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Forgotten was the impotent revolution, the danger, the loss, the gall of defeat. Possessed solely by the inordinate and unparalleled passion of the collector, he strode up and down the little deck, clasping to his breast with one hand the paragon of a flag. He snapped his fingers triumphantly toward the east. He shouted the paean to his prize in trumpet tones, as though he would make old Grunitz hear in his musty den beyond the sea.
They were waiting, on the Salvador, to welcome them. The sloop came close alongside the steamer where her sides were sliced almost to the lower deck for the loading of fruit. The sailors of the Salvador grappled and held her there.
Captain McLeod leaned over the side. "Well, señor, the jig is up, I'm told.”
“The jig is up?" Don Sabas looked perplexed for a moment. “That revolution ah, yes!” With a shrug of his shoulders he dismissed the matter.
The captain learned of the escape and the imprisoned crew.
“Caribs ?” he said ; "no harm in them." He slipped down into the sloop and kicked loose the hasp of the hatch. The black fellows came tumbling up, sweating but grinning.
“Hey! black boys !” said the captain, in a dialect of his own; "you sabe, catchy boat and vamos back same place quick.”
They saw him point to themselves, the sloop and Coralio. “Yas, yas!" they cried, with broader grins and many
nods. The four – Don Sabas, the two officers and the captain — moved to quit the sloop. Don Sabas lagged a little behind, looking at the still form of the late admiral, sprawled in his paltry trappings.
“Pobrecito loco," he said softly.
He was a brilliant cosmopolite and a cognoscente of high rank; but, after all, he was of the same race and blood and instinct as this people. Even as the simple paisanos of Coralio had said it, so said Don Sabas. Without a smile, he looked, and said, “The poor little crazed one!”
Stooping he raised the limp shoulders, drew the priceless and induplicable flag under them and over the breast, pinning it there with the diamond star of the Order of San Carlos that he took from the collar of his own coat.
He followed after the others, and stood with them upon the deck of the Salvador. The sailors that steadied El Nacional shoved her off. The jabbering
Caribs hauled away at the rigging; the sloop headed for the shore.
And Herr Grunitz's collection of naval flags was still the finest in the world.
THE SHAMROCK AND THE PALM
ONE night when there was no breeze, and Coralio scemed closer than ever to the gratings of Avernus, five men were grouped about the door of the photograph establishment of Keoghi and Clancy. Thus, in all the scorched and exotic places of the carth, Caucasians meet when the day's work is done to preserve the fulness of their heritage by the aspersion of alien things.
Johnny Atwood lay stretched upon the grass in the undress uniform of a Carib, and prated feebly of cool water to be had in the cucumber-wood pumps of Dalesburg. Dr. Gregg, through the prestige of his whiskers and as a bribe against the relation of his imminent professional tales, was conceded the hammock that was swung between the door jamb and a calabash-trec. Keogh had moved out upon the grass a little table that held the instrument for burnishing completed photographs. He was the only busy one
of the group. Industriously from between the cylinders of the burnisher rolled the finished depictments of Coralio's citizens, Blanchard, the French mining engineer, in his cool linen viewed the smoke of his cigarette through his calm glasses, impervious to the heat. Clancy sat on the steps, smoking his short pipe. His mood was the gossip's; the others were reduced, by the humidity, to the state of disability desirable in an audience.
Clancy was an American with an Irish diathesis and cosmopolitan proclivities. Many businesses had claimed him, but not for long. The roadster's blood was in his veins. The voice of the tintype was but one of the many callings that had wooed him upon so many roads. Sometimes he could be persuaded to oral construction of his voyages into the informal and egregious. To-night there were symptoms of divulgement in him.
“ 'Tis clegant weather for filibusterin',” he volunteered. “It reminds me of the time I struggled to liberate a nation from the poisonous breath of a tyrant's clutch. 'Twas hard work. 'Tis strainin' to the back and makes corns on the hands." “I didn't know
sword to an oppressed people," murmured Atwood, from the grass.