Chapter XXVII
 The  adventure  of  the day mightily tormented Tom's dreams that night.
Four times he had his hands on that rich treasure and four times it wasted
to nothingness in his fingers as sleep forsook him and wakefulness brought
back the hard reality of his misfortune. As he lay in the early morning
recalling the incidents of his great adventure, he noticed that they
seemed curiously subdued and far away-somewhat as if they had happened in
another world, or in a time long gone by. Then it occurred to him that the
great adventure itself must be a dream! There was one very strong argument
in favor of this idea-namely, that the quantity of coin he had seen was
too vast to be real. He had never seen as much as fifty dollars in one
mass before, and he was like all boys of his age and station in life, in
that he imagined that all references to "hundreds" and "thousands" were
mere fanciful forms of speech, and that no such sums really existed in the
world. He never had supposed for a moment that so large a sum as a hundred
dollars was to be found in actual money in any one's possession. If his
notions of hidden treasure had been analyzed, they would have been found
to consist of a handful of real dimes and a bushel of vague, splendid,
ungraspable dollars.
But the incidents of his adventure grew sensibly sharper and clearer
under the attrition of thinking them over, and so he presently found
himself leaning to the impression that the thing might not have been a
dream, after all. This uncertainty must be swept away. He would snatch a
hurried breakfast and go and find Huck. Huck was sitting on the gunwale of
a flatboat, listlessly dangling his feet in the water and looking very
melancholy. Tom concluded to let Huck lead up to the subject. If he did
not do it, then the adventure would be proved to have been only a dream.
"Hello, Huck!"
"Hello, yourself."
Silence, for a minute.
"Tom, if we'd 'a' left the blame tools at the dead tree, we'd 'a' got
the money. Oh, ain't it awful!"
"'Tain't a dream, then, 'tain't a dream! Somehow I most wish it was.
Dog'd if I don't, Huck."
"What ain't a dream?"
"Oh, that thing yesterday. I been half thinking it was."
"Dream! If them stairs hadn't broke down you'd 'a' seen how much dream
it was! I've had dreams enough all night-with that patch-eyed Spanish
devil going for me all through 'em-rot him!"
"No, not rot him. FIND him! Track the money!"
"Tom, we'll never find him. A feller don't have only one chance for
such a pile-and that one's lost. I'd feel mighty shaky if I was to see
him, anyway."
"Well, so'd I; but I'd like to see him, anyway-and track him out-to his
Number Two."
"Number Two-yes, that's it. I been thinking 'bout that. But I can't
make nothing out of it. What do you reckon it is?"
"I dono. It's too deep. Say, Huck-maybe it's the number of a house!"
"Goody! ... No, Tom, that ain't it. If it is, it ain't in this
one-horse town. They ain't no numbers here."
"Well, that's so. Lemme think a minute. Here-it's the number of a
room-in a tavern, you know!"
"Oh, that's the trick! They ain't only two taverns. We can find out
"You stay here, Huck, till I come."
Tom was off at once. He did not care to have Huck's company in public
places. He was gone half an hour. He found that in the best tavern, No. 2
had long been occupied by a young lawyer, and was still so occupied. In
the less ostentatious house, No. 2 was a mystery. The tavern-keeper's
young son said it was kept locked all the time, and he never saw anybody
go into it or come out of it except at night; he did not know any
particular reason for this state of things; had had some little curiosity,
but it was rather feeble; had made the most of the mystery by entertaining
himself with the idea that that room was "ha'nted"; had noticed that there
was a light in there the night before.
"That's what I've found out, Huck. I reckon that's the very No. 2 we're
"I reckon it is, Tom. Now what you going to do?"
"Lemme think."
Tom thought a long time. Then he said:
"I'll tell you. The back door of that No. 2 is the door that comes out
into that little close alley between the tavern and the old rattle trap of
a brick store. Now you get hold of all the door-keys you can find, and
I'll nip all of auntie's, and the first dark night we'll go there and try
'em. And mind you, keep a lookout for Injun Joe, because he said he was
going to drop into town and spy around once more for a chance to get his
revenge. If you see him, you just follow him; and if he don't go to that
No. 2, that ain't the place."
"Lordy, I don't want to foller him by myself!"
"Why, it'll be night, sure. He mightn't ever see you-and if he did,
maybe he'd never think anything."
"Well, if it's pretty dark I reckon I'll track him. I dono-I dono. I'll
"You bet I'll follow him, if it's dark, Huck. Why, he might 'a' found
out he couldn't get his revenge, and be going right after that money."
"It's so, Tom, it's so. I'll foller him; I will, by jingoes!"
"Now you're TALKING! Don't you ever weaken, Huck, and I won't."