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saw by its undeviating course that this shell was booming terrifically toward his brig, and a cry to “ look out for the shell," caused the work to be suspended. That shell struck the water for the last time, within two hundred yards of the brig, rose dark and menacing in its furious leap, but exploded at the next instant. The agme

of the iron were scattered on each side, and ahead. Of the last, three or four fell into the water so near the vessel as to cast their spray on her decks.

“Overboard with the rest of the powder !" shouted Spike. “Keep the brig off a little, Mr. Mulford-keep her off, sir; you luff too much, sir."

Ay, ay, sir,” answered the mate. Keep her off, it is."

“ There comes the other shell !” cried Ben, but the men did not quit their toil to gaze this time. Each seaman worked as if life and death depended on his single exertions. Spike alone watched the course of the missile. On it came, booming and hurtling through the air, tossing high the jets, at each leap it made from the surface, striking the water for its last bound, seemingly in a line with the shell that had just preceded it. From that spot it made its final leap. Every hand in the brig was stayed and every eye was raised as the rushing tempest was heard advancing. The mass went muttering directly between the masts of the Swash. It had scarcely seemed to go by when the fierce flash of fire and the sharp explosion followed. Happily for those in the brig, the projectile force given by the gun carried the fragments from them, as in the other instance it had brought them forward; else would few have escaped mutilation, or death, among their crew.

The flashing of fire so near the barrels of powder that still remained on their deck, caused the frantic efforts to be renewed, and barrel after barrel was tumbled overboard, amid the shouts that were now raised to animate the people to their duty.

“Luff, Mr. Mulford-luff you may, sir," cried Spike. No answer was given.

D'ye hear there, Mr. Mulford ?--it is ·luff you may, sir."

“ Mr. Mulford is not aft, sir,” called out the man at the helm," but luff it is, sir."

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“ Mr. Mulford not aft! Where's the mate, man? Tei: him he is wanted.”

No Mulford was to be found ! A call passed round the decks, was sent below, and echoed through the entire brig, but no sign or tidings could be had of the handsome mate. At that exciting moment the sloop-of-war seemed to cease her firing, and appeared to be securing her guns.

CHAPTER VII.

Thou art the same, eternal sea !
The earth has many shapes and forms,
Of hill and valley, flower and tree;
Fields that the fervid noontide warms,
Or winter's rugged grasp deforms,
Or bright with autumn's golden store;
Thou coverest up thy face with storms,

Or smilest serene—but still thy roar
And dashing foam go up to vex the sea-beat shore.

LUNT.

We shall now advance the time eight-and-forty hours. The baffling winds and calms that succeeded the tornado had gone,

and the trades blew in their stead. Both vessels had disappeared, the brig leading, doubling the western extremity of the reef, and going off before both wind and current, with flowing sheets, fully three hours before the sloop-of-war could beat up against the latter, to a point that enabled her to do the same thing. By that time, the Swash was five-and-twenty miles to the eastward, and consequently but just discernible in her loftiest sails, from the ship's royal yards. Still, the latter continued the chase; and that even. ing both vessels were beating down along the southern mar gin of the Florida Reef, against the trades, but favoured by a three or four knot current, the brig out of sight to windward. Our narrative leads us to lose sight of both these vessels, for a time, in order to return to the islets of the Gulf. Eight-and-forty hours had made some changes in and around the haven of the Dry Tortugas. The tent still stood, and a small fire that was boiling its pot and its ketile, at no great distance from it, proved that the tent was still inhabited. The schooner also rode at her anchors, very much as she had been abandoned by Spike. The bag of doubloons, however, had been found, and there it lay, tied but totally unguarded, in the canvas verandah of Rose Budd's habitation. Jack Tier passed and repassed it with apparent indifference, as he went to and fro, between his pantry and kitchen, busy as a bee in preparing his noontide meal for the day. This man seemed to have the islet all to

himself, however, no one else being visible on any part of - it. He sang his song, in a cracked, contre alto voice, and

appeared to be happy in his solitude. Occasionally he talked to himself aloud, most probably because he had no one else to speak to. We shall record one of his recitatives, which came in between the strains of a very in harmonious air, the words of which treated of the seas, while the steward's assistant was stirring an exceedingly savoury mess that he had concocted of the ingredients to be found in the united larders of the Swash and the Mexican schooner.

“Stephen Spike is a capital willian!"exclaimed Jack,smelling at a ladle filled with his soup—"a capital willian, I call him. To think, at his time of life, of such a handsome and pleasant young thing as this Rose Budd; and then to try to get her by underhand means, and by making a fool of her silly old aunt. It's wonderful what fools some old aunts be! Quité wonderful! If I was as great a simpleton as this Mrs. Budd, I'd never cross my thresh hold. Yes, Stephen Spike is a prodigious willian, as his best friend must own! Well, I gave him a thump on the head that he'll not forget this v’y'ge. To think of carryin' off that pretty Rose Budd in his very arms, in so indecent a manner! Yet, the man has his good p’ints, if a body could only forget his bad ones. He's a first-rate seaman. How he worked the brig till he doubled the reef, a'ter she got into open water; and how he made her walk off afore the wind, with stun'sails alow and aloft, as soon as ever he could make 'em draw! My life for it, he 'll tire the legs of Uncle Sam's man, afore he can fetch up with him. For running away, when hard chased, Stephen Spike has n't his equal on 'arth. But, he's a great willian-a prodigious willian! I cannot say I actually wish him hanged; but I would rather have him hanged than see him get pretty Rose in his power.

What has he to do with girls of nineteen? If the rascal is one year old, he's fifty-six. I hope the sloop-ofwar will find her match, and I think she will. The Molly's a great traveller, and not to be outdone easily. 'T would be a thousand pities so lovely a craft should be cut off in the flower of her days, as it might be, and I do hope she'll lead that bloody sloop on some sunken rock.

Well, there's the other bag of doubloons. It seems Stephen could not get it. That's odd, too, for he's great at grabbin' gold. The man bears his age well; but he's a willian ! I wonder whether he or Mulford made that half. board in the narrow channel. It was well done, and Stephen is a perfect sailor; but he says Mulford is the same. Nice young man, that Mulford ; just fit for Rose, and Rose for him. Pity to part them. Can find no great fault with him, except that he has too much conscience. There's such a thing as having too much, as well as too little conscience. Mulford has too much, and Spike has too little. For him to think of carryin' off a gal of nineteen! I say he's fifty-six, if he's a day. How fond he used to be of this very soup! If I've seen him eat a quart of it, I've seen him eat a puncheon full of it, in my time.

What an appetite the man has when he's had a hard day's duty on't! There's a great deal to admire, and a great deal to like in Stephen Spike, but he's a reg'lar willian. I dare say he fancies himself a smart, jaunty youth ag'in, as I can remember him; a lad of twenty, which was about his years when I first saw him, by the sign that I was very little turned of fifteen myself. Spike was comely then, though I acknowledge he's a willian. I can see him now, with his deep blue roundabout, his bell-mouthed trowsers, both of fine cloth-too fine for such a willian-but fine it was, and much did it become him."

Here Jack made a long pause, during which, though he may have thought much, he said nothing. Nevertheless, he was n't idle the while. On the contrary, he passed no less than three several times from the fire to the tent, and returned. Each time in going and coming, he looked in.

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tently at the bag of doubloons, though he did not stop at it or touch it. Some associations connected with Spike's fruitless attempts to obtain it must have formed its principal in. terest with this singular being, as he muttered his captain's name each time in passing, though he said no more audibly. The concerns of the dinner carried him back and forth; and in his last visit to the tent, he began to set a small tableone that had been brought for the convenience of Mrs. Budd and her niece, from the brig, and which of course still remained on the islet. It was while thus occupied, that Jack Tier recommenced his soliloquy.

“I hope that money may do some worthy fellow good yet. It's Mexican gold, and that's inemy's gold, and might be condemned by law, I do suppose. Stephen had a hank. erin' a'ter it, but he did not get it. It come easy enough to the next man that tried. That Spike's a willian, and the gold was too good for him. He has no conscience at all to think of a gal of nineteen! And one fit for his betters, in the bargain. The time has been when Stephen Spike might have pretended to Rose Budd's equal. That much I'll ever maintain, but that time's gone; and, what is more, it will never come again. I should like Mulford better if he had a little less conscience. Conscience may do for Uncle Sam's ships, but it is sometimes in the way aboard a trading craft. What can a fellow do with a conscience when dollars is to be smuggled off, or tobacco smuggled ashore? I do suppose I've about as much conscience as it is useful to have, and I've got ashore in my day twenty thousand dollars' worth of stuff

, of one sort or another, if I've got ashore the valie of ten dollars. But Spike carries on business on too large a scale, and many's the time I've told him so. I could have forgiven him anything but this attempt on Rose Budd; and he's altogether too old for that, to say nothing of other people's rights. He's an up-and-down willian, and a body can make no more, nor any less of him. That

soup must be near done, and I'll hoist the signal for grub."

This signal was a blue-peter of which one had been brought ashore to signal the brig; and with which Jack now signalled the schooner. If the reader will turn his eyes toward the last named vessel, he will find the guests whom Tier expected to surround his table. Rose, her aunt, and

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