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Tracked to his lair, or, The pursuit of the Midnight Raider

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Title:
Tracked to his lair, or, The pursuit of the Midnight Raider
Series Title:
American Indian weekly.
Physical Description:
1 online resource (31 p.) 28 cm. : ;
Language:
English
Creator:
Dair, Spencer
Publisher:
s.n.
Place of Publication:
Cleveland A. Westbrook, c1910
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Subjects / Keywords:
Indians of North America -- Fiction   ( lcsh )
Western stories   ( lcsh )
Dime novels   ( lcsh )
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serial   ( sobekcm )

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University of South Florida Library
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University of South Florida
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
usfldc doi - D14-00501
usfldc handle - d14.501
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SFS0000001:00002


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No.2 THE ARTHUR WESTBROOK COMPANY CLEVELAND U. S . A. S-.

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BY COLONEL SPENCER DAIR VOL. I II rBE ARTHUR WESTBROOK COMPANY, CLEVELAND, OHIO, U S A .. II NO.2 Copyright, 1910, by the Arthur Westbrook C ompany, Cleveland, Ohio. TRACKED TO HIS LAIR \ OR The Pursuit of the Midnight Raider '" By COL. SPENCER DAIR PRINCIPAL CHARACTERS. THE MIDNIGHT RAIDER-A dare devil Indian chief, known as Scalping Louie, who breaks from the Indian reservation and proceeds to steal cattle and burn houses, being finally brought to his well-deserved end by a cowboy who has the assistance of an aged scout. SAM BOWSER-Owner of the Double Cross ranch, il). Arizona, who is roused from bed by an eerie cry, finds a spectre hov ering ov e r his cattle corral and while he is qui eting his cowboys, s e es his cattle stamp eded by the apparition Starting in pursuit, he trails one bunch of cattle to a dange r o u s swamp in which h e c o m es n ear losing hi s lif e by being sucked into a mud hol e then is n early burne d t o d eath in a fire se t to driv e out the Midnight Raide r and finally has the s ati s faction of see ing o ne of hi s cow p un chers send the miscreant to his doom. SARAH BOWSER-His wife. CHAPTER 1. A MIDNIGHT ALARM. O -ue e I P i e r c in g and s hrill fro m the t e n se s tilln ess o f the night so un de d thi s e e ri e wail. In t e r r ified alarm Sam Bow s e r r ose in hi s b e d t o hi s e lb ow. As h e remain e d thus try in g t o d e cid e whether the awe so me s hri e k wa s a cry o f di stress fro m s om e .. human being o r was an imagining of hi s mind, hi s w i fe awoke. What wa s that?" she ga s ped, excitedly. You heard it, too? " I-I thought I heard something. It sounded like the HENRY HAWKs-Owner of the Star and Moon ranch, whose buildings are burned by the renegade Indian ch i eftain. He joins with Bowse1' in the trailing of the raider to his lair. AMY HAWKS-His wife. DEADSHOT PETECowboy on D o.uble Cross ranch, who fir es the bullet that ends the raider's life SANDy-Foreman on Double Cross ranch. PINKy-Cowboy in the Double Cross outfit. KI VI-Foreman on Star and Moon ranch, who helps D ead-shot. DUDE-Cowboy on Star and Moon ranch. GROUCH-Cowboy on Star and Moon ranch. SLIPPERY NIG-Half-bre ed scout, with a grievance against Scalping Louie and i s called b y D e ad shot to run him d 9 wn very soul being drawn from some woman. U-ugh! It makes me s hiver to think of it " Well, there aren't any women nearer than thirty mile s except you, s o it couldn t be that." But some one might be c<\rrying a woman off or murd e ring her. Jus t becau s e Amy Hawks i s the neare s t one we know of, doe s n t make it s o there mightn' t be s ome poor creature being killed." To this the man made no respon se, and togeth e r they listened intently for a repetition of the awful wail. Guess it must have been some coyote go t kicked while he was smelling round the cattle This is t h e fi--" But the words literally stuck in Bowse r 's m o uth.

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2 THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. Again the shriek, bloodcurdling in its gruesomeness, rang out ere he could finish what he purposed to say. This timet1:here was no mistaking the cry. It seemed to come from a woman in awful distress and to be close at hand. "There's some mischief afoot!" exclaimed the man, as, heedless of his wife's protests, he leaped from his bed, seized his rifle and rushed to the door. Yet, when he threw it open, there was nothing to be seen! The silence and the darkness of the night were overwhelming-as only the silence and darkness of the plains of Arizona can be. Sam Bowser was the owner of the Double Cross ranch. \Vith no neighbors nearer than thirty miles, he and his wife, Sarah, lived in the home ranch house. This building faced the South. To the right, and some sixty feet dIstant, was the bunk-house, where the cowpunchers lived when not on the range. To the North and between the two houses was a horse corral. Directly back of this was a second corral for the cattle, so large that it seemed more like a big pasture enclosed by barbed wire than a yard. Only the day before had Bowser's men driven the pick of his herds back to the home ranch in order that they might be shipped away to the great cattle markets of the Middle West. Scarcely had the ranch owner opened the door than lig .hts blazed in the bunkhouse, followed an instant later by the rush of the cowpunchers, as, guns in their hands, they crept from their shanty to learn the caus\ of the alarm. "-" Steady, boys! Don't go to shooting up hIe country! warned Bowser, running across the yard to join his men. .. What did you make of it, Sam?" demanded a tall, leathery cowpuncher, who served as foreman. .. You've got me, Sandy. The missus 'lows it's some woman being murdered." But there ain't any women round here," protested another of the men, who had been christened" Pinky" by his feHows because of his fondness for decorating his saddle and bridle with anything of the color. "That's just what I told her," declared the ranch man, evidently glad to learn his opinion found support. .. But she 'lowed that didn't make any difference, that one or a dozen could be brought here. I sort of had an ide? it might have been a coyote." Wal, it warn't no coyote," drawled the third of the boys attached to the Double Cross outfit, who revelled in the title of Deadshot Pete. "I been on these plains too long not to know every tone and variation of the songs them sneaks sing." "Then what was it?" demanded Sandy. "Seems to me, if it was some man or woman being done to death, they'<1 keep up more of a' continuous yelling." . j "unless it's too late," commented Deadshot, signifi cantly. This suggestion that perhaps the gruesOn1e wails which had roused them all from their sleep might have been the dying protests or appeals for help' of some human being caused the men to become silent. "Don't see how we can do any good' so long as we don't hear the thing again to give us a definite idea of its direction," remarked the ranchman, after a of several minutes peering into the darkness and listening had been productive of neither sight nor sound. "Guess we'd better get back to our bunks and wait till "Reckon you're right, Sam," returned his foreman. ,. It's either too late, as Deadshot says, or we mtt'st hear it again so' we can get our bearings." But neither the owner nor the outfit of the Double Cross was destined to get any more that night! While talking, the men had been looking toward the South. Chancing to turn so that he was facing the cattle corral, l?inky suddenly uttered an exclamation of wild fear, then clutched Sandy by the arm, wheeling him about, as he pointed Northward with trembling hand .. Amazed at such action on the part of their bmi.kmate, the others followed his gaZ'e. Apparently floating through the air, directly above the cattle conal, was a 7(,hite spect{e! CHAPTER II. THE RAID. Ghosties! gasped Sandy, in a voice scarcely above a whisper. "No wonder we couldn't place it-but I knew it warn't no coyote," asserted Deadshot. For several minutes the men gazed at the awesome thing as it flitted hither and thither. By the blood of my mother! But I'm glad the crittur never took it into its htad to visit us on the breathed Pinky. ,. Same here," chorused Sandy and Deadshot. It means trouble-you see if it doesn't," continued the latter. "The only other time I ever see anything like it was the night before the Pi utes dashed down on old man Turner's ranch and killed all but me a.nd a lowdown gambler called Crooked Joe." This assertion that the eerie spectre floating before their eyes was not the first one he had seen instantly claimed the ears of his companions, though they kept their gaze riveted on the apparition. What was that one like? breathed Pinky. It was all lit up, like fire The Pi utes said it was a l.:urse put. out by their Medicine ::\1an." But how'd you manage to get away from the Injun::; and escape the massacre?" inquired Sanely, in whom Deadshot's tales of his experiences always aroused s us picion of their truthfulness

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( THE A?lIERICAN IXDIAN \YEEKL Y 3 "Me a nd C rooked J oe s lop e d a s soon a s the light in the s k y w as di s c overed. ?lIark my word'Jllan d e ar, c ve ry tzmc y o u s ec s a n)'thillg ill thc air lilw ghosties, i t 1l1CQJ1S trouble! )) "\V ell, you aren't going to get out o f it thi s time by digging out," in the ranch own e r, wh o had been lis tening with increa s ing alarm to hi s cowpunch er's sto ry and feare d the eff e ct it mi ght hav e upon the res t of hi s men. I need you all t o -m orro w to g e t the bunch to the loading s tation. So don't think you can s neak off. " \Ve can t eh? demanded Deadshot. (Who's a going to s top 1l1e if I want to go? " I am, with thi s rifle I've got in my hands," returi1ed thc owner of the ranch calmly. "I don't want any troubl e But I won't stand for any of this nonsense about spirits trouble and running away. If anyone of you tries to get a pony from that corral to-night, I'll put shell into him. Just ke e p that in .your The unexpected turn of affair s had amazed the other cowboy s and, forgetting all about the spectre, they watched the 'ranchman and hi s helper. .( You kinder got the drop on me, Sam," growled the cowpuncher, s o I 'low I'll do jus t a s you say. Be s ide s I didn't mean nothing anyhow." .. All right, Deadshot. No hard feeling s Let's go over 'to the cattle corral and see what thi s white thing i s ." 'What, go chasing a ,ghostie? gasped Sandy, the very thought of any man daring to inve s tig\ite an apparitio n seeming akin to sacrilege to his supers titious mind. .. Sure. Why npt? It won't eat you. .. \Vell, Wit can go if you like. But I ain t particular," returned til e f o reman. "That ain't an y part of my job." The n e cess ity for anyone to go, however was s uddenly obviated. \\lith an abruptness that wa s in keeping i ith it s c o ming the s pectr e vanished (, & kull s and cro ss b o n es Did yo u s ee that? It jus t float e d away and we loo king straight at it!" m oa ned Sandy. The uncannine ss of the appariti o n' s di sappeara n c e impresse d eve n the ranch owner, and h e was .. wondering a s t o the cours e he s h o uld purs u e to reassure hi s men wh e n Pinky whi s p e rei:l: Let's go into the h o use before the blamed thing l ight s on u s here .. The thought that the my s teriou s s pectre might app{ar f ace t o fac e with them unnerved these men of the plain s men to Wh0111 danger in any tangible form was a delight -and'they w e re on point of dashing into their bunkhouse in utte r panic when they were recalled to their 1I0 rmal s elve s Simultaneously with the di s appearance of the s pe ctre came a pitching and s waying amon g the cattle, follow e d in s talJtly by terrified bellowing and the wildest confu s ion. .. T h e ghos ties. ca s t a s p ell on th e cattle! ., whimpe r e d Sandy. Didn' t I s a y it meant t r o uble? demanded Deads hot, exultin g a t th e very evid ent fulfilm ent of hi s prophecy. D o n t stand th e re t alking! Get y our p o nie s and come o n! 'We'v e got our work cut out for u s What it means I d o n t know. But I d o kn b w if we d o n t s teady those ca ttle d own liv ely, th ey'll stampede-and then we'll have a merry time! declar e d the ranchman, leading the way t o the hors e corral. A mome nt, fearing that the animal s had, indeed, be e n cursed, held the cowpu chers inactive. Then, their life l ong training on the plains coming to the fore, they fol l o wed their employer and were soon racing to the terrors tricken cattle Their fear increasing with every moment, the animals were plunging and lowing the crashing of their horns s ounding like the barking of pistols above the dull roar o f the pounding of their hoofs. There must be wolves in amongst 'em! yelled Sandy, tiding up clo s e to Bowser. "It's breaking out all over th e c o rral not in just one place " \ V ell whatever it i s we've got to quiet the cattle, or I won't have one fit to s hip away. Get busy, boys !" But .jus t as the ranchman finished speaking, Pinky let o ut a yell. Look, right in the middle of the corral! The ghostie again! he cried. Turning their eye s in the direction indicated, the beheld the same white form s eemingly floating over the head s of the cattle. .. It mu s t be th e Old i'\ick him self!" moaned Sandy, .. There 'll be no quieting tli e m critturs Sam, with that thing h o vering ov e r them Too well did the ranch owner realize this fact-and he also realized that unless h e did something to remove the s u g g es ti o n of the s up ernatura l fro m the m y sterious ap p a riti Q n h e w o uld b e un able t o c o ntrol eith e r men o r ca ttl e J u s t what the thin g was, h e did not know. Yet, being a man o f an unimaginative mind, he decided to find out. \\"ith o ut s ayin!;; w o rd o f his intentions to his assist a nts, the owner of th e D o uble Cross threw his rifle to his s h o ulder, t o ok a hurried s ight at the s pectral form and pull e d the trigger. \ s th e report rang out, the cowpunchers leaned forward in their s addle s watching the form intently. T o s h oo t at a ghos t require d more courage-in view o f the traditions relating to ill-luck and curses such an ac t br ought d o wn upon th e head of one so ra sh-than t h e y p oss e ss ed and the c o wb oys fully expected s ome dire puni shment t o be in stantly mete d out to their bo ss F o r an int e n s e m o m e nt, there was no apparent re s ult tro m the bullet sent at th e floating form. The n a m o cking laugh rent the air, and the white s p ectre'vani s hed a s co mpl e t e ly a s b e fore! .. The re' s more hum a n th a n s p oo k to that v o ice! .. excla im e d D o wser.

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4 THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. Skull s and cross bon es I have it It's a r a id cri e d Sandy. CHAPTER III. T H E RANCH MAN'S v o w The ranchman's assertion that the s pectre was of human invention and their foreman's d eclarati o n that it was but a rus e to cover the raiding o f the cattle, pro duced an instantaneous reacti o n upon the c owpunchers .. B y my saddle you 're right t a ss ented Deads hot. .. That's what the trouble is. S o mebod y's trying to lift the I've seen 'em started on a stampe de too many time s not to recognize the sympto m s And here we' ye afraid of a spook gi ving the thie v ing cus s e s jus t the chanc e the y planned : Say, Sam, I wo uldn t blam e you f o r sacking the w h o l e kit and b ood l e o f us!" h e added h is shame and contriti o n evident in hi s vo i ce Don't was te time b e ing sorry, get busy and h e l p c a l m the ca ttle!" returned hi s e mpl oye r. .. Y ou b oys rid e round 'e m and get 'e m to m illing if yo u can. I w ant to keep m y eye s open for another sight o f Mr. Spook." Dee pl y chagrined to thin k t h ey had a ll owe d s u c h a trick t o be played on the m f o r they r e alized tha t wh e n the s t o r y got out, the D o ubl e C r oss outfit wo uld b e the laughin g s t o ck of all the othe r c ow men in the reg i on, the cow b oys se t about work w ith a w ill. But the j o b w a s too big for t hem! Even before they had r idd en fifty ya r ds a l o n g t h e barbed wire fe nce, t hey l ea rn ed tha t t h e i r efforts wo ul d proll e f ruitl e )s. Wit h cras hing o f ho rn s s n o rtin g a n d bell ow in g, a bun ch o f the cattle das hed out on t o the p lains, the o u t lin es o f their bodie s jus t vi s ibl e a s the y plun g ed a l o n g As tho u g h thi s breaking away f r o m t he h erd ha d b een prearranged, oth e r bun c h es r ace d away in t o th e dark n ess. "T4e fenc e has been cut! The fence h as been cut! r o ared Sandy at the t op of h i s lung s. .. There' s no use t r ying to ho l d the crittur s Come on back to Sam and we 'll find out what he wants u s to do, returned Deads hot . Aware that w ith the c a ttl e da s hing awa y in a l l p o int s of the compa ss, it was an. i mpossibl e tas k for the m t o hope .to ro u nd them up or ev en to try to hold the one" that had n o t already gone P inky and I?ead s h o t rod e ba c1 ( with their fo r eman until th ey ca m e t o the ranc h ow ner. .. What's t o do?" a s k e d P inky, a f t e r the f a c t that th e barbed wire f ence h a d be e n cut in s everal place s had been reported t o B o wser. .. Lay for Mr. Spook!" s n ap p e d th e ow ner o f th e Double C r oss I'll gi v e anyone 'of y ou a th o u sa nd dollars for hi s dead body! VIe '1l each of us take one s id e of the corral a ncJ patrol it .. B u t we haven' t got' out r ifles, only our s i x s hooter s," int e r rupted Deads hot. T h en .ri de for all your worth t o the b un kh ou s e and get them! While y ou 're the re just tell the mi ss u s what's up. T hen hurry back. And say, bring some torches." he s houted, as the thought tha t l ights might prov e u seful came to him, for pis man w a s alread y racing f o r the guns. "That's some .trick," mutte r e d Sandy, whil e they waite d "Wonder w a s there m ore than one o f e m?" Sure," asserted Pinky "There was probabl y three o r four of em working o n the fence, cutting the wire s, whil e the other played ghos tie!" This opinion of the numerical stre ngth o f the Midnight Raiders which found read y acceptance from B owser and Sandy, was later to be proved false howe ver! They were destined to learn that the dare d e vil cattle thief was a lone man! "That being the ca se, a ren t w e wa sting tim e try in g fo r a s hot at them?" dem a n de d the f o r em an .. T h ey probabl y made their get a wa y al o n g w ith that first b unch of cattle." .. M a y be you're right Sandy," a sse n te d t h e ranchman. But I'v e got a sort o f hunc h tha t s p oo k w ill s h ow him self o nc e more. A nd the o wner o f th e Double C r oss was ri ght-tho u g h the m etho d chosetl b y the s pect r al rai der t o di sclose hi s wh e reab outs w a s differ ent fro m that w h i ch B owse r ex pected! Lin g ering at the h o u ses o nl y l o n g en o u g h to m ake a hurrie d r e p ort t o the ran c hm a n 's w i fe a n d then to get the rifl es a n d t o r c h es D ea d s h o t was soon b ac k w ith his co mpani o n s H e re e very b o d y take a to r c h a n d hurry to you r o s t s," ordered B o w se r a s his m an r ode up. "Sandy, yo u go t o the W es t s ide; P ink y t o th e N" orth; Dea d s h o t t o th e E a s t and I'll take the ;:lou t h K e ep your eyes p ee l e d-and r emember t he t housand d ollars! Even as h e the ranc hman t o u c h ed a matc h t o his t o r c h an d w h e n th e flame fla r ed up, it threw t h e four men in t o bo l d reli ef. t t How l ong s hall we patr o l ? as k ed Deadshot. "Till I wave m y torch in the air. Then ride to t h e hou se. \Ve' ll ge t some grub and pick up t h e trai l as soo n a,; it g e t s day l ight." B e fore any M the quartet cou l d take up the task o f patrolling the cut fence h owev e r the cattle thief made him s elf known. [la ng! b o om e d a gun fro m the North. In amazement the cowb oys wheeled And eve n a s they did, a bull e t whi s tled throug h the air, carry in g the s ombr e r o fro m Bow se r 's head. .. D o u s e the t o r c he s It g ive s 'e m a line o n u s cried D e ad s h o t in alarm l es t a s econd s hell might find i ts man 0 urging did the ranch owne r o r any of hi s men n ee d t o mak e t hem obey. T h e s hot had lleen t o o well aimed a nd h ad com e too close to it s mark for t hem to care to m a k e t a r ge t s o f for gu n me n who could s u c h skill at nig ht.

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THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. 5 But, as they hurl e d the torc hes t o t h e gro und the ranc h man r ose in hi s stirrups . Y o u m ay have th(} dro p on m e now! he roared shaking hi s fis t i n wrathful impotenc e in t he direction whence t h e s h o t had co me. But jus t wait! Nob o d y can steal S am 'Bowser's catt le, sccire his men, s hoo t a t him and get away with it! word or movement tha t w o uld indicate t h e i r bo s s s in tentions That's horse sen se, I suppo s e," he exclaimed, at last. "But I hate to let the skulks think I care more for my cattle than for g etting the fir s t opportunity t o pump them full o f le a d ." "But a in't i t more b usiness l ike to get bo t h the cattl e rr So l o n g as the r e i s a breath of life in my body, I'll and them?" i n quired Sandy. trail you-and I'll run you to your lair, mark my wor d! The tone in which the owner of the Double Cross It ain't on l y t h e bus i ness end of it it's the effec t it k h d will have on any other th1'eves who m1'ght take a fl1'er a t spo e, t e 1m outline of his tall figure as he swayed his saddle, his arm beating the air i n his fury, as he vowed cutt i ng out your critturs, that you've got to think o f Sam," declared Deadshot. revenge against the miscreants who had stampeded h i s # cattle arid tried to murder him, afforded an effect dra"Xi you hit the trail without round ing up the cattle, so matic in the extreme many cow l ifters would strike for the Double Cross there \ Yet, h 1 d the last words left his lips than wouldn't be room for 'em on the home ranch They'd again a gun barked and a bullet" pinged viciously as it argue as how you couldn't chase 'em all and so some of sailed over his head! 'em would be able to drive off a bunch of critttirs-and Man, dear, but this is too much! hissed the ranchfor the value of the cattle they'd be willing to risk pur-man. After them, boys! suit. On the other hand, if you first round up the cattle (( We'll hit their trail and stay on it till the last skulk-and then the cowlifters, getting both of them, there won't ing coyote of' em is furnishing food for the vultures! JJ, a dirty greaser nor a renegade buck dare to lift a f\nger against the D ouble Cross outfit." CHAPTER IV. PREPARATIbNS FOR PURSUIT. As the cowboys Who knew him so well, hea r d the g rim words uttered by the uoughty ranchman, they rea li zed that he wou l d keep his vow of trail ing the c a ttl e thi e v es unti l he had, indeed, run them to their lair. "'We're with you, Sam," decla r ed the foreman. That's what! chorused the othe r cowp u nchers, while Deadshot added: "There can' t no bunch of cowlifters say they foo l ed Deads hot Pete-and go t away w ith it! " But as I was a going to say," cont i nued S andy, i t strikes me we ought to round up the cattle and get 'em back before we start out." And let thos e s neaks get a way w h i l e we' r e doing i t ? s n a p ped the owner o f the D ouble C r oss "I'd rath e r get them than all the cattle on my ranch " That's all right, Sam. I know how you fee l ; t h a t is, I know how I'd fee l i n your p l ace. But they ca n t get away. We'll t r ai l 'em f r om O l d Mex to Ca nada-i f we have to. A few hours' s t art won't do 'em a n y good, c o n sequently. So I say, what's t1]e use of letting t he catt l e run wild?" Already the animals which still rema i ned i nside the raided corral were beginning to quiet down, the cause of their disturbance having been removed, and the reasoning of the foreman, therefore, was sound. "Reckon Sandy's right," opined Pinky. "The critturs won't run very far on such a night, and un l ess there are of the devi l s to fo ll ow each bunch, daylight won't find 'em more'n a mi l e or sci from home." Several minutes the sat poq dering, vouch safing no reply, whIle his men anxiously awaited any T hough th i s argu ment was crude and expressed in a roundabou t,'way, it's meaning was perfectly clear. T h ere's no ge t ting away from the fact that your rea soning is sound, Deadshot," responded Bowser. So ';'Ve 'll wait t ill daylight and then round up the cattle." Though h i s r eluctance to abandon immediate pursuit was ev id enced by h i s next words, as he added : "But I d o h ate to let a man take a shot a t me--let a l one two--with-uut se n d i ng at l east o n e shell in teturn. " If that's all what's worrying you, cheer up," rejoined Pinky. Y o ul see m t o be f orge tting it was you w ho s t a rt ed t he game by taking a pot a t the' spook, when i t was floa t ing around. " T hat's so I didn't thi nk of that," returned the owne r of the D oub l e Cross. And from t h e t one of h is vo i ce, hi s me n understood that the memory had apprec i ably t empered his regret at being ob l iged to await the com i ng of day b efo r e p icking up the tra il. Qui e t e r and qu i e ter w e re the cattl e in the ra i de d cor ral becom i ng, a s i g n the cowp u nc hers i n t erpre t ed to mean that t he t h ieves h ad taken their departure after the l as t shot. Consequent l y when the end o f a n h9ur brought no fres h outb re ak, t h e r anchman ordered his men to return to the h orse corral and gather together the t h ings they would require when they took up the pursuit. To their amazement, when they rode into the yard, there was not a light to be seen in e ither the home or bunkhouse. You don' t suppose they'v e run off with the missus, too? suggested Pinky, in ala r m But the i r anxiety as to tbe safety o f Mrs. Bowser was allayed even as cowboy spoke. Who ioes there?" demanded a voice, mean t to be

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6 THE IXDL\X Y. stern, but in which there was an unmistakable tre1110r, from the direction of the home front door. It's all right, Sarah. It's the boys and I," hastily re plied her husband. Glory be! I:ve been scared almost out of my wits," exclaimedlothe woman. \ Scared? repeated the men, in surprise. Yes. Just after Deadshot had left, I heard some one ride into the yard. Thinking it was either him or one of you, I rushed to the door. 'Get insid-e if yon don't want a bullt;t in your head! shouted a voice;" The fiend! ejaculated the ranchman. "Did he shoot at you? he asked, anxiously. No. I didn't give him the chance. When I found it wasn't any of you, I ducked down, slamming the door and then I put the lights out." But what became of the lights in the bunkhouse? irtquired Sandy. .-" I put them out, too,'" returned 1'1rs. Bowser. You see, after I got over the first surprise and scare, my nerve came back. I grabbed one of Sam's guns, crept across the yard, extinguished the lamps and then took up my .-'5tand in the doorway, determined to take a shot at any one else who came along." Thank goodness, you had the foresight to speak be fore shooting," exclaimed her h.usband. "It was the las't thing I ever thought of, your being on guard." Oh, I may be a 'fraid cat,' but I'm no fool," asserted the woman. "That's what you're not, Sarah." And there ain't many other women with the nerve to stand watch in the dark after they've been threatened," chimed in Sandy, in evident admiration of the bravery displayed by the wife of the. ranch owner. During the conversation, the men had dismounted and Pinky had r.elighted the lamps in. the which they all entered, leaving their ponies standing, ready sad dled in case of emergency, by the door. In the light of the lamps, Mrs. Bowser was able to notice for the first time that her husband was hatless, while the others all had their sombreros on. How'cl you lose your hat, Sam? she queried Shot off," replied the ranch owner, laconically. And then, in response to her eager inquiries, he told her all that had transpired in the cattle corral. "Land sakes! How many of them do you suppose there were?" she asked, as the narration of the exciting incidents of the stampede, the disappearance of the mys terious spectre and th shooting was concluded. There must have been four or five, at least, judging from the number of openings there were in the fence," answered Pinky, eager to take part in the conversation. But his remark was ignored in the attention given to Deadshot. lIow many did you see ridirig through the yard, Bowser? lie asked. Only one." Which means the gang has split up," declared Sandy. ('Oh, yon can't tell anything by that," asserted the ranchman. The fellow may have been cutting through to join the rest of his bunch. Just stow your saddlebags with grub, shells and cartridges, then look to your guns. \Ve must be off with the first break of day." In obedience, the cowpunchers set about making their preparations for the pursuit, while the ranchman and his wife crossed the yard to their home. With the first flush of light the East, the Double Cross outfit rode forth to gath.r the strayed cattle, the majority of which they found, as Pinky had prophesied, within a few miles of the home ranch. Driving them back to the corral as quickly as possible, the men took stock and found they had recovered all but about fifty. "That's probably all the 'lifters' thought they could handle and make their getaway," exclaimed Sandy .. "More likely it means there weren't so many of the raiders as we think," rejoined his boss. "Come on, now. vVe'll pick up the trail of this bunch of fifty and see where that brings us." And with the promise to his wife that he would have a couple of the cowboys from Henry Hawks' ranch come over to protect her and the cattle, the owner of the Double Cross dashed away to pick up the trail of the Midnight Raider, followed by his cowpunchers. CH,e..PTER V. ON THE TRAIL. Having learned, when they rounded up the stampeded cattle, that the openings in the corral fence were on the Southern side, Bowser and his men rode in that direction, spreading out into a wide semicircle in order that they might cover as much territory as possible, thereby 10cati'rW the more quickly the trail followed by the fifty head v,..hich had not been found. / Back and forth they dashed, peering through the lessening darkness for some sight of the missing animals and straining their ears for a distant bellow or sound that would give an idea to their whereabouts. And as the light grew stronger and stronger, they were finally able to scan the grass for the wide course w here the cattle had trampled it in their flight. Several times, one or another of the searchers thought they had found the trail, only to learn, after following 'it for a few minutes, it had been made by one of the bunches of steers they had driven back. Such was the position of the men that Deadshot was on the extreme right, or \Vestern, end of the line, while Pinky, Sandy and the owner of the raided ranch stretched away toward the East, in the order named. As an hour of daylight went"by without the discovery of the track, the cowmen began to realize that the pnrsuit of the cattlelifters would be no easy task, judging from

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THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. 7 the manner in which they had managed fj conceal the trail of fifty odd steers. The realization, however, only made them the more determined to pick up their track, and they settled down to the work grimly. At first they had ridden to and fro, rising now and again in their stirrups to survey the plains about them. Finding this method of no avail, the ranchman rode over to Sandy and ordered him to begin and systematically ride back and for.th, advancing about three hundred yards at each turn, telling him to pass the word to Pinky, who would, i'n turnJ inform the cowboy on the extreme West. If we can't pick up the trail within five miles, we'll try the same tactics to the vVest and then to the North and East. A man can't put fifty steers in his pocket and carry 'em off. The trail's round here somewhere-and it's up to us to get bt1sy find it!" snapped Bowser, as he whirled his pony and started back. Before the new order could be communicated by Sandy to Deadshot, however, the latter suddenly rose 1n his stirrups and waved his arms' wildly. But, failing to attract the attention of his companions, l\e whipped out his six-shooters and fired three times. The barking of the guns produced the desired effect. Wheeling their ponies, the others beheld their com' rade waving his hands to them in signal to ride to him. Have you found 'em?" Can you see 'em? " D'id you shoot at anyone? These questions were' shouted at the cowboy who had resorted to such startling methods to attract the attention of his fellows. Do you think I'd be sitting here, waiting for you all to come up if I'd sighted the cattle or fired at anyone? demanded the cowpuncher, with fine scorn. Then what have you brought us over here for? de manded the owner of the Double Cross, his anger risinb as he began to suspect some trick on the part of his cowman. .. K ow, don't get het, up, Sam," chuckled Deadshot, with a that exasperated his bunkmates. "I ain't seen the cattle, as I said, but I've found their trail." "Where, man?" asked Pinky. Ere the cowpuncher, who was enjoying to the full the whetting of the other's curiosity, could reply, however, the men rode up to him. There, stretching away as far as their eyes could see, was a lane, some twenty feet wide, where the fleeing cat tIe had trampled the grass down as cleanly as though the path through the waving mesquite had been cut. "Say, they certainly was going some," exclaimed Sandy, surveying the trail intently. "There must hav(' been at least four or five lifters at their heels to make them steers hit it up like that." "Well, don't sit there on your pony, arguing," cut in the ranchman. "Get down and search the ground forI horse-hoof tracks. Deadshot, you've always been brag ging how all-fired clever you were at picking out trails} IIOW show us if you can produce." This calling upon their comrade to "make good" in the matter which formed his favorite topic for bragging, brought smiles to the faces of the other cowboys, and they sat back in their saddles preparatory to awaiting the result of Deadshot's scouting. But their delight in the situation was rudely banished. Don't sit there like a bunch of tenderfeet waiting for a guide to drum up some game," snapped Bowser. "Get down see if you can't beat Deadshot to it. You want t;Aemember there's such critturs' as the Injuns call' heap talk'men." The owner of the raided ranch was not the one, how ever, to leav e all the work to his men, and even as he spoke, he slipped from his saddle anq. was soon crawling about on his hands and knees, peering at the trampled grass, now and then pushing it aside as he scanned the ground intently. Spurred to action by the stinging words of their boss, the three cowpunchers were doing the same thing, and for several minutes the only sound audible was the panting of the ponies as they strove to recover their wind after their hard run. "l\lust have been a shoeless broncho," grumbled Pinky, as no imprints of a horse's hoof rewarded his search. "\Arhat did you expect, cavalry horses?" gn;nted Deadshot, contemptuously. You my word, be fore we round up this gang of cowliftCi's, we'll know we've been on the trail! " For once, you're talking sense," grinned Sandy. And chafing one another good-naturedly, the cowboys continued their careful examination. The task, however, of discovering any tracks of ponies in the traIllPled and cloven-hoof cut ground proved too. great for the powers of the plainsmen and at last they abandoned the attempt. "It's no use wasting any more time," declared the ranchman, straightening up. "After all, it doesn't make any difference how many of the sneal}s there were. Whether their band' numbers two or a dozen, we're going to get tkem! We've found their frail, that's the main thing." Chagrined to think he had not been able to "make I good" on his oft-repeated assertions of his ability to track anything that went on legs, Deadshot was finally obliged to mount his pinto and ride after the others, who had mounted as soon as their boss had called the 'search off, and were following the well-defined trail through the grass. "Where do you reckon the cowlifters are he aded, Deadshot? asked Bowser, as the man overtook them. Determined not to venture another opinion not founded on good grounds, the cowpuncher stood up in his saddle

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. 8 THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY and scanned the horizon ahead and to the right and left. H Course, there ain't no way of saying for certain," he began, H but, from what I know of cowlifters' little ways and the lay of these here plains --" H .oh, cut it short! We ain't no pleasure party being tcted round on a 'rubberneck' expedition," growled Pinky. H If you've got any idea, out with it." H As I was saying, rom my knowledge of the tricks of cattle raiders and these plains," repeated Deadshot, ignoring the interr.uption of his bunkmate, H I should say the lifters were headed for the 'Sangammon bottoms. They ain't more than forty mile away, and there's swamps in there with grass higlt enough to hide an elephant." With various comments, the others received this sug gestion of the destination of the Midnight Raider, but no one ventured an open contradiction. H I reckon you've hit the mark this time, De a d s hot, finally declared ranch owner. H Though I'd hoped the devils might have headed for the old Indian cata combs, over in the Haunted Vall ey. It would be an all:" fired sight easier to rout them out from the tombs than from the Sangammon swamps-and not so dangerous to us. A man's liable to strike a mudhole and be sucked under before his could find him." H Perhaps Deadshot ain't right," suggested Pinky, to whom his boss' words brought up unexpected dangers. But none of the others offered any comment and in silence, each man absorbed in his own thoughts, the quartet, bound on their mission of revenge, swept along over the trampled trail. , CHAPTER VI. THE AVENGERS ARE DELAYED. After an hour's hard' riding, the. avengers came upon the body of a steer lying in the trail. The sight of the beast's carcass seemed to madden the owner of the Double Cross ranch H Look at that steer! he yelled. H Never was a better beef grazed the plains! And here it lies, dead from being driven to death! Curse the fiends! I'll make them suffe r for raiding my cattle and then running them to death! After them, boys, don't dally to examine the steer! H Easy, Sam, easy," returned Sandy. H We'll get 'em, don't worry. But it won t do any harm to look at the crittur. A few minutes won't make any difference, and we can tell from the heat of the body about how,far the lifters are ahead of us." Scarce a momen t after the foreman had voiced this sug gesti6n was it before D e adshot was on the ground. Still smarting under the sarcasm of his boss over his failu:re to pick out the horse tracks when they struck the trail, the cowboy had no sooner gained the side of the prostrate steer than he was upon the mesquite And, even as Sandy' spoke, with skilled hands, he was running over the hide. Eagerly others awai ted hi s verdict as to t h e t im e the a nima l had been ly i ng there But Deadsho t spoke never a word. Well?" snapped his master, unabl e t o restrai n his impatience when severa l minutes had passed and the cow boy had not voiced his opinion The body's cold, Sam. But it ain't stone cold." Which means we've got some tall riding to do if we expect to overhaul the ornery cusses before they lose tnemsel ves in the swamp," commented Pinky. H That shows how much you know," retorted the ranchman "We're a good twenty mile from ,the home corral, which is about half way to the bottoms, according to Deadshot, and the s teel is cold. Consequently, the rest of the bunch must have passed here a good six hours ago. No man, unles s he had could overtake the cowlifters before they reached Sangammon, eh, Sandy.?" Reckon you've got it about right, Sam," returned his foreman. H The raiders had all of six hours start, and jUdging from the condition of. thi s steer, here, they're running the critturs to the limit. If that animal ain't thirty pound poorer than when he left the corral I don t know anything about cattle "Thep you tq.ink we haven't gained on them?" de manded Bowser, anxiously. H N one to speak of." "And, what's more, we won't be able to cut down enough of their lead to make it worth while to kill our ponies trying to interposed Deadshot. H Sandy's tell ing if straight when he says the devils are running the. stee r s for a ll they can. If we don't come across more than half of t hem before we get to the' swamps, I'll miss my guess." A moment the ranchman pondered over these opinions. That being the case, then, there's no use of keeping to the trail," he finally exclaimed. "Why not?" demanded the others, surprised at the words as they remembered their boss's vow. H Because we've got to go over to Henry Hawks' and get him to send : ome of his men to guard Sarah and what's left of my cattle in the corral." And if you'll my advice, you'll get old Hen to join us with a couple <;>r so of his boys," asserted Dead shot. "Rounding up these lifters ain't going to be any child's play-especially when they're hiding in the swamps! "Righto," rejoined Bowser. "The more ot u s the better. Come on, every jump we take along this trail now is leading us farther from the Star and Moon. By strik ing for it now, we ought to reach Hen's in time for dinner." Accordingly, the av e ngers abandoned for the time being the trail made by the cattle thieve s and, turning their ponie s straight for the South, s e t out to obtain pro tectiori for the lone woman left on the Double Cro s s home r a nch and reinforcement s t o the ir ow n l)umbers,

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\ THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. 9 that they might the more quickly run the miscreants to cover. The tax upon their ponies incurred by gallop\ng through the tall grass and sagebrush was greater than in following the cattle track and, in consequence, their speed was less. Notwithstanding that handicap, however, they fairly good time, and the sun was directly overhead when they cantered into the yard of the Star and Moon home ranch. At the sound of the rapid hoofbeats, Mrs. Hawks came to the door. "Well, S ,am Bowser, if I'm not glad to see you," she exclaimed, cordially, as soon as she made out the iden tity of the riders. "Put your ponies in the corWlI and come right in. You're just in time for dinner. I guess I've got enough, if I haven't, I can mighty soon get it. I'm--" Believing that the woman's volubility would soon wear itself out, Bowser had waited for her to pause of her own accord. But when, after extending her hearty in vitation for the riders to come in and eat, she started on a fresh tack, the ranchman decided to interrupt. Isn't Hen home?" he asked, the failure of the man to appear suggesting the far from welcome idea. "No. He and the boys have been gone three days driving in the cattle for shipping. r expect him back this afternoon, though. He said it wouldn't be more than three days at the longest." Then, noting the look of disappointment that her words brought to her neighbor's us you feel like it. you know what I thought of with a spook hanging about." If I were Sarah, I'd let such treatme.nt, especially "Well, thank goodness, you're not Sarah," muttered Bowser under his breath, though aloud he said: "To tell the truth, Amy, I was so riled up over being tricked the way I was that the only thing I thought of was getting on the lifters' trail. But, after what you'vl! sai'd, I see it wasn't just right toward Sarah. Pinky, cut out one of Hen's ponies from the corral and ride back to the ranch just as fast as you can Remember, I shall ask how long it took you when I get home," he added, noting the look of disappointment and anger that spread over his cowboy's face at the instruc tions. But Pinky knew that orders were orders, especially when delivered by the owner of the Double Cross ranch, and, without any ado, y,rheeled his pony, rode over to the corral, picked out one of the Star and Moon bronchos and without as much as a glance toward his grinning bunk mates, dashed from the yard. Yet, to the cowboy was telling in no uncertain words or polite language what he thought of meddling old women." And, so many were his ideas upon the sub ject, that he was still intent upon his opinion when he reined into the yard of the Double Cross, some three hours later. CHAPTER VII. face, she asked 'hastily: "There isn't anything wrong, THE MYSTERIOUS SPECTRE REAPPEARS. is there? Nothing's happened to Sarah?" Even the delicious dinner Mrs. Hawks set before her Sarah's all right; at least, she was when we left at daybreak. But some ornery cowliIters got into my home neighbor did not reconcile him to the unexpected delay corral last night and made (off with fifty "ead." And caused in his 'plans by 'he absence of the owner of the Star and Moon. Moreover, he realized that there was reason briefly he told Mrs. Hawks the uncanny circumstances 'of the raid. for the sharp reprimand he had received on account of his lack of thought for the safety of his wife-and this realiWith eyes growing bigger at each word, the good zation did not tend to mollify his ill-humor. woman listened to the account of the mysterious spectre. N t' thO d f th t h h d h 'd t o mg IS an eanng a sea, per aps, sal 00 Sakes and you've left Sarah aloqe with that much, Mrs. Hawks,sought to make amends. thing liable to drop in on her any minute? she exclaimed, You mustn't take what I said about leaving in consternation. "If' I were she, I wouldn't ttjy there too hard, Sam," she exclaimed, contritely. "But, being by myself a minute. No, sir, not a single minute. It isn't left alone on the ranch is my sore point, and I'm so acfair of you to make her, Sam. I'd just like to see Henry customed to taking Hen to task for it, that I don't alw ays Hawks leave me alone under such conditions." stop to think what I'm saying. Of course, I know you This vigorous scolding for failure to afford protection were all cut up about your cattle-which is no more to his wife shamed the ,owner of the Double Cross, and than natural-and I reckon Sarah has been alone so often hot flushes glowed beneath his weather-tanned face as he she WO'l1't mind, especially as it's the daytime. If it was strove to excuse himself. night, now, it would be different." "That's just what I came over here for:' he stam"It certainly would be," returned Bowser, with emmered. "I wanted Hen to let me have a couple of his phasis. "I had no idea of leaving S;trah alone. I told boys so's I could use mine to trail the raiders." you that. It's Hen's being away that upset my calcuia" It makes no difference what you intended to do," detions What time did you say you expected him back)" clared Mrs. Hawks. "You men are all alike. You seem "During the afternoon. That is, to-day is the third t() think that we women can take care of ourselves, no day he's been gone and he said it wouldn't take longer matter what happens. And, as though it weren't enough than three days to round up the cattle, they're on the to make u s live way out in the plains, you go and leilVe near range, you know, and drive them in." And then,

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10 THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. woman like, she began to borrow trouble, adding:' You don't suppose that spook cO, uld have made any trouble for him, do you? " It certainly could have if it tried the same tricks on Hen's herd it did on mine," responded the owner of the Double Cross. "But, don't start 0 in imagining things, Amy. A man gets trouble enough on a ranch without and fretting about what mayor might happen." "That's just what Hen says," rejoined Mrs. Hawks. It's easy enough for you men folks to live up to that. You have so many things to keep you busy, you don't have the time to think. But with us women, it's different. Having nobody but you to take up our minds, we just can't help being afraid something may happen to you. I know it's that way with me about Hen, and I guess it is with Sarah about you." Yes, I suppose it is," assented her neighbor. "But just remember, worry doesn t do anybody any good-and generally makes you nervous and cross." And witp this parting shot, the owner of the Double Cross, having fin ished his dinner, arose and went out doors, followed by his cowboys. M o an, dear! but ain't she the old spitfire! chuckled Deadshot, as they gainid the yard, taking care, however, to make sure that the woman was not within earshot when he spoke. "I never did have any use for Hen Hawks; but after seeing-and listeniiIg to-his running mate, I certainly sorry for him." Well, he probably wouldn't thank you for telling him so," smiled Bowser, his disappearing under the combined effect the good dinner, his pipe and the cowboy's comment upon the garrulity of Mrs. Hawks. Further pursuit of the topic was prevented, however, by Sandy. Don' t it beat all how everything seems to go against us in trailing them cattlelifters?" he. asked. "First, we couldn't pick up their track. Then we couldn't overhaul 'em, and now we've got to lose more time waiting for reinforcements before starting out again. It sure does look, as though we were in for trouble all along the line." So you're beginning to wake up, are Y0u,?" chuckled Deadshot. "Didn't I say last night, when we came near going loco over that ghostie, that whevever one of 'em appeared, it meant trouble? And didn't I tell you, after we found it was a raid, that we'd have no easy time running 'em down, as Sam said he was agoing to do?" The scornful tone in which the cowboy reminded his bunkmate of his ptophecies aroused Sandy's ire. "Sure you did. But you say so many things ain t no account, a feller sort of has to see for himself before he cad agree with you." That's a hot one, Deadshot," grinned his boss. "It's a good thing for you Pinky isn't here, or between Sandy and him, they'd have your goat before sundown." In a silence that was portentiotls in its intensity, the cowboy took out his corn husk cigarette papers and makings, d eftly rolled one, light.ed it, and, taking a long draw, blew out the smoke deliberately, while his com wondered along what lines his retort would be. Did you ever notice, Sam? he finally drawled, that there's some folks has to be hit with a thihg before they can see it? That's the case with Sandy, here, though, as a member of the Double Cross outfit, I hare to be obliged to admit it. Instead of realizing when a feller is dever enough to pull off that ghostie stunt to cover a raid there' d be trouble 1n getting close enough to 'em to pump 'em full of lead, he don't tumble to it till about eighteen hours afterwards." Fortunately, the foreman of the Double Cross had a h'ighly developed sense of htuTIor, and he laughed at the pat rejoinder as heartily as either Bowser or the man who uttered it-with th, e result that what might have turned into a serious quarrel between the two cow punchers and endangered the harmony of the avengers, and the united action necessary to catch the raiders was avoided. When Mrs. Hawks had fiI]ished her housework, she appeared on the veranda with a basket of sewing and called to the men to join her. But, upon the pretext that they were obliged to keep close watch of one of their ponies in the fear it had strained a tendon, they man Hged to avoid the tiresome company of the well-inten tioned but garrulous woman. Now perched on the top rail of the corral, now stretched upon the ground, the three men who were so eager to be on their way in pursuit of the'raiders whiled away the time, ever and again searching the horizon to the East for a glim'pse qf the Star and Moon outfit, with what patience they could muster. as the wore away without either sight or sound of them, Bowser began to grow restless. If those devils find we haven't reached the swamps by sundown, they are just as likely as not to drive my cat tle to some other place-and then we surely will have a merry time locating them. It'll be hard enough if we ,know they are in the bottoms. But when we can't be certain of that, we'll have the very old Nick of a time," he complained. What do you want to do, start out and leave word for Hen and his men t'o follow?" asked Sandy. "It does seem too bad to give the ornery cusses a chance to get away on us." That's the idea I was figuring on returned the ranch m.an. "What do you say, Deadshot?" Just what you told Mrs. Hawks-don't borrow trouble," rejoined the cowboy, a twinkle in his eye Meaning? " That it's a fool idea to worry about the lifters hiking out right away when once they've hit the safety of the swamps . Let me tell you, they will be only too thankful to find we re not on their trail \So they can get a good night's re s t. You two know, as well a s I do, it flin't any

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THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. 11 cinch job shoving fifty of cattle along as fast as tlley can leg it in the dark." "There's good sense in lhat reasoning," declared the owner of the stolen steer:;, after moments' reflection. .,-"And the beauty of it is, it's the facts," exclaimed Deadshot. "I never knew a cow lifter Who wasn't lazy "Daybreak will ue time enough to start," assented Bowser, and instructions to that effect were accordingly sent to the men he proposed to take from the ranch by Haw1s:s. But in their assertion that the 'Midnight Raider would leave the swamps for many a day unless forced out, both Deadshot and Ki Yi were mistaken! and, once in the bottoms, they'll feel so safe, I'm will-Had the avengers been on guard at the bottoms just at ing to bet they think of breaking cover for a week, dusk, they would hav, seen a lone horseman emerge from at least, unless we jump 'em. So it Hen don't show up the tall grass, scan the surrounding plains searchingly and for forty-eight hours more, there won't be any great then set out at an' easy lope the very spot where harm done." the scenes of the night before were being described for The avengers were not obliged to wait so long for the the twentieth time. appearance of the men they hoped to get to take up the And had they been on watch at the sheds of the Star trail with them, however. and Moon horse corral at midnight, they would have Just as twilight tinted the w.aving grasses with glorious discovered that same horseman dismount in its shadow! reds and purples, the halloo of the cowboys rang out, and But, instead, the cowboys and their bosses were sleepill due course the owner of the Star and Moon ranch rode ing soundly. into the yard. After listening for several minutes, the skulk-At the sight of his neighbor, he was glad, greeting him ina fiaure hastily gathered a bunch of dried grass, thrust with hearty cordiality and chiding him for the length of a match into the waving ends and then plaeed the time it had been since he had paid him a visit. But wheT! flaming mass under an edge of the corral shed. he learned the purpose of Bowser's presen;e, he became Twice he repeated the action, then rushed toward the grave. sure right, I'll help you trail the skulks, Sam! he declared. "Just as soon as the boys have had their chuck, we'll start. We drove down by easy stages, that's what took us so 10 g, so they aren't tired." While the two ranchmen had been exchanging greetings and talking, the rest of the outfit had come up with the cattle, and, as he observed this, Hawks called out: Hey, Dude, tell Ki Yi to come right up to the house." But, before he entered the presence of his boss, the man whose name had been bestowed upon him by his bunk mates because of the yell he always emitted when excited, as well as the other members of the Star and Moon outfit, had been made aware of the reason for the presence of the men from the Double Cross. "I suppose 'Deadshot has told you about the raid?" smiled Hawks, as his cowboy came up to tne veranda. Sure." What, do you make of it? Ever hear of that ghost stunt being pulled off before?" if That's a new one on me, for certain, Hen. It strikes me, they're a mighty smart lot of lifters, and it's dollars to a coyote flea the whole bunch are in the swamps this very minute." .Think they'll shift to another hiding place?" asked Bowser. Not till they've got some of the beef back on the steers they run off of 'em-unless we jump 'em," de clared the cowpuncher. "Then I reckon with Ki Yi and Deadshot agreed on that, we needn't break our necks riding across the plains to-night, Sam," eX9aimed the owner of the Star and Moon. home house and applied the torch' in five places. Pausing only long enough by the ranch house to make sure the fire had caught, the miscreant ran back to his horse, vaulted lightly onto its back, rode a short dist:nce into the cover afforded by the shadows from the bunk house and then drew rein to gloat in his fiendish hand iwork. Inflammable as tinder because of their drynes s the boards blazed fiercely, and soon both the horse shed and the house were roaring cauldrons of seething flames. As the conflagration gained headway, its crackling and roused Bowser. Springing to window, he caught sight of the leaping flames. Fire! Fire!" he yelled at the top of his lungs. Awakened by the startling cry, Mr. .and Mrs. Ha\'lks jumped from their bed, while the cowboys tumbled out of their bunks. With such awful rapidity did the flames devour the wooden buildings that little beyond the clothes by their bedsides were the inmates of the house able to save. In a momentary lull, as they watched the flames, there rang out shrill and piercing: 0u-e-e For a moment, Bowser gazed at his men, astounded. "Get your guns! It's the Midnight Raiders!" he yelled. Instantly the boys from the Double Cross and those of the Star and Moon dashed into the bunkhouse, returning immeqiately with rifles an d six shooters: Shoot and shoot to kill! thundered Bowser. But, ignorant of which direction to rake with their

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12 THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. shells, the cowpunchers stood in a bunch, straining their ears for a repetition of the cry. I' As they waited, the roof tree of the corral fell in, sending a shower of sparks high into the air. And, while the lurid fiare lighted the s'ltrrounding coun try, of a sudden, a white spectre dashed out onto the plains. CHAPTER VIII. THE RUNNING NIGHT FIGHT. An instant, the ranchmen and cowboys stood, too dumb-founded to move. Then the shriek of a mocking jeer galvanized them into action. Bang! Bang! Barig! went their guns, the deeper ex plosions of the rifles and the s taccato barks of the six shooters sounding above the roar of the flame s But, as though shielded by a magic armour, the s pectre raced on, unscathed by the rain of bullets. To the corral! I "They're after the cattle! " Get horses and after 'em! In shrill confusion, the shout s of advice and command were uttered by cowboys and foremen. But above them all rang Bowser's roar: Deadshot, get your man! Striving with might and main to live up to his nick name, the CQwboy from the Double Cross ranch rushed on foot after the fleeing spectre, pumping lead at it as fast as he could throw shells into his repeating rifle. The combination of effort to make good" and the uneven footing, however, proved too much for the cow boy, and when his magazine was empty, the horse man was still riding away. Realizing that were they to overtake the man, they must take up the pursuit without delay, the ranch owners shouted at the rest of their men to mount and give chase. "Remember, a thousand dollars to the fellow who drops the fiend! shouted Bowser. "And I'll give the same!" yelled the owner of the burned ranch houses. The thought of being burned out of house and home by the very miscreant of whom they were planning to go in pursuit was sufficient incentive to make the cowpunchers eager to ihflict vengeance of the men who had so defied them. But the announcement of the two thousand dollars reward turne d this eagerness into frantic endeavor. Yelling and shouting to one another, the cowboys raced hither and thither, trying to catch their ponies which had dashed terror-stricken from the burning c orral. Hadn't we better send some of the men to the cattle yard, to pre vent the raiders lifting any of tl}e critturs? a s ke d Sandy, coming close to his master. The corral into which Hawks' b o ys had driven the steer.s was so situated, however, that the light from the flames enabled the men to see three sides of the barbed wire fence, while back of the fourth, the flare lighted the plains ' And as they strained their eyes, no human form could they see except the white spectre. Man, dear! he's sto.pped and is watching his work! cried Deadshot. Instantly the eyes of the ranchmen ;nd several of the cowboys, who were near enough to hear the words, fol lowed the direction of their companion's pointing finger. There, as calm as though he were watching some co, puncher frolic, sat,the white figure upon his horse. Skulls and crossbones! don't you suppose there are any more of the raiders? queried Sandy, suddenly. "Reckon that's all," grunted Ki Yi. "If there had been more of 'em, we have been told by a few bullets." Nons ense! retorted Bow s er. You don' t mean to tell me that one lone horseman could bedevil my men and me, cut my fences, stampede my cattle and get away with fifty of 'em, do you? Man, you're crazy! " I ain't saying there warn't more than one in the raid on the Double Cross," returned Ki Yi, ( What I said was there's only one mixed up in this here night's business." "Then, by thunder! get busy, you dubs and corral him!" roared the owner of the Star and Moon "The idea of one man being able to burn my building s and get away when I've four men of my own and Bowser has two right on the spot! Stung by the scorn and disgust in the ranchman's tones, Ki Yi, Dude and Deadshot were moving away to take some of the ponies the other members of the Star and Moon outfit had managed to catch when they were halted by Sandy's words. "I wouldn't be too quick to break away, Hen," he cautioned. "Your steers may be quiet enough now-the only fussing they're doing is what is naturally to be ex pected with the fire flaring in their eyes-but I don't doubt for a minute, there are five or six raiders in amongst 'em, ready to cut loose and stampede the critturs the minute they see us riding away. That's probably part of their scheme-they're counting on our giving chase to that ghostie. That's probably why he's sitting out there, so all-fired cool. It rlon t stand to reason that a lone man would take such chances against eight whe n he could be hiking across the plains putting d,istance between u:, and him while we're making up our minds what to do." The obvious soundness of the foreman's argument gave it instant attention fro m the ranch owners. In the fir s t place, it tended to l ess en the odium of their having been thrown into a panic-in additi o n t o b e ing made to s uffer very appreciable lo ss e s-by one man. And though their ey es s howed the m o nly a s ingl e raid e r, they w ere o nly t o o willing to b e li eve tha t more of the m w ere

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THE AMERICA N INDIAN WEEKLY. 13 hi d d en a m o n g the c a ttle, m e r e l y aw a iting a pro piti o u s m o m ent t o make the ir p r esenc e k n o wn. Accord in g ly, they a ccep t e d m o r e r ea dil y the s u gges ti on of San dy th a n was warran t e d in vi e w o f the tact that b oth Dea d s h o t a nd K i Yi b eliev e d the M idni ght R a i de r was t h e l o n e h o r se m an, s p ectra l in appear a n ce that m ocke d the m so taunting l y b y remai n ing in plain s i g h t of th e destructi o n h e h a d w r o u g h t. T h at's m ore lik e the truth, Hen, a ss erted the ow n e r of the D o uble C r oss, aft e r h e h a d d e lib e rated over hi s f o r e m a n 's w o rd s a few m o m ents "Ki Yi and Dea d s hot always w e re excitable bo ys It's a good thing Sandy has a littl e common s en s e and the c ourage to expres s it or we d have b ee n stamped e d by the two of em into cha sing that h o wling d evil-and giving the r es t of the gang the chanc e to carry off your cattl e at their pleasure : " Ri g hto !" returned Hawks "There' s nothing pa ys m ore than making ha s te slowly Hey, you fellows, bring hors e s for Sam and me and th e n we'll ride over to the corral and inspect .the fences. "Then you don' t care about getting that spook?", inquired Deads hot "Las t night, you remember, Sam, you was all for chasing the' lifters, IJotwithstaqding the fact you didn't have the slighte s t idea iI} which direction they had ridden, and letting the cattle go. N ow, when you have the bigge s t sort of a chance to run down the cu ss, you are all for patrolling the corral. If I was running this busines s and a man had driven off a bunch of my steer s and then set the buildings, be longing to the man I was getting to join the trail with me, afire, and I saw the man who turned the tricks a-watching what I was going to do I'd want to pump bi s good-for-nothing carca s s s o full of lead it wouldn't s ta y on his horse. That would make sure of at lea s t o n e of 'em-and I'm inclined to agree with Ki Yi that wh e n we get that one, we-ve g o t the gang. " You re the great little talker, Deadshot; the only trouble is you talk too much. A person can't tell when you're s aying things jus t for the sake of hearing your s elf sayin g them, or, wh e th e r you re talking fact s retorted the owner of the Double Cros s "It's my judgment there are more of the devils in amo ngst the cattle, and for that reason, I'm for inspecting the corral fence By being on the spot, we'll be able to t e t the whole c i owd instead of only cine-like we would if w e s et s ail after that fiend out yonder." T o the corral it i s," excl a imed Hawks. "So let' s get over th e re and not stand arg uing here. Firs t thing we kn o w they'lI ru s h Ollt and we 'll lo s e the whole kit and b oo dl e a s Sam s ay s "Which we 'lI do anyhow! g r o wled Ki Yi to Dead s h o t. But the cowbo y s were t oo wise to pn! ss the argum ent any h a rd e r and, declaring o ne to an other that the blam e would n o t be on their s houlder s they cantered t o the corral. B itt e rly, indeed we r e the ran c h owners to rue their d e c i s i on! How l o ng d o y o u i n tend 'to patro l the fence s ? a s ked Dude, as the e i ght me n drew close t o the c o rral. If we find the barb ed wire is cut, till the d ev il s show t h emse l ves," r eturned the ow n e r of the Star and M oon, even i f w e h ave to stay he r e a ll n i g ht. " Acco rdi ng to tha t i f the f enc es aren' t cut d o you mea n yo u will b elieve the rai ders a r e n t in s i de? sn eere d D e a ds h o t. I The t o ne of the c o wb o y angere d Bo w ser and H awks, and the f orme r was not s low in letting him know it. Don't try to get smart, Dead s hot," he snapped. You kno w as well as I do-or you ought to know-that the reaso n we aren't acc epting your advice is we can't trus t you "Of course, if we find the fences haven't been tampered with, we ll turn our attention to the s pectral rider. So be lively and in s pect the cor--" Well, you 'll be too late to round up that chap tonight retorted Deadshot, grimly. Why? demanded both the ranchmen. Becau s e he's disappeared! In amazement the men turned in the direction in which they had seen the lone horseman calmly sitting his pony Not a sign of him was visible! But he was there a few minutes ago!" gasped several of the cowpunchers. So was Hen' s house," grunted Deadsb,ot. "Watch out for the fences!" cried Sandy. "His, going is probably the s ignal for the dash from the cor ral With spur and quirt, the cowboys raced around the' encl os ure which fortunately for them, was still illumined b y the flare s frOI\1 the ruin s of the ranch house, while Bow ser and Hawks waited near the gate in silence. N othing wrong with the wires on the East;" reported Sandy, the first o f the c o wpunchers to complete his tour of in s pection. Comment by the ranchmen was prevented by the quick s uccession in which the rest of their boys rode in, announcing that on the other sides of the big yard the fences were intact. Tricked! grunted Ki Yi. "That Midnight Raider is sure one nervy crittur! " That's the he ha s n t got anythipg on me! retorted Deadshot. "Sam, I suppose you don't mind if I hit his trail no7.Cf, do you? " Go a s far as y ou lik e--only get the devil! returned his mas ter. "Then come on Ki Yi! We've no time to lose!" s houted the man fro m the Double Cro ss. And, without giving either of the ranch owners the chance to proffer an y advice, even had they been s o in clined which the y w e re n o t on account of the fiasco of the jn s pe c ti ol1, the t wo c o w p uncher s da s hed out onto the

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.. I THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. plains in the direction where they had last seen the lone horseman. "He's worked the same vanishing act he did at the Double Cross!" declared Deadshot, as he raced along beside his companion. "So don't expect to see some-thing white suddenly bob up." Quickly the two fTlen, whose opinions had been disre garded, got beyond the line where the reflection of the fire illumined the plains for them. But, though they could not distinguish o bjects ahead of them readily, their bodies were distinctly outlined against the background of flames-as they were soon to learn to their sorrow! Scarce another hundred yards had they ridden, than Bang! went a rifle to the West of them and an instant later, Ki Yi's horse gave a snort of pain and plunged forward, all but throwing his rider over his head: With a string of shocking oaths, the cowboy disen tangled himself from his stirrups and began to pump his rifle in tlf.e direction the shell had come. Get to him, man! Get to him! he shouted at Dead shot. Your. pony is fresh and you can soon overhaul him. I'll let you get his direction by drawing his fire. It's a cinch he can't blaze away at both of us at the same time -when we are in different places." The last words of the dismounted member of the Star and Moon outfit were lost upon Deadshot, however. No sooner had he seen the fate that had overtaken his comrade than he had dashed away. ; You may have given me the slip once, you ornery crittur, but you can't get away from Deadshot Pete twice running! We hissed. Yet the bragging. cowpuncher was almost forced to eat his words! I True to his promise, Ki Yi was his best to hold the attention of the lone horseman by sending bullet after bullet in his direction. But the Midnight Raider w;,ls clever, and, safe in the cover of the darkness, he stopped firing to discover what had become of his other pursuer. As he beheld him leaping his horse over the waving grass, he grinned. The surest way to stop him is to drop his horse, too," he muttered to himself. And, taking careful/ aIm, he waited until Deadshot was within Jess than two !1Undred yards of him, then fired. But his second shot. was not so lucky as his first. Instead of tumbling the pony over, the shell sailed harmlessly over the cowpuncher's head. So that's where you are, eh?" snapped Deadshot as he Q'auged the direction of the raider. C'That's all I b ..... wanted to know," And, as he uttered the words, he threw his rifle to \ his shoulder and pulled the trigger. Realizing that he had failed of his purpose, the lone horseman was too shrewd to linger, and, whirling his pony, headed for his hiding place, with the .Qouble cowboy i n hot pursuit. CHAPTER IX. BOWSER DISCIPLINES HIS FOREMAN. At the first crack of the rifles, Bowser and Hawks had dasbed after their two cowpunchers with the other members of their outfits at their neels. Get him! Get him! shouted the former. Don't go too far! cautioned Sandy. "This may be the very trick to get us out of the way, so the raiders can dash from the corral." But there are no raiders in there, you fool! retorted Hawks. "Keep your mouth shut, and see if you can t do something! Sweet, indeed, were these words to the other cow punchers, who had been prevented from adopting the ideas of Deadshot and Ki Yi and running down the raider, when they could see him by the foreman's over developed sense of caution. But, beyond chuckling to themselves, they gave no outward sign of their pleas ure. Leaning tar over their ponies' necks, the men rode, searching out the p.lains in their effort to locate either their pals or the horseman. For they realized that unless they exerted the .greatest care, they might, in their excitement, mistake their friends for the raider. Mindful of this danger, and determined not to allow any more untoward incidents to mark the pursuit of the man who had tricked him and lifted his cattle, Bowser shouted: Nobody fire till after we've picked up Deadshot and Ki Yi. It would be just our luck to hit one of them in stead of the cow thief." And this warning was uttered just in time! Riding a little to the and in advance of the others, Sandy sllddenly caught sight of his bunknTate, as he stood over the prostrate form of his pony, emptying his rifle in the direction whence the shot from the lone horseman had come. "This way! This way! I've f9lmd him!" yelled the excited foreman of the Double Cross, turning in his sad dle and beckoning to his fellows. "Then drop him!" Don't give him the chance to make another getaway! Loud and clear, these commands rang out, while Bowser and Hawks raced their ponies toward where Sandy was pointing. Luckily for the cowpuncher, however, he had been close enough to the foreman when the latter discovered him to hear his hail to his fellows and also their answers. AmI he realized if he were to save his life, there was no time to be lost! "Don't shoot! It's I, Ki Yi! My horse was shot fr4i>m under me! he shouted at the top of his lungs, at the same time, howe,rer, taking the extra precaution

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THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. 1 5 to drop flat behind the body of his pony that it might protect him from the shell of some e xcited pursuer who had pulledthe trigger of his rifle before clearly understanding the warning. His words had been in time to prevent such a mi s fortune, however, and quickl y hi s comrades were beside him. Are you hurt? inquired hi s master. "Only my pride. To think a meas ly cowliftel could knock the hors e from under m e and me not even abl e to see him to hit him! Sharing the humiliation which the Midnight Raider was bringing upon the outfits of the Double Cross and the Star and Moon ranche s the boys strained their ey es to penetrate the darknes s enveloping the plain s Oh, you needn t try to locate him. He' s miles away by thi s time," sneered Ki Yi H e don t sit round sucking his thumbs when it's time for action. Somebody give me a pony, will you? But none of the cowpuncher s w e re willing to surrender their mounts to their uhhors ed companion. Suddenly, Bowser noted the absen<;e of his man. U Where' s Deadshot? he queried, anxiously. Chasing the raider, returned Ki Yi. Did you s ee him? demanded Dude, breathle s sly. Sure. He came right up and said Pardon, tlemen, I believe you are looking for me. I'm going to ride t o the right ,' mocked hi s outfit mate. Now, don't get sore," returned the other. "I only w anted to know if you were sure Deadshot was on th(' real trail or whether we d have to take chances on find ing it. " That's about what it is, kiddo,' ; rejoined Ki Yi. "All Deadshot or I could get was the general direction. But no fool and he won't travel many mile s with (jut learning if he 's on the proper cour se. It' s so I can be on hand to help him I want another pony' without going gack t o the ranch hou se. Be s ides since the fir e scattered them, it may take A c o uple of hours to get on e that's worth riding. It had been hi s ma ster's intention to order his man curtly to return and cut out hi s own mount. But the last words changed hi s mind Well was he aware that Ki Yi wa s far and away the nerviest rider and best trail-finder in his o utfit A s there was a natural rivalry between the boy s of the Star and Moon and tho s e of the Double Cross, Hawks did not to handicap hi s s ucce ss by depri v ing him s elf of the a ss i s tanc e o f hi s best man Ere he could make up hi s mind which boy to s end back however the difficulty was so lved f o r him. Y o u can t leave Amy alone," exclaimed Bow ser, mindful of the upbraiding he had received at dinner for not providing protection for hi s own wife "Now there's no one more fitted to care for women and cattle that I kn o w of than Sandy He's what you might call overcatlti o u s If you like, 1'11 s end him back to h e lp A m y and t o quiet her, and Ki Yi can take his pony It was with amazel1)ent that the other to the s e words from the owner of the Double Cros s and so bitter was the tone in which the y were uttered that none o f them had the inclination even, to laugh at their luckle ss comrade to whom they were addressed. P artially because he was afraid his neighbor would r epent his generosity and partially for the reason he was sorry for the berated foreman-knowing as he and all the others did that Sandy' s advice had been given only for the purpose of avoiding a repetition of the raider 's tactics 'of the night before-Hawks quickly accepted the o ffer. In s ilence the transfer was made, the foreman feeling too crestfallen to utter any protest. But his spirits were revived somewhat b y the very man to whom he wa s surrendering his pony. When it daylight, catch a couple of ponies and make the missus ride over to the Double Cross with you. She's dead set against being left alone, and, after what's happened to-night, she'll be cUI the more ready to go. Tell her the cattle will get along all right. If she bucks at that, ask her if she isn t of more importance than a bunch of steers-and she'll g.o fast enough. Then, when you've put the two women together, get Pinky and ride ior all you are worth for the swamps. "But the women won t l e t us go perhaps," objected Sandy. Tell em it' s orders from the old man." That won't be the truth." "Never mind. I ll guarantee he won t offer any c omplaint you two ride up to where we 're camping." Then y.ou think we won't be too late if we don t joitt you till to-morrow afternoon?" No-nor if you didn.'t get to us for a couple of days. If we drive that slick cu ss out of the bottoms inside of a week, we 'll be all-fired lucky. A moment the foreman he s itated, then reached out hi s hand and shook Ki Y i 's gratefully All right, I'll do it. Much obliged. I won t forget thi s night, And, without saying another word or asking for an y instruction s from the ranch owners Sandy set out t o re turn to the ruins and Mrs Hawks at a rapid lope, CHAPTER X A THRILLIN G RESCUE. N o s ooner had he given hi s s uggestion t o Sandy than Ki Yi buried the rowel s of hi s spurs in the pony s flank s and darted after Deadshot. Hey, yotl numbskull, where you going?" shouted the owner of the Double Cros s ranch angrily, I didn t give yotl a mount just to have yotl go off by yourself. Wait for the rest of tis We've got to decide which i s the direction to take ,"

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1 6 THE AMERICA N INDIAN WEEKLY. "Have n t got time," reto rted the c ow bo y e x a s perat in g l y "There' s b e en t oo muc h tal k already I know ""hich way J?ea d shot w en t, and h e's o n the raidet's trail t Then w e' ll f o ll o w yo u, c a lled th e own e r of the Star and Moo n A n d q ui ckl y the t r oop of h o r s emen l ea pe d t h e i r po n ies i n the wake o f Ki Yi. In the m ea ntime, D ea d s h o t an d t h e l one h o r se man he was purs uin g w e re das hing o ver the plains. Whether he was foll ow ing hi s quarry or n o t -the cow boy from the Double Cross ranch did not know. H e had hoped that the raider would continue the running fight with which the chase had opened, thereby enabling him to gauge correctly the exact course the man he was purs uing was But the fiend who had stolen Bowser's cattle and burned Hawks' buildings was far too clever to give his whereabouts away in any such manner. From the fact tl).at the cowboys had e,xchanged shots with him-and had come off second best-he realized that the search for him would be unrelenting. In consequence, he was determined they should not know exactly in what direction he was headed. That they would trail the Double Cross steers to the Sangammon swamps, he did not doubt. Yat he believed that, could he enter the bot toms without being seen in the act, he would be able to elude his pursuers
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THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. 17 denly thrown into great exc itement by the s ight of a l one horseman approaching the bottoms cautiously. Clutching his rifle tightly, he drew a bead on the man. But, fortunately for both, he did not pull the trigger. What the reason was, Deadshot said later he could not tell. But his failure so to do spared the life of Ki Yifor the approaching horseman was none other than the man from the Star and Moon outfit who had made a desperate attempt to catch up with hi s pal from the Double Cross. ) Trembling as he thought how near he can come to shooting down his friend, Deadshot waited to see what Ki Yi would do. B4t the cowboy was a scout of no mean ability. Rising' in his stirrups from time to time as he drew nearer and near:er to the edge of the swamp, he soon di s covered the trail through the dew-la!ien grass which hi s pal had made. And, a s he did so, he too, threw his rifle to his shoul der. Then, realizing that anyone hiding in the underbrush surrounding the bottom lands would be able to see him when he could not detect the person concealed, he suddenly slid from his pony, hobbled it, and, crouching so low that his back was not visible above the waving tops 0f the grass, resumed his following of the trail. Arrived at the sapplings, however, it did not take him long to discover and recognize Deadshot's horse. But where the cowboy was, he was unable to make out until a chuckle caused him to look up into the branches di rectly over his head. That's one on me," he exclaimed, in a low voice, shak ing his fist at his pal. No doubt of that. And it's a mighty good thing it was I in the tree instead of Mr. Cowliher. I cam e mighty near putting a bullet into you as it was when I first caught sight of you," he added, shuddering at the closeness oi the call. But you ought to have known it was I," returneCl Ki Yi Don't see why. I knew your pony had been shot under you and I didn't have any idea how soon you'd get another." "That's true enough. But you were chasing the raider, not he you." how littie you know about it. Having a iresher mount than he, after he stopped firing so that I couldn't get a line on him, I decided to outride him and be here to greet him." "Well, did you? "More than I know. He hasn't come yet-and he won' t if you leave your broncho out there where any can see it." I'll bring him in, but I don t believe we'll get a shot at the ornery cuss from this side of the swamp. He's either beaten you to it or he 's struck the bottoms from some other direction." \ And, as the reader knows, this is just what the Midnight Raider done. After making his pony fast close beside Deadshot's, J Ki Yi climbed into a neighboring sap ling, and together they watched until about nine o'clock, when they agreed their had given them the slip, and they descended to have a bite to eat. This finished, they d i sQussed whether or not they should do some scouting on their own hook while waitin g for the rest of the outfits to come up, finally abandoning the idea in the fear that the horsemen might not find their trails and iter the swamp at-some other point. Ang well for the ranch owners was it that they dia!' Hav.iIJg been unable to k eep Ki Yi in s ight, they had headed. for the Southern end of the swa mps while their two cowboys had struck out for the middle. Conse quently, it was only becau se the latter were keeping a lookout for their pals that they di scovere d them severa l mile s away, about the middle of the forenoon . Man, dear, but I'm glad to see you! exclaimed Bbwser, a s Deadshot and Ki Yi joined them. "Every man jack of us has a different idea h o w we ought to go about trailing the raider, and none of us know enough about the business to track a buffalo. But, now you're here, we'll turn' the leadership over to you." This suggestion met with the approval of' Hawks, much to the delight of his men. That being the case, I reckon we'd best hit the trail where the cattle was driven in," declared Deadshot. "Ki Yi and I've been watching since daybreak and nary a sight of the crittur have we seen, nor we didn't run aCrG)SS any trail on our way here and unle ss you-all did it's a cinch the man we 're after didn ? t enter the swamp to the South or at the middle." We didn't see as much as a coyote track," returned the owner of the Star 'and Moon, so the cattle trail it i s." And without more ado the avengers headed their ponies Northward and entered the Sangammon bottom lands at the precise spot where Bowser's steers had some twenty-four hours previous Aware of the treacherous mudholes Deadshot and Ki Yi followed the cattle trail as best they could. But the task was no simple one, for the reason that the softness of the footing left no hoof marks and the grass had had time to recover fr.om its brushing aside or down, e;< cept in instances where it had been trampled into the mire. So much noise did the ponies make plunging and splashing as they struggled to get out of the mud that the two leaders soon, realized that their coming would be heard by anyone in hiding in sufficient time to make a getaway or establi s h an ambuscade, and accordingl y they called a halt to discuss what was best to do. But, before they could begin the council of war, o ne of their number came near death! In his desire to ride alongside Deadshot, Bowser r e ined

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1 8 THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. hi s p o n y out Of the trail. But s carce a ya1"d had he ad-, vanced than the animal s t e pped into one of the dread mudhole s and began to s ink with incredible rapidity. Help! H e lp! I'm being s ucked under! shouted the t erro rs tricken man . Understanding full well the danger that threatened the owner of the D04ble Cro ss ranch, Deadshot and Ki Yi ordered the others to halt and hold their ponie s where they were while they them se lve s di s mounted and rushed t o the res cue. "We' ll take him one o n each s ide, Ki Yi as they drew near the wildlys truggling horse. To the man s inking to such a horrible death -'and to the others watching, it s eem e d a s though the two cow boy s never would reach him. Y e t they were making has te with all speed po ss ible. Already Bowser 's stirrups had been gripped in the r e lentle ss maw of the mudhole and they realized that it would require all of their strength to draw him from the p owerful and mysteriou s s uction. Consequently, it was o f the utmost importance that they choo s e footing that would not give way with them thereby precipitating them into the mudhole and s ending all three to their death. I But the footing for the re s cuer s grew worse instead of better. We can t make it thi s way! cried Dead s hot l\fan dear, you re s ure not going to desert me?" pleaded the fa s t-di s appearing ranchman. "Not for a minute!" returned hi s cowboy. "Hey, Hawks, and the re s t of, you! thro, w your lariat s over Sam's s houlders. With a will, the men obeyed and for the next few s ec ond s the air re s ounded with the whi s tling of the rawhide s a s they sped to their goal. .-' Great work! exclaimed Ki Yi. "Now, Sam plac e them under your arms." His finger s almo s t u s ele ss so did the ranch man' s hand s tremble with fear, the work wa s s low. Seeing that if they wer e not t
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THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKI:. Y. 19 }\fan dear, but you've hit the nail on the head! ejac ulated Deadshot, in delight. "There's an ornery crittur, part greaser, part Injun and part coon, whom I ran across last summer, they call him' Slippery Nig,' who knows every mudhole and hummock of grass in the swamps." "Then he's the bucko we 'Want," returned Ki Yi. "The quickest way to get at the Midnight Raider is to track him to his lair and surprise him. He prob" ably knows there isn't a living white man who could scout through th bottoms for twenty-four hours, so he wouldn't take any pains to keep a lookout, once he his cover." But, suppose we can't find Slippery N ig, or he wont come, what then?" inquired Hawks. "Do you think it would do any good to lay for the fellow to pot him when he starts out on another raid?" '. "Not unless you had three or four regiments of 1.7ncle Sam's soldiers," returned Deadshot. "The Sangammon bottoms cover about ten square miles-and the farther in you go the ornerier they get-so you can figure it out for yourself how many men it would take to throw a cor don round it." Then, as far as I can see, the Nig is our only hope," declared Dude. Providing you can get him," added Ki Yi. "How about it, will he come, do you think? " He will if he's in this part 6f the. country." Don't be too sure," interposed Grouch. "I've heard of Slippery Nig before. They say if there's one thing he hates than another, that same's a white man." That being so, what's the use of wasting time trying to find him? demanded Bowser. Oh, don't worry about his not coming, if he's aliveand I haven't heard of his death," rejoined Deadshot. "Slippery Nig is under a trifling obligation to me-I saved his life last summer when a couple of Injuns had him cornered-so there's no danger of his refusing. If he does, I'll send him where the bucks were going to." Realizing that the cowboy would, in consequence, be able to obtain the assistance of the guide, could he be located, Hawks asked, eagerly: How long will it take to firid him? Where does 11e hang out?" ,. Over by the catacombs. I reckon if I take Ki Yi with me, we can have him back here before sundown." "Then get a move on. We'll wait right where we are," the owner of the Double Cross. "What with stealing my cattle and then causing me to get into that death hole, it seems as though I c6uldn't wait much longer to get a shot at that raider." No urging, however. did the two cowboys need to make them start on their quest for the old guide, and quickly taking the freshest ponies in the lot, they were soon galloping over the plains. If ill luck had attended the beginning of the pursuit of the Midnight Raider, it evidently repented of such actions, for, before the cowboys had travel-sed more than" half the distance to the catacombs, they came upon the object of their ride, squatting beside a fire, frying some bacon on an old piece of tin. At the sound of hoofbeats, the old guide had risen cautiously f rom his place and scanned the horsemen, though so craftily had he done the trick that neither of the cowpunchers were aware of it. Deciding, however, that they would not prove hostile, he had resumed his cooking and was still engaged it when the horsemen rode up to him, after discovering the faint wraith of smoke caused by his fire" Man, dear, but the sight of you does my eyes good! exclaimed Deadshot, slipping from his saddle and extending his hand, which the old man accepted rather suspiciously. What brings you over this way?" he asked, without expressing either pleasure or surprise at beholding the man to who he owed his life. Looking for you." Huh?" And the tone in which he spoke showed that the information was not welcome. "Nig no done noth ing. Besides, you toid me you was a cowman." So I am," laughed the member of the Double Cross outfit. "What have you been up to now, you old rascal, that you're afraid die officers are looking for you? But the old guide ignored the question, repeating his own as to the purpose of Deadshot's search for him. Briefly the cowboy told him about the lone spectre's raids and the vain pursuit. At the tale, Slippery Nig's eyes sparkled and there came into them a look of vengeance which mystified the cowpunchers. But only for a minute. Even before either of them had the chance to ask the cause, the old dlan sPQke. You know him raider? he queried. No, do you? chorused both the cowboys, exchanging significant glances. "Sure. Only one heap fool alike that." vVho is it, then?" You remember Inj,un bucks last summer? he asked, looking at the man who had rescued him from them. You bet I do! ., returned Deadshot . Fool raider, him one-Scalping Louie." Not really? cried the cowmen, in amazement, for the name was that of a renegade redskin whose chief delight was to scalp helpless women and children, and for whom was a reward offered by the Indian agent on the reservation from which he had escaped only a or w before. "That him, Scalping Louie," repeated Nig. "Me just heard day, two day ago, he broke way from reserve again. That why me here." These words were uttered with such grim significance that the cowboys realized without the necessity of asking

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2 0 THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY, o r b eing t o ld tha t t h e o ld sco u t w as o n the trail of t h e :Midni ght R aide r. T h e n yo u 'Il help u s run h i m dow n ? in q uir ed Ki Y i with a w i n k at hi s co mpani on U hu h Me go." "Good bov D o n t bother to cook t h a t bacon. Get [lp be h i n d and w e ll go back t o t he r es t of t he bunch and then yo u can eat all yo u want to," excla i med Dead shot, sca r ce l y a bl e to restrai n his de l ight' tha t the task he had fea r e d might e ve n n ecess it ate a r esor t to f o r ce h ad b e en acc o mpli s hed w ithou t the ma kin g o f a n y p r om i se o r offe r of reward. AIl ri ght, m e go No n eed ri de with you, g o t ow n p int o This statement that the o ld s cout had a pony with h i m a maz e d his hearers, and in surpris e they looked about t o s ee where the animal could be. For a moment Nig enjoyed the my s tification of the c o wpunch e rs, then finaIly got to hi s feet. "Cowmen no know all Injun trick, he chuckled: Long ago Injun, had be heap smart. Dead s hot could fool 'Paleface. Me show." Eagerly the two men foIlowed Nig, wondering whether o r not he was playing a joke on them or leading them into a trap. But their s uspicions of the old s cout were quickly al layed. Scarce a rod had they gone from the fire than the old scout s topped, bent over, swept a s ide the grass with his hand and beckoned to hi s companions. There, stretched flat on it s side where it had be e n deftly, covered with mesquite, lay a flea-bitten pony. Man, dear, but that's some trick! ejaculated Deao s hot, in undisguised admiration of the cleverness with w hi"h the animal had beel! hidden. "That's what! acquie s ced Ki Yi. How do you do it, Nig?" Train um pinto." So I s uppose. Sounds ea s y enough, but how in the world do you manage to make the crittur lie so still he won't even make the grass move unnaturally?" "Train um pinto. Injun pony no fool." So it seems. But, just the same, I don t see how you can rig up the grass, even after you ve taught the pon y to lie still declared Deadshot. Me show-after get Louie." Thus recaIled to the busille ss in hand the two cow boy s watched Nig a s he turned to go back to the camp fire uttering a sharp command in s ome half-bre e d Ungo wl-ych brought the pony to its feet as he did so. Say, if you and I knew a s much a s that old codger we could get the fine s t job in Uncle Sam's M o unted Scouts ,:' exclaimed Ki Yi, enthusiastically. : I 'll bet he has forgotten more than any other s cout on the plain s to-day ever knew " No chance for an argument there," returne d th e o th e r cowboy I wo uldn't b e in Sca l p in g L ou i e's s h oes for all the mo n ey in t h e United S t a t es treasury." Put in a n exceIlent humor b y the prai se of the cow punc h ers, fo r h e realized t h e prai se of t h ese me n of t h e p l ains was the appreciat i on of men ;Vho knew, S l ippe r y Nig quick ly, and wi t h an ag i l i ty a m az ing in one of h i s years, vaulted onto the back of h is pinto a n d headed to ward t he Sou th. CHAPTER XII. T H E PLAINSMEN ARE OUTWITTED. As the q u ee r tri o l o p e d al ong t o the camp wh ere the r es t of the av engers were eag e rl y awaiting the r eturn o f the two cowbo ys and hoping agains t h o pe that they w o uld b e s ucce ss ful not o nly in locating the old Indian s cout but in pers uadin g him t o lend his ski II and a ss i stance in running the Midnight Raide r to his lair, Slipper y Nig regaled his compani o n s with tale s of hi s pas t exploit s And many were the point e r s h e gave hi s listener s a s to trailing and woodcraft. But' when they drew near their de s tination, the o ld s cout grew reticent and by the time they reached their feIlows, he was a s s tolid of feature and a s taciturn a s the proverbial Indian chieftain. "What luck?" caIled Bowser, as the tramp o f the ponie s reached the ears of the waiting men. We' ve got him," returned Ki Yi. In delight, all the cowboys, Hawks and even the suffering owner of the D o uble Cros s ranch got to their feet and hastened to greet and get a glimp s e of the man upon whose skill they were depending to send the s pectral raider to hi s much-de s erved doom HeIlo, old chap!" exclaimed Bow s er, extending hi s hand cordially to the old s cout. "I'm sure glad Dead shot f o und you. We' re in a mighty bad way, as I s uppo se he' s told y ou." But Slippery N ig mad e no more m o ve to s hake the hand or return the greeting than if the own e r of th e Double Cro ss were not in exi s tence. Surly old duffer, ain't he? grinned Dude. Yet e ven this comm ent upon hi s manner failed to draw a s ign from the aged s c out that he wa s aware of the pres ence of the cowboy s and the ranchmen Nonplused by the refus al of their advances the m e n g,a z ed at one anoth e r in perplexity deeming that it wa s n e c essary for the s ucc ess o f the purs uit that they s h o ul d win N ig' s good grace s Even a word from D e ad s h o t fail e d t o elicit any re s p o n s e and they were at their wit s end s to know what t o d o to re s t o re his good humor, wh e n Grouch chan ced t o so lve the my stery o f his t a citurnity. 4 Perhaps he 's d eaf," th e Star and M oo n cowpull cher whi s pered to Dude This a s persi o n up o n his facultie s unl oos ed the floodgates M e no d eaf," s n o r ted the a g e d s c o ut. . i.s

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THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. 21 Scalping Louie. No wonder paleface no get near urn. Make noise like squaws. Louie maybe hear urn and cum see urn. See Nig and vamoose. Paleface heap fool. Louie think Nig in smamp, break for anywhere. Nig have heap trouble trailing him. Paleface either shut urn mouth, or Nig no help." "What's it all about?" asked Hawks, turning to the cowboys who had fetched the old scout for an explana tion of the torrent of wrath. "Who's this Louie, anyhow? What's he got to do with us? Doesn't the old duffer know it's .the Midnight Raider we're after? " Easy, easy," grinned Deadshot. "One question at a time." All right. I'll keep quiet, returned the owner of the Star and Moon, "only for pity s sake get busy and ex plain what we ve done to bring down the wrath of this old curmudgeon upon our heads." In the fir s t place your Midnight Raider is no other than Scalping Louie, the renegade chief from the Piute reservation who s e s pecialty i s de s cending upon lone ranch hou s es and s ettl ements and s calping all the w 9 men, children and old men h e can lay his hands on. He's broken from the re s ervation g o o d ne s s only knows how many time s-it. s eems he was o n e of the parties from whom I saved Nig last summer-and he' s brok e n out again w)thin a few weeks. If the de s ired to produce a s en s ation b y this statement, he beyond his fonde s t dreams In blank amazement, the men stared at one another and then from Deads hot to old Nig. "Skull and cro ss bone s a s Sandy says!" exclaimed Bowser. "No wonder we have been outwitted by the fiend. \ N hy, he's the mo s t dange rous Indian in the coun try. Only the other day, when I was at the Centre, I signed a petition asking that the devil be sent to the United States at Leavenworth-where he couldn t break out any more. " And s o did I," interpo s ed Hawks. Then it's dollars to a coyote flea that's why you two were s ingled out as the fir s t obj e ct s of his wrath, de clared Ki Vi. "He probabl y heard in s ome way that you d put your names to the petition and then later that you'd both out on the range to round up and drive in your steers for market. His intentions were, more'n likely to add Sarah's and Amy's s calp s to hi s collection s but finding you had both returned, he vented his wrath upon Sam by driv }ng off hi s cattle and leaving a trail big enou g h for a baby to find leading into the Sangammo n bott o m land s s o's he could get y ou into one of thos e mudho l es And when he found H e n wa s back, he de cid e d t o var y operation s b y burning the h o me outfit. Tho u g h thi s s peech wa s the l o n ges t con s ecuti v e o n e the cowb o y had ev e r made in hi s life and wa s somewhat in volved the oth e rs followed it closelY, the ir thorough con curre nce in the vi e w s s i g nifi e d b y h eq uent nodding s of t h e ir h e a ds . But the final touch of approval came from Stippery Nig. (( Some paleface plenty wise," he declared, his weatherbeaten and battle-scarred face breaking into a smile of praise. Keep on talking, you two, you'll soon have him really pleqsapt," chuckled Bowser: And, in obedience, Deadshot took up the task of interpreting Nig's remarks where he had left off when Ki Yi began his explanation of the arids. Nig? knowing Louie's cunning, did not like the way you-all greeted us when we came up. :He's out on a little scouting party for Louie himself-on account of that per forman, ce in which I played the part of the hero, I sup pose (( That's probably one of principal why he agreed to join force s with us. And, becau s e he's out on thi.s little trip, he doe sn't want to make s o much noise that Louie will come s nooping to find what's doing and get wi s e to the fact that Nig i s with us For, if there is anybody s licker in trailing and s uch things than Louie, it' s Nig-and Louie know s it. (( Consequently, if Louie s hould s ee N ig with u s, he would know he was on the war path and light out-which would s poil what s eems like a lovely littre chance for Nig to save Uncle Sam a lot of e xpen s e by putting him where he can't take any more s calp s Another grin of approval from the aged scout greeted this elucidation of his caustic comment "Then, as I understand it, what Nig wants i s for u s to keep quiet?" inquired Bowser. Heap chuckled the scout. All right, we will-es pecially as it s eems to be sound sease, returned the owner of the Double Cro ss. "Now, s uppose you ask him what he intends to do, Deads hot." Without, aelay, the cowboy put the que s tion, whil e hi s companions awaited eagerly for Nig' s res ponse. And, after s everal minute s their curio s ity was gratified. Firs t, must see trail, iearn where goes." But we can't follow it, we ve tried it once and pretty nearly lo s t Bowser in the attempt," e x claimed Hawks. Me no say follow um," returned the s cout, in di sgus t M e s ay want to see where urn goes." What good will that do? queri e d Ki Vi. Me know where pitch teppee, burn him o ut. " By thunder, that's the idea!" ejaculated the own e r of the D o uble Cro ss unable t o r estrain hi s d e light at the sugg es tion. "Want any h e lp fro m a ny o f us?" Uhuh! Me t a k e D e ad s h o t and Ki Vi. Paleface s s tay h e re till we c o m e back. ;' D o n t worry a b o ut our goi n g awa y," s mil e d Hawks, and we 'll keep all-fired q ui e t t oo." Goo d . We n o be back till burn L o ui e O l ; t stay o n e dge of sw amp \ N h e n see um fire, w a tch o u t This 'o nl y trail t o L o uie 's t ep p ee s tay h e r e and

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22 THE INDIAN vVEEKL Y. when Louie come, shoot U111. We stay on other side so shoot Louie if run that way." "But how about the North and South? Won't you need some guards for them?" queried Bowser. "Naw. No trail to South or North. Mudhole too bad, 'cept near catacombs." "Then hurry up and be going," exclaimed Hawks. This scheme looks like a rip-snorter to me. You won't be gone five minutes before I'll have the others in posi tions which they can sweep the trail." Huh! Palefaces watch out no shoot too soon. Louie hear shot, he dodge." "Oh, I reckon palefaces aren't such fools they can't tell a man from a shadow," retorted Bowser. "Mebbe. But animals, um come from swamp 'fore Louie. Animal smell'um fire mans." Then we'll be on the lookout. Now hurry-and good luck." "And don't forget that the success of this :lvhole scheme lies in you-all keeping dead quiet," cautioned Deadshot as he and Ki Yi followed Slippery Nrg into the trail. But, despite this warning, the bunch of avengers, sitting tense and alert for the appearance of the Midnight Raider, again fell prey to him! / 'Vith a cleverness that was uncanny, the old scout led the way through the swamps, seeming to travel all the time over firm ground, with such skill did he avoid the Fl1udholes. And, as the cowboys were marveling at his ability, he suddenly halted his pinto and raised his hand for them to stop, putting a finger to his lips to enjoin silence .aud then, when they had drawn rein, pointing with hi.s other hand toward the tops of the trees some thirty yards ahead. Quickly following the direction, the cowpunchers be held a faint wreath of smoke floating lazily off into the air. And, as--they realized that their quarry was in his teppee, their hearts beat like trip-hanlmers. But not long were they allowed to enjoy the sight. Again the old scout raised his hand, this time ing to them to ride close to him. -' Must be careful now," he whispered. "Must get on other side of teppee so set fire. Wind from South. We go North. Louie no smell." Wondering how their aged guide could detect the di rection of the wind when they were not even aware there was any stirring, at least, not sufficient to carry their odor to the shrewd old fiend, the cowboys followed his lead. But, though as before, 'Nig picked out only firm ground for them to ride on, he made frequent halts while he listened an.cI sniffed, once or fwice even and reconnoitring on foot. A fter what seemed to them several hours, so slowly did they advance, Nig gave the word to halt. .Isn't there any more danger of his hearing us?" queried Ki Yi, surprised to hear the aged scout speak. No make difference now," he replied. Why not?" exclaimed both cowboys, together. Because we on South side of teppee." But I thought that was the side you wanted especially to avoid? remarked Deadshot. "While we getti.ng here, uhuh. Now no difference. Palefaces at head of trail. If Louie smell us now, he no think any there and they shoot um." During this conversation, the aged SCOtlt-' had been preparing some grass which he braided with amazing rapidity into a long strand and then cut into three pieces, two of which he gave to his companions. What 11re these for? they asked, in chorus. "Torches." "But I never saw any like these," exclaimed Ki Yi, examining his braid sceptically. No go out easy, no burn too quick." And without other explanation, Nig lighted his, and, dismounting, began to kindle a row of fires in such a direction that the increasing wind would sweep them down upon the, retreat of the Midnight Raider. At first, it was necessary to rekindle the fires in several places, especially where the cowpunchers had applied their torches. But, at last, being shown how to avoid the wet undergrass and light only dry tops and the upper part of the underbrush, they soon had a leaping wall of flame raging through the swamp. As the wind steadily grew stronger, Nig's face was in smiles. Palefaces watch out, we get Louie, sure," he chuckled. Came near not, though." he added. "When we coming round by teppee he come nigh smelling us." How was that? We weren't near his tep pee, were we? asked Deadshot, surprised the thought. "Uhuh. Mebbe ten feet, mebbe rod." At this reply; the cowpunchers stared at' one another . 111 amazement. If we were so near, why didn't you sneak up and put a bullet into him? queried Ki Yi. "LOtiie snooping. Me no know where, but me fool um." And again he chL;ckled at the realizatiop his cun ning had outwitted his mortal enemy. But their rejoicing was premature. I In their calcula tions, they had forgotten the cattle. As it happened, the steers were grazing not far from where they had kindled the fires, and quickly the sensed the danger, lowing and groaning. "That will gi'je the alarm to Louie, won't it?" anxiously inquired Deadshot. "Uhuh. But steers never get through swamp," Yet, though Slippery N ig was right in this contention, the animals came near causing the c)eath of the trio. \Vith that perversity which makes steers so impossible to rely on, and because many animals are prone to rush

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THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. 23 into fire instead of away from it, the cattle charged di rectly at the wall of flame. Instantly realizing this action, and knowing the danger with which it threatened them, Nig leaped upon his pony and, calling to the others to mount behind him :md aban don their own horses, he guided the wiry little ri-Ito to a place of safety just at the edge of the fire. But, even with such a distance between them and the spot where they had been standing, they were only able to save themselves by shooting three steers that thundered down upon them. Growing impatient as time went by without any action, the rest of the avengers were suddenly roused to attention by the discovery of the glow from the flames. "Where'll we put the ponies?" asked Dude. We ought to have them far enough away so they won't be frightened by the fire." "Take 'em out a couple of hundred yards on the plains," directed the owner of the Double Cross. "They'll be safe there, and we can reach them in time to dash to the South before the flames get us." Quickly this order was obeyed, and the men spread out to cover as much ground as possible, that their quarry might not escape them. Eagerly they awaited a sight of Scalping Louie, guns held against their shoulders. But, though denizens of the swamps, of all sorts and descriptions, swarmed forth, never the s ight of a human being did they catch. Already the heat of the flames was becoming intense. "Do you think he's got by us?" shouted Bowser to Hawks. I don't see how X--" But his words were never finished. For, even as he was speaking, there rang out aboxe the roar of the fire, a pit;rcing O-' u-e-e Instantly the avengers whirled toward the plains. Waving his hand in derision, the lone horseman was racing Southward, driving the pOllles of his pursuers ahead of him. CHAPTER XIII. A THRILLING RESCUE. Cursing and howling in fury, to think that they had again been outwitted by the Midnight Raider, the cow boys pumped shell after, shell at the fleeing horseman. As before, he seemed to ride unscathed through the leaden hail-and their inability to hit the horseman only added to their anger. Dude and Grouch had raced out onto the plains in the futile attempt to overtake the fugitive on foot. But at last they even gave up shooting at him. What'll old Slippery Nig say to us now, I wonder? exclaimed the owner of the Star and Moon, as they s tood gazing after their fast-disappearing foe. "He won't have the chance to s ay anything if we don't hike out of here mighty quick," returned Bowser. Come on, men, run to the South for your lives! This command recalled the fire to the avengers for the first time since they were made aware that the Midnight Raider had tricked them. Gazing toward it, they realized they were in greater danger than they had ever been from Scalping Louie. By leaps and bounds, it seel'11ed to be sweeping down upon them, its billows of smoke already causing them to cough and choke. Turn ",our heads to the open plains and run lo;! shouted Hawks. "Two hundred yards will bring us be yond the edge of toe wall of flame. The wind is already driving it more to the Desperately the cowb t ys put forth every bit of their strength in frantic effort to reach the zone of safety. AJild each thought only of himself. As a result, it was not until they had gained a spot behind the dyath-dealing wall of flame that they gave thought to one another. Blrt; when they did, they found that one of their num ber was missing! "Where's Sam?" demanded Dude, looking from one to another of his fellows, in alarm. For a moment, 4:he thought that one of their band had fallen prey to the inexorable fire, filled them with horror. He must have fallen," murmured .Hawks. Shall we go back for him? asked Grouch. And lose your life, too? No. One life is enough to give to that raiding devil without sacrificing another in a useless attempt. Some of us should have thought of giving Sam assistance, that he was unable to take care of himself because of the wounds made by the lariats when we dragged him from the mudhole. But it's no use to try to save him now. We don't kl10w where he fell, and the sinoke is already upon him. Poor fellow! Though they accepted the decision of the ranchman, realizing that it would, indeed, be madness for anyone on foot to attempt the rescue, the thought of the man they so revered meeting such an J10rrible fate was more than they could ltear, and, seemingly with one accord, they faced away from the wall of flames and threw them selves into the grass tbat thh might not see the fire sweep up the plains-and devour the owner of the Double Cro s s ranch. But, even as they despaired, expecting every in stant to hear the agonized shriek that would announce the ru s h of the flames upon Bow s er, help was s p ee ding to him b y leaps and bounds! .When Sandy had been advi s ed by Ki Yi to take :\1r s Hawks to the Double Cross and then, getting Pinky, ride to join the rest of the avenger s he lo s t no time in put ting the suggestion into effect. "\Vhy, man, what brings you back? \Vhy aren't you riding with the others?" exclaimed the w o man. "I

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24 THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. should think they were short handed enough, as it was, to capture that villain without leaving you behind." "That's the way it looked to me, Mrs. Hawks, but Sam got mad at me and told me to give Ki Yi my pony and come back here to stay with you." And rapidly he narrated the incidents that had brought about the unhorsing of the pursuing cowboy and his own humiliation. Sympathetically the woman listened. always was hot tempered," she declared. "And then he only listens to the last one who has his ear. I',ve always told Hen so-and this bu s iness proves it. Still, I'm mighty glad you came back. I was beginning to feel scared, all alone here. It's no place to leave a woman, with her home in ruins and all those cattle in the corral." Groaning as he realized from this torrent of words that even the events of the' night would not' stop woman's loquacity, the foreman cursed silently to him self. But he was given little time to indulge in his own thoughts. Who knows, it may be an act of Providence that y.ou' ve come back," rattled on the woman. "Like'as not, something will happen before morning that will give you a chance to s how your worth and make us all glad you didn't go. Let's go over to the corral and s ee how the cat tle are I've got tobe doing something. There's 1)0 house to go into and--'" That's just what I was agoing to speak to you about," exclaimed Sandy, interrupting. "It's no fit place for a lady to b e-here on the plains with her home in ruins and no roof or nothing to protect from storms and no food to eat." "You never spoke a truer word, Sandy. But what can we do? Now, you re here, 1 don't propose to let you go and leave me while you ride to the Centre for pro vi s ion s or anything. " v V hy not go over to (he Double Cross?" suggested the foreman. You and Mrs. Bowser could get along together-you'd be company. for each other, so you w04lcln t feel afraid-and that being so, i t. would let Pinky and me go to join Sam and the rest of them." FOl' s everal minutes the woman co i 1sidered the propo sition, without making any B y watching her face clo s ely, thanks to the light from the s till glowing ruins the for e man could s ee from it s express i o n that hi s s ugg es ti o n had app e aled to her, and this was pro ved b y h e r words Do yo u think it would be ri ght f o r me to lea v e the c a ttle? s h e q u e ried anx iou s ly. "Something might hap p e n to t h em-o r they mi ght be raid ed," Well, I d on't s ee how y o u could do very much, either t o s t o p th e r aic\ o r t o help if tro uble bro ke out," r e plied S andy, a s mile lig htin g hi s f ace "If there's o n e thin g m o r e t h a n another th a t will stir u p a re s tl ess critti lr it' s a woman. And you sure wouldlf't be able to stand off a gang of raiders." "No-o, I suppose not," returned the woman, h esitat ingly. "Still, if anything should go wrong, and I wasn't here, Hen would never forgive me." Only too well did the foreman realize the truth of this statement, thoroughly familiar as he was with the nature and disposition of the owner of the Star and Moon ranch. But he was determined to rejoin his fellow avengers, and, as an idea came into his mind, he exclaimed: Hen didn't think anything about you when he started after that raider. I don't see why you should put yourself in danger. If it hadn't been for my row with Sam, I wouldn't be here now-and then you would have been in a bad fix, without food, shelter or ponies. It strikes me that, under the the thing for you to do is to think only of yourself and come with me to the Double Cross." But how would we get there? We haven t any ponies and I surely can't walk thirty miles through the grass " I'll fix that all right, if that's all is you. It won't take me more than an hour or so, perhaps not that long, to round up a couple of the bronchos and then we can T hen get bu s y and catch 'em," exclaimed the woman. "I kind of hate to leave the ranch this way-but Hen Hawks had no business to leave me all alone by m yself! never a minute, least the woman repent of her deci s ion, Sandy set out to round up two of the ponie s s miling to himself as he went out onto the plaih s at Mrs. Hawks' passronate outburst. I wouldn't be in Hen Hawks' place when he doe s get back for all the cattle in that corral," he grinned. Thanks to his skill, it did not take the foreman long to catch a couple of the bronchos, and, though they were obliged to ride without saddles or even blankets and with bridles improvised from bits of rawhide lariats which Sandy found, in due course they were on their way to the home ranch of the Double Cross, which they reached soon after daybreak. In horror, Mrs. Bowser listened to her friend's excited recital of the events of the night before. But, when Sandy announced his intention of taking Pinky and riding to the Sangammon s wamps for the pur-' pose of rejoining the band 'of avengers she refused to permit him .. What, leave us two women alone and unprotected? s he exclaimed. "Shame on you for thinking of s uch a thing, Sandy! Who know s but that terrible white raider, l earning that all the men from the Double Cross and the Star a nd M o on ranch es are cha sing him may \;ome back and burn our buildin gs, too?-" In vain the fo rem a n protes ted h e h ad r e ceiv ed orders from B ow s e r to f o llow, if po ss ible declaring that the g r eate s t safeguard agains t further raid s w as t o capture the r a id er.

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, THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. 25 Mrs. Bowser was adamant, however, and -in her posi tion Mrs. Hawks ably backed her up. Givtng up the idea for the moment, Sandy went back to the horse corral, taking Pinky with him. H What's to be done? demanded the latter, when they were safe from being overheard. "I'm going!" declared the foreman, with emphasis. You sneak into the bunkhouse pack some grub for our saddlebags. Better put in a good supply because 'the others will probably be running short. I'll catch aiouple of the best ponies and make 'em ready. When y(')u've stowed the grub, come on out here. We'll mount and ride up to the ranchhouse. Seeing that we're determined to go, anyhow, the women will probably i;ive their con sent.' ; And if they don't? just ri de away." Satisfied with this arrangement, Pinky hurried off to carry out hi s part of' it, rejoining his companion in due course. QuioJdy mounting, but not without many the two cowboys cante.red round to the veranda of the randihouse where they knew the women were sitting. Even before they had come in sIght Mrs. Bowser heard the hoofbeats and went to learn their cau se. What are you two boys going to do? she demanded. Join Sam and the rest," returned Sandy. "Oh, no, you're not; not whjle Amy and I are here all alone! exclaimed the woman, resolutely. And with a lightning movement, she turned to the side of the veranda, picked up a rifle and leveled it at the re bellious cowpunchers ere they could realize exactly wha!. was happening. Now do you think you'll go? demanded Mrs. Bow ser, grimly. H If you don't turn round and ride back to the corral, dismount and promise not to try any such tricks again, I'll-I'll shoot you! Not reli shing being in front of the death-dealing weapon pointed at him, especially when it was in the hands of a n et:vous woman-for he realized it might be discharged accidentally any moment-the foreman pre tended to yield. H All right You seem to be the doctor," he replied, wheeling his horse, and at the sa me time winking at Pinky to let him know he had evolved another s cheme to carry out hi s purpos e H Well, I rather guess I'm the doctor-and you'll find it out! Mrs. Bowser. Put down the rifle, won t you? pleaded Sandy. "It might go off without you intending it should. Now, we re not going, you don t need it." Say, you fellows must think I am ea s y," smiled the woman. "I won't .put it down-and what's more, Amy and I are going to follow you with it to the corral, s o y ou won't have the chance to give u s the s lip! It having been the foreman's purpose pers uading Mrs. Bowser to lay aside the rifle, to make a dash for the plains, when he realized from the determined woman's words that his scheme was frustrated, he relieved his feelings by cursing. But a way out of the difficulty was presented in an unexpected manner! Ere the cowboys had ridden a rod back toward the horse yard, both they and the two w o men were amazed to hear hoofbeats. Whee. ling in their s addles, at the s ame time whipping out their six shoot e r s that they might not be caught un awares in ca s e the newcom e r s prov e d more raiders, the cowpunchers were surpris ed to s ee a man and a woman canter' over the ri s e in the plain s that .le d into the yard of the D o uble Cro ss home ranch. At the sight of Mrs Bow ser with the rifle in her hands and the two horse m e n with rev o lv e r s drawn, the new com e r s dre w rein, abru p tl y What's wrong, Sarah?" caned the man, at the same tim e dropping his hand to hi s own s ho o ting iron. Well Charlie and Mary Harris, if I'm not gl a d t o se e you!" cried Mrs Bow s er, running out to m eet ,the couple, whom she had recognized a s of hers from the Centre /Then, for goodn ess s ake s put down that rifle! called the woman. "You may be glad to see U'i" but I don't feel over safe with that thing pointed at me. Quickly th. e other wOJIlan obeyed. Explanations of the surprising scene which had gre et e d the new comers were quickly a s ked and given. Now that we re here there' s no reas on why the boy s can't go ahead and joih Sam and H e n," e x claim e d Harris. "If they've got to search the Sangammon bottom s two more men will be mighty welcom e to thel ,TI. I wis h I could go my s elf he added wi s tfully. "Well, you can't, s o you might jus t a s well get that notion right out of your head! I' reto rted hi s companion, who wa s hi s wife. "It'll be bad enough to have onl y one man." Fearing that some whim of the women might deprive them of thi s unexpected opportunity to go to their f e l low s Sandy again whe e led his hors e and rode up t o the group. H Then, we can go, Mrs. Bowser? : he asked, gathering up his rein s and drawing hi s feet ba c k ready to bury the rowel s of his spurs in his pony' s flank s the in stant permi s s ion wa s given. "You think it will b e all right, Charlie?" s he as ked turning to her fri e nd fro m the C entre: "Sure thing. B es ide s, Sam and Hen will c erta inl y need every man they can get! " All right you may go," exclaimed Mrs. B ows er. And good luck to you! s he call ed. For, no sooner had Sandy and Pinky heard the fir s t words of her repl y than the y leaped th<1ir forward

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26 THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEK-L Y. and w ere racing over the plain s before the permi ssio n was f airly out of her mouth. Being mounted on the fleet es t horses that the Double C ro ss bo as ted, the y traveled fas t, s p aripg neither their h o r s e s n o r the m s elve s in their d es ire to join the othe r avengers as s oon a s po s sible. F r o m afar, they caught s ight o f the fire s w ee ping ov e r the botto m s . They' ve trailed the fiend and are trying to burn him out!" cried the foreman, in e x ultation Com e on man ride like the old Nick, s o w e can be in at the kill ing! All eagernes s the two cowpunchers rode with quirt and s pur. -Scarc e two mile s away w e re the y when they s uddenly beheld a figur:e dart from the underbrush, s can the plains before him has tily and then make a das h for the bunch of p o nie s standing to the South. That's the raider! He's g o t away from them! Ride him down!" yelled Pinky. But, e v e n as he s poke the daredevil renegade, a s the read e r knows had leaped upon on e of the ponie s and \\lavin g his arms, scattere d the oth e r s to the four point s o f tqe wind s A n in stant later, BOvYser and the other aveng e r s who ,had be e n outwitte d by Scalping L o uie das hed fro m the 5Wal!lpS and began their fra ntic but futile firing at' the fugiti ve, which the y quickly forso ok, a s the .reader know s, in order t o s av e their own liv es A m oment, Sandy and hi s companion, never s lack e ning their pace he s itated whether to g o in purs uit of the raider or t o ride to the relief of the ir friend s And as they tried to decide which to do they beheld B o w ser fall. Someone s 'down! We mus t s ave him! shouted the foreman to hi s bunkmate And together they rode with migh t and main. But little did they think the fallen man w.as their master! Be ing the heavier man Sandy's pony wa s tiring rapidl y Ride, man, I can t la st! '1 h e s houted. B ending low hi s s addle Pinky rowelled deep fur: rows in the Bank s of hi s broncho. Ga mely the b e a s t r e sponded. T h e blanket o f s uff ocating s m o ke was alm os t upon the prostrate form o f the o wn e r of the D o uble C ro ss Less than fift y fe e t away wa s Pinky Leaning far t o one s id e o f hi s s addl e, the c o wboy r ace d up jus t a s the h o t ch o king black pall se ttled o v e r t h e s p o t whe re the ranchman lay. I laving taken k e en s ight of wh e r e the body lay, Pinky mad e a q,es p erate grab. T o hi s inte n s e jo y, his fingers ca ugh t in the n;an 's b e lt. Tightening h \ h o ld th e c o wb o y turned hi s pon y s head gave a terrifi c j a b with hi s spurs-and s wept fro m the clou d of draggin' g the b o dy with him! CHAPTER XIV. THE A GED SC O U T GIV ES AN EXHIBITION OF HIS ABILITY Well d o ne, man! Well done Pinky!" shouted Sandy And with all s peed po ss ibl e he rode to the a ss i s tance of hi s bunkmate, as, with Bow ser in hi s clutch, the cow bo y Mnerged from the very gras p of death. Not a moment to o s oon did he arrive! Blinded by the hot s moke, choking and coughing, the cowboy from the Double Cros s outfit was reeling in hi s s addle his strength having given out after the re s cue of hi s employ e r though he s till : uncon s ciou s ly clutched Bowser's belt. But, before he fel Sandy 's strong arm encircled him. Becau s e of their horror at s e e ing o ne of their number give hi s life to the relentle ss wall o f flam e s a s they sup po se d Hawks and the men with him had not s een the thrilling r es cue and it was not till they heard the foreman's s h out of congratulation to Pinky that theJ had any idea there was anyone near them. s ooner had his words rung out, howev e r, than they w e re upon feet and quickly they swarmed about the prostra t e form of the man they had given up a s dead and his re scuers Eve n when they saw him saved the narrowness of the ranchm "an's es cap e fro m s uch a horrible fate held th e m s ilent a s they anX:ious ly poured brandy and other stimulants down hi s throat. But it was not many minutes before they were afforded the joyous relief of s eeing Bowser open his eyes. Thus satisfied that their fellow had, indeed, been saved in time, Dude and the others turned their attention to Pinky, who was quickly r e vived, while Hawks talked with Sandy, The owner of the Double Cross ranch, was aware that he had not been saved by any of the three men who had been hiding in the bushes to intercept the Midnight Raider. Indeed, his last memory was of s ee ing them das hing f o r safety giving no heed to hi s desperate call for a ss i s tance. And as his mind came back to it s normal condition he ;is ked feebly: \ Who-who saved me ? " Pinky!" returne d s everal voices. Pinky? Why-why-what's he doing h ere? I thought he was back at the ranch looking after Sarah? Then, another idea fla s h e d into hi s mind, and he a s ked : "There-has n t a n y thin g m o re happened at home has there? " Not a thing, Sam, e x claimed his foreman, m oving to wh e re hi s master could s ee him. What, you here too?" ejaculated Bowser. Y es Charlie Harris and his wiJe came ov e r to s ee S arah, and he t o ld u s t o join you-and from the fix I

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)' I I THF7 A:\fERICAN I::\DIA:-\ WEEKLY. Pinky found you in, I reckon it was an all-fired good thing we come just when we did! " No doubt about that," returned the ranchman. "To say nothing of saving me, w e 'll need you before we run that cowlifter down. But I thought I left you '!-t the Star and Moon? Briefly Sandy told him of his actions, not even omitting a description of the scene when :"fr s Dowser had held them from leaving the ranch at the point of her kn'Owing full well that the woman would tell about it upon their return and believing it would see m less se riou s when his master was still in forceful remembrance of the fact that the time l y arrival of hi s two n l en was all t hat had saved his Ii fe. As the picture of the angry and determined women ,set their minds, the men heartilr fhere s no doubt but that Sarah s a woman who's bound to have her own way." commented the owner of the Double Cross. "And I don t mind a bit saying I'd mHch rather it was you standing before her rifle 'than me. She's some nervous." "Well, so long's everything i s all right back at the ranch and we've got two more men than we thought YOL\'d have, let's have grub," Grouch. "I'm hungry." "Sure we'll have grub-when you overhaul ponie s," s napped Dude. "You 8tart out and round em up, and we 'll have a fire ready when you get back." 'f.hus reminded that the los s of their horl'es a l so meant the lo ss of their food, which was all in the saddle bags, the avengers were thrown into no pleasant fr'ame of mind. But the two cowboys whose arrival had been so opportune quickly their good humor by announcing 1.hey had brought all the grub they could. lay hands on. And, without more ado, the men who had come so near to a horrible death, se t about having a meal. Meantime, the aged scout and his two companions had h eard the fusillade 01 shots whicH had been fired at the man they had routed fro m hi s retreat. Hooray! They've got the cuss! shouted Ki Yi, glee fully as the reports reached their ears. Got nothin' snorted N ig. Why not?;: demanded Deadshot. N Can't you hear them firing? "Uhuh!" Then what makes you s ay they haven't got him? ,. "Too many shots! Injun fool paleface! No trick UI11, no keep firing! Scalping Louie he ap smart! From thi s logi c there wa s no getting away and, though they stared at one another in di s may, the two cowboy s accepted the aged scout's statement without quibble \Vhat's to do? asked Deads hot, after seve ral minutes had brought no further comment from their guide. Find paleface." That sou nd s easy, but how are we going to get out of thi s hole without our ponies which the cattle drove off? ,,' inquired Ki Yi. "I'm not ke e n o n )valking myself, -es pecially when you're liable to sink out of s ight if you (:on't step jus t so." ., Oh, we can hold Of r ope," rejoined Deadshot. No need walk," grunted the aged sco ut. How are we going, fly? ., grinned the man from the Star and :\loon. I'm so rry. but I haven't got my airship with me this trip," he added., jestingly, seek ing to r e s t o re Nig's good humor-which the escape of his arche nemy through the hands of the ranchmen and cowboys had s adly up set. "But perhaps yo u have one hidden in the swa mp somewhere back of us, like yo u did your pony, N ig. "Paleface heap funny-nit!" s napped the o ld halfbreed. "nIaybe no think so if Louie get um sca lp. ., That sure wouldn't make a hit with me," rejoined Ki Yi. "But if D eads hot and me haven't got to walk, will you kindly tell u s how we to travel. seeing as how w e've only got one pony among three?" ., And that one so short, Ki Yi couldn't s it it without pulling up hi s knees," added the member of the D ou ble Cross outfit. "Pinto carry plenty easy-bu t s low ," re sponded Nig. H Wetl if that flea bitten bunch of hide and bone s can "tand it, I reckon we can," grinned Ki Yi. But, de s pite hi s m oc king words, both he and the other cowboy g l anced at the little piece of horsefles h with renewed r es pect and. only t oo thankful to be spa red the danger from a mis s t ep which would land them in a suc king mudhole or from being bitt e n by so me deadly poison ous snake, the two cowpunchers mounted behind their aged guide. The tas k they had undertaken, however, proved even too much for the wily old half-bree d familiar with eve ry foot of the swamps as he had been. For the fire had obliterated all the old landmarks, l eaving a cover of charred grass and sapl ing s in it s wake which hid the treacherous whi1.e from all about rose a s team s ick ening ill its stench. Wondering if the would ever be able to live tl '!'rough it and thanking th"eir stars they were not oiYliged to walk, the cowboys were busy looking about them when the aged halfbreed drew rein. No use. No make it ," he grunted, scanning the black ened, foul-smelling waste. "Only paleface and fools try go through um." Much obliged for the comparison, but what d o you propose to do?" asked Deadshot. "We sure can't stay here. I believe I'd rather make a tryat getting thl'ough ori foot, by myse lf, than dying in thi s hole! ., Who s ay stay here? demanded 1\'ig. What e l se is there to do, if you s ay \\'e can't go on? " Go back." But what good will that do? This lack of ability to grasp hi s purpose, di sg u ste d the aged sco ut. .. Say, you think Nig fool enuff to get in where only one way get out, like paleface?" h e snorted. "'liVe turn roun' and go by the other trail. Chagrined to think they had both s howed s uch a lamen table lack of ordinary w oodcraft, the oowboys l ooke d at one another. By thunder! we are a pretty pair! exclajmed Deads hot. ,. Here we'd clean forgotten there was any other ay to get out of thi s death hole. -Say, it' s a mighty good thing we've .got you to h e lp u s or, if we didn't s h ow any more common se n se than we have so far. Scalping Louie could 'raid all the ranches within a hm1([r ed miles while we sa t round s6mew h e r e, thinking we d got him cornered." "'That's no dream," assented th e man from the Star and Moon outfit. If we ever do get the cu ss, the credit'll probably belong to N ig. All the while the cowpunchers were berating themselves

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28 THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. for their forgetting the other trails leading into the bot toms, they were riding toward the West, and it was not long before they found, to their delight, that the going was easier than along the track by which they had entered. How much out of our way is this going to take us? inquired Ki Yi, after they had proceeded for an hour or so. By turning to South, 'fore long, no make much more than twenty mile." How near will that bring us to where the cattle were driven in? he asked, coq,tinuing his questions. Mebbe ten, mebbe twelve 'mile South." "Well, I suppose you know what you're talking about. But I can't see how you figure that out," declared Dead shot. "Here you say our having to go back and round will take us twenty miles out of the way and yet we'll bring up in about ten from where we started." "Uhuh. Go West. Go South. Go North. Swamp not all burned. Nig know trfl save urn gDing clear OUl." "Say, isn't it easy when you know the answer?" chuckled Ki Yi. "Deadshot, the best thing for you and me to do is to keep our mouths shut before we show Nig any more of our ignorance." And accordingly, the two cowboys held their peace while the aged scout guided his pony with infinite skill in and out among the death holes, turning so many times that neither of the men at his back were able to keep any idea of direction. Several times, the member of the Star and Moon outfit had it on his tongue's end t9 ask toward which point of the compass they were traveling, bl:Ji his pride prevented and just as it seemed to them that they were going in a circle, they were amazed to emerge from a clump of saplings and underbrush and behold the plains in front of them. In delighted surprise, the cowboys gazed at the welcome grass of the rolling prairies. "I sure do take off my hat to you, Nig," exclaimed Ki Yi. "I've seen some good work in my life, but I never anything equal to what you've done. I'm all-fired glad it's on Scalping Louie's trail you are, and not mihe! Though the cowpuncher had intended his words to be complimentary, even hoping that they might restore the aged scout's good nature, he could not have made a more unfortunate remark. Huh! Me on Louie's trail some mQre, plenty! If Bowser and palefaces no been heap fool, no need trail Louie!" he grunted. "Now mebbe day mebbe week, mebbe never-if fool sojers take urn back to reserva tion. No been for fool paleface, Nig had Louie by now! Though the men at his back both believed his words, they were determined not to let him dwell upon the idea that the presence of themselves and, the other avengers was a handicap rather than an assistance and Deadshot quickly exclaimed: "Oh, well, I don'.t see how you could have got him alone. Besides, you won't have the hard time you think picking up his trail again. All we've got to do is to filld the rest of our crowd and they'll be able to tell us in which direction the ornery crittur went." But the aged scout was not to be propitiated so easily. "Heap good that do!" he snortea. "Paleface see Louie go South, mebbe. Good. But they eating grub, thinking catch um in the morning, Louie him back and go North." "There won't be any danger of his doing that, now you're with us," shrewdly; interposed Deadshot. "The very fact that they can tell you in which direction Scalp ing Louie went will save you just so much time in getting on his trail because you won't be obliged to go searching round for it at random." Though he gave no indication either by sigl) or speech that this statement was correct and appealed to him" the aged scout, however, became less taciturn as they rode Northward. / "What makes you go up instead of to the East or South? asked Ki Yi. "You don't think the rest of our bunch are fools enough to try to flee from a fire by riding in front of it, they could turn to one side or back and get away, do you? \ No. We go up because we find paleface waitipg near trail for us." What, do you think they'll sit quietly down arid give Scalping Louie the chance to get away when they can follow him?" Paleface no follow Louie," returned the. aged scout. What makes you think that? " Wait for us. Bowser, L1l11 want wait for Nig. Nig know. Hawk, um heap talk. No got good think cap. Bowser, urn think we come back same trail we went in, so urn wait near there." That this opinion of the clever old half-breed not alone showed his marvelous ability to read human nature, but was in accordance with the facts, the reader already knows-and it was not long before the cowboys were made aware of it also. By the time the strange trio mounted upon the hack of the flea-bitten pinto had reached the plains, dusk was upon them, which steadily increased until it was almost pitch dark. Of a sudden, as they mounted a rise in the prair'ies, the aged scout pointed ahead. In the distance could be seen the fitful flicker of a fire. Man, dear, you don't suppose that cOtlld be the Midnight Raider, do you?" eagerly inquired Deadshot. "What, Louie build a fire when um know um being hunted? Injun no such fool," retorted Nig, with infinite scorn in his voice. "Then who is it?" No know. Bowser and palefaces." Unable to dispute tbis assertion, the cowboys held their peace, for they realized that from the actions not only of their bunkmates, but of themselves, they had no right to resent the contempt for their scouting powers which the y old half-breed held. From time to time, as they steadily approached, they could see the form of some man silhouetted against the flare, as he arose and moved about. Howling coyotes! but. couldn't we pick him off easy exclaimed Ki Yi, after one of these movements which were made without any apparent thought that there might be enemies afoot. And he'd never know what hit him! returned Dead shot. Say, let's tlrtow a crimp into the bunch! ejaculated the member Of the Star and Moon outfit, all at once. How? demanded his companion. Sneak up on 'em and hold 'em up! " Man, dear! But that would be good fun! returned D eadshot. Then, turning to the old half-breed, he asked: ,. Do you think we could do it, Nig?" ., Uhuh Heap easy! "Then let's do it!" exclaimed the two cowboys, together. The thought of giving Bowser and his men a practical illustration of his ability to stalk his game, whether man or beast, appealed to the aged scout, and readily he entered into the joke.

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THE AMERICAN INDIAN WEEKLY. 29 Without delay, the trio dismounted and Nig, by means of a few gutteral commands, made his pinto lie down. H No need cover urn. So dark no one see," he declared. H You keep dose to me. Do what me do." Having a thorough observation of the exact location of the campfire, the aged scout doubled up, crouching so low that his back could not have been seen above the top of the grass, even if it had not been dark, and advanced, gliding through the mesquite so skillfully that it was nigh impossible for the cowboys to follow him. But out of consideration for them, he paused occasionally, giving them the opportunity to catch up to him. H We must be pretty close to 'em now," whispered Ki Yi, after they had proceeded for some ten minutes. H Ubtth. Palefaces no more thirty yards away." H Then let's rush 'em! exclaimed Deadshoot. H Get heap full lead," returned Nig. This response suggested a contingency that had not hitherto occurred to the cowpunchers and the thought filled them with alarm. H Won't we, anyway?" queried' Ki Yi, anxiously. H Seems to t:ne it would be better to go back to get the pony and then ride up, shouting to them as we came." H Not much!" returned the aged scout. H We play urn joke. Come on. Do just what I do." It was not without many misgivings; however, that his companions followed him, as, crouching even lower than before, Nig crept upon the unsuspecting and cowboys squatting about the fire. When they were so near that they could not only hear their voices but understand what was being said, the two cowpunchers expected that their guide would play his coup. But the aged scout was determined to impress the entire outfit with his amazing ability-and it was not until there were scarce a foot of grasl' between him and his play victims that he paused. Then, turning and signing to his companions that he was ready to act Nig drew his six shooters. With a .leap, he rose from the grass. H Hands up! he yelled, at the same time covering men about the fire with his guns. In amazement, Bowser and the rest of the avengers whirled in the direction whence the startling command had come-finding to their astoni shment that they were gazing into the muzzles of six revolver s CHAPTER XV. TRACKED TO HIS L AIR. SO ab s olutely by surpris e had the ranchers and cow boy s been taken that th e shock seemed to paralyze their s ense s and they stared at the thre e 1Jle n glowering from behind the death-dealing weapon s a s though they had neve r before bel1eld them. . With difficulty D eadshot and 'Ki Yi r estraine d th e ir de sire t o break into laughte r. But so utte rl y cres tfallen and p iti ful did their c o mpani o n s l oo k that they at la s t t oo k co mpa ss i o n on them. H G r o uch you old co yote, wh y didn't you throw. up your' hands, the way the gentl eman told you to ? s uddenl y d emande d the bo y from the Doubl e Cro ss At the words and the ring of the voice the men who believed themselve s in the power of the pal s of Scalping Louie started violently. H Well, i'f it isn't Deadshot and the others! exclaimed Dude, in disgust. At this identification the trio dropped their shooting iron s into their holsters and, walking to the fire, down without waiting to be asked. H What on earth did you throw such a scare into us for? demanded Hawks, his ire rising, when he saw that all danger was passed, to think he and his companions had been so easily tricked. "To let Nig show you just how big a bunch of dubs you are! retorted the member of the Double Cross 'outfit. H Weare sore because you let Scalping Louie get away and so we thought we'd get even with you by proving to you that anyone could come right up to where you were'and capture you, without you so much as knowing there was anybody round," H It's sure one on us-and a bad one," admitted Bowser. H But how did you know Louie had got away?" demanded Dude. H Nig doped that out when he heard you firing so TIuch," rejoined Ki Yi. H In addition to being the greatest thi1Jg in the line of a scout I ever came across, he can get the lay of. any situation straighter than anyone I know." H Then, if he's so all-fired clever, let him get out and trail the cuss! snapped Grouch. H He will, never fear, as soon as we've had some grub. We're a bit hungry, seeing that our ponies with all our chuck were stampeded by the cattle when we set the fire in the swamp." H So were ours--only it was Louie who did the stunt, declared Dude. At this announcement of the further humiliation of the avengers, the aged scout and the two men who had accompanied him roared with laughter. . H I suppose we ought to be thankful he didn't kidnap the bunch of .you!" grinned Ki Yi, when he had recovered from his mirth. H But from the hunger that's gnawing.my insides, I don't know but I'd have been willing to swap Grouch for some food." H Don't get too ftinny," retorted the member of the Star and Moon outfit. H If YEilu'd been any sort of fel lows you'd fixed Louie in the swamp and then the whole thing would have been over, instead of jus t starting ill again." But no attention did Ki. Yi or Deadshot pay to this remark. For just as it was fini s hed, Pinky came forward with some grub. The sight of the cowboy they had s upposed to be back at the ranch filled them with surpris e and his welcome was none the le s s 'hearty because he appeared wi .th food. H Now, if Sandy were only here, we'd be all hunky," a sserted Ki Yi. H Oh, I m here all right,". alfnounced the foreman of the Double Cross, advancing to where the others could see him. And while the trio were satisfying their appetites, .they lis ten e d to the story of what had happened to their pals who had b een left t o watch for the Midnight Raider, their narrow e s cape fro m the fir e and the thrilling re s cue of Bo w s er. H Well now that we' re all h e r e what's to be done?" a s ked Hawks ( Better leave that to ig, it s eems to me, returned the owner of the Double Cross The others ;ignifying their acquiescence by their s ilence, all eyes were turned upon the aged scout. II Wlp,ch way Louie go?" he inquired, after enjoying hi s importance for several minutes. H South," chorused two or three of the cowboys "Huh. Palefaces wait here, Nig take look round," returned the half-breed. and without giving them time

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30 THE A::\IERIC:-\N INDIAN -EEKLY. to protes t, he sprang to hi s feet and glided off into the With an oath, the aged s cout leaped upon the ranch man grass. to drag him down-but he was too late! As though Dame fortune had decided to smile upon No soone'r had Hawks' head appeared above the o-rass them, the night turned out to be clear as crystal and in than a rifle barked! "" due course a magnificent moon arose, bathing the plain s By thunder! He's got me! cried the owner of the in her silvery light till they were almost as bright as Star and Moon, clapping his hand to his left shoulder. For a while, after the aged scout had left them, Dead-.. Ser' ves you good and plenty right! retorted Bowser. shot and Ki Yi regaled their companions with de scrip"Paleface more fool than coyote!" snarled Nig. tions of the man'9 marvellous skill in guiding them into Now we no get to catacombs till night." and from the swamp. But as the minutes wore on with"Why not?" asked Sandy. out his return, they grew silent. Cause Louie stay on watch." Suddenly Deadshot sprang to his feet. But if the avengers were balked in their advance upon I say, let's not give the old beggar the chance to get the murdering Indian they had the satisfaction of know the drop on us again," he exclaimed. Ki Yi, you ing that he could not escape without running the gauntlet Dude and Pinky watch the North, West and East, and of their fire because the tiers of tombs had been hollowed I'll the South. Challenge anything suspicious." fro:;n a .c1iff and only extended three rows in. Readlly the others agreed and about an hour after takCurS1l1g the ranchman openly and under their breath, ing their posts, they were startled to hear Ki Yi shout: the cowboys made themselves as comfortable as they ., Out there in the grass! vVho are you? Speak becould and prepared to await the coming of darkness, their fore I count three--or I'll shoot! One-t--". guns ever at a ready, however, to pump a shot into their It's Nig! No shoot! quickly returned a voice, and quarry should he show himself. a moment later, the aged scout was among them. Once or twice,-Nig wo{med his. way forward, then .. What did you find? inquired Bowser. raised a bunch of grass suddenly, to learn whethe'i0r not "Louie gone to catacombs. ,Um hit.. Found trail his arch-enemy was on watch. And each time a bullet blood. Paleface pony over to North, half mile." ripped it to pieces. These responses brought delight to the avengers and .. He's some shot!" exclaimed Dude, after the third quickly they were afoot. repetition of this feat. "Nig, you ride with Pinky and show Ki Yi, who'll "Have to be," grunted the' aged scout, immediately take Sandy's pony, where our horses are," commanded lapsing into a silence from which no amount of question Bowser. "Bring 'em in as soon as you can. I sure am ing CQuid rouse him. itching to get on that raiding devil 's trail so I Cai-l get a To the avengers, j it seemed that never did a day have shot at him." so many hours nor. the sun seem so loath to set. But at \Vith alacrity, the three men /1110l111ted and galloped last twilight came-and with it welcomed activity to the away, returning in a short time with all the ponies s ave manhunters. the one Scalping Louie had appropriated for himself. "Me take Ki Yi Deadshot and Pinky," announced long did it take for the ranchmen and cowboy s to Nig. "You left, all spread out .. When we get to catamount and, with Slippery Nig riding to where he had combs, we give shot, then you s et fire to grass and left his pinto with Dead s hot, they again took up the watch s o Louie no 'scape. vVe get Injun to-night--or trail of the Midnight Raider. never! "Making all speed possible, scarce a word was s poken But the task was de s tined to prove no easy one! until they came in sight of the cell-hbneycombed cliff The face of the cliff into which the tomb cell s had been looming in the distance. cut was about three hundred feet long. ., We leave um pony here ,' } exc.laimed Nig. after taking After' stationing the five men who were again to try to a careful survey of the p\ains that he might get hi s prevent the fiend's getting away in po s itions some sixty bearings. feet apart and instructing them to lie flat on their bellies ., But why? The catacombs mu s t be all of five mil es in front of the fires they were to s et. in order that away, protested Hawks Scalping Louie might not s hoot them down, the aged Sure. But Louie, him can s ee man on pony heap s cout, hi s eyes gli s tening with anticipated j oy at the doom more easy than man in grass on foot. of his enemy led the three cowboy s forward. ,. That's true enough. Xet he won't be 109king fo r Bang! went Deadshot's gun a s they reached its base'. u s, seeing that he jumped our,horses on us," returned the Instantly, the fires flared from the plain s in answer. owner of the Star and Moon ranch. \ You um take hold this rope," ordered N ig, rapidl y ., Louie no take chances. Um know cowmen n o t only pas s ing out an end of hi s lariat which he had brought ones on trail." \ with him . "Ready? ?\ow.' See here, Hen. I say we let Nig have his way," ex-Yet before they could gain the entrance to the tomb s. claimed Bowser. "He sure know s h i s bu s ine ss-and \-ve th e murqering Indian made his presence known! haven't made a howling success of our part." \Vith terrific force a huge rock struck the ground This proposal 'net the ready re s pon s e of the cowboys sca rce a yard in advance of the aged s cout. and without more ado, they quickly di s mounted. hobbled .. You be sorry! You be sorry! ., hi sse d ?\ ig. shaking their ponies and resumed the trail to the ::\1idnight Raic1-his fis t t oward the t o p of the cliff. .. know wllere er's lair 011 foot. you are, now! You on third r o w tomb s \Ve g o t climb Bending low, they advanced cauti o u sly till they wei-e stair." within so me two hundred yards o f the ba se of the cata. \ s as though it were daylight, the aged s c out combs. along the face of the cliff, then sudcle11ly darted into My back's hi.me stooping over," snarled the o wner CJf o ne 'of the openings and indeed were his com the Star and ]\10011. ".I tbink thi s bu s ines s of crouching 1xdlion s that they were tied to him. I is all rot, anyhow. I'm going t o stand up. .. \Ve go up stair." whi spe r::-d. ., Get dO'\Vll 011 But bitterly did the ranchman regret his deci sio n a:ld hand and kne e No make n o i s e! heartily did his fellow s curse him Obediently. the cowboys dropped t o : : dl f ours :11:( \

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THE' A.\IERICAN WEEKLY. 3 1 th e a s cent o f the old. se l do m u sed r oc k s t e p s But though they did their b es t it w as im poss ibl e f o r the m to restra in an oath or an e xcla mati o n o f alarm when the ir hands touch e d s ome cre eping thing, n o w and again. We mus t be pretty n ear the s k y bre athe d Pinf<:y after what se emed an e ndle ss climbin g "That's no p l ace look f o r L o uie," returne d the age d s cout. "We be on sam e row in jiff y Nig's act of speaking amaz e d hi s c o mpani o n s Y e t it was done for. the purpose o f l earning whethe r o r n o t their quarry had surmi se d the y might mount the <;tairs and b e waiting to greet the m with a rain o f lead. And the s cheme worked t o p e rfecti on! Bang! went a gun almo s t before th e words w e re fin ished. But because the wi l y o l d half-bree d had made his men crawl on their hands and knee s the bullet whistled harml e s s l y over their h e ads. Expectantly, the cowboy s lis tened for the ans w e ring crack of the aged s cout's sixshoo ter. Instead, how ever, they fe lt a quick jerk on the rope and then felt it taughten as N ig crept forward. The failure to draw fire from hi s purs uers worrie d the Midnight Raider. Realizing full well the desperatene s s of his position, qe determined to learn their whereabout s at any co st-and of a sudden h e fla s hed a torch. Taken by surprise, the wil y old half-breed was not prepared to fire and before he could do s o, the hard-press ed renegade threw away hi s .light apd da s hed .down the tier of tombs ., "Up! After him! hi s s e d N ig. the cowboys obeyed, plunging blindly tnro ugh the darknes s guided onl y by the r o p e which b o und the m to the aged s cout. In the in stant that the torc h had flared Sca l ping L o ui e had r e c o gnized the grizzled f eatures o f hi s arch-enemyand realiz e d h e mus t outwit him we r e he t o e s cape With thi s purpose, he s uddenl y darted int o th e r o w o f tomb s se cond from the rear wall unwou nd hi s lari a t made o n e end fast about one o f the pilIar s and the n ti e d it around a pi lIar of tIre outs id e ti e r s om e e ighteen inch es fro m th e floor. Tlol.is d o ne, the s cheming fie nd glided n o i s el ess ly back t o the s e co nd row, t o ok a p os iti o n when ce h e c o uld l e ap upo n the r o pe and s h outed: Slipp e r y N ig nor yo u n o r hundre d pal e fac e n o ca t c h L o ui e Whirling in the direc ti o n when ce the taunt cam e, the aged scout s p e d to th e oute r tier o f t o mbs, then starte d toward th e end-and tripp ed o v e r th e r o p e With a h o wl of triumph, Scalping L o ui e wa s up o n the curs in g, squirming mass of cowboy s But he had reckoned with out their strength! ,. I've got him! Here he i s Quick, strike a light! yelle d D e ad s h o t winding hi s arms ab out the murdering I ndian in a grip lik e s t ee l r e nd e rin g th e fie nd p o werlesc; t t l wi e ld hi s s ca l ping knife, a s h e had intended. Y e t the Midnight Raide r was r eso urc e ful! that s h o uld a t o r c h b e lig hted hi s end wa s / co me, h e r a i s ed hi s kn ee with t e rrific f o rce, cat c hing hi s capto r full in th e s t o m ac h a t the s ame tim e buttin g him in the che s t with hi s h e ad. T h e s udd e nne ss o f the m o ve broke D e ad s h ot's h o ld a nd with a m o cking lau g h the dare d e vil ren e gade das h e d fo r the stairway ar i d darted t o the se c o nd floor o f th e catacomb s . You d o n e f o r n ow! g l oate d S lipp e r y )J ig. "Qui c k, boys, strike match g e t t o r c h p i c k up dri ed twi gs, g ra ss, a n y thin g m a k e fir e \Ve dri ve L o ui e out! u nd e r s t a n ding exac tl y h o w thi s wa s to b e ac complis h e d the cowpunche r s n eve r t h e lessob e yed, and wh e n t h ey had g athe r ed pil es of inflamma b l e stuff, N i g t oo k it c r ep t d o wn the s t airs, p l ace d it at the of the ti e r thrust a match into it and as it bl azed up, b o un ded b ac k t o th e floo r a b o ve Ki Vi, yo u P ink wat c h h e re. D ea d s h o t co m e w ith me. N i g know tra p at o th e r e n d t hi s r o w. We go down Ge t L o ui s betw een fire a nd u s-ba n g !-all over! Q u i ckl y the c ow b oys o b eye d and w hilt, wi t h g un s r eady, P ink y and Ki Y i s t oo d guard at the hea d o f th e stairs, the othe r two has t e ne d t o t he opp os it e end o f the ti e r and began t o w ork with mi ght and main at the s t o ne wbich formed the trap d o or. The Midnight Raide r h o w e ver, h eald them and, t a k i u g hi s po s ition behind a pilIar, waited f o r a form t o app ear through the opening. But the aged scout was more than hi s mat<;:h in cun ning. Anticipating thi s v e ry act, a s s oon a s he and Deads h o t rai s ed the trap, he t o ok off hi s ve s t and low ered it ca uti o u s ly In the darkness, the murdering Indian wa s o nl y able t o di s tinguish som e object de s c ending-and blazed a way at it, again and again. Howl! YelI! urged the old half-breed o f hi s comp a nion. "Make believe you hit! Me lowe;ve s t so me m o r e You count s hot. Whe n get ten tell me L o uie gun empty then we drop and git um .. Marveling at the cunning of the aged s cout D eads h o t o b e yed. And not until he had emptied b oth hi s guns and heard hi s purs u e r s as they dropp e d to the floor did the Indian fiend r e aliz e he had been outwitted! But though unabl e t o u se hi s s i x s h ooters, Sc alpin g Louie did not give up! Dashing to the ground tier, he awaited hi s chan ce tv dart out onto the plain s P al e face watch out! L o ui e coming! Se t um 1i r e u p front o f t o mb s He n o go t s h eIls in gun s! s h oute d N i g, go ing t o the front of the catacomb s Several tim es was it n ecessary t o rep eat the orde r b e fo r e Bo w ser and the othe r s und e r s t oo d But at l as t they did a nd has ti l y b egan t o start a lin e o f fir e al o n g the bc1se of the cliff. "Ki Vi y o u um co me d own! Help D e ad s h o t mak e t hi s floor! the n orde r e d Nig. .. }Ie k ee p L o ui e fro m comin g up! Hemme d in lik e a rat in a trap, th e murde rin g India n fa c ed hi s d oo m with the s t o ici s m of hi s race. The surprise of being driven fro m hi s t e pp ee in th e swamp had f o rc e d him t o flee w ith out t a kin g the tim e to s uppl y him self with ammuniti o n b e y o nd the s h ells he had in hi s s i x s h ooters and the one s he f o und in the sa ddl e ba gs o n th e pon y he s to l e were o f a differ ent calib er. Co n se quently though he made hi s way t o the h o r se, whi c h h e had hidden in on e o f the celIs, he had n o m ea n s t o offer r es i stance. As the flame s leaped up o ut s id e the cata co mb s th ey made the interi o r o f the cells a s light a s day I see him! I see him!" s ud de nl y yelle d Bow s er. .. S calping Louie yo u m a y have c o m e n ea r cau sing m y d eath twic e-but yo u 'll n e v e r hav e a n o th e r c han ce Ran g out the "crac k o f a rifle. a bloo dcurcl.lin g s hriek -the n the band o f av e ng e r s fro m th e tOl'nbs ab ove ru s h e d d o wn to make sure that th e M idni ght Raide r ha d n o t esc ap e d his jus t d oom! THE E:\, D

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No. No. No. : 10. No. N o No'. N o N o. No. N o. No. N o No. N o No. No. THE AD VENTURE SERIES The Most Thnlling, Exciting and Up-to-Date Stories of Adventure and the Far West Ev:er Published. The Absolutely True and Authentic History of the Lives and Exploits of America's Famous Bandits-All Profusely Illustrated. !lIo. 1 The M u r derer of New Orleans. 2. The James Boys o f Old Mis souri. No.3. The B lack Box M urder. No. 4. Harry Tracy, t h e O regon O u t l aw. No.5. The Passenger from Scotlan d Yard. No. 6. The Younger Brothers. No. 7 The Dalton Gang, Western Bandits. N o. 8. No.9. No.lO No.H. No. 12 . No.13. No.14. No. 15. No. 16. No. 17. No. 18. No. 19. No. 20 Rube Burrow, Great Train Robber Jesse James' Das h f o r For t u ne. esse James, KnightEr rant esse lames, Midnight R aid esse ames' G reat es t H a ul. esse ames' esse ames' $ 1 00,000 Robbery. ess e ames' Nemesis. esse ames' Terrible Raid. esse ames' Boast. esse ames' Desperat e G am e dom. No. 21. Jess e James, Gentleman. No. 22. esse ames' Bluff. No. 23 esse ames' Wild Night. No. 24 esse ames' Brutal Shot. N o. 25. esse ames' D aylight Foray. No. 26. esse ames' Threat. No. 27. esse ames' Mid-Winter Lark. N o. esse a mes' Mistake. No. 29. esse ames' Race fo r Life. No. 30. esse ames' Ruse. No.31. esse ames' Bol d Strok e. No. 32. esse ames' Midnigh t Attack. No. 33. esse ames' Daring Jok e. No. 3 4 esse ames' B lackest Crime. No. 35. esse ames' Nerve. Nat 36. esse a mes' Narrow Escape. No. 3 7 esse ames' Last C hance. No. 38 esse ames' Surprise. No. 39. esse ames' Legacy. No. 40. esse ames' Silver Trail. No. 41. esse ames' Ring o f Death. No. 42. esse ames' Mysterious F o e No. 43. esse ames' Fate . No. 44 eff Cayton's Lost C l ue No. 45 eff C layton's Strange Oues t No. 46. eff Clayton's Thunder 1Iolt. No. 47. eff C layton's M an-Tra p No. 48. Jeff C layton's White Mission. No. 49 : JEFF CLAYTON I N THE HEART OF TROUBLE, or T", Trail of the Golden Serpent. No. 50. 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N o No. SO.A Haunted Life by M iss Carol ine Hart. Sl.-Garnetta, The Silver King's Daughter by J ea n Libbey. Miss L a ur' The Hart S e ri es books are for sale everywhere, or they will be sent by m a il, postage paid, for 20 cents a copy, by the publisher s. 6 cop ies for $1 00. Postag e stamps taken t h e sam e a s m oney THE ARTHUR WESTBROOK CO., Cleveland, U. S. A. -I

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STANDING ALONE AT THE HEAD OF ITS CLASS The American Indian Weekly PUBLISHED EVERY THURSDAY This great week l y 1 5 a radical departure from all other five-cent weeklies that are now being publi s hed It ha s the greatest s torie s of frontier life of Indians .and of the far West that have ever been i ss ued. The stories are l o nger than tho se published in a n y o th e r five-cent library, except the OLD SLEUTH WEEKLY. They are all e dited by Co l one l Spencer Dair, th e m os t ce l ebrated Indian Scout, Bandit Tracker and Gun Fighter of m ode rn fiction. A new number i s i ss ued every Thurs day. LIST OF TITLES D ecember 1-No. 1. THE OUTLAW'S PLEDGE .................... or The Raid o n the Old Stockade Decembe r 8-No. 2. TRACKED TO HIS LAIR .................. o r The Pursuit of the Midnight Raider December 15-No. 3. THE BLACK DEATH ......................... or The Curse o f the Navajo Witch D ecembe r 22No. 4. THE SQUAW MAN'S REVENGE ......... ............ o r Kidnapped by the Pi utes D ecembe r 29--No. 5 TRAPPED BY THE CREES ...................... o r Tricked by a Renegade Scout January 5-No. 6. BETRAYED BY A MOCCASIN .......... o r The Round-Up of the India n Smuggl e r s January 12-No 7 FLYING CLOUD'S LAST STAND ............ or The Battl e o f Dead Man's Canyon January \9No. 8. A DASH FOR LIFE ................................. or Tricked by Timber Wolves January 26No. 9. THE DECOY MESSAGE ....................... o r The Ruse of the Border Jumpers February 2 No. 10. THE ALARM .................. o r The Raid on the Paymaster's Camp February 9-No. 11. THE MASKED RIDERS ......................... o r The Mystery of Grizzly Gulch February 16-No. 12. LURED BY OUTLAWS .................. 01' The Mounted Ranger's D es p erate Ride The AMERICAN INDIA N WEEKLY i s for sa l e by all new sdea l ers and b oo k sellers, or it will be sent to any address postpaid by the publishers upon receipt o f Gc per copy, 10 copies for 50c. All back numbers always in s t oc k. THE ARTHUR WESTBROOK COMPANY CLEVELAND, OHIO, G. S. A.


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