208 THE ADVENTURES OF HUCKLEBERRY FINN.
and used to write about sometimes, when he wrote home ; so Harvey '11 know where to look for friends when he get's here."
Well, the old man he went on asking questions till he just fairly emptied that young fellow. Blamed if he didn't inquire about everybody and everything in that blessed town, and all about all the Wilkses ; and about Peter's business— which was a tanner; and about George's—which was a carpenter ; and about Harvey's—which was a dissentering minister; and so on, and so on. Then he says :
" What did you want to walk all the way up to the steamboat for ? "
" Because she's a big Orleans boat, and I was afeard she mightn't stop there. When they're deep they won't stop for a hail. A Cincinnati boat will, but this is a St. Louis one."
" Was Peter Wilks well off ? "
" Oh, yes, pretty well off. He had houses and land, and it's reckoned he left three or four thousand in cash hid up som'ers."
" When did you say he died ? "
"I didn't say, but it was last night."
"Funeral to-morrow, likely ?"
" Yes, 'bout the middle of the day."
" Well, it's all terrible sad ; but we've all got to go, one time or another. So what we want to do is to be prepared ; then we're all right."
"Yes, sir, it's the best way. Ma used to always say that."
When we struck the boat, she was about done loading, and pretty soon she got off. The king never said nothing about going aboard, so I lost my ride, after all. When the boat was gone, the king made me paddle up another mile to a lonesome place, and then he got ashore, and says :
"Now hustle back, right off, and fetch the duke up here, and the new carpet-bags. And if he's gone over to t'other side, go over there and git him. And tell him to git himself up regardless. Shove along, now."
I see what he was up to ; but I never said nothing, of course. When I got back with the duke, we hid the canoe and then they set down on a log, and the king told him everything, just like the young fellow had said it—every last word