Page:Yule Logs.djvu/177

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was being mended. I wanted to go out fishing, and the pitch isn't dry."

"That don't matter," growled Hezz, setting down his kettle and brush, and catching up a couple of handfuls of dry sand, which he dashed over the shiny tar. Come on."

Lance came on in the way of helping to turn the clumsy boat over on its keel; then it was spun round so as to present its bows to the sea; a block was placed underneath, another a little way off, and the two boys skilfully ran it down the steep sandy slope till it was half afloat, when they left it while they went back to the natural boat-house for the oars, hitcher, and tackle.

"Got any bait?" said Lance.

"Heaps," came in a growl. Then in a squeak—"Thought you'd come down, so I got some wums—lugs and rags, and there's four broken pilchards in the maund, and a couple o' dozen sand-eels in the coorge out yonder by the buoy."

"Are there any bass off the point?"

"Few. Billy saw some playing there 'smorning, but p'raps they won't take."

"Never mind; let's try," said Lance eagerly. "Look sharp; I must be back in time for dinner."

"Lots o' time," growled Hezz, as he loaded himself up with the big basket, into which he had tumbled the coarse brown lines and receptacles of bait, including a scaly piece of board with four damaged pilchards laid upon it and a sharp knife stuck in the middle. "You carry the oars and boat-hook," came in a squeak.

They hurried down to the boat, and were brought back to the knowledge that four pairs of eyes were watching them from a hundred feet overhead, by Old Poltree roaring out as if addressing some one a mile at sea—

"You stopped that gashly leak proper, my son?"

" Iss, father," cried Hezz, in a shrill squeak, as he dumped down his load.