en-fr  The Island of Doctor Moreau by H.G. Wells-Chapter V
Chapitre V : L'Homme qui n'avait nulle part où aller. Au petit matin (c'était le second matin après mon rétablissement et, me semble-t-il, le quatrième après mon sauvetage), j'émergeai d'une longue nuit de rêves agités - rêves d'armes et de foules hurlantes - en prenant conscience d'un cri rauque au-dessus de moi. Je me frottai les yeux et restai allongé à écouter les bruits, un peu perdu pendant un instant. Lorsque soudain, j'entendis un vacarme de pieds nus, de lourds objets lancés, un craquement violent et le cliquètement de chaines. J'entendis le bruissement de l'eau alors que le bateau faisait un brusque demi-tour et une vague d'écume vert-jaune s'engouffra par le hublot et se répandit à l'intérieur. Je sautai dans mes vêtements et me rendis sur le pont.
En arrivant en haut de l'échelle, je vis à contrejour dans le ciel rougeoyant—car le soleil se levait juste— le large dos et la chevelure rousse du capitaine, et par dessus son épaule le puma qui se tournait autour d'un palan tendu au vit de mulet de la misaine
La pauvre brute paraissait horriblement effrayé, et se tenait accroupi au fond de sa petite cage.
— Foutez les par-dessus bord ! gueula le capitaine. Par-dessus bord ! L'bateau va être bientôt nettoyé d'toute cette vermine.
Il était sur mon passage, de sorte que je fus obligé de lui taper sur l'épaule pour aller sur le pont. Il se retourna en sursautant et fit quelques pas en arrière pour me dévisager. Nul besoin d'un œil expert pour affirmer qu'il était encore en état d'ébriété.
— Tiens ! dit-il, bêtement. Alors une étincelle s'alluma dans son regard : — Mais... c'est monsieur... monsieur ?
— Prendrick, lui avançai-je.
— Au diable Prendick ! éructa-t-il. La ferme... c'est vot' nom. Monsieur La Ferme.
Cela ne servait à rien de répondre à l'ivrogne ; mais je ne m'attendais certainement pas à ce qu'il me réservait. Il tendit la main vers la passerelle où Montgomery discutait avec un énorme bonhomme aux cheveux gris, vêtu de flanelle bleu-sale, qui venait apparemment de monter à bord.
— Par ici, fichu monsieur La Ferme ! par ici ! vociféra le capitaine.
Montgomery et son compagnon se retournèrent à ces paroles.
— Que signifie ? dis-je.
— Par ici, fichu monsieur La Ferme... c'est ça qu'ça signifie ! Par-dessus bord, monsieur La Ferme... et tout d'suite ! On nettoie c'navire... on nettoie c' sacro-saint navire, et vous... par-dessus bord !
Je le regardai abasourdi. Puis il me vint à l'esprit que c'était exactement ce que je voulais. Que s'éloigne la perspective d'un voyage comme unique passager avec cet ivrogne invétéré et chercheur de querelles n'était pas pour me déplaire. Je me tournai vers Montgomery.
— On n'peut pas vous prendre, dit, laconiquement, le camarade de Montgomery.
— Vous ne pouvez pas me prendre ! dis-je, atterré. Il avait le visage le plus impérieux et le plus résolu que j'aie jamais vu.
— Écoutez-moi bien, commençai-je en me tournant vers le capitaine.
— Par-dessus bord ! répondit ce dernier. — C'navire est pas pour les bêtes ni pour les cannibales et ceux qui sont pires qu'des bêtes, non plus. Allez, par-dessus bord, monsieur La Ferme. Si i' veulent pas vous prendre, vous passez par-dessus bord. Mais, n'importe comment, vous dégagez... avec vos amis. J'en ai fini pour toujours avec c'tte maudite île, allez, la messe est dite ! Ça suffat comme ci !
— Mais, Montgomery, implorai-je.
Il tordit sa lèvre inférieure, et d'un hochement de tête désespéré vers l'homme aux cheveux gris à ses côtés, m'indiqua son impuissance à me venir en aide.
— Je vous ai à l'œil, dit le capitaine.
Alors commença une curieuse discussion triangulaire. Je m'adressai alternativement à chacun des trois hommes, d'abord à l'homme aux cheveux gris de me laisser débarquer, puis au capitaine ivre de me garder à bord. J'ai même braillé des supplications aux matelots. Montgomery ne dit pas un mot, se contentant de hocher la tête. Le capitaine chantait toujours le même refrain : — Vous allez passer par-dessus bord, je vous le garantis. Au diable la loi ! Je suis le maître ici. Enfin, je dois avouer que soudain ma voix se brisa lors d'une menace vigoureuse. Je sentis monter une bouffée de colère noire, je me rendis à l'arrière et regardai sombrement dans le vide.
Pendant ce temps, les marins continuaient rapidement à décharger les colis et les animaux en cage. Une grande chaloupe, à deux voiles au tiers, se trouvait contre le flanc de la goélette ; et l'étrange assortiment des marchandises y était balancé. Je ne voyais pas alors les gens de l'île qui réceptionnaient les colis, car la carène de la chaloupe m'était cachée par le flanc de la goélette. Ni Montgomery ni son compagnon ne me prêtaient la moindre attention : ils s'activaient à assister et diriger les quatre ou cinq marins qui déchargeaient les marchandises. Le capitaine était à l'avant perturbant plus les choses qu'il n'aidait. J'étais entre le désespoir et l’affliction. Une fois ou deux alors que je me tenais là à attendre que les choses suivent leur cours, je ne pus m'empêcher de rire face à mon pitoyable dilemme. J'avais l'estomac dans les talons : je me sentais terriblement mal. La faim et le manque de globules sanguins privent l'homme de sa volonté. Je compris clairement que je n'avais pas assez d'énergie soit pour résister à la décision de m'expulser du capitaine, ou pour m'imposer à Montgomery et à son compagnon. Alors j'attendis passivement que le destin s'accomplisse ; et les manœuvres pour le transfert des possessions de Montgomery vers la chaloupe continuèrent comme si je n'existais pas.
Bientôt ce travail fut achevé, puis une lutte commença. Résistant assez faiblement, je fus traîné vers la passerelle. Même à ce moment-là, je remarquai l'étrangeté des visages bruns des hommes qui accompagnaient Montgomery dans la chaloupe ; mais celle-ci était maintenant entièrement chargée et s'éloigna à la hâte. Une étendue d'eau verte s'élargissait sous moi, et je reculai de toutes mes forces pour ne pas tomber la tête la première. Les membres d'équipage dans la chaloupe criaient d'un ton moqueur, et j'entendis Montgomery les maudire ; puis le capitaine, le second et l'un des matelots qui l'aidait, me balancèrent vers la poupe.
Le canot de la « Lady Vain » était remorqué derrière : il était à moitié rempli d'eau, n'avait pas de rame, et n'était presque pas ravitaillé. Je refusai d'y embarquer, et me jetai de tout mon long sur le pont. Pour finir, ils m'y balancèrent à l'aide d'une corde (car ils n'avaient pas d'échelle de poupe), et ensuite ils m'abandonnèrent à la dérive. Je m'éloignai lentement de la goélette. Dans une sorte de stupeur, je vis tous les membres d'équipage prendre le gréement, et lentement mais sûrement elle vint face au vent ; les voiles se gonflèrent, puis claquèrent au vent. Je regardai son flanc battu par les intempéries, il penchait lourdement vers moi ; puis elle disparut de mon champ de vision.
Je ne tournai pas la tête pour la suivre. Au début, je pus à peine croire ce qui s'était passé. Je m'accroupis au fond du canot, abasourdi, et fixant d'un regard vide la mer désertée et huileuse. Puis je me rendis compte que j'étais à nouveau dans ce petit enfer, maintenant à demi submergé ; en regardant par-dessus le plat-bord, je vis la goélette qui s'éloignait, avec le capitaine aux cheveux roux qui se moquait de moi par-dessus la rampe de poupe, et me tournant vers l'île, j'aperçus la chaloupe qui rapetissait en s'approchant de la plage.
La cruauté de cet abandon devint claire pour moi. Je n'avais aucun moyen d'atteindre la terre à moins que j'aie la chance de dériver par là. Il faut vous souvenir que j'étais encore faible, suite à mon hypothermie dans le bateau ; j'avais le ventre vide et je me sentais défaillir, alors que j'aurais dû avoir plus de courage. Mais soudainement, je me mis à sangloter et à pleurer, comme je ne l'avais jamais fait depuis mon enfance. Les larmes roulaient sur mon visage. Dans un accès de désespoir, je frappai de mes poings l'eau au fond du bateau et donnai des coups de pied violents au plat-bord. Je priai Dieu à voix haute pour qu'il me laisse mourir.
unit 5
I jumped into my clothes and went on deck.
2 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 7
The poor brute seemed horribly scared, and crouched in the bottom of its little cage.
1 Translations, 1 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 8
"Overboard with 'em!"
2 Translations, 4 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 9
bawled the captain.
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 10
"Overboard with 'em!
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 11
We'll have a clean ship soon of the whole bilin' of 'em."
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 12
He stood in my way, so that I had perforce to tap his shoulder to come on deck.
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 13
He came round with a start, and staggered back a few paces to stare at me.
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 14
It needed no expert eye to tell that the man was still drunk.
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 15
"Hullo!"
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 17
"Prendick," said I.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 18
"Prendick be damned!"
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 19
said he.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 20
"Shut-up,—that's your name.
2 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 21
Mister Shut-up."
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 22
It was no good answering the brute; but I certainly did not expect his next move.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 24
"That way, Mister Blasted Shut-up!
2 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 25
that way!"
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 26
roared the captain.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 27
Montgomery and his companion turned as he spoke.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 28
"What do you mean?"
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 29
I said.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 30
"That way, Mister Blasted Shut-up,—that's what I mean!
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 31
Overboard, Mister Shut-up,—and sharp!
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 32
unit 33
I stared at him dumfounded.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 34
Then it occurred to me that it was exactly the thing I wanted.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 36
I turned towards Montgomery.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 37
"Can't have you," said Montgomery's companion, concisely.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 38
"You can't have me!"
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 39
said I, aghast.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 40
He had the squarest and most resolute face I ever set eyes upon.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 41
"Look here," I began, turning to the captain.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 42
"Overboard!"
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 43
said the captain.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 44
"This ship aint for beasts and cannibals and worse than beasts, any more.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 45
Overboard you go, Mister Shut-up.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 46
If they can't have you, you goes overboard.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 47
But, anyhow, you go—with your friends.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 48
I've done with this blessed island for evermore, amen!
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 49
I've had enough of it."
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 50
"But, Montgomery," I appealed.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 52
"I'll see to you, presently," said the captain.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 53
Then began a curious three-cornered altercation.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 55
I even bawled entreaties to the sailors.
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 56
Montgomery said never a word, only shook his head.
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 57
"You're going overboard, I tell you," was the captain's refrain.
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 58
"Law be damned!
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 59
I'm king here."
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 60
At last I must confess my voice suddenly broke in the middle of a vigorous threat.
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 61
I felt a gust of hysterical petulance, and went aft and stared dismally at nothing.
1 Translations, 6 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 66
The captain went forward interfering rather than assisting.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 67
I was alternately despairful and desperate.
1 Translations, 7 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 69
I felt all the wretcheder for the lack of a breakfast.
2 Translations, 3 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 70
Hunger and a lack of blood-corpuscles take all the manhood from a man.
2 Translations, 3 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 73
Presently that work was finished, and then came a struggle.
2 Translations, 3 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 74
I was hauled, resisting weakly enough, to the gangway.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 79
I refused to go aboard her, and flung myself full length on the deck.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 81
I drifted slowly from the schooner.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 84
I did not turn my head to follow her.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 85
At first I could scarcely believe what had happened.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 88
Abruptly the cruelty of this desertion became clear to me.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 89
I had no means of reaching the land unless I should chance to drift there.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 92
The tears ran down my face.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
unit 94
I prayed aloud for God to let me die.
1 Translations, 5 Upvotes, Last Activity 3 months ago
Bouchka • 3709  commented on  unit 93  4 months, 2 weeks ago
Gabrielle • 13930  commented on  unit 83  4 months, 2 weeks ago
Oplusse • 13924  translated  unit 29  4 months, 3 weeks ago
Oplusse • 13924  translated  unit 25  4 months, 3 weeks ago
Oplusse • 13924  translated  unit 15  4 months, 3 weeks ago
francevw • 14085  commented on  unit 8  4 months, 3 weeks ago

Chapter V: The Man Who Had Nowhere To Go

IN the early morning (it was the second morning after my recovery, and I believe the fourth after I was picked up), I awoke through an avenue of tumultuous dreams,—dreams of guns and howling mobs,—and became sensible of a hoarse shouting above me. I rubbed my eyes and lay listening to the noise, doubtful for a little while of my whereabouts. Then came a sudden pattering of bare feet, the sound of heavy objects being thrown about, a violent creaking and the rattling of chains. I heard the swish of the water as the ship was suddenly brought round,
and a foamy yellow-green wave flew across the little round window and left it streaming. I jumped into my clothes and went on deck.
As I came up the ladder I saw against the flushed sky—for the sun was just rising—the broad back and red hair of the captain,
and over his shoulder the puma spinning from a tackle rigged on to the mizzen spanker-boom.
The poor brute seemed horribly scared, and crouched in the bottom of its little cage.
"Overboard with 'em!" bawled the captain. "Overboard with 'em! We'll have a clean ship soon of the whole bilin' of 'em."
He stood in my way, so that I had perforce to tap his shoulder to come on deck. He came round with a start, and staggered back a few paces to stare at me. It needed no expert eye to tell that the man was still drunk.
"Hullo!" said he, stupidly; and then with a light coming into his eyes, "Why, it's Mister—Mister?"
"Prendick," said I.
"Prendick be damned!" said he. "Shut-up,—that's your name. Mister Shut-up."
It was no good answering the brute; but I certainly did not expect his next move. He held out his hand to the gangway by which Montgomery stood talking to a massive grey-haired man in dirty-blue flannels, who had apparently just come aboard.
"That way, Mister Blasted Shut-up! that way!" roared the captain.
Montgomery and his companion turned as he spoke.
"What do you mean?" I said.
"That way, Mister Blasted Shut-up,—that's what I mean! Overboard, Mister Shut-up,—and sharp! We're cleaning the ship out,—cleaning the whole blessed ship out; and overboard you go!"
I stared at him dumfounded. Then it occurred to me that it was exactly the thing I wanted. The lost prospect of a journey as sole passenger with this quarrelsome sot was not one to mourn over. I turned towards Montgomery.
"Can't have you," said Montgomery's companion, concisely.
"You can't have me!" said I, aghast. He had the squarest and most resolute face I ever set eyes upon.
"Look here," I began, turning to the captain.
"Overboard!" said the captain. "This ship aint for beasts and cannibals and worse than beasts, any more. Overboard you go, Mister Shut-up. If they can't have you, you goes overboard. But, anyhow, you go—with your friends. I've done with this blessed island for evermore, amen! I've had enough of it."
"But, Montgomery," I appealed.
He distorted his lower lip, and nodded his head hopelessly at the grey-haired man beside him, to indicate his powerlessness to help me.
"I'll see to you, presently," said the captain.
Then began a curious three-cornered altercation. Alternately I appealed to one and another of the three men,—first to the grey-haired man to let me land, and then to the drunken captain to keep me aboard. I even bawled entreaties to the sailors. Montgomery said never a word, only shook his head. "You're going overboard, I tell you," was the captain's refrain. "Law be damned! I'm king here." At last I must confess my voice suddenly broke in the middle of a vigorous threat. I felt a gust of hysterical petulance, and went aft and stared dismally at nothing.
Meanwhile the sailors progressed rapidly with the task of unshipping the packages and caged animals. A large launch, with two standing lugs, lay under the lea of the schooner; and into this the strange assortment of goods were swung. I did not then see the hands from the island that were receiving the packages, for the hull of the launch was hidden from me by the side of the schooner. Neither Montgomery nor his companion took the slightest notice of me, but busied themselves in assisting and directing the four or five sailors who were unloading the goods. The captain went forward interfering rather than assisting. I was alternately despairful and desperate. Once or twice as I stood waiting there for things to accomplish themselves, I could not resist an impulse to laugh at my miserable quandary. I felt all the wretcheder for the lack of a breakfast. Hunger and a lack of blood-corpuscles take all the manhood from a man. I perceived pretty clearly that I had not the stamina either to resist what the captain chose to do to expel me, or to force myself upon Montgomery and his companion. So I waited passively upon fate; and the work of transferring Montgomery's possessions to the launch went on as if I did not exist.
Presently that work was finished, and then came a struggle. I was hauled, resisting weakly enough, to the gangway. Even then I noticed the oddness of the brown faces of the men who were with Montgomery in the launch;
but the launch was now fully laden, and was shoved off hastily. A broadening gap of green water appeared under me, and I pushed back with all my strength to avoid falling headlong. The hands in the launch shouted derisively, and I heard Montgomery curse at them; and then the captain, the mate, and one of the seamen helping him, ran me aft towards the stern.
The dingey of the "Lady Vain" had been towing behind; it was half full of water, had no oars, and was quite unvictualled. I refused to go aboard her, and flung myself full length on the deck. In the end, they swung me into her by a rope (for they had no stern ladder), and then they cut me adrift. I drifted slowly from the schooner. In a kind of stupor I watched all hands take to the rigging, and slowly but surely she came round to the wind;
the sails fluttered, and then bellied out as the wind came into them. I stared at her weather-beaten side heeling steeply towards me;
and then she passed out of my range of view.
I did not turn my head to follow her. At first I could scarcely believe what had happened. I crouched in the bottom of the dingey, stunned, and staring blankly at the vacant, oily sea. Then I realised that I was in that little hell of mine again, now half swamped; and looking back over the gunwale,
I saw the schooner standing away from me, with the red-haired captain mocking at me over the taffrail, and turning towards the island saw the launch growing smaller as she approached the beach.
Abruptly the cruelty of this desertion became clear to me. I had no means of reaching the land unless I should chance to drift there. I was still weak, you must remember, from my exposure in the boat; I was empty and very faint, or I should have had more heart. But as it was I suddenly began to sob and weep, as I had never done since I was a little child. The tears ran down my face. In a passion of despair I struck with my fists at the water in the bottom of the boat, and kicked savagely at the gunwale. I prayed aloud for God to let me die.