In Gallant Company (Richard Bolitho Novels, No. 3) (The Bolitho Novels) (Volume 3)
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new life. Because of others in high places, of deep loyalties and deeper mistrusts, the break had come as swiftly as the fall of an axe. The new Revolutionary government had challenged the King, that should have been enough. But when he thought about it honestly, Bolitho often wished that the men he fought, and those he had seen die, had not called out in the same tongue, and often the same dialect, as himself. Some gulls circled warily around the schooner’s spiralling masts, then allowed
settled in their new life, were ready enough to bring the Navy’s rough justice to the fore. If we have to go, why not you! seemed to be their only yardstick. Stockdale had vanished to the rear of the building, his cutlass in his belt and carrying instead a cudgel as big as a leg of pork. Bolitho stood for a few more seconds, taking deep breaths while he stared at the sealed door, beyond which he could hear someone crooning quietly like a sick dog. They were probably sleeping it off, he thought
Spite’s aground, zur!’ Something like a sigh ran along the Trojan’s decks. Of all the bad luck, this was it. Cunningham must have misjudged his entrance, or had been deceived by the currents. It was humiliating enough for Coutts. For Cunningham it must be the end of the world, Bolitho thought. Stockdale whispered, ‘The Frenchie can do as ’e pleases now, sir.’ The anchorage was opening up with every dragging minute. Bolitho could see the sheltered water beyond the turbulence at the entrance.
her. Always youthful and vivacious. Ready to stand-in and shoulder the responsibility of house and land when her husband, Captain James Bolitho, was away, which was often. Bolitho and his brother, Hugh, his two sisters, Felicity and Nancy, had all loved her in their own different and special ways. When he had returned home from the Destiny, still shocked and suffering from his wound, he had needed her more than ever. The house had been like a tomb. She was dead. It was impossible to accept even
how the yawl would be swinging to her cable. He thought suddenly of Sparke, deciding on his attack. Pushing sentiment aside after the bloody fighting was over. ‘Load your pistols. Take your time.’ If he hurried them, or shared his own anxiety over the brightening sky, somebody was bound to get muddled and loose off a ball. It only took one. Stockdale swayed through the boat and then returned. ‘All done, sir.’ ‘Mr Frowd?’ The lieutenant waved to him. ‘Ready, sir!’ In spite of his tense