90 THE SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON
ingly, I and his brothers held the ends of the rope, and of the ladder, as well as we could, while he ran easily up, and reached the branch without an accident; but, when he got there, I saw that he had not strength enough to tie the ladder firmly to the tree. So I sent Fritz up after him, not without some little anxiety, as he was much heavier than his brother. But it was not long before we saw him side by side with Jack, forty feet above our heads.
Fritz set to work to fasten the ladder by passing the rope round and round the branch, and this he did with so much sense, that I felt I might ascend myself in safety. But first I tied a large pulley to the end of the rope, and took it up with me. When I was at the top, I fastened the pulley to a branch, so that I might be able the next day to draw up the planks and timbers for building the platform of our hut. All this took so long that it was finished by the light of the moon.
For the last few minutes I had been alone on the branch, and concluded that Jack and Fritz had descended, when I suddenly heard their voices singing an evening hymn which seemed to come from the clouds. I soon gathered that instead of going down, they had gone up, and had climbed