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- To my excited imagination, it was the most doleful cry, that had ever met my ears. I fancied that there must be, something of bad omen in all this. I imagined that my death was coming soon, and that this hateful brute had come to warn me of it."
Such were the silly dreams, that occupied my mind. They affected me so much, that at length, I could endure my feelings no longer. With a trembling hand, I felt about for a stone, and having grasped one, I rose and hurled it at the dog, with all my might. I believe I hit him; for the creature ran yelping away.
As soon as I had done this, my idle fears vanished, and I laughed to myself, while thinking of my folly. I then sat quietly down, braced myself against the rocks, and having commended myself to God, I fell asleep.
I suppose I had slept for two or three hours, when I was awoke by a loud noise. I started to my feet, but it was still entirely dark, and
as I heard the sound only in my sleep, I could not tell what had caused it.
The wind was yet blowing terribly, and I supposed, that some rock had been hurled down the precipice, or that one of the tall trees had been overturned by the tempest. Thinking of these things, I sat still till morning
Never have I seen the morning come, withi more joy, than then. The grey light soon showed me my situation. I was sitting on a heap of rocks, that had fallen from the precipice. Within a few feet of me, lay the trunk of a tall pine tree, which had been blown down by the gale. It was this, that had waked me from my sleep. It had fallen very near to me, and I felt that He who governs the storm, had watched over, and saved me.
As soon as it was light, I left the place where I had spent the night. I was very lame, and sore, at first, but, by and by, I could walk pretty well. I made my way, as well as I could, through the thick trees and bushes. I soon
came to a small stream. I was very thirsty and I scooped some of the water up in my hand, and drank it.,
Then I continued to go along through the woods. I was very anxious to get to the shore, for fear the vessel would be gone. But the greater my anxiety, the less seemed to be my chance of getting out of the forest. It was quite cloudy, and I had no means of telling the direction in which I was going.
For four hours I continued to push on, imagining that I was going toward the shore ; but, what was my astonishment and grief, at length to find myself returned, to the same spot where I had remained during the night.
I was a good deal discouraged, for I was quite lame, and felt myself very weary. But as I deemed it folly to despair, so long as anything could be done, I set about climbing up the precipice, in hopes of seeing the sea.
After climbing to a considerable height, I saw the highlands, which I knew formed the
coast. I now descended, and determining to be more cautious than before, I guided my course, as I had seen the Indians do, many years before, in Vermont. I will tell you how this is done, so that if you ever get lost in the woods, you may be able to get out.
I looked forward, and fixing my eye upon three trees that ranged with each other, I went forward to the farthest of them. I then observed three other trees that ranged in the same way, and proceeded as before. In this manner, I soon reached the open ground.
Being clear of the woods, I now began to consider the probability, that the vessel had been driven off by the gale. As fast as I could, I ascended a hill, from which I knew that I could see the place, where the vessel had been anchored.
With a beating heart, I reached the top, and all my fears were realized. The gale was still blowing upon the shore, and the surf came tumbling and foaming against the rocks. But the ship was gone! With an anxious eye, I looked over the water, in every direction, but nothing could I see, but the rolling and restless billows.
Weary and disappointed, I sat down upon the ground. For sometime, I gave myself up to the most melancholy thoughts. But after awhile, I grew very hungry, and began to look about for something to eat. But I saw nothing fit for food. At length, overcome with fatigue, I laid myself down, and fell asleep.
I slept for many hours, and when I awoke, it was again night. I was also very much alarmed to observe at a little distance from me a bright fire, and at least twenty savages around it. Most of them were men, and the rest women. I was but a few rods from them, and it was impossible to think of escape. .
I however remained still, but at length, a party of ten or twelve others, came up the hill, and were on the point of stumbling over me. I rose up, and they rushed upon me with a loud