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THE SCHOONER EXERTION

had a silver lining, for Bolidar graciously handed over a small bundle at parting.

 

It contained a pair of linen drawers sent me by Nikola, also the Rev. Mr. Brooks' Family Prayer Book. This gave me great satisfaction. Soon after, Bolidar returned with his captain who had one arm slung up, yet with as many implements of war as his diminutive self could conveniently carry. He told me (through an interpreter who was his prisoner) that on his last cruise he had fallen in with two Spanish privateers and beat them off, but had fourteen of his men killed and was himself wounded in the arm. Bolidar turned to me and said, "It is a d—n lie," which words proved to be correct for his arm was not wounded and when I saw him again he had forgotten to sling it up.

 

An accurate and convincing portrait, this, and painted with very few strokes—the strutting little braggart of a pirate chief who resorted to such cheap and stagy tricks as bandaging his arm to make an impression! Having disposed of the cargo, it now transpired that the prisoners were to be marooned and left to perish. After all, the traditions of piracy had not been wholly lost and these sordid rascals were running true to form. With an inkling of this fate, Mr. Joshua Brackett, the mate of the Exertion, was heard to say:

"I cannot tell what awaits us, but it appears to me that the worst is to come."