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 Although Mr. Lillyworth knew very well that Pink Mulgrum was deaf and dumb, he "jawed" at him as though his hearing was as perfect as his own, doubtless forgetting for the moment his infirmity.  
"Draw up the bight, and lace it tighter," exclaimed the second lieutenant, intermixing an expletive at each end of the sentence. "Oh, you can't hear me!" he shouted, as though the fact that the scullion could not hear him had suddenly come to his mind. "Well, it is a nice thing to talk to a deaf man!"
Dave could see that Mulgrum also seemed to forget that his ears were closed to all sounds, for he redoubled his efforts to haul the screen into its place.
"I could not hear anything that was of any consequence," the steward heard the deaf mute say in a lower tone than his companion used.
082 "Couldn't you hear anything?" asked Mr. Lillyworth, making a spring at the canvas as though he was disgusted with the operations of his companion on the bridge.
"Only what I have just told you," replied Mulgrum.
"But you were at the door when the captain and the first lieutenant were talking together in the cabin," continued the officer in a low tone.
"But they were talking about me, as I told you before," answered the scullion, rather impatiently, as though he too had a mind of his own.
"Wasn't anything said about the operations of the future?" demanded Mr. Lillyworth.
"Not a word; but you know as well as I do that the captain has sealed orders which he will not see before to-morrow. I heard him tell his father that he was to open the envelope in latitude 38," said the supernumerary.
"You must contrive some way to hear the captain when he reads his orders," continued the second lieutenant. "He will be likely to have Mr. Flint with him when he opens the envelope."
"It will be difficult," replied Mulgrum, and Dave could imagine that he saw him shake his 083 head. "The captain has found me cleaning the brasses on his door twice, and it will hardly do to be found at the door again."
"Isn't there any place in his cabin where you can conceal yourself?" inquired Mr. Lillyworth.
"I don't know of any place, unless it is his state room; and the cabin steward has been at work there almost all the time since we got under way. Dave seems to be a sort of confidant of the captain," suggested Mulgrum; and it looked as though the deaf mute had not held his tongue and kept his ears open for nothing; but the steward could not understand how he had got this idea into his head, for he had received his instructions while the commander was at supper, and he was sure, as he had thrown the door open several times, that the scullion was not on the other side of it.
"A nigger for his confidant!" exclaimed the second lieutenant, as he interpolated a little jaw for the benefit of the seamen and petty officers within earshot of him. "What can we expect when a mere boy is put in command of a steamer like this one?"
"I think you need not complain, Pawcett, for you are on board of this vessel, and so am I, 84 because she is under the command of a boy. But he is a tremendous smart boy, and he is older than many men of double his age," added Mulgrum.
Dave realized that the supernumerary was well informed in regard to current history in connection with naval matters, and he was willing to believe that he was quite as shrewd as the officer at his side.
"The boy is well enough, though he is abominably overrated, as you will see before I have done with him," said Mr. Lillyworth contemptuously. "It is galling for one who has seen some service to touch his cap to this boy and call him captain."
"I hope you are not forgetting yourself, Pawcett—"
"Don't mention my name on board of this vessel, Hungerford," interposed the officer.
"And you will not mention mine," added the scullion promptly. "We are both careless in this matter, and we must do better. I think I ought to caution you not to neglect any outside tokens of respect to the captain. You can have your own opinions, but I think you do not treat him with sufficient deference."
85 "Perhaps I don't, for it is not an easy thing to do," replied the second lieutenant. "But I think the captain has no cause to complain of me. We must find out something about these orders, and you must be on the lookout for your chances at meridian to-morrow. If you can stow yourself away under the captain's berth in his state room, you may be able to hear him read them to the first lieutenant, as he will be sure to do."
"I don't believe in doing that," replied Mulgrum. "If I am discovered, no explanation could be made as to why I was concealed there."
"But we must take some risks," persisted Mr. Lillyworth. "After what you told me in the first of our talk, it may not be necessary to conceal yourself. I shall say something to the captain on the subject at which you hinted as soon as I get a chance. You may be in a situation to hear all that is said without danger."
Dave wondered what could be meant by this remark, for he had not heard the conversation between the captain and the first lieutenant which was intended as a "blind" to the listener, known to be at the door.
"I am willing to take any risk that will not 86 ruin our enterprise," Mulgrum responded to the remark of his companion.
"At noon to-morrow I shall come on deck in charge, and the first lieutenant will be relieved, so that he will be at liberty to visit the captain in his cabin. That will be your time, and you must improve it."
"But I shall meet you again to-morrow, and I will look about me, an............
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