Little Miss Grouch
With a view to gathering information about the functions, habits, and capacities of a pilot-boat, he started down to the office and was seized upon the companionway by a grizzled and sunbaked man of fifty who greeted him joyously.
"Sandy! Is it yourself? Well met to you!"
"Hello, Dr. Alderson," returned the young man with warmth. "Going over? What luck for me!"
"Why? Need a chaperon?"
"A cicerone, anyway. It's my first trip, and I don't know a soul aboard."
"Oh, you'll know plenty before we're over. A maiden voyager is a sort of pet aboard ship, particularly if he's an unattached youth. My first was thirty years ago. This is my twenty-seventh."
"You must know all about ships, then. Tell me about the pilot."
"What about him? He's usually a gay old salt who hasn't been out of sight of land for--"
"That isn't what I want to know. Do