Dory Dornwood had seen the La Motte when she was lying in the river, and
knew that a party from her had visited the school, though he had not
been near them. He had passed the schooner in the barge, but without
noticing the persons on board of her. Mr. Michael Angelo Spickles was
the chief of the party, and the principal operator in the robbery at the
office of the institution. But the prisoner knew nothing whatever about
The arm of Kingsland Bay where the marauders embarked was less than a
quarter of a mile wide, and the water was almost as smooth as on a calm
day. The bay itself did not average more than half a mile wide; and they
were not likely to experience any rough weather within its limits, as
they were a full mile from the open lake.
The members of the party had not said a word to Dory, and had hardly
noticed him since they finished binding his arms behind him. He was left
to himself, and he had abundant opportunity for reflection. He was not a
little humiliated because he had allowed himself to be captured so
easily, but he could not see how it would have been possible for him to
It was useless to consider the past, for it was all gone; and he could
not undo any thing that had been done. He had been captured, and he was
in the hands of the enemy. Mack reported the advance of a party from
Beech Hill, but they were too late to be of any service to him. The
future was a blank to him, and he could only wait for events as they
occurred. But he was satisfied that the boat could not get out of the
bay while the present storm raged.
“We are all right now,” said Angy, as the boat receded from the shore in
the gloom of the morning. “We lost all this time on your account, Chuck;
and I shall fine you for it when we divide.”
“I don’t think I am to blame for it,” replied Chuck, who was pulling the
bow-oar, next to Dory.
“You don’t think you were to blame!” exclaimed Angy angrily. “Didn’t you
speak out loud when we were within a few rods of this chap we have
picked up? Didn’t you make it necessary to capture this fellow, so that
he should not see us?”
“Perhaps I made a little noise when I saw the flash of light, but I
didn’t say any thing,” pleaded Chuck.
“You made noise enough for him to hear you, and to let him know where we
were; and I shall fine you fifty dollars out of your share,” added the
chief, as though he were talking to a delinquent schoolboy.
“Perhaps you will: if you do, you will wish you hadn’t done it,” replied
the culprit, who did not seem to be in a submissive mood.
“Didn’t you agree to obey orders, Chuck?” demanded Angy savagely.
“That is just what I have done; and if I was surprised into making a
little sound when that fellow struck a light close to us, I am not going
to be robbed for it,” protested the delinquent.
“What are you going to do about it?” growled Angy.
“I can only tell you what I’m not going to do yet: I shall not submit to
being robbed,” said Chuck.
It looked a little like a quarrel among the marauders, and Dory hoped he
might be able to derive some advantage from the disagreement. But they
had said enough to enable him to explain why he had been made a
prisoner. The burglars had evidently kept the run of him since he came
into the road, and they were not willing that any one should know they
had departed by water.
Probably they reasoned that he was alone, because they heard no voices,
for one pursuer would not do any talking. When he lighted the match to
examine the road, he had exposed himself; and then, if not before, the
fugitives saw that they could remove the only one on their track by
making him a prisoner.
The boat pulled out of the arm of the bay, and then followed the shore
on the west side, which entirely sheltered it from the violence of the
blast. But it soon reached a point where the crew could hear the
terrific roar of the storm on the open lake. The effect of the heavy
waves could be felt in the bay, and the boat began to tumble about.
“It is blowing a young hurricane,” said Mack, when the roar of the
tempest could be heard in its intensity. “We shall never be able to
reach the vessel. I think we are just beginning to find the rough side
of this scrape.”
“None of your croaking, Mack!” added the chief sharply. “We have found
our way out of this bay, and we are all right; and we must be on board
of the schooner before it is light enough for us to be seen from the
shore. I know where we are now.”
“Then, you know we are in a tight place,” added Mack. “It is light
enough now for you to see that the lake looks like a snow-bank, it is so
covered with foam from the waves. This boat will not live in that sea.”
“We shall soon see whether it will or not,” said Angy, as he shifted the
helm so as to direct the boat across the entrance of the bay.
The boat was the tender of the La Motte, and was not more than twelve
feet long. It was a sort of yawl, and the four persons in it was a full
freight for it. The sea was heavy at the mouth of the bay, though the
trend of the coast partially sheltered it from the full fury of the
Skilfully handled, and with her head up to the wind, she would have
stood it very well; but Angy seemed to have a contempt for a fresh-water
lake, and did not believe that any dangerous sea could prevail on its
waters. The lake in a violent storm is worse than the ocean,–a truth he
had yet to learn. He took the sea quartering; and the boat began to
pitch and roll, both at the same time, in a manner that suggested
disaster to Mack, if not to the others.
“This won’t do!” shouted he, as a wave drenched him to the skin.
“It will do very well, Mack!” replied Angy, with energy. “You have been
out in a heavy sea before, and you needn’t croak.”
Mack continued to pull his oar. Five minutes later, the boat took in a
sea on the windward side, which filled it half full. Dory had been wet
through in the first of it, and he was considering the probability of
being drowned with his arms tied behind him so that he could do nothing
to help himself.
“Pull steady!” called Angy, apparently undismayed by the situation, as
he took the bucket in the stern, and began to bail out the boat.
“What’s the use of pulling?” cried Mack, though he was sailor enough to
know that the boat was likely to fall off into the trough of the sea if
he ceased to use his oar. “It is getting worse and worse every fathom
you go ahead, Angy.”
“I can’t help it if it is: we are in for it now, and we can’t come about
if we want to do so,” replied the chief, who was beginning to have a
little more respect for fresh-water waves.
“We can’t stand this,” interposed Chuck, who had been nursing his wrath
in silence. “We had better be taken than drowned.”
“I don’t think so,” answered Angy. “I will keep her away a little so
that she will run before it, and we shall do very well. This blow comes
from the southward, and it won’t last long.”
“It will last long enough to drown the whole of us,” shouted Mack, loud
enough to be heard above the roar of the tempest. “If you don’t do
something to ease her off, I shall stop rowing.”
“If you don’t mean to obey orders, Mack, say so; and you know I have a
revolver in my pocket,” said the chief.
“And I have another,” replied Mack.
“I told you that I was going to let her fall off, and run before it.
What more do you want?” demanded Angy, disgusted at the mutinous conduct
of the oarsmen.
Neither of the rowers said any thing more then, and were evidently
willing to wait for the effect of the change in the course. The boat was
now about half way across the entrance of the bay. It was light enough
to enable the crew to see the opposite shore at the point, where the
waves were rolling on the beach, and piling themselves in great white
masses of foam.
As the boat advanced, the sea became more angry. Before the chief could
bail out the water, the craft took in another wave, and even Angy began
to realize that the boat was in a perilous situation. He gradually
shifted the helm until the boat was running for the shore a considerable
distance from the point.
But the change in the course had wrought no miracle in the situation.
The farther she went from the lee shore on the south, the rougher was
the sea. Though Dory was rather a noted swimmer among the students, the
accomplishment was not likely to be of much service to him with his arms
tied behind him.
“We are not getting out of it a bit,” shouted Mack. “Come about, Angy,
and make for the shore on the other side of the bay.”
“How can I come about in this sea?” demanded the captain. “You know as
well as I do, that if she gets into the trough of the sea, she will go
“We are sure to go over, as it is; and we might as well try it, and work
towards the lee-shore of the bay,” persisted Mack.
“Will you obey orders, or not?” cried Angy savagely.
“No, I won’t obey such orders as you are giving!” exclaimed the
mutineer. “I believe you mean to drown the whole of us.”
As he spoke, he drew in his oar, which was on the lee-side, for the
skipper had not yet got the boat before it. The tender of the La Motte
fell off into the trough of the sea, and began to roll, as though she
was intent upon spilling her burden into the water. Chuck could not row
after his companion ceased to do so.
“Drop into the bottom of the boat,” said Dory, in a low tone, to the
bow-oarsman, as he drew in his oar.
Chuck complied with this request. He evidently regarded this suggestion
as a favor; and, without saying a word, he untied the rope that secured
Dory’s arms. He had hardly done so before the boat shipped a sea, and