THE INDIAN OCEAN
WE now come to the second part of our journey under the sea. The first ended with the moving scene in the coral cemetery, which left such a deep impression on my mind. Thus, in the midst of this great sea, Captain Nemo's life was passing even to his grave, which he had prepared in one of its deepest abysses. There, not one of the ocean's monsters could trouble the last sleep of the crew of the Nautilus, of those friends riveted to each other in death as in life. "Nor any man either," had added the Captain. Still the same fierce, implacable defiance towards human society!
I could no longer content myself with the hypothesis which satisfied Conseil.
That worthy fellow persisted in seeing in the commander of the Nautilus one of those unknown savants who return mankind contempt for indifference. For him, he was a misunderstood genius, who, tired of earth's deceptions, had taken refuge in this inaccessible medium, where he might follow his instincts freely. To my mind, this hypothesis explained but one side of Captain Nemo's character.
Indeed, the mystery of that last night, during which we had been chained in prison, the sleep, and the precaution so vio-