DRAWN BY A TURTLE 127
tween us, I did not see what he was doing, till a violent jerk of the boat, a sudden turning of the windlass, and then a second jerk, accompanied by a rapid motion of the boat, made me face round.
' What are you about, Fritz ?' I exclaimed, somewhat alarmed.
'I have caught him !—I touched him !' cried Fritz, without hearing. ' The turtle is ours; it cannot escape, father! I have struck him in the neck. Hooray!'
I saw that the harpoon had indeed caught the animal in its only unprotected part, the neck; and, feeling itself wounded, it was trying to get away. I quickly pulled down the sail, and, seizing a hatchet, sprang forward ready to cut the rope, and let the harpoon and the turtle go ; but Fritz caught hold of my arm, begging me to wait a moment, and not cut the rope until it was absolutely necessary ; and to this I agreed.
So, drawn along by the turtle, we raced dangerously fast through the water. I soon noticed that the creature was making for the sea ; I therefore again hoisted the sail, and, as the wind was to the land and very brisk, the turtle found resistance of no avail. He accordingly fell into the track of the current, and drew us straight towards our usual