It was a wild and stormy sea through which the bluff-bowed Galliot laboured, as, tossed first from one wave to another, she, with the best part of her gear stowed away and no sail on her but a close-reefed main-topsail and a spanker, endeavoured to make her way towards the Suffolk coast. On the poop, the captain--a young man of not more than thirty--hurled orders and oaths indiscriminately at his crew, every man of which was a good deal older than himself, while the crew themselves worked hard at hauling up the brails, going out on the gaff to pass the gaskets, and stowing the mainsail-yard. But still she laboured and rolled and yawed, her forefoot pointing at one moment almost to the Dutch coast and at another to the English--she had left Calais thirty hours before, intending to fetch Dover, and had been blown thus far out of her course--and it seemed as though she would never get any nearer to the land she wished to reach. And, to make matters worse, lying some distance off on her starboard beam--though too far to be distinguished through the haze in the air and the spume of the waves--was a large vessel about which those on board could not decide as to whether she was one of King George's sloops or--a privateer. The young captain trusted it was the first, since he had no quarrel with either his Majesty or his navy, and had no men who could be pressed, while the passengers in the cabin--but this you shall read. In that cabin there sat four persons, three men and a woman--the last of whom shall be first described. A woman young--of not more than twenty-four years of age--fair and well-favoured, her wheat-coloured hair brought back in a knot behind her head, above which, as was still the custom of the time for ladies when travelling, she wore a three-cornered hat. Wrapped in a long, collarless coat, square cut and possessing no pockets--also the custom of the time--it was still easy to perceive that, underneath, was a supple, graceful figure, and, when--as was occasionally the case--this long coat was thrown open so that the wearer might get a little relief from the stuffiness of the cabin, the beauty of that figure might plainly be perceived beneath the full scarlet waistcoat embroidered with gold lace, which, by its plenitude of pockets, atoned for the absence of any in the coat. Her face was, as has been said, a well-favoured one, oval, and possessing large blue eyes and delicate, thin lips, and with upon it even here, on this tossing sea, a fair rose and milk complexion, while in those large eyes the observer might have well imagined he saw a look of unhappiness. Also, too, a look of contempt whenever they rested on the man who, as she leant an elbow on one side of the table between them, leant one of his on the other.