LALL KIGHTS RESERVED.) I HER VANISHED LOVER. I BY EDITH C. KENYON. Author 01 Which was the Heiress 11 The Hand oj his Brother, The Squire of Lonsdaledec. CHAPTER XXII. I GERALD'S SIGNET RING. I TWENTY-SIX hours afterwards, Jessie awakes I in the dead of night, miserably conscious that someone has been in her room and that she has been robbed. How she obtained the impression she cannot tell; she only knows that it is a very real one. Sitting up in bed, she feels for the matches she left on a chair close by, and finds they are not there. Alarmed at this, for she remembers perfectly leaving them there the night before, She gets out of bed, and going to her chest of drawers, searches for a reserve match-box, left there in case of need. Even in the dark she can tell by feeling it that her drawer has been rummaged and disarranged, her purse is not in the corner in which she keeps it, and her matches have been taken away also. A thief has been in the room her instinc- tive feelings that it is so are true ones. A thief has certainly taken away her match- boxes and rummaged her drawers. She feels naturally most nervous, and, longing for light more than anything else, draws up her dark green window blind, letting in the pale moonlight. At the same time she hears her door opening softly, and for one moment feels as if she could not stir, then, turning, perceives it closing in the dim light. It is a minute or more before she can nerve herself to cross the little room, and open the door. Peering out into the blackness of the narrow passage and staircase, she can per- ceive nothing. But sounds of some person stealthily descending the lower stairs come to her ears. Putting on her dressing-gown as rapidly as possible, never thinking of the danger to herself, but only wishful to pursue the burglar, she hastens down the attic stairs. Dick I Dick she cries—not too loudly, lest she should disturb her father down- stairs-" Dick! as she passes her brother's door. There is no answer. Dick's outdoor, hard- working life conduces to make him a heavy sleeper. Susan's door comes next Jessie calls her, and hurries on without waiting for any response. Downstairs the night air blows coldly in at the open door. There are voices outside, and Jessie stands still a moment to listen. "I tell you, it's not enough a man's voice is saying very roughly. "What's ten pounds? Nothing, when I've to go so far- just think, the other side of the world. For it must be Australia, or Tasmania. America's played out for me." You've had a deal of money, George, one way or another, time after time." Jessie starts. It is her step-mother's voice, querulous, too, and very miserable. What is she doing out there with this man ? You fool!" he bursts out with, passion- ately. "You fool! I must have at least thirty pounds, or I can't do it." "Nay, George," says the woman's voice. Not all that! You must make less do." "Now, come. Be generous, Hannah I I've always stuck to you all throllgh-" "Hush!" she says, querulously. "Don't talk of things. Least said soonest mended." I've been very faithful to you-" Will you hold your noise?" she says, adding, You know there's that ten pounds I gave you last time you was here, and-" "But that's al1 gone," interposes the voice," and you must remember I shall want an -autfit "I must let you havevome of my hus- band's clothes. He'll never want them any more. The doctor says, although he may stay with us some time, he will never leave his bed." Horrible Jessie can scarcely believe she hears aright. She has credited her step- mother with real true love for her husband, and that has often made her appear in a better light than she would otherwise have attained to. But, now, can it be she who is going to parfe with her husband's clothes to another man—presumably a lover—whilst he whom she has sworn to love and cherish. I as long as life shall last is still living? A great longing comes over the girl to rush out and cry shame upon this wickedness, and part the guilty lovers, and save her father's honour. She might have done so. She would cer- tainly have done something had it not been that at that instant a sudden gust of wind blew the house door to and the door of the front kitchen open, revealing the bed on which her father lay, in the dim light of a night-liglit burning on the table near him. "Hannah he called, being awakened by the noise, Hannah Fearful of startling him, Jessie hesitated to reply. Her mother could not hear. "Hannah!" called Mr. Eden again, ex- citedly. Hannah Where are you ? There's someone in the house. Someone is hiding behind the curtain by the door. I'm sure there is someone. Would to God that I were not so helpless Hannah Will no one come?" There is agony in the calling voice. Jessie can no longer resist the inclination to go to him. Dad," she says, coming forward, I am here. It's all right, dearest." She has taken his hand now, and is kissing him on his brow. "I thought I heard something; so ran downstairs. What do you want ? "Look!" lie says, pointing to a large curtain his wife has caused to be hung quite across the end of the kitchen to keep off the draughts. Look There is someone behind the curtain. There, see!" Even as she looks a covered form behind the curtain runs away towards the open door, and vanishes without revealing itself. "Quick, Jessie cries her father. "See who it is But when Jessie reaches the curtain by the door and lifts it, she can see nothing in the darkness beyond. "Follow him!" again says her father, excitedly. See where he goes. Where is Dick?" he adds. "Would to goodness I could move." His groan is heartrending. Jessie hesitates a moment, then, thinking the figure which has vanished from the room must be in collusion with the two out- side, she crosses over to the house door, and opens it softly. )( Good-bye, dear Hannah, the man's voice -luc is saying in much more kindiy tones. "Then, I will wait there until you give me the thirigs-I won't come here again." "No no." Mrs. Eden speaks hurriedly. "Be sure you lie hidden," she adds breath- lessly. "Oh, dear: I never thought, once, you would come to this," she breaks down, weeping. s> "Now, don't let us have any nonsense, the man says, "you can comfort yourself with thinking that at least you are faithful and true." "Well, I am," Mrs. Eden sobs. "You know, George, I am not one to change." There is the sound of kisses and hasty IC Good-byes," and Jessie slips back into the kitchen occupied by her father, to avoid meeting his faithless wife as she re-enters. "Who was it ? asks Mr. Eden. Did you see him ?" T "I couldn't see any face, answers Jessie. Mother is coming now. I will go to bed." "You here, Jess! 11 exclaims Mrs. Eden, rather crossly, as she enters. "Yes, I heard father callidg." Why' Richard ? Have you been calling? "Yes. Loudly. Where have you been? I called because I heard someone in thg house. And there was someone behind the curtain. Wasn't there, Jessie ? Yes," the girl answers, looking keenly at her step-mother. 111 Weil, I never!" cries Mrs. Eden, in ap- parently genuine surprise. "I left you," she adds, to her husband, "because I fancied I heard someone trying the house door." Burglars ? queries he. I suppose so,"she answers shortly. Then she looks at Jessie, and changes coun- tenance. "You go to bed," she remarks in a sour manner. Jessie kisses her father, and then, leaves the room quietly, full of suspicions of her step-mother, but not able to give utterance to any of them lest she should excite her father. For the doctor has warned them that, inasmuch as excitement in the first instance led to his apoplectic seizure, a recurrence of it might result in death. I may as well fasten the house door," thinks Jessie, as she passes it, and she lifts the latch a moment, and looks out before closing the bolts. As she does so a hand is thrust forward out of the darkness, and a man's voice says in a Avhisper, "Here, take this ring, and wear it in memory of me." The hand has found hers now, and is pressing a ring into it. Before she has time to say a word the owner of the ring has fled into the night, and she is left alone. Quickly closing the door, she bolts and locks it. Then, not liking to disturb her father and step-mother by calling the latter out to receive the ring which she expects was meant for her, Jessie goes upstairs, taking it with her. Passing by Susan's room she espies a light under the door, and calls softly as she raps tt it, "Susie, dear, let me come in." Immediately the light goes out, but there is no answer. Taking this as a sign that she is not wanted, Jessie passes on upstairs to her own room. It is still in darkness, except for the rays of pale moonlight lying across it, which make tha dark shadows in the corners look intensely black. Feeling about for a match-box, Jessie at length succeeds in finding one, and, striking light, looks about for her candlestick. It has been put on the mantel-piece Jessie lights the candle with feverish haste, and then, looks at the ring. It is a plain gold signet ring; the stone being sardonyx. Immediately upon seeing it Jessie gives a little cry of amazement. "Why," she exclaims aloud, "it is my Ger,i,ld's I With feverish haste, she turns the ring round that she may read the inscription inside it:— Gerald Harcourt, Front his mother on his 21st birthday." CHAPTER XXIII. MRS. EDEN'S PROMISE. YES, it is Gerald Harcourt's ring. There is no doubt about that. But it was not Gerald Harcourt who pressed it into Jessie's hands as she stood in the darkness at the house door, nor was it Gerald Harcourt who said at the same time, "Here, take this ring, and wear it in memory of ii-ie I It was a great strong, rough hand that put the ring into hers, and it was a coarse, un- cultured voice that bade her take the ring and keep it in memory of the speaker. Whose voice was it? That of the man who had been talking with her step-mother so long outside, and, yes, she remembered now what it had reminded her of, it was the voice of the tramp who had frightened her one day out on the common, when Archi- bald Slater, himself in all probability a bigger scoundrel, had come to the rescue. But how came that tramp to have Gerald Harcourt's ring in his possession ? Has he robbed him ? Can Gerald possibly be in that neighbourhood ? Jessie's heart bounds at the thought. The rich colour comes into her cheeks, her eyes shine. She feels animated with renewed strength Of body and mind. "Oh, Gerald," she whispers. Dear, if you are near, if you are returning to me, my happiness will be complete. Oh, Gerald 1 She kisses the ring, and holds it near to her. The very sight of it fills her once more with loving confidence in its owner. She remem- bers his unfailing tenderness towards her, Llie:cl)ivalry of his every word and action. She recalls his love, which revealed itself to her in all he did. Never once does she think of her more recent doubts of him they have gone, vanished, never to return. The ring she holds in her hand is a talisman before which all distrust and want of love vanish as completely as if they had never been. Oh, dear, but come thou back to me, V/hatever change the year hath wrought I find not here one single thought That cries against my love for thee, she says, with trembling lips and a tender smile upon her face. She sits for some time lost in happy thoughts, and is only recalled to herself by her door being flung open, as her step- mother bursts iu. "Mercy on us, Jessie!" cries she. "Do yon know there have been thieves in the house?" Yes, yes. They have been here, too "Been here? And you sit there, looking as if something too good to be true has hap- pened What's this ? She points to Jessie's open drawer, the condition of which reveals considerable disorder. "Someone has been searching in that drawer and has taken away my purse," says Jessie, quickly, looking straight at Mrs. Eden. "My goodness! And they've taken my money Oh, Jessie the Woman's voice is grief-stricken, "I'd been saving a bit of money, over twenty pounds this ever so long, for a special purpose-a very special purpose, and it has been taken out of my box. It has clean gone." "But what can you expect?" begins Jessie. "What can you expect when you encourage tramps about the place ? I J? J? saw "What! you saw him? asks Mrs. Eden, in tones of consternation. "Yes, I saw him; and you were conver- sing with him." Mrs. Eden's colour changes. Jessie," she says, "Jessie, it isn't him! He hasn't got the money. It was for Mm I wan ted i t." "Why for him?" asks Jessie, coldly. What is he—this tramp to you ? "He's not a tramp. He is an old friend, Jess. A very old friend." "Indeed? "Yes. And that is not the point. Who has got my money? That is what I want to know." And who has taken mine? "Mine was in a box which I always keep where I sleep. It was, to-night, in a box in the front kitchen, and while I was out she hesitates. Seeing the man ? suggests Jessie. Yes—seeing the man, it disappeared. Now, Jess, tell me this? What was you doing in the sick room with your father ? "I told you. Hearing someone up in the house, stealing downstairs, I followed in pursuit. Then I heard my father calling and went to him." "Was that all? Did you take nothing from my box, Jessie Eden ? Surprised at the question, Jessie answered, Of course I did not. I might as well ask you, niother, if you took my ten pounds? Mrs. Eden shakes her head. "Then it's clear," she says, at length, its quite clear that the same party that took my money took yours." And that person was not the—tramp ? "No, no. I was out talking with him." Jessie knows this. "Then probably it was the person behind the curtain who eluded my pursuit," she suggests. That's him. I wonder who 'twas." So do I." ITe's,Fol; cletii off in -iiiy case." "Yes." Jessie is silent g, minute or two, then she says, "As I was looking out after him I overheard some of your conversation with that man and did not like it. Oh, mother! How could you ? The last words are full of indignant appeal. Mrs. Eden bursts out crying, sinking into a chair and rocking herself to and fro. It's not what you think." she gasps out. "It's not what you think——" More tears follow; then she sobs, "I'm a miserable woman A miserable woman Her grief is so pitiable and so despairing, that, in spite of her anger on her father's account, Jessie feels the utmost compassion, and rising, lays her hand kindly on the elder woman's shoulder. Tel! me all about it," she says softly. "Tell you? You — his daughter? God forbid!" Dashing away her tears, Mrs. Eden rises to her feet. Jessie stiffens visibly at this evidence of guilt. She even makes a slight gesture towards the door, significant of her wish to be alone. Her mother rises slowly. "Jess," she says, "it's a bad job! A right bad job! But you'll make matters a hundred times worse if you tell your father. Remember the doctor says any excitement now will be fatal to him." "I don't forget that," says Jessie. "I never forget that for a moment. She begins to think of Dick. Shall she tell him ?" With the intuition of another's thoughts which one has sometimes, Mrs. Eden di- vined what was in her mind. Jessie," she exclaims, you mustn't tell Dick! Dick can never keep in a thing. He'll tell his father, I am certain, if he knows about it. He'll burst out with it, there and then." Yes, Jessie is aware Dick, at his age, has no reticence, no reticence at all. If I don't tell him," she begins, if I don't tell him 11 01), you won't! You won't! You're a sensible girl. You won't say a word to him," as she speaks, Mrs. Eden is bustling out of the room, when it occurs to her to add," "The man won't come here again. I've forbidden it. He won't come near the place." "That is well," says Jessie, "otherwise I should have to take steps." Mrs. Eden has gone before Jessie recollects that she has said nothing to her about the ring, Gerald's ring, which must really have been intended for Mrs. Eden, because the man who gave it was her friend. But how came he into possession of that ring? Puzzling over the matter, it is hours before Jessie falls asleep, and in consequence does not awake before Dick batters away at her door, calling out, "We've had breakfast, Jessie, and I'm off to look after the plough- ing of the four-acre field. Are you ill ? Or what is the matter ? "rIll all right, dear boy," answers Jessie. I've been awake a good deal in the night. There—there were noises. Did you hear any ? "None," replies Dick. "I say, Jessie," he adds, you ought to do a spell of plough- ing, then you wouldn't be plagued with nerves." He goes downstairs hurriedly. Jessie draws out Gerald's ring from beneath her pillow, and looks at it, with I misty eyes. Even if there were no inscrip- tion upon it she Avould know it amongst scores of similar ones, she says to herself, and again she kisses it very fondly. When, an hour afterwards, she comes downstairs, she finds her breakfast waiting for her in the parlour, on a small round table by the fire, and Jane informs her that her mistress is busy in the sick room and Miss Susan has gone to Wakefield. A little later in the day, when they are alone, Jessie seizes an opportunity to show her step-mother the ring and inform her in what way it came into her possession. "It was meant for me, Jess," says Mrs. Eden, looking alarmed. "It's—it's one I've seen—t'man wear." I can scarcely think that," rejoins Jessie, "Tramps do not wear rings like this one." Give me it. You must, it was meant for me." "It was pressed into my hand," says Jessie, "and more, it is the ring of a very dear friend of mine. I shall not part with it unless I first ascertain that the man who brought it here came by it honestly." Mrs. Eden's face changes colour. What are you going to do with it?" she asks, breathlessly. Jessie thinks for a moment, then she answers, "It is of very great importance to me to know how this ring came into your -friend's possession. If you can get the truth from him about that, I will not hand the ring over to the police—otherwise-:—" she pauses significantly, and then, instead of completing her sentence, informs Mrs. Eden that the ring was Gerald Harcourt's, and, as a clue to the mystery of his non-appearance, is of great interest to her. Mrs. Eden, with feverish eagerness, be- seeches Jessie to keep the ring, promising that she will ascertain from the man where and how he met with it. Satisfied that she can do no more, Jessie goes out for a stroll presently, and whilst pausing near the house door, to break off a pretty spray or two of yellow jessamine, which, winter though it is, adorns the walls of the house, her attention is arrested by the sight of a gold nencil-case lying on the ground. Quickly she picks it up, looking at it closely with great amazement. It also is Gerald Harcourt's. She has seen him use it, and his name is inscribed upon it. Jessie trembles now, with fear lest some evil should have befallen the man she loves. That lie has been robbed she is certain, that he may have been murdered, too, is a most alarming thought. Giving up the idea of a stroll, she returns into the house, and beckons to her mother to come to her out of the sick room. "Well, Jess, what is it now?" asks Mrs. Eden, avoiding her eyes. "I have found this on the ground out- side," answers Jessie, holdingout the pencil- case for her to see. "It is Mr. Harcourt's, too. How can that man have obtained pos- session of Mr. Harcourt's things? You must tell me where he is? I must speak to lJÏm-I must ask him." "Oh, Jess." Mrs. Eden catches hold of her arm excitedly. "Jess, you can't know. I can't tell you." If you don't I shall place this affair in the hands of the police." Oh, you mustn't do that! You mustn't do that!" cries her step-mother, wringing her hands. The police must not know." Then you must tell me where the man is." I can't—I can't." "You must take me to him." "Nay, Jess, nay. I can't." "But I must see him, and speak to him-" "Look here, Jess," interposes the other, hastily, you want to know where Mr. Har- court is, as well as when George," the name slips out in her excitement, "got the things. Well, if you'll leave it to me, I'll find out for you to-night, I will indeed—I will find out all about it." "Will you?" Jessie looks doubtfully at her. Oh, Jess, you may believe me. I'll keep my word," is the solemn answer, as Mrs. Eden looks straight at her, through stream- ing tears. "I believe you," says Jessie, touched in spite of herself, 1, 1 believe you." (To be continued.)
-7 Twice, within a week, says a writer in "London Opinion," two curious hands were dealt at bridge in a well-known London club. In each case one set of partners got all the hearts and diamonds, and their opponents, of course, got all the spades and clubs. The cards were not "Cooked" in any way. It may be stated that the writer Baw the cards properly cut.
THE WAR HOW THE PETROPAVLOVSK SANK.— BURNING OF THE KOREAN IMPERIAL PALACE. A despatch from St. Petersburg professes to give an authentic account of the sinking of the Petropavlovsk. She, with the other vessels of the Russian squadron, was retiring into the harbour before the advance of a superior Japanese fleet, and had just reached the entrance when there was a terrific explosion of the boilers, followed by a detonation from the magazines; huge gaps were torn in the hull, and the ship rolled on her side and sank. The exact number of lives lost is unknown. The complement of the vessel was about 650, of whom, according to the latest account, 52 have been saved. The Japanese official telegram that the Japanese fleet was responsible for the sinking of the Petro- pavlovsk is officially contradicted. The General Staff is of opinion that she was blown up by a mine placed at the entrance of the harbour to protect the channel. The St. Petersburg corres- pondent of a Paris journal says that the view that the Petropavlovsk and Pobieda, were struck by torpedoes launched by Japanese submarines finds acceptance in naval circles. Admiral Alexeieff has reported a renewed bombardment of Port Arthur by the Japanese fleet. He states that no injury was done to the ships or forts. The special correspondent on board the Times steamer sends by wireless telegraphy an account of some vigorous scouting operations at the mouth of the Ya-lu by a small party of seamen from a Japanese cruiser. He states that it is believed that the entrance to Port Arthur is now sealed. M. Verestchagin, the Russian painter; was drowned on board the Petropavlovsk. According to a Washington telegram, the Russian Government has given notice that newspaper correspondents using wireless telegraphy will be treated as spies and shot. The Imperial Palace at Seoul has been destroyed by a fire. According to a telegram received by the Paris "New York Herald," railway communication with Port Arthur has been interrupted by the destruction of a bridge. ADMIRAL TOGO'S FULL REPORT ON PORT ARTHUR. The following official telegram from iokio was received at the Japanese Legation on Sun- day Admiral Togo reports as follows: — "On the 11th our combined fleet commenced, as previously planned, the eighth attack upon Port Arthur. "The fourth and the fifth destroyer flotillas, the fourteenth torpedo flotilla, and the Kcryo Maru reached the entrance of Port Arthur at midnight of the 12th, and effected the laying of mines at several points outside the port, defy- ing the enemy's searchlight. "The second destroyer flotilla discovered at dawn of the 13th one "Russian destroyer trying to enter the harbour, and after ten minutes' at- tack sank her. "Another Russian destroyer was discovered coming from the direction of Liao-ti-shan. We attacked her, but she managed to flee into the harbour. "There were no casualties on our side, except two seamen on the Ikazuchi slightly wounded. There was no time to rescue the enemy's drown- ing crew, as the Bayanapproached. "The third fleet reached outside Port Arthur Rt eight a.m., when the Bayan came out and opened fire.. Immediatelv the Novik, Askold, Diana, Petro- pavlovsk, Pobieda, and Poltava came out and made offensive attack upon us. "Our third fleet, tardily answering and gradu- ally retiring, enticed the enemy fifteen miles south-east of the port, when our first- fleet, being informed by the wireless telegraphy from the third fleet, suddenly appeared before the enemy and attacked them. "While the enemy was trying to regain the port a battleship of the Petropavlovsk type struc-K mines laid by us on the previous evening, and sank at 10.32 a.m. "Another ship was observed to have lost free- dom of movement, but the confusion of the enemy's ships prevented us from identifying her. They finallv managed to regain the port. "Our third fleet suffered no damage. The enemy's damage was, besides the above-men tioned, probablv slight also. "Our first fleit did not reach the firing distance. Our fleets retired at one p.m., prepared for another attack. "On the 14t.li our fleet re-sailed towards Port Arthur. The second, the fourth, and the fifth destroyer flotillas and the ninth torpedo flotiua also joined at three a.m., and the third fleet at seven a.m. i. "No enemy's shin was seen outside the port. C ar first fleet arrived there at nine a.m., and discovering three mines laid by the enemy, destroyed them all. "The Kaluga and the Nishin were despatched to the west of Liao-ti-shSn. They made indirect bombardment for two hours, this being their first action. „ n "The new forts at Liao-ti-shan were^ finally silenced. Our forces retired at 1.30 p.m. THE SEOUL FIRE. ARCHIVES AND TREASURE INTACT. The Emperor of Korea, who appeared quite aelf-possessed, gave an audience to the foreign Ministers at Seoul on Saturday, and thanked Mr. Hayashi, the Japanese Minister, for sending the fire brigade and troops to extinguish the Palace fire. His Majesty declared that he personally observed the origin of the fire. It was caused, ne said, by the new flues under the floor, which were defective, igniting the woodwork. The Palace officials, who corroborate the Emperor's version, are indignant at the insinua- tion of incendiarism. Arrangements are. being made to rebuild the Palace on the same site, because the Emperor is compelled to reside in the same place for three years in order to com- plete the period of mourning for the Dowager Empress. After this, he will, in accordance witn Mr. Hayashi's suggestion, remove to the Eastern Palace, near the Japanese Legation. The total damage caused by the fire is fcoUU out sterling. The archives and the treasury, whicu were buried underground, have been discovered unhurt. The Emperor made his escape from the Fa^ace were buried underground, have been discovered unhurt. The Emperor made his escape from the Fa^ace under an escort of Japanese troops to the library. under an escort of Japanese troops, to the library. NO NEWS OF IMPORTANCE FROM THE FRONT. There was very little news at the beginning of the week of actual operations, either military or naval, in the theatre of war. The Russian and Japanese outposts on the Yalu were reported to be within a few hundred yards of each other. A party of Cossacks entered Song-ching on Saturday morning. The Japanese squadron at Port Arthur on April 13 consisted, according to a Tokio correspondent, of six battleships, two first-ciase cruisers, and four second-class cruisers. The I Russians had five battleships, two first-class cruisers, and one second-class cruiser. A St, Petersburg telegram published in Paris says that the Japanese are preparing to effect a landing in the Bay of Korea. A Tien-tsin despatch says reports have been received there that a fleet of over 70 Japanese transports has been sighted, heading for Ein-chau, to the north of Port Arthur. A correspondent of the Paris Figaro asserts that the Russian Government is now con- sidering the question of utilising the Black Sea squadron, and thinks that the British Government would not go beyond a platonic protest if the Russian vessels passed the Straits. A special correspondent who has sent to London various messages by wireless telegraphy from the Times steamer has forwarded from Wei-hai-wei a protest against the threat of the Russian Government to treat as spies correspondents using wireless telegraphy at sea. A SIGNALMAN'S THRILLING STORY. The Associated Press correspondent at Liaoyang says: Eager to ascertain what had occurred on board the sunken ship Petropavlovsk after the disaster at Port Arthur last week, I hastened to the landing, I where a small remnant of the gallant crew were I being put ashore and conveyed to the hospital. I Signalman Bockhoff, who was slightly wounded, was able to give me a remarkably clear statement of the disaster. We were ^turning to harbour,5 be said, 'with the PetropavlovslC leading. Some of our cruisers which had remained in the harbour came out and steamed towards the enemy, firing 16 shots at the Japanese ships with bow guns. They then retired. The Japanese numbered 14 heavy ships, wilile we were nine. Against their armoured cruisers we had only the Bayan. I stood in the battle wheelhouse on the bridge of the Petro- pavlovsk, looking up the signal-book. The ad. miral's lastsignal had been for the torpedo-boats to enter the harbour. I-, The Petropavlovsk slowed speed and almost stood still. Suddenly the ship shook violently. I heard a fearful explosion, immediately followed by another, and then another. They seemed to me to be directly under the bridge. I rushed to the door of the wheelhouse, but at the door I could not pass the helmsman. I sprang to the window and jumped out. The ship was listing. I feared every moment she would overturn. On the bridge I saw an officer weltering in blood. It was our Admiral Makaroff. He lay face downwards. I sprang towards him, grasped his Bhoulder, and attempted to raise him. The ship seemed to be falling somewhere. From all sides few fragments. I heard a deafening screech, a frightful din. Smoke rose in dense clouds, and flames seemed to leap towards the bridge where I was standing beside the admiral. I jumped on the rail and was washed off, but I succeeded in grabbing something. Then I was sucked down. 1 CRn remember faliing masts, then nothing more. On our ship was an old man with a beautiful white beard, who had been good to the men. He had a book in his hand, and seemed writing, perhaps sketching. He was Yerestchagin.' CZAR LENDS HIS PRIVATE FORTUNE. The St. Petersburg correspondent of the Petit Parisien," in an interview with a diplo- matist, who is said to enjoy the entire confidence of the Czar, touched cn the question of the issue of a new loan. This, it seems, is strongly opposed by his Majesty, who is greatly displeased at the comments of the European Press on the subject of Russian credit. His Majesty has determined to place his entire personal fortune at the service of his country for the purposes of the war. This is said to amount to an enormous sum, the amount deposited in the Czar's name in one foreign bank alone reaching eighty million roubles. The diplomatist assured the correspondent that this sum would be withdrawn within a month and would be lent to the country without interest or guarantee, to be repayable whenever the nation found itself in a sufficiently prosperous condition. It is hardly probable that any depositor would have as large a sum as this, however, it may be pointed out, in any one bank. RUSSIAN MOVE IN KOREA. It is reported from Seoul that a strong Russian force is advancing along the eastern coast ol Korea, and has reached Puk-cheng, 80 miles north of en saii, with the evident intention of drawing off the Japanese attack on the Ya-lu. General Kuropatkin has reported a skirmish between the outposts on the Ya-lu, in which the Japanese lost six killed and the Russians had two wounded. A St. Petersburg telegram states that the popula- tion of Vladivostok is in want of provisions, and many of the inhabitants are quitting the town. It is o-Mcialiy announced that the internal condi- tions of Japan are quite normal and remain UD- affected by the war.
I TIBET MISSION I ATTITUDE OF THE LAMAS. I All the prisoners taken by the British have been relieved of their arms and sent home from Gyangtse, but the action of the Lamas at that place in putting 100 monks into the fighting line is regarded (says the "Times" correspon- dent) as a grave offence, considering the special treatment which has been accorood to all the monasteries and gompas on the way into Tibet by the British Mission. The chief Lamas were received on Saturday by Colonel Younghusband, who pointed out that the Lamas themselves were compelling the ex- pedition for its own safety to treat the religious houses and men as hostile. The Lamas pleaded that there were overruling orders from Lhasa J and that there was only a small and unwilling response to them on the part of the monks at Gyangtse. In order to maintain connection with the Lamas, Colonel Younghusband inflicted only a small fine, but insisted on a periodical inspec- tion of the Lamassery by British officers. The Dalai Lama remains obstinate in his refusal to recognise the mission. TERROR-STRICKEN TIBETANS. The night before the action in Red Idol Gorge (according to the correspondent of one of the London News Agencies at Gyangtse) the mounted infantry and scouts were fired on from a ridge at right angles to the valley. The force marched out at eight next morning. The Tibetans had posted about 20 leather can- non and jingals on the ridge and opened a con- tinuous fire, but all the missiles fell short. Brigadier-General Macdonald decided to send the Gurkhas up a very steep mountain on the left to outflank their position, while the Sikhs kept to the valley. A great snow cloud swept over the hills, hiding the enemy and the Gurkhas from view. Meanwhile the Tibetans kept on firing through the clouds. The snowstorm lasted about an hour. When the clouds cleared it was found that the Gurkhas were still distant from the enemy's position. As the Tibetans' fire was perfectly harmless the General decided to send the mounted in- fantry through the gorge to reconnoitre. They came back with the information that there was a second position behind the first, with many more of the enemy with jingals behind the, rocks. The Sikhs then advanced on this posi- tion, but could not scale the rocks, so they marched through the gorge, the Tibetans firing the while. Finally they found themselves in a, fairly open valley behind the enemy's position. The Tibetans could then be seen running about the rocks and descending into the valley in a great fright. The mounted infantry pursued them, killing many. The troops could have killed more, but the officers restrained their men. Meanwhile the Gurkhas had reached the top of the mountain, where they found large num- bers of Tibetans hiding in caves in terror. These were called out and reassured, and were told to break their swords and matchlocks, which they did with manifest delight, dancing and jumping on them with pleasure. They were brought down into camp as prisoners. Many are now working with the British Mission as doolie bearers. They explained that they were peasants and did not want to fight, but were forced to do so by the Lamas, who threatened to burn down their villages. FOUR SEPOYS KILLED. Tw° ihstres.smg accidents 'have taken place. Wmle the troops were engaged in destroying the gunpowder abandoned by the Tibetans at Gura fcur Sepoys were killed and a native officer severely injured, and at Gvangtse again fourteen Sepoys were severely hurt. Colonel Young- nusband nas received a letter from two leading Bhutanese chiefs, congratulating him upon the success cf the British arms, and adding that the Tioetans brought their punishment upon them- selves by their folly. Tongsa Penlop intends to visit Colonel Younghusband here.
The Bolivian and T^rarran newspapers an- nounce that, after a search extending over five centuries, the great buried treasure of the Incas, upon which countless romances have been founded, ha3 been discovered buried in Bolivia., The treasure, which is valued at £ 4,000,000, was discovered, by a party of British and American engineers at Chayaltaya. The natives are in a state of great excitement, for they believe that there is treasure to the value of £ 7,000,000 still to be discovered- I An individual of somewhat doubtful appear- ¡ ance was applying for a situation as van-driver: On being asked for references, he mentioned one of the dealer's old hands, who was called in and questioned as to the applicant's honesty. s The referee rubbed his chin meditatively for, a rnoment, and said, "Honest? Well, guv'nor nls honesty's bin proved agin and agin. Faith, he's I bin tried sivin toimes for stealing, and eschcaped every teime!" The appiieaat wae not engaged.
NATURE KOTES. j ROOK BUILDERS. These little builders do their work solidly, and it is still going on. They labour at the bottom of the deep sea, which though it was once thought to be devoid of life, is now found to be a populous empire, thronged with active life and strange forms. By means of dredging-bags specimens are brought from a depth of three miles, and they report the bottom of the sea all alive-a sticky mud, composed of little balls of gelatinous flesh. Under the microscope it is also found to be full of their minute shells, which form chalk. Thus even the crayons we use in drawing are museums of natural history. The Laurentian hills are the work of these little builders. FRUIT TREE BLOSSOMS. When flowering fruit trees are grown out of doors, and branches are cut at intervals for decora- tive purposes indoors, it is always better to place them in opaque vessels. A good reason for this cannot at present be given, says the County Gentleman," but the fact remains that branches of flowering fruit trees cut in the orthodox way to place in vases last twice as long in a metal or china receptacle as they do in a glass one. SINGS WHILE SWIMMING. One of the prettiest companions of the angler in early spring is the dipper, or water-ouzel, as lip, is called in books, though the almost universal name for the bird in the North is the water-crow." At this time it is in full song, and very pretty the notes are. Part of the song is rather like that of the wren, but at the conclusion of its performance it utters several notes almost as rich (says the County Gentleman") as those of the nightingale. It can fly under water, as well as run along the bottom, and it can also float and swim. It some- times swims when singing, and is the only bird which does so. THE UNSHELLED ORAB. Professor Miall, lecturing at the Royal Institu- tion in London on the transformations of animals, took as typical examples the crab and the bar- nacle. Till quite recent times, he said, it was not suspected that these sober crustaceans enjoyed a preliminary existence as free sea-rovers. The crab in its swimming trim had long been known to zoology as the zoea when by accident it came in a transition stage under the eye of a naturalist. The motive for the trans- formation, Professor Miall said, was obvious. On no part of the earth's surface is competition so keen as in the shallow sea, and nowhere are the dangers to which an unprotected animal is exposed so great. If it is to browse there in security the crab must put on armour. THE BIOGRAPHY OF A BARNACLE. The life history of the barnacle is most interest- ing. It has two states of existence as a swimming creature before it settles down for good. When in due time it runs its head against a solid object a sort of cement exudes from its long feelers, and in a moment its free existence is at an end. Pro- fessor Miall has described infascin ating detail the changes which the new mode of life entails. No longer necessary, the head degenerates, while the middle part of the body develops and becomes the centre of life. And so the barnacle shows itself to be a true crustacean and free of the reproach, under which it remained so long, of being merely a kind of mollusc. THE OrTER AND HIS ENEMIES. The evasive silence and nocturnal habits of most "mammals" in Britain cause them, no doubt (says a writer in the "Daily Graphic") to be overlooked and neglected, and we should all pro- bably be surprised to discover how unsuspectedly numerous, in some parts of the country, such creatures as the badger and the polecat, supposed to be approaching extinction, still remain. The otter, again, manifestly keeps up its numbers in most of its haunts, and is always ready to colonise new waters where circumstances permit. In some small streams they reappear every spring almost as regularly as the swallows, and are as regularly killed by the gamekeepers. For the otter has now almost as bad a reputation in game preserves and fowlyards as the stoat or fox, while in the trout stream he has a sphere of "mischief" all his own. here seems, too, to be some understood connec- tion between a village inn-parlour and a stuffed otter in a glass case; so the beasts chances of establishing itself in new water is usually small. IN THE HEIGHTS OF TIBET. An article upon the route of the Tibet Mission, by the special correspondent of the Times," contains an interesting record of temperatures and conditions of life at high altitudes. The mission has necessitated the continued exposure of a very large number of untried men to life at altitudes ranging between 10,000ft; and 15,700ft., and the general results are of considerable value. The lowest temperature reached on the route has been-26deg. F. at Chuggia, on the Tnng-la, which was, however, only an encampment. Of actual nightly exposure to cold of men and animals Tuna probably holds the record with — 17deg, F. ButPharihas repeatedly reached— deg.F., and Kamparah; nine miles dis- tance from Phari, might—if continual registration had been possible there—show a lower figure than either. The normal height minimum is probably 10deg. F. for 15,000it. warming to 7deg. F. for 10,000ft. Mountain sickness has been closely observed by the medical men accompanying the mission. Indigestion has been common on account of the eating of imperfectly-cooked food. At 15,000ft. water boils at a temperature about 3Cdeg. F. lower than at sea-level, and the normal amount of cooking is therefore quite inadequate. At 15,000ft. it is almost impossible to boil rice pro- perly. Dal-the common red lentil of India-affords a curious example of the difficulty of cooking at high elevations. Of the live different kinds of dal supplied to the troops—Mussoor, Urad, Arhar, Moong, and Chenna—only the first is capable of being cooked at all heights above 10,000ft. It is difficult to make the native understand these aberrations of gastrology, and a great deal of insufficient cooking has been the natural result. MEERKATS AT THE ZOC- A corner of the beavers' enclosure in the gardens of the Zoological Society of London has been set apart for those interesting little South African creatures, the meerkats. These animals, known indifferently as suricates, belong to the civet family, which includes hot only the true civets, but the genets, paradoxures, and ichneumons. This species is small, of slender build, and has a tail about half as long as its body. The colour of its soft and rather long fur is grizzled, and the hinder part of the back is transversely marked with black stripes. The new cage is divided into two compartments, and is so constructed that the animals can burrow in the siiidy soil. ARTFUL RATS. How do you think a rat managed to transport a big potato to his home ? Lying on his back, he. placed the potato on his breast and held it there with his paws, while his mate dragged him along by the tail like a sledge until they came to a hole in the floor. Down this hole the potato was rolled, and the rats went tumbling after! However, we must not do the rats an injustice. There is no doubt that in many cases they behave very kindly one to another. Here is a pleasing example of such affection. A poor blind old rat has acquired a great liking for cod-liver oil (doesn't this prove that they are sensible beings as well as thievish, and cunning, and kind ?)—a fondness which had probably grown upon him before he lost his sight. Of course he was unable without help to gratify this taste of his, but a young rat, pitying his forlorn state, used to lead him to the oil-flasks. Now, when a rat wants anything out of a bottle, he does not knock the vessel over and break it; that would be clumsy and No; he simply slips his tail into the liquid and then licks,his tail. Well, when the young condtictor arrived at the cod-liver oil, he dipped bit tail into the bottle, and allowed his ▼eoen&lg friend to liok the oil off. This done, the ea&r4i«ii carefully conveyed his bHnd charge back £ » his lodging. This little dodge WM repeated opes