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"I think I've lost him," he choked.
The captain swore an oath and brandished his gaff. "Reel in,, reel in!" he rasped.
The fish was still there. He had tried an old striper trick: rushing the boat in an attempt to lose the hook. Now he pulled away again in a great dash that made the line sing once more.
The investigator reeled her in slowly, gaining line all the time.
There was a great hush. Then the mate said, like a man speaking in church: "It...is...a...big fish."
All at once, 25 yards away, there—through the fog—was the apparition.
The striper—lauded, berated, slandered, exalted and denied during this investigation—made his appearance.
This wonderful creature came up out of the sea like a vision and rolled over with a flash of dazzling green and gold and silver.
Then he was gone again.
But he was being brought in now. He was tiring. He surfaced again and he came on again. Captain Scholz stood waiting, his eyes shining for all the stripers he had seen, waiting tensely with his gaff until—as the rules demanded—he could grasp the wire leader and rip into the striper with the hook.