CHAPTER 6: The Greek Islands
I could easily see what the Canadian was driving at. In any event,
I thought it best to let him have his chat, and we all three went
to sit next to the beacon, where we were less exposed to the damp
spray from the billows.
"Now, Ned, we're all ears," I said. "What have you to tell us?"
"What I've got to tell you is very simple," the Canadian replied.
"We're in Europe, and before Captain Nemo's whims take us deep into
the polar seas or back to Oceania, I say we should leave this Nautilus."
I confess that such discussions with the Canadian always baffled me.
I didn't want to restrict my companions' freedom in any way,
and yet I had no desire to leave Captain Nemo. Thanks to him
and his submersible, I was finishing my undersea research by
the day, and I was rewriting my book on the great ocean depths
in the midst of its very element. Would I ever again have such
an opportunity to observe the ocean's wonders? Absolutely not!
So I couldn't entertain this idea of leaving the Nautilus before
completing our course of inquiry.
"Ned my friend," I said, "answer me honestly. Are you bored
with this ship? Are you sorry that fate has cast you into
Captain Nemo's hands?"
The Canadian paused for a short while before replying.
Then, crossing his arms:
"Honestly," he said, "I'm not sorry about this voyage under the seas.
I'll be glad to have done it, but in order to have done it,
it has to finish. That's my feeling."
"It will finish, Ned."
"Where and when?"
"Where? I don't know. When? I can't say. Or, rather, I suppose
it will be over when these seas have nothing more to teach us.
Everything that begins in this world must inevitably come to an end."