The young rough rider's silent foe, or, The hermit of Satan's Gulch


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. 16 THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. Carried away by the soothing effect of his own music, Ted had shut his eyes whi singing the last verse. Just at the close of the mn he he a rd a sli g ht noise, and, looking up, he saw the old man sta nding and look ing to the right, along the side of the mountain. As Ted finished the last verse the old man turned, gave Ted a quick look, then, without a word, glided quickly away in the opposite direction from which he h a d been gazing. Two minutes later there appeared a shadow across the m outh of the cave. Then a second later Ted was look i n g into the leer ing counten ance of J ack Raub. For a full minute the men s tared into each other's eyes. Not a word was spoken by either. A malicious, revengeful grin was spread over the face o f Ted's silent enemy. At last it was Ted who broke the silence: "It was you, then, you brought me here?" Raub merely nodded. The grin did not leave his face. "You int end to kill me, I suppose?" asked Ted, in a matte r-of-fact tone. For the first time since his capture, Ted he a rd the man speak. B ut eve n now Jack Raub uttered but three words, but they were words of terrible significance: you starve!" CHAPTER IX. THE RESCUE. Bud Morgan and Ben Tremont had s tarted off on the trail of Jack Raub at a fast gait when they left the hotel at Sunshine. As has been stated, they were informed by Kit that Raub had taken a northward direction and had just passed from view into a growth of timber at the edge of the town. Bud and Ben had no trouble in keeping the ri g ht trail, for there were no branching paths where it passed through the narrow belt of forest. Sunshine was located upon a high elevation of rolling land, and as the two rough riders rode into th e forest fuey found that they were gradually descending into a wide valley. They soon rode through the belt of woods, and as they came to the open country again they found themselves looking down into this fertile valley. From their position they could look for several miles in each direction up and down the valley, and, over half a m ile away, riding along at a moderate pace they caught sight of the man they were following. They thus knew which direction had been taken by Raub, and they lost no time in taking up the chase again. It was a beautiful and picturesque country through which they were now traveling and the weather, at that time of year, was delightful and invigorating. lt \Yas neither too warm nor too cold and, h ad it not betn for the th oug ht of what m ight have been the fate of the young rough rider Bud and Ben would have en joyed th eir trip immensely. They t oo k a fast gait when the y had reached the level of the valley, and they were soon in plain sight of Raub. Raub did not travel fast, for his horse was already tired and our two friends had little trouble in keeping him in sight most of the time. But the rough riders took good care that the man who was bei n g so closely followed did not get sight of them. Thus was the chase continued until nearly noon when Raub suddenly guided his horse off the straight trail and t oo k an indi sti nct trail leading out of the valley to the left an d throu g h a narrow wooded gulch. Through this gulch the rough riders followed, but their pro gress was slow, as they had tQ pick their way along carefully. For a half or three-quarters of a mile their path led throu g h the narrow gulch, and then they suddenly came out into another beautiful open valley or larger gulch. As the y 'came to a h a lt for the purpose of ascerta i ning which direction had been taken by Raub, their denly cau ght the sounds of a strong, rich voice singing: Rock of Ages, cleft for me, L et me hide mysel( in Thee." The two rough riders looked at each other in aston ishment. They had recognized the voice to be that of their young leader, Ted Strong. As the sweet notes died away in echoes, Bud Morgan swallowed a lump which had seemed to rise in his throat, and muttered: "He ain't dead! He ain't dead!" The voice had seemingly come from the side of a high mountain on the opposite side of the big gulch. The 0two rou g h riders lost no time in descend:,rig _the trail into the gulch, and, as they finally halted 11r bank of a little stream in the center of the valk..:,, they gazed up at the opposite mountain. A thrilling s i ght met their gaze. High up the mountain, they could see the mouth of a cave, and in front of th e entrance to the cave was stand ing Jack Raub. The man was standing upon a led ge of rock that led up the mountain side from the north and continued on past the mouth of the cave for a considerable distance. Raub's horse had been tied to a jutting rock about half way up the mountain side. But it was neither the man nor the horse that held the attention of the two rough riders. To the left of Raub, further along the led ge, they be held a st range creature, half crawl i ng, h a lf walking toward the man who was standing near the mouth of the cave

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THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. 17 This creature was no other than the crazy hermit for whom Ted had b en compelled to sing "The Rock of Ages." As Ben and Bud watched the man creeping so slowly toward Raub they held their breath in suspense. Suddenly they saw the maniac stand nearly erect and in his hand he held a large stick-the limo of a small tree. Then the man rush
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; 18 THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. On the ledge above them, gazing down upon their camp, stood the ragged hatless wild-eyed maniac. His face seemed distorted with ra ge. Then the shaggy head disappeared for a moment, and when it again appeared, had the rough riders been look ing above, they wotild have seen that the maniac had planned an awful catastropJ1e for th em. To the edge of the precipice, directly over Ted's head the crazy hermit had rolled a huge rock. He was now about to send it crashing down upon the heads of the three rough rider 's. The first intimation that Ted or his companions had of danger was the sound of a sudden cracking of the rocks above them. They glanced up quickly a nd saw that the huge rock was falling from the mountain led ge. Then was h ea rd a s hrill agonizing s hriek. The maniac had lost his balance, and was following the big stone to the foot of the mountain. But the stone did not hit of Ted's party, although their escape was little short of miraculous. After wa rd it was fot}Ild that when the stone was on the very verge of the prec,ipice a large layer of the rock compos ing the edge of the ledge had suddenly broken off. This had tended to throw the big stone off in a slant ing direction, so that, instead of it falling directly to the spot where the rough riders had been sitting, it had fallen several feet to the left of that spot. But the breaking of tl1'! la ye r of rock had caused the maniac to lose his balance on the ledge, and he had started to fall to the ground below : The falling body of the old hermit landed right across the shoulders of Ted Strong and Ben Tremont. And, as the body hit the shoulders of the two young ro\}gh riders, Bud Morgan quickly caught it in his arms and lowered it gently to the ground. Had the maniac fallen directly to the ground from the rocky ledge, he would most likely have been killed in stantly. As it was, the boys soon learned that he was alive, but unconscious. There was a wicked gash from his left temple diagonally clear acro ss his scalp. Ted made a quick examination, and then announced that if the man had not suffered toncussiop of the brain he would probably recover. Under Ted's direction, everything possible was done to bring the maniac back to consciousness. With boughs from the green trees a shelter was erected U!ider which the injured man was placed upon a pile of horse blankets. I Ted and Ben continued to work over him until at last they had the satisfaction of seeing his eye lids quiver. ., The man was returnii:ig to consciousness. A moment later the eyes were opened, but were closed agjin instantly: Then from the thin lips came a strange request. "Please sing 'Rock of Ages'." Ben had opened his mouth to say something, but Ted raised a warning finger. the rich voice of the young rough rider was again raised in singing the beautiful old hymn. As Ted sang a smile appeared upon the wasted face of the injured man and his lips opened and shut as if, to himself, he was repeating the 1words of the song w it h Ted. Ted sang the song through and had commenced the first verse again, w'hen the deep, regular breathing of his patient told him that the man was sleeping peacefully. "The sleep will be good for him," said Ted, "and we will be car e ful not to disturb him. Vv e will take turns watching over him." "You need a rest yourself, Ted," remarked Ben, "and you had better take a nap while I watch he crazy man for a while." "Thank you, Ben," was Ted's reply, "I'll act on your suggestion." Ted had probably slept for an hour, when he was awak ened by a voice coming from somewhere down the vallev. The voice was hailing the camp. Ted raised just in time to see Bud Mo' .. (mg the signs for the person who had called out to be ."er Then Ted stood upon his feet and saw three riders proaching. They were Kit Summers, Arthur Maxim and Brick Davis! CHAPTER XI. T H E 'S K Y P I L 0 T 1 Kit Maxim and Davis were overjoyed at finding Ted Strong alive and well, and they listened with great inter est to the story of Ted' s experiences. they were informed of the fall received maniac in trying to kill Ted, Bud and ...... the heavy stone from the edge of the While Ted was telling about the old man's request for him to sing the old hymn, "Rock of Ages," Arthur Maxim's face suddenly a more than merely 111 -terested expression. "You say he repeatedly wanted you to sing that same hymn?" he asked. "Yes." "Well, now this is strange," Maxim murmured, as if to himself. At the arrival of Kit and Arty, Ben Tremont had left the terrf):lorary shelter, where the crazy man was still sleeping soundly, and had come ou t to greet the new comers . As the maniac seemeci to be g9od for a long nap yet, it was not deemed necessary to stay right by his side con stantly.

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\. i 20 THE YOU G ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. "No," replied Arty, "everything is just as it was. I have made no more attempts to work the mine. I con <;luded to wait until you arrived, after receiving your telegram that you would come." "What is your own theory in regard to the ghost story?" asked Ted. "I can hardly tell you what I think," said Maxim. ;'I have never believed in ghosts, but the sight I saw in the mine certainly seemed to be more than human. It was awful. I cannot shut my eyes now without seeing the terrible, grinning face. But still, I can hardly bring my self to believe it was a spirit I saw." "Then you think some human agency is at work to prevent your claim being worked?" asked Ted. "I will frankly tell you that I am entirely at sea con cenring the matter. I don't know what to think. I can form no theory. That is what I hope you will be able to do." "Well, we have decide4 to stay with you the rest of the summer, if necessary," was Ted's reply, "until this mystery is cleared up." Had the men gathered around the fire but known it, they were not the only listeners to the conversation be tween Ted and the young mine owner. Hidden in the growth of thick bushes, not far from the fire, was the crouching figure of a human being. This hidden individual had been since dark watching the actions of the six men, and had listened to every word of the conversation. The evil face of the listener had taken on a look of wicked hate, when Ted announced that he had come to help Maxim clear up the mystery of the mine, and, be tween the clinched teeth of the eavesdropper was hissed, in a low tone: "So ther young, smart Aleck thinks he ki. n find ther ghost of ther Lucky Strike? Well I opine if he goes ter snoopin' inter things as don't consarn him, he'll get inter trouble." "Has your claim ever been worked to speak of?" asked Ted, after Maxim had thanked him for the interest the young rough riders were taking in his affairs. "The paying vein has hardly been touched," replied I Maxim. '1After the shaft was sunk, the original owner followed a vein in a diagonal direction to the extreme left. This passage leads quite a distance into the mine, but was evidently finally deserted, on account of the vein running out, or because the quartz did not show enough yellow. Afterward, when the claim passed into other hands, a new \rein was opened in another direction from the shaft. This 1s the vein I hope to work, and it is a rich one." "Have you ever thoroughly explored the abandoned passage?" asked the young rough rider. "Perhaps not what you might call thoroughly," was Maxim's reply, "but I have been to the end of it several times. It in a solid wall of rock." "How far is the mine from this place, and which di rection must we travel from here to reach Satan's Gulch?" asked Kit SummerS. "Why, this is Satan's Gulch-this valley we are now 1 in," was Arty's reply. "My is between twenty and twenty-five miles from here up the valley. We follow that little stream right to my cabin." "And where is the claim of this man, Raub, which you told me about?" was Kit's }\ext question. "Not far," was the answer, "not over two or three miles above here." Thus the conversation kept up until quite a late hour_ It was decided to keep a guard over the the night and the short watches were divided among the six men, Ted's watch not coming until toward morning. One by one, the men, all but Davis, who was chosen for the first watch, rolled up in their blankets and went to sleep. l Ted was the last of the young rough riders, owing to his short nap during the afternoon, to become sleepy, and he sat and talked in low tones with Davis for over an hour. \ Finally Davis began talking of Ted's great work in the trick revolver-shooting contest the previous day at Sun shine, and finally said : "In yer pistol work yer never seem ter at>. at all, but yer hit yer mark every tiifne." "Well," replied Ted, "it is a fact that I never aim along a pistol barrel with my eye, either in regular or trick shooting, but I take just the same." "Yer do?" asked Brick, with a note of credulity in his voice. "And what der yer aim with, if it ain't yer eye?" Ted's answer astonished Davis. "I aim with my finger." "With yer index finger-ther finger next yer thumb ?" repeated Brick. "What finger do yer use ter pull ther trigger?" "My second finger, the next one to the index finger," replied Ted.

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THE r YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. 21 Brick looked confused. Ted smiled and then proceeded took me in ther arm. I fell down because my foot caught to make the matter clear to the man. "Did you never know that a person will instinctively point straight at any object he wi. shes to with his index finger? It makes no difference whether the hand is on a level with the eye or down below the waist. The index finger never makes a mistake." "That's news ter me," said Brick. "Well, it's the truth, and it's a valuable fact to know, as I have learned, when you wish to be a good shot with the pistol." "But how do yer handle ther gun?" Brick. Ted took Davis' revolver to demonstrate while he ex plained. "I bo!d the revolver grip in the palm of my hand with my third and little finger s thus. My index finger is stretched out straight along the barrel. That leaves my second finger free to pull the trigger. In shooting I do --... not think of the revolver at all. I erely point my index ...__ the mark, sometimes, if necessary making a sl;ght allowance for the difference in the position of the end of the barrel, and where end of my finger would be, did it reach the full length of the revolver barrel. ; "Well, b y--" Davis had started to give utterance to some exclama tion of a s tonishment, as Ted's theory of pistol shooting suddenly became clear to him, but his remark was inter rupted. There had come the crack of a rifle and a had whizzed right between th e heads of the two men, com ing dangerously near to each! Both men started to their feet, and, a s they did so, they ,,.. cra l! v ling among the bushes to the right of the .,, camp fir$!. It sounded as if some one was be ating a hurried t:..: treat. Davis who was nearest to the btishes, his revolver in hand, jumped forward and Te closely followed. Then Ted heard Davis shout from several rods ahead in the darkness. At the same moment there was the sound of another shot followed by the thud of a falling body. Ted hastened forward. "Here I b e ; don't st e p on me !" It was Davis' voice, and Ted found him lying near the roots of a small upturned tree. "Are y ou s e ri o usly hurt?" Ted ask e d, anxiously. "Guess not, seriously," replied Davis. "Ther bullet in that there root." Ted helped the man to his feet and to the fire, where an examination of the wounded arm that the bullet had broken no bones. The wound was by no means serious, and a bandage, applied at once, stopp('Ji the flow of blood. "By guns, announced Brick, when his arm had been attended to, "I got a glimpse of ther critter's face all right. I were lookin' straight him when he fired and the flash lit up his face." "And did you recognize the prow !er?" asked Ted. "Yer bet I did," was the answer "He were nobody else but thet enemy of yourn, Jack Raub !" CHAPTER XIII. RAUB'S TREACHEROUS SCHEME. The shots from the revolver of Raub had awakened the sleepers, and, by the time Ted had led Davis to the fire, the whole camp was astir. Ben Tremont Bud Morgan started out to try and locate the night prowler, but they returned in half an hour without having found any traces of him. "I tell yer Ted, if I ever git my hands on that cuss, it'll be all off with him !" exclaimed Bud Morgan. "I believe we ought to set about it and run him down," said Ben Tremont. "It isn't right to allow him to run wild. He's dangerou s ." "If it wasn't for the importance of clearing up this mine mystery for Maxim, I would be in favor of hunt ing down Raub, myself," said T ed, "but the mine busi ness seems to me to be more urgent and important." "I don t blame you for wanting to clean up on Raub," put in Arty, "and I'll be glad to help you hunt for him. I guess the mine can wait a few days." "Well, we'll see," was Ted's reply. "Perhaps we will have time to look Raub up, after we get through at the mme. The awakened campers shortly cornposed themselves for another sleep, but it was little slumber that visited any of the party during the res-t of the night. There were no more disturbances, however, and all were up at daylight, getting ready for the ride to the mme. .. "At any rate ," announced Ben Tremont, "Jack Raub didn't secure his hprse last night. The animal is stin tied with the other five."

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22 THE 'iOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. "That's certainly good news," Ted replied, "and as Raub brought me here against my will, I think I will just borrow his horse for a few days. The man must have another animal, however, for I was secured to one, while he rode another when he brought me from Sun shine." After an early breakfast, the company started for the haunted mine, and, as they rode along, Maxim remarked: "If there was only some way of cutting through this mountain range to the right, we could easily save twenty or twenty-one miles ttavel." "How is that?" was asked. "Because my mine is almost straight across on the other side of this mountain. I figure it is almost straight across the mountain from Raub's claim, and we will come in sight of his shanty when we round that ridge yonder." Arty pointed to a ridge of rocks, that extend e d from the mountain side a short distance into the valley. The ridge was about one hundred yards ahead. "But I thought you said that your mine was situated in Satan's Gulch?" asked Ted. "Yes, so it is," was the reply, "but Satan's Gulch is very crooked. It extends southward, the direction we are going, for about ten miles, then _turns to the west for a couple of miles, and, finally, makes a tum back north ward. Thus we have to travel nearly twenty-five miles to g.o a distance, as the crow flies, of less than two. Could we go through the mountain we would only have to travel three-quarters of a mile or so, to reach Satan's Gulch on the other side." "Hurrah, there's the shanty," announced Bud Morgan, at this point. "Yes, that is Ranb's claim," said Maxim. "What do you say, Ted, to stopping for a few minutes and taking a look around? You IT'.; i be able to find your firearms and the gold medal which the man remov:: c frorr your person." "I should hate to lose my revolvers," replied Ted, "but it seems a small chance that Raub would leave them in his shanty." "You can't tell. He migl1t have figured it out that you would never think of looking for them here, and, for t'1at reason, did so." "Well, we'll take a look around, said the )'.Oung rough rider. The riders were now approaching the shanty, which was built close to the wall of the mountain. Close to the I shanty, where the building backed up against the moun tain wall, was a yawning hole leading into the mountain. This was evidently the entrance to Raub's mine. The company under the leadership of Ted Strong had arrived within a few rods of the cabin, when the wooden shutter of the only window visible was suddenly opened and a man pushed his head and shoulders through the sash. In his hands he held a long-barreled rifle. The company instantly recognized the man as Jack Raub. There was an evil look upon his face, which brooded no good for the riders who were approaching. As Raub appeared in the window of the log cabin, Ted involuntarily stopped his horse and his followers d i d the same. "Yer do well ter halt!" exclaimed Raub, :'fer if yer hadn't I'd bored yer full of holes. This is my cabin and that there hole is my orn ine. Yer ain't got no right ter _,_ trespass onto my property, an' I'll give yer jest utes ter make yersel's scarce. If every last one of yer ain't gone then, I'm goin' ter begin shootin'." When Raub had finished this long speech, Ted remarked:, "You have grown to be quite an orator, Mr. Raub, since I last saw you. If I remember correctly, you were not able to converse in English to any considerable ex tent yesterday. I am pleased to find that your voice has returned. But, all foolishness aside, I am really pleased to find that you are at home. You have a few things belonging to me, which I have called to get. I suppose you are now through with them arui will be pleased to return them." "Yer mean yer gqrys ?" asked Raub, insolently. "Yes, and a certain gold medal, which I won quite recently in a little shooting contest," wa Ted's reply. "So yer has come ter git 'em, eh?" "Must I speak that little piece all over again?" asked Ted. "Yer can sing it, if yer had rather sing than talk," was the reply, "but I'm here ter tell yer that yer is goin' ter be terribly disappointed. I aim ter keep those little trophies ter remember yer by." "Then we will have to force you to give them up," said Ted. There ain't enough of you ter do it. If yer think there is, come op and try it !" challenged Jack.

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THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. 23 "Make him eat them words, Ted !" exclaimed Bud Morgan. "Come on and try it!" yelled Raub, tauntingly, hearing Bud 's remark. "Go s low, boys," cautioned Ted. "The man wants us to charge. He must know that under ordinary con ditions we would certainly be able to do him up. He has some kind of a trap prepared." "By the hokey-pokey, it 's durn tough lines ter sit here an' let that sucker give us ther laugh!" said Bud. "If yer will give me ther word, capting, I'll make a break fer ther cabin erlone "We know you are game, all right," was Ted's reply, but we want to find out how many trump cards Raub is holding before we lay down our hands." "Well, ye're ther boss, r e plied Bud. '"Ye're a lot of baby cowards!" yelled Raub. "Six men an' ye're all afraid of me." As he delivered this last sally, Raub drew in his head and, a moment jater, appeared .at the . doorway. From the door he stepped outside of the cabin. He still carried his rifle, and his revolvers were seen hanging from his belt, but none of the weapons were raised. As he appeared, h e shouted: "I want ter have a little talk with Ted Strong." "Well, talk away," re s ponded Kit Summers. "Shet up yer head, you," snarled Raub. "This little difference is between yer boss an" myself. It ain't yer put 111. I want ter talk with him an' I want ter see him alone." "Don't yer listen ter ther villain," said Bud. I for a minute, 1Bud, until I can find out ';J:wnat he wants," admonisheq Ted. Then, turning to Raub, he shouted: "What have you got to propose?" "Well,,p'r'aps I've made a durn fool of myself," was the man's reply, "an' I don't mind givin' yer back yer weapons an' ther medal. They ain't no perticular use ter me. But I want ter do ther business with yer alone. Thi s ain't none of those other fellers' business anyway." "\i\Tell, lay your w eapoi:is to one side and I'll ride up and talk to you," said Ted, with a sudden determination. Ted's friends objected to his yielding to the villain's request but Ted had determined to get close to Raub and find out what was reall y in the wind. Not for a moment did Ted b e lieve that the young man, who had sworn to kill him, had any intenti o n of giving up the guns or medal. At Ted's words Raub advanced and laid his rifle down in the mouth of the mine. Then he unbuckled his belt, containing two revolvers and a knife,and laid it by the rifle. He then returned to the front of his cabin, near the door. Ted rode up to the front of the cabin and dismounted. "Now I'm ready ter make a bargain with yer," wa s Raub 's greeting. "If yer will give up my horse that yer are riding I'll give yer ther barkers an' ther medal." "I'll agree to that," replied Ted. He thought to him self that perhaps Raub really valued the horse and was sincere in the bargain proposed. "Ther guns is in ther house," said Raub, "an' yer can go in an' get 'em. I've got ther medal in my pocket and I'll hand that over when yer give up ther horse." Ted glanced into the cabin through the open doorway. Jack was not l ying about the guns. Ted could see them upon a rough table, at the further side of the on e room of the cabin. The young rough rider knew that his friends had Raub covered with their weapons. It seemed that it would be impossible for the man to harm him treacherously. Ted wanted his revolvers badly. The weapons had been made especially for himself, and they were valuable The hand grips had been molded to fit his hand per fectly and there were several improvements in the weap ons, invented by Ted himself. He resolved to take Raub at his word, enter the cabin and get the weapons Ted did not see the gratified in Rau. h's eyes, when he started to dismount. Ted did not think it necessary to in struc t his friends to keep an eye on Raub. He did not even glance to ward his companions. He hac:i implicit faith in Bud and Ben and Kit. Raub was playing a deep game, could Ted have but known it, and the minute that the young rough crossed the threshold of the cabin door and started toward the table, the chances were many to one that he would never leave that cabin again alive. In an old newspaper, Raub had previously wrapped up a few sticks of dynamite He had placed the package upon the floor of the cabin, not far from the rough table upon which he had laid ,Ted's revolvers.

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' 24 THE YOUNG .ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. Raub had placed his rifle, two revolvers and knife on the ground, just within the entrance to the mine, but con cealed in the front of his loose blouse Raub had a third revolver. There was a revengeful glitter in his eyes as he watched the young rough rider enter the cabin. Raub had stationed himself so that, without moving, he had a clear view of the interior of the cabin and the package of dynamite. Just as Ted reached the table, Raub quickly pulled his revolver from the front of his blouse and fired a quick shot, directly at the package of dynamite! As he did so he turned and ran toward he mouth of his mine. Three shots followed the man from the weapons of Bud Morgan, Kit Summers and Ben Tremont, but all seemed to have gone wild. At the same instant the dynamite exploded! The roof was blown off from the cabin and the logs, composing its sides, were sent flying in every direction As the noise of the explosion died away, Bud Morgan's voice was raised in an exclamation of anguish : "Good Lord, boys, ther villain has killed our capting !" CHAPTER XIV. KIT'S DISCOVERY. "Don't let the murderer escape!" shouted Ben Tremont. Raub had disappeared into the mme shaft, after he had fired his shot into the package of dynamite. Not one of those who had witnessed the tragedy be lieved that the young rough rider had not been killed in stantly by the terrific explosion, and, led by Ben Tremont, they quickly started in pursuit of the n.1an whose treacherous scheme, they believed, had caused the death of Ted Strong. At the entrance to the mine they quickly dismount e d and entered the mine on foot-all but Brick Davis. He remained outside in charge of the horses. Ben noticed that Raub had snatched up his revolvers and rifle as he had entered the mine. Down the gently sloping shaft Ben and his compan I ions ran, and, arriving at the level it was found the shaft reached a passage leading both to the right and left. Hurriedly Ben gave several words of direction and the party divided, Ben going to the left, accompanied by Maxim, while Bud went to the right, accompanied by Kit. Fifteen minutes later all four met again at bottom of the shaft. Both ends of the passage had been explored and rro sign of the villain had been found. The passasge in each direction was neat"ly straight. There were no apparent branching passages and each end of the passage ended in a dead wall of rock. Yet, somewhere in that mine, Raub had found a hid ing place! There must be some secret passage leading from this one, somewhere," announced Ben Tremont, finally, "and I'm going to stick right here until I find it." "I'm with you," said Kit. "Well, then, you fellers hunt fer the secret passage," said Bud, "and I'll go up and try ter find ther body of ther young capting." Bud's voice trembled as he spoke and there were te a t in his eyes. He fully believed Ted to be dead. "While Ben and Kit continued their exploration of the mine, Bud and Maxim went to the surface to search the ruins of the cabin for the body of the young rough rider. With the assistance of Brick Davis the heavy logs were rolled to one side. After half an hour's work the three men discovere d that the dynamite had blown a big hole right in the floor of what was once the log cabin. The hole was as large as a good-sized cellar, but was so dark below that its depth could not be determiqed. Bud went to his saddleb11gs and soon rej;t,...a candle and his lariat. He secured one end of the lariat about his waist and then requested his companions to lower him into the hole. Hand over hand Bud was let down into the darkness of the pit. At last they heard him announce that he was at the bottom. "It seems to me that is a pretty big hole for a small amount of dynamite to blow into the ground," said Davis. "That is just what I was thinking," replied Maxim. For several minutes the two men over the hole waiting to hear from Bud. At last they heard the rough rider shout to them. There was a ring of joy in Bud's voice.

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RIDERS WEEKLY. 25 "I've found Ted!" he said. "You don't mean that he is alive?" asked Maxim. "Yes, he's alive," replied Bud Morgan, "but he's un conscious an' I can't tell how much he's hurted." But it was a, great relief to learn that the young rbugh rider was alive. Bud was busy for several moments and then he gave the friends above directions to pull up the rope very care r fully. Two minutes later, loving hands were stretched out to ward the inanimate body of the young rough rider and Ted was carried from the ruins and laid tenderly upon a grassy knoll, some distance away. Then Bud Morgan was hastily brought to the surface. Bud's first words were: "Get B e n Tremont, quick, somebody! He knows more'n we does about what ter do fer Ted." Maxim started at once toward the mine, but met both "'fi-,..1 in the shaft. Ben was soon bending over the form of Ted. In a minute he announced that the young rough rider was breathing very feebly. Jhen he began giving quick directions, and soon had every member of the party doing something for Ted's relief. Ben found that Ted's left arm, at the shoulder, had become dislocated, and, before attempting to bring his friend ta' consciousness, he resolutely took hold of the injured member just above the elbow and, with a quick jerk, sprung the joint back into place. Ted's face was dirty and bloody, but when washed, the ...... rS "'Wasf0u nd to have come from a number of insig nificant scratches on the cheeks and neck. Then, for an hour, Ben worked over the young leader of the rough rider s before he finally was rewarded by seeing Ted open his eyes. Half an hour later, the young rough rider sat up atA began to comprehend how miraculous his escape had been. After he had fully recovered' from the shock, Ted an nounced that he was going to search the ruins for his revolvers. "I think yer weapon s is at ther bottom of ther hole, where I found you," a nnm mced Bud, "fer I seen a part of yer belt down there, part :::overed by ther dirt." "Don t move, Ted," said Kit, "for you arm be pretty sore. I'll go down and get the guns, if some of you fellows will lower me." Kit was soon at the bottom of the hole and found the belt with the weapons intact, without trouble. He was about to give his friends above an order to haul him up when in turning around, he noticed that tbe hole he was in seemed to bulge out considerably on the side toward the mountain. He stepped over to that side and found that the hole extended some distance. "Throw me down a candle !" he shouted to those above. In a short time Kit had a light, and, as he held it above his head, he discovered that, where he had thought the hole bulged out, there was in reality a regular under ground cave, and that it extended as far toward the mountain as the feeble rays of the candle pierced the darkness. CHAPTER XV. RAUB IS CAPTURED. When Kit realized the fact that he had made a dis. covery which might prove of great importance, he did not stop to explore the p;:issage, but at once gave his friends a signal to draw him up. Arrived at the top of the hole again, Kit lost no time in telling his companions of what he had discovered. "If I am not mistaken," he said, "the passage leads quite a distance into the mountain, and I think it would be wise to explore it. It is possible this passage is in some way connected with one of the passages in Raub's mine, and if so, we may be able to capture the man." Ted agreed with Kit, and, although his arm still pained him considerably, the young rough rider insisted upon being lowered into the hole to personally conduct the ex ploration. Ted was accompanied by Kit, Bud and Ben, while Maxim and Davis remained at the moufr of the mine, to head off Raub should he return that way and to look after the horses. The rough riders supplied themselves well with matches and candles before starting on their exploring trip along the passage, which had so strangely been uncovered by the explosion. The passsage was of uniform w i deness and height, and was large for comfortable traveling.

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) THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS W'
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RIDERS WEEKLY. The face of Raub grew ashen pale, as he heard Bud's remark. He was not well acquainted with Ted Strong's methods and h e did not know but that the young rough rider would carry out Bud's suggestion. "Don' t, don't hang me!" he pleaded. A sudden idea came to Ted. Of course he had no intention of letting Raub be lynched, but he thought a lit tle scare would not hurt the man, who had so persistently tried to bring about his death. "What will yo u promise if I'll agree not to lynch you?" asked Ted, suddenly. ness without danger of an after relapse, which might prove Brick Davis was the first to answer the question. He said he thought a wagon could easily travel the trail, and . the others agreed with hi _m. "Will you start right out and ride to Sunshine, get a doctor and bring him here and a wagon and team to convey this injured man back to Sunshine?" asked Ted. "Sure," was Davis ready reply, and he at once mounted his horse. "I know ther trail like a book," he shouted, as he preRaub now showed his real, cowardly nature. He was pared to gallop away, "an' yer can look fer me back bethoroughly scared and completely cowed. fore ter-morrow mornin'." In cringing tones he answered : "If you will promise not to let 'em lynch me, an' will see that I get a regular trial, I'll confess everything I know about ther old her mit and ther ghost of ther Lucky Strike 1" "The ghost of the Lucky Strike? repeated Ted, taken that, in the capture of Raub two bird s had been killed by one 1 stone, as the saying goes? Perhaps, at any rate, what Raub would have to tell would help to straighten out the mystery. Ted thought a moment, as if turning the propo s ition over in his mind. Then, when he thought that Raub had been duly im pressed, h e replied : "I will promise that you shall have a regular, fair trial, on whatever charge may be brought against you, providing that you tell all you know about the hermit and the mystery of Maxim's mine, known as the Lucky Strike." Raub started to begin his confession at once, but Ted "Wait," said Ted, "until we have reached the surface, with the body of the crazy hermit." CHAPTER XVI. II RAUB'S STORY . "I have not been over tne road, th at is; to see it. How i s the trail between here and Sunshine? Could a wagon go over it all right?" Ted had asked the question after the unconscious her rnit had been brought to the surface and laid tenderly up o n a pile of blankets. Ted's experienced eye had seen that, without proper drugs, he could not bring the man to a state of conscious"Good," returned Ted, and then added: "You had bet ter bring a mattress or feather bed along in the wagon." Davis waved his hand to show that he had heard, and soon disappeared up the valley. When he was sure that nothing more could be done immediately for the unconscious maniac, Ted turned his attention to his prisone;, "Now," said the young rough rider, "we will listen to your confession." lt took Raub a long time to tell all that Ted wanted to know. He had to be prompted many times by ques tions, but when he was through Ted knew that the mys tery of the Lucky Strike Mine was solved and that Arthur Maxim would be disturbed no more by "ghosts." In brief, Raub's story was as follows: Three years before this time he had begun working his claim, at the spot where the compan y was at that time. He had struck pay dirt at the start and thought he was going to make a fortune, but suddenly the vein he was following ran out. His passage had run into a natural cave in the mountain. Eventually, Raub had learned that this natural cave ran clear through the mountain, and, at the other side, ran, for a considerable distance, parallel with the deserted pas sage of the mine now owned by Maxim. The new passage of the Lucky Strike Mine, Raub knew, would ultimately strike the same cave. There was rich ore between the cave and the .new passage and Raub wanted to mine it himself. He conceiv ed the idea of making a secret entrance to the Luck y Strike Mine, and did through the narrow partition betw een the cave and the deserted passsage. The mechanism of this secret passage was cunningly con ceived.

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' THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS vv1ft:KL Y. Then he walled up the passage leading from his claim into the cave and there, also, contrived a cunningly con cealed door. It was through this door that he had escaped when pursued by Ted's friends after the explosion. Then it was that Raub began playing the ghost. He told Ted where, in a portion of the cave not yet explored by them, there could be found the powder used for the colored fire the white costumes, the skeleton arms and other paraphernalia used by him while playing the ghost. Then Raub told how he had made a trip to Seattle and had there been taken sick and confined in a hospital for several months. Finally returning to the mountain, he found his cabin occupied by the crazy hermit. He had driven the man out several times, but the maniac had persistently re turned. Finding that the hermit had discovered the secret doors leading from his mine into the cave, and from the cave into the Lucky Strike l\lline, Raub had finall y mad e the hermit understand that he could live in the cave if he would play ghost and frighten any men who attempted to work the Lucky Strike Mine. Thereafter Raub had left his claim for weeks at a time, fully trusting the hermit to do his part. The crazy man had acted the part of ghost even better than Raub, and the two seldom saw t.ach other. But Raub knew that the maniac hated him and would kill him at any moment if he got the chance, so he never slept in his cabin without making the door and window secure against intrusion. When Raub had told all that would evidently be of use to the listeners, Ted asked: "Why did you strike the man in the cave to-day?" "I was angry with him," was the reply. "When he saw me he screamed. I knew that you had entered the cave through the hole in the floor of the cabin. I was afraid you would hear his scream and come that way." * * * The readers of this story will be interested in knowing that the wagon and team, which Brick Davis had gone after, arrived just before daylight the next morning, and that the doctor who arrived with Davis succeeded in pull ing the old man back to life. But foi;.over a week, a relapse threatened to set in, and the old man required constant watching. During his sickn e s s h e w a s fully identified as the Rev. W. I. N. Jones. His relativ e s arrived from Portland, and they were overjoyed when he finally recovered, for then it was found that his reason had been completely restored. He had become insane in the first place on account of a fall which drove a small piece of the skull against the brain. The blow received b y Raub's revolver butt re leased this pressure and restored to him h i s reason. Before Raub was put in jail, to await his trial on what ever charge might be preferred against him, he restored to the young rough rider the gold medal won at the shooting contest. When Ted and his companions were offered the five thousand dollars reward for the restoration of the Rev. J o nes to his friends, the boys hetd a sh ort con s ultation, after which Ted asked the lawyer who had been s ent on with the money: "\Vho is putting up this reward?" ::, / "The members of the church of which the rif s was pastor just before he became insane, was [;e an swer. "Is it a rich church?" "No; most of the members belong to the poorer class." "Such being the case we have decided that four thou1 sand dollars be given to that church to be used as the trustees may deem proper. The other thousand we will donate to the Rev. Jones, for the purpose of settling his medicinal and doctor bills," announced Ted. Arthur Maxim was greatly pleased that the mystery of his mine was cleared up. He start e d w o rk at the mine again as s oo n .asand the Lucky Strike turne d out much as he had p't{ dict e d one of the best-paying mines of the West. Brick Davis is now Maxim's most trusted overseer. THE E N D. Ted Strong and his c o mpanions did not leave the Northwest immediately after the mystery of Maxim's mine was cleared up. They stayed in the vicinity for hunting purposes and soon became involved in a series of startling adventures. The story next week, which is No. 58, entitled "The Young Rough Rider's River Route; or, A Fight Against Great Odds," tells of these adven tures interestingly, of an exciting fight with timber thieves, a ride along an under g round river, and of find' ing a treasure in an underground lake.

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I RIDERS WEEKLY I 7-Ted Strong in Montana; or, Trouble at the Blackfoot Agency. 8-Ted Strong's Nerve; or, Wild West Sport at Black Mountain. sr-Ted Strong's Rival; or, The Cowboys of Sunset Ranch. lo-Ted Strong's Peril; or, Saved by a Girl. II-Ted Strong's Gold Mine; or, The Duel at Rocky Ford. 12-Ted Strong' s Lawsuit; or, Right Against Might. 13-Ted Strong's Railway Trip; or, An Unsolved Mystery. 14-Ted Strong's Mission; or, Taming a Tender foot. 15-Ted Strong's Might; or, The Cross Against the Sword. 16-Ted Strong's Puzzle; or, The Golden Mesa. 17.-:.Ted Strong in Chaparral; or, The Hunt \....' at Las Animas . 18--Ted Strong's Forethought; or, King of the Mesa. 1sr-Ted Strong in the Land of Little Rain; or, Bud Morgan's Vengeance. 20-Ted Strong's Water Sign; or, In Shoshone Land. 21-Ted Strong's Steadiness; or, The Cattle Rustlers of Ceriso. 22-Ted Strong's Land Boom; or, The Rush for a Homestead. 23-Ted Strong's Indian Trap; or, Matching Craft with Craft. 24-Ted Strong's Signal; or, Racing with Death. 25-Ted Strong's Stamp Mill; or, The Woman in Black. 26-Ted Strong's Recruit; or, A Hidden Foe. 27;;::::::'Ifj Strong's Discovery; or, The Rival 9!f"'-H-,JI'. 'Miners. 1 28-Ted Strong's Chase; or, The Young Rough Riders on the Trail. 2sr-Ted Strong's Enemy; or, An Uninvited Guest. 30-Ted Strong's Triumph; or, The End of the Contest. 31-Ted Strong in Nebraska; or, The Trail to Fremont. 32-Ted Strong in Kansas City; or, The Last.of the Herd. 33-The Rough Riders in Missouri; or, In the Hands of His En e m y _,, 34-The Young Rough Riders in St. Louis; or, The League of the Camorra. 35-The Young Rough Riders in Indiana; or, The Vengeance of the Camorra. 36-The Young Rou g h Riders in Chicago; or, Bud Morgan s Day Off. 37-The Young R s mgh Rid e rs in Kansas; or, The Trail of the Outlaw. 38-The Young Rough Riders in the Rockies; or, Fighting in : Mid Air. 3sr-The Young Rough Rid e r's Foray; or, The Mad Horse of Raven Hill. 40-The Young Rough Rider's Fight to the Death; or, The Mad Hermit of Bear's Hole. Young Rough Rider's Indian Trail; or, Okanaga, the Cheyenne. 42-The Young Rough Rider's Double; or, Un masking a Sham. 43-The Young Rough Rider's Vendetta; or, The House of th e Sorceress. 44-Ted Strong in Old Mexico; or, The Haunted Hacienda. 45-The Young Rou g h Rid e r in California; or, The Owls of S a n Pablo. 46-The Young Rou g h Rid e r's Silver Mine; or, The Texas Giant. 47-The Young Rough Rid e r's Wildest Ride; or, Cleaning Out a \:\Thole Town. 48-The Young Rough Rid e r's Girl Guide; or, The Maid of the Mountains. 4sr-The Young Rough R i d e r's Handicap; or, Fighting the Mormon Kidnapers. 50-The Young Rough Rid e r's Daring Climb; or, The Treasure of Copper Crag. 51-The Young Rough Rider s Bitterest Foe; or, The Challenge of Capt. Ne1110. 52-The Young Rough Rider's Great_.P.-1ay; or, The Mad Ally of a 53-The Young Rougn Rider Trapped; or, A Villain's Desperate Play. 54-The Young Rough Rider's Still-Hunt; or, The Mystery of Dead Man's Pass. 55-The Young Rough Rider's Close Call; or, The Girl from Denver. 56-The Young Rough Rider's Long Ride; or, Life Against Life. All of the above numbers always on hand. If you cannot get them from your 1(18Wsdealer11 five cents per oopy will bring tltem to yoa by ma/111 post11aid. l STREET & SMITH, Publishers, 79-89 Seventh Ave., NLW YORK l' I

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i ... NIC. K CARTER WEEKLY THE BES T D ETECTIVE S T ORIES I N T .HE WORLD1 389-Mercedes Danton's Double; or, A Plot for Many Millions. 390-The Millionaire's Nemesis ; or, Paul Roger's Oath of Vengeance. 391 A Princess of the Underworld; or, The Mysterious Burglary at Lakeview. 392-A Queen of Her Kind; or, A Beautiful Woman s Nerve. 393-ISabel Benton's Trump Card; or, Desperate Play to Win. 394-A Princess of Hades; or, The Reappear ance of Dazaar, the Fiend. 395-A Compact witlj Dazaar; or, The Devil Worshiper's Den 3-In the Shadow of Dazaar; or, At the Mercy of Vampires. 397-The Crime of a Money -King; or, The Bat tle of the Magnates 398-The Terrible Game of Millions; or, Tracking Down the Plotters. 399-A Dead Man's Power; or, The Mystery of a Telephone Number. 400--The Secrets of an Old House; or, The Crime of Was hin g ton Heights. 401-The House with the Open Door; or, The Double Crime of Madison Avenue. 402-The Society of Assas s ination; or, The De tective's Double Disguise. 403-The Brotherhood of the Crossed Swords; or, The Little Giant's Mighty Task. 404-The Trail of the Vampire; or, The Mys terious Crimes of Prospect Park. 405-The Demons of the Night; or, The Terrors of the Idol's Cavern. 406-The Captain of the Vampi re; or, Smuggler;; of the Deep Sea. 407-A Bank President's Plot; or, Three Vil lains pf a Stripe. 408---The Master Criminal; or, With the Devil in His Eye. 409-Th e Carruthers Puzzle; or, Nick Carter's Best Disgu ise. 410-Inez, the Mysterious; or, The Master Crim inal's Mascot. 4II-The Criminal Queen's Oath; or, The Dif ference Between Two. 412 -The Point ,of a Dagger; or, The Criminal Queen's Madness. 413-Doctor Quartz, the Second; or, The Great Freight Car Mystery 414-Doctor Quartz, the Second, at Bay; or, A Man of Iron Nerve. 415-The Great Hotel Murders; or, Doctor Quartz's Quick Move 416-Za oni, the Woman Wizard; or, The Ward of Doctor Quartz. 417 -The Woman Wizard's Hate; or, A Dangerous Foe. 418---The Prison Demon; or, The Ghost of Dr. Quartz. 419-Nick Carter and the Hangman's Noose; or, Dr. Quartz or: Earth Again. 420-Dr. Quartz's Last Play; or, A Hand wit!-> / Royal Flush. ;< ...,,, 421Zanoni, the Transfigured; or, Nick Car ter's Phantom Mascot. 422-By Command of the Czar; or, Nick Carter' s Boldest Defiance. 423-The Conspiracy of an Empire; or, Nick Car ter's Bravest Act 424-A Queen of Vengeance; or, Nick Carter's Beautiful Nemesis. 425 -Daring Dan, the Human Mystery; or, Nick Carter's Smoothest Foe. 426-Dan Derrington's Double; or, Nick Carter's Terrible Test. 427-The Great Gold Swindle; or, The Little Giant's Masterpiece 428 -An East River Mystery; or, Nick Carter's Daring Leap. 429-The Phantom Highwayman; or, ick e -ter's Slender Clew. -,.. __ ,,..............,_..-;_ 430-A Million Dollar Hold Up; or, Nick Carter's Richest Client. 431-Nick Carter and the Man With the Crooked Mind. 432-Nick Carter's Convict Enemy; or, The Power that Makes Men Tremble 433 -The Pirate of the Sound; or, Nick Car ter's Midnight Swim. 434-The Cruise of the Shadow; or, Nick Car ter's Ocean Chase. All of the above numbers a lways o n h and. If you cannot get them fro m y our newsdealer. f ive c e nts p e r cop y will bring them to you by mail. postpaid. STREE T & SMITH, Publishers, 79-89 Seventh Ave., NEW YORK

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\ BUFFALO BILL STORIES Containing the Most Thrilling Adventures of the Celebrated Government Scout "BUFFALO B.lll" (Hon. William f. Cody) 164-Buffalo Bill's Wildest Ride; or, The Mon ster Serpent of the Bad Lands' Lake. 165-Buffalo Bill and the Greengoods' Cabal; or, The Woman with the Manacled Arm. 166--Buffalo Bill's Lightning Shot; or, The Red Gulch Rescue 167-Buffalo Bill's Bandit Friend; or, The Mys tery of the Black Riders. 168-Buffalo Bill at Bay; or, The Claim Jumper of Silver Gulch. 169--Buffalo Bill's Dark Drive; or, Manton, the Mountain Mystery. 170-Buffalo Bill's Fair, Square Deal; or, The Duke of the Dagger's Dead Lock. 171-Buffalo Bill's Bod Brigade; or, Injun Joe's Burrow. j72-Buffalo Bill on a Hunt for Gold; or, The Lost Mine of the Cimarrons 173-Buffalo Bill's Ride for Life; or, Fighting the Border Cattle Thieves. 174-Buffalo Bill's Double; or, The Mephisto of the Prairie. 175-Buffalo Bill and the Claim Jumpers; or, The Mystery of Hellgate Mine. 176--Buffalo Bill's Strategy; or, The Queen of the Crater Cave. 177-Buffalo Bill in Morenci; or, The Cat of the Copper Crag. 178-Buffalo Bill's Dead Drop; or, The Ghost Scout of Colorado. 179--Buffalo Bill's Texan Hazard; or, The War Trail of the Apaches. 18o-Buffalo Bill's Blindfold Duel; or, The Death Feud in Arizona 181-Buffalo Sill's Mexican Feud; or, The Bari. of Sonora. 182-Buffalo Bill's Still Hunt; or, The Masked Men of Santa Fe. 183-Buffalo Bill's Fiercest Fight; or, The Cap tive of the Apaches. 184-Buffalo Bill's Navajo Ally; or, The War with the Cave Dwellers. 185-Buffalo Bill's Best Shot; or, Saving Uncle Sam's Troopers. 186--Buffalo Bill's ,Girl Pard; or, The Mystery of the Blindfold Club. 187-Buffalo Bill's Eagle Eye; or, The Battle of the Staked Plains 188-Buffalo Bill's Arizona Alliance; or, Nav ajos Against Apaches. 189--Buffalo Bill s Mexican Adventure; or, The White Indians of Yucatan. 190-Buffalo Bill After the Bandits; or, Chasing the Wyoming Bank Robbers. 191-Buffalo Bill s Red Trailer; pr, The Hole-in tpe-Wall Outlaws of Wyoming. 192-Buffalo Bill in the Hole-in-the-Wall; or, Fighting the Wyoming Bank Robbers. 193-Buffalo Bill and the Bandit in Armor; or, The Mysterious Horseman of the Moun tains. 194-Buffalo Bill and the Masked Mystery; or, The Wild Riders of the Wilderness. 195-Buffalo Bill in the Valley of Death; or, The Masked Brotherhood 196--Buffalo Bill in the Land of Fire; or, Nick Nomad, the Mountain Wanderer. 197-Buffalo Bill in the Den of Snakes; or, The Search for a Ton of Gold. 198-Buffalo Bill's Nebraskan Quest; or, The Secret Brotherhood of the Platte. Bill and the Hounds of the Hills; or, The Traitor Trooper. 200-Buffalo Bill's Young Partner; or, The Out law Queen's Cipher Message. 201-Buffalo Bill's Great Search; or, Bagging Bad Birds in Wyoming. 202-Buffalo Bill and the Boy in BJue; or, The Ghost Dancers of the Bad Lands. 203-Buffalo Bill's Long Chase; or, Nervy Frank's Leap for Life. 204-Buffalo Bill's Mine Mystery; or, Con,quer ing the Brotherhood of the Crimson Cross. 205-\uffalo Bi!l's Strategic Tactics; or, Trail ing the Terrible Thirty-nine. 206--Buffalo Bill's Big Jack Pot; or, A Game for a Life. 207-Buffalo Bill's Last Bullet; or, Solving the My s tery of Robber's Rock. All o' the above numbers always on hand. 1' you cannot get them 'ram your newsdealer11 '1ve cents per copy will bring them to you by naail11 postpaid .STRT & SMITH, Publishers, 79-89 Seventh Ave., NW YORK

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;.1 ; I 1 BRA VE AND BOLD Contains the Biggest and Best Stories of All Descriptions. A Different Complete Story Each Week FOLLOWING 15 A LIST OF THE LA TE.ST iSSUES: 73-Seared With Iron; or, The Band of Skeleton Bar. By Cornelius Shea. 74-The Deuce and the King of Diamonds; or, Two Southern Boys in South Africa. By the author o. "Among the Malays." 75-N ow or Never; or, The Adventures of Bobby Bright. By Oliver Optic. 76--Blue-Blooded Ben; or, Two Princeton Pals. By the autho r of "Hal Larkin 77-Ch eckered Trails; or, Under the Palmettoes. By Marline Manley. 78-Figures and Faith; or, Messenger Clinton's Chance. By the author of "The Hero of Ticonderoga." 7rThe Trevalyn Bank Puzzle; or, The Face in the L ocket. By Matt Royal. 80-The Athlete of R ossville; or, The Isle of Serpents. By Cornelius Shea. 8r-Try Again; or, The Trials and Triumphs of Harry West. By Oliver Optic. 82-The Mysteries of Asia; or, Among the Komdafs. By Cornelius Shea. 83-The Frozen Head; or, Puzzling the Police. By Paul Rand. 84-Dick Danforth's Death Charm; or, Lost in the South Seas. By the author of "The Wreck of the Glauws." 85-Burt Allen's Trial; or, Why the Safe was Robbed. By W. A. Parcelle of War; or, J ack Dashaway's Rise from the Ranks. By "Old Tecumseh." 87A Charmed Life; or, The Boy with the Snake Skin Belt. By the author of "Among the Malays." 88-0nly an Irish Boy; or, Andy Burke's Fortunes. By Horatio Alger, Jr. Sr The Key to the Cipher; or, The Boy Actor's Struggle. By Frank J. Earll. 90-Through Thick and Thin; or, Foes to the Last. By Walter J Newton. 9r-In Russia's Power; or, How Two Boys Outwitted the Czaf. B:v Matt Royal. 92Jon ah Mudd, the Mascot of Hoodooville; or, Which Was Which? By Fred Thorpe. 93-Fighting the Seminoles; or, Harry Emerson's Red Friend. By Maj. Herbert H. Clyde. 94-The Young Outlaw ; o r, Adrift in the Streets. By Horatio Alger, Jr. 95-The Pass of Ghosts; or, A Yankee Boy in the Far West. By Cornelius Shea. Fortunes o f a Foundling; or, Dick, the Ou t cast. By Ralph Ranger. 97-The Hunt for the Talisman; or, The Fortunes of the Gold Grab Mine. By J. M. Merrill. 98-Mystic Island. The Tale of a Hidden Treasure. By the author of "Th e Wreck of the Glaurns." 9rCapt. Startle; or, The Terror of the Black Range. By Cornelius Shea. roo-Julius, the Street Boy; or, A Waif's Rise fr om P overty By Horatio Alger, Jr. ror-Shanghaied; or, A Wanderer Against His Will. By H. C. Emmet. ro2-Luke J e pson's Treachery; or, The Dwarfs of the Pacific. By the author of "The Wreck of the Glaucus." ro3-Tangled Trails; or, The Mystery of the Manville Fortune B.y Clifford Park. ro4-Jam es, L angley & Co. ; or, T h e Boy Miners of Salt River. By the autho r of "Capt. Startle." ro5-Ben Barclay's Courage; o r, The Fortunes of a Store Boy. By Horatio Alger, Jr. ro6--Fred De s mond's Mission; or, The Cruise of the "Explorer." By Corne liu s Shea. ro7-Tom Pinkney's Fortune; or, Around the World with Nellie Bly. By Lieut. Clyde. ro8-Detective Clinket's Investigations; or, The Mys tery of the Severed Hand. By Clifford Park. rcrln the Depths of the Dark Continent; or, The Vengeance of Van Vincent. By the author of "The Wreck of the 'Glaucus.'" IIO-Barr, the Detective; or, The Peril of L ucy b. By Thomas P. Montfort. III-A Bandit of Costa Rica; or, The Story of a Stranded Circus. By Cornelius Shea. n2-Dacey Dearborn's Difficulties; o r The Struggle of the Rival Detectives. By Clifford Park. rr3-Ben Fols o m's Courage; or, How Pluck Won Out. By Fred Thorpe. II4-Daring Dick Goodloe's Apprenticeship; or, The Fortunes of a Young Newspaper Reporter. By Phil Willoughby. !IS-Bowery Bill, the Wharf Rat; or, The Young Street Arab s Vow. By Ed. S. Wheeler. u6--A Fight for a Sweetheart; or, The Romance of Young Dave Mansard. By C ornelius Shea. n7-Col. Mysteria; or, The Tracking of a Criminal to His Grave. By L aunce Poyntz. rr8-Electric Bob's Sea Cat; or, The Daring Invasion of Death Valley By Robert T. Toombs. Irr The Great Water Mystery; or, The Adventures of Paul Hassard. By Matt 120-The Electric Man in the Enchanted Valley; or, The Wonderful Adventures of Twf' Rey In' ventors By the author of "The o{ l 'Glaucus.'" 12r-Capt. Cyclone, Bandit; or, Pursued by an Elec tric Man. By the author of "The Wreck of the 'Glaucus.'" 122-Lester Orton's Legacy; or, The S to ry of the Treasure Belt. By Clifford Park. r23-The Luck of a Four-Leaf Clover; or, The R e united Twins. By Cornelius Shea. r24-Dandy Rex; or, An American Boy's Adventure s in Spain. By M a rline Man ly. r25-The Mad Hermit of the Swamps; or, Ned Hawley's Que s t By W. B. Lawso n 126--Fred Morden's Rich Reward; or, The Rescue of a Millionaire. By Matt Royal. All of the above numbers always on hand. If you cannot get them from your newsdealer, five cents per copy will bring them to you by mail, postpaid. STREET & SMITH, Publishers, 79-89 Seventh Ave., NEW YORK "' . ,. .


Citation
The young rough rider's silent foe, or, The hermit of Satan's Gulch

Material Information

Title:
The young rough rider's silent foe, or, The hermit of Satan's Gulch
Series Title:
Young rough riders weekly
Creator:
Taylor, Edward C.
Place of Publication:
New York
Publisher:
Street & Smith
Publication Date:
Language:
English
Physical Description:
1 online resource (28 p.) 28 cm.: ;

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Subjects / Keywords:
Western stories. ( lcsh )
Dime novels. ( lcsh )
Genre:
serial ( sobekcm )

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Source Institution:
University of South Florida
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
025569851 ( ALEPH )
17906270 ( OCLC )
R16-00011 ( USFLDC DOI )
r16.11 ( USFLDC Handle )

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No.57 MOST f ASCINATING .WESTERN .. STORIES -:. 111e : llermit \l Jt ,Ip; I pru.in1v .la re..:tfy f" f ._cf <:'IH{ 'IJt hcf"l1Ji l h;1d 1)1) I f'U):t.' r, !._ ti, ':t :thnut lfJ '4t"!1d it 1. d t \ 'f' lb( \nun}..' k'idt'"

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N o.57 NEW 'YORX, MAY 20, I 903 Price Five Cents THEYOUNG ROUGH RIDER'S SILENT FOE1 or> The Herrnt.t of Satan's Gulch. : -llilllllllii-......... -----=---.. -... ._._:..:_ ,.._

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, THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. 5 rnon.d death. Since that experien he had grown cauto every known tactic in the bucking line, and then it it SUl"such instances, and now just the bare tips of his a ro:i110hanged. its tactics. "I cc..,,_g the stirrups. '_ of ou r pians 1.ing rapidly in a circle, as if c;tumbled . h b t f II h Id f bl orse egm o a e wo u sppng rom ranch, so that we won't 1 at. kl d . ,, week Y to one s 1 e. .:n take as much time as .._.....y. comm; ,,_.. : r, and n;l1d not fall. It came down 0 1 ''a11orrow morning. 11 rie. Lately ? lt, whi1h .r.1one, >yould hav pposed to bE: a-:-.nted, tne_ 1ro'.1t ft to sell to me He r 1d tneu. 'f' companions f ,., .. ,tter was sett! ft .Stories lmt was n ever able __ _____________ I ssued I d t t l ;:-.50 per year. Entered accordingto Act of Cong-ress n tlte Offic e of the Librarian of Cong-ress, Waslt Post Otfice for entry as S econd-class Matter. ing\ S ay more lal,.it SMITH, 7Q-8Q Seventh Avenue, N. Y. Applkatzon tn, ---made every P:...r _________ ________ Price Five Cents. No. 57 1d h ave p11' ''\ou t s11r '"er t t II,; The Young Rough Rider's .Silent Foe; J '1. .... ..; JJ1 r "'.,,,. r: ; OR, lfj """"' "' .< -' J .. ... :.> "' HERMIT OF SATAN'S QULCH. >I .I .. I By NED I. I CHAPTER I. TED' S LETTER. "Don't b e in a hurry, Kit. I ha ve a letter in my pocket that I want you to h ea r me read, just as soon as I have eating." 1 ne ... ce ne was the large dining room of the Los Animas Ranch h o u se, in Dimmit County, Texas, not far from the Rio Grande Rive r In the room were seated four men, three of whom h a d evidently fini shed eating a few moments b efo r e, for they left the table. The other young man was still at the table and had jus t commenced to eat. The young man who was seated at the table was no other than the young manager of the Los Anim!ls Ranch T e d Strong. known throughout the West a s "the young rough rider." After l eaving the army, Ted had come West to run a r anch, and had formed an organization, which h ad sin ce become famed all over the country, known as th e Young Rough Riders. Ted was a h andsome boy, with brow n e y es and hair. His face an extraordinarily pleasant one, wore a l ook of determination. A t the present time it was flu s h ed, as from r ecent exercise. The other three me n were well-known members of Ted Strong's c ompa n y of young rough rid e r s, Bud Morgan, Ben Tremont and Kit Summers. They were all dressed alike, wearing closely fitting brown khaki cloth suits, cut military style. Around the waist of each was buckled a web belt supporting lon g -barreled revolvers, bow ie knives and cartrid ges. Brown somb rero s hung on a row of pegs driven into the wall of th e room, and showed what manner of head dress was worn by each o f the rough rid e rs. They wore brown leather leggins in s t ead of boots. Of the four men present, Bud Morgan was the oldest. He was an old-timer in the West,most of his life hav ing been spen t o n cattle ran ges He had joi ned the company of young rou g h r i ders, however almost wl.,.,_ :L ' b') had first be en o ro-anized. _11 trou "' s as old r Bud h a d been a r ather rough :.icter mtics 1e th e11an or me t Ted Strong. He had been < b th . iave o spent much time at the gammg ta,' t' t ff K )Ost 100 o o er

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I nothing that he wou a the young rough riders. Ben Tremont was the strong ma Ben was large and muscular. He was sa strongest men in the country. He ha the college in field sports, before gradua Ben was slow of speech and also slow had been termed lazy many times. But Ben was alwitys .. active enough when it was necessary. Kit Summers claimed to be a genuine Westerner by birth, having first seen the light of day in Nebraska, but he had been educated in the East. Ted Strong had been to Paco that day, to make some necessary purchases and to get the mail. He had re turned home quite late for supper. The others had waited for him some time and then gave him;-1p. They had just finished eating when he arriyed, but had lin gered in the dining room to listen to what news he might have picked up in the little town that day. Kit Summers had finally started to leave the room when he was detained by Ted with the words which open this story. As Ted ate his supper he talked: "You know Bud was saying yesterday that it was be ginning to be pretty dull on the ranch here s i nce we had finished the round-up and had sorted out the beeves we intend to market. So it is. I had been expecting to put in a few weeks soon looking over some mining proposi tions, but I received a letter to-day which interests me If you boys are of the same mind as myself, we may take a trip that will be pleasant for this time of the year, as well as profitable, with just enough mystery and ad venture in store to give it the right flavor." Of course, all hands were interested but Ted would not answer any of their questions until he had finished his supper. When he had pushed back his chair, after having dis posed of a hearty meal, he turned to Ben Tremont and asked : "Ben, do you remember Arthur Maxim?" "Arty Maxim, the boy we used to call 'Squatty' ?" asked Ben. "Yes, the same fellow. He finished college the year after you graduated, became a mining engineer later and est finally. Well, I got a letter from him to-day. ter l am going to read. That is, I will read to Y. here is a lot of it y o u won't c a re xplain briefly that Arty seems to o hoe since he came West. For "He examined the m ne b it to contain paying rock, vem. "The mine had already been wo "He purchased the mine with wha of his grandfather's bequest, and start_ his troubles began. me extent. 1ey he had left to work it. Then "I'll read you what he says about it. Then I want you uoys to tell me just what you think of the proposition he makes." Ted took from the front of his blouse a blue envelope, from which he drew several pages of paper, which were written closely on both sides. He drew his chair up closer to the light, and read as follows: V"' 1 i I "I hesitated a long time before investing in the Lucky Strike Mine. The owner seemed almost too anxious to sell, and was willing to take a ridiculously low price if the mine proved to be as valuable as it looked. I made a careful examination of the ore, however, and finally invested. A month later I picked up a crew of .men at Spokane and took them to my m i ne. They worked one day. Then every last man, from my foreman down, quit. They refused to again enter the shaft "I had built several log cabins close to the shaft for the men to live in. That night, beginning soon after dark, there came from the mine the most dismal sounds that could be ima g ined. Piercing screams, groans, clinking of chains and shrieks continued all night. With the mine foreman, I entered the shaft of the mine at about mid night, determined to learn the cause of the noises. We had hardly reached the mine level, -whe,n our lights were extinguished, as by a sudden rush of air. \V t.,.Y!' r in perfect darkness for about two minutes, d.g!:ipg we heard groans and rumbling sounds, apparently cOl-.,is from further in the mine Then it suddenly became as light as day. Wll
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, \ t. THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. 5 I mon.f death. Since that experien, he had grown cau it srnL such instances, and now just the bare tips of his "I c.::'"!P the stirrups. horse begin to fall, he would spring from did not blar. . kl 'd "A k 1 'lUlC y to one s1 e. wee aL N .::n together, and rnjid not fall. It came down on i way from the mine. vyould havr e the mine was supposed to be.-, c>:nted, t ne front feet mer was so anxious to sell to me. He had trieu ""veral years to work it, but was never able to get a gang of men together who would stay more than a day or two. "I have made every possible examination of the mine passages, and have put forth every effort to solve the m ys tery, without success. It is beyond me. Unless I can soon discover what agencies are being brou ght to bear against me to induce me to abandon the mine, I sh all have to give it up and lose every cent I have in the world. "Since I have been in the West, I have heard and read much about your movements. You have been successful in many strange enterprises, and I have confidence that if you were here you could solve this mystery and re deem the reputation of my mine. Can't you come, Ted, you and your friends your young rough riders? "This is a delightful part of the country at this time + -n e;. and y ou could comb i ne pleasure with business. I w1 i.
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he i not inw1 1 him on the trip, but i g previous to breaking in th<:J young one' b1ea ent lame. ha Ted had ridden this young horse several times, and had For a se 1 cm1quered its spirit to a certain extent, but the young that its bod/ rough rider knew that, after the long ride, his previous Its ears flat back against its head, and its /I work with the horse would count for nothing at all. He angry eyes rolled wickedly. That it was getting ready would have to break it all over again. for a fierce l.latt)e, the spectators knew for certain. As the animal was led from the car Ted took a glance "I reckon I know suthin' about horseflesh," Ted at the crowd, out of the tail of his eye. heard one of the strangers exclaim, "an' I'm willing ter He saw that they were greatly interested, and he knew bet money ther boy don't keep his seat six minutes." that they realized, at their first sight of the animal, that Bud Morgan also heard the remark, and he jumped there was sure to be fun ahead for them. toward the stranger. Ted was resolved that they should not be disappointed. "You're on!" exclaimed the fervent friend of Ted He would let the horse go through with its complete Strong. "Here's an even hundred that my young partner repertoire of tricks. sticks to his saddle until the brtite caves." Had the t'ough riders been entirely alone, or on the The stranger flushed when Bud Morgan so quickly Texas ranch, Ted would have shortened the coming procalled his offer to bet. gram considerably. He would have used different tactics "Yer know ther feller, an' I don't," he said. "All ther with the horse and brought the animal to a state of sub same, it's my opjne he gets throwed. If jection quickly. He would have saved considerable odds I'll take a slice of that roll." time, but the effect would have been the same witti the "Suit yerself," returned Bud. "I'll bet ther hundred hor se. agin' fifty. How's that suit yer ?" The animal would have been more quickly conquered, "All right," returned the stranger. "Who ill hold but not thorou'ghly broken, than by the method Ted ther wad?" now planned to pursue. "Hold it yerself," said Bud, generously, and gave the The hor s e was f. little stiff from its ride on the cars, stranger his roll of bills and Ted gave it plenty of rope for a few minutes before Now that one of their number had a bet up, the trying te saddlt! it. strangers were all the more interested in the struggle be -He allowed it t; jump and kick and get the stiffness tween the young rough rider and the spirited horse. out of its joints. The animal had stood just half a minute after Ted had Then, as theanimal began running at top speed in a got into the saddle. It seemed to be gathering its circle, with Ted in the center holding the long rope, the strength for some desperate move. young rough rider began gradually drawing in the rope Ted knew well what was coming. He held the reins and educing the circumference of the circle. fairly taut and sat it seemed is At last he the animal close to him, and, as the saddle. horse stopped, Kit Summers quickly approached from the ofher of Ted and threw the heavy saddle over its back. But Ted was on his guard. Not for a second did 'ri eyes leave the horse's ears. He not ed every twitch of those ears, and every move of them was a plain signal to him. The animal reared and tried to break away, but Ted quickly jerked in on the rope, while B e n Tremont sprang forward and tightened the girth enough to keep the sad dle from falling off. When the ears suddenly flapped up quickly, he knew that the animal was ready to begin operations. He tightened the rein a trifle and leaned slightly forward in It then took the united efforts of all the rough riders the saddle. to get' the saddle properly secured and the bri dle upon As he did so tlie animal reared again. The horse stood the animal, but at last all was ready for Ted to mount. up o n its hind legs, so straight up in the air it to Ted took the reins securely in his left hand which he the spectators that it would certainly fall over backwaru laced upon the animal's neck, close to rommel of Hie "'and crush the young rough rider under its weight. le. Instances have been known where h o rses have thus felt the hand of the young rough rider fallen over backward and crushed th e ir riders. It had ed to rear up on its hind legs. happened once with Ted, when he had been trying t? to rise, Ted grasped the seat of break an unusually willful anime1J, and he had barelY.

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THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. 5 escaped death. Since that experien, he had grown cau tious in such instances, and now just the bare tips of his toes touched the stirrups. Should the horse begin to fall, he would spring from the saddle and quickly to one side. But the horse did not fall. It came down on its front feet with a terrible jolt, which, alone, vyould have an inexperienced rider, and, as its front feet struck the earth its hind feet went high in the air, while its head went down between its two front hoofs. Then the horse started off at a swift gallop. Had Ted been upon the broad acres of the Los Animas Ranch just at this time, he would have given the animal its head and kept .it on a hard run to tire it out. Once thoroughly tired out, the battle would be more than half won; but just now he did not wish to conquer the horse too easily. He wanted to give the strangers some fun. He allowed the animal to gallop wildly for a few sec onds, but kept the horse traveling in a circle. While going at full speed, the horse suddenly braced its front hoofs dropped its head and stopped dead still. This was a which Ted had fully expected and ..:: .x:ir.!'f p re c-l f.o r. Irml?aCl "Of sailing on over the animal's head, the form of the young rotJgh rider did not even lurch forward the fraction of an inch, as far as the spectators could judge. One of the friends of the man who had made the bet with Bud Morgan now began jollying the man. "Guess yer kin kiss that fifty bucks good-by, Brick," he said, "fer the kid seems ter be a inner now." "I'm willin' ter acknowledge ther boy is ther best I ever seen straddle a saddle," returned the man addressed as Brick, "but ther beast ain't through with all his tricks yet. I ain't \ost ther bet by a long shot, an' even if I do lose, I ain't begrudging ther dust. This 'ere show beats ther fair an' is worth ther money." Bud Morgan heard the remark, and his mental note .thet feller is game. He's all right, an' thisJO> ere show ain't goin' ter cost him anything, if I do win." \ Five or six times the horse endeavored to unseat its young rider by sudden stops, after running for a while at full speed. Then it changed its program to regular, old-fashioned bucking. And such bucking! The animal proved itself a master of the art of stiff legged horse athletics. Its back would hump up like that of an angry house cat. Then it would spring in the air and come down in the same position, stiff-legged. Still Ted kept his seat, a bland smile never for an in stant leaving his lips. For fully five minutes the horse treated the spectators to every known tactic in the bucking line, and then it again changed its tactics. It began whirling rapidly in a circle, as if to make its rider dizzy. In an instant Ted knew what was coming. The ani mal was getting ready to throw itself to the ground. It would roll over and over and thus try to crush its rider. As the horse began circling both ";)f Ted's feet kicked free of the stirrups, and, a second later, the horse threw itself on its side, Ted jumped quickly to the ground and far enough away the horse to avoid its kicking heels. Over and back again the animal rolled, and then, just as it started to get up again, Ted's foot went into the stirrup and he rose with the horse He was again seated in the saddle, and the smife was still upon kis lips. As the animal regained its feet the spectators set up a great cheer. In acknowledgment Ted lifted his sombrero and bowed. The horse was now thoroughly out. Its flank s were white with foam and it head drooped in subjecti o n Its spirit was broken. Ted rode it back and forth s e\ eral times, and then finally reined the animal up near t h e crowd and dismounted. "B'gosh, stranger, I lost fifty on yer, but I don't ca r e a durn. Ther show was worth it. Yer the best I ever see in these parts, an'. I been here a long time. I'd like ter know yer name." ,It was the man who had bet with Bud Morgan wh o spoke. Ted did not get a chance to answer, however, for just then Bud pushed forward. "Stranger," exclaimed Morgan, "yer ain't lost a cent on this 'ere bet of our'n. It would be stealin' ter t ake . ther money, and Bud Morgan a in't no thief. I had a sure thing. Give me back ther hundred and keep yer fifty." "Not by a durn sight," returned the stranger, "I lost dead fair an' I ain't no man ter holler when I bites inter something I can't chew. No, sir, ther fifty belongs ter you." "Yer is a square man, all right," was Bud's reply, "but it would be just like taking candy from a baby ter take yer money. It were dead open and shut thet I couldn't lose, so I refuse ter take ther fifty. Yer money aiM good with me." The stranger was plainly perplexed. He ccfasidered that he had lost his bet and seemed anxious .eih Bud should take the money. "That's all right,' said Ted, as the man fo, ee member s him as if asking what course to pursue. .tl and Jack to means what he says, and you can never m the fifty, if he says he don't want it." fe chairman of "But, dm;n it all, he won it fair and you 1have both man. 'Josition to off er ., I

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6 THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. "That's all right," returned Ted. "You do as I say and keep it "Yer bet," put in Bud, "ther capting knows yer can't make me finger yer fifty. It's worth more'n fifty ter meet a man as square as yer has proved yerself ter be. TI1ey ain't no such men too plenty 'round this part of ther country, I reckon. But ye r asked ther capting his name, an', begging his parding for butting in, I'll answer yer question. He ain't nobody else only Ted Strong, an' I reckon yer hev heard of Ted Strong an' his rough riders even up in this 'ere part of ther West." "Ted Strong!" The words were chorused by four or five of the strangers, and every eye rested upon the young, hand some man, who had just finished giving them such an exhibition of horsemanship as none of the party had ever seen surpassed. "Yer bet I hev heard of Ted Strong, the young rough rider," said the man with whom Bud Morgan had laid the wager, "an' if I hed knowed who this young man we re on the start I'd never bet my money. I'm powerful glad ter rest my eyes on so famous a man, an' I suppose the rest of you fellers belong ter Ted Strong's famous company of rough riders?" "Thet we do," returned Bud, who seemed to have taken quite a liking to this stranger, something quite un usual for Bud Morgap on such slight acquaintance, "an' I'll interjuice yer if yer will p a ss me yer own handle." "Me? Oh, I'm Jay Davis. The boys call me 'Brick' Davis, 'count of the color of my hair. I'd ruther be called Brick than Jay, I reckon." Bud, as he had pro111ised, then introduced Davis to the re s t of the par t y of rough riders. When Davis, on his part. had introduced the rough riders to several of his own friends, he turned to Ted a n d suddenly said : "If yer won't think I'm too fresh, I'd like ter ask a favor of yer." "Fire away," said Ted "If it's something easy, I'll be glad to accommodate you "I understand yer are a crack shot with ther rifle an' fist gun?" "Yer bet he won't tell ye," put in Bud again, "but I will. He's got 'em all faded." "Then I want ter take this 'ere fifty, that Morg an wouldn't < handle, after he's won it fair and square, an' enter yer in a sharpshootin' contest thet is ter be pulled off at-ne fair this arternoon," said Brick, addressing Ted. H animal, fair?" Ted asked. Ted took Nas the answer. "There fs a regular county laced upon t 1 unshine. This is the last day, and there is to le. )ting contest on. All ther crack shots in the horswants ter can enter. Ther entrance fee is her winner gets back h!s money and a th a diamond setting besides." "What is the obj of the fair?" asked the young rough rider. "It' s fer charity. It were got up ter help ther widows of some miners what got kilt in an explosion in ther No. 20 Mine over in Short Cut Valley." "And the contest is this afternoon?" "Yes." "All right, you may enter me," said Ted, with quick determination, "and now we will bid you adieu until afte r dinner. Meet me at the hotel as soon as convenient after one o'clock." If there was anything that Ted Strong delighted in, it was a contest of any kind where s kill was needed to win. He looked forward to the shooting match with pleasure. CHAPTER. III. THE SHOOTING CONTEST. rough riders had just finished a hearty dinner and had entered the hotel office, when Brick Davis made his appearance. "It's all right," was Brick's greeting to Ted. ther fifty and entered your name just as th ey<'"m' the list. Ther rifle shooting comes first an' then ther pis tol stunts. There are som e crack shots entered an' yer can shake hands with yerself if yer win." Loyal Bud Morgan did not fail to catch up the last sen tence. "Now, look 'ere, Mister Davis," chirped Bud, "I opined yer were a purty good feller, but I'm all-fired afraid I kin see a yeller streak in yer. Ted, he ain't goin' tcr 1 lose in this 'ere contest by a long shot. Hear me mut ter?" "I don't want him ter lose," replied Brick, "any more nor you do." "Well; don't fer a minute doubt thet he'll win. I'm willin' ter bet all ther money I've got as fur as it goes, an' then put up ther clothes offn my back th e t medal," exclaimed Bud. "Cut it out, Bud," said Ben Tremont. "Ted don't want you to bet. It's a bad habit. Of cou rse, we expect Ted will win, and we know he will win if he has a fair show." "Well, yer can bet that Ted's going ter have a fair show, all right, all right, fer Bud Morgan-that's meis going ter be right there with both feet and all his nateral faculties, fer the express purpose of seeing that there ain't no double-cross racket 'sprung inter the game." This sally of Bud's caused a general laugh. "That's all right, Bud said Ted, "I really do hope to win, and I am sure I will get fair play, as far as that is concerned. But do not be too sanguine of my success There are some pretty handy men in these parts, and just because I have never been defeated is no sign I will not meet some one more expert than myself here." This conversation had going on while the rough

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THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. f riders were bein g gu id ed by Bri ck Davis t owa rd the grounds set apart for the use of the fair. This was the first fair that had ever been a ttempted at or near Sunshine and i t was proving a grand success Miners, cattlemen and all classes of people traveled fot miles to attend it It had n ow lasted seve ral da ys, and this afternoon it would draw t o a close. The fair had naturally attracted a g r eat ma ny men of doubtful character to Sunshine, and a great many men whose characters were well kn(')wn to be bad. But the sheriff of the county and the marshal of the town were, happily, first-class officers. They had sworn in a number of deputies and had so far preserved fairly good order. But this afternoon it was expected the oiicers would have their severest trials. Seve1al acres of l eve l desirable g round at one side of the little town had been set apart for the accommoda tion of the fair. Here the races had been held and all of the sports and contests. As the young rough riders and their g uide approached the grounds, they saw that a horse race was just being an d Ted was informed that the rifle contest would soon be on. Davis introduced Ted to the man who was to have charge of the shooting contests. His name was Lewis Johnson, and he gree ted Ted sociably and promised him that there would be no opposition to him, although his entry had been rather tardy. During the few moments to spare before the contest was announced, Ted thoroughly examined his weapons and ammunition. Like everything he undertook, Ted's greatest ambition at that particular time was to win the medal. He felt that he was in the best possible trim. At last he heard the man who was acting as master of ceremonies announce th a t the next feature on the program fqr_ the afternoon would be a rifle and pi s tols hoot-tha. there were nine entries, including the best shots of the Northwest. Then the speaker announced that one of those who entered was a young man, famous all over the West, who was known as Ted Strong, the young rough rider. In a few words the speaker called attention to the fact that Ted Strong had reputation of being the crack shot of the West, but that there were severa l shooters, 'vho were entered for that day s contest, who disput ed that statement, and would endeavor to prove it to be false that afternoon. As the speaker ceased talking there came cheers and shouts froni every part of the crowd. "Where is the rough rider? Hurrah for T ed Strong! A speech A speech !" This was an ovation which had c e rtainl y not be e n ex pected by Ted. For a moment he hardly knew how to respond, but the cries from the crowd did not c ease. They seemed determined to h ear Ted's voice "Git up on ther stump, Ted, and give them a few wags of you r tongue. They want te r see yer,"' said Bud Mor gan It was plain to be seen the clamoring would not ceas e until Ted consented to speak. He accordingly mounted a stump near by and held up his hand for sile nce. Instantly the crowd was silent. Ted's was a command ing face, albeit a pleasant one. A smile was now upo n his lips and the spectators in st incti vely knew that the words he was about to speak wou ld be pleasant to hear. In his rich, musical voice, harmonious and clear as a b e ll, Ted made a few brief remarks thanking the crowd for it s wa rm welcome. He said in conclusion: "A few hours ago I had n o intention of entering this contest. In fact, it has only been a s h ort time since I l earned there was to be a contest o f this kind here this afternoon. I was invit e d t o ente r and did so. I do not know whether I will wjn or not, but I am going to try my l eve l best to win that medal." Ted had made a good impr ess ion. The cro wd was with him from that minute, and most of the spectators secretly hop ed that he would win the medal, Unlike several other shooting cont es ts in which the young rough rider had taken part in Texas and elsewhere, the nine conteMants were divided into three squads, three men in each squad. The three men of each squad, after going through the tests, retired. At the end of these trials the winners of each squad were put to more severe tests and the final winner was to be declared owner o f the gold, diamond-set medal. It chanced that in drawing l ots Ted found himself of the contestants in the third s quad and it was well along in the afternoon when it came his turn to shoot. The squad tests with the rifle and revolver were not hard and the young rough rider soon found himself to be the superior of the other two shooters of his squad. Then came the sfruggle of the afternoon. The three squad winners, all of whom h ad shown about equal s kill so far, were to fight for the possession of the medal. This contest was close and exciting, and, after all the tests arranged for the contest had been used it was found that Teel and a young man by the name of Jack Raub, a tall, gain ly man, were tied for the possession of. the medal. The committee were unable to discover that either one had showed better skill than the other. It was a try ing situation. The committee memb ers h eld a short consultation, and then called Ted and Jack to o n e side. "We are in a quandary," announced the chairman of the committee, "for in straight shooting you have both proved to be dead shots. We have a proposition to offer I

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8 THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. which we hope you will acccept to decide the matter. Will each of you give us an exhibition of trick revolver shooting? The one whom we consider does the neatest and most difficult work, we will name as the winner." "It suits me all right, exclaimed Raub, it seemed to Ted almost eagerly. Ted knew in an instant that Raub considered himself a good trick shooter and felt certain in hi!) own mind of winning the medal. "lf that is the case," thought Ted to himself, "I think I can take some of the conceit out of him." "It is satisfactory as far as I am concerned," repli ed Ted, to the chairman of the committee. And thus it was arranged and the proper announcement made to the crowd. CHAPTER IV, TED MAKES AN ENEMY. Bud Morgan, Ben Tremont and Kit Summers had been interested spectators of the shooting contests, and when they heard it announced that the tie between Ted Strong and Jack Raub for the possession of the gold medal would be determined by exhibitions of fancy pistol shooting they felt certain that their young leader would soon be the owner of the medal. Kit Summers was standing some distance from his companions, back in the crowd, and just after the an nouncement was made, a remark by one of the by standers caught his ear. It was a remark that attracted his attention, and he moved nearer to hear what more might be said. The remark was this : "I pity Ted Strong if he defeats Jack Raub." "Why?" inquired the man who had been addressed. "You know Raub has been considered the crack shot of this country for some years?" "Yes." "And you know what kind of a disposition he has?" "Yes. He is a revengeful cuss. I have heard that he has been known to k ill several men with very little reason." "Now you have struck it. I happen to know Jhat Raub has sworn to take the lif e of any man who sho\ld defeat him in this conte st!" This was the startling sentence that Kit S mers heard. "Jack Raub must be crazy returned th e man w been first addressed. "For my part, I d o not think his mind is quite balanced. He ought n ot to be allowe d h i s liberty." "'V\'hy do not the authorities take him in h :md ?" was aked. ''That is someth ing I can't answer. Probably, however, it is becau'.se no char ges have ever been preferred against him. He is as cowardly as he is revengeful. He does .. not challenge his enemiet1 openly, but creeps upon them unawares, like a Greaser." "I think Ted Strong should be warned in this mat ter," said the second man. "You needn't worry about Ted Strong," said a voice behind the last speaker, "for the young rough rider is fully capable of l ooking out for h imself." It was Kit Summers who had spoken. The two men turned when they heard Kit's voice and recognized the boy immediately, by his uniform, as one of the young rough riders. "I am glad you h eard our conversation," said one of the men, "for I fully intended to convey the information to one of your company at the first opportunity." "I am much obliged to you, gentlemen," replied Kit, "and I will see that Ted is informed, but it is very un likely that Jack Raub, as you call him, will ever get the opportunity to get r evenge upon Ted Strong." The conver sa tion came to a close here, as it was evi dent that the two contestants were ready to begin the ex hibition. It had been agreed that twenty minutes should be given to each man in which to demonstrate his skill. Raub was to use the first twenty minutes in tricks, then Ted would come on. Raub was then to use ten minutes in duplicating, if pos sible, any tricks introduced by the young rough rider, and then Ted should have the following ten minutes to use in trying to do new tricks introduced by Raub. From the crowd each man had the priv i lege of selecting some one to help th em in the tricks. Raub chose his assistant, and then loaded his revolvers preparatory to beginning the exhibition. Raub gave an exhibition which elicited great applause from the spectators. His work was perfect, but when he had finished the young rough riders knew that the .young man had lost. The tricks seemed very ordimry to Ted's companions Raub 's repertoire consisted of shoot:?g t e necks off from beer bottles thrown high in the air, sl1ooting t 1 centers out of the ace of diamonds and ace of hearts, the cards being individually thrown into the air, driving tacks into pine boards and hitting a target bull's-eye at ten paces, with the revolver h e ld upside down. Ted chose Bud Morgan for his assist an t, and began his exhibition as soon as th e w ord was given. His first nunib e r consi s ted of shooting the necks off from six bee r bottles thrown high into the air at Buel threw them simultaneously, three with each hand. The feat was accomplished befor e the bottles struck the ground and every chamber of Ted's revolver was emptied. Raub had done the same trick with only two bottles. A ringing cheer from the crowd demonstrated that the sp ectators were quick to note the superiority of Ted in this one number

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8 THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. which we hope you will acccept to decide the matter. Will each of you give us an exhibition of trick revolver shooting? The one w horn we consider does the n eates t and most difficult work, we will name as the winner." "It suits me all right, exclaimed Raub it seemed to Ted almost eagerly. Ted knew in an instant that Raub con side red himself a good trick shooter and felt certain in his own mind of winning the medal. "If that is the case," thought Ted to himself "I think I can take some of the conceit out of him." "It is satisfactory as far as I am concerned," replied Ted, to the chairman of the committee. And thus it was arranged and the proper announcement made to the crowd. CHAPTER TED MAKES AN Bud Morgan, Ben Tremont and Kit Summers had been int e rested spectators of the shooting contests, and when th ey heard it announced that the tie between Ted Strong and Jack Raub for the possession of the gold medal would be determined by exhibitions of fancy pistol shooting they felt certain that their young leader would soon be the owner of the medal. K it Summers was standing some distance from his companions, back in the crowd, and just after the an nouncement was made, a remark by one of the by standers caught hi s ear. It was a rem ark that attracted his attention, and he moved nearer to hear what more might be said. The remark was this : "I pity Ted Strong if he defeats Jack Raub. "Why?" inquired the man who had b ee addressed. "You know Raub has bee n considered the crack shot of this country for some years?" "Yes." "And you know what kind of a disposition he has?" "Yes. He is a reven geful cuss . I have heard that he has b ee n known to k ill several men with very little reason." "Now you have struck it. I happ e n to know J:ha t Raub has sworn to t ake the lif e of any man who sho'lld defeat him in this conte st!" This was the startling sentence that Kit Simers heard. "Jack Raub must b e crazy," returned th e man w o had been first addressed. "For my part, I d o not think his mind is quite balanced. He oug h t n ot to be al!owed h:s liberty." "Why do not the authori ties ta ke him in h :md ?" was "That is something I can't answer. Probably, however it i s becab'.se no char g es have ever been preferred against him. He is as cowardly as he is revengeful. He does not challenge his enemiet1 openly, but creeps upon them unawares, like a Greaser." "I think Ted Strong should be warned in this mat ter," said the second man. "You needn t worry about Ted Strong," said a voice behind the last speaker, "for the young rough rider is fully capable of looking out for h imself. It was Kit Summers who had spoken. The two men turned when they heard Kit's voice and recognized the boy immediately, by his uniform, as one of the young rough riders. "I am glad you heard our conversation," said one of the men, "for I fully intended to conve y th e information to one of your company at the first opportunity." "I am much obliged to you, gentlemen," replied Kit, "and I will see that Ted is inform ed, but it is very un likely that Jack Raub, as you call him, will ever get the opportunity to get r eve nge upon Ted Strong." The conver sa tion came to a close here, as it was evi dent that the two contestants were ready to begin the exhibition. It had been agreed that twenty minutes should be given to eac h man in which to demonstrate his ski ll. Raub was to u se the first twenty minutes j n tricks, then Ted would come on. Raub was then to use ten minutes in duplicating, if pos sible, any tricks introduced by the young rough rider, and then Ted should have the following ten minutes to use in trying to do new tricks introduced by Raub. From crowd each man had the privilege of selecting some one to help them in the trick s Raub chose his assistant, and then loaded his revolvers preparatory to beginning the ex hibition Raub gave an exhibition which elicited great applause from the spectators. His work was p erfec t, but when he h ad finished the young rough rid ers knew that the young man had lost. The tricks seemed very ordimry to Ted's companions. Raub's repertoire consisted of 8hoot:pg th e necks off fr om beer bottles thro wn hi g h in the air, sl1ooting tic ce nters out of the ace of diamonds and ac e of hearts, the cards being individually thrown into the air, driving tacks into pine boards and hittin g a target bull'seye at ten paces, with the revolver h eld upside clown. Ted chose Bud Morgan for hi s assistant, and began his exhibition as soon as the word was given His first nuniber consisted of shooting the necks off from six b eer bottles thro wn high into th e air at Bud threw them simultaneously, three with each hand. The feat was accomplished before the bottles struck the ground, and eve r y chamber of T ed's r evolve r was empt;ed. Raub had done the same trick with only two bottles. A ringin g cheer from the crowd demonstrated that the s pectators were quick to note the superiority of Ted in this one number .

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THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. 9 Ted's next number was an improvement on Raub's card-trick shooting. Twenty cards were used by Ted, among them being the four aces. Ted used two revolvers in the trick, and, as Bud threw the twenty cards in the air, the quick eye of the young rough rider singled out the aces and his bullets neatly cut a hole in the center of each. The crowd did not cheer this time, but the silence was more significant than a loud ovation. The spectators were amazed. Had Ted stopped right then, he would have been awarde'd the medal, but, now that he was in form, he de cided to give the spectators the worth of their money. Ted's request for twenty-six army hard-tacks was granted. Standing at ten paces Bud Morg;:in held the large, hard crackers between his thumb and forefinger, one at a time, while with two revolvers, being fired alternately, Ted shot outlines of the twenty-six letters of the English alphabet in them. Each hard-tack, when he was through, had a letter outholes in it. This was a trick that Ted had mastered by long prac tice. He had practiced it so much during idle moments on the Los A nimas Ranch that he could almost do it with his eyes shut. It seemed" wonderful work to the spectators, and the crowd went almost wild with delight. "Yer hev ther medal cinched, Ted," whispered Bud, while the crowd was cheering. "What's the use of wast ing any more cartridges?" ."I'll give them one more," replied Ted, "the tin-can trick." The tin-can trick was the most difficult trick of revolver shooting that Ted had ever attempted. It had been the hardest for him to master, but he had finally perfected it. There was some delay while a perfect, empty tin can -It happened to be a round tomato can that was handed to the young rough rider at last. Ted quickly took the colored paper off, leaving the bright tin in view. I The young rough rider then selected a perfectly level space, several rods square and placed the can upon the ground upon its side. The crowd, curious to I.now what Ted intended to do, pressed close around the spot. "Say, young feller, what's ther trick?" asked a voice in the crowa. This gave Ted an opportunity to explain. "The trick is to chase this tomato can twice around this circle by shooting under it. I will U$e three revolvers, shooting six shots with each. If I do the trick perfectly, the can will not stop rolling until after the last shot is fired, and there will not be a bullet hole in it." "Say, ain't yer givin' u s a kid? How kin yer sho o t a t ther can without there beitl' no bullet holes in it?" Ted smiled. "My idea," he said, "is to fire each bullet so that th e edge of the bullet touches the side of the can just enough to keep it rolling. If there is a hole in the can it will show that my aim was inaccurate." Ted borrowed Bud's revolver and placed it loo s ely in his own belt. Then he began firing. The can rolled rapidly around in a circle, while Ted's weapons kept spitting out the leaden plugs. There seemed to be not the slightest variation in the shots, even when Ted exchanged the empty revolver for the loaded one. vVhen the can ce 2se d rolling a dozen hands were thru s t forward to p i ck it up for examination. It was quickly passec'. from one person to another in the crowd, and there were many of aston ishment. The can had not been once punctured, but there were scratches upon the tin showing where the bullets had scraped it. Ted's time was up. and the master of ceremonies called for the appearance of Raub, who was to have ten min utes to duplicate Ted's new tricks. But Raub could not be found. It was finally announced, by several men in the crowd, that Jack had given up and had gone away. The man had realized that he stood no show against the young rough rider when it came to fancy shooting and had left the grounds. Amid the delighted cheers of the crowd, the gold med a l was presented to Ted, and for half an hour the spectators crowded about him for the purpose of shaking his hand and examining the medal. The fifty dollars was handed to Ted, and he at once returned it to Davis. As Ted handed the money to Davis, Brick, in turn, handed the young rough rider a slip of paper. "What is it?" asked Ted, as he took the paper. "Jack Raub handed it to me just before he left, and told me to see that you got it," replied Davis. Ted unfolded the paper. He read the following words written in pencil : "You are as good as dead J. RAUB." "This is something I do not understand," said Ted, handing the paper to Kit Summers, who happened to be standing nearest him. Kit glanced at the note and then said: "I understand it, Ted, and will explain it to you as soon as we reach the hotel." "All right," replied the young rough rider, betraying not the least curiosity. But he knew that Kit had som<-', thing of importance to communicate, which he did not dis sire to speak of in the presence of the crowd, which w now taking up T.ed's attention. he

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IO THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. The young rough riders did not leave the grounds im mediately, as there were several other interesting features on the program for that afternoon, and they wished to see the fun. I CHAPTER V. TED'S SILENT FOE. The young rough riders loitered about the fair grounds until darkness had set in. The program for the afternoon was a long one, and, it being the last day of the fair, the committee in charge were anxious to clean up every num ber on the program. There were a number of foot races, and these were finished after dark. A display of fireworks was scheduled for the evening, and the young rough riders concluded not to return to the hotel for supper. They, therefore, procured a lunch at a stand on the fair grounds, and then prepared to put in an evening of enjoyment. Just as the young rough riders had finished eating, one of the local men in charge of the fair approached the stand where Ted, with his companions, had been eating. "Mr. Strong," inquired the man, "do you know any-thing about fireworks?" / "I used to help fire them off during my college days," replied Ted. "Have you run up against something you don't understand?" "Yes," was the reply. "Our fireworks were shipped from the East, and we have a big bundle of l)ew-fangled rockets which none of us know how to handle. Would it be asking too much of you to look them over and see if you can make head and tail of them?" "By no means," was Ted's reply. "I will be glad to assist you, if I am able." Telling his companions where he was going, the young rough rider left them and accompanied the man With the assistance of the young rough rider, the man ner in which the rockets should be touched off was soon determined, and, a little later, the display commenced. Ted did not go far from the seat of the operations, thinking he might perhaps be needed to further assist. About half of the fireworks had been ignited, when the crowd was suddenly attracted by the alarming ringing of a church bell in Sunshine. A minute later they heard the cry of "Fire!" Then above the tree tops arose a great column of black smoke, and the sky was lighted by a large blaze. In a body, it seemed the people who had been watching the fireworks started toward the town. \The grounds were soon vacated Everybody was rush \ng toward the place where the fire seemed to be. a. Ted sprang to the top of a large box, in which some the fireworks had been shipped, and tried to single out it Sm the crowd his companions, but he caught'no glimpse h i rany of them. \ "Some of the rockets must have landed in the town and started the blaze," Ted muttered to himself. Then. he leaped to the ground and started himself toward the village. He \\Tas one of the last to leave the grounds. The road leading from the fair grounds to the town skirted a small, but dense, piece of woods, to the right and to the left was a steep, precipitous bluff. The road ahead of Ted was choked with people trying to hurry toward the fire. In order to save time, Ted concluded to cut into the woods, thinking he could thus make better time. He found he had made a mistake, however, a moment later, for the trees were close together, and the under grnwth was too thick for fast traveling After stumbling along in the darkness for a few rods, Ted concluded to retrace his steps, get back in the road and follow the crowd. Just as he reached the edge of the timber, Ted's foot caught in a tangled growth of underbrush, and, before he could catch himself, he fell on the ground at full length. As the young rough cider fell, a dark forruJlfi1l'ped from behind a large tree, holding in its hands a rifle, uplifted like a club -" Before Ted had time to rise, the dark individual brought the gun clown upon the head of the young rough rider with tremendous force. Ted lay like one dead, while his assaulter carefully stooped over the prostrate form, for the evident purpose of ascertaining the effect of the blow. It was probably several hours later that Ted returned to consciousness. He found that he was blindfolded and that he h;i.d been tied hand and foot, and to the back of a strange horse. The animal was moving, and sounds of a second horse's hoof beats told Ted that the animal he was led Ted was not gagged, and he ventured to ask, after rid ing some distance and fully recovering his senses : "Where are you taking me?" There was no answer. Thinking he had not been heard, Ted raised his voice to a loud yell. "Hey, there I say, where are you taking me?" No answer. "Say, can't you hear my question?" Still no answer. Ted beg an to wonder if he was in the power of a deaf and dumb man. He made several other attempts at ask ing questions, bot only the hoof beats of the two traveling horses and his own voice broke the silence.

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THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. IT CHAPTER VI. BUD AND BEN TAKE A TRAIL. "What 's thet? Yer say th e r young boss didn't come to t her hotel la s t night?" It was Bud Morgan who was taJ!, ing With Kit Summers and Ben Tremont, he was stand in g at the desk in the h o t e l office of Sun s hine. His remarks were addressed to the clerk. On getting up the next morning afte r the fire, Bud h ad been the first to notice that Ted was not in the hotel office, but he supposed that, owing to the strenuous work and excitement of the previous night, Ted had not ye t awakened. It was yet early in the morning. Bud had supposed that Ted had b e en one of the first of the spectators to reach the fire. He h ad worked hard hi mself to save the burning building, which was occupied as a general store, and, while he had not see n Ted, he had suppos e d him to be somewhere on the street. None of the young rough riders had arrived at the h otel at the same time the previous evening, and each had secured a separate room and had retired as soon as tte. hotel. It was, therefore. not strange that the young leader had not been missed t hat night. Bud waited for over an hour in the hotel office for the appearance of the young rough rider. The breakfast hour was nearly over. Then Bud called the attention of Kit and Ben to the fact that Ted was oversleeping and liable to miss a full meal. They had also missed Ted, but h ad accounted for his nonappearance the same way that Bud h ad figured it out. "Do you think I had better ca ll him?" asked Bud. Both Ben and Kit answered in the affirmative. Bud th e n approached the desk and asked the clerk the numb e r of the room occupied by Ted Strong. The cl erk g l anced at the names on the re gis t e r and astonishing s t atemen t which caused Bud to utter the que s tions with which this chapter begins: "Mr. Strong did not s l eep h ere last night." "Were yo u on duty all the evening?" asked Kit Sum mers. "Yes, my h ou rs a re from eigh t in the eveni n g until nine in the morning," replied the clerk. "And was there no message l ef t h ere for any of us?" asked Kit, r epeating the names of his two companions and himself. "There was no message for any o f you three," was the repl y, "but the re is a message here for Mr. Strong. It was delivered last evening." "We are his friends,'' said Ben Tremont, "may we see the message? We are afraid our captain h as met with foul play. We cannot account for his not coming to th e hotel last ni g ht. If it was in his power, he would ha ve either arrived here or have sent us a message explaining h i s absence." The clerk handed Ben a sea led envelope, which was addressed thus: "To Ted Strong, Sunshine, care of Miners' Hotel." Ben at once recognized the handwriting of Arthur Maxim. / The letter is from Maxim," he said, addressing his companions. "Shall I open it? It may give a clew to Ted's whereabou t s Under the circumst a nces it was decided to open the letter. They found the letter to be a very short a few words. "You should arrive in Sun s hine by to-morrow or next day If this l etter finds you a lr eady there, wait for me. I will arrive at the hotel Friday to guide you to the Lucky Strike Mine ARTY." "Why, this is Friday," remarked Kit Summers "Yes, the letter must h ave been del ayed," r ep l ied Ben. "Well, ther letter don t exp l ain nothing about where ther young capting h as gone ter," said Bud Morgan. "I'm fer Jookin' him up. But, how in sandh ill be we ter kn o w where ter look?" "Boys," announced Ki t Summers, "I have some in formation which may help in solving the question. It is something I would have t old you all before had I had an opportunity Kit's face wore a very grave, sad look. He was of the threat tha t Jack Raub had been sa i d to have made-that he would kill any man who won the shooting contest from him-and of the message Ted had received from the tall, ungainly man afte r the young roug h rider had been presented 0with the medal. Kit now t ook his t wo friends to one side and told them of what he h ad overheard. "An' yer think ther l ong-co ntinu ed galoot has made away with our young capting ?" asked Bud Mo rgan, his voice trembling and a suspicious moisture n o ticeable in his eyes. "Let us hope not,'' replied Kit, his tones also tremu lous and his cou:1tena n ce very grave. Ben Tremont's face did not so p l ai nl y picture the emo t ions which he felt, but it was plain that he, t o o regarded the s itu ation as a very grave one, afte r hearing what Kit had to say "I'll tell yer one th ing," excla imed Bud, finally, "an' that is that Bud Mo rgan ain't never goin' ter rest until he h as this questio n settled. A n if I finds out that one hair of ther young capting's head has been so much as kinked by this 'ere fresh cuss, as is called Jack Raub, this same cuss will start on ther long trip If T e d is alive, I'll find him, and if he's been killed--" "We are with you, B ud clear to the end of the

PAGE 15

f 12 THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. trail," cut in Kit Summers, "but we have to go about the matter sensibly, so as to l11ilke no mistakes.' "It is just possible, know," said Ben Tremont, "that this man Raub has nothing to do with Ted's disap pearance." "Just the same," said Kit, "I'm willing to bet money that Raub has a hand in this matter." "So am I," returned Ben, "but I merely said, for the purpose of covering the points in the case, that it is just possible that the ta11 man is not guilty." "Well, he seems ter be about all ther start we have ter begin with," remarked .Bud; "an'. I think ther best plan would be ter look him up first thing, eh?" "You won't have to g:o far to get track of Jack Raub!" That was Kit Summers' sudden exclamation just at that point, and, as Kit spoke, he pointed through the open window toward the street. Bud and Ben followed his gaze. Surely enough, direct.Jy across the street they saw Raub just about to enter a saloon! The man had dismounted from the horse which he had ridden up to the door of the saloon, and had tied the an imal to a post set at the edge of the street. "He's been taking a long ride," remarked Bud, gazing at the horse. The animal surely bore evidences of having been ridden hard. Its flanks were flecked with perspiration. Its mouth was dripping lather, and the animal stood with its head drooped, as if thoroughly tired out. "To my mind," said Kit Summers, "that horse is evidence that Jack Raub must have been riding most of the IJ,ight. I believe now, more than ever, that he had con siderable to do with Ted's disappearance. Let us decide quickly what move we will make, before Raub comes from the saloon." "I know, durn well, what I'm gain' ter do," said Bud Morgan, suddenly starting to his feet. "What is it, Bud?" asked Kit and Ben together. "I'm going ter get my cayuse saddled, and, when thet feller starts out, it's me right arter him. I'm going ter foll er him, 'ithout his getting next ter ther fact, until. I am dead sartin he either does, 'or don't, know ther where abouts of Ted Strong." "Good for you, Bud J That's the right talk!" Ben was the one who spoke. Bud had a strange temperament, and when he had first announced his inten tion of making some move, Ben was afraid Bud's impetu ousity would lead him to go straight across the road to the saloon and attack Raub, with an idea of making him confess what had happened to Ted. Ben knew that such a proceeding would be rash, in deed, and probably spoil their plans altogether. He knew that Raub would confess to know nothing of the whereabouts of Ted Strong, and stick to it. They would then have no way of proving that Raub had been instrumental in causing Ted's disappearance. But when Ben heard Bud's plan of procedure, he knew that Bud had control of whatever impulse he might have had when he first saw Raub. Ben approved heartily of Bud's plan, but he did not think it advisable for all three of them to go on the errand Bud had suggested. / He was about to propose to Kit to stay at the hotel, while Bud ahd himself followed Raub, in order to notify Ted of the means taken to find him, should Ted happen to turn up during the day. But, before he could broach the subject, a roughly dressed but srrfooth-faced, intelligent-appearing young man approached the party. The stranger's arm was extended toward Ben. "Hello, Ben, old boy! Glad to you are here Where is Ted?" Ben jumped quickly to his feet and grasped the out stretched hand of the newcomer. "You have got here just in time, Arty," he exclaimed. "Ted has mysteriously disappeared." .,,.....Then Ben introduced the man to his companions as Arty Maxim, the young mine owner, whom they had jomneyed from Texas to assist. the introductions, Ben lost no time in telling Maxim the particulars of Ted's disappearance. "And so you think Jack Raub has something to do with Ted's misfortune, if such it proves to be?" asked Arty. "Yes, certain." "I know of this man Raub," said Maxim, "and I do not believe his mind is just right. I would not wonder at all if your suspicions prove correct. Raub owns a miner's claim in the same gulch in which my haunted mine is located. It is called Satan's Gulch. But his claim is twenty miles nearer Sunshine than my own. It is not a valuable mine, as I understand, and he it slowly by himself. He lives there alone most of the time. If he has made Ted a prisoner and not killed him, it is just possible he has him confined at or near his mine." "That is a good suggestion," said Kit, "and it puts an idea into my head. Suppose, Ben, that you and Bud fol low Raub, as Bud proposed, while Maxim and myself tr.ave! to Raub's mine and see if we can find Ted any where around there?" "Now you are talk!ng !" Ben exclaimed, and, without further parley, he and Morgan started for the stable to get their horses ready. In the meantime, Kit procured from the hote,l cook a supply of cooked provisions for Ben and Bud to take with them-enough to last several days. As Ben and Bud, mounted and ready for the journey, r

PAGE 16

7 .,,,, _ _ THE YOUNG R.OUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. rode a round to the front of the hot e l Kit met them and exclaimed : "You're just in time, Raub just came out of the saloon a moment ago, got on his horse and started north He jus t ente red that path leading through the woods. Ben and Bud to o k the packa ges of food handed to them b y Kit ti ed th e parcel s to their sadd l e th o n gs and galloped off in the direction t a k e n by the man th ey su s pect e d of havin g eith e r kill ed or kidnaped th eir young c ap tai : Ted Strong. A s h ort time after the departure of Ben Tremont and Buel Morga n Kit Summers and Arty Maxim mounted their hor ses preparjltory to startin g for the vicinity of Raub's claim. Just as they w e re ready t o s tart Brick Davi s rod e up to the hotel. 'He appeared to be equipped for a lon g ride. "I'm goi n g wa y up int e r ther rr1otmtains was hi s greeting to Kit, "a nd I thought I'd jus t call a minut e to bid yo u fellows good-by "They are all gone but me ," said Kit. "Which way a re you going ?" the n o rth end of S at an's Gulch," was \ h e \ r ep l y "That's the direction we're h ea ded for," announc ed Kit, "and we'd be to have you j og along w i th us. "Hurrah! I'm with yer," exclaimed Brick and in a few minutes the three were loping along the h a rd-b e at e n trail l ea ding northward, in the same direction taken by B u d and Ben l ess than half an hour b e forn. When well started on the journey, Kit told Brick all about the myst e rious disappearance of Ted Strong, of their suspicions concerning Jack Raub s b e ing mixed up with the case and the reasons for those suspicions Brick was surprised, but he shook his head knowin gly as Kit told the story. "That there Raub is jest th e r fell e r ter do up Ted tieatin' him in shootin' contest, if he got ther chanst, said Davis. "It's dollars ter dou g hnuts th e t he dealt th e r hand all right, an' say, yer can count on Brick Davis ter stick with you fellers un til we find ye r youn g partn e r I'm dead stuck on that boy. He' s ther squarest f elle r I seen in a long time." Kit' s glance at Davis' face told him the man was sin cere, and h e th a nk e d Brick warmly for his offer of assistance and accepted it. .. CHAPTER VII. THE CRAZY HERMIT. Blindfolded as be w as, and probably for several hours unconsci o us Ted had l ost all track of time or distance. He coultl not tell whether or not it was still dark, his -eyes had been so densely covered. A nd h e did not know how l ong he h a d b een unc o nscious or how lon g he had b riai n g, tied to th e strange horse. Several times during the he asked questions but no an swers were received. The man in whose power he was seemed to be either deaf or disinclined to talk. It was a silent ride. The very silence added to the ter rors of it. Ted would have felt much easier had his silent foe spent th e ti me in making t e rrible threa ts. As it was h e h ad no i de a the man was old or young or w h e th e r hi s e n emy's intenti o n was to kill him or h o ld him a p ri so ner. Then T e d thought of the mysterious note he h ad re ceived from J ack Raub, which re ad: "Yo u are as good as dead!" Could Raub have tak e n offense at him because he h ad honestly and fairly won th e go ld medal in the s ho oting c o ntest? It hardly seemed poss ible t o Ted th a t such could b e th e case, yet, t a kin g into consideration the message an d the absence of facts to s upport any o ther theory, Ted w as inclined to b elieve that he was then in the p o wer of J ack Raub But, if so, wh y did R au b refu se t o speak? Perhaps Raub wished to t orture his pri so ner by keep in g him in s u spense: thou ghts and others flitted th rough T ed's mind as the weari some j ou rney cont i nued. Ted kn ew b y the n a ture of the ground, th e wind ings, the up and d o wn g r ades, t ha t the trail folloW'ed was throu g h the mountains, but h e had no i dea o f the direc tion being tak en. Finally T e d resolved to persuade his ca ptor to s peak -to surprise Raub, if he it proved to be, into uttering a t least some exclamation. "Say, Raub, hasn't this Quaker meeting laste d ab out lon g enough? Open your mouth and sing a h y mn, if yo u don't feel like talking religion or politics," said Ted, sud denly. If Ted had hoped to su r prise foe into saying somethin g, the young rough rider was di s appointed. Complete silence, as usual, followed Ted's sally. Then Ted gave up try ing to make the man t alk. To keep up his spirits and let his enemy know he was not afraid, Ted be g an sin g in g. At fir s t he sang a f e w old songs, and the n he let his rich baritone voice out in singing snatches from popular operas. If his enemy heard the music, he made no comments, nor was any effort made to induc e Ted to cease h i s sing ing. By this Ted knew that the y were far away from any settlement and ri ding along some trail seldom us e d For a n hour or more Ted amused himself a n d bols t e r ed

PAGE 17

14 THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. up his spirits by singing. He was right in the middle of a favorite selection, when t horse he was riding came to a sudden halt. He could hear sounds, 1 i<;ating that his enemy had dismounted and was moving about several rods ahead on foot. Then the horse upon which Ted was tied was led for ward a short distance and again halted. Ted's feet were cut loose, and the young rough rider was suddenly jerked sideways, nearly off from the hor se. His hands being tiep, Ted lost his balance, but by acci dent, more than otherwise, he managed to land on his feet. Ted was then led a short distance, and, a second later, he felt iron bracelets being snapped to his ankles. Then the handkerchief which had bound his eyes was s1;dden ly snatched away and the cords which had tied his hands were cut with the quick slash of a knife at the same moment. _..., Ted found himself standing in a small cave in the side of a mountain. In front of the cave was a wide led ge of rock. Beyond this led ge there seemed to be a high precipice. From T ed's position he could see, through the opening of the cave, a wide gulch or valley, which seemed to st r etc h away for miles. But where was his enemy? As the handkerchief had been snatched from his eyes, Ted had heard quick, retreating footsteps, and he glanced hurriedly around. But he only got a glimpse of his pur suer's boot heel and a brass sp ur. The man who had the young rough rider in his power had passed beyond the shelter of some rocks which skirted the entrance to the narrow shallow cave. Ted then examined h i s fastenings. His h ands were free, but his weapons were go ne. Even the medal which he had won in the shooting contest had been remo ved from his shirt front. Ted found that his feet were bound by two heavy bands of iron, which closely fitted his ankles. A heavy padlock secured the se bands. The bands were hinged much like the old-fashioned handcuffs used on the wrists. To iron loops on the sides of the ankle bands had been forged the two end links of a heavy iron chain, and this chain passed from one ankle, throu g h a l a rge, iron ring set into the rocky wall of the cave, to the other foot. The chain was about fifteen feet in length, and Ted found that with difficulty he could move to nearly every part of the shallow cave. But he could not get closer than within several feet of the entrance. Link by link Ted examined the chain, hoping to find a weak spot in some one of them, but each link seemed per fectly made The young rough rider examined the padlocks. He soon knew that he would be unable to unlock them with out the proper keys. The ring in the wall could not be budged without tools. For the second time, Ted was going carefully over the links of the heavy chain when he was suddenly startled by a cackling laugh at the entrance to the cave. He looked quickly up, and what he was truly as tonishing. Ri g ht in the mouth of the cave stood an old, white haired man-a man, surely, although the individual ap peared more like an apparition than a human being. The wild, saneless look in the sunken eyes and the fiendish grin upon the face of Ted's visitor told the young rough rider plainly that the old man was crazy. The man's hair, frowzy and long, was as white as snow, as was also his long, shaggy beard, that fell to his waist. His clothes were ragged, and his skinny shoulders, el bows and knees protruded through the rents in his garments and showed brown and dry, l ike the skin of a mummy. From the g rinning fanglike upper teeth. peared to be tooth less. lips protruded two long, ye llow, But for these, the As Ted raised his head, the maniac repeated his cackling lau g h and his fiendish grin widened. Ted gazed upon the horrible picture before him for a moment, and then asked: "Are you the person who brought me here?" Another chuckling laugh was Ted's on ly answer. The man seemed greatly amused at Ted's words, how ever. He stood motionless, looking at the help!ess lad as if he was beholding some s trange and amusing speci men, the like of which he had never seen before. Ted repeated his question a trifl e louder. This time a fain glimmer of r eason came into the man's eyes. He seemed for a moment to realize :reo.i:e.:i. tion was being asked. He came a step nearer. j' Ted was quick to take advantage of the change in the man's actions. He repeated his question again, nearly as loudly as he could speak, without actually yelling. "Bring you here? repeated the man after Ted this time. And then the crazy placed a bony finger against his h ead and seemed to be thinking deeply. "I say," r epeated Ted for the third or fourth time, "are you the person who brought me here?" This time the maniac seemed to understand what Ted had said, and he answered, quickly: "Me? I am the great Napoleon Bonaparte. I did not bring you here. No, no, no not I. It was you, you, who brought me here. I am in exile. I will die here at St. Helena. Yes, I, Napoleon Bonaparte, the greatest gen era l h i story will ever know, will d _ie here in thE'se moun tains, alone. And I will be buried here, unwept, unhon-

PAGE 18

14 THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. up his spirits by singing. He was right in the middle of a favorite selection, when t horse he was riding came to a sudden halt. He could hear sounds, 1 eating that his enemy had dism ounted and was moving about several rods ahead on foot. Then the horse upon which Ted was tied was led forward a short distance and again halted. Ted's feet were cut loose, and the young rough rider was suddenly jerked sideways, nearly off from the horse. His hands being tied, Ted lost his balance, but by acci dent, more than otherwise, he managed to land on his feet. Ted was th en led a short distance, and, a second later, he felt iron bracelets being snapped to his ankles Then the handkerchief which had bound his eyes was suddenly snatched away and the cords which had tied his hands were cut with th e quick slash of a knife at the same moment. .... Ted found himself standing in a small cave in the side of a mountain In front of the cave was a wide led g e of rock. Beyond this l edge there seemed to be a hi gh precipice. From Ted 's position he could see, through the opening of the cave, a wide gulch or valley, which semed to st r etch away for miles. But where was his enemy? As the handkerchief had been snatched from his eyes, Ted had heard quick, retreating footsteps, and he g lanced hurriedly around But he only got a glimpse of his pur suer's boot heel and a brass spur. The man who had the young rough rider in his power had passed beyond the shelter of some rocks which skirted the entrance to the narrow shallow cave. Ted then examined h i s fastenings. His h a nds were free, but his weapons were gone Even the medal which he had won in the shooting contest had been r emoved from his shirt front. Ted found that his feet were bound by two heavy bands of iron, which closely fitted his ankles. A h eavy padlock secured these bands. The bands were hin ged much like the o l d-fashioned handcuffs used on the wrists. To iron loops on the sides of the ankle bands had b ee n forged the two end links of a h eavy, iron chain, and this chain passed from one ankle, through a l a rge, iron ring set into the rocky wall of the cave, to the 0th er foot. The chain was about fifteen feet in length, and Ted found that with difficulty he could move to nearly every part of the shallow cave. But he could not get closer than within severa l feet of the entrance. Link by link Ted examined the chain, hoping to find a weak spot in some o ne of them, but each link seemed per fectly made. The young rough rider examined the padlocks. He soon knew that he would be unable to unlock them with out the prop er keys. The ring in the wall could not be budged without tools. For the second time, Ted was going carefully over the links of the heavy chain when he was suddenly startled by a cackling laugh at the entrance to the cave. He looked quickly up, and what he was truly as tonishing. Ri g ht in the mouth of the cave stood an old, white haired man-a man, surely, although the individual ap peared more like an apparition than a human being The wild, saneless look in the sunken eyes and the fiendish grin upon the face of Ted's visitor told the young rough rider plainly that the old man was crazy. The man's hair, frowzy and lon g, was as white as snow, as was also his long, shaggy beard, l:hat fell to his waist. His clothes were ragged, and his skinny shoulders, el bows and knees protruded through the rents in his gar ments and showed brown and dry, like the skin of a mummy. From the g rinning fanglike upper teeth. peared to be toothless lips protruded two long, ye llow, But for these, the old / ma a p,.........,As Ted raised his head, the maniac repeated his cackling laugh and his fiendish grin widened. Ted gazed upon the horrible picture before him for a moment, and then asked: "Are you the person who brought me here?" Ano ther chuckling lau g h was Ted's only answer. The man seemed greatly amused at Ted's words, how ever. He stood motionless, looking a t the help!ess lad as if he was beholding some strange and amusing speci men, the like of which he had never seen before. Ted repeated his question a trifle louder. This time a fain glimmer of reason came into the man's eyes. He seemed for a moment to realize tha:t tion was being asked. He came a step nearer +. ) Ted was quick to take advantage o f the change in the man's actions. He repeated his question again, nearly as loudly as he could speak, without actually ye lling "Bring you here?" repeated the man after T ed this time. And then the crazy creatui:-e placed a bony finger agains t his he ad and seemed to be thinking deeply. "I say," r epeated Ted for the third or fourth time, "are you the person who brought me here?" This time the maniac seemed to understand what Ted had said, and he answered, quickly : "Me? I am the great Napoleon Bonaparte. I did not bring you here No, no, no, not I. It was you, you, who brought me h ere I am in exile. I will die here at St. Helena. Yes, I, Napoleon Bonapar te the greatest gen eral h i story will ever know, will d _ie here in moun tains, alone. And I will be buried here, unwept, unhon-

PAGE 19

THE YOUNG ROUGH RIDERS WEEKLY. 15 ored and unsung. Ah, my young man--not unsung. You can sing?" The madman had not raved as he uttered the foregoing sentences. He h ad delivered his words in a cracked, harsh tone, that almost set Ted's teeth on edge. As he ask e d Ted if he could sing, the man 's eyes glit tered dangerously and l1'f long, knotted forefinger pointed straight at the young rough rider m e nacingly, as if for bidding h i m to deny his ability to sign Ted met the maniac's gaze squarely and coolly. Ted was in a helpless position, entirely at the mercy of the maniac, should the man take a notion to become vio lent. Ted thought it best to humor his visitor. "Sure, I can sing," was Ted's answer. "Would you like to hear me try it?" "Raise up your voice for the amusement of the great Napoleon. If it is satisfactory, you shall not be beheaded until to-morrow." "I will sing for you," replied Ted, "but first I would ask you two questions." The old man squatted upon the ground in anticipation Ted sing, and, as Ted made his re quest, the answer was merely a nod of his shaggy head. "How long have you been an exile on this island?" was Ted's first question. The answ
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Phasellus ornare in augue eu imperdiet. Donec malesuada sapien ante, at vehicula orci tempor molestie. Proin vitae urna elit. Pellentesque vitae nisi et diam euismod malesuada aliquet non erat.

WIKIPEDIA

Nunc fringilla dolor ut dictum placerat. Proin ac neque rutrum, consectetur ligula id, laoreet ligula. Nulla lorem massa, consectetur vitae consequat in, lobortis at dolor. Nunc sed leo odio.