They scraped the hooks free of the whitened worms with their finger nails and rebaited, only to find that the sun-parched flesh softened and floated away soon after it was lowered into the water.
"Have to buy some fresh ones! Got any money?"
A thorough search resurrected a worn copper that had lain in Silvey's back pocket until he had forgotten it--else the coin had gone the way of many another that had purchased peppermints at the school store. John surrendered a penny that had been given him the night before for a perfect spelling paper. They viewed the scanty hoard on the sun-bleached plank reflectively.
"Ask him." John indicated the Scandinavian, who was well supplied with the desired bait. Silvey stood up and jingled the two pennies in his grimy hand with the air of a young millionaire.
Yes, the fisherman would sell some. How many were desired?
"Aw, give me," the boy paused, as if considering the amount sufficient for their needs, "give me two cents' worth."