Pretty soon I
wanted to smoke, and asked the
widow to let me.
But she wouldn't.
She said it was a mean practice and wasn't
clean, and I must try to not do it.
That is just the way with some
They get down on a thing when they don't know nothing about it.
Here she was a-bothering about Moses, which was no kin to her, and
no use to anybody, being gone, you see, yet
finding a power of fault with me for
doing a thing that had some good in it.
she took snuff, too; of course
that was fine, because she done it herself.
Miss Watson would say,
"Don't put your feet up there, Huckleberry;" and "Don't scrunch up like that,
Huckleberry -- set up straight;" and pretty soon she would say, "Don't gap and
stretch like that, Huckleberry -- why don't you try to behave?"
told me all about the bad place, and I said I wished I was there.
She got mad then, but I didn't mean no harm.
I wanted to go
somewheres; all I wanted was a change, I warn't particular.
She said it
was wicked to say what I said; said she wouldn't say it for the whole world;
she was going to live so as to
go to the good place.
Well, I couldn't see no advantage in going
where she was going, so I made up my mind I wouldn't try for it.
never said so, as it would only make trouble, and wouldn't do no good.
I asked her if she reckoned Tom Sawyer would go there, and she said not
by a considerable sight.
I was glad about that, because I wanted him
and me to be together.
I felt so lonesome I most
wished I was dead.
The stars were shining, and the leaves rustled
in the woods ever so mournful.
I heard an owl, away off,
who-whooing about somebody that was dead, and a whippowill and a dog crying
about somebody that was going to die.
The wind was trying to whisper
something to me, and I couldn't make out what it was, and so it made the cold
shivers run over me.
Then away out in the woods
I heard that category of a sound that
a ghost makes when it wants to tell about something that's on its mind and
can't make itself understood, and so
can't rest easy in its grave,
and has to go about that way every
Pretty soon a spider went crawling up my shoulder,
and I flipped it off and it lit in the candle; and before I could budge it was
all shriveled up.
I didn't need anybody to tell me that that was an
awful bad sign and would fetch me some bad luck; I was scared and most shook
the clothes off of me.
I got up; turned around
in my tracks three times; crossed my breast every time; I tied up a little lock
of my hair with a thread to keep witches away.
But I hadn't no
You do that when you've lost a horseshoe that you've found, instead of
nailing it up over the door, but I hadn't
ever heard anybody say it was any way to keep off bad luck when you'd
killed a spider.
"Now, we'll start
this band of
robbers and call it Tom Sawyer's Gang.
Everybody that wants to join
has got to take an oath, and
write his name in blood."
Everybody was willing. So Tom got out a
sheet of paper that he had wrote the oath on, and
every boy to stick to the band, and never tell any of the secrets; and if
anybody done anything to any boy in the band, whichever boy was ordered to kill
that individual and his family must do it, and he mustn't
eat and he mustn't sleep till
he had killed them and hacked a cross in their
breasts, which was the
sign of the band.
And nobody that didn't belong to the band could use
that mark, and if he did he must be sued; and if he done it again he must be
And if anybody
that belonged to the band told the secrets, he must have his throat cut,
and then have his carcass burnt up and the
ashes scattered all around, and his name blotted off of the list with blood
and never mentioned again by the gang, but have a curse put on it and be forgot
Everybody said it was a real
oath, and asked Tom if he got it out of his own head.
He said, some
of it, but the rest was out of pirate-books and robber-books, and every gang
that was high-toned had it.
"Now," says Ben
Rogers, "what's the line of business of this Gang?"
murder," Tom said.
"Must we always kill the
"Oh, certainly. It's best.
Some authorities think
different, but mostly it's considered best to kill them - except some that
you bring to the cave here, and keep them till they're ransomed."
played robbers now and then about a month, and then I resigned.
We hadn't robbed nobody, hadn't killed any victims, only just
Pap got too handy with his
hick'ry, and I couldn't stand it.
I was all over welts.
to going away so much, too, and locking me in.
Once he locked me in and
was gone three days.
It was dreadful lonesome.
judged he had got
drowned, and I wasn't ever going to get out any more.
I was scared. I
made up my mind I would fix up some way to leave there.
I had tried to
get out of that cabin many a time, but I couldn't find no way.
warn't a window to it big enough for a dog to get through.
get up the chimbly; it was too narrow.
The door was thick,
solid oak slabs.
Pap was pretty careful not to leave a knife or
anything in the cabin when he was away.
I reckon I had hunted the place
over as much as a hundred times.
I was most all the time at it, as it
was about the only way to put in the time.
This time I found something.
I found an old rusty wood saw without any handle.
It was laid
in between a rafter and the clapboards of the roof.
I greased it up and
went to work.
There was an old horse-blanket nailed against the logs at
the far end of the cabin behind the table, to keep the wind from blowing
through the chinks and putting the candle out.
I got under the table and
raised the blanket, and went to work to saw
a section of the big bottom log out -- big enough to let me through.
Well, it was a good long job, but I was getting towards the end of it
when I heard pap's gun in the woods.
I got rid of the signs of my work,
and dropped the blanket and hid my saw, and pretty soon pap come in.
Pap warn't in a good humor -- so he
was his natural self.
After supper pap took the
jug, and said he had enough whisky there for
two drunks and one delirium tremens.
That was always his word.
I judged he would
be blind drunk in about an hour, and then I would steal the key, or saw myself
out, one or t'other.
He drank and drank, and tumbled down on his
blankets by and by; but luck didn't run my way.
He didn't go sound
asleep, but was uneasy.
He groaned, moaned and thrashed around this way
and that for a long time.
I got so sleepy I couldn't
keep my eyes open, and so before I
knowed what I was about I was sound asleep, and
the candle burning.
I don't know how long I was asleep, but all of a
sudden there was an awful scream and I was up.
There was pap looking
wild, and skipping around
every which way and yelling about snakes.
He said they was crawling up his legs;
and then he would give a jump and scream, and say one had bit him on the cheek
- but I couldn't see no snakes.
started and run round and round the cabin, hollering "Take him off! take him
off! He's biting me on the neck!"
I never seen a man look so wild in
Pretty soon he was all fagged out, and fell down panting.
Then he rolled over and over wonderful fast, kicking things every which
way, and striking and grabbing at the air with his hands, and screaming and
saying there was devils a-hold of him.
He wore out by and by, and laid
still a while, moaning.
Then he laid stiller, and didn't make a sound.
I could hear the owls and the wolves away off in the woods, and it
seemed terrible still.
He was laying over by the
By and by he
raised up part way and listened, with his head to one side.
very low: "Tramp -- tramp -- tramp; that's the dead; tramp -- tramp -- tramp;
they're coming after me; but I won't go. Oh, they're here! don't
touch me! hands off -- they're cold;
let go. Oh, let a poor devil alone!"
Then he went down on all fours and
crawled off, begging them to let him alone, and he rolled himself up in his
blanket and wallowed in under the old pine table, still a-begging; and then he
went to crying.
I could hear him through the blanket.
By and by
he rolled out and jumped up on his feet looking wild, and he sees me and went
He chased me round and round the place with a clasp-knife,
calling me the Angel of
Death, and saying he would kill me, and then I couldn't come for him no
I begged, and told him I was only Huck; but he laughed such a
screechy laugh, and roared and cussed, and kept on chasing me up.
when I turned short and dodged under his arm he made a grab and got me by the
jacket between my shoulders, and I thought I was gone.
I slid out of
the jacket quick as lightening, and saved myself.
Pretty soon he was
all tired out, and dropped down with his back against the door, and said
he would rest a minute and then kill
He put his knife under him, and said he would sleep and get
strong, and then he would see who was who.
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