The Never Land
Far away in the Never-Never-Never Land the Lost Boys lived in the depths of the forest, on the banks of a lake now covered with ice. The trees were bare without their summer dress, and wolves prowled and howled in the distance, and wild beasts snarled in the undergrowth, and Pirates sailed villainously up the lake, and Red Indians, who were friends of the boys, lived secretly in their wigwams hidden in the glades of the woods.
The Lost Boys, who, in their fur coats, looked more like bears than boys, were anxiously awaiting Peter’s return. There were six of them: Slightly Soiled, the eldest; then came Tootles, and Nibs, and Curly, and the Twins, who were so much alike that one name did for both of them, so each was called Twin. They lived like moles under the ground, for fear of the Pirates and the wolves. Each one had a special staircase hollowed in a tree-trunk, so that they could easily run down among the roots of the trees into their home. They were playing about happily, although they were beginning to be a little anxious that Peter was so long away. Slightly was tootling on a whistle, and dancing quite merrily, with an ostrich for partner (a queer companion, you will say), when suddenly the gruff voices of the Pirates were heard. Nibs, who was very brave, slipped away through the trees to scout, but the others had only just time to scuttle down the stairs in the hollow trees before the big ugly buccaneers came tramping up, hauling their captain, who was sitting in state upon a sledge.
You could not imagine a more dreadful-looking villain than that man was. His name was James Hook, and it suited him! He had two most evil-looking black eyes, his face was seamed with lines which seemed to express his wicked thoughts, his hideous chin, all unshaven, was as black as ink and as prickly as a furze-bush, his hair was long and black, and it hung around his face in greasy curls. He was singing a horrible song about himself, keeping time by swinging in the air the gruesome stump of his right arm, on which a double iron-pronged hook was ﬁxed instead of a hand. Hence his name.That man was the most wicked pirate who ever lived! He simply wallowed in wickedness! Even his own crew dreaded him; and they were as bad as could be! So no wonder the Lost Boys darted like rabbits to their cave.
Now Captain Hook most of all wanted to ﬁnd Peter Pan, for it was Peter who, a long time before, in an encounter between the Pirates and the Lost Boys, had cut off his right arm and ﬂung it to a passing crocodile.
The crocodile had liked the taste of it so much that ever since he had wandered from land to land and from sea to sea licking his lips for the rest of the Captain.
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