After some breakfast they started off, bicycled boldly past the picket on the quay, and reached Dooncarra without any mishap, where Devine arranged for O’Hara to stay in a fisherman’s house until the pilot-boat left at dusk.
O’Hara had never been to sea before, and was ill before he ever reached the steamer. As soon as he got aboard, a stoker, who had been warned by Devine to expect O’Hara on the pilot’s boat, took charge of him, and at once put him into a bunk.
36That night the steamer ran into an Atlantic storm, and by the time they had made the north coast of Ireland, O’Hara was beyond caring whether he lived or died.
Blake reported O’Hara’s escape to the authorities in Dublin, who were most anxious to secure the man, knowing he had been the ringleader in the worst atrocities committed in the south recently. They at once came to the conclusion that O’Hara was trying to get away by boat from Ballybor to Liverpool and then on to America, hence the picket of Cadets on the quay; but to make doubly sure they ordered an ocean-going destroyer to search the steamer from Ballybor at sea.
After rounding the north of Ireland the steamer ran into smooth water, and O’Hara came on deck for a breath of fresh air. After a time he became interested in a queer-looking long grey steamer which was approaching them from the south, and very soon the queer boat came within hailing distance, and orders were megaphoned for the steamer to heave to.
O’Hara was greatly interested in watching the progress of the destroyer boat, and it was not until a sergeant of the R.I.C. in plain clothes, who had known O’Hara in the south, covered him with a Webley and commanded him to put up his hands, that he realised that this interesting show was all for his benefit.
III. THE LANDING OF ARMS. It was the busy hour of the evening in Stephen Foy’s public-house in the small western town of Ballybor, and Larry O’Halloran, the barman, never ceased drawing corks and measuring out “half ones” of whisky for the endless flow of customers.