184 THE ADVENTURES OF HUCKLEBERRY FINN.
The nearer it got to noon that day, the thicker and thicker was the wagon3 and horses in the streets, and more coming all the time. Families fetched their dinners with them, from the country, and eat them in the wagons. There was considerable whiskey drinking going on, and I seen three fights. By-and-by somebody sings out—
" Here comes old Boggs!—in from the country for his little old monthly drunk—here he comes, boys ! "
All the loafers looked glad—I reckoned they was used to having fun out of Boggs. One of them says—
"Wonder who he's a gwyne to chaw up this time. If he'd a chawed up all the men he's ben a gwyne to chaw up in the last twenty year, he'd have con-siderble ruputation, now."
Another one says, " I wisht old Boggs 'd threaten me, ?cuz then I'd know I warn't gwyne to die for a thousan' year."
Boggs comes a-tearing along on his horse, whooping and yelling like an Injun, and singing out—
"Cler the track, thar. I'm on the waw-path, and the price uv coffins is a gwyne to raise."
He was drunk, and weaving about in his saddle ; he was over fifty year old, and had a very red face. Everybody yelled at him, and laughed at him, and sassed him, and he sassed back, and said he'd attend to them and lay them out in their regular turns, but he couldn't wait now, because he'd come to town to kill old Colonel Sherburn, and his motto was, " meat first, and spoon vittles to top off on."
He see me, and rode up and says—
" Whar'd you come f'm, boy ? You prepared to die ?"
Then he rode on. I was scared ; but a man says—
"He don't mean nothing; he's always a carryin' on like that, when he's drunk. He's the best-naturedest old fool in Arkansaw—never hurt nobody, drunk nor sober."
Boggs rode up before the biggest store in town and bent his head down so he could see under the curtain of the awning, and yells—