THE DEVIL AND THE OLD MAN i8i
be care-free, heart at ease and jib-sheet to wind- ward.
So for nineteen years and nine months he lived in great state, having- his heart's desire in all things ; but, when his twenty years were nearly run through, there was no wretcheder man in all the world than that poor fellow. So he threw up his house, his position, riches, everything, and away he went to the port of Liverpool, where he signed on as A.B., aboard a Black Ball packet, a tea clipper, bound to the China seas.
They made a fine passage out, and when our friend had onl}' three days more, they were in the Indian Ocean lying lazy, becalmed.
Now it was his wheel that forenoon, and it being dead calm, all he had to do was just to think of things ; the ship of course having no way on her.
So he stood there, hanging on to the spokes, groaning and weeping till, just twenty minutes or so before eight bells were made, up came the Captain for a turn on deck.
He went aft, of course, took a squint aloft, and saw our friend crying at the wheel. " Hello, my man," he says, " why, what's all this? Ain't you