Nick Carter's hot pursuit; or, The trick of an escaped convict


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Nick Carter's hot pursuit; or, The trick of an escaped convict

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Title:
Nick Carter's hot pursuit; or, The trick of an escaped convict
Series Title:
Nick Carter weekly
Creator:
Carter, Nicholas
Place of Publication:
New York
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Street & Smith
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English
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1 online resource (32 p.) 25 cm.: ;

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Detective and mystery stories. ( lcsh )
Dime novels. ( lcsh )
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serial ( sobekcm )

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University of South Florida
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University of South Florida
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The University of South Florida Libraries believes that the Item is in the Public Domain under the laws of the United States, but a determination was not made as to its copyright status under the copyright laws of other countries. The Item may not be in the Public Domain under the laws of other countries.
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030707357 ( ALEPH )
17902257 ( OCLC )
C36-00017 ( USFLDC DOI )
c36.17 ( USFLDC Handle )

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.IeK eARTER w EEKLY. 1 cot
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NICK CARTER WEEKLY. He turns with sudden dedsion, passes through the gate into the yard, reaches a huge pile of lumber, and rather enjoying the predicament in which he finds himself, crawls beneath the projecting boards, stretches out at full length where the rain ca11110t touch him, and waits for the storm to pass. He has b ee n there but a few moments -perhaps five-when a sudden flash of the electric currents of the air reveals two figures l1astening toward him from the opening gateway. They hurry forward, already drenched by the storm, and th:r:ow themselves beneath the lumber, les s than ten feet from tl1e spot where the detective is lying; but there is an intervening wall of boards which renders it impossible for them to see hi1:1 even when the lightning illumi nates the scene. Habit of caution have become secoud natnre to the detective, and so he remains silent, wondering, it is true, who and what the men are who are so close to him, and yet who have no suspicion of his proximity. But he is destined to hear something startling; the parts of a plot which one may glean from a conversation b e tween the two who are already familiar with. every detail. "Curse the rain!" growls one of the men, after securing the shelter of the boards. "I've tried three matches and I can't make one of them burn." "What do you want of a match, Budge?" asks the other. "Well, I don't want to eat it." "Probably not." "I want to light my pipe." "Best not, Budge.'' "Why?" "Well, we want to talk, and we don't want anybody prying around us while we are at it." "Bah! In this storm? There's nobody here, and nobody will come, either." "Others may seek shelter here the same as ourselves "Bosh! I tell you, Jim, I opened that gate myself, less than twenty minutes ago. It is always kept closed at night. "What of that?" "Simply that nobody would come bert for shelter who is not fawiliar with tl place; and anybody who is familiar wit.! it knows that the gate 1s kept closed; see?'' (Yes." "Have you a match?" "Yes." ''Pass one over; mine are wet.'' In another moment the wind carries the odor of tobacco smoke to the detcc. tive's nostrils as he waits, listening intently to hear what more the men will have to s1.y to each other. Already he scents the presence of roguery, and ever npon thealert to do his duty as a man and a citizen as well as an officer, he resolves to hear all that takes place. His fatigue is instantly forgotten, and his only thought is to l1ear what is said and to govern his actions accordingly. c t t 1T One of the men hav1ug lighted his f pipe, the other does the same, and se v p era] moments of silence ensue. The one who has been addressed as Budge is the .first to break the silence. bl

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I 't le tly he Jat t e s of h i s r a n l ke s a nd sa id his e v as NICK CARTER 3 "Jim," he says, "is everything fixed "Bah!" yet?" "Bah all you please! Billy's no "No, not everything." "1 t strikes me you're cursed slow with your part of the work." ''Great undertakings take time, Budge; and we have been waiting for you." "You might just as well have gone ah-.,1 on the original plan," growls Budge. "Why?" "Because my end of it is a dead failn e." "A failure, Budge?" ''Yes-total. '' Jim utters an oath, and for a moment another silence follows. "Tell me about it," says Jim, pres"There's mighty little to tell." "Well, give me what there is." "I've spent pretty nearly three weeks in that infernal and I haven't ac complished a thing." 'I'm afraid you didn't go to work in the right way." "You try it, that's all." "Could you get in at all?" "Yes, on visiting days, and once or twice to see 'Cousin Tom.' His use of the e xpression "Cousin Tom" suggests to the mind of the listen ing detective that the name is used in irony and not to signify a re lative. "Did you talk with Tom?" asks Jim. "Yes; but always with one of the con founded guards standing over us. Billy Piper; you know him." "I should think so." "I think the cuss more than half tumbled to me." slouch." "True; he's a good fellow, though, for a guard." "Right enough. All the same, it was owing to him that I couldn't get a half dozen words with Tom that he didn't hear.'' "How much. did you m11nage to say?" "Well, I gave Tom to understand that there was a scheme afoot; that you, Jack Lawless, and--" "Hush! no names." "Oh, blast your caution! However, that you, Jack and Polly were in it." "Well?" "There isn't any 'well' in the sense you use it." "Why?" "Simpl.y because I said just enough to make poor Tom crazy with curiosity, which I couldn't satisfy." "He played sick?" "Certainly." "And you could not--" "Curse it! Haven't I told you that Billy Piper stood over us like a spe:tre the whole time?" "How about visiting days?" "Well, I to drop a word to several of the boys here and there, but only enough to set them to thinking and wondering. ''Too bad, Budge.'' "Yes; the scheme is an utter failure so far as that part of it is concerned.'' "It won't work without that end Of it., "Then we '11 have to give it up." "Oh, no; not yet, Budge!"

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NICK CARTER WEF.KLY. "Well, Jim, you al'Vays had brains for planning things. If you've got another scheme, out with it. You know that I'm with you, whatever it is." "Do you mean that?" "Mean what?" "That you are with me whatever the scheme may be?'' "Yes." "Then I know one that will work." "Sure?" "Certain." "What is it?" "It involyes a great sacrifice en your part, Budge.'' "I'm ready." ''Not so fast, old man ; you haven't heard me out yet." tell )'()U I'm ready whatever it is, if it will carry through the plans we outlined a month ago." "It will, sure!" ''Even--'' "Confound it! speak out!" "Wait. Even to the extent of giving up your liberty for a time!" "Eh ?" "Dues that startle you?" "I don't catch on." "How do you like prison fare?" "What are you at, anyhow?" "This: would you, for the sake of as-suring the success of our plans, consent to be sent to Sing Sing for--" "What! sent way to that infernal jug? No! by all the thunders, no!" "I was afraid you would not, even "Do you mean that I'm to be arrested. tried, convicted, and sent to Twice,' and-say! by the great chat-inwh Bootem-street, you're asking too much. "I thought so." Anotl1er silence follows, and presentl.the Budge speaks again. "Jim," he says. "Well?" "Just begin at chapter one-eye, anr tai up, tell me the whole story. When I catch otat better, I C'an tell better what I will d rot and what I won't do; see?" CHAPTER II. AN UNHZARD-OF VENTURE. Jim does not at once respond to the re yo quest of his companion. He 1'een1. o tl1inking over t.he. pros and con\:> t tl ]}roposition be is about to make, o cb there may be no mistake in the afta1 xt when it is once launched. "We have both seen the inside of Sin Sing, Budge," he says, presently. Bu "I reckon we have." kn "We were there together. 11 "Yes." "Therefore yot) know that I know wh: to a man faces wnen he consents to go the1 fiv l voluntarily." ''Sure?'' "I speak of this so you will remembt that I thoroughly know what I am tall ing about." wh "Oh, confound it! Come to the point. wil "Don't be impatient, Budge. This the most serious undertaking of our live though you said you were in it, no mat-don't forget that." No ter--" "Say, Jim, do you mean it?" "Certainly. 11 "Iwon't. Goon." "Suppose you were arrested ar charged with forgery?'' yot1

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NICK CARTER WEEKLY. 5 rrested, "Well, it wouldn't be the first time." 'Sin "Certainly not. All the l.T!ore reason chat-in why your conviction would be certain." much. "Ugh! Go on." "You might as well have the game as esentl the name, and, therefore, with the certainty that you are to be caught and sent )up, you might as well make a good haul." "Well?" '''e1 a11C. (( b d I ; Suppose you wnte some o y s name atch ot at the bottom of a check, secure a good will d( round. sum--" "How much?" "Ten or fifteen thousand." "Easier said than done." "Easily done, Budge, with me to tell I II the r1:1 you 1ow. "Well; what next?" 'en )'On get the money in your knowin!! you are to be cau!!ht, )'OU pa. r, L i "Je afta it over to me--" "Tbat's nice-for you." of Sin "To be used in the general fund, Budge. You know me well enough to know that I'll stick by you." "Snre! go on." "You are caught, tried, convicted, sent ow wh to Sing Sing for a term of years-say go the five." "Beautiful!" with withering sarcasm. Bnt Jim continues, apparently uncon-scions of the interruption. em em b am tal "Once inside the prison wa11s, the task which you have just failed to accomplish e point.' will be easy." This "That's so." "Every man we want can be notified. Nobody knows how to do that better than you." ed a "Sure!" "The only difference this and the former plan 1s that you are in limbo with the others." "I begin to catch on." "I will leave you there a month before I make a move. 'l'hen I, or 'somebody, will visit the prison. Suppose I do that act?" "Well?" "I will see you, but I will not speak to you." "Certainly not." "If your work is done so that everything is in readiness, you will give me a signal." "What?" "We 'II arrange that later. think it o\'er." "Well?" I want to "If you want more time, you will give a different sigJlal. We will have one for 'All right;' one for 'Give me another week,' 'Another month,' and so on. In short, we will fix up a perfect code, so that we will understand each other, al-though twenty to fifty feet apart, and though a thousand Billy Pipers stand at our elbows, they will be none the wiser., "Capital! I begin to ftel some enthusiasm. "According to onr signals we will work; you on the inside, I on the outside. 11 "I see. 11 "In that way there can be no mistakes, and we mnst succeed." "You bet, Jim." "When the fruit is ripe and ready to pick--" "We'll pick it." "That's the way to talk. 11 "I begin to like the idea."

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6 NICK CARTER WEEKLY. "At the most, you will not be in limbo your judgment, fur over two months." when you are on the ground "I don't care if it's three, or even advise you here." "V four." "Sure!" "C "Twe1 will do it, snre; and I think one "Remember one thing, however." S will.'' "It ought to." "You will have plenty of time to make / every point." "Yes." "Tom knows enough now so that he will catch on quick enough, and when he once gets posted about the whole lay-out, he can help you fix the others. How does he stand with the guards?" "Oh, he's way up; regular goody goody chap. "Better and better. You must follow the same course.'' ."Right!" "Before you go up, I will make a list "Give it out." "\ "That yon stake your own libert}-Cte < this thing. If you fail, you are there>1hat keeps, until your time expires, so free
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NICK CARTER WEEKLY. 7 "About that check?" "What about it?" "When will we spring it?" "Oh, in a day or two!" "So soon ?" "Yes; j L1St as soon as our p1ans are per erty cted. When we have once settled upon ere hat we are to do, there is no use in de ee r "'I'he 9-uicker we get to work, the oner we will get through.'' "How much sha 11 we make it ?n "A good round sum, Budge. We will ed money, and it is a good way to get th. In doing this thing yqu will serve ight o purposes. It will be yon who pro"Just leave that to me, Budge; I will arrange it all." "By thunder, Jim, I wish I had a little of your brain!" exclaims Budge, with genuine admiration. Jim latlghs. "In that case," he says, "I would not have so much, and I need it all just now." "That's so." \ "Never mind the brain, Budge; when you get out of Sing Sing you will have a fortune and so will I; and then--" "Then for the other plan, in which nobody bnt Jim and Budge are inter e sted.'' "Exactly. you "That's what ct'ltches m By thunder, i.t6 ,uccess au establ:..:;ller1 -think I d do five years without a mur-ct. '' th "You plauued it all?" 1 t "Eveu so, Bndge, the geueral may get e glory, btn it is the soldier who de fr'c ves it." 'Who are you going to strike?" J t f "On t!ifl check question?" hot es." two men; I have not yet dethat now. Time enough, against the n, "I think not.., LZles me, though. "Jim wa:.. think if you h. Scu.,., 'O'lt gdting ten or fif sociated in a I just as easy to forge c pr ber 1t as it is for ten "r mo ''Never.'' Nick then related tt. tail. <;hed, eh ?" ul. f I was dead sure of the sncee::. tl1at scheme afterward.'' "Would you? I'm not sure that I wo11ld, '' and Jim laughed again. To the listening detective, there is something familiar in that low laugh, but he cannot place it. "The rain has ceased," continues Jim, presently. "You had better skip out, Budge; we must no_t be seen together." "You go first; I want to lock the gate." "Never mind the gate. Good-night." "When do I see yon again, Jim?" "I willle! y know." 'All So long." Budge hmries rapidly away, leaving Jim alone, or seetni11gl y so, in the lnm ber pile. "Poor fool!" he says, presently. Tben he also leaves the shelter, and starts away through the &rkness. ,.

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8 NIOK OARTER WEEKLY. But he does not go alone, for Nick Car ter is upon his trail. CHAPTER III. A NEW "\\ RINKLE IN CRIME. When the man who had been called Jim during the conversation which the detective had so strangely overheard reached the street he paused suddenly and Nick Carter was yet in the lumber yard, and he kept well in the shadow so that if perchance the ex-convict-for such he doubtless was-should look around he would not discover that he had been spied upon. I Jim waited several moments, standing .pto ti-:mless the while, but whether he --expecting any one or not the detective ,. could not tell. Presently he moved away, walking slowly toward the east, but stopping every few paces and turning full around to inspect the street behind him. "Is he looking to see if he is followed?" muttereci the detective, "or is he expecting somebody else besides Bunge to meet him to-nigl:ltir i': "" He passed Ninth avenu6 and then Eighth, traversing the distance in the same manner, pausing at frequent inter vals to look behind him, and walking leisurely all the way. The storm had entirely ceased. The streets were wet and the gutters were full of water, but all evidence of the storm had passed. The detective ha.,d great difficulty to avoid being seen by the man he was fol-at lowing, for the constant turning sc looking around rendered the task .of shadowing a difficult one. n To have Jim suspect that he was fol. h lowed would suggest to him that the con-versation in the lumber pile J1ad been t overheard, and the detective. wished to e avoid that above all things. The consequence was that Nick altered t his appearal:lce several times as he fol c lowed his man through the street, and therefore Jim, who doubtless saw him 1 often when he looked back, could not suspect that he was the same man. Jim continued along Twenty-secon street until Broadway was reached. There he turned abruptly, crossed that great diagonally to 'J'went third street, and hastened agam. When he arrived at the corner of Third avenue the detective was twenty rods behind him. He saw Jim turn the of avenue toward the south, and Lc hastened forward in order not to lose sig!:'t of him, for he was confident that tht 1 was near his stopping-place. But when Nick reached the corner tb fellow l1ad disappeared. Nick paused in doubt how next to pro ceed. ,,<>' That Jim had darted into ;\1ilf an eye w near by he could not t'lswear that I cou were a dozen different one::. yet I'm apt l1e might have gone, andhad no means of oeterm Great mnscul the one used by the man in gigantic p! down to us from o1 lowing. It 111 ust be ren' was very Clark. tive had bePr

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NICK CARTER WEEKLY. 9 at the man whom he knew to be plotting qp.d some desperate crime. It is true he had rtlany times passed beneath electric lights, but at such times folhis back bad been toward Nick, for he had contaken care not to pause and look around een except when he was in the shadow. d to "One thing is certain," mused the de tective, "the fellow entered a doorway ered close to Third avenue, else he would have folcontinued through Twenty-second street and instead of coming up to Twenty-third. him not enty "I do not think he suspected tHat he was followed, but adopted those tactics .only from habits of caution. "Now, what is the next thing to do?'' He spent s everal moments in deep thought, then turned abruptly on hi s haste ned homeward. "Pshaw!" he mutte r ed; "it 1s t i m e that I leal'ned to atte nd to my own busi ness. Thos e fellows w e re plotting some-thing in which the State Prison at Sing rhird Sing is to play a prominent part. I'll ju s t t ened send a note to Ward e n Brown, giving him all the information I have s ecured, wa and let it go at that." 1 pro COt1 On the following morning at the break fast table the detective the affair of the preceding night to his chief assistant. "Chick," he said, did you ever run against the name 'Bndge ?' '' "I think not." "There's a plot there somewhere," he said, in conclusion. "Certain." "What is your idea of it, Chick?" u Prison breaking,'' was the laconic answer. "No doubt of that, but there is something more connected with it.'' "Perhaps." "Must be; they spoke of making a for tune, and they would have to do some thing aside from the mere escape from limbo; eh ?'' "Sure." "The man 'Jim' was simply engaged in making a tool of 'Budge;' no doubt of that,Jl "Well?" "Humph Nothing more. Are you busy t o-day, Chick?" "Rather. Miss Jones and I. are busy puttiug the finishing touches on 'that forgery case. It's a simple will get through to-day. Nick!" "Well?" matter, and we Tell you what, "Ida Jones is the shrewdest woman I ever knew." "Yes?" "She has done two-thirds of the fine work in this matter, and I've let her do it.)) "Right, lad." "She just guesses, and then follows up ap "Jim was another name. Try and .the guess, and I'm blowed if she don't think if you have heard those names a s guess right every time." f l S CU I sociated in a way that you can remem"Good!'' ic prl her." Chick lighted a cigar, and. leaned back "Never." in his chair. Nick then related the incident in de"I'm off in ten minutes," he said; "any tail. orders?''

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10 NICK CARTER WEEKLy. "No. I have nothing on hand to-day, and so I will run up toSing Sing and see Brown.'' "Back to-night?" "I think so." "We11, good luck to you." The assistant took his departure. Twenty minutes later Nick Carter was on his way to the depot, and in due time be was sitting in the private office of Warden Brown at Sing Sing prison. As tersely as possible the detective re lated all that had occurred the preceding night, ending with the remark: "'Warden, I am convinced that a de termined effort is to be made to liberate some of your prisoners; I am also satis fied that the thing is being planned by a man of brains, who has carefully calcu lated every step and provided for it." '"It has that look, certainly." "I thought I'd warn you and so give you a chance to meet the scoundrels baH way." "It is very kind of you, Carter, and I appre iate it; but as for breaking prison atl Sing Sing, why the thing is Impossible." "My dear warden,'' replied Nick, slowly, "the thing that was impossible yesterday becomes only improbable to day, and an established to-morrow." "With exceptions, Nick." "Such as--" "Escaping from Sing Sing." "Perhaps so; I hope so." "I hope you won't think that I am unappreciative of--" ':Certainly not. Do you recognize the name 'Cousin Tom,' or Tom, 111 connec tion with this affair?" ''No.'' "The man Budge was evidently here, and, no doubt, visited the prison several times.'' "It would seem so." "Tte prisoner to whom he referred as 'Cousin Tom' is--" "My meat if I can nail him." ntil then "That's it!" ady no Every convict is ,known in the prison his is a a number, but a very careful descriptir a man of them a11 is kept in the records whstory the true name, if it is known, is enterome." The warden and Nick examined t records carefully, but althongh t1l foJnd many "Toms" and "Thomases there was no means of ascertaining which one Budge had rderred. "Has one thing occurred to you :Just asked the warden, presently. corded i "What do you mean?" "Suppose that those men, Jim at Budge, were 'onto' you when you euterld a ne the lumber yard?" Both w "Well?" h ... ke "Snppose they sq_w you go in, knt P sent who you were, followed and held the co" Read fab purposely for you to hear it?" "Yes." "Well?" "\V.hqt ..... ''WI "That's all; you can th ... remal 1y, der of the suppositions under that head."No do "It won't work, warden." "To-m "Why not?" ,e forge "Well, I know they did not see me, w will ll the first place, and in the second, wJ:udge. '' object could they .have in view?" "Snre t "A hoax, or a desire to draw your 1 "They tention from--'' ey ?'' won't work." "Yes; "Well, I'll keep awake up here." 1zzled it "I hope so. Depend upon it, you Bnd hear of a forgery before long; the forg will be arrested, and sent here, and t "Like man will be Budge." check fo "It may be so." >liars as "It will be." ore diffi "Anyhow, I can watch him if he de "Butt come; nothing is to be done till then.)) "So do ."Unless they change their plans." 1eck was "Do you think they are likely to l1ich it thatT' lly." "No, I do not." "\Veil, "Nick, if thic; fellow Budge conshed aft, here, as you predict, I will send for yl "I don' and we will talk this matter over aga "\Vhy?

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NICK CARTER WEEKLY. 11 til then we'll it easy. Dinner is dy now, and you must dine with me. 1is is a new wrinkle in criminal lore, a man to come here and tell me the tory of a crime before it is committed. CHAPTER IV. THE BIG FORGERY. Just seven days later than the events orded in the preceding chapter, Nick rter and his assistant, Chick, were im ain at the breaKfast table, and each enter d a newspaper spread open before him. Both were reading earnestly and neithr ke the silence for some time. Presently Nick threw aside his paper. "Read it through, Chick?" he asked. "Yes." do you think of it?" rema "Why, it's the same case." head "No doubt of that." "To-morrow morning we'll hear that e forger has been arrested, and the fel e me, w will be your man of the lumber pile, 1d, wJ dge. '' ''Sure to.'' .. your "They made quite a haul, didn't ley?" "Yes; got away with the cash. I'm 1 zzled in the same manner that Jim puz-d Budge.'' "Like him, I say It 1s as easy to forge c heck for twelve thousand five hundred llars as for less, but it's a great deal ore difficult to get the check cashed." "But this paper explains 1t. '' .hen." "So does this one. It says that the ls., eck was presented at the bank upon l y to hich it was drawn for certification ly. )) "Well, it was easy enough to get it co shed after that." for yo "I don't think so." r agail "Why?" "No matter how thoroughly a check may be certified the man who seeks to draw the money must be identified by somebody who is known at the bank that cashes it." "Certainly, but that--" "Is also explained, eh ?" "Why, yes." "Chick, it may be all right, but it looks shady.'' "Humph! I don't see it; oh !" "What's the matter now?" "I just caught on to your meaning." "Perhaps I'm right, and perhaps, I'm wrong; time will show.'' A silence ensued which was broken only by the advent of Patsy. He laid a card upon the table before the detective, which bore the name of Simon Duncan, president of the Gotham National Bank of New York city. Nick smiled as he tossed the card to his assistant and rose to leave the room "Got it, haven't you?" murmured Chick. "Seems so. Patsy, tell the gentleman that I will be down presently." "Yes, sir." "Chick." "Well?" "Come to the study with "Right. f A moment later the two detectives were in the study together, and the wardro .be was open before them. "What next?" asked Chick. "You're to play Nick Carter in this case, lad. '' "Oh !" "Put on the 'Old Thunderbolt' rig. I'll make up something, and then we'll interview the bank president." "Yes, but--" "You're to be Nick Carter, and I'm to be the assistant. You will do the talking and I tl1e listening.'' In ten minutes they were ready, and they proce e ded at once to the reception -

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12 NICK CARTER WEEKLY. room, where Mr. Duncan was awaiting them. ''W_hich of you is Nick Carter?" asked Simon Duncan when they entered. "I," replied Chick; "this is my assistant, whom I prefer to have present, if you do not object." "Certainly not." "I have read the papers, Mr Duncan, and I am therefore already informed as to yom business with me." "Ah!" "Rather a serious matter, that forgery.'' "I should say so. Will you take the "Certainly. I am surprised though that you did not go to the office." "The Central office has the case in hand, sir, but I am determined to catch that forger, if possible." "Quite right." "The bank will pay yon f o r your trouble whether you succeed or t "ot." "Very well; now tell me the story "You say you have read the papers (his morning?" "Yes." "What ones?" "The Herald and World." "Then yon have the story." "Tht:! paper tells me that the man who secured the money was named Benjamin Farrel.'' "Yes." "And that he was identified by Judson Leonard.'' "Yes." Who is Judson Leonard?" One oi our depositors." A rich man?'' "No, I think not particularly." "How large does he keep his balance with you?" "Usually about fiye thousand dollars, I believe." "He is well known at the bank, I trust?'' "Oh, yes. 'fhat is, he was thorough}) wel1 introduced." "How long has he he en a depositor?" "About two or three months." "All! who introduced Mr. Leonard?" "The fact is 1 met him at the club, where he was a new member. We became friends, and one day he expressed the wish to open an account wit\.! us. I was, of course, glad to have him do so--" "So he was not introduced at the bank after all?'' "My club is very select, sir. I hope your questions do 11ot illl ]Jly any reflections upon Mr. Leonanl, for--" "Go on, please." "I was :.bout to say that I look u no hiin as a personal friend, that he is a C<- stant visitor at my honse, and is, in fact er-as far above suspicion-er-as-" "As yourself." "Exactly that." "I do not donbt it, Mr. Dnnca., bu1 an ugly fact stares us in the face." "What?" "That he int:r:oduced a forger to you." "Oh, he explains that p e rfectly. I will telJ you what he says, and--" "Wait, please. I gather from what y o say that Mr. Leonard is now as anxious to find and apprehend the forger as you are.'' "Every bit." "Then he will be willing to talk with me." "He'll be glad to do so. Indeed, offered to come here with me." "Ah! very kind of him. Where can 1 see him, and at what time?" "At the bank, _at any hour you rna) select.'' "Very good i say at eleven this morn ing. '' "He will be there." "Thank you. Who first suggested the employment of your humble servant?" "Of whom?" Nick Carter. Wl w o m a H sn ch the id fir pr of it. I c

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ghl ?" ?" \1 b a me tb as ank u." cwil Y01t lOU yott with he an ra orn the NICK CAUTER WEEKLY. 13 "Why, it was Jndson." ''] udson I Oh, Mr. Leonard?'' "Yes." "I take it that you are quite intimate with him." ''We are close friends, sir." "Of three months standing, eh ?" "Sir, this is tl1e secono time that your word3 l1a ve implied a reflection upon my--" "Excnse me. I imply nothing. I sus pect everybody and nobody. I am a de tective. I do not want your ca:::e; take it elsewhere." "Dut-oll, confound it! I want you to take it. My tndignation was si111ply loy alty to a friend. You can excuse that, I suppose, Mr. Carter?" "Certainly. "Wil r you be at the bank at eleven?" "Yes." "Theu I wi;l go." "Wait; a few more questions first.n ''Very good.'' "The gentleman whose name was forged was George J. Mackcye, I believe." "Yes." "Why, when Farrel presented the check for certification, did he not take the cash instead?" "Because there was no one there to identify him." "Tell me what occurred when Farrel first a ppearec1 ?" "He went to the paying teller, and presented a check bearing a perfect copy of Mackeye's signature." "Well? and then--" "The teller, of course, declined to cash it., "\Vhat time was that?" ''A bout one yesterday afternoon.'' "Continue." 'Haye you anybody to identify you, Mr. Farrel?' askeo the teller. 'No,' was the reply. 'Then,' continued the teller, 'all that I can do you is to certify the check.' 'Thank you,' Farrel; 'if you will do that I will find soinebody who knows me, and I will not be obliged to return here.' J "The teller certified the check, and the forger went away. "At ten minutes before three--'' "That is ten minutes before the bank closes." "Exactly. At tl1at time Farrel came in again accompanied by Judson Leonard. "They walked to the window together, and Farrel exclaimed : 'I have comP. here with the check after all. Here is a gentleman who has known me a great many years, who will identify me.' 'Do you know Mr. Benjamin Farrel, Mr. Leonard?' asked the teller. 'Perfectly well,' replied Leonard. 'I know he is Benjamin Farrel, but I know nothi11g 8bout the check he wishes cashed.' "Did he say that?" "Yes-jokingly, of course-nevertheless, he said it." IC 'Oh, the check is all right,' replied the teller. 'How will you have the money, Mr. Farrel?' '' "How did he take it?" "In small bills; that is, tens, twenties, and fifties." "Ah! How did he carry the money when he went away?" "In a newspaper, wrapped up and tied with a string. Now you must see Leonard, and hear what he has to say." CHAPTER V. PLAYING A DEEP GAME. At eleven o'clock Nick Carter and Chick were at the bank of which Simon Duncan was the president. They were still attired as they bad been during the interview at Nick's house, Chick representing the great de tective, and Nick the assistant.

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NICK CAR'fEH. WEEKLY. They were shown at once to the presi dent's room, where they found Mr. Dun can, and with him a slight, dark, hand some man, faultlessly dressed, and with exquisite manners, who was presented to them as Mr. Leonard. ""\Ve will get to business at once, gen tlemen," said Chick, who, as before, did the talking. "Certainly." "Mr. Leonard, I believe you are the gentleman who identified Benjamin Farrel, are you not?" "lam." "Why did you do so?" ''Because be asked me if I would. I had known him a long time, and--" "How long?" "We were schoolmates." "Where?" "In Havana, N. Y." "How long ago?" "Twenty years or more." ''Have you met stnce you parted there?'' "Frequently." "Where?" "In various places; several times in 1New York and-but teally I can't re \nember. Our meetings were always acci iental. '' ''You are sure that you were not de?" "About what?" "Regarding his :ormer schoolmate?" "Certainly." identity with your "What is Mr. Farrel's business?'' "I don't know." "You told the teller when you identi fied Farrel that you knew nothing about the check.'' "So 1 did; I had forgotten that." "H'm! When did you leave Havana, Mr. Leonard?" '"When I was twenty-one." ''When did Farrel leave there?'' ''I don't I think.'' ''Knowing him so well, can you give me any point regarding his general ap pearance that will aid me in catching him?" "No; I'm afraid not. He is about my height, but heavier -much heavier. When I saw him yesterday he wore a mustache, but no beard. His hair and mustache are of the ordinary brown, and--" "He's a sort of nondescript, eb ?" .;'Precisely." "It would not be a bad idea for . kee_p an eye out for him, Mr. LeonRrd. Yo u might see him, and--" "If I do he won't be free long." "Good. Mr. Duncan, when did you find out that the check was a forgery?" "About thirty minutes after the forger got away with the cash.'' "Tell me how." "Mackeye, whose check we supposed it was, had an appointment at the bank with me at three-thirty." "Ah!" .. "The teller was in my here, when Mackeye came in, and he made some remark about having certified and cashed a check of his but a few moments before. "Eh ?" "I never asked him. We weren't par"'How much?' demanded Mackeye. 1cularly cordial; I never liked him, and "The teller told the amount, and then 1e never liked me. I always knew that Mr. Mackeye, looking very solemn, as tis conscience was elastic-well, you well he might, said: :now, he wasn't my sort." 'I have drawn no such check as that "That is why you made the remark you describe." bout the check, I suppose." "I won't weary you with the details, "What remark?" but I speedily became satisfied that the

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NICK CAR'lER WEEKLY. 15 check was a forgery, and, of course, the of your task; however, if you say so it goes.'' "I do." "You want five years, eh ?" "Yes." "Regular?" "Sure. You may let the district at torney into the secret, of course, because the indictment will have to be drawn, but nobody else need know.'' "Then nobody but the district attorney and myself outside are to know that you are not a genuine::, dyed-in-the-wool burglar." "That's it." "Nick, suppose we should have a vio lent thunder-storm.'' "Well?" "And I should be struck by light ning.'' rt Yes." "And an epidemic of cholera should strike the city." "Well?" "And carry Nicoll off?" "I see.'' "You'd be in for five years 'whedder 'r no,' as the coon said. '' Nick la11ghed. "I'll take my chances of convincing Warden Brown of my identity if two such calamities should occur," he said. "You insist, then ?ll "Certainly." "All right; when do you want me to arrest you?'' "I'll let you know." "Very good." 'When this fellow Budge is taken I'll adopt a make-up that will---" "My dear fellow, what good will a make-up do you when you get into the hands of W.arden Brown?'' ''Lots.'' "I don't see it." "I can adoptl one through which he will not recogmze me, and which he won't be able to wash off, either." "All right, Nick," laughed the super intendent of police, "I have learned not to argue these points with you, and not to dispute you. Let me know when you are ready, and I'll undertake to land you in Sing Sing in short order." Then Nick took his leave. CHAPTER VI. THE TWO CONVICTS. The detective's prediction was verified. Within twenty-fonr hours of tim when Nick Carter had the interview wit President Duncan at the the ma who was known as Benjamin F?rrel wa arrested. He was identified at once by the teller the other clerks of the bank who had seel him on the day when he presented check, and by Judson Leonard. After what seemed to be a stubbot:n de nial, which lasted a few hours, he down and confessed the forgery, buf re fused point-blank to tell what he ha done with the money. When pressed to tell where the cas could be found he said: "I have hidden it. You'll send me u the river for just as many years if I te you where it is, as you will if I don't." That is all he could be induced to sa and neither promises nor threats cou extract any further information fro him. His case was so well known and guilt so easily proven that no time w wasted in bringing the matter before t grand jury. He was indicted, and the day fina came for him to plead to the indictme When he was taken from the Tombs the court-house there were several ot prisoners in the "Black Maria," among them was one whose spirits see

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16 NIOK WEEKLY. in no wise dampened by the predicament in which he found himself. "I'm doing a tour of the States," he said to Budge, as they were on their way to the court-house. "Eh ?" said Budge. "Don't ketch on, hey?" "No." "I'm tryin' to find out which State gives one the best grub." "Oh !" "I've tried Joliet, Jefferson City-but what's the use of naming them? This will make the seventh." "What are you up for?" "Cracking a crib." "Oh! Going to stand trial?" '"Twouldn't do no good." "Why?" ''I was caught in the act; see?'' "Yes." "My pal got away. He and I have worked together a long time. He'll take my share to our hiding-place, and I'll find it there when I get out if it's ten years.'' "Don't be too sure of that." "Sure! Why, l'ni. just as sure of it as I am that I'm booked for five years certain.'' e "Then he's an uncommonly good pal to have." "Humph! He wouldn't cheat me out e; of a cent, nor I him. We're on the square with each other." "That's nice." "I sav, old chap, what are you answering to to-day; eh ?" "Forgery." "Oh! Stand trial?" c "No; my fix is the same as yours." "Plead, eh ?" "Yes." e "Dead sure for five years, eh ?" lS "Yes; or more. n "Let's hang together; what do you -ay?'' : "I'll think it over." "Correct. When you get throughon 't fa thinking I'll tell you something." e that "What?" "Aft "You aren't through thinking yet." Sing "Perhaps what you've got to say will "All help me." :lUse. "Well, I don't mind letting you in. "For You look like a square chap, but you mayuilt tl as well know that I don't give this snap1ys go to everybody." "What is it?'' "I've got a little scheme with the boys that beats all you ever saw." "Is tl "Yes for talking rty ot the gumbos La!. ''Bud Budge's face brightened perceptibly, "Cor then it fell again. le'lll "You can't use it," he said, "unless:lU're the other fellows know the tiling as welling Si as you." "Cot "Bah!" replied the burglar, who, as They the reader has already suspected, 1\ id Carter; "I never was in a pris"u yet h where I couldn't teach all hands the 1ey w secret in less than a week. But I keep it) the i for the good fellows. None of the splitters Both can get onto it, you. bet." "Will you teach it to me?" "That depends on the way in ,ut you finish that thinking you set out tO a moment ago." R j "I have finished." "Good! What's the verdict?" "We'll be pals if you say so." ve yea ''Agreed.'' Then "We're both bound to go up." The)l "Sure!" ntil t "To Sing Sing." ere h "Certain." Bit The conversation above recorded had ludge i been carried on in a low tone, which had hat, af gradually sunk to a whisper, so that the or the other occupants of the Black Maria could It wa hear nq word that was said. ime so "Maybe I'll let you into something of 10nder mine by and by," said Budge. hough "No time like the present." But "Yes, there will be a better time. I le1p ad

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NICl{. CARTER W.E.EKLl'. I 17 uough on't forget. Now, when will you teach e that thing of yours l" "After we're sentenced; before we get et." Sing-twice." Y will "All right. Here we are at the court d had had t the could ing of re. I use. Don't forget.'' "Forget! Mel I! Not much! I ain't ilt that way! Whatever Happy Hal "Is that your cog?" "Yes; Happy Hal. I've got thirty or rty others, but to my friends I'm Happy al. Who're you?" ''Budge.'' "Correct. We're pals from this out. e'lllay in together for keeps, and if u're made of the stuff I think you are, ing Sing won't hold us long." "Count on me!" They had no more time in which to "'n<5e 4" Black Maria came to a halt, an( hey were led to the court-room to plead o the indictments against them. Both pleaded guilty, and by the lav.ers assigned to defend them were recom ended to the mercy of the court. evidence was very strong B, Jamin Farrel was sentenced to years and six months at hard labor, nd Henry Dodge, alias Happy Hal, to ve years. rrhen they were taken away. They conld not be sent to Sing Sing ntil the following day, and then they ere handcuffed together for the journey. Bit by bit the detective instructed udge in the secret way of communication hat, after careful study, he had invented or the occasion. It was very ingenious, and at the same ime so simple that Budge could not help why convicts had never bought of it before. But they never had, and he could not elp admitting that it was much better and simpler than anything of the kind before devised. To describe it in detail would occupy too much space for the purposes of our story. Suffice it to say that certain mo tions of the body, hands, and feet con veyed letters and syllables, the motions in themselves being so slight as not to attract the attention of the guard or of an uninitiated convict, yet they were perfectly adequate to convey the intended meaning to one who understood them. Sing Sing was reached at last, and two prisoners were delivered to the prison officials. They were entered in the records as follows: "Benjamin Farrel." Then followed the date of his reception at the prison, date of sentence, length of term to serve, etc., etc. Continuing, it read: Born, won't say. Age, 38. Occupa tion, forger and thief. Complexion, light. Eyes, blue. Hair, light brown. Stature, 5 feet 101-2 inches. Weight, 182 pounds. Can read and wnte. tobacco. Cath olic. Single. Residence, unknown. Has wart on back of neck. Mole on back of right hand, near middle knuckle joint. Low, broad, projecting forehead. Eyes, full and very wide apart. Eyebrows, darker than hair. Large nose, slightly crooked. Nostnls small. Upper lip long. Teeth even and white. Chin recedes a lit tle. Short neck. Carries head little to one side. Has habit of moving lips invol untarily, as though talking to himself. Face, pleasant. Hands, broad and muscu lar. Feet, large. Little toe of right foot has been flattened so that nail grows side ways." The above description is given here in order that the reader may know how minute are the descriptions of convicts. No point, however trivial, is neglected, and in the event of an escape it is made

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18 NICK CARTER WEEKLY. a most difficult matter for the convict to avoid being retaken. Few of the readers of this library can realize the difficulties that lie in the way of escape from State prisons. Suppose a convict succeeds in reaching the world without the stone walls of his prison, his freedom is not attained, and will not be, until he has concealed the closely cropped hair, the smoothly shaven face, the strange pallor of the skin, unlike any other, that is produced by prison life; he must rid himself of the striped cloth ing, and secure in its place outer garmems which cannot expose him at any moment; he must conceal the moles, warts, bent fingers, uneveu teeth, nar row nostrils, shuffling gait, and in sl10rt root out and cast aside every peculiarity which nature gave him-and he finds he cannot. They are the leopard spots which nature gave to human kinci, and as un changeable as the genuine article. A 11 the escaped convict can do is to hicle until the fickle world outside the prison wall has forgotten him, unless, like the other prisoner of that day with Benjamin Farrel, like Henry Dodge, alias Happy Hal, alias (to us, reader) Nick Car ter, his description is somewhat as fol lows: "Born in New York. Age, 36. Occupa tion, carpenter. Complexion, neither light nor dark. Hair, brown. Eyes, gray. Height, 5 feet 9 inches. No distinguishing marks of any kind. Figure perfect and very muscular. Voice soft and musi cal. Face handsome." A description that will answer for nine men out of ten is difficult to localize. A description which points out many pecu liarities renders identification an easy task. However, the two prisoners were en tered, and became convicts. They went through the usual routme, and in a day or two were "old stories." CHAPTER VII. SIGNAL TALKING. Even Warden Brown did net hi gh ,, iVel that the burglar who was known whe COJJvicted as Happy Hal was Nick Cargl! t He did, however, remember his connin sation with the famous detective reg( t ing the forger who would be "sent u o and he interviewed Budge very close part ''What is your real name?'' he as.1. of the forger. 'hey "Benjamin Farrel." y Pl "How many other n::.mes have you'-. "No others." he ''Bah! Aren't you sometimes ca::ted Budge?" ha The face of the forger remained ngi movable. "Never," he replied. _he "I think you have been here before.. t 0 IC ''You ought to know il' T havt< '' c-, ve the cool reply. n t It was a self-evident truth, r caused the warden to change his tact11 .LIV He was about to question Budge closely, following the cues that had b' It given him by Nick Carter, when con 1 1 d. en ot 1er pnsoner w 10 was stan 1ng nea k the burglar, Happy Hal-interru[ him with a coarse laugh. t W ''Excuse me, warden,'' he hastenergra say when the official scowled at hthe "your questions reminded me of s01' I thing.'' "Of what?" "I paid a visit to Joliet once. "Ah, whatofit?" "D "Nothin', only we had a little scht 'Ye on foot, and the warden got wind
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NICK CARTER WEEKLY. 19 thoroughly, you know, but just "Is he well enough posted to talk with make him want to knpw me?'' ell?" e probed me with questions till he himself away, and so we just laid by a few months till he'd forgotten all t it; see?" 1e warden did see. c did not suspect the identity o the sus before him, but he was reminded, 1 he clever story, that if l1e questioned Ca ge too closely the latter would take Jng. <. therefore contented himself with a 1. ore questions which meant nothing articular, and then dismissed them hey were placed under the charge of y Piper, and a shrewder, keener guard .. .,t"hed a convict at work. he uay::. ._g n to creep past, and re ted as they were, Budge and Happy had very few opportunities 1or exIging confidences. ut Budge was in no burry. he few words spoken to him by the nn had set him to thinking, and he :ved to bide his time. n thP meantime, by the method taught ;--v Hal, the two convicts found y opportunities of conversing. ithout being too literal we will give conversation between them one day en they had been in prison about a k t was begun by Happy Hal, and was e graphed to Budge, who answered it he same manner. so 'I have fixed Tom," was the first sen ce. 'When?" 'Yesterday." ''Does he know the system?'' 'Yes." o 'Ha\'e you taught anybody else?" "No." "Yes." "Good 1 I will try him when I get a chance.'' Nick was delighted. As yet Burlge had said not a word about the plot" that the detective knew brought him there. But by using the system of signaliug which Nick had for the occasion Budge would be obliged to take Happy Hal into his confidence from the very fact that the latter could understand every signal that was made. On the following day Budge signaled to Nick. "When you see me talk with Tom he said, "watch." "Why?" "Do you remember what I said about a scheme of mine?" "Yes." "You will catoo on when you read what I say to Torn." "0. K." "It's a big one." "What kind?" "Escape!" "Oh !" "Sure to succeed." "Tough job here.'' "Can't fail." "Am I in it?" "You bet!" "You ought to have posted me sooner." "Wanted to study you." "Oh !" "There's something in it besides escape." "What?" "Boodle." "Where?" "Not fal' away." "Have you got friends outside?'' "You bet!"

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20 NICK CARTER WEEKLY. "Ready to help?" "Yes." "\Vho ?" "You '11 know some time." ''Correct. '' "I needn't have come here this trip." "Get out!" "Honest." ''Then-why--" "I came to carry out this scheme." "Oh !" "I knew 1 could escape." "Ah !" "So got nabbed purposelv." "You're a jay." "Think so?" "Yes. Any fel1ow who'd get nabbed purposely is a lunatic, a fool, or a jay." "All right. Watch me when 1 signal Tom.'' "Will you do it to-day?""No; to-morrow." "0. K." The man whom they referred to as Tom was in face and physique the last person whom a beholder would take for a criminal. He was slight of build, his face was re fined, his eyes clear and strong, and everything about him denoted a man of high character rather than one who would commit the crime for which he was imprisoned-highway robbery. When Nick first saw Tom he fancied that there was something familiar in the convict's face, but although he conceutrated his mind upon the thought he could not recall the time, place, and cir which the glance of Tom's clear eyes brought to mind. "I will rem em her it all in good time," thought the detective, and waited. The day fo11owing the conversation above quoted between Nick and Budge the detective was on the watch to catch every word that might be signaled between the forger and Tom. The informatic:,:m that he wanted, Nic he had risked so much to gain, was to become his. ;:mish It was afternovn before Budge and He got a chance to communicate: hole Then, without a moment of unne new sary clelay, Budge opened the "ball." en ''Can yon understand. my signais ?" J en askecl of Tom. ost "Yes." Th "Perfef'tly ?" ''Yes.'' "I have a great deal to tell you." 1e s "Fireaway." Th "You know I couldn't do anythlvery when I came to see you." xp1o ''Yes." lJey "Pi per watched me too closely." On "Yes." ast a "He's watching now; see him ''Yes." Ired "He can't get onto this ra .cket. n fe11ow who taught it to you taught 1111 Bil "I know it." 1s ex "I came here on purpose to fix thingtv ay. "How?" Th "Forged a check, got the cash, turdegre the money over to Jim, let myself 1 Th nabbed, pleaded guilty, and here I a11 ro "Well?" d s "I'm not going to stay." "How can you help it?" "Bah! Do you th1nk I came up on a seven-year trip for fun?" "No." "Not much." "What are you here for?" "For liberty." hem. ( ....,!1 nd t "It's a queer place to look for it." "There are five fellows here whom Th want." hese "Who?" "Yon are one." "Yes." "J em Green's another." "Yes." "Bob Dixon, Bill Foster, and B Thompson.'' w rres eede and La1 racec

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NICK CARTER WEEKLY. 21 e wanted, ain, was a Nick Carter, who had not lost a word, me near uttering an exclamation of as nishment. 1dge and te: of unn 1e "ball.' signals?' 11 you.'' do osely." cash, tur t myself here I a1 for it." ere whom and But He believed that he saw through the lwle scheme then and there, for he ew the names and reputations of the en named by Budge. Jem Green and Bob Dixon were the ost expert counterfeiters in the world. They were both up for long terms, and ere were other indictments awaiting em when they should be liberated from e sentence they were then serving. They knew, the authorities knew, erybody who was familiar with their plaits knew that there was no hope that Jey could ever be liberated. One sentence would follow another as st as tl1ey were served out, and the two en would have to live to be over a hun red years old apiece to pay the penalties II( 'lrred. Bill !aster and Butch Thompson w<:>re s expert as the other two in their own cracksmen of an advanced egree. They were men who had reduced the rofession" to a fjne art, and they also ..Jd several indictments pending against hem. Shunld aU.hold good forty years would nd them convicts still. CHAPTER VIII. THE PLOT UNFOLDS A LITTLE. There was yet another fact regarding hese four men which was equally well nown to the detective. When ]em Green and Bob Dixon were rrested, it was known that they had suceeded in passing over two hundred thouand dollars' worth of counterfeit money. Later, another hundred thousand was raced, so it was safe to assume that they had nearly a quarter of a million dollars in good mone-y concealed somewhere. The hiding-place neither would reveal, of course, but that theyhad it, and coulq find it if liberated was almost positively known. With the number of indictments that were hanging over them, together with the fact that they would probably have to spend the remainder of their lives in pri5on, it was more than likely that thy wou'ld cheerfully give up every dollar of their hoarded fortune to procure their liberty. Indeed, soon after their commitment, ]em Green had offered one of the guards the entire amount if he would help them to escape. But the guard was Billy Piper, and Billy was invulnerable. He had simply reported the matter, and the two convicts received nothing hut pnnjshmcnt for their attempt to bribe a guard. Something of the same condition of things existed in the cases of Bill Foster and Butch Thompson. They had before the burglary, at which they were caught robbed a bank in Leavenworth, and had succeeded in extracting over a hundred thousand dollars in cash from the vaults, b<'.!sides twice as much more in negotiable bonds. Many of the bonds they had succeeded in "placing." When finally arrested every effort had been made to force them to reveal the hiding-place of their money, but they had only snapped their fingers at the requests and accepted the inevitable. But _they knew where the money was, and it was a very large amount, upward of two hundred thousand dollars, all in good, legal-tender cash. The reader begins to see through the method of the man "Jim" of the lumber pile. Jem Green, Bob Dixon, Bill Foster and

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22 NICK CARTER WEEKLY. Butch Thompson could and doubtless would pay the immense sum of half a million dollars for their liberty. "Jim" knev<. it, and resolved tu earn the fee by liberating them. He laid his plans, engaged Jack Lawless and Polly-wl10ever they were-and Budge to aid him. Such was the scheme which the detective believed he had discovered, when he read the names of the men it was pro posed to liberate, through the signals that were passing between Budge and Tom. But why Tom? Why had h e been selected as one who was to be liberated? The detective could find no answer to that question in his memory. Tom was a stranger to him-an unknown quantity. Altogether there were six to escape, according to the scheme as Nick believed he understood it. Six meant sixty or more, doubtless, for o thers would have to be let into the secret; and Nick "believed that he was on the eve of the discovery of the most stu pendens plot of prison-breaking in the history of this country. "I must have your help," was the next message signaled from Bndge to Tom. "0. K.," was the answer. "There will be seven of ns in all." "Yes." C l "The five named, Happy Hal, and myself. ''Yes.'' "Jim and Jack work the outside part of it." "Oh !'' Nick saw the suspicion of a smile upun the face of "Cousin Tom" when he sig-1 naled the word "Oh !" and the detective 1 wopdered what had caused it. "What is the scheme?" was the next signal made by Tom. f 'The days are getting shorter." "Yes." "Yon know Jim's lwbby ?" ''Yes.'' "He uses that." "I'm afraid it won't .work." ":t can't help it." " '' "I'm willing to aid all I can." "0. K. You must pass the word Jem, Bob, Bill and Butch." her t o ten "How?" ''Get a chance code.'' "Well?" to teach "Then get their promise." '' them this ing " "0. K." the "You have more chance with them than I." ''Yes." ''Besides, they know you and wil l place faith in what you say. If yon tel ] them you can get them out, they will be lieve you .'' "0. K." ,, oth pro " "They must promise to give up the boodle." unl "Yes." ben "All but ten thousand apiece." ''Correct. '' are to get twenty thousand, I the same, and the rest goes between Jac k uf Jim and Polly." "You ought to have n1ore." "Why?" "For taking this risk." "Jim'lll ook out for me." "That's so ''Get to work as soon as you can. Time flies.'' " "I will." "Tackle Jem Green you first; he's th e shrewdest. '' "0. K. I wish I knew more about the scheme, so I could tell them better." "I will post yon when I can. Ther e jsn 't time to-day." _"That's so." ''All yon need tell them for a starter i s that we have got a scheme to liberat them." "' "l "' ton "]

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NICK CARTER WEEKLY. 23 11. ) ) "Ves." "That it's bound to work." "Yes." "That I am so sure of it that I came here voluntarily on. a seven-year senthe word to tence." 1 them this with them and will If yon tell hey will be-lVe ce. '' ween s you can. ; ; he's the re about the ,eUer. '' There r a starter is to liberate ''Yes.'' "That you and Jim and Jack are work ing it." "Yes." "That they've got to agree to give up the boodle as I have said." "Yes." ''And that they can take as many others into the scheme as they please, provided they are sure of their men.'' "Right!" "Afi far as we are concerned, we won't t ,,,. \ except tbe ones in it now, unless they say so. The scheme's for their benefit and yours.'' "0. K." "You might say that Happy Hal is one lf our men ; he is.'' "Since when?" "Oh, a month or two!" 'In Jim's confidence?" "Partially." "0. K. That "answers for him. Jim never was fooled in a man yet. '' "Have you got any 'friend here whom you want in it?" ''No.'' "Well, we'd better quit now.'' "Wait. How's Polly?" "Fine." ''Does she miss me?'' "Miss you! She's been punching tls up to this ever since you got here.'' "I thought she would." "We would have done it, anyway, for your sake." "I expected it.'' "But we've got a chance at the boodle in the same haul, and having four such fellows as the counterfeiters and the cracksmen makes it easier. 11 "Of course." "Hal's no slouch, either." "No." "Billy Piper is watching us. Let's qmt for to-day." "0. K." The reader must not suppose that the si analed conversation above quoted took b place as it is written. Signs represented words, and the intellicrence filled in many gaps left blank in "" the gestures. Again, if it bad been possible for the men to have conversed only a few mo ments would have been occupied iu the exchange of ideas. As it was, the entire afternoon was consumed in the signaling. Sometimes many minutes elapsed after a question had been asked before an an swer could be given. Aaain following an answer, it might "" 1 be a quarter of an hour before the next question came. But to a convict, hours count for noth-in g. A month is a mere interval of time, a day but a brief space. To possess a system by which they can converse intelligibly is to them a boon indeed, and it not matter if hours pass between the asking of a question and the transmission of its answer. To go to prison is to be buried ; to be

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I NICK CARTER WEEKLY. released 1s to be resurrected from the dead, but into a new world from which confidence in human nature has ben elim inated. Everybody looks upon an ex-convict with suspicion; the police watch him. If a crime is committed in his particular line, he is harassed and questioned until driven to commit another himself. CHAPTER IX. AN ESCAPED CONVICT. During the time that we have been obliged to. pass over in following Nick Carter 111 person, Chick had uot been idle. But they had left there many ago, and nothing had known them since. So far the story that Leonard had at the bank seemed to be substantia Several times Chick on the of believing that right,, and that he was solely a v r.ircumsta nee. But each time, just as he had made up his mind to that belief, he covered something which led his ide a en upon the other tack. Leonard frequently visited a hou Twenty-first street. When he went there, it was invarial p in the early evening. d'd 1 hen Upon every occaswn, he 1 not e4 the premises until the following morn nt I Nobody except Superintendent Byrnes -a fact which made Chick wonder. and District Attorney Nicoll suspected Careful inquiry iu the neighborhlre that Nick was absent from home, for Chick personated him on every occasion when it became necessary to do so. New cases were constantly being brought in, which it became necessary to declin(!, for Nick was away, and Chick was busy. Following the instructions of the de tective, he spent his time in watching Judson Leonard. The more he watched him the more puzzled he became. Leonard was a mystery which was hard to solve. h 1 d He gave t e wuse an 1ts mmates an exd lent reputation. 1me d f 1 'd d too Ju gmg rom w 1at was sa1 an that the assistant detective could obse It c the character of the people who lii Da rant there was irreproachable. Chick could learn nothing upon w J>.g b . 'f f Th to ase a susp1c1on, 1 1t were not or l other circumstance. reet e e Twice he had sent a messenger bo Ch the door of the house after he had Pa1 Leonard enter it. The boy had been instructed to inq for Mr. Judson Leonard, and botb t' "S ":!'\ "V In reply to the inquiries sent by Chick he had beeu told that the gentleman y 1 to Havana, N. Y., the information had not there. Bu come that forme;ly there had been two One night Chick had placed Pats the young men bearing the names of Judson Leonard and Benjamin Farrel, who had been residents of that place. the watch after Leonard had gone opt the house, and had, himself, gone to He next street-Twentieth-and had wa wer

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NICK CARTER WEEKLY. 2o any Y houses directly in the rear of that Third avenue and Twenty-third street ich Leonard had entered. and waited. e had seen several people come out of different residences, and one of them man-he had followed. xcept that he was about the same ure as Leonard, and walked like h im, re was no resemblance. he stranger walked to Fourth avenue, that thoroughfare to Twenty-third et, thence east to Third avenue, and en Chick reached the corner around ich the stranger had passed, he had he remembered, then, the erience which Nick bad met witb en shadowing "Jim," after the inci-Id not Ie . nt of the lumber p1le. ng morm ls n<. m"' I have followed onder. id, and uld obser who li e not for re Jim?" Chick asked himself. He waited, resolved to see his man me out, and to take his track again, if took all night. It did, nearly. Daylight was not far away when the anger again appeared. 1 Chick took the track. The stranger ;eturned to Twentieth reet, entered the house that he had left e evening before, and close the door. enger boy Chick hastened to Twenty-first street. he had s Patsy was still at his post. d to inq both t i ntleman "Seen anything?" asked Chick. "Nothing." "Well,come away; we won't watch y longer now." But the nxet time that Leonard went In due time he saw his man-the same one whom he had followed before. He saw what doorway he entered, and the appearance of Patsy, a moment later, proved that he had not been mistaken in the identity of the fellow. "It's my belief," mused Chick, "that the man 'Jim' and Judson Leonard, are one and the same, and therefore the woman who lives in the house in Twentyfirst street must be Polly. "God. Now, I'll find out who lives in Twenty-second street." He did. "A gentleman named John Lawler," said his informant; "a very pleasant gen tleman he is, too, although he is seldom at home.'' "A h travels, eh ?" "Yes." "What business?" "Wholesale liquor house, I think.;, '"Have you met him often?" "Not very; but I would vote him a nice fellow." "Thanks." Chick walked away. He had told the man a feasible story to account for his desire to learn abont Mr. Lawler, and he was convinced that the information that he was inquiring about would not be likely to reach the object of his questions. Suddenly he paused in his walk, and ced Patsy the house in Twenty-first street, Chick uttered an exclamation. ad gone i opted different tactics. gone to He set Patsy to watch the house in I had watc wentieth street, and himself hurried to "By Jove!" he muttered; "I never thought of thaf." Then he took an envelope from his

PAGE 27

26 NICK CAitTER WEEKLY pocket, and wrote down the following names one underneath the others. "Jim., "Jack Lawless., "Judson Leonard., "John Lawler., "Strikingly alike, those names," he mused, viewing them critically, "and the same initials stand for all except that there is no 'L' that goes with 'Jim.' "Humph! 'J. L.' Ah !'' A sudden idea occurred to him, and he re s olv e d to act upon it at once. He hurried home and found Patsy there "Patsy,, he said, "I'm going out of town this afternoon, and you've got to do my work., t
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NICK CARTER WEEKLY. 27 Nose rather long and straight. Deep dimple in chin. Hair curls st at ew e, Inly of lcl w Shoulders--' '' "That will do, warden." "Have I hit it?" "Yes; what was he in for?" "Forgery and embezzlement." "How long?" "Five years only." "Ever heard of him since?" "No. queer thing about him, too; he "Esc a peel "Yes. Under my predecessor in office, ind you. Worked a neat trick; and got way. His time was nearly out, too. He ad only one more year to serve." "He's my man, warden." L 'o 'itl .!
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28 NICK CARTER WEEKLY. The prisoners had been, as usual, hard at work all day, and they were marched to their cells when the day's work was done, according to the every-day custom. After they are locked securely in their tomb-like retreats, all danger of an outbreak seems past, and the vigilance of the prison guards relaxes in proportion as the security increases. But the guards did not know "Jim's hobby," referred to in a signaled conversation between Budge and Tom. Jim was a talented individual, who boasted that he could make a key for any lock that he had ever seen. The day of Chick's arrivalatthe prison was visitors' day, and an emissary of "Jim's" had been there. Just how he accomplished what he did, and who he was, will never be known, for the men could not be forced to con fess. That he "got there," however, the sequel will show. Night settled down and all was quiet about the prison. Chick, however, was restless. He knew, from what Nick had said, that the trying time was at hand. He had not warned the warden, because he knew that Nick would have sigmfied the desire to have him warned had he felt it. The assistant only waited. He went to his room and put ont the light; he did not take off his clothing, for he felt that he had need to be dressed and ready for emergency. Midnight came and passed, and still no sign. One o'clock and all was well. Two. d and Chick could bear the suspense them. : even longer. tards He left his room in the warden's hot cts to passed silently through the hall, do occn the stairs, and out into the night, remi f . e o 1ng, however, 1n the shadow of the bud d an ing, where he could not be seen by guards. s arm ams, Two-thirty. The assistant began to think tha'rl wha had misunderstood Nick, after all. ::"! was Suddenly, however, from the direee leap of the prison, he heard a noise 'kness startled him like an electric shock. very t' It was a cry of pain, loud, piercing.fellInstantly Chick leaped toward n, !'tr' prison doors. !.Ttl But even as he ran, he heard a coJUlt is I tion in the house of the warden. "At It connected with the prison, of cot forth and it was through that dour that'he gu convicts attempted to escape. 'he gn Suddenly there was a loud crash. 'hick He heard the noise of a falling doo1ding w a f It was followed by loud cries, cu h ngt and shouts, and an instant later a sw . 'ick, of men 111 stnped ttmforms rtl t, was through the house and tumbled in ra1n haste from the front door into the 1 1dS. air. rhe c At the same 1nstant the alarm bell! y, and gan to dang, shots were fired by 3ut th guards, and men rushed from every Q '=Int.'' ter to assist in quelling the riot. 1 Jne b warden, 1alf-dressed, leaped from a f they dow of hts honse to the ground, an 'I' he fi scene became one of utter confuswn. len m As though to light up the The o moon at that mstant passed from b

PAGE 30

NICK CARTER WEEKLY. 2!1 and shed its flood of yellow glow ing convicts were crowded back into the suspense hem. doorway, through it, into the hall, and on until the prison do"er behind them again. arden's ho e\en as they all rushed forward, ard.s to prevent the escape and the Just victory became an assured night, ret j of the b seen by ts to get away, a most unexpected occurred. of the convicts, the foremost, and faced the others. arms seemed like animated batterms, his fists like metal projectiles. was attacking his own companions thing, a figure rushed toward Chick. It was Patsy. How he got tf1ere was a mystery. lthink 'ter all. a noise shock. ard a co Hen. r l crash. do cnes, cu ter a s ms rn 1bled in riot. from a what an attack it was. was ten, ay, a dozen men in one. leaped from point to point with the ness of lightning. ery time his fist shot forward a confell-and fell to lie where he h a d He whispered a few hasty sentences in Chick's ear. and tben they dashed away together. But not until Chick had leaped to the warden's side, and hastily whispered: "Do me a favor. Keep Happy Hal out of the prison till I return.' 1 "Where are you going?'' "I'll be back in thirty minutes with n, l'tricken senseless by the force of Jack Lawless." Then he turned and dashed away 11 P' shouted the wnv-. 'rhe waden had Happy Hal taker. tr. "At 'em, You'll get your par-his office. for this." he guards were superfluous. he guns were not used. hick was also in the thick of the ding by Nick's side and striking after blow with his terrible ngth. ick, although in the garb of a con' was all officer now. His blows fell the escaping prison'ers' were struggling for lib and they fonght like tigers. ut they were no match for the "Little "Now, Ninety-nine, explain yourself, 11 he said. Nick'smiled. "Explain what?" he asked. "If ) lou had not fought your compan ions, you would have escaped, all of you, I fear." "I think so." "Then why did you fight them?" "Because I didn't wnnt them to get away." "I can't understand it." Nick stepped forward, so that he was out of ear-shot of the others. "Warden," he said, in a low tone. "I ne by one they went down. One by am Nick, Carter. Be careful. Don't let it they were vanquished. he fiaht was fierce while it lasted, but ,., ten minntes it was over. The guards rnshed forward, the escapbe known. Let me be pardoned in the regular way. will attend to it; Byrnes and Nicoll." "If I send you back there, those f ellows

PAGE 31

30 NICK CARTER WE KLY. w ill k ill y o u,..:' s aid the warden, when h e had re c o v e red from his .surpris e. Arra?ge it_. to suit yourself, warden. Y o u do n't more than half believe me, do you?" "No." "Telegraph to B yrnes." And the warden did Twenty minutes later Chick and Patsy returned. Between them walked a man who was handcuffed, and a glance revealed the handsome o f J udson Leonard. He had fought like a tiger, but taken by surprise, the two assistants had over powered him. He was on hand to aid his friends in securing the money from ]em Green, Rob Dixon, Bill Foster and Butch Thomps on. It was found that he was Jim, Jack Lawless, John Lawler and Judson Leonard, all in one. The woman, Polly escaped, and has ne ve r been heard of since. She was Jack Lawless' sister, and the wif e of "Cousin Tom,, who owned the ho use in Twenty -fir s t s treet. The expe diti o n s to Third avenue were o nl y to coll ect the moneys from a faro ban k own e d by L a wless. B n dg e was a m e r e tool. He did not know that Jim, Jack, and John were one and the same, but believe d them to be different individuals. That is why "Cousin Tom" smiled. The denouement come just "in time. Lawless as Leonard, had already be come engaged to Simon Duncan's daugh ter. The sc oundrel would hav e m a and then-but why speculate. Nick was releas e d in due for body but the initiated suspecte great detective had played the con v ict. But for Nick Carter the p i have succe eded; but he stopp because a storm drov e him in a pile of lumber. (THE END.] The next number of the Nic Weekly will contain "Nick Youl:!gest Detective; or, Workin Own Case," by the author of ter." NICK Our readers will be ple ased that we h a ve is s ued No. I of N i t er's Quarte rly, containing Nos of the New Nick C arte r Wee ki in on e volume, with all the origi ored illustrations-a splendid of g ood detective sto ri es. PRICE For s ale by all n e w s d ea l e r s postpa id by mail on rec eipt of STREET & SMITH, Publi Ne AMATEUR PHOTOGRA Many peop l e Imag in e lhal a ph o tographer's camera mach m e to halttlle, a u d that the work isdirLy ami d i this !sa mlstalutitleci AMA T K O F P HOTOGRAI H V will hq S'tllt Oil r eceipt Of ten cen H.ANUAL LlBHARY, 25 Rose street,

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NICK OARTER WEEKLY. 31 Carter Weekly in due Clnn----.JND ERS. ted suspec ad played Carter the but he ve; or, e author o ER'S TERL be pleased ed No. I of Ni )ntaining Nos. .. 35 Cents. der will keep your paper, always clean and more missing numbers. Handy to refer to as well as useful. Sent post-paid to any receipt of price, fifty cents. Address, STREET & SMITH, NEW YORK CITY. Carter Weeklv.._ ____________ th au the origi \VRESTLING. -a splendid tories. newsdealers, n receipt of MITH, Publis wa."' thP first form of athlettc It gl\'e!; !itnng-LII a.ud firnwess, combined 1illty, tn llw limb:'!, \'i.t;'or to tile body, tn tilt> lwarl and to the tem. ft,rlllllll( nn E>lltrJ.:ltk <:OII\hlnn.tlon of thL l'umul In man. '!'he hook 1!-i cnlltled PHOlo'J<.:.l..>SOH. .. :..;Tusn. ft 11"1 illmnrn.te<.l, aml will he sen t rcctIJt nr Jtu n"' Adclle!o\.<; M.\ .. U.A .J LlHB.A RY, 2.) Ro'ie street, New York. in lire, Prlnclplps o f nur!IIJ:' and Stlliug, (:enPral l\lann.g-e )fannfactlll'illg, Hookkpepi11g, :\ln.:dms llllll F'orms. etc. It ni!'O lx nfcntnphtP forms nntl a clicllonn.ry So mnn shnnlrl he without this H cmuplPle Information about trfHh.s. and orcupatuln in wllich any youug man is lntert;>Ste, ceurR. SPORTS. for playing many of the moHt ponular ont fount! In thiR l-ook The gn.meM nre ftlust ra.ted ma.<;tered. Price lf"n rf"nrs. Address MANUAL LTBRARY, 25;Jlose s!reet New V?rk Tip Top uarterly 416 Large Pages. Fifty Cents Each Numbers I, 2, 3 and 4 of the Tip Top Quar terlies are now ready, each contain ing in one volume thirteen of the fumous Frank Merriwell stories complete and 1m abridged, and thirteen 111uminated photoengraved illustrations. THE FRANK MERRIWELL STORIES detail the pranks, trials and bravery of a true-hearted American lad-brave to the core. They haYe received universal com mendation, and the Tip Top Quarterlies are issued in response to numerous in quiries for a complete series of tbe Merriwe1l stories. For sale by newsdealers everywhere, or sent by mail, postpaid, on receipt of price, by the publishers. STREET & SMITH, New York TEN CENTS EACH. The follo\\'lng list of books will he found useft1l, enterta.lnlug, nnd t'ull or iusuucti,p lnf'orlllu.Uou ror all. 'l'hey are bouncl in altru.ctlve co,ers. printed on good qun.llty pnoer, illus tratell, and are nuu,els of TheSt" Uook!i lla"e-never befol'> hPt'll olft>red u.t such a low figure. '!'be 11rice, 10 ceuts each ncludes postage. USEFUl, ANU INS'l'JWC'l'IYE INFOHlllA'l'ION. .llhnm WritPr's AsRiRtant. Shod llnnol for lion to llo llnino-.. Jloy Own !look of Tlonts 'J'he llook of Knon ledge. Jo:veryclay Cool< Hook. Allll\lonr' Jlnnnal of l'hotogrnJ>hy. Jlills' (Jniversnl l.etfer-Writer. The Tnxiclermi9( JI:1nual. (Jooof llons ekoep ing. 1'he llnnter nntl Angler. The lnternntionnl Critket llnid e 'fhc ( 'o mtJielf' \m:ltH". Anmteur nwl Prol'e!iSioun l Oarsmnu's Ritliuz aud Uriving. Poe' FooHiall. l'omplete 'fmining llulde ror Amateur CoHllll1w1l'.lil J.:n11t ft-nnts. Uunn,s Fenrhu: 'J'he l'hrrher I' in) eo. Cnpt. l!lTinnning Uarka-nmmnn lllltl Bagntelle. Instrurto, Ont lloor Sports. Aquatic Guide; or, Yachting mod 'J'he Young Gymnast. Snllhog, FORTUNE'l'ELLJNG. Nn11oleon's nook or Drenm nook. Cupid's Dream llook Jlerrmnn's Tllnek Art. The W ny to no 'l'IUCJiS. lie Her's llnnd Rook of llerrmnn's Tricks with Cards. IUW11'A'l'IONS AN]) Rl:AIHNGS 1'he Prerless Reriter. The ronnl< f:loroitionlst, Select Ilerilat ions and Readings. The Stnnrlnnl Ilrriter. hnoks wfll hP sent nrerlR.fd upon receiptor 10 \Vht?n orrlering-, please he JH\.rtlCI!Iar to se11cl thP fuJI title of the l:look rlesirel.nlso _vour full nume and address. 'fhe books n.rP. 10 cent.'! each, pn'!U\ge free. Acldress niANUAJ, J,IBRARY Rose st., New Yot ko

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Tbirty=two Pages. "Back Numbers always on hand . ........ Ill lllllljlllli ltllllllllllllllllllllll STREET & SM TH ; PUBLISHERS NEW )'ORK. For Sa1e by a11 Newsdea1e:r


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