The Mysterious Island
The next day, the 20th of October, at seven o'clock in the morning, after a
voyage of four days, the "Bonadventure" gently glided up to the beach at the
mouth of the Mercy.
Cyrus Harding and Neb, who had become very uneasy at the bad weather and
the prolonged absence of their companions, had climbed at daybreak to the
plateau of Prospect Heights, and they had at last caught sight of the vessel which
had been so long in returning.
"God be praised! there they are!" exclaimed Cyrus Harding.
As to Neb in his joy, he began to dance, to twirl round, clapping his hands and
shouting, "Oh! my master!" A more touching pantomime than the finest
The engineer's first idea, on counting the people on the deck of the
"Bonadventure," was that Pencroft had not found the castaway of Tabor Island,
or at any rate that the unfortunate man had refused to leave his island and
change one prison for another.
Indeed Pencroft, Gideon Spilett, and Herbert were alone on the deck of the
The moment the vessel touched, the engineer and Neb were waiting on the
beach, and before the passengers had time to leap on to the sand, Harding said:
"We have been very uneasy at your delay, my friends! Did you meet with any
"No," replied Gideon Spilett; "on the contrary, everything went wonderfully well.
We will tell you all about it."
"However," returned the engineer, "your search has been unsuccessful, since
you are only three, just as you went!"
"Excuse me, captain," replied the sailor, "we are four."
"You have found the castaway?"
"And you have brought him?"