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CHAPTER III It was the forty-fathom slumber that clears the soul
and eye and heart, and sends you to breakfast ravening. They
emptied a big tin dish of juicy fragments of fish ? the blood-ends
the cook had collected overnight. They cleaned up the plates and
pans of the elder mess, who were out fishing, sliced pork for the
midday meal, swabbed down the fo'c'sle, filled the lamps, drew coal
and water for the cook, and investigated the fore-hold, where the
boat's stores were stacked. It was another perfect day ? soft,
mild, and clear; and Harvey breathed to the very bottom of his
lungs. More schooners had crept up in the night, and the long blue
seas were full of sails and dories. Far away on the horizon, the
smoke of some liner, her hull invisible, smudged the blue, and to
eastward a big ship's topgallantsails, just lifting, made a square
nick in it. Disko Troop was smoking by the roof of the cabin ? one
eye on the craft around, and the other on the little fly at the
mainmast-head. When dad kerflummoxes that way, said Dan, in a
whisper, he's doin' some high-line thinkin' fer all hands. I'll lay
my wage an' share we'll make berth soon. Dad he knows the cod, an'
the fleet they know dad knows. 'See 'em comin' up one by one,
lookin' fer nothin' in particular, o' course, but scrowgin' on us
all the time ? There's the Prince Leboo; she's a Chat-ham boat.
She's crep' up sence last night. An' see that big one with a patch
in her foresail an' a new jib ? She's the Carrie Pitman from West
Chat-ham. She won't keep her canvas long onless her luck's changed
since last season. She don't do much 'cep' drift. There ain't an
anchor made'll hold her. . . . When the smoke puffs up in little
rings like that, dad's studyin' the fish. Ef we speak to him now,
he'll git mad. Las' time I did, h...
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