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Shipwreck

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The new member of the club listened with solemn interest to the various
stories that were told in the smoking room. They were good stories, and
obviously lies, and each of them was a bigger lie than any that had gone
before. Finally, the company insisted that the new member should relate
a tale. He refused at first, but under pressure yielded, and gave a
vivid account of a shipwreck at sea during one of his voyages. He
described the stress of the terrible situation with such power that his
hearers were deeply impressed. He reached the point in his account where
only the captain and himself and half a dozen others were left aboard
the doomed vessel, after the last of the boats had been lowered.

"And then," he concluded, "a vast wave came hurtling down on us. It was
so huge that it shut out all the sky. It crashed over the already
sinking ship in a torrent of irresistible force. Under that dreadful
blow the laboring vessel sank, and all those left on board of her were
drowned."

The narrator paused and there was a period of tense silence. But
presently someone asked:

"And you--what became of you?"

"Oh, I," was the reply, "why I was drowned with the rest of them."





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