The Lost Continent

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 14

attention,
though I knew full well that all who cared to had observed us, but the
ship moved steadily away, growing smaller and smaller to our view until
at last she passed completely out of sight.



2


What could it mean? I had left Alvarez in command. He was my most
loyal subordinate. It was absolutely beyond the pale of possibility
that Alvarez should desert me. No, there was some other explanation.
Something occurred to place my second officer, Porfirio Johnson, in
command. I was sure of it but why speculate? The futility of
conjecture was only too palpable. The Coldwater had abandoned us in
midocean. Doubtless none of us would survive to know why.

The young man at the wheel of the power boat had turned her nose about
as it became evident that the ship intended passing over us, and now he
still held her in futile pursuit of the Coldwater.

"Bring her about, Snider," I directed, "and hold her due east. We
can't catch the Coldwater, and we can't cross the Atlantic in this.
Our only hope lies in making the nearest land, which, unless I am
mistaken, is the Scilly Islands, off the southwest coast of England.
Ever heard of England, Snider?"

"There's a part of the United States of North America that used to be
known to the ancients as New England," he replied. "Is that where you
mean, sir?"

"No, Snider," I replied. "The England I refer to was an island off the
continent of Europe. It was the seat of a very powerful kingdom that
flourished over two hundred years ago. A part of the United States of
North America and all of the Federated States of Canada once belonged
to this ancient England."

"Europe," breathed one of the men, his voice tense with excitement.
"My grandfather used to tell me stories of the world beyond thirty. He
had been a great student, and he had read much from forbidden books."

"In which I resemble your grandfather," I said, "for I, too, have read
more even than naval officers are supposed to read, and, as you men
know, we are permitted a greater latitude in the study of geography and
history than men of other professions.

"Among the books and papers of Admiral Porter Turck, who lived two
hundred years ago, and from whom I am descended, many volumes still
exist, and are in my possession, which deal with the history and
geography of ancient Europe. Usually I bring several of these books
with me upon a

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