Their leaders have sent their lumber into goal, and rated the rest soundly, and one hundred and twenty picked players-up are there, bent on retrieving the game.
Again and again the cloud of their players- up gathers before our goal, and comes threatening on, and Warner or Hedge, with young Brooke and the relics of the bull-dogs, break through and carry the ball back; and old Brooke ranges the field like Job's war-horse.
The quarter to five has struck, and the play slackens for a minute before goal; but there is Crew, the artful dodger, driving the ball in behind our goal, on the island side, where our quarters are weakest.
Reckless of the defence of their own goal, on they come across the level big-side ground, the ball well down amongst them, straight for our goal, like the column of the Old Guard up the slope at Waterloo.
The ball rolls slowly in behind the School-house goal, not three yards in front of a dozen of the biggest School players-up.
"This is one of the goals," said East, "and you see the other, across there, right opposite, under the Doctor's wall.
"But how do you keep the ball between the goals?" said he; "I can't see why it mightn't go right down to the chapel."
"Hold the punt-about!" "To the goals!" are the cries; and all stray balls are impounded by the authorities, and the whole mass of boys moves up towards the two goals, dividing as they go into three bodies.
They're going to try, at any rate, and won't make such a bad fight of it either, mark my word; for hasn't old Brooke won the toss, with his lucky halfpenny, and got choice of goals and kick-off?
The two sides change goals, and the School- house goal-keepers come threading their way across through the masses of the School, the most openly triumphant of them-- amongst whom is Tom, a School-house boy of two hours' standing-- getting their ears boxed in the transit.