For some time she had been doing the worse thing possible for
me—standing still. She headed nearly due south, yawing, of course, all
the time. Each time she fell off, her sails partly filled, and these brought
her in a moment right to the wind again. I have said this was the worst
thing possible for me, for helpless as she looked in this situation, with
the canvas cracking like cannon and the blocks trundling and banging on
the deck, she still continued to run away from me, not only with the
speed of the current, but by the whole amount of her leeway, which was
naturally great.
But now, at last, I had my chance. The breeze fell for some seconds,
very low, and the current gradually turning her, the Hispaniola revolved
slowly round her centre and at last presented me her stern, with the cab-
in window still gaping open and the lamp over the table still burning on
into the day. The main-sail hung drooped like a banner. She was stock-
still but for the current.
For the last little while I had even lost, but now redoubling my efforts,
I began once more to overhaul the chase.
I was not a hundred yards from her when the wind came again in a
clap; she filled on the port tack and was off again, stooping and skim-
ming like a swallow.
My first impulse was one of despair, but my second was towards joy.
Round she came, till she was broadside on to me—round still till she had
covered a half and then two thirds and then three quarters of the
122
distance that separated us. I could see the waves boiling white under her
forefoot. Immensely tall she looked to me from my low station in the
coracle.
And then, of a sudden, I began to comprehend. I had scarce time to
think—scarce time to act and save myself. I was on the summit of one
swell when the schooner came stooping over the next. The bowsprit was
over my head. I sprang to my feet and leaped, stamping the coracle un-
der water. With one hand I caught the jib-boom, while my foot was
lodged between the stay and the brace; and as I still clung there panting,
a dull blow told me that the schooner had charged down upon and
struck the coracle and that I was left without retreat on the Hispaniola.
123
Chapter 4
I Strike the Jolly Roger
I
had scarce gained a position on the bowsprit when the flying jib
flapped and filled upon the other tack, with a report like a gun. The
schooner trembled to her keel under the reverse, but next moment, the
other sails still drawing, the jib flapped back again and hung idle.
This had nearly tossed me off into the sea; and now I lost no time,
crawled back along the bowsprit, and tumbled head foremost on the
deck.
I was on the lee side of the forecastle, and the main-sail, which was
still drawing, concealed from me a certain portion of the after-deck. Not
a soul was to be seen. The planks, which had not been swabbed since the
mutiny, bore the print of many feet, and an empty bottle, broken by the
neck, tumbled to and fro like a live thing in the scuppers.
Suddenly the Hispaniola came right into the wind. The jibs behind me
cracked aloud, the rudder slammed to, the whole ship gave a sickening
heave and shudder, and at the same moment the main-boom swung in-
board, the sheet groaning in the blocks, and showed me the lee after-
deck.
There were the two watchmen, sure enough: red-cap on his back, as
stiff as a handspike, with his arms stretched out like those of a crucifix
and his teeth showing through his open lips; Israel Hands propped
against the bulwarks, his chin on his chest, his hands lying open before
him on the deck, his face as white, under its tan, as a tallow candle.
For a while the ship kept bucking and sidling like a vicious horse, the
sails filling, now on one tack, now on another, and the boom swinging to
and fro till the mast groaned aloud under the strain. Now and again too
there would come a cloud of light sprays over the bulwark and a heavy
blow of the ship's bows against the swell; so much heavier weather was
made of it by this great rigged ship than by my home-made, lop-sided
coracle, now gone to the bottom of the sea.
124
At every jump of the schooner, red-cap slipped to and fro, but—what
was ghastly to behold—neither his attitude nor his fixed teeth-disclosing
grin was anyway disturbed by this rough usage. At every jump too,
Hands appeared still more to sink into himself and settle down upon the
deck, his feet sliding ever the farther out, and the whole body canting to-
wards the stern, so that his face became, little by little, hid from me; and
at last I could see nothing beyond his ear and the frayed ringlet of one
whisker.
At the same time, I observed, around both of them, splashes of dark
blood upon the planks and began to feel sure that they had killed each
other in their drunken wrath.
While I was thus looking and wondering, in a calm moment, when the
ship was still, Israel Hands turned partly round and with a low moan
writhed himself back to the position in which I had seen him first. The
moan, which told of pain and deadly weakness, and the way in which
his jaw hung open went right to my heart. But when I remembered the
talk I had overheard from the apple barrel, all pity left me.
I walked aft until I reached the main-mast.
"Come aboard, Mr. Hands," I said ironically.
He rolled his eyes round heavily, but he was too far gone to express
surprise. All he could do was to utter one word, "Brandy."
It occurred to me there was no time to lose, and dodging the boom as
it once more lurched across the deck, I slipped aft and down the com-
panion stairs into the cabin.
It was such a scene of confusion as you can hardly fancy. All the lock-
fast places had been broken open in quest of the chart. The floor was
thick with mud where ruffians had sat down to drink or consult after
wading in the marshes round their camp. The bulkheads, all painted in
clear white and beaded round with gilt, bore a pattern of dirty hands.
Dozens of empty bottles clinked together in corners to the rolling of the
ship. One of the doctor's medical books lay open on the table, half of the
leaves gutted out, I suppose, for pipelights. In the midst of all this the
lamp still cast a smoky glow, obscure and brown as umber.
I went into the cellar; all the barrels were gone, and of the bottles a
most surprising number had been drunk out and thrown away. Cer-
tainly, since the mutiny began, not a man of them could ever have been
sober.
Foraging about, I found a bottle with some brandy left, for Hands; and
for myself I routed out some biscuit, some pickled fruits, a great bunch
of raisins, and a piece of cheese. With these I came on deck, put down
125
my own stock behind the rudder head and well out of the coxswain's
reach, went forward to the water-breaker, and had a good deep drink of
water, and then, and not till then, gave Hands the brandy.
He must have drunk a gill before he took the bottle from his mouth.
"Aye," said he, "by thunder, but I wanted some o' that!"
I had sat down already in my own corner and begun to eat.
"Much hurt?" I asked him.
He grunted, or rather, I might say, he barked.
"If that doctor was aboard," he said, "I'd be right enough in a couple of
turns, but I don't have no manner of luck, you see, and that's what's the
matter with me. As for that swab, he's good and dead, he is," he added,
indicating the man with the red cap. "He warn't no seaman anyhow. And
where mought you have come from?"
"Well," said I, "I've come aboard to take possession of this ship, Mr.
Hands; and you'll please regard me as your captain until further notice."
He looked at me sourly enough but said nothing. Some of the colour
had come back into his cheeks, though he still looked very sick and still
continued to slip out and settle down as the ship banged about.
"By the by," I continued, "I can't have these colours, Mr. Hands; and by
your leave, I'll strike 'em. Better none than these."
And again dodging the boom, I ran to the colour lines, handed down
their cursed black flag, and chucked it overboard.
"God save the king!" said I, waving my cap. "And there's an end to
Captain Silver!"
He watched me keenly and slyly, his chin all the while on his breast.
"I reckon," he said at last, "I reckon, Cap'n Hawkins, you'll kind of
want to get ashore now. S'pose we talks."
"Why, yes," says I, "with all my heart, Mr. Hands. Say on." And I went
back to my meal with a good appetite.
"This man," he began, nodding feebly at the corpse "—O'Brien were his
name, a rank Irelander—this man and me got the canvas on her, mean-
ing for to sail her back. Well, he's dead now, he is—as dead as bilge; and
who's to sail this ship, I don't see. Without I gives you a hint, you ain't
that man, as far's I can tell. Now, look here, you gives me food and drink
and a old scarf or ankecher to tie my wound up, you do, and I'll tell you
how to tail her, and that's about square all round, I take it."
"I'll tell you one thing," says I: "I'm not going back to Captain Kidd's
anchorage. I mean to get into North Inlet and beach her quietly there."
"To be sure you did," he cried. "Why, I ain't sich an infernal lubber
after all. I can see, can't I? I've tried my fling, I have, and I've lost, and it's
126
you has the wind of me. North Inlet? Why, I haven't no ch'ice, not I! I'd
help you sail her up to Execution Dock, by thunder! So I would."
Well, as it seemed to me, there was some sense in this. We struck our
bargain on the spot. In three minutes I had the Hispaniola sailing easily
before the wind along the coast of Treasure Island, with good hopes of
turning the northern point ere noon and beating down again as far as
North Inlet before high water, when we might beach her safely and wait
till the subsiding tide permitted us to land.
Then I lashed the tiller and went below to my own chest, where I got a
soft silk handkerchief of my mother's. With this, and with my aid, Hands
bound up the great bleeding stab he had received in the thigh, and after
he had eaten a little and had a swallow or two more of the brandy, he
began to pick up visibly, sat straighter up, spoke louder and clearer, and
looked in every way another man.
The breeze served us admirably. We skimmed before it like a bird, the
coast of the island flashing by and the view changing every minute. Soon
we were past the high lands and bowling beside low, sandy country,
sparsely dotted with dwarf pines, and soon we were beyond that again
and had turned the corner of the rocky hill that ends the island on the
north.
I was greatly elated with my new command, and pleased with the
bright, sunshiny weather and these different prospects of the coast. I had
now plenty of water and good things to eat, and my conscience, which
had smitten me hard for my desertion, was quieted by the great conquest
I had made. I should, I think, have had nothing left me to desire but for
the eyes of the coxswain as they followed me derisively about the deck
and the odd smile that appeared continually on his face. It was a smile
that had in it something both of pain and weakness—a haggard old
man's smile; but there was, besides that, a grain of derision, a shadow of
treachery, in his expression as he craftily watched, and watched, and
watched me at my work.
127
Chapter 5
Israel Hands
T
he wind, serving us to a desire, now hauled into the west. We could
run so much the easier from the north-east corner of the island to
the mouth of the North Inlet. Only, as we had no power to anchor and
dared not beach her till the tide had flowed a good deal farther, time
hung on our hands. The coxswain told me how to lay the ship to; after a
good many trials I succeeded, and we both sat in silence over another
meal.
"Cap'n," said he at length with that same uncomfortable smile, "here's
my old shipmate, O'Brien; s'pose you was to heave him overboard. I ain't
partic'lar as a rule, and I don't take no blame for settling his hash, but I
don't reckon him ornamental now, do you?"
"I'm not strong enough, and I don't like the job; and there he lies, for
me," said I.
"This here's an unlucky ship, this Hispaniola, Jim," he went on, blink-
ing. "There's a power of men been killed in this Hispaniola—a sight o'
poor seamen dead and gone since you and me took ship to Bristol. I nev-
er seen sich dirty luck, not I. There was this here O'Brien now—he's
dead, ain't he? Well now, I'm no scholar, and you're a lad as can read and
figure, and to put it straight, do you take it as a dead man is dead for
good, or do he come alive again?"
"You can kill the body, Mr. Hands, but not the spirit; you must know
that already," I replied. "O'Brien there is in another world, and may be
watching us."
"Ah!" says he. "Well, that's unfort'nate—appears as if killing parties
was a waste of time. Howsomever, sperrits don't reckon for much, by
what I've seen. I'll chance it with the sperrits, Jim. And now, you've
spoke up free, and I'll take it kind if you'd step down into that there cab-
in and get me a—well, a—shiver my timbers! I can't hit the name on 't;
well, you get me a bottle of wine, Jim—this here brandy's too strong for
my head."
128
Now, the coxswain's hesitation seemed to be unnatural, and as for the
notion of his preferring wine to brandy, I entirely disbelieved it. The
whole story was a pretext. He wanted me to leave the deck—so much
was plain; but with what purpose I could in no way imagine. His eyes
never met mine; they kept wandering to and fro, up and down, now
with a look to the sky, now with a flitting glance upon the dead O'Brien.
All the time he kept smiling and putting his tongue out in the most
guilty, embarrassed manner, so that a child could have told that he was
bent on some deception. I was prompt with my answer, however, for I
saw where my advantage lay and that with a fellow so densely stupid I
could easily conceal my suspicions to the end. "Some wine?" I said. "Far
better. Will you have white or red?"
"Well, I reckon it's about the blessed same to me, shipmate," he replied;
"so it's strong, and plenty of it, what's the odds?" "All right," I answered.
"I'll bring you port, Mr. Hands. But I'll have to dig for it."
With that I scuttled down the companion with all the noise I could,
slipped off my shoes, ran quietly along the sparred gallery, mounted the
forecastle ladder, and popped my head out of the fore companion. I
knew he would not expect to see me there, yet I took every precaution
possible, and certainly the worst of my suspicions proved too true.
He had risen from his position to his hands and knees, and though his
leg obviously hurt him pretty sharply when he moved—for I could hear
him stifle a groan—yet it was at a good, rattling rate that he trailed him-
self across the deck. In half a minute he had reached the port scuppers
and picked, out of a coil of rope, a long knife, or rather a short dirk, dis-
coloured to the hilt with blood. He looked upon it for a moment, thrust-
ing forth his under jaw, tried the point upon his hand, and then, hastily
concealing it in the bosom of his jacket, trundled back again into his old
place against the bulwark.
This was all that I required to know. Israel could move about, he was
now armed, and if he had been at so much trouble to get rid of me, it was
plain that I was meant to be the victim. What he would do after-
wards—whether he would try to crawl right across the island from
North Inlet to the camp among the swamps or whether he would fire
Long Tom, trusting that his own comrades might come first to help
him—was, of course, more than I could say.
Yet I felt sure that I could trust him in one point, since in that our in-
terests jumped together, and that was in the disposition of the schooner.
We both desired to have her stranded safe enough, in a sheltered place,
and so that, when the time came, she could be got off again with as little
129
labour and danger as might be; and until that was done I considered that
my life would certainly be spared.
While I was thus turning the business over in my mind, I had not been
idle with my body. I had stolen back to the cabin, slipped once more into
my shoes, and laid my hand at random on a bottle of wine, and now,
with this for an excuse, I made my reappearance on the deck.
Hands lay as I had left him, all fallen together in a bundle and with his
eyelids lowered as though he were too weak to bear the light. He looked
up, however, at my coming, knocked the neck off the bottle like a man
who had done the same thing often, and took a good swig, with his fa-
vourite toast of "Here's luck!" Then he lay quiet for a little, and then,
pulling out a stick of tobacco, begged me to cut him a quid.
"Cut me a junk o' that," says he, "for I haven't no knife and hardly
strength enough, so be as I had. Ah, Jim, Jim, I reckon I've missed stays!
Cut me a quid, as'll likely be the last, lad, for I'm for my long home, and
no mistake."
"Well," said I, "I'll cut you some tobacco, but if I was you and thought
myself so badly, I would go to my prayers like a Christian man."
"Why?" said he. "Now, you tell me why."
"Why?" I cried. "You were asking me just now about the dead. You've
broken your trust; you've lived in sin and lies and blood; there's a man
you killed lying at your feet this moment, and you ask me why! For
God's mercy, Mr. Hands, that's why."
I spoke with a little heat, thinking of the bloody dirk he had hidden in
his pocket and designed, in his ill thoughts, to end me with. He, for his
part, took a great draught of the wine and spoke with the most unusual
solemnity.
"For thirty years," he said, "I've sailed the seas and seen good and bad,
better and worse, fair weather and foul, provisions running out, knives
going, and what not. Well, now I tell you, I never seen good come o'
goodness yet. Him as strikes first is my fancy; dead men don't bite;
them's my views—amen, so be it. And now, you look here," he added,
suddenly changing his tone, "we've had about enough of this foolery.
The tide's made good enough by now. You just take my orders, Cap'n
Hawkins, and we'll sail slap in and be done with it."
All told, we had scarce two miles to run; but the navigation was delic-
ate, the entrance to this northern anchorage was not only narrow and
shoal, but lay east and west, so that the schooner must be nicely handled
to be got in. I think I was a good, prompt subaltern, and I am very sure
that Hands was an excellent pilot, for we went about and about and
130
dodged in, shaving the banks, with a certainty and a neatness that were a
pleasure to behold.
Scarcely had we passed the heads before the land closed around us.
The shores of North Inlet were as thickly wooded as those of the south-
ern anchorage, but the space was longer and narrower and more like,
what in truth it was, the estuary of a river. Right before us, at the south-
ern end, we saw the wreck of a ship in the last stages of dilapidation. It
had been a great vessel of three masts but had lain so long exposed to the
injuries of the weather that it was hung about with great webs of drip-
ping seaweed, and on the deck of it shore bushes had taken root and
now flourished thick with flowers. It was a sad sight, but it showed us
that the anchorage was calm.
"Now," said Hands, "look there; there's a pet bit for to beach a ship in.
Fine flat sand, never a cat's paw, trees all around of it, and flowers a-
blowing like a garding on that old ship."
"And once beached," I inquired, "how shall we get her off again?"
"Why, so," he replied: "you take a line ashore there on the other side at
low water, take a turn about one of them big pines; bring it back, take a
turn around the capstan, and lie to for the tide. Come high water, all
hands take a pull upon the line, and off she comes as sweet as natur'.
And now, boy, you stand by. We're near the bit now, and she's too much
way on her. Starboard a little—so—steady—starboard—larboard a
little—steady—steady!"
So he issued his commands, which I breathlessly obeyed, till, all of a
sudden, he cried, "Now, my hearty, luff!" And I put the helm hard up,
and the Hispaniola swung round rapidly and ran stem on for the low,
wooded shore.
The excitement of these last manoeuvres had somewhat interfered
with the watch I had kept hitherto, sharply enough, upon the coxswain.
Even then I was still so much interested, waiting for the ship to touch,
that I had quite forgot the peril that hung over my head and stood cran-
ing over the starboard bulwarks and watching the ripples spreading
wide before the bows. I might have fallen without a struggle for my life
had not a sudden disquietude seized upon me and made me turn my
head. Perhaps I had heard a creak or seen his shadow moving with the
tail of my eye; perhaps it was an instinct like a cat's; but, sure enough,
when I looked round, there was Hands, already half-way towards me,
with the dirk in his right hand.
We must both have cried out aloud when our eyes met, but while
mine was the shrill cry of terror, his was a roar of fury like a charging
131
bully's. At the same instant, he threw himself forward and I leapt side-
ways towards the bows. As I did so, I let go of the tiller, which sprang
sharp to leeward, and I think this saved my life, for it struck Hands
across the chest and stopped him, for the moment, dead.
Before he could recover, I was safe out of the corner where he had me
trapped, with all the deck to dodge about. Just forward of the main-mast
I stopped, drew a pistol from my pocket, took a cool aim, though he had
already turned and was once more coming directly after me, and drew
the trigger. The hammer fell, but there followed neither flash nor sound;
the priming was useless with sea-water. I cursed myself for my neglect.
Why had not I, long before, reprimed and reloaded my only weapons?
Then I should not have been as now, a mere fleeing sheep before this
butcher.
Wounded as he was, it was wonderful how fast he could move, his
grizzled hair tumbling over his face, and his face itself as red as a red en-
sign with his haste and fury. I had no time to try my other pistol, nor in-
deed much inclination, for I was sure it would be useless. One thing I
saw plainly: I must not simply retreat before him, or he would speedily
hold me boxed into the bows, as a moment since he had so nearly boxed
me in the stern. Once so caught, and nine or ten inches of the blood-
stained dirk would be my last experience on this side of eternity. I placed
my palms against the main-mast, which was of a goodish bigness, and
waited, every nerve upon the stretch.
Seeing that I meant to dodge, he also paused; and a moment or two
passed in feints on his part and corresponding movements upon mine. It
was such a game as I had often played at home about the rocks of Black
Hill Cove, but never before, you may be sure, with such a wildly beating
heart as now. Still, as I say, it was a boy's game, and I thought I could
hold my own at it against an elderly seaman with a wounded thigh.
Indeed my courage had begun to rise so high that I allowed myself a few
darting thoughts on what would be the end of the affair, and while I saw
certainly that I could spin it out for long, I saw no hope of any ultimate
escape.
Well, while things stood thus, suddenly the Hispaniola struck,
staggered, ground for an instant in the sand, and then, swift as a blow,
canted over to the port side till the deck stood at an angle of forty-five
degrees and about a puncheon of water splashed into the scupper holes
and lay, in a pool, between the deck and bulwark.
We were both of us capsized in a second, and both of us rolled, almost
together, into the scuppers, the dead red-cap, with his arms still spread
132
out, tumbling stiffly after us. So near were we, indeed, that my head
came against the coxswain's foot with a crack that made my teeth rattle.
Blow and all, I was the first afoot again, for Hands had got involved with
the dead body. The sudden canting of the ship had made the deck no
place for running on; I had to find some new way of escape, and that
upon the instant, for my foe was almost touching me. Quick as thought, I
sprang into the mizzen shrouds, rattled up hand over hand, and did not
draw a breath till I was seated on the cross-trees.
I had been saved by being prompt; the dirk had struck not half a foot
below me as I pursued my upward flight; and there stood Israel Hands
with his mouth open and his face upturned to mine, a perfect statue of
surprise and disappointment.
Now that I had a moment to myself, I lost no time in changing the
priming of my pistol, and then, having one ready for service, and to
make assurance doubly sure, I proceeded to draw the load of the other
and recharge it afresh from the beginning.
My new employment struck Hands all of a heap; he began to see the
dice going against him, and after an obvious hesitation, he also hauled
himself heavily into the shrouds, and with the dirk in his teeth, began
slowly and painfully to mount. It cost him no end of time and groans to
haul his wounded leg behind him, and I had quietly finished my ar-
rangements before he was much more than a third of the way up. Then,
with a pistol in either hand, I addressed him.
"One more step, Mr. Hands," said I, "and I'll blow your brains out!
Dead men don't bite, you know," I added with a chuckle.
He stopped instantly. I could see by the working of his face that he
was trying to think, and the process was so slow and laborious that, in
my new-found security, I laughed aloud. At last, with a swallow or two,
he spoke, his face still wearing the same expression of extreme perplex-
ity. In order to speak he had to take the dagger from his mouth, but in all
else he remained unmoved.
"Jim," says he, "I reckon we're fouled, you and me, and we'll have to
sign articles. I'd have had you but for that there lurch, but I don't have no
luck, not I; and I reckon I'll have to strike, which comes hard, you see, for
a master mariner to a ship's younker like you, Jim."
I was drinking in his words and smiling away, as conceited as a cock
upon a wall, when, all in a breath, back went his right hand over his
shoulder. Something sang like an arrow through the air; I felt a blow and
then a sharp pang, and there I was pinned by the shoulder to the mast. In
the horrid pain and surprise of the moment—I scarce can say it was by
133
my own volition, and I am sure it was without a conscious aim—both
my pistols went off, and both escaped out of my hands. They did not fall
alone; with a choked cry, the coxswain loosed his grasp upon the
shrouds and plunged head first into the water.
134
Chapter 6
"Pieces of Eight"
O
wing to the cant of the vessel, the masts hung far out over the wa-
ter, and from my perch on the cross-trees I had nothing below me
but the surface of the bay. Hands, who was not so far up, was in con-
sequence nearer to the ship and fell between me and the bulwarks. He
rose once to the surface in a lather of foam and blood and then sank
again for good. As the water settled, I could see him lying huddled to-
gether on the clean, bright sand in the shadow of the vessel's sides. A
fish or two whipped past his body. Sometimes, by the quivering of the
water, he appeared to move a little, as if he were trying to rise. But he
was dead enough, for all that, being both shot and drowned, and was
food for fish in the very place where he had designed my slaughter.
I was no sooner certain of this than I began to feel sick, faint, and terri-
fied. The hot blood was running over my back and chest. The dirk,
where it had pinned my shoulder to the mast, seemed to burn like a hot
iron; yet it was not so much these real sufferings that distressed me, for
these, it seemed to me, I could bear without a murmur; it was the horror
I had upon my mind of falling from the cross-trees into that still green
water, beside the body of the coxswain.
I clung with both hands till my nails ached, and I shut my eyes as if to
cover up the peril. Gradually my mind came back again, my pulses
quieted down to a more natural time, and I was once more in possession
of myself.
It was my first thought to pluck forth the dirk, but either it stuck too
hard or my nerve failed me, and I desisted with a violent shudder.
Oddly enough, that very shudder did the business. The knife, in fact,
had come the nearest in the world to missing me altogether; it held me
by a mere pinch of skin, and this the shudder tore away. The blood ran
down the faster, to be sure, but I was my own master again and only
tacked to the mast by my coat and shirt.
135
These last I broke through with a sudden jerk, and then regained the
deck by the starboard shrouds. For nothing in the world would I have
again ventured, shaken as I was, upon the overhanging port shrouds
from which Israel had so lately fallen.
I went below and did what I could for my wound; it pained me a good
deal and still bled freely, but it was neither deep nor dangerous, nor did
it greatly gall me when I used my arm. Then I looked around me, and as
the ship was now, in a sense, my own, I began to think of clearing it from
its last passenger—the dead man, O'Brien.
He had pitched, as I have said, against the bulwarks, where he lay like
some horrible, ungainly sort of puppet, life-size, indeed, but how differ-
ent from life's colour or life's comeliness! In that position I could easily
have my way with him, and as the habit of tragical adventures had worn
off almost all my terror for the dead, I took him by the waist as if he had
been a sack of bran and with one good heave, tumbled him overboard.
He went in with a sounding plunge; the red cap came off and remained
floating on the surface; and as soon as the splash subsided, I could see
him and Israel lying side by side, both wavering with the tremulous
movement of the water. O'Brien, though still quite a young man, was
very bald. There he lay, with that bald head across the knees of the man
who had killed him and the quick fishes steering to and fro over both.
I was now alone upon the ship; the tide had just turned. The sun was
within so few degrees of setting that already the shadow of the pines
upon the western shore began to reach right across the anchorage and
fall in patterns on the deck. The evening breeze had sprung up, and
though it was well warded off by the hill with the two peaks upon the
east, the cordage had begun to sing a little softly to itself and the idle
sails to rattle to and fro.
I began to see a danger to the ship. The jibs I speedily doused and
brought tumbling to the deck, but the main-sail was a harder matter. Of
course, when the schooner canted over, the boom had swung out-board,
and the cap of it and a foot or two of sail hung even under water. I
thought this made it still more dangerous; yet the strain was so heavy
that I half feared to meddle. At last I got my knife and cut the halyards.
The peak dropped instantly, a great belly of loose canvas floated broad
upon the water, and since, pull as I liked, I could not budge the down-
hall, that was the extent of what I could accomplish. For the rest, the His-
paniola must trust to luck, like myself.
By this time the whole anchorage had fallen into shadow—the last
rays, I remember, falling through a glade of the wood and shining bright
136
as jewels on the flowery mantle of the wreck. It began to be chill; the tide
was rapidly fleeting seaward, the schooner settling more and more on
her beam-ends.
I scrambled forward and looked over. It seemed shallow enough, and
holding the cut hawser in both hands for a last security, I let myself drop
softly overboard. The water scarcely reached my waist; the sand was
firm and covered with ripple marks, and I waded ashore in great spirits,
leaving the Hispaniola on her side, with her main-sail trailing wide upon
the surface of the bay. About the same time, the sun went fairly down
and the breeze whistled low in the dusk among the tossing pines.
At least, and at last, I was off the sea, nor had I returned thence empty-
handed. There lay the schooner, clear at last from buccaneers and ready
for our own men to board and get to sea again. I had nothing nearer my
fancy than to get home to the stockade and boast of my achievements.
Possibly I might be blamed a bit for my truantry, but the recapture of the
Hispaniola was a clenching answer, and I hoped that even Captain Smol-
lett would confess I had not lost my time.
So thinking, and in famous spirits, I began to set my face homeward
for the block house and my companions. I remembered that the most
easterly of the rivers which drain into Captain Kidd's anchorage ran
from the two-peaked hill upon my left, and I bent my course in that dir-
ection that I might pass the stream while it was small. The wood was
pretty open, and keeping along the lower spurs, I had soon turned the
corner of that hill, and not long after waded to the mid-calf across the
watercourse.
This brought me near to where I had encountered Ben Gunn, the ma-
roon; and I walked more circumspectly, keeping an eye on every side.
The dusk had come nigh hand completely, and as I opened out the cleft
between the two peaks, I became aware of a wavering glow against the
sky, where, as I judged, the man of the island was cooking his supper be-
fore a roaring fire. And yet I wondered, in my heart, that he should show
himself so careless. For if I could see this radiance, might it not reach the
eyes of Silver himself where he camped upon the shore among the
marshes?
Gradually the night fell blacker; it was all I could do to guide myself
even roughly towards my destination; the double hill behind me and the
Spy-glass on my right hand loomed faint and fainter; the stars were few
and pale; and in the low ground where I wandered I kept tripping
among bushes and rolling into sandy pits.
137
Suddenly a kind of brightness fell about me. I looked up; a pale glim-
mer of moonbeams had alighted on the summit of the Spy-glass, and
soon after I saw something broad and silvery moving low down behind
the trees, and knew the moon had risen.
With this to help me, I passed rapidly over what remained to me of my
journey, and sometimes walking, sometimes running, impatiently drew
near to the stockade. Yet, as I began to thread the grove that lies before it,
I was not so thoughtless but that I slacked my pace and went a trifle war-
ily. It would have been a poor end of my adventures to get shot down by
my own party in mistake.
The moon was climbing higher and higher, its light began to fall here
and there in masses through the more open districts of the wood, and
right in front of me a glow of a different colour appeared among the
trees. It was red and hot, and now and again it was a little darkened—as
it were, the embers of a bonfire smouldering.
For the life of me I could not think what it might be.
At last I came right down upon the borders of the clearing. The west-
ern end was already steeped in moon-shine; the rest, and the block house
itself, still lay in a black shadow chequered with long silvery streaks of
light. On the other side of the house an immense fire had burned itself
into clear embers and shed a steady, red reverberation, contrasted
strongly with the mellow paleness of the moon. There was not a soul
stirring nor a sound beside the noises of the breeze.
I stopped, with much wonder in my heart, and perhaps a little terror
also. It had not been our way to build great fires; we were, indeed, by the
captain's orders, somewhat niggardly of firewood, and I began to fear
that something had gone wrong while I was absent.
I stole round by the eastern end, keeping close in shadow, and at a
convenient place, where the darkness was thickest, crossed the palisade.
To make assurance surer, I got upon my hands and knees and
crawled, without a sound, towards the corner of the house. As I drew
nearer, my heart was suddenly and greatly lightened. It is not a pleasant
noise in itself, and I have often complained of it at other times, but just
then it was like music to hear my friends snoring together so loud and
peaceful in their sleep. The sea-cry of the watch, that beautiful "All's
well," never fell more reassuringly on my ear.
In the meantime, there was no doubt of one thing; they kept an infam-
ous bad watch. If it had been Silver and his lads that were now creeping
in on them, not a soul would have seen daybreak. That was what it was,
138
thought I, to have the captain wounded; and again I blamed myself
sharply for leaving them in that danger with so few to mount guard.
By this time I had got to the door and stood up. All was dark within,
so that I could distinguish nothing by the eye. As for sounds, there was
the steady drone of the snorers and a small occasional noise, a flickering
or pecking that I could in no way account for.
With my arms before me I walked steadily in. I should lie down in my
own place (I thought with a silent chuckle) and enjoy their faces when
they found me in the morning.
My foot struck something yielding—it was a sleeper's leg; and he
turned and groaned, but without awaking.
And then, all of a sudden, a shrill voice broke forth out of the
darkness:
"Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight! Pieces
of eight! and so forth, without pause or change, like the clacking of a tiny
mill.
Silver's green parrot, Captain Flint! It was she whom I had heard peck-
ing at a piece of bark; it was she, keeping better watch than any human
being, who thus announced my arrival with her wearisome refrain.
I had no time left me to recover. At the sharp, clipping tone of the par-
rot, the sleepers awoke and sprang up; and with a mighty oath, the voice
of Silver cried, "Who goes?"
I turned to run, struck violently against one person, recoiled, and ran
full into the arms of a second, who for his part closed upon and held me
tight.
"Bring a torch, Dick," said Silver when my capture was thus assured.
And one of the men left the log-house and presently returned with a
lighted brand.
139
Part 6
Captain Silver
140
Chapter 1
In the Enemy's Camp
T
he red glare of the torch, lighting up the interior of the block house,
showed me the worst of my apprehensions realized. The pirates
were in possession of the house and stores: there was the cask of cognac,
there were the pork and bread, as before, and what tenfold increased my
horror, not a sign of any prisoner. I could only judge that all had per-
ished, and my heart smote me sorely that I had not been there to perish
with them.
There were six of the buccaneers, all told; not another man was left
alive. Five of them were on their feet, flushed and swollen, suddenly
called out of the first sleep of drunkenness. The sixth had only risen
upon his elbow; he was deadly pale, and the blood-stained bandage
round his head told that he had recently been wounded, and still more
recently dressed. I remembered the man who had been shot and had run
back among the woods in the great attack, and doubted not that this was
he.
The parrot sat, preening her plumage, on Long John's shoulder. He
himself, I thought, looked somewhat paler and more stern than I was
used to. He still wore the fine broadcloth suit in which he had fulfilled
his mission, but it was bitterly the worse for wear, daubed with clay and
torn with the sharp briers of the wood.
"So," said he, "here's Jim Hawkins, shiver my timbers! Dropped in,
like, eh? Well, come, I take that friendly."
And thereupon he sat down across the brandy cask and began to fill a
pipe.
"Give me a loan of the link, Dick," said he; and then, when he had a
good light, "That'll do, lad," he added; "stick the glim in the wood heap;
and you, gentlemen, bring yourselves to! You needn't stand up for Mr.
Hawkins; he'll excuse you, you may lay to that. And so, Jim"—stopping
the tobacco—"here you were, and quite a pleasant surprise for poor old
141
John. I see you were smart when first I set my eyes on you, but this here
gets away from me clean, it do."
To all this, as may be well supposed, I made no answer. They had set
me with my back against the wall, and I stood there, looking Silver in the
face, pluckily enough, I hope, to all outward appearance, but with black
despair in my heart.
Silver took a whiff or two of his pipe with great composure and then
ran on again.
"Now, you see, Jim, so be as you are here," says he, "I'll give you a
piece of my mind. I've always liked you, I have, for a lad of spirit, and
the picter of my own self when I was young and handsome. I always
wanted you to jine and take your share, and die a gentleman, and now,
my cock, you've got to. Cap'n Smollett's a fine seaman, as I'll own up to
any day, but stiff on discipline. 'Dooty is dooty,' says he, and right he is.
Just you keep clear of the cap'n. The doctor himself is gone dead again
you—'ungrateful scamp' was what he said; and the short and the long of
the whole story is about here: you can't go back to your own lot, for they
won't have you; and without you start a third ship's company all by
yourself, which might be lonely, you'll have to jine with Cap'n Silver."
So far so good. My friends, then, were still alive, and though I partly
believed the truth of Silver's statement, that the cabin party were in-
censed at me for my desertion, I was more relieved than distressed by
what I heard.
"I don't say nothing as to your being in our hands," continued Silver,
"though there you are, and you may lay to it. I'm all for argyment; I nev-
er seen good come out o' threatening. If you like the service, well, you'll
jine; and if you don't, Jim, why, you're free to answer no—free and wel-
come, shipmate; and if fairer can be said by mortal seaman, shiver my
sides!"
"Am I to answer, then?" I asked with a very tremulous voice. Through
all this sneering talk, I was made to feel the threat of death that overhung
me, and my cheeks burned and my heart beat painfully in my breast.
"Lad," said Silver, "no one's a-pressing of you. Take your bearings.
None of us won't hurry you, mate; time goes so pleasant in your com-
pany, you see."
"Well," says I, growing a bit bolder, "if I'm to choose, I declare I have a
right to know what's what, and why you're here, and where my friends
are."
"Wot's wot?" repeated one of the buccaneers in a deep growl. "Ah, he'd
be a lucky one as knowed that!"
142
"You'll perhaps batten down your hatches till you're spoke to, my
friend," cried Silver truculently to this speaker. And then, in his first gra-
cious tones, he replied to me, "Yesterday morning, Mr. Hawkins," said
he, "in the dog-watch, down came Doctor Livesey with a flag of truce.
Says he, 'Cap'n Silver, you're sold out. Ship's gone.' Well, maybe we'd
been taking a glass, and a song to help it round. I won't say no. Least-
ways, none of us had looked out. We looked out, and by thunder, the old
ship was gone! I never seen a pack o' fools look fishier; and you may lay
to that, if I tells you that looked the fishiest. 'Well,' says the doctor, 'let's
bargain.' We bargained, him and I, and here we are: stores, brandy, block
house, the firewood you was thoughtful enough to cut, and in a manner
of speaking, the whole blessed boat, from cross-trees to kelson. As for
them, they've tramped; I don't know where's they are."
He drew again quietly at his pipe.
"And lest you should take it into that head of yours," he went on, "that
you was included in the treaty, here's the last word that was said: 'How
many are you,' says I, 'to leave?' 'Four,' says he; 'four, and one of us
wounded. As for that boy, I don't know where he is, confound him,' says
he, 'nor I don't much care. We're about sick of him.' These was his words.
"Is that all?" I asked.
"Well, it's all that you're to hear, my son," returned Silver.
"And now I am to choose?"
"And now you are to choose, and you may lay to that," said Silver.
"Well," said I, "I am not such a fool but I know pretty well what I have
to look for. Let the worst come to the worst, it's little I care. I've seen too
many die since I fell in with you. But there's a thing or two I have to tell
you," I said, and by this time I was quite excited; "and the first is this:
here you are, in a bad way—ship lost, treasure lost, men lost, your whole
business gone to wreck; and if you want to know who did it—it was I! I
was in the apple barrel the night we sighted land, and I heard you, John,
and you, Dick Johnson, and Hands, who is now at the bottom of the sea,
and told every word you said before the hour was out. And as for the
schooner, it was I who cut her cable, and it was I that killed the men you
had aboard of her, and it was I who brought her where you'll never see
her more, not one of you. The laugh's on my side; I've had the top of this
business from the first; I no more fear you than I fear a fly. Kill me, if you
please, or spare me. But one thing I'll say, and no more; if you spare me,
bygones are bygones, and when you fellows are in court for piracy, I'll
save you all I can. It is for you to choose. Kill another and do yourselves
no good, or spare me and keep a witness to save you from the gallows."
143
I stopped, for, I tell you, I was out of breath, and to my wonder, not a
man of them moved, but all sat staring at me like as many sheep. And
while they were still staring, I broke out again, "And now, Mr. Silver," I
said, "I believe you're the best man here, and if things go to the worst, I'll
take it kind of you to let the doctor know the way I took it."
"I'll bear it in mind," said Silver with an accent so curious that I could
not, for the life of me, decide whether he were laughing at my request or
had been favourably affected by my courage.
"I'll put one to that," cried the old mahogany-faced seaman—Morgan
by name—whom I had seen in Long John's public-house upon the quays
of Bristol. "It was him that knowed Black Dog."
"Well, and see here," added the sea-cook. "I'll put another again to that,
by thunder! For it was this same boy that faked the chart from Billy
Bones. First and last, we've split upon Jim Hawkins!"
"Then here goes!" said Morgan with an oath.
And he sprang up, drawing his knife as if he had been twenty.
"Avast, there!" cried Silver. "Who are you, Tom Morgan? Maybe you
thought you was cap'n here, perhaps. By the powers, but I'll teach you
better! Cross me, and you'll go where many a good man's gone before
you, first and last, these thirty year back—some to the yard-arm, shiver
my timbers, and some by the board, and all to feed the fishes. There's
never a man looked me between the eyes and seen a good day
a'terwards, Tom Morgan, you may lay to that."
Morgan paused, but a hoarse murmur rose from the others.
"Tom's right," said one.
"I stood hazing long enough from one," added another. "I'll be hanged
if I'll be hazed by you, John Silver."
"Did any of you gentlemen want to have it out with me?" roared Sil-
ver, bending far forward from his position on the keg, with his pipe still
glowing in his right hand. "Put a name on what you're at; you ain't
dumb, I reckon. Him that wants shall get it. Have I lived this many
years, and a son of a rum puncheon cock his hat athwart my hawse at
the latter end of it? You know the way; you're all gentlemen o' fortune,
by your account. Well, I'm ready. Take a cutlass, him that dares, and I'll
see the colour of his inside, crutch and all, before that pipe's empty."
Not a man stirred; not a man answered.
"That's your sort, is it?" he added, returning his pipe to his mouth.
"Well, you're a gay lot to look at, anyway. Not much worth to fight, you
ain't. P'r'aps you can understand King George's English. I'm cap'n here
by 'lection. I'm cap'n here because I'm the best man by a long sea-mile.
144
You won't fight, as gentlemen o' fortune should; then, by thunder, you'll
obey, and you may lay to it! I like that boy, now; I never seen a better
boy than that. He's more a man than any pair of rats of you in this here
house, and what I say is this: let me see him that'll lay a hand on
him—that's what I say, and you may lay to it."
There was a long pause after this. I stood straight up against the wall,
my heart still going like a sledge-hammer, but with a ray of hope now
shining in my bosom. Silver leant back against the wall, his arms
crossed, his pipe in the corner of his mouth, as calm as though he had
been in church; yet his eye kept wandering furtively, and he kept the tail
of it on his unruly followers. They, on their part, drew gradually togeth-
er towards the far end of the block house, and the low hiss of their whis-
pering sounded in my ear continuously, like a stream. One after another,
they would look up, and the red light of the torch would fall for a second
on their nervous faces; but it was not towards me, it was towards Silver
that they turned their eyes.
"You seem to have a lot to say," remarked Silver, spitting far into the
air. "Pipe up and let me hear it, or lay to."
"Ax your pardon, sir," returned one of the men; "you're pretty free
with some of the rules; maybe you'll kindly keep an eye upon the rest.
This crew's dissatisfied; this crew don't vally bullying a marlin-spike;
this crew has its rights like other crews, I'll make so free as that; and by
your own rules, I take it we can talk together. I ax your pardon, sir, ac-
knowledging you for to be captaing at this present; but I claim my right,
and steps outside for a council."
And with an elaborate sea-salute, this fellow, a long, ill-looking,
yellow-eyed man of five and thirty, stepped coolly towards the door and
disappeared out of the house. One after another the rest followed his ex-
ample, each making a salute as he passed, each adding some apology.
"According to rules," said one. "Forecastle council," said Morgan. And so
with one remark or another all marched out and left Silver and me alone
with the torch.
The sea-cook instantly removed his pipe.
"Now, look you here, Jim Hawkins," he said in a steady whisper that
was no more than audible, "you're within half a plank of death, and
what's a long sight worse, of torture. They're going to throw me off. But,
you mark, I stand by you through thick and thin. I didn't mean to; no,
not till you spoke up. I was about desperate to lose that much blunt, and
be hanged into the bargain. But I see you was the right sort. I says to my-
self, you stand by Hawkins, John, and Hawkins'll stand by you. You're
145
his last card, and by the living thunder, John, he's yours! Back to back,
says I. You save your witness, and he'll save your neck!"
I began dimly to understand.
"You mean all's lost?" I asked.
"Aye, by gum, I do!" he answered. "Ship gone, neck gone—that's the
size of it. Once I looked into that bay, Jim Hawkins, and seen no schoon-
er—well, I'm tough, but I gave out. As for that lot and their council, mark
me, they're outright fools and cowards. I'll save your life—if so be as I
can—from them. But, see here, Jim—tit for tat—you save Long John from
swinging."
I was bewildered; it seemed a thing so hopeless he was asking—he,
the old buccaneer, the ringleader throughout.
"What I can do, that I'll do," I said.
"It's a bargain!" cried Long John. "You speak up plucky, and by thun-
der, I've a chance!"
He hobbled to the torch, where it stood propped among the firewood,
and took a fresh light to his pipe.
"Understand me, Jim," he said, returning. "I've a head on my
shoulders, I have. I'm on squire's side now. I know you've got that ship
safe somewheres. How you done it, I don't know, but safe it is. I guess
Hands and O'Brien turned soft. I never much believed in neither of them.
Now you mark me. I ask no questions, nor I won't let others. I know
when a game's up, I do; and I know a lad that's staunch. Ah, you that's
young—you and me might have done a power of good together!"
He drew some cognac from the cask into a tin cannikin.
"Will you taste, messmate?" he asked; and when I had refused: "Well,
I'll take a drain myself, Jim," said he. "I need a caulker, for there's trouble
on hand. And talking o' trouble, why did that doctor give me the chart,
Jim?"
My face expressed a wonder so unaffected that he saw the needless-
ness of further questions.
"Ah, well, he did, though," said he. "And there's something under that,
no doubt—something, surely, under that, Jim—bad or good."
And he took another swallow of the brandy, shaking his great fair
head like a man who looks forward to the worst.
146
Chapter 2
The Black Spot Again
T
he council of buccaneers had lasted some time, when one of them
re-entered the house, and with a repetition of the same salute,
which had in my eyes an ironical air, begged for a moment's loan of the
torch. Silver briefly agreed, and this emissary retired again, leaving us
together in the dark.
"There's a breeze coming, Jim," said Silver, who had by this time adop-
ted quite a friendly and familiar tone.
I turned to the loophole nearest me and looked out. The embers of the
great fire had so far burned themselves out and now glowed so low and
duskily that I understood why these conspirators desired a torch. About
half-way down the slope to the stockade, they were collected in a group;
one held the light, another was on his knees in their midst, and I saw the
blade of an open knife shine in his hand with varying colours in the
moon and torchlight. The rest were all somewhat stooping, as though
watching the manoeuvres of this last. I could just make out that he had a
book as well as a knife in his hand, and was still wondering how any-
thing so incongruous had come in their possession when the kneeling
figure rose once more to his feet and the whole party began to move to-
gether towards the house.
"Here they come," said I; and I returned to my former position, for it
seemed beneath my dignity that they should find me watching them.
"Well, let 'em come, lad—let 'em come," said Silver cheerily. "I've still a
shot in my locker."
The door opened, and the five men, standing huddled together just in-
side, pushed one of their number forward. In any other circumstances it
would have been comical to see his slow advance, hesitating as he set
down each foot, but holding his closed right hand in front of him.
"Step up, lad," cried Silver. "I won't eat you. Hand it over, lubber. I
know the rules, I do; I won't hurt a depytation." Thus encouraged, the
buccaneer stepped forth more briskly, and having passed something to
147
Silver, from hand to hand, slipped yet more smartly back again to his
companions.
The sea-cook looked at what had been given him.
"The black spot! I thought so," he observed. "Where might you have
got the paper? Why, hillo! Look here, now; this ain't lucky! You've gone
and cut this out of a Bible. What fool's cut a Bible?"
"Ah, there!" said Morgan. "There! Wot did I say? No good'll come o'
that, I said."
"Well, you've about fixed it now, among you," continued Silver. "You'll
all swing now, I reckon. What soft-headed lubber had a Bible?"
"It was Dick," said one.
"Dick, was it? Then Dick can get to prayers," said Silver. "He's seen his
slice of luck, has Dick, and you may lay to that." But here the long man
with the yellow eyes struck in.
"Belay that talk, John Silver," he said. "This crew has tipped you the
black spot in full council, as in dooty bound; just you turn it over, as in
dooty bound, and see what's wrote there. Then you can talk."
"Thanky, George," replied the sea-cook. "You always was brisk for
business, and has the rules by heart, George, as I'm pleased to see. Well,
what is it, anyway? Ah! 'Deposed'—that's it, is it? Very pretty wrote, to
be sure; like print, I swear. Your hand o' write, George? Why, you was
gettin' quite a leadin' man in this here crew. You'll be cap'n next, I
shouldn't wonder. Just oblige me with that torch again, will you? This
pipe don't draw."
"Come, now," said George, "you don't fool this crew no more. You're a
funny man, by your account; but you're over now, and you'll maybe step
down off that barrel and help vote."
"I thought you said you knowed the rules," returned Silver contemptu-
ously. "Leastways, if you don't, I do; and I wait here—and I'm still your
cap'n, mind—till you outs with your grievances and I reply; in the mean-
time, your black spot ain't worth a biscuit. After that, we'll see."
"Oh," replied George, "you don't be under no kind of apprehension;
we're all square, we are. First, you've made a hash of this cruise—you'll
be a bold man to say no to that. Second, you let the enemy out o' this
here trap for nothing. Why did they want out? I dunno, but it's pretty
plain they wanted it. Third, you wouldn't let us go at them upon the
march. Oh, we see through you, John Silver; you want to play booty,
that's what's wrong with you. And then, fourth, there's this here boy."
"Is that all?" asked Silver quietly.
148
"Enough, too," retorted George. "We'll all swing and sun-dry for your
bungling."
"Well now, look here, I'll answer these four p'ints; one after another I'll
answer 'em. I made a hash o' this cruise, did I? Well now, you all know
what I wanted, and you all know if that had been done that we'd 'a been
aboard the Hispaniola this night as ever was, every man of us alive, and
fit, and full of good plum-duff, and the treasure in the hold of her, by
thunder! Well, who crossed me? Who forced my hand, as was the lawful
cap'n? Who tipped me the black spot the day we landed and began this
dance? Ah, it's a fine dance—I'm with you there—and looks mighty like
a hornpipe in a rope's end at Execution Dock by London town, it does.
But who done it? Why, it was Anderson, and Hands, and you, George
Merry! And you're the last above board of that same meddling crew; and
you have the Davy Jones's insolence to up and stand for cap'n over
me—you, that sank the lot of us! By the powers! But this tops the stiffest
yarn to nothing."
Silver paused, and I could see by the faces of George and his late com-
rades that these words had not been said in vain.
"That's for number one," cried the accused, wiping the sweat from his
brow, for he had been talking with a vehemence that shook the house.
"Why, I give you my word, I'm sick to speak to you. You've neither sense
nor memory, and I leave it to fancy where your mothers was that let you
come to sea. Sea! Gentlemen o' fortune! I reckon tailors is your trade."
"Go on, John," said Morgan. "Speak up to the others."
"Ah, the others!" returned John. "They're a nice lot, ain't they? You say
this cruise is bungled. Ah! By gum, if you could understand how bad it's
bungled, you would see! We're that near the gibbet that my neck's stiff
with thinking on it. You've seen 'em, maybe, hanged in chains, birds
about 'em, seamen p'inting 'em out as they go down with the tide. 'Who's
that?' says one. 'That! Why, that's John Silver. I knowed him well,' says
another. And you can hear the chains a-jangle as you go about and reach
for the other buoy. Now, that's about where we are, every mother's son
of us, thanks to him, and Hands, and Anderson, and other ruination
fools of you. And if you want to know about number four, and that boy,
why, shiver my timbers, isn't he a hostage? Are we a-going to waste a
hostage? No, not us; he might be our last chance, and I shouldn't won-
der. Kill that boy? Not me, mates! And number three? Ah, well, there's a
deal to say to number three. Maybe you don't count it nothing to have a
real college doctor to see you every day—you, John, with your head
broke—or you, George Merry, that had the ague shakes upon you not six
149
hours agone, and has your eyes the colour of lemon peel to this same
moment on the clock? And maybe, perhaps, you didn't know there was a
consort coming either? But there is, and not so long till then; and we'll
see who'll be glad to have a hostage when it comes to that. And as for
number two, and why I made a bargain—well, you came crawling on
your knees to me to make it—on your knees you came, you was that
downhearted—and you'd have starved too if I hadn't—but that's a trifle!
You look there—that's why!"
And he cast down upon the floor a paper that I instantly recog-
nized—none other than the chart on yellow paper, with the three red
crosses, that I had found in the oilcloth at the bottom of the captain's
chest. Why the doctor had given it to him was more than I could fancy.
But if it were inexplicable to me, the appearance of the chart was in-
credible to the surviving mutineers. They leaped upon it like cats upon a
mouse. It went from hand to hand, one tearing it from another; and by
the oaths and the cries and the childish laughter with which they accom-
panied their examination, you would have thought, not only they were
fingering the very gold, but were at sea with it, besides, in safety.
"Yes," said one, "that's Flint, sure enough. J. F., and a score below, with
a clove hitch to it; so he done ever."
"Mighty pretty," said George. "But how are we to get away with it, and
us no ship."
Silver suddenly sprang up, and supporting himself with a hand
against the wall: "Now I give you warning, George," he cried. "One more
word of your sauce, and I'll call you down and fight you. How? Why,
how do I know? You had ought to tell me that—you and the rest, that
lost me my schooner, with your interference, burn you! But not you, you
can't; you hain't got the invention of a cockroach. But civil you can speak,
and shall, George Merry, you may lay to that."
"That's fair enow," said the old man Morgan.
"Fair! I reckon so," said the sea-cook. "You lost the ship; I found the
treasure. Who's the better man at that? And now I resign, by thunder!
Elect whom you please to be your cap'n now; I'm done with it."
"Silver!" they cried. "Barbecue forever! Barbecue for cap'n!"
"So that's the toon, is it?" cried the cook. "George, I reckon you'll have
to wait another turn, friend; and lucky for you as I'm not a revengeful
man. But that was never my way. And now, shipmates, this black spot?
'Tain't much good now, is it? Dick's crossed his luck and spoiled his
Bible, and that's about all."
150
"It'll do to kiss the book on still, won't it?" growled Dick, who was
evidently uneasy at the curse he had brought upon himself.
"A Bible with a bit cut out!" returned Silver derisively. "Not it. It don't
bind no more'n a ballad-book."
"Don't it, though?" cried Dick with a sort of joy. "Well, I reckon that's
worth having too."
"Here, Jim—here's a cur'osity for you," said Silver, and he tossed me
the paper.
It was around about the size of a crown piece. One side was blank, for
it had been the last leaf; the other contained a verse or two of Revela-
tion—these words among the rest, which struck sharply home upon my
mind: "Without are dogs and murderers." The printed side had been
blackened with wood ash, which already began to come off and soil my
fingers; on the blank side had been written with the same material the
one word "Depposed." I have that curiosity beside me at this moment,
but not a trace of writing now remains beyond a single scratch, such as a
man might make with his thumb-nail.
That was the end of the night's business. Soon after, with a drink all
round, we lay down to sleep, and the outside of Silver's vengeance was
to put George Merry up for sentinel and threaten him with death if he
should prove unfaithful.
It was long ere I could close an eye, and heaven knows I had matter
enough for thought in the man whom I had slain that afternoon, in my
own most perilous position, and above all, in the remarkable game that I
saw Silver now engaged upon—keeping the mutineers together with one
hand and grasping with the other after every means, possible and im-
possible, to make his peace and save his miserable life. He himself slept
peacefully and snored aloud, yet my heart was sore for him, wicked as
he was, to think on the dark perils that environed and the shameful gib-
bet that awaited him.
151
Chapter 3
On Parole
I
was wakened—indeed, we were all wakened, for I could see even the
sentinel shake himself together from where he had fallen against the
door-post—by a clear, hearty voice hailing us from the margin of the
wood:
"Block house, ahoy!" it cried. "Here's the doctor."
And the doctor it was. Although I was glad to hear the sound, yet my
gladness was not without admixture. I remembered with confusion my
insubordinate and stealthy conduct, and when I saw where it had
brought me—among what companions and surrounded by what
dangers—I felt ashamed to look him in the face.
He must have risen in the dark, for the day had hardly come; and
when I ran to a loophole and looked out, I saw him standing, like Silver
once before, up to the mid-leg in creeping vapour.
"You, doctor! Top o' the morning to you, sir!" cried Silver, broad awake
and beaming with good nature in a moment. "Bright and early, to be
sure; and it's the early bird, as the saying goes, that gets the rations. Ge-
orge, shake up your timbers, son, and help Dr. Livesey over the ship's
side. All a-doin' well, your patients was—all well and merry."
So he pattered on, standing on the hilltop with his crutch under his el-
bow and one hand upon the side of the log-house—quite the old John in
voice, manner, and expression.
"We've quite a surprise for you too, sir," he continued. "We've a little
stranger here—he! he! A noo boarder and lodger, sir, and looking fit and
taut as a fiddle; slep' like a supercargo, he did, right alongside of
John—stem to stem we was, all night."
Dr. Livesey was by this time across the stockade and pretty near the
cook, and I could hear the alteration in his voice as he said, "Not Jim?"
"The very same Jim as ever was," says Silver.
The doctor stopped outright, although he did not speak, and it was
some seconds before he seemed able to move on.
152
"Well, well," he said at last, "duty first and pleasure afterwards, as you
might have said yourself, Silver. Let us overhaul these patients of yours."
A moment afterwards he had entered the block house and with one
grim nod to me proceeded with his work among the sick. He seemed un-
der no apprehension, though he must have known that his life, among
these treacherous demons, depended on a hair; and he rattled on to his
patients as if he were paying an ordinary professional visit in a quiet
English family. His manner, I suppose, reacted on the men, for they be-
haved to him as if nothing had occurred, as if he were still ship's doctor
and they still faithful hands before the mast.
"You're doing well, my friend," he said to the fellow with the band-
aged head, "and if ever any person had a close shave, it was you; your
head must be as hard as iron. Well, George, how goes it? You're a pretty
colour, certainly; why, your liver, man, is upside down. Did you take
that medicine? Did he take that medicine, men?"
"Aye, aye, sir, he took it, sure enough," returned Morgan.
"Because, you see, since I am mutineers' doctor, or prison doctor as I
prefer to call it," says Doctor Livesey in his pleasantest way, "I make it a
point of honour not to lose a man for King George (God bless him!) and
the gallows."
The rogues looked at each other but swallowed the home-thrust in
silence.
"Dick don't feel well, sir," said one.
"Don't he?" replied the doctor. "Well, step up here, Dick, and let me see
your tongue. No, I should be surprised if he did! The man's tongue is fit
to frighten the French. Another fever."
"Ah, there," said Morgan, "that comed of sp'iling Bibles."
"That comes—as you call it—of being arrant asses," retorted the doc-
tor, "and not having sense enough to know honest air from poison, and
the dry land from a vile, pestiferous slough. I think it most prob-
able—though of course it's only an opinion—that you'll all have the
deuce to pay before you get that malaria out of your systems. Camp in a
bog, would you? Silver, I'm surprised at you. You're less of a fool than
many, take you all round; but you don't appear to me to have the rudi-
ments of a notion of the rules of health.
"Well," he added after he had dosed them round and they had taken
his prescriptions, with really laughable humility, more like charity
schoolchildren than blood-guilty mutineers and pirates—"well, that's
done for today. And now I should wish to have a talk with that boy,
please."
153
And he nodded his head in my direction carelessly.
George Merry was at the door, spitting and spluttering over some bad-
tasted medicine; but at the first word of the doctor's proposal he swung
round with a deep flush and cried "No!" and swore.
Silver struck the barrel with his open hand.
"Si-lence!" he roared and looked about him positively like a lion.
"Doctor," he went on in his usual tones, "I was a-thinking of that, know-
ing as how you had a fancy for the boy. We're all humbly grateful for
your kindness, and as you see, puts faith in you and takes the drugs
down like that much grog. And I take it I've found a way as'll suit all.
Hawkins, will you give me your word of honour as a young gentle-
man—for a young gentleman you are, although poor born—your word
of honour not to slip your cable?"
I readily gave the pledge required.
"Then, doctor," said Silver, "you just step outside o' that stockade, and
once you're there I'll bring the boy down on the inside, and I reckon you
can yarn through the spars. Good day to you, sir, and all our dooties to
the squire and Cap'n Smollett."
The explosion of disapproval, which nothing but Silver's black looks
had restrained, broke out immediately the doctor had left the house. Sil-
ver was roundly accused of playing double—of trying to make a separ-
ate peace for himself, of sacrificing the interests of his accomplices and
victims, and, in one word, of the identical, exact thing that he was doing.
It seemed to me so obvious, in this case, that I could not imagine how he
was to turn their anger. But he was twice the man the rest were, and his
last night's victory had given him a huge preponderance on their minds.
He called them all the fools and dolts you can imagine, said it was neces-
sary I should talk to the doctor, fluttered the chart in their faces, asked
them if they could afford to break the treaty the very day they were
bound a-treasure-hunting.
"No, by thunder!" he cried. "It's us must break the treaty when the time
comes; and till then I'll gammon that doctor, if I have to ile his boots with
brandy."
And then he bade them get the fire lit, and stalked out upon his crutch,
with his hand on my shoulder, leaving them in a disarray, and silenced
by his volubility rather than convinced.
"Slow, lad, slow," he said. "They might round upon us in a twinkle of
an eye if we was seen to hurry."
154
Very deliberately, then, did we advance across the sand to where the
doctor awaited us on the other side of the stockade, and as soon as we
were within easy speaking distance Silver stopped.
"You'll make a note of this here also, doctor," says he, "and the boy'll
tell you how I saved his life, and were deposed for it too, and you may
lay to that. Doctor, when a man's steering as near the wind as
me—playing chuck-farthing with the last breath in his body, like—you
wouldn't think it too much, mayhap, to give him one good word? You'll
please bear in mind it's not my life only now—it's that boy's into the bar-
gain; and you'll speak me fair, doctor, and give me a bit o' hope to go on,
for the sake of mercy."
Silver was a changed man once he was out there and had his back to
his friends and the block house; his cheeks seemed to have fallen in, his
voice trembled; never was a soul more dead in earnest.
"Why, John, you're not afraid?" asked Dr. Livesey.
"Doctor, I'm no coward; no, not I—not so much!" and he snapped his
fingers. "If I was I wouldn't say it. But I'll own up fairly, I've the shakes
upon me for the gallows. You're a good man and a true; I never seen a
better man! And you'll not forget what I done good, not any more than
you'll forget the bad, I know. And I step aside—see here—and leave you
and Jim alone. And you'll put that down for me too, for it's a long
stretch, is that!"
So saying, he stepped back a little way, till he was out of earshot, and
there sat down upon a tree-stump and began to whistle, spinning round
now and again upon his seat so as to command a sight, sometimes of me
and the doctor and sometimes of his unruly ruffians as they went to and
fro in the sand between the fire—which they were busy rekindling—and
the house, from which they brought forth pork and bread to make the
breakfast.
"So, Jim," said the doctor sadly, "here you are. As you have brewed, so
shall you drink, my boy. Heaven knows, I cannot find it in my heart to
blame you, but this much I will say, be it kind or unkind: when Captain
Smollett was well, you dared not have gone off; and when he was ill and
couldn't help it, by George, it was downright cowardly!"
I will own that I here began to weep. "Doctor," I said, "you might spare
me. I have blamed myself enough; my life's forfeit anyway, and I should
have been dead by now if Silver hadn't stood for me; and doctor, believe
this, I can die—and I dare say I deserve it—but what I fear is torture. If
they come to torture me—"
155
"Jim," the doctor interrupted, and his voice was quite changed, "Jim, I
can't have this. Whip over, and we'll run for it."
"Doctor," said I, "I passed my word."
"I know, I know," he cried. "We can't help that, Jim, now. I'll take it on
my shoulders, holus bolus, blame and shame, my boy; but stay here, I
cannot let you. Jump! One jump, and you're out, and we'll run for it like
antelopes."
"No," I replied; "you know right well you wouldn't do the thing your-
self—neither you nor squire nor captain; and no more will I. Silver trus-
ted me; I passed my word, and back I go. But, doctor, you did not let me
finish. If they come to torture me, I might let slip a word of where the
ship is, for I got the ship, part by luck and part by risking, and she lies in
North Inlet, on the southern beach, and just below high water. At half
tide she must be high and dry."
"The ship!" exclaimed the doctor.
Rapidly I described to him my adventures, and he heard me out in
silence.
"There is a kind of fate in this," he observed when I had done. "Every
step, it's you that saves our lives; and do you suppose by any chance that
we are going to let you lose yours? That would be a poor return, my boy.
You found out the plot; you found Ben Gunn—the best deed that ever
you did, or will do, though you live to ninety. Oh, by Jupiter, and talking
of Ben Gunn! Why, this is the mischief in person. Silver!" he cried.
"Silver! I'll give you a piece of advice," he continued as the cook drew
near again; "don't you be in any great hurry after that treasure."
"Why, sir, I do my possible, which that ain't," said Silver. "I can only,
asking your pardon, save my life and the boy's by seeking for that treas-
ure; and you may lay to that."
"Well, Silver," replied the doctor, "if that is so, I'll go one step further:
look out for squalls when you find it."
"Sir," said Silver, "as between man and man, that's too much and too
little. What you're after, why you left the block house, why you given me
that there chart, I don't know, now, do I? And yet I done your bidding
with my eyes shut and never a word of hope! But no, this here's too
much. If you won't tell me what you mean plain out, just say so and I'll
leave the helm."
"No," said the doctor musingly; "I've no right to say more; it's not my
secret, you see, Silver, or, I give you my word, I'd tell it you. But I'll go as
far with you as I dare go, and a step beyond, for I'll have my wig sorted
by the captain or I'm mistaken! And first, I'll give you a bit of hope;
156
Silver, if we both get alive out of this wolf-trap, I'll do my best to save
you, short of perjury."
Silver's face was radiant. "You couldn't say more, I'm sure, sir, not if
you was my mother," he cried.
"Well, that's my first concession," added the doctor. "My second is a
piece of advice: keep the boy close beside you, and when you need help,
halloo. I'm off to seek it for you, and that itself will show you if I speak at
random. Good-bye, Jim."
And Dr. Livesey shook hand s with me through the stockade, nodded
to Silver, and set off at a brisk pace into the wood.
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Chapter 4
The Treasure Hunt--Flint's Pointer
"J
im," said Silver when we were alone, "if I saved your life, you
saved mine; and I'll not forget it. I seen the doctor waving you to
run for it—with the tail of my eye, I did; and I seen you say no, as plain
as hearing. Jim, that's one to you. This is the first glint of hope I had since
the attack failed, and I owe it you. And now, Jim, we're to go in for this
here treasure-hunting, with sealed orders too, and I don't like it; and you
and me must stick close, back to back like, and we'll save our necks in
spite o' fate and fortune."
Just then a man hailed us from the fire that breakfast was ready, and
we were soon seated here and there about the sand over biscuit and fried
junk. They had lit a fire fit to roast an ox, and it was now grown so hot
that they could only approach it from the windward, and even there not
without precaution. In the same wasteful spirit, they had cooked, I sup-
pose, three times more than we could eat; and one of them, with an
empty laugh, threw what was left into the fire, which blazed and roared
again over this unusual fuel. I never in my life saw men so careless of the
morrow; hand to mouth is the only word that can describe their way of
doing; and what with wasted food and sleeping sentries, though they
were bold enough for a brush and be done with it, I could see their entire
unfitness for anything like a prolonged campaign.
Even Silver, eating away, with Captain Flint upon his shoulder, had
not a word of blame for their recklessness. And this the more surprised
me, for I thought he had never shown himself so cunning as he did then.
"Aye, mates," said he, "it's lucky you have Barbecue to think for you
with this here head. I got what I wanted, I did. Sure enough, they have
the ship. Where they have it, I don't know yet; but once we hit the treas-
ure, we'll have to jump about and find out. And then, mates, us that has
the boats, I reckon, has the upper hand."
158
Thus he kept running on, with his mouth full of the hot bacon; thus he
restored their hope and confidence, and, I more than suspect, repaired
his own at the same time.
"As for hostage," he continued, "that's his last talk, I guess, with them
he loves so dear. I've got my piece o' news, and thanky to him for that;
but it's over and done. I'll take him in a line when we go treasure-hunt-
ing, for we'll keep him like so much gold, in case of accidents, you mark,
and in the meantime. Once we got the ship and treasure both and off to
sea like jolly companions, why then we'll talk Mr. Hawkins over, we
will, and we'll give him his share, to be sure, for all his kindness."
It was no wonder the men were in a good humour now. For my part, I
was horribly cast down. Should the scheme he had now sketched prove
feasible, Silver, already doubly a traitor, would not hesitate to adopt it.
He had still a foot in either camp, and there was no doubt he would
prefer wealth and freedom with the pirates to a bare escape from
hanging, which was the best he had to hope on our side.
Nay, and even if things so fell out that he was forced to keep his faith
with Dr. Livesey, even then what danger lay before us! What a moment
that would be when the suspicions of his followers turned to certainty
and he and I should have to fight for dear life—he a cripple and I a
boy—against five strong and active seamen!
Add to this double apprehension the mystery that still hung over the
behaviour of my friends, their unexplained desertion of the stockade,
their inexplicable cession of the chart, or harder still to understand, the
doctor's last warning to Silver, "Look out for squalls when you find it,"
and you will readily believe how little taste I found in my breakfast and
with how uneasy a heart I set forth behind my captors on the quest for
treasure.
We made a curious figure, had anyone been there to see us—all in
soiled sailor clothes and all but me armed to the teeth. Silver had two
guns slung about him—one before and one behind—besides the great
cutlass at his waist and a pistol in each pocket of his square-tailed coat.
To complete his strange appearance, Captain Flint sat perched upon his
shoulder and gabbling odds and ends of purposeless sea-talk. I had a
line about my waist and followed obediently after the sea-cook, who
held the loose end of the rope, now in his free hand, now between his
powerful teeth. For all the world, I was led like a dancing bear.
The other men were variously burthened, some carrying picks and
shovels—for that had been the very first necessary they brought ashore
from the Hispaniola—others laden with pork, bread, and brandy for the
159
midday meal. All the stores, I observed, came from our stock, and I
could see the truth of Silver's words the night before. Had he not struck a
bargain with the doctor, he and his mutineers, deserted by the ship, must
have been driven to subsist on clear water and the proceeds of their
hunting. Water would have been little to their taste; a sailor is not usu-
ally a good shot; and besides all that, when they were so short of eat-
ables, it was not likely they would be very flush of powder.
Well, thus equipped, we all set out—even the fellow with the broken
head, who should certainly have kept in shadow—and straggled, one
after another, to the beach, where the two gigs awaited us. Even these
bore trace of the drunken folly of the pirates, one in a broken thwart, and
both in their muddy and unbailed condition. Both were to be carried
along with us for the sake of safety; and so, with our numbers divided
between them, we set forth upon the bosom of the anchorage.
As we pulled over, there was some discussion on the chart. The red
cross was, of course, far too large to be a guide; and the terms of the note
on the back, as you will hear, admitted of some ambiguity. They ran, the
reader may remember, thus:
Tall tree, Spy-glass shoulder, bearing a point to
the N. of N.N.E.
Skeleton Island E.S.E. and by E.
Ten feet.
A tall tree was thus the principal mark. Now, right before us the an-
chorage was bounded by a plateau from two to three hundred feet high,
adjoining on the north the sloping southern shoulder of the Spy-glass
and rising again towards the south into the rough, cliffy eminence called
the Mizzen-mast Hill. The top of the plateau was dotted thickly with
pine-trees of varying height. Every here and there, one of a different spe-
cies rose forty or fifty feet clear above its neighbours, and which of these
was the particular "tall tree" of Captain Flint could only be decided on
the spot, and by the readings of the compass.
Yet, although that was the case, every man on board the boats had
picked a favourite of his own ere we were half-way over, Long John
alone shrugging his shoulders and bidding them wait till they were
there.
We pulled easily, by Silver's directions, not to weary the hands prema-
turely, and after quite a long passage, landed at the mouth of the second
river—that which runs down a woody cleft of the Spy-glass. Thence,
bending to our left, we began to ascend the slope towards the plateau.
160
At the first outset, heavy, miry ground and a matted, marish vegeta-
tion greatly delayed our progress; but by little and little the hill began to
steepen and become stony under foot, and the wood to change its char-
acter and to grow in a more open order. It was, indeed, a most pleasant
portion of the island that we were now approaching. A heavy-scented
broom and many flowering shrubs had almost taken the place of grass.
Thickets of green nutmeg-trees were dotted here and there with the red
columns and the broad shadow of the pines; and the first mingled their
spice with the aroma of the others. The air, besides, was fresh and stir-
ring, and this, under the sheer sunbeams, was a wonderful refreshment
to our senses.
The party spread itself abroad, in a fan shape, shouting and leaping to
and fro. About the centre, and a good way behind the rest, Silver and I
followed—I tethered by my rope, he ploughing, with deep pants, among
the sliding gravel. From time to time, indeed, I had to lend him a hand,
or he must have missed his footing and fallen backward down the hill.
We had thus proceeded for about half a mile and were approaching
the brow of the plateau when the man upon the farthest left began to cry
aloud, as if in terror. Shout after shout came from him, and the others
began to run in his direction.
"He can't 'a found the treasure," said old Morgan, hurrying past us
from the right, "for that's clean a-top."
Indeed, as we found when we also reached the spot, it was something
very different. At the foot of a pretty big pine and involved in a green
creeper, which had even partly lifted some of the smaller bones, a hu-
man skeleton lay, with a few shreds of clothing, on the ground. I believe
a chill struck for a moment to every heart.
"He was a seaman," said George Merry, who, bolder than the rest, had
gone up close and was examining the rags of clothing. "Leastways, this is
good sea-cloth."
"Aye, aye," said Silver; "like enough; you wouldn't look to find a bish-
op here, I reckon. But what sort of a way is that for bones to lie? 'Tain't in
natur'."
Indeed, on a second glance, it seemed impossible to fancy that the
body was in a natural position. But for some disarray (the work, per-
haps, of the birds that had fed upon him or of the slow-growing creeper
that had gradually enveloped his remains) the man lay perfectly
straight—his feet pointing in one direction, his hands, raised above his
head like a diver's, pointing directly in the opposite.
161
"I've taken a notion into my old numbskull," observed Silver. "Here's
the compass; there's the tip-top p'int o' Skeleton Island, stickin' out like a
tooth. Just take a bearing, will you, along the line of them bones."
It was done. The body pointed straight in the direction of the island,
and the compass read duly E.S.E. and by E.
"I thought so," cried the cook; "this here is a p'inter. Right up there is
our line for the Pole Star and the jolly dollars. But, by thunder! If it don't
make me cold inside to think of Flint. This is one of his jokes, and no mis-
take. Him and these six was alone here; he killed 'em, every man; and
this one he hauled here and laid down by compass, shiver my timbers!
They're long bones, and the hair's been yellow. Aye, that would be Al-
lardyce. You mind Allardyce, Tom Morgan?"
"Aye, aye," returned Morgan; "I mind him; he owed me money, he did,
and took my knife ashore with him."
"Speaking of knives," said another, "why don't we find his'n lying
round? Flint warn't the man to pick a seaman's pocket; and the birds, I
guess, would leave it be."
"By the powers, and that's true!" cried Silver.
"There ain't a thing left here," said Merry, still feeling round among the
bones; "not a copper doit nor a baccy box. It don't look nat'ral to me."
"No, by gum, it don't," agreed Silver; "not nat'ral, nor not nice, says
you. Great guns! Messmates, but if Flint was living, this would be a hot
spot for you and me. Six they were, and six are we; and bones is what
they are now."
"I saw him dead with these here deadlights," said Morgan. "Billy took
me in. There he laid, with penny-pieces on his eyes."
"Dead—aye, sure enough he's dead and gone below," said the fellow
with the bandage; "but if ever sperrit walked, it would be Flint's. Dear
heart, but he died bad, did Flint!"
"Aye, that he did," observed another; "now he raged, and now he
hollered for the rum, and now he sang. 'Fifteen Men' were his only song,
mates; and I tell you true, I never rightly liked to hear it since. It was
main hot, and the windy was open, and I hear that old song comin' out
as clear as clear—and the death-haul on the man already."
"Come, come," said Silver; "stow this talk. He's dead, and he don't
walk, that I know; leastways, he won't walk by day, and you may lay to
that. Care killed a cat. Fetch ahead for the doubloons."
We started, certainly; but in spite of the hot sun and the staring day-
light, the pirates no longer ran separate and shouting through the wood,
162
but kept side by side and spoke with bated breath. The terror of the dead
buccaneer had fallen on their spirits.
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Chapter 5
The Treasure Hunt--The Voice Among the Trees
P
artly from the damping influence of this alarm, partly to rest Silver
and the sick folk, the whole party sat down as soon as they had
gained the brow of the ascent.
The plateau being somewhat tilted towards the west, this spot on
which we had paused commanded a wide prospect on either hand. Be-
fore us, over the tree-tops, we beheld the Cape of the Woods fringed
with surf; behind, we not only looked down upon the anchorage and
Skeleton Island, but saw—clear across the spit and the eastern low-
lands—a great field of open sea upon the east. Sheer above us rose the
Spy-glass, here dotted with single pines, there black with precipices.
There was no sound but that of the distant breakers, mounting from all
round, and the chirp of countless insects in the brush. Not a man, not a
sail, upon the sea; the very largeness of the view increased the sense of
solitude.
Silver, as he sat, took certain bearings with his compass.
"There are three 'tall trees'" said he, "about in the right line from Skelet-
on Island. 'Spy-glass shoulder,' I take it, means that lower p'int there. It's
child's play to find the stuff now. I've half a mind to dine first."
"I don't feel sharp," growled Morgan. "Thinkin' o' Flint—I think it
were—as done me."
"Ah, well, my son, you praise your stars he's dead," said Silver.
"He were an ugly devil," cried a third pirate with a shudder; "that blue
in the face too!"
"That was how the rum took him," added Merry. "Blue! Well, I reckon
he was blue. That's a true word."
Ever since they had found the skeleton and got upon this train of
thought, they had spoken lower and lower, and they had almost got to
whispering by now, so that the sound of their talk hardly interrupted the
silence of the wood. All of a sudden, out of the middle of the trees in
164
front of us, a thin, high, trembling voice struck up the well-known air
and words:
"Fifteen men on the dead man's chest—
Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!"
I never have seen men more dreadfully affected than the pirates. The
colour went from their six faces like enchantment; some leaped to their
feet, some clawed hold of others; Morgan grovelled on the ground.
"It's Flint, by——!" cried Merry.
The song had stopped as suddenly as it began—broken off, you would
have said, in the middle of a note, as though someone had laid his hand
upon the singer's mouth. Coming through the clear, sunny atmosphere
among the green tree-tops, I thought it had sounded airily and sweetly;
and the effect on my companions was the stranger.
"Come," said Silver, struggling with his ashen lips to get the word out;
"this won't do. Stand by to go about. This is a rum start, and I can't name
the voice, but it's someone skylarking—someone that's flesh and blood,
and you may lay to that."
His courage had come back as he spoke, and some of the colour to his
face along with it. Already the others had begun to lend an ear to this en-
couragement and were coming a little to themselves, when the same
voice broke out again—not this time singing, but in a faint distant hail
that echoed yet fainter among the clefts of the Spy-glass.
"Darby M'Graw," it wailed—for that is the word that best describes the
sound—"Darby M'Graw! Darby M'Graw!" again and again and again;
and then rising a little higher, and with an oath that I leave out: "Fetch aft
the rum, Darby!"
The buccaneers remained rooted to the ground, their eyes starting
from their heads. Long after the voice had died away they still stared in
silence, dreadfully, before them.
"That fixes it!" gasped one. "Let's go."
"They was his last words," moaned Morgan, "his last words above
board."
Dick had his Bible out and was praying volubly. He had been well
brought up, had Dick, before he came to sea and fell among bad
companions.
Still Silver was unconquered. I could hear his teeth rattle in his head,
but he had not yet surrendered.
"Nobody in this here island ever heard of Darby," he muttered; "not
one but us that's here." And then, making a great effort: "Shipmates," he
cried, "I'm here to get that stuff, and I'll not be beat by man or devil. I
165
never was feared of Flint in his life, and, by the powers, I'll face him
dead. There's seven hundred thousand pound not a quarter of a mile
from here. When did ever a gentleman o' fortune show his stern to that
much dollars for a boozy old seaman with a blue mug—and him dead
too?"
But there was no sign of reawakening courage in his followers, rather,
indeed, of growing terror at the irreverence of his words.
"Belay there, John!" said Merry. "Don't you cross a sperrit."
And the rest were all too terrified to reply. They would have run away
severally had they dared; but fear kept them together, and kept them
close by John, as if his daring helped them. He, on his part, had pretty
well fought his weakness down.
"Sperrit? Well, maybe," he said. "But there's one thing not clear to me.
There was an echo. Now, no man ever seen a sperrit with a shadow; well
then, what's he doing with an echo to him, I should like to know? That
ain't in natur', surely?"
This argument seemed weak enough to me. But you can never tell
what will affect the superstitious, and to my wonder, George Merry was
greatly relieved.
"Well, that's so," he said. "You've a head upon your shoulders, John,
and no mistake. 'Bout ship, mates! This here crew is on a wrong tack, I
do believe. And come to think on it, it was like Flint's voice, I grant you,
but not just so clear-away like it, after all. It was liker somebody else's
voice now—it was liker—"
"By the powers, Ben Gunn!" roared Silver.
"Aye, and so it were," cried Morgan, springing on his knees. "Ben
Gunn it were!"
"It don't make much odds, do it, now?" asked Dick. "Ben Gunn's not
here in the body any more'n Flint."
But the older hands greeted this remark with scorn.
"Why, nobody minds Ben Gunn," cried Merry; "dead or alive, nobody
minds him."
It was extraordinary how their spirits had returned and how the natur-
al colour had revived in their faces. Soon they were chatting together,
with intervals of listening; and not long after, hearing no further sound,
they shouldered the tools and set forth again, Merry walking first with
Silver's compass to keep them on the right line with Skeleton Island. He
had said the truth: dead or alive, nobody minded Ben Gunn.
166
Dick alone still held his Bible, and looked around him as he went, with
fearful glances; but he found no sympathy, and Silver even joked him on
his precautions.
"I told you," said he—"I told you you had sp'iled your Bible. If it ain't
no good to swear by, what do you suppose a sperrit would give for it?
Not that!" and he snapped his big fingers, halting a moment on his
crutch.
But Dick was not to be comforted; indeed, it was soon plain to me that
the lad was falling sick; hastened by heat, exhaustion, and the shock of
his alarm, the fever, predicted by Dr. Livesey, was evidently growing
swiftly higher.
It was fine open walking here, upon the summit; our way lay a little
downhill, for, as I have said, the plateau tilted towards the west. The
pines, great and small, grew wide apart; and even between the clumps of
nutmeg and azalea, wide open spaces baked in the hot sunshine. Strik-
ing, as we did, pretty near north-west across the island, we drew, on the
one hand, ever nearer under the shoulders of the Spy-glass, and on the
other, looked ever wider over that western bay where I had once tossed
and trembled in the oracle.
The first of the tall trees was reached, and by the bearings proved the
wrong one. So with the second. The third rose nearly two hundred feet
into the air above a clump of underwood—a giant of a vegetable, with a
red column as big as a cottage, and a wide shadow around in which a
company could have manoeuvred. It was conspicuous far to sea both on
the east and west and might have been entered as a sailing mark upon
the chart.
But it was not its size that now impressed my companions; it was the
knowledge that seven hundred thousand pounds in gold lay somewhere
buried below its spreading shadow. The thought of the money, as they
drew nearer, swallowed up their previous terrors. Their eyes burned in
their heads; their feet grew speedier and lighter; their whole soul was
found up in that fortune, that whole lifetime of extravagance and pleas-
ure, that lay waiting there for each of them.
Silver hobbled, grunting, on his crutch; his nostrils stood out and
quivered; he cursed like a madman when the flies settled on his hot and
shiny countenance; he plucked furiously at the line that held me to him
and from time to time turned his eyes upon me with a deadly look. Cer-
tainly he took no pains to hide his thoughts, and certainly I read them
like print. In the immediate nearness of the gold, all else had been forgot-
ten: his promise and the doctor's warning were both things of the past,
167
and I could not doubt that he hoped to seize upon the treasure, find and
board the Hispaniola under cover of night, cut every honest throat about
that island, and sail away as he had at first intended, laden with crimes
and riches.
Shaken as I was with these alarms, it was hard for me to keep up with
the rapid pace of the treasure-hunters. Now and again I stumbled, and it
was then that Silver plucked so roughly at the rope and launched at me
his murderous glances. Dick, who had dropped behind us and now
brought up the rear, was babbling to himself both prayers and curses as
his fever kept rising. This also added to my wretchedness, and to crown
all, I was haunted by the thought of the tragedy that had once been acted
on that plateau, when that ungodly buccaneer with the blue face—he
who died at Savannah, singing and shouting for drink—had there, with
his own hand, cut down his six accomplices. This grove that was now so
peaceful must then have rung with cries, I thought; and even with the
thought I could believe I heard it ringing still.
We were now at the margin of the thicket.
"Huzza, mates, all together!" shouted Merry; and the foremost broke
into a run.
And suddenly, not ten yards further, we beheld them stop. A low cry
arose. Silver doubled his pace, digging away with the foot of his crutch
like one possessed; and next moment he and I had come also to a dead
halt.
Before us was a great excavation, not very recent, for the sides had
fallen in and grass had sprouted on the bottom. In this were the shaft of a
pick broken in two and the boards of several packing-cases strewn
around. On one of these boards I saw, branded with a hot iron, the name
Walrus—the name of Flint's ship.
All was clear to probation. The cache had been found and rifled; the
seven hundred thousand pounds were gone!
168
Chapter 6
The Fall of a Chieftain
T
here never was such an overturn in this world. Each of these six
men was as though he had been struck. But with Silver the blow
passed almost instantly. Every thought of his soul had been set full-
stretch, like a racer, on that money; well, he was brought up, in a single
second, dead; and he kept his head, found his temper, and changed his
plan before the others had had time to realize the disappointment.
"Jim," he whispered, "take that, and stand by for trouble."
And he passed me a double-barrelled pistol.
At the same time, he began quietly moving northward, and in a few
steps had put the hollow between us two and the other five. Then he
looked at me and nodded, as much as to say, "Here is a narrow corner,"
as, indeed, I thought it was. His looks were not quite friendly, and I was
so revolted at these constant changes that I could not forbear whispering,
"So you've changed sides again."
There was no time left for him to answer in. The buccaneers, with
oaths and cries, began to leap, one after another, into the pit and to dig
with their fingers, throwing the boards aside as they did so. Morgan
found a piece of gold. He held it up with a perfect spout of oaths. It was
a two-guinea piece, and it went from hand to hand among them for a
quarter of a minute.
"Two guineas!" roared Merry, shaking it at Silver. "That's your seven
hundred thousand pounds, is it? You're the man for bargains, ain't you?
You're him that never bungled nothing, you wooden-headed lubber!"
"Dig away, boys," said Silver with the coolest insolence; "you'll find
some pig-nuts and I shouldn't wonder."
"Pig-nuts!" repeated Merry, in a scream. "Mates, do you hear that? I tell
you now, that man there knew it all along. Look in the face of him and
you'll see it wrote there."
"Ah, Merry," remarked Silver, "standing for cap'n again? You're a
pushing lad, to be sure."
169
But this time everyone was entirely in Merry's favour. They began to
scramble out of the excavation, darting furious glances behind them.
One thing I observed, which looked well for us: they all got out upon the
opposite side from Silver.
Well, there we stood, two on one side, five on the other, the pit
between us, and nobody screwed up high enough to offer the first blow.
Silver never moved; he watched them, very upright on his crutch, and
looked as cool as ever I saw him. He was brave, and no mistake.
At last Merry seemed to think a speech might help matters.
"Mates," says he, "there's two of them alone there; one's the old cripple
that brought us all here and blundered us down to this; the other's that
cub that I mean to have the heart of. Now, mates—"
He was raising his arm and his voice, and plainly meant to lead a
charge. But just then—crack! crack! crack!—three musket-shots flashed
out of the thicket. Merry tumbled head foremost into the excavation; the
man with the bandage spun round like a teetotum and fell all his length
upon his side, where he lay dead, but still twitching; and the other three
turned and ran for it with all their might.
Before you could wink, Long John had fired two barrels of a pistol into
the struggling Merry, and as the man rolled up his eyes at him in the last
agony, "George," said he, "I reckon I settled you."
At the same moment, the doctor, Gray, and Ben Gunn joined us, with
smoking muskets, from among the nutmeg-trees.
"Forward!" cried the doctor. "Double quick, my lads. We must head
'em off the boats."
And we set off at a great pace, sometimes plunging through the
bushes to the chest.
I tell you, but Silver was anxious to keep up with us. The work that
man went through, leaping on his crutch till the muscles of his chest
were fit to burst, was work no sound man ever equalled; and so thinks
the doctor. As it was, he was already thirty yards behind us and on the
verge of strangling when we reached the brow of the slope.
"Doctor," he hailed, "see there! No hurry!"
Sure enough there was no hurry. In a more open part of the plateau,
we could see the three survivors still running in the same direction as
they had started, right for Mizzen-mast Hill. We were already between
them and the boats; and so we four sat down to breathe, while Long
John, mopping his face, came slowly up with us.
170
"Thank ye kindly, doctor," says he. "You came in in about the nick, I
guess, for me and Hawkins. And so it's you, Ben Gunn!" he added. "Well,
you're a nice one, to be sure."
"I'm Ben Gunn, I am," replied the maroon, wriggling like an eel in his
embarrassment. "And," he added, after a long pause, "how do, Mr. Sil-
ver? Pretty well, I thank ye, says you."
"Ben, Ben," murmured Silver, "to think as you've done me!"
The doctor sent back Gray for one of the pick-axes deserted, in their
flight, by the mutineers, and then as we proceeded leisurely downhill to
where the boats were lying, related in a few words what had taken place.
It was a story that profoundly interested Silver; and Ben Gunn, the half-
idiot maroon, was the hero from beginning to end.
Ben, in his long, lonely wanderings about the island, had found the
skeleton—it was he that had rifled it; he had found the treasure; he had
dug it up (it was the haft of his pick-axe that lay broken in the excava-
tion); he had carried it on his back, in many weary journeys, from the
foot of the tall pine to a cave he had on the two-pointed hill at the north-
east angle of the island, and there it had lain stored in safety since two
months before the arrival of the Hispaniola.
When the doctor had wormed this secret from him on the afternoon of
the attack, and when next morning he saw the anchorage deserted, he
had gone to Silver, given him the chart, which was now useless—given
him the stores, for Ben Gunn's cave was well supplied with goats' meat
salted by himself—given anything and everything to get a chance of
moving in safety from the stockade to the two-pointed hill, there to be
clear of malaria and keep a guard upon the money.
"As for you, Jim," he said, "it went against my heart, but I did what I
thought best for those who had stood by their duty; and if you were not
one of these, whose fault was it?"
That morning, finding that I was to be involved in the horrid disap-
pointment he had prepared for the mutineers, he had run all the way to
the cave, and leaving the squire to guard the captain, had taken Gray
and the maroon and started, making the diagonal across the island to be
at hand beside the pine. Soon, however, he saw that our party had the
start of him; and Ben Gunn, being fleet of foot, had been dispatched in
front to do his best alone. Then it had occurred to him to work upon the
superstitions of his former shipmates, and he was so far successful that
Gray and the doctor had come up and were already ambushed before
the arrival of the treasure-hunters.
171
"Ah," said Silver, "it were fortunate for me that I had Hawkins here.
You would have let old John be cut to bits, and never given it a thought,
doctor."
"Not a thought," replied Dr. Livesey cheerily.
And by this time we had reached the gigs. The doctor, with the pick-
axe, demolished one of them, and then we all got aboard the other and
set out to go round by sea for North Inlet.
This was a run of eight or nine miles. Silver, though he was almost
killed already with fatigue, was set to an oar, like the rest of us, and we
were soon skimming swiftly over a smooth sea. Soon we passed out of
the straits and doubled the south-east corner of the island, round which,
four days ago, we had towed the Hispaniola.
As we passed the two-pointed hill, we could see the black mouth of
Ben Gunn's cave and a figure standing by it, leaning on a musket. It was
the squire, and we waved a handkerchief and gave him three cheers, in
which the voice of Silver joined as heartily as any.
Three miles farther, just inside the mouth of North Inlet, what should
we meet but the Hispaniola, cruising by herself? The last flood had lifted
her, and had there been much wind or a strong tide current, as in the
southern anchorage, we should never have found her more, or found her
stranded beyond help. As it was, there was little amiss beyond the wreck
of the main-sail. Another anchor was got ready and dropped in a fathom
and a half of water. We all pulled round again to Rum Cove, the nearest
point for Ben Gunn's treasure-house; and then Gray, single-handed, re-
turned with the gig to the Hispaniola, where he was to pass the night on
guard.
A gentle slope ran up from the beach to the entrance of the cave. At
the top, the squire met us. To me he was cordial and kind, saying noth-
ing of my escapade either in the way of blame or praise. At Silver's polite
salute he somewhat flushed.
"John Silver," he said, "you're a prodigious villain and imposter—a
monstrous imposter, sir. I am told I am not to prosecute you. Well, then,
I will not. But the dead men, sir, hang about your neck like mill-stones."
"Thank you kindly, sir," replied Long John, again saluting.
"I dare you to thank me!" cried the squire. "It is a gross dereliction of
my duty. Stand back."
And thereupon we all entered the cave. It was a large, airy place, with
a little spring and a pool of clear water, overhung with ferns. The floor
was sand. Before a big fire lay Captain Smollett; and in a far corner, only
duskily flickered over by the blaze, I beheld great heaps of coin and
172
quadrilaterals built of bars of gold. That was Flint's treasure that we had
come so far to seek and that had cost already the lives of seventeen men
from the Hispaniola. How many it had cost in the amassing, what blood
and sorrow, what good ships scuttled on the deep, what brave men
walking the plank blindfold, what shot of cannon, what shame and lies
and cruelty, perhaps no man alive could tell. Yet there were still three
upon that island—Silver, and old Morgan, and Ben Gunn—who had
each taken his share in these crimes, as each had hoped in vain to share
in the reward.
"Come in, Jim," said the captain. "You're a good boy in your line, Jim,
but I don't think you and me'll go to sea again. You're too much of the
born favourite for me. Is that you, John Silver? What brings you here,
man?"
"Come back to my dooty, sir," returned Silver.
"Ah!" said the captain, and that was all he said.
What a supper I had of it that night, with all my friends around me;
and what a meal it was, with Ben Gunn's salted goat and some delicacies
and a bottle of old wine from the Hispaniola. Never, I am sure, were
people gayer or happier. And there was Silver, sitting back almost out of
the firelight, but eating heartily, prompt to spring forward when any-
thing was wanted, even joining quietly in our laughter—the same bland,
polite, obsequious seaman of the voyage out.
173
Chapter 7
And Last
T
he next morning we fell early to work, for the transportation of this
great mass of gold near a mile by land to the beach, and thence
three miles by boat to the Hispaniola, was a considerable task for so
small a number of workmen. The three fellows still abroad upon the is-
land did not greatly trouble us; a single sentry on the shoulder of the hill
was sufficient to ensure us against any sudden onslaught, and we
thought, besides, they had had more than enough of fighting.
Therefore the work was pushed on briskly. Gray and Ben Gunn came
and went with the boat, while the rest during their absences piled treas-
ure on the beach. Two of the bars, slung in a rope's end, made a good
load for a grown man—one that he was glad to walk slowly with. For
my part, as I was not much use at carrying, I was kept busy all day in the
cave packing the minted money into bread-bags.
It was a strange collection, like Billy Bones's hoard for the diversity of
coinage, but so much larger and so much more varied that I think I never
had more pleasure than in sorting them. English, French, Spanish, Por-
tuguese, Georges, and Louises, doubloons and double guineas and
moidores and sequins, the pictures of all the kings of Europe for the last
hundred years, strange Oriental pieces stamped with what looked like
wisps of string or bits of spider's web, round pieces and square pieces,
and pieces bored through the middle, as if to wear them round your
neck—nearly every variety of money in the world must, I think, have
found a place in that collection; and for number, I am sure they were like
autumn leaves, so that my back ached with stooping and my fingers
with sorting them out.
Day after day this work went on; by every evening a fortune had been
stowed aboard, but there was another fortune waiting for the morrow;
and all this time we heard nothing of the three surviving mutineers.
At last—I think it was on the third night—the doctor and I were
strolling on the shoulder of the hill where it overlooks the lowlands of
174
the isle, when, from out the thick darkness below, the wind brought us a
noise between shrieking and singing. It was only a snatch that reached
our ears, followed by the former silence.
"Heaven forgive them," said the doctor; "'tis the mutineers!"
"All drunk, sir," struck in the voice of Silver from behind us.
Silver, I should say, was allowed his entire liberty, and in spite of daily
rebuffs, seemed to regard himself once more as quite a privileged and
friendly dependent. Indeed, it was remarkable how well he bore these
slights and with what unwearying politeness he kept on trying to ingra-
tiate himself with all. Yet, I think, none treated him better than a dog, un-
less it was Ben Gunn, who was still terribly afraid of his old quartermas-
ter, or myself, who had really something to thank him for; although for
that matter, I suppose, I had reason to think even worse of him than any-
body else, for I had seen him meditating a fresh treachery upon the plat-
eau. Accordingly, it was pretty gruffly that the doctor answered him.
"Drunk or raving," said he.
"Right you were, sir," replied Silver; "and precious little odds which, to
you and me."
"I suppose you would hardly ask me to call you a humane man," re-
turned the doctor with a sneer, "and so my feelings may surprise you,
Master Silver. But if I were sure they were raving—as I am morally cer-
tain one, at least, of them is down with fever—I should leave this camp,
and at whatever risk to my own carcass, take them the assistance of my
skill."
"Ask your pardon, sir, you would be very wrong," quoth Silver. "You
would lose your precious life, and you may lay to that. I'm on your side
now, hand and glove; and I shouldn't wish for to see the party
weakened, let alone yourself, seeing as I know what I owes you. But
these men down there, they couldn't keep their word—no, not suppos-
ing they wished to; and what's more, they couldn't believe as you could."
"No," said the doctor. "You're the man to keep your word, we know
that."
Well, that was about the last news we had of the three pirates. Only
once we heard a gunshot a great way off and supposed them to be hunt-
ing. A council was held, and it was decided that we must desert them on
the island—to the huge glee, I must say, of Ben Gunn, and with the
strong approval of Gray. We left a good stock of powder and shot, the
bulk of the salt goat, a few medicines, and some other necessaries, tools,
clothing, a spare sail, a fathom or two of rope, and by the particular de-
sire of the doctor, a handsome present of tobacco.
175
That was about our last doing on the island. Before that, we had got
the treasure stowed and had shipped enough water and the remainder of
the goat meat in case of any distress; and at last, one fine morning, we
weighed anchor, which was about all that we could manage, and stood
out of North Inlet, the same colours flying that the captain had flown
and fought under at the palisade.
The three fellows must have been watching us closer than we thought
for, as we soon had proved. For coming through the narrows, we had to
lie very near the southern point, and there we saw all three of them
kneeling together on a spit of sand, with their arms raised in supplica-
tion. It went to all our hearts, I think, to leave them in that wretched
state; but we could not risk another mutiny; and to take them home for
the gibbet would have been a cruel sort of kindness. The doctor hailed
them and told them of the stores we had left, and where they were to
find them. But they continued to call us by name and appeal to us, for
God's sake, to be merciful and not leave them to die in such a place.
At last, seeing the ship still bore on her course and was now swiftly
drawing out of earshot, one of them—I know not which it was—leapt to
his feet with a hoarse cry, whipped his musket to his shoulder, and sent
a shot whistling over Silver's head and through the main-sail.
After that, we kept under cover of the bulwarks, and when next I
looked out they had disappeared from the spit, and the spit itself had al-
most melted out of sight in the growing distance. That was, at least, the
end of that; and before noon, to my inexpressible joy, the highest rock of
Treasure Island had sunk into the blue round of sea.
We were so short of men that everyone on board had to bear a
hand—only the captain lying on a mattress in the stern and giving his or-
ders, for though greatly recovered he was still in want of quiet. We laid
her head for the nearest port in Spanish America, for we could not risk
the voyage home without fresh hands; and as it was, what with baffling
winds and a couple of fresh gales, we were all worn out before we
reached it.
It was just at sundown when we cast anchor in a most beautiful land-
locked gulf, and were immediately surrounded by shore boats full of
Negroes and Mexican Indians and half-bloods selling fruits and veget-
ables and offering to dive for bits of money. The sight of so many good-
humoured faces (especially the blacks), the taste of the tropical fruits,
and above all the lights that began to shine in the town made a most
charming contrast to our dark and bloody sojourn on the island; and the
doctor and the squire, taking me along with them, went ashore to pass
176
the early part of the night. Here they met the captain of an English man-
of-war, fell in talk with him, went on board his ship, and, in short, had so
agreeable a time that day was breaking when we came alongside the
Hispaniola.
Ben Gunn was on deck alone, and as soon as we came on board he
began, with wonderful contortions, to make us a confession. Silver was
gone. The maroon had connived at his escape in a shore boat some hours
ago, and he now assured us he had only done so to preserve our lives,
which would certainly have been forfeit if "that man with the one leg had
stayed aboard." But this was not all. The sea-cook had not gone empty-
handed. He had cut through a bulkhead unobserved and had removed
one of the sacks of coin, worth perhaps three or four hundred guineas, to
help him on his further wanderings.
I think we were all pleased to be so cheaply quit of him.
Well, to make a long story short, we got a few hands on board, made a
good cruise home, and the Hispaniola reached Bristol just as Mr. Blandly
was beginning to think of fitting out her consort. Five men only of those
who had sailed returned with her. "Drink and the devil had done for the
rest," with a vengeance, although, to be sure, we were not quite in so bad
a case as that other ship they sang about:
With one man of her crew alive,
What put to sea with seventy-five.
All of us had an ample share of the treasure and used it wisely or fool-
ishly, according to our natures. Captain Smollett is now retired from the
sea. Gray not only saved his money, but being suddenly smit with the
desire to rise, also studied his profession, and he is now mate and part
owner of a fine full-rigged ship, married besides, and the father of a fam-
ily. As for Ben Gunn, he got a thousand pounds, which he spent or lost
in three weeks, or to be more exact, in nineteen days, for he was back
begging on the twentieth. Then he was given a lodge to keep, exactly as
he had feared upon the island; and he still lives, a great favourite, though
something of a butt, with the country boys, and a notable singer in
church on Sundays and saints' days.
Of Silver we have heard no more. That formidable seafaring man with
one leg has at last gone clean out of my life; but I dare say he met his old
Negress, and perhaps still lives in comfort with her and Captain Flint. It
is to be hoped so, I suppose, for his chances of comfort in another world
are very small.
The bar silver and the arms still lie, for all that I know, where Flint
buried them; and certainly they shall lie there for me. Oxen and wain-
177
ropes would not bring me back again to that accursed island; and the
worst dreams that ever I have are when I hear the surf booming about its
coasts or start upright in bed with the sharp voice of Captain Flint still
ringing in my ears: "Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight!"
178
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Part 1 The Old Buccaneer

3

like a connoisseur. then. broken nails. Livesey. and go back to the time when my father kept the Admiral Benbow inn and the brown old seaman with the sabre cut first took up his lodging under our roof. and when my father appeared. Here you. mate?" My father told him no. I remember him looking round the cover and whistling to himself as he did so. "and a pleasant sittyated grog-shop. the more was the pity. from the beginning to the end. "Well. livid white." says he at length. nut-brown man. a dirty. very little company. he drank slowly. Dr. his hands ragged and scarred. keeping nothing back but the bearings of the island. and the sabre cut across one cheek. "I'm a plain man." he continued. Much company. called roughly for a glass of rum." he cried to the man who trundled the barrow. and that head up there for to watch ships 4 . lingering on the taste and still looking about him at the cliffs and up at our signboard. rum and bacon and eggs is what I want. I remember him as if it were yesterday. "bring up alongside and help up my chest. and then breaking out in that old sea-song that he sang so often afterwards: "Fifteen men on the dead man's chest— Yo-ho-ho. his sea-chest following behind him in a hand-barrow—a tall.Chapter 1 The Old Sea-dog at the Admiral Benbow S quire Trelawney." said he. and that only because there is still treasure not yet lifted. and a bottle of rum!" in the high. heavy. matey. Then he rapped on the door with a bit of stick like a handspike that he carried. his tarry pigtail falling over the shoulder of his soiled blue coat. as he came plodding to the inn door. with black. when it was brought to him. "this is the berth for me. I take up my pen in the year of grace 17—. "This is a handy cove. old tottering voice that seemed to have been tuned and broken at the capstan bars. This. and the rest of these gentlemen having asked me to write down the whole particulars about Treasure Island. I'll stay here a bit. strong.

Often enough when the first of the month came round and I applied to him for my wage. And indeed bad as his clothes were and coarsely as he spoke. I need scarcely tell you. at least. Mostly he would not speak when spoken to. and we and the people who came about our house soon learned to let him be. What you mought call me? You mought call me captain. for I was. At first we thought it was the want of company of his own kind that made him ask this question. and repeat his orders to look out for "the seafaring man with one leg. and described as lonely." says he. On stormy nights. And that was all we could learn of our guest. in a way. All day he hung round the cove or upon the cliffs with a brass telescope." How that personage haunted my dreams. but at last we began to see he was desirous to avoid them. The man who came with the barrow told us the mail had set him down the morning before at the Royal George. I would see him in a thousand forms. When a seaman did put up at the Admiral Benbow (as now and then some did. He had taken me aside one day and promised me a silver fourpenny on the first of every month if I would only keep my "weather-eye open for a seafaring man with one leg" and let him know the moment he appeared. I see what you're at—there". and with a thousand diabolical expressions. had chosen it from the others for his place of residence. making by the coast road for Bristol) he would look in at him through the curtained door before he entered the parlour. Now the leg would be cut off at the knee. Oh. He was a very silent man by custom. that he had inquired what inns there were along the coast.off. he had none of the appearance of a man who sailed before the mast. looking as fierce as a commander. I suppose. and he threw down three or four gold pieces on the threshold. only look up sudden and fierce and blow through his nose like a fog-horn. all evening he sat in a corner of the parlour next the fire and drank rum and water very strong. now he was a monstrous 5 . "You can tell me when I've worked through that. Every day when he came back from his stroll he would ask if any seafaring men had gone by along the road. but before the week was out he was sure to think better of it. and he was always sure to be as silent as a mouse when any such was present. now at the hip. there was no secret about the matter. For me. when the wind shook the four corners of the house and the surf roared along the cove and up the cliffs. and hearing ours well spoken of. a sharer in his alarms. but seemed like a mate or skipper accustomed to be obeyed or to strike. he would only blow through his nose at me and stare me down. bring me my four-penny piece.

Dreadful stories they were—about hanging. and so he judged the company was not following his story. calling him a "true sea-dog" and a "real old salt" and such like names. but sometimes he would call for glasses round and force all the trembling company to listen to his stories or bear a chorus to his singing. it was a fine excitement in a quiet country life. the captain blew through his nose so loudly that you might say he roared. His stories were what frightened people worst of all. and the Dry Tortugas. with the fear of death upon them. and a bottle of rum. and saying there was the sort of man that made England terrible at sea. and sent shivering to their beds. but I really believe his presence did us good. But though I was so terrified by the idea of the seafaring man with one leg. indeed." all the neighbours joining in for dear life. and there was even a party of the younger men who pretended to admire him. or sometimes because none was put. but on looking back they rather liked it. wild sea-songs. Often I have heard the house shaking with "Yo-ho-ho. I was far less afraid of the captain himself than anybody else who knew him. old. For in these fits he was the most overriding companion ever known. My father was always saying the inn would be ruined. and walking the plank. and then he would sometimes sit and sing his wicked. By his own account he must have lived his life among some of the wickedest men that God ever allowed upon the sea. People were frightened at the time. in the shape of these abominable fancies. and each singing louder than the other to avoid remark. There were nights when he took a deal more rum and water than his head would carry. And altogether I paid pretty dear for my monthly fourpenny piece. and stared my 6 .kind of a creature who had never had but the one leg. and storms at sea. and that in the middle of his body. and still my father never plucked up the heart to insist on having more. so that all the money had been long exhausted. he would fly up in a passion of anger at a question. and the language in which he told these stories shocked our plain country people almost as much as the crimes that he described. and wild deeds and places on the Spanish Main. If ever he mentioned it. for he kept on staying week after week. minding nobody. he bade fair to ruin us. To see him leap and run and pursue me over hedge and ditch was the worst of nightmares. In one way. Nor would he allow anyone to leave the inn till he had drunk himself sleepy and reeled off to bed. for people would soon cease coming there to be tyrannized over and put down. and at last month after month. he would slap his hand on the table for silence all round.

I have seen him wringing his hands after such a rebuff. it was new. the gardener. In the meantime. The voices stopped at once. to nobody but Dr. The great sea-chest none of us had ever seen open. Livesey's. Dr. that night. He never wrote or received a letter. But by this time we had all long ceased to pay any particular notice to the song. bright doctor. with his arms on the table. and a bottle of rum!" At first I had supposed "the dead man's chest" to be that identical big box of his upstairs in the front room. sitting. and I am sure the annoyance and the terror he lived in must have greatly hastened his early and unhappy death. and which. for we had no stabling at the old Benbow. He was only once crossed. only when drunk on rum. and a bottle of rum! Drink and the devil had done for the rest— Yo-ho-ho. made with the coltish country folk. for the most part. bleared scarecrow of a pirate of ours. for he looked up for a moment quite angrily before he went on with his talk to old Taylor. Suddenly he—the captain. and above all. far gone in rum. I remember the appearance of his coat. and he never spoke with any but the neighbours. One of the cocks of his hat having fallen down. I followed him in. black eyes and pleasant manners. and went into the parlour to smoke a pipe until his horse should come down from the hamlet. and the thought had been mingled in my nightmares with that of the one-legged seafaring man. and I remember observing the contrast the neat. which he patched himself upstairs in his room. with that filthy. on a new cure for the rheumatics. and at last flapped his hand upon the table before him in a way we all knew to mean silence. and with these. the captain gradually brightened up at his own music. when my poor father was far gone in a decline that took him off. that is—began to pipe up his eternal song: "Fifteen men on the dead man's chest— Yo-ho-ho. though it was a great annoyance when it blew. heavy. he let it hang from that day forth. All the time he lived with us the captain made no change whatever in his dress but to buy some stockings from a hawker. and on him I observed it did not produce an agreeable effect. Livesey came late one afternoon to see the patient. he went on as before speaking 7 .poor father out of the room. Livesey. with his powder as white as snow and his bright. before the end. took a bit of dinner from my mother. all but Dr. was nothing but patches. and that was towards the end.

"Silence. and at last broke out with a villainous. The captain glared at him for a while. with another oath. Let that suffice. but the captain soon knuckled under. and if I catch a breath of complaint against you. "that if you keep on drinking rum. there." replies the doctor. He sprang to his feet. grumbling like a beaten dog. but perfectly calm and steady: "If you do not put that knife this instant in your pocket. "And now.clear and kind and drawing briskly at his pipe between every word or two. sir. threatened to pin the doctor to the wall. He spoke to him as before. and when the ruffian had told him. The doctor never so much as moved. upon my honour. between decks!" "Were you addressing me. flapped his hand again. and resumed his seat. and for many evenings to come. put up his weapon. drew and opened a sailor's clasp-knife. I'm a magistrate. low oath." Then followed a battle of looks between them." continued the doctor. the world will soon be quit of a very dirty scoundrel!" The old fellow's fury was awful. "since I now know there's such a fellow in my district." Soon after. and balancing it open on the palm of his hand. rather high. I'll take effectual means to have you hunted down and routed out of this. but the captain held his peace that evening. so that all the room might hear. 8 . that this was so. you may count I'll have an eye upon you day and night. over his shoulder and in the same tone of voice. "I have only one thing to say to you. glared still harder. if it's only for a piece of incivility like tonight's. I'm not a doctor only. I promise. sir. you shall hang at the next assizes. sir?" says the doctor. Dr. Livesey's horse came to the door and he rode away.

and he said he would take rum. tallowy creature. I asked him what was for his service. his hat tilted back upon his head. he did not look much like a fighter. the ripple lapping softly on the stones. and my mother and I had all the inn upon our hands. his brass telescope under his arm. with long. and though he wore a cutlass. hard frosts and heavy gales. with one leg or two. but as I was going out of the room to fetch it. 9 . "Is this here table for my mate Bill?" he asked with a kind of leer. as though his mind was still running upon Dr. mother was upstairs with father and I was laying the breakfasttable against the captain's return when the parlour door opened and a man stepped in on whom I had never set my eyes before. and I remember this one puzzled me. frosty morning—the cove all grey with hoar-frost.Chapter 2 Black Dog Appears and Disappears I t was not very long after this that there occurred the first of the mysterious events that rid us at last of the captain. He sank daily. I paused where I was. and it was plain from the first that my poor father was little likely to see the spring. "Come nearer here. It was a bitter cold winter. very early—a pinching. "Come here. It was one January morning. wanting two fingers of the left hand. he sat down upon a table and motioned me to draw near." says he. I remember his breath hanging like smoke in his wake as he strode off. The captain had risen earlier than usual and set out down the beach. sonny." I took a step nearer. and the last sound I heard of him as he turned the big rock was a loud snort of indignation. He was a pale. though not. and yet he had a smack of the sea about him too. of his affairs. the sun still low and only touching the hilltops and shining far to seaward. as you will see. and were kept busy enough without paying much regard to our unpleasant guest. Well. He was not sailorly. his cutlass swinging under the broad skirts of the old blue coat. I had always my eye open for seafaring men. with my napkin in my hand. Livesey.

But the great thing for boys is discipline. even supposing he meant what he said. Once I stepped out myself into the road. Ah. "Well. and it rather added to my fears to observe that the stranger was certainly frightened himself.I told him I did not know his mate Bill." said he. You and me'll just go back into the parlour. "Ah. and he's all the pride of my 'art. and this was for a person who stayed in our house whom we called the captain. and besides. well! I told you. sonny. We'll put it. and he ordered me in with an oath that made me jump. as like as not. if you like. and answered a few other questions. the stranger backed along with me into the parlour and put me behind him in the corner so that we were both hidden by the open door. if you had sailed along of Bill. you wouldn't have stood there to be spoke to twice—not you. "my mate Bill would be called the captain. is my mate Bill in this here house?" I told him he was out walking. half sneering. But it was no affair of mine. I thought. particularly in drink. "I have a son of my own. that your captain has a cut on one cheek—and we'll put it. So saying. I say again. I was very uneasy and alarmed. That was never Bill's way. it was difficult to know what to do. He cleared the hilt of his cutlass and loosened the blade in the sheath. He has a cut on one cheek and a mighty pleasant way with him. sonny? Which way is he gone?" And when I had pointed out the rock and told him how the captain was likely to return. for argument like. The stranger kept hanging about just inside the inn door. with a spy-glass under his arm. Now. And here." The expression of his face as he said these words was not at all pleasant. told me I was a good boy and he had taken quite a fancy to me. patted me on the shoulder. half fawning. sonny—discipline. "as like you as two blocks. sure enough. and get behind the door. has my mate Bill. "Which way. and all the time we were waiting there he kept swallowing as if he felt what we used to call a lump in the throat. As soon as I was back again he returned to his former manner. as you may fancy." said he. peering round the corner like a cat waiting for a mouse. bless his old 'art. and how soon." said he. to be sure. that that cheek's the right one. is my mate Bill. 10 . Now. nor the way of sich as sailed with him. "this'll be as good as drink to my mate Bill. but he immediately called me back. a most horrible change came over his tallowy face. and I had my own reasons for thinking that the stranger was mistaken. and we'll give Bill a little surprise—bless his 'art. and as I did not obey quick enough for his fancy.

At last in strode the captain. surely." holding up his mutilated hand." returned Black Dog. then. and marched straight across the room to where his breakfast awaited him. us two. on his retreat. from the captain. "Black Dog!" said he. like old shipmates. and we'll sit down. and talk square. "If it comes to swinging. a clash of steel followed. without looking to the right or left. mostly oaths." said the stranger in a voice that I thought he had tried to make bold and big. slammed the door behind him." he said. and the former streaming blood from the left shoulder. Bill. "And who else?" returned the other. Bill. and I could pick up a word or two. and the captain hotly pursuing. no. since I lost them two talons. you know me." said the captain. as I thought. speak up. Bill. if you please. Bill. "you've run me down. as I've took such a liking to. and the next instant I saw Black Dog in full flight. he had the look of a man who sees a ghost. He bade me go and leave the door wide open. but at last the voices began to grow higher. we have seen a sight of times. The captain made a sort of gasp. I'll have a glass of rum from this dear child here. here I am." said the stranger. though I certainly did my best to listen. no. sonny. and upon my word. what is it?" "That's you." Then all of a sudden there was a tremendous explosion of oaths and other noises—the chair and table went over in a lump. "For a long time. well. all the brown had gone out of his face. The captain spun round on his heel and fronted us. "No. and then a cry of pain. no. and an end of it!" he cried once. "you're in the right of it. if anything can be. and even his nose was blue. at the Admiral Benbow inn. "Come. swing all. Billy. Just at the door 11 . or the evil one. "Black Dog as ever was. "Now. I felt sorry to see him all in a moment turn so old and sick. you know an old shipmate." When I returned with the rum. "None of your keyholes for me. Bill. both with drawn cutlasses. "Bill. and I left them together and retired into the bar. getting more at his ease. or something worse. say I. come for to see his old shipmate Billy. Ah. And again. I could hear nothing but a low gattling. look here. they were already seated on either side of the captain's breakfast-table—Black Dog next to the door and sitting sideways so as to have one eye on his old shipmate and one.

just you run upstairs to your husband and tell him. the doctor had already ripped up the captain's sleeve and exposed his great sinewy arm. The captain. and caught himself with one hand against the wall. nor any other thought but that he had got his death-hurt in the scuffle with the stranger. and tried to put it down his throat. for his part. which would certainly have split him to the chine had it not been intercepted by our big signboard of Admiral Benbow. but I was quite unsteadied by all that had fallen out. "what shall we do? Where is he wounded?" "Wounded? A fiddle-stick's end!" said the doctor. Hawkins." and "Billy Bones his fancy. Jim." we cried. "I must get away from here. It was a happy relief for us when the door opened and Doctor Livesey came in. "Oh. "No more wounded than you or I. you get me a basin. but his teeth were tightly shut and his jaws as strong as iron." When I got back with the basin. beheld the captain lying full length upon the floor. as I warned him. nothing about it. deary me. I must do my best to save this fellow's trebly worthless life. stood staring at the signboard like a bewildered man. Mrs. he reeled a little. It was tattooed in several places.the captain aimed at the fugitive one last tremendous cut. That blow was the last of the battle. on his visit to my father. and while I was still getting in my own way. Black Dog." "A fair wind. I heard a loud fall in the parlour." were very neatly and clearly executed on the forearm. came running downstairs to help me. For my part. and as he spoke. "Jim. Between us we raised his head. "Rum. I got the rum. "what a disgrace upon the house! And your poor father sick!" In the meantime. The man has had a stroke. Once out upon the road. He was breathing very loud and hard." cried my mother. Then he passed his hand over his eyes several times and at last turned back into the house." says he. doctor. to be sure. You may see the notch on the lower side of the frame to this day. and I broke one glass and fouled the tap." he repeated. showed a wonderful clean pair of heels and disappeared over the edge of the hill in half a minute. Rum! Rum!" I ran to fetch it. At the same instant my mother. Now. if possible. "Dear. "rum". and up near the 12 . but his eyes were closed and his face a horrible colour. and running in. alarmed by the cries and fighting. in spite of his wound. "Are you hurt?" cried I. "Here's luck. we had no idea what to do to help the captain.

precisely as I told you." said the doctor. "And now. "I clear my conscience—the name of rum for you is death. "Prophetic. if that be your name. "This is nothing." he said." said he. Come." 13 . "Much I care. then his glance fell upon me. Bones—" "That's not my name. and go to your own place. Now. he should lie for a week where he is—that is the best thing for him and you." he said as soon as he had closed the door." he interrupted. like the man in the Bible. mind you. and with that he took his lancet and opened a vein. I'll help you to your bed for once. Master Billy Bones. dragged you headforemost out of the grave. and laid him on his bed. then. sir. Jim. "Now. very much against my own will." Between us. we'll have a look at the colour of your blood. and I have just." said the doctor. "except what you have on your own back. one glass of rum won't kill you. "Well. taking me with him by the arm. "It's the name of a buccaneer of my acquaintance.shoulder there was a sketch of a gallows and a man hanging from it—done. we managed to hoist him upstairs. First he recognized the doctor with an unmistakable frown. where his head fell back on the pillow as if he were almost fainting. crying. with great spirit. A great deal of blood was taken before the captain opened his eyes and looked mistily about him. "Where's Black Dog?" "There is no Black Dog here. and what I have to say to you is this. but another stroke would settle him." said the doctor." said I. But suddenly his colour changed. You have been drinking rum. with much trouble. and I stake my wig if you don't break off short. make an effort. and he tried to raise himself." returned the doctor. now. you'll die—do you understand that?—die." And with that he went off to see my father. but if you take one you'll take another and another. and I call you by it for the sake of shortness. touching this picture with his finger. "you hold the basin". "I have drawn blood enough to keep him quiet awhile. you have had a stroke. "are you afraid of blood?" "No. Mr. and he looked relieved. as I thought.

I seen him. now quoted to me. 14 . Never a month but I've given you a silver fourpenny for yourself. I haven't had a drop this blessed day. not I. I'm pretty low. and man and wife. and he seemed both weak and excited. and I'll raise Cain. And now you see. how my fingers fidges. "and that doctor there. and if I'm not to have my rum now I'm a poor old hulk on a lee shore. I'll give you a golden guinea for a noggin. I seen old Flint in the corner there. I seen some on 'em already." he said. If I don't have a drain o' rum. in a feeble voice but heartily. Jim. I tell you. and this alarmed me for my father. and you know I've been always good to you. I was reassured by the doctor's words. only a little higher. "you're the only one here that's worth anything. to me. now. and the blessed land a-heaving like the sea with earthquakes—what to the doctor know of lands like that?—and I lived on rum. Jim. who was very low that day and needed quiet. He was lying very much as we had left him. won't you. what do he know about seafaring men? I been in places hot as pitch.Chapter 3 The Black Spot A bout noon I stopped at the captain's door with some cooling drinks and medicines. you'll bring me one noggin of rum." He was growing more and more excited. But he broke in cursing the doctor. and that doctor swab". I tell you. That doctor's a fool. and he ran on again for a while with curses. and rather offended by the offer of a bribe. my blood'll be on you. and if I get the horrors. Jim. "Look. and Jim. behind you. and deserted by all. besides. "Jim. why. I'll have the horrors. matey?" "The doctor—" I began." he continued in the pleading tone. "I can't keep 'em still. as plain as print. Your doctor hisself said one glass wouldn't hurt me. It's been meat and drink. mate. I'm a man that has lived rough." he said. and mates dropping round with Yellow Jack. "Doctors is all swabs. Jim.

contrasted sadly with the weakness of the voice in which they were uttered. "Jim. he seized it greedily and drank it out. then. But you won't peach unless they get the black spot on me. His words. "you saw that seafaring man today?" "Black Dog?" I asked. I want to know? But I'm a saving soul." he murmured. matey. And now. did that doctor say how long I was to lie here in this old berth?" "A week at least. you get on a horse. and moving his legs like so much dead weight. and I'll trick 'em again. I was first mate." he said at length. when he lay a-dying. all on 'em that's left. it's my old sea-chest they're after. I'll get you one glass. I never wasted good money of mine. lubbers as couldn't keep what they got. He paused when he had got into a sitting position on the edge. but there's worse that put him on. they'd have the black spot on me by then. 15 . nor lost it neither. Jim—him above all. I'll shake out another reef. spirited as they were in meaning. The lubbers is going about to get the wind of me this blessed moment. holding to my shoulder with a grip that almost made me cry out. "Thunder!" he cried." says he. where he lay for a while silent. "but what you owe my father. He gave it me at Savannah. and go to—well. man and boy. "that's some better. captain?" I asked. yes. I will!—to that eternal doctor swab. "A week! I can't do that. and no more. and I'm the on'y one as knows the place. and tell him to pipe all hands—magistrates and sich—and he'll lay 'em aboard at the Admiral Benbow—all old Flint's crew. you get on a horse—you can."I want none of your money. he had risen from bed with great difficulty. "My ears is singing." When I brought it to him. or unless you see that Black Dog again or a seafaring man with one leg." said I. you see. old Flint's first mate. I was. if I can't get away nohow. I'm not afraid on 'em. "He's a bad un." said I. Is that seamanly behaviour. and they tip me the black spot." Before I could do much to help him he had fallen back again to his former place. "Ah! Black Dog." "But what is the black spot." said he. "That doctor's done me. Lay me back." As he was thus speaking. aye. matey. sure enough. and daddle 'em again. can't you? Well. Now. now. "Aye. and want to nail what is another's. like as if I was to now. mind you.

he piped up to a different air. full of sad thoughts about my father. He clambered up and down stairs. Our natural distress. though he ate little and had more. to our extreme wonder. and it was shocking. for he helped himself out of the bar. which he took like a child. "If ever a seaman wanted drugs. more violent than ever. foggy. scowling and blowing through his nose. I'll tell you if they get that. and went from the parlour to the bar and back again. his voice growing weaker. and sometimes put his nose out of doors to smell the sea. He had an alarming way now when he was drunk of drawing his cutlass and laying it bare before him on the table. and all the work of the inn to be carried on in the meanwhile kept me so busy that I had scarcely time to think of the captain. in that house of mourning. On the night before the funeral he was as drunk as ever. we were all in the fear of death for him. for I was in mortal fear lest the captain should repent of his confessions and make an end of me. for instance. But you keep your weather-eye open. to hear him singing away at his ugly old sea-song. than his usual supply of rum. but his temper was more flighty. But with all that. and I'll share with you equals. I am afraid. Jim. and no one dared to cross him. the arranging of the funeral. and it is my belief he had as good as forgotten his confidences. a king of country love-song that he must have learned in his youth before he had begun to follow the sea. with the remark. He got downstairs next morning. and the doctor was suddenly taken up with a case many miles away and was never near the house after my father's death. Once. So things passed until. holding on to the walls as he went for support and breathing hard and fast like a man on a steep mountain. and about three o'clock of a bitter." He wandered a little longer. to be sure. but soon after I had given him his medicine. He never particularly addressed me. and indeed he seemed rather to grow weaker than regain his strength. my poor father died quite suddenly that evening. when I saw someone 16 . frosty afternoon. but weak as he was. upon my honour."That's a summons. in which I left him. But as things fell out. which put all other matters on one side. What I should have done had all gone well I do not know. mate. far less to be afraid of him. the day after the funeral. it's me. I have said the captain was weak. swoon-like sleep. he minded people less and seemed shut up in his own thoughts and rather wandering." he fell at last into a heavy. Probably I should have told the whole story to the doctor. I was standing at the door for a moment. and had his meals as usual. the visits of the neighbours. and allowing for his bodily weakness.

where our sick old buccaneer was sitting. "take me in to the captain. "a young voice. I was so utterly terrified of the blind beggar that I forgot my terror of the captain. He sits with a drawn cutlass. and lead me in?" I held out my hand. cried out the words he had ordered in a trembling voice. my good man. and as I opened the parlour door. as if with age or weakness. for he tapped before him with a stick and wore a great green shade over his eyes and nose. but I do not believe he had enough force left in his body. 17 ." and with that he gave me a twitch that I thought would have made me faint. boy." he sneered. He stopped a little from the inn. The poor captain raised his eyes. "Sir. "Now. as he spoke. but the blind man pulled me close up to him with a single action of his arm. dazed with rum. The blind man clung close to me. I never saw in my life a more dreadful-looking figure. I'll do this. and cold. He was plainly blind. march. It cowed me more than the pain. and I began to obey him at once. eyeless creature gripped it in a moment like a vise." said I. and wore a huge old tattered sea-cloak with a hood that made him appear positively deformed. and I never heard a voice so cruel. The captain is not what he used to be. I was so much startled that I struggled to withdraw. 'Here's a friend for you." said I. now. who has lost the precious sight of his eyes in the gracious defence of his native country. and ugly as that blind man's. The expression of his face was not so much of terror as of mortal sickness. addressed the air in front of him. Black Hill Cove. Another gentleman—" "Come. holding me in one iron fist and leaning almost more of his weight on me than I could carry. England—and God bless King George!—where or in what part of this country he may now be?" "You are at the Admiral Benbow.drawing slowly near along the road.' If you don't." "Oh. a wrench that made me cry out. and raising his voice in an odd sing-song." said he. soft-spoken. "that's it! Take me in straight or I'll break your arm. my kind young friend. "I hear a voice. "Will any kind friend inform a poor blind man. and he was hunched. and the horrible. He made a movement to rise. Will you give me your hand. "it is for yourself I mean. walking straight in at the door and towards the parlour. Bill. Between this and that. and at one look the rum went out of him and left him staring sober." said I. "upon my word I dare not." he said." And he gave it." interrupted he. and when I'm in view." "Sir. "Lead me straight up to him. cry out.

with a peculiar sound. which closed upon it instantly. put his hand to his throat. where. "And now that's done. which I was still holding." said the blind man. fell from his whole height face foremost to the floor. I burst into a flood of tears. stood swaying for a moment. skipped out of the parlour and into the road. and at the words he suddenly left hold of me. Even as he did so. But haste was all in vain." said the beggar. and about at the same moment. It is a curious thing to understand." and he sprang to his feet. Business is business." We both obeyed him to the letter. I released his wrist. I ran to him at once. It was the second death I had known. It was some time before either I or the captain seemed to gather our senses."Now. and the sorrow of the first was still fresh in my heart. and I saw him pass something from the hollow of the hand that held his stick into the palm of the captain's. Boy. he reeled. as I still stood motionless. I could hear his stick go tap-tap-tapping into the distance. Hold out your left hand. "Ten o'clock!" he cried. The captain had been struck dead by thundering apoplexy. sit where you are. take his left hand by the wrist and bring it near to my right. for I had certainly never liked the man. "If I can't see. and with incredible accuracy and nimbleness. calling to my mother. 18 . and then. though of late I had begun to pity him. Bill. "Six hours. but at length. but as soon as I saw that he was dead. We'll do them yet. I can hear a finger stirring. and he drew in his hand and looked sharply into the palm.

we ran out at once in the gathering evening and the frosty fog. but that. seemed haunted by approaching footsteps. We were not many minutes on the road. as the saying goes. It was already candle-light when we reached the hamlet. Indeed. The neighbourhood. The captain's order to mount at once and ride for Doctor Livesey would have left my mother alone and unprotected. and what between the dead body of the captain on the parlour floor and the thought of that detestable blind beggar hovering near at hand and ready to return. above all the two specimens seen by me. in telling my mother all that I knew. filled us with alarms. as it proved. the fall of coals in the kitchen grate. was the best of the help we were likely to get in that quarter. there were moments when. though out of view.Chapter 4 The Sea-chest I lost no time. the very ticking of the clock. but it was not likely that our captain's shipmates. though we sometimes stopped to lay hold of each other and hearken. it seemed impossible for either of us to remain much longer in the house. and what greatly encouraged me. Something must speedily be resolved upon. it was in an opposite direction from that whence the blind man had made his appearance and whither he had presumably returned. and we saw ourselves at once in a difficult and dangerous position. of course. to our ears. I jumped in my skin for terror. on the other side of the next cove. would be inclined to give up their booty in payment of the dead man's debts. The hamlet lay not many hundred yards away. For—you would have thought men would 19 . Some of the man's money—if he had any—was certainly due to us. and perhaps should have told her long before. and it occurred to us at last to go forth together and seek help in the neighbouring hamlet. But there was no unusual sound—nothing but the low wash of the ripple and the croaking of the inmates of the wood. and I shall never forget how much I was cheered to see the yellow shine in doors and windows. Black Dog and the blind beggar. No sooner said than done. which was not to be thought of. Bare-headed as we were.

chicken-hearted men. the door of the Admiral Benbow had closed behind us. For that matter. alone in the house with the dead captain's body. we advanced into the parlour. anyone who was a comrade of the captain's was enough to frighten them to death. to have bolted away. and small thanks to you big. with his eyes open and one arm stretched out. which lay in another direction. They say cowardice is infectious. that all would be as bright as day. He lay as we had left him. I slipped the bolt at once. the more—man. she declared. besides. And the short and the long of the matter was. The more we told of our troubles. Livesey's. "If none of the rest of you dare. if we die for it. though it was strange to me. was well enough known to some there and carried a great weight of terror. and we stood and panted for a moment in the dark. to have seen several strangers on the road. "Jim and I dare. on the other hand. and of course they all cried out at our foolhardiness. to our relief. that while we could get several who were willing enough to ride to Dr. on his back. The name of Captain Flint. not one would help us to defend the inn. and child—they clung to the shelter of their houses. My heart was beating finely when we two set forth in the cold night upon this dangerous venture. noiseless and swift. and taking them to be smugglers. and this increased our haste. hulking. for it was plain. Mrs. All they would do was to give me a loaded pistol lest we were attacked. nor did we see or hear anything to increase our terrors. Back we will go. and one at least had seen a little lugger in what we called Kitt's Hole. lose money that belonged to her fatherless boy. but even then not a man would go along with us. We slipped along the hedges. Some of the men who had been to field-work on the far side of the Admiral Benbow remembered. Then my mother got a candle in the bar. woman." she said. the way we came. but then argument is. a great emboldener. before we came forth again." Of course I said I would go with my mother. A full moon was beginning to rise and peered redly through the upper edges of the fog. And I'll thank you for that bag. to bring back our lawful money in. till. 20 . She would not. Crossley. and holding each other's hands. while one lad was to ride forward to the doctor's in search of armed assistance.have been ashamed of themselves—no soul would consent to return with us to the Admiral Benbow. and so when each had said his say. my mother made them a speech. and to promise to have horses ready saddled in case we were pursued on our return. We'll have that chest open. and our departure exposed to the eyes of any watchers.

an old Spanish watch and some other trinkets of little value and mostly of foreign make. for it was only six. we found the key." "He had till ten. the miscellany began—a quadrant. hanging to a bit of tarry string. blackened on the one side. and the corners somewhat smashed and broken as by long. one after another. They had never been worn. Overcoming a strong repugnance. two brace of very handsome pistols." said she when I had done so. Mother. and hunted life."Draw down the blind. A few small coins. my mother said. At this triumph we were filled with hope and hurried upstairs without delay to the little room where he had slept so long and where his box had stood since the day of his arrival. and some thread and big needles. she had turned it and thrown back the lid in a twinkling. several sticks of tobacco. a pair of compasses mounted with brass. Underneath there was 21 . "they might come and watch outside. carefully brushed and folded. a piece of pigtail tobacco bitten away at the end. but nothing was to be seen on the top except a suit of very good clothes. "Give me the key. and five or six curious West Indian shells. I tore open his shirt at the neck. guilty. I have often wondered since why he should have carried about these shells with him in his wandering. a piece of bar silver. Under that." suggested my mother." said I. but the news was good. and just as I said it. "we have to get the key off that. sure enough. and who's to touch it. a pocket compass. and neither of these were in our way. this short message: "You have till ten tonight." whispered my mother. in a very good. clear hand." I felt in his pockets. I should like to know!" and she gave a kind of sob as she said the words. the initial "B" burned on the top of it with a hot iron. a tin canikin. In the meantime. a thimble. and there. and though the lock was very stiff. and a tinder box were all that they contained. A strong smell of tobacco and tar rose from the interior. I went down on my knees at once. I found written on the other side. which I cut with his own gully. we had found nothing of any value but the silver and the trinkets. our old clock began striking. On the floor close to his hand there was a little round of paper. "Now. "Perhaps it's round his neck. and I began to despair." said my mother. Jim. rough usage. I could not doubt that this was the Black Spot. "that key." she said. and taking it up. his gully with the crooked handle. It was like any other seaman's chest on the outside. Jim. And now. This sudden noise startled us shockingly.

she knew her rights and she would have them." said I. were about the scarcest. would not consent to take a fraction more than was due to her and was obstinately unwilling to be content with less. It was not yet seven. leaving the candle by the empty chest. frightened as she was. and." And she began to count over the amount of the captain's score from the sailor's bag into the one that I was holding. Next moment we were both groping downstairs. Then it struck sharp on the inn door. none could tell who had never met that terrible blind man. and not a farthing over. and it was with these only that my mother knew how to make her count. and pieces of eight.an old boat-cloak." for I was sure the bolted door must have seemed suspicious and would bring the whole hornet's nest about our ears. for both of us. and looking like papers. and she was still arguing with me when a little low whistle sounded a good way off upon the hill. the jingle of gold. Hold Mrs. while we sat holding our breath." said I. and I know not what besides. and the next we had opened the door and were in full retreat. died slowly away again until it ceased to be heard. and it was only in the exact bottom of the dell and round the tavern 22 . At last the tapping recommenced. "take the whole and let's be going. That was enough. My mother pulled it up with impatience. already the moon shone quite clear on the high ground on either side. and guineas. and a canvas bag that gave forth. difficult business. too. and louis d'ors. a bundle tied up in oilcloth. at a touch. though how thankful I was that I had bolted it. to our indescribable joy and gratitude. "I'll show these rogues that I'm an honest woman. "I'll have my dues. When we were about half-way through. and then we could hear the handle being turned and the bolt rattling as the wretched being tried to enter. But my mother. and then there was a long time of silence both within and without. for I had heard in the silent frosty air a sound that brought my heart into my mouth—the tap-tapping of the blind man's stick upon the frozen road. and there lay before us. It drew nearer and nearer. "I'll take what I have. picking up the oilskin packet. jumping to her feet. she said." said my mother. "And I'll take this to square the count." she said. and more than enough. the last things in the chest. whitened with sea-salt on many a harbour-bar. by a long way. The guineas. Crossley's bag. It was a long. "Mother. for the coins were of all countries and sizes—doubloons. all shaken together at random. The fog was rapidly dispersing. I suddenly put my hand upon her arm. We had not started a moment too soon.

" This was certainly the end for both of us." said my mother suddenly. 23 . I am going to faint. and I helped her. a light tossing to and fro and still rapidly advancing showed that one of the newcomers carried a lantern. for her past foolhardiness and present weakness! We were just at the little bridge. I do not know how I found the strength to do it at all. and as we looked back in their direction. I thought. but I managed to drag her down the bank and a little way under the arch. how I blamed my poor mother for her honesty and her greed.door that a thin veil still hung unbroken to conceal the first steps of our escape. sure enough. to the edge of the bank. "My dear. How I cursed the cowardice of the neighbours. for the bridge was too low to let me do more than crawl below it. very little beyond the bottom of the hill. Nor was this all. "take the money and run on. she gave a sigh and fell on my shoulder. by good fortune. where. So there we had to stay—my mother almost entirely exposed and both of us within earshot of the inn. Farther I could not move her. Far less than half-way to the hamlet. for the sound of several footsteps running came already to our ears. we must come forth into the moonlight. and I am afraid it was roughly done. tottering as she was.

and addressed the blind beggar on the road below him. Three men ran together. and cursed them for their delay. as if he were afire with eagerness and rage. His voice sounded louder and higher. Four or five of them obeyed at once. in. hand in hand. so that the house must have shook with it. and I made out. The next moment his voice showed me that I was right. "Down with the door!" he cried. in a sense. "Search him. But the pause was brief. the lantern-bearer following. then a cry of surprise. in!" he shouted. but crept back to the bank again. sir!" answered two or three. was stronger than my fear. for I could not remain where I was. and a man leaned out into the moonlight." he cried. their feet beating out of time along the road and the man with the lantern some paces in front. I could hear their feet rattling up our old stairs. the window of the captain's room was thrown open with a slam and a jingle of broken glass. "Aye. 24 . There was a pause. "In. seven or eight of them. and the rest of you aloft and get the chest. sheltering my head behind a bush of broom. aye. whence. for the blind man again issued his commands. even through the mist. and then a voice shouting from the house. and a rush was made upon the Admiral Benbow. and then I could see them pause.Chapter 5 The Last of the Blind Man M y curiosity. I was scarcely in position ere my enemies began to arrive. as if they were surprised to find the door open. two remaining on the road with the formidable beggar. I might command the road before our door. Promptly afterwards." But the blind man swore at them again for their delay. head and shoulders. "Bill's dead. running hard. and hear speeches passed in a lower key. fresh sounds of astonishment arose. that the middle man of this trio was the blind beggar. some of you shirking lubbers.

I wish I had put his eyes out!" cried the blind man. on the road and declared that we were nowhere to be found. furniture thrown over. while the rest stood irresolute on the road." "It's these people of the inn—it's that boy. a signal to warn them of approaching danger. came to the door of the inn."Pew. you fools. they can't be far. lads." The blind man cursed the money. crawling 25 . Scatter and look for them. and you hang a leg! You'd be as rich as kings if you could find it. until the very rocks re-echoed and the men came out again. I had thought it to be the blind man's trumpet. "We don't see it here nohow." "Budge. "There were no time ago—they had the door bolted when I tried it. but I now found that it was a signal from the hillside towards the hamlet. "Bill's been overhauled a'ready. "There's Dirk again. and with half an eye to their own danger all the time. striking with his stick upon the road." "Is it there?" roared Pew. and from its effect upon the buccaneers. and you know it's here. doors kicked in. heavy feet pounding to and fro. "Flint's fist." he cried. "they've been before us. mates. "Twice! We'll have to budge. and you stand there skulking." returned the man." said the fellow from the window. Scatter. "You have your hands on thousands. dogs! Oh. And just the same whistle that had alarmed my mother and myself over the dead captain's money was once more clearly audible through the night. so to speak. "The money's there." he cried. for two of the fellows began to look here and there among the lumber. I thought. There wasn't one of you dared face Bill. one after another. they left their glim here. "nothin' left. probably him who had remained below to search the captain's body. you skulk!" cried Pew. you below there. "Here. shiver my soul. "Dirk was a fool and a coward from the first—you wouldn't mind him. is it on Bill?" cried the blind man again." said one. but half-heartedly. They must be close by. summoning his crew to the assault. At that another fellow. and find 'em." said he." "Sure enough. Someone's turned the chest out alow and aloft. Then there followed a great to-do through all our old inn. "Scatter and find 'em! Rout the house out!" reiterated Pew. and I did it—a blind man! And I'm to lose my chance for you! I'm to be a poor. Pew. I mean. but this time twice repeated. "if I had eyes!" This appeal seemed to produce some effect." he cried. you have your hands on it.

These. sponging for rum. and the four hoofs trampled and spurned him and passed by. one seaward along the cove. Finally he took a wrong turn and ran a few steps past me. now utterly bewildered.beggar. and four or five riders came in sight in the moonlight and swept at full gallop down the slope. whether in sheer panic or out of revenge for his ill words and blows I know not. "Johnny. Dirk. "you won't leave old Pew. cursed back at the blind miscreant. flash and report. tapping up and down the road in a frenzy. for the buccaneers turned at once and ran. "They might have hid the blessed thing. Some news 26 . the rest were revenue officers. turned with a scream. but there he remained behind. They were pulling up. then gently collapsed upon his face and moved no more. another sound came from the top of the hill on the side of the hamlet—the tramp of horses galloping. but in vain. horrified at the accident. he struck at them right and left in his blindness and his stick sounded heavily on more than one. and tried in vain to catch the stick and wrest it from his grasp. and I soon saw what they were. and don't stand here squalling. Pew. tailing out behind the rest. his passion completely taking the upper hand. and so on. "Take the Georges. threatened him in horrid terms. was a lad that had gone from the hamlet to Dr. and with whom he had had the intelligence to return at once. Him they had deserted. crying. Almost at the same time a pistol-shot. Pew's anger rose so high at these objections till at last. This quarrel was the saving of us. At this Pew saw his error. And that was plainly the last signal of danger. One. for while it was still raging. Down went Pew with a cry that rang high into the night. so that in half a minute not a sign of them remained but Pew. one slant across the hill. at any rate." Squalling was the word for it. mates—not old Pew!" Just then the noise of horses topped the rise. came from the hedge side. The rider tried to save him. into which he rolled. and groping and calling for his comrades. He fell on his side. in their turn. But he was on his feet again in a second and made another dash. Black Dog." and other names. and ran straight for the ditch. when I might be rolling in a coach! If you had the pluck of a weevil in a biscuit you would catch them still. Livesey's." "Hang it. whom he had met by the way. we've got the doubloons!" grumbled one." said another. right under the nearest of the coming horses. I leaped to my feet and hailed the riders. towards the hamlet. separating in every direction. Pew.

you see. the lugger doubled the point and disappeared. In the meantime the supervisor rode on. not that I regret it. leading. Mr. then. quite right. As for my mother. I'll take you along." he interrupted very cheerily. when all's done. Dance stood there. I should like to get it put in safety. to Kitt's Hole. now I come to think of it. if make it out they can. "like a fish out of water. the very clock had been thrown down by these fellows in their furious hunt after my mother and myself. boy. "perfectly right—a gentleman and a magistrate. if you like. sir. and there's an end." for by this time he had heard my story. I might as well ride round there myself and report to him or squire. "Only. stone dead. "I'm glad I trod on Master Pew's corns. "Perfectly right. as he said. a little cold water and salts and that soon brought her back again. Pew was dead." said he. I'll tell you. what in fortune were they after? More money. though still close in. sir. you say? Well. as fast as he could.of the lugger in Kitt's Hole had found its way to Supervisor Dance and set him forth that night in our direction. "They got the money. and people will make it out against an officer of his Majesty's revenue. if you like. I think. but he's dead. their horses. when we had carried her up to the hamlet. and in continual fear of ambushes. Soon after. A voice replied." replied I. though she still continued to deplore the balance of the money." said he. and she was none the worse for her terror." 27 . I believe I have the thing in my breast pocket. Livesey—" I began. but his men had to dismount and grope down the dingle. I went back with him to the Admiral Benbow." "I thought perhaps Dr. And. Now." and all he could do was to dispatch a man to B——to warn the cutter. and at the same time a bullet whistled close by his arm. They've got off clean. and to tell you the truth. Master Pew's dead. telling him to keep out of the moonlight or he would get some lead in him. and to that circumstance my mother and I owed our preservation from death. and you cannot imagine a house in such a state of smash. "And that. Hawkins. "I'll take it. I suppose?" "No. "In fact." "To be sure. I could see at once that we were ruined. He hailed her. "is just about as good as nothing. Mr. and sometimes supporting. so it was no great matter for surprise that when they got down to the Hole the lugger was already under way. Hawkins. not money." he added. Dance could make nothing of the scene. and though nothing had actually been taken away except the captain's money-bag and a little silver from the till.

28 . and we walked back to the hamlet where the horses were. holding on to Dogger's belt." As soon as I was mounted. "you have a good horse.I thanked him heartily for the offer. the supervisor gave the word. "Dogger. take up this lad behind you. Livesey's house." said Mr. Dance. and the party struck out at a bouncing trot on the road to Dr. By the time I had told mother of my purpose they were all in the saddle.

but ran with Dogger's stirrup-leather to the lodge gates and up the long. The servant led us down a matted passage and showed us at the end into a great library. he had come home in the afternoon but had gone up to the hall to dine and pass the evening with the squire. leafless. Livesey fairly slapped his thigh. as the distance was short. "So there we go. His eyebrows were very black. Dance told me to jump down and knock.Chapter 6 The Captain's Papers W e rode hard all the way till we drew up before Dr. and taking me along with him." says the doctor with a nod. "Come in. "And good evening to you. and forgot to smoke in their surprise and interest. and the squire cried "Bravo!" and broke his long pipe against 29 . Dance. and he had a bluff. and Dogger gave me a stirrup to descend by. Dance dismounted." says he. was admitted at a word into the house. Livesey sat. and moved readily. When they heard how my mother went back to the inn. This time. Livesey in?" I asked. very stately and condescending. The house was all dark to the front. What good wind brings you here?" The supervisor stood up straight and stiff and told his story like a lesson. I did not mount. Mr. you would say. rough-and-ready face. I had never seen the squire so near at hand. where the squire and Dr. and broad in proportion. and you should have seen how the two gentlemen leaned forward and looked at each other. pipe in hand. all roughened and reddened and lined in his long travels." said Mr. on either side of a bright fire. Livesey's door. over six feet high. Dance. Dance. not bad. friend Jim. The door was opened almost at once by the maid. "Is Dr. and this gave him a look of some temper. all lined with bookcases and busts upon the top of them. boys. she said. He was a tall man. Mr. "Good evening. moonlit avenue to where the white line of the hall buildings looked on either hand on great old gardens. No. Dr. Here Mr. but quick and high.

and the doctor. "when Dance has had his ale he must. "One at a time. as if to hear the better. Dance was further complimented and at last dismissed. sir. And as for riding down that black. The doctor looked it all over. and with your permission. "you are a very noble fellow. you will remember. "Mr." said the squire." laughed Dr. "But the point is. sir. and I made a hearty supper. and gave him the oilskin packet. Trelawney (that. of course." said the doctor. Hawkins. I was sometimes proud he was an Englishman. was the squire's name) had got up from his seat and was striding about the room. Dance must have some ale. Mr." "Well.the grate." "As you will. atrocious miscreant." said the doctor. I've seen his top-sails with these eyes. but I mean to keep Jim Hawkins here to sleep at my house. "Heard of him. "And now." said the squire in the same breath." At last Mr. I suppose?" "Heard of him!" cried the squire. Livesey. off Trinidad. squire. you say! He was the bloodthirstiest buccaneer that sailed. have you?" "Here it is. "You have heard of this Flint." said the doctor. I propose we should have up the cold pie and let him sup." said the squire. one at a time. Jim. but instead of doing that. will you ring that bell? Mr. Long before it was done. Blackbeard was a child to Flint. and the cowardly son of a rum-puncheon that I sailed with put back—put back." So a big pigeon pie was brought in and put on a sidetable. "you have the thing that they were after. like stamping on a cockroach. This lad Hawkins is a trump." said he. sir. "And now. Dance finished the story. I perceive. had taken off his powdered wig and sat there looking very strange indeed with his own close-cropped black poll. had he money?" "Money!" cried the squire. The Spaniards were so prodigiously afraid of him that. as if his fingers were itching to open it. sir. "Hawkins has earned better than cold pie. he put it quietly in the pocket of his coat." said I. I've heard of him myself. I tell you. "Have you heard the story? What were these villains after but money? What do they care for but money? For what would they risk their rascal carcasses but money?" 30 . Livesey. in England. while Mr. be off on his Majesty's service. into Port of Spain. for I was as hungry as a hawk. Dance." "And so. "Squire. I regard it as an act of virtue. Livesey.

" said Dr. 1745. where I had been eating. "It will amount to this: If we have the clue you talk about. On the first page there were only some scraps of writing. and take you and Hawkins here along. we'll open the packet"." and what "itt" was that he got." observed the doctor." or a mere entry of latitude and longitude. as "Offe Caraccas. In a few cases. for instance. mate." "No more rum. sir!" cried the squire." said the doctor. It contained two things—a book and a sealed paper. One was the same as the tattoo mark. as "62o 17' 20". I fit out a ship in Bristol dock. his pile. and he laid it before him on the table. and at the end a grand total had been made out after five or six wrong additions. A knife in his back as like as not. and I'll have that treasure if I search a year. to be sure. mostly single words and unintelligible. the name of a place would be added. to enjoy the sport of the search. I could not help wondering who it was that had "got itt. and there was nothing but six crosses to explain the cause. then there was "Mr." replied the doctor."That we shall soon know. will that treasure amount to much?" "Amount. The next ten or twelve pages were filled with a curious series of entries. 31 . 19o 2' 40". only a varying number of crosses between the two. but instead of explanatory writing. There was a date at one end of the line and at the other a sum of money. "But you are so confoundedly hot-headed and exclamatory that I cannot get a word in. then. such as a man with a pen in his hand might make for idleness or practice. "Bones. "Billy Bones his fancy". and these words appended." The record lasted over nearly twenty years. the amount of the separate entries growing larger as time went on." "Off Palm Key he got itt." "I can't make head or tail of this. The bundle was sewn together. "Not much instruction there. Bones. "First of all we'll try the book. W. "Now. Livesey as he passed on. Livesey had kindly motioned me to come round from the sidetable. a sum of seventy pounds had plainly become due to someone. On the 12th of June." and some other snatches. The squire and I were both peering over his shoulder as he opened it. if Jim is agreeable." "Very well. and the doctor had to get out his instrument case and cut the stitches with his medical scissors." said Dr. as in common account-books. What I want to know is this: Supposing that I have here in my pocket some clue to where Flint buried his treasure. Livesey. for Dr.

English. that I had found in the captain's pocket. bearing a point to the N. The sums are the scoundrel's share.N." Over on the back the same hand had written this further information: Tall tree. and had two fine land-locked harbours. and where he feared an ambiguity. names of hills and bays and inlets. but above all. the very thimble. in the same red ink. J. 'Offe Caraccas. God help the poor souls that manned her—coral long ago." There were several additions of a later date. It was about nine miles long and five across. The doctor opened the seals with great care. three crosses of red ink—two on the north part of the island." "And now. and a hill in the centre part marked "The Spy-glass. neat hand. you can find it by the trend of the east hummock. "Thrifty man!" cried the doctor.S. and Spanish moneys to a common value. N. these words: "Bulk of treasure here. Right! And the amounts increase. one in the southwest—and beside this last. The bar silver is in the north cache.E. you see he added something clearer.' now. and there fell out the map of an island. in the sand-hill.E. with latitude and longitude. as he rose in rank." cried the squire. and every particular that would be needed to bring a ship to a safe anchorage upon its shores. and in a small. shaped. very different from the captain's tottery characters. perhaps. ten fathoms south of the black crag with the face on it. you might say. Spy-glass shoulder. Skeleton Island E. These crosses stand for the names of ships or towns that they sank or plundered. "He wasn't the one to be cheated. here was some unhappy vessel boarded off that coast. you see. you see." The paper had been sealed in several places with a thimble by way of seal. of N. like a fat dragon standing up. and by E.F. "See what it is to be a traveller." said the squire. and a quarter N. "This is the blackhearted hound's account-book. point of north inlet cape. Ten feet."The thing is as clear as noonday." "Right!" said the doctor." There was little else in the volume but a few bearings of places noted in the blank leaves towards the end and a table for reducing French. The arms are easy found. soundings. bearing E. "for the other. 32 .

so will Jim. These fellows who attacked the inn tonight—bold. In three weeks' time—three weeks!—two weeks—ten days—we'll have the best ship." "Livesey. sir!" "You." said the squire. "for you cannot hold your tongue. to roll in. through thick and thin. You. not one of us must breathe a word of what we've found. not far off. Tomorrow I start for Bristol. and money to eat." returned the squire. We'll take Redruth." said the doctor. but brief as it was. and to me incomprehensible. are ship's doctor. desperate blades. and I'll go bail for it. I am admiral. to play duck and drake with ever after. We'll have favourable winds. and Hunter. Jim and I shall stick together in the meanwhile. and not the least difficulty in finding the spot. bound that they'll get that money." "Trelawney." replied the doctor. a quick passage. Hawkins.That was all. you'll take Joyce and Hunter when you ride to Bristol. sir. it filled the squire and Dr. I dare say. Livesey with delight. We must none of us go alone till we get to sea. Livesey. one and all. "I'll go with you." 33 . Hawkins shall come as cabin-boy. and be a credit to the undertaking. "Name the dog. There's only one man I'm afraid of. are." "And who's that?" cried the squire. We are not the only men who know of this paper. and the choicest crew in England. You'll make a famous cabin-boy. "you will give up this wretched practice at once. for sure—and the rest who stayed aboard that lugger. and more. "Livesey. Joyce. I'll be as silent as the grave. "you are always in the right of it. and from first to last.

Part 2 The Sea Cook 34 .

did everyone 35 . all the details of which I well remembered. of keeping me beside him—could be carried out as we intended. I explored every acre of its surface. and none of our first plans—not even Dr. who has proved himself throughout the most surprising trump. I climbed a thousand times to that tall hill they call the Spy-glass. the gamekeeper. 17— Dear Livesey—As I do not know whether you are at the hall or still in London. in the case of his absence. name. but in all my fancies nothing occurred to me so strange and tragic as our actual adventures. I approached that island in my fancy from every possible direction. but full of sea-dreams and the most charming anticipations of strange islands and adventures. Sitting by the fire in the housekeeper's room." Obeying this order. with this addition. almost a prisoner. sometimes full of dangerous animals that hunted us. I brooded by the hour together over the map. The doctor had to go to London for a physician to take charge of his practice. the squire was hard at work at Bristol. Sometimes the isle was thick with savages. I may say. March 1. The ship is bought and fitted. She lies at anchor. I got her through my old friend. You never imagined a sweeter schooner—a child might sail her—two hundred tons. "To be opened. or rather I found—for the gamekeeper was a poor hand at reading anything but print—the following important news: Old Anchor Inn. ready for sea. we found. Bristol. So the weeks passed on. The admirable fellow literally slaved in my interest. Livesey's. Livesey. and from the top enjoyed the most wonderful and changing prospects. and so.Chapter 1 I Go to Bristol I t was longer than the squire imagined ere we were ready for the sea. by Tom Redruth or young Hawkins. Blandly. Hispaniola. I send this in double to both places. till one fine day there came a letter addressed to Dr. with whom we fought. and I lived on at the hall under the charge of old Redruth.

They go the length of declaring that this honest creature would do anything for money. under the immortal Hawke. knew all the seafaring men in Bristol. and that he sold it me absurdly high—the most transparent calumnies. till the most remarkable stroke of fortune brought me the very man that I required. "Redruth. after all. I was monstrously touched—so would you have been—and. kept a public-house. since he lost it in his country's service. had lost his health ashore. He has no pension. or the odious French—and I had the worry of the deuce itself to find so much as half a dozen. The squire has been talking. but time cured that. that the Hispaniola belonged to him. "Dr. and by the most admirable management got her for the merest trifle. It was the crew that troubled me. he said. Livesey. I mean. I should think. by their faces.in Bristol. who's a better right?" growled the gamekeeper. to deny the merits of the ship. Imagine the abominable age we live in! Well. The workpeople. I fell in talk with him. Wo far there was not a hitch. and has lost a leg." said I. None of them dare. as soon as they got wind of the port we sailed for—treasure. Livesey." "Well. Livesey will not like that. There is a class of men in Bristol monstrously prejudiced against Blandly. sir. Between Silver and myself we got together in a few days a company of the toughest old salts imaginable—not pretty to look at. but that I regarded as a recommendation. I engaged him on the spot to be ship's cook. "A pretty rum go if squire ain't to talk for Dr. I thought I had only found a cook. He had hobbled down there that morning. I wished a round score of men—in case of natives. but it was a crew I had discovered. he is called. when. I found he was an old sailor. I was standing on the dock. by the merest accident. however. Long John Silver. and wanted a good berth as cook to get to sea again. but fellows. to be sure—riggers and what not—were most annoyingly slow. interrupting the letter. to get a smell of the salt. of the most 36 . buccaneers." At that I gave up all attempts at commentary and read straight on: Blandly himself found the Hispaniola. out of pure pity.

which has never been overdrawn. Seaward.S. T. Any of the under-gamekeepers would gladly have changed places with him. had found an admirable fellow for sailing master—a stiff man. The captain. with Redruth for a guard. and the squire's pleasure was like law among them all. that sends him back to roving. who. do not lose an hour. a man named Arrow. by the way. I have a boatswain who pipes. sleeping like a tree. I am in the most magnificent health and spirits. come post. and then both come full speed to Bristol. The next morning he and I set out on foot for the Admiral Benbow. You can fancy the excitement into which that letter put me. which I regret. Long John Silver unearthed a very competent man for a mate. and there I found my mother in good health and spirits. He leaves his wife to manage the inn.—Hawkins may stay one night with his mother. a pair of old bachelors like you and I may be excused for guessing that it is the wife. who could do nothing but grumble and lament. I was half beside myself with glee. ho! Hang the treasure! It's the glory of the sea that has turned my head. eating like a bull. and as she is a woman of colour. So now. J. Long John even got rid of two out of the six or seven I had already engaged. Livesey. P. if you respect me. yet I shall not enjoy a moment till I hear my old tarpaulins tramping round the capstan. I forgot to tell you that Silver is a man of substance.indomitable spirit. but in all other respects a treasure. who had so long been a cause of so much discomfort. but such was not the squire's pleasure. T. quite as much as the health. Let young Hawkins go at once to see his mother. is to send a consort after us if we don't turn up by the end of August. so things shall go man-o'-war fashion on board the good ship Hispaniola. I declare we could fight a frigate. was gone where 37 . He showed me in a moment that they were just the sort of freshwater swabs we had to fear in an adventure of importance. and if ever I despised a man. it was old Tom Redruth.P. I know of my own knowledge that he has a banker's account. John Trelawney Postscript—I did not tell you that Blandly. Livesey. Nobody but old Redruth would have dared so much as even to grumble. J.

and the next day. that had all been far over the ocean. clumsy sea- 38 . and had added some furniture—above all a beautiful armchair for mother in the bar. He had found her a boy as an apprentice also so that she should not want help while I was gone. and the public rooms and the sign repainted. "Get down. I am afraid I led that boy a dog's life. and I opened my eyes to find that we were standing still before a large building in a city street and that the day had already broken a long time. besides. and their swaggering. Next moment we had turned the corner and my home was out of sight. and whiskers curled in ringlets. many old sailors. no longer quite so dear. for when I was awakened at last it was by a punch in the ribs. I must have dozed a great deal from the very first. hanging to threads that seemed no thicker than a spider's. and in spite of the swift motion and the cold night air. in another there were men aloft. sailors were singing at their work. Redruth and I were afoot again and on the road. not at all of the home that I was leaving. In one. I said good-bye to Mother and the cove where I had lived since I was born." Mr. The smell of tar and salt was something new. with rings in their ears. I had a hundred opportunities of setting him right and putting him down. The squire had had everything repaired. One of my last thoughts was of the captain. Though I had lived by the shore all my life. It was on seeing that boy that I understood. his sabre-cut cheek. and I was not slow to profit by them. who had so often strode along the beach with his cocked hat. I was wedged in between Redruth and a stout old gentleman. who was to stay here in my place beside my mother. The mail picked us up about dusk at the Royal George on the heath. for the first time. at sight of this clumsy stranger. Trelawney had taken up his residence at an inn far down the docks to superintend the work upon the schooner.the wicked cease from troubling. my situation. I seemed never to have been near the sea till then. "Where are we?" I asked. I had thought up to that moment of the adventures before me. and now. high over my head." said Tom. and then slept like a log up hill and down dale through stage after stage. after dinner. for as he was new to the work. and tarry pigtails. Thither we had now to walk. to my great delight. The night passed. I saw the most wonderful figureheads. I had my first attack of tears. "Bristol. and our way. and his old brass telescope. I saw. lay along the quays and beside the great multitude of ships of all sizes and rigs and nations. and the dear old Admiral Benbow—since he was repainted.

walk. and to seek for buried treasure! While I was still in this delightful dream." he cried. we came suddenly in front of a large inn and met Squire Trelawney. "We sail tomorrow!" 39 . And I was going to sea myself. sir. to sea. "and the doctor came last night from London. "when do we sail?" "Sail!" says he. Bravo! The ship's company complete!" "Oh. bound for an unknown island. coming out of the door with a smile on his face and a capital imitation of a sailor's walk. in stout blue cloth. and if I had seen as many kings or archbishops I could not have been more delighted. all dressed out like a sea-officer. "Here you are. to sea in a schooner." cried I. with a piping boatswain and pig-tailed singing seamen.

according to me. in spite of clouds of tobacco smoke. As I was waiting. 40 . The sign was newly painted. and under the left shoulder he carried a crutch. which made the large. until I found the tavern in question. It was a bright enough little place of entertainment. a man came out of a side room. overjoyed at this opportunity to see some more of the ships and seamen. almost afraid to enter. at the sign of the Spy-glass. The customers were mostly seafaring men. and told me I should easily find the place by following the line of the docks and keeping a bright lookout for a little tavern with a large brass telescope for sign. the floor was cleanly sanded.Chapter 2 At the Sign of the Spy-glass W hen I had done breakfasting the squire gave me a note addressed to John Silver. Indeed. for the dock was now at its busiest. from the very first mention of Long John in Squire Trelawney's letter I had taken a fear in my mind that he might prove to be the very one-legged sailor whom I had watched for so long at the old Benbow. which he managed with wonderful dexterity. hopping about upon it like a bird. Now. and picked my way among a great crowd of people and carts and bales. low room pretty clear to see in. I had seen the captain. but intelligent and smiling. and Black Dog. from this clean and pleasant-tempered landlord. and at a glance I was sure he must be Long John. His left leg was cut off close by the hip. with a merry word or a slap on the shoulder for the more favoured of his guests. I set off. and the blind man. There was a street on each side and an open door on both. whistling as he moved about among the tables. with a face as big as a ham—plain and pale. Pew. and I thought I knew what a buccaneer was like—a very different creature. the windows had neat red curtains. He was very tall and strong. he seemed in the most cheerful spirits. and they talked so loudly that I hung at the door. But one look at the man before me was enough. to tell you the truth.

I plucked up courage at once, crossed the threshold, and walked right up to the man where he stood, propped on his crutch, talking to a customer. "Mr. Silver, sir?" I asked, holding out the note. "Yes, my lad," said he; "such is my name, to be sure. And who may you be?" And then as he saw the squire's letter, he seemed to me to give something almost like a start. "Oh!" said he, quite loud, and offering his hand. "I see. You are our new cabin-boy; pleased I am to see you." And he took my hand in his large firm grasp. Just then one of the customers at the far side rose suddenly and made for the door. It was close by him, and he was out in the street in a moment. But his hurry had attracted my notice, and I recognized him at glance. It was the tallow-faced man, wanting two fingers, who had come first to the Admiral Benbow. "Oh," I cried, "stop him! It's Black Dog!" "I don't care two coppers who he is," cried Silver. "But he hasn't paid his score. Harry, run and catch him." One of the others who was nearest the door leaped up and started in pursuit. "If he were Admiral Hawke he shall pay his score," cried Silver; and then, relinquishing my hand, "Who did you say he was?" he asked. "Black what?" "Dog, sir," said I. Has Mr. Trelawney not told you of the buccaneers? He was one of them." "So?" cried Silver. "In my house! Ben, run and help Harry. One of those swabs, was he? Was that you drinking with him, Morgan? Step up here." The man whom he called Morgan—an old, grey-haired, mahoganyfaced sailor—came forward pretty sheepishly, rolling his quid. "Now, Morgan," said Long John very sternly, "you never clapped your eyes on that Black—Black Dog before, did you, now?" "Not I, sir," said Morgan with a salute. "You didn't know his name, did you?" "No, sir." "By the powers, Tom Morgan, it's as good for you!" exclaimed the landlord. "If you had been mixed up with the like of that, you would never have put another foot in my house, you may lay to that. And what was he saying to you?" "I don't rightly know, sir," answered Morgan.

41

"Do you call that a head on your shoulders, or a blessed dead-eye?" cried Long John. "Don't rightly know, don't you! Perhaps you don't happen to rightly know who you was speaking to, perhaps? Come, now, what was he jawing—v'yages, cap'ns, ships? Pipe up! What was it?" "We was a-talkin' of keel-hauling," answered Morgan. "Keel-hauling, was you? And a mighty suitable thing, too, and you may lay to that. Get back to your place for a lubber, Tom." And then, as Morgan rolled back to his seat, Silver added to me in a confidential whisper that was very flattering, as I thought, "He's quite an honest man, Tom Morgan, on'y stupid. And now," he ran on again, aloud, "let's see—Black Dog? No, I don't know the name, not I. Yet I kind of think I've—yes, I've seen the swab. He used to come here with a blind beggar, he used." "That he did, you may be sure," said I. "I knew that blind man too. His name was Pew." "It was!" cried Silver, now quite excited. "Pew! That were his name for certain. Ah, he looked a shark, he did! If we run down this Black Dog, now, there'll be news for Cap'n Trelawney! Ben's a good runner; few seamen run better than Ben. He should run him down, hand over hand, by the powers! He talked o' keel-hauling, did he? I'll keel-haul him!" All the time he was jerking out these phrases he was stumping up and down the tavern on his crutch, slapping tables with his hand, and giving such a show of excitement as would have convinced an Old Bailey judge or a Bow Street runner. My suspicions had been thoroughly reawakened on finding Black Dog at the Spy-glass, and I watched the cook narrowly. But he was too deep, and too ready, and too clever for me, and by the time the two men had come back out of breath and confessed that they had lost the track in a crowd, and been scolded like thieves, I would have gone bail for the innocence of Long John Silver. "See here, now, Hawkins," said he, "here's a blessed hard thing on a man like me, now, ain't it? There's Cap'n Trelawney—what's he to think? Here I have this confounded son of a Dutchman sitting in my own house drinking of my own rum! Here you comes and tells me of it plain; and here I let him give us all the slip before my blessed deadlights! Now, Hawkins, you do me justice with the cap'n. You're a lad, you are, but you're as smart as paint. I see that when you first come in. Now, here it is: What could I do, with this old timber I hobble on? When I was an A B master mariner I'd have come up alongside of him, hand over hand, and broached him to in a brace of old shakes, I would; but now—"

42

And then, all of a sudden, he stopped, and his jaw dropped as though he had remembered something. "The score!" he burst out. "Three goes o' rum! Why, shiver my timbers, if I hadn't forgotten my score!" And falling on a bench, he laughed until the tears ran down his cheeks. I could not help joining, and we laughed together, peal after peal, until the tavern rang again. "Why, what a precious old sea-calf I am!" he said at last, wiping his cheeks. "You and me should get on well, Hawkins, for I'll take my davy I should be rated ship's boy. But come now, stand by to go about. This won't do. Dooty is dooty, messmates. I'll put on my old cockerel hat, and step along of you to Cap'n Trelawney, and report this here affair. For mind you, it's serious, young Hawkins; and neither you nor me's come out of it with what I should make so bold as to call credit. Nor you neither, says you; not smart—none of the pair of us smart. But dash my buttons! That was a good un about my score." And he began to laugh again, and that so heartily, that though I did not see the joke as he did, I was again obliged to join him in his mirth. On our little walk along the quays, he made himself the most interesting companion, telling me about the different ships that we passed by, their rig, tonnage, and nationality, explaining the work that was going forward—how one was discharging, another taking in cargo, and a third making ready for sea—and every now and then telling me some little anecdote of ships or seamen or repeating a nautical phrase till I had learned it perfectly. I began to see that here was one of the best of possible shipmates. When we got to the inn, the squire and Dr. Livesey were seated together, finishing a quart of ale with a toast in it, before they should go aboard the schooner on a visit of inspection. Long John told the story from first to last, with a great deal of spirit and the most perfect truth. "That was how it were, now, weren't it, Hawkins?" he would say, now and again, and I could always bear him entirely out. The two gentlemen regretted that Black Dog had got away, but we all agreed there was nothing to be done, and after he had been complimented, Long John took up his crutch and departed. "All hands aboard by four this afternoon," shouted the squire after him. "Aye, aye, sir," cried the cook, in the passage.

43

"Take your hat." said Dr." says squire. but I will say this." "The man's a perfect trump."Well." added the doctor. and we'll see the ship." declared the squire. "Jim may come on board with us. Hawkins. "I don't put much faith in your discoveries. as a general thing. may he not?" "To be sure he may. squire. Livesey." 44 . John Silver suits me. "And now.

"I am always at the captain's orders. Show him in. all shipshape and seaworthy?" "Well. Livesey cut in. sir." "Possibly. you don't like the ship?" inquired the squire. entered at once and shut the door behind him. and I don't like my officer." said he. "Stay a bit. what have you to say? All well. Arrow. but I soon observed that things were not the same between Mr. "Well. very angry. "She seems a clever craft. I believe. you say. and were met and saluted as we stepped aboard by the mate." said he. Trelawney and the captain. You don't." said the captain. This last was a sharp-looking man who seemed angry with everything on board and was soon to tell us why. and I'm bound to say that I require an explanation of his words. I don't like the men. But here Dr." said the captain. and their cables sometimes grated underneath our keel. who was close behind his messenger. The captain. sir. That's short and sweet. Mr. why?" 45 . sir. I don't like this cruise. "I can't speak as to that. At last. I hope.Chapter 3 Powder and Arms T he Hispaniola lay some way out. He and the squire were very thick and friendly. axing to speak with you. not having seen her tried. Captain Smollett. No use of such questions as that but to produce ill feeling. "better speak plain. we got alongside. "stay a bit. sir. a brown old sailor with earrings in his ears and a squint. Now. even at the risk of offence. sir. and we went under the figureheads and round the sterns of many other ships. more I can't say. for we had hardly got down into the cabin when a sailor followed us. like this cruise." said the squire. The captain has said too much or he has said too little. however. you may not like your employer. as I could see. and sometimes swung above us. either?" says the squire. "Captain Smollett." "Perhaps.

and I don't like them." "Perhaps you should. Arrow?" "I don't. They are putting the powder and the arms in the fore hold. above all. It's my belief neither of you gentlemen know what you are about. and a close run. But now I find that every man before the mast knows more than I do. sir. if you go to that. sir. have taken you along with him." "Any more?" asked Mr. "I don't. "Then. "No. on what we call sealed orders. Livesey. and the short and long of it. Now. "So far so good. "We take the risk. are you determined to go on this cruise?" "Like iron. I don't like treasure voyages on any account. 46 . but he's too free with the crew to be a good officer. I believe he's a good seaman. you are bringing four of your own people with you. now." "Well. Are they not good seamen?" "I don't like them. I dare say. Then. captain?" asked the doctor. hear me a few words more. Now. was unintentional." replied the captain." "Well. Why not give them the berths here beside the cabin?—second point. if there be one." said the captain. "only that he's too familiar." said the captain. "Blabbed." "That is all clear. Mr. I don't call that fair. "My friend should. "It's a way of speaking. now. "Tell us what you want. "Very good." said the captain."I was engaged. sir. but we are not so ignorant as you believe us. gentlemen. as you've heard me very patiently. and. Livesey. Trelawney. but I'll tell you my way of it—life or death. Next. perhaps. mind you. why not put them there?—first point." said the captain. to sail this ship for that gentleman where he should bid me. I mean." returned Captain Smollett. do you?" "No. but the slight. you have a good place under the cabin. true enough. you say you don't like the crew. sir." "Next. And you don't like Mr." replied the doctor. treasure is ticklish work. "I learn we are going after treasure—hear it from my own hands. "And I think I should have had the choosing of my own hands." said Dr." answered the squire." replied Dr. saying things that I could not prove. Trelawney) the secret has been told to the parrot." "Silver's parrot?" asked the squire. and they tell me some of them are to be berthed forward. A mate should keep himself to himself—shouldn't drink with the men before the mast!" "Do you mean he drinks?" cried the squire. when they are secret and when (begging your pardon.

"I never told that. I dare say." continued Captain Smollett: "that you have a map of an island. Arrow. it shall be kept secret even from me and Mr. "I don't know who has this map. And I ask you to take certain precautions or let me resign my berth." agreed the doctor. "Livesey. When you came in here. I see things going. all may be for what I know. "Well." "No more I would. As for Mr. sir. gentlemen. "did ever you hear the fable of the mountain and the mouse? You'll excuse me." cried the squire. No captain. "with no intention to take offence." 47 . but I make it a point. In other words." returned the captain. Trelawney's protestations." said the captain. some of the men are the same. And I could see that neither he nor the captain paid much regard to Mr." replied the doctor. he was so loose a talker." "Doctor." "Captain Smollett." cried the squire. would be justified in going to sea at all if he had ground enough to say that. but you remind me of that fable."One more. but I think the worse of you. "you are smart." "Sir. that there's crosses on the map to show where treasure is. as I think. I had no thought that Mr. And that's all. "You wish us to keep this matter dark and to make a garrison of the stern part of the ship. Arrow. "Had Livesey not been here I should have seen you to the deuce. and provided with all the arms and powder on board. you fear a mutiny. I have heard you." said the captain. Trelawney would hear a word. Otherwise I would ask you to let me resign. to be sure. you meant more than this. Neither did I. I'll stake my wig." "I see. I deny your right to put words into my mouth. "I'll tell you what I've heard myself." said the doctor." continued the captain. sir. manned with my friend's own people." cried the squire. I believe him thoroughly honest." "Far too much. "It doesn't much matter who it was. not quite right. that must have been you or Hawkins. I will do as you desire. As it is." said Captain Smollett. yet in this case I believe he was really right and that nobody had told the situation of the island. But I am responsible for the ship's safety and the life of every man Jack aboard of her. "There's been too much blabbing already. "to a soul!" "The hands know it." began the doctor with a smile. and that the island lies—" And then he named the latitude and longitude exactly. When I came in here I meant to get discharged.

"So ho. "What's this?" "We're a-changing of the powder. if you like. I believed you have managed to get two honest men on board with you—that man and John Silver. We were all hard at work. which had been enlarged on each side till you might almost have called it a round-house. and the squire were to occupy these six berths. and this set of cabins was only joined to the galley and forecastle by a sparred passage on the port side. men—easy." said the doctor. of course. Jack. Joyce. had been doubtful as to the crew." "Silver. aye. and 48 . by the powers. six berths had been made astern out of what had been the after-part of the main hold. while the captain and Mr. and touching his forelock. Even he. "Why. Hands will want supper. and as soon as he saw what was doing. "Trelawney. perhaps. "You may go below. came off in a shoreboat. "but as for that intolerable humbug. Arrow. "Very likely. my man." replied Captain Smollett. we had not long the benefit of his opinion. Mr. he disappeared at once in the direction of his galley." says the doctor. but there was room to swing two hammocks." cried the squire. The new arrangement was quite to my liking. Hunter. mates!" says he. and Long John along with them." answers one." answered the cook. and downright un-English. "Easy with that. "we shall see. and even the mate seemed pleased with the arrangement. to the fellows who were shifting the powder." And with that he took his leave. but that is only guess. "You'll find I do my duty. changing the powder and the berths. we'll miss the morning tide!" "My orders!" said the captain shortly. It had been originally meant that the captain. unsailorly. sir. The whole schooner had been overhauled." "Aye. for as you shall hear." said the captain. Very low it was still. The cook came up the side like a monkey for cleverness. "if we do. the men had begun already to take out the arms and powder. captain. Arrow stood by superintending. when the last man or two. Arrow and the captain were to sleep on deck in the companion. yo-ho-ing at their work. "That's a good man. the doctor. "contrary to all my notions." he ran on." cried Long John." "Well. sir. Now Redruth and I were to get two of them and Mr."That's as you please." When we came on deck." said the doctor. sir. I declare I think his conduct unmanly.

"Here you. quite loudly. and hated the captain deeply." And then as I was hurrying off I heard him say. "out o' that! Off with you to the cook and get some work. ship's boy. 49 ." he cried.then suddenly observing me examining the swivel we carried amidships. "I'll have no favourites on my ship. to the doctor." I assure you I was quite of the squire's way of thinking. a long brass nine.

" said Long John. "The old one." cried another. tip us a stave. 50 . It was fairly prosperous. aye. all was so new and interesting to me—the brief commands. and before I could lie down to snatch an hour of slumber the Hispaniola had begun her voyage to the Isle of Treasure. soon it was hanging dripping at the bows. and the captain thoroughly understood his business. and I seemed to hear the voice of the captain piping in the chorus. "Now. and boatfuls of the squire's friends. yet I would not have left the deck. mates. Barbecue. the boatswain sounded his pipe and the crew began to man the capstan-bars. and I was dog-tired when. the men bustling to their places in the glimmer of the ship's lanterns. But soon the anchor was short up. and a bottle of rum!" And at the third "Ho!" drove the bars before them with a will." cried one voice. "Aye. a little before dawn. But before we came the length of Treasure Island. soon the sails began to draw. Mr. I might have been twice as weary. coming off to wish him a good voyage and a safe return. two or three things had happened which require to be known. I am not going to relate that voyage in detail. the shrill note of the whistle. the crew were capable seamen. and at once broke out in the air and words I knew so well: "Fifteen men on the dead man's chest—" And then the whole crew bore chorus:— "Yo-ho-ho. Blandly and the like. and the land and shipping to flit by on either side. Even at that exciting moment it carried me back to the old Admiral Benbow in a second. The ship proved to be a good ship. who was standing by.Chapter 4 The Voyage A ll that night we were in a great bustle getting things stowed in their place. We never had a night at the Admiral Benbow when I had half the work. with his crutch under his arm.

turned out even worse than the captain had feared. Sometimes he fell and cut himself. The boatswain. and his knowledge made him very useful. red cheeks. and he would hand himself from one place to another. "Overboard!" said the captain. as the men called him. stuttering tongue. Still more strange was it to see him in the heaviest of weather cross the deck. wily. He had a line or two rigged up to help him across the widest spaces—Long John's earrings. yielding to every movement of the ship. And the coxswain. for after a day or two at sea he began to appear on deck with hazy eye. when one dark night. Barbecue. and propped against it. old. sometimes he lay all day long in his little bunk at one side of the companion. of course. experienced seaman who could be trusted at a pinch with almost anything. so nobody was much surprised. to have both hands as free as possible. But that was by no means the worst of it. He had no command among the men. and so the mention of his name leads me on to speak of our ship's cook. In the meantime. we could never make out where he got the drink. with a head sea. Israel Hands. Aboard ship he carried his crutch by a lanyard round his neck. Trelawney had followed the sea. for he often took a watch himself in easy weather." But there we were. was a careful. and if he were sober deny solemnly that he ever tasted anything but water.Mr. to advance one of the men. as quickly as another man could walk. He was a great confidant of Long John Silver. but it was plain that at this rate he must soon kill himself outright. That was the ship's mystery. Mr. now using the crutch. nor very sorry. get on with his cooking like someone safe ashore. and people did what they pleased with him. He was not only useless as an officer and a bad influence amongst the men. was the likeliest man aboard. he would only laugh if he were drunk. Watch him as we pleased. first of all. and though he kept his old title. Time after time he was ordered below in disgrace. without a mate. and when we asked him to his face. gentlemen. he served in a way as mate. It was something to see him wedge the foot of the crutch against a bulkhead. we could do nothing to solve it. they were called. he disappeared entirely and was seen no more. "Well. sometimes for a day or two he would be almost sober and attend to his work at least passably. Job Anderson. and it was necessary. Arrow. now trailing it alongside by the lanyard. and other marks of drunkenness. that saves the trouble of putting him in irons. 51 .

and if anybody's seen more wickedness. and always glad to see me in the galley. that bird. cap'n?" And the parrot would say. "is. she is. "He had good schooling in his young days and can speak like a book when so minded. the great Cap'n England. and at Malabar. She's sailed with England. two hundred years old. or till John threw his handkerchief over the cage. with great rapidity. The squire made no bones about the 52 . after the famous buccaneer—here's Cap'n Flint predicting success to our v'yage. "come and have a yarn with John. the dishes hanging up burnished and his parrot in a cage in one corner. Hawkins! She was at the boarding of the viceroy of the Indies out of Goa. "Now. and give her sugar from his pocket. Nobody more welcome than yourself. In the meantime. you may lay to that. She would swear the same. She was at the fishing up of the wrecked plate ships. cap'n?" "Stand by to go about. which he kept as clean as a new pin. in a manner of speaking. Here's Cap'n Flint—I calls my parrot Cap'n Flint. my son. passing belief for wickedness. and to look at her you would think she was a babby. the pirate. and Portobello. she's a handsome craft. It's there she learned 'Pieces of eight. Barbecue. "Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight!" till you wondered that it was not out of breath. and brave—a lion's nothing alongside of Long John! I seen him grapple four and knock their heads together—him unarmed." he would say. "Come away. "There. "Ah." he would say. it must be the devil himself. To me he was unweariedly kind. She's been at Madagascar. the squire and Captain Smollett were still on pretty distant terms with one another. Here's this poor old innocent bird o' mine swearing blue fire." John would add." And John would touch his forelock with a solemn way he had that made me think he was the best of men." said the coxswain to me. Hawkins. "He's no common man. and then the bird would peck at the bars and swear straight on. "you can't touch pitch and not be mucked. before chaplain. and none the wiser." the cook would say.' and little wonder." the parrot would scream. three hundred and fifty thousand of 'em. Wasn't you. lad. and Providence. Sit you down and hear the news. she was. and Surinam." All the crew respected and even obeyed him. Hawkins—they live forever mostly.Yet some of the men who had sailed with him before expressed their pity to see him so reduced. maybe. He had a way of talking to each and doing everybody some particular service. But you smelt powder—didn't you.

The Hispaniola rolled steadily. and had a steady breeze abeam and a quiet sea. if the squire heard it was any man's birthday. as you shall hear." But good did come of the apple barrel. "Never knew good come of it yet. We had run up the trades to get the wind of the island we were after—I am not allowed to be more plain—and now we were running down for it with a bright lookout day and night. for instance. he had taken a downright fancy to her. which only proved the qualities of the Hispaniola. chin in air. "A trifle more of that man. dipping her bowsprit now and then with a whiff of spray. and always a barrel of apples standing broached in the waist for anyone to help himself that had a fancy.matter. when driven into a corner. "She'll lie a point nearer the wind than a man has a right to expect of his own married wife." We had some heavy weather." he would say. It was about the last day of our outward voyage by the largest computation. for if it had not been for that. But. would turn away and march up and down the deck. "all I say is. and not a word wasted. He owned. on his part. "and I shall explode. we should sight the Treasure Island. as. All was drawing alow and aloft. make devils." the captain said to Dr. We were heading S. The watch was all forward looking out for the island. As for the ship. when all my work was over and I was on my way to my berth. or at latest before noon of the morrow. The captain. and I don't like the cruise. That's my belief. there was duff on odd days. and they must have been hard to please if they had been otherwise. we're not home again. This was how it came about. that he seemed to have been wrong about the crew. sir. Now. The man at the helm was watching the luff of the sail and whistling away gently 53 . Every man on board seemed well content. it occurred to me that I should like an apple. never spoke but when he was spoken to. everyone was in the bravest spirits because we were now so near an end of the first part of our adventure." The squire.W. he despised the captain. some time that night. at this. Livesey. "Spoil forecastle hands." he would add. that some of them were as brisk as he wanted to see and all had behaved fairly well.S. for it is my belief there was never a ship's company so spoiled since Noah put to sea. Double grog was going on the least excuse. I ran on deck. just after sundown. and then sharp and short and dry. we should have had no note of warning and might all have perished by the hand of treachery.

trembling and listening. and before I had heard a dozen words. but sitting down there in the dark. I would not have shown myself for all the world. in the extreme of fear and curiosity. and that was the only sound excepting the swish of the sea against the bows and around the sides of the ship.to himself. what with the sound of the waters and the rocking movement of the ship. It was Silver's voice. but lay there. for from these dozen words I understood that the lives of all the honest men aboard depended upon me alone. In I got bodily into the apple barrel. 54 . The barrel shook as he leaned his shoulders against it. I had either fallen asleep or was on the point of doing so when a heavy man sat down with rather a clash close by. and found there was scarce an apple left. and I was just about to jump up when the man began to speak.

The same broadside I lost my leg. "Flint was cap'n. 'Tain't earning now. so it was with the old Walrus. but he was hanged like a dog. so let her stay. I laid by nine hundred safe. you may lay to that. he's dead now and under hatches. I was quartermaster. by all accounts." "Ah!" cried another voice. shiver my timbers. and two thousand after Flint. at Corso Castle. I says. it's saving does it. "'Tain't much use for fools. that's my story. along of my timber leg. and he stole.Chapter 5 What I Heard in the Apple Barrel "N o." cried Silver. Where is he now? Well. after England took the viceroy of the Indies. nor nothing. that of the youngest hand on board. as I've seen amuck with the red blood and fit to sink with gold. That was Roberts' men. the man was starving! He begged. "He was the flower of the flock. him that ampytated me—out of college and all—Latin by the bucket. and evidently full of admiration. and starved at that. but for two year before that. it ain't much use. by the powers!" "Well. Where's Flint's? Why. that was. and he cut throats." said the young seaman. and sun-dried like the rest. in a manner of speaking. So it was with the Cassandra. "I never sailed along of him. That ain't bad for a man before the mast—all safe in bank. most on 'em aboard here. like a lord in Parliament. as brought us all safe home from Malabar. then with Flint. Old Pew. not I. you look here: you're young. "But now. you are. old Pew lost his deadlights. and what not. and comed of changing names to their ships—Royal Fortune and so on. spends twelve hundred pound in a year. and glad to get the duff—been begging before that." said Silver. Now. from England. what a ship was christened. some on 'em. It was a master surgeon. first with England. after all. Where's all England's men now? I dunno. was Flint!" "Davis was a man too. but you're as 55 . as had lost his sight. Flint's old ship." said Silver. and might have thought shame. and now here on my own account. you may lay to it—that.

where might you suppose it was?" asked Silver derisively. They was the roughest crew afloat. but I've lived easy in the meantime. But that's not the course I lay. but there's my hand on it now. and none too much anywheres. "usually trusts little among themselves. "At Bristol. I tell you now. and some that was feared of Flint. But my old missis has it all by now. the devil himself would have been feared to go to sea with them. ain't it? You daren't show face in Bristol after this." replied the lad. mark you. There was some that was feared of Pew. "It were. but when I was quartermaster. I puts it all away. Ah. But I have a way with me. some here. I have. some there. And the Spy-glass is sold. if I had been able. I'm not a boasting man. lambs wasn't the word for Flint's old buccaneers. "Here it is about gentlemen of fortune. but Flint his own self was feared of me. "Gentlemen of fortune." returned the cook. why. was Flint's. never denied myself o' nothing heart desires. and when a cruise is done. "I didn't half a quarter like the job till I had this talk with you.smart as paint. he ran on. I mean—it won't be in the same world with old John. says you. Meantime. the most goes for rum and a good fling. by reason of suspicion. like you!" "Well. for I trust you. and to sea again in their shirts. but it'd make jealousy among the mates. I tell you. and slep' soft and ate dainty all my days but when at sea. little supposing he was overheard. When a mate brings a slip on his cable—one as knows me. They lives rough. and I'll talk to you like a man. but they eat and drink like fighting-cocks. I'm fifty. Ah." "Well. I set up gentleman in earnest. I see that when I set my eyes on you. you may lay to it. in banks and places." You may imagine how I felt when I heard this abominable old rogue addressing another in the very same words of flattery as he had used to myself. "it were when we weighed anchor. you may be sure of yourself in old John's ship." answered his companion." "And can you trust your missis?" asked the other. And how did I begin? Before the mast." said the other." 56 . and the old girl's off to meet me. Now. Well now. and proud. Time enough too. I think. and right they are." "Why. that I would have killed him through the barrel. and they risk swinging. I would tell you where. lease and goodwill and rigging. and you seen yourself how easy I keep company. John. once back from this cruise." said the cook. Feared he was. "but all the other money's gone now. it's hundreds of pounds instead of hundreds of farthings in their pockets.

for Silver giving a little whistle." he went on. I'll tell you when. my son. Well then. Cap'n Smollett. first and last. and that. nor ever was. Here's this squire and doctor with a map and such—I don't know where it is." "Well. If I had my way. "We can steer a course. "here's what I want to know." answered Silver. By a "gentleman of fortune" they plainly meant neither more nor less than a common pirate. "Oh. a third man strolled up and sat down by the party. But you're never 57 . and you'll keep sober till I give the word." "Israel." By this time I had begun to understand the meaning of their terms. as soon's the blunt's on board. "He's no fool. I'd have Cap'n Smollett work us back into the trades at least. leastways. you mean. "your head ain't much account. and a pity it is. says you. "We're all forecastle hands. he's hazed me long enough. if you want to know. I want their pickles and wines. Now. Here's a first-rate seaman. do I? No more do you. I don't say no." said the lad Dick. and the little scene that I had overheard was the last act in the corruption of one of the honest hands—perhaps of the last one left aboard. I'll finish with 'em at the island. Then we'll see. we're all seamen aboard here." "Why." "When! By the powers!" cried Silver." said Silver. I reckon. I'd have Cap'n Smollett navigate us half-way back again before I struck." snapped Silver. I know'd Dick was square. and that's when. I mean this squire and doctor shall find the stuff. "Dick's square. and you'll live hard. If I was sure of you all. shaking hands so heartily that all the barrel shook. and you may lay to that. "What I say is. I should think. Israel Hands."And a brave lad you were. The last moment I can manage. is Dick. and you'll speak soft. by thunder! I want to go into that cabin. here's what I say: you'll berth forward. by the powers. then we'd have no blessed miscalculations and a spoonful of water a day. Barbecue: how long are we a-going to stand off and on like a blessed bumboat? I've had a'most enough o' Cap'n Smollett. and smart too." said Silver. But on this point I was soon to be relieved. I do. "Well now. "But look here. "and a finer figurehead for a gentleman of fortune I never clapped my eyes on. but who's to set one? That's what all you gentlemen split on. and help us to get it aboard. sons of double Dutchmen. But I know the sort you are." And he turned his quid and spat. sails the blessed ship for us. when? That's what I say. your ears is big enough. do I?" growled the coxswain. But you're able to hear." returned the voice of the coxswain.

Long John. to wet my pipe like. mates. They wasn't so high and dry.' says he." "So?" says Silver." "Billy was the man for that. I heard Dick begin to rise. "Well." "Everybody knowed you was a kind of a chapling. how many tall ships. and if ever a rough hand come to port. what would you think? Put 'em ashore like maroons? That would have been England's way. But not you! I know you. it was Billy. You'll have your mouthful of rum tomorrow." said Israel. think ye. I'm an easy man—I'm quite the gentleman. I don't want none of these sea-lawyers in the cabin a-coming home. now. like a sweet lad." said Israel. and then someone seemingly stopped 58 . Ah. anyhow?" "There's the man for me!" cried the cook admiringly." cried Israel. but took their fling. Wait is what I say. nohow. or Billy Bones's. Or cut 'em down like that much pork? That would have been Flint's. but when the time comes. "You just jump up. but this time it's serious. where are they?" "But. I'll wring his calf's head off his body with these hands. but my limbs and heart alike misgave me. "Who's a-crossin' of you?" "Why. I've a sick heart to sail with the likes of you!" "Easy all." You may fancy the terror I was in! I should have leaped out and run for it if I had found the strength. he knows the long and short on it now. "you're a man!" "You'll say so. When I'm in Parlyment and riding in my coach. and he died of rum at Savannah. "That's what I call business. I give my vote—death. Well. "rough and ready. but there's others as could hand and steer as well as you. "when we do lay 'em athwart. and get me an apple. they was a sweet crew. and go hang. You hear me? I seen a thing or two at sea. like the devil at prayers. Dick!" he added. they was! On'y. let her rip!" "John. "Only one thing I claim—I claim Trelawney. But mark you here. says you. I have. breaking off. "They liked a bit o' fun. and a p'int to windward.happy till you're drunk. like jolly companions every one." said Silver. he's dead now hisself. Dooty is dooty. Flint was." asked Dick. you would ride in carriages." cries the coxswain. unlooked for. you would. and he died a beggar-man. "'Dead men don't bite. John. why. Israel when you see. If you would on'y lay your course. "And all for this same hurry and hurry and hurry. and where are they now? Pew was that sort. they did. Split my sides." said Silver. have I seen laid aboard? And how many brisk lads drying in the sun at Execution Dock?" cried Silver. Well. what are we to do with 'em." "Right you are.

It was but a word or two that I could catch. in a kind of song. mind. and yet I gathered some important news. you fill a pannikin and bring it up. "Oh. stow that! Don't you get sucking of that bilge. "I trust you. Let's have a go of the rum. "Here's to ourselves. I could not help thinking to myself that this must have been how Mr. plenty of prizes and plenty of duff. I've a gauge on the keg." another with a "Here's to old Flint." Hence there were still faithful men on board. and looking up. and almost at the same time the voice of the lookout shouted. Arrow got the strong waters that destroyed him.him. "Land ho!" 59 . John." and Silver himself saying." said Silver. There's the key. Dick was gone but a little while. and the voice of Hands exclaimed. I found the moon had risen and was silvering the mizzen-top and shining white on the luff of the fore-sail. for besides other scraps that tended to the same purpose. this whole clause was audible: "Not another man of them'll jine. When Dick returned. and during his absence Israel spoke straight on in the cook's ear. one after another of the trio took the pannikin and drank—one "To luck. and hold your luff." Just then a sort of brightness fell upon me in the barrel." "Dick." Terrified as I was.

made a double towards the stern. and a hand we had on board knowed all their names for it. I fancy?" asked the captain." says Captain Smollett. I could hear people tumbling up from the cabin and the forecastle." said the captain. The Hispaniola was laid a couple of points nearer the wind and now sailed a course that would just clear the island on the east. and came out upon the open deck in time to join Hunter and Dr. All three seemed sharp and conical in figure. and rising behind one of them a third and higher hill. and mizzen. by reason of a lookout they kept when they was in the anchorage cleaning. sir." "I have a chart here. So much I saw. I dived behind the fore-sail. for it's there they cleaned their ships. "Yes. "has any one of you ever seen that land ahead?" "I have. A belt of fog had lifted almost simultaneously with the appearance of the moon. And then I heard the voice of Captain Smollett issuing orders. "And now. sir. behind an islet. sir. and slipping in an instant outside my barrel. asking your pardon. "See if that's the place. It were a main place for pirates once." "The anchorage is on the south. almost in a dream. whose peak was still buried in the fog. main. when all was sheeted home. But the main—that's the big un. men. about a couple of miles apart. That hill to the nor'ard they calls the Fore-mast Hill. there are three hills in a row running south'ard—fore. Livesey in the rush for the weather bow. for I had not yet recovered from my horrid fear of a minute or two before. with the cloud on it—they usually calls the Spyglass. There all hands were already congregated. "I've watered there with a trader I was cook in. Skeleton Island they calls it.Chapter 6 Council of War T here was a great rush of feet across the deck. Away to the south-west of us we saw two low hills. sir." 60 ." said Silver.

I have terrible news. He did not know. and Dr. it makes me young again. I wonder? The pirates were too ignorant. and being a slave to tobacco. to be sure. and yet I had by this time taken such a horror of his cruelty. that I had overheard his council from the apple barrel." says he. and you'll hunt goats. You'll bathe. but an accurate copy. "Ah. this island—a sweet spot for a lad to get ashore on. "Yes. you just ask old John. While I was still casting about in my thoughts to find some probable excuse. I reckon. Why. "this is the spot. and anxious as I was to tell them my story. When you want to go a bit of exploring. he hobbled off forward and went below. and very prettily drawed out. I was." "Thank you. "this here is a sweet spot. You may go. and he'll put up a snack for you to take along. Right you was. duplicity. Livesey were talking together on the quarter-deck. I was going to forget my timber leg. Sharp as must have been his annoyance. here it is: 'Capt." And clapping me in the friendliest way upon the shoulder. and there ain't no better place for that in these waters. "to haul your wind and keep the weather of the island." I was surprised at the coolness with which John avowed his knowledge of the island. "Doctor. had meant that I should fetch it. Get the captain and squire down to the cabin. Leastways. Who might have done that.Long John's eyes burned in his head as he took the chart. and you'll climb trees. He had left his pipe below. Livesey called me to his side. and you may lay to that. you will." says he. sir. Aye. This was not the map we found in Billy Bones's chest. Silver had the strength of mind to hide it. Kidd's Anchorage'—just the name my shipmate called it. the squire." said he. complete in all things—names and heights and soundings—with the single exception of the red crosses and the written notes. and then away nor'ard up the west coast. It's a pleasant thing to be young and have ten toes." 61 . and then make some pretence to send for me. but as soon as I was near enough to speak and not to be overheard. let me speak. I durst not interrupt them openly. sir. "I'll ask you later on to give us a help. I broke immediately. my man." says Captain Smollett. Dr. Captain Smollett. and power that I could scarce conceal a shudder when he laid his hand upon my arm. to be sure. and I own I was half-frightened when I saw him drawing nearer to myself. but by the fresh look of the paper I knew he was doomed to disappointment. if such was your intention as to enter and careen. There's a strong current runs along the south. and you'll get aloft on them hills like a goat yourself.

"My lads. "Jim. I found them all three seated round the table. The stern window was open." I did as I was bid. a bottle of Spanish wine and some raisins before them. has just asked me a word or two. and though none of them started. "take a seat. Trelawney. it was plain enough that Dr. but they kept their eyes upon my face from first to last." 62 . as we all know. Jim." cried Long John when the first had subsided. but it rang out so full and hearty that I confess I could hardly believe these same men were plotting for our blood. They spoke together for a little. and the doctor smoking away. "One more cheer for Cap'n Smollett. or raised his voice. And this also was given with a will. "Now. being a very open-handed gentleman." as if he had asked me a question. I'll tell you what I think of this: I think it handsome." said Captain Smollett. nor did any one of the three of them make so much as a movement. as I never ask to see it done better. and not long after." The cheer followed—that was a matter of course." said Dr. you'll give a good sea-cheer for the gentleman that does it. "I've a word to say to you. Hawkins. Livesey. and as short as I could make it. This land that we have sighted is the place we have been sailing for. and as I was able to tell him that every man on board had done his duty. And with that he turned on his heel and rejoined the other two. for the next thing that I heard was the captain giving an order to Job Anderson. and that. with his wig on his lap. And if you think as I do. and you'll have grog served out for you to drink our health and luck. "that was all I wanted to know. or so much as whistled. but next moment he was master of himself. Speak up. Nobody interrupted me till I was done. for it was a warm night. On the top of that the three gentlemen went below. was a sign that he was agitated.The doctor changed countenance a little. why. alow and aloft. I knew. Mr. "Thank you. "you have something to say." said the squire. he and I and the doctor are going below to the cabin to drink your health and luck. told the whole details of Silver's conversation. word was sent forward that Jim Hawkins was wanted in the cabin. and you could see the moon shining behind on the ship's wake. and all hands were piped on deck. Livesey had communicated my request." said he quite loudly.

sir." "Jim here. "I never heard of a crew that meant to mutiny but what showed signs before. Trelawney's permission. counting Hawkins here. captain." "He'd look remarkably well from a yard-arm." "Well. and I was wrong." he added. It would be pleasanter to come to blows. we have time before us—at least until this treasure's found. poured me out a glass of wine." said the captain. But there's no help for it till we know our men. Second point. "the best that I can say is not much." "Captain. there are faithful hands. are the captain. they would rise at once. and all three. A very remarkable man. "Three." declared the squire. sir. We must lay to. "you were right. "with your permission. Smollett." "You. if you please. and I await your orders. I own myself an ass." 63 . this don't lead to anything. Lay to. gentlemen. "First point." began Mr. it's got to come to blows sooner or later. and Jim is a noticing lad." reckoned the captain. "We must go on. as the saying is. "Hands was one of mine." replied the squire. and with Mr. and their service to me. We can count. "But this is talk. and whistle for a wind. "Now." "I did think I could have trusted Hands. drank my good health. sir. because we can't turn back." said the squire. for my luck and courage. Now. Trelawney grandly. "Sir.And they made me sit down at table beside them." returned the captain. Trelawney?" "As upon myself. Third point. I see three or four points. "And to think that they're all Englishmen!" broke out the squire. But this crew. sir. for any man that had an eye in his head to see the mischief and take steps according." said the doctor." added the captain. and each with a bow. It's trying on a man. one after the other. I could find it in my heart to blow the ship up." "No more an ass than I." "Nay. "ourselves make seven. on your own home servants. "can help us more than anyone. that's Silver. I'll name them. and keep a bright lookout. filled my hands with raisins. Mr. "those he had picked up for himself before he lit on Silver. that's my view." said the doctor. and what I propose is to take time by the forelock. Now. I know." returned the captain. and come to blows some fine day when they least expect it. If I gave the word to go about. The men are not shy with him. "beats me. I take it." says Mr. It is for you to speak." said the doctor. about the honest hands?" "Most likely Trelawney's own men.

by an odd train of circumstances. and out of these seven one was a boy. there were only seven out of the twenty-six on whom we knew we could rely. In the meantime. so that the grown men on our side were six to their nineteen. for I felt altogether helpless. it was indeed through me that safety came. talk as we pleased. I put prodigious faith in you. and yet." added the squire. 64 . I began to feel pretty desperate at this."Hawkins.

Part 3 My Shore Adventure 65 .

66 . The hills ran up clear above the vegetation in spires of naked rock. as the saying is. some in clumps. the rudder was banging to and fro. and jumping like a manufactory. Although the breeze had now utterly ceased. I had to cling tight to the backstay. and wild stone spires. on an empty stomach. above all in the morning. and the shore birds were fishing and crying all around us. All were strangely shaped. and from the first look onward. Grey-coloured woods covered a large part of the surface. The booms were tearing at the blocks. and the whole ship creaking. with its grey. melancholy woods. was likewise the strangest in configuration. into my boots. groaning. and the world turned giddily before my eyes. for though I was a good enough sailor when there was way on. but the general colouring was uniform and sad. this standing still and being rolled about like a bottle was a thing I never learned to stand without a qualm or so. and you would have thought anyone would have been glad to get to land after being so long at sea.Chapter 1 How My Shore Adventure Began T he appearance of the island when I came on deck next morning was altogether changed. This even tint was indeed broken up by streaks of yellow sand-break in the lower lands. and the Spy-glass. I hated the very thought of Treasure Island. my heart sank. Perhaps it was this—perhaps it was the look of the island. running up sheer from almost every side and then suddenly cut off at the top like a pedestal to put a statue on. we had made a great deal of way during the night and were now lying becalmed about half a mile to the south-east of the low eastern coast. and by many tall trees of the pine family. which was by three or four hundred feet the tallest on the island. out-topping the others—some singly. although the sun shone bright and hot. and the surf that we could both see and hear foaming and thundering on the steep beach—at least. The Hispaniola was rolling scuppers under in the ocean swell.

or rather two swamps. the trees coming right down to high-water mark. no business. with a spade. and the ship warped three or four miles round the corner of the island and up the narrow passage to the haven behind Skeleton Island. The plunge of our anchor sent up clouds of birds wheeling and crying over the woods." 67 . buried in woods. like someone tasting a bad egg. the shores mostly flat. where I had. All the way in. and though the man in the chains got everywhere more water than was down in the chart. and the boats had to be got out and manned. and instead of keeping the crew in order. emptied out into this pond. the mainland on one side and Skeleton Island on the other. He knew the passage like the palm of his hand." We brought up just where the anchor was in the chart. for up to that day the men had gone briskly and willingly about their business. Anderson was in command of my boat. nor a sound but that of the surf booming half a mile away along the beaches and against the rocks outside. "I don't know about treasure. and the foliage round that part of the shore had a kind of poisonous brightness. and the hilltops standing round at a distance in a sort of amphitheatre. Long John stood by the steersman and conned the ship. "but I'll stake my wig there's fever here. as you might call it. and the men grumbled fiercely over their work. From the ship we could see nothing of the house or stockade. about a third of a mile from each shore. "and this here passage has been dug out. but in less than a minute they were down again and all was once more silent. The heat was sweltering. "There's a strong scour with the ebb. "Well." I thought this was a very bad sign. in a manner of speaking. John never hesitated once. but the very sight of the island had relaxed the cords of discipline." he said. The bottom was clean sand. The place was entirely land-locked. and if it had not been for the chart on the companion. one here. Two little rivers. we might have been the first that had ever anchored there since the island arose out of the seas. I volunteered for one of the boats. "it's not forever." he said. I observed the doctor sniffing and sniffing. he grumbled as loud as the worst. one there. There was not a breath of air moving.We had a dreary morning's work before us. A peculiar stagnant smell hung over the anchorage—a smell of sodden leaves and rotting tree trunks. for they were quite buried among trees. for there was no sign of any wind." he said with an oath. of course.

Mutiny. sir!" in the world. "if I risk another order. "Silver. he'd soon talk 'em out of it if he had the chance. I'll fire a gun half an hour before sundown. Of all the gloomy features of that gloomy afternoon. "My lads. pikes will be going in two shakes. we hold the cabin. If some go. aye. and Redruth were taken into our confidence and received the news with less surprise and a better spirit than we had looked for. hung over us like a thunder-cloud. and then the captain went on deck and addressed the crew. "we've had a hot day and are all tired and out of sorts." returned the captain. the whole ship'll come about our ears by the run. why we'll fight the ship. he was all smiles to everyone. and when there was nothing else to do. Silver'll bring 'em aboard again as mild as lambs. you mark my words. Joyce. if I don't." said the captain. Even the honest hands must have caught the infection. Now. They lay about the deck growling together in talk. do I not? Well. A turn ashore'll hurt nobody—the boats are still in the water. John would be on his crutch in an instant. Hunter. If an order were given. He fairly outstripped himself in willingness and civility. I get a rough answer. for there was not one man aboard to mend another. If they none of them go. and God defend the right. sir. "he's as anxious as you and I to smother things up. well then. and the game's up. if I speak back. Silver will see there's something under that." I believe the silly fellows must have thought they would break their shins over treasure as soon as they were landed. You see. "Sir." "And who is that?" asked the squire. here it is. spending himself in good advice. and as for example no man could have shown a better. loaded pistols were served out to all the sure men. Long John was hard at work going from group to group.If the conduct of the men had been alarming in the boat. and what I propose to do is to give him the chance." It was so decided. as if to conceal the discontent of the rest. this obvious anxiety on the part of Long John appeared the worst. you can take the gigs. This is a tiff." said he. And it was not only we of the cabin party who perceived the danger. it was plain. Let's allow the men an afternoon ashore. The slightest order was received with a black look and grudgingly and carelessly obeyed. we've only one man to rely on. he kept up one song after another. and as many as please may go ashore for the afternoon. We held a council in the cabin. sir. it became truly threatening when they had come aboard. If they all go. with the cheeriest "Aye. for they all came out of 68 . sir.

It was as plain as day. and the bow had struck among the shore-side trees and I had caught a branch and swung myself out and plunged into the nearest thicket while Silver and the rest were still a hundred yards behind. If six men were left by Silver. Then it was that there came into my head the first of the mad notions that contributed so much to save our lives. The honest hands—and I was soon to see it proved that there were such on board—must have been very stupid fellows. that all hands were disaffected by the example of the ringleaders—only some more. But you may suppose I paid no heed. I ran straight before my nose till I could run no longer. began to embark. and since only six were left. leaving Silver to arrange the party. No one took notice of me. Silver was the captain. shot far ahead of her consort. the party was made up. and almost at the same moment she shoved off. only the bow oar saying. In a jiffy I had slipped over the side and curled up in the fore-sheets of the nearest boat. from the other boat. having some start and being at once the lighter and the better manned. Or rather. Had he been on deck. some less. I suppose the truth was this. and the remaining thirteen. but the boat I was in. and a few. Six fellows were to stay on board. He whipped out of sight in a moment." But Silver. jumping. being good fellows in the main. and from that moment I began to regret what I had done. including Silver. it was plain our party could not take and fight the ship. it was equally plain that the cabin party had no present need of my assistance. looked sharply over and called out to know if that were me. Jim? Keep your head down. The crews raced for the beach. The captain was too bright to be in the way. "Jim. It occurred to me at once to go ashore. It is one thing to be idle and skulk and quite another to take a ship and murder a number of innocent men. "Is that you. At last. he could no longer so much as have pretended not to understand the situation. however. and breaking through. Jim!" I heard him shouting. could neither be led nor driven any further. ducking. 69 .their sulks in a moment and gave a cheer that started the echo in a faraway hill and sent the birds once more flying and squalling round the anchorage. and I fancy it was as well he did so. and a mighty rebellious crew he had of it.

I turned hither and thither among the trees. outlandish. and I had now come out upon the skirts of an open piece of undulating. reedy fen. Here and there were flowering plants. through which the nearest of the little rivers soaked its way into the anchorage. I had crossed a marshy tract full of willows. dotted with a few pines and a great number of contorted trees. I judged at once that some of my shipmates must be drawing near along the borders of the fen. like thatch. Nor was I deceived. spreading and growing taller as it went. On the far side of the open stood one of the hills. The marsh was steaming in the strong sun. unknown to me. until it reached the margin of the broad. with two quaint. and soon over the whole surface of the marsh a great cloud of birds hung screaming and circling in the air. or evergreen. and one raised his head from a ledge of rock and hissed at me with a noise not unlike the spinning of a top. about a mile long. and odd. the foliage compact. I now felt for the first time the joy of exploration. I heard afterwards they should be called—which grew low along the sand like brambles. The isle was uninhabited. Little did I suppose that he was a deadly enemy and that the noise was the famous rattle. sandy country. and nothing lived in front of me but dumb brutes and fowls. a wild duck flew up with a quack. swampy trees. oaks. bulrushes. and the outline of the Spy-glass trembled through the haze. the boughs curiously twisted. but pale in the foliage. here and there I saw snakes. The thicket stretched down from the top of one of the sandy knolls. not unlike the oak in growth. like willows. All at once there began to go a sort of bustle among the bulrushes.Chapter 2 The First Blow I was so pleased at having given the slip to Long John that I began to enjoy myself and look around me with some interest on the strange land that I was in. craggy peaks shining vividly in the sun. another followed. my shipmates I had left behind. for soon I 70 . Then I came to a long thicket of these oaklike trees—live.

as I continued to give ear. that since I had been so foolhardy as to come ashore with these desperadoes. once more took up the story and ran on for a long while in a stream. raising my head to an aperture among the leaves. Tom—now. and his voice shook too. as silent as a mouse. and you're brave. but no distinct word came to my hearing. do you think I'd have been here a-warning of you? All's up—you can't make nor mend. And will you tell me you'll let yourself be led 71 . till at last. it's to save your neck that I'm a-speaking. Another voice answered. the least I could do was to overhear them at their councils. all shining with heat. only now and again interrupted by the other. which I now recognized to be Silver's. By the sound they must have been talking earnestly. where'd I be?" "Silver. where'd I be. or has the name for it. was lifted to the other man's in a kind of appeal. which. where Long John Silver and another of the crew stood face to face in conversation. and that my plain and obvious duty was to draw as close as I could manage. hearkening. and you may lay to that! If I hadn't took to you like pitch. smooth. but spoke as hoarse as a crow. under the favourable ambush of the crouching trees. I could tell the direction of the speakers pretty exactly. The sun beat full upon them. and you're honest. like a taut rope—"Silver. and then the first voice. and his great." he was saying. tell me. which lots of poor sailors hasn't. And now I began to feel that I was neglecting my business. for not only did they cease to draw any nearer." said the other man—and I observed he was not only red in the face. At last the speakers seemed to have paused and perhaps to have sat down. This put me in a great fear. "Mate. not only by the sound of their voices but by the behaviour of the few birds that still hung in alarm above the heads of the intruders. Silver had thrown his hat beside him on the ground. but the birds themselves began to grow more quiet and to settle again to their places in the swamp. "you're old. I could see clear down into a little green dell beside the marsh. or I'm mistook. Crawling on all fours. and almost fiercely. blond face. and you've money too.heard the very distant and low tones of a human voice. grew steadily louder and nearer. I made steadily but slowly towards them. and if one of the wild uns knew it. and I crawled under cover of the nearest live-oak and squatted there. "it's because I thinks gold dust of you—gold dust. and closely set about with trees." says he.

his back was broken on the spot. leaping back a yard. smiling away. and long after that death yell was still ringing in my brain." And at this point Tom flashed out like a hero. Far away out in the marsh there arose. resting lightly on his crutch. then another on the back of it. the whole troop of marsh-birds rose again. right between the shoulders in the middle of his back. his eye a mere pin-point in his big face. It struck poor Tom. point foremost. here. have you? Kill me too. I'd sooner lose my hand. "Then rest his soul for a true seaman! And as for you. agile as a monkey even without leg or crutch. and only the rustle of the redescending birds and the boom of the distant surges disturbed the languor of the afternoon. But in heaven's name. He stood where he was. if you can. But he was not destined to go far. but warier than ever. Like enough. "John!" said the sailor. tell me. with the speed and security of a trained gymnast. I'll die in my dooty. like a horse at the spur. But he had no time given him to recover. to judge from the sound. darkening heaven. Tom had leaped at the sound." said the other. Silver. I reckon that'll be Alan. this brave fellow turned his back directly on the cook and set off walking for the beach. If I die like a dog. what was that?" "That?" returned Silver. "Alan!" he cried. But I defies you. if you like. "Hands off!" cried Silver. came news of another. a sound like the cry of anger. at that same moment. as it seemed to me. but gleaming like a crumb of glass. with a simultaneous whirr. John Silver. If I turn agin my dooty—" And then all of a sudden he was interrupted by a noise. and with stunning violence. was on the top of him next moment and had twice 72 . whipped the crutch out of his armpit.away with that kind of a mess of swabs? Not you! As sure as God sees me. Whether he were injured much or little. all of a sudden. The rocks of the Spy-glass re-echoed it a score of times. stretching out his hand. You've killed Alan. and fell. and sent that uncouth missile hurtling through the air. "It's a black conscience that can make you feared of me. John Silver. "That?" Oh. and then one horrid. he gave a sort of gasp. but Silver had not winked an eye. but you're mate of mine no more. silence had re-established its empire. With a cry John seized the branch of a tree." And with that. "Hands off. none could ever tell. long you've been a mate of mine. long-drawn scream. I had found one of the honest hands—well. watching his companion like a snake about to spring. His hands flew up.

Silver and the birds. I could not tell. as I say. good-bye to the squire. I could hear him pant aloud as he struck the blows. but I do know that for the next little while the whole world swam away from before me in a whirling mist. might not I come next? Instantly I began to extricate myself and crawl back again. I could hear hails coming and going between the old buccaneer and his comrades. after Tom and Alan. 73 . could anyone be more entirely lost than I? When the gun fired. of course. and all manner of bells ringing and distant voices shouting in my ear. how should I dare to go down to the boats among those fiends. But now John put his hand into his pocket. I do not know what it rightly is to faint. From my place of ambush. and therefore of my fatal knowledge? It was all over. I had drawn near to the foot of the little hill with the two peaks and had got into a part of the island where the live-oaks grew more widely apart and seemed more like forest trees in their bearing and dimensions. Just before him Tom lay motionless upon the sward. Everything else was unchanged. the meaning of the signal. the doctor. and blew upon it several modulated blasts that rang far across the heated air. and this sound of danger lent me wings. I might be discovered. to the more open portion of the wood. As I did so. so long as it led me from the murderers. I thought. going round and round and topsy-turvy before my eyes. his crutch under his arm. I ran as I never ran before. and without taking any notice. fear grew and grew upon me until it turned into a kind of frenzy. Good-bye to the Hispaniola. More men would be coming. still smoking from their crime? Would not the first of them who saw me wring my neck like a snipe's? Would not my absence itself be an evidence to them of my alarm. and I could scarce persuade myself that murder had been actually done and a human life cruelly cut short a moment since before my eyes. As soon as I was clear of the thicket. scarce minding the direction of my flight. but it instantly awoke my fears. brought out a whistle. I was still running. and as I ran. Indeed. and the captain! There was nothing left for me but death by starvation or death by the hands of the mutineers. All this while. cleansing his blood-stained knife the while upon a wisp of grass. his hat upon his head.buried his knife up to the hilt in that defenceless body. but the murderer minded him not a whit. and the tall Spy-glass hilltop. When I came again to myself the monster had pulled himself together. the sun still shining mercilessly on the steaming marsh and the tall pinnacle of the mountain. They had already slain two of the honest people. with what speed and silence I could manage.

74 . some fifty. The air too smelt more freshly than down beside the marsh.Mingled with these were a few scattered pines. feet high. some nearer seventy. And here a fresh alarm brought me to a standstill with a thumping heart.

But the terror of this new apparition brought me to a stand. Instantly the figure reappeared. and my fear of Silver began to revive in proportion. I could see it was in vain for me to contend in speed with such an adversary. As soon as I remembered I was not defenceless. I was within an ace of calling for help. and as I was so thinking. And immediately I began to prefer the dangers that I knew to those I knew not. and looking sharply behind me over my shoulder. before me this lurking nondescript. and I saw a figure leap with great rapidity behind the trunk of a pine. had somewhat reassured me. running manlike on two legs. for as soon as I began to move in his 75 . and I turned on my heel. cut off upon both sides. it seemed. however wild. Silver himself appeared less terrible in contrast with this creature of the woods. I stood still. and making a wide circuit.Chapter 3 The Man of the Island F rom the side of the hill. My eyes turned instinctively in that direction. From trunk to trunk the creature flitted like a deer. a spout of gravel was dislodged and fell rattling and bounding through the trees. began to head me off. Yet a man it was. I could no longer be in doubt about that. therefore. the recollection of my pistol flashed into my mind. But the mere fact that he was a man. but had I been as fresh as when I rose. I was tired. whether bear or man or monkey. which was here steep and stony. more I knew not. I began to recall what I had heard of cannibals. at any rate. courage glowed again in my heart and I set my face resolutely for this man of the island and walked briskly towards him. It seemed dark and shaggy. behind me the murderers. I could in no wise tell. He was concealed by this time behind another tree trunk. I was now. What it was. but unlike any man that I had ever seen. began to retrace my steps in the direction of the boats. stooping almost double as it ran. and cast about for some method of escape. but he must have been watching me closely.

I know. mate. and I knew it stood for a horrible kind of punishment common enough among the buccaneers. and loops of tarry gaskin. showing a childish pleasure in the presence of a fellow creature." he continued. "Ben Gunn." said he. I am. like a rusty lock. mate. drew back. 76 . my heart is sore for Christian diet." All this time he had been feeling the stuff of my jacket. smoothing my hands. even his lips were black." I could now see that he was a white man like myself and that his features were even pleasing. mostly—and woke up again. "If ever you can get aboard again. which was the one thing solid in his whole accoutrement. "Were you shipwrecked?" "Nay. was burnt by the sun. "you shall have cheese by the stone. bits of stick. wherever it was exposed. But. "I'm poor Ben Gunn. who's to hinder you?" "Not you. says you?" he repeated. threw himself on his knees and held out his clasped hands in supplication. and his fair eyes looked quite startling in so dark a face. and I haven't spoke with a Christian these three years. You mightn't happen to have a piece of cheese about you." "If ever I can get aboard again. and berries. "Why. now. "Marooned three years agone." I had heard the word. "and lived on goats since then. and generally. he was the chief for raggedness. About his waist he wore an old brass-buckled leather belt. "Who are you?" I asked." said I. a man can do for himself. came forward again. His skin. "Three years!" I cried. to my wonder and confusion. Then he hesitated. in the intervals of his speech. and oysters. brass buttons. looking at my boots.direction he reappeared and took a step to meet me. "marooned. At that I once more stopped. and at last. Of all the beggar-men that I had seen or fancied. says I." he answered. He was clothed with tatters of old ship's canvas and old sea-cloth. and here I were. many's the long night I've dreamed of cheese—toasted. now? No? Well. and his voice sounded hoarse and awkward. Wherever a man is. in which the offender is put ashore with a little powder and shot and left behind on some desolate and distant island." was my reply. and this extraordinary patchwork was all held together by a system of the most various and incongruous fastenings. But at my last words he perked up into a kind of startled slyness.

the first chance I have. Jim. you'll bless your stars. And I'll tell you what: I'll make a man of you. do you suppose?" 77 . pious boy. quite pleased apparently. And I was a civil. she did. "Well. and the ringleader too. mate?" "Jim. worse luck for the rest of us." "Not a man—with one—leg?" he gasped." I answered. you wouldn't think I had had a pious mother—to look at me?" he asked. Now. I'm bound I'll be good. and it begun with chuck-farthen on the blessed grave-stones! That's what it begun with. and at that he give it quite a wring. for instance. now. And." says he. "That were his name. But where was you. "Ah. well. "but I had—remarkable pious. And here's what it come to. Jim. and so my mother told me. you was the first that found me!" And at this there came suddenly a lowering shadow over his face." he said." He was still holding me by the wrist. the pious woman! But it were Providence that put me here." I now felt sure that the poor fellow had gone crazy in his solitude. as you couldn't tell one word from another. of course. "Now you—what do you call yourself. Jim"—looking all round him and lowering his voice to a whisper—"I'm rich. for he repeated the statement hotly: "Rich! Rich! I says. I began to believe that I had found an ally. Jim. Jim. but I'll tell you true. you tell me true: that ain't Flint's ship?" he asked. and I'm back on piety. I've thought it all out in this here lonely island. I've lived that rough as you'd be ashamed to hear of. Jim. you will. as you ask me—there are some of Flint's hands aboard. and Flint is dead. At this I had a happy inspiration. "Jim. "Now. and I know it. "If you was sent by Long John. Jim. You don't catch me tasting rum so much. and I suppose I must have shown the feeling in my face. and could rattle off my catechism that fast. "I'm as good as pork. and I answered him at once." "He's the cook. and predicked the whole. "Why. "It's not Flint's ship. "Silver?" I asked." said he. not in particular. but just a thimbleful for luck. and he tightened his grasp upon my hand and raised a forefinger threateningly before my eyes."And right you was. but it went further'n that. Ah. no." he cried." I told him. "Ah. Silver!" says he. and I see the way to.

'As for you.' The cap'n was displeased at that." "Ah. Jim. let's land and find it. but you see. "so you would. Billy Bones was the mate. How he done it. that your squire would prove a liberal-minded one in case of help—him being in a clove hitch.' said I. and us standing off and on in the old Walrus. and sudden death.' says he. 'and a spade." "And a passage home?" he added with a look of great shrewdness. and a suit of livery clothes. I'll tell you what." he went on. you just put your trust in Ben Gunn—Ben Gunn's the man to do it. and stay. It was battle. He heard me with the keenest interest. by thunder!' That's what he said. 'here's Flint's treasure. "As it was." returned Ben Gunn. "You're a good lad. you mind. "Now. she'll beat up for more. "Well. would he be likely to come down to the toon of." said he. What I mean is." I cried. he was quartermaster. 'Boys. Long John." he said. Jim. and by way of answer told him the whole story of our voyage and the predicament in which we found ourselves. Twelve days they looked for it. and every day they had the worse word for me. we should want you to help work the vessel home.' says they. And besides. But. 'Ah. as you remark?" I told him the squire was the most liberal of men.' he says. until one fine morning all hands went aboard. now. "I didn't mean giving me a gate to keep. 'here's a musket. and the six all dead—dead and buried. "the squire's a gentleman." And he seemed very much relieved. if you like. not a man aboard us could make out. Benjamin Gunn. and we sighted this island. "Aye. I was in another ship three years back. and his head done up in a blue scarf. Would you think it likely. "Why. "So much I'll tell you. if we got rid of the others. and 78 . I were in Flint's ship when he buried the treasure. 'you can go ashore. leastways—him against six.' they says. but my messmates were all of a mind and landed.I had made my mind up in a moment. and no more. say one thousand pounds out of money that's as good as a man's own already?" "I am sure he would. he and six along—six strong seamen. that's not my mark. there he was. and mortal white he looked about the cutwater. murder. and they asked him where the treasure was. One fine day up went the signal. ain't you? Well. and when I had done he patted me on the head." said I. and here come Flint by himself in a little boat. "and you're all in a clove hitch. and such. all hands were to share. The sun was getting up. They was ashore nigh on a week. 'but as for the ship.

left. "Nor he weren't." "Well. "that's the hitch." And he pinched me again in the most confidential manner. I says. mind that—in a gen'leman born than in these gen'leman of fortune. "Then. nor so much as a Bible and a flag. they're all mastheaded on them mountings for the fear of Benjamin Gunn. and sometimes he would maybe think of his old mother. If the worst come to the worst. You can stay here and find Flint's money for yourself. and then. Jim. Jim. and he puts a precious sight more confidence—a precious sight. so be as she's alive (you'll say). "Follow me. but it seemed more solemn like. all the echoes of the island awoke and bellowed to the thunder of a cannon. there's my boat. when I thought maybe a Sunday would be about doo. neither—that's the words. "Left. Nor I weren't." he went on." And I began to run towards the anchorage. and not a bite of Christian diet from that day to this. look at me. Well.' they says." I said. we might try that after dark. while close at my side the marooned man in his goatskins trotted easily and lightly." he continued. "then you'll up. three years have I been here. that I made with my two hands. fair and rain. although the sun had still an hour or two to run. Three years he were the man of this island. 79 . but the most part of Gunn's time (this is what you'll say)—the most part of his time was took up with another matter. says you. mate Jim! Under the trees with you! Theer's where I killed my first goat. "They have begun to fight!" I cried. But now." says he." said he. nows and thens. Do I look like a man before the mast? No. light and dark. for how am I to get on board?" "Ah. "What's that?" For just then. for sure. "You see the mounds? I come here and prayed." And with that he winked and pinched me hard. Ben Gunn was short-handed—no chapling. "I don't understand one word that you've been saying. and you'll say this: Gunn is a good man (you'll say). my terrors all forgotten. And then you'll give him a nip. Hi!" he broke out. you says. But that's neither here nor there. "keep to your left hand. he must have meant. having been one hisself. and sometimes he would maybe think upon a prayer (says you). They don't come down here now. "Just you mention them words to your squire. you look here. neither expecting nor receiving any answer.pick-axe. neither. Ah! And there's the cetemery"—cemetery." So he kept talking as I ran. like I do. "Well. I keep her under the white rock. It weren't quite a chapel. says you.

Another pause. I beheld the Union Jack flutter in the air above a wood. 80 . and then.The cannon-shot was followed after a considerable interval by a volley of small arms. not a quarter of a mile in front of me.

Part 4 The Stockade 81 .

with a big silk 82 . in the direction of the stockade upon the chart. The six scoundrels were sitting grumbling under a sail in the forecastle. One of them was whistling "Lillibullero. it seemed an even chance if we should see the lad again. all might have turned out differently. "Lillibullero" stopped off. With the men in the temper they were in. but Hunter and I pulled straight in." Waiting was a strain. The two who were left guarding their boats seemed in a bustle at our appearance. we should have fallen on the six mutineers who were left aboard with us. if ever a man smelt fever and dysentery. I suppose. and decided to sit quietly where they were and hark back again to "Lillibullero. and away to sea. and to complete our helplessness. Had there been a breath of wind. and I steered so as to put it between us. it was in that abominable anchorage. the squire. and I could see the pair discussing what they ought to do. The pitch was bubbling in the seams. but we were alarmed for his safety." There was a slight bend in the coast. down came Hunter with the news that Jim Hawkins had slipped into a boat and was gone ashore with the rest. but they had their orders. even before we landed we had thus lost sight of the gigs. I jumped out and came as near running as I durst. Had they gone and told Silver.Chapter 1 Narrative Continued by the Doctor: How the Ship Was Abandoned I t was about half past one—three bells in the sea phrase—that the two boats went ashore from the Hispaniola. and it was decided that Hunter and I should go ashore with the jolly-boat in quest of information. and I were talking matters over in the cabin. hard by where the river runs in. The captain. ashore we could see the gigs made fast and a man sitting in each. It never occurred to us to doubt Jim Hawkins. The gigs had leaned to their right. We ran on deck. But the wind was wanting. the nasty stench of the place turned me sick. slipped our cable.

they stood quiet in shelter and shot the others like partridges. "There's a man. thinking of the harm he had led us to. and enclosing the spring. and things to eat. and the boat was soon alongside and I aboard the schooner. without door or opening. By good fortune Hunter pulled a good oar. but more still to have been a doctor. with plenty of arms and ammunition. doctor. We made the water fly. they might have held the place against a regiment. with three or four loaded muskets and a mattress for protection. for. short of a complete surprise. Hunter brought the boat round under the stern-port. and then the thing was completed by a paling six feet high. I had not gone a hundred yards when I reached the stockade. And so now I made up my mind instantly. as white as a sheet. the good soul! And one of the six forecastle hands was little better." says Captain Smollett. I found them all shaken.handkerchief under my hat for coolness' sake and a brace of pistols ready primed for safety." was my first thought. and with no time lost returned to the shore and jumped on board the jolly-boat. on the knoll. What particularly took my fancy was the spring. There is no time to dilly-dally in our work. For though we had a good enough place of it in the cabin of the Hispaniola. nodding towards him. All round this they had cleared a wide space. and excellent wines. This was how it was: a spring of clear water rose almost at the top of a knoll. "new to this work. they had clapped a stout log-house fit to hold two score of people on a pinch and loopholed for musketry on either side. when he heard the cry. I was thinking this over when there came ringing over the island the cry of a man at the point of death. We put old Redruth in the gallery between the cabin and the forecastle. The people in the log-house had them in every way. He came nigh-hand fainting. "Jim Hawkins is gone." I told my plan to the captain. too strong to pull down without time and labour and too open to shelter the besiegers. All they wanted was a good watch and food. and between us we settled on the details of its accomplishment. The squire was sitting down. Well. It is something to have been an old soldier. Another touch of the rudder and that man would join us. I was not new to violent death—I have served his Royal Highness the Duke of Cumberland. and Joyce and I set 83 . and got a wound myself at Fontenoy—but I know my pulse went dot and carry one. there had been one thing overlooked—we had no water. as was natural.

dog!" cries the captain. and after a little consultation one and all tumbled down the fore companion. of these six very faint-hearted seamen. for the time. Not one of the men ashore had a musket. but with half a dozen muskets—Hunter and I returned to the jolly-boat and loaded ourselves once more. But when they saw Redruth waiting for them in the sparred galley. and I. when the two servants took up their position in the block house. and my invaluable medicine chest. thinking no doubt to take us on the rear. muskets. The squire was waiting for me at the stern window. kegs of pork. By this time. sculled back to the Hispaniola. And the head popped back again. Pork. and we fell to loading the boat for our very lives. tumbling things in as they came. that man's dead. powder. of course. we had the jolly-boat loaded as much as we dared. Joyce and I got out through the stern-port. one of them whipped ashore and disappeared. We had soon touched land in the same place as before and set to provision the block house. "Mr. and before they could get within range for pistol shooting. and biscuit was the 84 . and just before we lost sight of them behind the little point. Hands. If any one of you six make a signal of any description. and we heard no more." They were a good deal taken aback. a cask of cognac. but I feared that Silver and the others might be close at hand. but we had the advantage of arms. and all might very well be lost by trying for too much. bags of biscuits. and the latter hailed the coxswain. heavily laden." he said. "Lillibullero" was dropped again. They had the advantage of numbers. till the whole cargo was bestowed. "Down. and tossed our stores over the palisade. This second trip fairly aroused the watchers along shore. Then. the squire and the captain stayed on deck.to work loading her with powder tins. they went about ship at once. That we should have risked a second boat load seems more daring than it really was. "here are two of us with a brace of pistols each. to be sure. who was the principal man aboard. I had half a mind to change my plan and destroy their boats. In the meantime. He caught the painter and made it fast. and we made for shore again as fast as oars could take us. all his faintness gone from him. All three made the first journey. So we proceeded without pausing to take breath. with all my power. we flattered ourselves we should be able to give a good account of a half-dozen at least. and a head popped out again on deck. leaving Joyce to guard them—one man.

Smollett. "I am leaving this ship. and the ship was swinging round to her anchor." There was a sudden scuffle. By this time the tide was beginning to ebb. and though this reassured us for Joyce and Hunter. and we had shoved off and given way. I'm risking my life and the lives of these good gentlemen every second. who were well to the eastward. "don't hang so long in stays. men. and I dare say not one of the lot of you's as bad as he makes out. it warned our party to be off.cargo. 85 . I give you thirty seconds to join me in. "Gray." said he. a little louder. with only a musket and a cutlass apiece for the squire and me and Redruth and the captain." Still no reply. which we then brought round to the ship's counter. And the next moment he and the captain had dropped aboard of us. Redruth retreated from his place in the gallery and dropped into the boat. I know you are a good man at bottom. "I'm with you. and came running to the captain like a dog to the whistle." resumed Mr." continued the captain. sir. so that we could see the bright steel shining far below us in the sun. I have my watch here in my hand. Voices were heard faintly halloaing in the direction of the two gigs. sandy bottom. We were clear out of the ship. and out burst Abraham Gray with a knife cut on the side of the cheek. on the clean. "Now. a sound of blows. "do you hear me?" There was no answer from the forecastle. "It's to you. my fine fellow. The rest of the arms and powder we dropped overboard in two fathoms and a half of water. and I order you to follow your captain. "Come. but not yet ashore in our stockade." There was a pause. to be handier for Captain Smollett." said he. Abraham Gray—it's to you I am speaking.

" said he. Five grown men. the ebb was now making—a strong rippling current running westward through the basin. but the worst of it was that we were swept out of our true course and away from our proper landing-place behind the point. "The tide keeps washing her down. and three of them—Trelawney. the little gallipot of a boat that we were in was gravely overloaded. we must even lie it. Redruth. I was steering. we were afraid to breathe. "If it's the only course that we can lie. In the first place. pork. "We must keep upstream. "I cannot keep her head for the stockade. Even the ripples were a danger to our overloaded craft.Chapter 2 Narrative Continued by the Doctor: The Jolly-boat's Last Trip T his fifth trip was quite different from any of the others. it's hard to say where we 86 . where the pirates might appear at any moment. Several times we shipped a little water. were at the oars. sir. "if once we dropped to leeward of the landing-place. sir. "We'll never get ashore at this rate. sir. sir." said I." I tried and found by experiment that the tide kept sweeping us westward until I had laid her head due east." said I to the captain. All the same." he went on. The gunwale was lipping astern." returned the captain. The captain made us trim the boat. or just about right angles to the way we ought to go. and the captain—over six feet high. and bread-bags. You see. Could you pull a little stronger?" "Not without swamping the boat. while he and Redruth. If we let the current have its way we should come ashore beside the gigs. "You must bear up. if you please—bear up until you see you're gaining. two fresh men. Add to that the powder. In the second place. and then south'ard and seaward down the straits by which we had entered in the morning. was already more than she was meant to carry. and we got her to lie a little more evenly. and my breeches and the tails of my coat were all soaking wet before we had gone a hundred yards.

" said the captain. out and away. "They could never get the gun ashore. and there." cried the captain. and if they did." The squire raised his gun. or you'll swamp the boat. and we leaned over to the other side to keep the balance." "The current's less a'ready. quite as if nothing had happened." said I. we put the boat's head direct for the landing-place. and I thought his voice was a little changed. they could never haul it through the woods. We had entirely forgotten the long nine. as they called the stout tarpaulin cover under which she sailed. sir. sir. Suddenly the captain spoke up again. "Israel was Flint's gunner.should get ashore. "Mr. "I have thought of that. "Who's the best shot?" asked the captain. the rowing ceased. Not only that. who was sitting in the fore-sheets. besides the chance of being boarded by the gigs. But the worst of it was that with the course I now held we turned our broadside instead of our stern to the Hispaniola and offered a target like a barn door. Trelawney. Trelawney was as cool as steel. and a stroke with an axe would put it all into the possession of the evil ones abroad. At any risk." said I. the way we go the current must slacken. doctor. "The gun!" said he. He looked to the priming of his gun." said the man Gray. All hands stand by to trim her when he aims." "Look astern. to our horror. for we had all quietly made up our minds to treat him like one of ourselves. 87 . and then we can dodge back along the shore. and I could keep her steady for the goal. if possible." replied the captain." said I." said Gray hoarsely. and all was so nicely contrived that we did not ship a drop. By this time we had got so far out of the run of the current that we kept steerage way even at our necessarily gentle rate of rowing. I could hear as well as see that brandy-faced rascal Israel Hands plumping down a round-shot on the deck. sir? Hands. my man. Trelawney. will you please pick me off one of these men." "Thank you. "you can ease her off a bit. getting off her jacket. "easy with that gun. but it flashed into my mind at the same moment that the round-shot and the powder for the gun had been left behind. were the five rogues busy about her. "Mr. whereas. "Now. for I made sure he was thinking of a bombardment of the fort.

sir. when you see the match." said I. "If I durst. and looking in that direction I saw the other pirates trooping out from among the trees and tumbling into their places in the boats. quick as an echo. in three feet of water. Where the ball passed. and Hands. for just as Trelawney fired." returned the captain. "Jack ashore. The 88 . though he was not dead. down he stooped. Tell us. you know. "Here come the gigs. We were now close in. This was the first that Jim heard. then. quite gently. The ebb-tide. the ball whistled over him. and I could see him trying to crawl away. was in consequence the most exposed." cried the captain." "Only one of the gigs is being manned. which had so cruelly delayed us. squire. on our feet. sir. who was at the muzzle with the rammer. "the crew of the other most likely going round by shore to cut us off. slewed round upon the swivel." said the captain. thirty or forty strokes and we should beach her. and we had shipped but little water in the process. the little point had already concealed it from our eyes. "Hold!" cried the captain. it's the round-shot. sir." In the meanwhile we had been making headway at a good pace for a boat so overloaded. They had never so much as looked at their fallen comrade. "We mustn't mind if we swamp her now. Carpet bowls! My lady's maid couldn't miss. we had no luck. facing each other. for the ebb had already disclosed a narrow belt of sand below the clustering trees. by this time. and it was one of the other four who fell. was now making reparation and delaying our assailants. not one of us precisely knew. leaving the captain and myself. However. and we'll hold water. but I fancy it must have been over our heads and that the wind of it may have contributed to our disaster. all's up. It's not them I mind.They had the gun. the boat sank by the stern. The one source of danger was the gun. The cry he gave was echoed not only by his companions on board but by a great number of voices from the shore. "Give way. At any rate. the sound of the squire's shot not having reached him. If we can't get ashore." "They'll have a hot run. The report fell in at the same instant of time. "I'd stop and pick off another man. "Ready!" cried the squire." But it was plain that they meant nothing should delay their shot. The gig was no longer to be feared. And he and Redruth backed with a great heave that sent her stern bodily under water." I added.

they would have the sense and conduct to stand firm. and came up again drenched and bubbling. and to make things worse. only two guns out of five remained in a state for service. we waded ashore as fast as we could. As for the captain. To add to our concern. So far there was no great harm. leaving behind us the poor jolly-boat and a good half of all our powder and provisions. polite man for a valet and to brush one's clothes. The other three had gone down with the boat. we heard voices already drawing near us in the woods along shore. and we could wade ashore in safety. With all this in our minds. and like a wise man. he had carried his over his shoulder by a bandoleer. But there were all our stores at the bottom. that we knew. Hunter was steady. but not entirely fitted for a man of war. by a sort of instinct. Joyce was a doubtful case—a pleasant. if Hunter and Joyce were attacked by half a dozen. No lives were lost. and we had not only the danger of being cut off from the stockade in our half-crippled state but the fear before us whether. lock uppermost. Mine I had snatched from my knees and held over my head. 89 .other three took complete headers.

but Hunter and Joyce from the block house. and at every step we took the voices of the buccaneers rang nearer. We began to rejoice over our good success when just at that moment a pistol cracked in the bush. turned and plunged into the trees. The four shots came in rather a scattering volley. observing Gray to be unarmed. and before they recovered. "Captain. but they did the business: one of the enemy actually fell. and poor Tom Redruth stumbled and fell his length on the ground. We struck the enclosure about the middle of the south side. Forty paces farther we came to the edge of the wood and saw the stockade in front of us. It did all our hearts good to see him spit in his hand. "Trelawney is the dead shot. Both the squire 90 . Give him your gun. and the rest." said I. seven mutineers—Job Anderson. his own is useless. and almost at the same time. a ball whistled close past my ear. They paused as if taken aback." They exchanged guns. without hesitation. At the same time.Chapter 3 Narrative Continued by the Doctor: End of the First Day's Fighting W e made our best speed across the strip of wood that now divided us from the stockade. After reloading. It was plain from every line of his body that our new hand was worth his salt. not only the squire and I. Soon we could hear their footfalls as they ran and the cracking of the branches as they breasted across a bit of thicket. silent and cool as he had been since the beginning of the bustle. He was stone dead—shot through the heart. knit his brows. I began to see we should have a brush for it in earnest and looked to my priming. hung a moment on his heel to see that all was fit for service. had time to fire. at their head—appeared in full cry at the southwestern corner. we walked down the outside of the palisade to see to the fallen enemy. and Trelawney. and make the blade sing through the air. the boatswain. I handed him my cutlass.

Poor old fellow. He had lain like a Trojan behind his mattress in the gallery. but as we had nothing to aim at. The captain and Gray were already examining him. my man. a Bible. "say you forgive me. "Tom. I believe the readiness of our return volley had scattered the mutineers once more. ink." said the squire. he had with his own hand bent and run up the colours. without another word. "Be I going. complaint. so be it. "Tom. it was he that was to die. or even acquiescence from the very beginning of our troubles till now. had turned out a great many various stores—the British colours. "you're going home. whom I had observed to be wonderfully swollen about the chest and pockets. The squire dropped down beside him on his knees and kissed his hand. This seemed mightily to relieve him. a coil of stoutish rope. groaning and bleeding. "It's the custom. won't you?" "Would that be respectful like. sullen. for we were suffered without further molestation to get the poor old gamekeeper hoisted over the stockade and carried. and with the help of Hunter he had set it up at the corner of the log-house where the trunks crossed and made an angle. from me to you. doctor?" he asked. and well. when we had laid him down in the loghouse to die. amen!" After a little while of silence. he was the oldest of our party by a score of years. and pounds of tobacco. old. He re-entered the log-house and set about counting up the stores as if nothing else existed. squire?" was the answer." said I. sir. Then.and I returned the shot. fear. pen. it is probable we only wasted powder. crying like a child. and I saw with half an eye that all was over." he replied. he had not uttered one word of surprise. And not long after. he passed away. In the meantime the captain. "Howsoever." he added apologetically. he had followed every order silently. serviceable servant. and now. and as soon as all was over." "I wish I had had a lick at them with the gun first. He had found a longish fir-tree lying felled and trimmed in the enclosure. he said he thought somebody might read a prayer. came forward with another flag and reverently spread it on the body. the log-book. 91 . climbing on the roof. Then we reloaded and turned our attention to poor Tom. into the log-house. doggedly. But he had an eye on Tom's passage for all that.

" replied the captain. sir. "in how many weeks do you and squire expect the consort?" I told him it was a question not of weeks but of months. "Oho!" said the captain. "and making a large allowance. good feeling. Would it not be wiser to take it in?" "Strike my colours!" cried the captain." observed the captain. not I". Volunteers to go and bring in pork. "You can calculate for yourself. It mayn't be good divinity. All through the evening they kept thundering away. "Captain. "the wood in front of us is likely clear." Then he pulled me aside. a round-shot passed high above the roof of the log-house and plumped far beyond us in the wood." "How do you mean?" I asked."Don't you take on." I said. seamanly." he said. we'll do. our stores should be uncovered." returned the captain." said the squire. but neither sooner nor later. "As for powder and shot. Just then. but it's a fact. and as soon as he had said the words. yes. with a roar and a whistle. Dr. it was good policy besides and showed our enemies that we despised their cannonade. and the ball descended inside the stockade. that if we were not back by the end of August Blandly was to send to find us. The ebb has made a good while. "No. and though one popped in through the roof of the log-house and out again through the floor. "Why. For it was not only a piece of stout. I think we all agreed with him. It must be the flag they are aiming at. "It's a pity. That's what I mean. "Dr. "All's well with him. "There is one good thing about all this. sir. but they had to fire so high that the shot fell dead and buried itself in the soft sand." he said. scratching his head. my lads. "Blaze away! You've little enough powder already. no fear for a hand that's been shot down in his duty to captain and owner. we lost that second load." And he pointed to the dead body under the flag. very short—so short. that we're perhaps as well without that extra mouth. Livesey. "the house is quite invisible from the ship. I should say we were pretty close hauled. the aim was better. sir. we soon got used to that sort of horse-play and minded it no more than cricket. Livesey. sir. 92 . We had no ricochet to fear. shaking the squire's hand. Ball after ball flew over or fell short or kicked up the sand in the enclosure. for all the gifts of Providence. scattering a cloud of sand but doing no further damage. But the rations are short." At the second trial.

safe and sound. owner's servant. pulling an oar or so to hold her steady against the current. owner. cabin-boy— And at the same time. Thomas Redruth. David Livesey. John Hunter and Richard Joyce. James Hawkins. John Trelawney. is that you?" came the cries. 93 . master. And I ran to the door in time to see Jim Hawkins. "Somebody hailing us. Abraham Gray. ship's doctor. A hail on the land side. but it proved a useless mission. come climbing over the stockade. The mutineers were bolder than we fancied or they put more trust in Israel's gunnery. For four or five of them were busy carrying off our stores and wading out with them to one of the gigs that lay close by. and every man of them was now provided with a musket from some secret magazine of their own." said Hunter. The captain sat down to his log. I was wondering over poor Jim Hawkins' fate. Silver was in the stern-sheets in command. landsman. landsmen—being all that is left faithful of the ship's company—with stores for ten days at short rations. "Doctor! Squire! Captain! Hullo. came ashore this day and flew British colours on the log-house in Treasure Island. carpenter's mate. Hunter. shot by the mutineers. owner's servants. who was on guard. and here is the beginning of the entry: Alexander Smollett. Well armed.Gray and hunter were the first to come forward. they stole out of the stockade.

Just wheer you found him today.Chapter 4 Narrative Resumed by Jim Hawkins: The Garrison in the Stockade A s soon as Ben Gunn saw the colours he came to a halt.' says you. No.'" "Well." he added." "Far more likely it's the mutineers. and I reckon your friends has had the best of it. from about noon observation to about six bells. you don't make no doubt of that. And you won't forget my words. 'A precious sight (that's what you'll say). "That!" he cried. or I'm mistook. "that may be so. all told. and you wish to see the squire or the doctor. Ah. You have something to propose. And him that comes is to have a white thing in his hand. till I see your born gen'leman and gets it on his word of honour. You're a good boy. as was made years and years ago by Flint. his match were never seen. Oh! And you'll say this: 'Ben Gunn. Jim. There's been blows too. you know where to find him. "Why. and he's to come alone. that's your friends. a precious sight more confidence'—and then nips him. where you're going—not rum wouldn't." "Well. "not you." said I." "Nay. on'y Silver—Silver was that genteel. in a place like this." returned Ben. Ben Gunn is fly. "Why. "Now. Silver would fly the Jolly Roger. "And when Ben Gunn is wanted. not he. 'has reasons of his own." said he. Rum wouldn't bring me there. sure enough. and here they are ashore in the old stockade." 94 ." said I. "there's your friends. He were afraid of none. "I believe I understand. and so be it. he was the man to have a headpiece. And he pinched me the third time with the same air of cleverness. Now. Is that all?" "And when? says you. and sat down. and you're to be found where I found you. all the more reason that I should hurry on and join my friends. stopped me by the arm. where nobody puts in but gen'lemen of fortune. but you're on'y a boy." I answered. mate. was Flint! Barring rum.

near the mouth of the river. I saw. some distance further down the spit and rising from among low bushes."Good. I lay for some time watching the bustle which succeeded the attack. an isolated rock. and a cannonball came tearing through the trees and pitched in the sand not a hundred yards from where we two were talking. a great fire was glowing among the trees. and reasons of his own. the sea breeze was rustling and tumbling in the woods and ruffling the grey surface of the anchorage. Even as I looked. It was the last of the cannonade. I had begun. the tide. though still I durst not venture in the direction of the stockade. Away. sure enough. there came another red flash and another report that sent the echoes clattering. The next moment each of us had taken to his heels in a different direction. "and now may I go?" "You won't forget?" he inquired anxiously. you wouldn't go for to sell Ben Gunn? Wild horses wouldn't draw it from you? No. and one more round-shot whistled through the air. Jim. but. Men were demolishing something with axes on the beach near the stockade—the poor jolly-boat. and peculiarly white in colour. I was pretty far down on the low. the air. sandy spit that encloses the anchorage to the east. that's the mainstay. there was the Jolly Roger—the black flag of piracy—flying from her peak. Jim. and is joined at half-water to Skeleton Island. as I rose to my feet. in a manner. But there was a sound in their voices which suggested rum. or so it seemed to me. At length I thought I might return towards the stockade. whom I had seen so gloomy. Well. was far out. and between that point and the ship one of the gigs kept coming and going. and after a long detour to the east. says you. But towards the end of the bombardment. pretty high. what would you say but there'd be widders in the morning?" Here he was interrupted by a loud report. The sun had just set. where the balls fell oftenest. "Precious sight. always pursued. And if them pirates camp ashore. by these terrifying missiles. says you. after the heat of the day. crept down among the shore-side trees." said I. too. and balls kept crashing through the woods. and now. Reasons of his own. shouting at the oars like children. and great tracts of sand lay uncovered. as between man and man. chilled me through my jacket. then"—still holding me—"I reckon you can go. if you was to see Silver. I moved from hiding-place to hidingplace. I afterwards discovered. the men. For a good hour to come frequent reports shook the island. And. Jim. 95 . The Hispaniola still lay where she had anchored. to pluck up my heart again.

If we had been allowed to sit idle. and we could see by the stumps what a fine and lofty grove had been destroyed. all of fir on the land side. only where the streamlet ran down from the kettle a thick bed of moss and some ferns and little creeping bushes were still green among the sand. it was but a little part of the smoke that found its way out. All hands were 96 . we should all have fallen in the blues. sand in our teeth. still unburied. and the rest eddied about the house and kept us coughing and piping the eye. and sunk "to her bearings. sand dancing in the spring at the bottom of the kettle. I had soon told my story and began to look about me. lay along the wall. under the Union Jack. Very close around the stockade—too close for defence. of the stockade. Most of the soil had been washed away or buried in drift after the removal of the trees. for all the world like porridge beginning to boil. of which I have spoken. sand in our suppers. stiff and stark. the new man. There was sand in our eyes. and was soon warmly welcomed by the faithful party. The log-house was made of unsquared trunks of pine—roof. The latter stood in several places as much as a foot or a foot and a half above the surface of the sand. Add to this that Gray. The slopes of the knoll and all the inside of the stockade had been cleared of timber to build the house. or shoreward side. and under this porch the little spring welled up into an artificial basin of a rather odd kind—no other than a great ship's kettle of iron. with the bottom knocked out. but towards the sea with a large admixture of live-oaks. Then I skirted among the woods until I had regained the rear. walls. Little had been left besides the framework of the house. The cold evening breeze. among the sand." as the captain said. but in one corner there was a stone slab laid down by way of hearth and an old rusty iron basket to contain the fire. they said—the wood still flourished high and dense. There was a porch at the door. whistled through every chink of the rude building and sprinkled the floor with a continual rain of fine sand.It occurred to me that this might be the white rock of which Ben Gunn had spoken and that some day or other a boat might be wanted and I should know where to look for one. had his face tied up in a bandage for a cut he had got in breaking away from the mutineers and that poor old Tom Redruth. and floor. Our chimney was a square hole in the roof. but Captain Smollett was never the man for that.

I was put sentry at the door. But our best hope. Hunter. "A man who has been three years biting his nails on a desert island. Every time we had a crack at them. it was decided." says he. the squire. can't expect to appear as sane as you or me. the three chiefs got together in a corner to discuss our prospects. when we had eaten our pork and each had a good stiff glass of brandy grog. keeping up our spirits and lending a hand wherever it was wanted." he said once. It doesn't lie in human nature. two were sent out for firewood. the stores being so low that we must have been starved into surrender long before help came. sir. and looked at me. Jim. "is a better man than I am. And when I say that it means a deal. and one at least—the man shot beside the gun—severely wounded. Jim. very nutritious. cheese. the doctor was named cook. You've seen my snuff-box. From nineteen they were already reduced to fifteen. and the captain himself went from one to another. the reason being that in my snuff-box I carry a piece of Parmesan cheese—a cheese made in Italy. two others were wounded. "I do not know. and he divided us into watches." "If there's any doubt about the matter. "Is this Ben Gunn a man?" he asked. if he were not dead. From time to time the doctor came to the door for a little air and to rest his eyes. "That man Smollett. It appears they were at their wits' end what to do. haven't you? And you never saw me take snuff. and whenever he did so." returned the doctor. but not enough for the captain's fancy. "Well. and he shook his head over it and told us we "must get back to this tomorrow rather livelier. "just see the good that comes of being dainty in your food. Then he put his head on one side. sir. Tired though we all were. two more were set to dig a grave for Redruth. he is." I answered. and Joyce upon the other." said I. The doctor and Gray and I for one. which were almost smoked out of his head. that's for Ben Gunn!" Before supper was eaten we buried old Tom in the sand and stood round him for a while bare-headed in the breeze. "I am not very sure whether he's sane. A good deal of firewood had been got in. he had a word for me. Well. Was it cheese you said he had a fancy for?" "Yes. Jim. was to kill off the buccaneers until they either hauled down their flag or ran away with the Hispaniola." Another time he came and was silent for a while." Then. we 97 .called up before him.

" "First ship that ever I lost. "Flag of truce!" I heard someone say. I was dead tired." he added. As for the first. It's always a ship. "Silver himself!" And at that. And besides that. with the extremest care. The rest had long been up and had already breakfasted and increased the pile of firewood by about half as much again when I was wakened by a bustle and the sound of voices. ran to a loophole in the wall. and then." said Captain Smollett. I slept like a log of wood. and when I got to sleep. we could hear them roaring and singing late into the night. "if we are not all shot down first they'll be glad to be packing in the schooner. the doctor staked his wig that. the half of them would be on their backs before a week.were to take it. saving our own lives. and as for the second. which was not till after a great deal of tossing. and rubbing my eyes. up I jumped. with a cry of surprise. immediately after. I suppose. and they can get to buccaneering again. as you may fancy. 98 . we had two able allies—rum and the climate. though we were about half a mile away. "So. camped where they were in the marsh and unprovided with remedies.

and careful. "Who goes? Stand. "Cap'n Silver! Don't know him. This time it was the other man who replied. It was plainly a damp. and no bones about it." And then he turned again to the mutineers. Cap'n Smollett. It was still quite early. But where Silver stood with his lieutenant. Gray. The chill and the vapour taken together told a poor tale of the island. the other. and they waded knee-deep in a low white vapour that had crawled during the night out of the morass. there were two men just outside the stockade. one of them waving a white cloth. if you please. is it? My heart. all was still in shadow. These poor lads have chosen me cap'n." cried Silver. unhealthy spot." said the captain. Dr. or we fire. Jim. and the coldest morning that I think I ever was abroad in—a chill that pierced into the marrow. no less a person than Silver himself. west. all hands to load muskets." "We're willing to submit. And we could hear him adding to himself. "And what do you want with your flag of truce?" he cried. Who's he?" cried the captain." Then he hailed the buccaneer. Lively. Livesey take the north side. He turned and spoke to us. after your desertion. "Cap'n Silver. "Keep indoors. and the tops of the trees shone rosily in the sun. should any be intended." he shouted. All I ask is your word. keeping himself carefully out of the way of a treacherous shot. to let me 99 . the east. "Doctor's watch on the lookout.Chapter 5 Silver's Embassy S ure enough. men. The captain was in the porch. if we can come to terms. "Ten to one this is a trick. and here's promotion!" Long John answered for himself. to come on board and make terms. standing placidly by. feverish. The sky was bright and cloudless overhead. sir. sir. The watch below." "Flag of truce. sir"—laying a particular emphasis upon the word "desertion. men. "Me. "Cap'n.

" 100 . threw over his crutch. there you all are together like a happy family." shouted Long John cheerily. cap'n?" complained Long John. He was tricked out in his best. with his elbows on his knees. Then he advanced to the stockade." "Why." said the captain. But he stuck to it like a man in silence." "My man." We could see the man who carried the flag of truce attempting to hold Silver back." Silver had terrible hard work getting up the knoll. indeed. and at last arrived before the captain. If there's any treachery. "I have not the slightest desire to talk to you. his head in his hands. sir. What with the steepness of the incline. "Here you are. and the soft sand. "if you had pleased to be an honest man. you might have been sitting in your galley. hung as low as to his knees. and you may lay to that." "You ain't a-going to let me inside. I know a gentleman. here's my service. you can come. If you wish to talk to me. cap'n. and one minute to get out o' shot before a gun is fired. he and his crutch were as helpless as a ship in stays. and then you can go hang!" "Well. Jim. and with great vigour and skill succeeded in surmounting the fence and dropping safely to the other side. A sweet pretty place you have of it here. that's all. Why. an immense blue coat. cap'n. Nor was that wonderful. well. Silver. "A word from you's enough." "That's enough. there's Jim! The top of the morning to you. to be sure. It's your own doing. it'll be on your side. the thick tree stumps." returned the sea-cook. got a leg up. I had already deserted my eastern loophole and crept up behind the captain. whom he saluted in the handsomest style. Doctor. "It's a main cold morning." said the captain. and a fine laced hat was set on the back of his head. that's all. I will confess that I was far too much taken up with what was going on to be of the slightest use as sentry." said Captain Smollett. sitting down as he was bidden on the sand. Lasses and Lads. and his eyes fixed on the water as it bubbled out of the old iron kettle in the sand.safe and sound out of this here stockade. who had now seated himself on the threshold. He was whistling "Come. But Silver laughed at him aloud and slapped him on the back as if the idea of alarm had been absurd. raising his head. Ah. "you'll have to give me a hand up again. "You had better sit down. and the Lord help you. thick with brass buttons. a common mutineer and pirate. You're either my ship's cook—and then you were treated handsome—or Cap'n Silver. to sit outside upon the sand. in a manner of speaking. my man. seeing how cavalier had been the captain's answer.

and that's yours. I don't deny it was a good lay. What I mean is. "You needn't be so husky with a man. maybe I was shook myself. Maybe you think we were all a sheet in the wind's eye. there ain't a particle of service in that. you can't do it. maybe that's why I'm here for terms." said Silver. we want your chart. but now he pulled himself together." replied Silver." said he." "That won't do with me. "We know exactly what you meant to do. Smollett. I began to have an inkling." replied the captain. But you mark me."If you have anything to say. "I would set no limits to what gentlemen might 101 . but you would never have guessed it from his tone. Cap'n Smollett. you look here." returned Long John. As for me. by thunder! We'll have to do sentry-go and ease off a point or so on the rum. Now. for now. I know that. haven't you?" "That's as may be. "Like enough. "Well." interrupted the captain. Some of you pretty handy with a handspike-end. "We want that treasure. my man. you see. I'd 'a caught you at the act. and I reckoned up with glee that we had only fourteen enemies to deal with. I reckon. and we'll have it—that's our point! You would just as soon save your lives. and you may lay to it. All that Silver said was a riddle to him. "Avast there!" cried Mr." said the captain. not he. I never meant you no harm. I began to suppose that he had paid the buccaneers a visit while they all lay drunk together round their fire. to be sure. my man. here it is. it won't do twice. Well now." And the captain looked at him calmly and proceeded to fill a pipe. better say it. He had been growing nettled before. and I asked him nothing. So there's my mind for you. I would see you and him and this whole island blown clean out of the water into blazes first. and what's more." "Well?" says Captain Smollett as cool as can be. well. "Right you were. you have. He wasn't dead when I got round to him. "Oh. on that. "Gray told me nothing." This little whiff of temper seemed to cool Silver down. cap'n. myself. that was a good lay of yours last night. I would. You have a chart. I was on'y dog tired. and we don't care. And I'll not deny neither but what some of my people was shook—maybe all was shook. Ben Gunn's last words came back to my mind. "If Abe Gray—" Silver broke out. "Dooty is dooty. and if I'd awoke a second sooner. But I'll tell you I was sober. my man.

If you'll come up one by one. for what is spoke to one is spoke to all. my lad. "Who'll give me a hand up?" he roared. Now. or might not. You can't fight us—Gray. hand over hand. there. and we'll offer you a choice. you'll own that's talking. and so you'll find. and I'll give my affydavy. to clap you somewhere safe ashore. please. now leaning forward to spit. If you won't. I'll put a bullet in your back when next I meet you. He shook the fire out of his pipe." Silver's face was a picture. "Give me a hand up!" he cried. as before to speak the first ship I sight. You do that. my name is Alexander Smollett. as the case were. then you can stay here. Or if that ain't to your fancy. "Now. You give us the chart to get the treasure by. Master Silver. Either you come aboard along of us. and double quick. And seein' as how you are about to take a pipe. man for man. And I hope"—raising his voice—"that all hands in this here block house will overhaul my words. and they're the last good words you'll get from me. and drop shooting poor seamen and stoving of their heads in while asleep. I'll engage to clap you all in irons and take you home to a fair trial in England. some of my hands being rough and having old scores on account of hazing. We'll divide stores with you. now looking each other in the face." returned the captain. and you've seen the last of me but musket-balls. upon my word of honour." said the captain." "Very good. unarmed. his eyes started in his head with wrath. got away from five of you. I'll make so free as do likewise. Tramp. now you. You can't sail the ship—there's not a man among you fit to sail the ship. "Refuse that. now stopping their tobacco. you can. I stand here and tell you so." Captain Smollett rose from his seat and knocked out the ashes of his pipe in the palm of his left hand. "Not I. Your ship's in irons. and then I'll give you my affy-davy. by thunder!" answered John. once the treasure shipped. and the two men sat silently smoking for quite a while. I've flown my sovereign's colours.consider shipshape. "Is that all?" he asked. and I'll see you all to Davy Jones." And he filled a pipe and lighted it." resumed Silver. for in the name of heaven. Handsomer you couldn't look to get. 102 . cap'n. you're on a lee shore. You can't find the treasure. "here it is. "Every last word. and send 'em here to pick you up. Bundle out of this. It was as good as the play to see them. "Now you'll hear me.

and disappeared in an instant afterwards among the trees. Them that die'll be the lucky ones. "That's what I think of ye. Before an hour's out. Growling the foulest imprecations. ploughed down the sand. he crawled along the sand till he got hold of the porch and could hoist himself again upon his crutch. Then he spat into the spring. laugh! Before an hour's out. 103 . Laugh. I'll stove in your old block house like a rum puncheon." And with a dreadful oath he stumbled off. by thunder. ye'll laugh upon the other side. was helped across the stockade. after four or five failures. "There!" he cried.Not a man among us moved. by the man with the flag of truce.

five. the captain. Doctor. and a minute ago I should have said we fought with discipline. and on each of these tables some ammunition and four loaded muskets were laid ready to the hand of the defenders. you'd have been better in your berth." The doctor's watch were all back at their loopholes. Then he spoke. We're outnumbered. two again." said the captain. the rest were busy loading the spare muskets. and we mustn't have smoke in our eyes. "Quarters!" he roared. "the chill is past. It was the first time we had ever seen him angry.Chapter 6 The Attack A s soon as Silver disappeared. "Gray. as he said. as the saying is. and a flea in his ear. and before the hour's out. and everyone with a red face. "Toss out the fire. we shall be boarded. The captain looked on for a while in silence. if you choose. "I've given Silver a broadside. 104 . the cutlasses lay ranged." said he. as we all slunk back to our places. I've no manner of doubt that we can drub them." Then he went the rounds and saw. as he said. Trelawney. you may be certain. there were only two loopholes. I'm surprised at you. but we fight in shelter. I thought you had worn the king's coat! If that was how you served at Fontenoy. Mr. sir. and on the north side. And then. on the south side where the porch was. and the embers smothered among sand. turned towards the interior of the house and found not a man of us at his post but Gray. sir. you might say—one about the middle of each side. east and west. I needn't tell you that. "I'll put your name in the log. the firewood had been built into four piles—tables. who had been closely watching him. Trelawney. There was a round score of muskets for the seven of us. I pitched it in red-hot on purpose. On the two short sides of the house. In the middle. that all was clear. you've stood by your duty like a seaman." he said. "My lads." The iron fire-basket was carried bodily out by Mr.

and we stood there. take the east side. So some seconds passed. not the gleam of a musket-barrel betrayed the presence of our foes." returned Joyce with the same quiet civility. from every side of the enclosure. Hunter." said Joyce. the captain out in the middle of the block house with his mouth very tight and a frown on his face. help yourself. you'll want it before you've done. Hawkins. my man. you stand by the west. Gray. "Hang them!" said the captain. like a string of geese. in his own mind. Hunter. "Thank you. "Doctor. Hawkins. and back to your post to eat it." As the captain had said. straining ears and eyes—the musketeers with their pieces balanced in their hands. "if I see anyone. and fire through the porch. Mr. there. Trelawney. sir. my lad. serve out a round of brandy to all hands. sir. but the remark had set us all on the alert. shirts thrown open at the neck and rolled up to the shoulders. it's there the danger is. we'll stand by to load and bear a hand. "This is as dull as the doldrums. till suddenly Joyce whipped up his musket and fired."Hawkins hasn't had his breakfast. each at his post. Not a bough waved. Soon the sane was baking and the resin melting in the logs of the block house. the plan of the defence. Jackets and coats were flung aside. things would begin to look dirty." he resumed. it fell with all its force upon the clearing and drank up the vapours at a draught. whistle for a wind. you will take the door. keep within. now. Nothing followed for a time. shot behind shot. but not one entered. "If you please. "Lively. the captain completed. you are the best shot—you and Gray will take this long north side." continued Captain Smollett. am I to fire?" "I told you so!" cried the captain. the chill was past. "See. 105 . Joyce. Several bullets struck the loghouse. An hour passed away. and as the smoke cleared away and vanished. If they can get up to it and fire in upon us through our own ports. in a fever of heat and anxiety." And just at that moment came the first news of the attack. and don't expose yourself." And while this was going on. The report had scarcely died away ere it was repeated and repeated from without in a scattering volley. As soon as the sun had climbed above our girdle of trees. the stockade and the woods around it looked as quiet and empty as before. with the five loopholes. neither you nor I are much account at the shooting.

From the east and west only a single shot had been fired. one had fled. "I believe not. There had come many from the north—seven by the squire's computation. Livesey. "Three shots were fired on this side. "No. Two had bit the dust. Squire and Gray fired again and yet again." muttered Captain Smollett. How many should say there were on your side. "Load his gun. and the men among the trees shouted back to encourage them. Mr. they would take possession of any unprotected loophole and shoot us down like rats in our own stronghold. Trelawney?" But this was not so easily answered. a little cloud of pirates leaped from the woods on the north side and ran straight on the stockade. sir. The four who had boarded made straight before them for the building. Suddenly. In a moment. appeared at the middle loophole. while from the shelter of the woods seven or eight men. doctor?" "I know precisely. and a rifle ball sang through the doorway and knocked the doctor's musket into bits. for he was on his feet again in a crack and instantly disappeared among the trees. "And how many on yours. Hawkins. sir. If the mutineers succeeded in crossing the stockade." "Next best thing to tell the truth. The boarders swarmed over the fence like monkeys. three men fell. two back on the outside." "Three!" repeated the captain. Nor had we much time left to us for thought." replied Joyce. but such was the hurry of the marksmen that not one appears to have taken effect. eight or nine according to Gray. But Captain Smollett made no change in his arrangements. "At 'em. The head of Job Anderson. 106 . one forwards into the enclosure. the four pirates had swarmed up the mound and were upon us. shouting as they ran. one was evidently more frightened than hurt. he argued. kept up a hot though useless fire on the log-house. the boatswain. each evidently supplied with several muskets. I saw the three flashes—two close together—one farther to the west. with a loud huzza. all hands—all hands!" he roared in a voice of thunder. But of these."Did you hit your man?" asked the captain. Several shots were fired. that the attack would be developed from the north and that on the other three sides we were only to be annoyed by a show of hostilities. four had made good their footing inside our defences. therefore." said Dr. It was plain. the fire was once more opened from the woods. At the same moment.

I perceived a change in his voice. Next moment I was face to face with Anderson. and just as my eyes fell upon him. and with one stunning blow. Mechanically. had even got upon the top and thrown a leg across. And yet. under cover. wrenched it from his hands. Of the four who had scaled the palisade. but as the blow still hung impending. When I had first sallied from the door. He roared aloud. and fight 'em in the open! Cutlasses!" cried the captain. and with my cutlass raised. another pirate grasped Hunter's musket by the muzzle.At the same moment. in a red night-cap. and his hanger went up above his head. I snatched a cutlass from the pile. leaped in a trice upon one side. Another had been shot at a loophole in the very act of firing into the house and now lay in agony. and even in the hurly-burly. "Out. as I had seen. gave me a cut across the knuckles which I hardly felt. out. and someone. the fight was over and the victory was ours. laid the poor fellow senseless on the floor. had cut down the big boatswain ere he had time to recover from his last blow. I had not time to be afraid. Meanwhile a third. I dashed out of the door into the clear sunlight. turned eastwards. The log-house was full of smoke. beat down his guard and sent him sprawling on his back with a great slash across the face. A third. Cries and confusion. another still just showing his head above the top of the stockade. appeared suddenly in the doorway and fell with his cutlass on the doctor. the other mutineers had been already swarming up the palisade to make an end of us. One man. lads. "Round the house. at an exposed enemy. I knew not whom. Someone was close behind. the doctor had disposed of at a blow. ran round the corner of the house. plucked it through the loophole. and one loud groan rang in my ears. the flashes and reports of pistol-shots. I obeyed. one only 107 . in this breath of time. flashing in the sunlight. so short had been the interval that when I found my feet again all was in the same posture. and missing my foot in the soft sand. Right in front. running unharmed all around the house. to which we owed our comparative safety. A moment since we were firing. following close behind me. Our position was utterly reversed. with his cutlass in his mouth. the doctor was pursuing his assailant down the hill. the pistol still smoking in his hand. at the same time snatching another. the fellow with the red night-cap still half-way over. rolled headlong down the slope. now it was we who lay uncovered and could not return a blow. Well. Gray. lads! Round the house!" cried the captain.

or thought we were. We were seven to nineteen then. The house was by this time somewhat cleared of smoke. Smollett. Joyce by his. was now clambering out again with the fear of death upon him. and he. Hunter lay beside his loophole. Five against three leaves us four to nine. that's better.remained unaccounted for. and we saw at a glance the price we had paid for victory. you may be bound. "Come. while right in the centre. "And you. "The captain's wounded. "All that could. That's better odds than we had at starting." "Five!" cried the captain. back into cover. lads." But his words were unheeded. and that's as bad to bear. "Have they run?" asked Mr. The survivors would soon be back where they had left their muskets." 108 ." returned the doctor. no shot was fired. In three seconds nothing remained of the attacking party but the five who had fallen. "but there's five of them will never run again. having left his cutlass on the field. stunned. never to move again. one as pale as the other. and at any moment the fire might recommence. the squire was supporting the captain. and the last boarder made good his escape and disappeared with the rest into the wood. four on the inside and one on the outside of the palisade. shot through the head. Trelawney. "Fire—fire from the house!" cried the doctor." said Mr. The doctor and Gray and I ran full speed for shelter.

Part 5 My Sea Adventure 109 .

but in the meantime. do what we could. My own accidental cut across the knuckles was a flea-bite. without sign or sound. and Captain Smollett. the doctor took up his hat and pistols. He lingered all day. put the chart in his pocket. and when they had talked to their hearts' content. Out of the eight men who had fallen in the action. nor so much as speak when he could help it. he went to his Maker. and for weeks to come. Hunter. only three still breathed—that one of the pirates who had been shot at the loophole. breathing loudly like the old buccaneer at home in his apoplectic fit. and even outside we could hardly tell what we were at.Chapter 1 How My Sea Adventure Began T here was no return of the mutineers—not so much as another shot out of the woods. Doctor Livesey patched it up with plaster and pulled my ears for me into the bargain. and some time in the following night. the mutineer indeed died under the doctor's knife. After dinner the squire and the doctor sat by the captain's side awhile in consultation. They had "got their rations for that day." as the captain put it. never recovered consciousness in this world. and we had the place to ourselves and a quiet time to overhaul the wounded and get dinner. the doctor said. for horror of the loud groans that reached us from the doctor's patients. his wounds were grievous indeed. As for the captain. and Hunter. he must not walk nor move his arm. Squire and I cooked outside in spite of the danger. the second had only torn and displaced some muscles in the calf. No organ was fatally injured. girt on a cutlass. but the bones of his chest had been crushed by the blow and his skull fractured in falling. not badly. it being then a little past noon. but not dangerous. He was sure to recover. and of these. Anderson's ball—for it was Job that shot him first—had broken his shoulder-blade and touched the lung. the first two were as good as dead. and with a musket over his 110 .

from starving till far on in the next day. would keep me. and if I am right. and then washing up the things from dinner. my only plan was to take French leave and slip out when nobody was watching. which was not by any means so right. the house being stifling hot and the little patch of sand inside the palisade ablaze with midday sun. this disgust and envy kept growing stronger and stronger. and as I already had a powder-horn and bullets. and no one then observing me." says I. I was a fool." "Well. a thing quite worth doing. "is Dr. "He's about the last of this crew for that. but I was determined to do it with all the precautions in my power. "the doctor has his idea." said Gray. I began to get another thought into my head. I take it. but in the meantime.shoulder crossed the palisade on the north side and set off briskly through the trees." "I take it. find the white rock I had observed last evening. till at last. "Why. being near a bread-bag." replied I. I am. while I sat grilling. as I still believe. and that was so bad a 111 . should anything befall me. What I began to do was to envy the doctor walking in the cool shadow of the woods with the birds about him and the pleasant smell of the pines. so thunder-struck he was at this occurrence. shipmate. "mad he may not be. I took the first step towards my escapade and filled both pockets of my coat with biscuit. I felt myself well supplied with arms. it was not a bad one in itself. The next thing I laid hold of was a brace of pistols. you mark my words. I was to go down the sandy spit that divides the anchorage on the east from the open sea. at least. Gray and I were sitting together at the far end of the block house. with my clothes stuck to the hot resin." I was right. he's going now to see Ben Gunn. overbold act." said he. if you like. to be out of earshot of our officers consulting. These biscuits. All the time I was washing out the block house. Livesey mad?" "Why no. But as I was certain I should not be allowed to leave the enclosure. and so much blood about me and so many poor dead bodies lying all around that I took a disgust of the place that was almost as strong as fear. as appeared later. and ascertain whether it was there or not that Ben Gunn had hidden his boat. but if he's not. in the name of Davy Jones. As for the scheme I had in my head. and certainly I was going to do a foolish. and Gray took his pipe out of his mouth and fairly forgot to put it back again.

and I had made my mind up. it was a help towards saving all of us. I made a bolt for it over the stockade and into the thickest of the trees. Alongside lay one of the gigs. Well. The Hispaniola. under lee of Skeleton Island. as though it had the sooner blown itself out by its unusual violence. was already at an end. and I scarce believe there is one spot in the island where a man would be out of earshot of their noise. and the anchorage. the coast was clear. till. and before my absence was observed I was out of cry of my companions. the Jolly Roger hanging from her peak. It was already late in the afternoon. but a certain tossing of foliage and grinding of boughs which showed me the sea breeze had set in higher than usual. The sea breeze. Behind me was the sea. This was my second folly. I took my way straight for the east coast of the island. but like the first. I walked along beside the surf with great enjoyment.way of doing it as made the thing itself wrong. and saw the sea lying blue and sunny to the horizon and the surf tumbling and tossing its foam along the beach. As I continued to thread the tall woods. in that unbroken mirror. thundering and thundering by day and night. in front the anchorage. the air be without a breath. Silver in the stern-sheets—him I could always recognize—while a couple of men were leaning over the stern bulwarks. Apparently they were 112 . carrying great banks of fog. I found an admirable opportunity. as things at last fell out. but still these great rollers would be running along all the external coast. it had been succeeded by light. the surface smooth and blue. I could hear from far before me not only the continuous thunder of the surf. although still warm and sunny. variable airs from the south and south-east. I took the cover of some thick bushes and crept warily up to the ridge of the spit. one of them with a red cap—the very rogue that I had seen some hours before stride-legs upon the palisade. lay still and leaden as when first we entered it. as I left but two sound men to guard the house. far worse than the first. I have never seen the sea quiet round Treasure Island. The sun might blaze overhead. and a few steps farther I came forth into the open borders of the grove. for I was determined to go down the sea side of the spit to avoid all chance of observation from the anchorage. thinking I was now got far enough to the south. Soon cool draughts of air began to reach me. was exactly portrayed from the truck to the waterline. But I was only a boy. The squire and Gray were busy helping the captain with his bandages.

Soon after. Well. and stretched upon that a covering of goat-skin. and in the centre of the dell. and I can give you no fairer idea of Ben Gunn's boat than by saying it was like the first and the worst coracle ever made by man. unearthly screaming. but I have seen one since. and the man with the red cap and his comrade went below by the cabin companion. the sun had gone down behind the Spyglass. though I had soon remembered the voice of Captain Flint and even thought I could make out the bird by her bright plumage as she sat perched upon her master's wrist. often on all fours. this. But the great advantage of the coracle it certainly possessed. This was to slip out under cover of the night. even for me. and let her go ashore where she fancied. for it was exceedingly light and portable. lifted the side of the tent. I had quite made up my mind that the mutineers. after their repulse of the morning. Just about the same time. of course. hear no word of what was said. and a double paddle for propulsion. which at first startled me badly. now that I had found the boat. I had not then seen a coracle. cut the Hispaniola adrift. but in the meantime I had taken another notion and become so obstinately fond of it that I would have carried it out. visible enough above the brush. and it took me a goodish while to get up with it. I thought. I believe. hidden by banks and a thick underwood about knee-deep. it would be a fine 113 . I dropped into the hollow. though at that distance—upwards of a mile—I could. a little tent of goat-skins. and as the fog was collecting rapidly. like what the gipsies carry about with them in England. you would have thought I had had enough of truantry for once.talking and laughing. There was one thwart set as low as possible. sure enough. such as the ancient Britons made. that grew there very plentifully. in the teeth of Captain Smollett himself. was still some eighth of a mile further down the spit. a kind of stretcher in the bows. Night had almost come when I laid my hand on its rough sides. and I can hardly imagine that it could have floated with a full-sized man. with the hair inside. lopsided framework of tough wood. All at once there began the most horrid. and there was Ben Gunn's boat—home-made if ever anything was home-made. among the scrub. I saw I must lose no time if I were to find the boat that evening. a rude. Right below it there was an exceedingly small hollow of green turf. the jolly-boat shoved off and pulled for shore. it began to grow dark in earnest. The white rock. The thing was extremely small. crawling. had nothing nearer their hearts than to up anchor and away to sea.

It was a night out of ten thousand for my purpose. absolute blackness settled down on Treasure Island. there were but two points visible on the whole anchorage. a mere blur of light upon the darkness. 114 . The other. set my coracle.thing to prevent. keel downwards. The fog had now buried all heaven. I shouldered the coracle and groped my way stumblingly out of the hollow where I had supped. and made a hearty meal of biscuit. on the surface. by which the defeated pirates lay carousing in the swamp. indicated the position of the anchored ship. and what I saw was merely a reflection on the fog of the strong rays that flowed from the stern window. And when. and wading a little way in. The ebb had already run some time. As the last rays of daylight dwindled and disappeared. and now that I had seen how they left their watchmen unprovided with a boat. before I came to the edge of the retreating water. at last. One was the great fire on shore. with some strength and dexterity. and I had to wade through a long belt of swampy sand. I thought it might be done with little risk. where I sank several times above the ankle. She had swung round to the ebb—her bow was now towards me—the only lights on board were in the cabin. Down I sat to wait for darkness.

the rippling current bubbled and chattered like a little mountain stream. and there lay the Hispaniola right in the fairway. as it seemed (for. The hawser was as taut as a bowstring. she always made more leeway than anything else. suddenly cut. the brisker grew the current of the ebb). She turned in every direction but the one I was bound to go. if I were so foolhardy as to cut the Hispaniola from her anchor. Do as you pleased. and I am very sure I never should have made the ship at all but for the tide. I and the coracle would be knocked clean out of the water. All round the hull. in the blackness.Chapter 2 The Ebb-tide Runs T he coracle—as I had ample reason to know before I was done with her—was a very safe boat for a person of my height and weight. I was alongside of her hawser and had laid hold. and forced her up into the 115 . both buoyant and clever in a sea-way. I should have had to abandon my design. Even Ben Gunn himself has admitted that she was "queer to handle till you knew her way. One cut with my sea-gully and the Hispaniola would go humming down the tide. By good fortune. the most part of the time we were broadside on. paddle as I pleased. Just while I was meditating. and if fortune had not again particularly favoured me." Certainly I did not know her way. but she was the most crossgrained. and the current so strong she pulled upon her anchor. is a thing as dangerous as a kicking horse. and the next moment. lop-sided craft to manage. but it next occurred to my recollection that a taut hawser. then her spars and hull began to take shape. So far so good. the farther I went. First she loomed before me like a blot of something yet blacker than darkness. hardly to be missed. caught the Hispaniola. But the light airs which had begun blowing from the south-east and south had hauled round after nightfall into the south-west. the tide was still sweeping me down. Ten to one. This brought me to a full stop. a puff came. and turning round and round was the manoeuvre she was best at.

that had been Flint's gunner in former days. for I expected every moment to be swamped. with a droop and a quaver at the end of every verse. with a drunken cry. and every now and then there came forth such an explosion as I thought was sure to end in blows. till the vessel swung only by two. Oaths flew like hailstones. I could see the glow of the great camp-fire burning warmly through the shore-side trees. and they were still drinking. droning sailor's song. old. for even while I was listening. end for end. On shore. But they were not only tipsy. I felt the hawser slacken in my grasp. and to my great joy. and I was almost instantly swept against the bows of the Hispaniola. opened it with my teeth. At last the breeze came. I began to pay more heed. cut the last fibres through. But each time the quarrel passed off and the voices grumbled lower for a while." And I thought it was a ditty rather too dolefully appropriate for a company that had met such cruel losses in the morning. of course. a dull. across the current. The other was. I had heard it on the voyage more than once and remembered these words: "But one man of her crew alive. Now. the schooner sidled and drew nearer in the dark. All this time I had heard the sound of loud voices from the cabin. and the hand by which I held it dip for a second under water. one of them. Israel Hands. At the same time. I now shoved 116 . spinning slowly. What put to sea with seventy-five. Both men were plainly the worse of drink. but to say truth. But. and with a good. my friend of the red night-cap. my mind had been so entirely taken up with other thoughts that I had scarcely given ear. One I recognized for the coxswain's. took out my gully. the schooner began to turn upon her heel. all these buccaneers were as callous as the sea they sailed on. Someone was singing. indeed. With that I made my mind up. tough effort. and since I found I could not push the coracle directly off. when I had nothing else to do. The breeze had but little action on the coracle. Then I lay quiet. I felt the hawser slacken once more. opened the stern window and threw out something. however. from what I saw. and cut one strand after another.current. and seemingly no end to it at all but the patience of the singer. which I divined to be an empty bottle. until the next crisis came and in its turn passed away without result. it was plain that they were furiously angry. waiting to sever these last when the strain should be once more lightened by a breath of wind. I wrought like a fiend.

I opened my eyes at once. we had already fetched up level with the camp-fire. when I was surprised by a sudden lurch of the coracle. and a bottle of rum!" I was just thinking how busy drink and the devil were at that very moment in the cabin of the Hispaniola. however. treading the innumerable ripples with an incessant weltering splash. bristling sound and slightly phosphorescent. for I was near overboard. combing over with a sharp. and the whole diminished company about the camp-fire had broken into the chorus I had heard so often: "Fifteen men on the dead man's chest— Yo-ho-ho. By this time the schooner and her little consort were gliding pretty swiftly through the water. and a bottle of rum! Drink and the devil had done for the rest— Yo-ho-ho. each with a hand upon the other's throat. encrimsoned faces swaying together under the smoky lamp. a few yards in whose wake I was still being whirled along. and just as I gave the last impulsion. rose at infinite risk to about half my height and thus commanded the roof and a slice of the interior of the cabin. seemed to stagger in her course. loudly. and I determined I should have one look through the cabin window. I could see nothing for the moment but these two furious. The Hispaniola herself. Why I should have done so I can hardly say. I dropped upon the thwart again. my hands came across a light cord that was trailing overboard across the stern bulwarks. was sufficient. indeed. The speed in the meantime had strangely increased. It showed me Hands and his companion locked together in deadly wrestle. but once I had it in my hands and found it fast.straight astern. and until I got my eye above the window-sill I could not comprehend why the watchmen had taken no alarm. One glance. and when I judged myself near enough. none too soon. At length I was clear of my dangerous neighbour. and it was only one glance that I durst take from that unsteady skiff. and I saw her spars toss a little 117 . I pulled in hand over hand on the cord. The ship was talking. It was at first mere instinct. At the same moment. Instantly I grasped it. and I shut my eyes to let them grow once more familiar with the darkness. curiosity began to get the upper hand. she yawed sharply and seemed to change her course. The endless ballad had come to an end at last. All round me were little ripples. as sailors say.

perhaps. I made sure we must fall into some bar of raging breakers. ever quickening. now and again wetted with flying sprays. where all my troubles would be ended speedily. perhaps. and my heart jumped against my ribs. I could not bear to look upon my fate as it approached. it went spinning through the narrows for the open sea. a numbness. sweeping round along with it the tall schooner and the little dancing coracle. as I looked longer. Gradually weariness grew upon me. turning. nay. until sleep at last supervened and in my sea-tossed coracle I lay and dreamed of home and the old Admiral Benbow. So I must have lain for hours. The current had turned at right angles. I lay down flat in the bottom of that wretched skiff and devoutly recommended my spirit to its Maker. I glanced over my shoulder. and never ceasing to expect death at the next plunge. fell upon my mind even in the midst of my terrors.against the blackness of the night. I could hear feet pounding on the companion ladder and I knew that the two drunkards had at last been interrupted in their quarrel and awakened to a sense of their disaster. continually beaten to and fro upon the billows. right behind me. through twenty degrees. ever muttering louder. an occasional stupor. At the end of the straits. was the glow of the camp-fire. and almost at the same moment one shout followed another from on board. Suddenly the schooner in front of me gave a violent yaw. I made sure she also was wheeling to the southward. bear to die. ever bubbling higher. There. 118 . and though I could.

which descended to the margin of the sea. the head bound with cliffs forty or fifty feet high and fringed with great masses of fallen rock. as it were.Chapter 3 The Cruise of the Coracle I t was broad day when I awoke and found myself tossing at the southwest end of Treasure Island. But the look of them. making the rocks to echo with their barkings. leaving at low tide a long stretch of yellow sand. again. Haulbowline Head and Mizzen-mast Hill were at my elbow. and I saw myself. I have understood since that they were sea lions. The sun was up but was still hid from me behind the great bulk of the Spy-glass. added to the difficulty of the shore and the high running of the surf. succeeded one another from second to second. of incredible bigness—two or three score of them together. the hill bare and dark. North of Haulbowline Head. and entirely harmless. loud reverberations. heavy sprays flying and falling. was more than enough to disgust me of that landing-place. I remembered what Silver had said about the current that sets northward along the whole west coast of Treasure Island. which on this side descended almost to the sea in formidable cliffs. if I ventured nearer. there comes another cape—Cape of the Woods. and it was my first thought to paddle in and land. To the north of that. That notion was soon given over. I was scarce a quarter of a mile to seaward. In the meantime I had a better chance. the land runs in a long way. before me. Nor was that all. I felt willing rather to starve at sea than to confront such perils. and seeing from my 119 . Among the fallen rocks the breakers spouted and bellowed. as I supposed. as it was marked upon the chart—buried in tall green pines. dashed to death upon the rough shore or spending my strength in vain to scale the beetling crags. for crawling together on flat tables of rock or letting themselves drop into the sea with loud reports I beheld huge slimy monsters—soft snails.

position that I was already under its influence, I preferred to leave Haulbowline Head behind me and reserve my strength for an attempt to land upon the kindlier-looking Cape of the Woods. There was a great, smooth swell upon the sea. The wind blowing steady and gentle from the south, there was no contrariety between that and the current, and the billows rose and fell unbroken. Had it been otherwise, I must long ago have perished; but as it was, it is surprising how easily and securely my little and light boat could ride. Often, as I still lay at the bottom and kept no more than an eye above the gunwale, I would see a big blue summit heaving close above me; yet the coracle would but bounce a little, dance as if on springs, and subside on the other side into the trough as lightly as a bird. I began after a little to grow very bold and sat up to try my skill at paddling. But even a small change in the disposition of the weight will produce violent changes in the behaviour of a coracle. And I had hardly moved before the boat, giving up at once her gentle dancing movement, ran straight down a slope of water so steep that it made me giddy, and struck her nose, with a spout of spray, deep into the side of the next wave. I was drenched and terrified, and fell instantly back into my old position, whereupon the coracle seemed to find her head again and led me as softly as before among the billows. It was plain she was not to be interfered with, and at that rate, since I could in no way influence her course, what hope had I left of reaching land? I began to be horribly frightened, but I kept my head, for all that. First, moving with all care, I gradually baled out the coracle with my sea-cap; then, getting my eye once more above the gunwale, I set myself to study how it was she managed to slip so quietly through the rollers. I found each wave, instead of the big, smooth glossy mountain it looks from shore or from a vessel's deck, was for all the world like any range of hills on dry land, full of peaks and smooth places and valleys. The coracle, left to herself, turning from side to side, threaded, so to speak, her way through these lower parts and avoided the steep slopes and higher, toppling summits of the wave. "Well, now," thought I to myself, "it is plain I must lie where I am and not disturb the balance; but it is plain also that I can put the paddle over the side and from time to time, in smooth places, give her a shove or two towards land." No sooner thought upon than done. There I lay on my elbows in the most trying attitude, and every now and again gave a weak stroke or two to turn her head to shore.

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It was very tiring and slow work, yet I did visibly gain ground; and as we drew near the Cape of the Woods, though I saw I must infallibly miss that point, I had still made some hundred yards of easting. I was, indeed, close in. I could see the cool green tree-tops swaying together in the breeze, and I felt sure I should make the next promontory without fail. It was high time, for I now began to be tortured with thirst. The glow of the sun from above, its thousandfold reflection from the waves, the sea-water that fell and dried upon me, caking my very lips with salt, combined to make my throat burn and my brain ache. The sight of the trees so near at hand had almost made me sick with longing, but the current had soon carried me past the point, and as the next reach of sea opened out, I beheld a sight that changed the nature of my thoughts. Right in front of me, not half a mile away, I beheld the Hispaniola under sail. I made sure, of course, that I should be taken; but I was so distressed for want of water that I scarce knew whether to be glad or sorry at the thought, and long before I had come to a conclusion, surprise had taken entire possession of my mind and I could do nothing but stare and wonder. The Hispaniola was under her main-sail and two jibs, and the beautiful white canvas shone in the sun like snow or silver. When I first sighted her, all her sails were drawing; she was lying a course about north-west, and I presumed the men on board were going round the island on their way back to the anchorage. Presently she began to fetch more and more to the westward, so that I thought they had sighted me and were going about in chase. At last, however, she fell right into the wind's eye, was taken dead aback, and stood there awhile helpless, with her sails shivering. "Clumsy fellows," said I; "they must still be drunk as owls." And I thought how Captain Smollett would have set them skipping. Meanwhile the schooner gradually fell off and filled again upon another tack, sailed swiftly for a minute or so, and brought up once more dead in the wind's eye. Again and again was this repeated. To and fro, up and down, north, south, east, and west, the Hispaniola sailed by swoops and dashes, and at each repetition ended as she had begun, with idly flapping canvas. It became plain to me that nobody was steering. And if so, where were the men? Either they were dead drunk or had deserted her, I thought, and perhaps if I could get on board I might return the vessel to her captain. The current was bearing coracle and schooner southward at an equal rate. As for the latter's sailing, it was so wild and intermittent, and she

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hung each time so long in irons, that she certainly gained nothing, if she did not even lose. If only I dared to sit up and paddle, I made sure that I could overhaul her. The scheme had an air of adventure that inspired me, and the thought of the water breaker beside the fore companion doubled my growing courage. Up I got, was welcomed almost instantly by another cloud of spray, but this time stuck to my purpose and set myself, with all my strength and caution, to paddle after the unsteered Hispaniola. Once I shipped a sea so heavy that I had to stop and bail, with my heart fluttering like a bird, but gradually I got into the way of the thing and guided my coracle among the waves, with only now and then a blow upon her bows and a dash of foam in my face. I was now gaining rapidly on the schooner; I could see the brass glisten on the tiller as it banged about, and still no soul appeared upon her decks. I could not choose but suppose she was deserted. If not, the men were lying drunk below, where I might batten them down, perhaps, and do what I chose with the ship. For some time she had been doing the worse thing possible for me—standing still. She headed nearly due south, yawing, of course, all the time. Each time she fell off, her sails partly filled, and these brought her in a moment right to the wind again. I have said this was the worst thing possible for me, for helpless as she looked in this situation, with the canvas cracking like cannon and the blocks trundling and banging on the deck, she still continued to run away from me, not only with the speed of the current, but by the whole amount of her leeway, which was naturally great. But now, at last, I had my chance. The breeze fell for some seconds, very low, and the current gradually turning her, the Hispaniola revolved slowly round her centre and at last presented me her stern, with the cabin window still gaping open and the lamp over the table still burning on into the day. The main-sail hung drooped like a banner. She was stockstill but for the current. For the last little while I had even lost, but now redoubling my efforts, I began once more to overhaul the chase. I was not a hundred yards from her when the wind came again in a clap; she filled on the port tack and was off again, stooping and skimming like a swallow. My first impulse was one of despair, but my second was towards joy. Round she came, till she was broadside on to me—round still till she had covered a half and then two thirds and then three quarters of the

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123 . With one hand I caught the jib-boom. I was on the summit of one swell when the schooner came stooping over the next. while my foot was lodged between the stay and the brace. I could see the waves boiling white under her forefoot. a dull blow told me that the schooner had charged down upon and struck the coracle and that I was left without retreat on the Hispaniola.distance that separated us. stamping the coracle under water. and as I still clung there panting. of a sudden. And then. I sprang to my feet and leaped. I had scarce time to think—scarce time to act and save myself. I began to comprehend. Immensely tall she looked to me from my low station in the coracle. The bowsprit was over my head.

lop-sided coracle. There were the two watchmen. now on another. his face as white. crawled back along the bowsprit. the jib flapped back again and hung idle. This had nearly tossed me off into the sea. his hands lying open before him on the deck. the rudder slammed to. which was still drawing. and now I lost no time. now gone to the bottom of the sea. sure enough: red-cap on his back. Not a soul was to be seen. The schooner trembled to her keel under the reverse. and an empty bottle. with a report like a gun. The planks. and the boom swinging to and fro till the mast groaned aloud under the strain. now on one tack. 124 . as stiff as a handspike. the other sails still drawing. bore the print of many feet. tumbled to and fro like a live thing in the scuppers. which had not been swabbed since the mutiny. and showed me the lee afterdeck. the sails filling. I was on the lee side of the forecastle. Now and again too there would come a cloud of light sprays over the bulwark and a heavy blow of the ship's bows against the swell. as a tallow candle. and tumbled head foremost on the deck. under its tan. the sheet groaning in the blocks. broken by the neck.Chapter 4 I Strike the Jolly Roger I had scarce gained a position on the bowsprit when the flying jib flapped and filled upon the other tack. Suddenly the Hispaniola came right into the wind. so much heavier weather was made of it by this great rigged ship than by my home-made. The jibs behind me cracked aloud. but next moment. concealed from me a certain portion of the after-deck. with his arms stretched out like those of a crucifix and his teeth showing through his open lips. the whole ship gave a sickening heave and shudder. and the main-sail. his chin on his chest. For a while the ship kept bucking and sidling like a vicious horse. and at the same moment the main-boom swung inboard. Israel Hands propped against the bulwarks.

all painted in clear white and beaded round with gilt. At the same time. I slipped aft and down the companion stairs into the cabin. but—what was ghastly to behold—neither his attitude nor his fixed teeth-disclosing grin was anyway disturbed by this rough usage. and for myself I routed out some biscuit. which told of pain and deadly weakness. a great bunch of raisins. and the way in which his jaw hung open went right to my heart. "Come aboard. and a piece of cheese. all the barrels were gone. With these I came on deck. bore a pattern of dirty hands. I walked aft until I reached the main-mast. He rolled his eyes round heavily. All the lockfast places had been broken open in quest of the chart. I found a bottle with some brandy left. obscure and brown as umber. Israel Hands turned partly round and with a low moan writhed himself back to the position in which I had seen him first. little by little. and of the bottles a most surprising number had been drunk out and thrown away. At every jump too. Dozens of empty bottles clinked together in corners to the rolling of the ship. but he was too far gone to express surprise. and dodging the boom as it once more lurched across the deck. half of the leaves gutted out. The moan." I said ironically. around both of them.At every jump of the schooner. put down 125 . But when I remembered the talk I had overheard from the apple barrel." It occurred to me there was no time to lose. hid from me. Hands appeared still more to sink into himself and settle down upon the deck. "Brandy. While I was thus looking and wondering. All he could do was to utter one word. I went into the cellar. some pickled fruits. Certainly. not a man of them could ever have been sober. and the whole body canting towards the stern. all pity left me. when the ship was still. since the mutiny began. so that his face became. in a calm moment. red-cap slipped to and fro. I suppose. It was such a scene of confusion as you can hardly fancy. Hands. The floor was thick with mud where ruffians had sat down to drink or consult after wading in the marshes round their camp. I observed. his feet sliding ever the farther out. splashes of dark blood upon the planks and began to feel sure that they had killed each other in their drunken wrath. and at last I could see nothing beyond his ear and the frayed ringlet of one whisker. The bulkheads. Mr. In the midst of all this the lamp still cast a smoky glow. for pipelights. for Hands. Foraging about. One of the doctor's medical books lay open on the table.

nodding feebly at the corpse "—O'Brien were his name. he's good and dead. "This man." "I'll tell you one thing. I take it. went forward to the water-breaker. S'pose we talks. as far's I can tell. I have. "Aye. Mr. "And there's an end to Captain Silver!" He watched me keenly and slyly. "with all my heart. and I'll tell you how to tail her. and not till then." says I: "I'm not going back to Captain Kidd's anchorage." said I. "I can't have these colours." And I went back to my meal with a good appetite. He must have drunk a gill before he took the bottle from his mouth." I continued." said he." he added. I might say. Hands. He grunted. As for that swab. "I'd be right enough in a couple of turns." "Why. "If that doctor was aboard. but I don't have no manner of luck. and chucked it overboard." says I. and by your leave. Mr. you'll kind of want to get ashore now. Some of the colour had come back into his cheeks. meaning for to sail her back. and I've lost. and that's what's the matter with me. you see. he is." he said at last. you do. "By the by. and it's 126 . and who's to sail this ship. he barked. I mean to get into North Inlet and beach her quietly there. his chin all the while on his breast. I don't see. and you'll please regard me as your captain until further notice. Say on." "To be sure you did. Better none than these. Well." He looked at me sourly enough but said nothing. Mr. or rather. though he still looked very sick and still continued to slip out and settle down as the ship banged about. "by thunder. indicating the man with the red cap. look here. Hands." And again dodging the boom." he said. but I wanted some o' that!" I had sat down already in my own corner and begun to eat. yes.my own stock behind the rudder head and well out of the coxswain's reach. And where mought you have come from?" "Well. I ain't sich an infernal lubber after all." he cried. Now. gave Hands the brandy. you gives me food and drink and a old scarf or ankecher to tie my wound up." he began. Hands. and had a good deep drink of water. a rank Irelander—this man and me got the canvas on her. Cap'n Hawkins. I'll strike 'em. I can see. "Much hurt?" I asked him. he's dead now. he is—as dead as bilge. "I reckon. waving my cap. "God save the king!" said I. you ain't that man. "I've come aboard to take possession of this ship. "He warn't no seaman anyhow. Without I gives you a hint. "I reckon. I ran to the colour lines. and that's about square all round. can't I? I've tried my fling. and then. handed down their cursed black flag. "Why.

I was greatly elated with my new command. but there was. and my conscience. Hands bound up the great bleeding stab he had received in the thigh. and pleased with the bright. not I! I'd help you sail her up to Execution Dock. We struck our bargain on the spot. Then I lashed the tiller and went below to my own chest. I had now plenty of water and good things to eat. when we might beach her safely and wait till the subsiding tide permitted us to land. The breeze served us admirably. which had smitten me hard for my desertion. as it seemed to me. and watched. he began to pick up visibly. I haven't no ch'ice. North Inlet? Why. where I got a soft silk handkerchief of my mother's. have had nothing left me to desire but for the eyes of the coxswain as they followed me derisively about the deck and the odd smile that appeared continually on his face. with good hopes of turning the northern point ere noon and beating down again as far as North Inlet before high water. sandy country. a grain of derision. a shadow of treachery. It was a smile that had in it something both of pain and weakness—a haggard old man's smile. We skimmed before it like a bird. With this. spoke louder and clearer. I should. in his expression as he craftily watched. and with my aid. and after he had eaten a little and had a swallow or two more of the brandy. Soon we were past the high lands and bowling beside low. and watched me at my work.you has the wind of me. and soon we were beyond that again and had turned the corner of the rocky hill that ends the island on the north. by thunder! So I would. sunshiny weather and these different prospects of the coast. 127 . was quieted by the great conquest I had made. sparsely dotted with dwarf pines. In three minutes I had the Hispaniola sailing easily before the wind along the coast of Treasure Island. I think." Well. sat straighter up. there was some sense in this. the coast of the island flashing by and the view changing every minute. and looked in every way another man. besides that.

not I. after a good many trials I succeeded. by what I've seen. blinking. a—shiver my timbers! I can't hit the name on 't. you must know that already. for me. Jim. I ain't partic'lar as a rule. or do he come alive again?" "You can kill the body. and I'll take it kind if you'd step down into that there cabin and get me a—well. and there he lies. ain't he? Well now. Jim. you've spoke up free." he went on." "Ah!" says he." I replied. Mr. O'Brien. Jim—this here brandy's too strong for my head. "There's a power of men been killed in this Hispaniola—a sight o' poor seamen dead and gone since you and me took ship to Bristol. now hauled into the west. I'm no scholar. well. do you take it as a dead man is dead for good. and you're a lad as can read and figure. "Cap'n. time hung on our hands. this Hispaniola." said he at length with that same uncomfortable smile. "O'Brien there is in another world. sperrits don't reckon for much. you get me a bottle of wine. We could run so much the easier from the north-east corner of the island to the mouth of the North Inlet. and may be watching us. I never seen sich dirty luck. and I don't like the job. Hands. The coxswain told me how to lay the ship to. but I don't reckon him ornamental now. "here's my old shipmate. do you?" "I'm not strong enough. as we had no power to anchor and dared not beach her till the tide had flowed a good deal farther. serving us to a desire. "This here's an unlucky ship. and we both sat in silence over another meal. Howsomever." 128 . There was this here O'Brien now—he's dead. "Well. and to put it straight. And now." said I. but not the spirit.Chapter 5 Israel Hands T he wind. s'pose you was to heave him overboard. I'll chance it with the sperrits. that's unfort'nate—appears as if killing parties was a waste of time. and I don't take no blame for settling his hash. Only.

and as for the notion of his preferring wine to brandy. trusting that his own comrades might come first to help him—was. thrusting forth his under jaw. We both desired to have her stranded safe enough. "I'll bring you port.Now. I knew he would not expect to see me there." With that I scuttled down the companion with all the noise I could. But I'll have to dig for it. since in that our interests jumped together. hastily concealing it in the bosom of his jacket. and certainly the worst of my suspicions proved too true. He looked upon it for a moment. a long knife. rattling rate that he trailed himself across the deck. now with a flitting glance upon the dead O'Brien. more than I could say. but with what purpose I could in no way imagine." I answered. now with a look to the sky. or rather a short dirk. Mr. Yet I felt sure that I could trust him in one point. and then. and though his leg obviously hurt him pretty sharply when he moved—for I could hear him stifle a groan—yet it was at a good. He had risen from his position to his hands and knees. and plenty of it. "Far better. tried the point upon his hand. I entirely disbelieved it. she could be got off again with as little 129 . yet I took every precaution possible. ran quietly along the sparred gallery. he was now armed. embarrassed manner. Israel could move about. in a sheltered place. "so it's strong. trundled back again into his old place against the bulwark. however. what's the odds?" "All right. the coxswain's hesitation seemed to be unnatural." he replied. and that was in the disposition of the schooner. slipped off my shoes. All the time he kept smiling and putting his tongue out in the most guilty. In half a minute he had reached the port scuppers and picked. The whole story was a pretext. they kept wandering to and fro. and popped my head out of the fore companion. Hands. and so that. This was all that I required to know. His eyes never met mine. I was prompt with my answer. discoloured to the hilt with blood. for I saw where my advantage lay and that with a fellow so densely stupid I could easily conceal my suspicions to the end. He wanted me to leave the deck—so much was plain. of course. out of a coil of rope. What he would do afterwards—whether he would try to crawl right across the island from North Inlet to the camp among the swamps or whether he would fire Long Tom. mounted the forecastle ladder. it was plain that I was meant to be the victim. Will you have white or red?" "Well. "Some wine?" I said. shipmate. when the time came. and if he had been at so much trouble to get rid of me. so that a child could have told that he was bent on some deception. up and down. I reckon it's about the blessed same to me.

" he said. and laid my hand at random on a bottle of wine. Cap'n Hawkins. Mr. Well. Ah. Him as strikes first is my fancy." I spoke with a little heat. took a great draught of the wine and spoke with the most unusual solemnity. begged me to cut him a quid. that's why. I think I was a good. suddenly changing his tone. "For thirty years. thinking of the bloody dirk he had hidden in his pocket and designed. slipped once more into my shoes. lad. now I tell you. Jim. but the navigation was delicate. "You were asking me just now about the dead. and I am very sure that Hands was an excellent pilot. "for I haven't no knife and hardly strength enough. you look here. them's my views—amen. Hands lay as I had left him. "I've sailed the seas and seen good and bad. however. as'll likely be the last. but if I was you and thought myself so badly. I had not been idle with my body." says he. He. better and worse. and what not. at my coming. You've broken your trust." "Well. pulling out a stick of tobacco. with this for an excuse. "Cut me a junk o' that." "Why?" I cried." All told. I would go to my prayers like a Christian man. I had stolen back to the cabin. and no mistake. and took a good swig. and you ask me why! For God's mercy. knives going. fair weather and foul. He looked up. with his favourite toast of "Here's luck!" Then he lay quiet for a little. "I'll cut you some tobacco. prompt subaltern. I reckon I've missed stays! Cut me a quid. for we went about and about and 130 . but lay east and west. dead men don't bite. so be as I had. for I'm for my long home." he added. and we'll sail slap in and be done with it. so that the schooner must be nicely handled to be got in. I made my reappearance on the deck." said I. you've lived in sin and lies and blood. to end me with. and until that was done I considered that my life would certainly be spared. knocked the neck off the bottle like a man who had done the same thing often. I never seen good come o' goodness yet. so be it. we had scarce two miles to run. and now. You just take my orders.labour and danger as might be. provisions running out. And now. The tide's made good enough by now. "Now. "we've had about enough of this foolery. and then." "Why?" said he. the entrance to this northern anchorage was not only narrow and shoal. you tell me why. While I was thus turning the business over in my mind. all fallen together in a bundle and with his eyelids lowered as though he were too weak to bear the light. Jim. there's a man you killed lying at your feet this moment. Hands. for his part. in his ill thoughts.

Come high water. but. and she's too much way on her. but the space was longer and narrower and more like. with a certainty and a neatness that were a pleasure to behold. and the Hispaniola swung round rapidly and ran stem on for the low. Even then I was still so much interested. till. that I had quite forgot the peril that hung over my head and stood craning over the starboard bulwarks and watching the ripples spreading wide before the bows. the estuary of a river. with the dirk in his right hand. and on the deck of it shore bushes had taken root and now flourished thick with flowers. It was a sad sight. Starboard a little—so—steady—starboard—larboard a little—steady—steady!" So he issued his commands. there's a pet bit for to beach a ship in. bring it back. sharply enough. "Now. at the southern end. take a turn about one of them big pines. we saw the wreck of a ship in the last stages of dilapidation. "look there. We must both have cried out aloud when our eyes met. he cried. which I breathlessly obeyed. Right before us. there was Hands. when I looked round. waiting for the ship to touch. but it showed us that the anchorage was calm." "And once beached. all hands take a pull upon the line. perhaps it was an instinct like a cat's. what in truth it was. trees all around of it. And now. Perhaps I had heard a creak or seen his shadow moving with the tail of my eye. The excitement of these last manoeuvres had somewhat interfered with the watch I had kept hitherto. his was a roar of fury like a charging 131 . and flowers ablowing like a garding on that old ship. sure enough. I might have fallen without a struggle for my life had not a sudden disquietude seized upon me and made me turn my head.dodged in. Scarcely had we passed the heads before the land closed around us. luff!" And I put the helm hard up." said Hands. Fine flat sand. shaving the banks. my hearty." he replied: "you take a line ashore there on the other side at low water. It had been a great vessel of three masts but had lain so long exposed to the injuries of the weather that it was hung about with great webs of dripping seaweed. and off she comes as sweet as natur'. boy. wooded shore. and lie to for the tide. never a cat's paw. but while mine was the shrill cry of terror. so. all of a sudden. upon the coxswain. "how shall we get her off again?" "Why. The shores of North Inlet were as thickly wooded as those of the southern anchorage. "Now. you stand by. take a turn around the capstan. already half-way towards me." I inquired. We're near the bit now.

Why had not I. and I thought I could hold my own at it against an elderly seaman with a wounded thigh. long before. for I was sure it would be useless. Still. but there followed neither flash nor sound. but never before. which was of a goodish bigness. you may be sure. suddenly the Hispaniola struck. his grizzled hair tumbling over his face. Once so caught. and while I saw certainly that I could spin it out for long. and nine or ten inches of the bloodstained dirk would be my last experience on this side of eternity. Indeed my courage had begun to rise so high that I allowed myself a few darting thoughts on what would be the end of the affair. the priming was useless with sea-water. canted over to the port side till the deck stood at an angle of forty-five degrees and about a puncheon of water splashed into the scupper holes and lay. As I did so. Seeing that I meant to dodge. Before he could recover. while things stood thus. which sprang sharp to leeward. the dead red-cap. every nerve upon the stretch. into the scuppers. and both of us rolled. reprimed and reloaded my only weapons? Then I should not have been as now. nor indeed much inclination. for it struck Hands across the chest and stopped him. swift as a blow. almost together. I was safe out of the corner where he had me trapped. and drew the trigger. a mere fleeing sheep before this butcher. At the same instant. I let go of the tiller. as I say. Wounded as he was. The hammer fell. or he would speedily hold me boxed into the bows. One thing I saw plainly: I must not simply retreat before him. I had no time to try my other pistol. though he had already turned and was once more coming directly after me. Well. and waited. as a moment since he had so nearly boxed me in the stern. with his arms still spread 132 . It was such a game as I had often played at home about the rocks of Black Hill Cove. and I think this saved my life. and then.bully's. in a pool. between the deck and bulwark. it was wonderful how fast he could move. took a cool aim. with all the deck to dodge about. drew a pistol from my pocket. I cursed myself for my neglect. and his face itself as red as a red ensign with his haste and fury. and a moment or two passed in feints on his part and corresponding movements upon mine. I placed my palms against the main-mast. dead. for the moment. he threw himself forward and I leapt sideways towards the bows. staggered. it was a boy's game. I saw no hope of any ultimate escape. Just forward of the main-mast I stopped. he also paused. ground for an instant in the sand. with such a wildly beating heart as now. We were both of us capsized in a second.

out, tumbling stiffly after us. So near were we, indeed, that my head came against the coxswain's foot with a crack that made my teeth rattle. Blow and all, I was the first afoot again, for Hands had got involved with the dead body. The sudden canting of the ship had made the deck no place for running on; I had to find some new way of escape, and that upon the instant, for my foe was almost touching me. Quick as thought, I sprang into the mizzen shrouds, rattled up hand over hand, and did not draw a breath till I was seated on the cross-trees. I had been saved by being prompt; the dirk had struck not half a foot below me as I pursued my upward flight; and there stood Israel Hands with his mouth open and his face upturned to mine, a perfect statue of surprise and disappointment. Now that I had a moment to myself, I lost no time in changing the priming of my pistol, and then, having one ready for service, and to make assurance doubly sure, I proceeded to draw the load of the other and recharge it afresh from the beginning. My new employment struck Hands all of a heap; he began to see the dice going against him, and after an obvious hesitation, he also hauled himself heavily into the shrouds, and with the dirk in his teeth, began slowly and painfully to mount. It cost him no end of time and groans to haul his wounded leg behind him, and I had quietly finished my arrangements before he was much more than a third of the way up. Then, with a pistol in either hand, I addressed him. "One more step, Mr. Hands," said I, "and I'll blow your brains out! Dead men don't bite, you know," I added with a chuckle. He stopped instantly. I could see by the working of his face that he was trying to think, and the process was so slow and laborious that, in my new-found security, I laughed aloud. At last, with a swallow or two, he spoke, his face still wearing the same expression of extreme perplexity. In order to speak he had to take the dagger from his mouth, but in all else he remained unmoved. "Jim," says he, "I reckon we're fouled, you and me, and we'll have to sign articles. I'd have had you but for that there lurch, but I don't have no luck, not I; and I reckon I'll have to strike, which comes hard, you see, for a master mariner to a ship's younker like you, Jim." I was drinking in his words and smiling away, as conceited as a cock upon a wall, when, all in a breath, back went his right hand over his shoulder. Something sang like an arrow through the air; I felt a blow and then a sharp pang, and there I was pinned by the shoulder to the mast. In the horrid pain and surprise of the moment—I scarce can say it was by

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my own volition, and I am sure it was without a conscious aim—both my pistols went off, and both escaped out of my hands. They did not fall alone; with a choked cry, the coxswain loosed his grasp upon the shrouds and plunged head first into the water.

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Chapter

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"Pieces of Eight"

O

wing to the cant of the vessel, the masts hung far out over the water, and from my perch on the cross-trees I had nothing below me but the surface of the bay. Hands, who was not so far up, was in consequence nearer to the ship and fell between me and the bulwarks. He rose once to the surface in a lather of foam and blood and then sank again for good. As the water settled, I could see him lying huddled together on the clean, bright sand in the shadow of the vessel's sides. A fish or two whipped past his body. Sometimes, by the quivering of the water, he appeared to move a little, as if he were trying to rise. But he was dead enough, for all that, being both shot and drowned, and was food for fish in the very place where he had designed my slaughter. I was no sooner certain of this than I began to feel sick, faint, and terrified. The hot blood was running over my back and chest. The dirk, where it had pinned my shoulder to the mast, seemed to burn like a hot iron; yet it was not so much these real sufferings that distressed me, for these, it seemed to me, I could bear without a murmur; it was the horror I had upon my mind of falling from the cross-trees into that still green water, beside the body of the coxswain. I clung with both hands till my nails ached, and I shut my eyes as if to cover up the peril. Gradually my mind came back again, my pulses quieted down to a more natural time, and I was once more in possession of myself. It was my first thought to pluck forth the dirk, but either it stuck too hard or my nerve failed me, and I desisted with a violent shudder. Oddly enough, that very shudder did the business. The knife, in fact, had come the nearest in the world to missing me altogether; it held me by a mere pinch of skin, and this the shudder tore away. The blood ran down the faster, to be sure, but I was my own master again and only tacked to the mast by my coat and shirt.

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The evening breeze had sprung up. against the bulwarks. The sun was within so few degrees of setting that already the shadow of the pines upon the western shore began to reach right across the anchorage and fall in patterns on the deck. pull as I liked. The jibs I speedily doused and brought tumbling to the deck. and then regained the deck by the starboard shrouds. I began to see a danger to the ship. At last I got my knife and cut the halyards. He had pitched. tumbled him overboard. upon the overhanging port shrouds from which Israel had so lately fallen. By this time the whole anchorage had fallen into shadow—the last rays. He went in with a sounding plunge. as I have said. O'Brien. the cordage had begun to sing a little softly to itself and the idle sails to rattle to and fro. The peak dropped instantly. I began to think of clearing it from its last passenger—the dead man. nor did it greatly gall me when I used my arm. that was the extent of what I could accomplish. and though it was well warded off by the hill with the two peaks upon the east. I thought this made it still more dangerous. Of course. the boom had swung out-board. shaken as I was. indeed. I could not budge the downhall. I was now alone upon the ship. but it was neither deep nor dangerous. ungainly sort of puppet. For nothing in the world would I have again ventured. O'Brien. Then I looked around me. falling through a glade of the wood and shining bright 136 . the tide had just turned. I went below and did what I could for my wound. There he lay. though still quite a young man. like myself. yet the strain was so heavy that I half feared to meddle. my own. and as soon as the splash subsided. a great belly of loose canvas floated broad upon the water. both wavering with the tremulous movement of the water. I could see him and Israel lying side by side. but how different from life's colour or life's comeliness! In that position I could easily have my way with him. with that bald head across the knees of the man who had killed him and the quick fishes steering to and fro over both. the Hispaniola must trust to luck. where he lay like some horrible. For the rest. and as the ship was now. and as the habit of tragical adventures had worn off almost all my terror for the dead. when the schooner canted over.These last I broke through with a sudden jerk. it pained me a good deal and still bled freely. and since. and the cap of it and a foot or two of sail hung even under water. I took him by the waist as if he had been a sack of bran and with one good heave. life-size. but the main-sail was a harder matter. was very bald. in a sense. I remember. the red cap came off and remained floating on the surface.

as jewels on the flowery mantle of the wreck. It began to be chill; the tide was rapidly fleeting seaward, the schooner settling more and more on her beam-ends. I scrambled forward and looked over. It seemed shallow enough, and holding the cut hawser in both hands for a last security, I let myself drop softly overboard. The water scarcely reached my waist; the sand was firm and covered with ripple marks, and I waded ashore in great spirits, leaving the Hispaniola on her side, with her main-sail trailing wide upon the surface of the bay. About the same time, the sun went fairly down and the breeze whistled low in the dusk among the tossing pines. At least, and at last, I was off the sea, nor had I returned thence emptyhanded. There lay the schooner, clear at last from buccaneers and ready for our own men to board and get to sea again. I had nothing nearer my fancy than to get home to the stockade and boast of my achievements. Possibly I might be blamed a bit for my truantry, but the recapture of the Hispaniola was a clenching answer, and I hoped that even Captain Smollett would confess I had not lost my time. So thinking, and in famous spirits, I began to set my face homeward for the block house and my companions. I remembered that the most easterly of the rivers which drain into Captain Kidd's anchorage ran from the two-peaked hill upon my left, and I bent my course in that direction that I might pass the stream while it was small. The wood was pretty open, and keeping along the lower spurs, I had soon turned the corner of that hill, and not long after waded to the mid-calf across the watercourse. This brought me near to where I had encountered Ben Gunn, the maroon; and I walked more circumspectly, keeping an eye on every side. The dusk had come nigh hand completely, and as I opened out the cleft between the two peaks, I became aware of a wavering glow against the sky, where, as I judged, the man of the island was cooking his supper before a roaring fire. And yet I wondered, in my heart, that he should show himself so careless. For if I could see this radiance, might it not reach the eyes of Silver himself where he camped upon the shore among the marshes? Gradually the night fell blacker; it was all I could do to guide myself even roughly towards my destination; the double hill behind me and the Spy-glass on my right hand loomed faint and fainter; the stars were few and pale; and in the low ground where I wandered I kept tripping among bushes and rolling into sandy pits.

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Suddenly a kind of brightness fell about me. I looked up; a pale glimmer of moonbeams had alighted on the summit of the Spy-glass, and soon after I saw something broad and silvery moving low down behind the trees, and knew the moon had risen. With this to help me, I passed rapidly over what remained to me of my journey, and sometimes walking, sometimes running, impatiently drew near to the stockade. Yet, as I began to thread the grove that lies before it, I was not so thoughtless but that I slacked my pace and went a trifle warily. It would have been a poor end of my adventures to get shot down by my own party in mistake. The moon was climbing higher and higher, its light began to fall here and there in masses through the more open districts of the wood, and right in front of me a glow of a different colour appeared among the trees. It was red and hot, and now and again it was a little darkened—as it were, the embers of a bonfire smouldering. For the life of me I could not think what it might be. At last I came right down upon the borders of the clearing. The western end was already steeped in moon-shine; the rest, and the block house itself, still lay in a black shadow chequered with long silvery streaks of light. On the other side of the house an immense fire had burned itself into clear embers and shed a steady, red reverberation, contrasted strongly with the mellow paleness of the moon. There was not a soul stirring nor a sound beside the noises of the breeze. I stopped, with much wonder in my heart, and perhaps a little terror also. It had not been our way to build great fires; we were, indeed, by the captain's orders, somewhat niggardly of firewood, and I began to fear that something had gone wrong while I was absent. I stole round by the eastern end, keeping close in shadow, and at a convenient place, where the darkness was thickest, crossed the palisade. To make assurance surer, I got upon my hands and knees and crawled, without a sound, towards the corner of the house. As I drew nearer, my heart was suddenly and greatly lightened. It is not a pleasant noise in itself, and I have often complained of it at other times, but just then it was like music to hear my friends snoring together so loud and peaceful in their sleep. The sea-cry of the watch, that beautiful "All's well," never fell more reassuringly on my ear. In the meantime, there was no doubt of one thing; they kept an infamous bad watch. If it had been Silver and his lads that were now creeping in on them, not a soul would have seen daybreak. That was what it was,

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thought I, to have the captain wounded; and again I blamed myself sharply for leaving them in that danger with so few to mount guard. By this time I had got to the door and stood up. All was dark within, so that I could distinguish nothing by the eye. As for sounds, there was the steady drone of the snorers and a small occasional noise, a flickering or pecking that I could in no way account for. With my arms before me I walked steadily in. I should lie down in my own place (I thought with a silent chuckle) and enjoy their faces when they found me in the morning. My foot struck something yielding—it was a sleeper's leg; and he turned and groaned, but without awaking. And then, all of a sudden, a shrill voice broke forth out of the darkness: "Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight! and so forth, without pause or change, like the clacking of a tiny mill. Silver's green parrot, Captain Flint! It was she whom I had heard pecking at a piece of bark; it was she, keeping better watch than any human being, who thus announced my arrival with her wearisome refrain. I had no time left me to recover. At the sharp, clipping tone of the parrot, the sleepers awoke and sprang up; and with a mighty oath, the voice of Silver cried, "Who goes?" I turned to run, struck violently against one person, recoiled, and ran full into the arms of a second, who for his part closed upon and held me tight. "Bring a torch, Dick," said Silver when my capture was thus assured. And one of the men left the log-house and presently returned with a lighted brand.

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Part 6 Captain Silver 140 .

shiver my timbers! Dropped in. "So. and the blood-stained bandage round his head told that he had recently been wounded. I could only judge that all had perished. I thought. flushed and swollen. as before. I remembered the man who had been shot and had run back among the woods in the great attack. Hawkins. he was deadly pale. Five of them were on their feet." he added. daubed with clay and torn with the sharp briers of the wood. gentlemen. preening her plumage. all told." said he. and doubted not that this was he. He still wore the fine broadcloth suit in which he had fulfilled his mission. lad. when he had a good light. Jim"—stopping the tobacco—"here you were. but it was bitterly the worse for wear. "here's Jim Hawkins. I take that friendly. and still more recently dressed. "Give me a loan of the link." said he. on Long John's shoulder. eh? Well. like. He himself. not a sign of any prisoner. lighting up the interior of the block house. and quite a pleasant surprise for poor old 141 . looked somewhat paler and more stern than I was used to. The pirates were in possession of the house and stores: there was the cask of cognac. "That'll do. he'll excuse you. bring yourselves to! You needn't stand up for Mr." And thereupon he sat down across the brandy cask and began to fill a pipe. The sixth had only risen upon his elbow. and then. you may lay to that. not another man was left alive. There were six of the buccaneers. showed me the worst of my apprehensions realized. Dick. "stick the glim in the wood heap. and what tenfold increased my horror. suddenly called out of the first sleep of drunkenness. and you. The parrot sat. And so.Chapter 1 In the Enemy's Camp T he red glare of the torch. and my heart smote me sorely that I had not been there to perish with them. come. there were the pork and bread.

I was more relieved than distressed by what I heard. Jim." continued Silver. you see." says he. which might be lonely. pluckily enough. I have.' says he.John. They had set me with my back against the wall. and right he is." "Wot's wot?" repeated one of the buccaneers in a deep growl. but this here gets away from me clean. I've always liked you. and if you don't. "Ah. and though I partly believed the truth of Silver's statement. so be as you are here. looking Silver in the face. "no one's a-pressing of you. were still alive. Through all this sneering talk." "Well. "Lad. and without you start a third ship's company all by yourself. Cap'n Smollett's a fine seaman. and the picter of my own self when I was young and handsome. "Now. and why you're here. for a lad of spirit. and if fairer can be said by mortal seaman. it do. and die a gentleman. and you may lay to it. my cock. as I'll own up to any day. The doctor himself is gone dead again you—'ungrateful scamp' was what he said." To all this. "though there you are. I hope. why. time goes so pleasant in your company. and my cheeks burned and my heart beat painfully in my breast. I declare I have a right to know what's what. I made no answer. mate. I was made to feel the threat of death that overhung me. shipmate. Just you keep clear of the cap'n. I see you were smart when first I set my eyes on you. for they won't have you. you'll have to jine with Cap'n Silver. "I don't say nothing as to your being in our hands. Take your bearings. Silver took a whiff or two of his pipe with great composure and then ran on again. "I'll give you a piece of my mind. Jim. If you like the service. and the short and the long of the whole story is about here: you can't go back to your own lot. I never seen good come out o' threatening." So far so good. that the cabin party were incensed at me for my desertion. "if I'm to choose. growing a bit bolder. shiver my sides!" "Am I to answer. but with black despair in my heart. you'll jine. you're free to answer no—free and welcome. well. then?" I asked with a very tremulous voice. but stiff on discipline. 'Dooty is dooty. you see. None of us won't hurry you. you've got to. I always wanted you to jine and take your share. to all outward appearance. I'm all for argyment. as may be well supposed. My friends." said Silver. and I stood there." says I. and now. then. he'd be a lucky one as knowed that!" 142 . and where my friends are.

Hawkins. block house. none of us had looked out. him and I. Says he. bygones are bygones. the whole blessed boat. not one of you. or spare me. men lost. and you. 'nor I don't much care. The laugh's on my side. "Is that all?" I asked. As for that boy. it was I who cut her cable.' says the doctor. from cross-trees to kelson. and you may lay to that.' says I. "Yesterday morning." cried Silver truculently to this speaker.' says he. And then. your whole business gone to wreck. Ship's gone. and in a manner of speaking. and a song to help it round." said Silver. I'll save you all I can. in his first gracious tones." returned Silver. it's all that you're to hear.' These was his words. And as for the schooner. and by this time I was quite excited. it's little I care.' We bargained. 'let's bargain. Kill me." He drew again quietly at his pipe. Kill another and do yourselves no good." he went on. It is for you to choose. But one thing I'll say. he replied to me. and if you want to know who did it—it was I! I was in the apple barrel the night we sighted land. "Well. and Hands. they've tramped. Leastways. the firewood you was thoughtful enough to cut. "And lest you should take it into that head of yours. treasure lost. and when you fellows are in court for piracy. and one of us wounded. brandy. and no more. "And now I am to choose?" "And now you are to choose. 'to leave?' 'Four." I said. I've seen too many die since I fell in with you. John. "in the dog-watch. and here we are: stores." 143 .' says he. if you please. I won't say no. Dick Johnson. Let the worst come to the worst.' Well. who is now at the bottom of the sea. down came Doctor Livesey with a flag of truce. and it was I that killed the men you had aboard of her. my friend. 'four. But there's a thing or two I have to tell you. in a bad way—ship lost. my son. "I am not such a fool but I know pretty well what I have to look for." said I. "that you was included in the treaty. As for them. We looked out. 'Well. maybe we'd been taking a glass. Mr. if I tells you that looked the fishiest."You'll perhaps batten down your hatches till you're spoke to. I don't know where's they are. or spare me and keep a witness to save you from the gallows. you're sold out." said he. I've had the top of this business from the first. confound him. if you spare me. I no more fear you than I fear a fly. I don't know where he is. and it was I who brought her where you'll never see her more. and you may lay to that. "and the first is this: here you are. here's the last word that was said: 'How many are you. We're about sick of him. "Well. the old ship was gone! I never seen a pack o' fools look fishier. and I heard you. and by thunder. and told every word you said before the hour was out. 'Cap'n Silver.

I'm cap'n here by 'lection. shiver my timbers." "Did any of you gentlemen want to have it out with me?" roared Silver. Mr. but all sat staring at me like as many sheep. "Well. is it?" he added." "I'll bear it in mind. decide whether he were laughing at my request or had been favourably affected by my courage. Take a cutlass. and to my wonder. for. returning his pipe to his mouth. I reckon." added the sea-cook. but a hoarse murmur rose from the others. anyway. Not much worth to fight. not a man of them moved. And while they were still staring. "I stood hazing long enough from one. I'm ready. "I'll be hanged if I'll be hazed by you." I said. we've split upon Jim Hawkins!" "Then here goes!" said Morgan with an oath. Him that wants shall get it. and you'll go where many a good man's gone before you. And he sprang up. you're all gentlemen o' fortune. I broke out again. "That's your sort. and some by the board. "And now. first and last." "Well. "I believe you're the best man here. you may lay to that." said Silver with an accent so curious that I could not. and see here. him that dares." added another. There's never a man looked me between the eyes and seen a good day a'terwards. with his pipe still glowing in his right hand. Have I lived this many years. crutch and all." said one. and all to feed the fishes. "Tom's right. "I'll put one to that." Morgan paused. I was out of breath.I stopped. By the powers. for the life of me. by thunder! For it was this same boy that faked the chart from Billy Bones. "I'll put another again to that. I tell you." Not a man stirred. Tom Morgan. "Who are you. before that pipe's empty. John Silver. Silver. bending far forward from his position on the keg. "It was him that knowed Black Dog. you're a gay lot to look at. and if things go to the worst." cried the old mahogany-faced seaman—Morgan by name—whom I had seen in Long John's public-house upon the quays of Bristol. these thirty year back—some to the yard-arm. not a man answered. Well. you ain't. you ain't dumb. perhaps. Tom Morgan? Maybe you thought you was cap'n here. and a son of a rum puncheon cock his hat athwart my hawse at the latter end of it? You know the way. 144 . First and last. "Avast. I'm cap'n here because I'm the best man by a long sea-mile. P'r'aps you can understand King George's English. by your account. and I'll see the colour of his inside. "Put a name on what you're at. drawing his knife as if he had been twenty. but I'll teach you better! Cross me. I'll take it kind of you to let the doctor know the way I took it. there!" cried Silver.

and steps outside for a council. I never seen a better boy than that. ill-looking." he said in a steady whisper that was no more than audible." remarked Silver." There was a long pause after this. sir. but with a ray of hope now shining in my bosom. and be hanged into the bargain. They. acknowledging you for to be captaing at this present. Jim Hawkins. But. and what's a long sight worse. by thunder. I stand by you through thick and thin. sir. this crew has its rights like other crews. as calm as though he had been in church. maybe you'll kindly keep an eye upon the rest. "Now." said Morgan. as gentlemen o' fortune should. and you may lay to it! I like that boy. I stood straight up against the wall." said one. And so with one remark or another all marched out and left Silver and me alone with the torch." returned one of the men. One after another the rest followed his example. and Hawkins'll stand by you. this fellow. I take it we can talk together. and by your own rules. "you're pretty free with some of the rules. stepped coolly towards the door and disappeared out of the house. You're 145 . and the low hiss of their whispering sounded in my ear continuously. "you're within half a plank of death. like a stream. But I see you was the right sort. you mark. his pipe in the corner of his mouth." And with an elaborate sea-salute. they would look up. and you may lay to it. not till you spoke up. yet his eye kept wandering furtively. a long. look you here. One after another. of torture. I didn't mean to. yellow-eyed man of five and thirty. This crew's dissatisfied. I ax your pardon.You won't fight. it was towards Silver that they turned their eyes. He's more a man than any pair of rats of you in this here house. then. I was about desperate to lose that much blunt. now. each making a salute as he passed. my heart still going like a sledge-hammer. you stand by Hawkins. or lay to. and he kept the tail of it on his unruly followers. each adding some apology. no. but I claim my right. on their part. and the red light of the torch would fall for a second on their nervous faces. "Forecastle council. spitting far into the air. "Pipe up and let me hear it. I says to myself. I'll make so free as that. They're going to throw me off. but it was not towards me. his arms crossed. Silver leant back against the wall. "According to rules. this crew don't vally bullying a marlin-spike. drew gradually together towards the far end of the block house. you'll obey. and what I say is this: let me see him that'll lay a hand on him—that's what I say. "You seem to have a lot to say. John. The sea-cook instantly removed his pipe." "Ax your pardon.

nor I won't let others. no doubt—something. returning. neck gone—that's the size of it. "Understand me. I do!" he answered. "I've a head on my shoulders. And talking o' trouble. "Ah. Once I looked into that bay. Jim. "You speak up plucky. mark me. Jim. I'm on squire's side now. You save your witness. it seemed a thing so hopeless he was asking—he. under that. shaking his great fair head like a man who looks forward to the worst. and I know a lad that's staunch. But. and he'll save your neck!" I began dimly to understand. he's yours! Back to back. How you done it. messmate?" he asked. you that's young—you and me might have done a power of good together!" He drew some cognac from the cask into a tin cannikin. and by thunder." said he. they're outright fools and cowards." said he. and took a fresh light to his pipe. "Will you taste. well. why did that doctor give me the chart. Now you mark me. "I need a caulker. Jim—bad or good. and seen no schooner—well. Jim—tit for tat—you save Long John from swinging. I have. I'll take a drain myself. and by the living thunder. As for that lot and their council. the old buccaneer. I don't know. says I. "Ship gone." I was bewildered. I know you've got that ship safe somewheres. 146 . I'm tough. I do. for there's trouble on hand. surely. see here. "Aye. I know when a game's up." I said. but I gave out.his last card. Ah. Jim?" My face expressed a wonder so unaffected that he saw the needlessness of further questions. where it stood propped among the firewood. Jim Hawkins. I'll save your life—if so be as I can—from them. that I'll do. "It's a bargain!" cried Long John." he said. and when I had refused: "Well. I guess Hands and O'Brien turned soft." And he took another swallow of the brandy. "You mean all's lost?" I asked. "What I can do. John. I've a chance!" He hobbled to the torch. but safe it is. "And there's something under that. I ask no questions. by gum. though. he did. I never much believed in neither of them. the ringleader throughout.

I do." cried Silver. lubber. "Here they come. and was still wondering how anything so incongruous had come in their possession when the kneeling figure rose once more to his feet and the whole party began to move together towards the house. "I won't eat you. I turned to the loophole nearest me and looked out. but holding his closed right hand in front of him. and with a repetition of the same salute. and this emissary retired again." said I. lad. who had by this time adopted quite a friendly and familiar tone. "Well. In any other circumstances it would have been comical to see his slow advance. when one of them re-entered the house." said Silver cheerily. pushed one of their number forward. hesitating as he set down each foot. The rest were all somewhat stooping. and I saw the blade of an open knife shine in his hand with varying colours in the moon and torchlight. and having passed something to 147 . I know the rules." said Silver. "I've still a shot in my locker. Silver briefly agreed. lad—let 'em come. Jim." The door opened.Chapter 2 The Black Spot Again T he council of buccaneers had lasted some time. they were collected in a group. let 'em come. which had in my eyes an ironical air. for it seemed beneath my dignity that they should find me watching them. standing huddled together just inside. I could just make out that he had a book as well as a knife in his hand. and I returned to my former position. as though watching the manoeuvres of this last. leaving us together in the dark. The embers of the great fire had so far burned themselves out and now glowed so low and duskily that I understood why these conspirators desired a torch. begged for a moment's loan of the torch. one held the light. the buccaneer stepped forth more briskly. Hand it over. About half-way down the slope to the stockade." Thus encouraged. "There's a breeze coming. and the five men. I won't hurt a depytation. another was on his knees in their midst. "Step up.

"He's seen his slice of luck. "You'll all swing now. that's what's wrong with you. fourth. now. You'll be cap'n next. you've made a hash of this cruise—you'll be a bold man to say no to that. there's this here boy. Well." "Well. and has the rules by heart. but you're over now." said Silver. anyway? Ah! 'Deposed'—that's it. hillo! Look here." "Oh. and you'll maybe step down off that barrel and help vote. this ain't lucky! You've gone and cut this out of a Bible." said George. slipped yet more smartly back again to his companions. Just oblige me with that torch again. Then you can talk. as I'm pleased to see. Your hand o' write. we're all square. First. I shouldn't wonder." he said. we'll see. You're a funny man. Second. "There! Wot did I say? No good'll come o' that. "you don't be under no kind of apprehension. you let the enemy out o' this here trap for nothing. Oh. "This crew has tipped you the black spot in full council. George. you want to play booty. from hand to hand. and you may lay to that. 148 . "Where might you have got the paper? Why." returned Silver contemptuously." he observed. as in dooty bound. among you. we see through you. by your account." continued Silver." "I thought you said you knowed the rules. there!" said Morgan. And then. "Leastways. now.Silver. and see what's wrote there. just you turn it over." replied the sea-cook." replied George. "The black spot! I thought so. The sea-cook looked at what had been given him." But here the long man with the yellow eyes struck in. as in dooty bound. mind—till you outs with your grievances and I reply. George. like print. George? Why." "Thanky. and I wait here—and I'm still your cap'n. Third. What soft-headed lubber had a Bible?" "It was Dick. "you don't fool this crew no more. John Silver. your black spot ain't worth a biscuit. if you don't. After that. "You always was brisk for business. but it's pretty plain they wanted it. John Silver. you wouldn't let us go at them upon the march. you was gettin' quite a leadin' man in this here crew. what is it. I said. was it? Then Dick can get to prayers. Why did they want out? I dunno. in the meantime. I reckon. will you? This pipe don't draw. I swear. to be sure." said one." "Is that all?" asked Silver quietly. What fool's cut a Bible?" "Ah. I do. you've about fixed it now. "Belay that talk." "Come. has Dick. is it? Very pretty wrote. "Dick. we are.

And you can hear the chains a-jangle as you go about and reach for the other buoy. and other ruination fools of you." "Well now. John. "Speak up to the others. seamen p'inting 'em out as they go down with the tide. that sank the lot of us! By the powers! But this tops the stiffest yarn to nothing. and I shouldn't wonder. "That's for number one. and fit." "Ah. and Hands. I'll answer these four p'ints." "Go on. did I? Well now. for he had been talking with a vehemence that shook the house." said Morgan."Enough. thanks to him. isn't he a hostage? Are we a-going to waste a hostage? No." cried the accused. look here. and that boy. and you have the Davy Jones's insolence to up and stand for cap'n over me—you. he might be our last chance. and I could see by the faces of George and his late comrades that these words had not been said in vain. I knowed him well. wiping the sweat from his brow. "They're a nice lot. Now. maybe. Maybe you don't count it nothing to have a real college doctor to see you every day—you. as was the lawful cap'n? Who tipped me the black spot the day we landed and began this dance? Ah. the others!" returned John. and the treasure in the hold of her. Sea! Gentlemen o' fortune! I reckon tailors is your trade. every mother's son of us. well. it was Anderson. ain't they? You say this cruise is bungled. I made a hash o' this cruise. it does. You've seen 'em. if you could understand how bad it's bungled. And if you want to know about number four. Kill that boy? Not me. and I leave it to fancy where your mothers was that let you come to sea. and you. one after another I'll answer 'em. I'm sick to speak to you. and Hands. 'Who's that?' says one. shiver my timbers. every man of us alive. Ah! By gum. John. and Anderson. birds about 'em. you all know what I wanted. by thunder! Well. You've neither sense nor memory. hanged in chains. But who done it? Why. mates! And number three? Ah. with your head broke—or you. George Merry.' says another. there's a deal to say to number three. that's about where we are. you would see! We're that near the gibbet that my neck's stiff with thinking on it. why. not us. "Why. and you all know if that had been done that we'd 'a been aboard the Hispaniola this night as ever was. that had the ague shakes upon you not six 149 . "We'll all swing and sun-dry for your bungling. too. who crossed me? Who forced my hand." retorted George. George Merry! And you're the last above board of that same meddling crew." Silver paused. I give you my word. 'That! Why. it's a fine dance—I'm with you there—and looks mighty like a hornpipe in a rope's end at Execution Dock by London town. and full of good plum-duff. that's John Silver.

you was that downhearted—and you'd have starved too if I hadn't—but that's a trifle! You look there—that's why!" And he cast down upon the floor a paper that I instantly recognized—none other than the chart on yellow paper. F.hours agone. friend. I found the treasure. How? Why. Why the doctor had given it to him was more than I could fancy." 150 . you hain't got the invention of a cockroach. so he done ever. you didn't know there was a consort coming either? But there is." "Silver!" they cried. and a score below. in safety. not only they were fingering the very gold." said the sea-cook. sure enough. But civil you can speak. and why I made a bargain—well." said one. George Merry. "that's Flint." said George. shipmates. with your interference." "Mighty pretty." he cried. "Yes. and we'll see who'll be glad to have a hostage when it comes to that. by thunder! Elect whom you please to be your cap'n now. how do I know? You had ought to tell me that—you and the rest. "Barbecue forever! Barbecue for cap'n!" "So that's the toon. that I had found in the oilcloth at the bottom of the captain's chest. and I'll call you down and fight you.. But if it were inexplicable to me. you may lay to that. and by the oaths and the cries and the childish laughter with which they accompanied their examination. But that was never my way. "You lost the ship. the appearance of the chart was incredible to the surviving mutineers. They leaped upon it like cats upon a mouse. that lost me my schooner. and us no ship. I reckon you'll have to wait another turn. is it? Dick's crossed his luck and spoiled his Bible. and not so long till then. I'm done with it." "That's fair enow. "One more word of your sauce. one tearing it from another. perhaps. and lucky for you as I'm not a revengeful man. you would have thought. It went from hand to hand. And now. burn you! But not you. "George. this black spot? 'Tain't much good now. and has your eyes the colour of lemon peel to this same moment on the clock? And maybe. And as for number two. J. with the three red crosses. "Fair! I reckon so. Who's the better man at that? And now I resign. "But how are we to get away with it." Silver suddenly sprang up. but were at sea with it." said the old man Morgan. and that's about all. George. with a clove hitch to it. besides. is it?" cried the cook. and shall. and supporting himself with a hand against the wall: "Now I give you warning. you came crawling on your knees to me to make it—on your knees you came. you can't.

for it had been the last leaf. 151 . One side was blank. on the blank side had been written with the same material the one word "Depposed. "Well." The printed side had been blackened with wood ash. possible and impossible. with a drink all round." "Here. to make his peace and save his miserable life. who was evidently uneasy at the curse he had brought upon himself. It don't bind no more'n a ballad-book. won't it?" growled Dick. the other contained a verse or two of Revelation—these words among the rest. in my own most perilous position. I reckon that's worth having too. and above all. we lay down to sleep. in the remarkable game that I saw Silver now engaged upon—keeping the mutineers together with one hand and grasping with the other after every means. "A Bible with a bit cut out!" returned Silver derisively. but not a trace of writing now remains beyond a single scratch."It'll do to kiss the book on still. wicked as he was." I have that curiosity beside me at this moment. That was the end of the night's business." said Silver. which struck sharply home upon my mind: "Without are dogs and murderers. "Not it. It was long ere I could close an eye. He himself slept peacefully and snored aloud. and the outside of Silver's vengeance was to put George Merry up for sentinel and threaten him with death if he should prove unfaithful. yet my heart was sore for him. though?" cried Dick with a sort of joy. and heaven knows I had matter enough for thought in the man whom I had slain that afternoon. and he tossed me the paper." "Don't it. Soon after. to think on the dark perils that environed and the shameful gibbet that awaited him. such as a man might make with his thumb-nail. It was around about the size of a crown piece. Jim—here's a cur'osity for you. which already began to come off and soil my fingers.

he did. right alongside of John—stem to stem we was. Although I was glad to hear the sound. shake up your timbers. All a-doin' well. slep' like a supercargo. George. yet my gladness was not without admixture. your patients was—all well and merry. sir." he continued. ahoy!" it cried. and it was some seconds before he seemed able to move on. "You. to be sure. I saw him standing. sir. we were all wakened.Chapter 3 On Parole I was wakened—indeed." says Silver." And the doctor it was. although he did not speak. and looking fit and taut as a fiddle. that gets the rations. Livesey was by this time across the stockade and pretty near the cook. broad awake and beaming with good nature in a moment. and help Dr. as the saying goes. 152 . and expression. He must have risen in the dark." So he pattered on. Livesey over the ship's side. and when I saw where it had brought me—among what companions and surrounded by what dangers—I felt ashamed to look him in the face. hearty voice hailing us from the margin of the wood: "Block house. son. standing on the hilltop with his crutch under his elbow and one hand upon the side of the log-house—quite the old John in voice. up to the mid-leg in creeping vapour. for the day had hardly come. and it's the early bird. like Silver once before. "Not Jim?" "The very same Jim as ever was. and when I ran to a loophole and looked out. "Bright and early. manner. and I could hear the alteration in his voice as he said. "Here's the doctor. sir!" cried Silver. I remembered with confusion my insubordinate and stealthy conduct. "We've a little stranger here—he! he! A noo boarder and lodger. doctor! Top o' the morning to you." Dr. The doctor stopped outright. all night. for I could see even the sentinel shake himself together from where he had fallen against the door-post—by a clear. "We've quite a surprise for you too.

since I am mutineers' doctor. that's done for today. take you all round." A moment afterwards he had entered the block house and with one grim nod to me proceeded with his work among the sick. I should be surprised if he did! The man's tongue is fit to frighten the French." The rogues looked at each other but swallowed the home-thrust in silence. and he rattled on to his patients as if he were paying an ordinary professional visit in a quiet English family. "Dick don't feel well. "Well. His manner. how goes it? You're a pretty colour. sir." 153 . Let us overhaul these patients of yours. more like charity schoolchildren than blood-guilty mutineers and pirates—"well. reacted on the men." says Doctor Livesey in his pleasantest way. he took it. You're less of a fool than many. it was you. as if he were still ship's doctor and they still faithful hands before the mast. sure enough. I suppose."Well. or prison doctor as I prefer to call it. "that comed of sp'iling Bibles. aye. is upside down. step up here. Silver. man. Well." he added after he had dosed them round and they had taken his prescriptions." he said to the fellow with the bandaged head." said Morgan. your liver. my friend. He seemed under no apprehension. men?" "Aye. pestiferous slough. why. "I make it a point of honour not to lose a man for King George (God bless him!) and the gallows. "duty first and pleasure afterwards. you see. Camp in a bog. well. "Well. with really laughable humility. there. "Don't he?" replied the doctor. but you don't appear to me to have the rudiments of a notion of the rules of health." returned Morgan. Dick. among these treacherous demons. Another fever. And now I should wish to have a talk with that boy. your head must be as hard as iron. George. I think it most probable—though of course it's only an opinion—that you'll all have the deuce to pay before you get that malaria out of your systems." said one. "and if ever any person had a close shave. sir. for they behaved to him as if nothing had occurred. though he must have known that his life. "and not having sense enough to know honest air from poison. I'm surprised at you. please." "That comes—as you call it—of being arrant asses. Did you take that medicine? Did he take that medicine. "You're doing well." "Ah. and the dry land from a vile. and let me see your tongue. depended on a hair. certainly. as you might have said yourself. "Because. No. would you? Silver." retorted the doctor." he said at last.

"Then. in one word. and his last night's victory had given him a huge preponderance on their minds. broke out immediately the doctor had left the house. and." And then he bade them get the fire lit. "Slow. of sacrificing the interests of his accomplices and victims. if I have to ile his boots with brandy. "you just step outside o' that stockade. and silenced by his volubility rather than convinced. although poor born—your word of honour not to slip your cable?" I readily gave the pledge required. and till then I'll gammon that doctor. It seemed to me so obvious. We're all humbly grateful for your kindness." said Silver. doctor. and once you're there I'll bring the boy down on the inside. sir. and stalked out upon his crutch. and as you see. but at the first word of the doctor's proposal he swung round with a deep flush and cried "No!" and swore. knowing as how you had a fancy for the boy. said it was necessary I should talk to the doctor." he said." The explosion of disapproval. and all our dooties to the squire and Cap'n Smollett. which nothing but Silver's black looks had restrained. and I reckon you can yarn through the spars. puts faith in you and takes the drugs down like that much grog. But he was twice the man the rest were. in this case. of the identical. Good day to you. lad. "No. slow. Silver was roundly accused of playing double—of trying to make a separate peace for himself. spitting and spluttering over some badtasted medicine. fluttered the chart in their faces. with his hand on my shoulder. Hawkins. that I could not imagine how he was to turn their anger. asked them if they could afford to break the treaty the very day they were bound a-treasure-hunting." he went on in his usual tones. will you give me your word of honour as a young gentleman—for a young gentleman you are. "Si-lence!" he roared and looked about him positively like a lion. by thunder!" he cried. leaving them in a disarray. George Merry was at the door.And he nodded his head in my direction carelessly." 154 . And I take it I've found a way as'll suit all. exact thing that he was doing. "They might round upon us in a twinkle of an eye if we was seen to hurry. "I was a-thinking of that. "It's us must break the treaty when the time comes. Silver struck the barrel with his open hand. He called them all the fools and dolts you can imagine. "Doctor.

"Why." said the doctor sadly. and doctor. so shall you drink. John. not any more than you'll forget the bad. till he was out of earshot. and as soon as we were within easy speaking distance Silver stopped. by George. I never seen a better man! And you'll not forget what I done good. If they come to torture me—" 155 . "You'll make a note of this here also. doctor. is that!" So saying. You're a good man and a true. my life's forfeit anyway. Livesey. never was a soul more dead in earnest. and when he was ill and couldn't help it. "and the boy'll tell you how I saved his life. and you may lay to that. be it kind or unkind: when Captain Smollett was well. Jim." says he. to give him one good word? You'll please bear in mind it's not my life only now—it's that boy's into the bargain. when a man's steering as near the wind as me—playing chuck-farthing with the last breath in his body. no. "Doctor. did we advance across the sand to where the doctor awaited us on the other side of the stockade. I can die—and I dare say I deserve it—but what I fear is torture. And I step aside—see here—and leave you and Jim alone.Very deliberately. and were deposed for it too. his cheeks seemed to have fallen in. And you'll put that down for me too. for the sake of mercy. and I should have been dead by now if Silver hadn't stood for me. "Doctor. I'm no coward. like—you wouldn't think it too much. I know." Silver was a changed man once he was out there and had his back to his friends and the block house. sometimes of me and the doctor and sometimes of his unruly ruffians as they went to and fro in the sand between the fire—which they were busy rekindling—and the house. you're not afraid?" asked Dr. "you might spare me. and there sat down upon a tree-stump and began to whistle. for it's a long stretch. from which they brought forth pork and bread to make the breakfast. As you have brewed. he stepped back a little way. I cannot find it in my heart to blame you. but this much I will say. "So. my boy. Doctor. you dared not have gone off. and give me a bit o' hope to go on. then. spinning round now and again upon his seat so as to command a sight. Heaven knows. I have blamed myself enough. "If I was I wouldn't say it. doctor. believe this. mayhap. it was downright cowardly!" I will own that I here began to weep. his voice trembled. I've the shakes upon me for the gallows. "here you are. not I—not so much!" and he snapped his fingers." I said. and you'll speak me fair. But I'll own up fairly.

and back I go. Silver. Jim." "Doctor. and his voice was quite changed. If they come to torture me. "I can only. do I? And yet I done your bidding with my eyes shut and never a word of hope! But no. But. Whip over. I'd tell it you. for I'll have my wig sorted by the captain or I'm mistaken! And first. I do my possible." "I know. "Silver! I'll give you a piece of advice. I give you my word. I'll go one step further: look out for squalls when you find it. "We can't help that. But I'll go as far with you as I dare go. I know. and we'll run for it like antelopes. "Every step. Silver trusted me. just say so and I'll leave the helm. I might let slip a word of where the ship is. and no more will I. this here's too much." the doctor interrupted." "Why." "No. and he heard me out in silence." I replied. and talking of Ben Gunn! Why. If you won't tell me what you mean plain out." "Sir. on the southern beach. "I passed my word. and she lies in North Inlet. I'll take it on my shoulders. I don't know. that's too much and too little." "The ship!" exclaimed the doctor. What you're after. "don't you be in any great hurry after that treasure. though you live to ninety. part by luck and part by risking. Silver!" he cried. I can't have this. Oh. At half tide she must be high and dry. why you left the block house. and a step beyond." said Silver. "I've no right to say more. my boy." he cried. doctor. I passed my word." "Well. for I got the ship. you did not let me finish. I cannot let you. save my life and the boy's by seeking for that treasure. You found out the plot." he observed when I had done. my boy." said the doctor musingly. and you may lay to that. by Jupiter." said I. and just below high water. and you're out. it's you that saves our lives. and do you suppose by any chance that we are going to let you lose yours? That would be a poor return. which that ain't." "No. I'll give you a bit of hope. sir. "Jim. you see. "if that is so. now." he continued as the cook drew near again. "as between man and man." said Silver. Rapidly I described to him my adventures. or will do. why you given me that there chart. asking your pardon. Silver." replied the doctor. "you know right well you wouldn't do the thing yourself—neither you nor squire nor captain."Jim. Jump! One jump. 156 . "There is a kind of fate in this. blame and shame. this is the mischief in person. and we'll run for it. now. or. but stay here. you found Ben Gunn—the best deed that ever you did. it's not my secret. holus bolus.

not if you was my mother. "Well. I'm sure. sir. if we both get alive out of this wolf-trap. that's my first concession." Silver's face was radiant. and set off at a brisk pace into the wood. "You couldn't say more." And Dr. nodded to Silver. I'll do my best to save you." he cried. 157 . "My second is a piece of advice: keep the boy close beside you. and that itself will show you if I speak at random. halloo. and when you need help. I'm off to seek it for you." added the doctor. Jim. short of perjury. Livesey shook hand s with me through the stockade. Good-bye.Silver.

And then. with sealed orders too. with an empty laugh. In the same wasteful spirit. and one of them. Jim. back to back like. I did. Jim. as plain as hearing. and I owe it you. and we were soon seated here and there about the sand over biscuit and fried junk." Just then a man hailed us from the fire that breakfast was ready. eating away. I could see their entire unfitness for anything like a prolonged campaign. which blazed and roared again over this unusual fuel. And now. Even Silver. and I don't like it. and I'll not forget it. "if I saved your life. mates. This is the first glint of hope I had since the attack failed. though they were bold enough for a brush and be done with it. but once we hit the treasure. three times more than we could eat. threw what was left into the fire. I don't know yet. I suppose. with Captain Flint upon his shoulder. had not a word of blame for their recklessness." said he. you saved mine. I got what I wanted. "it's lucky you have Barbecue to think for you with this here head. They had lit a fire fit to roast an ox. has the upper hand. I reckon.Chapter 4 The Treasure Hunt--Flint's Pointer "J im. they have the ship. we're to go in for this here treasure-hunting. that's one to you. I seen the doctor waving you to run for it—with the tail of my eye. we'll have to jump about and find out. hand to mouth is the only word that can describe their way of doing. I never in my life saw men so careless of the morrow." 158 . And this the more surprised me." said Silver when we were alone. for I thought he had never shown himself so cunning as he did then. "Aye. and what with wasted food and sleeping sentries. Sure enough. Where they have it. and I seen you say no. I did. they had cooked. us that has the boats. mates. and even there not without precaution. and we'll save our necks in spite o' fate and fortune. and you and me must stick close. and it was now grown so hot that they could only approach it from the windward.

why then we'll talk Mr." he continued. and in the meantime. I've got my piece o' news. and thanky to him for that. Silver had two guns slung about him—one before and one behind—besides the great cutlass at his waist and a pistol in each pocket of his square-tailed coat. Livesey. or harder still to understand. Should the scheme he had now sketched prove feasible. He had still a foot in either camp. but it's over and done. who held the loose end of the rope. I more than suspect. with his mouth full of the hot bacon. with them he loves so dear. We made a curious figure.Thus he kept running on. The other men were variously burthened. and. thus he restored their hope and confidence. the doctor's last warning to Silver. already doubly a traitor. I had a line about my waist and followed obediently after the sea-cook. you mark. Nay. bread. For all the world. I'll take him in a line when we go treasure-hunting. For my part. Silver. we will. some carrying picks and shovels—for that had been the very first necessary they brought ashore from the Hispaniola—others laden with pork. and even if things so fell out that he was forced to keep his faith with Dr. repaired his own at the same time. "As for hostage. I was led like a dancing bear. Captain Flint sat perched upon his shoulder and gabbling odds and ends of purposeless sea-talk. I guess. for all his kindness. and there was no doubt he would prefer wealth and freedom with the pirates to a bare escape from hanging. "Look out for squalls when you find it. now between his powerful teeth. even then what danger lay before us! What a moment that would be when the suspicions of his followers turned to certainty and he and I should have to fight for dear life—he a cripple and I a boy—against five strong and active seamen! Add to this double apprehension the mystery that still hung over the behaviour of my friends. in case of accidents. and we'll give him his share. their unexplained desertion of the stockade. Once we got the ship and treasure both and off to sea like jolly companions. Hawkins over. for we'll keep him like so much gold. would not hesitate to adopt it. To complete his strange appearance." It was no wonder the men were in a good humour now. to be sure. I was horribly cast down. which was the best he had to hope on our side. "that's his last talk. had anyone been there to see us—all in soiled sailor clothes and all but me armed to the teeth. now in his free hand. their inexplicable cession of the chart." and you will readily believe how little taste I found in my breakfast and with how uneasy a heart I set forth behind my captors on the quest for treasure. and brandy for the 159 .

and after quite a long passage. not to weary the hands prematurely.S. Yet. right before us the anchorage was bounded by a plateau from two to three hundred feet high. where the two gigs awaited us. when they were so short of eatables. deserted by the ship. bending to our left. of course. a sailor is not usually a good shot. Had he not struck a bargain with the doctor. we began to ascend the slope towards the plateau. one after another. bearing a point to the N. and so. Water would have been little to their taste. Long John alone shrugging his shoulders and bidding them wait till they were there. to the beach. We pulled easily. I observed. cliffy eminence called the Mizzen-mast Hill. must have been driven to subsist on clear water and the proceeds of their hunting. came from our stock. as you will hear. who should certainly have kept in shadow—and straggled.N. every man on board the boats had picked a favourite of his own ere we were half-way over. it was not likely they would be very flush of powder. and the terms of the note on the back. Thence. Skeleton Island E. by Silver's directions. Every here and there. there was some discussion on the chart. one in a broken thwart. with our numbers divided between them. he and his mutineers. The red cross was. thus equipped. Spy-glass shoulder. we all set out—even the fellow with the broken head. thus: Tall tree. landed at the mouth of the second river—that which runs down a woody cleft of the Spy-glass. the reader may remember. Both were to be carried along with us for the sake of safety. and besides all that. Well. As we pulled over. Even these bore trace of the drunken folly of the pirates. The top of the plateau was dotted thickly with pine-trees of varying height. far too large to be a guide.midday meal. and by E. 160 . and which of these was the particular "tall tree" of Captain Flint could only be decided on the spot. one of a different species rose forty or fifty feet clear above its neighbours. A tall tree was thus the principal mark. Now. adjoining on the north the sloping southern shoulder of the Spy-glass and rising again towards the south into the rough.E. admitted of some ambiguity. All the stores. of N. Ten feet.E. although that was the case. and both in their muddy and unbailed condition. They ran. and I could see the truth of Silver's words the night before. and by the readings of the compass. we set forth upon the bosom of the anchorage.

Thickets of green nutmeg-trees were dotted here and there with the red columns and the broad shadow of the pines. in a fan shape. and the wood to change its character and to grow in a more open order. under the sheer sunbeams. raised above his head like a diver's. was a wonderful refreshment to our senses.At the first outset. miry ground and a matted. was fresh and stirring. shouting and leaping to and fro. At the foot of a pretty big pine and involved in a green creeper. We had thus proceeded for about half a mile and were approaching the brow of the plateau when the man upon the farthest left began to cry aloud. "for that's clean a-top." said George Merry. a most pleasant portion of the island that we were now approaching. had gone up close and was examining the rags of clothing. But for some disarray (the work. it seemed impossible to fancy that the body was in a natural position. "Leastways. indeed. From time to time. 161 . his hands. but by little and little the hill began to steepen and become stony under foot. The air. The party spread itself abroad." "Aye. besides. I reckon. on a second glance. bolder than the rest. hurrying past us from the right. which had even partly lifted some of the smaller bones. among the sliding gravel." said old Morgan. I had to lend him a hand. with a few shreds of clothing. "like enough. it was something very different. or he must have missed his footing and fallen backward down the hill. perhaps. heavy. he ploughing. who. this is good sea-cloth. as we found when we also reached the spot. you wouldn't look to find a bishop here. aye. pointing directly in the opposite. a human skeleton lay. of the birds that had fed upon him or of the slow-growing creeper that had gradually enveloped his remains) the man lay perfectly straight—his feet pointing in one direction." Indeed. and the others began to run in his direction. But what sort of a way is that for bones to lie? 'Tain't in natur'. A heavy-scented broom and many flowering shrubs had almost taken the place of grass. About the centre. "He can't 'a found the treasure." said Silver. marish vegetation greatly delayed our progress. and a good way behind the rest. "He was a seaman. Shout after shout came from him. and the first mingled their spice with the aroma of the others. indeed. I believe a chill struck for a moment to every heart. Silver and I followed—I tethered by my rope." Indeed. on the ground. as if in terror. and this. It was. with deep pants.

The body pointed straight in the direction of the island. Aye. He's dead. and the birds. and by E. but in spite of the hot sun and the staring daylight." observed another." said Morgan. says you. Dear heart. "I mind him." cried the cook." "Dead—aye. by thunder! If it don't make me cold inside to think of Flint. and that's true!" cried Silver. 162 . It was main hot." We started." "Come. the pirates no longer ran separate and shouting through the wood. and I hear that old song comin' out as clear as clear—and the death-haul on the man already. "stow this talk. Six they were. he won't walk by day. did Flint!" "Aye. there's the tip-top p'int o' Skeleton Island." "I saw him dead with these here deadlights. and the windy was open." said another. and now he sang. with penny-pieces on his eyes. I guess." "Speaking of knives. but he died bad. would leave it be.E. "this here is a p'inter. but if Flint was living. and bones is what they are now. Right up there is our line for the Pole Star and the jolly dollars. and no mistake. he killed 'em. that he did." "By the powers. and you may lay to that." "No. This is one of his jokes. aye. every man. and took my knife ashore with him. certainly. Him and these six was alone here. "Here's the compass." It was done. You mind Allardyce. I never rightly liked to hear it since. leastways. But. mates. There he laid. by gum. that I know. Great guns! Messmates. and this one he hauled here and laid down by compass. nor not nice. sure enough he's dead and gone below. "but if ever sperrit walked. Care killed a cat. "now he raged. Fetch ahead for the doubloons. along the line of them bones. it don't. "why don't we find his'n lying round? Flint warn't the man to pick a seaman's pocket. still feeling round among the bones. and the hair's been yellow. shiver my timbers! They're long bones." said the fellow with the bandage. and now he hollered for the rum. that would be Allardyce." agreed Silver. It don't look nat'ral to me. he owed me money. "Billy took me in.S. "not nat'ral." said Merry. stickin' out like a tooth. "There ain't a thing left here. come. and I tell you true." said Silver. Tom Morgan?" "Aye." returned Morgan. and the compass read duly E."I've taken a notion into my old numbskull." observed Silver. "not a copper doit nor a baccy box. will you. this would be a hot spot for you and me. it would be Flint's. and six are we. "I thought so. Just take a bearing. he did. 'Fifteen Men' were his only song. and he don't walk.

The terror of the dead buccaneer had fallen on their spirits. 163 .but kept side by side and spoke with bated breath.

took certain bearings with his compass. The plateau being somewhat tilted towards the west." cried a third pirate with a shudder. 'Spy-glass shoulder. "He were an ugly devil. Before us. you praise your stars he's dead." growled Morgan. It's child's play to find the stuff now. behind." said Silver.Chapter 5 The Treasure Hunt--The Voice Among the Trees P artly from the damping influence of this alarm. upon the sea. "about in the right line from Skeleton Island. this spot on which we had paused commanded a wide prospect on either hand. Silver. we not only looked down upon the anchorage and Skeleton Island. but saw—clear across the spit and the eastern lowlands—a great field of open sea upon the east. and the chirp of countless insects in the brush." added Merry. so that the sound of their talk hardly interrupted the silence of the wood. I've half a mind to dine first. "that blue in the face too!" "That was how the rum took him. there black with precipices. "Blue! Well. well. as he sat. partly to rest Silver and the sick folk. the whole party sat down as soon as they had gained the brow of the ascent." "I don't feel sharp. "Thinkin' o' Flint—I think it were—as done me. my son. and they had almost got to whispering by now. There was no sound but that of the distant breakers. here dotted with single pines. not a sail. Not a man. Sheer above us rose the Spy-glass." "Ah. the very largeness of the view increased the sense of solitude." Ever since they had found the skeleton and got upon this train of thought. I reckon he was blue. All of a sudden. they had spoken lower and lower. That's a true word. "There are three 'tall trees'" said he.' I take it. we beheld the Cape of the Woods fringed with surf. over the tree-tops. out of the middle of the trees in 164 . mounting from all round. means that lower p'int there.

but in a faint distant hail that echoed yet fainter among the clefts of the Spy-glass. had Dick. when the same voice broke out again—not this time singing. and then rising a little higher. their eyes starting from their heads. "I'm here to get that stuff. Already the others had begun to lend an ear to this encouragement and were coming a little to themselves.front of us. Darby!" The buccaneers remained rooted to the ground. sunny atmosphere among the green tree-tops. but it's someone skylarking—someone that's flesh and blood. but he had not yet surrendered. and a bottle of rum!" I never have seen men more dreadfully affected than the pirates. and you may lay to that. trembling voice struck up the well-known air and words: "Fifteen men on the dead man's chest— Yo-ho-ho. The colour went from their six faces like enchantment." he muttered. in the middle of a note. I could hear his teeth rattle in his head. and I can't name the voice. "his last words above board. a thin. some clawed hold of others. "That fixes it!" gasped one. Long after the voice had died away they still stared in silence. Morgan grovelled on the ground. This is a rum start. The song had stopped as suddenly as it began—broken off. "Darby M'Graw. and the effect on my companions was the stranger. Coming through the clear. dreadfully. before he came to sea and fell among bad companions. "It's Flint. Still Silver was unconquered. struggling with his ashen lips to get the word out. "Come. "Nobody in this here island ever heard of Darby. He had been well brought up." said Silver." he cried. as though someone had laid his hand upon the singer's mouth. "not one but us that's here." it wailed—for that is the word that best describes the sound—"Darby M'Graw! Darby M'Graw!" again and again and again. and I'll not be beat by man or devil. some leaped to their feet. "this won't do. before them. and some of the colour to his face along with it." "They was his last words. Stand by to go about." Dick had his Bible out and was praying volubly." And then. you would have said. making a great effort: "Shipmates." His courage had come back as he spoke. and with an oath that I leave out: "Fetch aft the rum. I 165 ." moaned Morgan. by——!" cried Merry. "Let's go. high. I thought it had sounded airily and sweetly.

with intervals of listening. "Ben Gunn's not here in the body any more'n Flint. now?" asked Dick. and so it were. 166 . by the powers. "But there's one thing not clear to me. He had said the truth: dead or alive. "Belay there. no man ever seen a sperrit with a shadow. "Well. It was liker somebody else's voice now—it was liker—" "By the powers. "Why. of growing terror at the irreverence of his words. I do believe. nobody minds him. mates! This here crew is on a wrong tack." And the rest were all too terrified to reply." he said. There's seven hundred thousand pound not a quarter of a mile from here. There was an echo. well then. nobody minded Ben Gunn." It was extraordinary how their spirits had returned and how the natural colour had revived in their faces. after all. I'll face him dead. rather. but fear kept them together. They would have run away severally had they dared. surely?" This argument seemed weak enough to me. John!" said Merry. George Merry was greatly relieved. John. and kept them close by John. but not just so clear-away like it. When did ever a gentleman o' fortune show his stern to that much dollars for a boozy old seaman with a blue mug—and him dead too?" But there was no sign of reawakening courage in his followers. "Ben Gunn it were!" "It don't make much odds. I should like to know? That ain't in natur'. Soon they were chatting together. had pretty well fought his weakness down. it was like Flint's voice. they shouldered the tools and set forth again. hearing no further sound. that's so. "You've a head upon your shoulders. "Aye. and to my wonder. "Sperrit? Well. and not long after. springing on his knees. maybe. indeed. on his part. And come to think on it.never was feared of Flint in his life. and." he said. Now." cried Merry. do it. and no mistake. He. nobody minds Ben Gunn. 'Bout ship." cried Morgan. what's he doing with an echo to him. But you can never tell what will affect the superstitious. "dead or alive. I grant you. Merry walking first with Silver's compass to keep them on the right line with Skeleton Island. as if his daring helped them. Ben Gunn!" roared Silver." But the older hands greeted this remark with scorn. "Don't you cross a sperrit.

Dick alone still held his Bible. The third rose nearly two hundred feet into the air above a clump of underwood—a giant of a vegetable. ever nearer under the shoulders of the Spy-glass. The first of the tall trees was reached. our way lay a little downhill. 167 . wide open spaces baked in the hot sunshine. great and small. on his crutch. their whole soul was found up in that fortune. with fearful glances. as we did. and Silver even joked him on his precautions. it was the knowledge that seven hundred thousand pounds in gold lay somewhere buried below its spreading shadow. It was conspicuous far to sea both on the east and west and might have been entered as a sailing mark upon the chart. as they drew nearer. halting a moment on his crutch. But it was not its size that now impressed my companions." said he—"I told you you had sp'iled your Bible. Livesey. with a red column as big as a cottage. it was soon plain to me that the lad was falling sick. and by the bearings proved the wrong one. swallowed up their previous terrors. their feet grew speedier and lighter. and a wide shadow around in which a company could have manoeuvred. hastened by heat. that whole lifetime of extravagance and pleasure. Certainly he took no pains to hide his thoughts. that lay waiting there for each of them. exhaustion. all else had been forgotten: his promise and the doctor's warning were both things of the past. we drew. It was fine open walking here. he cursed like a madman when the flies settled on his hot and shiny countenance. looked ever wider over that western bay where I had once tossed and trembled in the oracle. But Dick was not to be comforted. If it ain't no good to swear by. Striking. he plucked furiously at the line that held me to him and from time to time turned his eyes upon me with a deadly look. was evidently growing swiftly higher. the fever. So with the second. for. and even between the clumps of nutmeg and azalea. what do you suppose a sperrit would give for it? Not that!" and he snapped his big fingers. and looked around him as he went. on the one hand. Silver hobbled. Their eyes burned in their heads. and certainly I read them like print. In the immediate nearness of the gold. grew wide apart. his nostrils stood out and quivered. the plateau tilted towards the west. grunting. upon the summit. predicted by Dr. indeed. and the shock of his alarm. The pines. and on the other. as I have said. "I told you. The thought of the money. pretty near north-west across the island. but he found no sympathy.

Shaken as I was with these alarms. Silver doubled his pace. All was clear to probation. for the sides had fallen in and grass had sprouted on the bottom. We were now at the margin of the thicket. was babbling to himself both prayers and curses as his fever kept rising. cut every honest throat about that island. And suddenly. Now and again I stumbled. with his own hand. the seven hundred thousand pounds were gone! 168 . On one of these boards I saw. laden with crimes and riches. I was haunted by the thought of the tragedy that had once been acted on that plateau. when that ungodly buccaneer with the blue face—he who died at Savannah. and to crown all. branded with a hot iron. singing and shouting for drink—had there. all together!" shouted Merry. and it was then that Silver plucked so roughly at the rope and launched at me his murderous glances. find and board the Hispaniola under cover of night. not very recent. This also added to my wretchedness. Dick.and I could not doubt that he hoped to seize upon the treasure. This grove that was now so peaceful must then have rung with cries. I thought. and even with the thought I could believe I heard it ringing still. A low cry arose. and the foremost broke into a run. Before us was a great excavation. and sail away as he had at first intended. digging away with the foot of his crutch like one possessed. The cache had been found and rifled. not ten yards further. who had dropped behind us and now brought up the rear. we beheld them stop. mates. the name Walrus—the name of Flint's ship. it was hard for me to keep up with the rapid pace of the treasure-hunters. and next moment he and I had come also to a dead halt. In this were the shaft of a pick broken in two and the boards of several packing-cases strewn around. "Huzza. cut down his six accomplices.

" said Silver with the coolest insolence." "Ah. he began quietly moving northward. one after another." he whispered. found his temper. boys. into the pit and to dig with their fingers.Chapter 6 The Fall of a Chieftain T here never was such an overturn in this world. he was brought up. "Mates. as much as to say. Look in the face of him and you'll see it wrote there. "you'll find some pig-nuts and I shouldn't wonder." There was no time left for him to answer in. and I was so revolted at these constant changes that I could not forbear whispering. Morgan found a piece of gold. well." remarked Silver. "Two guineas!" roared Merry. Each of these six men was as though he had been struck. with oaths and cries. in a scream. like a racer. indeed. on that money. I thought it was." as. and changed his plan before the others had had time to realize the disappointment. But with Silver the blow passed almost instantly. "take that. "So you've changed sides again. Merry. ain't you? You're him that never bungled nothing. that man there knew it all along. began to leap. in a single second. "Jim. and he kept his head. "standing for cap'n again? You're a pushing lad. shaking it at Silver. He held it up with a perfect spout of oaths. you wooden-headed lubber!" "Dig away. and stand by for trouble. to be sure. "That's your seven hundred thousand pounds. At the same time. The buccaneers. Every thought of his soul had been set fullstretch. "Here is a narrow corner. is it? You're the man for bargains." 169 . and it went from hand to hand among them for a quarter of a minute. It was a two-guinea piece. Then he looked at me and nodded. and in a few steps had put the hollow between us two and the other five. His looks were not quite friendly. dead. do you hear that? I tell you now." And he passed me a double-barrelled pistol." "Pig-nuts!" repeated Merry. throwing the boards aside as they did so.

But just then—crack! crack! crack!—three musket-shots flashed out of the thicket. "Forward!" cried the doctor. and the other three turned and ran for it with all their might. "Mates. "I reckon I settled you. the pit between us. and plainly meant to lead a charge." said he. he watched them. and no mistake. 170 . mates—" He was raising his arm and his voice." And we set off at a great pace. and so we four sat down to breathe. he was already thirty yards behind us and on the verge of strangling when we reached the brow of the slope. with smoking muskets. and as the man rolled up his eyes at him in the last agony. He was brave. At last Merry seemed to think a speech might help matters. Well. leaping on his crutch till the muscles of his chest were fit to burst." he hailed. As it was. my lads. but still twitching. They began to scramble out of the excavation.But this time everyone was entirely in Merry's favour. mopping his face. "Double quick." says he. The work that man went through. and nobody screwed up high enough to offer the first blow. In a more open part of the plateau. but Silver was anxious to keep up with us. we could see the three survivors still running in the same direction as they had started. sometimes plunging through the bushes to the chest. two on one side." At the same moment. Gray. was work no sound man ever equalled. Now. and so thinks the doctor. five on the other. while Long John. right for Mizzen-mast Hill. "George. I tell you. Long John had fired two barrels of a pistol into the struggling Merry. one's the old cripple that brought us all here and blundered us down to this. "see there! No hurry!" Sure enough there was no hurry. "Doctor. there we stood. from among the nutmeg-trees. We were already between them and the boats. Silver never moved. the doctor. came slowly up with us. Before you could wink. darting furious glances behind them. One thing I observed. Merry tumbled head foremost into the excavation. the man with the bandage spun round like a teetotum and fell all his length upon his side. the other's that cub that I mean to have the heart of. where he lay dead. We must head 'em off the boats. very upright on his crutch. and looked as cool as ever I saw him. "there's two of them alone there. which looked well for us: they all got out upon the opposite side from Silver. and Ben Gunn joined us.

to be sure. "You came in in about the nick. "to think as you've done me!" The doctor sent back Gray for one of the pick-axes deserted. I am. after a long pause. he had found the treasure. Then it had occurred to him to work upon the superstitions of his former shipmates. "And. 171 . and then as we proceeded leisurely downhill to where the boats were lying. in their flight. finding that I was to be involved in the horrid disappointment he had prepared for the mutineers." "Ben. by the mutineers. from the foot of the tall pine to a cave he had on the two-pointed hill at the northeast angle of the island. "As for you. I thank ye. and there it had lain stored in safety since two months before the arrival of the Hispaniola." he added. doctor. however. Ben Gunn!" he added. you're a nice one." says he. Ben. and when next morning he saw the anchorage deserted. related in a few words what had taken place. Silver? Pretty well. When the doctor had wormed this secret from him on the afternoon of the attack. had taken Gray and the maroon and started. he had run all the way to the cave. wriggling like an eel in his embarrassment. "how do. I guess. making the diagonal across the island to be at hand beside the pine. And so it's you. and Ben Gunn. for me and Hawkins. in many weary journeys. and he was so far successful that Gray and the doctor had come up and were already ambushed before the arrival of the treasure-hunters. given him the chart. he had dug it up (it was the haft of his pick-axe that lay broken in the excavation). he had gone to Silver. in his long. which was now useless—given him the stores."Thank ye kindly." he said." murmured Silver. It was a story that profoundly interested Silver. had found the skeleton—it was he that had rifled it. for Ben Gunn's cave was well supplied with goats' meat salted by himself—given anything and everything to get a chance of moving in safety from the stockade to the two-pointed hill. whose fault was it?" That morning. he saw that our party had the start of him. Ben. he had carried it on his back. the halfidiot maroon. Mr." replied the maroon. Soon. being fleet of foot. Jim. there to be clear of malaria and keep a guard upon the money. had been dispatched in front to do his best alone. but I did what I thought best for those who had stood by their duty. and if you were not one of these." "I'm Ben Gunn. "it went against my heart. and leaving the squire to guard the captain. was the hero from beginning to end. "Well. says you. and Ben Gunn. lonely wanderings about the island.

Livesey cheerily. "I dare you to thank me!" cried the squire. single-handed. Stand back. To me he was cordial and kind. The floor was sand. and never given it a thought. we should never have found her more. sir. there was little amiss beyond the wreck of the main-sail. we had towed the Hispaniola. I am told I am not to prosecute you. returned with the gig to the Hispaniola. in which the voice of Silver joined as heartily as any. the nearest point for Ben Gunn's treasure-house. four days ago. This was a run of eight or nine miles. then. sir. though he was almost killed already with fatigue. As we passed the two-pointed hill. and in a far corner. "John Silver. or found her stranded beyond help." "Not a thought. with a little spring and a pool of clear water. and then Gray. Before a big fire lay Captain Smollett."Ah. It was a large. We all pulled round again to Rum Cove. You would have let old John be cut to bits. I will not." And thereupon we all entered the cave. like the rest of us. Silver. again saluting. where he was to pass the night on guard. round which. cruising by herself? The last flood had lifted her. sir." replied Long John. saying nothing of my escapade either in the way of blame or praise. Well. demolished one of them. Three miles farther. At the top. overhung with ferns. leaning on a musket. hang about your neck like mill-stones. and then we all got aboard the other and set out to go round by sea for North Inlet. and we waved a handkerchief and gave him three cheers." "Thank you kindly. and had there been much wind or a strong tide current. Another anchor was got ready and dropped in a fathom and a half of water. with the pickaxe. "you're a prodigious villain and imposter—a monstrous imposter. "It is a gross dereliction of my duty. At Silver's polite salute he somewhat flushed. A gentle slope ran up from the beach to the entrance of the cave. The doctor. As it was." said Silver." he said. doctor. we could see the black mouth of Ben Gunn's cave and a figure standing by it. Soon we passed out of the straits and doubled the south-east corner of the island. airy place. and we were soon skimming swiftly over a smooth sea. But the dead men. only duskily flickered over by the blaze. what should we meet but the Hispaniola. as in the southern anchorage. just inside the mouth of North Inlet. was set to an oar. the squire met us. "it were fortunate for me that I had Hawkins here. And by this time we had reached the gigs. I beheld great heaps of coin and 172 ." replied Dr. It was the squire.

what blood and sorrow. "You're a good boy in your line. "Ah!" said the captain. obsequious seaman of the voyage out. polite. but I don't think you and me'll go to sea again. Never. what good ships scuttled on the deep. John Silver? What brings you here. what brave men walking the plank blindfold. You're too much of the born favourite for me. Yet there were still three upon that island—Silver. were people gayer or happier. as each had hoped in vain to share in the reward. Jim. and Ben Gunn—who had each taken his share in these crimes. 173 . prompt to spring forward when anything was wanted. perhaps no man alive could tell. How many it had cost in the amassing. sitting back almost out of the firelight. I am sure. with Ben Gunn's salted goat and some delicacies and a bottle of old wine from the Hispaniola. And there was Silver. what shame and lies and cruelty. and what a meal it was. That was Flint's treasure that we had come so far to seek and that had cost already the lives of seventeen men from the Hispaniola. sir. Jim. "Come in. with all my friends around me. What a supper I had of it that night. what shot of cannon.quadrilaterals built of bars of gold. but eating heartily. man?" "Come back to my dooty." said the captain." returned Silver. and that was all he said. even joining quietly in our laughter—the same bland. and old Morgan. Is that you.

For my part. It was a strange collection. strange Oriental pieces stamped with what looked like wisps of string or bits of spider's web. I was kept busy all day in the cave packing the minted money into bread-bags. Therefore the work was pushed on briskly. Gray and Ben Gunn came and went with the boat. Portuguese. besides. have found a place in that collection. round pieces and square pieces. and pieces bored through the middle. Two of the bars. and for number. I think. I am sure they were like autumn leaves. and thence three miles by boat to the Hispaniola. At last—I think it was on the third night—the doctor and I were strolling on the shoulder of the hill where it overlooks the lowlands of 174 . Georges. made a good load for a grown man—one that he was glad to walk slowly with. as if to wear them round your neck—nearly every variety of money in the world must. for the transportation of this great mass of gold near a mile by land to the beach. doubloons and double guineas and moidores and sequins. but so much larger and so much more varied that I think I never had more pleasure than in sorting them. and we thought. like Billy Bones's hoard for the diversity of coinage. English. Day after day this work went on. by every evening a fortune had been stowed aboard. slung in a rope's end. The three fellows still abroad upon the island did not greatly trouble us. Spanish. as I was not much use at carrying. but there was another fortune waiting for the morrow. while the rest during their absences piled treasure on the beach. and Louises. the pictures of all the kings of Europe for the last hundred years. French. and all this time we heard nothing of the three surviving mutineers. they had had more than enough of fighting. was a considerable task for so small a number of workmen. a single sentry on the shoulder of the hill was sufficient to ensure us against any sudden onslaught. so that my back ached with stooping and my fingers with sorting them out.Chapter 7 And Last T he next morning we fell early to work.

unless it was Ben Gunn. Indeed. and with the strong approval of Gray." said the doctor. who was still terribly afraid of his old quartermaster. But if I were sure they were raving—as I am morally certain one. of Ben Gunn. and by the particular desire of the doctor. I must say. a fathom or two of rope.the isle. not supposing they wished to. "Right you were. Silver. sir." Well. a spare sail. I'm on your side now. a handsome present of tobacco." "Ask your pardon. none treated him better than a dog. "You would lose your precious life. let alone yourself. take them the assistance of my skill." replied Silver. "and precious little odds which. when. and what's more. "and so my feelings may surprise you. you would be very wrong." said he. and at whatever risk to my own carcass. although for that matter. a few medicines. 175 . they couldn't keep their word—no. Master Silver. "Heaven forgive them. sir. I suppose. to you and me. We left a good stock of powder and shot. that was about the last news we had of the three pirates. was allowed his entire liberty. Only once we heard a gunshot a great way off and supposed them to be hunting. the bulk of the salt goat. and you may lay to that. Accordingly. at least. it was remarkable how well he bore these slights and with what unwearying politeness he kept on trying to ingratiate himself with all. and it was decided that we must desert them on the island—to the huge glee. and some other necessaries. "'tis the mutineers!" "All drunk. of them is down with fever—I should leave this camp. sir. seemed to regard himself once more as quite a privileged and friendly dependent. It was only a snatch that reached our ears. who had really something to thank him for. from out the thick darkness below." quoth Silver. "You're the man to keep your word. Yet. A council was held. clothing. I had reason to think even worse of him than anybody else." struck in the voice of Silver from behind us. the wind brought us a noise between shrieking and singing. and in spite of daily rebuffs. seeing as I know what I owes you. for I had seen him meditating a fresh treachery upon the plateau. I should say." said the doctor. "Drunk or raving. followed by the former silence. I think." "No. and I shouldn't wish for to see the party weakened. it was pretty gruffly that the doctor answered him. tools. hand and glove." returned the doctor with a sneer. But these men down there. we know that. or myself." "I suppose you would hardly ask me to call you a humane man. they couldn't believe as you could.

and at last. After that.That was about our last doing on the island. and where they were to find them. I think. seeing the ship still bore on her course and was now swiftly drawing out of earshot. the taste of the tropical fruits. whipped his musket to his shoulder. and to take them home for the gibbet would have been a cruel sort of kindness. The doctor hailed them and told them of the stores we had left. the end of that. and the spit itself had almost melted out of sight in the growing distance. which was about all that we could manage. It went to all our hearts. for God's sake. we had to lie very near the southern point. one of them—I know not which it was—leapt to his feet with a hoarse cry. The three fellows must have been watching us closer than we thought for. and stood out of North Inlet. At last. and as it was. The sight of so many goodhumoured faces (especially the blacks). But they continued to call us by name and appeal to us. we had got the treasure stowed and had shipped enough water and the remainder of the goat meat in case of any distress. went ashore to pass 176 . and there we saw all three of them kneeling together on a spit of sand. That was. one fine morning. we kept under cover of the bulwarks. Before that. we weighed anchor. and above all the lights that began to shine in the town made a most charming contrast to our dark and bloody sojourn on the island. to leave them in that wretched state. and when next I looked out they had disappeared from the spit. It was just at sundown when we cast anchor in a most beautiful landlocked gulf. for we could not risk the voyage home without fresh hands. and the doctor and the squire. at least. We were so short of men that everyone on board had to bear a hand—only the captain lying on a mattress in the stern and giving his orders. and before noon. with their arms raised in supplication. for though greatly recovered he was still in want of quiet. taking me along with them. to be merciful and not leave them to die in such a place. but we could not risk another mutiny. to my inexpressible joy. For coming through the narrows. we were all worn out before we reached it. We laid her head for the nearest port in Spanish America. the same colours flying that the captain had flown and fought under at the palisade. what with baffling winds and a couple of fresh gales. as we soon had proved. and were immediately surrounded by shore boats full of Negroes and Mexican Indians and half-bloods selling fruits and vegetables and offering to dive for bits of money. the highest rock of Treasure Island had sunk into the blue round of sea. and sent a shot whistling over Silver's head and through the main-sail.

with wonderful contortions. and he is now mate and part owner of a fine full-rigged ship. and the father of a family. Of Silver we have heard no more.the early part of the night. in short. Gray not only saved his money. married besides. As for Ben Gunn. and a notable singer in church on Sundays and saints' days. in nineteen days. a great favourite. and he still lives. or to be more exact. and as soon as we came on board he began. and perhaps still lives in comfort with her and Captain Flint. It is to be hoped so. which he spent or lost in three weeks. Silver was gone. we got a few hands on board. He had cut through a bulkhead unobserved and had removed one of the sacks of coin. The maroon had connived at his escape in a shore boat some hours ago. That formidable seafaring man with one leg has at last gone clean out of my life. to make a long story short. made a good cruise home. fell in talk with him. to help him on his further wanderings. went on board his ship. I think we were all pleased to be so cheaply quit of him. The sea-cook had not gone emptyhanded. for his chances of comfort in another world are very small. had so agreeable a time that day was breaking when we came alongside the Hispaniola. though something of a butt. exactly as he had feared upon the island. also studied his profession." But this was not all. which would certainly have been forfeit if "that man with the one leg had stayed aboard. but being suddenly smit with the desire to rise. where Flint buried them. What put to sea with seventy-five. with the country boys. All of us had an ample share of the treasure and used it wisely or foolishly. Five men only of those who had sailed returned with her. we were not quite in so bad a case as that other ship they sang about: With one man of her crew alive. Then he was given a lodge to keep. Blandly was beginning to think of fitting out her consort. and certainly they shall lie there for me. to make us a confession. Here they met the captain of an English manof-war." with a vengeance. according to our natures. he got a thousand pounds. but I dare say he met his old Negress. Ben Gunn was on deck alone. for he was back begging on the twentieth. worth perhaps three or four hundred guineas. although. Captain Smollett is now retired from the sea. and the Hispaniola reached Bristol just as Mr. The bar silver and the arms still lie. "Drink and the devil had done for the rest. I suppose. and he now assured us he had only done so to preserve our lives. for all that I know. Well. to be sure. and. Oxen and wain- 177 .

and the worst dreams that ever I have are when I hear the surf booming about its coasts or start upright in bed with the sharp voice of Captain Flint still ringing in my ears: "Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight!" 178 .ropes would not bring me back again to that accursed island.

It is about a London lawyer who investigates strange occurrences between his old friend. These are the first of the Sherlock Holmes short stories. The book was published in England on October 14. Stage adaptations began in Boston and London within a year of its publication and it has gone on to inspire scores of major film and stage performances. and the misanthropic Edward Hyde. This is different from multiple personality disorder where the different personalities do not necessarily differ in any moral sense. in mainstream culture the very phrase "Jekyll and Hyde" has come to mean a person who is vastly different in moral character from one situation to the next. as seen by one of his passengers. Arthur Conan Doyle The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes is a collection of twelve stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.Loved this book ? Similar users also downloaded Jules Verne 20. originally published as single stories in the Strand Magazine from July 1891 to June 1892. It is about the fictional Captain Nemo and his submarine. published in 1870. The work is known for its vivid portrayal of a split personality. Herman Melville Moby-Dick 179 . Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde was an immediate success and one of Stevenson's best-selling works. Robert Louis Stevenson Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde is a novella written by the Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson and first published in 1886. featuring his famous detective and illustrated by Sidney Paget. Nautilus. 1892 by George Newnes Ltd and in a US Edition on October 15 by Harper. split in the sense that within the same person there is both an apparently good and an evil personality each being quite distinct from each other.000 Leagues Under the Sea Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (French: Vingt mille lieues sous les mers) is a classic science fiction novel by French writer Jules Verne. Professor Pierre Aronnax.500 copies. The initial combined print run was 14. Dr Henry Jekyll.

Porthos. vengeance. The Three Musketeers was first published in serial form in the magazine Le Siècle between March and July 1844. Ahab intends to exact revenge. and all for one". islands in the Mediterranean and the Levant during the historical events of 1815–1838 (from just before the Hundred Days through the reign of Louis-Philippe of France). The story of d'Artagnan is continued in Twenty Years After and The Vicomte de Bragelonne. père. justice. It is also among the highest selling books of all time. the whale destroyed Ahab's boat and bit off his leg. Moby-Dick. The historical setting is a fundamental element of the book. Alexandre Dumas The Count of Monte Cristo The Count of Monte Cristo (French: Le Comte de Monte-Cristo) is an adventure novel by Alexandre Dumas. and fewer yet have encountered him. forgiveness and death. Ishmael soon learns that Ahab seeks one specific whale. D'Artagnan is not one of the musketeers of the title. those are his friends Athos. it is expanded from the plot outlines suggested by his collaborating ghostwriter Auguste Maquet. and Aramis—inseparable friends who live by the motto. a white whale of tremendous size and ferocity. Those three novels by Dumas are together known as the D'Artagnan Romances. Bram Stoker Dracula 180 .Moby-Dick is an 1851 novel by Herman Melville. Comparatively few whaling ships know of Moby-Dick. mercy. In a previous encounter. The story tells the adventures of the wandering sailor Ishmael and his voyage on the whaling ship Pequod. as Dumas' most popular work. The writing of the work was completed in 1844. and is told in the style of an adventure story. "One for all. Like many of his novels. commanded by Captain Ahab. père. Alexandre Dumas The Three Musketeers The Three Musketeers (Les Trois Mousquetaires) is a novel by Alexandre Dumas. It is primarily concerned with themes of hope. The story takes place in France. along with The Three Musketeers. Italy. It recounts the adventures of a young man named d'Artagnan after he leaves home to become a musketeer. It is often considered.

by Mark Twain. particularly racism. that is. 181 . Although Stoker did not invent the vampire. By satirizing Southern antebellum society that was already a quarter-century in the past by the time of publication. the book is an often scathing look at entrenched attitudes. The drifting journey of Huck and his friend Jim. Dracula has been attributed to many literary genres including vampire literature. the novel's influence on the popularity of vampires has been singularly responsible for many theatrical and film interpretations throughout the 20th and 21st centuries. Petersburg. It is commonly used and accounted as one of the first Great American Novels. Structurally it is an epistolary novel. a runaway slave. down the Mississippi River on their raft may be one of the most enduring images of escape and freedom in all of American literature. or vernacular. The book is noted for its colorful description of people and places along the Mississippi River. is a popular 1876 novel about a young boy growing up in the antebellum South on the Mississippi River in the fictional town of St. immigration. best friend of Tom Sawyer and hero of three other Mark Twain books. conventional and conservative sexuality. The Modern Prometheus. featuring as its primary antagonist the vampire Count Dracula. Mark Twain The Adventures of Tom Sawyer The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Missouri. told in the first person by the eponymous Huckleberry "Huck" Finn. colonialism. The title of the novel refers to a scientist. or. told as a series of diary entries and letters. the gothic novel and invasion literature. generally known as Frankenstein. Victor Frankenstein. is a novel written by the British author Mary Shelley. such as the role of women in Victorian culture. Literary critics have examined many themes in the novel. Mark Twain The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (often shortened to Huck Finn) is a novel written by American humorist Mark Twain.Dracula is an 1897 novel by Irish author Bram Stoker. It is also one of the first major American novels written using Local Color Regionalism. postcolonialism and folklore. horror fiction. Mary Shelley Frankenstein Frankenstein.

but larger than average and more powerful. It was also a warning against the "over-reaching" of modern man and the Industrial Revolution. In popular culture. people have tended to refer to the Creature as "Frankenstein". It is arguably considered the first fully realized science fiction novel. The story has had an influence across literature and popular culture and spawned a complete genre of horror stories and films. The Modern Prometheus. Frankenstein is a novel infused with some elements of the Gothic novel and the Romantic movement.who learns how to create life and creates a being in the likeness of man. 182 . despite this being the name of the scientist. alluded to in the novel's subtitle.

www.feedbooks.com Food for the mind 183 .

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