in such an unsavoury derelict; and Reginald, be it remembered, had only once in his life made a sea voyage, and that in the peaceful security of an ironclad. His heart quailed beneath his Commander's uniform.
However, setting his teeth and consoling himself with the thought that she would undoubtedly fall to pieces before they could leave the harbour behind, he went aboard.
The master, an unprepossessing but exceedingly polite child of the Ęgean, was overwhelmed at the prospect of carrying a British Naval Commander as passenger. He saluted wildly; he gesticulated; it was too much honour. Would his Excellency the Commander accept the use of his poor state-room-- yes? Would he undertake the navigation of this so dangerous voyage--no? Ah, but he would seek his so expert advice in the sudden perilous moment--good. Reginald bowed nervously.
At first all went well. Except for the atmosphere of the state-room, which was richly tinged with a mixed odour of mildewed figs and rotten pomegranates, and the unco
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