"Where could he get a cask
large enough to contain the right proportion of water?"
"Casks and chests of it, casks and chests of it, oodles and oodles, a fathom under the sand," chattered the Ancient Mariner.
As long as you keep up your end, I'll sail with you to the Pit 'n' back an' watch you sweatin' the casks 'n' chests out of the sand.
But the sparrow crept under the tilt of the cart, and pecked at the bung of one of the casks
till she loosened it; and than all the wine ran out, without the carter seeing it.
"'Tis true," he said; "but where can I get a chisel to take the planks out, a gimlet to pierce the cask?"
At this point Grimaud stopped and was preparing to make a hole with his gimlet, when he found a spigot; he therefore placed his tankard under it and turned the spout; something, whatever it was the cask contained, fell silently into the tankard.
Grimaud, thinking that they had come, as he had, to try the port wine, effaced himself behind his cask and consoled himself with the reflection that if he were discovered the crime was not a great one.
He drew some cognac from the cask
into a tin cannikin.
"They are two casks, one containing powder, and the other balls; I wish these casks to be transported to the little hamlet at the mouth of the river, and which I intend to occupy to-morrow with two hundred muskets.
Let these casks be fastened on to the horse, and let them be escorted by two men and you to the residence of this gentleman, who is my friend.
But they were not long without light, for they had not gone far when they heard the crowd forcing the door; and, looking back among the low-arched passages, could see them in the distance, hurrying to and fro with flashing links, broaching the casks, staving the great vats, turning off upon the right hand and the left, into the different cellars, and lying down to drink at the channels of strong spirits which were already flowing on the ground.
So, when they had crawled through the passage indicated by the vintner (which was a mere shelving-trap for the admission of casks), and had managed with some difficulty to unchain and raise the door at the upper end, they emerged into the street without being observed or interrupted.