by Robert Louis Stevenson
"Were you addressing me, sir?" said the doctor; and
when the ruffian had told him, with another oath, that
this was so, "I have only one thing to say to you, sir,"
replied the doctor, "that if you keep drinking rum,
the world will soon be quit of a very dirty scoundrel!"
The old fellow's fury was awful. He sprang to his
feet, drew and opened a sailor's clasp-knife, and
balancing it open on the palm of his hand, threatened
to pin the doctor to the wall.
The doctor never so much as moved. He spoke to him as
before, over his shoulder and in the same tone of
voice, rather high, so that all the room might hear,
but perfectly calm and steady: "If you do not put that
knife this instant in your pocket, I promise, upon my
honor, you shall hang at the next assizes."
Then followed a battle of looks between them, but the
captain soon knuckled under, put up his weapon, and
resumed his seat, grumbling like a beaten dog.