He could not help starting, which so changed the position of his nose as to bring the "pyramid" pell-mell upon the stage.
All this Passepartout learned from Aouda, who told him what had taken place on the voyage from Hong Kong to Shanghai on the Tankadere, in company with one Mr. Fix.
Passepartout did not change countenance on hearing this name. He thought that the time had not yet arrived to divulge to his master what had taken place between the detective and himself. In the account he gave of his absence, he simply excused himself for having become drunk smoking opium at a tavern in Hong Kong.
Mr. Fogg heard this narrative coldly, without a word. Then he furnished his man with funds necessary to obtain clothing more in harmony with his position. Within an hour the Frenchman had cut off his nose and parted with his wings, and retained nothing about him which recalled the sectary of the god Tingou.
The steamer which was about to depart from Yokohama to San Francisco belonged to the Pacific Mail Steamship Company, and was named the General Grant. She was a large paddle-wheel steamer of two thousand five hundred tons, well-equipped and very fast. The massive walking-beam rose and fell above the deck. At one end a piston-rod worked up and down. At the other was a connecting-rod which, in changing the rectilinear motion to a circular one, was directly connected with the shaft of the paddles. The General Grant was rigged with three masts, giving a large capacity for sails, and thus materially aiding the steam power. By making twelve miles an hour, she would cross the ocean in twenty-one days. Phileas Fogg was therefore justified in hoping that he would reach San Francisco by the 2nd of December, New York by the 11th, and London on the 20th - thus gaining several hours on the fatal date of the 21st of December.
There was a full complement of passengers on board, among them English, many Americans, a large number of coolies on their way to California, and several East Indian officers, who were spending their vacation in making a tour of the world. Nothing of moment happened on the voyage. The steamer, sustained on its large paddles, rolled but little, and the Pacific almost justified its name.
Mr. Fogg was as calm and taciturn as ever. His young companion felt herself more and more attached to him by other ties than gratitude. His silent but generous nature impressed her more than she thought; and it was almost unconsciously that she yielded to emotions which did not seem to have the least effect upon her protector. Aouda took the keenest interest in his plans, and became impatient at any incident which seemed likely to retard his journey.
She often chatted with Passepartout, who did not fail to perceive the state of the lady's heart. Being the most faithful of servants, he never exhausted his eulogies of Phileas Fogg's honesty, generosity and devotion. He took pains to calm Aouda's doubts of a successful termination of the journey, telling her that the most difficult part of it had passed, that now they were beyond the fantastic countries of Japan and China, and were fairly on their way to civilized places again. A railway train from San Francisco to New York, and a transatlantic steamer from New York to Liverpool, would doubtless bring them to the end of this impossible journey round the world within the period agreed upon.
On the ninth day after leaving Yokohama, Phileas Fogg had traveled exactly one half of the terrestrial globe. The General Grant passed, on the 23rd of November, the one hundred and eightieth meridian, and was at the very antipodes of London. Mr. Fogg had, it is true, exhausted fifty-two of the eighty days in which he was to complete the tour, and there were only twenty-eight left. But, though he was only halfway by the difference of meridians, he had really gone over two-thirds of the whole journey; for he had been obliged to make long circuits from London to Aden, from Aden to Bombay, from Calcutta to Singapore, and from Singapore to Yokohama.