Here my friend, about whose madness I now saw, or fancied that I saw, certain indications of method,
removed the peg which marked the spot where the beetle fell, to a spot about three inches to the westward
of its former position. Taking, now, the tape measure from the nearest point of the trunk to the peg, as
before, and continuing the extension in a straight line to the distance of fifty feet, a spot was indicated,
removed, by several yards, from the point at which we had been digging.
Around the new position a circle, somewhat larger than in the former instance, was now described, and we
again set to work with the spades. I was dreadfully weary, but, scarcely understanding what had
occasioned the change in my thoughts, I felt no longer any great aversion from the labor imposed. I had
become most unaccountably interested--nay, even excited. Perhaps there was something, amid all the
extravagant demeanor of Legrand--some
air of forethought, or of deliberation, which impressed me. I dug eagerly, and now and then caught myself
actually looking, with something that very much resembled expectation, for the fancied treasure, the vision
of which had demented my unfortunate companion. At a period when such vagaries of thought most fully
possessed me, and when we had been at work perhaps an hour and a half, we were again interrupted by
the violent howlings of the dog. His uneasiness, in the first instance, had been, evidently, but the result of
playfulness or caprice, but he now assumed a bitter and serious tone. Upon Jupiter's again attempting to
muzzle him, he made furious resistance, and, leaping into the hole, tore up the mould frantically with his
claws. In a few seconds he had uncovered a mass of human bones, forming two complete skeletons,
intermingled with several buttons of metal, and what appeared to be the dust of decayed woolen. One or
two strokes of a spade upturned the blade of a large Spanish knife, and, as we dug farther, three or four
loose pieces of gold and silver coin came to light.
At sight of these the joy of Jupiter could scarcely be restrained, but the countenance of his master wore an
air of extreme disappointment he urged us, however, to continue our exertions, and the words were hardly
uttered when I stumbled and fell forward, having caught the toe of my boot in a large ring of iron that lay
half buried in the loose earth.
We now worked in earnest, and never did I pass ten minutes of more intense excitement. During his
interval we had fairly unearthed an oblong chest of wood, which, from its perfect preservation and
wonderful hardness, had plainly been subjected to some mineralizing process--perhaps that of the Bi-
chloride of Mercury. This box was three feet and a half long, three feet broad, and two and a half feet deep.
It was firmly secured by bands of wrought iron, riveted, and forming a kind of open trelliswork over the
whole. On each side of the chest, near the top, were three rings of iron--six in all--by means of which a firm
hold could be obtained by six persons. Our utmost united endeavors served only to disturb the coffer very
slightly in its bed. We at once saw the impossibility of removing so great a weight. Luckily, the sole
fastenings of the lid consisted of two sliding bolts. These we drew back trembling and panting with anxiety.
In an instant, a treasure of incalculable value lay gleaming before us. As the rays of the lanterns fell within
the pit, there flashed upwards a glow and a glare, from a confused heap of gold and of jewels, that
absolutely dazzled our eyes.
I shall not pretend to describe the feelings with which I gazed. Amazement was, of course, predominant.
Legrand appeared exhausted with excitement, and spoke very few words. Jupiter's countenance wore, for
some minutes, as deadly a pallor as it is possible, in nature of things, for any negro's visage to assume. He
seemed stupefied thunderstricken. Presently he fell upon his knees in the pit, and, burying his naked arms
up to the elbows in gold, let them there remain, as if enjoying the luxury of a bath.
It became necessary, at last, that I should arouse both master and valet to the expediency of removing the
treasure. It was growing late, and it behooved us to make exertion, that we might get every thing housed
before daylight. It was difficult to say what should be done, and much time was spent in deliberation--so
confused were the ideas of all. We, finally, lightened the box by removing two thirds of its contents, when
we were enabled, with some trouble, to raise it from the hole. The articles taken out were deposited among
the brambles, and the dog left to guard them, with strict orders from Jupiter neither, upon any pretence, to
stir from the spot, nor to open his mouth until our return.
Which selection best represents the phrase "Here my friend, about whose madness I now saw, or fancied
that I saw, certain indications of method"?