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首页 » 经典英文小说 » The Ice Queen » Chapter XXV. THE PERILS OF A MIDNIGHT SEARCH.
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 The next morning snow was falling, and the wind was blowing furiously.
"This ought to bring us some small birds, and maybe an owl1 or two," said Tug2, as he watched the dense3 clouds of snow hurled4 along from the northern waste of ice.
"Do you think you would dare to go out to the traps, or could find them in this gale5?" Aleck asked.
"I reckon so; and while I'm gone you take the gun and see if you can't find snow-birds among the hemlocks6."
"What'll you do if those dogs get after you? They're perfectly8 savage9 with hunger. It don't take much wildness or long famine to turn a dog back to a wolf, and we've got to look out for these curs as if they were wild beasts."
"You're right," Tug assented10. "But I hardly think they'll be out on the ice in this storm; you are more likely to meet them in the woods. At any rate, we must have something to eat, and it's my business to tend those traps, wolves or no wolves. If I go under, why, there's one less mouth to feed."
So Tug and Aleck went away into the storm, one out upon the wide white desert, the other wading11 up the drifted slopes to the woods.
Katy and Jim stayed at home, sitting comfortably in the house. She was reading aloud from an old newspaper they had found lying in a corner, when there came plainly to her ears the twittering of small birds.
"Listen, Jimkin. Did you hear that?"
"Snow-birds!" the boy exclaimed. "Right on the roof, too, and nary a trap!"
"Let us go out," said Katy, eagerly. "Perhaps we could catch one or two somehow."
So they crept out, and saw that the thick hemlock7 growing beside the big rock was covered with small birds. Some were hiding away from the "cauld blast" in the nooks between the dense branches; some were hanging upon the little cones12, swinging and clinging like acrobats13; some were taking short flights through the smoke to warm their toes, or sitting on the bare rock near the top of the chimney. They were of two kinds, but all equally happy and unconcerned.
"If I only had the gun I could knock over about twenty at once," Jim whispered. "I believe I could even kill a lot with my pea-shooter."
"Could you? Well, Jimkin, I've got some strong rubber cord in my trunk, and you might make one of those horrid14 forked-stick things."
"That's a splendid idea, Katy. Get your rubber, and I'll cut a stick. Hurry up!"
Ten minutes afterwards the weapon was ready. But now it occurred to Jim that he had no "peas" for his "shooter." So he and Katy both hurried down to where they knew there was a bit of beach not covered by ice. They scraped away the new snow, and raked up double handfuls of small pebbles15.
Jim's hands grew so cold during this operation that he had to go in and warm them before he could handle his "rubber gun." But the birds still stayed in the trees, as is their custom when a heavy snow-storm is raging, and the excited young hunter waited only long enough to get the stiffest of his fingers into decent shape.
Creeping around to the rear side of the rock, he climbed slowly up until he could peer over the edge, and found himself not more than a dozen feet away from the little feathered group sitting by the chimney-top. Taking the best of aim, and pulling the rubber as far back as it would go, he let fly, and one of the largest of the birds tumbled over the edge. The boy had hard work to refrain from shouting with pride at this early success, though he wasn't sure he had killed the bird.


1 owl 7KFxk     
  • Her new glasses make her look like an owl.她的新眼镜让她看上去像只猫头鹰。
  • I'm a night owl and seldom go to bed until after midnight.我睡得很晚,经常半夜后才睡觉。
2 tug 5KBzo     
  • We need to tug the car round to the front.我们需要把那辆车拉到前面。
  • The tug is towing three barges.那只拖船正拖着三只驳船。
3 dense aONzX     
  • The general ambushed his troops in the dense woods. 将军把部队埋伏在浓密的树林里。
  • The path was completely covered by the dense foliage. 小路被树叶厚厚地盖了一层。
4 hurled 16e3a6ba35b6465e1376a4335ae25cd2     
v.猛投,用力掷( hurl的过去式和过去分词 );大声叫骂
  • He hurled a brick through the window. 他往窗户里扔了块砖。
  • The strong wind hurled down bits of the roof. 大风把屋顶的瓦片刮了下来。 来自《简明英汉词典》
5 gale Xf3zD     
  • We got our roof blown off in the gale last night.昨夜的大风把我们的房顶给掀掉了。
  • According to the weather forecast,there will be a gale tomorrow.据气象台预报,明天有大风。
6 hemlocks 3591f4f0f92457ee865b95a78b3e9127     
由毒芹提取的毒药( hemlock的名词复数 )
7 hemlock n51y6     
  • He was condemned to drink a cup of hemlock.判处他喝一杯毒汁。
  • Here is a beech by the side of a hemlock,with three pines at hand.这儿有株山毛榉和一株铁杉长在一起,旁边还有三株松树。
8 perfectly 8Mzxb     
  • The witnesses were each perfectly certain of what they said.证人们个个对自己所说的话十分肯定。
  • Everything that we're doing is all perfectly above board.我们做的每件事情都是光明正大的。
9 savage ECxzR     
  • The poor man received a savage beating from the thugs.那可怜的人遭到暴徒的痛打。
  • He has a savage temper.他脾气粗暴。
10 assented 4cee1313bb256a1f69bcc83867e78727     
同意,赞成( assent的过去式和过去分词 )
  • The judge assented to allow the prisoner to speak. 法官同意允许犯人申辩。
  • "No," assented Tom, "they don't kill the women -- they're too noble. “对,”汤姆表示赞同地说,“他们不杀女人——真伟大!
11 wading 0fd83283f7380e84316a66c449c69658     
(从水、泥等)蹚,走过,跋( wade的现在分词 )
  • The man tucked up his trousers for wading. 那人卷起裤子,准备涉水。
  • The children were wading in the sea. 孩子们在海水中走着。
12 cones 1928ec03844308f65ae62221b11e81e3     
n.(人眼)圆锥细胞;圆锥体( cone的名词复数 );球果;圆锥形东西;(盛冰淇淋的)锥形蛋卷筒
  • In the pines squirrels commonly chew off and drop entire cones. 松树上的松鼠通常咬掉和弄落整个球果。 来自辞典例句
  • Many children would rather eat ice cream from cones than from dishes. 许多小孩喜欢吃蛋卷冰淇淋胜过盘装冰淇淋。 来自辞典例句
13 acrobats 0a0a55e618cb6021651a7c7a9ac46cdc     
n.杂技演员( acrobat的名词复数 );立场观点善变的人,主张、政见等变化无常的人
  • I was always fascinated by the acrobats at the circus. 我总是着迷于马戏团里的杂技演员。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • The acrobats' performance drew forth applause from the audience. 杂技演员的表演博得了观众的掌声。 来自《简明英汉词典》
14 horrid arozZj     
  • I'm not going to the horrid dinner party.我不打算去参加这次讨厌的宴会。
  • The medicine is horrid and she couldn't get it down.这种药很难吃,她咽不下去。
15 pebbles e4aa8eab2296e27a327354cbb0b2c5d2     
[复数]鹅卵石; 沙砾; 卵石,小圆石( pebble的名词复数 )
  • The pebbles of the drive crunched under his feet. 汽车道上的小石子在他脚底下喀嚓作响。
  • Line the pots with pebbles to ensure good drainage. 在罐子里铺一层鹅卵石,以确保排水良好。


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