Jack Lightfoot in the box; or, The mascot that "hoodooed" the nine

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Jack Lightfoot in the box; or, The mascot that "hoodooed" the nine

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Title:
Jack Lightfoot in the box; or, The mascot that "hoodooed" the nine
Series Title:
All-Sports Library
Creator:
Stevens, Maurice
Place of Publication:
New York
Publisher:
Winner Library
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Language:
English
Physical Description:
1 online resource (31 p.) 28 cm.: ;

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Subjects / Keywords:
Dime novels. ( lcsh )
Sports stories, American. ( lcsh )
Athletic clubs -- Fiction ( lcsh )
Genre:
serial ( sobekcm )

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Source Institution:
University of South Florida
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
A46-00018 ( USFLDC DOI )
a46.18 ( USFLDC Handle )
025837563 ( ALEPH )
76174284 ( OCLC )

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serial

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P bl h Not T each the Amerrcsn 1>oy bow t o becvme Bf1 atblete, and lay the fou ndation for a Constlh1tlon greater than nun: u IS ers e. of the Unite d Stat es."-Wise sayings from "Tip Top." T h ere has never been a time when the boys of this great c:ountry took so keen a n interest in all manly and health-giving sports as the y do to-day. As proof of this witness the record-breaking throngs that attend college struggles o n the gridiron, as well as athletic and baseball gam es, and other tests o f endurance and skill. In a multitude of other channels this love for the "lif e strenuo us" is making itself manifest, so that, as a nation, we are rapidly forging to the front as seekers of honest sport. Recognizing this "handwriting on the wall, we have concluded that the time has arrived to give this vast army of young enthusiasts a publication devote d exclusively to invigorating out-door life We feel we are justified in anticipating a warm response from our sturdy American boys, who are sure to revel in tbe stirring phases of sport and adventure, through which our characteu pass from week to week. ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY Issued Weellly, By Subscription Sa.so per year. Entered acc o rdin8" t11 Act of Con8"1"eSS in the year rqo5 in the 0(/ice of the Librarian o/ Conl{res s Washinrfon, D. C., by THE WINNER LIBRARY Co., r65 Wes t F i:fteentll.St ., New York, N. Y. No. 30. NW YORK, September 2, 1905. Price Five Cents. JACK LI6HTFOOT IN THE BOX; OR, The Mascot That ''Hoodooed'' the Nine. By MAURICE STEVENS. CHARACHRS IN THIS STORY. Jack Lightfoot, the be"t '111-round athlete in Cranford or vicinity, a lad clear of eye, clean of s/'eech, and, after he had conquered a few of his faults, possessed of a acuity for doing things while others were talkill that by degrees caused him to be looked upon as the natural l eade'!' in all the sports Young America delights in-a boy who in learning to conquer himself put the power into his hands to wrest victory from others. Tom Lightfoot Jack's cousin, and sometimes his rival; though thei!' striving for the mastery was a!w .. ys of the friendly, generous kind. Tom was called the H Book\'Al orm" by his fellows, on account of his love for studying such secrets of as practical observers have discovered and published; so that he possessed a fund of general knowledge calculated to prove useful when his wandering spirit took him abroad into strange lands. Ned Skee n of impulsive. nervous temperament, one of those who followed the newcomer, Birkett, being dazzled by the dash of his manner, and the free way in which he flung money around. Lafe Lampton, a big, hulking chap, with an ever present craving for something to eat. Lafe a lways bad his appetite along, a n d p"oved a stanch friend o f our h e r o through tilick and thin Kate Strawn, and Nellie Conner, some of the girl s a t Cranford. Phil Kirtland, Jack's former rival, but who just at present was wor ing on ball team with Lightfoot. Nat Kimball, an undersized fellow, whose hobby was the study of jiu-jitsu, and who had a dread of germs. Brodie Strawn, a member of the Cranford baseball team. Jubal Marlin, a Yankee lad whose l ove for money got him into many scrapes. Wiison Crane, son of the town doctor, whose appearance was not unlike the bird his name indicated. Mack Reming t on, a young hu5tling reporter. N i c k Flint, leader of the tough element in Cranford. Kid Casey, the "wizard pitcher of Tidewater. CHAPTE R I. THE FALL OF JUBE AND WILSON. "Here's to luck!" roared Jub al. "May t he Cran ford nine jis t eve rl asti n l y squash t h e Tidewa t e r Tigers in tew b u g du s t! Ile h eld u p a s m all g l ass c ontamm g liquor. Wilso n C r ane h eld u p a n other. "Hip, hip, h ooroa r h e how l ed. The ot h e r boys i n the roo m h eld up g l asses an d yelled for the s uc cess o f C r a nford. "May the C ra nfo r d nin e m a k e 'e m tu c k their t ails betwee n the ir l egs a n d run l i ke a tin c a nne d purp Jubal went o n "Bu t if t h ey' re sq u as h ed into b-bu g du s t h ow can th ey run?" Wilso n o bj e ct ed. H i s face was flushe d a n d hi s t o n g ue s tutte r e d a little. Wi lson a n d Juba l h ad fa llen i nt o the toils again. A bout them at the table sat several members of the

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z 1\LL-SPORTS Gang, among them and leading them bein g 'ick F lint, the boy of the Apache face nd tiger heart. All were in Tidewater, n the morning of the clay of the great baseball game between Tidewater and Cranford. The last time the Cranford nine had come to Tide water had witnessed their overwhelming defeat. To day they hoped to win a great victory and take out the sting of that memory of defeat. This was known all over Cranford, and was the gen eral desire of the Cranford people. But not of all of them. Among those who hoped for Cranford's defeat were Delancy Shelton and Reelward Snodgrass. And these two had hired Nick Flint a nd certain other mem bers of the Gang to get Wilson and Jubal intoxicated so that they could not play in the game of the after noon. 'i\Tilson and Jube were two of the best players; Wilson was a great runner on bases, and Jubal, being left-handed, was a puzzle to the pitcher. By eliminat ing these two, Delancy and Reel expected to so weaken the nine that another defeat even more overwhelming, perhaps, would be registered against Cranford. They 11 d Jack Lightfoot, and as a consequence felt an in tense desire to humiliate him, and they had been able to think up nothing else that was promising. "No, of course, if they're squa s hed intew bug dust they can't run," Jubal agreed, answering 'i\Tilson. "'Ve'll drink to the bug dust. Here's h o pin' that they'll be squashed-squashed from the time they take up the bat until the very end." ". nd may they never rise again!" howled vVilson, enthusiastically. T hen they drank, thus putting themselves to some extent in a c o ndition to make impossible their wish. ick Flint winked knowingly to one of his a s so ciates. "Fill 'em up again!" he urged; and took up the b o t tle to pour more liquor into the glasses. But jus t then Jubal leaped to his feet with a squeal of de light and ran to the window. Beneath it a hand organ had opened up; and wh e n he loo ked fr o m the window he saw a dark-faced man clown there, grinding away at the organ, and a monkey in reel clothing hopping about c ollecting pennies. That was enough for Jubal, in his then cated condition. He jumped for the stairway. "Here," called Nick, "don't go until we've finished thi s ''hi sky!" Jubal he s itated a moment, lookin g back as Nick p oured some more of the l i quor into the g!asses. The temptation to ret urn and have an ot her drink was strong o n him. Before Juba l and \Vil so n became members o f J a ck Lightfo o f s nine, they had been member s of the Gang. This was th e thing which had now given Nick his means of getting a hold on th e m once mor;{: Jack had never po s itively o rdered them to stop as sociating with the fell o w s who were kn ow n as the Gang, but both Jubal and Wilson knew that if they drank and made fools of themselves their stay in the nine would b e very brief. Hence, they had for some time now kept clear of Nick Flint and his reckless crew who were known to be among the worst boys in Cranford. But meeting Nick it seemed to them by chance and being in a somewhat hilarious mood because they had c o me over t o Tidewater for a good time, they had permitted themselves to be tempted by Nick and their former friends to go to that upper room where the sampling of a bottle of whisky naturally followed. They had not intended to become intoxicated. Very few pers o ns start out with the deliberate intenti o n of getting drunk. "Come on back and we'll finish this!" said Nick, per s ua s ively. The h a nd organ was sq ueaking forth its tune 'N other time ," cried Jubal ; "I got tew go daown naow and see that m on k, b y jings !" He hopped through the do o rway and went plunging down the stairs In spite of the attempt of Nick and the others t o re strain him 'i\Tilson Crane leaped up and followed Jubal. vVhen Jubal and vVilso n reached the sidewalk they saw several children c o llected about the hand organ man, and the monkey hopping alqng the sidewa lift in g it s little red cap at intervals and holding out its cup for pennies. Jubal, who had the reputati o n of being close-fisted was never so when he had been drinking. He thr'ew a quarter into the monkey's cup ; and lau g hed when the monk sage ly bit it as if to test its genuineness. 'Vilson contributed a dime. The n Jubal made a lun ge for th e h an d organ, and, pus hin g the man aside, he b ega n t o turn the crank. "Switch it ontew an other tun e !" he commanded. The h and orga n man, who appeared to be an Italian c o mplied and Jubal began t o grind out dole fully "The Wearing of the Green." \ Vhen J uba l h ad ground this out for a time he or de red th e man t o "switch on another tune."

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ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. 3 The man had for so m e m o ments been eying both Jubal and \i\Tilso n in rather curi o u s fashion. "You taka you'self away," he c o mmanded, angrily. "Nit-not much! said Jubal, clinging to the organ. "Di s -a my org cried the man: "You give-a me my org o r I break -a head!" "Hold on to it!" s houted Wilson. "By hemlock, ain't I?" He looked at the man, who was again trying to push him away. "Didn't I give ye a quarter j ist now?" "Yes, but that not-a buy
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ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. His cap came off hi s h e ad, a nd h o l d ing it out he gan to s oli c i t mo n ey "You f ello w s are goi n g to ge t yo u r e l v e s int o ::i. who le peck of trou ble i f y ot: d cu't l oo k out, warned the storekeepe r w h o had c o m e round t h e c orner an d now sto o d l oo kin g on. "You haven't any license to play a hand o r g an a n d c o llect m o ney here ." "We' ve g o t a licen.s e b jings, tew have fun wherever we can find it! s h o uted Jubal. "Shell aout, yeou peo ple ; we' v e b orrerecl this hand organ and monkey fer a few minutes and we're w o rkin fer him." "Fo r th e m o nkey?" s aid s o me one "Great h e ml o ck, fer the o w ne r o f the organ an
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ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. 5 a day's work of ten haours J ew-rusalem I'm goin' tew buy a hand organ and a mo nk ey and go intew this bizness for good Gol-darned if I don't! You'll go intew it with me, Wilson, won't ye?" "Sur e said Wilson, counting the money and drop ping it into his pocket. "Make anot her collectin' trip, yeou and the monkey; this crowd has got more'n a d ollar in it s jeans, an' I know it." "Don't you think you'd better put the monkey and the o rgan in a store somewhere," sugge s ted Nick Flint, "and telephone to the police?" He wanted to ge t Jubal and Wilso n upstairs a g ain and have them s ampl e" the rest of that bottle of whisky Out here the effe ct of the liquor would soon wear off, h e knew. Even now they began to show signs that they would soon be thinking seriously of the con sequences of what they were doing. Just n ow they were on l y bent on having a good time "Put the organ in the s t ore and stop the collectin' and the fun? Jubal demanded "Nit, we don't! Shell aout there, yeou fellers, while I p l ay ye a nother tune! This organ's got the colic, I guess, by t he way it groans, so metimes. But I'll turn o n ano ther tune A h! there she comes-'The Iris h \i\Tasherw om an !' I !mowed I'd dig up somethin' lively thi s time That tune's worth another dollar, the way I play it. o tice the effect, gents! I'm no tw o-by-twice Eyetalian, bu t a re g ular music per fessor, and I'm givin' ye yeour m o ney's wu'th. So, shell aout and be liberal! \,\Til son, yeo u an' the m onk pa s s the contribution boxes ag'in.'1 Wilson went among the crowd again, yelling to them to be l ibera l and shell out, and got another ten cents, and a coat button. Jubal stared at that but ton. "By o-ranny, we've milked thi s crowd dry, and w e'd better be mo v in' on. \i\Thich way did that Eyetalian go? We'll oiler him. But, by cracky, we' re
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6 ALL-SPORTS LIER. ARY. other collection" stirred strongly within him. But he reflected that the mo ney would not be his, even after it was collected. A sense of honor would com pel him and Wilson to turn it over to the owner of the organ whenever that elusive individual put in an ap pearance. "By granny, I guess I will go upstairs!" he said at last, in response to Flint's repeated urgings. "These sidewalks air hot as blazes, and I'm gittin' all sweated up. \Nilson, how' re ye feelin ?" "Chipper," said \Nilson; "but maybe we'd better go upstairs and wait there for the man to come back." "Yeou're chipper because yeou haven't been luggin' this blamed old hand organ araound. It's beginnin' tew weigh abaout a ton." "But think of the money!" some one yelled from the crowd. "By granny, so Jong's we're collectin' it fer the owner of the organ that don't appeal tew me so much as it did, when I git tired." l There was a snicker of unbelief. 1 "Oh, he'll get it, all right!" another shouted, skeptic ally. "You bet he will!" said Wilson. "We're not thieve s if--" "If you are fools !" was exclaimed, as a finish to Wilson's uncompleted sentence. "'vVell, we ain : t goin' tew quarrel with yeou !" cried Jubal. "Say what yeou want Yeou've been good, ah' yeou've been generous. 'vVe're jist goin' upstairs tew rest. Mebbe we'll come aout bimeby an' play s0me more fer ye. An' if yeou see that Eyetalian, j ist hand him the word that we're right up here with hi s prop erty, an' he can have it'any time by callin' fer it." The crowd laughed, while some jeered "I guess we'd better go upstairs !" said wil son, be ginning to be anxious. Forthwith they sta rted upstairs, Jubal carrying the hand organ, with the monkey perched on it. The l itt l e animal had grown quiet and seemed now perfectly satisfied with hi s new masters; a thing that they thought rather strange Yet he would permit of no petting; but grO\ vled and showed his teeth whenever anyone sought to become too familiar. CHAPTER III. SOME SURPRISES. Near the he ad of the stairs Jubal caught his toe and tripped, falling fornard. As he qid so the organ p itc h e d from his shou l der, and went bumping and clat tering down the stairway The monkey abandoned it with a chattering squeal as it fell; and hopped to Jubal's shoulders, v.-hile he still lay prostrate. \Vi Ison, who chanced to be behind Jubal, was almost knocked clown b y the falling hand organ; and no w with some grumbling, he went back downstairs to get it. Jubal scrambled t.o his feet, trying to laugh, and put his hand on the head of the frightened monkey. It s h owed its teeth, and seemed about to sink them in his hand; then thought better of it, ancl permitted him to caress its head. Several of the boys were laughing. But Jubal felt too uneasy now to laugh. "I bet that gol-darncd old hand organ is busted intew giblets!" he grumbled. The words were hardly out of his mouth when a roar of surprise came from Wilson Crane He smothered it, when he saw that several people had followed him and his friends to the l ower door. Then he caught up the hand organ, and, carrying it in his arms, moved his long legs quickly up the stairs. His big eyes were shining with excitement. Jubal stood awaiting him, with Nick Flint. The others were going on into the room, which Flint had hired with Delancy Shelton's money. "See there!" whispered Wilson, in a tense tone. "The hand organ's busted !" Jubal exclaimed, anxiously. "It seems to be, for a fact," observed Flint, who saw the hole which Wilson had indicated. "But it s not that-it's not that!" said Wilson, in that tone of suppressed excitement. "Come on in and I'll show you. Don't let any of those fellows down there follow !" He jumped into the room, and, Nick and Jubal fol lowing, Nick closed the door and stood with his back against it. "What is it?" Jube demanded. "By granny, I reckon we'll have tew pay fer bu'stin' the hand organ!" "You mean you'll have to pay for it-you and \Vil son," said one of the boys. "But, see here!" It was Wilson who spoke, and then he brought from the interior of the old hand organ a big roll of paper money. As one of the boys said afterward, Jubal's eyes stuck out "so that you could have shaved them off with a shingle."

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LIBRARY. Nick Flint uttered an oath of and the boys all crowded aqout Wilson and the hand organ. "I found the money right in the r e," v\Tilscn palp i tated. "vV h en I stooped t o p ick up the hand organ, I saw it was broken, and there I saw t hi s rol l." He held it up. "Findin's keep in' said one of the young fellows. "\i\T e'll divvy, and skip out of here." "Nit!' cri ed Jubal, though h e was starin g at the m o n ey hungrily. "\i\T e ain't thieves yit. I allaow that m oney belongs to the owner of the han d organ." ,,..... Nick Flint's dark eye s shone greedily. "How much i s it, do you suppose?" he asked. Wilson put the r o ll on the littl e table and began to count it, with the ot her fellows hanging ove r him. While he was thu s engaged, Juba l s lip ped back t o the door, turned the key in the l ock, and the n hun g his cap on the ke y, thus covering up the keyhole, so that no one c o uld see into the room from t h e landing. Wilson was counting the money, when h e cam e back, and he watc h ed with excited int e r est as the big b ills were peeled off one after another and flung on the table. "Hands off !" cried Jubal, as some of the fellows k gan to reach out to exanine the m o n ey One of the hands thus stretc h ed fo r t h belonged t o Nick Flint. "Hands off!" Juba l warned again. \Vi Iso n faound that money and he's g o in' t o handle it. I nomernate him fer treasurer of tliis here club till the owner of the money comes amblin' along "It l ooks like counterfeit," explained Flint; "I wanted t o see whether it was or not!" "Hands off!" sa id Jubal. "\ \'hether it's caounter feit or nut ain't any of aour bizn ess as I see, so long as don't bel o n g tew u s." "Do you think I'd s t ea l it?" N ick flung at him. Jubal tried t o grin. He knew that Nick w as a thief by instinct. "Well, yeo u might! 'Twas me an' \i\Tilso n t o o k possession of that hand organ, an' we've go t te w see that the owner g it3 his money back when he comes fer it. Otherwise"-he tried to smile, to mollify Flint "we might be h e lt r esponsible fe r the l oss ye see, if there should be a!1y. N ick Flint g ave him an unpl easant l ook. "You weren't always so infernal 'honest, J ube Marlin! I've !mo wed you to s t ea l apples and melons, and candy from the stores a nd cak e s from t h e baker's!" "But never money," said Jubal--"never money! What stc alin' I clone was :fer a lark, ye see. l e r stole anything in earnest "And I n ever did!" Wilson Crane had his long nose clmn1 over the rol l o f m o n ey, ste adil y c o untin g, w hil e the other boj 3 lo oked on, hardly any of t h em daring to breathe. 'Tb.: whole thin g see med too r emarkab l e for b elief. A n d in the eyes of m ore than o ne was the same thievish light seen in the black orbs of Nick F l in t. The exciting experiences of the past mi nute or so bad driven out of Jubal's brain the la st befogging fume s of the liquor: He began to think now tha t h e had acted the part of a fool, and the discovery of t hat m oney made him uneasy. He va lued money to o much to wish to have a large su m belonging to some one el s e in his possession and so stand the risk 6f having it sto l en "There's a tho u sand dollars, alrea dy," said \.Vils o n still counting. The biil s were heaped up on th e table "I'll b et it' s counterfeit!" said Flint, hungrily. But he saw that Juba l was watching him and h e did not put fo rth his band to take any of i t. "Eleven hundred and forty-three dollars, said vVil son, concluding his counting. It was a fortune, in the eyes of more than one of those boys Jubal found a piece of old paper lying on th e floor "\Vrap it up in this," he sai d to \Vilso n, "and wri t e th e amount on the paper, and put it in y our p ocket!" \.Vilson wrapped the money in t he pap e r and scrib bled the figures. He was about to p u t it in hi s pocket. He, too, had co me pretty well out from under the influ nce of the liquor. "You take it," he said to Juba l st ruck by sudden caution. Jubal hesitated; but when again he saw the black eyes o f N ick Flint fas t ened on it he took the package and rammed it well clown in on e of hi s pockets. Having settied t his matter, t h e boys turned their at tention to the broken hand o rgan, on ly t o d i sco ver t hat it was not broken, but that it had a sec ret pocket or drawer in one end of it, and that this had fall e n open, o r been kn o ck e d open, by the j olting fall down the stairs. "By g r anny, I'll put it right back in there, where it belongs!" sa id Jubal, taking the roll of money from h i s pock e t and p lacing it ca r efu lly in thi s receptacle, w hich h e clo s ed as carefully, hearing the hidd en spring sli d e i:1to place. "Fellers, this goes to show h aow good a thing this organ grindin' is. Over eleven hundred do!-

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.. u ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. Jars in there, ye see; an' I b e t that Eyetalian c o llared every cent of it from the crowds that gethered tew hear him play." He dropped back into a chair and surveyed the hand organ, which seemed an ordinary piece of property now. The monkey had hopped to the table, and now sat there, looking curiously about with its shrewd, little, gray eyes. "Don't it make yeou feel curious," said Jubal, "to think of it? That feller goin' raound playin' the pov erty trick, and the monkey beggin' fer him? That's what it is-beggin' And peopie givin' money tew him, when more'n nine times aout of ten he had more money than they did. But, by jacks, it makes me think what a good bizness it'd be tew faller-fer money makin' Blamed if I ain't most tempted tew git me a hand organ and a monkey and try the trick. Why, a feller could lay up enough in a few months tew start hisself in bizness in the regular way. He could, for certain!" "Have another drink!" Nick Flint invited, pushing a half-filled glass of liquor toward him across the table. The monkey sniffed at the whisky, and drew back, chattering. Jubal laughed. "If that critter's got sense enough to let that stuff alone, I allaow I have." The boys were much interested in the monkey and eagerly watched every movement it made. "Oh, have a drink!" Flint urged. "Don't be a fool!" When Jubal would touch no more of the liquor Flint begged 'Wilson to have another drink with him; and he drank some himself, smacking his lips to show how good it was. But a sense of responsibility concerning that mone y kept Wilson from again touching the liquor. Some of the other fellows in the room drank, and urged Jubal and Wilson to join them. "I ain't gain' tew drink any more until I see haow this thing comes aout," said Jubal, with a sturdy air. "I'm allaowin' we hain't seen the eend of this thing yit. That policeman they talked abaout hain't showed up, but when he does he may want tew arrest us." "Oh, you can trust to little Jack Lightfoot to get you out," said Flint, with a sneer. Jubal did not like the tone, and he gave Nick a sharp look. Seeing that neither Wilson nor Jubal would drink a g ain, so me o f th e b o y s w e nt back int o the str eet, say ing they wanted to see what was going to happen. Suddenly a cry was rai s ed that the Italian was re turning. Jubal and Wilson jumped to the window to look out, but saw only some people gathered below on the side walk. "That was jist a scare, said Jubal, grinning, as he came back. "I'm thinkin' that orye of a our own fellers hollered that." Nick Flint was bending over the table, talking ear nestly in whispers with one of his close friends. Jubal glanced at the hand organ by the wall and at the monkey on the table. The monkey chattered and s howed its teeth. Apparently the hand organ had not been di s turbed. Jubal began to fondle the monkey, trying to make friends with it. "By granny, I allaow the fellers would l i ke tew h av e yeou f e r ma s c o t of the n i n e," h e s aid, rubbing its h air and drawin g his hand softly over its head. "Haow' d you like that, monk ? He turned to the other fellows in the room, and saw that Nick Flint had thrust the whisky bottle into his hip pocket and wa s mo ving toward the door. "I think I'll go down and look round, said Flint, nervously. Jubal glanced a g ain at the hand organ, and was sure it had not been touched. "Jist yell the word up, if yeou see the Eyetalian o r the c o p comin'," he requested. Flint went out, closing the door after him, with out speaking. Then one of the other boys-the one Nick had been talking with in whisp e rs:-ro s e and went out and Ju bal saw one of those remaining look quickly in the di rection of the hand o r ga n. A feeling that s o m ething was wrong came to him. Taking the monkey on his arm, he moved over t o th e hand organ, and, finding the spring in the hidden door, he opened it. The package of money was gone! CHAPTER IV. THE LOSS OF THE MONEY. With a bell o w of rage, Jubal Marlin dropped the hand organ and the monkey to the floor and leaped for the doorway. Wilson Crane, who w as at the window, looked ab out just in time to see him van i shing, and he saw the

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ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. 9 monkey on the floor, chattering with wrath, for the sudden way in which Jubal had tossed it clown had enraged it. A glance served to s h ow Wilson that the hand organ's secret drawer had been opened, and he spoke to the o ne young fellow who still remained in the room with him. "Who opened that?" he asked, as he jumped toward the hand o rgan. "I don't know !" "Well, the money 's gone!" Wilson snapped "Is it? Maybe you think that I took it?" "Did you see anyone handling thi s organ?" Wilson demanded, sharply. "Only J ube Marlin. He had it just now." He arose from his seat at the table, with a slinking l ook that proclaimed guilty knowledge, but Wilson was too excited at the m o ment t o n ot ice this. Reaching the stairs almost at a jump, Wilson saw Jubal at the foot, and saw him spring out into the street; then Wilson's long legs took him flying clown the stairway and soon lan ded him at Jubal's side. 'Jubal was looking about in the street. "The money's gone," he said to Wilson, "arn ; l I'm bettin' that Nick took it took it that time when that feller hollered daown here and me an' yeou went to the winder. Somebody ope ned the organ and t oo k the money wh ile we was there, and I know 'twas Nick. And naow he's s kun aout." Nic k could not be seen, nor were any of the other boys who h ad been in that upper room visible except the so l itary member of the Gang now descending the stairs after Wilson. Jubal turned on him fiercely in the hall at the foot of the sta irs. "What do yeou know abaout this?" he demande
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IO ALL-SPORTS LIER1\RY. 0 course, we'd be charged with iakin' t h e money And it would look natural that we did when the owner finds it 's gone. vVhat d'ye say? 'Twoulcln't be sen si ble, ner the square thing, I reckon, if we was tew cut aout?" \ Vilson began to see that he had placed himself in a Yery embarrassing sit uation. His father, Dr. Miles Crane, was one of the reputable ?i1d re spect ed citizens of Cranford, and his family connections were good. Wilso n had been called "wild," and hi s father had more than o nc e taken him to task for associating with suc h fellows as Nick Flint, but whatever vViison h::id done h e had never openly sullied his reputation for honesty, t hough h e had done things that came very close to the thiev ing line more than once, as when he had stolen liquor from his father's office with whic h to treat the members of the Gang. But what would his fat her say now, and what would his friends think and s ay, if he s h o uld be arrested, charged with stealing that m o ney ( The sweat came out on hi s face as he thought of it. The monkey was chattering an g rily from the top of the organ when they re-entered the room. He did not like to be left alone ip that way, with the door closed on him. Jubal went over and tried to pat him on t h e head, but he growled in a threatening way. "Even the monk's gone back on us!" said J nbe, try ing to seem cheerful. 'Nilson came o ve r, and t oget h e r they reinspected the o rgan's secret drawe r h opi n g against h op e that the money was there and they had overlooked it. Bu t the money was gone. The temp ta tion was again strong on Jubal t o bolt from the pl::ic e a n d seek an escape from this unplea s ant s ituati o n in a cowardly flight and he said as much to Wilson Crane. "The trot1ble is, J ube, that everybody on the street that we we re from Cranford and members of the nine. If we hadn't had these baseball clothes on!" "Yes, that's so, tew. \i\Te're in f e r i t, I guess That hand organ man will be fer arrestin' us, wh e n he comes back. But, by granny, I ain't goin' tew ji st lay daown an
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ALL-SPORTS LIBR _0\RY. Il You know he doesn't lik e N i ck Flint and this d r inking bizness "He never said tew me that he didn't." "Well, we know it, j us t the same." "He's baound tew find it aout, and it won't make it no worse tew go tew him an' tell him. \tVoulcln't s u r prise me if it got intew the Tidewater papers. Jew rusalem, if it sh o uld come aout in the paper this after n oon!" Jube a lm ost paled at the thought. "Well, this makes me swea r off o n drinking!" "Me, tew, by g r anny We wouldn't made s ich pe s ky fools of aours elves but for that whisky I reckon i f I had an other drink, though, I'd feel more like seein' thi s thing th rough." "Not another drop for me!" "What do yeou say tew goin' tew see J ack abaout it?" "I don't know." Wil son was weakening. "He ain't goin tew b e rough o n u s abaout it ; 'tai n't his way. And he'll know it, anyhaow. He's ba ound tew find it out. Or clew ye o u think we'd better hunt Nick Flint up and paound the very old dickens aout of him, and make him fork over that money? I know he's got it." "I don't know what to say." \Nilson's big eyes were even bigger t h an u s ual and his long, thin face looked distressed "We'll go tew Jack first, and then we' ll find Nick, if he' s in this ta o wn, and we'll hammer the wadd in' a ut of him. \tVhat dew yeou say tew t hat?" "\i\ T ell, we've g o t to do somet hing," \ Vilson agreed. "There'll be an office r a long here pretty s oon hunting for us, and I don't care to be pinched and maybe landed in j ai l for this thing." CHAPTER V. TELLING JACK LIGHTFOOT. When Jubal and 'Wilso n found Jack L i g h tfoo t he wri-; sitting witlt Laft Lampton, Neel Skeen, Tom Lightfoot and some others o n the steps of a boarding l1ouse. J ube carried the red-coated monkey in hi s arms, shielding i t as much as he could from the view of the curi o us, but the hand organ had been l eft behind with the s to rekeepe r who had ventured t o give them some warning advice w hen they interfered with the organ grinder. Both Wi lson and Juba l stopped in he sitat i on when hey saw that Jack was not alone. "I w i sh he was alone," said Wilson. "I feel like runnin' like a tin-canned purp ," Jubal c onfessed \ Nhat do yo u to call ing him out?" "Yes, that's it; yeo u call t e w him, sayin' that we want tew see him a minute." The boys with Jack were already l oo kin g at Jubal and Wi l son, but Jubal's shie ldin g arm k ept them from seeing the mo nk ey. Jack left the group Wilson summo ned him. "\Vhat's up ?" he said, for he could see that Wilson's m an n e r was stra nge and mysterious. Then he beheld the m onkey in J ube's arms, and hi s gray-blue eyes opened in wi de surprise. "Where' cl you get that th\ng ? "That's what we want tew tell yo u ," sa id \i\Tilson hi s l ong, thin face flus h ed. "vValk clow n thi s way, for we don't want the other fellows to hear." J ack stared at the m onkey, a nd it regarded him ke en ly. "How' cl it dew fer a ma s c o t said Jubal lau g hing nervously. "Fine! But w here did yo u get it?" "Borrerecl it," said Juba l m yste ri o u s ly. "It's this way," said Wilson, beginning his explana tion; "we thought we'd have a littl e fun with a hand o rgan man we saw downtown. J ub e wanted to play th e hand o r gan for him and th e man o bjected. Just t o sca r e him I looked straight at him a nd told him that the police were l ooking for him ." "It sca red him all right, tew," sa id Jube. "You'd ought t o seen him go." "Yon scared him so that he left the hand organ?" "And the monkey," added J ube. 'Wilson went on with hi s exp lana ti on Ni ck Flint was in a room upstairs there, with with some other fellows, you kn ow, a nd when the man didn't come back we went up there, taking the monkey a nd the hand organ fo r we didn't wa nt t o leave them on the street." "You'd bee n up there before with Nick, I s uppose? said J ack, dryly. "Y-yes, jus t a little while before. And so we went up there. \Veil, n ea r the head of the s tairs Jubal let the hand organ fall, and it tumbled down the s tairs I went clown to g : et it, and I found, as I thought at first, t hat it had been split open at o ne encl by the fall. And if you'll believe me, there was ove r eleven hund re d dollar s in m o ney in it! I took it upstairs and counted it

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ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. "I don't know that I understand you," said Jack, with a twinkle in his gray-blue eyes. "Tell us vvhat yon know-if you know anything." "Well, they're saying downtown that two of the Cranford baseball boys held up a hand organ man thi s morning a nd robbed him of hi s hand organ and his monkey, and--" "That's a gol-darned lie!" Jubal fired at him. "Then you tell me about it;" Mack requested, ge t ting into a reviewer's attitude. "I don't know anything about it. I'm just trying to find out." "\Vhat were you doing at the police stat ion?" Jack asked. "I th<;mght maybe the fellows had been arrested and I could get track of it there. Rut the police hadn't heard anything about it." "\IV e'll take a walk, then, and talk the thing over, and we'll tell you what we know about it." They turned about, with Mack walking eagerly at their side, pencil and paper still in hand. Jack told him in a few words what had been told to him, but exacted a promise from him before doing so. Macklin was beginning to scribble, when Jack put up his hand and pulled the pencil off the paper. "Remember your promise, Mack! If you're bound to give this thing to some paper you must give it out as I want you to." "I don't want him tew give it aout at all!" Jubal grumbled. "Nor I!" said Wilson. "But, fellows," expostulated Macklin, "see what a sto ry it is, and think of what a sensation it will make! I can get a newspaper beat on that!" "By hemlock, I'll beat yer head in, if yeou do!" "Macklin's going to put this in the paper jnst as I t ell him to," said Jack. "It's a good thing he came along, for I've th ought ont a plan now which will save the necessity of going to the police station and laying in a complaint, and at the same time I think it will bring back that money." :VIack hesitated, fearing a good newspaper story was about to be spoiled, and the other young fellows looked at Jack inquiringly. "You're going to give this story to the Tidewater papers?" "Yes, I want to; and then send it to the Guardian, when I send in the report of the ball game, and per haps wire a stick about it to my New York paper." "Hold back your report to t he Guardian as long as you can, and write something like this for the Tide water press." "Great s c i ssor s a onr names will be in the paper s, after a ll!" Jubal grunted. "We was wantin' tew keep 'em aout." "Say it's reported," said Jack, speaking to Remingt on, "that two young fellows dressed to rese1nb/e mem bers of the Cranford baseball team tackled an organ grinder here in Tidewater to-day, and--" Mack had begun to scribbl e furiously. "And," Jack went on, speaking slowly, "that they took from him his hand organ and his monkey. As it chances, this hand organ man was acquainted with the captain and members of the Cranford nine, to whom he at once reported his loss. The monkey es caped from its captors and was recovered by its owner, but the sum of more than eleven hundred dollars, which was hidden in a secret receptacle 111 the hand organ, was taken from its hiding place and is still miss ing. This is known because 1.he hand organ was found later with this rec eptacle riAed. The owner of the hand organ has reported the matter to the police, and the name of one young fellow, who was a leader of the roughs who attacked him--" "Wow!" said \Nilson, "that's rmt,gh, on us!" "The name of this young fellow is known. He lives in Cranford, and in the past has borne a shady repu tation. The police are now shadowing him, and it is believed that his arrest will follow shortly, when his name and that of his confederate will be brought to light. As he seldom has any money, he will doubtless try to spend some of his ill-gotten gains, and that will help in his identification. That he can escape, or clear himself o f the charge that will be brought against him, is impossible. But it is expected that the proofs of his crime will be found on him when he i taken. "The hand organ man who is an Italian, is aiding in the search. His monkey has been left by him in care of the Cranford nine, and there have been suggestions made to the effect that it will be used this afternoon by the nine as a mascot." Jack smi led as he stopped "How is that?" he asked. Jubal was gasping in bewilderment and amazement, and the big eyes of Wilson Crane had rounded to an unnatural size. Mack continued to scribble for some seconds after Jack ceased speaking. "Gee! You didn't expect me to keep up with that, did you?" he asked, his cheeks flushed. "But I got the point s clown, I think. Say, who were those fellows?" Jack laughed.

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.r\LL-SPORTS J .... 15 "l\Iack, if I s hould tell yo11, yoll':l know m u r e th<111 do Then-then yon don't kn o\\ yo urself?" "I think I now. I'm just building a little fire to try to smoke the chap out of his hole, that's all. If you 'JI put that in "Oh, I'll put it in you bet! But I'd like to know the names of th os e Cranfordites." He turned to Jubal and Wilson. "Needn't c o me tew me," said Jubal; "Jack seems tew know a heap more abaout it than I dew. I hadn't heard all o' that he's been tellin' yeou." Mack looked at his watch. "Jumpin' grass hoppers, I've got to get a move on, if I get this in the Tidewater paper this afternoon. It's about time for them to go to press I'll see you later." He sprinted away, clutching his pad of paper and running for the nearest street car lin Jack laughed. "I suppose it's too bad to put that in the paper. But it can't harm anyone and will give those rascals a s care. You fellows wouldn't want to go now to the police with your story?" "No, by gum!" Jubal answered. "What will the police think when they see that re port?" asked Wilson. "\Ve needn't care for that. They'll laugh, probably, for they'll know it isn't so. What I hope for is that it will scare Nick Flint into returning the money, and it will also bring forward the owner of the hand organ and the monkey, it seems to me, unless he's crooked and has cleared out." "It's the funniest thing, how he ran away just be cause I threatened him with the police!" remarked Wilson. "It is." They moved in the direction of the boarding house where Jack and some other members of the nine in tended to get dinner, and where he had been sitting with his friends when Jubal and Wilson appeared and asked for that private talk. CHAPTER VII. MACK REMINGTON' S NEWS "STORY." The ball grounds at TidewatQr faced t h e bay, which was a beautiful sheet of water, containing th e harb o r, w hich he!
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16 ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. p a per men t o put int o a report things that aren't told to you?" lVIack puffed o ut his apple-red cheeks. "\Veil. that's a sensational s he e t you know-a yel low journal. So, as they like that kind of stuff; I thought I d give i t to 'em hot. Whatever isn't right in it the y'll correct in the next issue A little thing like that doesn't tro uble 'em But I some of you, if you know wou l d tell me who those tvvo C ran ford fel lows were." He l oo ked proudly at the "story" in the paper, \ v hich, with the big-lette r h ead ings, m a de almost a c o lumn. "Do you think that will s mok e 'em out?" he asked. "\Ve're h o pin g so," said Jack. Then they all went on down toward the ball grounds, talking of the report in the paper and of the things which had brought it out, and of how radically it dif fered from the truth as Wil son and Jubal knew it. Mack listened with red cheeks growing still redder "Say," he grumbled, "I think I'm the victim of over confidence; you fooled me! So you think that fellow was Nick Flint? Why didn't you say so? Oh, say, I'll have to hu s tle back to the office of that paper and write another right away." "\!\Tait till after the ball game," Jack urged. "We want t o see if thi s smokes him out of his h o le." As they were about to pa ss through the gate s into the grounds so me o f the Cranford rooters appeared, ha v ipg arrived a littl e while before by train, and Nellie Conner and Kate Strawn drove up in a buggy which had brought them over vVith this cr owd of rooters came Phil Kirtland, Brodie Strawn, Sau l Messenger, Nat Ki11 1ball and sev eral other member s of the nine and s ub s t i tute s None o f them had yet heard the sto ry of th e h an d organ and the monkey, but they s aw the monke y in Jubal 's arms. "Oh, the cute thing!" cried Kate, leaning forward out o f the buggy to look at it. "Where did you get it?" "Faoun
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ALL SPORTS LTBR .\RY. goo d o men, it see m ed, a n d h elped t o make the Cran ford boys feel b ette r n ow. Jack was to pitch, and Lafe was to be behind the bat, and this was of itself an encouraging feature, and, besides, as Jack knew, the members of his nine all o n hand and in good condition, even to Jubal and Wilson. "Fellows, we can do 'em to-day, and I know it!" was what he said. He felt sure of it and that was of itself a great element o f s ucce s s in hi s ca s e vVhen he could make him s elf feel that his nine had more than a fighting chance t o win, he always played better. Jubal led the way out on the diamond, carrying the m o nkey on his shoulders, and all the nine, following him a s he circled round the rubber, sang with fire and s pirit one of Cranford's fighting baseball songs: Glory glory, halleluyah F o r thi s i s Cranford' s d ay!" The m o nkey, without being directed to-perhaps he thought he was with hi s o ld ma ster-lifted his little r ed and feathered cap, a s he sat thus o n J ube's shoulder, and nodded toward the p eople now crowded into the grand stand and the bleachers. A11d the people h o wled and clapped their hands By granny, this ought tew be the best masc o t \Y e eve r had," said Jubal, feeling much better, now that so l ong a time had pa s sed and neither he nor Wil so n h a d been arrested n o r had their names been published i n the papers. "I reck o n we'll adopt it reg'lar, if that Eyetalian d o n t s h o w up. I'd like tew buy it of him, a nyhaow by hemlock! Hav ing "mixed their war medicine," the Cranford nin e began t o s lam the ball around the diamond, for w arming up w o rk. The people were still c o ming upon the grounds and s treamin g t oward the s eat s F rorn the ba y came a plea sant breeze which tem pe red the heat. I t w a s in truth, a d e lightful day, s o far as the \Yeath e r w a s c o ncern e d J a c k s th o u g hts were a good d ea l on N ick F lint and wi'.h o ut r e all y e x pectin g t o see h im there he c o ntinued t o wat ch the p eo ple \\"h o h ad come a nd w e re com i n g. H e h ad n o t wired t o I\:enn edy, th e Cranford c o n s table, t o l oo k for Flint. H e meant t o clo th a t l ate r o r rep ort t o the c o n s tabl e a s soo n as h e got ho m e } -le wa s h o p ing, h o wev e r, that Flint w o u l d a p pe a r with the m o ney, o r wo uld se nd so me o ne t o s peak with him ab o ut it. Perhaps in this he was overconfident. But he was c o untin g o n certa i n w ell-kno wn weaknesses in Nick's s o m ew h at c o wardl y character. Seei n g that he was not likely to be needed as a s ub stitute, as several were on the grounds, Nat Kimball, after taking into hi s possession the monkey, climbed with it into the bleachers and sat dO\Yn with it there, with the rooters and the girls from Cranford. Wheneve r the rooters cheered and the girls shook out their flags Nat would hoist the monkey to his shoul der, when it would doff its little red cap to the shout ing people. The Cranford nine were given first chance at the bat, and Kid Casey, believed by the Cranford boys to have been once a professional pitcher, and known gen erally as "The Wizard Pitcher of the Four-Town League," went into the pitcher's box. T 1 he game opened sensationally. Tom Lightfoot was the first man at the bat. 'Wizard Casey sent ill one of his famous twists, but Tom Lightfoot connected with it at the first crack, lining the ball to right center. The fielder there made a wild run to get it. With out slacking his speed, he dropped his gloved to the ground as if to stop the flying ball, and then raised his hand with the ball in it. Tom Lightfoot had gone to first, taking it with a flying run. "Safe on first!" said the umpire. It was like a bombshell fired into the faces of the Tigers. They apparently believed that the "catch'' of the fielder was really a catch, and besides, they had been given to believe that this umpire would somewhat fa vor them when he had a good chance It bewildered them to see that he was doing nothing of the kind, but seemed inclined to s w a y tot, a rd C r a nford. So it ap peared to them a n d i t s eemed t o t hem further--or so they claimed-that t he b all had be e n caught. They were thrO\-vn at o nce into an ugly mood. The p itc her jumped towa rd t he u m pir e and the members o f t h e nin e all ran in t o b a ck him up, while the Tide wat e r fan s roared th e ir i n dignation, declaring that the w as o ut. "That wa s out!" y elled Casey shaking his fis t i n the umpire's face. "Sa fe o n fir s t ; I sa id! I think y o u heard me! That b ail w a s n o t caught. "But see here, said another Tiger, "I saw Tom L ig htfo o f s h i t ; and it was fair-right on the line, and I saw the fielder's catch, and that was fair. Lightfoot was out, I tell you !"

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ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. The !1elder wh o claime d t o have c aught the ball came up making den ts in his glove, as he hammered the spot where h e sa1cl the ball struck. "It landed right there!" he s h o uted. "Right there!" The nmpir e wa s ed in the face, a s thes e vocifero us pla yers thus surrounded him shouting at him. Tom Lightfoot still stood on first and Jack sat in the benches. Some of the other members of the Cran fo r d nine went for rd and mingled with the crowd gathe red round the umpire. They added their testi 1 mony, declaring that Tom was safe, and they knew it. "Go back to your places!" yelled the umpire The Tigers did not go, but continued to howl tl1eit protests. 'The umpire stood his ground, with his head erect. Once he turned to the bleachers, where the Tide water fans were standing up and screaming at him, de n ouncing him as a thief and calling him names. "Go on, barking dogs!" he shouted to them 'But L'm here to render decisions as I see them!" He turned back to the howling Tigers. "Y Otl fellows play ball !" he commanded, angrily. "But that decision was rotten!" said Casey. "We're not going to stand such decisions !" "You'll stand my clecisions or get off the field," was the answer. "If you fellows are going to play ball get back to your corners. I've had enough of this. My decision stands. The runner is safe on first." He threw the ball to the pitcher. Torn was flying for setond, which he took while the confusi o n still reigned. "Safe on second!" said the umpire. "Play ball! S ext batter up is Brodie Strawn." Then the Cranford rooters yelled, and the little mon key o n Nat Kimball's shoulder lifted his red cap and ho\\'ec.l. I. CHAPTER IX. JACK LIGHTFOOT IN THE BOX. i Case y began to cut the corner s of the rubber f11 r Brodie Strawn when the latter came to the bat. tirodie was a safe hitter a11d a batting slugger, and the Tidewater boys feared him. Tom Lightfo o t was playing daringly off second, looking for a chance to steal, and the outfielders had gon e well back, ex pe cting if Broe.lie got a hit he 'tJUld line it o ut. The batting list s were as follows: CRANFOR!J. Tom Li g htfoot, 2d b Brodie Strawn, 1 s t b. Mack Remington, rf. Jubal Marlin, If. Wil so n Crane, cf. Lafe Larnpttn1, c. Ne. d Skeen, ss. Phil Kirtla nd, 3d b. Jack Lightfoot, p. TJDEWATER. B e n Talbot, ss J oe B owers, r st b. Kid Ca sey, p. Silas Cross, 2d b. Jim L a ne. c. Paul Loc;kwood, If. Sidney Talbot, cf. George Steele. 3d b. Mason King, rf. Brodie g athered in a two-bagger, and brought Tom Lightfoot home, but went out himself in trying to reach third on Mack Remington's hit to first base. Mack went out, too, for it was a double play. The Tidewater fans cheered l oudly. "It's going to be another defeat for Cranford!" some of them yelled. "But not a whitewash Torn flung at them, hum or ously J nbal Marlin, with his left-handed swing, landed a hit in right and took first, but Wilson Crane struck out and wound up affairs for Cranford at the bat in that inning. Jack Lightfoot signa lized his entrance into the er's box by striking out the first batter up, Ben Talbot. But Joe Bowers was :iot so easy a proposition. Bow ers was a good all-around player, a good catcher and really a fine batter. He was a big, heavy fellow, who could not run as well as he could bat or pitch. Jack tried the spit ball on and Bowers caught its deceptive down-shoot at the plate and lifted it into outfield. He did not have to run hard to make second on that hit, and the Tidewater fans were given a chance to do a l ot of cheering. Then Kid Casey came into pos1t1011, wielding the bat, and smiled down at Jack from the rubber. Jack permitted Lafe to do most of the watching of runners on bases. He and Lafe had a perfect system of signals, by which fr was easy for Lafe to tell him what a runner was doing. Thus, though Jack was lookin g at the batter, h e knew at the s ame time that Bowers wa s trying to steal. The ball went i n to the plate with a quick in-shoot, and I id Ca sey fanned the air Again Jack sent i n this ball, and t hen ended Casey hy striking him ont wit h the spit ball. This was a humiliation to Casey, and was made

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ALL-SPORTS LIB R A RY. 1 9 wo r se by t he fact t hat t h e C ranford roote r s bega n t o sing "Ca ey at t h e Bat." S i las Cross w as st ru c k o ut and J o e Bowers h ad b e en held so close t o s econd t h a t he had not b een ab le t o get away fro m it. Lafe Lampto n w h o wa s first up in t h e s econ d in ning, g o t to fir s t bag o n a grass c utter t h rough shor t. Neel Skeen and Phil Kirtland struck "out. Lafe s t o le sec ond, and J ack tried t o brin g h i m h ome with a tw o -bagge r but h a d the atroci o u s luc k t o send it a lit tle high, so that it was gath ered in b y a fie l de r, thus putting the s i de o ut. Jack now struck o u t three m e n in s uc cess i on. 'When the C ra n fo r d boys ca m e t o the b a t again in the firs t h alf o f t he t h i rd, th e hun g r y C ran ford fan s aga in had their appet i te s whe t ted in good style. T o m Lightfoot started t h e b all t o ro lling w ith a clea n hit t o right cente r B rodi e follo wed with a sing le M ack Remingt o n sacri ficed and, with runn e r s o n se c o nd and third Jubal Ma rl in, w i t h his g r ea t left hancled swing, arou sed t he crowd to terrific enthus ia s m wi th a treme n do u s swat far o ut ove r t he ri ght fie ld e r s head. T o m an d Brodie came a cro ss th e pl a te amid franti c cheering Juba l w as stopped a t third by a t errific t hrow fro m t he field that went into t he mitt o f the catche r. \Vilso n Crane tried to bring him in b y a sac rifice i n t o ri g ht field but the b all was ca u g ht, a n d Juba l w h o h ad run fo r the plat e when Wilson l ined ou t t h e b a ll, was th row n out i n tryin g t o get back to third N everth eless two runs h ad been brough t in m a kin g three run s a l t o geth e r a g ain s t the of goose eggs o f the Tidewaters, and t h e C r a n ford fan s con t inue d to h ow l and t o sing their songs, whi le t h eir flags fluttered a n d th e m o nke y, p e rched on Nat Kimball's s h o ul de r doffed hi s ca p and b o wed unti l it seemed t hat h e was so me kind o f a machine se t in moti o n by w ind i n g it w it h a k ey. "Fell o ws, we ve g o t 'e m on th e run n ow cri ed J a ck, with g r eat ent h us ia s m a n d c o nfid e nce a s he went once mo r e in to the pit c h er's box. His arm was in fin e s h a p e a n d hi s c o nfidence w as great, and h e aga in retire d t h e T iger s in o ne t w o, three order. The C ranford fan s had a n othe r fit of ye llin g an d o f flu tterin g flags whe n Jack thus struck out t h e s id e T h e riine c a me b o undin g fro m the fiel d, N ed Skeen turning a somer a ult in his de l ight. "Oh, w e've g o t the m o n the run!" ho w led Wilson. H i s b i g eye s \re r e s hinin g. an d h i s l o n g n os e and b i rdlik e he a d w e re thrus t :ward a s if h e \\ e r e pecking at the bo y he wa s talkin g t o In the heat a nd exc i te m ent of the game he h ad temp o ra ril y forgo tten t he h a nd o rgan and the mi s s ing m o ney a n d the c o mplic ati o n s into w h ich he a n d Jubal h a d run th e m s elve s L a fe L a mp t o n started thi n g s t o going again with a b as e h it to left, and we n t to seco n d o n N ed Skeen s sacrific e There was o ne th ing t hat J ack's nin e learning, and that wa s t o sacrifice, an d th i s i s a hard le s son for a n y yo ung mne. Ye t Skeen had sac rificed with fine spirit a n d w as gla d of t he chance P hil K irtland n o w m ade a good bid t o bring in the run, but th e cente r fielder c heckm ated him by making a grea t s t o p t hu s puttin g K irt o ut. J a ck drove a lin e r th a t bro u g h t t h e run in but Tom, follow ing him a t the bat, met w i t h h a r d luck kn o ckin g a fly t h a t was caught. Thro u g h out the pla y in g the Tigers had continued t o h ow l a t the umpire and t o d e n o unce his decision s :is "rotten," but he c o ntinued to g i v e them out, threate ning n ow and then t o la y off so me l o ud-talking mem ber of the T i d e w ater nine Then J a ck in the b ox, d id the trick again he struck out hi s thr ee men st rai ght! A n d the s c ore was four runs fo r Cranford, with four g oose eggs s howing up fo r Tidewater, and four in nin gs h a d been played. It s h o wed what Jack Lightfoot could do in the box w h e n he felt in tiptop c o nditi o n and had g oo d sup po rt. L a fe L a mpt o n the other member o f the battery d e s er ved q uite as much prai se. L a f e's w ork behind the bat was brainy, clean and a ccurate, and his throwing to the bases to cut off runners w a s worth going a long distance to see. CHAPTER X. THE MISCHIEV O U S MASCOT. A strong w i nd had risen d u ri n g t h e progre ss o f the game, and thi s ma d e J a ck L i g h tfoot's feat of st riking out his string of three me n strai g h t all t h e m o r e r e markable. Onl y the fierce speed that Jack w as a ble to

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20 ALL-SPORTS LIBR A RY give the spit ball had m a d e i t p oss i b l e The s p eed he put into the s pit ball e n able d i t to b o r e int o the wind. Thi s ri s ing o f the wind was disconcert ing t o the pe ople in th e grand s t and a nd ble ac h e r a n c l so m e o f them beg a n to s h o w restlessn ess. A few ha ts w e r e tumbled from t he head s o f men and b o y s and so me par asol s and umbrell as we re turne d insid e o ut. But the game w ent o n an d n ear l y a ll t he people clung to their s ats, s o intFes ted were they in the play. This mo v ement of the pe o ple who ro s e and l e ft their seats s eemed to e x cite a spirit of mischief in the mon key. He took delight in grabbing at the dresses of the women and girls who passed by him and of clutching at the trousers of the boys and men. He was out of Nat Kimball's arms half of the time and Nat could do nothing with him while this fit of mischief lasted. "Y h 't t 11 ou aven go your mascot very we said an elderly gentleman, stopping before l ooking down at the monkey. trained," Nat and Nat lifted his cap respectfully when thus addressed. Politeness was one of Nat's characteristics, as much as his love of jiu-jitsu and his dread of germs. "No, sir," he answered; "we've had him only to day, you know." T h e man stooped to pat the mischievous mon k ey, and it gave a jump at him. while Nat pulled at its chain. The man sprang back so suddenly that he came near losing his eyeg-lasses, and dropped a box of matches out of his pocket. The monkey saw the box of matches fall down b<:: tween the seats to the ground, and before Nat could clo anything to stop him he had released himself and \\'as climbing down to get that box of matches. bent over and whistled to the monkey, and was on the point of asking the people to move aside so that he could get down to catch the little joker, when the monkey scampered away under the seats and dis appear ed fro m his s ight. ::\at Yas in so r e trouble o v er this, and a s ked th e g irl s w hat he s h o u l d do. "Let h i m go," sa i d Kate, l a u g h i n g. "Perhap s w h e n he get s t ired h e ll c o m e climbing back. But he' s g o t matches that b o x o f matches t he man dropped! Kate's eyes opened wider. "Has he ? I didn't see that! Do you suppose h e can s et anything afire?" "I don t think so," said Nelli e though a bit anxiously. "He wouldn t know how to strike a matc h. But I don't see how you're going to get him again. He might bite the matches and set them on fire that wa y Nat was so worried that he missed the plays that were now being made on the diamond, while he tried again to look beneath the seats and get track of the monkey. Not seeing him, Nat climbed out of the seat s and made his way to the ground, with the intention of going round the bleachers and grand stand and seein g if, from the rear, he could not discover the monkey and capture it. The fans were yelling and Nat observed now that Mack Remington had made a hit and was sprinting for first, and that Brodie Strawn was going like a whirlwind for third. He stopped to see how this came out, for the ball was being fielded to cut Brodie off. Nat could not resist a cheer when he saw Brodie gain third on a grand slide, and saw also that Mack was safe on first. He heard Mack laugh hilariously from his perch on first bag and heard his characteristic exclamation: "Pap says that the way to do a thing is to do it!" Little at was a baseball enthusia s t, and he could not tear him s elf away as he saw Jubal Marlin pick up the bat and move toward the batter's positi on. So Nat stood close by the benches and s aw Jubal g o o ut on a fly and watched Wilson as he poked his bird like nose over the rubber and swung up the bat, and Nat continued to watch when the ball came whistling in to Wilson from the fingers of the "Wizard Pitcher," Kid Casey. "Crack!" \\Tilson got t he ball an d w ent fo r first, whi l e Ma c k ran for second and Brodie flew fo r ho me. Nat swung his c a p, quite forget ful for t h e momen t

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,LL-SPORTS LIBRA RY. 21 o f t h e m on k ey and c h e er ed with t h e o th e r s when B ro d ie crossed the h o me pla te. "Oh, they can t beat us to-day!" was his enthusiastic con<:lus i on. "That make s the fif th run for us, and two me n a r e o n ba se an d the Tigers haven't had a nm to d ay. Whoo p! Whee-ee H e yelled th e las t tw o w ords, s till s winging his cap, t h o u g h his s quealing a ppl a u se wa s drowned in the g r eate r roa r t h a t was b ellowing ov er the diam o nd It w ill be r e m e mber ed th a t Nat K imball w as n o t in the gam e at all, tha t he w as a t best but a subs titute who w a s sure h e wo uld n o t b e called o n for a n y w o rk that day; but, jus t the sa me i t wa s "hi s game that was bein g playe d a nd "hi s" nine t h a t w a s do ing the work. In t hat he was lik e the enthu s iastic roo t e r s o f b oth sexes fro m r a n fo rd, in th e bleach e r s a nd g r a nd s tand ; it was their game t h a t th ey were l ooking at, th o ugh ex c ept to chee r the y t oo k n o p art whatev e r. Yet it is t hi s that m akes th e grea t Americ a n g ame of baseball. What would the game be without the spectators? lt w o uldn t last l o ng. Two b as e s were now filled Mack Remington being o n se c ond and Wils on C rane o n fir st. Lafe Lampto n was t o be th e next player at the bat a n d mu c h as 1\ a t de s ired t o rec ov er th e m o nkey he could n o t go o n until he h a d e en what reliable o ld L a fe wo uld d o M an y of the pe op le wh o h a d desc e nded from 1.he s e ats b e cau se o f the hi g h wind ha l also s t o pped to wat ch the play a nd were g roupin g back of N at. Laf e hamm e red at the ball, which s eemed to have a s m a n y decept ive kinks n o w as th e r e were puffs o f wind t o v e e r it anJ h a d tw o t r i kes call ed on him K imb all s hi v ered with sympa thy and then l a u g h ed w i th s h aki n g s i des as Lafe du g a n a pple fr o m som ew h e re in hi s b ase ball clo thin g a nd so le mnly bit int o it w hil e the ball was going b ack t o the pitch er. The re was a lwa ys meth o d in L afe's maclnes wh e n he d i d tha t tric k a t t h e bat; h e r e all y t h o u ght that h e f e l t bette r and s t ro n ger, ancl t h a t his n e rv es wer e i e s s shaky when he p ut a bite o f apple t h us int o bis s t o m ac h at a cr i tical time, and h e al so kn ew t ha t it i nvariab l y d r ew a la u g h whic h o f te n ext e n d ed t o the pitcher an d made his pitching arm less reliable. Havin g taken his b i te of apple, Lafe slowly hitched up his belt and grabbed the bat-Old Wagon Tongue lifting it for he saw Jhat the ball was due to come in. It came, and Lafe lined it out, sending it in a great drive well down toward the ruffled water that was lapping up against the san and reedy grass on the shore, where the high tide was being blown into spray by the wind. Again a wild yell bellowed forth from the specta t o rs, a s the runners and the fielders got under way and the ball w ent b o uncing and skipping toward the s alt water. In !he midst of this yell a cry of another kind was heard. It came fro m the grand t and, a s a s cream of alarm and fri g ht. Nat wheeled a s if o n a piYo t and s aw a t o ngue of fla m e s h oo t up between so me o f the seat s in the grand stand and beheld a mad stampede begin among the people, as they scrambled to get awa y fro m that fire. Nat was not wrong n ow, when he guessed that a I m o nkey and a box of matches were at the bottom of that fire. The grand stand was old, and s o me repair work h a d b een d o ne o n it but th e clay before, to get it in readine ss for the game The c a rpenter s who did this w o rk had left a large pile of fine s having s and o t h e r imflammable material b e n e ath the grand stand where they had been em ployed Thes e h a d offered an inviting bed for the monkey, w h o wa s accu s t o med, with his o ld ma s ter to cuddling clown in plac es ; and into the midst of th e s h avings he clivecl, chattering with delight and mis chief. H e knew what th e matche s w e r e-that i s he kn e w th a t fir e could b e brought fro m them; he had seen his m as t e r light his pipe many times and n i an y t i mes kin d l e fire s with these things; ancl h e had even been in struc ted o m ewhat t o s tri k e matches himself, as a trick. It h ad a l w a ys b e en fun for him to scra t ch one of t he thin gs a n d h ear it s nap and crackle and watch the fire jump out of it.

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ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. Cuddling clown in the kindlin gs the monkey began to s cratch and i g nite the m atches for the pure fun of it, c h attering as they sprang into flame. \ V h e n one was s truck he threw it clown and got o ut another. One of the matche s started a fire in the shavings; and th i s caught by the high wind communicated lik e a flash to th e other materials beneath the grand s tand ; and in an inc onceivab l y s hort time a flar e of flame was flung up between the sea ts, startli1g t hat wild stampede. Jack Lightfoot heard the cry that was rq.isecl, and, s eeing the fire was o ne of the fir s t to rec ognize its po ssi bilities of peril. He sprang up from t he bench where he was sitting watc hin g the game and clashed toward the grand s tand. The members of his nine followed him, wit h the s ub st itutes; even the b oys on the base lines coming in n ow to fight the fire a nd be of assistance t o the imperiled people. The Tidewater Tigers we re as quick to see the need, an d came runnin g in from the field. 1 For a time the game was forgotten Jack's voice rang o ut loudly as he reached the grand s tand, where the flames were ri sing still higher, fanned by the furi o u s wind. "Steady! he s houted to the pe o ple, c a11ing o ut in hi s excitement as h e w o uld h ave called out to o ne o f the nine at a critical t ime. "If you'll take just a little time no o ne will get hurt." It was lik e bell ow ing at that fir e or at the wind that fanned it. The ball players hu s tled the frightened people out of the burning grand s tand, a nd Jack led his nine in the good work. They pulled some out of the way, ass i s ted othe rs, : : md did all they could to get t h e wome n and ch ildreu clown and prevent them from injuring themsel ves or eac h o ther. Kid Casey and the Tigers were doing the same. Eve n the umpire joined in this work; and it c a n be i ruly said if the sp ecta t ors had s h own half the cool ness of the baseball b oys and th e umpire not a per so n would ha ve been hurt there that day. The g rand stan d was pretty well emptied, when Jack s aw, behind the fire, a girl who seemed to have been aban lonecl The fire was r oaring in a g r eat volume of flame be twe en her and the ground, and she was screaming with feat : Then Jack saw a crutch at h e r side a n d knew that the girl was a cripple; and that, thus h ampered by her crippled cond i tion, fear h ad clon e the r est, and s he wa s so paral yzed by fright t h a t h e could do nothing for her self. Runnin g to an encl of th e grand sta nd Jack spran g up the seats with mighty jumps, and, circling the fire, hurried to the girl. "Here, I will h e lp you!" he cried. He fairly lifted her, swinging her up while she clutche d her crutch and b ega n to u s e it, s timulated by hi s words and d ete rmin ed manner. "Don't be scared-don't be sca r ed h e urged. "You've got plenty of time; and I'll h e lp you." Her face was as white as wax. Seein g h ow s he trembled, Jack fairly li ft ed he r across the benches, and, circling the fire with her, he b ega n to h elp her o n down to the ground. As he did so, the monkey appeared between the seats. Seeing him it r an clown, chattering, into the midst of t h e crowd, di sap pearing as it had done fro m th e s ight of Nat Ki mb a ll. Jack wondered then if the monkey had clone anything to start the fire; but h e was not to learn how true hi s half fuess was until later. H e again )ielpecl the girl on, w hil e other fellows were assisting other people o u t of the burning grand stand. Thus he brou ght her in safety to the ground, where some h ysterica l women were gathered to meet her, and to v v eep ove r her, even though, in their fri ght, they had aband o ned her a few m o m ents before. The boys, under Jack's l eadership, now turned their tho u g hts to saving the grand stand But the thing was impossib le It was fast bec om ing wrapped in flames, and there was no water supply available.

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ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. 23 \Vithin a comparatively short dis tance rolled the waters of the bay, whipped and torn by the wind; but SO far as being of any service in putting Otlt the fire it might as well have been miles distant. The bleachers were saved, by heroic efforts, and by half tearing them down. Two anci more went by before the fire was out sufficiently to permit of a thought of continuing the game. A full five innin gs had not been played when the fire began; Cranford had been at the bat, with men o n bases in the first half of the fifth inning. The Cranford nine disliked to stop the game, when they had so good a lead; and Tidewater was equally l oath to quit when so far they had not made a run. More anxious even than the players were many of the spectators. Half of the big crowd had gone home, a ew of the injured in carriages, though it was known there would be no fatalities as a result of the fire. The monkey had been found by Nat Kimball, out in the middle of the diamond, sitting "upright on his ta il" as Nat said, and seeming to be \NOnclering vvhat all the hullabalo o had been about. There Nat had gut h o ld of his short chain and ha l l captured him. The players now bad a talk with the umpire; and after a little an agreement was reached, that the game should be played out, if it could be clone so before darkness came. As the sun was still far from setting, the boys be lieved this was easily possible. I The plucky decision was greeted by the spectators with cheers. CHAPTER XI. TUE GAME GOES ON. As the oamf. thus started anew, the umpire decided, >:> in accordance with an agreement made by the two nines that L afe was on first base, \i\Tilson Crane on seco nd and Mack Remington on third ; and that Jubal Marlin was out. This brought Ned Skeen to the bat, for his name was next on the Cranford batting list. "I thin k we're gomg to have a warm time ," saicl Jack, humorously, as a shower of cinders from the still burning grand stand was blown across the benches by the wind. But the wind was dying down, as the afternoon drew on; and though the heat from the embers of the fire was unpleasant it was not unbearable. Many people had gone tack into what remained of the bleachers but most of the spectators stood on the ground, crowding as close up to the players as was allowable. The Cranford girls were in one of the groups, where the Cranford rooters were gathered; and they were ready to do their part toward giving further encouragement to the Cranford boys. "I think you'd 9etter take that monkey away some where out of sight," said Nellie Conner, half laugh ingly and half seriously, as the game opened once more. "He's a hoodoo, instead of a mascot." "By granny, I guess that's right," was the thought of Jubal, who heard her; "he's hoodooecl me and Wil son abaout all day !" Neel Skeen struck out now; and, the ball getting away from the catcher, Mack Remington risked too much on the swiftness of his legs in an effort to go home; and he retired the side, for he was put out as he thu s tried to reach t'he rubber Yet Brodie Strawn had made a run before the fire ; and that had put the Cranford runs at five; with n o th ing for the Tigers. \\T hen Jack Lightfoot now went into the box he foun d that he was not in the condition which had enabled him to do su ch phenomen a l pitching before. He had overexerted himself at the fire, in his de sire to help the people and prevent seriou s accidents, was beginning to feel the effects of it. He had been covered with sweat besides, and had cooled too quickly, and now he felt stiff and sore. He tried the spit ball on Joe Bowers, who was first man up, after balls h_ad been called against him ; and Bowers hammered, it out for a three-bagger. Kid Casey followed this by slamn'1ing a two-base hit into center, thus bringing Bowers in with a run.

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2..j. ALL-SPORTS LIBR1\RY. Jack got a better grip on him s elf, and s truck out Silas Cross; but Casey stole third bag; and Lafe, in throwing to put him out at third, overthrew, sending the ball on into the field ; and Casey came whooping home. Reliab l e old Lafe was as stiff and sore from his ex ertions as Jack for, like J 11ck he had n ot spared him se lf at the time o f the fire But there wa s ragged work, o n the ot her s ide Jim Lane, who was captain and catcher fo r the Tigers, in trying to line one of Jack's balls into center, knocked a fly which Jack captured with the greatest ease ; and Paul Lockw ood, getting a bunt, was so s l ow in making for first that Lafe cut him off there, tlius retiring the side. Yet the Tige r s had made two runs, and, as these were the first t he y had made in t he ga me the y were wildly hilari o us, in sp it e of the sobering fact that their grand sta nd had been burned to the ground. That it was the work of the monkey severa l guessed, and that opinion was o p e nl y expressed; but none of them laid the blame on the Cranford nine, nor eve n on at Kimball, who had b een given charge of the "mas cot.'' Some of them however, and not a few of the spe ctat o rs, privately declared that the Cranford nine had made jackasses o f them se l ves by bringing the m on key up o n the grounds. As to h ow the monkey came t o be in the possession of the Cranford nine pe op le who h ad not been in fo rmed o therwise accepted the sto r y w h ic h had ap peared in the Tidewater paper without questioning its entire truthfulness. Jack had not felt it to be hi s duty to enlighten anyone on the sub ject. Phil Kirtland came to the bat, in the fir st half of the sixth inning; and who was fully as much o ut o f co nditi o n as Jack him self, very promptly went clown before the pitching of the "\Vizard." Yet the "\\. izarcl" was far fro m being at his best n ow, though h e h:id not so greatly ove re xerted himself at the fire. It a lwa ys humiliated Kirtland to be first man up ancl stri ke o ut ; and he flung the bat clown with an ex clam atio n of anger. \i\T e were a l ot of fools for wanting to go o n with this game!" he snarled. "My shoulders are. so sore that I couldn't hit a house." Jack Lightfoot caught up Old Wagon Tongue, facing the \ i\Tizard" with some uneasiness. Yet the feeling that he was the captain and that on him so much depended hardened him against the pain and stiffness, and he drove out the first ball, with a mighty swing that sent it through the han ds of the sho r tstop and bobbing on toward the tumbling blue waters of the bay. \i\Then J ack started t o run the bases his legs and feet fe l t so heavy and sore he had at first difficuity in get ting under way; but he disregarded this, jus t as be fore, and sprinted to first as fast as he could, and there turning, and getting more speed, he went on to second, and then on toward third. The cry went up that the ball had gone into the bay; and the center fielder could be seen wading and poking with his hands amid the grass tufts close by the water. Seeing this, Jack did not stop at third: and Skeen, who had run down there to coach him, yelled wildly to him to "Go home!" And Jack went for home, running now with almost his old-time speed, and crossed the plate, jus t as the center fielder got the ball out of the grass and threw to the l eft fielder, who had run ottt to get it and send it on in. The gi rl s and the rooters of Cranford "made the welkin ring!" as Jubal ob s erved, and things once began to look more rosy But Tom L i ghtfoot, who s e ability as a batter is well known, now struck o ut ; and Brodie Strawn, the slug ger, p o pped a fly, when he tried to dri v e the ball and that fly being smothered, the side was out. B u t Jack had brought in a nm, and the score stood --Cranford, six; Tidewater, two, at the end of the fir t half of the s ixth inning. The Tigers batted Jack bad l y when he again began to pitch. He found that, though he cou l d by s h eer will p ower gather himself together and run, he could not get the s t iffn ess out of hi s finger and hands when he tried to r eg a in h i s o l d skill as t h e pitching end of the battery.

PAGE 24

ALL-SPORTS LIBRARY. He had largely lost control and could not get the curves; and, almost before he knew it, the bases were filled. Before the encl of the second of the inning the Tigers had brought two men across the rubber. A run was gained by each nine in the seventh. In the eighth Cranford lost ground again, for the Tigers made two runs, while the Cranforcls made only one. Cranford had lost steadily ince the new beginning of the game, and when the ninth inning opened they were but a run in the lead. "Fellows, we've got to pull some men over the rub ber in this inning," said Jack, as Ned Skeen went to the bat. "It may be our last chance." The nine had grown nenou he saw, and he was growing nervous himself. To help himself and them he began to talk with them, trying to fill his own heart with the courage he knew was so necessary. "We're still one to the good, fellows," he urged. "Vv e can at least hold that l Skeen, do your best l" Skeen did his best. It was poor enough, for he struck out. Jack said nothing when Phil Kirtland took up the bat. He had learned that it was a l ways best to let Kirtland go his own way without urging or adv ice. Yet, knowing that Kirtland was in poor condition, Jack felt a great uneasiness. He did not doubt that Phil would do all he could Phil did better than Skeen-he got a single. Then Jack came to the bat. He still felt so stiff and sore that he was at first inclined to try merely for a sacrifice. But the ball happened to come just right, and Jack smashed it with all his might. It was a great two-bagger in right field, though Jack had really tried to plant it in center well down toward the water. Phil Kirtland started hot for second, ignoring his own poor condition for running, jus t as Jack had clone, and gained third; while Jack followed him to second. Tom came to the rubber with Old Wai;on Tongue. Tom had struck out before; but he managed to pull himself together now; and, getting a single, he brought Phil Kirtland home. Tl;ien Brodie Strawn, again t ry ing for a great drive, popped up a littl e fly, t hus going out; and Mack Remington, following him at the bat, struck out, re tiring the side Yet a run had been made, giving the Cranford nine a lead of two. The Tigers came to the bat with a great roar of de li ght. They had climbed up so steadily that they now felt confident' of winn ing a victory. And they started off right for it, the ball getting away from Jack, and men being put on bases and a run being brought in. It began to look as if Cranford was agam to be defeated on the Tidewater grounds. The "mascot" had hood ooed nme indeed, and with a vengeance. Nat Kimball was so wrought up by it that he was tempted to fling the chattering monkey to the ground 111 a rage. Lafe now threw out one of the runners. A batter, not meeting Jack's incurve fairly, drove it into Brodie's hands on first, when h e meant to put it into right field. Then Jack, pulling himself desperately together and gathering all of hi s remaining strength and skill into a s upreme effort, struc k the third man out. And the game ended, wit Cranford roaring with glee; for, though it was close-too close for comfort or for much pride in the result, still the s core card showed Cranford leading at the close with these figures-Cranford, nine; Tidewater, eight. CHAPTER XII. CONCLUSION. Hardly had Jack struck out th is third man when, with a squeal of delight, the monkey flung it se lf out of Nat Kimball's arms, and with great bounds ran to a dark-browed stranger w h o had ju t come upon the ground, and l eaped into his arms. Jubal and 'Wilson stared hard at this man. They thought at first it was the hand organ man who had been frightened by Wilson, but only a se c -

PAGE 25

ALL-S PORTS LIBP ,-\l'Y. on d clo se l oo k was needed to show them t hat it was not. The man ca1i.1e up t o the e xc it e d baseball boys. "Dis-a my monk! he s aid. Then they saw that he was in a badly battered c ondi t ion. There was a patch of bl oody c o urt plaster over o n e eye, hi s coat wa s torn and sta ined with blood. and there was a bruise on his face, and a rai sed lump s h ow ing a gash, on his head. He had c o me limping upo,n the ball grouncls at the conclusion o f the game, and had been almost as s ur prised as Nat Kimball him s elf when the m o nk ey ran to him. "Dis-a my m onk!" he declared again l ooking at the boys who had gathered round him. "\i\There you get-a da monk?" "But yeou're not the f elle r that had him when we seen him daowntaown," sa id Jubal. "I don't think that is yeou re m on key a t all. I reck o n yeou'd better fork him over." The man clung to the m on k ey and r edeclared his ownership. A police officer came up at this junct ure throwing Juba l and Wilson into a flutter of a l arm "We saw that in the paper," he explained, "and, though there are a lot o f lies and mi stakes in it, I thought I'd bring this Dago up here and h ave him l ook at the monkey you've got. He cam e to the police s tation an hour o r two ago, h ammered t o pieces, and said that he had been knocked down and robbed b y another Italian, somewhere o n the road west of h er e yesterday, and that the Italian who jumped him left him there in a field for dead "He came to the stati on t o complain about it, and claimed that the fell er who tackl ed him robbed him of his hand organ and monk ey an d t oo k what money he had in his jean s You can see the fix h e's in. We fixed h i m up a little at the station, and then I thought I'd come up here and see if you could tell me any thing." Jubal and Wilson were about to tell the officer all they knew hoping thereby to e s cape trouble, when Jack restrained them. At the sam e t im e he glanced toward the Italian who held the monkey: "I think we'd bett er hav e a private talk about this," be sa id, a nd r eq uested the b oys and the officer to go to one s ide for .that purpose. "My reas o n i s this," said Jack. "This Italian claims that he is the real ow ner of the monkey and the hand o rgan If that is so there is a way to make him prove it. U nle ss h e is r eally the owner it is not likely h e will kn ow of that se<:ret dravver in the organ. That's all. It st ruck me that we ought to be careful o::i tlnt point." Then J.ibal and Wilson explained to the officer thei r connection w ith the organ and the monkey, excusing themselves all they could "And the money is gone?" the office r c ried. "That's the wu'st of it," said Jubal; "she's gone! But I kn ow gal -darned well who tuck it!" "Here, yo u! called the officer, speaking to the Italian at the same time be ck oning t o him. "Come ove r l1ere and tell u s something about your hand o rgan \ i \That kind was it?" The Italian b egan to exp l ain volubly, shrugging his s h ou ld ers and usin g many gestures. He told who made it, and its number; where he had bought it, a n d how l ong he had owned it. "But wasn' t there so m e thin g else peculiar about it?" "Oh, yes-a-yes-a; it have a picture on-a da front." "But n o t that! Was anyth ing else? What was inside of it?" Moo sic-moosic in s ide-a da organ!" "N e lse?" The man shook his head. "Then it ain't yours, I guess There was something e l se inside of this organ something worth while." The dark face of the Itali an almost turned pale; he ch oked and s tamm e red. "My mona !"he gasped. "You find-a my mona in-a
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A L L-:ro ::::_TS Lr::::m. \::: Y. 27 o-I not-a lie; I have-;a,
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