Page:Howard Pyle's Book of Pirates (1921).djvu/316

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Howard Pyle’s Book of Pirates

drubbing with his heels upon the rug in which he had become entangled.

Our hero leaped to his feet, and with dilating eyes and expanding brain and swimming sight stared down upon the other like one turned to a stone.

He beheld instantly what had occurred, and that he had, without so intending, killed a fellow-man. The knife, turned away from his own person, had in their fall been plunged into the bosom of the other, and he now lay quivering in the last throes of death. As Jonathan gazed he beheld a thin red stream trickle out from the parted and grinning lips; he beheld the eyes turn inward; he beheld the eyelids contract; he beheld the figure stretch itself; he beheld it become still in death.


The Momentous Adventure with the Stranger with the Silver Earrings

So our hero stood stunned and bedazed, gazing down upon his victim, like a man turned into a stone. His brain appeared to him to expand like a bubble, the blood surged and bummed in his ears with every gigantic beat of his heart, his vision swam, and his trembling hands were bedewed with a cold and repugnant sweat. The dead figure upon the floor at his feet gazed at him with a wide, glassy stare, and in the confusion of his mind it appeared to Jonathan that he was, indeed, a murderer.

What monstrous thing was this that had befallen him who, but a moment before, had been so entirely innocent of the guilt of blood? What was he now to do in such an extremity as this, with his victim lying dead at his feet, a poniard in his heart? Who would believe him to be guiltless of crime with such a dreadful evidence as this presented against him? How was he, a stranger in a foreign land, to totally defend himself against an accusing of mistaken justice? At these thoughts a developed terror gripped