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wwwstp4bet "Ay, ay; and she is coming alongside the Vernon," added another. "Better; a great deal better," replied the patient. "I don't see how the commodore could go behind the commission which Corny carries in his pocket, with the orders of the department, any more than Captain Battleton could. I have thought of this, and I am afraid to trust myself to the chance," replied Christy very decidedly. "Besides, I desire to take the conspirators in the very act of running away with the Bronx; then I can make out a good case." wwwstp4bet "Precisely so." "I came on board of the Bronx, and put myself in a place where you were least likely to look for me,—under the berth in the captain's stateroom. I was at home there, for I had occupied the room while I was the acting commander of the vessel on her voyage to the Gulf. But you must excuse me now, for I am ordered to get under way at once; and the ship's company of the Floridian have reported on board." "On board the sloop!" replied Mr. Pennant, standing up in the stern sheets. "What sloop is that?" "I believe you; they be mixed if you be the captain when I done seen him on deck just now." "Then you are not dangerously wounded," added Christy. "I was afraid it had gone through your head." "You cannot ship as a pilot, only as an able seaman, if you know how to hand, reef, and steer, and how to make knots and splices." เครดตฟรลาสด ava168s The steamer went ahead slowly; but the steam was hissing, and she seemed to be as impatient as a fiery horse at the slow starting. Standing on the bridge with the executive officer, Christy took his leave mentally of the flag-ship, and the few other vessels that were on the 254 station; for most of them were on duty in various expeditions engaged in the destruction of salt works. A boat expedition had just captured Appalachicola, with all the vessels loading with cotton in the bay. The young commander congratulated himself that he had a fast steamer, for that caused him to be employed in more active duty than the work of destruction on shore. "I did; you were correctly informed," answered Corny, as the wandering gaze of the commander rested upon him. "Peach says he has taken his valise with him, which indicates that he has gone for good." "I think you told me that you had had some experience on board of steamers, Pennant," replied Christy. "I don't believe you will find many hands down here, Mr. Pennant," said Mike in a whisper. 195 "I think some of us need a little sleep to-night," said the commander. "I have not the slightest prejudice against you and while we stand by the union, shoulder to shoulder, we shall be friends," replied Christy, warmly pressing the hand of the captain of the Vernon. "Sit down, take a seat, doctor, and I will tell you all about it. You may go forward, Dave, and report to me the condition of the prisoner," added Christy, as he seated himself at the table, and began to tell the story of the intruder's visit to his cabin. "I dol't walt any Yalkee surgeod at work od be," protested Captain Flanger, whose speech was badly affected by the injury to his nasal organ, or by the pressure he applied to it with his hand. "Boddyvale? I never heard of the place before in my life, sir," answered the runaway servant. 170 "But it had not one chance in ten of success. Your cousin looks more like you than he did the last time I saw him." When the cutter was about half a mile from the shore, making it about three-quarters of a mile from the fort, the peal of a cannon was heard, and a puff of smoke could be seen as it rose on the clear, starred sky, for the clouds had rolled away during the night. The shot dropped into the water a short distance abreast of the cutter. 99club "What have you here, Mr. Pennant?" asked the commander with a smile, as he pointed to Uncle Job, who seemed to be as bashful as a young girl, and utterly confounded by what he saw on the deck of the Bronx. This order was promptly obeyed. Before it was fully carried out an elderly gentleman crawled out of the cuddy, and stood up in the standing room; he was a man of dignity, and evidently of importance. "He has not found me yet; and I think that the stateroom of the commander of the Bronx is the last place he will think of looking for me. But I have no time to talk of merely selfish matters, for I am not at all worried about my personal safety while we are within union lines. If this plot succeeds, and the conspirators get the ship into a Confederate port, I shall feel differently about this matter. Has any third lieutenant been appointed, Mr. Flint?" "Then you can do my errand for me," added the soldier. "What then?" repeated the intruder. "Why, you will reduce me to the disagreeable necessity of blowing out your brains, if you have any, as I should judge that you had not, after your refusal to accede to my request in the face of the death that awaits you." "If I am the impostor, I do not know myself; but I have no desire to forestall your decision. You saw the sick officer when he came on board last evening, and you have visited him in his stateroom to-day. Do I look enough like him to be taken for him?" asked Christy with a smile, as he placed himself in an attitude to be scrutinized by the commander. "I shall not," replied Corny, with quite as much firmness. "He can't get any whiskey here unless it is served out to him; so that habit, if it is his habit, will do him no harm," argued Mr. Flint. "I beg your pardon, Captain Flanger, but do you really purpose to blow out the brains of your figure-head?" asked Christy, as coolly as though no such threat had been suggested to him.

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wwwstp4bet "How do you feel?" asked the doctor. "The boats are in good condition, sir, and they will be ready in five minutes," replied Mr. Flint, who had come on deck at the call for all hands, and had hardly learned the results of the recent boat expedition. "I did not think it was so late; but that reminds me that I have eaten nothing since my breakfast was brought to me early this morning," said Christy. "No, sir; I belong to Captain Flanger: his father is dead, and left me to his son." "At Bonnydale, on the Hudson," replied Corny confidently. "Where does he live?" "I don't quite understand this matter," said the surgeon. "What are you doing, Mr. Passford?" t99 gaming "Exactly north-east, sir," replied Mr. Pennant. "You have the names of the four men that I sent to you by the steward, have you not?" asked Christy. "Can you get into it?" Dressing himself hastily, Christy hastened on deck, and to the bridge, where he found Mr. Flint, who informed him that the Bronx was off the South Pass of the Mississippi. The fleet of the flag-officer of the Western Gulf squadron had 306 gone up the river, with the exception of a single vessel, which had not been able to get over the bar. There were a few sail in sight. illustration of quoted scene "We shall soon be where our operations begin; but I am afraid we are to have a lazy time of it," 307 added Christy, as soon as the vessel's head had been pointed in the direction indicated. "That is exactly the situation, Dave. Can you tell me what they are doing on deck?" asked Christy, who began to feel more hopeful of the future. "You will pardon me if I add that I think one or the other of them must be an impostor," added Captain Battleton with some diffidence. "A drift lead, sir," replied Mr. Flint. "You are the only officer on board except myself," replied Christy. "We are still in the dark as to what we have to do here. We may have to send off a boat expedition, as we did at Cedar Keys, and we are in absolute need of more officers." "On deck, sir," reported Ralph, touching his cap to the commander, as Mr. Flint descended the steps to the ward room. "Your views, if you please, Dr. Connelly." sb888 "I was hardly called upon to decide anything, for the matter in doubt had been settled by the commander of the Vernon before it came to my knowledge; but I agreed with him that the commission ought to settle the point. Are you not the officer presented to me by Captain Battleton, Captain Passford?" asked the commodore, gazing earnestly into the face of Christy. "I know what he means," interposed the Russian. "I know that steamer, for she came in at Cedar Keys when I was there. He means the Sphinx." "Stand by, my men! Give way together, lively!" shouted the lieutenant as though he intended that those on board of the sloop should hear him as well as his own crew. The watch below were all around him. Some of them were mending their clothes, others were reading newspapers they had brought with them, but the greater part of them were in squads engaged in talking about the events of the war. 104 The nearest group to Christy were conversing about the two lieutenants who claimed to be the real officer ordered to the command of the Bronx. It seemed rather strange to the listener that they should know anything about the events which had happened in the secrecy of the captain's cabin, and this circumstance led him to believe that at least one of the officers of the ship must be a confederate of Corny. "We are all right so far," said Corny. "Those were the coast guard, sir," replied Mike, chuckling again. 67 "Then you were both brought up in the North," suggested the captain. wwwstp4bet "Wollywogs! You look like Massa Christy, for sure," exclaimed Dave, as he gave himself up 130 to a study of the face presented to him. "But the captain looks like Massa Christy too." Captain Battleton spoke to Christy as though he had met him before, and needed no introduction. He was glad to see that the young officer was better, which indicated that he had been sick. He was confounded by the situation, for he had not been sick an hour, and he had never seen the commander of the Vernon in his life. The petty officer had told him that he appeared to be quite sick when he came on board the night before. "We have met before," replied the stranger. "Shall I help you to some of these fried potatoes? They are very good, and I can recommend them. CHAPTER IV THE SICK OFFICER IN THE STATEROOM "Hardly, doctor; I looked up the subject for my own benefit. I simply mean to say that I do not consider my cousin a liar," replied Christy, who was an earnest debater when he became warm in his subject.

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wwwstp4bet His scheme, which must have been devised after he obtained admission to the cabin, was born of nothing less than madness, and could hardly have succeeded under any circumstances, though it 302 might have ended in killing or disabling the commander. Christy felt that a kind Providence had saved him, and he rendered devout thanks for the merciful interposition, as it seemed to him. "I have heard about that; and I know that your cousin Christopher is no chicken." On his arrival in New York he hastened across the ferry to the navy-yard. As he approached the opposite shore, he discovered a steamer getting under way. He had not seen the vessel on board of which he was ordered to report as a passenger, but when he asked a deck hand what the steamer was, he was informed that it was the Vernon. The ferry-boat had just gone into the slip, and Christy was terribly startled to learn that he was late. He was still two hours ahead of the time indicated in his orders, and the Vernon was actually getting under way. The commander looked at his watch after they had conversed a little while longer, and then invited Christy to visit his cabin with him. The other Lieutenant Passford was seated in an arm-chair at the table. Christy looked at him with the deepest interest, but the back of the other was turned to him, and he did not get a full view of his face. The sick man was dressed in the naval uniform with the shoulder straps of a lieutenant. "Of course my cousin Corny intends to hand the vessel over to the Confederate government." "I have had considerable talk with Camden, and I am satisfied that he will make a capital officer," said the executive officer, as he moved towards the companion-way. "I suppose you 198 have sent for Pennant with the intention of appointing him third lieutenant." "What are you about?" demanded the prisoner, attempting to shake off his captor when he felt the cold iron. "Of course my cousin Corny intends to hand the vessel over to the Confederate government." 303 "Undoubtedly; headed to the south-west the ship would be off the passes of the Mississippi at eight bells in the forenoon. If we are sent to Lake Pontchartrain or Ship Island, we should be a long way off our course at that time," added Christy, as he broke the seal of the envelope. "Neither Lake Pontchartrain nor the Mississippi. We are ordered to Barataria Bay, where a steamer is loading with cotton." "Mr. Flint, drop a drift lead, and station a hand to observe it," said Christy, hailing the first lieutenant. "I suppose that is the Bronx astern of her," added Captain Battleton. "It is the smallest of the three, at any rate. Mr. Salisbury, you will run directly for the flag-ship," he added to the executive officer on the quarter-deck. betflix 28 "Have them closely watched, or they may play us some trick when we least suspect it, and in some critical moment," said the commander. "I beg your pardon, sir; my name is not Walsh," replied the sailor, with all the deference the occasion required. "But he did not." 329 "You, Massa Gumboat!" cried the negro. "De sodgers put de bagonet frou your crop like a knife frou a pullet's froat!" 215 "Tie his hands behind him," added Mr. Pennant to the men, who fell upon Flanger the moment he lighted in the bottom of the cutter. wwwstp4bet Not a few of them who had served with Christy in the Gulf declared they had not believed that the person who was the nominal captain was their old first lieutenant; they knew that something 168 was wrong, they said, though they could not tell what. Perhaps they found the captain less active than formerly, and considered him somewhat changed after his visit to the north; but doubtless they were as much blinded by the resemblance as others had been. "No, he won't! If I was to be captured at all, Corny, you insulted me when you set a nigger to do the job," said the prisoner angrily. "But Christy would have found plenty of witnesses here: the second lieutenant and the seamen on board of the Bronx, for example." "I see; that is plain enough," added Corny. "How far is it to St. Andrew's?" CHAPTER XIX THE SKIPPER OF THE SLOOP MAGNOLIA Though it is said that the South "robbed the 6 cradle and the grave" to recruit the armies of the Confederacy, it is as true that young and old in the North went forth in their zeal to "Stand by the union," and that many and many a young soldier and sailor who had not yet seen twenty summers endured the hardships of the camp and the march, the broiling suns, and the wasting maladies of semi-tropical seas, fought bravely and nobly for the unity of the land they loved, and that thousands of them sleep their last sleep in unmarked graves on the sea and the land. The writer can remember whole companies, of which nearly half of the number could be classed as mere boys. These boys of eighteen to twenty, who survived the rain of bullets, shot, and shell, and the hardly less fatal assaults of disease, are the middle-aged men of to-day, and every one of them has a thrilling story to tell. The boys of to-day read with interest the narratives of the boys of thirty years ago, and listen with their blood deeply stirred to the recital of the veteran of forty-five years, or even 7 younger, who brought back to his home only one arm or one leg. "We are all right so far," said Corny. "On the contrary, I do not see how he could have done otherwise, commodore, and I have expressed to him my friendly feeling," replied Christy. "I think he is a devoted and faithful officer, sir." ไฮดรา88 Christy did not go near him, but he watched him very closely. He had not long to wait before Mr. Galvinne, who was then the officer of the deck, spoke to him, and they had quite a long conversation. He could not hear a word of it; but the fact that they were intimate enough to 112 hold what appeared to be a confidential interview was enough to satisfy the prisoner that the second lieutenant was the principle confederate of his cousin. How many of the crew were "packed" for the enterprise he could form no idea. "I find no fault with you on that account, doctor," added Christy. "That was the folly of Captain Flanger; and I protested the moment I discovered what had been done," added the planter, who seemed to be anxious to relieve himself of all responsibility for the discharge of the muskets. Christy looked at the stranger with astonishment, and he could not imagine who he could be. He had seen no such person on board of the Bronx or on the deck of the flag-ship. When the prisoners from the Magnolia had been brought on board, Christy had been too much occupied with other matters to bestow any attention upon them with the exception of "the dignified gentleman in black," who proved to be his uncle. He had had no curiosity in regard to them, and Mr. Camden had disposed of them at the rail. "For these reasons, I do not believe this fort is of much account." "I think we shall be in Pensacola Bay by daylight," said Mr. Galvinne; "and we have just the right kind of weather for our enterprise. It is cloudy, and it looks as though we might have a fog, for they often come up after dark when the wind is as it is now." "What time shall you come about?" asked Corny, apparently from curiosity rather than any especial interest in the navigation of the steamer. Dave did know better than to obey the order, and Christy was morally certain that he had been menaced with a pistol, or threatened in some manner if he attempted to leave the cabin. He acted as though he felt confident that a bullet would be sent through his head if he disobeyed the bold visitor. At the same time there was a certain amount of energy and earnestness visible in the expression of the steward, which assured Christy that he was ready to take part in any action that was reasonably prudent and hopeful. "My first service was in the Bellevite, and my last in the Bronx, of which I was acting commander on her voyage from New York to the Gulf," answered Christy, to whom the question was addressed. "Quartermaster, strike one bell," said Christy. "I have had enough of him; remove him to the quarters," added Christy. 55 "The brilliant officer who bears this name is too well known to hide his light under a bushel. I have not the honor to be personally acquainted with him, and therefore I am unable to decide which of the gentlemen who report to me under that name is the real one." "On board the ferry-boat!" replied the man, resting on his oars. "I beg your pardon, Mr. Passford, but I did not intend to question the truth of your reply to my question," said the commander, fearing that he had overstated his doubts. "I am 52 simply bewildered, confused, confounded by this interview."

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wwwstp4bet "We have no countersign to give." "That is a bad name for this child," said the octoroon, shaking his head. "Are you the son of Colonel Passford?" Mr. Pennant had the deck, and the commander walked back and forth, considering the information he had obtained from the skipper of the Magnolia, of the correctness of which he had no doubt, for Mike impressed him as a truthful man, and, like all the contrabands, his interest was all on the side of the union, which meant freedom to them. For the first time he began to feel not quite at home in his new position. He had been compelled to fight for it; but he absolutely wished that he were the first or second lieutenant rather than the commander of the vessel. "Mark under water three!" shouted the leadsman, with an earnestness inspired by the occasion. Under the vigorous pulling of eight stalwart men, the cutter leaped forward at a speed that would have won an ordinary boat race, and in ten minutes more, the sloop could be distinctly made out, the cutter running across her bow. She was close-hauled, with the wind from the south-west, and very little of it. On board of her were at least ten men, as the quartermaster counted them, and there might have been more in her cuddy under the hail-deck forward. "I have no doubt you will work your way up in good time," added Christy, who saw that Pennant was an intelligent and reliable man, though it was possible from the appearance of his face that he had been in the habit of imbibing too much whiskey for his own good. 197 "If they are worthy, I shall certainly do the best I can for them," added Christy, gaping. "Without reflecting upon your decision, I must deny that I am a Confederate, and proclaim that my motto is 'Stand by the union!'" ไฮดรา88 "One thing more, Captain Passford," continued the flag-officer; "the ship's steward of the Mercidita has been very sick for three weeks, and has applied for a sick-leave. I shall be obliged to transfer Mr. Nawood of the Bronx to his place." "That lieutenant is a brave man," said Mr. Pennant, "and I know he is a gentleman." 270 "There may be difficulties; but I think they can be overcome. I purpose to act through you, my friend, as my resources are rather limited at the present moment. In other words, I propose that you shall issue certain orders which I intend to dictate," Captain Flanger proceeded, as coolly as though he had been in his own cabin instead of that of his companion. "We always called it Bonnydale; and I know no other name for it." At this time the preparations for the reduction of the forts on the Mississippi were in progress, and every available vessel was called into activity. The Bronx had been built for a blockade-runner, and for a steamer of her size she was of exceptional speed. The vessels of the Eastern Gulf squadron were employed to a considerable extent in destroying salt works on the west coast of Florida; but the commodore was not disposed to order the fleet little gunboat upon such service. 170 "But it had not one chance in ten of success. Your cousin looks more like you than he did the last time I saw him." "I obey my orders without question, and I should not have suspected anything was out of the way. I was rather cut up when I found that Galvinne had been appointed executive officer; and that, with the cold greeting you gave me, led me to ask in what manner I had lost your good opinion." "Where are you bound, Captain Passford?" asked Flanger, in a careless and indifferent manner, as he looked about the cabin. Dave Receives his Appointment as Steward.—Page 364. 83 "If I am correctly informed, you came home as prize master of the Vixen, convoying quite a fleet of steamers and schooners," continued Captain Battleton, looking about the cabin as though the inquiry had become wearisome to him. "I do not regard his statements as lies in any proper sense of the word, Dr. Connelly," replied Christy with considerable spirit. "I have had occasion to deceive the enemy on several occasions; and nearly two years ago I looked up the morality of lying on the field of battle and its surroundings. I think my father is as good a Christian man as draws the breath of life, and I found that I simply held to his opinions." โอเพน365 "Of course I should like to see my son." "I tell you the truth, Dave; but things are mixed," added Christy. Walsh, the man-servant at Bonnydale, was now a seaman on board of the Vernon, under the real or assumed name of Byron. He denied his identity, as he would naturally do under the circumstances; but Christy had not a doubt that he was the man who had suddenly disappeared after the mysterious visitation of the night before. Doubtless, Corny had been the visitor at the mansion, and had procured the contents of the official envelope on this occasion. "Are you a sailor?" asked Christy. "My father is quite well, but he left Bonnydale last Tuesday to go to Washington, and had not returned when I left home. My mother is quite well, and so is Florry," replied the sick officer, who did not appear to be suffering from a very severe headache just then, for he was quite cheerful and animated. wwwstp4bet 207 The boat went ahead again, though only at a moderate speed consistent with the least possible noise. The quartermaster in the bow continued to gaze into the fog bank, though by this time there was a little lighting up in the east, indicating that the day was breaking. For half an hour longer the cutter continued on its course. Occasionally Vincent had raised his hand over his head, and then dropped it to his left, indicating to the officer in command that the sounds came from farther to the southward, and the cockswain was directed to change the course. "What steamer is that?" called Mr. Blowitt. The commander was amazed at the impudence of the intruder. The Bronx had been absent from the station hardly more than thirty hours; but she had accomplished the mission with which she had been charged in her secret orders. The Vernon was still at anchor near the flag-ship. Christy hastened on board of the latter to make his report, which he had written out during the passage; in fact, he had two reports, one of the capture of the Bronx, and the other of the Floridian.

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uwin789 เขาสระบบ "Only one, sir: a steamer of five hundred tons, called the Floridian." "Mr. Passford," continued the captain, indicating Christy with his finger, "your father's name, if you please." "I did, captain; I keep copies of all my reports. I have them in my valise," answered he of the South in a matter-of-fact manner. CHAPTER XV A REBELLIOUS AND PREJUDICED PRISONER

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สลอต666 pg Christy looked at the stranger with astonishment, and he could not imagine who he could be. He had seen no such person on board of the Bronx or on the deck of the flag-ship. When the prisoners from the Magnolia had been brought on board, Christy had been too much occupied with other matters to bestow any attention upon them with the exception of "the dignified gentleman in black," who proved to be his uncle. He had had no curiosity in regard to them, and Mr. Camden had disposed of them at the rail. "I did not believe a little vessel like the Bronx would be sent up the river," said Mr. Flint, when the commander had read the paper. "Barataria Bay—that locality is noted for something in history, isn't it, captain?" The course was believed to be correct for the point indicated by the captain, and in less than half an hour the boat grounded; but the shore was bold enough to enable the men to land. Mr. 316 Pennant went to the forward part of the boat and took a careful look all around him. All was as silent as a tomb. Stepping into the fore-sheets, he leaped on shore, directing the Russian to follow him. 259 "What is your name, boy?" he asked.

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rama33 The naval officer read the orders aloud for the benefit of his associate. The flag-officer had obtained information that a steamer was loading with cotton at St. Andrew's Bay, and Captain Passford was instructed to visit that locality and capture the vessel, and any others that might be found there. "I will take care of the orders myself." "I cannot say as much as that," replied Christy, still holding the gentleman's hand; "I must say I am sorry to see you under present circumstances, for you come as a prisoner in the hands of my men."

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fox888 ทาง เขา

fox888 ทาง เขา

fox888 ทาง เขา The mystery was not solved till Christy embarked for the Gulf. "There are a great many hiding-places on board of any vessel, and I am very clear in my own mind as to what became of him. Of course, the flag-officer, seeing both of you together, would have been as much perplexed as the captain was, and he would have been compelled to accept the evidence of the commission and the orders in your possession." It was a humiliating posture for the actual commander of the vessel, but he promptly got down upon the floor of the stateroom, and crawled under the berth. He placed the trunk and some other articles there so as to form a sort of breast-work, behind which he carefully bestowed himself. It was not an uncomfortable position, for the floor was carpeted and an old satchel filled with his cast-off garments furnished him a pillow sufficiently soft for a person on extraordinary duty. Dave arranged the trunk and other articles to the best advantage for the concealment of the lieutenant, and then left the stateroom. Christy, 134 as soon as he had become acquainted with the situation, had arranged his plan of action, and the new officers of the Bronx were likely to encounter a mutiny, either to inaugurate or end their sway. In less than half an hour, the steward returned to the stateroom with the information that he had spoken to the second lieutenant, and informed him that the real commander of the Bronx was concealed under the berth in the captain's stateroom.

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goal123

goal123

goal123 "But Bonnydale is not an incorporated town. In what city or town is your father's place situated?" "I reckon I do, sir; your cousin Corny is an impostor," replied the steward promptly. "It was not; for I had concealed myself on board when I realized what Galvinne was about, and, with the aid of the officers who knew me, captured the vessel. I am now in command of her, and I am likely to have a prize to assist in establishing my identity when I report to the flag-officer." "I can; but I have not had time to consider any 97 events or circumstances, and it would not be treating Captain Battleton with proper respect to submit a string of crude conjectures to him." Christy had hardly finished his instructions to the steward before he heard footsteps in the cabin. Dave looked into the apartment and discovered Mr. Flint, who went into the stateroom at once.

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livewin365

livewin365

livewin365 "You don't like it!" exclaimed the engineer of the Bellevite. "Probably the odd time means something." "I hope you have not committed any rash act, Mr. Passford," said Dr. Connelly as the party passed through the ward room.

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