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“Vel, gentlemen, I purtest against these proceedings," replied Mr. Easthupp. "I came here to have satisfaction from Mr. Easy, and not to be fired at by Mr. Biggs."
"Don't you have satisfaction when you fire at Mr. Easy?" replied the gunner. "What more would you have?” "I purtest against Mr. Biggs firing at me."
'So you would have a shot without receiving one!" cried Gascoigne." The fact is that this fellow's a confounded coward, and ought to be kicked into the cooperage again.”
At this affront Mr. Easthupp rallied, and accepted the pistol offered by the gunner.
"You 'ear those words, Mr. Biggs? Pretty language to use to a gentleman! You shall 'ear from me, sir, as soon as the ship is paid off. I purtest no longer, Mr. Tallboys. Death before dishonour! I'm a gentleman, damme!"
At all events, the swell was not a very courageous gentleman, for he trembled most exceedingly as he pointed his pistol.
The gunner gave the word as if he were exercising the great guns on board ship.
66 Cock your locks! Take good aim at the object! Fire! Stop your vents!"
The only one of the combatants who appeared to comply with the latter supplementary order was Mr. Easthupp, who clapped his hand to his trousers behind, gave a loud yell, and then dropped down, the bullet having passed clean through his seat of honour, from his having presented his broadside as a target to the boatswain as he faced toward our hero. Jack's shot had also taken effect, having passed through both the boatswain's cheeks, without further mischief than extracting two of his best upper double teeth and forcing through the hole of the further cheek the boatswain's
own quid of tobacco. As for Mr. Easthupp's ball, as he was very unsettled, and shut his eyes before he fired, it had gone the Lord knows where.
The purser's steward lay on the ground and screamed; the boatswain spit out his double teeth and two or three mouthfuls of blood, and then threw down his pistol in a rage.
A pretty business, by God!" sputtered he. "He's put my pipe out. How the devil am I to pipe to dinner when I'm ordered, all my wind 'scaping through the cheeks?"
In the meantime, the others had gone to the assistance of the purser's steward, who continued his vociferations. They examined him, and considered a wound in that part not to be dangerous.
"Hold your confounded bawling," cried the gunner, or you'll have the guard down here. You're not hurt."
Hain't hi!" roared the steward. "Oh, let me die! Let me die! Don't move me!"
"Nonsense!" cried the gunner, "you must get up and walk down to the boat; if you don't, we'll leave you. Hold your tongue, confound you! You won't? Then I'll give you something to halloo for."
Whereupon Mr. Tallboys commenced cuffing the poor wretch right and left, who received so many swingeing boxes of the ear that he was soon reduced to merely pitiful plaints of "Oh, dear! such inhumanity! I purtest! Oh, dear! must I get up? I can't, indeed."
"I do not think he can move, Mr. Tallboys," said Gascoigne. "I should think the best plan would be to call up two of the men from the cooperage and let them take him at once to the hospital."
The gunner went down to the cooperage to call the men.
Mr. Biggs, who had bound up his face as if he had a toothache, for the bleeding had been very slight, came up to the purser's steward, exclaiming:
'What the hell are you making such a howling about? Look at me, with two shot-holes through my figurehead, while you have only got one in your stern. I wish I could change with you, by heavens! for I could use my whistle then. Now, if I attempt to pipe, there will be such a wasteful expenditure of his Majesty's stores of wind that I never shall get out a note. A wicked shot of yours, Mr. Easy.” "I really am very sorry,” replied Jack, with a polite bow,
and I beg to offer my best apology."
ALL the sailors were busy at work, and the first lieutenant cried out to the gunner, "Now, Mr. Dispart, if you are ready, we'll breech these guns."
'Now, my lads," said the first lieutenant, we must slug (the part the breeches cover) more forward." As I never had heard of a gun having breeches, I was very curious to see what was going on, and went up close to the first lieutenant, who said to me, "Youngster, hand me that monkey's tail." I saw nothing like a monkey's tail, but I was so frightened that I snatched up the first thing that I saw, which was a short bar of iron, and it so happened that it was the very article which he wanted. When I gave it to him, the first lieutenant looked at me, and said, "So you know what a monkey's tail is already, do you? Now don't you ever sham stupid after that."
Thought I to myself, I'm very lucky, but if that's a monkey's tail, it's a very stiff one!
I resolved to learn the names of everything as fast as I could, that I might be prepared, so I listened attentively to what was said; but I soon became quite confused, and despaired of remembering anything.
'How is this to be finished off, sir?" inquired a sailor of the boatswain.
"Why, I beg leave to hint to you, sir, in the most delicate manner in the world," replied the boatswain, "that it must be with a double-wall-and be damned to you-don't you know that yet? Captain of the foretop," said he, “up on your horses, and take your stirrups up three inches." "Aye, aye, sir." I looked and looked, but I could see no horses. "Mr. Chucks," said the first lieutenant to the boatswain, "what blocks have we below-not on charge?"
Let me see, sir. I've one sister, tother we split in half the other day, and I think I have a couple of monkeys down in the store-room. I say, you Smith, pass that brace through the bull's eye, and take the sheep-shank out before you come down."
And then he asked the first lieutenant whether something should not be fitted with a mouse or only a Turk's-head-told him the goose-neck must be spread out by the armourer as soon as the forge was up. In short, what with dead-eyes and shrouds, cats and cat-blocks, dolphins and dolphinstrikers, whips and puddings, I was so puzzled with what I heard, that I was about to leave the deck in absolute despair. 'And, Mr. Chucks, recollect this afternoon that you bleed all the buoys."
Bleed the boys, thought I; what can that be for? At all events, the surgeon appears to be the proper person to perform that operation.-" Peter Simple."
Not a Sou Had He Got
(Parody on Wolfe's "Burial of Sir John Moore")
Nor a sou had he got, not a guinea or note,
We saw him again at dead of night,
When home from the club returning; We twigged the doctor beneath the light Of the gas-lamp brilliantly burning.
All bare, and exposed to the midnight dews,
"The doctor's as drunk as the devil," we said, And we managed a shutter to borrow;
We raised him, and sighed at the thought that his head Would consumedly ache" on the morrow.
We bore him home, and we put him to bed,