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find some pig-nuts and I shouldn’t wonder.”

“Pig-nuts!” repeated Merry, in a scream. “Mates, do you hear
that? I tell you now, that man there knew it all along. Look in the
face of him and you’ll see it wrote there.”

“Ah, Merry,” remarked Silver, “standing for cap’n again?
You’re a pushing lad, to be sure.”

But this time everyone was entirely in Merry’s favour. They
began to scramble out of the excavation, darting furious glances
behind them. One thing I observed, which looked well for us: they
all got out upon the opposite side from Silver.

Well, there we stood, two on one side, five on the other, the pit
between us, and nobody screwed up high enough to offer the first
blow. Silver never moved; he watched them, very upright on his
crutch, and looked as cool as ever I saw him. He was brave, and no

At last Merry seemed to think a speech might help matters.
“Mates,” says he, “there’s two of them alone there; one’s the old
cripple that brought us all here and blundered us down to this; the
other’s that cub that I mean to have the heart of. Now, mates--”

He was raising his arm and his voice, and plainly meant to lead
a charge. But just then--crack! crack! crack!-- three musket-shots
flashed out of the thicket. Merry tumbled head foremost into the
excavation; the man with the bandage spun round like a teetotum
and fell all his length upon his side, where he lay dead, but still
twitching; and the other three turned and ran for it with all their

Before you could wink, Long John had fired two barrels of a
pistol into the struggling Merry, and as the man rolled up his eyes
at him in the last agony, “George,” said he, “I reckon I settled

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