The Mucker

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 13

Skipper Simms--just enough to set him to wondering what was
doing, and to show him that whatever it might be it was crooked and that
the immaculate passenger and Skipper Simms were both "in on it."

He questioned "Bony" Sawyer and "Red" Sanders, but neither had nearly as
much information as Billy himself, and so the Halfmoon came to Honolulu
and lay at anchor some hundred yards from a stanch, trim, white yacht,
and none knew, other than the Halfmoon's officers and her single
passenger, the real mission of the harmless-looking little brigantine.


NO SHORE leave was granted the crew of the Halfmoon while the vessel lay
off Honolulu, and deep and ominous were the grumblings of the men. Only
First Officer Ward and the second mate went ashore. Skipper Simms kept
the men busy painting and holystoning as a vent for their pent emotions.

Billy Byrne noticed that the passenger had abandoned his daylight
strolls on deck. In fact he never once left his cabin while the Halfmoon
lay at anchor until darkness had fallen; then he would come on deck,
often standing for an hour at a time with eyes fastened steadily
upon the brave little yacht from the canopied upper deck of which gay
laughter and soft music came floating across the still water.

When Mr. Ward and the second mate came to shore a strange thing
happened. They entered a third-rate hotel near the water front, engaged
a room for a week, paid in advance, were in their room for half an hour
and emerged clothed in civilian raiment.

Then they hastened to another hostelry--a first-class one this time, and
the second mate walked ahead in frock coat and silk hat while Mr. Ward
trailed behind in a neat, blue serge sack suit, carrying both bags.

At the second hotel the second mate registered as Henri Theriere, Count
de Cadenet, and servant, France. His first act thereafter was to hand a
note to the clerk asking that it be dispatched immediately. The note was
addressed to Anthony Harding, Esq., On Board Yacht Lotus.

Count de Cadenet and his servant repaired immediately to the count's
rooms, there to await an answer to the note. Henri Theriere, the second
officer of the Halfmoon, in frock coat and silk hat looked every inch a
nobleman and a gentleman. What his past had been only he knew, but his
polished manners, his knowledge of navigation and seamanship, and his
leaning toward the ways of the martinet in his dealings with the men
beneath him had led Skipper Simms to assume that he

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