Page:Hopkinson Smith--armchair at the inn.djvu/48

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and a becassine. I left them with Pierre as I came in. Didn’t see a duck—haven’t seen one for a week. Wait until I get rid of this,” and he stripped off his outer jacket and flung it at Louis, who caught it with one hand and, picking up the tongs, held the garment from him until he had deposited it in the far corner of the room.

“Haven’t had hold of you, Herbert, since the gold medal,” the hunter resumed. “Shake!” and the two pressed each other’s hands. “I thought ‘The Savage’ would win—ripping stuff up and down the back, and the muscles of the legs, and he stands well. I think it’s your high-water mark—thought so when I saw it in the clay. By Jove!—I’m glad to get here! The wind has hauled to the eastward and it’s getting colder every minute.”

“Cold, are you, old man!” condoled Louis. “Why don’t you look out for your fire, High-Muck? Little Brierley’s half frozen, he says. Hold on!—stay where you are; I’ll put on another log. Of course, you’re half frozen! When I went by your marsh a little while ago the gulls were flying close inshore as if they were hunting for a stove. Not a fisherman fool enough to dig bait as far as I could see.”