The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Comprising the details of a mutiny and atrocious butchery on board the American brig Grampus, on her way to the South Seas, in the month of June, 1827.

By Edgar Allan Poe

Page 23

and there either yield to my sad fate, or
try so to tranquillize my mind as to admit of my arranging some plan of
escape. I immediately set about the attempt, and succeeded, after
innumerable difficulties, in getting back. As I sank, utterly
exhausted, upon the mattress, Tiger threw himself at full length by my
side, and seemed as if desirous, by his caresses, of consoling me in my
troubles, and urging me to bear them with fortitude.

The singularity of his behaviour at length forcibly arrested my
attention. After licking my face and hands for some minutes, he would
suddenly cease doing so, and utter a low whine. Upon reaching out my
hand towards him, I then invariably found him lying on his back, with
his paws uplifted. This conduct, so frequently repeated, appeared
strange, and I could in no manner account for it. As the dog seemed
distressed, I concluded that he had received some injury; and, taking
his paws in my hands, I examined them one by one, but found no sign of
any hurt. I then supposed him hungry, and gave him a large piece of
ham, which he devoured with avidity--afterward, however, resuming his
extraordinary manoeuvres. I now imagined that he was suffering, like
myself, the torments of thirst, and was about adopting this conclusion
as the true one, when the idea occurred to me that I had as yet only
examined his paws, and that there might possibly be a wound upon some
portion of his body or head. The latter I felt carefully over, but
found nothing. On passing my hand, however, along his back, I perceived
a slight erection of the hair extending completely across it. Probing
this with my finger, I discovered a string, and, tracing it up, found
that it encircled the whole body. Upon a closer scrutiny, I came across
a small slip of what had the feeling of letter paper, through which the
string had been fastened in such a manner as to bring it immediately
beneath the left shoulder of the animal.




CHAPTER III.


The thought instantly occurred to me that the paper was a note from
Augustus, and that some unaccountable accident having happened to
prevent his relieving me from my dungeon, he had devised this method of
acquainting me with the true state of affairs. Trembling with
eagerness, I now commenced another search for my phosphorus matches and
tapers. I had a confused recollection of having put them carefully away
just before falling asleep; and, indeed, previously to my last journey
to the trap, I had been able to remember the exact

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