They soon halted to take a long breath and finally found themselves standing in a group gazing after Peter and Ben, who were still racing in the distance as if their lives were at stake.
"It is very evident," said Lambert at he and his three companions started up again, "that neither of them will give up until he can't help it."
"What foolishness," growled Carl, "to tire themselves at the beginning of the journey! But they're racing in earnest--that's certain. Halloo! Peter's flagging!"
"Not so!" cried Ludwig. "Catch him being beaten!"
"Ha! ha!" sneered Carl. "I tell you, boy, Benjamin is ahead."
Now, if Ludwig disliked anything in this world, it was to be called a boy--probably because he was nothing else. He grew indignant at once.
"Humph, what are YOU, I wonder. There, sir! NOW look and see if Peter isn't ahead!"
"I think he IS," interposed Lambert, "but I can't quite tell at this distance."