"Well!" I said, after contemplating it for some minutes, "this is a strange scarabæus, I must confess: new to me: never saw anything like it before - unless it was a skull, or a death's-head - which it more nearly resembles than anything else that has come under my observation."
"A death's-head!" echoed Legrand -"Oh - yes - well, it has something of that appearance upon paper, no doubt.
"Well, well," I said, "perhaps you have - still I don't see them;" and I handed him the paper without additional remark, not wishing to ruffle his temper; but I was much surprised at the turn affairs had taken; his ill humor puzzled me - and, as for the drawing of the beetle, there were positively no antennæ visible, and the whole did bear a very close resemblance to the ordinary cuts of a death's-head.
You recollect also, that I became quite vexed at you for insisting that my drawing resembled a death's-head. When you first made this assertion I thought you were jesting; but afterwards I called to mind the peculiar spots on the back of the insect, and admitted to myself that your remark had some little foundation in fact.
Well, as I was in the very act of crumpling it up, my glance fell upon the sketch at which you had been looking, and you may imagine my astonishment when I perceived, in fact, the figure of a death's-head just where, it seemed to me, I had made the drawing of the beetle.
You will, of course, ask 'where is the connexion?' I reply that the skull, or death's-head, is the well-known emblem of the pirate.
This reflection suggested some meaning - some relevancy - in the death's-head. I did not fail to observe, also, the form of the parchment.
His hands were bony claws, his emaciated face a sheer death's-head
. His task, it seemed, was to tend the fire, and while he blinked at them he added to it a handful of dead and mouldy wood.
His large gray eyes were mainly responsible for this feeling, and they blazed out feverishly from what was almost a death's-head
, so thin was the face, the skin of which was a ghastly, dull, dead white.
The cub painted a high-light picture of his poor little room, its oil-stove and the one chair, and of the death's-head
tramp who kept him company and who looked as if he had just emerged from twenty years of solitary confinement in some fortress dungeon.