The Animal Story Book - online children's book

Edited By Andrew Lang And With Numerous Illustrations By H. J. Ford

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THE HISTORY OF JACKO I.
347
to have only come with a view to gymnastics. At length, seeing that Cataqua took no notice of him, he quietly sidled that way, and at the very moment that the performance of the English National Anthem was at its height, he seized the singer firmly with his left hand just where the wings join the body.
Cataqua uttered a wild note of terror, but no one was sufficiently awake to hear it.
' By all the winds of heaven !' exclaimed the captain suddenly. ' Here's a phenomenon—snow under the Equator!'
' No,' said Double Mouth, ' that's not snow, that's— ah, you rascal ! ' and he rushed towards the companion.
'Well, what is it then?' asked the captain, rising in his hammock.
' What is it ?' cried Double Mouth from the top of the ladder. ' It's Jacko plucking Cataqua !'
The captain was on deck in two bounds, and with a shout of rasre roused the whole crew from their slumbers.
' Well !' he roared to Double Mouth, ' what are you about, standing there? Come, be quick!'
Double Mouth did not wait to be told twice, but was up the rigging like a squirrel, only the faster he climbed the faster Jacko plucked, until when the rescuer reached the spot it was a sadly bare bird which he tore from Jacko's vindictive hands and carried back to his master.
Needless to say that Jacko was in dire disgrace after this exploit. However, in time he was forgiven and often amused the captain and crew with his pranks.
When the ' Roxalana ' reached Marseilles after a quick and prosperous voyage, he was sold for seventy-five francs to Eugene Isabey the painter, who gave him to Flero for a Turkish hookah, who in his turn exchanged him for a Greek gun with Decamps.
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