stumps of cigarettes. In a corner was a tin chop-box, which
Everett asked to have removed. It belonged, the landlord told him, to
the man who, two nights before, had occupied the cot and who had died in
it. Everett was anxious to learn of what he had died. Apparently
surprised at the question, the Portuguese shrugged his shoulders.
“Who knows?” he exclaimed. The next morning the English trader across
the street assured Everett there was no occasion for alarm. “He didn’t
die of any disease,” he explained. “Somebody got at him from the
balcony, while he was in his cot, and knifed him.”
The English trader was a young man, a cockney, named Upsher. At home he
had been a steward on the Channel steamers. Everett made him his most
intimate friend. He had a black wife, who spent most of her day in a
four-post bed, hung with lace curtains and blue ribbon, in which she
resembled a baby hippopotamus wallowing in a bank of white sand.
At first the black woman was a shock to Everett, but after Upsher
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