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and walked away with him for a few hundred yards. These
were then relieved by four more; and, in this manner, was
the whole distance to the house passed over. The patient
was put in his bunk, and some attention was bestowed on
his bruises and other injuries.

Glad enough was the sufferer to find himself beneath a
roof, and in a room that Tiad its comforts ; or what were
deemed comforts on a sealing voyage. As the men were
in the dormitory very little of the time except at night, he
was enabled to sleep ; and Roswell had hopes, as he now
told Stimson, that a month or six weeks would set the pa
tient on his feet again.

" He has been a fortunate fellow, Stephen, that it was
no worse," added Roswell, on that occasion. " But for the



THE SEA LIONS. 247

luck which turned the lance-pole beneath him, every bone
he has would have been broken."

" What you call ZucAr, Captain Gar'ner, I call Provi
dence," was Stephen's answer. " The good book tells us
that not a sparrow shall fall without the eye of Divine Pro
vidence being on it."



CHAPTEE XYDI.

" Now far he sweeps, where scarce a summer smiles,
On Bhering's rocks, or Greenland's naked isles ;
Cold on his midnight watch the breezes blow,
From wastes that slumber in eternal snow,
And waft across the waves' tumultuous roar,
The wolf's long howl from Oonalaska's shore."

CAMPBELL.

ROSWELL GARDINER set about his duties, the succeeding
day, with a shade of deep reflection on his brow. A crisis
had, indeed, come in his affairs, and it behooved him to
look well to his proceedings. Daggett's presence on the
island was no longer of any moment to himself or his owner,
but there remained the secret of the Key, and of the buried
treasure. Should the two schooners keep together, how
was he to acquit himself in that part of his duty, without
admitting of a partnership, against which he knew that
every fibre in the deacon's system, whether physical or
moral, would revolt. Still, his word was pledged, and he
had no choice but to remain, and help fill up the rival Sea
Lion, and trust to his own address in getting rid of her
again, as the two vessels proceeded north.

The chief mate of Daggett's craft, though a good sealer,
was an impetuous and reckless man, and had more than
once found fault with the great precautions used, by the
orders of Roswell. Macy, as this officer was called, was
for making a regular onslaught upon the animals, slaying
as many as they could at once, and then take up the busi
ness of curing and trying-out as a regular job. He had



248 THE SEA LIONS.

seen such things done with success, and he believed it was
the most secure mode of getting along. ' Some of these
fine mornings,' as he expressed it, ' Captain Gar'ner would
turn out, and find that his herd was off gone to pasture in
some other field.' This was a view of the matter with
which Roswell did not at all agree. His forbearing and
cautious policy had produced excellent results so far, and
he hoped it would continue so to do, until both schooners
were full. On the morning when the men next went forth,
he as leader of both crews, therefore, our young master
renewed his admonitions, pointing out to the new-comers,
in particular, the great necessity there was of using forbear
ance, and not to alarm the seals more than the work indis
pensably required. The usual number of "Ay, ay's, sir!"
were given in reply, and the gangs went along the rocks,
seemingly in a good humour to obey these injunctions.

Circumstances, however, were by no means favourable
to giving Roswell the same influence over the Vineyard-
men as he possessed over his own crew. He was a young
commander, and this was his first voyage in that capacity,
as all well knew; then, there had been rivalry and compe
tition between the two crafts, which was a feeling not so
easily removed ; next, Macy felt, and even intimated, that
he was the lawful commander of his own schooner, in cases
in which Daggett was disabled, and that the latter had no
power to transfer him and his people to the authority of any
other individual. All these points were discussed that day,
with some freedom, particularly among the Vineyard-men,
and especially the last.

Wisely has it been said that " the king's name is a tower
of strength." They who have the law on their side, carry
with them a weight of authority that it is not easy to shake
by means of pure reasoning on right or wrong. Men are
much inclined to defer to those who are thus armed, legal
control being ordinarily quite as effective in achieving a
victory, as having one's "quarrel just." In a certain sense,
authority indeed becomes justice, and we look to its proper
exercise as one of the surest means of asserting what " is
right between man and man."

" The commodore says that the critturs are to be treated
delicately," said Macy, laughing, as he lanced his first seal



THE SEA LIONS. 249

that morning, a young one of the fur species ; "so take up
the pet, lads, and lay it in its cradle, while I go look for its
mamma."

A shout of merriment succeeded this sally, and the men
were only so much the more disposed to be rebellious and
turbulent, in consequence of hearing so much freedom of
remark in their officer.

" The child 's in its cradle, Mr. Macy," returned Jen
kins, who was a wag as well as the mate. "In my judg
ment, the best mode of rocking it to sleep will be by knock
ing over all these grim chaps that are so plenty in our
neighbourhood."

" Let 'em have it!" cried Macy, making an onset on an
elephant, as he issued the order. In an instant, the rocks
at that point of the island were a scene of excitement and
confusion. Hazard, who was near at hand, succeeded in
restraining his own people, but it really seemed as if the
Vineyard-men were mad. A great many seals were killed,
it is true ; but twenty were frightened to take refuge in the
ocean, where one was slain. All animals have their alarm
cries, or, if not absolutely cries, signals that are understood
by themselves. Occasionally, one sees a herd, or a flock,
take to its heels, or to its wings, without any apparent cause,
but in obedience to some warning that is familiar to their
instincts. Thus must it have been with the seals; for the
rocks were soon deserted, even at the distance of a league
from the scene of slaughter, leaving Hazard and his gang
literally with nothing to do, unless, indeed, they returned
to complete some stowage that remained to be done, on
board their own craft.

" I suppose you know, Mr. Macy, all this is contrary to
orders," said Hazard, as he was leading his own gang back
towards the cove. " You see I am obliged to go in and
report."

" Report and welcome !" was the answer. " I have no
commander but Captain Daggett; and, by the way, if you
see him, Hazard, just tell him we have made a glorious
morning's work of it."

"Ay, ay; you will have your hands full enough to-day,
Macy; but how will it be to-morrow?"

" Why, just as it has been to-day. The devils must come



250 THE SEA LIONS.

up to blow, and we're sartain of 'em, somewhere along the
shore. This day's work is worth any two that I 've seen,
since I came upon the island."

" Very true ; but what will to-morrow's work be worth t
I will tell Captain Daggett what you wish me to say, how
ever, and we will hear his opinion on the subject. In my
judgment, he means to command his craft till she gets back
to the Hole, legs or no legs."

Hazard went his way, shaking his head ominously as he
proceeded. Nor was he much mistaken in what he ex
pected from Daggett's anger. That experienced sealer
sent for his mate, and soon gave him to understand that he
was yet his commander. Loose and neighbourly as is usu
ally the discipline of one of these partnership vessels, there
is commonly a man on board who is every way competent
to assert the authority given him by the laws, as well as by
his contract. Macy was sent for, rebuked, and menaced
with degradation from his station, should he again presume
to violate his orders. As commonly happens in cases of
this nature, regrets were expressed by the offender, and
future obedience promised.

But the mischief was done. Sealing was no longer the
regular, systematic pursuit it had been on that island, but
had become precarious and changeful. At times, the men
met with good success ; then, days would occur in which
not a single creature, of any of the different species, would
be taken. The Vineyard schooner was not more than half-
full, and the season was fast drawing to a close. Roswell
was quite ready to sail, and he began to chafe a little under
the extra hazards that were thus imposed on himself and
his people.

In the mean time, or fully three weeks after the occur
rence of the accident to Daggett, the injuries received by
the wounded man were fast healing. The bones had knit,
and the leg promised, in another month, to become tolera
bly sound, if not as strong as it had been before the hurt.
All the bruises were well, and the captain of the Vineyard
craft was just beginning to move about a little on crutches;
a prodigious relief to one of his habits, after the confine
ment to the house. By dint of great care, he could work
his way down on the shelf that stretched, like a terrace, foi



THE SEA LIONS. 251

two hundred yards beneath the dwelling. Here he met
Roswell, on the morning of the Sabbath, just three weeks
after their unfortunate visit to the mountain. Each took
his seat on a low point of rock, and they began to converse
on their respective prospects, and on the condition of their
vessels and crews. Stephen was near his officer, as usual.

" I believe Stimson was right in urging me to give the
men their Sabbaths," observed Gardiner, glancing round
at the different groups, in which the men were washing,
shaving, and otherwise getting rid of the impurities created
by another week of toil. " They begin anew, after a little
vest, with a better will, and steadier hands."

" Yes, the Sabbath is a great privilege, especially to such
as are on shore," returned Daggett. "At sea, I make no
great account of it : a craft must jog along, high days or
holidays."

" Depend on it, the same account is kept of the day,
Captain Daggett, in the great log-book above, whether a
man is on or off soundings," put in Stephen, who was pri
vileged ever to deliver his sentiments on such subjects.
" The Lord is God on the sea, as on the land."

There was a pause ; for the solemn manner and undoubted
sincerity of the speaker produced an impression on his
companions, little given as they were to thinking deeply
on things of that nature. Then Roswell renewed the dis
course, turning it on a matter that had been seriously up
permost in his mind for several days.

" I wish to converse with you, Captain Daggett, about
our prospects and chances," he said. " My schooner is
full, as you know. We could do no more, if we stayed
here another season. You are about half-full, with a greatly
diminished chance of filling up this summer. Mr. Macy's
attack on the seals has put you back a month, at least, and
every day we shall find the animals less easy to take. The
equinox is not very far off, and then, you know, we shall
get less and less sun, so little, as to be of no great use to
us. We want day-light to get through the ice, and we
shall have a long hundred leagues of it between us and
clear water, even were we to get under way to-morrow.
Remember what a serious thing it would be, to get caught
up here, in BO high a latitude, after the sun has left us!"
22



252 THE SEA LIONS.

" I understand you, Gar'ner," answered the other, quietly,
though his manner denoted a sort of compelled resignation,
rather than any cordial acquiescence in that which he be
lieved his brother master intended to propose. " You 're
master of your own vessel ; and I dare say Deacon Pratt
would be much rejoiced to see you coming in between
Shelter Island and Oyster Pond. I 'm but a cripple, or I
think the Vineyard craft wouldn't be many days' run astarn !"

Roswell was provoked ; but his pride was touched also.
Biting his lip, he was silent for a moment, when he spoke
very much to the point, but generously, and like a man.

" I '11 tell you what it is, Daggett," said our hero, " good-
fellowship is good-fellowship, and the flag is the flag. It
is the duty of all us Yankee seamen to stand by the stripes ;
and I hope I 'm as ready as another to do what I ought to
do, in such a matter ; but my owner is a close calculator,
and I am much inclined to think that he will care less for
this sort of feeling than you and I. The deacon was never
in blue water."

" So I suppose He has a charming daughter, I believe,
Gar'ner?"

" You mean his niece, I suppose," answered Roswell,
colouring. " The deacon never had any child himself, I
believe at least he has none living. Mary Pratt is his
niece."

"It's all the same niece or daughter, she's comely,
and will be rich, I hear. Well, I am poor, and what is
more, a cripple /"

Roswell could have knocked his companion down, for
he perfectly understood the character of the allusion ; but
he had sufficient self-command to forbear saying anything
that might betray how much he felt.

It is always easier to work upon the sensitiveness of a
spirited and generous-minded man, than to influence him
by force or apprehensions. Roswell had never liked the
idea of leaving Daggett behind him, at that season, and in
that latitude; and he relished it still less, now that he saw
a false reason might be attributed to his conduct.

" You certainly do not dream of wintering here, Captain
Daggett?" he said f , after a pause.

" Not if I can help it But the schooner can never go



THE SEA LIONS. 253

back to the Vineyard without a ful hold. The very women
would make the island too hot for us in such a case. Do
your duty by Deacon Pratt, Gar'ner, and leave me here to
get along as well as I can. I shall be able to walk a little
in a fortnight; and, in a month, I hope to be well enough
to get out among the people, and regulate their sealing a
little myself. Mr. Macy will be more moderate with my
eye on him."

"A month ! He who stays here another month may
a most make up his mind to stay eight more of them; if,
indeed, he ever get away from the group at all !"

"A late start is better than a half-empty vessel. When
you get in to Oyster Pond, Gar'ner, I hope you* will send a
line across to the Vineyard, and tell 'em all about us."

Another long and brooding pause succeeded, during
which Roswell's mind was made up.

" I will do this with you, Daggett," he said, speaking
like one who had fully decided on his course. " Twenty
days longer will I remain here, and help to make out your
cargo; after which I sail, whether you get another skin or
a thousand. This will be remaining as long as any prudent
man ought to stay in so high a latitude."

"Give me your hand, Gar'ner. I knew you had the
clear stuff in you, and that it would make itself seen at the
proper moment. I trust that Providence will favour us
it 's really a pity to lose as fine a day as this ; especially as
the crittur's are coming up on the rocks to bask, something
like old times !"

" You '11 gain no great help from that Providence you
just spoke of, Captain Daggett, by forgetting to keep
'Holy the Sabbath,' said Stimson, earnestly. "Try for
bearance a little, and find the good that will come of it."

" He is right," said Roswell, " as I know from having
done as he advises. Well, our bargain is made. For twenty
days longer I stay here, helping you to fill up. That will
bring us close upon the equinox, when I shall get to the
northward as fast as I can. In that time, too, I think you
will be able to return to duty."

This, then, was the settled arrangement. Roswell felt
that he conceded more than he ought to do ; but the feel-



254 THE SEA LIONS.

ing of good-fellowship was active within him, and he was
strongly averse to doing anything that might wear the ap
pearance of abandoning a companion in his difficulties.
All this time our hero was fully aware that he was be
friending a competitor ; and he was not without his suspi
cions that Daggett wished to keep him within his view
until the visit had been paid to the Key. Nevertheless,
RoswelPs mind was made up. He would remain the
twenty days, and do all he could in that time to help along
the voyage of the Vineyarders.

The sealing was now continued with more order and
method than had been observed under Macy's control.
The old caution was respected, and the work prospered in
proportion. Each night, on his return to the house, Gar
diner had a good report to make; and that peculiar snap
ping of the eye, that denoted Daggett's interest in his
calling, was to be again traced in the expression of the
Vineyarder's features ; a certain proof that he was fast
falling into his old train of thought and feeling. Daggett
was never happier than when listening to some account
of the manner in which an old elephant or lion had been
taken, or a number of fur-seals had been made to pay their
tribute to the enterprise and address of his people.

As for Roswell, though he complied with his promise,
and carried on the duty with industry and success, his eye
was constantly turned on those signs that denote the ad
vance of the seasons. Now he scanned the ocean to the
northward, and noted the diminished number as well as
lessened size of the floating bergs; proofs that the summer
and the waves had been at work on their sides. Next, his
look was on the sun, which was making his daily course,
lower and lower, each time that he appeared, settling
rapidly away towards the north, as if in haste to quit a
hemisphere that was so little congenial to his character.
The nights, always cool in that region, began to menace
frost; and the signs of the decline of the year that come
so much later in more temperate climates, began to make
themselves apparent here. It is true, that of vegetation
there was so little, and that little so meagre and of so hardy
a nature, that in this respect the progress of the seasons
was not to be particularly noted ; but in all others, Roswcll



THE SEA LIONS. 255

saw with growing uneasiness that the latest hour of his
departure was fast drawing near.

The sealing went on the while, and with reasonable re
turns, though the golden days of the business had been
seriously interrupted by Macy's indiscretion and disobe
dience. The men worked hard, for they too foresaw the
approach of the long night of the antarctic circle, and all
the risk of remaining too long. As we have had frequent
occasion to use the term ' antarctic,' it may be well here
to say a few words in explanation. It is not our wish to
be understood that these sealers had penetrated literally
within that belt of eternal snows and ice, but approxima-
tively. Few navigators, so far as our knowledge extends,
have absolutely gone as far south as this. Wiilkes did it,
it is true ; and others among the late explorers have been
equally enterprising and successful. The group visited by
Gardiner on this occasion was quite near to this imaginary
line; but we do not feel- at liberty precisely to give its
latitude and longitude. To this hour it remains a species
of private property ; and in this age of anti-rentism and
other audacious innovations on long-received and venerable
rules of conduct, we do not choose to be parties to any
inroads on the rights of individuals when invaded by the
cupidity and ruthless power of numbers. Those who wish
to imitate Roswell must find the islands by bold adventure
as he reached them ; for we are tongue-tied on the subject.
It is enough, therefore, that we say the group is near the
antarctic circle ; whether a little north or a little south of
it, is a matter of no moment. As those seas have a general
character, we shall continue to call them the antarctic
seas ; with the understanding that, included in the term,
are the nearest waters without as well as within the circle.

Glad enough was Roswell Gardiner when his twenty
days were up. March was now far advanced, and the ap
proach of the long nights was near. The Vineyard craft
was not full, nor was Daggett yet able to walk without a
crutch ; but orders were issued by Gardiner, on the evening
of the last day, for his own crew to " knock off sealing,"
and to prepare to get under way for home.

" Your mind is made up, Gar'ner," said Daggett, in a
deprecating sort of way, as if he still had latent hopes of
22*



256 THE SEA LIONS.

persuading his brother-master to remain a little longet
"Another week would almost fill us up."

" Not another day," was the answer. " I have stayed too
long already, and shall be off in the morning. If you will
take my advice. Captain Daggett, you will do the same
thing. Winter comes in this latitude very much as spring
appears in our own ; or with a hop, skip, and a jump. I
have no fancy to be groping about among the ice, after the
nights get to be longer than the days !"

"All true enough, Gar'ner; all quite true but it has
such a look to take a craft home, and she not full !"

" You have a great abundance of provisions ; stop and
whale awhile on the False Banks, as you go north. I
would much rather stick by you there a whole month, than
remain here another day."

"You make me narvous, talking of the group in this
way ! I 'm sartain that this bay must remain clear of ice
several weeks longer."

" Perhaps it may ; it is more likely to be so than to freeze
up. But this will not lengthen the days and carry us safe
through the fields and bergs that we know are drifting about
out here to the northward. There's a hundred leagues of
ocean thereaway, Daggett, that I care for more just now,
than for all the seal that are left on these islands. But,
talking is useless; I go to-morrow; if you are wise, you
will sail in company."

This settled the matter. Daggett well knew it would be
useless to remain without the aid of Roswell's counsel, and
that of his crew's hands; for Macy was not to be trusted
any more as the leader of a gang of sealers. The man had
got to be provoked and reckless, and had called down upon
himself latterly more than one rebuke. It was necessary,
therefore, that one of the Sea Lions should accompany the
other. The necessary orders were issued accordingly, and
" hey for home !" were the words that now cheerfully pass
ed from mouth to mouth. That pleasant idea of" home,' 1
in which is concentrated all that is blessed in this life, the
pale of the Christian duties and charities excepted, brings
to each mind its particular forms of happiness and good.
The weather-beaten seaman, the foot-worn soldier, the
weary traveller, the adventurer in whatever lands interest



THE SEA LIONS. 257

or pleasure may lead, equally feels a throb at his heart as
he hears the welcome sounds of " hey for home." Never
were craft prepared for sea with greater rapidity than was
the case now with our two Sea Lions. It is true that the
Oyster-Ponders were nearly ready, and had been quite so,
for a fortnight ; but a good deal remained to be done among
the Vineyarders. The last set themselves to their task with
a hearty good-will, however, and with corresponding re
sults.

" We will leave the house standing for them that come
after us," said Roswell, when the last article belonging to his
schooner was taken out of it. " The deacon has crammed
us so full of wood that I shall be tempted to throw half of it
overboard, now we have so much cargo. Let all stand,
Hazard, bunks, planks and all ; for really we have no room
for the materials. Even this wood," pointing to a pile of
several cords that had been landed already to make room
for skins and casks that had been brought out in shocks,
" must go to the next comer. Perhaps it may be one of
ourselves ; for we sailors never know what port will next
fetch us up."

" I hope it will be old Sag, sir," answered Hazard, cheer
fully ; " for, though no great matter of a seaport, it is near
every man's home, and may be called a sort of door-way to
go in and out of the country through."

"A side-door, at the best," answered Roswell. " With
you, I trust it will be the next haven that we enter; though
I shall take the schooner at once in behind Shelter Island,
and tie her up to the deacon's wharf."

What images of the past and future did these few jocular
words awaken in the mind of our young sealer ! He fan
cied that he saw Mary standing in the porch of her uncle's
habitation, a witness of the approach of the schooner, look
ing wistfully at the still indistinct images of those who were



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