"TYPE 'SOGAN' IN THE NOOK BOOK SEARCH BOX TO VIEW ALL MY TITLES!"
The San Martin, a single-screw cargo steamer of 3050 tons, was on her way from Realejo to Tahiti. Built on the Clyde twenty years back, this Peruvian-owned tramp was no longer in her prime. Since passing out of the hands of her British owners, neglect had lessened her speed, while the addition of various deck-houses, to suit the requirements of the South American firm under whose house-flag she sailed, had not increased her steadiness.
Captain Antonio Perez, who was in command, was a short, thick-set man of almost pure Spanish descent, swarthy, greasy, and vain—combining all the characteristics, good, bad, and indifferent, of the South American skipper. As part owner of the San Martin he was glad of the opportunity of adding to the vessel's earnings, so he had willingly agreed to take five passengers as far as Tahiti.
The five passengers were Mr. McKay, his son Andrew, Terence Donaghue, Fanshaw Ellerton, and Quexo; but before relating the circumstances in which they found themselves on board the San Martin, it will be necessary to introduce them to our readers.
Mr. McKay, a tall, erect Queenslander, of Scottish descent, had, through the death of a near relative, migrated from Australia to one of the Central American republics in order to test the possibilities of an estate which had been left him, before putting it into the market.
Andrew McKay, or Andy, as he was called, was a well-set-up young fellow of nineteen, broad-shouldered and straight-limbed, with a fine head surmounted by a crop of auburn hair.
Terence Donaghue, the son of an Irish Canadian, was about Andy's age, and was on a visit to the McKays. He was impulsive both in manner and speech, high-spirited, and good-natured.
Fanshaw Ellerton, a lad of sixteen, was supposed to be serving his apprenticeship on board the Tophet, a barque of 2200 tons, of the port of Liverpool. He was in reality a deserter—but in circumstances beyond his control.
Taking advantage of general leave being granted to the crew of the Tophet, Ellerton had gone "up-country," and, before he actually realised it, he found himself besieged in Mr. McKay's ranch of San Eugenio.
One of those revolutions that occur in many of the South Central American states had broken out, and the rebels, thinking that Mr. McKay's house and estate would prove an easy and profitable prize, promptly attempted to take and plunder San Eugenio.
|Sold by:||Barnes & Noble|
|File size:||727 KB|