In Which Phileas Fogg Engages In A Direct Struggle With Bad Fortune.
The `China', in leaving, seemed to have carried off Phileas Fogg's last hope. None of the other steamers were able to serve his projects. The `Pereire', of the French Transatlantic Company, whose admirable steamers are equal to any in speed and comfort, did not leave until the 14th; the Hamburg boats did not go directly to Liverpool or London, but to Havre; and the additional trip from Havre to Southampton would render Phileas Fogg's last efforts of no avail. The Inman steamer did not depart till the next day, and could not cross the Atlantic in time to save the wager.
Mr Fogg learned all this in consulting his `Bradshaw', which gave him the daily movements of the transatlantic steamers.
Passepartout was crushed; it overwhelmed him to lose the boat by three-quarters of an hour. It was his fault, for, instead of helping his master, he had not ceased putting obstacles in his path! And when he recalled all the incidents of the tour, when he counted up the sums expended in pure loss and on his own account, when he thought that the immense stake, added to the heavy charges of this useless journey, would completely ruin Mr Fogg, he overwhelmed himself with bitter self-accusations. Mr Fogg, however, did not reproach him; and, on leaving the Cunard pier, only said: `We will consult about what is best tomorrow. Come.'
The party crossed the Hudson in the Jersey City ferry-boat, and drove in a carriage to the St Nicholas Hotel, on Broadway. Rooms were engaged, and the night passed, briefly to Phileas Fogg, who slept profoundly, but very long to Aouda and the others, whose agitation did not permit them to rest.
The next day was the 12th of December. From seven in the morning of the 12th, to a quarter before nine in the evening of the 21st, there were nine days, thirteen hours, and forty-five minutes. If Phileas Fogg had left in the `China', one of the fastest steamers on the Atlantic, he would have reached Liverpool, and then London, within the period "agreed upon.
Mr Fogg left the hotel alone, after giving Passepartout instructions to await his return, and inform Aouda to be ready at an instant's notice. He proceeded to the banks of the Hudson, and looked about among the vessels moored or anchored in the river, for any that were about to depart. Several had departure signals, and were preparing to put to sea at morning tide; for in this immense and admirable port there is not one day in a hundred that vessels do not set out for every quarter of the globe. But they were mostly sailing vessels, of which, of course, Phileas Fogg could make no use.
He seemed about to give up all hope, when he espied, anchored at the Battery, a cable's length off at most, a trading vessel, with a screw, well-shaped, whose funnel, puffing a cloud of smoke, indicated that she was getting ready for departure.
Phileas Fogg hailed a boat, got into it, and soon found himself on board the `Henrietta', iron-hulled, wood- built above. He ascended to the deck, and asked for the captain, who forthwith presented himself. He was a man of fifty, a sort of sea-wolf, with big eyes, a complexion of oxidized copper, red hair and thick neck, and a growling voice.
`The captain?' asked Mr Fogg.
`I am the captain.'
`I am Phileas Fogg, of London.'
`And I am Andrew Speedy, of Cardiff.'
`You are going to put to sea?'
`In an hour.'
`You are bound for--'
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