My new captain was somewhat of a revelation. He received me as one gentleman would another, and when he chose he could be particularly agreeable.
His appearance was decidedly prepossessing, and he had a pair of steely blue eyes that could on occasions show a very lurid light. Let me say at once that I always found him a kind friend, though years afterwards we had differences of opinion.
Warleigh was a very fine character and would have been an ornament to any service; he was not, however, physically strong, having suffered greatly from fever contracted on the Mauritius service.
When he had asked me some few questions as to where I had been and what I did there, he called to the chief officer, whose name was Coathupe, and introduced me to him in the following manner: “Curly, this is our new third, show him round and help him feel his feet, will you?”
The freedom of speech, I afterwards learnt, was owing to the fact that Warleigh had only been promoted the previous voyage, and as he and Coathupe had been great friends when officers together, the skipper was on more free and easy terms with his chief than would otherwise have been the case.