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I - "-I'*'**.' V The Caravan…

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I PRUSSIAN" DIET SCENE.

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SOCIALISTS AND COMPULSION.

OIL TANKS FOR SHIPS.

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I - "-I'*'**.' V The Caravan…

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was still sitting there with a beatific grin on his face, as motionless as an idol, and completely indifferent whether the pugilist ever regained consciousness. "Who'd 'a' thought, it?" exclaimed the referee, in a tone of amazement. "A guy that ain't been heard of blows in an' knocks out the Boston Ti.oerl" I never follow prize fighting, because it doesn't interest me very much; but I did know that the Boston Tiger came j very near being the champion welter- weight of the world, and, so vain are most of us, I enjoyed a flash of exalta- tion. Perhaps for the friendship of those who consider it a brutal sport, it is best that I add that never before, and never since, have I appeared in I a prize ring. I was knotting my necktie when my 1 queer employer entered. "Well," I said, pausing and facing him, "perhaps you'll be so kind now as to explain what this all means ?" I know that for the moment I was angry and humiliated. If Bertrand thought me a mere hired bully, I would undeceive him then and there, tell him to take his job and clothes and keep clear of me. I had no desire to be the butt of every practical joke that came through his cracked brain. For an instant he stared at me, and then roared with enjoyment. "Don't be angry," he said at last. "You said you could fight. I wanted to prove your estimate of yourself." I adjusted the necktie. "You said you could fight," the professor added, after a pause. "Well you can." And I learned !Lfterward that his sole reason for arranging this meeting paying an extravagant price for it, and being the sole spectator, was merely to prove whether I could hold my own in a physical contest. CHAPTER V. For three days after my peculiar meet- ing with Boston Tiger, I saw and heard nothing of my employer; then I dis- covered him one evening when I saw him in a magnificent limousine in the fashion- able part of Fifth Avenue. A chauffeur and footman in livery sat on the front seat, moodily waiting for the traffic polioeman to speed them along; but the occupants of this wealthy turnout were heedless of everything save their own conversation, so I had a chance to inspect them from the curb. Two men attired as befitting gentlemen of wealth, and a strikingly beautiful woman, were listen- ing to something the professor had to say. He was dressed as he always was, even to the umbrella, which he clutched in otieland. But what impressed me most was that his companions bestowed ex- treme deference upon my eccentric em- ployer, as if he were some one of note. When the whistle up at the point sounded and the stream abruptly swept forward like an imprisoned river released by the bursting of its dam, I walked slowly toward our hotel, speculating on what and who the professor might be. I resolved at the first opnotrtunity to make a few discreet inquiries of the clerks. Hitherto the professor, having introduced me as his friend, had rather barred me from satisfying my curiosity. Those in- quiries were never to be made, because at seven o'clock on the following morn- ing, the telephone in my room rang, and the professor asked me to come to his apartment. I found him fairly swamped with a mess of personal belongings scat- tered over every conceivable place, from the chair, lounge, window sill, and dres- ser, to a large portion of the floor. I re- member that his hat rested jauntily on an electri-light bulb, while his shoes were in a washbowl. He looked up from the depths of a trunk long enough to J say "My boy, go down and pack your stuff. Buy a trWlk if you haven't one.  We sail for Europe at ten o'clock." Ij His abruptness was disconcerting, but I knew that it would require small time for me to make my arrangements; so, al- though I am no valet, I offered to assist him. He laughed and said I could come to his rooms when my own preparations were made, and I retired. In less than an hour, my new trunk packed with new clothing, I returned. The professor, in ragged carpet slippers, with feet draped on the dresser, and still in his shirt sleeves, was reading Balzac and chuckl- ing over something that pleased him. "Bless me!" he exclaimed, as I en- tered. "I forgot all about it!" and straightaway drove for the trunk. It was like a miniature cyclone. He grabbed stuff in his arms and hove it into the trunk regardless of fragility or spacA. He I jerked out dresser drawers and emptied their contents in on top of the clothing. When the trunk was overflowing, he tucked in the stray ends, and asked me j to sit on it while he sprang the locks. "There he said contentedly. Now we are ready." As we rode from the hotel, I won- dered what steamer we were to take. Down to the end of the island we went, and once the chauffeur stopped a police- man to ask the direction. Then we took the ferry to Brooklyn, and at last came to the Atlantic Basin. I had not known until that time that any of the liners docked there, and was thereifdre I'mrpris.ed at sight of a huge freighter, of that type that carries but first-class and steerage passengers. I was pleased, for I surmised that we were in for a slow but enjoyable trip, with accommodations all that any man on farth might require. The professor had engaged what was called "the director's suite," consisting of two sleeping rooms and a neat little drawing- room, all on the upper deck, where we stowed our belongings. The boat was on the moment of sail- ing. Indeed, I think we were the last of the passengers, for when I finished my preparations and went outside, the lines were being cast off, and a strange still- ness had settled over the wharf-that momenta.ry hush of parting, when those behind see their friends or loved ones fare forth to sea. Foreigners they were mostly, down there on the dock below, bidding good-bye or farewell to our five hundred steerage companions. The first- class accommodations were limited in capacity to a bare fifty or seventy-five and I was to learn later that there we-;o scarcely more than forty whom I could call fellow passengers. Every one seemed leaving friends but me and one other, and it wras the very isolation of her appearance that attracted me to Mademoiselle Marie Dorion. She stood, a dainty, pathetic little figure, leaning over the rail and resting a well- defined chin on a well-gloved little hand as if thinking of something very distant. She was neatly attired—so neatly, in fact, as to suggest an abounding good taste with a meagre purse. The telepathy of close scrutiny must have disturbed her I abstraction, for she faced me abruptly, and our eyes met as certainly as if she had known I was there and waiting for her to look toward me. She betrayed less embarrassment than I felt, although I presume my face was as expressionless as ever; but unaccountably I turned away and resumed my inspection of the docks that now appeared to drift slowly from us. Suddenly a man rushed out to the edge of the wharf, thrusting people aside in his anxiety and haste. He was a me- dium-? ized man with a iferce. moustache and imperial, and w her he saw that the boat had dea?d from the dock, appeared overcome with disappointment or rage. He leaped up and down. He shouted. He waved hia arms and clenched his nst< and thoo seemg that the boat would not pause and was slowly turning out into I the crowded sti?ea?m, he tore the hat  from his head and threw it into the Ij water, as if his temper had robbed him of sanity. "That," said a voice behind me that I recognised, "is Francois Laurent." I turned to discover the professor, with the most outrageous travelling cap I ever beheild on a maai's head. It was as loud as a burlesque motor cap in a cheap variety show and twice as large—so large in fact, that only the professor's ears kept it from falling completely over his head. "He was to go with us," gleefully ex- plained the professor. "I wanted you to have an assistant who speaks French and so employed him." He laughed and waved his hand airily at the Frenchman, who, for the moment, was a mere figure of despair. I did not think it necessary to inform the profes- sor that I spoke French with the fluency of a Fi-enchman, having passed four years of my boyhood in a French family. I was more interested in the information he had volunteered. I continued to stare back until the wharf was lost to sight, and was just de- ciding to have a look around the deck when I saw a tugboat appear from ro uid the bend where the dock had disappeared and its stack was belching black unacr forced draft. It did not dawn on me at the moment that we were being pur- sued but a while later I discovered this to be the case. It gained on us slowly until I could see a man on its deck, shouting and gesticu- lating. It was my fellow employee. I decided to inform the professor, but when I found him he was standing by the rail pleasantly watching the pursuit, a pureiy disinterested spectator. The tug gained until it ran abreast, and then Francois sighted the professor and poured forth a rapid string of shouts in French between his cupped hands. He was felicitating the professor on not losing him. The professor, I think, was not only amazed, but amused. I know I was. Also the professor had another surprise coming to him, for when our ship, the "Menduto," pfciused to flower the pilot, the tug put the man of intelligence and aplomb on the ladder. He scaled it with agility of a monkey, and doffed his hat to the professor, who up to this moment had given no sign of recognition. "Please be so kind, my dear friend," said Francois, in his glib French, "to pay the man. I promised him a hundred dollars if he got me abroad, knowing that you would consider such sum a mere trifle when in danger of losing my valuable services. The professor's mouth hung open for a minute, and he looked down at the waiting tug. "Y ou did. eh?" he said dryly, in Eng- lish. "Well. suppose you climb back down the ladder and tell them to take I you back to jail for payment." I was sorry for Francois. His agony was unspeakable. He could only implore for succor in hysterical sentences; but for a. full minute the professor merely smiled at him. All of Francois' bombast was gone. Perhaps the professor was merely teaching him a lesson. I think that must have be-Ti .0. for at last he said-in French "All right! I'll pay, but I'll hold it out of vour wages!" He opened his wallet, extracted a hun- dred-dollar bill, beckoned to the man on the tug, who was still holding the rope ladder and looking li?ward, and. when the man aS0ended. plad the bill in his hand. As the "Menduto's" screws start- ed again thA professor's face lost all its I smile, and he scowled harshly at the un- fortunate Francois. "Listen," he said in French, "under- stand this, my man! I never make allow- ances for negligence or mistakes. Never When I tell a man he is to do something he must do it—no matter what the cost to him. The only reason I don't send I you back where they would probably jail you for false pretences is that, I like the quickness you showed in coming aboard regardless of what it cost. That's: all that saved you. Go to the purser and ask what cabin he gave you." Quite a breeze was springing up now that we were out facing the ocean, and the passengers of the first-class were either finding shelter from approaching sickness or arranging their belongings in their staterooms. I discovered that ours and two more staterooms were the only passenger accommodations on the upper deck not occupied by the ship's officers, the remainder of the first class being berthed on the main deck. From one of these cabins, as I passed a man emerged whom I had not seen before, a rather handsome man with an aquiline nose, cropped moustache, and well groomed. He was almost exactly my height, and near my age. I heard his footsteps behind me as I rounded the turn of the port deck forward of the dining saloon beneath the lower bridge and looked over the rail. The well-groomed man crow ded behind and past me in the narrow space between the rail and the steel wall with its bras bound portholes, and went to the corner. He was on the lee aide but hesitated be- fore going around to the starboard reach, and from the corner of my eye I watched him. I was impressed by a certain fur- tiveness of manner, a suggestion that he wa,s peering around the turning and wait- ing for some one. So engrossed was he in his watch that he failed to look behind where I stood, but no longer so keenly interested in the scene below as in his actions. I was even annoyed when, with a light, swift step, there came from the corner to port Mademoiselle Marie. Red of cheek, breathless, from the struggle with the mischievous,-4 invisible sprite of the wind, she passed me, and was moving onward to pass the well-groomed man as well, when he heard and turned. There was an exclamation, end I thought she drew back a trifle, either irf surprise or annoyance. I think it was that benevolent charitable, kindly, old philosopher, Vol- taire, who, when caught listening at a keyhole, calmly continued his occupation, and when taxed with this breach said contemptuously <cBah What of it? All men are eavesdroppers if their own amusements are involved So if Voltaire could get away with it, why should I make my excuses ? I lis- tened, and was sorry that my ears were not as long as a jack rabbit's. "What? You here!" she exclaimed, as if the words had tumbled themselves im- pulsively from her lips. "Yes, mademoiselle, I am here," he re- sponded in French, bowing as only some of those chaps can bow ,a grace which some of us must needs envy, and lifting his hat. I could not see her face: but in his there was some flash so devilish, so sinister, so confident, that I wanted then and there to find excuse to strike him. As if something in his glance, or his use of French when addressed in English put her on her guard, she turned and looked at me. I was merely the careless lounger watching those below; but that she did not wish me to know what conversation took p.ace was evidenced by the fact that she next spoke in French, as facile, as well intoned, as true as his own. "I thought I told you that you were not to follow me?" she said, with some undernote of temper in her voice. "The queen may command but her subjects are sometirnes-sh-all we say?— rebellious, or merely disobedient," he re- plied. with that same indefinable touch of self-oonfidence in his attitude and words. "But why-why are you here?" she de- manded, drawing back a trifle; then, as he did not answer, but stood there smil- ing at her, a very brave figure of a man,. she added, still in that swift, explosive French "I thought I made it quite: plain to you, Monsieur Perard, that your attentions were becoming—shall I say ?— a trifle unpleasant." By the way of reply he smiled,, shrugged, and lifted apologetic hands. "Come, mademoiselle," he said, and his voice was as soft as a soothing caress, "let us be reasonable. I love you. You do not love me. To me you are the soul of delight—the perfumes of mysterious, il- lusive gardens of flowers. To you I am the hedge of thorns, ever encroaching; yet must I persevere. Why am I here ? Why do the planets endlessly travel round the sun ? I am as they-incapable of doing otherwise. I will follow, and persist and hope, dreaming always that you will beam upon me some time, I know not when, but some time!" Her foot tapped the deck—twice, im- patiently. "Bosh!" she exclaimed in good rotund English. And then, as if his hyperbole had been understood, and was so flamboy-- ant as to stir her to good humour, she- laughed. "Well," she said, "I can't put you off the boat. You know that. But for Heaven's sake, leave me alone as much as you can Entirely unrebuffed and quite politely he again doffed his cap, and proffered his arm as she walked past him. She- did not accept his arm, but a few minutes later I saw that he was pacing up and down the lee side of the deck with her, complacent, polished, and engaging as, ever. And somehow, more than ever, f wished that I might hit him. (To be continued).