"No, sir, I do not think that would be right either, - some accident might happen; there is no saying what might happen, although there is every appearance of safety. I should like, therefore, to have some one with me; the question is, whether it be William or Juno?"
"Take you, Tommy!" said Ready, laughing; "then I must take Juno to take care of you. No; I think they cannot spare you. Your mamma will want you when we are gone; you are so useful in gathering wood for the fire, and taking care of your little sister and brother, that your mother cannot part with you; so I must have either Juno or William."
"And which would you prefer, Ready?" said Mrs. Seagrave.
"William, certainly, ma'am, if you will let him go with me, as you could ill spare the girl."
"Indeed, I do not like it; I would rather lose Juno for a time," replied Mrs. Seagrave.
"My dear wife," said Mr. Seagrave, "recollect how Providence has preserved us in such awful dangers - how we are landed in safety. And now, will you not put trust in that Providence, when the dangers are, as I trust, only imaginary?"
"I was wrong, my dear husband; but sickness and suffering have made me, I fear, not only nervous and frightened, but selfish: I must and will shake it off. Hitherto I have only been a clog and an incumbrance to you; but I trust I shall soon behave better, and make myself useful. If you think, then, that it would be better that you should go instead of William, I am quite content. Go, then, with Ready, and may Heaven protect you both!"
"No, ma'am," replied Ready, "William will do just as well. Indeed, I would go by myself with pleasure; but we know not what the day may bring forth. I might be taken ill - I might hurt myself - I am an old man, you know; and then I was thinking that if any accident was to happen to me, you might miss me - that's all."