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Patrick O'Brian

“They were furious. Did he not know he might catch cold? Why did he not answer their hail? It was no good his telling them he had not heard; they knew better; he had not got flannel ears--Why had he not waited for them? --What was a boat for? Was this a proper time to go a-swimmin? -- Did he think this was midsummer? Or Lammas? -- He was to see how cold he was, blue an trembling like a fucking jelly -- Would a new-joined ships boy have done such a wicked thing? No, sir, he would not. -- What would the skipper, what would Mr Pullings and Mr Babbington say, when they heard of his capers? -- As God loved them, they had never seen anything so foolish: he might strike them blind, else. -- Where had he left his intellectuals? Aboard the sloop? They dried him with handkerchiefs., dressed him by force, and rowed him quickly back to the Polychrest. He was to go below directly, turn in between blankets--no sheets, mind--with a pint of grog and have a good sweat. he was to go up the side now, like a Christian and nobody would notice. Plaice and Lakey were perhaps the strongest men in the ship, with arms like gorillas; they thrust him aboard and hurried him to his cabin without so much as by your leave, and left him there in the charge of his servant, with recommenations for his present care.”


Patrick O'Brian, Post Captain
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Post Captain (Aubrey & Maturin, #2) Post Captain by Patrick O'Brian
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