She starts crying, and it is a while before Maria realises that
it is not the storm but her own words that have upset
Ingrid, there is no real substance to them, they are only
sound and fury. But she can’t bring herself to say it, that of
course they are never going to leave Barrøy, it is an
impossible idea, especially now that the First Winter Storm
is in its death throes beyond the creaking walls, at these
times people become unbalanced and cannot see that once
you settle on an island you never leave, an island retains
what it has with all its might and main.
Lars didn’t become ill. After the weather had settled he
went out and found that he couldn’t budge the snowed-up
færing. He fetched Barbro. They managed to turn it over
and manoeuvre it onto two trestles so that he could
examine the hole in the hull from both sides. It was bigger
than he had imagined, one of the ribs was broken. Barbro
shook her head. Lars asked whether Felix was going to die.
Barbro said no, so now he’ll wish he’d paid more attention
to Hans when he was repairing boats.
‘How do you know?’ Lars said.
‘It takes two,’ Barbro said pointedly, and walked back
towards the house, but turned and shouted to them that
she could help him to hammer in the rivets, the rest he
would have to do himself.