Frank Reade, Jr., and his steam Wonder

Frank Reade, Jr., and his steam Wonder

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Frank Reade, Jr., and his steam Wonder
Series Title:
Frank Reade library.
Senarens, Luis, 1863-1939
Place of Publication:
New York
Frank Tousey
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1 online resource (15 p.) 29 cm. : ;


Subjects / Keywords:
Inventors -- Fiction ( lcsh )
Science fiction ( lcsh )
Dime novels ( lcsh )
serial ( sobekcm )

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Source Institution:
University of South Florida Library
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
R17-00032 ( USFLDC DOI )
r17.32 ( USFLDC Handle )
024784647 ( Aleph )
63271381 ( OCLC )

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I No. 20. { cOlllftlms.} and Best Stories are Published in FRANK TOUSEY, PuBLISHER, 34 & 36 NOR T H MOOR E SrR EET, N EW YORK. New York, February 4 1893. IssuED WEEKLY. { JJtJCI'l } 5 Vol. I Entered ac cording to the Act of Congress, i n t h e yeur 1893, by F RANK (l' OUSEY, in the offi c e of the Librarian of Con g r ess, at Wash ington, D C FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. By "NONAME.'' The appearance Wonder in the streets there created the most intense excitement among the people. Men, women and children ran out to look at it.


FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM subscription Price o[ the FRAN-/ READE LIBRARY by the year is $2.50: $1.25 per six months, post-paid. Address FRANK TOUSEY, PuBLISIIER, 34 and 36 North Moore Street. Box 2730. RANK JR., / j :S:IS ST:E.A.:l\1.!: "VV:O:N":OE::Fi.. By "NONAME," Author of all the Frank Reade Stories. CHAPTER I. 4'RANX :READE, JR., AND HIS FATHEB-THE WON DEBFUL INVENTION. Now, father, 'I want you to and look a ft. I think I've g o t everytbing right now." "In a 'lD.ome nt, my boy .as soon as I get a l1gbt for my cigar Here's a match, father." Ab I that's bandy; there!' The cigar lit, the father and son passed out of the bouse-the r e sidence of a well-known wealthy gentleman in the Far Weet-and w!'lnt through the back yard toward a large carriage-house in the rear oi the premisee. I should think it was about time you had it right, my boy," said the father, puffing away at his cigar. "You have been thinking at it for a year a'' "So I have, father; but that was no worse "than your first experiment, you know," replied tbo:t son, a manly-looking youth of seventeen summers and the same number of winters. "You are right; but I had no precedeuts, and you harl." "True; but mine Is a bigger thiag than yours WIIB," and the son led the way into the carriage house. "Just look at that, now." "It's a beauty, so ffLr as appearances go," said his father, his face beaming with pride and grati fication; but will it wo1k? That's the point you want to arrive at." '-' Oh. it works like a charm," replied the son. Every part is perfect. Every joint is covered and protected from the du11t." "But can i.t adapt itself to any little rise or de on the earth's surface?" Oh, yes. I've had an eye to that all th0 time. It doesn't make much noise, either, even at full speed." "I would like to see it on trial once, my boy," said the rather. "If it will do all you claim for it, you have a fortune In your hands, for it will work a revolution in this section." "I will get uv.steam, father, while you examine thl'l machinery, and the young man proceeded to follow his suggestion, throwing o:tl' his coat and mounting the machine under inspection. And now, reader, who do you supvose the father and son are? No reader of the BOYS OF NEW TOBK has for gotten Frank Reade. He well remembers the great genius that invented the world-renowned Steam Man of the plains, the Steam Team, and the Steam Tally-Ho. Well, Frank Reade, after making an ample for tune out of his invention, married the girl of his choice, bought a large trsot of plain-land out West, settled down to farming by steam, and soon had a thriving settlement around him. Ife plowed by steam, hauled up his grain by steam In tact, made steam do the work of man and beast to such an extent as to a11tound all his neighbors. He used one-fourth only of the forc e his neighbors did, and thus made four times a.'l much money. He bad several children In the course of time. The eldeet, Frank Reade, Jr., now a youth of sevE>nteen, at the opening of our story, inherited his father's inventive genius and great fondnees tor adventure. On his return from college, Frank had com experimenting on a steam traveling con9'e;yance for the Illimitable plains of the West which be bad c o nceived whil e at school. His father, willing to encourage and develop a taste for a science that had made him both rich and famous, allowed him to dmw on him for all the money he ne eded in p e rfecting his plans. Frank took possession of the farm carpenter shop, and employed a first-class model-maker to work under his supervi s ion. He bad many of the tools and implements hie father had used years ago, as well as the great knowledge whi c h Frank Reade, Sr., plaotJd at his service. After nearly a year of unremitting toil, Frank had everything complete trom the hands of his model-maker. He s ent the model to and bad one of the best machine-shops in that great city make a duplicate of it in steel and hard wood. When complete, this duplicate had been sent to him by rail, and be bad put it together calling on his father to in spect it. And now, reader, let us see what his wonderful invention was. I don't that I can give the reader a better idea of its use than by the simple statement that it was an engine and oar without a railroad 1 In deed, it needed no track. It was made !o leave tracks behind it-not follow OI\e-and 'to give the horse a rest. The engine was a beauty-a picture to look at. It WII.S light and airy in appearance, yet strong as the best steel and wrought iron 0011ld make it. At first glance it bad tbe appearance of an ordi nary railroad engine. But a closer inspection would show a vast di:tl'ereuce. In the llrst place, what is tho boiler in the ordi nary engine was simply a case that inclosed the delicate machinery to protect it from dust. The boiler, a small upright one, was at the end that conneoted with the car. Steam was to be gene rated by the use of a non-explosive oil. A special anr., examined the machinery with minute care, like the experienced machinist and Inventor that he was, and then remarked: I believe you have made it a success, my boy. I congratulate you. I canuot regret the cost of it in the least. Suppose you get up steam now, and give it a trial?" "Just what I want to do, father," replied Frank, striking a match and furnace under the upright boilder. Instantly there was a bright light under there. "There'll be steam in ten minutes, father,'' said Fmnk, "and while waiting for that,_ come in and look at my palao!l-oar." The father stepped Into the car, which waa mounted on four wheels with broad, smooth ties, and looked arouud with 11 ple11sed countenance, There were for four-easy, cozy, reclining seats, and sleeeping berths for as many more fur ther back. Then there was a small baggage-room and provision closet; a place for guns and other hunting implements, together with many other things needed on a long journey over the plains. The father took in everything at a glance, and remarked: "You are a chip of' the old block, my b0y. I am proud of you. and hope you may have as good a time as I did with the Steam Team and the Tally Ho." "You can just your fortune that I am going to have all the fun there is in it, father," replied Frank, l11ughing be11rtily. I've worked hard at it, and intend to get pay for it in more ways thl\n one." That's right. I hE>ar the steam hissing al ready. That's a powerful heat under there." It beats coal or wood, is cheaper, 11nd a bar rel ot the oil will last a month of constant use,, replied Frank. "But is it entirely safe?" "A gallen of lar

FRANK READE. JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. 3 Jr.'s, hand was grasped by his father in hearty oonJ{ratulatiou. "I knew I would succeed, father," he said, "because I knew I was a chip off the old block. You never failed when you went at a thing in earpest, and neithe1 will I!" Is that your rule in life, my boy?" the happy father asked. ''Ye s, 8ir." "Tht>n I'll bet my !urtune on your success i{l anything you undertake," replied Frand Reade, Sr. "You had better turn baok, as I think you ba ve gone ten miles at least.'' Frank turned the Wonder around and started on the return trip. It made splendid time going back, ana soon reached the neighborhood of Reactestown, the name of the settlement thathadgrowu up around the farm of Frank Reade, Sr. As Frank had kept his work quite a secret in the village, the appearance of the Wonder in the streets there created the most intense excitement among the people, Men, women and chiluren mn out to look at it. "Hang me for a horse-thief t'' exclaimed a red shirted man in front of the Wild West saloon," ef one of the ilroad keers ain' t out fur herself l" "Blast mv eyes, pards 1" cried another, his blood-shotbin eyes opening wide with amaze ment. That'll bust railroad stock bigher'n a kite," and many other comments of like character were made as the Wonder dashed on to the car riage-house young Reade had used as a workshop in putting it together. CHAPTER II. JACll: RUSSELL JOD!S THE YOUNG iNVENTOR. THE first appearance of the VI" onder in the streets in Readestown created a great excite ment. As soon as he returned home, Frank hastened to lo open ing of our story, bad exacted a promise from him to come out to Readestown whenever he should telegraph for him. On the morning of his trial of the Wonder, and when it had proved its success, Frank tele graphed to Jack at New York: "Come on next train-big thing on wheels. .. FRANK READE, JR.'' Two hours later he received a reply: "I am coming in a big thing on wheels. "JACK RUSSELL." "Ha, ha, ha I" laughed Frank, on reading the dispatch. "Good tor Jack I He's the same olu alligator-always ready for a chunk or a joke.'' "What's that about Jack?" his father asked. "Read that," and Frank handed him the tele gram. Frank Sr. read it and smil e d. f It reminded him o( his boyhood days, when he was just that way himself. When the train came thundering into the little station at Readestown, Frank, Jr., was there to meet his cousin. When it stopped a manly-look ing youth about Frank's age stepplld off, and Frank darted forwaru to grasp his band. ",Jack, old boy, how are y9u I" exclaimed Frank. "Frank-pard-glad to see you I" and both went through the pump-handle motion with tre mendous energy. "Hello, Marse Jack I" exclaimed Pomp, his l!laok face shining like polished ebony; how you is, ea?" "Pomp, you old buffalo I how are you?" and the generouS-hearted youth grasped Pomp's hand ana shook it as cordinlly as he had shaken his cousin's. "How is it with you, old ebony?" "Nebber was brighter in my life, Marse Jack," replied Pomp, taking the check for his trunk. "You never were blacker, either, if I remem ber right," said Jack. "Yah-yah! Youse right again, )farse Jack; and youse nebber was wl!iter, was yer"l" "Don't know that I was, old man; but I was a blessed sight handsomer whena pickaninny." Pomp grinned from ear to ear at the idea of a white pickaninny, and went to secure the new comer's trunk, which he hoisted on bia. shoulder and carried out to the little wagon waiting for them. "Pomp has got your trunk," said Frank. "Come 011.. Supper will be ready by the time we re1tch nome,'' and he led the way to the little wagon in the rear of the station. They sprang in and seated themselves on the back seat. Pomp took up the reins and drove off. "I say, Frank,'' said Jack, as they dashed through the village in the gathering twilight, "what i this big thing on wheels you spoke or in your dispatch?" "Can't you choke off that curiosity tiU to-mor row /" Frank asked. "Well, I might, but you'd find me choked dead to-morrow morning," he replied. Frank laughed. "You ought to have been a girl, Jack,'' he said. "Glad I am not, though, old boy,'' was the quick response. "No petticoats on me, if you please. I am very fond of the girls, though.'' "Well, I'll tell you all about it to-morrow--" "No, you won't I Yon'll;tell me all about it this evening, or there'll be a funeral in this village, with a youth of your size the subject lor the per son. Understand?" "Did you bring your shooting-irons with you?" Frank asked. "Of course. I did. What fool would come West without 'em?" Then I'll have to unbosom myself to you to night. Do you know how to ride a velocipede?" "Of courtie l do, and have been under a pledge for a year to kill any man who even suggests ridinp: one to me. Bewate." Frank laughed again in the heartiest way imaginable. "Wouldn't you like to ride a new style of velocipede?" he asked. "Not if it is called by that name,'' he said. "Now look here, Frank Reade, Jr., if you bav9 sent for me to ride anything calleu a velocipede, or that runs on the velocipede principle, I ll mur der you in the bewitching hour of midnight. Again I say, beware I" "He, he, he I" giggled old "Crowd 'im up to de wall, Marse Jack. He s a bad un, he is." "I know him, Pomp, and am going to club the old Nick out Of him if he has played any old joke on me." "Dat's right, dat's right, Marse Jack I" chuck led Pomp. "Dey won't lef me lick 'im, but I'll hole yer coat." Both enjoyed the old darkey hugely, and in a few minutes lll,ore the little wagon halted in front of the Reade residence. Frank Reade, Sr., was wafting to welcome his nephew. "Hello, Uncle Frank I" greeted Jack, leaping to the ground and grasping his uncle's hand. "Why, Jack, my boy!" exclaime:i Frank, Sr., "you are almost a man in size I" "Oh, I'm a man all over," said Jack, breaking away from him to rush forward and kiss Mrs. Reade and a half dozen children from fifteen down to one year old. They gave him an old-fashioned reception, for his mother was the only sister of Frank Reade, Sr. They liked him because he was young Frank's companion in college, and was his best loved friend. "Come right in to supper, Jack,'' said Mrs. Reade, "as soon as you wash the dust out of your eyes.'' He did so, and during the meal he had to an swer a thousand questions about home and the dear ones he had left behind him. Annie Reade was a sweet, shy girl of fifteen, who sat oppositll to her 'Cousin and listened to his report of his brothers and sisters at home. Sister Lizzie Is just like cousin Annie there,' he said; "almost the image of her.'' "Oh, brother I" she exclaimed, turning to Frank, "won't you tRke the Wonder and go after her? I know she would like so much to pay us a visit." "Wonder I" nxclaimed Jack, looking from one to the other. "That's the big thing on wheels, is it?" "Yes," said one of the younger ones, "it's got a big lot of wheels, and can go faster'n a railroad, and it don't want no old track either.'\ "What in blue blazes are you talking about?" exclaimed Jack. "Frank has invented some kind of an engine and car that doesn't need any track," explained Mrs. Reade, "and he's going to take a trip witli it to-morrow, I believe." CHAPTER III. ON THE BOUNDLESS PRAIRIE. JACK RussELL opened his eyes in astonil'hment when Mrs. Reade bad finished speaking. "So that's it, eh ?"he said, turning to Frank. "Yes; that's it exactly," Frank replied. "Where is it? I want to see it before I sleep. "Oh, you can't see it now," said Frank. "The door is locked, the key lost, and a tub over the chimney.''


I I 4 FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. "Then I'll go through the key hole," said lack. "Plugged I" exclaimed Frank. "Window," said Jack. "None," replied Frank. "l give it up." "Good boy. Now come and see that your are right for a thousand-mile journey to the south-west to-morrow." Frank led 'the way up to the room that had been assigned his cousin, and there told him everything in regard to the Wonder, and the plensure trip he proposed to start on to-morrow morning. Jack was delifOhted. "Frank, old boy," he exclaimed, "nothing oould have suited me better. I brought a brace of seven-shooters and a splendid repeating-rifle with me, hoping I would get a chance at some buffalo while out here." "Good for you. We'll have all the buffaloshooting we want. We'll go right in among the buffaloea. Pomp will go with us, and I have a repealing-rifle for him, and one for myself. Oh, we'll have a glorious time, and don't you for get it." I know that, old boy. or course we don't want to take our trunks with us?" "We eould if we wish to." "Are you going to take yours?" "No. I'll place such things as I think I may aeed in a drawet. and leave my trunk at homo." Is there another drawer?" "There are four of them." "Then I'll leave my trunk." And forthwith Jack commenced unpacking his trunk, placing such things ns he thought he might need on the bed td be carried to the Wonder in the morning. Iu a half hour he had his trunk repacked a'nd and was ready to talk over the old times they had at college. The reader can \'9'ell imagine how they sat up after midnight talking over their plans and enJoying the trip in anticipation. At las\ they retired, however, to dream of the morrow. The morrow came clear, beautiful and bright, and Pomp had the two cousins up ahead or the sun .-Just as the sun was gilding the of thejvillagej.Jackand Frank went into the carriage house to look at the Wonder. Great Jehosaphat I" exclaimed Jack, on see ing thl) beautiful engine, but she'B a beauty I" She's a darliug said Frank and does he work like a good glrl." But I can't see any of her machinery, Frank." "Oh, her machinery is Inside of her-all in closed, to keep the dust out of her j9ints." "'That's a good idea-a brillia11t Idea, old boy. Nothing is exposed to view-not even the crank that turns the driving-wheels." No, and that's what'll puzzle people when they see her. They won't know how she runs." That's a pretty smoke-stack." "Well, that's where you are fooled. It isn't a ijmoke-stack at all. She doesn't make any smoke." The deuce I u Fact.." How's that?" "I use oil which-doesn't smoke.'' But oil wiU srpoke." That depends upon how you wle it." Of course-that settles it.'' "Oh, it's all right. Here comes Pomp with the camp cooking utensils. He was with father and the steam Tally Ho twenty years ago, you l'emem ber." "Yes-we couldn't do without Pomp." Oh, father said I couldn't go without him. Baye has forgotten more ab{)ut euch trips than I will learn in a year." "Well, if he has forgotten it, "'hat use can he be to us?" "Oh, he remembers enough for us, you can wager, every time." Pomp carried everything they needed to tha car and stowed them away in their proper places, while Jack and Frank were at breakfast. After breakfast they tonk leave of the family and went out to the Wonder. Pomp had lighted the furnace, and the steam was hissing like a dooon serpents. "Open the door, Pomp," said Frank. Pomp openefl the qoor of the carriage-house, and then leaped aboard. Ft'll.nk pulled the whistle-bar, and a shrill whis 'lle startlf:ld the whole village. The next moment the Wonder moved out of the house, and turned through the principal street. "Up with the flag, Pomp," said Jack, and Pomp ran out on the engine and ran up a. small United llta.tes flag from the smoke-stack. Then the street began to ftll with men, women and children, cheering wildly and running after it. Jack and Frank leaned out of the windows and waved their hnts to the crowd, which responded with the wildest cheerB ever heard. "Good-bye, boys I cried Frank, waving his hat to his young acquaintances. "We are off to the land of the Comanches I" Hold on, Frank I" scores of them cried give us a ride before you go I" Wait till we come back," said pulling at the steam-valve handle, which sent the Wonder ahead of the crowd like a scared rabbit. They were soon out on the open prairie, where Frank turned on a full head of steam. The Wonder dashed ahead at a rattling speed. "By George I Frank," exclaimed Jack, "this is glorious I But suppose we we!e to run against a rook?" "There'd be a Bmash-up--that's all," said Frank, "But who ever saw a rock out here in the open pt'll.irie?" "Well, suppose we were to run into a river or chasm?" "We'd be drowned or smashed up, and would to be. What in do you want to run Into a river for?" Oh, I'm not anxious to run into any river. I was looking up possibilities." "Well, we are not going to have that kind of possibilities. We are going to travel by daylight, and moonlight, too, when we can get it clear and good.'' Jack then turned his attention to inspeoting the interior of the car. The sleeping-berths and the little cooking apartment interested him greatly. Pomp took pleasure in showing him everything. Then he turned to the curious little upright en gine, and examined the workings of the oil-fur nace. "A gallon of oil will last thirty hours," said Frank, "and I have a forty-gallon barrel on board.'' "Whew I" exclaimed Jack. "That makes you independent of fuel." "Yes-we don't ask any favors of anybody. I've got a hose and a pipe that'll throw boiling water fifty feet in any direction." "How far have we come now?'' One and a. half hours out," said Frank, look Ing at his watch. "I guess we have come some twenty-five or thirty mileR." Jack was astounded. The Wonder ran smoothly and almost noiselessly. Even heavy tufts of grass made no jolting, aud there was no rattling of steel against steel to make a deafening racket. When night came they had traveled over one hundred and fifty miles. They halted on the banks of a small stream, and shot a for supper. Pomp had venison steak and coffee for supper, and they all ate with a hearty relish. All three slept In the sleeping-berths, and never slept sweeter in their lives. The door locked, no one could get in, and the car was both fire and bullet-proof, hence they had no disturbing fears. The next morning they were up at sunrise, going along the banks of the stream looking for game. Jack stood at the forw 'ard window, rifle in hand, watching for game of any description. Jac!): rabbits by hundreds were bounced, but they were difficult to hit while both hunter and game were in motion. .A.t last a couple of coyotes were bounced. They dashed away together, and Frank turned theiWonder in pursuit. "Hi, hi, yi I" yelled Pomp, as Jack fired, and the frightened wolves laid themselves out to do their best to get away from there. .But the Wonder, going at the rate of twenty miles an hour, was not an easy thing to run away from. In a little while they heard the coyotes howl in despairing terror, and then separate. Pomp brought one down with his rifle, but the other got away. They then turned and made their way back to ward the stream which the chase had drawn them away from. They traveled along during the day at the rate of about ten miles per hour, getting a few shots at straggling buffaloes, and chasing one of them till he plunged headlong into the stream. That night they encamped on the banks of the .same stream, and had jack-rabbit for supper, retiring to bed at about ten o'clock, leaving every thing secure. Some time after midnight they were startled by a series of uneartly yells outside. Good Lord I" exclaimed Pomp, dam's red skins I" and he sprang up and grabbed his re volvers. CHAPTER IV. THE ATTACK, FoR a moment or two the two young friends were too much to make any movement toward a defense of the wonder. The reader will remember that Frank Reade, Jr., and his cousin, Jack Russell, were both under eighteen years of age, and had never seen hostile Indians in their lives. It is true thl't Frank had seen a great many red-skins, having been born in the West, yet he had never seeu them in war-paint, nor heard their war-whoop. He and Jack had read much of their eruelty to those who were so unfortunate as to fall into their hands, and were, therefore, greatly excited when they were so unexpectedly awakened by the yells of the red demons outside the car. But old Pomp was there. He had a supreme contempt for Indians individually, as he had fought an<). butted them from the Canada line almost to the Gulf in the days of the Steam Team and Stet\m Tally l'Jo. His experience stood him good in this moment of peril. "Hush-sh I" he cautioned. "Don't yer say a. word, Frank," and then he went to the windows, which were closed, and pieered through the blinds at the yelling demons ou He could see them moving about the clear starlight, greatly puzzled to know e-xactly what kind of a prize they had captured. Frank and Jack also took pt>eps at them. There seemed to be at least half a hundred of them. But by this time both Frank and Jack had regained their wits. I say, Jack!" whi.apered Frank, I think if we get up steam we can get away from them." "Dat's so," said Pomp. "But dey can't git yer, nohow, 'case dey can't git in. Dey can't burn der keer, neder." "They are climbing up on top," said Jack, aa the noise of a dozen red demons climbing upon the roof was plainly heard inside. "We'll give 'em a surprise that'll make 'em think we are the Old Nick," said Frank, creepisg forward and lighting the oil furnace under the boiler. He closed the furnace door quickly, so the light would not be seen, and then quietly waited for the steam to generate. In some ten or fifteen minutes there was a good head of steam on. "Now blow dat. whistle, Marse Frank," wllis pered old Pomp, "au.' see dem red niggers roll off'n dar I" All ready for a sudden start I" said Frank, pulling the whistle-crank. There was a piercing scream of the whistle that utterly paralyzed the red rascals. They ylllled in a terror of fright, and rolled off the top of the car like turtles off a log when an alligator comes to pay them a visit. The next moment the Steam Wonder darts for ward, one poor fellow being rnn over and crush ed, and soon they are a quarter of a mile away from the camp. The Indians fired a volley at the Wonder as she drew away from them, and the young friends heard the leaden messengers rattle against the side of the car. Shoot er way, yer red niggers !" cried Porn p, gleefully, "yer cain't hurt dis chile. Dis am de hoss dat lefs yer behine ebbeey time.'' "I wonder if they will pursue us?" Frank re marked. "I don't know," replied Jack. "I'll wait and see," aRd he shut off steam The Wonder came ton full halt. The rear door was opened, and Frank peered out in the darkness to listen. "Shut dat door, Marse Frank I" cried old Pomp. "Yer doaa want er take no stock in Injuns. Shet it, I tole yer I De fust ting yer know ye'll be clim'ing dem golden stairs wider bullet-hole in yer." \ t "Oh, we left 'em a mile back yonder, Pomp," said Frank, shutting the door. "Yer ca!n't bet whar dem Injuns Is," said Pomp. "Dey's jes like er flea. When youse tink :yQu've got 'im he's er hop pin' er roun' libely as eber. Doan' tell me nuffin 'bout Injuns I I'a& got my wool yit 'case l'se too for 'em." "Well, what must we do now?" Frank asked. "I think we'd better light the bead-light, so we can know where we are going," suggested Juak. "We might run into or against something, and then we'd be ruined.'' "That's so," replied Frank. I'll light it at once, for we may have to run again.'' "Better look out dar!" said Pomp, warningly, as Frank opened a very narrow door and ran out on a still narrower platform to the head of tlla engine. He struck "' match, and in another momtmt a stream of brilliant light shot forth from the power ful reflector, enabling Ol!r to see small ob-


' FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. jects plainly at a distance of two hundred yards from the engine. "That's the thing!" excla!mod Jack, as he gazed ahead. "We need fear nothing now as long as we keep a good lookout ahead." Frank regainea the car without having seen an Indian, and all three then waited to see what would be the result of the move. Ten minutes later, Frank heard them yelling in the direction of the 5tream they had just left. "Deys er com!n' !"said Pomp, who was listen ing for the first sounds of pmsuit. "Let 'em come," remarkeu Fra!lk. "They can't dtl us any harm." "Let's give 'em a few bullets, Frank;" suggested Jack. "No-abed no blood unless compelled to. Fa ther warned me against firing on Indians just beeause they were Indians. They are human be-ings as well as ourselves." Jack was astonished. He had been reared in New York, where he had got the idea in his Mad that white menjou the plaius shot Indians as they did deer, buffalo and other game, every time they got a chance. He saw that Frnnk was right, and put up his repeatwg nfie, which he had taken down. "What will you do now?" he asked. "Oh, we'll wait and see what they do," replied Frank. "Hyer dey come!" cried Pomp. With deafening yells the red-skins came on mounted on their ponies. "I'll give 'em a scar.,," said Frank, pulling the steam-valve, and turning the right guide-bar. 1'he Wonder at once moved forward, making a circle till the light from the reilector was turned full upon tho astonished Indians. The light blinded horses and riders alike so they could see nothing very plainly. Then Frank bore down upon them. They eouldn't tell wh e thtJr the Wonder was approach ing or r11ceding till it was almost upon them. Frank took the small hose-pipe and turn ed on a stream of boiling water upon them, at the same time rooking the steam-whistle split their ears with its uuearthly shrieks. The .whistle scattered Indian ponies in direotwn, and the scaldmg water gave the red skins good cause to yell. They yelled and swore in broken English, rubbing their backs and faces wherever the hot water touched them. Hi-hi-yah-yah I" yelled Pomp. "How youse like dat, yer rfld niggers?" Crack -crack-crack I went half a. hundred rilles, and the leaden hail rattled against the Wonder, and fell flatten e d to the ground. "Oh, sb.oot away, shoot away!" laught'd Frank. I've not the laugh on you, and that' s a.Jl I care for." "Good Lord!" exclaimed Jack, In a convulsive fit of "Did you ever see feUows scatter as they did!" "I never did, replied Frank, "But 1'11 ehase a few of them u til they are sick cf this business," and then he turned the so a2 to reveal the whereabouts of a varty of r e d-skins. 'Ihe moment he got sight of them he dashed Lorward iu hot pursuit. Of course the terrified rascals put their ponies to the tov of their spee d, and dashed away o"er the prairie. The Wonder gained steadily on them, whistling fiercely at every hundred yards. The Indians now believed thlt old Nick was after them, and made despemto efforts to get out of the way. They lashed their ponies till the white foam flecked their sides. Finally they scatt\'red, hoping thus to break up the pursuit. Hnt Frank r esolved to run down one of them. He kept after one who seemed to l&e a leader among them, keeping about fifty ya.r:is behind him so as to prevent him from sud l yer am !" Pomp banded him the tin cup half filled with whisky, which he poured from a. demijohn in the provision closet. The Indian gulped down the liquor like an old toper, smacking his lips and feeling greatly re freshed. "You didn't expect to get a. good drink of liquor, did you?" Frank asked. "Urn-no. White mans no bad mans.'' "But you hre a bad Indian, I see," said Frank. \'No-me good Indian.'' "What did you shoot at us for?" "No see you-Indian see big wagon-Do boss. Run away-ugh!" "yoa didn't Know what it was?" o-no h oss-heap 1vagon !" Frank smiled at the idea of the untutored savHe couldn't realize how a. wagon could travel without horses to pull it. Perhaps they had never seen any ot the trains on tlle Union Paci!l c Rail road Well, you Indians must let all wagons alone," saiJ Frank. "You bad no right to bother us when you found us." The Indian made no reply. Those red rovers ol the plains held that they had the right to plunder everything that came in their way, hence the prisontJr made no reply when Frank Paid what he did. Some day a wagon will come along and de stroy all your people," said Frank, "if you don't let wagons alone." "Get the .cissors and cut all his hair o1Y, Pomp.'' Pomp saw fun ahead. He WE1Dt in to one of the drawers, and brought out a pair of shenrs. He took a b'\ndful of hair, and clipped it off before the samge had any irlM as to what he was doing. Then the truth Jl.ashed over his mind that he was to be shorn of his scalp Jock. He gave a. defiant yell and sprang to his feet. "Hole still dar!'' said Pomp, making a grab for another handful of hair. The lndifm made a grab for the shears, and then a terrific struggle ensued. "Thunder, Frank I" exclaimed Jack," he'll kill the nigger!" "Just you wait and see the nigger get away with the Indian. The red-Rkin doesn't live that can get away with black Porn p. There I What did I tell you I Now, Pomp will shear him like a sheep!" The struggle lasted Jess than one minute. The red-skin was no match for the burly olack, and in a twinklll,1g Pomp had him on the floor, astride and cutting his hair as nonchalantly as i! shearing a sheep. During the struggle the Indian never said a word. He Jay with closed eyes and bf!oted breath. Dar I" exclaimed Pomp, youse er bald headed Injun now I" Jack and Fra.fik burst into a. hearty laugh at the comical sight. The Indian seemed all at once to have l

FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDEI'\, The deer made a gallant run of some twenty miles, alter which he began to show signs of distress. "He's weakening l" cried Jack, getting his rifle ready. Yes, he can't escape us l" Orack l" went Jack's rifle, but he missed. Try it again l" cded Frauk. Orack l went another shot, and the deer SJ?rang up some three feet or more and fell dead 1n his tracks. That fetched him l" cried Frank, shutting off steam and stopping alongside the game. Pomp went out and secured the carcass. It was a small one, and was soon landed in the kitch11n, where he cut it up, throwing out all the useless parts as the car dashed along over the fral rie. Ah l" said Frank, this is glorious This is Just what I have been aiming at for a year." You have made a splendid success of it, I ilhould say." "Yes, I believe I have." "It will create a revolution in Western travel." I think it will." But how will it do In deep snow?" I don't know. I think I can make a steam sleigh, though, that would make sleighing as easy as winking." That would be the thing l" exclaimed Jack, and then he suddenly looked out of tile window and saw flve wagons, some three miles away, going in the same direction the Wonder was going. "See there 1" he cried; "there goes an old-style traveling party." Frank gazed through the window at the flve wagons, with their tops. "Yes," he said, they are going south-west. I guess they are emigrants. I'll go down and see them just to hear their comments pn the Wonder." Giing a shrill whistle he turned and made di rectfor the little wagon-train. The wagons halted, and every soul seemed excited as they watched its approach. "They don't know what to D?-ake of us," said Frank. "No, but they know well we are not Indians." Of course-just see how the men, women and children stare l I'll give them anotl!er whistle." He did, and the horses of the wagon-train grew restless and showed signs of fright. To prevent any runaways the Wonder was turned so as to come up in the rear of the last wagon, where it came to a standstill. Hello!" cried Frank, running out on the en gine platform. Hello !" came lmck from the guide of the party. "What in blue blazes yer doin' of! yer track l" "Ain't got any track," returned Frank, ''and don't want any." nie whole party, a. score or more in number, came trooping around the Wonder, wondering if they were dreaming. Thunder and chain lightnin' !" exclaimed the guide, yer don't mean to tell me yer don't netld a. track for that ar machine?" "You saw us drive up, old man," replied Frank. "Where's the track, eh?" Hang me for a galoot!" exclaimed the old guide, ef the days of guides ain't ended. Who made that thing, sonny?" "I did," replled Frank, proudly. "Wal,l'm sorry for yer, I am," he said, con temptuously. "Yer'll die young-too much brain Without sensa. C!'ar outen hyer now 1 Don't come around me with yer durned old whistle, or l'll blow yer full o' holes l" "Why1 what in blazes is the matter with you, old mant" "Git out l" growled the old guide. That Union Paniflc Railroad drove us guides away down hyer, and now you come snortin' erlong with a. blasted ole steam machine to break us up. Git out, I say, or by the great prairie I'll flll yer skin chock full of lead." "All right, old man. Good-bye!" and Frank turned away with the Wonder, to the Intense dis gust of the emigrants, who wanted to see more of the wonderful ill'Vention and its inventor. "Hanged if this don't beat all," said Jack, as the Wonder steamed away, leaving the little ll'!lgOUtrain behind, "Yes," replied Frank. lie must be a. orus .ty old crank, whose business has been broken up by the PacUlc Railroad. He thinks this will kill his business completely." "He must be a. ora.nky old fool," said Ja.ok. "Dat's er fao'," said Pomp, with a look of su preme disgust on his black face. "Oh1 I guess there isn't many like him In the world, remarked Fmuk. "llore than you have any idea of, Frank." "Well, they'll get badly left, that's all," remarked the young inventor. "People who don't keep up with the progress of the age will get leU j old crank back there will die cursing the new-fangled ideas of the day." The sooner such fools die the better of! the country will be. Hello l There's buffalo, as I'm a sinner!" Away out on the plains ahead oJ them a score or more of dark objects were seen. Frank seized his telescope and leveled it at them. "Yes," he said, they are buffalo. We'll have some fine sport." "D>U''s some Injuns out dar, too," said Pomp. "Where?" "Out dar on dere hosses," said he, pointing in another direction where a party of a score or more of mounted Indians were seen bearing down on the small herd of buf!alo. "They are trying to beat us," said Frank. "Get your rifles ready, and we'll see who'll get the best game." Full of excitement over his flrstsightbf buffalo, Jaok Bussell got his splendid repeating-rifle in readiness. Pomp was also in arms. Fmnk turned on aJull bead of steam and dash ed forward at a tremendous pnce. Of course the Wonder beat the Indian ponies. The game took the alarm, and, with hoads down an< I tails up, started off on a !lard run. That was just w at Frank wanted. He could keep up with them, 11nd let Jaok and Pomp pick out the best in the herd. Tht> Indians seemed utterly paralyzed at the a.pbearance of the Wonder in the chase. They hafted and stared till the chase was a mile ahead of them. Then, with fierce yells, they started in pursuit of the Wonder. After a. two-mile run Frank ran alongside of three or four fine bul!aloes. Jack and Pomp made quick work with their repf;lating rifles-giv ing each three or four bullets in succession at close range. They dropped in their tmcks, gave a few kicks, and yielded up their lives, victims to the rapacity of man. Pushing ou, they brought down four mn pure and simple. My name is Dick Morgan," said the prisoner. "I wtw born and reared in Arkansas, where both my parents are buried. They both died sudden ly a little over a year ago. As soon as they were buried I took my young sister, Julia, aqd joimd a party of neighbors who were going to the Southwest, and went with them. We were out a month when one night we were a.tta.ckod and overpowered by Apaches. They killed all the old women and alJ the men except Bill Lucky and myself, wllo escaped in the darkness. Bill and I were together three days when, on another dark night, we were separated. I never saw him again. In my despair I resolved to pretend to be a fugi tive from the whites and join the Indians. That very afternoon I omw a party of Apache hunters. I signaled to them to : avproach. Thtly came up and seized me. I told them my story, and they be lieved, took me into their tribe, whera I found several white men, fugitives from justice, and made me one ofthemselves." "Are you telling me the truth?" Frank asked. "As God is my judge, I am telling the truth," replied the mau. "How long have you been Indian?" "About a year-looking out at! the time for a chance to escape with my sister. I would not leave without her." "You found her, then?" "Yes-she and four other young girls wllom the Indians kept." "How have they been treated?" "Two of them have been made wives of by clliefs. 'I'D.e others 8.1'6 to be treated the same way soon. My sister was to have beAn made the wife of a. chief six months ago, but the Comanches killed him, which was all that saved her." "Where aTe those girls now?'' "At an Apache village, about two hundreQ miles south-west from here," replied Morgan. Are you willing to go there with us after them?" Yes. I am willing to risk my life for them at any time I can see a glimmer of hope." "Well, if we can gilt this car into their we can rescue them without any difficulty," said Frank, "as no band of enemies can get inside unless they have artillery with which to batter us to pieces. We have flve repeating-rifles, plenty of ammunition, and nearly a dozen six-shooterrl. We can whip a body of one hundred warriors in ten minutes, at any time." Then, for Heaven's sake, go to their rescue. It you fail, we will all be killed; but I prefer death to this suspense any longer." "rell me, oan we reach there without crossing a stream? That's something we can't do, you know." Morgan hung his head and remained several minutes in deep thought. 8uddenly he looked up and said: There is a way, but it's aloll8 one-four hun dred miles or more." "Oh, that doesn't matter. We can make that in two days. M Two days !" "Ytls-even more, II pushed," replied Frank. "Then go north-west till you st!lke the head-wattll'fl of the White River. Turn that and go soutlJ. There's no stream in the way on thai side," said Morgan. Jack turned to Frank and asked: "Have you water enough for the trip?" "No; we'll flll the barrels at the head-waters or White River." There are not many warriors at the village now, I !Suppose?" said Frank. "NO-very few, if any, They are out hunting for buf!alo and llmall emigrant trains." "Well, we'll give them a taste of their devilish work. Wash otr that paint, and try to look like a white man once more. I think I have a suit of clothes that will flt you." Pomp led him into the kitchen, where a plent!. ful application of soap and water changed him from a hideou!l-leoking Indian to a very good-


I I ,. FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. 7 ... looking young white man of some twenty-two or "Are tbt>y all here?" Frank asked of Morgan. we are safe, and don't have to keep any watcb, three years. "Yes-all safe," replied Morgan. 1'here we can talk and laugh till bed-time." He was about the size of Frank, and the suit of He blew a fierce blast on the whistle and start-They sat up and talked till midniglJt. The the young inventor gave him fitted him ed off. The girls \Yere frightened at first, girls had many startling experiences to tell. exactly. Morgan quieted them in a moment. At last it was time to retire. "Why, you are really a decent-looKing white "Girls, we are free I" he cried, gathering his "You girls can take the in the other man, Dick Morgan," said Jack Russell, when he sister in his arms and pressing her to his heart. room,!' said Frank; "and we fellows will roll in came out into the main room of the car. They burst into tears and wept for joy, smiling our blankets on the fioor here." "I never felb more proud of myself in my life," through their tears a:t the brave young maQ who "I am so sorry you have to do that, Mr. :replied Morgan. "The white man is certainly had rescued them from a rate worse than death. Reade," said Julia Morgan. "I would rather lie the higlJest type ot the human racll." on the fioor myself." "Right you are, my boy," said Frank, grcl.Bp-"But we wouldn't allow that, you know," said ing his hand. "My name is Frank Reade, Jr., CH.U'1'ER VIII. he. "You are our guests, and have notlling to and this is my cousin, Jack Russell. Pomp, say about where you will sleep." there, is an African prince-the last of his royal A MERRY, MERRY PARTY. Julia laughed, and said: race." "We can only thank you for your kindness, Pomp grinned from ear to ear as be acknowl-THEY soon dried their teal".l, h0\1ever, for joy is Mr. Reade." edged the introduction, but said nothing in reply seldom killing, nnd then they looked out on the "Oh1 don't do that, Miss Morgan. We are so to the" whopper" Erank bad put upon the newprairie, over which they werR going so fast. glad that we had the good fortune to get you comer. "Oh, they can never, never catch us at this away from the Indians thr(t we feel thankful to l\[organ was the happiest man they had ever speed I" cried Julia Morgan, a handsome young you ladies for it." seen in their lives. He examined everything, girl of seventeen. The girls then kissed them good-night again, and asked a thousand questioas about the Won"Oh, I am so glad I" cried Susie Jones. "I and went into the part of tlJe car, der. He also told many strange stories of his never thought ever to be free again." whilst Jack, Frank, Dick and Pomp rolled on the adventures among the Apaches. "Who made this car to run on the ground floor in their blankets. The Wonder was put to its lull speed all that without rails?" Julia Morgan asked. Nothing disturbed their slumbers during the day. They came in sight of trees, which denoted "Frauk Reade, Jr.," replied Jack, pointing to night, and at sunrise Pomp called them all up to the presence of water, at about an !lour before the young inventor," is the inventor and owner." breakfast. He had the tables and stools outdoors sunset. They reached the water before night, re-Julia went up to him and kissed him. again, where they breakfa..ted in the sunlight as filled their barrels, and then pushed up-stream InRtantly the other four followed. it camo through 'he tall cotton-wood trees. till near midnight. Then they stot-ped, and all "Hello I" cried Jack," don't leave me out. I'm It was a merry breakfast p!trty, and the silvery went to bed. as gj)Od-looking as he is." laughter of the girls eould have been heard :a.t At daylight Pomp woke them all up, and start-The girls fairly screamed wit'h laughter, and least a quarter of a mile away. ed the Wonder on its way. He cooked buffalo rushed upon him. The breakfast over, they prepared to resume ateaks and bread and oo1Ieo whilst going at the "Oh, we haven't seen any white men in a their journey, when Dick Morgan remarked: rate of eighteen or twenty miles an hour. year," cried Susie Jones, "and we don't know "Perhaps the girls would prefer to go where About noon they turned the head-waters of how to behave ouNelves. The Indians wouldn't they started, Mr. Reade." White River, pushed down on the other side. let us kiss Mr. Morgan there, so we had to do "Oh, I forgot about that!" exclaimed Frank. The smooth prairie afforded them a splen-without kissing." "Certainly, we'll carry. them just where they did run. Coyotes, deer, buffalo, prairiedogs, They 81llaughed. want to go." and any quantity of feathered game were "Com_ e on and make up for lost time," cried "Oh, I've got enough of this country I" exrouted up, but they did not stop to shoot. Jack. I never had such sweet kisses in my claimed Julia Morgan. "I don't want to go any "Save time and ammunition," said Frank. life." further West." "We need both when we reach the Apache "No," said Morgan, "it's my turn next." "Nor I-n or I I" echoed all the othllrs. village." Julia ran up aud kissed her brother, and Susie "Where do you wish to go, then?" he asked. Ther encamped on the banks or the White i:ttver Jones came next. She hugged him and kissed "East-take us East; we ran find employment that mght. bim a dozen times. or hnsbands in our old homes." I don't think we can be more than fifty or It was plain that Susie loved him; for was "Ob, as to that you had better go to Reade!! sixty miles from the village now," said Morgan. happy and rosy when he let her go. The other town, where I live," said Frank. "You'll find "Then we'll reach it early to-morrow morning," girls then kiBsed him and eaob other, after w hicb husbands tlJere without any trouble, as pretty said Jack. they took each other's hands and danced around girls are scarce there." "Yes," said Frank. "We'll rush right Into the like childrenJ'ust out of school. laughed and whispered together seeral village. An the women and children will run out Big-hearte Pomp looked on with tears in his minutes, and then the fair Julia said: to see us. Morgan will call the girlii by name; eyes. "As all our people are dead except some disand they, knowing his voice, will run to us. We "Tank de good Lord I" he murmured, and taut relatives, we have conclude d to go to Readescan take them iu allfl rush away before the others then suddenly darred back into the kitchen. town and see if we cannot find employ mont ean realize what has been done.". He was gone but a moment, and returned with there." "Yes, that's the plan," said Morgan. "They his old violin, which he had used for ten years. "Very sensible. I am glad you have done so. understand that I am on the lookout for a Oh, golly, how those girls did dance! They flung I am sure you can finrl homes there, aud--" to escape, and will lose no time In join lug me." their tiny feet about only as young,light-lJoartetl "Look dar I" cried Pomp, springing up, and That night Frank made an examination of girls know how, and danced till they were tired pointing to a band of Indians on horseback riding evet'y joint in the machinery of the WonCler. He out. The three young men, took turns dancing furiously down upon them. l'ound everything all right and singularly free with the girls until all had danced. "Get inside, quick I" cried Frank. from dust, and distributed oil quite freely. "Whoop I" yelled Pomp, jumping up and cut-In just one minute they were inside, and all the The next morning the journey was resumed. ting a pigeon-wing," eQding in a reguhtr old fastenings secured. "Now for the village I" cried Frank. "MorVirginia breakdown. "Get you r rilies ready." gan, show the way, and we'll be there in three The young girls lau"hed till they cried. Their Four repeating rifitls were taken down and hours." soung hearts were so light all of a sudden that made ready for servictJ. "Keep right down the river. You can't miss they could only dance and laugh and sing. The Indians rode up alongside the Wonder, and It," said Morgan. The Wonder sped over tlJe dead-level till it reFrank at the window, the chief said: "All righi." gained the very spot where they camped the "How I" Away they went, and game or every description night before. The sun was still three hours high, 1 "How do?" greeted Frank. 11eampered out of the way of the monster. and they concluded to push on north and camp "Heap wagon," said the chief, looking at the I see de wigwams I" cried Pomp, as the first some fifty miles above. W011der with a. great deal of interest. lodge-pole came in sight. They made a fine run, and sunset found them "Yes, but we have henp horse, too," returned "That' s the village," said Morgan. ou the banks of White River in a grove of cottoJJ.>Frank. "Get ready, then, for any t>mergenoy," said wood trees. "Where boss-me no see boss?" Frank. "We'll soon be there." Pomp and the three men took pails and quick"Oh, that's our horse," remarked Fr1111k, Steadily they rushed forward until at last the ly tilled the barrels with water. pointing to the engine. fewch!ldrenplayingaboutthevlllagewerestart"It's necessary to keep pl"nty of water on "Ugh'l whltemanjoke; wherego?" Led,l!eeingthe monster right in their midst. Then board," said Frank," for we couldn't budge an "Going home-up north," he replied. Frank m&de the echoes ring with the steam inch if we were to get out of wat..,." "Better stay-want you--want wagon, too." whistle, a thing never heard before in that While the men were getting water Julia Morgan "Can't stay, haven't got time." part of the world. and the other girls were busy getting Bupper "Must stay," and then at a signal the who!' Men, women and children came tumbling ready. band dismounted and surrounded the Wond..r. out of the wigwams with territied faces. What a splendid set of oooks those girls were! ''Me got you now I" cried the chief. "Julia come here!" called Dick The-y were all daughte-rs of practical, sensible "Haveyou? Comeinside,then." Morgan, openmg the door of the car; "here's mothers, who taught them how to cook. a good The chief came in as Jack opened the door. liberty and home for all of us." meal on short notice. Such bread and coffee ns Pomp and Dick s&ized and disarmed him, whilst Julia recognized er brother's voice and they made! Such brotled bu1Inlo steaks I Even Jack closed the door. sprang forward. old Pomp" licked his chops" and muttered: Frm1k palle4 the whistle valve. "It's brothQr Dick I" she cried. "Come on, "Golly, but dat smells powerful good!" A fierce scattered them like a bombshell, girls J" "You are right, Pomp," said Jaak "Women and then the Wonder shot ahead like a. race-horse, Tbe other four s-prang after her. A half dozen can beat men at that kind of work." leaving the dumfounded Indians far behind 02 olC. quaws ran after them, but Frank blew the "Yes, sah; dat's er fact. Dey's mighty handy foot, as the steam whistle had scattered their wbllstle which frightened them back, and ter hab around, anyhow, Marse Jack.H horses like cll:\1! before a strong wind. the girls gained the car. By the time the barrels were filled Julia MorPomp and Dick had bound the chief and kept "Come in, quick!" exclaimed Dick, as the Ingan announced supper. A portable adjnstablR him down till the Wonder bad carried him sev lilans began to utt -er cries of alarm, and a rew table had been put up, and the camp-stools put era.! miles away from his warriors. warriors ran back for their arms. around it. They all sat down and ate, talked, "Now, shear his head," ordered Frank; and The girls dashed in, clothed in picturesque Incracked jokes, and made merry like a party of Pomp seized his shears and went to work on his dian costumes, and gl<1red at our two heroeg in young children. shock of coarse black hair. In ten minutes the the greatest amazement. The supper over, they quickly put everything proud chief was nothing but a disgraced, bald The shouts of the Indians grew loud e r and, i,uto car. headed Indian. fiercer, and a f&w rifie-shots were heard. Bullets I s now, satd Frank. The "Kick him out, now; he hasn't any friends," mttled the side of the mtr. Indians mtght sltp up and lire on us. In the car said Jack, laughing; and forthwith Dick, Pomp,


8 FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS .STEAM WONDER. Jaruc and Frank fell to kickiBg him. They raised him at every kiok, till at last Pomp's brogan sent him ll.ying through the open door of the car, land Ing on the grass outside. CHAPTER IX. TEE HERD OJ' BUFFALO-A 'l'EBRIBLE DANGBB. DuRING the time the Indian chief was in the ear the girls kept conoealed in the little kitchen apartQlent, fearing to let him see them. The y had a perfect horror of the red-skins, and did not wish t9 look upon their like again. But they could hear all that was said or done, hence, when they heard them kioking the baldheaded red man out of the car they ran in and Join e d in the general laughter. Oh, was swe\!t. revenge to them, for to lose his soalp-lock iS the lowest depth an Indian oan reach 1 His people will driv e him ont of the village whe n he returne," said Susie Jones. Oh, he won't dare return till his hair gro\Vs out again," S!lid Julla :Morgan. "I am almost !lorry you didn' t take his scalp ofl' with his hair." I don't want to hurt them said Frank "unless compelled to in "Well, thE>y won't be so considerate with you, if they once get you in their power." Oh, I lmow that well enough, and that's why I never take any chances with them." "They ought not to be treated as human be Ings," said Susie Jones. "They haven't as much meroy as the wolves h a ve." I believe you, Sue," said Dick. I was for oed to witness some of their atrocities and pretend to delight in them. I know that among the braves In the vi).lage we left yesterday, n o t one Is inao Cdnt of the most unprovoked murder. To ll.ay the m alive would be no more than the y d e served." "Yes-that would not b e all the y d e serve. I don't see why the governm ent allow'3 them to live and roam about as they do." Some day the people of the border will or ganize and sweep them ofl' the face of the oorth," Dick Morgan. They are devils incar nate. "He's making his way toward the timber," said Jack, who was watching the Indian whose looks had been sheared. evlt.le ntly trying to dodge his compan lone," remarked Frank. "Oh, the others are so busy trying to catoh their .tl.ors e s whil(h the whistle scattered, that they ton' t seem to take any notice of him." I've a mind to run back down there, and scatter them, too." Oh they'd take to the timber and on us. "Don' t go, please," pleaded Julia :Morgan. "Please go as far away from the m a.s you can." To please lou I wlll," said Frank, turning to the engme, an starting it again. The Wonder moved along over the level plain as smoothl;r as sklltlng, giving ihe red-skins 11 parting whiStle as the y went. Faster and faster it went, the addition of six more persons to the load apparently making no difl'erence in the sped. The gi-rls threw up the blinds, raised the win dows, and drank in the frash air as they sped along. Every now and then a long-eared jaokass-mbbit would spring up and scud across the prairie in a terror of fright at the Wonder. The girls would scream and laugh as the timid oreatures sped away. It is said that a well soared jaokass-rabb!t oan outrun anything in the animal kingdom. Rille men have never been known to k!ll one whilst running from him. They are said to outrun the bullets. In another half hour they were out of sight of the Indians. The girls felt free and happy once more, and sang joyously as th"'y spea along. Buttnlo I Buttalo I" cried Pomp, who was out on tbe engine. "Where?" cried Jack. "Straight ahead I" returned Pomp. Frank got his spy-glass ami looked in tll.e di rection Pomp had indioated. "Why, you black truthk!ller r exolaimed Frank. Those are not bufl'alo I" "What am dey, den?" "Ha nged if I know." I "Dat's what I know," chuc1ded Pomp. "I .kno'v dem blaok spots. Dey's butralo, suah." "If they are your eyes are better than this spy glass." "Go long wid yer ole spy-glass said Pomp. ":My two eyes am better den all de spy-glhs8 e s in de worl Marse Frank. Wait m ye gUs dar, an' yer'll lots er bufl'alo." The glrh 0rowded forward, anxlons to get a glimpse at the huge, shall;gy monstf'rR. But as yet only a few small black specks in the horizon ack dar. Dey come rushln' down dis way, an' de debbil would be er goner ef he didn't ron faster den dey did." "Pomp is right," said Frank; I've heard my father say the same thing many a ttme, and I've read of it, too." "So have I," said Jaok. "Me, too," added Diok. I wish we were in the rear instead of thE> front of this herd." As far as the eye could reach to the fight, front and le ft of them, the horiz o n was black with tile moving monsters. They were moving down on eith e r side of the Wond e r. :Many came within ten paces of the car; but no one dared shoot at the m I must turn round and get away from here," said Frank. "This Is the moRt seriol18 danger we h 1we met with yet;" and starting the Wonder, he commenced slowly aad cautiously to make a oircuit. "Look out dar I" called out Pomp; don't run agin um, Marse Frank. One ob dem big bulls turn yer ober, an' den we d be goners." The Wonder grazed several, but the grim monsters did not notice it, as there were so m any around thorn At last the Wonder was compl e t e ly turned. Frank put on a full head of steam, and sped away as fast as they could go. "We must get round on their right, and then attack the m," remarke d Frank. An hour's run brought them to the river, and, to their diemay, they saw that the herd reached the timber also. "My God I" gasped Frank, suddenly realizing the danger of the situation; we'll have to run for it r "Dat's er fac'," said Pomp, soberly as a parson, "an' yer's got ter run miii;hty fast, too, .M.arso Frank, 'case dem bufl'aloes am er comin' fnsttJr an' faster all de ti ma." It was true. The body pressing thos" near the timber too clos e ly, caused thonsPnds to make a rush to g e t ahead ; that started others, and thus a stampede comm e nced Frank turned southward, and made good speed, the blaok herd coming after him OB If in hot pun.uit. Away went the Wont.ler, gflining 111 mile in every three or fonr, till at last the r w e re a considerable distance in advance of the hert.l. "Why, we a re going right back to the v!Ua.gel" cri e d Julia :Morgan In great nlarm. ''So we are, said Jack; "but there is no danger whatever from that quarter; the danger is all behind us in that h11rd." "Dat's er fac', Marse J ack; dem Injuns aill't nothln'. It's dem bufl'al o dat make s me eIISSing behind himthat those that shot across hiS path in front were mere ly strngglers. "We are es.fe," he said, "If we oon miles further without &ny aeoidant." .He held the Wonder ll.rmly to her eo11rse, aad in another half hour the roar was behind him. "Saved!" he cried, stopping the engine and dropping into a seat. The danger is passed." Jack called to the two girls and repeated his words. There was a general rejoicing among them, for they had expected nothing but a hor rible death after experiencing the shock of the eollisloa. They eould scargely realize l;bat th&y were ottt of daBger. ''Now, Pomp," saiti Frank," I've j11.Bt out that I am hungry. I guess all the rest are the same way. C o ok somo of that bufl'alo steak. I oo11.ld ent a pound or two of It, I think." "Sol Gould I," said Jack. l'emp got up and went baok into the kitchen, where he at onc e began preparations for supper. In another hour he annonnoed that it was ready. AR the kitohen \vas too small to hold them n.ll it was brought out to them, and they ate it in the maie r o om of the car. The roar of the rushing h e rd still rang in their ears when they retired. But when they awoke at daylight not a butrslo was in sight. The gronad as far as the eye could reach as If a. sirocco of fir e had sweft over it. Not a blade of grass was visible iu the of tbe herd where the main body passed. We made a narrow escape,'' said Jack, sha.k hlg his head. "Yes,'' replied l!'rank. Had been caught in thn.t rush we would have been ground to ll.ust." Oh, It was llWful," exclaimed Julia Morgan.


FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. as she gazed <.ver the scene I shall never forget the horrors of yesterday and last night." "Neither will I," added Susie Jones. "I never slept a wink all night." There must h11ve been a million of thew," remarked Jack. And thousands upon thousands were drowned where they crossed the river. 'l'he river must have been choked with them," must have been awful. I wish we could follow their trail and see the result at the nver." There's nothing to hinder except the ladies," replied Frank. They may not wish to follow it llP" "Oh, indeed w& would if you gentlemen wish to go," said Julia Morgan, speaking for the girls, "and think there is no danger." "Oh, there is no dailger as long a8 we are behind the herd. It's the front of the herd I fear." "Then we girls are in no hurry," said Julia. "Are we, girls, as long as we have such kind friends?" "Oh, no. We would be delighted," said they all. "Then we will follow them as far as the river," said Frank. Pomp soon had breakfast ready, and then the Wonder was turned in the direction the buffaloes bad gone. "Youse don't do much tinkin', Marse Frank," said Pomp, as soon as he found out which way they were going. "What's the matter now, Pomp?" Frank asked, 11eeing that something was weighing on the old darkey's mind. Injuns," was the sententious reply. "Well, what about Indians?" Dey aller-..J follow de buffalo." "What?" Dey allers follow dem buffalo. D11re'll be a bsap ob 'em down dar by de ribber '' Oh, yes, I 11nderstand you now," 1111oid Frank. "But they can't hurt us. We have nothing to fear from them." "Better not fool wid 'em," and Pomp shook his woolly )lead deprecatingly. "Oh, we won't botl;ler them if they won't bother us," he said, laughing. DoJ;t't let that trouble you, Poml>. The Wonder is master of the situa tion." The Wonder pushegling buffaloes. mind them," srud Frank, on looking at the111 through his spy-glass. "They are too busy now to try to meddle wJtb other people." The Wonder pushed on steadily, and soon came l.n sight of many straggling buffaloes. 'fhey ran alongside of several, and brought them down with their repeating rifles. I Other bands or Indians came into view, until oTer one hundred were in s ight. The presence of the Wonder seemed to astonish them beyond me1\sure. They made a rush for it, and whooped and yelled like so many lunatics. Frank closed tl;le steel blinds so no stray bullet could harm any one inside, and kept on his way as though no Indian was in sight. A ohief rode up alongside of the car, and called out: "Big wagon, stop I Me great chief. Me talk to big wagon." "Well, what do you want?" Frank asked, not daring to raise the blinds. "Me want to talk." "Well, talk away." "Who you?" "We are white men hunting the buffalo," re plied Frank. "We are friends of the red man, and don't want any trouble with him. You go on and kill all the game you oon and we'll do the same thing." "White man must stop," said th!l savage. I won't do it. is a free country. Go your way and I'll go minGl." The Indian gave a whoop, and one hundred warrior& answered it. Frank blew the whistle llll!.d the Indian ponies scattered In terror. CHAPTER XI. 'I'HIIi FIG!IT ON THE BUFFALO TRAIL. 'l'tlosE in the car laughed beartlly when they 1111\v the many cases the riders were as much de moralized as the ponies were, llut in a few minutes some two score rallied, and commenced fl.ring at the Wonder. Of course their bullets flattened against the I rush. By keeping a steady lookout ahead they sides of the car and fell to the ground. But managed to avoid them. Frank was angry at the unprovoked attack. Late in the afternoon they passed the spot "'fhree of you take good aim and drop three where the Indian village bad stood. Not a shred of those fellows," he s:1id to Jack. of it remain!ld. Everyth.Wlg was swept bare. The Jack, Dick and Pomp took good aim and fired. main body of the herrl bad passed over it. Three Indians tutnbled to the ground. "Wiped out completely!" said Jack. "'l'hree more!" cried Frank. Julia Morgan shuddered. CrMk I crack I crack! "It'j terrible to think about," she said. "A Three more went down. whole village destroyed so utterly that not a !lin-Crack I crack I crack gle trace of it can be founrll I never dreamed They were good marksmen, and every shot that t he bisons were so te;rribly dangerous." counted. "I had read of such things," said Jack:, "but 1 Nine Indians were down. never dreamed of its terrible reality." 'fhat was getting serious. "Nor I, either," said one of the young ladies. They yelled and charged upon the Wonder, as The W 9nder passed the site of the late village, if expecting to be able to take it by overwhelming and moved o.n up the right bank of the river. numbers. That night they camped on lhe edge of the Frank turned on a full head of steam, and the timber, and eating supper, when they wel"fl Wonder dashed away from them like 11 bird, yet startled by a hoarse: keeping them in range for the deadly rifles. Hello, stranger!" "I'll spoil their buffalo bunt for this," said Hello yourself!" returned Frank. Fmnk. "Now blaze away just as long as you Two white men, busby-bearded and Ped-slairtcan bring down one." ed, rode up and, dismounted by the tire. The three repeating-rifles did fearful execution, "Glad ter see yer," said the taller of the twe and in a minutes the Iudians were heartily strangers, advancing toward tP,e party. "Didn't sick of the affair and drew off. expect ter see any whites down byer." "Oh, you don't getaway so easily l" cried Jack. "How came you down here, mister?" Frank "Turn round on 'em, Frankl" asked. The Wonder now tutned and became the pur"Ob, pard and me war goin' across the connsuer. try, when we seed yer mersbine. What In blue The terrified savages riow put their ponies to is it, anyhow?:' their full speed. But the poor animals bad been Its a steam carrmge, or car, replied Frank, following the herd until they were almost fagged takes .us wberev?r we want tog?." ,, out. 'l'hey made poor runs, and the villainous Hang me 1f that don t beat a.Jl creation I ex redskins dropped rapidly under the fire of the churned one of the ; "an' yer can repeating-rifles. yer along With At last .they beca:me '!ltterly demoralized and ureJ?h: yes, and the party smiled good-natscattered m every d1rection. "vtal, you fellows have got a nice thing of it. Frank sent the Wonder around m Cli"cles! and Yer don;t want no more company now, do yer?" many brought down tnat way. The mrcles "No-haven't room for any more" replied were wlden.ed at each round, so the):' managed to Frank. keep up w1th them. The grass bemg trampled 'l'he man scowled fiercely and seated himself down they not conceal themselves, wb1ch by the fire. Fmnk saw at once that he was a. so demorah;z:ed them that they made no bad customer-probably an outlaw--and that res1stance, but still ran or. rode as they thought both were armed to the teeth. make the best tnJ?e. I beg yocr pardon," said Frank. I mellll.t Don t sp,are one of the villams.l Frank. that we bad no room in the car. '!.'here's plenty I II leave em seuse, or grve em all the of room here-in the camv-and plenty to eat. fight they want. Won't you have some supper with us?" A few got away, and then Frank concluded "Yes-stranger. We are hungry as coyotes, had enough. He turned and made for the herd an' no mjstake," and they both proceeded to help again. themselves to the buffalo steaks. Pomp pro That's the worst licking they've had for ceeded to cook more, knowing from years," said Dick !\forgan. They won't tackle that plainsmen have good appetites. another 'big wagon' soon, I'm thinking." After supper the girls went into the car and I guess they got enough," said :Frank. I proceeded to themselves comfortable. didn't want to burt any of them, but they would Frank, Jack, Dick and Pomp remained outside, have it. I think they ll let us alobll after thiR." armed to the teeth, till quite late, keeping up a "I dunno 'bout dat," sai

, l 10 FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. "Don't know you-don't want you!" The thunder you don't I" "Yes-don't want you." "That' s cool, stranger." We are a cool set." '' Come outside an' aay that." "Oh, no--we are teo cool for that." Too cowardly I" "See hero, my good fellow,"Mid Frank, speaking with consider a ble energy, "we <:an wipe you out so y ou'd think ligbtniBg did it. Go a'vay now, before we are tempted to do it. You mus t be escaped lunatics." "Show yer head, pard--Show yer head!" yelled the man, and running under the window, the stee l blinds of whieh Frank was speakmg, and I'll blow it off for yer !" The blin:l was sudde nly thrown open, and a stream of boiling hot water poured into his faee. He y e lled blo ody murder, fired his revolver in the air, and r o lled over on the ground. The Wonder st&rte d off at the same instant, and by the time tte seald e d outlaw serambled to hifl feet it was a half mile away, scudding along at the rate of t\velve or llft eeu miles an hour. The two villainous wretches were left behind, and in a half hour w ere out of sight. "'l'hat's the last of them," said Frank. "They'll be one hundred and fifty miles away by sunset." "I hope we'll never s e e t!::.em again," said Julia Morgan. "They are bad m e n." "Undoubtedly. I don't think you'll ever see them again J h o pe not." The day pass e d without anything unusual hap pening, and night found the m ag-i\in by the same stream, though it was now a mere branch or !lreek. "We'll turn it early to-morrow," said Jack, in talking to one of the g irls. "Then we will start straight for lteadestown, Wlll we?" she asked. Yes, I believe s o." "I am almost sorry, for we are all having snch a pl e ll.'lant time tog ether." So am I," he said. But it is too dangerous to carry so many pretty girls about tho country this way._ !:lome a c cident might happen, you know, We fellows can g o t along in that case, whJle you girls could not." Pomp w ent up on the top of the car afte r meat 'he w88 curing the buffalo meat up there), and I see de tops of wagons out dere." He pointed In the directi o n the Wonder had been traveltug all day. Jack and Frank went up to get a view from there. The spy-glll.'ls revealed the white tops of five wagons in the distance. "Yes," said Frank. "There are five of them." shall we out and see them?" "Yes-after supper." They then \Vent leisurely about getting supper, whilst Frank looked at his compass to get the bearing of the wagons. The meal over, the stars were out, and the Wonder moved gently along in the direction or the wagons. The head-light threw a bright ray several hun dred yards ahead, which. enabled them to a;ee everything as they went along. After an hour's run they c a me In sight of the wagons, but1 to their surprise, they saw gunshot llMhes and neard gullE!hot reports. "Why, hang me if the red-skins ain't after them I" exclaimed Frank. Get your guns ready, l" Jack, Dick and Pomp got their repeating-rilles ready, and Frank turned on a full head of steam. The Wonder dashed forward at a double speed, and soon they could hear the shouts of the combatants. Suddenly the Indians were brought Into vie\V by the bright light of the reflector. Jack and the other two opened fire on them, and several tum bled from their ponies lr>. a few minutes. There was a large party of them, but the contlnuou. fire from the three repeating-rifles soon 116nt them scattering. The Wonder pursued, the light bringing them Into view whichever way they turned, for Frank had arranged it so he eould turn it to the right or left at will." "Don't let one essape that you can bring down," said .Frank. The three rilles were kept busy for n. few min utes longer, after which time not an Indian could be seen. They couldn't imagine what kind of a monster if was that had come down upon them, and so who could had slipped away in the darkness. Hello, there I" called Frank to the wagon-train. "Hello I" eame back again. "All right, are y o u?" "I dunno I Come in, pard." Frank turned and steamed up alongside the He found it to be the same train whose guide had so unceremoniously ordered the Wonder away the week before. The old guide came forward now, and said: "Shake, pard, an' forgit what an onnery cuss I am. Yer've saved the train, an' I'm the galoot that's honest enough ter say so. Come out an' stop with us." The old guide had reached dis horny hand through the open window, and shaken hands with Frank. Oh, that' s all right, pard," said Frank. "Of eourse we'll come out," and the whole partygirls included-came out and mingled with the emigrants. 1.'he y found that one man had been killed and four wounded by the Indians. 'I'he joyous reception the y received delighted them, so they concluded to spend the night there with tht'ru. They helped dig the grave and bury the poor fellow who had been killed, afte r which they told the story of the rescue of the five girls, and the subsequent destruction oi the Indian vil lage, by the herd or buffalo. The women of the train were never tired of listening to the story of the girls, who bad been captives f:>r a year among the red demons, and the girls were never tired of t e lling it. It was a very late hour when they retirAd to sleep, but -they slept well and w ere up 'by sun rise, locking as fresh and li'vely as if they were in a splendid home, surrounded by all the comforts of life. 'l'hey all ate breakfast together, the Wonder furnishing the meat, and the wagons the bread. "I can give you plenty of moot if you want it," said Frank. "Our meat is short, pard," said the old guide. "Well, we'll go hunting for you to-any, and klll a few buf!'nlo. We can run 'em down, you see, and kill as many as we want." "Which we do," said the guide. Before the meal was over several buffaloes were seen in the distance, and, iu a little while, the Wonder was after them. T\VO hours later four were killed, and their hind-quarters brought into camp, to the great delight of the emigrants, who had been living for weeks on salt meats. The-thanks of the who.le party were showered on them. "Yer don't know how much we oweyer, pard said the old guide, wringing Frank's hand; ''you've saved us from the red-skins, an' then from starvin'." "Well, I'm glad I did, pard. You would have done the same for me or anybody else." "Yes; blow me dead if I wouldn't!" "That makes us even, then." At about noon the Wonder bade adieu to the wagons, and returned to the route it was pursu ing the day before. In another hour the wagons were out of sight. Late that evening the Wonder turned the head waters of the stream, and sped away north-east ward, night overtaking them in the open prairie. They sat up and talked till bed-time, and then retired to sleep and dream. The young ladies dreamed of the pleasures of civilization, and their hearts fluttered at the thought th&t in a few more days they would be in the midst of civilized peo ple again, where their past sufferings would make evl'ry one their friend. Some time aftE"r midnight Jack thought he heard several large animals rush the Won der. Soon it 'became more frequent, and he got up to see what it mE'ant, fearing another rush of buffaloes. As he raised the window, he Wll.'l astounded at seeing the whole heavens ablaze in a red glare. "My God I" be gasped, the world is 011 fire I" CHAPTER XIIL THE WONDEll PLUNGES INTO A. SEA. 07! l1'IliE. THE sudden exclamation of Jack aroused all the sleepers in the car. They all sprang up and made inquiries as to what the trouble was. Pomp'wll.'l the next one to get to the window, and the first glimpse of the broad glare told him but too plainly that the prairie was on fire. De Lord sabe us 1" he ejll.Culated. "De prairie Is burn!n' up I" Good Lord I" gasped Frank, springing to the nearest window and throwing up the blinds, this Is the worst danger of all!" "What is it? What is it?" cried Julia Morgan, from the sleeping-apartment of the c a r "The prairie is on fire I" repli e d Frank, "You ladiE"s had better get up and dress, ll.'l we will have to make a hard run." ileveral feminine screams were beard, but in the general excitement no notice was taken of them. They were not fashionable young ]cyl!es who took an hour to dress. On the contrary, they were all dressed Inside of flve minute& &v.d !'-the main room with the boys. "Pomp!" cried Frank, "light the furnace, quick, and see how much water there is in the tank." Yes, Mh I" and the old dar key at once set himself to his task. He appiiod a match to the wicks in the furnace, and in an instant they were ablaze, giTing an intense heat to the boi.lel' just above it. A few minutes later he reported two Cll.'lk6 !ull of water, with the boiler half full. "That'll be enough," said Jack, ll.'l Frank was busy watching the approach of the flames, which now came into full view. The girls gazed at the coming danger with blanched faces. The flames seemed to fairly and dance with demoniaoaljoy as they approach ed the Wonder. Great tongues of fire twisted and turned, reached out and took new laps at the tall, waving grass. Oh, we are lost I" moaned Susie Jones, wring ing her hands. "We will all be burnt to cinders l" cril'd Julia Morgan. I think we will get through," said Frank, after a careful survey of the situation. How in the world can we?" demanded Dick Morgan. "The Wonder is fire-proof, you know," replied Frask. "But iron can get hot, you know," said Dick. It would get hot enough to roast us." I don t think so," repfied ,Frank. Prairie grass doesn't burn long. We can run through the !lre and come out on the other side." My God I" gasped Jack Russell. Do yon mean to ride right into that blaze?" Why not? We can' t get away from it." "Why, those animals are getting away l" But those animals can swim the river when they strike it, and the Wonder cannot." But we can leave the Wonder, and wade into the water ourselves," argued Jack. Only to be smothered to death with smoke," said Frank. "No, our safest plan is t;o dash through the flames to the other eide. A dash of a mile, which will not take us ov e r three or four minutes, would put us behind that wall of flames." But if some accident were to happen and leave us right in the midst of the flames?" Julia Morgan asked. What would be the result?" "Oh, we'd be baked nice and brown, said Dick. "We'd only get a good warming," B a ld Frank, smiling in spite of the gravity of the situation. In the meantime the flames oome leaping on a\ a f e arful pace. "I d on't think there is so much danger," said Dick Morgan. "I remember hearinll: several In dians telling about how Kit Carson once saved his life, by killing his horse, cutting him open, getting inside of him, and staying there until the flames passed over him." "And it didn't burn him?" one of the young girls asked. "No-it baked the horse pretty well, but he came out unhurt. "Oh, there's no use talking about It," said Frank: "it's our only chance, and I am going through." The others looked desperate, but Julia. Morgan walked up to Frank, laid her hand in his, anrl said: "You h!ive savE'd us twice, Mr. Reade. I will trust you as before, and believe in you. If we perish, I will die blessing you witb. my las&. breath." "You are a brave girl, MIS!< Julia," said Frank. "I woald brave death a thousand times to save '(OU," "'.i'hanksl" and her eyes showed that she ap-o prec1ated his words. "Hyer dey come I" cried Pomp, &Sthecoyotes, jack-rabbits, and almost every description of prairie animals dashed past the Wonder toward the river many miles away. The rabbits no longer feared the co rote, and the coyote no longer felt like making a dmner o!J the rabbit. The air was filled with prairie fowls Jlylng soutJ,lward and westward. Any other time th sight would have gladdened the heart of the sportsman. But now sport was not thought ot Life was everything, and that was in danger. The flames were now only three miles away. I'll start now," said Frank, "so as to get a good start for the dash through. Are you all ready?" "1 am," eald Julia Morgan, stepping up by hla side. "Close the. windows, then." The windows were closed. Frank pulled tha steam handle and the Wonder moved forward, increasing its speed every moment, till a full head of steam sent it dashinK along at the rate of eighteen or twenty an hour.


FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM W ONDER. 11 One, two, three, five, ten minutes passed, and the Wonder was about to dash through the wall of fire which reared many feet 1\bove it. Julia Morgan gave a shuddering gasp and caught hold of Frank. He passed s.n arm around her waist, and said: Don't be alarmed, there's no danger." She clung to him all the closer, however, without making any reply. The next moment the Wonder entert>d the blaze. It was completely enveloped in fiames tlery, hissing tlames, that tried in vain to break the thick glass of the ear windows for the purpose of getting at the blanched faces inside. How they hissed I Ho;v they crackled I How the fiery tongues leaped, twisted, and lapped at the rushing Wonder that thus bravely defied them How the wonderful young inventor held his breath as the of his brain dashed into the sea of fiame I Julia Morgan, the brave, the beautiful heroine, clung to him and looked up into his face, as the Wonder plunged through the fiames, as if to catch the spirit of his own indomitable will. On, on dashed the car. The d>Lring young engineer held her steadily to her course. Smoke crept in through every crack and crevice, and grndually filled the car. 1'he young ladies grew more and more excited. Lie down with your faces to the fioor I" ordereJ Frank. But they did not seem to ht>ar, or bearing, did not understand. "I will make them lie down," said Julia Morgan, as calmly as Frank had ever seen her. "Do so," he said, and forthwith she went to thern and soon had them all on the fioor, where the smoke was not so dense. Then she came back and stood by the side of Frank, who said: "Thank!! I You are a brave girl." "I am not afraid as long as you are not," she replied, "because I believe you know what is best." "Thanks again. I will always try to deserve your confidence." "On-on plunged the Wonder, and a minute or two later Porn p sung out: "We'se froo de fire I We'se froo de fire I" The girls sprang up, but were almost suffocated with the smoke. 'TLie down I Lie down I" cried Frank. "We are through the fire, but we are yet in the smoke. We' ll soon be out of that I" A brisk wind was blowing. which carriell the smoke and fire forward very fast. 1'he dry grass gave but little smoke after the main body of the flames bad swept over them. Ten minutes after passing the wall ot fire Jack and Dick threw opE>n the front, >Lnd rear doors of car, and the stiff breeze soon emptied it of all the smoke. "Glory Hallelujah I" shouted Pomp. "We'se done gone froo dat fire!" "Yes, we are all right now," said Frank. The girls sprang up and looked about them. Tile sea of flame was behind them. Here and there around them could be seen small lights, or embers of tufts of grass which slowly burned at the ground. "Oh, is it possible we got through so easily I" cried Susie Jones, almost overcome with joy. "Yes," said Julia Morgan, taking her in her arms, "Mr. Reade Is a real hero. No otp& man could have taken Ui. through as he did." They laughed, cried, and sung their joy,' and several kissed Frank in the enthusiasm of the moment. The Wonder plunged along till it reached a part of the plains where no smoke or smell of fire could annoy them, and there stopped to finish the sleep the flames had interrupted. CHAPTER XIV. l!LACK POMP AS A RAM. THE Wonder was stopped, and all the party lay down to sleep, knowing well that nd enemy was within many milee< of that spot, as the alldevouring flames had scattered everything in the animated kingdom. They siept sweetly, and did not wake up till some time after sunrise. Then they rose up to lqok out ULCb. Not a sign of me could be seen in a .ny direction Here and there were the half-charred rei'IHtins of some animnl which failed to maKe its escape. "Oh, it was awful!" exclaimed Julia, with a shudder. I never want to pass through such another ordeal." Why, I < .bought you stood it like a.a old vet emv 11retr.lill," s>Lid Jack. And at the same time I was trembling from bead to foot," she replidd. "That was from nervous excitement," said Frank. "I saw such courage di.aplayed by a lady as th>Lt shown by you last night. Why, you actually gave me courage to go on, when otherwise I might h>Lve faltered." Julia blushed, and said: But for the manly and confidence which I saw in your f'llce and actions, I should have fainted with fe>Lr." "We both aided and sustained each other, then?" "It would seem so;' and then they took a walk over the blackened earth till Pomp should an nounce Frank enjeyed the companionship of the !Jrave girl during the walk of a half hour, finding her really interesting. Pretty soon Pomp called all hands to breakfast, and they returned with appetites to do ample justice to the meal. The breakfast over, Frank examined the Wonder, to see what damage it had received from the fire. He found the only damage done was in the ap peacance of the whole turnout. The smoke and heat together had given it a general dingy color -darker in some place!! than in others. I'll have to pat on a new coat of paint," heremarked. "Oh, I wouldn't do that, Mr. Reade," exclaimed Juli>L Morgan. Why not, pray?" I would let that smoke remain on there, as a memento of the peril that you had passed through." "That's a good idea," said Jack. "I didn't !>-now you had so much sentiment, Miss Mor gan." I didn't know it was sentiment," she replied. "I was speaking just as I felt." "And I appreciate that feeling," said Frank. "I would .n't repnint the Wonder for anything. It shall Just stay as it is, beauty or no beauty." Juha felt proud that her suggestion had met with such a heart.y approbation. They all climbed aboard again, and Frank took his seat at the engine, to see to the running of the car. It started off in grand style. The occupants sented themselves near tbe windows and gazed out upon the scene of the recent terrible event. The Wonder made a good run during tho day, passing many C>Lrcasses or animals which had fallen victims of the fire. They reached the stream on the'banks of which the fire had started about sunset. On the other side the tall grass remained intacl. "How I wiAb there were more rivers," said Susie Jones, "so these great fires could not extend far." "They sometimes even leap across rivers," said Frank, "pmtlcularly when a high wind pre vails I wish I was on the ether side,'' remnrked onE> of the girls. I love the grass better tlnln this blackened earth." So do I,'' added another. "So say we all,'' put in Jack, good-naturedly. "Well, we'll get over there as soon as we can,'' said Frank. "We can't swim the Wonder over, you know." "Oh, this small stream \'{On't extend many miles up, surely," remarked one of the girls. About twenty or thirty miles, I guess," said Frank, as be and the other men proceeded to fill the tank and casks with fresh water.. The girls prepared supper. They spent a pleasant evening fishing in the creek. They caught enough for a he>Lrty breakfast the next morning, which Pomp cleaned and salted before going to bP-d. Just a little before daylight the Wonder watf attacked by Indii'Lns ngain They climbed UJ! on of the car, and danced their hideous wardance, yelling and screeching like so many wild cats. Telling the girls to keep quiet, Frank lighted the furnace, and WILited for the ste>Lm to generate. In t!Ome fifteen or twenty minutes the steam was hissing. He gave four or tlve toots with the ste>Lm wbistle, and the red rascals tum hied off the top of the car like turtles rolling off a log. They didn't lmow what had broken.Joose. They scattered to a reasonable distance, and stared at the thing. Fmnk and Jack were watching them through the blinds. Crnck, crack! went a couple of rilles, and two bullets flattened against the side of the car. "Let me geta shot at 'em !" said Dick, taking down one of the repeatiniZ rilles. "No, no!" said Frarik."We'll have some fun with them as soon as it is light enough for us t9 see them." "What are you going to do?" "Wait and see. By-and-by the Indians came nearer and nearer, until Frank was ready to giv"' them some boiling water. Taking the small hose-pipe in hand, he told Jack t<> pull the whistle. As Jack did so Frank turneu on the boiling water, and in than ten seconds a dozen half-naked red-skiu;; were howling with scalded spets all over them. They whooped and yelled all the more, keeping out of the way and firing shoto; for nearly an hour after. By that time the gray dawn afforded light enough for Frank to see how to chase them around. He turned the Wonder upon them, and charged. Of course they scattered. One big fellow, who seemed to be the chief of the party, was singled out and run down. It was done in a half hour. His horse was slain, and the rascal stood at bay, expecting nothing but instant death. The Wonder stopped, and all feur sprang out and seized hiw. He made no resistance, preserving a dignified silence. They disarmed him. "What do you mean by shooting at us?" Frank asked. The savage looked contemptuously down at the youth, and said: Me great bnwe. Me talk to men, not boys !" "Oh, you are a great brave, >Lre you? Now, I think you are a great fool! Pomp, show him how you can butt." "Wh>Lt dat yer say, Marse Frank?" demanded Pomp, in evident surprise. "Show this great brave how you can ontt. Fatber says you can out butt anything in all t!Je West." "Oh, golly I" chuckled Pomp, grinning from ear to ear; 'I'll butt de foolishness clean outen him, Marse Frank." "Well, let him have it." Pomp went up to the tall savage, and said: "You'se a red fool nigger I What fo' yer com& foolin' round byer?" "Ugh I" grunted the sav>Lge. "Ugh I" grunted Pomp, butting him in the chest, and layiug him out like a log on the"' grass. Frank, Jack, Dick and the girls fairly r<'ared with merrimebt u.s the disgusted savage rose to his feet and glared contemptuously at the woolly head. How yo use like dat, yer red nigger, eh ?" said Pomp. "Ugh I Black man skunk!" "Ugh I Black man's er ram!" grunted Pomp, and >Lg>Lin he planted that hard head of hie against the stalwart red-skin, and again sent him to grass, as though a thunder-bolt truck him. The others roared with merriment. The Indian tried to rise again. and in doing so, he presentedt!t fair mark with his posterior. Pomp dashed forwt}rd and gave him a bump---_. that sent him bead first to the ground again. 1'1len, when he arose to llis knees ag>Lin, Pomp bumped him on the head with such force as to knock him senseless for severn! minutes. "That waa IL good one, Pomp I" cried "Butt him to a jelly I I'll wager that he has scalped women and children." "l'se de ram what can do it," said Pomp, grinning from ear to ear. "Give it to him till be asks for quarter," Rnid Frank. "They will take a great deal before th

FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER.. into which he had plunged, he would have broken his n eck or head. he was mad. He rushed up to the Indian, seized him with Both hands, and comm e n ce d butting him furious ly. The savage tried to get away. He could not. Whack 1 Bump I Thud I And h.e down to the unconscious under the ternble blow,;, CHAPTER XV. THE WONDE:B :BETU:BNS TO :BEADESTOWN. "MEnnE youse won't f oo l wid er black man no m o r e 1 said Pomp, as he stoo d over the prostrate form of the ins e nsible "You've done f o r him, I guess, Pomp," said Jac k. f lin f h h d "Hope I hab" sa1d Pomp ee go 1s ea whe re it struck tbe ground. "Dat Injun ain' t g o t no sense." "I guess not, now,"said Frank, looking down at the b attered savage, from mouth, n ose and ears tbered blood was OOZlng. During all this time theotberindia.ns, who had be e n scattered by the charge of the Wond e r, h a n c ollec t e d togeth e r again, watche d the treat m ent I)le ted out to their ch1ef. The y d a red n o t make an attempt at rescue. They dreaded the p o w e r of the Wond e r. "Now f o r the othe rs," said Frank, leading the way to the car. The party re-entered and the chase reaom m e nced. .1 The r edskins scattered again, but not unt1 a half doz e n of them had caught bullets from the r e peatin g -rifles or Jack, Bic k, and Pomp. "Tha t'll do, boys," Frank. "Ma ybe they'll be g o od now, this. Good I" excl a imed Dick Morgan. I'vo. been a year with them, and the only good Ind1an I eve r sa.w wasP. dead one!" "Ma ybe you are right, Mr. Morgan," said Frank "in fact. I believe you; but we haven't got fool with 'em any longe r t o -day." "The best way to make an Indian good is to kill him said Dick with considerable em phA.Sis. er fao'," added Pomp, rubbing his bead ..Jind ba c k or his n e ck. "De y ortet kiU'em all, SU11h. D e y s er bad crowd, dat's er fao'." The Wonder was now turned h o meward again, and all hearts Njoiced they were fast leaving th11t part of the great West where crime o! every d oac ription 'vas so rampant. "I don't think we will meet with any more In dians now, said Frank," as we are too far east ward for that. '.rhe red rasools are loo shrewd to commit any depredations so near tbe border eett)ements." Oh, I am so glad I" cried Susie Jones, bursting into tears. Poor girl! She had suffered so much that she eould scarcely realize that lite could have any charms for her. That day they made a good run, and camped In the open prairie. They spent th'3 evening in singing, dancing, and story-telling, till a. late hour, when theyret!Nd to r e st. They were all up at sunrise, ready to resume the journey, Such a happy lot of young people were never seen together. Every one of the girls assisted In cooking the breakfast, telling the boys to look after the car. P omp was s et to rubbing up the engine, while Frank again examined the j oints of the covered machinery. The young inventor was delight e d at "flnding ev ery screw in place, and ev e ry joint free from dust. He oiled every part and closed the covers again. After braakfast they started oft In high spirits, making fast time till high noon, when they eaught sight of tbe two church steeples of Reades town. "Readstown! Readstown I" cried Pomp. "Tank de Lord, w e's h ome er gin I" The girls laughe d and cri e d by turns, hngge d and kissed each other, and otherwise acted like overjoyed children. "This is the happiest of my life," said Frank, grasping Jack Russell's h imd. "To kno w tha t we have made so m any Innocent y-oung hoorts glad is enough to satisfy the ambition of any man." "Yes,'' said Jack, the tears dimmin<> his bright blue eyes. "You have rescued them from a livIng d eath." "It was a. living hell,'' said Dick Morgan, with bitterness. "Satan's kingdom can't be any Well, it's all over with now." I don't know about that, said Dick. "If I get two hundred volunteers, with repeating rilles, I intend to go back and kill every Apache that I can flnd "You can get the men, I guess,'' said Jack. "If I can, tb.ere ll be no more trouble with them in anoth e r year. "Would you kill all?" "Yea-men, women and children. I would de stroy the race altogeth e r. They are born devils, and ought to be wiped out." I b e lieve you, M orga n, and, if you can r a ise the men I'll agree to transport the m a c ro s s the country.' I'd build two more cars for the pur pose." Thanks. I'll appeal to the people through the press The church steepl e s came Into better vi e w as the Wonder neared the town. The white c o tt a ges looked so \leautiful in the clear sunlight, that even Frank and were charmed, though they aad been only two weeks away from them. Wh e n they were within a m i le or the town Frank bl e w the whistl e s e v e ral time s so as to no tify the p e ople that they were coming. The y could see men, women and childr e n run nlng out of the hous e s to welcome them. "They' ll give us a grand reception,' said Jack. "Yes adde d Frank, a nd wh er.. they s ee the girls and hear their story, they' ll carry us on their s h o uld ers. "Oh,'ll be fun," remarked J ac k. "I don't know what to do,'' r eturned Frank, who was as modest as be was brave. "Those big-hearted, red-shirted fellows abo.ut the saloon will want to m a ke a big demonstra tiOn." Well, l et them make it. It will be b ette r for the girls a -nd excite sympathy in tb.eir behalf." "Oh, I couldn't help myself if I wanted to," said Frank. By time they had reache d tho outskirts of the village, and entemd the main stre et. Th e r e d-shirts commenc e d yelling and throwing up their slouch hats. Frank slow e d up so as to al low the people to walk alongside of the car and shake hands witb. him. Eve rybody knew old P o mp, aud in less tha n five minutes !:!e had told the story of the rescue o f the girls (tom tb.e The pretty fac e s o f some of them at the windows excited the most intense enlhusia.qm. At last the Wond e r drew up In front of Frank Reade, Sr.'s, home A crowd of ov e r three hundred men, wdmen an.! children gathered around" it. Tell us about It, Frank I" cried dozens at once. Frank came out, leading the girls, and stood on ths steps of his fath e r's house, and said: We caught Dick Morgan here "-b.e pointed to Dick-" di s guised as an Indian, and were about to wipe him out when he told us why ho turne d Indian. It was to rescue his young sister and four other girls who were captives in 110 Apache village. Tllatwas enough for us. We made him wash oft the paint and dress Ilks a white man again. He then agreed to pilot us to the village where his sister was, and we Wjlnt there. The Wonder scared the Indians nearly to death, but we got the girls and brouooht them away. They are the best and prettit>.st lot of girls I ever saw, and I told the m that if they would come to Read estown tb.ey would soon find friends, homes and husbands. They have come, and I hope thev will find my words true." The crowd yelled and cheered with the wildest entb.usiasm, and scores or red-shirt e d men, with revolvers in their b e lts, rushed forward to take the young inventor by the hand. Then they s hook hands witlt tb.e girls, and left ten and twenty-dollar gold pieces in their hands. Julia Morgan got over $100, nnu the others nearly as much. The red-shirted men of the W est are rough and j(enerally on the shoot, but they are tender-hea rt ed for all that, and, where wom e n and cb.ildren are concerned, are ready to spend their last dol inr and spill their blood for them. Su s ie Jones receivfld three offers of marriage on the spot, and Julia. two. The y blush e d r osy red, and asked to be excused fr o m giving answers then. "Wait till they are dressed up like ladies," .said Jack, "and then you'll all want wiv es.'' The girls were conducted into 'the house by Mrs. R eade and given two rooms, whilst many other women of the village hastened home to get some articles of clothing for tbem. In the meantime Frank and Jack and Dick had be e n seiz e d by the red-shirts and carried away on their should e rs. "Hurrah for the whitest boys in the West I" cried a st.alwart r e d-shirt, and they made the wei kin ring with their shouts. CHAPTER XVI. POMP WINS A MATCH. THE crowd increased .in numbers and entbusi-asm as they progressed through tho streets of the town, bearing the tb.ree young men on stalwart shoul<1e111 towat"d "Grand Saloon," lht ee blocks away. Cheering continued with every step. The red shirts had found a vent for their pent-up spirits, and determined to blow off at all hazards. They bore the three young men to the saloon, put the m in thre e c hairs on tables, and called fot tb.ree times three and a. tiger, which were with a will. "Now, barkeeper," called out a stalwart red shirt, "here's fifty dollars in tho yellow. Set the wortb. of it in drinks for this cro,,.d in honor of the tnre e whii.etoc :Joys in tbe West I" "Hooray for Bill Perkins I" called out some one in the crowd, and the generous-hearted red-shirt was applauded to the skies. "Thankee, pards," said Perkins. "Just come up an' take your horns, like little llilen.'' "That we will!" and fult three hund,red men crowd e d forward to take their favorite drinks. "Tell us your yarn, pard?" said Bill Perkins, taking Dick Morgan by the arm and making him rise to his feet. Dick then commenced, and repeated his seory as the r'lader has already heard it-how, in order to be near to aid his sister in <'aptivity, he had the Indians as a pretende d fugitive from JUstice, and went with them on their marauding excursions. "'.rhey are born fiends he said, "and ought to be swept from the face of the earth. If I can get two ,hundre d m e n with arms, I will go back and kill ev.Jry man, woman, and child of the race I can flnd I" Such wild cheering as greeted his proposilion I "I'll go with you, pard," cried an old red-shirt in the crowd. "I to o I And I, and I, I, I I" cried half a hun dre d more, tlourishing revolvers above their heads. "Give me the men," cried Dick," and the days of the A p a c h e s are numbered I" "Hye r s yer man I Whoop I Set 'em up ag!n, Jim 1" and an enthusiastic miner threw an ounce of g o ld on the c o unter. Cb.eers broke forth anew, and the bull ding falr Jy shoo k. Wine and cigars were pressed on thG three young men, which they took modera ti o n. Then they took them on their shoulders In thG chairs, and carried them back to the Reade house, where the Wondt>r was still be fore the gate. They put them down at the door, gave three more cheers, and then returned to the saloons to finish the day in drinking. Frank Reade, Jr., was the most popular young man In Readestown then, and every new-comer ia the town was anxious to make his acquaint ance and take him by t.he hand. Bill Perkins, the burly red-shirted frontiersman, who first treated the crowd to fifty dollars' worth of drinks, was a typical Western man, rough, but generous, and brave in every sense of the term. He pronounced him the whitest boy he had ever met, and offered to whip any man who said to the contrary. Of course no man in Readestown dal'ed to contradict him, for Perkins on tbe shoot, and bad a "private cemetery." His friendship was much sought after by the rough elements that passed through Readestown. He swore by Frank Reade 1r., and dooiared that he would back him against any galoot in the West. That 'night there was more liquor drank In Rea.destown than ever was known before in the history of the place. A o! miners from tile Black Hills got hold of Pomp, and made him teU the story of the trip of the Won d e r. His story of the buffalo stampede aml the great prairie flre, and the daring of the Wonder through the sea of fire, but added to the excitement and the reputation of Frank. Reade, Jr. The story of his butting episode with the Ap ache chief, in which the Indian was l e ft for d ead on the gr'lund, caus e d them to regard him as s o mething of a hero aloo. "Sa y, Jim," call e d Bill Perkins to the bar keepet "bring this son of charcoal a l!' ol y our best whisky. He's my friend-! want every body to understand th a t. His skin is black, bnl his heart is white. There you are, old man, Bill Perkins is looking at you." "An' l'se lookin l}t you, Massa Bill," sald Pomp, grinning from e a r to e a r, as he held up tb.e glass to his thick lips. Ho drr.nk the liquor like an oldev eteran, and set down the glass with a smack of his lips that s et the crowd in a roo\r. "So you butted tb.e Injun, did you?" asked a brawny red-shirt. Y e s. sah; butted u m stiff,'' replied Pomp. "I'se got er hard h e ad, I is." "Wal, now, I've got a hard nut myself," sa.!d


FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. 13 the man. "I outbutted 'he oldest ram in Dead wood. I'll bet a. gallon. of whisky I can outbutt you." '' Whoop I" yelled Bil'l Perkins. "That's a match. I'll take that bet, and make it a barrel. l'ut up or shut up." "My barrel is up," said red-!hlrt, placing a small leather bag of gold-dust on t.he counter. ''What's a barrel worth, pard?" "Two huu4red dollars," said the Bolh men planked down two hundred dollars in gold-dust and coin together, the belding the stakes. Pomp was dumfounded. "De Lord gorramitey I" he exclaimed. "I ain'\ Ot no call ter butt dat man !" "Yes, you have," said Perkins. "He' s good as ealled yer 1< liar, and wants to butt with you to the crowd that you can't butt no more' n a hog." Why, Marse Bill, no white 1nan ain't got er nigger head I" said Pomp, in honest innocence, at which the crowd roared. "Well, go in and win, old man. I'm backing JOU. 1'he whisky is yours if you win it." "De wll.ole bar'!?" Yes ; every pint of it." "Whoop! Bring out yer man!" And Pomp flung his coat ott with the eagerness o! a small boy going for candy., The butter from Deadwood was a professional "hard head." But Pomp had confidence in his nut. The ring was formed, and the two men met and shook hands. "Doet1 yerseedat bead?" asked Pomp, bending his woolly head forward for Deadwood to inspect. Oh, yes, I see it," was the reply. ]'eel oh it I" said Pomp. The crowd laughed, and the Deadwood man butted it with a tremendous whack, falling back stone blind !or a moment. "Yi-yi-did youse feel it?" Pomp asked. The man slowly recovered and got on his feet again. Pomp rmet b1m halt-way next time, and sent him alf in a heap on the floor, where he lay utterly unconscious !or minutes, unable to respond when ttme was called The whisky is yours, Pomp," said the bar !l.eeper. The crowd yelled like so many wild lunatics. 'l'hHy crowded around Pomp and shook his hand as though he were the leader of a hundred battles won. "I'll back him agafnat any man In the West I" cried Bill Perkins. Whoop I" yelled Pomp. l'se got a whole bar'l o' whisky I I goll;[l_ Dis ole head ain't so no account arter all. Whoop I" and he danced a regular old plantation breakdown, to the In tense amusement of the crowd. Scores of men pressed forward and Insisted on him drinking with them. He tried to do so. The result was be got as drunk as a lord, and offered to butt against a wild buffalo if any one would bring one in. They took him home, and turned him over to the tender mercies of Frank and Jack. They put him under the pump and turned a stream of cold water on him. He stood it for some time, as the cold water were quite refreshing to him. But he finally came to, and mumbled out something about omebody spilling water around. Jack and Fronk laughed heartily until he so bered up enough to understand the racket. "Hei.Jo, Pomp!" cried Frank. "How's this? Are you drunk?" "Ebbery (hie) body drunk," muttered Pomp. He didn't miss the mark very far that time, for nearly every man at the saloon was drunk by that time. The two young men sa.w that be was unable to talk very Intelligibly, so they took him to his room over the stable and put him to bed. After that thay retired to their own door, when Jack, who, beill!( n New York boy, knew something about eucb called out: "Why, Pomp, old man, what in thunder is the matter with your btJRd this mOt"ning?" Pomp stopped, and looked at them. There was a heaviness about him that gave him a. way badly. "I dunno, Marse Jack," he said. "I reckon I done gone an' butted sunthin' las' night. !'sean ole fool nigger, Marse Jack." "Why, what have you been doing, Pomp? Your head is all swelled up as big as a barrel. You can make a fortune with that head in New York." Pomp slowly felt of his head, closed his eyes, opened them again, and muttered: l'se an ole fool nigger, I is." "What have you been doing, Pomp?" Frank asked. "Tell us. We won't give you away." Marse Frank, is yer got any ob dem sperrits what yer had in dat jug in de keer?" he said, corning up close alongside of the young Inventor. "Yes, I think there is," replied Frank. "Help yourself, if that's what you wnnt." "Tankee, Marse Frank. Dat's de trouble wid me dis mornin'." He disappeared In the car, and found the demijohn. Turning it up, he took a. long and strong pull at it. Giving a sigh of supreme satisfaction as he set it down, he returned to the two young men, and frankly confessed his fall of the evening before of his match, and the winning of the forty-gallon barrel of Bourbon whisky. "Why, Pomp I" exclaimed Frank, "it will never do In the world for you to own so much liauorl" not?" "You' d be a dnmkard In Jess than three montha, get fired oft the plnce, and b eco me n drunken traBlp, whom nobody would have around." "Dat's er fac' l" exclaimed Pomp; "but what's I gwine ter do wid it?" Sell it for the benefit of the girls in the house. It would be a big thing for you. Yon would be the best man in Readestown alter that.'' Oh, golly, Mnrse Frank I" exclaimed the de Jighred darkey, growing bright and lively under tht> strong drink he had just taken, "dat's de ting I Tell clem I gibs It to 'em." "Bully for you, Pomp I I'll give you a new suit of clothes for that." Pomp was delighted, and went about his duties as light-hearted as a child. Frank and Jack told the girls at the breakfast table of Pomp's comical match the night before, nod of his intention to p;!ve the proceeds of the sale of the barrel of whisky to them. Ab I" said Frank Reade, Sr., "I see a way to create a sensation, and make that barrel pan out a thousand dollars!' "How, father?" "Put it up at auction to the highest blddor for the benefit of the girls. Every maa will want to chip In ana be more generous than that poor 0ld negro, so the barrel will bring a round sum in the end.u "Oh, that's the racket f" cried Jack. "It will be n big thing." Frank and the girls were dellgllted. They called Pomp in and thanked him for his generous gift, and explained to him what they intended to do with it. He expreesed his satisfaction, and said he would help work up the excitement. After breakfat!t Pomp went down to the saloon with Jack and Frank, and the barrel was delivered to him. I ain't gwlne fo' ter take it away," he said to the barkeeper.: "Well, what shall I do ')Vith it?" the barkeeper asked. I'se gwine ter hab er sale for de young l ed dies.'' "The deuce I" exala!med the astonished bar k<*lp_er. "Yest sah." "Well, it'll oo tbe biggest thing ever seen In this town, old bed-rock." "Dat's er fac' I" said Pomp; at which the others laughed. "A reg'lar auction for the benefit of the young ladies you brought up with you?" "Yes." replied Jack. "That whisky' ll bring fifty dollars a gallon, as sure as you Jive." That would be two thousand dollars for the barre l." "Yes, and it would bring even more than that if you sell it by the gallon." "Well, we'll sell it by the gn.Jlon then, d said Frank. "Put up a notice that It will be sold next Tuesday for the benefit of the five young ladies rescued from the Indians.'' "Why, pard,"said the ,barkeeper, "that'll make a holiday." "Well, let's have a holiday, then," returned Frank. "I think beys would like a blow-out anyhow, I'll have the girls down here in the car whe!'ll every man can see them as he bids for the liquor." The barkeeper put up an elaborate notice, and the first man that rend lit started out to spread the news. Ea:ch red-shirt that beard it caught the inspiration, and commenced working up an enthus1asm that was to last till after the auo tion. Black Pomp wRs recognized as a white man after that, and every red-shirt in town took him by the hand and asked him to drink with him. Thus they kept the poor fellow ai:Jout half-seas over during the five days--or until Frank Reade, Sr., interfered to save him. The day of the sale came. Red-shirts came In from every direction, till th e re were several hundred great, rough, fellows h a nging around waiting to get a cba.nceto bid for a gallon of that whisky. Everybody was out in Sunday clothes. It was a regular holiday. About two hours before the sale was to com me.[lce a delegation of red-shirts waited on tho ladies at the Reade house, and asked permission to escort them to the place of sale. Tbey the reques1 of course, for they co uld not do otherwise. The committee went away, to return at the proper time, dragging two barouches-each drawn by one hundred red shirted men-preceded by a wagon drawn by an other hundred men, covered with flowers and the barrel of whisky. Oh, mercy I" gasped Julia Morgan, "just look at that t Ah I" exclaimed Frank Reade, Sr., his face brightening with pleasure, our boys are going to do this thh:g right, young ladles. They are rough fellows, but their hearts are all right every time. Smile on them, and look your prettiest, and you will be glad you did so.'' "Oh, Mrs. Reade, won' t you go with us?" cried Susie Jones. "Yes, if you wish it," r eplied the good matron. They were escorted out, and seated ill the barouches, and the procession eommenced. Tha wagon with the whisky preceded them. :Black Pomp was seated on top of the barrel, and received as many cheers as the ladies did. The wildest enthusiasm prevailed all along the line of the procession, which was nearly a.n hour in reaching the place where the sale was to take place. Frank Reade, Sr., was selected as the proper person to act as auctioneer. Now, gentlemen," said Frank, Sr., "you all know why we are assembled here to-day. You have heard the story of the young ladiea-of their captivity among the red-skins, and their rescue by my bov and his compapions. You have heard of Pom,P'S hard h!!nd. To-day we see his tender heart m that barrel of whisky. There's the whisky. Here are the girls, as pretty as the whisky is good. Now how much for tbe first gal ion?" "Fifty dollars I" roared a. dozen voices a.t onoo. "Sixty!" "Seventy!" "Eighty!" "One hundred 1,. "One ten!" One twenty I" One thllty I" One fifty I" One hundred and fifty dollars," cried the auctioneer, "one fifty-one fifty-do I hear any more? One fifty, and--" "Two hundred I" cried Bill Perkins. "Hip-hip-hurrah I Hurrah I" "Gone to Bill Perkins I" cried Frank, Sr., "one of the whitest men in the West l" "Here's your rhino I" cried Dill, holding up the amount In gold. The money was W.ken amidst the wildest cheers. "Now, sell it again for the youngest gal In the lot," said Bill, at which the crowd went wild with enthusiasm. The second sale brought $250. Then the sale went on for nearly three hours, by which time the last gallon was sold, the whole bringing over $3,000. The sale over, the enthusiastic crowd drew the two barouches around town again, and finally halted il; front ol Frank Beade, Sr.'s, place. CHAPTER XVIII. ON THE GO AGAIN. "THAT gives you all about $500 each, girls," said Mrs. 'Reade-" a small fortune for a young lady nowadays." "Oh, I am rich I" cried Susie Jones. "I kiss dear old black Pomp for his hard head I" "So could I I" chorused the others.


FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. "Well, what are you going to do with your money, girls?" Frank Reade, Sr .. asked. I am going to buy a iarm right here close to Readestown," said Julia Morgau. "My father was a farmer, and I know all about farming." "You are a sensible girl, Miss You won' t have to walt long for a mate, I can assure you, unless you are very hard to please." The other four decided to follow Julia's ex ample. That cTenlng two of th'} girls accepted offers of marriage, the ceremonies to take place in a month from that day. All the others received offers, but gave no positive an11wers. Pomp rec e ived presents from almost ev e ry body, and was, perhaiJS, the happiest m>\n in the town. Frank, Jr., bought him a handsome suit of clothes according to promise. He swore he would go with him to the ends of the earth and butt every Indian be met. The saM over with, Frank and Jack began to prppate for another trip to the south-west-clear down into New Mexico. Bill Perkins wanted to go, but Frank said he would only take Jack and Pomp. Perkins then turned his attention to courting Julia Morgan. Dicit waR to remain behind and look after the 1arms of the girls. The decisi o n arrived at, no time In gett.lng ready was lost. Everything was provided that woult.i be nee ded on such a trip, a.nd on the mornIng of the third day after the of the barrel of whisky the Wonder left Readestown and pushed southward at the speed of eighteen or twenty miles an hour. "This is glorious 1" exclaimed Jack, RS the gal lant' engine plunge d along over the smooth surface of the pmirie -land. "f think we'll have even more fun on this trip thA.n we did on the "So do I," assented Frank, "as we know bet ter how to manage It than before." "Dat's er fn.o'," put in Pomp j "nn' we nln t afeard of no Injuns dis time." I guess not. 'Che red-skins will let us have our own way, I think-that Is, those who have seen or heard of us.'' That night they encamped nearly two hundred miles south of Readestown. A. beautifulfull moon gave them light enough to see a long distance around them. The next morning they were off before aunrise. By the aid of a fine map and compass they were able to turn the heads or several streams, and thus avoided many miles of useless On the second night they stopped at the head of a small Btre>lm, where a cold spring bubbled up out of the ground. 'l'all cotton-wood trees grew around the spring, rendering it a lovely spot. Pomp g o t out and went to the spring for water. He saw fresh moccasin tracks near it, and rightly concluded there were red-skins about. Dipping his pail full of water, he started to leave when three stalwart savages attacked him with knives, thinking he would make no resistance, but beg for mercy, But Pomp wasn't that kind of a moke. He lr.nooked one down with the pall, butted the other tnto a cot'ked hat, and then faced the third with a defiant look and a revolver in his hand. "Dead Injun, shuah 1" said he, pulling the trigger. The savage gave a whoop and staggered bltck ward-the bullet having gono clean through him. The one who had met the watar-pail rose to his feet and got the nest bullet. He, too, staggered a few feet and fell. J aok and Frank, bearing the shots, ran out to see what the troublo wns, and found Pomp holdtug the third Indl under the muzzle of his death-dealing revol \'or. The savage was atterly amazed at the turn of affairs. He stood looking around like one in a dream. Frank Jack 'lUickly disarmed him. "What did vou ,ttack him for?" Frank asked. "Ugh, me great bl'ave-me 'lght 1" was his re-ply. "Well, you shall have all the fight you want. you infernal red coward. There' s your man; both of you are unarmed. Go for him." P o mp grinned, anr Pomp to get a fair whacK rLt him. Pomp gIVe him several more thumps, and then they dropped him. ''Let's take 'em away from hertl if we nre going to camp by this spring," suggested Jack. "Just what I was thinking about," !lBid Fr11nk. Pomp took up the borliPs anrl pnt thPm bl tlu! car. Frauk and tllen und the Wonder was run out about two miles. The bodies were thrown out, and the Wonder re turned to the svring. The Indians' ponies wore found in the timber about a hundred yards below the spring. Pomp cut them loose, and they were free to go where they pl(ased. The next mornlog they took In all the water that they needed, and started off again in fine trim. The fire had swept over a vast extent of tarritory-some three hundred mileS--and left nothing but a blackened and charred look where once waved the tall grass. But the next day they were out of the burned region, and entered a lovely rolling prairie region again. Game was plentiful. They spent a whole day hunting, and had splendid success. Buffalo, deer, and all kinds of prairie fowls and birds were slaughtered in great quantiti e s. Po rap broiled a couple of pmirie -h e ns for sup per, which delighted the two boys b eyond expression. They had game enough to last them many days if they wanted to keep it. Pomp cured two hind-quarters of baffalCI beef, to keep in ca.iie of emergency. That night they were greatly annoyed by wolves, which came around all through the night, howling and barking. The next morning, however, not a wolf could be found. On the wing again, they found the country more rolling. S9metimes tpey were down in a valley, and then again on tl\e top of a knoll, from which they could see for miles around. "I see a column of smoke on the right, out there, Frank," eaid Jack, about noon. Frank looked in the dire ction indicated, and said: "There's somebody over there. We'll see who they are," and turning the Wond e r that direc tion, pusehd on for an hour or so. "It's an Indian village," said Jack, as soon as he caught sight of the wigwamR. "Dat's er fnc'," said Pomp, "an' dere's lots on 'em deru, too." Frank rode right UI,> Into the village, and gave the savages such a fr1ght as they had never recflived before in their lives, by giving several plorcing w his ties. They tumbled over each other In their eager ness to get eut of the way. "Ha, ha, ha !'' laughed Frank an.d Jack. "They think Old Nick has come at last." "I think we'd better move on now, and not let 'em know what it is.'' "Go ahead." Giving another fierce toot, the Wonder dashed away at railroad speed, leaving the untutored savage to wonder \'I' hat in the name of the Happy Hunting Grounds the old thing was, anyhow In a half hour it was out of sight of the village, going southward toward New Mexico. Suddenly they struck the trail of the New Mexico mail route, and stopped to look at it. "Hark 1" said Frank. "I he!Lrd rifle-shots." "So did I," replied Jack. Pomp cllmbed out on top of the car and gazed around. "By golly 1" he exclaimed, "day am flghtln' de coach down dar 1" Where?" cried Frank, "Ober in de hollow dere." Frank startsd the Wonder, and turned It arounLt's all right. Get in with it, oJ course.'' "And we passengers?" "Get in, all of you." "The two horses?" "Tie them behind." Thus the Wonder took the passengers and the United States mail and started off along the old route. But for the two horses they wer .. leadf'lg they would have made the distance In one hour. it was, it took them two hours to make it. The hands at the station were astounded at seeing such a strange train rush up to the stand. But when they learned the story of the rescue, and the death of the robbe-rs, their enthusiasm was boundless. Frank put out the mall and passengers, and then returned for the stage. He found it un touched, and secured it to the car. It interfered but little with ths speed of the Wonder, which made the run to the station ln one hour. By all the horned frogs In Texas," exclaimed Sam Watson, but that beats all the stages in the world." "I shonld say it does," said one of the passen gers. "Why don t thA contractor hire it to cnrrt mails and passengers?" "Never heard of the thing till to-day," replied Sam. "Can't you get him to take us thr-ough?" "Don't knc,w. I ha,e no authority to do so, Here comes the other stage from below." The stage from below came up at a run. It was carrying a .l!.eavy mail and four pas sengers. "Indians are thicker'n prairie dogs bel01v," said the driver of No. 2 t

r FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. be a. whitE' man every day. I'll carry you and your mail through though a. thousanut the station. Such a thing had never been dreamed or by any one there, and now they saw in the nenr future the breaking up of the old stage system of travel. The Indians, who had been threatening the station all day, now thought that the big double wagon, as they took the Wonder to be, was an additional prize for them. They grew more demonstrative, and dashed about the prairie as if to show their numbers and superior horsemaa ship. The Comanches are the finest riders of all the Indians of America, being taught the art of riding from early youth. They seemed, like the famed centaurs of old, lo be part of tho horses themselves, so admirably did they sit on their steeds. "We'll go out and see them,"said Frank, "and find out what they want. If they want a fight we' ll accommodate them. If th e y want a little fun, why, we can give them some." All the passengers were willing to go, and the Wonder moved out in the direction or the band of red-skins. The Indians were naturally surprised at seeing the big wagon coming out to meet then. supposed that it was sent out to negotiate for them togo away. When the Wonder got right up to them, Frank tooted the whistle. Lord, hO\V those Indian ponies did scatter I They ran over each other in their terror, and over a dozen went down on the grass with their riders. Frank and the passengers laughed heartily. After scattering and running half a mile or so, the most of them stopped to look at the thing that had frightened them with its" whoop." "They'll come back soon," said Frank, "and then we' ll have a chance to talK with them." But the red-skins did not seem very anxious to approach the strange Wonder, and remainedcon grtlgated together in wondering silence a half mile away. "tet's m ove upon them again,'' suggested Jack. "All right," said Frank, we'll go slow, 60 as not to them again." The Wonder moved forward again, and slowly approached the main body of Comanches. They saw it coming and "Hold on, red-skms 1" cried Frank, opening the door and calling out to them. "I want to talk with you." "They heard and understood him, and there fore waited till the Wonder came up pretty close to them. Rallo I" cried Frank, as the engine stopped. How?" responded the chief of the band. "We are all right up to the present time,'' said Frank. How is it with you red-skins?" "Ug.b.l" grunted the chtef. Where are you going?" "Go hunt buffalo 1" said the chief. "Where are the buffalo?" The chief pointed toward the setting sun. "Well, you've been here all day. Are you waitIng for the buffaloes to come to you?" "No. We go when ready,'' was the reply. "That's right, old duffer. Never go after a. buf falo tiU you are ready. You might get hurt, you know." The Indians eyed the young inventor very sut< picious1y. They evidently suspected the Wonder to be some kind of an Infernal machine that would bear watching. Otherwise they would have attaeked the party then and there. "I want to ask you a question, chief?" "Ugh I" "Do you want a fight?" The chief opened his eyes in the most profound That a little handful of men, less than half a score, !!hould seek a fight with over one hundred Indians, was more than he could understand. "Ugh, me fight-me great brave,'' he replied. "Well, who do yoUc want to fight-white men or Indians?" The wily savage replied that bA wanted to fight his enemies. "Who are your Elnemies-whltemen?'' Re made no reply. "Do you want to attack the stage station there. and steal the horses?" Still uo reply. "Now, look here, rM-skln,'" Frank oontinued, "you'd better go hunt the buffalo. You'll get the worst of it if you go to troubling the whites." "White boy heap big talk,'' said the chief sneel:'< ingly. "Yes, and you'll find him heap big fight, too,'' replied Jack, "if you want to try It on." Boy heap talk," said the chief. "M& great brave-no fight women and boys "You're a great liar and coward 1" retorted Frank. "You would scalp a. motller and child as quick as you would steal a horse, if yojl thought there was no danger. Now look here, red-skins, I came out here to tell you to go away from here and not interfere with the people up at. the station there. Now will you go?'' "Ugh 1" grunted the chief. "Boy big fool. Me take his scalp and have his wagon 1" and he gave a whoop that was answered by one hundred others. Frank blew the whistle, which scattered the ponies Instanter. Jack, Pomp, and Sam Watson then opened fire with the sixteen-charge repeat ing-rifle!!. Frank then started the Wonder In a. circle, to enable them to do the work more effect ively. An Indian went down at Elvery saot. They re turned the fire, but their bullets struck the car and dropped to the ground. The execution was simply terrible. Nearly one half were soon killed or wounded, and the others drew ofr to devise a better way of destroying the bovs. But Frank wouldn't give them time to consult. He charged on them and scattered them, till they were glad to sneak away, with two thirds of their number

L FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. "Ot course. I wouldn't have you run any I other's heart beat. But they heard nothing riSks, pard." else. A half hour later they came to the river. The My God!" groaned Jack, turning ashen pale, water was silvery clear and limpid in the light of "this is awful! How can we do without Frank? the full moon. They all got out, and Fru.nk We must find him. Come Qn, and let's go l!>ack stripped and 1vaded m to examine the bottom. toward the road by going further away from the He found it hard, white sand, and that the water water." came just above his knees in the deepest part. They started, each man growing more deeperBut Frank would not be satisfied till he waded ate as the time passed witb.out finding any trace clear over to the other side. The stream was one ot the young inventor. hundred yards wide. The refiector threw the "Hark!" and every man stopped as if rooted rays of light over on the opposite bank. to the spot. Jack and the others were watching him. He A pistol-shot bad rung out on the still night reached the other side, and was examining the air. bank closely to see if the Wonder could climb Crack I went another-and another. out of the water there, when two men darted out "To the Wonder!" cried Jack, cl arting away ot tha timber, s eized and dra;tged him out of with the speed of a deer. "Come, quick!" sight before the eyes of his astonished friends. "My God!" gasped Jack, "he is captured by outlaws I Jump in, quick-burry up!" They all sprang in, and JtLCk pulled the steam handle with an energy that sent the Wonder llend long into the river. It ran through the water with a roar that could bave been heard a. mile. Get your weapons ready I" cried lack, seizing a. repeating-rifie bimsell. The others followed his example. Pomp, you must stay on board, to prevent any one getting inside." "Dat's er fac' !" replied the faithful darkey. The Wonder rushed up the sloping bank on the other side about fifty yards from the water, and there halted. "Now follow me, all but Pomp," he cried, leaping to the ground. The others followed-all but Pomp. "Ksep well closed, Pomp, and let no one but our crowd in." "Yes, sah l Dey cain't git in," replied Pomp, with an energy that assurtld Jack that he would be equal to the task of guarding the Wonder. Jack and Watson then led the pursuit through the timber. Thev beat every bnsh in their way, revolvers in band ready for any emergency. Still I> trace of the outlaws could be found. "By my soul!' groaned Jack, "I would rather die than go back without him. Hanged if I don't bunt over all the West but what I'll find him or thos& out.laws I" "I'm with you there, pard!" said Watson. "He'd never go back on a friend." "Never J He's thll truest friend that ever Hvedl" They turl!ed and made their way back to the road, keeping close to the J:iver, but failed to find any traces of him. "We'll have to wait for llaylight to follow their trail," said one of the passengers. "Frank is half naked," said Jack, "and will catch his death of cold in the uigbt air. I'll keep bunting all night but that I'll find some clew to his captors." I'll go wlth you, pard," put in the stagedriver. So will we all," said the others. "Come on, then. We saw them go in here on this side of the road. Let's go through again." The whole followed him into the timber, and pushed on fer nearly a quarter of a mile. "Hark I Hush-sh !"and Sam Watson stopped the entire party for nearly a minute. They could !lear nothing. I am sure I heard a horse down on the right !here," he whispered. "I th01.fght so too," said one of the passen gers. "Opme on, then," said Jack. "We'll soon see whether there Is a horse there or not." They followed him, and in five minutes came to the river. "There's no horse here," said Jack. "You must have been mistaken." "I may have been, but I was quite sure I heard one." "So was I," said the passenger, who claimed to have heard the same noise that Sam did. "Well, let's go further up on this side and see what we can find." They followed along the river-bank one or two hundred yards, looking carefully into every clump of bushes for a concealed enemy. Nothing whatever could they find, and they turned to retrace their steps, 'vhen three of them declared they heard a horse snort back in the timber. Of course they went back in search of the horse, rambling about east, west and north. But all their labor was in vain. They could find no traces of a. horse, and seemed to be puz Fled to know what next to do. "Let's wait a few minutes and listen," sug gested Jack. "Yes," remsrked Sam," I was thinking about that." They stopped and listE-ned. was so quiet they could bear each CHAPTER XXII. POMP'S FINE STRA!I:EGY-FRA.NK RESCUED. WHEN Frank Reade, Jr., was seized by two stalwart outlaws on the banks of the river on the opposite side from his companions, he was un armed and powerless to resist. One of the men clapped a revolver to his ht>ad, and hissed: "Make any noise or trouble, and youn pass In your chips !" "Who the blazes are you?" demanded Frank. "Never mind who we are," one replied, whilst they both seizett him by the arms and dragged him into the bushes out of tile rays of the power ful refiector. "Well, what do you want?" he asked, as he went with tt1em. "We want you Just now," was the reply. "Oome on with you. They hurried him forward and crowded him into a clump of tushes, where they pressE-d him down to the ground, and waited for develop ments. Frank beard the rush ot the Wonder through the water, and knew that those inside of it would not leave him to his fate. The robbers heard Jack's instructions to Pomp to let no one enter the car but those who be longed to it; also the search that was going on. If you make a noise to attract their atten tion," hissed one of the outlaws in his ear, I'll blow out your brains, because it would be death to us to be naptured." "I won't say a word," saill Frank, "but I can save you if they find me." "We don't want you to save us," said the man. "We can do ourselves. Keep quiet now." Jack and his companions came up to the very clump of bushes, and actually struck it several times with theiJ. rifies, and then passed on. ''That was a escape,' whispered one outlaw to the other. "Yes-we are not safe yet. Hush!" They waited half an hour, and heard the party of pursuers go up further in the timber. "See here, now,'' said the stouter of the two outlaws, bending low over their prisoner. "We don't want to kill you. That isn't our !rltention. We want that machine of yours. That aigger is in there as a guard. You must go up to it with us and tell him to open it. He knows your voice, and will obey. The first to escape will be your death. Do you unilerstand?" "Yes." Will ;vtm do it?" "Yes.' "Come on, then. We'll take care of the nigger." They led him out into the stage-road and ap proached the rear end of the car. As good fortune woultl have it, Pomp was peep ing through the blinds in that direction, watching the road down to the water, and saw them come Uil with Frank between them. He could see Frank's pale In the clear moonlight, also the revolvers in the hands of the two men. "Pomp!" called Frank. "Hello, Marse Frank I .A.m dat yer?" replied Pomp, through the blinds. "Yes; open the door, Pomp. I ain very cold and wet." "All right, Marse Frank," and he promptly opened the door of the ear. One of the outlaws sprang Into the door, but Pomp '(llanted his revolver against his bead and pulled the trigger. He fell in a heap at Pomp's feet. "That settles the nigger," said the other out law, and even Frank himee)f tliought Pomp was done for forever. There was no light in the car, so he could not see within. "Now come in with you, and start the machine. We want to get away from here now." The second outlaw put one toot on the step, and was about to spring in, when a seeond shot broke his arm. His revolver dropped to ground, and be sprang baok with an oath. "Who tired that sb.ot?" he angrily demanded. "De niggar did!" replied Pomp, looping out and confronting him with his smoking revolver in his hand. "Perdition I" hissed the villain, turning and darting toward the woods. Frank sprang forward and seized him. He was too strong for him, and would have gotten away had not Pomp butted him like a thunderbolt, and Knocked him senseless to the ground. "Pomp, you are worth your weight in gold!" cried Frank, seizing Pomp' s hand and wringing it with all his might. "Dat's er f&c' !" said Pomp, "but I ain't er gwine ter sell out for all de gole in de worl':' Just then Jack and the others dashed into ths road in breathless haste. "Hello, Frank!" cried the surprised and de lighted Jack. "Is it all right?" "Yes, I guess it is," he replied; "atleastitwiU be as soon as I get dressed." "Are you hurt?" "No., "Are you hurt, Pomp?" "No, sah." Who fired those shots?" "I did, sah." "WhatatZ" "Dere's one dead un it: de keer, an' de udder un it! hyer on de groun' ." They af!d found one of the villains just recoverwg CODSCIOUSness. "He isn't dead!" said Sam Watson, holding his revolver in his direction. ''No, sab." "Don't kill him," said Frank. Pomp dragged the other body out of the car, and then lit a lamp and got Franks clothes for him, whilst Watson and Jack guarded the wound ed man. Frank told the story in a. few words, and every one said Pomp was a hero. "Dat's er fac','' assented Pomp. "I seed 'em com in' wid Marse Frank, an' laid for 'em wid my pistil. l'se er bad nigger sometime.'3." The party roared with merriment for several minutes. "I say, boys," said Frank, "we must. fill the casks with water here." Pomp got the pails, and in twenty minutes the tank aud casks were fillet! with water. "Now you, chap," said Frank, "I want to tak$ a look at you in the light. Bring him around in front, where we all can see him." Here, you cowardly skunk!" Mid Watson. "get up here and let's see what kind of & galoot' you are." The man groaned, as tr In great pa!n. "Two of you bring him along,'' said Frank. _1 Two men seized him aQd brought him around In front of the engine, where the headlight gave all a good view of him. He was a powerful built, muscular man. His right arm hung limp by his side. Blood was dropping from the tips of his fingers. "By the Lord Harry I" exclaimed Sam Wat!!On, "you helped rob my stage once up on Whitlt Biverl" The man never said a word. "Dil you know him, Watson?" Frank asked. "No-not his name. I know his face, though, and can swear to it." That's enongb, "What shall we do with him?" "Hang him!" Shoot him!" Drown him I" Burn him I" The wretch stood unmoved in the midst of th& angry men around him. He knew that there was no Mercy in that crowd for him. He had played a bqld game and lost. To loHe was death. He had faced death before, and was defiant, like such villains often are. "I see you are all In favor of killing him in some way," said Frank," but we ought to eettlt' on some plan." "Hang him," said Sam Watson. "Yes," put in Sam's passengers," hang hllll., and leave him hanging to the tree." 'I'ie 'im to de.keer," said Pomp, "1m' run '!Ill ter def." "That's the idea 1" cried Watson, In the great est glee. "Tie a rope around his neck and fasten it to the car. He can then live as long as he can run. When he ean't run, let him the villain !" "That's it-drag him drag him!" oriel evert one in the party. Jack ran into tbe car and brought out a. l"iiQ-lar Texas lariat.


FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. 17 Thie is just the thing," he said handing it to Watson. The stage-driver adjusted the lariat around the rascal's Beck, and Pomp fastened it to the car. Then they searched him for knives, or anything with which h11 could free himself. His unhurt arm Wa.t! secured to his side. "Are you ready to pass in your checks?" Wat-lilon asked. "Oh, yes-drive ahead," was the cool reply. All aboard I" cried Frank. They aU got aboard. The whistle awoke the echoes for miles around, and the next moment the Wonder started oJI. CHAPTER XXIII. DRAOGINu AN OUTLAW TO DEATH. WH&N the Wonder started it moved slowly at first, and the doomed man trotted leisurely along behind it. He trotted along till the Wonder passed beyond the timber. Then the whistle tooted again and the speed increased to a run. Faster and faster it ran, until it seemed to reach the utmost of the Wonder's limit. Still the doomed wretch ran, his white fe and staring eyos giving him a ghastly look In the moonlight. Every one in the car was gazing at him, won dering at his wonderful endurance. "He can't hold out much longer," said Frank, for he bas run over ten miles now." Suddenly they were all startled by a. wild shriek from the wretch, and the next moment he reu 1 Those insitle turned away and would not look at the body that was dragging behind the car. Five miles were passed after he fell, and then Frank said to Wat8on: "8uppose you cut the lariat? He is dead as a herring now." "All right," said the stage-driver. "It makes me feel queer to have his body following us that way." He drew his knire, opened the door and cut the ol!lriat. In two minutes more it was out of sight and tne party breathed freely. "'l'hat ends those two 1ellows," said Jack. "Yes," said Frank; "but if it had not been for :Pomp, we would have all been ended ourselves." I believe you, Frank, and it shows how im portant it is that we keep the car well guarded." "Yes, we ought always to be particular about that. How far is it to the next station, Watson?" "About five miles, now, I think," replied the stage-driver. Oh, we'll soon reach that," and he crowded on a. full bead of steam. The road was a dead level one and quite firm. I see a light ahead I" exclaimed J That's the station," said Watson. Frank blew the whistle which had the effect of bringing everybody out doors. The Wonder created the most intense amaze ment, and had not Sam Watson sprang out and ordered the hands about in the style ->f all the drivers on the route, they would have fled into the house and stable and barricaded the door. "Why, Sam!" exclaimed' one of the men, "where in Hail Columbia did you get that train of cars?" .. It ain't a. trflin," replied Sam. "It's a new stag-understand?" "No, I don't understand," replied the man. "I can't understand how a steam engine can run down here without a railroad trflck." "Well, this is an ind ependent concern, and doesn't care a continental for tracks. It's here, sod we all want a drink of something hot and strong." Pomp remained in the car as guard, whilst Jack and Frank went in with the party to drink some thing that woll!ld make them feel better than they They had plenty of good stuff in the car, but they w<.uld not let the passengers know it, aa there would be llanger of having it all used up before they reached tae end of the trip. "How much abead of time are we?" Frank asked of the relay agent. "Twelve hours," was the replT. "Then we will sleep here to-night," said Frank. "There's no use in running all night when there ill no necessity for it." "Hip-bip-hurrah-burmh I" cried the whole batch of passengellB. "We'll have a night of rest and a fresh start in the morning." That' s the ticket," said Watson; I want a rest too." Pomp was carrifld a hot drink, and then Sam and two others volunteer@d to guard the mails. "No need of that," said Frank. "We will llleep in the car. which wiH be locked. Nothing CliO interfere with them. Bu.t you bad better sleep ou the bags in order to comply with your duties." "That's it." The passengers can get beds in the house, can't they?" "Of course they can." "That makes it all right then." Jack went to the wounded passenger, and fouad him doing well. Re expressed a desire to be let alone, and Jack said that was a good sign and left him. In another hour the whole party were asleep and dreaming. Early the next morning they were all awakened by a stage dashing up from below filled with pas sengers. Sam inquired if there were any Indians below, and was told that there were a few, but they were quiet. After a hearty breakfast the party aboard, and the Wonder moved slowly away from th!l station. A mile further it was going at a rapid speed. We can reach the end of the route this after noon, where we connect with the Santa Fe stages," said Wats,on. I didn't know it was such a long run," said Frank; but I to come this far, anyhow." You will find / some hills at the lower end of the route," remarked Watson. "Can we climb them?" "Oh, yes; the roads are good." That's all right, then." Nothing of interest oc curred on the way, and in thtee hours they reached another station. All hands were a,mazed at the Wonder, and crowded around. and examined it with the great est curiosity. They scarcely believed what they saw. There was a delay of twenty minutes there, af ter which they started off agam at fulls peed. The end of that section of the route was Valley Town, It village of several hundred inhabitants. There were several very productive mines in the the vicinity of Valley Town, which attracted many rough characters. The Wonder found several hills to climb before it reached Valley Town. The country was more rugged, and well timb ered in many places. But the road was good all the way. They reached Valley Town in the middle of the afternoon. Watson piloted the way through the streets to the post-office and hotel in thE place. The whistle sent everybody out of doors They kne"l'!' it was i'l steam whistle, but wondered where it came from. Such an astonished crowd as gathered around the Wonder I Everybody knew Sam Watson, but they didn't know his this on and a. thousand were hurled at him at once. He could not deliver the mall-pouches till the postmaster bad a guard put out to make way for them, so great was the excitement. When the mail was delivered Watson got up on a. box and told the crowd the story ot the in vention, and the. wonderful work it had done m defeating the Indians and the mails. The crowd yelled and cheered, and called for Frank. He made his appearance and said: "I am glad to see you all. We had a good time on the trip, and hope to have a good time going back. We will stop here a week to rest and see the country." 'l,'he rough miners and rancheros cheered him lustily, and called him the brainiest young man in the country. The passengers paid their fares like men, and forced him to accept n dinner from them. "We never could have come 1nrough alive on the stage," they said, and therefore we nre more indebted to you and your Wonder than words CP express." Oh. 'bRt's all right," said Frank. "I'!! eat dinner with you. There's nothing mean about me." Tbn next day there was a big dinner at the "Grub House" in Valley Town, at which half 11 hundred rough-and-ready men of the town sat down to the table. They did things in the usual American style. Jack and Frank both responded to toasts in neat little speeches, and Frank told the story of Pomp's quick work in bagging the two outlaws who had captured him. That created the wildest enthusiasm. "Whore's the nigger I Trot him out I Give him II ShOW," and a SCOre of callS were made. ''He is in the car guarding the property there," said Frank. "We never leave it unguarded." "Which shows a level head," said one of the red-shirts. "Ryar, landlord, send a twenty dol lar lunch out to the nigger, and throw in ail the whisky hi!! skin will bold. You may whoop at me for the dust." The landlord knew his man. He prepared a, sumptuoUll rep.ast, and garnished it wtth brandy, wine, and whisky, and sent it out to t!Ui cars on two trnys. Pomp was surprised as well as tickled. He pitched in and gorged himself with. the things, and then sampled the liquors. CHAPTER XXIV. THE JOKE ON POMP-THE GAMBLEBS, A HALF an hour later Frank whispered to J'aatr: "Go out and look aftor Pomp. Thq'll get him as drunk as a biled owl before they get through with him." Aji..b_e had eaten all he cbuld stow away, Jack slipped away and went out to the Vfllnder, which had been left standing in the street, so everybody could get a good look at it, and found Pomp numing a bottle of brandy like a Dutch mother. "Hello, Marse (hie) Jack I" greeted Pomp, as Jack came into the car. "Dis a m er bully ole town (hie) ain't it?" "Yes, but bow about the whisky, Pomp?" "Bes' Iicker in der worl', Marse Jack. Take (hie) a pull?" and he handed the bottle to Jack. "Don't care if I do," rer.lied Jaek, taking the bottle, and seeing it was still half full, added : "Let me get a glass of wa.ter." He went to the water, and doliberately poured out all there was in the bottle, letting it run to the ground through the pipe. "Here's luck to you, Pomp," he said, turniqg up the bottle and pretending to take a long pull at it. He held it up so long tbat Pomp, fuJI as he was, felt uneasy as regards the contenfs, and ex claimed: "Look out dere, Marse Jack I Dat's er bad anemlle youse foolin' wid I" "What's the matter with it?" asked look ing scared. Too much is bad," said Pomp. "Why in thunder didn't you say so before?" "Didn't know dat?" "No-I've taken every drop of it." "De Lor' gorramitey I" exclaimed Pomp, hi1 eyes almost bulging out of his head. "What for yer do dat, Marse Jack? Youse'n bab de monk eys arter yer, suab I" "What in blue blazes did you give me snell stuff for?" "De Lor' bless yer I" groaned Pomp I didn' t know youse'd drink er quart, honey 11 and the fright it gave nearly sobered him at once. Jack wns nearly bursting with suppressed laughter. Pomp was nearly In the same condi tion from fright. "Pomp, I feel as if the Wonder was running away with me I" cried Jack, keeping U(J the racket. "What's the matter with me? Wbere'a Frank? The Indians are coming I Get the rifles! Where's my revolver?" "Ob, Lor' l" gasped Pomp, scared into com plete soberness, "dat boy am got 'em, suah l Re'll kill somebody er he gets dim pistols I" "Whoop I" yel1ed Jack; "Indians I Thev've got my scalp I Ha, ha, ha 1-got my scalp I Take old Pomp's scalp, too I Ha, ha, ha I" and he at Pomp like a young blood-hound. Pomp grabbed and held him in a vise-like grip. "Marse Jack I Marse Jack I" be cried. "Don't yer knew ole Pomp? I ain't no Injun. Ise ole Pomp. De lor gorramitey I Dat war bad Iicker for yer I" Jack suddenly calmed down, np at Pomp, acd asked: "How goes it, old maB? Are you sober yet?" Pomp's eyes grew as big as tea-cups. He glared at the young joker as though fullyconvincod that reason had been dethroned. .But he held tightly to him, and wouldn't let go. I say, old man," said Jack again, 'that wa1 a good joke, wasn't it?" "What dat yer say?" That was a good joke. I did not touch a drop of the stuff." "Yer foolin' me, Marse Jack." "No, I ain't. I poured it out through tbe pipe." Pomp went to the waste-pipe and put his n06e to it. That satisfied him. What for yer do dat?" he asked, half angry at the loss of the brandy. "To keep you from getting blind drunk, old man." "De lor' gorramltey, Marse Jack I I ain't drunk!" "Of course not. I scared you sober as a judge," and Jack burst into a fit of uproarious laughter, in which Porno was compelled to joi!l in spite of his desire to ao otherwise. "Marse Jack," he said, "dat war er g0od joke on ole Pomp, kase it spiled his dram; but look


18 FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. out ef I uon't make yer laugh er gin for dat, suah.', "Oh, that's all right, old man," said Jack. "No man enjoys a joke better than I do." Frank came in after awhile, aud joined in the laugh on PomP.. But while the joke spoiled his .trunk, it didn t hurt his dinner. He enjoyed the dinner, and felt as big as a New York alderman after eating a dinner at the expense of the cor poration. That night there was a grand hop at the" Grub House." All the women in the town were there. There were ten men to one woman, as the gentler sex is never very numerous in mining towns. But those who were there were brave and true women, who had no fear of the perils of a front Ier life. They were pretty and amiable, nnd seemed to appreciate the genius of the young inventor in the highest degree. Jack and Frank danced with a score of differ ent girls and woman, and promised to give them a ride in the Wonder the next day-a promise they were sure not to let them forget. The next day he fired up, and, with a full head of steam, waited for the appearance of the girls. They came in t\vos and threes, until the car was jammed with them. "Too many for one load," Frank, shaking his head. "The Wonder can't climb a hill with 110 many on board. Half will have to get ot! and wait till we return .. Pomp will stay behind with his fiddle, and you can dance for an hour or two." That pleased the girls immensely, and at least halt got otY to wait and dance till the Wonder came back. Blowing the whistle, the Wonder moved out of town, followed by the cheers of 500 miners. It went up and down hill at fine speed. The girls were charmed to find they were going so fast with so little danger and inconvenience. On the return they sang and made merry like light-hearted young maidens, and thanked Frank and for the treat. The second batch had danced Incessantly till the return of the Wonder. The first batch insist ed on dancing till the others had returned. Pomp aald ha would tlddle a week for them if they wanted him to. The second trip was but a repetition of the flrst. The young people enjoyed themselve' to their hearts' content, and returned home with recollections that would last them a life-time. In all mining towns there have always boon thieves, robbers, and gamblers-men ready to commit any crlme for g()ld. Valley Town was no exception to the rule. There were blackleg desperados there who were l'eady for anything. It was not surprising, there fore, that a party of them conspired and plotted together to get possession of the Wonder, for with it they could defy all known means to cap ture thtlm, and could plunder with all the impunity of pirates on the high seas. Frank first suspected such a design when a regular blackleg gambler began making Inquiries as to how the machine was un. It was natural to ask such questions, but the minute details aroused his suspicions. He communicated his suspicions to Jack, and .Tack then took l'omp into his confidence. Pomp had usually been the guaTd in charge of the car when the others were absent. The gam blers had noticed that fact, and began to lay their wires to get possession of the Wonder by drug .glng Pomp. They first commenced by treating him to as much liquor as he could drink, and making him believe that they thought he was the real hero of the concern. Ot course Pomp was "up to snut!" every time, and gave everything away to Frank and .Tack. To guard against all possible danger, Frank locked the crank so that it could not be usea to turn on the steam, and kept it iocktld till he want ed to use it himself. Then ha knew that it could never leave him without his consent. On the third night after these precautions bad been taken, Pomp was sitting in the door of the car, listening to the musio of a dance going : on at the Grub Honse." A halt dozen stalwart fel )ows came up and said: "Hello, Pomp, give us a ride." "Oan't do it, boss." Why not?" "Ain't got no steam." "You oon bavQ it in ten minutes." Marse Frank ain't byer, an--" "'That'll do I" hissed one of the men, clapping the muzzle of a revolver against his ear. "Just fire her up, and be quick about It, or you're a 4lead nigger 1" CHAPTER XXV. THE ATTEMPT TO STEAL THE WONDER. Polin' felt the cold muzzle of the revolver against his ear, and ciLme to the instant conclu sion that he had nothing else to do but to obey. He was not such a good Christian that he wanted to begin climbing the golden stairs then and there. On the contrary, he fe!t that he was too bad to die just then. He wanted more time. Y -yes, sah I" he stammered; c-c-come right in flahl" The six men entered the car, and closed the door. "Now fire her up, Pomp," said the leader, "and no fooling about it, understand." "Yes, sah," and Pomp, whose long experience in the West told him that these were very dan gerous men to trifle with, struck a lucifer match and started the furnace. The light glowed with a fierce heat which would soon set the water to boiling. The six desperadoes gazed the queer furnace for several minutes in perfect silenctl. "How long will it take to get up steam enough?" the leader asked. "Fifteen minutes, sah," was the reply. One mau looked at his watch and said: "We have twelve minutes to wait yet, then." Those twelve minutes seemed almost an hour to those desperate men. They knew the danger of being caught before they could get away wit)l the Wonder. They knew that everybody in Val ley Town was a friend to the young inventor and his cousin, and that a fight would be death to them. By and by the steam began hissing in the boiler. See if she will go now," said tutlleader, turn Ing to one of their number whol"had been some thing of an engineer in his younger days. The man-Jim Brady-tried the steam crank, but could not move it. What's the matter with it?" he asked of Pomp. "Dunno, sah. I dunno nu.tlln erbout it. l'se de cook on dis hyer train." "What's the matter?" the leader of the party asked of Jim. "'l'hat's what I want to know," replit>d Jim. "This crank seems to be fastened some way." "Do you know what the trouble Is, Pomp?" "No, sah. I dunno nuJlln erbout it," said Pomp. "Marse Frank allers done dat, sah." They were satiRfled that lae was telling the truth, for ttiey well knew he was not the engineer of the Wonder. But they thought be might know the peculiar construction of the machine. "Which one does he pull to start her?" Brady asked. "Dunno, boso." "Try one of tho others, Jim," suggested the leader. Jim took hold of oue of the other handles and gave it a sudden wrench. The et!ect was startling. The steam-whistle awoke the echoes of the town! "Perdition 11 hissed the leader in a furious rage. "That'll Reade and all the people out of the tavern I" Try all the others I" hissed one of the six men. Brady grasped the others, but they were to be used only when the Wonder was in motion. Tile whistle blew again, as if to call oat everybody in the town. "We must run for it, boys!" said the leader. "They are coming now I" And leaping out of the car, they dashed away at full speed down the street. "Dar dey go!" yelled Pomp, drawing a re volver and firing at them. "Kotch um I kotcb um!" "What's the matter, Pomp?" Frank asked, dashing up to the black as be was sen dlng bul lets after tile desperadoes. "Dis you, Marse Frankl Golly, but dey bad me dat time, suah I" "What was it? What were you shooting at?" demanded Frank, seizing him, and thus stopping the shooting. "Dey come up heah an' put er pistil ter me bead," he said, "an' tole me ter fire up or dey wr,uld fire me head ot!. I lit de furnace an' dey waited till de steam was er fryin', den dey tried fur ter make her go; but she wouldn't go. Dey pulled de udder crank, an' lordy 1 Dat whistle jes' blowed um outen de keer. Dey run like Ole Nick down dat way," and be pointed in the direction the desperadoes bad gone. A crowd soon gathered, and the story passed from mouth to mouth with startling rapidity. Lynch 'em !" Shoot 'em I" 'emt" "Run the machine over 'em I" "Whar's the galoots?" "Run 'em-down I" an<.! a score of other angry suggestions and questions were hurled at the young inventor as the story gathered on its way from mouth to mouth. "Maybe we'll catch 'em yet," said Frank, turning to the crowd. I took the precaution to lock the steam-crank, which is all that saved us. I'll give one hun application for passage. On account of the speed, and absolute safety as regarded Indians and outlaws, the passengQrs were willing to pay $100 each. "1 don't mind taking ten passengers," said


FRANK READE, JR., AND HlS STEAM WONDER. lQ Frank, "but I don' t want the mails. There is Loo much responsibility, and I have no contract with Government The postmaste r said: "Demonstrate to the Government that you can earry the mails quicker and safer th a n the pres ent contractors c.1ll, and you can get tho contract next year." "The Government will soon learn of the Steam Wonder's speed, and then make me an off e r. It will pay better to earry passengers just now," and he stoutly refused to b6 encumbeted with a wn of mail-bags. The twenty passengers concluaed to thro w dice for chances to go, as but ten could go at a tim e The game took place at the Grub House. The first man who won was a little plucky red .<.!hirted fellovr. "I'll give you two hundred dollars for your seat," said his opponent. "I'll take it," was the reply. "I am not in a b.urry. I can wail f o r the n ext "I'll be buck again in a week," said Frank, who saw a chance to make back the mon e y be had spent in t.he construction of the "Then my place now," and the little fellow at once paid the'y, taking a receipt for it. The raffle went on, and the men who were to W' down their money and preJ.oared to g o "By George, Frank," said Jack, "a tbow;and d-lllars each way will soon pay for the thing. 1 "Yes--! want to t.ake back monAy enougli to pay father every ceat he advanced to me. I ll n:aake a dozen trips and then go home." "It'll make him open his eyes, won't it?" "Yes, and he'll back me up in anything I want tG alter Lhat." Early the next morning the ten passl)ngers boarded the car. The steam-whistle awoke tb,e echoes o! town and then' the Wonder mov e J down the sLreet, followed by the ringing shouts of three hundred miners. The passengers respondl'd to their cheers until the distance was too great for voices to be heard. the Wonder settled down to businee,s. 'l'be hills were climbed very carefully, but when the open prairie was reached the full speed of eigbt or twenty milee per hour was made. The pass engers h urrabed and che e red until tbey were hoarse. The grass seemed lik e smooth T e l vet as the car whirled over it. Scarc e ly a jolt was heard, and the slight clicking of the machinery was scarce ly noticed. In one hour the first stage-sta tion was reached. The men the re greeted them with cheers as they recognized the Wonder as the dredging macbinl'l that would clear the channel of all obstrucLions-outlaws and Indians. They stopped five minutes at the station to al low the men to get drinks, and then moved away again. Now a dead level for over one hundrt'd miles le.y before them. They rushed along at a speed that was startling to some of the passengers. "Ain't we going too fast?" one of them{ed. "Well, no," replied Jack. "There's no dange t of our running off the track." A broall grin greeted the reply, and nothing more was said about the speed, other than to commend it. Game of every description was scared up. Jack-rabbits and all kind of prairie fowl scattered as the monster dashed into their midst. Then they chased another and brought him "Jump with him I" down. "Roll off sideways I" The game grew mo1e exciting. "Hold on till he falls I" and dozens o! other 'fbe passengers yell e d for a third one, and the suggestions were burled at him. Wonder gave chase to a huge old bull-buffalo, I Pomp was too busy to respond. who was making good time in getting away from He kept his seat and held on to the shaggy that vicinity. mane of the beast. The chase grew exciting. The Wonder came It was plain that the buffalo was nearly rub. up close behind him, blew the steam-whistle and down. The steam whistle again made him wheel squirted hot water on his back. round and face tho Wonder. >hat WB.fl more than any bull-buffalo would That caused Pomp to yell with terror. He stand. With a bellow and a roar be turned and didn't waat to collid e with the Steam Wonder. faced the engine-head down and tail up. "Whoa I" be yelled. Hole on oar Marse "My God I" gasped Frank, shutting otr the Fl"\nk I I ain't er huffier I Whoa, I tole yer I" steam and putting on the brakes. The Wonder slaekeued up her speed as befo!>re Jack turned pale, and Pomp yelled with all his but the infuriated beast rushed madly forward' might at the buffal o as if to utterly demolish the car. "Go 'way dar, y e r debbill" Pomp' s eyes seemed on the point of popping Crash I out of his head 'rhe bull was knocked back on his haunches, "Jump offjump off I" yelled Frank and Jack, an.-! the Wond e r came to a staud-Etill. Every one and he quickly follow e d their advice. in the car was thrown forward by the force of the He rolled off just a few seconds before the bull collisloa. l struck the engine, rolling over and over on the But for the shutting off of the !\team and the grass, springing to his feet just as the beast putting on of the brake s too collision would have struck the Wonder. be e n fatal to life, limb, or the W o nder. The engine had almost when the col-As it was, the bull was the ouly one hurt. He lision took place. The shoe 'arred the engine was stunned so thoroughly that he swung his and car, bttt did no damage. he bull was again shaggy bead from side to side, and did not seem thrown back on his haunches, but ere he could to notice the presence of his implacable foes. regain his feet a half-dozen rille-shots settled his "Dat whack gin 'im er bad headache, suab," busin e ss. said Pomp, as they all got out and He rolled over on his side a dead buffalo. the hnge monster. "Hello, Pomp 1" cried Frank, as the black hero "Better keep clear th e re I" said one of pas-of a hundre d mishaps c a m e up. "What do you seng e rs. "Those old bulls are ugly oustomers mean by trying to get away with our game?" when they g!'t corn e red." Pomp grinned f).'om ear to ear. I "One of his horn s are broken." remarked Jack. De game war gittin' erway wid me, Marse "Yes, and dar' s blud in his eyulook at datI" be repli e d. The bull bad recover e d from the stunning blo w I beli e ve they will eat a nigger anytime when and staggered to his teet. Blood was dri!Jping grass is scarce," remarked one of the passengers. from his nostrils. He was craz e d with rage, and "Dey don't get any ob my meat," said Pomp, rr.ade a furious charge at the m e n. entering the car, at which there was a laugh all Sev e ral revolver w e re tl1e d at him, which round. only served to madden him the more. With a "Shall we cut up this old bull?' Frank asked. bellow and a roar, he plunged forwarrl aft e r "No," was the respo J s e "Let' s go back and them. They ran round the cal' and scrambled in cut Ull the two young c o ws we killed." as as they could. "All aboard, then." Pomp was behind, and fearing he would be The y crowded aboard again, and the Wonder caught on the horn of the monste r, undertook to pushed forward, circaing round and making climb upon the top of the Wond e r. straight for the carcasses of the two cows they He was half-way up, when his footelipped, and bad slain. be landed on th e ba c k of the infuriated beast. On reaching them Lhe passengers went to work Pomp bad pre sence of mind enough to grasp cutting off the hams, whilst Franlc and Jack the shaggy mane of the bull, and !!ecure his seat made a thorough examination of the machinery on his back. to see if any dnmnge bad been done by thA colliWith a roar the huge beast tried to shake him sion with the bull. off. Pomp knew his safe ty d e p e nded on the They found everything intact and in perfect position be h e ld, and k ept it with the agility of a order. squirrel "It was a hard shock," said Frank," and I dar I" be yell e d. was about it. But I guess it wen't pa' a "Hold on, Pomp I" cried Jack, "t!ll I get a shot bull to butt against us." at him I" "No," said Frank. "That old fellow got a "Ob, Lordy, don't shoot I" yelled Pomp. "De ringing bead!Lche from that first bump. We had lor' gorramiley I Dis yere ain' t no fun I Whoa some fun out of him, though." dar, I tole yer I" "Yes-that about the best racket we had. The bull reared, plunged and tried to shake Pomp is rather inclined to think the laugh is on him off. him instead of the buffalo, I guess." Some one blew the steam-whistle, and that "Ob. be doesn't mind that." gave a new terror to the bull. He another The bind-qunrterswerecutofftbetwobuffaloes bellowing roar and st:am crank, and much to his Mile after mile WitS passed, and the passengers delight, the engine moved forward. were delighted with the ride. At times whole flocks of prairie-hens were run inte, and many killed before they could rise on the wing. CHAPTER XXVII. A !ew buffnlo \vere seen in the distance, generINDIANS AGAIN-POMP'S TEllROR. ln another hour Lhe other station was reached, where they received a royal weloome. The Rgent said a bunter had come In and re ported a band uf Indians on the stage-road be tween there and tho river. ally two or three miles out of the way. WHEN the buffalo dashPd away with black "Let's briug down a buffalo and have fresh Pomp on his back f ear lt'nt wina;s to his feet. steak for supper," suggested one of the pas-The further be got away the faster fie ran, until it seemed that be was fairly fiying over the level I have taken your money anil agreed to put plaiu. you through as quickly as said Frank; "Why don't he fall o ff?" one of the passengers "so I will not leave the rood for any purpose asked without your consent." It's not a very safe thing to do," remarked ThGy looked oord at him. anothet'. "If you all say go for those buffaloes," said he, "We'll overtake him," said Frank, putting on a "why, I'll go." full hMd of steam. "Go lor 'em I" shouted the ten passengers in a 'rhe Wonder shoved ahead at a rattling pace. -Jhorus. I wns afraid that hml dono some "All rl;!ht. the rill e s in readiness, Jack." mischi e f." saiil Faank; "but I guess no harm was Jack went for th61repeatlng-ritles. whilst Frank done. We are gain on Pomp ai!Cl will soon turned W o nrler from Lhe road. and made f o r I overtake him. I'll bet his wool hils straightened the smnll betd of buffalo some three miles away 1 out from t e rror." on thfl right. "I gu esR n ot," satd Jack. "I heard Uncle The was soon run and the game Frank t ell about such a ride he had some twenty fiushPd. The shaggy monsters heard the engine, years ago." and at once took to their heels. "Yes. I remember It, but be said '!'hen the passengers yelled and hooted. The Pomp was scared almost to death then." frlghtAned buffaloes dashed away at full speed. I TbA Wonder gainec,l steadily on the buffalo, ann J3ut the Wond e r soon ran alongside one of them, in a short time the passengers were yelling at and half a dozen sho ts from the repeating-rilles Porn p to fall off. ended his career as a ranger of the plains. "8lid13 down I" "We'll reach the river to-night," said Frank, "and cross by moonlight." "Yon had 'better keep moving," said the agent, "or they will attack you." "Ob, we don't mind their attacks," replied Frank. "We'd stop just to give them a. chance if that would encourage them. The truth is, we are spoiling for a fight." "They'll give you a. fight if you will give tl!e11. a chnnce." "We'll give 'em a chance," said Jack, signifi cantly. fbey stopped only ten minutes at the station and then pushed on toward the river, which they hoped to reach before midnight. The sun was then a little abovA the horizon, and in another hour the stars would be out. The moon rose as the eun went down. Its silvery rays fiooded the illimitable plaine with its soft It was scarcely necessary to light the headlight, but Pomp did it as soon as the stars came out. The light enabled them to travel as fast 8.8 they would in the daytime.


20 FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. Two hours after sanset they found a band of a strong pull at it. and emptied it of its contents.! roar of the rain. Jack-rabbits and other small Indians on the roadside, whose intentions evi"'1-'ankee, marser. Dat warm me all fro." game were In danger of being drowned out. dently were to intercept the mail stage. "It was right along here we dragged that fel Scores of them stopped under the 011r, an wagon is not for sale," said Frank. eyes and pallid face, a rope around his neck or more, during which time it seemed as if the No buy-red man take wagon." which reached to the car. windows above had been opened, ana threatened "Oh, you want to take it, do you?" the indom"By George!" gasped Jack Russell, turning drowning of the universe. !table young inventor asked, Do you think pale as a sheet, "there he is, as natural as life!" 1 "I think it wouldn t be a bad idea to build you can do it?" "Let me have a shot at him!" oxclaimed one of the next car in the shape of a boat," remarked all wagon." the passengers. "l'vA always heard that gun-Jack. "Now, look here, red-skin, you know you are powdllr would scare them away." "Just what I was thinking about," said Fmnk. 'Wrong. You know you will be punished by the Horan the gun out of the window, took delib"The whole country seems to be covered with government for interfering with people this way. erate aim, and fired. wafer." You had better go away before we fire on you. The smoke cleared away, and revealed the "It will soen disappear," said one of t he pasWe are able to take care of ourselves." specter still there. sengers. "The earth is very dry and will absorb "1hite man heap talk," &aid t9e Indian. "Cut the rope, Pomp,'' ordered Jack. it like a sponge. There has been no hard rain in "Oh, yes, we talk a great deal, lint we generally "De Lord saba us I' groaned Pomp, crouch-this section. for>many weoks." whip you red-skins when we take a notion to do ing down in a corner of the car; I don't want It will be slow traveling for ljS until the watef so. Be off with you now!" nuffin' ter do wid 'lm." goes." He started the Wonder slowly along. The savPomp was extremely superstitious, and so "That will not be long." ages, intent on capturing her, surrounded, it and were a few of the passengers, some of whom The rain ceased as suddenly as it had com commenced firing at the car. Tb.e bullets fiatcrouched down alongside of the black, and would m e nced. tened against the car and fell to the ground. not again look at the pursuing specter. 1 The clouds broke and the sun came out. Rain" That settles it-let them have the repeating But Frank Reade, Jr., was of more l!erofc drops on the grass glistened like precious stone1 rifl e s &nd revolvers, boys." mold. He wa.'l a very matter-of-fact youth, who everywhere The work of death then commenced. had b ee n taught by his lather that dead men can Suddenly the steam whistle shrieked, and such Crack I Crack I Crack I never harm the living. a scattering of Jack-rabbits from under the oar I Y e lls and howls followed. "That's the first real ghost that I ever saw," They went helter-skeJter in every as Crack I Crack I Crack I he said, after gazing at the specter in silence for rapidly as a flock of partridges on th1.ns caught bullets in their bodies on both sides "Young man," said one of the elderly p!lSsen-0! th e car. gel'fl in a husky tone of voice, "you are very cool Then they c oncluded that tlaey wouldn't take about it." tbe wagon. "Why be otherwise? Such things never harm They didn't want it. It was a poor thing, any-any one I want to see all there is of it. That ho\7, Theyturnedand f!ed. ropeseemsto reach up to the car, but you see "Oh, take the wagon with you!" cried Frank, it gets very dim when you look straight down at turning and pursuing them. it. I guess it will follow us to the river .and stop They yelled defiance, but fted all the same. there-the place where we caught him." Crack 1 Crack I Crack. I went the unerring reThe specter did follow them to the river, but peating rifles, and many a red-skin wished he had the moment the Wonder entered the water it dis-never seen the wagon. appeared, anu they no more of it. "That'll do," said Frank, turning to the road On ths othet side they stopped, and all hands w,ain. "We must reach the rivar by midnight, assisted in refilling the tank ahd casks with or our water will give out." water. This done, they made another statt and They regained the road and rushed on toward pushed forward, keeping in the old stage-route. the river at fulls peed. Just before daylight they reached the next sta Snddenly Pomp gave a yell of terror. His eyes I tion, and stopped there ten minutes. The paswere about to pop out of hilo head. sengers got out, took copious drinks at I he little "Look dar!" he yelled, opening the l'tlar win-bar in the agent' s office, and told about the Won dow and pointing to the road behin(l. See dat der being pursued ten miles by a ghost. man we run def de oder night!" That story was sure to be retailed to the driver Jack looked out and saw nothing, but Pomp's and passengers of the next stage and fill them terror grew more frightful each moment. with dread. But little cared the passenger:> of the Steam Wonder for that. CHAPTER XXVIII. TBB OUTLAW'S GHOST-THE STORM. JACK looked at Pomp in the greatest IIStonish ment. "Why, I don't see anything," he said, turning to the darkey, whose teeth were chatteriu!{. PomJ) popped hlil head to the window and gazed out. He wiped his eyes and looked agl\in, and he seem ed greatly relieved. "De lor gorramitey !" he gasped, wiping great drops of perspiration from his brow. "Why, the matter with you, Pomp?" :Frank asked, unable to understand the cause of llis apparent terror. Didn't yer see Jaim, Marse Jack?" Pomp asked, turning to Jack Russell. "I saw nothing nor nobody," rtlplied Jack. Pomp groaned and looked uneasily out of the window again. "Yer know dat man yer tied round de ceck 'an' hung 'im to der keer, Marse Frank." "Yes what of him?" "Wal: I took

r FRANK READE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. 2.1 Morgan and the rescue of the five young girls from the Apaches. By the great desert !" exclaimed the elderly passt>ngd ?" "Yes, eir, and two splendid girls they are, too." "'hank God I" he murmured, and then he burst into a flood o! tears. There was not a dry eye in the cn.r, for there was a manly sympathy in the hearts of all. "Youn!\ man, you have a friend in Duncan Kenward,' said tb.e uncle of the girls, "and I have a fortune for the girls I have long given them up as dead. They are the children of an only sister. What did you do with them? Where "They are at my father's house in Readestown, as happy a& humming birds. He wrung Frank's hand, and 1then shook hands with everybody in the car. Even Pomp came in for his share. But when ..:Tack told the st"ory of the gala day in Readestown, when Pomp' s barrel of whisky was auctioned off f o r the ben e fit of the girl,s, every man grasped his big black and said be was every inch a man. Banged if this isn't the strangest meeting I ever heard of," remarked Jack Russ e ll. "Who'd have dreamed of ymi being the uncl e of the Jones girls?" "I was going through to New Y ork to enj oy the money made in mine.s and mining gtocks," sai<'l Mr. Kenward, but I'll go to R e adestown first." Go with ns, then," said Frank, for I'll run (I)Ver there as soon as we deliver the passengers at the railroad." 1 Of course I will, young man-of course I will. God bless me I I am so happy I don t know what to do I Who bas got any good whlsky on board? I want to wet my throat or my ey e s will overflow again." A half dozen flasks wero instantly thrust at ltim. He took one and made a strong pull at it, diminishing its contents greatly. "Ah," he said, smacking his lips. llfy heart Is full, gentlemen. We'll celebrate when we reach the railroad." They ,reached the railroad that night, and astounded the citizens of the town by going through the principal streets. They thought an engine ani:! car bad gotten off the track and was running around The uncle took the whole crowd to the hotel and ordered a magnificent breakf ast to be served for the party the next morn in!{ at his expense. Jack, Frank and Pomp in the Wonder,de termlned to give the desperadoes no chance to get yossesAion of it. AI hands were up with the sun, and ready for breakfast. Several hundred men crowded around the Wonder to gaze at it. But Jack and Frank were cautious about allowing peo11111 to enter it, as they were not disposed to give the secret away to everybody. It was announced that the Wonder would there on third day for Valley Town, with pas sengers, beating the regular mail-stage by four days. In two hours there was a score of applications for passage, and Jack told them that they could carry only ten at a time. In the meantime Frank telegraphed to his father that the Wonder would reach Readestown that night. Then they started, and pushed in a due easterly The dead, level country made the trip a pleasant and easy one Tht} red-shirts of Readestown made up their minds to give them a reception on their arrival. They mustered some three hundred strong, and had every arrangement made by !I unset. When the whiRtle of the Wonder was heard out on th-e prairie they assembled and gave three times three rousing cheers for the Wonder and ber young inventor. They then formed in a procession and marched down through the vil lage, bearing torches, halting in front of Frank 1\eade, Sr.'s, house. The five girls had remained up out of bed to \Velcome their gallant young rescuers. They were neatly dressed and looked pretty and sweet enough to kiss, as they stood on the piazza and waved a welcome to the Wonder. Fra!lk wa.a called on for a speech, and his appearance was the cause of anoth e r enthusiastic outburst of cheets. "We have had a successful crulse," he said, talking to the crowd. "We rescued the regular mail-stage from a band of outlaws, and carried the mails and passengers thro11gh to Town. Had two fights with Indians who didn t know what they were bucking against. We had a fight witb. a bull-buffalo, too, who took Pomp on his back and r a n five or six m,iles with him. We had to do some fine work to get him back again." That put the laugh on Pomp, and caused the crowd to go for him. "Why didn t yoa butt. him, Pomp?" Pomp grinned. "Dis yer chile knows who to butt," he said, at which there was another roar of laughter. He was a great favorite with the red-shirte of Reades town ever since his auotion sale of the barrel of whisky. "Now, you girls up there on the piazza," cried Frank, looking up at the piazza, which was crowded with ladies, "we have a surprise for twq of you. We have not brought husbands for any of you, but we have found the uncle of Susie and Sarab. Jones," and he brought Duncan Kenward forward. Oh, Uncle Duncan I" screamed both the gil'ls, springing forward and rushing through the crowd, clasping him round the neck and weeping for joy. CHAPTER XXX. THE MEETING OF UNCLE AljD NIECES-FRANK CHECKMATES A GANG OE DESPERADOES. ''BLOW me, if that don't make a baby of me I" exclaimed Bill Perkins, the red-shirt Mro of the town, wiping his eyes with the sleeve of his red shirt, as tl,le sobs of the two girls were keard. There was sc a rcely a dry eye in the Roul:{h as they were they were tender-hearted fellows. "Whoop I Hooray for the Steam Wonder ot the plains?" cried one of the m e n, and the c eers burst forth like a thunde r-bolt. "Come down to the saloon,boys," said Perkins, "arl.d we ll something to take this brine oute n your eyes. Che ers for Perkins followed, and then the crowd moved away down to tl;le saloon, where t he drinkfl w e re set up for the whole party. Frank and Jack lock e d up the Wonder, and spent the rest of the night in the house with the family. Duncan Kenward told the story of his ad venture R since l e aving his home in the East years before-how he went West poor and seedy, and was now rich-worth a cool half million dollars, which he would share with his dead sister's two children. He was told of the farm the girls had bought ln the outskirts of Readestown. "I'll buy 'eru all a farm each he E.aid, "and stock it for 'em. They be as independent as girls ought to be, so they won't marry to have some fellow take care of them." "Why, bless your soul, sir I" exclaimed Frank Reade, Sr., "two of 'em are engaged now, and I am suspicious of Susie and a young fellow down in the village." "Eh, f>usie, girl!" said the uncle, looking hard a!Jthe Susie. "Don't be ashamed of it. If he is the right kind of a chap for you I'll set you up all right. Susie made no reply. "Oh, well, we'll see about it. Time enough yet, only don't pick up a man who'll spend your mon e y, and ab\lse you and your children." They all laughed, and the party broke up, for it was long after midnight. The next morning, there was a merry, happy pa_rt.y at the breakfast-table of the Reade f a mily. Frank Reade, Sr., was delighted when Frank Reade Jr., paid him ono tho!lsand dollars down on the amount be had adyanced toward the con struction of the Wonder. "I'll pay for it in a month, father," said Frank. "If you do, I'll make you a handsome present, my bov," said the happy father. "Alf right. I'll hold you to that, father," he replied. Duncan Kenward bought a fine farm each for the five girls, gave orders for houFes to be built, and for stock to run them. Said they could all live with him till married off. They were a happy set that day. The next morning Frank and the Wonder were off again for the town on the railroad, where they were to get a load of passengers for Valley Town. He had laid in a double quantity of oil and every thing he could possibly need on the trip. They reached the to'jl'n and announced that they would leave next day. The number of applications had doubled. There were over forty men who wanted to go. "Gentlemen," ho aaid, "only ten can go at a time. You must throw dice fo.1 chances." The proposition was eagerly accepted, and half the evening was spent taffling !or seats. Every man \vho won was required to pay down his money on the spot and take a receipt. They were closely serutinized, too, so their faces would be know.a in the Jack and Frank had become They suspected that a gang of desperadoes would try to get passage for tb.e purpose of capturing the Wonder when out on the plains. The dice-throw ing had upset such calculations-if any had been made. In less than an hour after the raffle men were offering $50 premium for seats in the Won der. whispered Frank to his eouein, "we must not let any man go who did not draw his seat in the ra:fl:le. I don't like the looks of those fellows who are trying to buy seatil. "It' s a as sure as you live," said Jack, watching the movements of the party. "We'll have trouble in the morning. Every man who arew s eats is selling out for double. I'll get some red -shirts to stand by us to prevent a. row." Frank found out two or three professional bul lies who were "on the shoot," and engaged them to be on hand the next day and take a hand In any scrimmage that mightocour. Of course they agreed to do so. Nothing would please them better. They found out that those who had bought out the winners of seats were men of ba.d rePrutations. The next morning the three bullies and the l r friends were on h and to see the Wonder off. Everything being in readiness, Frank stationed himself at the door of the car and called out: "Those who won seats In this car last night will please come aboard, as we will start in a hall hour." The first man to present himself Waf' a big red shirted fellow, with an ugly scar across his cheek. "Hold on, my friend," said Frank. "You didn't draw a s eat last night." The thunde r I didn't? and the man drew the receipt Frank had giv e n to th e man who did draw it. "There's thl' r e c eipt f o r $100 you." So it is, but that was given to Mr. Dougherty -nol you. Only Mr. Dougherty c a n travel on that receipt. I didn t agree to carry OU, did I?" The man was thunde rstruck. "I bought his seat from him," he said. "That may be-but you must remember that if I agreed t\l earry Mr. Doughe rty to Vall e y Town I am not bound to carry any one else in his place. I d.on't propose to let Mr. Dougherty make $50 or $100 off of me that way. Mr. Dougherty can go on that receipt, and no one elu." "See hyer, youngster I" cried another man with a receipt in his hahd. That game won't do. We've paid for this ere thing an' we're gwine to see it through." "You have a receipt, too, have you?" Frank asked. "Yeo-bought and paid $150 for it," replied the man. "Who sold it to you?" "Peter Cronan." "Well, you must see Cronan about it. I never sold you anything. I don't know you at all." "Blow my eyes I" growl e d the man, "you'll know me soon enough if you come such a shenanigan ga}ne as this over me." "Oh, keep your shirt on, my friend," eaid Frank. "We are able to run this thing ourselves. Jack, call over the names of the men we agreed to carry through to Valley Town." Jack did so. "Now come aboard you who paid me for pas sage, or you'll be left." I thought I had the right to sell my seat," said Peter Cronin. "No, sir. I simply agreed to carry you," was the r e ply. That's fair talk," said one of the bullies," and the galoot what says it ain't calls me a liar." "That's so," chorused the other two bullies, and such was their reputation in the place that no one dared to dispute with thllm. "You who are entitled to go can have one hour in which to get ready. At the end of tha.t time the Wonder will start, whether you go or not.'' "How about my money?" demanded one flftht roughs, holding up his receipt. "Who did you pay your money to?" Tom Mulligan." "Theil 101all Tom Mulligan. That isn't my name." Curses loud and deep were heard on all sides, but Frank remained firm. The ten original men were forced to refund the money they received and go themselves. The Wonder then moved away, amid the cheers of the crowd.


FRANK READE JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. CHAPTER XXXI. THE OUTLAW'S SPECTER AGAIN. ON the way out Frank explained to his paesen l(ers that he had reason to believe that a gang of desperadoes were trying to get passage on the Wonder for the purpose of capturing it on the plains. The raftle broke up t.heir game, and they tried to buy seats so as to get the gang together. "By the great horned frog I" exclaimed one of the passengers, I thougtt it strange you would not let a passenger sell his seaL. Your excuse is a reaeonable one." "But why couldn't they win seats as well as the rest of us?" one man asked. 1 "Oh, they could ; but it was not likely that the gang could go in and win seats for themselves. Six or eight men had to take their chances with forty, you know." "Yes; but how do you know that two or three of them didn't win?" "The fact that every one sold out prov'lls to me that not one of them won. Had one of the gang won he would have kept his receipt." "That's so; good reaeoning, young man. 'J'hat makes me feel batter," and there was general confidence at once established among the passengers. Nothing of ,jnterest occurred on the first day out. Several stations were passed. The agents of the stage contractors said that were it not that the Wonder cleaned out the Indians and outlaws on the route they would kick against its carrying passengers, as it interfered with the business. "Not a bit of it," replied Jack Russell. "Tlte stages can't carry a fourth of the passengers. We don't interfere in the least." "But it will interfere and eventually break up the stage but!iness," the agent. "Never, because the Wonder cannot ran when thete is snow on the ground." Is that so'/" "Yes." "I didn't know that." "Thora are many things you don't know yet," remarked Jack, smilingly. The Wonder moved on, and passed another station about sunset. After a stop of ten minutes it moved off. Everything was in good order, and as the stars came out the bead-light guided the way beauti fully. The stars gave a light that enabled them to see objects the size of a man a hundred yards otr. The moon would not rise till ten o'clock or after. "It will be up by the time we reach the river," said Jack, who was acting as engineer. They reached the river just before midnight. J'he moon was rising out of the plains like a great ball of silvery fire, shedding a fiood of pale bght over the illimitable prairie. Frank took charge and guided the Wonder over the hard sand-bed of the river. The water was some six inches higher than when they crossed it last-the result of the heavv rainstorm four or five days previous. On the other side they stopped and refilled the oasks and tanks with water, and then resumed the journey. About a mile from the river one of the passengers looked out of the rear windows and exclaimed: Hello I There's a fellow following us, running like a race-horse I" The deuce I" cried half a dozen at once, crowding forward to get a look at the sight. De Lord sa be us I" groaned Pomp, growing uttecly demoralized. "Who In thunder is It?" cried one of the party. "Why don't you stop and see what he wants?" Look at him carefully," said Fraqk. "Don't you see that we have got him tied by the neck to the car?" "Good Lord, yes I What does it me&n?" "It. means that you are looking at the ghost of a man we dragged to death just that way right a.long here, illss than a month ago." Every passenger turned pale. Frank then told the story over again, and then said: He will follow us this way till we reach the spot where he fell and gave up the struggle. Tben he will give a shriek and fall to the ground. When we return this way he will hitch on again, and follow us to the river." "What in thunder do you travel this way for?" demanded an excited passenger. "Because th1s is the only route to the ford. '!'hat is the only place where we can cross." It's no fun to be cha.qed ten miles or more by the ghost of a dead outlaw," remarked the passenger. "I would rather be chased by a dead one than & real live or;e,'' said Jack. "These specters never hurt anybody. 'l : bey merely disturb the nerves of weak people. That's all." "I was never considered a weak man, and yet that thing out there makes me feel very uncomfortable." "Of course. That's because It's the only real ghost you have ever seen. You have always believed that ghosts were something all mankind was in honor bound to be afraid of "I believe you are right, young man," and the passenger again glanced out at the specter of the outlaw. "He will follow us about a mile further," said Jack, "and then you'll see him make a etl'ort to free himself, fall to the ground, roll over and over, drag about lmlf a mile, and then the rope will part where Pomp cut it. That's the way he follows us." Does he fall when you go the other way-toward the river?" "No. He leaves us and dodges into the woods when we reach the river, to wait until we come back again." "Well, I'll be hanged if I would not get some other route." I don't know that that would get rid of him if we did." "Maybe not, but I'd try it." "Oh, he doesn't scare me worth a cent," said Frank, laughing. "I'd drag a dozen of them the same way if they played me the same game." ''Of course, and---" There I" cried one of the pnssengers. He's down I See how he rolls over I" The passengars crowded forward to get a glimpse of the specter again. They Eaw him rolling ovor and over as the rope drll{(ged him over the grass, till finally the rope and he was quicb:l.)' left behind and out of sight. Thank Go1, he's gone I" gasped three or four of the passengers at once. "Good riddance," cried others. "De Lord sabe ns I" exclaimed Pomp, with a great sigh of relief. "I don't mind him at all," said Jack. "We've proved to him that we can hang such as he with out any trouble." I wouldn't travel this way again," said another passenger, for a thousand dollars. Why, the car is haunted I" "No, not the car, but the place of his execution," &aid the young inventor. He leavos Ufl as soon as we pass the spot where we cut him loose." -"Yes-yes. I don't want to come this way any more. I'll never forget that fellow's looks as long as I live." Jack and Frank laughed and enjoyed the fright of the passengers, and told many ghost stories to while away the ba)ance of the night, as the specter had driven sleep from the eyes of most of them. The next station was reached in a lirtle over an hour after they got rid of the ghost of the dead outlaw. Ouly ten minutes w .. re allowed the passengers to r efresh themselves, and then the jour nay was resumed. They reached Valley Town on the third day, arid met with a rousing reception from every body. The red-shirts were particularly demon strative, and wanted to shake hands with the young inventor. CHAPTER XXXII. DESTROYING A COMANCHE VILLAGE. THE next day after the Wonder reached Valley Town three men came in from below. Two were wounded-one quite seriously. The one not hurt was a very wealthy stock-owner. whose place bad been attacked and burned, and his wife and daughter carried away by the Comanche In dians. The moment he entered the .J}rub House, he called out: "I will g.ive one thousand dollars to any ma.n who will ride to Santa Fe for a com_pany of United States troops I" Santa Fe was three hundred miles away, yet a dozen men sprang up to accept his offer. "What's the trouble, stranger?" one of the prowd asked. "The Comanches have burnt my ranch and carried off my wife and daughter and many of my best horses," he said. Frank heard him. "Do you know where they have carried them, sir?" he asked, stepping up to the stranger. "I think I do; to one of the villages about one hundred and fifty miles from here Ob, God what will my poor darlings not suffer? I'd give $10,000 in gold to save them from-" "My friend," said Frank, "I think I oan save them within two dnys." The man grasped his hand, and lookEld hard at him for several moments. "How can you?" he huskily asked. "Oh, be can do it, stranger," exclaimed a redshirt in the crowd, Then I'll give you $10,000 if you will." "I don't want your mo--" "You ahall have lt I" interrupted the man. "I am rich. I'll give all I'm worth to get them out of the hands of those demons." "Do you know the country down there well enough to guide me?" "Every inch of it." "Then we can be off in a half hour," <;aid Frank. I want five good fighter'S to go with us." Twenty red-shirt volunteered to go, but Frank let the barkeeper of the Grub House 3elect ths men to go with him. "I have six repeating-rifies on board," said the young inventor; "you can bring your revolver11 with you." The aitxious father was bewildere:l. He knew not what to think. lle had never heard of the Steam Wonder. He followed Frank and the five men out to the car. The whole thing fiashed over him in a moment. He grasped the young inventor's hand, und said: man, your fortwne is made if you giYe me my Wife and daughter alive." Enough said, sir. Get in, Pomp, fire up and get ready for a run. Now, sir. you must tell me how I can reach the Indian viUagl'lS without having to cross any streams. Can you do so?' The man hung his in deep thought a few moments. "Yes," he replied, "but you'll have to go at least fifty miles out of the way to do so." That is only a matter of some three hours," said Jack. "Three hour'S?" "Yes, sir. On a good prairie, we can ru11 twenty miles an hour." "Thank God I" he ejaculated. In less than the half hour they were ready to start, and the Wonder moved out of the town, followed by the cheers and good-will of every body. Mr. Gregory, for that was the rich ranch man's name, guided Frank as to the right direction to take, auP the Wonder sped along at full speed. In the meantime Jack tnstructed the men a to the style of fighting inside the car. They were apt scholars, and soon mastered it. Night came on, and the speed was reduced t<> t en miles an hour, the head-light guiding thvm safely. 1 They traveled all night, and daylight found them some twenty miles out of the way. Gr-egory soon gave the right direction, and in three hours they came in sight of the Indian village. Many ponies about the village indicated that the braves were at home. By my soul!" exclaimed Gregory, "I recog nize several of my horses I There's my favorite saddle-horse and my own saddle on him. And there's my horse-one of the fieetest in the country I The Wonder was almost in the village before tt was discovered. The alarm was given, and fully a hundred braves rushed out to meet it. Frank stopped right on the edge of the village. The braves, be lieving a new prize had come into their hands, whooped and yelled like the demons they were. "Where's your chief?" Frank demanded of eue who seemed to be a leader among them. "Me chief. Me Prairie Wolf," replied the sav age. "That's the chief!" whispered Gregory to Frank. "Well, Prairie Wolf, come in here; I want to see you;" and Frank opened the door at the end of the for the chief. The bold rascal caru" in, expecting to be followed by several others. The door was closed quickly and two revo)ver'B pressed against kis breast. "Prahpe Wolf 1" hissed Gregory," do you know me?" "Ugh t yes-me know," replied the chief. "Where is my family?n "Me got 'urn." "Well, rve got you-do you understand that? Confident in his ability to face the little hand-ful of whites in the car with his hundred braves outside, the chief gave a war-whoop. Instantly he was seized, disarmed, bound, and gagged. Those outside yelled in response to his whoop, and commenced a furious attack on the car. Then the repeating-rilles commenced their deadly work. Crack I crack I crack I they went, and the death-r<1te ran higber among the red-skins. Twenty minutes passed, and the Comanches found that over one-half their number were down, and yet they had not seen a white-face since Prairie Wolf entered the car. They ret. reated. The Wo.cdar pursued and shot them down like rabbits.


FRANK RF.:ADE, JR., AND HIS STEAM WONDER. 23 They sprang on their horses and fled, but ev;m that didn't save thtJm. At ! they S!'attered aud went in every direction. Back to the village J" cried Gregory. ThtJ Wonder steamed up to the village again. Not a warrior was left there. The women were frightened almost te death. Opening the door Greg01.y sprang out, followed by the five red-shirts who had come with them, twd commenced a search among the for his family. He found them in Prairie Wolf's lodge, kep hidden under an immense buffalo robe by two old hags. Oh, papa, papa I" cried the daughter, on hear ing his volCe. 'fhe hags tried to keep her down, but the redshirts tore &em aside, and restored husband, wife, and daughter to each other. "'fhank God I" cried Gregory, pressing them to his heart. "Come to the car, darlings," and he led them to the Wonder and put them in, saying to Frank and Jack "'l'here they are-safe as ever, Mr. Reade. I'm going to burn up this village, and Prairie Wolf with it." "Do as you please, Mr. Gregory," said Frank. "I won't interfe;e in the matter. I am glad to see you restored to your husband. Mrs. Gregory." "Oh it's you we are Indebted to for this J" cried Mrs. Gregory. "May Heaven bless you, Mr. Reade I" Thank you, madam,'' and Frank bowed to the mother and daughter, and turned away to see what Gregory and the red-shirts were doing. I They bad started the fire, and soon several lodges were in a blaze. 'l'he aquaV<.S mude a great outcry, but they were mtJrcilessly kn:>cked over whenever they got in the ''Now, you fl<*1d I" cried a-regory rushing into the cur, and seizing.Prairie Wolf," i ll settle with you for all the past." He dragged him out of the car and threw him into the burning lodge he had recently occupied. In a moment the fiend was suffocated and writhing in death agonies. You will never raid another ranch I" cried Gregory, as he watched the flames do their work.. While the village was burning a score of war l'iors sat on their horses out in the prairie look Jng on, not daring to go any nearer. The Steam Wonder was much for them. Their bullets f ell harmless. They knew not what to do. When the village was destroyed the w bites re the Wonder, and moved away. They the warriors, and shot them down could be seen. Government ought to bu this Steam for the protection of the plains," said Gregory. "So I think,'' said one of the red-shirts. "I'll give you one hundred per cent. on the cost of lt, Mr. Reade," remarked the wealthy stock-raiser. "When I feel disposed to part with it, I'll consider the offer, Mr. Gregory," replied Frank. Tlmt gives ;ne the refusal of it, does it not?" "Yes." That settles it," and they ahook hands over the understanding. CHAPTER XXXII). I'll bring my sister with me," he said, "and you can go back with her and stay a month 01: two." "Yes," said she. "I would be delighted to do so. Bring her, by all means." They parted, and the Wonder speeded on its WH.y back with ten followed by th CONCLU.ION. cheerS' and good wis es of everybody in Valley l,own. ALICE GREGORY, the daughter of tbe rich stock-The return trip was not exriting beyoad the raiser, was one of the pr'lttiest 1!.8 well as the appearance of the ghost of the dead outlaw, most interesting girls Frank had ever seen. She which followed them to the river, as it had done was dark-inte11.selv to having before. s.vent all her lif6, except when at scnool, in the Frank and Jack had gotten used to the specter, open air of the prairie. Her eyes were like ebon but Pomp was terribly demoralized every time it diamonds, large and lustrous, and her hair like appeared, and would not look at it. Some of the the raven's wing. passengers were just as badly broken up as Pomp Frank lost no time in making her acquaintance. was about it. She seemed to be Ill! much pleased \fith him as The specter left them at the rivAr, however, and he w1s with her. They sat by each other during then it was pleasant sailing the rest of the way. the whole day, Jack running the engine. They indulged in a buffalo chase, but did not se& She made him tell her the history of the Steam any Indians. The fact the red-skins had Wonder and his adventures with it. heard that a strange kind of wagon was out on It seemed like a tale of romance to her, and she the prairie, playing the old Harry with them, so regarded him a.s the most remarkable young man they kept oil', a long way off, lest they should she had tJver heard of. They were about the meet it. The Steam Wonder had grown to be a. same age-not quite eighteen-and their youth J terror to the red-men of the West. and temperaments caused a deep sympathy to After delivering his passengers, Frank conclud-spring up between them. ed to run down to Beadestown and pay his father Night came on, and still the Wonder pushed on all the money he had advanced for the construe over the plains. Alice Gregory leaned her head tion of the Wonder. on Frank's shoulder and slept. Frank enjoyed Accordingly he remained only one l:Nur at the the situation immensely. place, saying he would return soon and carry anAt daylight they reachtld Valley Town, and the_ other load of passengers through to Valley 'l'own. stor)> of the rescve of the ladies and the destruc-and Santa Fe, and then set out for home. tion of the Indian village spread like wildfire. A glad welcome awaited them at Readestown. 'fhe red-shirt!! turned out en masse, and greeted The five young ladies he had rescued from the the young inventor of the Steam Wonder in royal Apaches gave them kisses, and everybody else .style. took their hands. A meeting was called, and resolutions passed, Julia. Morgan, it was plain to everybody, was requesting Frank Reade, Jr., to build a Steam madly in love with Frank, and when Jack told Wonder for the town of Valley Town, to be used them all how badly mashed Frank was on Alice for the protection of that part of the country from Gregory, sh,e almost fainted. the Comanches. A committee was appointed to Frauk Reade, Sr., Wa.!J astonished at the flnan-wait on Frank and get his answer. cial success of t!he Steam Wonder. He said .it The gold is on hand to pay for it, pard," said beat anything he had done in the palmy days the chairman of the committee, when they called the Steam Team or the Tally Ho. on Frank. I think I ought to improve on your inven" I will try to do as you desire," said Frank, I t!ons, father," replied Frank, laughing, "as t "as the people of Valley Town have been kind to had the benefit of thew to start on. I've got us." something In my head that'll work out some "Thank you, pard. We'll make the red-!;kins and l,ty everything else in the shade." bowl wben we g,et it. We'll call it the 'Frank "What Is it?" Reade,' aud stand by her till the earth crumbles Oh, I don't exactly know myself, but look away." out for it-it's a-coming,'' and they both laughed Then the whole town took drinks, and made a heartily. holiday of it. Mr Gregory gave Frank a draft And now, reader, we will leave the brilliant on St. Louis for $10,000, anc' told him he would young inventor with his Steam Wonder, career takA Wonder, too, if he would make one ing over the illimitable plains, making a lholliand for him. dollars a trip, running down to the ranch of th& Two days more were spent at Valley Town, rich stock-raiser to bRSk in the smiles of the during which time Frank was constantly with the beauteous Alice, and spreading terror among the vmmg lady he had rescued from the Comanches. Indians and outlaws, till some other time, when The truth is, be was deeply in love with the dashhis wonderful inventive genius shall call for a iag beauty, and she with him. He promised to pen to record his and adventures. run the Wonder down to her father's ranch in the fall and' Hpend a week there. (THE END.l an.d :Books. HOW TO FLIRT.-J'ust out. The arts and wiles of flirtation are fully explained by this little book. Besides the various methods of hand kerchief, fan, glove, parasol, window, and hat flirtations, it contains a full list of the language and sentiment of flowers, whieh is interesting to everybody, both old and young. You cannot be happy without one. Price 10 cents. Address Frank Tousey, publishr, 34 and 36 Nortk Moore street, New York. Box 2780. HOW '110 DO TRICKS.The great book of magic and card tricks, con .. full instructions of all the leading card tricks of the day, also the m)st popular :nagical illusions as performed by our leading m&giciuns; every boy should obtain a copy, as it will both amuse and instruct. Fo-r sale by all newsdealers, or will be sent, postage free, on receipt of 10 cents. Address Frank Tousey, publisher, 34 and 36 Nortb Moore straet. New York. Box 2780. t{OW TO ROW, SAIL AND BUILD A BOAT.-Fully Illustrated. Every boy should know how to row and sail a boat. Full instructions are given in this little book, together with instructions on swimming and companion sports to boating. Price 10 ctJnts. For sale by all liJ.vtQWers in the United States and Canada, or we will send it to filrtr address on receipt of the price. Frank Tousey, publisher, 34 North Moore street, New York. Box 2730. _AA'ND'S STRUGGLES FOR LAND AND LIBERTY.-A new book just issued. biographical sketches of Robert Emmet, Charles Stewart Parnell, 'Grattan, O'Brieh, O'Mahony, Wolfe Tone, and every prominent :patriot. Also interesting and instructive incidents in the history of Erm's Isle. Price of book by mail, 10 cents. Postage paid by us. Everyl:>ofail price 10 cents, or sent, postage free, upon receipt o price. Frank '.l'ousey, publisher, 34 and 36 North Moore street, New York, Box 2730. t!OW TO HUNT AND FISH.-The most complete hunting and flsbint guide ever published. It contains full instructions about guns, hunt ing dogs, traps, trapping, and fishing, together with descriptions ot game and fish. Price 10 cents. For sale by ail newsdealers in the United States and Canada, or sent, postpaid, to your address, O'l re ceipt of price, by Frank Tousey, publisher, 34 and 36 North Moore street, New York. Box 2730. HOW TO BECOME BEAUTIFUL.-One of the brightest and most val. uable little books ever given to the world. Everybody wishes to know how to become beautiful, both male and female. The secret is simple and al:w.ost oostless. Bead this book, and be convinced. "How to Become Beautiful." Price ten ce.1ts For sale by book and nAwsdeal ers, or send ten cents to Frank Tousey, 34 and 36 North Moore street, New York. and it will be mailed to yc.ur address. J)OSt paid.. HOW TO WRITE LOVE LETTERS.-A most complete littls book, con tainipg full directions for writing love lett em, and when to use them; also giving specimen lett-ers for both the young and old. Price 10 cents. For sale by all newsdealers, or sent to your addresscpostage free, on receipt of the price. Address Frank Tousey, publiSher, Btl and 36 North Moore street, New York, Box 2730.


The Best 5 Cent Detective Library YOUNC SLEUTH LIBRARY. Issued Every Saturday. Each Number Complete. Rea d All About This Wonderful Young D etective in the Following Stories Which Are t Now On S ale: 1. Young Sleuth; or, The Inspector's Right Hand Man. 2. Young Sleuth in Chinatown; or, 'fhe Mystery of an Opium Den 3 Young Sleuth on the Rail; or, Working Against the 'frain Robbers 4. Young Sleuth and the Beautiful Actress; or, The Diamond Thieves of New York. 5. Young Sleuth's Best Bargain; or, $20,000 for One Night's Work. 6. Young Sleuth's Night Trail; or, The Slums of New York. 7 Young Sleuth Behind the Scenes; or, The Keen Detective's Great Theater Case. 8 Young Sleuth and the Widow in Black; or, Tracking a Child Stealer of New York. 9. Young Sleuth as a Hotel Detective; or, Solving the Terrible Mystery of Room 17. 10. Young Sleuth After Stolen Millions; o r, The Keen Detective and the Safe Blowers. 1 11. Young Sleuth and the Dashing Girl Detecti ve; o r, Workin g with a Lady Agent of Scotland Yard. 12. Young S leuth's Ghost; or, The Keerl Detective and the Confidence Quee'n 13. Young Sleuth's Triple Case; or, Piping the Mysterious 3 14. Young Sleuth's DragNet; or. Seimng a Desperate Gang. 15. Young Sleuth and the Masked Lady; or, The Queen o f the Avengers. 16. Young Sleuth and the Blood Stained Card; or, Shadowed by the Ace of Hearts. 17. Young Sleuth on the Midnigh t Express; or, The Crime of the T unnel. 1 8 Young Sleuth in the Prize Ring; or, The Keen Detective' s Figh t for a Life Fun by the Bushel in Every Number of THE 5 CENT COMIC LIBRARY. THE ONLY CO] IIC LIBRARY PUBLISHED IN THE WORLD. Iss ued Ever y Sat urd ay. Each N umb et a Comtle t e Story. L ook Through Your Newsdealer's S tock of T his Library and M ake'Your Selection. 'l'HE F OLLOWING ARE NOW ON SALE: 1 Two of New York; or, The Funny Side of Everr I thiflg, Pi, Tom 'Ieaser 2. Cheeky Jim, the Boy From Chicago; or, Nothing roo Good for Ilim, by Sam Smiley 3. Gymnastic Joe; or, Not a Bit Like His Uncle, by Tom 'l'easer 4. Shorty; or, Kicked Into Good Luck, by Peter Pad 5, Mama's Pet ; or, Always In It, by Sam Smiley 6. Tommy Bounce, the Family Mischief, by Peter Pad 7 Dick Quack, the Doctor's Boy ; or, A Hard Pill To Swallow, by Tom Teaser 8. Shortyin Luck, by Peter Pad 9 Casey From Ireland; or, A Green Son of the Old Sod, by Tom Teaser 10. Skinny, the Tin Peddler, by Tom Teaser 11. Millions In It; or, Something New Every Minute, by Sam Smiley 12. The Mulcahey Twins, by Tom Teaser 13. 'l'he Village Sport; or, Two te One on Everything, by Sam Smiley 14. One of the Boys of New York; or, The Adventures of Tm'nmy Bounce, by Peter Pad 15. Toll'\, Dick and Dave; or, Schooldays in New York, by Peter Pad 16. Touchemup Academy; or, Boys Who Would Be Boys, 17. Corkey.; or, The Tricks and Travels of a Supe, 18. Three Jacks; or, 'rhe Wanderings of a Waif, 19. Shorty Junior; or, The Son of His Dad, 20. Mulligan's Boy, by Sam Smiley by Tom Teaser by Tom Teaser by Peter by Tom Of. Course You Have Heard About FRANK READE, JR., THE GREAT INVENTOR! Read About H i s Thrilling With His Wonderful Machines in the FRANK READE LIBRARY. Pric e 6 Cents Issued Every Saturday. EVERY A COMPLETE STORY. THE 1'0LLOWING HAVE B EEN ISSUED: I. Frank Reade, Jr., and His New Steam Man; o r, The Young 9 Frank Reade, J r., With His New St.eam Horse i n t h e Great Inventor' s Trip to the Far West, by" Noname American Dese r t ; or, The Sandy T r a il of Death, 2. Frank Reade, Jr., With His New Steam Man i n N o Man's by" Non ame" !land; or, On a Mysteri o u s Trail by" Noname" 10. Frank Reade, J r With His New Steam Horse and the Mvs 8. Frank Reade, Jr., With His New Steam Man in Centr a l tery of the Underground Ranch, l;)_y N oiiame America, by" Noname" 11. Frank Reade, J r., With His New Steam Horse I n Search of 4. Frank Reade, Jr., With His New Steam Man in Texas; or, an Ancient Mine, by" Noname" Chasing the Train Robbers, by" Noname" 12. Frank Reade and His Steam Man of the Plains; o r, The Terror of the West, by "N oname" 5 Frank Reade, Jr., With His New Steam Man in or, 13. Frank Reade, Jr. With His New Steam Horse in the North Hot Work Among the Greasers, by "Nonallle" west; or, Wild Adventur es Among the Blackfeet, 6. Frank Reade, Jr. With His New Steam Man Cliasing a by N oname" Gang of "Rustlers;" or, Wild Adventures in Montana, 14. Frank Reade and H i s Steam Horse, by" Noname" by" Noname" 15. Frank Reade Jr.'s Electric Air Canoe; or The Search for the 7. Frank Reade, Jr. With His New Stllam Horse; or, The V1.1.lley of D iamonds, by "Noflame" Search for a Million Dollars. A Story of Wild Life in 16. Frank Reade and His Steam Team, by "Non arne" New Mexico, by" Nona me" 17. Frank Reade Jr.'s New Electr ic Submarine Boat" The Ex 8 Frank Reade, Jr. With His New Steam Horse Among the p l orer;" or, To No rth Pol e Under the Ice, by" Nonam< Cowb oys; or, the Leagu e of the Plains, by" Noname" 18. Frank Reade and H i s Steam Tally-Ho, by "Noname" All the above'libraries a r e fo r s a l e by all newMe a l ers in the United States a n d C a nada, or sent t o your addr ess, post paid, o n receipt o f p rice by P. 0. Box 2730 FRANK TOUSEY, Publisher, 34 & 36 North Mnore Street, New York.


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