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wind is at our back; now put up your finger, and you will feel it even among the trees.
“No, I cannot,” replied William, as he held up his finger. “Then wet your finger, and try again.
William wet his finger in his mouth, and held it up again: “Yes, I do feel it now,” said he; “but why is that?”
“Because the wind blows against the wet, and you feel the cold.”
As Ready said this, the dogs growled, then started forward, and barked.
“What can be there?” cried William.
"Stand still, Master William,” replied Ready, cocking his gun, “and I will go forward to see.” Ready advanced cautiously with the gun to his hip. The dogs barked more furiously; and at last, out of a heap of coconut leaves collected together, out burst all the pigs which had been brought on shore, grunting and galloping away as fast as they could, with the dogs in pursuit of them.
“It's only the pigs, Master William,” said Ready, smiling; “I never thought I should be half frightened by a tame pig. Here, Romulus! here, Remus! come back!” continued Ready, calling to the dogs. “Well, Master William, this is our first adventure.'
“I hope we shall not meet with any more dangerous," replied William, laughing; “but I must say that I was alarmed.”
“No wonder; for, although not likely, it is possible there may be wild animals on this island, or even savages. We must always be prepared for the worst in an unknown country; but being alarmed is one thing, Master William, and
being afraid is another. A man may be alarmed, and stand his ground, as you did; but a man that is afraid will run away.”
Ready and William continued their way through the coconut grove for more than an hour longer, marking the trees as they went along. They then sat down to take their breakfast, and the two dogs lay down by them.
“Don't give the dogs any water, Master William, nor any of the salt meat; give them biscuit only."
“But they are very thirsty; may not I give them a little?"
“No; we shall want it all ourselves, in the first place; and, in the next, I wish them to be thirsty.”
After half an hour's walking they found that the ground was not so level as it had been. Sometimes they went gradually up hill, at others down.
“I am very glad to find the island is not so flat here, Master William; we have a better chance of finding water."
“But, look, it is much steeper before us,” replied William, as he barked a tree; “it is quite a hill.”
“So much the better; let us push on.'
The ground now became more undulating, although still covered with coconut trees, even thicker together than before. They continued their march, occasionally looking at the compass, until William showed symptoms of weariness, for the wood had become more difficult to get through than at first.
“How many miles do you think we have walked, Ready?" asked William.
“About eight, I should think.”
“No; I do not think that, altogether, we have made more than two miles an hour; it's slow work traveling by compass, and marking the trees; but I think the wood looks lighter before us, now that we are at the top of this hill.”
They now descended into a small hollow, and then went up hill again. As soon as they arrived at the top, William cried out, “The sea, Ready! There's the sea!”
Perhaps a more lovely scene could scarcely be imagined. The form of the coast was that of a horseshoe bay, two points of land covered with shrubs extending far out on each side. The line of the horizon, far out at sea, was clear and unbroken.
Knăp'săcks, canvas or leather bags carried strapped to the back by soldiers or travelers; Tom Thůmb, the very small hero of a famous nursery tale; brăck'ish, salty; lee'ward (lē'wěrd), the sheltered side; ún' du lāting, hilly, rolling. STUDY HELPS
Tell of the preparations for crossing the island.
When asked how he would find the way back, what old story did William say he had been thinking about?
What better way did Ready describe?
What instructions are given William about finding the direction of the wind?
Tell of the adventure with the pigs.
What difference is there between “being alarmed” and “being afraid”?
What reasons are mentioned for not giving the dogs any water?
Why was William surprised when he learned the distance they had come?
II. LOCATING THE SPRING [The rest of the day was spent in fruitless search for water.) They returned to the high ground where the coconut grove ended, and collecting several branches and piles of leaves, made a good soft bed under the trees.
“And now we'll have a little water, and go to bed. Look, Master William, at the long shadow of the trees! The sun has nearly set.
“Shall I give the dogs some water, Ready? See, poor Remus is licking the sides of the bottles.”
“No, do not give them any; it appears to be cruel, but I want the intelligence of the poor animals to-morrow, and the want of water will make them very keen, and we shall turn it to good account.”
William slept as sound as if he had been on shore upon a soft bed in a warm room. So did old Ready; and when they awoke the next morning it was broad daylight. The poor dogs were suffering for want of water, and it pained William very much to see them with their tongues out, panting and whining as they looked up to him. “Now, Master William,” said Ready, "shall we take our breakfast before we start, or have a walk first?”
“Ready, I cannot really drink a drop of water myself, and I am thirsty, unless you give a little to these poor dogs.'
“I pity the poor dumb creatures as much as you do, Master William. Depend upon it, it's not out of unkindness; on the contrary, it is kindness to ourselves and to them too, which makes me refuse it to them; however, if you like, we will take a walk first, and see if we can find any water. Let us first go to the little dell on the right, and if