"If the launch is above water they will find her," said Holmes, as he rose from the table and lit his pipe.
"I would engage a launch and go down the river on the track of the Aurora."
"Why, bless you, sir, it is in the steam launch that he has gone.
A moment later, he was followed by another and another, and it is needless to state that we beat a hasty retreat to the launch.
I may say that it was with no regret that we bid adieu to Tigerland, as we rechristened the ancient Devon, and, beating out into the Channel, turned the launch's nose southeast, to round Bolt Head and continue up the coast toward the Strait of Dover and the North Sea.
With the report of his rifle the tiger stopped short in apparent surprise, then turned and bit savagely at its shoulder for an instant, after which it wheeled again toward Delcarte, issuing the most terrific roars and screams, and launched itself, with incredible speed, toward the brave fellow, who now stood his ground pumping bullets from his automatic rifle as rapidly as the weapon would fire.
3 Novenber.--We heard at Fundu that the launch had gone up the Bistritza.
4 Novenber.--Today we heard of the launch having been detained by an accident when trying to force a way up the rapids.
Then that launch would give one final shriek of a whistle that would nearly burst the boiler, and she would reverse her engines, and blow off steam, and swing round and get aground; everyone on board of it would rush to the bow and yell at us, and the people on the bank would stand and shout to us, and all the other passing boats would stop and join in, till the whole river for miles up and down was in a state of frantic commotion.
"Why, George, bless me, if here isn't a steam launch!"
Upon which we would get nervous and confused, and not know how to get the boat out of the way, and the people in the launch would crowd round and instruct us:
It was necessary to run in shore, toil up, laboriously, along the eddies and to attain some distance above the snag, when they launched
forth again into the stream and floated down with it to his rescue.