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Sest of the artist, and of the grace required in
Prir 10 do justice to their efforts. He had an
i rad cene behind him, passed under his elbows; e in the middle, and his upper lip was in
Sesabe, and looked a shade darker than the
* Tus:* he cried, as soon as he caught sight of YSBTS; * where did you come from?” T:7:& nument to look at him, and little Martin
We Albis to be sure." "AX. Puoride chaps!”
"Ya wodi Eke to le there yourself,” said Tom, very in mart at this expression of affected pity, “if it were not for—He paused.
* If it were not for what?”
“ If you meet with any of our fellows of your own size," said Tom, “they will soon inform you; so you had better look out."
Chaffin drooped visibly, and his cigar fell from his lips. " Are any of them here?” he asked—“any besides you, I incan ?”
eyes flashed fire, but he did not condescend to answer. It was not necessary; for Chaffin knew by his look that he had spoken the truth.
" What do you mean by being afraid'?” he said. “ It is like your impudence to talk in that way. It would serve you right if I were to give you a good licking. But I don't want to
quarrel with you ; it's too much trouble. How is old Piercey, and all the rest of them ? So you think I should like to be back at Abbotscliff, do you ? No, thank you; I'm in business now, don't you see? I'm getting on capitally!”
“You don't seem to be very busy just now," said Martin. "Oh, yes, I am. Do you see all those new buildings? They
Ι. are all under my charge; I'm looking after them; and those workmen are all under me. I have to keep them to their work.”
“And to set them a good example of industry," Tom suggested.
Yes,” Chaffin answered ; "I go round every now and then and take notes. They are obliged to work when they see me.”
"I wonder they don't leave off to look at you,” said Tom, contemplating him from head to foot with pretended admiration.
"Ah! you may say that,” said Chaffin, looking down at his boots, and then throwing his head and shoulders back, after the manner of his father. “No,” he continued, “I have done with Abbotscliff, thank goodness! Piercey need not think I'm going back there."
“He would not have you at any price," said Tom; “you know that very well."
"Nonsense; he was very much annoyed, I know, when the letter came to say I was to leave at once. It 'served him right, though. He wanted to make out that I had told lies; but it was he that told lies, not I. He is an old brute!”
“Dr. Piercey a brute !—Dr. Piercey tell lies !” cried Tom, white with anger. “How dare you say so!”
“How dare I? Why shouldn't I ? It's all stuff for him to pretend to be so particular about the truth. He did tell a lot of_4"
Before he could repeat the offensive word Tom gathered himself together and sprang at the tall bully like a tiger. His
fist, though a little one, was hard, and the fierceness of his indignation gave strength to his arm, so that the blow which he delivered just under Mr. Chaffin's chin was a sharp one; the cigar which had been replaced between his teeth was bitten in two, and part of it went into his throat and nearly choked him, while the doorpost, against which his head was impelled with some violence, returned the blow with interest by the inevitable law of action and re-action. Chaffin, as soon as he could recover from the shock, scrambled away coughing into the house, and stood ready for instant flight in case the attack should be renewed. But Tom had no intention of renewing it; on the contrary, he was already ashamed of having given way to his passion. Not that he was afraid of Chaffin. Chaffin could have overwhelmed him with a few blows from his great fists, but the boy did not think of that. He felt that he had lowered himself by entering into a quarrel with such a fellow; and having waited before the door for a minute or two, that he might not seem to shrink from the consequences of his rash attack, he walked slowly away, the Swallow keeping close behind and looking back continually to guard his friend from a surprise. "I am sorry I hit him," said Tom.
I “I'm glad, I'm very glad,” said the Swallow; “if he had hit you again I would have gone at him myself."
The little fellow looked as if he were in earnest. His eye sparkled, and his chest heaved with indignation; otherwise it would have been ridiculous to hear him speak so.
“He deserved it," said Tom; "though I don't suppose he meant to say anything very bad after all. A fellow who can tell stories himself, and think nothing of it, would not understand how much anybody else would hate to be accused of such a thing."
“Well then, that will teach him," said Martin, decidedly.
As soon as they were out of sight of the Jolly Dolphin they turned towards the shore and quickened their pace to a run. The aspect of the place was very different from what Tom had been led by Captain Broad's description of it to expect.
The contractor's boast to his directors of what he could accomplish in twelve months was in a fair way to be realised. The scene along the shore reminded Tom of a picture which he had once seen in an old Roman history, representing Romulus founding the city of Rome. In half-a-dozen different places buildings more or less substantial were being erected. Here the foundations were laid for a row of houses, there the site of some public building was being excavated. At one end of the village a group of scaffold-poles stood out like network against the sky; at the other a cloud of smoke and steam arose from a temporary engine-house, while the sounds of sawing, hammering, and ramming disturbed the wonted tranquillity of the place, wherever they passed.
“Where is the shipyard ?" Tom asked a labourer whom he met.
“ You see that there iron shed," said the man; "that there's the shipyard—what's left of it."
They went towards the spot pointed out. Upon the shed in question was a board, with the inscription, “Daniel Chaffin, Contractor. Office.” By the side of it was another board, with the same name, and the addition, “No admittance except on business." Carts were coming and going with bricks, of which large quantities were already stacked in the shipyard, and on every cart was the same legend, " Daniel Chaffin, Contractor."
“These are Mr. Chaffin's horses and chariots," said Martin; "and those," pointing to the carters and hodmen—“those are his servants.”
But Tom could not laugh at the old joke. “Hold your tongue," he said; "come round this way; there
is a boat upon the stocks yonder, and that is Mr. Dean's house, I suppose."
One half of the shipyard was still applied to its old uses, and a man was at work there caulking. The house did not look so neat or cheerful as when Mr. Chaffin paid his first visit to it; the garden was overgrown with weeds, and everything was smothered with lime and dust; even here some building materials had been laid down, and more were arriving. Tom threaded his way through carts and poles and ladders and drain-pipes, and walked up the garden path to the door.
CHANGES AT THE SHIPYARD.
Whip me such honest knaves.— Othello.
towards Mr. Dean's house, and are standing at the door waiting for it to be opened, we will cast a glance inside the dwelling.
Order does not appear to rule there any more than out of doors. The old mother no longer occupies her accustomed seat in the trim parlour, but spends the greater part of her time in a corner of the kitchen. Lucy is generally busy there with household duties, which devolve almost entirely upon her, as there is no longer any servant to assist. With all her industry she is not able to keep the place in such good order as she would like, and she goes about her work languidly, sadly, and as if she had no heart in it or courage to go at it. Joshua does what he can to help her, but he, too, seems depressed and out of sorts. Altogether there is something wrong with the place, and with those who dwell in it.