“Fare you well, my lad; what I have seen of your brothers-in-law pleases me much; and as for your wife, it will be your own fault if she is not all that you would wish. If ever I come to England again, I will pay my first visit to Forest Hill. God bless you!”

But Sir Thomas never did go back to England, and this was their final adieu. Once more the Rebiera pursued her course, stopped a day or two at Gibraltar, shared the proceeds of the captured gun-boat, and then made sail for England, where she arrived without adventure or accident in three weeks. Thus ended the last cruise of Mr. Midshipman Easy. As soon as their quarantine at the Motherbank was over, they disembarked and found Dr. Middleton and Mr. Hanson waiting for them at the George Hotel. Our hero had scarcely time to introduce his wife, when the waiter said that a lady wished to speak to him. She did not wait to know if Jack was visible, but forced her way past him. Jack looked at her large proportions, and decided at once that it must be Mrs. Oxbelly, in which conjecture he was right.

“Pray, sir, what do you mean by carrying off my husband in that way?” exclaimed the lady, red with anger.

“God forbid that I should have to carry your husband, Mrs. Oxbelly; he is rather too heavy.”

“Yes, sir, but it’s little better than kidnapping, and there’s a law for kidnapping children at all events. I shall send my lawyer to you, that you may depend upon.”

“You hardly can consider your husband as a child, Mrs. Oxbelly,” replied Jack, laughing.

“Very well, sir, we shall see. Pray, where is he now?”

“He is on board, Mrs. Oxbelly, and will be delighted to see you.”

“I’m not quite so sure of that.”

“He’s very anxious to see little Billy,” said Gascoigne.

“What do you know of little Billy, young man?”

“And more than anxious to be on shore again. He’s quite tired of sleeping single, Mrs. Oxbelly.”

“Ah, very well, he has been talking, has he? very well,” exclaimed the lady in a rage.

“But,” said Easy, “I am happy to say, that with pay and prize-money, during his short absence, he has brought home nearly five hundred pounds.”

“Five hundred pounds— you don’t say so, sir!” exclaimed Mrs. Oxbelly; “are you sure of that?”

“Quite sure,” rejoined Gascoigne.

“Five hundred pounds !— Well, that is comfortable — dear me! how glad I shall be to see him! Well, Mr. Easy, it was hard to part with him in so unhandsome a way— but all’s for the best in this world. What a dear nice lady your wife is, Mr. Easy— but I won’t intrude— I beg pardon. Where is the brig, Mr. Easy?”

“Now coming into harbour,” replied Gascoigne; ‘if you bargain, you can get off for twopence.”

“Five hundred pounds !” exclaimed Mrs. Oxbelly, whose wrath was now appeased.

“By all power, she no fool of a woman dat,” said Mesty, as she retreated curtesying. “I tink Mr. Oxbelly very right sleep tingle.”

We have now come to the end of our hero’s adventures; that afternoon they all started for Forest Hill, where everything was ready for their reception. The Rebiera’s men were paid off, and were soon distributed

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