Produced by David Widger
By W. W. Jacobs
Frederick A. Stokes Company – 1897
“Wapping Old Stairs?” said the rough individual! shouldering the brand-new sea-chest, and starting off at a trot with it; “yus, I know the place, captin. Fust v’y’ge, sir?”
“Ay, ay, my hearty,” replied the owner of the chest, a small, ill-looking lad of fourteen. “Not so fast with those timbers of yours. D’ye hear?”
“All right, sir,” said the man, and, slackening his pace, twisted his head round to take stock of his companion.
“This ain’t your fust v’y’ge, captin,” he said admiringly; “don’t tell me. I could twig that directly I see you. Ho, what’s the use o’ trying to come it over a poor’ard-working man like that?”
“I don’t think there’s much about the sea I don’t know,” said the boy in a satisfied voice. “Starboard, starboard your helium a bit.”
The man obeying promptly, they went the remainder of the distance in this fashion, to the great inconvenience of people coming from the other direction.
“And a cheap ‘arf-crown’s worth, too, captin,” said the man, as he thoughtfully put the chest down at the head of the stairs and sat on it pending payment.
“I want to go off to the Susan Jane,” said the boy, turning to a waterman who was sitting in his boat, holding on to the side of the steps with his hand.