AN ENGLISH SHIP SOI
as we wished to present ourselves before him better fitted out.
We hastened instead to land near Falcon's Nest, where the others had already arrived. Every one but myself and my wife was half mad with joy ; they ran hither and thither, hardly knowing what they did. As for myself, I scarcely wished to renounce my life and my possessions, which had cost me so much labour, and had become so dear to me; and neither my wife nor myself could again consent to a sea voyage; but all this was merely a dream; we as yet knew nothing about the ship or its character.
We spent some time in preparing the pinnace, and loading it with presents for the captain. When we at last set off we sailed gallantly along, Fritz preceding us as pilot. Ernest, Jack, and Francis managed the boat, while I attended to the tiller. As a precaution we loaded our cannons and guns, and took with us all the defensive arms that we could find, in case of accidents.
When we drew near to the ship, a sensation of joy was experienced by us all: my sons were dumb with pleasure and eagerness.
'Hoist the English flag,' cried I, and a second