فصل 02

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کتاب های خیلی ساده

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فصل 02

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متن انگلیسی فصل

CHAPTER TWO

Uncle Ebenezer

The next morning I knocked at the door and shouted until my uncle let me out. We sat at the table and my uncle gave me some breakfast. He did not say much or even look me in the eye.

Now and again he asked me a question.

‘Where’s your mother?’ he said. I told him that she was also dead.

‘She was a beautiful girl,’ he said.

The day went on like this. He asked me a question now and again, after long silences. But when I tried to ask him about the letter and my inheritance, he said nothing.

I wanted to ask my uncle about my father. ‘Who was the eldest brother?’ I asked. He jumped up.

‘Why do you ask that?’ he said, suddenly taking hold of my jacket.

‘What do you mean?’ I asked him calmly. ‘Let go of my jacket,’ I said.

He let me go. ‘Don’t ask me about your father,’ he said. ‘That’s why I became angry.’

I began to think my uncle was mad and maybe dangerous.

Later on that night, my uncle gave me some money - thirty-seven gold coins! This was a lot of money.

‘Why are you giving me this money?’ I asked. ‘What do you want in return?’

‘Nothing much,’ he replied. ‘But I’m getting old, and I need someone to help me around the house.’

Then he gave me a key. He said it was for a tower at the other end of the house. ‘Go up the stairs in the tower, find some papers and bring them to me.’ he said.

I unlocked the door to the tower. There was no light inside, and it was very dark. Very slowly, I went up the stairs in the darkness. As I went higher and higher, I began to feel the wind on my legs. The stairs seemed to move under my feet. Suddenly, there was a flash of lightening. The sudden light saved my life. I saw in the flash of light that the stairs were old and falling apart. I was going to fall! Why did my uncle send me here? Was he trying to kill me?

I was scared, but also very angry. I carefully climbed back down the stairs, using the flashes of lightening to find my way. Then I went back into the kitchen. My uncle was sitting with his back to me and did not hear me come in. I put my hands down heavily on his shoulders. This shocked my uncle (he was an old man) and he fell down to the floor. I left him there and looked for a weapon. My uncle was a danger to me and I wanted to know why. I found an old dagger. I sat with it and waited.

When he opened his eyes, I began to ask questions.

‘Why don’t you want to talk about my father? Why did you give me the money? And most importantly, why did you try to kill me?’

The old man looked very weak and tired.

‘I’II answer your questions in the morning,’ he said. I locked him in a room and waited for morning.

The next morning we had breakfast. While we were eating I watched my uncle carefully. I was waiting for him to answer my questions but he said nothing. Suddenly there was a knock at the door. I opened it and saw a young boy in sailor’s uniform.

‘I have a letter for Mr Balfour from Captain Hoseason,’ the boy said. He showed me the letter. ‘I’m very hungry,’ he added, hopefully.

I let him in and he finished my breakfast. My uncle read the letter, then gave it to me. Here is what it said:

The Hawes Inn, at the Queensferry

Sir,

If you have any more orders for overseas, you must tell me today. The wind is blowing in the right direction for the ship to leave today. You must also pay your lawyer, Mr Rankeillor, if you don’t want to lose more money.

Your sincerely, Elias Hoseason.

My uncle told me that he was doing some business with Hoseason, the captain of a ship called the Covenant.

‘Let’s go and see him,’ he said. ‘And then afterwards we could visit Mr Rankeillor, the lawyer. He knew your father.’

I thought about this and decided to go. I wanted to meet this lawyer - maybe he could answer my questions. ‘And with lots of people around, my uncle can’t try to kill me again,’ I thought. I also wanted to see the sea.

‘Let’s go,’ I said.

On the way there I talked to the young sailor - his name was Ransome. My uncle did not speak at all. Ransome told me about the ship, the captain and the rest of the sailors. He said that Captain Hoseason was violent and was not a very good sailor. Ransome said that a man called Mr Shuan really knew how to sail the ship.

We came to the top of a hill. From there, Ransome showed me the Covenant out at sea. There was also a small boat that took people out to the ship. We walked down the hill and went into the Hawes Inn.

It was very warm inside. After a while, I decided to go outside to get some fresh air. When I left my uncle was talking to Captain Hoseason. Outside, I talked to the owner of the Hawes Inn and he told me a very interesting story. The story was that Ebenezer killed my father, Alexander, because he wanted the House of Shaws.

‘So Alexander was the eldest son?’ I asked.

‘Of course he was,’ said the owner. ‘That’s why Ebenezer killed him.’

So my father was the eldest son! I could not believe my luck. Two days ago, I was a poor boy with nothing, and now I had a house and some land. I was lost in these thoughts when Captain Hoseason appeared.

‘Do you want to see the inside of my ship?’ he asked. I was very curious to see inside the Covenant and I went with Captain Hoseason.

‘So, David, what can I bring back for you?’ said Captain Hoseason. ‘A friend of Mr Balfour’s is my friend as well.’

He, my uncle and I climbed into the small boat and went across the water towards the Covenant. By the time we arrived at the ship, I thought that Captain Hoseason was a good friend. When we were next to it, I was surprised at how big it was. I was not really listening to what the captain was saying. Hoseason said that I must go on to his ship first. A rope was sent down for me. I was pulled into the air and put down on the deck of the larger ship. Then the captain came up.

‘But where’s my uncle?’ I asked suddenly. I ran to the side of the ship. There was the smaller boat with my uncle still in it; he was going back to the land.

‘Help! Come back!’ I shouted. My uncle turned to look at me. His cruel face was the last thing I saw. Someone’s strong hands held me from behind, and I was hit on the head by something hard. Then everything went black.

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