The Mysterious Island HTML version

Chapter 9
In a few words, Gideon Spilett, Herbert, and Neb were made acquainted with
what had happened. This accident, which appeared so very serious to Pencroft,
produced different effects on the companions of the honest sailor.
Neb, in his delight at having found his master, did not listen, or rather, did not
care to trouble himself with what Pencroft was saying.
Herbert shared in some degree the sailor's feelings.
As to the reporter, he simply replied,--
"Upon my word, Pencroft, it's perfectly indifferent to me!"
"But, I repeat, that we haven't any fire!"
"Nor any means of relighting it!"
"But I say, Mr. Spilett--"
"Isn't Cyrus here?" replied the reporter.
"Is not our engineer alive? He will soon find some way of making fire for us!"
"With what?"
"With nothing."
What had Pencroft to say? He could say nothing, for, in the bottom of his heart
he shared the confidence which his companions had in Cyrus Harding. The
engineer was to them a microcosm, a compound of every science, a possessor
of all human knowledge. It was better to be with Cyrus in a desert island, than
without him in the most flourishing town in the United States. With him they could
want nothing; with him they would never despair. If these brave men had been
told that a volcanic eruption would destroy the land, that this land would be
engulfed in the depths of the Pacific, they would have imperturbably replied,--
Cyrus is here!"