722 A STORY FROM THE SAND-DUNES
from the sea towards the land, and across to Vosborg, it appeared to him that people could breathe most freely here ; and here too was a splendid summer I In imagination he saw the heath bloom and grow purple with rich juicy berries, and saw the elder trees and the lime trees at Vosborg in full blossom. He determined to go there once more.
Spring came on, and the fishery began. Jiirgen helped with this ; he had grown in the last year, and was quick at work. He was full of life, he understood how to swim; to tread water, to turn over and tumble in the flood. They often warned him to beware of the shoals of mackerel which could seize the best swimmer, and draw him down and devour him ; but such was not Jiirgen's fate.
At the neighbour's on the dune was a boy named Martin, with whom Jiirgen was very friendly, and the two took service in the same ship to Norway, and also went together to Holland ; and they had never had any quarrel; but a quarrel can easily come, for when a person is hot by nature he often uses strong expressions, and that is what Jiirgen did one day on board when they had a quarrel about nothing at all. They were sitting behind the cabin door, eating out of an earthenware plate which they had placed between them. Jurgen held his pocket-knife in his hand, and lifted it against Martin, and at the same time became ashy pale in the face, and his eyes had an ugly look. Martin only said,
1 Ah ! ha ! so you're one of that sort who are fond of using the knife ! '
Hardly were the words spoken when Jiirgen's hand sank down. He answered not a syllable, but went on eating, and afterwards walked away to his work. When they were resting again, he stepped up to Martin, and said,
' You may hit me in the face ! I have deserved it. But I feel as if I had a pot in me that boiled over.'
' There let the thing rest,' replied Martin.
And after that they were almost doubly as good friends as before ; and when afterwards they got back to the dunes and began telling their adventures, this was told among the rest; and Martin said that Jurgen was certainly passionate, but a good fellow for all that.