V: Wŭl and Wōtr

Ś

 còt ɖ śōl az ś spouc, n lct abt fr ɖ ǒnr: in anɖr momnt ɖ Ẃît Qīn cem runñ wîldli ʈru ɖ wŭd, wɖ bʈ armz strećt ǎt wîd, az f ś wr flayñ, n Alis vri siṿli wnt t mīt hr wɖ ɖ śōl.

“I’m vri glad I hapnd t b in ɖ we,” Alis sd, az ś hlpt hr t pt on hr śōl agn.

Ɖ Ẃît Qīn onli lct at hr in a hlplis frîtnd sort v we, n cept rpitñ smʈñ in a ẃispr t hrslf ɖt sǎndd lîc “bred n butr, bred n butr,” n Alis flt ɖt f ɖr wz t b eni convseśn at ol, ś mst manij it hrslf. So ś bgan rɖr timidli: “Am I adresñ ɖ Ẃît Qīn?”

“Wel, yes, f y cōl ɖt a-dresñ,” Ɖ Qīn sd. “It z’nt  nośn v ɖ ʈñ, at ol.”

Alis ʈt it wd nvr d t hv an arğmnt at ɖ vri bginñ v ɖer convseśn, so ś smîld n sd, “F yr Maɉsti wl onli tel m ɖ rît we t bgin, I’l d it az wel az I cn.”

“Bt I d’nt wont it dn at ol!” grond ɖ pur Qīn. “I’v bn a-dresñ mslf fr ɖ last tū aurz.”

It wd hv bn ol ɖ betr, az it sīmd t Alis, f ś hd got smwn els t dres hr, ś wz so dredf̣li untîdi. “Evri sngl ʈñ’z crŭcid,” Alis ʈt t hrslf, “n ś’z ol ovr pinz!—me I pt yr śōl stret fr y?” ś add alǎd.

“I d’nt nǒ ẃt’s ɖ matr wɖ it!” ɖ Qīn sd, in a meḷnc̣li vôs. “It’s ǎt v tmpr, I ʈnc. I’v pind it hir, n I’v pind it ɖr, bt ɖr’z no plizñ it!”

“It c’nt g stret, y nǒ, f y pin it ol on wn sîd,” Alis sd, az ś jntli pt it rît fr hr; “n, dir m, ẃt a stet yr her z in!”

“Ɖ bruś hz got intangld in it!” ɖ Qīn sd wɖ a sai. “N I lost ɖ com yesṭde.”

Alis cerf̣li rlist ɖ bruś, n dd hr bst t gt ɖ her intu ordr. “Cm, y lc rɖr betr nǎ!” ś sd, aftr olṭrñ most v ɖ pinz. “Bt riyli y śd hv a ledi’z meid!”

25

“I’m śr I’l tec y wɖ pleźr!” ɖ Qīn sd. “Tuṗns a wīc, n jam evri uɖr de.”

Alis cd’nt hlp lafñ, az ś sd, “I d’nt wont y t hîr m—n I d’nt cer fr jam.”

“It’s vri gd jam,” sd ɖ Qīn.

“Wel, I d’nt wont eni tde, at eni ret.”

“Y cd’nt hv it f y dd wont it,” ɖ Qīn sd. “Ɖ rūl z, jam tmoro n jam yesṭde—bt nvr jam tde.”

“It mst cm smtmz t ‘jam tde’,” Alis objctd.

“No, it c’nt,” sd ɖ Qīn. “It’s jam evri uɖr de: tde z’nt eni uɖr de, y nǒ.”

“I d’nt unḍstand y,” sd Alis. “It’s dredf̣li cnfyzñ!”

“Ɖt’s ɖ ifct v livñ bcwdz,” ɖ Qīn sd cîndli: “it olwz mcs wn a litl gidi at frst—”

“Livñ bcwdz!” Alis rpitd in gret astoniśmnt. “I nvr hŕd v sć a ʈñ!”

“—bt ɖr’z wn gret advantij in it, ɖt wn’z meṃri wrcs bʈ wez.”

“I’m śr mîn onli wrcs wn we,” Alis rmarct. “I c’nt rmembr ʈñz bfr ɖe hapn.”

“It’s a pur sort v meṃri ɖt onli wrcs bcwdz,” ɖ Qīn rmarct.

“Ẃt sort v ʈñz d y rmembr bst?” Alis vnćrd t asc.

“Ǒ, ʈñz ɖt hapnd ɖ wīc aftr nxt,” ɖ Qīn rplaid in a cerlis ton. “Fr instns, nǎ,” ś wnt on, sticñ a larj pìs v plastr on hr fngr az ś spouc, “ɖr’z ɖ Cñ’z Mesinjr. H’z in prizn nǎ, biyñ puniśt: n ɖ trîl dz’nt īvn bgin tl nxt Wenzde: n v cors ɖ crîm cmz last v ol.”

26

“S’poz h nvr cmits ɖ crîm?” sd Alis.

“Ɖt wd b ol ɖ betr, wd’nt it?” ɖ Qīn sd, az ś bǎnd ɖ plastr rnd hr fngr wɖ a bit v ribn.

Alis flt ɖr wz no dnayñ ɖt. “V cors it wd b ol ɖ betr,” ś sd: “bt it wd’nt b ol ɖ betr hiz biyñ puniśt.”

“Y’r roñ ɖr, at eni ret,” sd ɖ Qīn: “wr y evr puniśt?”

“Onli fr fōlts,” sd Alis.

“N y wr ol ɖ betr fr it, I nǒ!” ɖ Qīn sd trîumfntli.

“Yes, bt ɖen I hd dn ɖ ʈñz I wz puniśt fr,” sd Alis: “ɖt mcs ol ɖ difṛns.”

“Bt f y hd’nt dn ɖm,” ɖ Qīn sd, “ɖt wd hv bn betr stl; betr, n betr, n betr!” Hr vôs wnt hayr wɖ ć ‘betr,’ tl it got qt t a sqīc at last.

Alis wz jst bginñ t se “Ɖr’z a mstec smẃr—,” ẃn ɖ Qīn bgan scrīmñ so lǎd ɖt ś hd t līv ɖ sntns unfiniśt. “Ǒ, ǒ, ǒ!” śǎtd ɖ Qīn, śecñ hr hand abt az f ś wontd t śec it of. “Mî fngr’z blīdñ! Ǒ, ǒ, ǒ, ǒ!”

Hr scrīmz wr so xacli lîc ɖ ẃisl v a stīm-enjin, ɖt Alis hd t hold bʈ hr handz ovr hr irz.

“Ẃt z ɖ matr?” ś sd, az sn az ɖr wz a ćans v mcñ hrslf hŕd. “Hv y prict yr fngr?”

“I hv’nt prict it yt,” ɖ Qīn sd, “bt I sn śl—ǒ, ǒ, ǒ!”

“Ẃn d y xpct t d it?” Alis asct, fīlñ vri mć inclînd t laf.

“Ẃn I fasn mî śōl agn,” ɖ pur Qīn grond ǎt: “ɖ broć wl cm undun d’recli. Ǒ, ǒ!” Az ś sd ɖ wrdz ɖ broć flù opn, n ɖ Qīn clućt wîldli at it, n traid t clasp it agn.

“Tec cer!” craid Alis. “Y’r holdñ it ol crŭcid!” N ś còt at ɖ broć; bt it wz tù lêt: ɖ pin hd slipt, n ɖ Qīn hd prict hr fngr.

“Ɖt acǎnts fr ɖ blīdñ, y si,” ś sd t Alis wɖ a smîl. “Nǎ y unḍstand ɖ we ʈñz hapn hir.”

“Bt ẃ d’nt y scrīm nǎ?” Alis asct, holdñ hr handz redi t pt ovr hr irz agn.

“Ẃ, I’v dn ol ɖ scrīmñ olrdi,” sd ɖ Qīn. “Ẃt wd b ɖ gd v hvñ it ol ovr agn?”

Bî ɖs tîm it wz gtñ lît. “Ɖ cro mst hv floun awe, I ʈnc,” sd Alis: “I’m so glad it’s gn. I ʈt it wz ɖ nît cmñ on.”

“I wś I cd manij t b glad!” ɖ Qīn sd. “Onli I nvr cn rmembr ɖ rūl. Y mst b vri hapi, livñ in ɖs wŭd, n biyñ glad ẃnvr y lîc!”

“Onli it z so vri lonli hir!” Alis sd in a meḷnc̣li vôs; n at ɖ ʈt v hr lonlinis tū larj tirz cem rolñ dǎn hr ćīcs.

“Ǒ, d’nt g on lîc ɖt!” craid ɖ pur Qīn, riññ hr handz in dsper. “Cnsidr ẃt a gret grl y r. Cnsidr ẃt a loñ we y’v cm tde. Cnsidr ẃt o’cloc it z. Cnsidr enʈñ, onli d’nt crî!”

Alis cd nt hlp lafñ at ɖs, īvn in ɖ mdst v hr tirz. “Cn y cīp fṛm crayñ bî cnsiḍrñ ʈñz?” ś asct.

“Ɖt’s ɖ we it’s dn,” ɖ Qīn sd wɖ gret dsiźn: “nbdi cn d tū ʈñz at wns, y nǒ. Let’s cnsidr yr ej t bgin wɖ—hǎ old r y?”

“I’m sevn n a haf xacli.”

“Y nīd’nt se ‘xać̣li’,” ɖ Qīn rmarct: “I cn b’liv it wɖt ɖt. Nǎ I’l gv y smʈñ t b’liv. I’m jst wn hundṛd n wn, fîv munʈs n a de.”

“I c’nt b’liv ɖt!” sd Alis.

“C’nt y?” ɖ Qīn sd in a pitiyñ ton. “Trî agn: drw a loñ breʈ, n śut yr îz.”

Alis laft. “Ɖr’z no ys trayñ,” ś sd: “wn c’nt b’liv imposbl ʈñz.”

“I derse y hv’nt hd mć practis,” sd ɖ Qīn. “Ẃn I wz yr ej, I olwz dd it fr haf-an-aur a de. Ẃ, smtmz I’v b’livd az mni az six imposbl ʈñz bfr brecfst. Ɖr gz ɖ śōl agn!”

Ɖ broć hd cm undun az ś spouc, n a sudn gust v wind blù ɖ Qīn’z śōl acrs a litl brŭc. Ɖ Qīn spred ǎt hr armz agn, n wnt flayñ aftr it, n ɖs tîm ś s’xidd in caćñ it fr hrslf. “I’v got it!” ś craid in a trîumfnt ton. “Nǎ y śl si m pin it on agn, ol bî mslf!”

“Ɖen I hop yr fngr z betr nǎ?” Alis sd vri p’lîtli, az ś crost ɖ litl brŭc aftr ɖ Qīn.

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“Ǒ, mć betr!” craid ɖ Qīn, hr vôs rîzñ t a sqīc az ś wnt on. “Mć be…tr! Be…tr! Be……tr! Be………!” Ɖ last wrd endd in a loñ blīt, so lîc a śīp ɖt Alis qt startd.

Ś lct at ɖ Qīn, hu sīmd t hv sudnli rápt hrslf p in wŭl. Alis rubd hr îz, n lct agn. Ś cd’nt mc ǎt ẃt hd hapnd at ol. Wz ś in a śop? N wz ɖt riyli—wz it riyli a śīp ɖt wz sitñ on ɖ uɖr sîd v ɖ cǎntr? Rub az ś cd, ś cd mc nʈñ mor v it: ś wz in a litl darc śop, līnñ wɖ hr elboz on ɖ cǎntr, n oṗzit t hr wz an old Śīp, sitñ in an armćer nitñ, n evri nǎ n ɖen līvñ of t lc at hr ʈru a gret per v specṭclz.

27

“Ẃt z it y wont t bai?” ɖ Śīp sd at last, lcñ p fr a momnt fṛm hr nitñ.

“I d’nt qt nǒ yt,” Alis sd, vri jntli. “I śd lîc t lc ol rnd m frst, f I mt.”

“Y me lc in frunt v y, n on bʈ sîdz, f y lîc,” sd ɖ Śīp: “bt y c’nt lc ol rnd y—unls y’v got îz at ɖ bac v yr hed.”

Bt ɖz, az it hapnd, Alis hd nt got: so ś cntntd hrslf wɖ trnñ rnd, lcñ at ɖ ślvz az ś cem t ɖm.

Ɖ śop sīmd t b fl v ol manr v krịs ʈñz—bt ɖ odist part v it ol wz, ɖt ẃnvr ś lct hard at eni ślf, t mc ǎt xacli ẃt it hd on it, ɖt ptiklr ślf wz olwz qt emti: ɖo ɖ uɖrz rnd it wr crǎdd az fl az ɖe cd hold.

“Ʈñz flo abt so hir!” ś sd at last in a plentiv ton, aftr ś hd spent a minit or so in venli psywñ a larj brît ʈñ, ɖt lct smtmz lîc a dol n smtmz lîc a wrcbox, n wz olwz in ɖ ślf nxt abv ɖ wn ś wz lcñ at. “N ɖs wn z ɖ most pṛvocñ v ol—bt I’l tel y ẃt—” ś add, az a sudn ʈt struc hr, “I’l folo it p t ɖ vri top ślf v ol. It’l puzl it t g ʈru ɖ sīlñ, I xpct!”

Bt īvn ɖs plan feld: ɖ “ʈñ” wnt ʈru ɖ sīlñ az qaytli az poṣbl, az f it wr qt yst t it.

“R y a ćîld or a tītotm?” ɖ Śīp sd, az ś tc p anɖr per v nīdlz. “Y’l mc m gidi sn, f y g on trnñ rnd lîc ɖt.” Ś wz nǎ wrcñ wɖ fortīn perz at wns, n Alis cd’nt hlp lcñ at hr in gret astoniśmnt.

“Hǎ cn ś nit wɖ so mni?” ɖ puzld ćîld ʈt t hrslf. “Ś gts mor n mor lîc a porkpîn evri minit!”

“Cn y ro?” ɖ Śīp asct, handñ hr a per v nitñnīdlz az ś spouc.

“Yes, a litl—bt nt on land—n nt wɖ nīdlz—” Alis wz bginñ t se, ẃn sudnli ɖ nīdlz trnd intu òrz in hr handz, n ś faund ɖe wr in a litl bot, glîdñ alñ btwn bancs: so ɖr wz nʈñ fr it bt t d hr bst.

28

“Feɖr!” craid ɖ Śīp, az ś tc p anɖr per v nīdlz.

Ɖs dd’nt sǎnd lîc a rmarc ɖt nīdd eni ansr, so Alis sd nʈñ, bt pld awe. Ɖr wz smʈñ vri qir abt ɖ wōtr, ś ʈt, az evri nǎ n ɖen ɖ òrz got fast in it, n wd hardli cm ǎt agn.

“Feɖr! Feɖr!” ɖ Śīp craid agn, tecñ mor nīdlz. “Y’l b caćñ a crab d’recli.”

“A dir litl crab!” ʈt Alis. “I śd lîc ɖt.”

“Dd’nt y hír m se “Feɖr”?” ɖ Śīp craid angṛli, tecñ p qt a bunć v nīdlz.

“Indd I dd,” sd Alis: “y’v sd it vri ofn—n vri lǎd. Plīz, ẃr r ɖ crabz?”

“In ɖ wōtr, v cors!” sd ɖ Śīp, sticñ sm v ɖ nīdlz intu hr her, az hr handz wr fl. “Feɖr, I se!”

 d y se ‘feɖr’ so ofn?” Alis asct at last, rɖr vxt. “I’m nt a brd!”

“Y r,” sd ɖ Śīp: “y’r a litl gūs.”

Ɖs ofndd Alis a litl, so ɖr wz no mor convseśn fr a minit or tū, ẃl ɖ bot glîdd jntli on, smtmz amñ bedz v wīdz (ẃć md ɖ òrz stic fast in ɖ wōtr, wrs ɖen evr), n smtmz undr triz, bt olwz wɖ ɖ sem tōl rivrbancs frǎnñ ovr ɖer hedz.

“Ǒ, plīz! Ɖr r sm séntd ruśz!” Alis craid in a sudn transport v dlît. “Ɖr riyli r—n  bytiz!”

“Y nīd’nt se ‘plīz’ t m abt ’m,” ɖ Śīp sd, wɖt lcñ p fṛm hr nitñ: “I dd’nt pt ’em ɖr, n I’m nt gwñ t tec ’em awe.”

“No, bt I mnt—plīz, me w wêt n pic sm?” Alis plīdd. “F y d’nt mînd stopñ ɖ bot fr a minit.”

“Hǎ am I t stop it?” sd ɖ Śīp. “F y līv of rowñ, it’l stop v itslf.”

So ɖ bot wz left t drift dǎn ɖ strīm az it wd, tl it glîdd jntli in amñ ɖ wevñ ruśz. N ɖen ɖ litl slīvz wr cerf̣li rold p, n ɖ litl armz wr plunjd in elbo-dīp t gt ɖ ruśz a gd loñ we dǎn bfr brecñ ɖm of—n fr a ẃl Alis fgot ol abt ɖ Śīp n ɖ nitñ, az ś bnt ovr ɖ sîd v ɖ bot, wɖ jst ɖ endz v hr tangld her dipñ intu ɖ wōtr—ẃl wɖ brît īgr îz ś còt at wn bunć aftr anɖr v ɖ darlñ séntd ruśz.

“I onli hop ɖ bot w’nt tipl ovr!” ś sd t hrslf. “Ǒ, ẃt a luvli wn! Onli I cd’nt qt rīć it.” “N it srtnli dd sīm a litl pṛvocñ (“olmst az f it hapnd on prṗs,” ś ʈt) ɖt, ɖo ś manijd t pic plenti v bytifl ruśz az ɖ bot glîdd bî, ɖr wz olwz a mor luvli wn ɖt ś cd’nt rīć.

“Ɖ pritiist r olwz frɖr!” ś sd at last, wɖ a sai at ɖ obstiṇsi v ɖ ruśz in growñ so far of, az, wɖ fluśt ćīcs n dripñ her n handz, ś scrambld bac intu hr ples, n bgan t arenj hr ny-faund treźrz.

Ẃt matrd it t hr jst ɖen ɖt ɖ ruśz hd bgun t fed, n t lūz ol ɖer sént n byti, fṛm ɖ vri momnt ɖt ś pict ɖm? Īvn riyl séntd ruśz, y nǒ, last onli a vri litl ẃl—n ɖz, biyñ drīmruśz, mltd awe olmst lîc sno, az ɖe le in hīps at hr fīt—bt Alis hardli notist ɖs, ɖr wr so mni uɖr krịs ʈñz t ʈnc abt.

Ɖe hd’nt gn mć farɖr bfr ɖ bled v wn v ɖ òrz got fast in ɖ wōtr n wd’nt cm ǎt agn (so Alis xplend it aftwdz), n ɖ consiqns wz ɖt ɖ handl v it còt hr undr ɖ ćin, n, in spît v a siriz v litl śrīcz v “Ǒ, ǒ, ǒ!” fṛm pur Alis, it swept hr stret of ɖ sīt, n dǎn amñ ɖ hīp v ruśz.

Hvr, ś wz’nt hrt, n wz sn p agn: ɖ Śīp wnt on wɖ hr nitñ ol ɖ ẃl, jst az f nʈñ hd hapnd. “Ɖt wz a nîs crab y còt!” ś rmarct, az Alis got bac intu hr ples, vri mć rlivd t fînd hrslf stl in ɖ bot.

“Wz it? I dd’nt si it,” Sd Alis, pīpñ cōśsli ovr ɖ sîd v ɖ bot intu ɖ darc wōtr. “I wś it hd’nt let g—I śd so lîc t si a litl crab t tec hom wɖ m!” Bt ɖ Śīp onli laft scornf̣li, n wnt on wɖ hr nitñ.

“R ɖr mni crabz hir?” sd Alis.

“Crabz, n ol sorts v ʈñz,” sd ɖ Śīp: “plenti v ćôs, onli mc p yr mînd. Nǎ, ẃt d y wont t bai?”

“T bai!” Alis ecoud in a ton ɖt wz haf astoniśt n haf frîtnd—fr ɖ òrz, n ɖ bot, n ɖ rivr, hd vaniśt ol in a momnt, n ś wz bac agn in ɖ litl darc śop.

“I śd lîc t bai an eg, plīz,” ś sd timidli. “Hǎ d y sel ɖm?”

“Fîvṗns farɖñ fr wn—Tuṗns fr tū,” ɖ Śīp rplaid.

“Ɖen tū r ćīpr ɖn wn?” Alis sd in a s’prîzd ton, tecñ ǎt hr prs.

“Onli y mst īt ɖm bʈ, f y bai tū,” sd ɖ Śīp.

“Ɖen I’l hv wn, plīz,” sd Alis, az ś pt ɖ muni dǎn on ɖ cǎntr. Fr ś ʈt t hrslf, “Ɖe mt’nt b at ol nîs, y nǒ.”

Ɖ Śīp tc ɖ muni, n pt it awe in a box: ɖen ś sd “I nvr pt ʈñz intu ppl’z handz—ɖt wd nvr d—y mst gt it fr yrslf.” N so seyñ, ś wnt of t ɖ uɖr end v ɖ śop, n set ɖ eg uprît on a ślf.

“I wundr  it wd’nt d?” ʈt Alis, az ś gropt hr we amñ ɖ teblz n ćerz, fr ɖ śop wz vri darc twdz ɖ end. “Ɖ eg sīmz t gt frɖr awe ɖ mor I wōc twdz it. Let m si, z ɖs a ćer? Ẃ, it’s got branćz, I dcler! Hǎ vri od t fînd triz growñ hir! N acć̣li hir’z a litl brŭc! Wel, ɖs z ɖ vri qirist śop I evr sw!”

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So ś wnt on, wunḍrñ mor n mor at evri step, az evrʈñ trnd intu a tri ɖ momnt ś cem p t it, n ś qt xpctd ɖ eg t d ɖ sem.


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