Young Klondike's trump card, or, The rush to Rocky River

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Young Klondike's trump card, or, The rush to Rocky River

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Young Klondike's trump card, or, The rush to Rocky River
Series Title:
Young Klondike
Author of Young Klondike ( Old Miner )
Place of Publication:
New York
Frank Tousey
Publication Date:
Physical Description:
1 online resource (31 p.)


Subjects / Keywords:
Dime novels ( lcsh )
Gold mines and mining -- Fiction ( lcsh )
serial ( sobekcm )

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Source Institution:
University of South Florida
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
The University of South Florida Libraries believes that the Item is in the Public Domain under the laws of the United States, but a determination was not made as to its copyright status under the copyright laws of other countries. The Item may not be in the Public Domain under the laws of other countries.
Resource Identifier:
025502666 ( ALEPH )
15009026 ( OCLC )
Y14-00010 ( USF DOI )
y14.10 ( USF Handle )

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Issued Sernir 1Wonthly-By Subscriptwn $1.25 per year. FJntered as Second Class .Jt[atter at the. New York Post O/ftee, by Frank 1 ousey. N o 14. NEW YORK, SEPTEMBER 14 1898 Price 5 Cents. Hooray! We',e made a big-strike!" shouted the Unknown, kicking one o f severa.i old bags which stood under the tablP. The ba.g burst immediately and a shower of golden nuggets came out on the floor "Right you are !" Young Klondike. "We've struck John's gold."



2 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. mischief. Is it your intention to go prospecting aga. in ?" "That's just what we arc thinking of, Edith," re plied Ned. If we go, of course we want you to go with us. vVhat do you say?" "But how can we go without the Unknown? You know he's gone up El Dorado Creek." "I don't know anything of the sort," replied Dick. "I know be ain't in Dawson, but as to where he is it would be hard to say." "Probably looking for his man," laughed Ned . "Exactly," added Edith. "That mysterious man whom he will never find." Then all three laughed, for they were discussing a comical character. Just who and what he was will develop later on. "Where do you propose to go?" asked Edith. Again Ned pointed toward the mountain. "Over there?" "Yes." "Why, nobody ever goes over there." "Exactly why I'm going." "Do you mean to climb the mountain? They say it can't be done." "We'll sec about that. Where there's a will there's a way. I think it can be done." "All right; I'm sure I have no objection, We may as well tackle the mountain,as anything else." '"fhen it's settled," said Ned. "Let's start right off now. We'll astonish the natives if we happen to strike a good diggings right at the door of Dawson City, so to speak." "When shall we stal't ?" asked Edith. "What do you say to three o'clock?" That means you intend to stay on the mountain all night." "It would be foolish to try it any other way." "I suppose it would. Three o'clock will do all right. I'll be on hand." Soon after that Edith went out to call on friends, and the boys went down to the levee to hire a boat in which to cross the Yukon. It was really remarkable to note the profound respect with which they were greeted by almost every one they met. So much for what money will do. Young Klondike and his partner were by long odds the richest men in Dawson City. Every word they uttered em the subject of mining was listened to and discussed on all sides. Every move they made was noted, and it was for this reason that the boys boarded the boat then and there, and pulled down the river to a little wooded cove ab6ut a mile below town. Here they left the boat hidden among the bushes and walked back to Dawson. "I don't propose to have everybody watching us when we go over," said Ned. "First we know we'll have a do:i:en boats after us. Ttat's just exactly what I don't want and won't have." So at three o'clock Y Oling Klondike and his pa .rt-ners quietly took a wagon which came to the hotel for them, and drove away out of town. The wagon carried provisions, a tent, rifles and such other things as were likely to be of use on their exploring expedition, and when they reached the cove these were put on board the boat. "Now, don't you tell a soul where you took us, or what you saw," said Ned, to French Peter, the man who had driven them out. "There's a ten dollar note for you if you hold your tongue when we get back. Of course there was no other way in which Young Klondike could have been sure of the fellotv's silence; but money will purchase silence in Dawson City as elsewhere, and although many pressed French Peter when he returned to town, no one succeeded in getting any information out of him about Young Klondike's movements. No one guessed that the boat seen crossing the river late that afternoon carried the young gold king and his friends. Nothing more desolate than the bank of the Yukon under the big mountain can be imagined. The bo:ys made their landing, and drew the boat up among the bushes. Enormous ledges of rock frowned above them. To attempt to ascend the mountain here would be to at tempt the impossible. Ned surveyed them carefully, but could see no break. "We'll never get up there," he said. "That's a sure thing. Where shall we strike in first?" "We've got to find a place where we can climb up; that's the first move," Edith remarked. "Decidedly ; but how are we going to do it? Which way shall we go?" Down the river," said Dick. "Right you are! A lucky man, and always a lucky leader," laughed Ned. "I just wanted to hear you express your opinion, that's all." "Perhaps it won't prove as lucky as you think," said Dick. "A fellow can't always hope to hit it right." "That's so Why did you say down?" "Because if we go up it will bring us opposite the levee, and the first thing you know someone will catch onto us with a glass. If we are to keep our moYe ments secret that won't help us a bit." "Besides, we know the ledges run up opposite Dawson," said Edith. "I guess it's our best hold to go down. Load me up with all I can carry, boys, and we'll start." Young Klondike and his friends were used to carrying heavy loads on these expeditions-" packing," it is called. They had traveled many hundred miles on foot thus loaded down, and there was no one in all the Klondike country who could pack a bigger load than Ned Golden; on this occasion they walked off with all their belongings as easily as if they had carried no load at all. Half a mile brought them to a place where there was a break in the mighty rock wall which skirted the foot of the mountain.


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. 3 It was not much of a break either, and to the un-It was immensely startling. Ned was ready to de practiced eye it would have seemed impossible to clare that the man had not been there a minute beclimb the mountain there. fore. But Young Klondike saw it differently. He stopped "Is it a man ?" breathed Edith. "Gracious It and surveyed the ledge and then declared that it could looks to me more like a mummy !" be done. All stood motionless, staring at the strange object. "What do you think, Edith?" he asked. "Can It was standing against a tree, a tall, dried-up you get up?" specimen of humanity. The face was a deep brown, "I'm sure I can," replied Edith. "Wherever you anq the features horribly drawn and dried up. There go I'm willing to try to go, Ned." seemed to be no eyes-only the empty holes where "We'll take the rope," said Dick; "that will make the eyes had once been. Thrown around the body in it easier and safer at all events." such fashion that their true shape could scarcely be Dick tied the rope around his waist and Ned and determined, were some old rags of clothing. Edith did the same. Altogether it was a hideous, repulsive-looking ob-Experienced mountain climbers know that it is ject, which stood there above the heads of Young safest to be thus lashed together, although Ned would Klondike and his friends. have greatly preferred going up on his own account, "A mummy, sure," said Dick. "Edith is right!" but the rope gave security to Edith and that was the "But how did it come there?" asked Ned. "I'm main thing after all. I positive that it was not there when we first came out It was a terrible pull up those rocks. Dick would I on this ledge." get hold of a tree and draw himself up, and Ned would H e took out a fine field glass which he always car-work up after him, and then holding on by one hand, I ried and turned it on the ledge. turn and help pull Edith up. Seen through the powerfu1 l enses the ful{ details of Meanwhile Dick would crawl on to the next tree, the figure stood out hideously before Ned's eyes. sometimes actually on his hands and knees, and so "A mummy as sure as fate !" he cried. "Well, they went on for fully five hundred feet, and the ledge upon my soul, this is strange." where the thick pine trees grew always in their eye, Dick had a look through the glass and was just seemed to recede as they advanced, and be as far passing it to Edith, when a curious cry which seemed away as ever. to come from behind them lower down the ledge atComing at last upon a little shelf of rock where tracted their attention. there was just room enough for three of them to All turned involuntarily to look, but there was stand, they turned to look back down the way they nothing to be seen. had come. "What was that?" exclaimed Edith. It almost made Young Klondike's brain reel to "Where's the mummy?" cried Dick, in tlfe same look down from that giddy height. breath. The whole valley of the Yukon for miles and miles Here was a mystery-a mystery of a mummy. lay spread out before them like a map. For the strange object on the top of the ledge had Dawson City lay at their feet, the houses flattened disappeared. by the height and the people as small as ants as they walked on the levee and through the streets. "By Jove, we can never get back !" gasped Ned. I "We could no more go down over this ledge without CHAPTER II. breaking our neck than we could fly." "And there don't seem to be any end to the climb," THE LONE HUT ON THE GLACIER. said Dick, looking up. "The higher we go the further off the top seems to be; the fact is, it begins to look "THAT beats the band !" said Dick. "Can it as if we were stuck." haive been a live man after all?" "Don't you say it, and don't you think it," replied "Never!" said Ned. "Whatever the explanation Ned. "Push on boldly. We' ve got to get to the of the mystery may be, that ain't it. That, thing top or bust." was a mummy, sure." Dick tried it again, and little by little they worked Now it must be remembered that Young Klon-themselves up to another stopping place, where on dike and his friends were not entirely unacquainted looking up still further they could see that one more with mummies ; any one living long in Alaska could effort would bring them to the top. hardly be. "Hooray We're almost there !" cried Ned. Get The Indians throughout this region have a great your breath, Edith, and we'll make the last pull." habit of embalming their dead. "It's safe to say that no one ever climbed up here Often the dead bodies of great men thus prebefore," declared Dick, and he was going on to say served are kept for months and months in their more, when all at once he stopped and pointed up to huts, preserved in a sitting posture, with all their the top of the last ledge. I goods and personal belongings displayed around them. "Look! Look!" he exclaimed. "A ma.n !" The boys and Edith had seen many such, and


4 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. were well acquainted with their peculiar appearance. f "Yes, if you please, but how are we going to do it. Ned could not doubt that they had seen a mummy Only a fly could walk down that wall." up there on top of the rocks; but where was the "I don't believe any respectable fly would attempt thing now? such a thing," said Edith. "I'm sure he'd break his "Of course the way to find out is to climb up neck if he did, but, of course there must be some there and see," declared Ned, after the discussion other way of getting down to the hut." about the mummy had gone on for some moments. Some way, certainly; let's look for it," replied "Looks to me as if we had neighbors here, after Ned, and they wandered along the ridge toward Daw all-that's the way I figure it out." son a good half mile, but the wall leading down to the "We'll soon know," said Dick. "This last pull glacier remained just as steep. will be easy enough. Come on. Edith, you might, Pausing for a few moments to rest and have a look just as a matter of precaution, unship your rifle and at the city below them, they were about to move on have it ready, but I don't believe we are going to need when all at once Dick burst out into a hearty laugh. it, though." "What's the matter now?" asked Ned. The ascent was soon accomplished. As Young "Why, don't you see?" Dick replied. K f f th 1 "No, I don't see anything to laug h at." londike and his riends came out on top o e edge a general exclamation of amazement escaped them, "Look down there." and no wonder, for the sight which met gaze "Down where?" was not only beautiful but grand. "ln Dawson." Instead of the rounded dome-like appearance which "Whereabouts in Dawson?" the mountain top presented seen from Dawson City, "ln front of the new Mining Exchange." here at their feet lay a broad, deep valley filled with "Hello! I didn't see all that before. See them, a glacier, the myriad of ice points glittering like so Edith? This is serious. I don't like it, not for a many diamonds in the light of the descending sun. little bit." Beyond the glacier the mountain rose again to a Out came oung Klondike's again. considerable and Young Klondike perceived I He turned it dow: on Dawson City. that it was this they could see from the streets of What he saw was a great crowd of people gathered Dawson. in front of the ExchangP.. Seen there it looked like a straight -rise from the looking up at the mountain. river, but seen here they knew that to reach the real ot a ew had glasses and were looking through top of the mountain would involve a journey of many them. miles. "Well upon my word, they are right on to us!" "This is a great go," cried Dick. "N 0 chance of 1 cried Edith, who could see the people well enough. find ing gold here." But Ned could do more than that. He could study "Not much as matters staind,,, answered Edith, their faces and was able to recognize many of his "but remember, Dick, we .haven't seen all the mounfriends on the Mining Excha.nge. "Of course they see us," he said. "This is altotains yet." gether too bad. I don't like it at all. Next thing "But the mummy, the mummy," said Dick. you know there'll be the greatest old rush over here "Where in thunder is the mummy? There's hardly that Dawson City ever saw." room to swing a cat here on this ridge, and I'll be Now this fear of Young Klondike's was not at all imaginary. hanged if there's room enough for any one to play tricks on us? Where is bis mummyship? That's Golden & Luckey were in some respects the most popular in Dawson City, and in all re There's a house down what I want to know?" spects the best known. "Hold on!" cried Ned. there on the glacier." Of course their movements were always watched' "I see it," said Edith, leaning over the ledge. and now that the people had discovered them upon "A log hut in close to the rocks !" the mountain there was pretty sure to be a rttsh up It stood almost at their feet, and as they looked there if they did not take steps to prevent it. The down on the roof, they saw that it was old and de-fact was that the luck of this lucky firm had become cayed. Great tufts of Arctic moss were growing on a proverb, and whatever they did was sure to at the boards, and the logs, which formed the sides of tract attention, as they had good reason to know. the hut, were moss-grown, too. "Let's get right out of the way," said Ned; "per-" That hut ain't been inhabited in many a long haps they don't recognize our faces, and if that is the day," said Ned, as he turned his glass upon it. "Now, c ase we don't want to give them the chance." I wonder who could have been mad enough to have "That's what," replied Dick, "and, hello Here's built it down glacier in a place that it's I a way down on to the glacier now!" as much as a man s life is worth to get to. By gra-Dick had taken a few steps ahead as he spoke, cious, it beats me!" rounding a point of rock which cut across the ridge. "We want to get down and have a look at it," said There was a break in the ridge here, and an abrupt Dick. rise to a higher level on the other side.


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. 5 Down between the two masses of ragged rocks a I "No doubt it has been here for many, many stream ran, falling some twenty feet to a lower level moons," said Ned, "but you must that where a second stream joined it. there has been more or less gold washing done in the These united fell down upon a broad shelf of per-Yukon Valley ever since it was discovered. There is haps a quarter of a mile in width, extending on nothing strange in this hut being found up here." through the valley for a long distance. 'l'hey had now reached the hut and the next thing Across this level land the little river ran and passed was to explore it. out upon the glacier where it had worn itself a deep The interior was as old and dilapidated as the exchannel in the ice and went sweeping on toward the terior, but one thing instantly attracted the attensecond mountain, its clear water sparkling in the sun. 1 tion of all. There had been a fire recently built on "What a beautiful sight!" cried Edith. "Really, I the hearth. it's charming." "Someone's here now!" exclaimed Edith. "We must have a picture of that,'' declared Ned. I "Or has been within a very short time," said He got out his camera, and focusing the view from Ned. "Hello! That bunk was occupied last night." its most pleasing aspect, took a snap shot. There were two bunks, one on each side of the hut. "Name it, Edith," he said. "I don't believe many There was a pair of new blankets in the left hand people have ever seen this river. I should say no-bunk, and the impression of a man's form on the old body had if it wasn't for the hut. Give it a name." straw mattress. "I'll christen it Rocky river, then," replied Edith. "Say,. we ought to know those blankets !" cried It begins among. rocks and runs across the ice to Dick. rocks, so that ought to be a good name." "Ought to know them! Why, they are mine!" "Couldn't be a better Rocky river it is from Ned exclaimed. this time on, and I'll make it my business to see Hello Hello, Young Klondike Hello the that it gets on the map." hut!" a voice was heard to shout outside, and then Now this was something Young Klondike was able it ca.lled again : to promise, for at that very time a new map of the I'm By the Jumping Jeremiah, I've Klondike was being prepared in Dawson, and Ned got my man!" was one of the committee who was supervising the work. Nothing to hinder us from getting down on the glacier here, is there?" asked Dick. CHAPTER III. "Nothing 3!t all. It's all plain sailing. We can. climb down over these rocks as easy as rolling off WORKING THE MUMMY'S CLAIM. a log," replied Ned. THE Unknown exclaimed Young Klondike, and Then they tried it. they all hurried out of the hut. The descent was not quite as easy as Ned anticiComing toward them over the glacier from the di-pated, but they managed to climb down. rcction of the rocky ridge was a short, thick-set man, Once on the ice they found it decidedly colder. The wearing an old plug hat tilted on the back of his hut lay back about a quarter of a mile, and they head, amd big cavalry boots which came up above started toward it, leaping over great breaks in the his knees. glacier-crevices-they are termed, rounding hum-He was dragging after him what had once certainly mocks, which would be difficult climbing, and at been a man, if it could no longer be called so-in short length reached it without a fall. the mummy! And their way followed the windings of Rocky He had him by the hair, and as the dried-up thing river, which here, right by the hut, was joined by an-1 was as stiff as a ramrod, it looked rather odd to see other and smaller stream, which issued from the the little man dragging it after him over the ic6. rocky wa.U of the ridge. "I've got my ll).an, boys l I've got him at last !" This stream swept over the level shelf here about he cried. "What in the world brought you up here? five yards wide. It had cut a deep channel Ye gods and little fishes! I did think I was to be for itself through the gravel, just as Rocky river had allowed to do a little exploring on my own account." done through the ice, and Ned saw at a glance that And here we must pause to introduce the last mem' it was a chance for gold, if, indeed, there ber of the firm of Golden & Luckey. It was the was any gold on the mountain at all. famous Unknown. "Someone has been a.t work here," he exclaimed. "Unknown," because the man, strange as it may "That's what,'' said Dick. "That's why the hut seem, had always declined to tell his name, even to was built, of course." his partners. "Certainly. Wonder who it could have been?" By profession he was a detective; his claim, was Give it up." that he was hunting a mysterious criminal, that he "Whoever it was it must have been years and had been hunting him all over the world for yea .rs. years ago," said Edith. "You can see for yourself Perhaps this was the Unknown's little joke, that the hut has been built a long time." 1 although he always preferred to be serious about it.


6 Y OUNG K LONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. Sometimes he carried it to lengths unpleasant for strangers, for it was an old trick of the detective's to suddenly pounce upon some unfortunate individual, declaring that at last he had got his man and threatening to arrest him, but only to apologize a moment later and profess great regret at having made a mis take. Young Klondike, Dick and Edith broke into a hearty laugh at the comical sight. Say, Zed," called the former, "your man seems to be rather a back number. You'll have a sweet job putting the handcuffs on him. So you're the fel low who played the trick on us up there on the ridge?" "I'm the identical individual," replied the detect ive "Whoa, January! Stand up, there, you snoozer Now look at his royal nibs, Edith! he a handsome looking specimen? Who'd ever thought of seeing you up here? What do you mean by prowling on my claim?" Now this was all a joke, aind as the Unknown talked he jerked the mummy about in a comical way which brought out a general laugh. "I saw you coming up the mountain," he cried, "and I thought I'd give you a scare with this thing. Ha! Ha! Ha! How you did stare when I pulled my man back. Oh, I've been watching you. I won dered if you were bright enough to get down here to the hut, but I see you were "Well, I guess! I'd be ashamed if we couldn't," said Ned "But tell us what brought you here? We want to know right now." "Tell me what brought you here? I'm the first comer on this land ; the claim is mine." This good-natured banter might have gone on in definitely, but Ned broke it up by telling how he had suddenly formed the plan of prospecting the mountain and had lost no time in carrying it out. "Now that's just like you, Young Klondike," laughed the detective. "You're always on the rush." "And ain't you?" "Well, rather. I've had an idea of exploring this mountain for the last two months, but didn't do it. '!'here seemed to be a little spare time just now, so I thought I'd strike in and see what sort of a place this was up here." "And yo u found the hut and the mummy lying in one of the bunks ?" "No, I didn't! Now, there you are jumping at conclusions again, Young Klondike. I found the mummy in a little cave away up the rocks there-almost to the top of the ridge, in fact. "Hello Then there's a way up on the ridge besides the one we found?" Ned asked. "Where was I? Why, in the c,ave to be ure, and my man with me." "Your man-you mean your mummy." "Exactly. Oh, he's a great fellow, this mummy of mine, and he's going to make us all rich "We're all rich now, butidon'tmindbeingricher," laughed Ned "You've found something-I see it "in your eyes "By the Jumping Jeremiah, I just have, then," re plied the detective with a chuckle. "Look here, boys, whenI found this mummy lying in the cave his clothes were to all appearance as good as the day he lay down in them to die, but when I undertook to lift him up they all dropped to pieces and among other things that dropped out of his pockets was this: ''What is it ?'' asked Ned, as the detective bega. n .. furn bling in his own pocket. "Look at it !" "A paper?" A bit of bearskin." "So Pretty well tanned, then. Hello There's writing on it. "Yes, and that's my discovery," declared the Un known, as he passed the curiously written document over to Ned. "This mummy is evidently all that remains of the man who wrote these words," he said. "Perhaps he was a trapper. Mebbe he might have been a sailor who deserted his ship and penetrated into the country ; but whoever he was, there's no doubt that he built the hut and worked a claim here; pity is that the only document we've got to tell us anything about him pin't complete." Ned examined the bearskin carefully. It was thoroughly tanned and made as good a piece of parchment as any one could ask for. The trouble wasthat the ink used, whatever it may have been, had been washed off in spots. This made the document read rather oddly. Leaving the mummy outside on the ice they went into the hut, and Young Klondike spread the docu ment out on the table. It read as follows : I am * is my name * I came here from * have been here two years now * gold * richest diggings the world ever saw * no use un less I can get away * located in the river below the waterfall. Dig there anywhere and you will find * I write this because I may never see my home or civilization again * what I dug is hidden * Here the document abruptly ended. There was a considerable space which had evidently been written over, but the ink was entirely washed off "Of course there is," replied the detective. "When Away down at the bottom of the bit of bearskin I saw you fellows looking over and trying to find it, I was written "January, 1834, JOHN * was on the point of hollering out to you, but you -This was all. It fixed the date of the document backed away, and so I didn't do it. Thought I'd let I over half a century back and told them that the you work it out for yourself." writer's first name was John. "And where were you all this time?" asked Dick. I Of the last name there was merely a trace.


) r j YOUNG KLONDIKE'S '!'RUMP CARD. 7 "And you think that your mummy wrote this l After some further discussion and a more careful thing?" asked Ned. I examination of the document, the boys walked over to "I'm very sure of it. Can you question my being right?" the detective replied. "Well, no, I suppose not,'' replied Young Klondike, "but what took the body into the cave? Did John, whatever his name may be, die there? When he felt death coming on, why didn't he stay in his hut?" "Now, come, Young Klondike, don't ask me a question like that," replied the detective. "Perhaps he went in there because it was warmer. Perhaps the Indians put him in there after he died; perhaps this, that or the other-how can I tell?" "Can't be told by anybody now, I suppose," said Dick. "Of course it can't," replied the detective, "but what puzzles me is how our friend John became a mummy." Rocky River. They here discovered that the Unknown had been panning in many places, something they had not no ticed before. "You've been hard at work here," said Dick. "You bet I have. In the river below the waterfall is what the writing says, and that's what I've been looking for-John's diggings." "What about the gold he speaks of hiding ?" "Ah! that's a different thing. By the Jumping Jeremiah I only wish I could find it." Have you searched the hut?" "Of course." "And the cave?" "Sure." "I must see that cave, but we can't go there now. "Oh, that's easy enough accounted for," said Ned. What's Ned doing down ther e ?" "Easy to say so, but how?" Ned had pushed on below the waterfall, and was "Limestone rock up there in the cave, Zed?" stooping and scrapingup the sand and pebbles at the "Well, yes, it is." edge of the river with a stick. "Well, then, water percolating through the inter"I believe this is the place," he calkd out. "There's stices of limestone rock has often been known to trans-certainly a color here." form a corpse into a mummy." "How can that be the place when the document ex" Ha! Ha! Percolating through the interstices is j pressly says it is below the waterfall?" replied the de-good. You ought to stuff that." tective. "Or mummify it." Either will do to exhibit those big words in the museum of our Exchange, and that's what I propose to do with our friend John." We must explain that Young Klondike was the father of the new Exchange at Dawson City. In fact he built it, and when he built it there was a room laid aside for a museum, and on its shelves were many curiosities gathered together from all parts of the Klondike country. "John will look well in the museum," said Ned. "Fine !" declared Edith. "We'll have a special glass case built for him. I'll pay the bill." "No, you won't! John is my mummy, and I'll pay the bill," declared the detective, but let's bring him in and stand him in a corner; then we'll go out and look up this claiim of his. I don't suppose you have any idea of going back to Dawson to-night?'' "Well, hardly," replied Ned. "How long have you been up here yourself?" Three days." "And we thought you were up at El Dorado creek. Haven't you been looking for this claim of John's?" "Yes, but I didn't find it." "Thought as much. Do you expect us to do any "Well, don't you see how the waterfall has worn everything away here?" replied Ned Look at these rocks. They are as soft as punk. Fifty years has sent the waterfall back, and this is surely the place. where we ought to look." What Ned asserted was only reasonable, and all hands turned in to pan out the sand at this place. The Unknown had some tools with him and he now brought them out from behind a big rock. Young Klondike's party had some, too, and the detective volunteered to go up on the ridge where they had been left and pack them down The Unknown was always willing that someone else should do gold washing. The icy chill of the water on his hands did not please him at all, to say nothing of picking away at the frozen ground. Before the detective had time to make the top of the ridge, Ned had his first panful ready for washing. Dick and Edith watched eagerly as he shook the pan, letting the water carry of the coarse gravel and sand. If there was any gold mixed with what had been put in the pan, it ought by its superior weight sink to the bottom. better?" There were a few specks left in the pan when the "Why, of course, I do. Who's luckier than Dick last of the water had run out, but that was all. Luckey? or more likely to strike gold than Young "Bother! There ain't much there, is there?" Klondike? Tell me that!" Edith exclaimed Ned laughed, and they went out after John and "I should saiy not," said Dick. "This sort of dig-stood him up in the. corner. ging won't suit us for a cent." The mummy was certainly a curious looking object "You bet your life it won't," said Ned. "We've. and one for which any showman would have given a got to have something better than this." good round sum. j "Hello!" shouted the Unknown from the top of the


8 YOUNG K L ON DIKE'S TRUMP CARD ridge, and he added something that the roar of the waterfall drowned. "Hit 'em again!" cried Ned. "We don't get what you say." "There's-a-boat-coming-across-the-river!" the detective bawled. "Let her co,m.e !" replied Ned. "You come back with the tools !" "Any luck?" the Unknown yelled. "Not a bit!" I thought so Unless we can make John talk we ain't likely to strike any !" Then the Unknown disappeared over the ridge. "He's right," said Dick. "I'm afraid we ain't going to make much working the mummy's claim." THE BIG STRIKE ON ROCKY RIVER. YouNG KLONDIKE and Dick Luckey had washed out six pans of sand by the time the Unknown got back with the tools and other belongings, which they had left on the ridge. Well, you don't seem to make it go at all," remarked the detective, as he threw down the pack. "That's what I don't," replied Ned, "and yet I be lieve the gold is here." "Ought to be. Whoever my friend John was, he certainly was a plain, every-day sort of fellow, and I don' t b e lieve he spent his time tanning down bear's s kin just to write lies on it." "Right," said Edith. "I don't believe it either. At the time he wrote there was gold here along the creek." "That's what's the matter," said Ned. "I've got the secret of it, I think." "Hello Another brilliant idea, Young Klondike ?" cried the Unknown. Y ea, verily I believe I've hit the true explanation of the thing." "Spit it out." ''Why it's just this; there must have been an aw ful lot of dirt washed down over this ridge in the last fifty years." "Naturally." "While a good deal of it was swept away by the river all did not go, and it gradually formed a deposit here under the falls." "Unquestionably the explanation," said the Un known. "We may be washing twenty feet above the dirt John worked a half century ago. "Then the long and short of the matter is we've got to get down to it," said Edith. "Exactly," replied Ned, "and that's no such easy matter, either. Of course, the bed of the creek is frozen solid just below the surface and the frost probably goes down the usual depth." "I wonder how we are going to get at it?" mused the detective. "Of course we can't build a fire in the middle of the river." "Well, hardly. We shall have to turn the river into another channel, that's all." "A slow and difficult job," said the detective. Goodness knows how long it would .take us to b u ild a dam strong enough to turn the stream." "I don't see why you have to do it !" said Edith, after a few moments' thought. "I see a way out of it all that seems easy enough." "Name it," replied Ned "Let's have your idea right away and if there's anything in it, you may con sider it adopted in advance." Dig your shaft here alongside the creek and then run a tunnel in under the river below the frost line." "Upon my word that's an original suggestion?" the Unknown exclaimed. For my part I'm quite ashamed not to have thought of it before," said Ned. "It's adopted. N o w what comes next ?" "Next is to do it," laughed Edith. "And the next after that to find the gold if there's any to be found there," said Dick. "I own up I'm not skeptical about it ; still we may as well make a try for it and get to work.'' But it was too late that day to begin any such undertaking and they determined to postpone it until the next. So they returned to the hut and a fresh fire was lighted on the hearth, and Edith prepared a first-rate supper out of the provision which had been packed over from Dawson. The long evening was spent in the hut. Ned played his banjo and Edith sang and the Un known told stories. John remained in the corner silent and grim, as well behaved as a respectabl e mummy ought to be By midnight nothing had been seen or heard of any visitors from Dawson City, so all hands wrapped themselves in their blankets and lay down to sleep It was pretty cold before morning there on the glacier, and the boys awoke to find the water frozen on top of the ice, but it soon melted as the day advanced. The first thing necessary was to climb upon the side of the ridge, and cut down a number of the stunted fir trees which grew there, to build the fires with. They tumbled the trees down on to the, and cu t them up afterward. It took all day to collect wood enough to begin their work, and the next was spent in the same way, for in order to get the frost out of the ground, it would be necessary to keep the fires going for a long time. A spot was then selected, and the wood piled up and lighted early in the evening. Our Klondikers sat around it until dark, and kep t it well supplied w ith wood. Then Ned banked up the hot ashes and covered them


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. with earth to keep the heat in, and they all retired to The boys turned out at sunrise, which means be-the hut for the night. tween two and three o'clock, and had put in three The following morning the ashes were cleared away good hours work before the Unknown showed up. and digging began. By this time they had succeeded in running the This is the usual ,Programme on the Klondike. shaft down to a point where it would be safe to drift. A vast deal of time and expense has to be devoted The Unknown came down into the hole and sur-to thawing out the ground, for during the short veyed the work with the air of an expert. Arctic summer the frost never wholly leaves the "I should think we might go ahead now," he said. ground of its 'own accord. "Just what we are going to do," replied Ned. Ned now marked out the line of liis shaft, six "We'll start in under the river right away after feet by twelve, and with the help of Dick and the breakfast. If my theory is correct we ought to be Unknown, went to work. working on the old bed within a couple of hours, and They found the ground soft and loamy, and digif there's any truth in the mummy's letter we may ging consequently very much easier than they had expect to find gold there." expected. I They soon went to breakfast, Edith having pre-Good headway was made, and by twelve o'clock the I pare d hot coffee and made up the best meal she shaft had been run down six feet when the y were I could. forced to stop, having struck the frost line again. I After it w a s over all went down to the diggings Now another fire had to be built, and it was allowed and the drifting began. to burn all the afternoon. J "I see a fortune in here," said Young Klondike At evening Ned cleared the embers out of the hole as he struck his pick into the gra vel bed. "Someand found the ground quite soft beneath. thing tells me this is going to be the trump card." "I don't believe we shall have to burn it out any Down came a shower of earth and pebbles. There more," he declared. "Water: is evidently working was little or no frost here, and nothing to prevent in here below the frost line. I believe we can go the business of drifting from going straight ahead. straight ahead now." Ned did the digging and Dick loaded the bucket, The prospect was so encouraging that they deter-which the Unknown passed up to Edith. mined to work straight ahead until darkness overtook It was all he could do to reach up, although a them. ledge of earth had been left for him to stand on Ned was anxious, too, for in a case like his, water about half way up the shaft. might be an enemy more to be dreaded than the Worked in this way, progress was slow, but frost. steady. If a connection with Rocky river happened to be Still, after two hours, there was no trace of the !!!truck, then good-by to all hopes as far as that shaft precious metal, and Young Klondike was just be' was concerned, for the water would instantly rush in ginning to d6spair, when all at once his pick broke and fill it, and of course the boys had no means of through into an open space. pumping it out. Ned almost tumbled.through with it, and the pick Nothing of the kind occurred. slipped out of his hand and was gone. The wet spot proved to be nothing but an accumu"Hello! What you struck now?" cried the Unlatioh of melted frost, and was soon passed. known. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, it can't be a To Ned's great joy they now came to a soft, cave here under the river.'? gravelly deposit without a trace of frost. "It ain't It's wood," replied Ned. "See, here's "No trouble now," declared the Unknown, "but a bit of an old board." we m.ay as well off till morning, and then begin I "By gracious, it's a buried house!" cried Dick. to drift under the river bed. "I can see the wall on the other side." This was all "vell enough. Of c .ourse they could And, strange as it may seem, Dick's explanation not work very well in the dark, but on the other hand proved to be entirely correct. time was precious, for their supply of provisions was Here was a rude, log hut, buried under the bed of now almost gone, indeed would have been quite ex-Rocky river. hausted but for the extra quantity the Unknown had I But after all it was not so strange, for Young Klonbrought along. dike himself had witnessed landslides among the "If we don't strike it to-morrow one of us had bet-mountains along the Yukon, wher. e great masses of ter go over to Dawson and lay in a fresh lot of grub," earth and rocks came tumbling down, sufficient not said Dick. Or course we ain't going to break up only to bury a house but a town. here till we've made our drift.'' Edith now came down into the shaft, and Ned broke It would have been mere folly to do this, for if the away more of the boards which proved to be the theory on which they were working was the correct door. one, no hope of striking gold until they had pene"Ye gods and little fishes I believe this is where trated in under the river bed was to be entertained. John lived!" cried the Unknown. "Look, boys-First thing in the morning everyone was at it j here's his bunk and his old cook stove and h 1 s mining again. tools and all sorts of traps and--"


10 YOUNG KLON:' .... IKE'S 'l'RUMP CARD. The Unknown stopped short, stared, threw up his l Nobody knew where it came from, and nobody had battered plug hat, catching it on the back of his head seen them come into town. after it struck the ceiling and came down again. When Ned came on 'Change that morning he was "Hooray! we've made a big strike!" he shouted, besieged by a thousand questions, none of which would kicking one of several old bags which stood under the he answer. table. The result was just what might have been expect-The bag burst immediately, and a shower of golden ed; he had been followed ever since, for now all Daw-nuggets came out on the floor. son knew that he was laying in tools and provis"Right you are," said Young Klondike. "We've ions for another move. struck John's gold." "Let him keep after us, I don't care," remarked ,,,; CHAPTER v. THE BEGINNING OF THE GREAT RUSH. t Young Klondike, as he and the Unknown walked along. "He won't get on to anything. Wouldn't tbey all go wild if they only knew what we found in the hut under Rocky river." "Well, I guess yes," replied the Unknown. "A hundred and fifty thousand dollars ain't to be sneezed at, dear boy, and yet we've got to turn them off the scent some way or other, or by the Jumping Jere HE'S watching us, Y outig Klondike. His eye is miah, there'll be a rush as sure as fate." right on us. By the Jumping Jeremiah, I'll give him I "Let it CQme," said Ned, carelessly. "I don't the slip though!" I care." "Who says we can't make a move in Dawson City I It makes a big difference when a fellow can't lo-without being followed and having our movements cate his claim, though." watched day and night?" replied N e d Golden. "It "Of course, we can't locate up there. You know seems as if it was so, and I say it's a blame shame." that part of the mountains has already been located Ned and the Unknown were walking down the prin-and never worked. All we can do is to jump the claim cipal business street of Dawson City one evening, under the mining law. Let the rush come and I'll about a week after the big strike. trade on it. We'll jump the whole business, and sell Close at their heels an ugly-looking fellow, out subclaims subject to our jumping." dressed in the usual 'style of a Dawson City tough. "Good idea. Oh, well, there's no use worrying; He had been following them ever since they left the only I hate to be hounded this way, and I'm going to hotel. give that fellow a lesson before I'm through." There was nothing particularly strange in this when "I wouldn't; it will only make trouble." you come to think of it, for all Dawson was talking I will, though. Do you know him ?" about Young Klondike and the wonderful luck of Dick "No, he's a stranger to me." Luckey just about that time. "I have a suspicion that he's my man." Just as Ned surmised the prospecting party had Ned laughed, and they entered the bar-room of the been seen on the mountain from the streets of Daw-Victoria Hotel where they expected to meet Dick. son. As usual, in the early evening, the bar-room was The result was just what might have been excrowded. pected. Men in red shirts and rough clothes were drinking, A rush across the river began next day. The Unsmoking and discussing mining matters. known was not mistaken when he thought he saw the I Dick Luckey sat over at a table waiting for Ned to boats. come in. But it was one thing to go over the Yukon and "Well, what's the good word?" Dick asked, as his quite another to climb the big mountain. The rush-partner approached the table. ers did hot find the way, and after numerous attempts Before Ned could reply there was a great scramble were forced to give it up. behind them. Next day they tried it again, and still again the "By the Jumping Jeremiah, my man at last! next, but with precisely the same result. Watc)l me put the handcuffs on him!" they heard Then the curiosity seekers began to think that they the Unknown shout. had been mistaken, and it was rumored that Young The instant the spy entered the bar-room, the little Klondike and his company had gone down the river detective pounced u.Pon him and catching him by the to Forty Mile, and everybody began to wonder what shoulders shook him as a dog would shake a rat. that meant, when all at once N ed and Dick reappeared The detective's grip was iron. He was good for in their midst. any man in the bar-room, but he immediately let go Immediately Dawson City was thrown into a fevoc his bold. of excitement again. "Ye gods and little fishes! Wrong again!" he Golden & Luckey made a deposit in the bank of cried. "My dear sir, let me apologize. I am a detectnuggets and dust amounting to over sixty thousand ive. I mistook you for another party. Now, don't dollars. say a word. You know you've been following me


i Y O UNG KLONDIKE'S 'l'RUMP CARD. 11 about for an hour. Honest. Injun, I took you for my side of the river," cried Dick, suddenly. "It looks man and thought you wanted to give yourself up. to me like one." Come and take a drink." "Uan't make it out," replied Ned, after a long There was a general laugh all over the bar-room. look. "It may be a boat or it may be only some-Nearly everybody knew the Unknown and his little thing floating on the water." peculiarities. They had seen him play this game be" Don't seem to move though." fore "I think it's a boat," said Edith; "but never mind. "Don't you lay your hand on me again!" growled We may as well start." the man. "I'd see you in blazes before I'd take a All were of the same opinion, so they got into their drmk with you! I--" owlil. boat to which the two others were attached. "Don't you do it! Don't you do it!" roared the Very leisurely they pulled across the Yukon. Unknown, for the fellow attempted to draw a re-They had scarcely covered half the distance when volver. they saw two boats put out from Dawson But the Unknown did not take it out in talking. At the same instant a shot was fired over on the He whipped out his o''vn revolver like lightning. other side . So did Young Klondike and so did Dick. "There's your boat, Edith!" cried Ned "The In a twinkling they had the man covered, and the fellow has been laying for us sure enough." fellow was glad to sneak away. "Tain't Welsh," said Dick, peering forward into "He's Thad Welsh, the gambler," said Dan Lov-the darkness. "This man has got whiskers, Welsh ering, an old time Yukoner. "He's been around Dawonly had a mustache. son before, but he belongs in Forty Mile. He's no "He's trying to head us off," said the Unknown. good." "Boys, I say let's take the bull by the horns." "They say you can't spoil a bad egg, but I'll spoil "What do you mean?" demanded Dick . him if he bothers me any more," said the Unknown, "Let him head us off Let him come up to us and and he sat down at the table with Dick and Ned. take him along." No one interfered with them now, for Golden & "Not half a bad idea," said Dick. Luckey were universally respected. "Bother; we don't want him," added Ned. "'He'd "When do we start, Dick?" Ned asked in an unonly be a nuisance!" dertone. "Wait; it would postpone the rush till we got "Well, everything is ready. I don't see why we located," declared the unknown. "The whole fact of shouldn't start as soon as it's dark. the matter is we are surrounded by spies, and they "How many boats have we ?" are determined to follow us. The longer we can "I've fixed up three. One is packed full of provi-1 stave off the rush the better, I sa.y." s10ns-there's enough to last us a month. "Good enough. Let it be just as you want it," re" Good enough And the other ?" I plied N ed,-and he so turned the boats that the man "One has tools, and bed and bedding-anything we who was pulling out toward them must come across are likely to want. I their path. "And the other is intended to carry us, I sup-1 "Boat ahoy! Boat ahoy!" shouted the Unknown. pose?" "Hello, yourself !" was the answer. "Who are "Exactly !" you ? Where you bound?" "You've done first rate. All that remains is to "We,are three poor travelers bound nowhere," reget the stuff up to Rocky river without being seen." plied the detective. "Come alongside with your old "Which we'll never be able to do, in my estima-ark. Did you fire that gun?" tion," declared the Unknown. "You may figure it "Well, what if I did? 'Tain't against the law to out how you like, the rush is bound to come." fire a gun on the Yukon, is it?" returned the man as Without disputing the Unknown's conclusions, or he came alongside. putting himself particularly out of the way to avoid He was a short, thick-set old fellow with a bushy being seen, Young Klondike nevertheless arranged black beard. his departure secretly. Ned looked back and saw that other boats were Edith was up-stairs in her room, and ready to putting out from Dawson; there was quite a little start at a moment's notice. fleet of them. The move was made shortly after midnight. They were pretty sure to be overhauled if they did Ned and Edith walked together down to the same not get out of the way. place from which they had started before. "Look here, stranger, who are you?" he asked. Dick and the Unknown had gone there separa,tely "Joe Dusenbury's my name," replied the man. and were awaiting their arrival. "I reckon you're Young Klondike. I've seen you in "Did you see anything more of Thad Welsh?" Dawson if I don't mistake. asked the detective. "Were you followed at all?" "More than likely I've been there enough. "We didn't see a soul," replied Ned, and yet I What's your business?" wouldn't like to swear we were not followed "Haven't any. "Ain't that a boat away over there on the other "Which means you are gold hunting?"


-12 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. "I've done a deuce of a lot of hunting, yes, but I I "We're in for it, Dick," said Ned, quietly. "We don't find any gold worth talking about." I might as try to stop the. wind from blowing as "Want a job?" 4.: J.. I to stop this rush. I tell you it can't be done." "Mebbe. What is it?" They thought so a few minutes later,..when peering "To help us pack these things up the mountain." I out from behind the bushes they saw the boats pass. The man's little eyes glistened. They could see that Young Klondike counted twenty of them-and each even in the dark. boat was packed to its utmost capacity with men. "Well, I don't know. What will you pay?" It was hard to see their features there in the dark, Give you a claim in our new diggings." but Ned and Dick did not fail to recognize some of "These are them. What say, it's a big thing to them. tie to the firm of Golden & Luckey, boss." They were some of the hardest characters in Daw" I see you know us well enough." son City. "l don't deny it." "By gracious, them fellows will make a hot time "ls it yes or no, then? Decide quick. 'rhere are for us if they ever get the chance!" cried the Un-otl!e r boats coming, and I don't want those in them 11 known. "Just you wait, though. We can head them to see where we go. off. Instead of waiting till morning, we'll start up "You'll give me a claim outright in your new dig-1 the mountain right now, to-night-for the rush to gings up on the mountain?" I Rocky river has fairly begun." 1 "Give you a chance to work of us. We don't own claim up there ourselves yet." 1-F .Ji ....;----" B'gosh I'll take that offer. I don't want any,.,. .fi.1 thing better than to tie to Young Klondike. I'm sorry now I fired that gun." "Pull around the point then," said Ned. "Quick CHAPTER VI. now Don't lose an instant. y OU want to be as spry THE LITTLE OLD MAN WHO CARRIED THE TRUNK UP as you can." The man showed that he was a perfect expert at the oars, for he sent his boat flying around the point be fore Ned and Dick could make the turn. He was holding back, waiting for them when they came up. \ THE MOUNTAIN IF ever the Unknown surprised Young Klondike it was when he made this remark about going up the mountain then and there. A keen recollection of the difficulties of their last "Now which way, boss ?" he called out. "Say, journey came over him. the boys mean to follow you to-night. They are deNed did not feel as though he wanted to climb the termined on a rush wherever you go, and they'll mountain that night. ) make it, too. Better be spry in carrying out your "lt can't be done," he said emphatically. plans, whatever they are." "It can be done," declared the Unknown with equal "My plan now is to haul this stuff right in under the I emphasis. rocks and stop there till morning," replied Ned, cool"The man who attempts it takes his life in his hand ly. "If you want to train with me, you want to help unless he happens to strike the little old man with the us do it-that's all!" trunk," drawled Mr. Dusenbury. They made their landing in a hurry. "Of course we all want to know who the little old Ned knew the spot well. It was the place where man with the trunk is," said Dick. "You'd better they left the boat before. tell us, Dusenbury." Here the steep ledge overhung a foot or two and "Hold on," said the Unknown. "I've heard that there were thick bushes growing in front of it. story before. I can tell it myself." Although it was some distance away from the place "Tell it, then," said Edith. where they went up the mountain, there could not be "What's the with my telling it ?" said a better spot to hide. Dusenbury. "It's my story, a nyhow. I put it out As fast as possible they carried their traps in befirst." hind the bushes, and then the boats were dragged up "Business, business!" cried the Unknown. "We'll there, too. tell stories later. I know a way to get up this moun"They're coming! There'll be twenty boats in tain that Young Klondike don't know at all." front of us in less than no time!" the Unknown ex"Hello!" said Dick. "l suspected as rnch. And claimed, for he was watching on the shore. yet you let us come down the way we went up, at the "Was that your work? Did you give the signal, risk of our necks." Dusenbury?" asked Ned. "There was no risk. If there had been I wouldn't "Well, now, that's what." have let you do it; but my way is better, as you'll see "Who hired you to spy on us?" if we can use it." "Didn't nobody hire me. We're all into it; we've "Ha, ha, ha!" chuckled Dusenbury, laughing till all been a-watching you ever since you were on the his sides shook. mountain before." "What's the matter with you ?" demanded the


1 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S 'L'RUMP CARD. 13 Unknown. cat for?" What are you grinning like a Cheshire "Never you mind, boss." "Bah Bother You are all mystery. Keep your mysteries to yourself, I don't want to know them. Are you here to help us in our work or not ?" "Of course, I am. Who said I wasn't?" "Nobody." "There you are then. What do you want me to do?" "To come .with me and show me where your friends haYe landed. I want to know what they are going to do?" "You don't go alone," said Ned. "Let's all go together. It won't pay to be separated in a case like Now by packing it might be well enough to explain that Cool Codmore meant carrying. Naturally our Klondikers sharpened up their ears at this. "Hush!" breathed the Unknown. "We are going to b.ear the stny of the little old man who packs his trunk up the ountain now." And sure enough they were, for one Of the prospect ors, a tenderfoot only lately from the States, at once asked what about the little old man who packed his trunk up the mountain. "Well, sir," replied Jerry, lighting a pipe, "it's like this, mebbe it' s a ghost and mebbe it isn't. Them as believes in ghosts is blame sure he's one, and them as don't believe in ghosts, is equally dead certain he isn't, so whether he is or whether he isn't I don't this." "But the goods? Are we to leave here to be you are." ,, swiped by the next boatload of toughs that comes Which amt the story at all nor any part of it, along?" I said Cool Codmore. "P'raps I'd better tell it, for I N bt f d Tl 'll fi d th see you don't know how and it's no use to try." ot a i o anger. iey never n em . . There wa. s a little more sparrmg between them and here. Anyhow I m gomg and so is Dick and of course, th C 1 C d t k tl t lk 't b 1 ft 1 ,, en oo o more oo up ie a i i can e e a one. "You see, fellers," he began, "'twasalwaysknown All started along the shore a few moments later. that there was slathers of gold up on this here mount-There was a narrow beach between the rise of the ain since the first time the Yankees and Canucks bemountain and the river. gan to come up here to the Klondike, but the trouble This was pretty well woode and it was easy was to get at it on occount of the mountain being so enough to make one's way along and keep out of gosh blamed steep. sight. Rounding a point of rocks they came soon upon the boats which had been beached in a broad cove about a quarter of a mile from the spot where Young Klon dike and his friends landed a few days before. The prospectors were gathered on the shore where they had built a fire and evidently meant to put in the night. "When I first came here I tried it, and I've trled it many a time since, but I never was able to get up no distance at all, and the little old man what packs his trunk up the mountain, right up the sid'e of them rocks like a fly." "Come, come," said the tenderfoot, "you don't seem to be getting on with your story no than the other fellow did. Why don't you get down to "Hush Don't go a step further !" breathed the business-say?" Unknown. "N ow's our chance to overhear their "Don't, because I hain't ready," growled Codmore. Plans." "Anyhow, there hain't nothing much to tell, except For some time they stood there among the bushes that on stormy nights and often in the dead of winter, listening. the little old man is seen going up the mountain here There was one big fellow named Cool Codmore, an with his trunk strapped to his back. Some say he's a inveterate gambler and all-around hard nut, spouting Rooshian, but there's others who say he's an old away to the others. French fur trader, or rather was, for, of course he's a "I'd like to know where in thunder they went to?" ghost." he wa.s saying. "Of course it must have been some"Shucks!" said the tenderfoot, "I don't believe in where in here. Gosh blame that Young Klondike! ghosts." This is the secorn ; l time he's fooled me. Where did he "Don't make any difference whether you believe in land? We've searched everywhere and can't find 'em or not, this here's one," declared Jerry Pilcher. him, and there ain't no use going no further. A fly the little old man has been packing his trunk couldn't crawl up the mountain at any place beyond up the mountain these fifty years. You ask any of here." the old habitants-them's the French fur traders-" Don't you be so sure of that. Young Klondike and they'll tell you Live here long enough and went up beyond here the other time." mebbe you'll see him yourself some day, and if you "Tell you he didn't, Jerry Pilcher. 'Coz why? do then look out, for they say the man that sees him He couldn't. I know the place blamed well. All the dies." way from here to Forty Mile this side of the river is At this Cool Codmore broke into a great hoarse to me like an open book." laugh. "Maybe," replied Cod more, "and yet you know the I "That's all poppycock,'' he declared. "I've seen little old man does go up the mountain at h.alf a dozen him twice myself and am I dead? Well I guess not points beyond here packing his trunk." -not much."


1 4 YOUNG 'fRUM P C A RD They talked a little more about the mysterious old l have told all this before, but the detective had his own man and then the subject chainged, and it became ideas, and did just as he pleased, and in this instance Young Klondike and bis plans again. it pleased him to keep his information to himself. The determination was to follow the fqrtuues of They walked back to where they left their goods, Golden & Luckey if possiple, wherever thi}Y might go still discussing the matter. pn the mountain, for as was well known, the mountain I "If I could have been sure of finding that place was open to anyone who chose to jumjj the claims of again, I'd have taken you down the way I came up," the original locators, who had failed ro \\ritb said the Unknown, "but I couldn't find it for myself, the requirements of the mining act. and when you came I began to feel afraid I never Ned listened as long as it was worth while to listen, should get down again. What's more, I'm blest if I and when at last be saw the prospectors settle them-think I can find it now." selves down for the night, he made a sign to the Un-"We can try, and we must go right at it," said known that it was time to move. Ned . "Where's Dusen bury? Perhaps he can throw They returned to a safe distance beyond where the some light on the matter. prospectors had left their boa,ts, and then stopped to T'T talk matters over themselves. ne looked around, supposing the silent old pros" You didn't gobackonus,Dusenbury," WM! Ned's pector to be standing close behind him. But Dusenbury had vanished, and what was more, first remark, "and I thank you for it. You stand by us and we'll stand by you and make your fortune in they couldn't find him, although they looked along the end." the shore back among the bushes-everywhere they could think of, in fact, but all to no purpose. The "That's what I'm out for, boss. They say every-man had gone body strikes it rich what stands by Young Klondike, and I'm sure I hope I'm no exception to the rule. "Come, I don't like that," said Edith. "But about that story you were going to tell us," "Looks as though he was a spy," added Dick. said Edith. "Have we beard it the way we know it "He's heard all we had to say, learned all our or not?" plans, and now be goes and lights out. "Exactl y the way I know it. It made them all feel decidedly uneasy, but they "And you, Zed ?" had felt that wa. y before, for it was quite impossible "I don't know no different except that I don't be-to pass the prospector's camp without being seen, lieve in ghosts." either by land or water, and to remain where they "Of course it's all a silly legend," said Dick. were until morning would be to betray their plans. "Wh' h t 't ,, 1 d th U 1 tl "I suppose I'd better try to find the place where I ic i am rep ie e n 'nown, qme y. ,, U "I' "H 11 t" d N cl "Wh t ?" went up, said the nknown. 11 own up now that e o crie e a now I I h t I t d t fi d 't "Wh t I It' 'll 1 d I' th don t know w ere l is. rie o n i yesterda v a say. s no s1 y egen ve seen e I S 1 v l'ttl ld h k h. t 1 th t and also the day before and couldn t till, have 1e o man w o pac s is run { up e moun am . th hopes that I may be able to find it to-mght. w1 my own eyes. . He went on to say that it was further along the Of course, everyone was immensely mterested at h t d D ct d th t t d tl t s ore owar a wson i y an ey s ar e m 1a once. "I want to know more about this," said Ned. "Spit it right out." "Well, it's like this," said the Unknown. "When I came over here first I wandered along the base of the mountain for a couple of miles, but I wasn't as lucky as you, Young Klondike, for I couldn't find any place to go up." "And yet you went up." "Well, rather; the way I did it was to follow the little old man." And the Unknown went on to tell how while he was wandering along the shore, he suddenly saw this mys terious p ersonage standing on a rock above him. It was just such a looking person as had be e n de scribed by the man Codmore. He se e med to beckon to the Unknown, and then turning disappeared behind the rock. Having often.heard the legend, the Unknown, with his usual love of adventure, determined to follow the strange figure, and to cut bis story short, did follow him up on top of the first ridge by a way that was direction, leaving their goods behind them to be carried up later in case they found the path. Half an hour was wast ed tbis way and they covered about a mile of the beach, but could discover no break in the wall. Then the Unknown declared that they had certainly gone far enough and they started to return. "Strange I can't locate that rock," mused the de tective. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, I must be taking leave of my senses. You see, boys, it was-stop look Ye gods and little fishes l There's the little old man now!" All turned their eyes in the direction which the Unknown pointed and saw standing high above them on a narrow ledge just such a person as has been de scribed. It was a stout Jittle man with a small trunk strapped to his back. He was looking down at them curiously "Hello l Hello!" shouted the Unknown. There was no answer. comparatively easy. Of course, anybody else The strange figure merely raised his right hand and but the Unknown would beckoned to them. ..


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. 15 Then turning he suddenly vanished from their I toward working the bed of the river which Young sight. Klondike believed was going to turn out to be his .ANOTHER BIG STRIKE ON ROCKY RIVER. "WHERE'S he gone?" cried Edith. '' Is he coming back again ?" "You'll see him again in a minute," said the Un known. "Come on, friends! 'l'he trouble is all over. I know the way up the mountain now." The Unknown made a rush for a place where the bushes grew thick against the base of the ledge. Pushing them aside he revealed a narrow trail leading up between two ledges. From the beach this would scarcely be noticed, but it was plain enough now, and by no means steep. The detective declared that it was the trail he had followed before. They had scarcely discovered it when the little old man was seen above them again at a higher point still. Once more he stood, stared and beckoned, and then, as before, disappeared. "We'll go right on after him," said the Unknown, and that was what they did, and in less than minutes found themselves on top of the ledge, in plain sight of the hut on the glacier, but considerably be low Rocky river. Four times during the climb the little old man showed himself, but when they reached the top of the ledge he was no longer to be seen. To account for all this mystery was quite beyond the powers of Young Klondike and his friends, and they wasted no time trying. "We are all right now," declared the Unknown, "and let the little old man explain himself when and how he pleases. What we wau_t is to get our goods up. With their usual energy they went right about it. Five trips did the business, for taken here the climb was a comparatively easy one and could be accom plished without fatigue. By the time the sun rose all their belongings, ex cept the hoats, were on top of the ledge, and the prospectors, easily seen from the ridge, were still asleep at their camp. Young Klondike was jubilant. If I could get hold of that little old man, or little old ghost or whatever he is, I d give him the best claim on Rocky river," he declared. "We've given tho rushers the slip completely: Let them get up the mountain, if they can." After a hasty breakfast they started to convey the goods and tools down into the underground hut, and the remainder of the day was spent in getting ready to continue their work under the river. As yet, be it remembered, they had done nothing 'trump card. All that had been accomplished was to secure the gold which the dead miner left behind him, and al though this in itself constituted a small fortune, it did not satisfy Young Klondike at all. As for the rushers they dismissed them from their minds. Young Klondike knew these men well. They were the scum of Dawson City. He felt that it was very doubtful if they would dare to attempt the difficult climb that he had successfully acco,rnplished with Edith and Dick, and after three days no one appearing, they all came to the conclusion that Ned was right. Each day the Unknown took a view down from the top of the ridge. The report was always the same. The boats were gone and there was nothing to be seen of the rush ers. Busy with their work they forgot all about them. Success crowned their efforts from the start, and we must now describe how it came about. This in volves some mining points which it may be well to know. It will be remembered that Young Klondike's the ory was that the deposit of gold worked by John the mummy, while yet that dried up individual was in life, lay in the old bed of Rocky river over which a landslide from the heights above had deposited a great mass of rocks and earth. That this landslide had actually taken place was proved by the discovery of the buried hut, and the point now to be accomplished was to run a drift out on top of the old river bed. But Young Klondike aimed at more than this. The richest deposits of gold never lie on top of the bed of rivers and creeks, but beneath them, usually down from ten to twenty feet. Young Klondike's little company held a consultation, and determined to run two drifts, one on top of the old river bed, and the other beneath it about fifteen feet down. In this way he proposed to find out exactly what this new claim was worth; whether or no it wa,s really going to prove a trump card, and whether it would pay to work it. He figured out that it would take about a week to do this, but as the hut was provisioned for two weeks, he felt that it would pay best to put it through on these lines. The first thing they did was to continue the shaft down below the level of the hut to a distance of fifteen feet. It was very easy digging and soon accomplished. Little or no gold was found in the gravel which c ame out and that was discouraging, but it by no means proved that gold would not be discovered when they came to drift under the river bed. The next move was to start the drifts. Edith was determined to work with the others.


16 YOUNG TRUMP CA.RD. The plucky girl always did her share whenever it "And don't you forget it we have!" was necessary, and was as good a miner as there was "We're right in it all around, then! Young Klon-on the Klondike. dike, this is your trump card !" With the Unknown to help her, Edith now under-It was a good day for mining, that was certain. took charge of the upper drift while Ned and Dick "Come up here; Ned, and see what we've found!" took the lower. Edith now called out. Their plan was to work out as much earth as possij "Come down here and see what we've found !" re ble into the shaft on each level during the morning, plied Ned. "I don't believe that your strike can hold and spend the afternoon hoisting it up. a candle to mine." It was rather slow work, but by the end of the "Who says so?" cried the Unknown. "Ladies week they had pushed both drifts in about eight feet. should be served first every time. If you don't want Occasionally they would pan out a little, always to come up stay where you are. Findings are keepfinding gold, but only a trace here and there. ings, and by the Jumping Jeremiah we'll keep all On Sunday they knocked off work, and went down we've got." on the shore to see if their boats were all right, find"Oh, if there's going to be any words it, up ing them undisturbed. we come," answered Ned, seizing the rope and pulling Nothing was seen of the rushers until just as they himself up hand over hand to the upper level of the were about to return, when two boat loads of men shaft. were seen coming down the Yukon from the direction Edith pointed triumphantly to a rough brown lookof Dawson City. ing object which lay half embedded in the gravel. They did not stop to observe them closely, but hur"A big nugget!" cried Ned. ried right back up on to the ridge, and watched them "That's what," said the Unknown. "That's from that height. Edith's find. Can you equal that?" The men landed and roamed around the shore for 'It's the biggest I ever saw, if it turns out to be as a while. I big as it looks," declared Ned, "but it has got to be Ned saw Cool Codmore and Jerry Pilcher among dug out before we can know." them-saw them examine the boats, and later saw I "That's what we are here for," exclaimed the Un-. them start back to Dawson. known, and be seized the pick and went to work. This was all that happened on Sunday, and early Ned and Dick took hold too and they soon rolled Monday morning they went right to work again. the nugget out on the gravel. "If we don't strike it to-day, I declare I believe I It was more than half gold, a rough, ugly-looking shall give it up!" Ned remarked to Dick, as he drove object, but immensely valuable. his pick-ax into the wall of gravel before them. Ned declared his belief that it could not be worth "Perhaps we haven't got low enough yet," replied less than twenty thousand dollars. Dick. "I've kind of thought so from the first, but-But this was not all. hello what's all this?" Examination showed that the old bed of Rocky river They were working by the light of a powerful re-was indeed a rich mine, for a little behind the nugget fleeting lantern, and as the gravel loosened by Ned's -the boys worked in a few feet further-they struck pick came tumbling down, Dick caught the gleam of a bed of small nuggets similar to that found on the gold. level below. "We've struck it We've struck it !" he cried. The rest of the day was spent in hoisting out the "Oh, Ned, look here! We don't need any panning to precious gravel, and it is unnecessary to say that the show that we've struck it rich !" big nugget came out with the rest. This was true enough. Tuesday was devoted to panning out Monday's The gravel pile which had fallen at their feet fairly hoist. glittered with golden nuggets, and where there are The result was tremendous. nuggets there is pretty apt to be dust which don't At night Ned weighed up nearly ten thousand dol-show itself except at the bottom of the pan. in nuggets and dust. Ned seized the lantern and flashed it on the gravel Wednesday was hoisting day again, and another big pile, letting the stuff run through his fingers. pile of gravel was accumulated. The gravel bristled with nuggets, and while they On Thursday more panning was done and with were examining it there came a tremendous pounding equally favorable results. overhead. Double the amount of gravel was panned, and Ned "Hello! Hello! Hey there, Young Klondike!" weighed up eighteen thousand dollars after it was all the Unknown yelled down the shaft. over. "What's the row?" called Ned, running to the end "Nearly fifty thousand in a week cried the Unof the drift. known. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, that's error" We've struck it !" ,,,.. mous Who says our Rocky river diggings ain't "Hooray! So have we!" Young Klondike's trump card?" "You don't mean to say so We've struck it rich!"


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. 17 CHAPTER VIII. is just what the Unknown likes to call our diggings here, the trump card." THE NIGHT ALARM. They sat up talking until ten o clock, when Edith retire d to the loft and went to bed, leaving Ned and THERE was no more work done that day. Dick to wait for the Unknown. Supper was served at seven o'clock, Edith having "I shan't sit up very long, you bet," declared Dick. knocked off work a little earlier to prepare it, and "I'm about tired out, and it wouldn't surprise me a after it was over Ned got out his banjo and began to bit if the Unknown had gone to Dawson and didn't play, while Edith cleared up the dishes and made show up till morning. It didn't need him to tell me everything snug for the night. that he had one of his old restless fits on him-I could The Unknown went up out of the shaft, leaving our se e it in his eye." friends in the hut. He felt nervous and restless, and Half an hour passed and still the Unknown did not declared that he was going for a walk. appear at the top of the rough ladder which led down "That's just like old Zed,'' declared Dick. to the hut. won't see him work any more now. Once we make a Dick lay down and went to sl e ep then, but Ned restrike that ends it with him alway s. He'll be on the mained on the watch, as it was the rule of the camp move looking out for new digg. ings, you mark my I that someone should always remain awake. words." Tow ard one o'clock Young Klondike grew so "Oh,, let him have his own way,'' said Ned. "It sle epy that he felt he c ould stand it no longe r and don't make much difference. In fact, I fe e l v ery much J he determined to wake Dick and take his turn, but the same way myself. I'd like to put a gang of men before doing so he w ent up the ladder and looked on to this claim and let them work it for us, and go off off on the glacier, thin king that perhaps he might on the hunt for new diggings myself." see something of the Unknown. "I tell wlpt it is'. Ned," who was It was a wonderful sight to see the moon shining busy washmg up the dishes. We d better make down on that v ast fie ld of ic e sure of wha. t we've got first. I say let's get this stuff down to Dawson and giYe the claim a rest for a week. After that we can put jn two weeks' work and round up what we can. It will add a good bit to our b ank account, and then we c a n publish what we've done to After contemplating it for a moment Ned turned his gaze toward the top of the ridge and as he did so he was startled by h earing a strange cry ring out upon the silence of the night. What was it? the world, and let the rushers come in." "And sell them claims?" asked Ned. Ned could see nothing and yet the cry had been "Yes." startlingly plain. There was something wild and "I like that idea. Don't think we could do better. unearthly about it, too; it almost made Ned's blood run cold; and as he listened he heard it again. Of course we don't want to stay stuck up here on this "What in thunder is going on up there, Ned ?" mountain for any great length of time, a0nd as to k' tl t 't' t t b th ht f called Dick from the bottom of the ladder, for he had ma mg us a wm er camp i. s no o e oug o been awakened b the er' We'd surely starve to death if we didn't freeze." y 3 ,, "We could never get up and down the mountain Blest if I can tell you, replied Ned: ,,Come up that's certain," said Dick. "I think Edith's idea is I and .see you can make out of it, about the correct one as usual, and for my part I'm I Dick hurried _up the and :Whil? the boys ready to act upon the suggestion at once." stood lookmg about m every direction the cry "What you don't mean to go down to Dawson to-came agam. niO'ht do ?"laughed Edith. "That's what I call "It's off on the glacier," declared Dick. "' "N I It' th d I" d N d 11 being a little too prompt." .. o, sir. s on e ri ge sa1 e equa y "No ; of course I don't mean that," replied Ned, positive. "but wha t we might do is to pack up to-night and "Pshaw That's only the echo. I tell you it's off move down in the morning. Of course the Unknown on the glacier. There, now, what do you say to wouldn't object. He' ll be only too glad of the r est." that?" After some further talk they determined to do it, "I s a y it's on the ridge Look for yourself and and as soon as Edith was through her work, N e d see!" exclaimed Ned, pointing up to a place nearly undid a bale of bags which had been brought along, opposite the other hut fully a quarter of a mile and they began packing up the gold. away. The nugget, of course, was too heavy to handle Dick saw the strange obj ect instantly. \ J and it was rather a proble m how to get it down the It was the little old man again. mountain whole. There he stood on the ridge with his trunk strapped "For it has got to go whole declared Ned. "I've to his back, beckoning to the boys in a most animated set my heart on landing that lump in the Mining Ex fashion to come up where he was. change at Dawson City, and letting all the world "By gracious, I don't know what to make of this !" know we found it, for there's no use talking, it's the gasped Dick. "Is tha t thing alive or not?" biggest thing ever found on the Klondike; in fact, it "Wha t nonsense to think ,anything else," said


18 Y OUNG K L ONDI KE'S T R UMP CAR D Ned. "Oome on, Dick. Let's go up there and see who he is and what he wants.' It was in the detective's handwriting sure enough, and read as follows : "By gracious, I'll go if you do," said Dick,'"but I'll be hanged if I care about it all the same." I "DEAR NED :-The rush is on at last. Take Edith "What's the matter? Superstitious?" and what gold you can, and light right out without a "Not at all, but just the same I don't like it." moment's delay The hardest gang that ever left "It's strange, I own, but I'm determined to find out Dawson are liable to drop on you at any time, and what it means. I'm off now. You can come or not, some of your old enemies are among them. From just as you please." what I've heard I know that they not only intend to "And leave Edith?" rush our claim, but I believe they would not hesitate "What harm can come to he.r ?" 1 to rob us of what we have taken out, if nothing worse. "I don't know as any can. All right ; I'll go. He Go, and go now Take s0me of the old -boards and keeps it right up, don't he? .He seems determined to cover up the mouth of the shaft and then skedaddle get us over there if he can." down the mountain. They've got me prisoner, but Stopping only to get their rifles, the boys now you needn't worry about that. I shall to get ed to ascend the ridge. away. Always J ours, "ZED Ned waved his hand to the little old man to show ), that they meant to come, andhe immediately stopped beckoning, standing there motionless in the moon-This was startling enough certainly. light watching them as they hurried over toward the The boys stared at each other, hardly knowing ridge. what to say. In a moment they lost sight of him on account of "That means business sure," exclaimed Dick. the turn they had to take in order to get up the "Ned, it's tough, but I've been expecting it. It's rocks. the same old gang; those fellows have been down on us ever since we started the new Mihing Exchange.'' But when they got on top of the ridge, there he "We're going to act on the letter, that's all," cried was still, and beckoning again, which was hardly Ned; "but I'd give sqmething to know who that fel necessary, for they were making the best time they could. low really is." The boys were on the dead run back to the hut by "We're coming!" shouted Ned. "Stay there, will this time, and not a moment lost in arousing you? I want to talk to you Don't go away !" Edith, who, as a matter of course, was not a little 'rhen a very singular thing happened. surprised to learn what had occurred. Ned had no sooner spoken, when the strange figure "That settles the ghost theory," she exclaimed. vanished before their eyes "The little old man with the trunk is flesh and blood, How it went or where, the boys were entirely at a and appears to be a very good friend of ours, but I loss to determine. must say I don't like the idea of running away and The little old man was there on the ridge one mo-leaving the Unknown in the hands of the enemy.'' ment, and gone the next. "Who says we are running away from him by goDick declared that his hair was all on end, and even ing down the-mountain !" replied Dick. "How do we Ned felt a cold chill run down his spine. know that he didn't go down himself?" "By gracious, this is strange enough!" he ex"That's what," said Ned. "More likely he claimed. "I can imagine a dozen ways in which he did go down, and that's how he got into trouble, but. could take himself off out of our sight, but why should anyhow you have a mind to look at it, .Zed don't he keep on doing the disa .ppearance act-that's what make mistakes, and we want to act on his letter at gets away with me.'' once.'' "That's evidently his style," said Dick. "But Now this point scarcely admitted any further dis-what are you going to do? Are you going on?" cussion. "Decidedly, yes. Come, we'll make a move now. They hurriedly carried the gold up the ladder, all I've got the place fixed in my mind's eye all right. but the big nugget, which of course was too heavy to It's there by that big rock." be moved in any such hasty fashion as this. They pushed on to the rock and stopped again. Next Ned took the old boards which had formed Nothing was to be seen of their strange visitor, but the door of the hut and wedged them in over the there on the rock lay a folded paper kept in place by top of the shaft. a little stone. Down upon this cover they shoveled dirt and "Hello A letter from the ghost," exclaimed Ned. banked" it down hard, strewing loose gravel over the "What does this mean?" top to conceal their work. "You can probably tell better after you read it," Everything was now closed in, and no one but a said Dick. "Here, I'll strike a match, and you can very sharp-eyed person would ever guess the place see what he has to say.'' had l?een disturbed. The. spades were then thrown "By gracious!" cried Ned, as he glanced at the into the river and the job was done. paper, "this is from the Unknown!" Meanwhile nothing alarming had occurred. The ID4 ev re th se rt tl tc pi fi rr g a i1 I t l


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. 19 moon shone down upon the glacier as peacefully as then we'll have a full view of them. They have got ever, and it was hard to realize that there was any to give up the Unknown." real cause for being so disturbed. Now by the pass Ned meant the place where this "I hate to leave so," said Ned, as they loaded narrow defile ended at the ridge. themselves down with the bags of gold and started. They hastily retreated there and took up their sta"For a fellow to go back on his trump card is a very tion behind some loose rocks which completely con-serious matter." cealed them from the path. "Better to make sure of what we've got, than to They had not Jong to wait before they heard the 1 run the risk of losing it all," said "Besides, rusllers trooping up the mountain. there is the Unknown." "You surely don't mean to fire on that crowd, They moved on toward the ridge, climbed to the Ned?" said Edith; "it would be death to try to fight top, and started down the mountain, without ex-them here." periencing any such difficulty as the detective had in Of course I don't," replied Ned. "Let them go finding the entrance to the pass, for, of course, the on. As I said before we can't stop them; all I'm many times they went up and down in carrymg their I stopping here now for is to see if the Unknown is goods up the mountain, had firmly fixed the appear-with them ; if he isn't we'll just go on down. ance of the place in their minds. I In a moment the rushers were filing past tho rocks But trouble was right ahead of them. 1 led by Cool Codmore and Jerry Pilcher and never Too much time entirely had been spent in conceal-dreaming that Young ;Klondike's eye was right upon ing the entrance to the shaft. them as they passed. They had not covered half the distance down the There were as many as a hundred of these men and mountain, when the sound of voices below reached they were, as the Unknown's hasty note had said, their ears. the very scum of Dawson City, men who hated Golden "They are coming! By gracious, they are com-& Luckey for their part in the work of breaking up ing !"breathed Ned. "We are too late!" the swindling old Mining Exchange. "Let's have a look! Don't, be scared before we are But the Unknown was not among them. hurt," replied Edith. The boys and Edith watched until the last of the She put the two bags of gold upon the ground, and gang had gone up upon the ridge, and then seizing leaning over the rocks looked down. the bags of gold stole down the path. A great crowd of roughly-dressed men were wendI "Probably there are more of them below," Ned ing their way up the mountain by the secret trail. said. "They've left the Unknown in their camp." The rush to Rocky river had begun. "More than likely he's got away," added Edith. "You know what he is, ropes can't hold him, and I don't believe those fellows have killed him. Tough as they are they would hardly dare to do that." "Best thing we can do is to get down the mountain CHAPTER IX. while there's time," said Edith. They started down the trail, going as quietly as PRISONERS ON THE GLACIER. possible. The situation seemed dangerous. THUNDER! What are we to do?" exclaimed To be caught on the trail with the enemy above and Young Klondike, when Edith announced her startling belo"v might mean the worst. discovery. Nothing occurred, how e ver, and they got down the "The best we can every time," replied Dick. mountain in safety, and a few moments later found "There's to hinder us from going back, I them standing by their boats, which still remained suppose?" undisturbed under the rocks. "Would that do any good ?" "Strange they didn't bother the boats," remarked "We might hide the gold." Dick. "They must have seen them too." "What do I care for the gold? l'd drop it all to Of course the rushers did see the boats, and the save the Unknown if his life is in danger." fact that they had not interfered with them made That, of course, went without saying, but the quesN e d wonder in his own mind, whether the case was as tion was whether the Unknown was really with the' bad as the Unknown thought for. rushers or not. Rushers to new diggings are very common in every The dawn was close at hand, and Ned could see the mining district. faces of many a Dawson City tough, 'whom he knew It was not in the power of Young Klondike to pre only too well, as he looked over the rocks, but he vent the rush to Rocky river, and if he had possessed could not see the Unknown. such P'ower, he would hardly have exercised it, for it "We'd better retreat," he said. "Of course we is the rush which makes the new diggings valuable can't drive them down, and I don't know that it would after all. pay us to do it, for sooner or later the rush has got "If it wasn't for the Unknown I'd go straight to to come; but we'll take our stand in the pass and Dawson," said Young Kiondike. "I'd let them rush


20 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. the place and make the most of it. There's no parI Dan Mosely, one of the most active members was ticular eason why they should choose the spot where the first to try to question Ned. the shaft is, and, anyhow, I can file a notice with the "Say, Young Klondike, it's true you fellows are claim recorder that we've jumped there first thing to-working up on the mountain, isn't it ?" he asked. morrow morning." "That's what it is," replied Ned. "We've been Just as Ned spoke, the same strange cry was heard working my trump card for the last two weeks." again, aind looking up, they perceived the little old "Meaning a new claim up on the mountain?" man, with his trunk still strapped to his back, stand"Exactly. The trump card is a claim I've jumped. ing on the rock where they had seen him first. It's located on Rocky river." "Hello Hello !" he shouted. "And where the deuce is Rocky river? No one Then he waved his hands as though motioning to ever heard of it before." Young Klondike's party to get out of the way. "No, I suppose not. Fact is, I gave the place its "What in the world does he mean ?" said Dick. name myself. I don't expect you to have heard of it, "I think he's going to throw something," replied but all the world will hear of it soon." Edith. "Look; he's got his other hanp. behind him "Rich?" asked Mosely, confidentially -he wants us to look out and not get hit." "Very," replied Ned, in his coolest fashion. They stepped aside, and just as Ned predicted down "Then I'm off for Rocky river to-morrow. There's came a big stone which landed at Edith's feet. always luck where Golden & Luckey locate, and I As soon as it was thrown the little old man disap-want to be in th'e swim." peared. Everybody crowded around to listen to this conver" Hello There's a letter here," exclaimed Ned, and Ned knew the rush was on for fair. picking up the stone. "We may as. well go the whole figure," he whis-It was tied around the stone with a strong cord, pered to Dick. "We may as well let them know just and when opened proved to be from the Unknown. how to get there." Mounting the platform at the end of the long room, "Don't worry any more about me," it read. "I've Ned addressed the Exchange. escaped. Big thing on hand. So big that I hardly He told exactly what he had done at Rocky river, to think of it. You'd better get to Dawson with described the richness of the gold deposit, and without whatever you've brought down from the trump card. di sclosi?g any of the details of businessMeet me to-morrow night at the same place where somethmg which he always the whole you went up the mountain first. If I ain't there the I matter before the E:cchange. little old man will be Yours, The result was JUSt what might have been ex"ZED. "P. S. The little old man is all right, and don't you forget it. You may think you struck the trump card down there under Rocky river, but you didn't. I hold the trump card. Let the rushers rush and be biamed. We'll play our 'trump card to morrow night." "Just like the Unknown," said Young Klondike. "He's never happy unless he has a mystery on hand." They now proceeded to drag two of their boats down into the water, and the gold was loaded on. Nothing occurred during the run to Dawson, which they reached about four in the morning. During the light season, people are early astir at Dawson City, and there were quite a number on the levee, who greeted Young Klondike enthusiastically. All wanted to know where he had been and how the luck had run. Ned was cordial to everyone, as he always was, but he gave them no satisfaction at all . The gold was unloaded .and taken up to the hotel, and later in the day was deposited in the bank. At the usual hour Golden & Luck!'ly appeared on 'Change. Everybody crowded around them and commenced to talk about the rush to Rocky riYer. pected. Before night fully a thousand men had crossed the Yukon on their way .to the new diggings on Rocky river. These for the most part were respectable miners; men who could be trusted to do the right thing at all times. "They'll swamp the toughs completely," Ned re marked to Dick, as they left the Exchange. Let them go there and make a camp of it. I don't care." By which remark it will be seen that Young Klon dike had given up the idea of jumping the, whole of the Rocky river land and selling out claims. This plan was abandoned almost at the start. The fact was Golden & Luc1rny had claims enough and did not care about going into land speculations. Before the recorder's office closed for the day they had complied with the law so far as the land where the concealed hut stood was concerned, and they de termined to be satisfied with that. After supper Ned, Dick and Edith took one boat and leisurely pulled down the Yukon. The rush was still on. At least a dozen boats loaded with hardy miners were going the same way as themselves. "Wonder what the toughs think about now," chuckled Dick. "There must have been.over a thou sand men go up the mountain since you gave the snap a way on the Exchange."


Y O UNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. 21 "I don't know and I don't care," replied Ned. Of course, being well in advance, he reached the top "We're safe as far as our claim is concerned. We of the ledge first and then vanished, but when they want to get in and stake it out, that's all." got up there they saw him standing down on the "There's time enough to do that to-morrow, ain't glacier near the hut, beckoning as usual. there?" inquired. Edith. As soon as he knew that they saw him, he turned "Lots. No hurry at all. We've got our appoint-abruptly, entered the hut and disappeared again. ment to keep with the Unknown to-night." Young Klondike's party now prepared to descend When they reached the landing, they stowed away upon the ice. the boat in the usual place, and leaving the rushers But before doing so they paused to look at the won to make their way up the mountain, which they freely derful change which had taken place over near the pointed out to them, Young Klondike and his com-trump card since the night before. panions walked on to the appointed place. The whole side of the bluff was covered with It was not yet dark, and they hardly expected to and. so was the level land on both sides of Rocky see the little old man so soon. river. Nor were they disappointed, for they remained In many of the tents lights twinkled in spite of the there until after midnight, and still no one bad ap-lateness of the hour, and.not a few men could be seen peared. moving about the camp. Long before this, Edith had rolled herself up in her It would soon be daylight, and the prospectors were blankets and gone to sleep, while Ned and Dick sat I getting ready to begin their work. by the edge of the river, watching the noble stream I In the summer season Klondikers turn night into as it rolled on in the moonlight, and occasionally lookday, just as in the lorig dark winters they turn day ing up on the rocks overhead. I into night. "Confound the Unknown!" said Dick, impatiently. "Well, the rush is on for fair, Dick," remarked "He ought to have set some time. Does he expect Ned. "This is going to be a busy camp for the next us to wait up here all night? I never got a wink of few months, or I greatly miss my guess." sleep last night and I'm as tired as a dog." "I don't see how in the world they are ever going "Probablyhecan'thelpit,"saidNed. "Anyhow to run it in the winter,'' replied Ned, "but I don't we can't. We've got to watch all night if neces -douht they'll try. sary. Then they went down upon the glacier and made .., You don't suppose he's been captured again?" their way to the hut. "Heavens! Don't suggest it." They found it empty as they had fully expected, "I won't, for I don't believe it. Of course he is on for their eyes had been on it all the way down the his guard now, and Zed is too sharp to fall into the bluff. same snap twice "Look out and see if you can see anything of that "That's what's the matter. Wonder what he's fellow, Dick,'' said Ned. "I'm tired of packing all driving at? He must have made some big discovery this stuff and I know Edith is We may as well stow to have written the way he did some of it away here." While the boys were .:;till discussing the situati on So they began stowing away the provision bags and they were suddenly startled by hearing the same old other things, and had hardly finished when Dick cry on the heights above them. called out that he sa,w the Unknown. Both were on their feet in an instant. I "No!" cried Ned, running out of the hut. L ooki n g up they saw the little old man standing on "Where?" the steep slope with his trunk strapped to his back in "Away down there on the glacier. Look!" the usual way. Dick pointed down the great ice field; about half a H e was holding on to a tree a,n d beckoning to them. mile away, pretty close to the line of the bluff, a fire The Unknown was nowhere to be seen was blazing. "That's for us," said Ned "We must sta;rtright In front of the fire stood a man waving a plug alo ng." hat. "Coming!" he shouted. "Hold on there, and let's His form stood out distinctly in the fire's light, and have a talk. We won't do you any harm." I although they could not distinguish his features, they T he little old man made no reply. Re stopped saw that it could be no one else but the Unknown. b eckoning, however, and just stood there holding on "I suppose we'd better go right down there,'' said to the tree. Edith. Ned woke up Edith and they immediately began "Certainly we must,'' replied Ned ''Get your t h eir difficult climb. gun, Dick. We'll start right along. I reckon our T he moment they started the little old man started stuff is all safe here. It ain't likely the rushers will too and made his way up the slope, a,lways keeping come over before morning anyhow, and by that time we ll i n advance, but there was no disappearing this we shall know just where we are at. t i m e as there had been b efore. In fact there was no As soon as they were fairly started the Unknown pl ace for him to disappear t o o n the bare face of that disappeared, but they still had the fire to guide them terrib l e ledge and they kept steadily on.


22 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. But the mystery continued to be a mystery. They were all gold hunters, and when a man ishuntWhen they reached the fire there was no one near ing gold, as a rule he is not much interested in any-it. thing else It had been built directly on the ice, about a hun dred feet out from the shore. Ice surrounded them on all sides .For t4e Un known to hide was impossible. "He must have gone over to the bluff," said Ned, "and all we can do is to wait for him, unless Hea vens What was that?" A thunderous report suddenly broke upon the still ness. "It's .the ice breaking up!" Dick exclaimed. "Never! This glacier must have been here a thousand years answered Ned, and he had no more than spoken, when the report was heard again, louder than at first. Instantly it was followed by an awful crash, and our Klondikers witnessed a sight which few persons bave been favored with or ever will be "N e:xt thing we know, this will be too," said Dick, gloomily. "Don't croak, Dick," replied Edith. a bit of use in that." going down, "There ain't "I'm sure I don't want to croak," said Dick, "but I can't help saying what I think." "Let's try to be cool. Edith, you don't seem to be scared one bit," Ned remarked. "What's the use of being scared. We can't make anything by t4at." "That's right. There's no use in it. Still, there ain't one woman in a thousand who would take as you do." "Then it's lucky for you that you've got the other nine hundred and ninety-nine somewhere e lse instead of here." All around them-in every direction the ice sank Ned laughed. In spite of the seriousness of their down, breaking up into great masses which ground situation he felt that some way of escape would be together, falling lower and lower, crushing, crashing, shown them if the pillar of ice only held. grinding, turning, twisting, until they had sun],{ to a,. "It seems as firm as a rock," said Dick, lookmg depthoffiftyfeetormore,leavingYoungKlondikeand down dubiously upon the broken mass of ice below his friends standing on a pillar of ice high in the air. them. They were prisoners on the glacier. The pillar of "When it goes to pieces it will go down with a rush, ice had not been moved. but it don't follow that we shall be killed even then replied Ned. ... CHAPTER X. If we can only get down there alive there is noth ing to hinder us from walking right off the ice," re marked Edith. "THIS IS THE TRUMP CARD." IT was some moments before Young Klondike or "Where's the little old man? Why ain't he around 1 now to tell us what to do ?" said Dick. "There's a man now," cried Ned, for just as Dick spoke a man suddenly appeared on the side of the bluff. either of his companions could find words. The change which had occurred on the glacier was "It's the Unknown!" exclaimed Dick. so tremendous, that it seemed to strike them dumb. "Hello! Hello over there!" bawled the detective It was Dick who broke silence first. gesticulating violently. "Are you all right over "What in thunder is it all about ?" he blurted there? Are you alive ?" out. "You bet we are !" cried Ned. "What are you "Some underground river has washed away the going to do for us? Anything? We don't relish the foundations of the glacier-that's all," said Ned. idea of staying here!" Young Klondike was as cool as a cucumber, as in"You don't have to but a minute. Hold on, dear deed he always was at times of great emergency like boy. I'll get you off." this. As the Unknown thus spoke, another figure sud" I suppose that's it," said Edith; "but how about denly appeared beside him. this ice we are standing on? Is that going to give I It was the little old man. He was without his way, too ?" trunk now and seemed to come right out of the face "I shouldn't wonder." of the rock. "And we can't get off it. We are here, and here "ls that ice firm?" bellowed the Unknown, put-we are likely to stay, unless someone comes to the ting his hand his mouth. rescue." "Seems to be!" shouted Ned. "What are you go-They looked off toward Rocky river, fully expecting ing to do for us? Whatever you do you want to do to see a rush along the bluff. it quick!" None came. I "I've got a rope for you!" yelled the detective. To be sure, the noise of the collapsing glacier had "Just you wait !" been heard, but none of the prospectors were suffi-Then he turned and vanished again, and so did the ciently interested in it to come down and see what it little old man. meant. "A rope What nonsense! What can he ever do


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD 23 with a rope?" groaned Dick. "What good will it do us, anyhow? There's nothing at all in that!" They waited with breathless impatience for the reappearance of the It was fully ten minutes before he came. Meanwhile, the gray of dawn had just begun to show itself in the east. The Unknown came out from behind some rocks dragging a heavy rope as big round as a ship's cable after him "Hello We'll fix you now !" he shouted. "If I get this rope to you can you make it fast anywhere over there ?" "We'll have to !" answered Ned, but how the deuce are you going to get it over?" "I can fix that. Do you think you can come over on it hand over hand?" "I'd like to know what's the reason I can't," cried Ned. "Just give us the chance to try, but hang me if I see how it's to be done." "By the -!umping Jeremiah, I do, then, and I'll mighty sudden show you," replied the Unknown, and he popped in out of sight again the rock. "By gracious, he's a regular Jack-in-the-box," said Dick. "I'd like to ask him a question or two and see how he got there, if I could get a chance. Out came the Unknown with a smaller line. This he tied to the cable, and tying a rough stone to the other end flung it over toward the prisoners on the ice. It just didn't reach, and.the stone carried the rope down upon the ice hummocks below. "Never mind. We'll try again!" shouted the Unknown, good humoredly. "I'll pull in. There's no such word in my dictionary as fail." "Where's the little old man ?" called Ned. "Gone!" yelled the Unknown, hauling away on the rope. "Who is he ?" "Don't you know?" "How should I ?" "See you later, Young Klondike. I've got all I can do to attend to this line now That ice may go to pieces any moment. I want to get you off." "You can just bet your life we want to get off our selves then," said Ned, and he did not try to force the Unknown to talk after that. Presently the rope came flying over again. This time it fell within an inch of the edge of the ice pillar and next time Ned got the stone. Then he hauled in and soon had the cable over on the ice pillar. It kept paying out and paying out through the Un known's hands. There seemed to be no end to it. "How long is the thing anyway?" called Ned "Oh, there's a thousand feet of it," replied the Un k nown. "Pull a way. You can't come to the end of i t if you try. "How in tne world did it come to be up here on the mountain?" Edith called out. A ll explanations postponed until later," replied the Unknown. "Now, then, haul in, boys! Make fast around the ice ; there's plenty of rope." This Ned and Dick were able to do after a little. They ran the rope entirely around the ice pillar, and tied it in a strong slip noose, which would pull tighter under the strain of their weight when it came to be thrown upon it. "I can never get over there," said Edith, doubt fully. "Oh, yes, you can; don't you worry. Put your. hands on my shoulders, and I can carry you over easy enough." "I'm sure I can never get over any other way," declared Edith again. "Do you suppose you could bear my weight as well as your own, Ned ?" "If Ned can't, then I can," said Dick. "We'll get you over somehow, Edith." "You'd better hurry up!" shouted the Unknown. "Don't you take too big chances on that ice-it won't pay." "Go ahead, Dick, I'll follow with Edith," said Ned. Dick demurred at first, but finally yielded Hand over hand he went over the rope and landed safely at the Unknown's side. His feet were scarcely on the ground when a sharp crack under their feet warned Young Klondike that the ice pillar was in danger. "Quick, Edith! Now!" he exclaimed, and seiz ing the rope, he leaped out over. the hummocks. Edith" put her hards on Ned's shoulders and clutch ing bin;_ desperately dropped over the edge of the ice. Another crack Ned could feel the rope tremble as he worked hand over hand . "Put your arms around my neck, Edith," he gasped. "The ice may be going, but we've still got the rope." "Don't you fret about me. We can only die together," Edith replied I think the ice is going, Ned." She passed her arms around his neck, and locking her hands together held on for dear life. The Unknown and Dick watched them in despairing silence "Ned's progress was slow Oh, so slow," Dick thought. "Would he never get across ?" "Don't speak Don't say a word or you may do the business," gasped the Unknown, the perspiration standing out all over his forehead "That's a terrible load for Ned to carry. If he can stand it he'll do more than I think he can, and-good Heavens! It's going It's-gone !" There was another crack, and then another still, and the ice pillar crumbled before their eyes. Before the Unknown's eyes, at least, for shut h i s to hide the awful sight. "Hold hard!" growled the detective clutching at the rope and holding on for dear life. The rope was fastened to something inside t h e cave


24 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. which opened among the rocks behind them, or the J but that was later on, after the little old man came Unknown could never have stood the strain. 1 to me from behind the rock and told me that you "Are they dead?" gasped Dick, seizing hold, ought to be warned. too. "'What in tlie world are you talking about?' Cool "Dead, no Not a bit of it! Look down there?" Codmore hollered out. 'Who are you talking to any-the detective cried. how?' You see, boys, he couldn't see the little old Dick bent over the edge of the bluff, and looked man. down upon the sunken glacier. 'I'm talking to myself,' says I, as he came over There was Ned holding on bravely, supporting his to where I lay, 'but I'll talk to you if you say so, and own weight and Edith's, too, just by the strength of what I'd rather do more than all is to write a letter. his two hands. Mebbe 1I'll tell you how to get up the mountain if "Don't you fellows let us drop!" he cried. "We're you'll let me do that.' all right if you can only hold on " 'Who are you going to write the letter to?' says Of course they could hold on, and they could haul he. in, too. "'Why,' says I, 'to Young Klondike to be sure. I'll Little by little they pulled them up, until Ned was ask him if he has any objection to my sh'owing you able to get a footing on the bluff. the way up the mountain. If he hasn't any I'm sure Dick seized his hand and pulled him forward, and I haven't.' the Unknown helped Edith. "Well, boys, he asked me how I was going to get Poor Ned fell down all in a heap. the letter up to Young Klondike, and I wouldn't give "Edith is safe, thank God!" he gasped, and then I him any satisfaction, but kept saying I could do it. the next he knew Dick was bathing his face with ice I You'd better believe there were some words wasted cold water' from a s.tream which trickled down the then." bluff, and the Unknown was trying to force a swallow "I can easily believe it,'' laughed Edith. "I fancy of whisky down his throat. I can hear you sparring with him, Zed." "What in the world is the matter? Did I faint?" "Oh, we kept it up in lively style and don't you he gasped. forget it," laughed the detective, "but at last he "I guess you did,'' said the Unknown, "but you gave it up and went away, leaving me to scribble are all right now, dear boy." the letter, for he untied my hands for the purpose. "And Edith?" I'd have escaped then, but he kept watching me "I'm here, Ned. There's nothing the matter with from a distance, and I knew the cuss well enough me. You've saved my life once more and I shall to feel pretty sure he'd shoot if I tried any funny never, never forget it." business then." There was more talk-a lot of it. We need p.ot go "What did you do with the letter?" asked Edith. into it all here. "Why, as soon as I had finished it I just put it beNed was feeling pretty shaky and was glad to sit hind me on the rocks and waited. Didn't hear a down at the entrance to the cave out of which the sound, but when I looked around a few minutes later rope came, and he did this without feeling strength it was gone." enough to ask the Unknown a question about himself. "The little old man got it all right," said Dick. Nor was this necessary. "At least we received it all right from him." The Unknown was in a talking frame of mind, and "I know you did. I know all about that. It wasn't the explanation came witbout any urging from Ned. but a little while after that one of the gang found "I suppose you're wondering all this time what I've the way up the mountain. ln the excitement that been about, boys," he began. "Well, now, just let me followed the. discovery I managed to escape. I started tell you in as fe, w words as possible, for of course, now to come up your: road, and before I'd gone half way that Ned and Edith are all 0. K., you want to know. up, who should I run against but the little old man It's just like this: When I walked off last night I coming down." never stopped walking unti.l I was down at the bottom I "That was after he had delivered the letter," said of the You see I wan tea to see if the rush-Dick. "But where is he now?" ers had made any move, and I found out blame sud"Hold on a bit; you shall see him. Boys, the lit den that they had, for they were there, and they tle old man may be peculiar, but he's all right. He moved on me. showed me the way to a fortune, and all he asks in "What's that you say, Dick? How did they capt-return is to be let alone." ure me? Why, they lassoed me. One of 'em had a "Mad?" inquired Dick. ... rope, and he just threw it round my neck and pulled "Well, a little." until I was almost strangled. That's the way they "I .thought so. Do you know him?" got me, and the next I knew they were firing the Before tla.e Unknown could answer, a noise like thun-q uestions at me to find out how to get up the mount-der was heard inside the cave. ain. Did I tell, 'em? No, sir, I didn't tell 'em! "What in the world was that?" demanded Ned, That's not my style. But I'll be hanged if one of roused to action at last. 'em didn't find it out for himself while I was there. ; "Come and see," replied the Unknown. "Here's


YOUNG KLO NDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. 25 your trump card, Young Klondike a look !" Come and have this la.dder reached to the center of the earth I'd go He led the way into the cave. It was a small affair just like a dozen other caves in the Klondike country which the boys had seen, except that right in the middle was an opening exactly like a mining snaft down into which the rope ran. "Natural or artificial ?" asked Ned. "Artificial!" said the Unknown. "Built by John the mummy. Another cave under this one. That's my trump card." "A mine?" inquired Edith. "You bet! The richest on the Klondike." "Hello! Hello! Hello!" was shouted up the shaft. out of "That's the little old man now," said the Un known "He's getting impatient to know how we made out. I ought to have let him know before He shook the rope and shouted down the shaft : "It's all right! We are all here! We are coming down right now." Immediately the rope was pulled down into the shaft. "Used to be a sailor, that fellov\'," said the Un known. "He was here twenty years ago, and hefore that thirty years ago with John, the mummy. In fact, he was John's partner, he tells me." Of course, all were greatly interested, and Ned pressed the detective for further information. "I won't tell you his name-I wanttosurprise you. All l'll say is this : He is a harmless lunatic, who for thirty years has known of what I believe to be one of the biggest gold deposits in the world; he never made any use of it, and he don't want to now. His carrying that little trunk on his back is one of his whims. He heard the yarn about the old man of the mountain, and it struck his fancy to personate him, and-hello, here's the ladder. Now, we'll go down." There was no ladder to be seen, so the detective's exclamation was not altogether clear, but the rope had stopped and was being shaken; by.this we mean the small rope, be it understood, the ship's cable-it was really three cables spliced together-had all disappeared down into the hole. The Unknown began pulling on the small rope and up came a rope ladder made on the most approved pattern and evidently the work of an expert. "He made it," said the Unknown. "That fellow can do anything. You'll see other ladders better than this before you get through." "Are we to go down and interview this mysterious individual?" asked Edith. "We are, most decidedly," replied the Unknown. "I'll go first to test the ladder. It's a long climb, more than two hundred feet. The Vnknown swung himself lightly into the shaft and disappeared down the ladder. "Are you good for it, Edith?" asked Ned. "It's y our turn next if you are. "Well, I should be ashamed of myself if I wasn't after all we've been through," replied Edith. "If down So it was Edith next and then Ned and last Dick who went down the swinging ladder. In a few moments all were assembled at the foot, where the Unknown stood holding a lantern. The littl e old man was nowhere to be seen. "Look, boss," said the Unknown to Ned. "You're the leader of this gang, and as your name is tacked I on to everything, it may as well be tack;ed on to this, too. Look at it. Ain't it a dandy ? Who says this mine ain't Young Klondike:s best? This is the trump card." CHAPTER XI. COOL CODMORE SAYS IT'S WAR TO THE KNIFE. THE walls around the bottom of the cave were not walls of rock asone might have expected to find in such a place, but walls of gravel. The fact was, an immense deposit of gravel had been left here by the retreating glacier, for in former ages tho ice field had been twice as large a .sit was at the present time. Something caused this vast gravel bank to separate leaving the shaft and a long narrow tunnel extending in the direction of Rocky river running off from it, and in every direction the gravel fairly bristled with golden nuggets. Millions upon millions were in sight. Young Klondike, Dick and Edith with struck dumb with amazement. Gold sufficient to buy the world lay all around them. Supposing that they could ever succeed in taking out even a small fraction of it they would be in all probability the richest people in the world. "Well, what do you think of that, dear boy ?'' cried the Unknown. "What do you think of that, eh? Ain't it great? Ain't it wonderful? Ye gods and little fishes, why, there's nothing like it in the known world." "It's the biggest thing I ever_ saw," replied Ned, "but mo:::,t difficult to handle." J "You bet we'll get there somehow It can be done." The words were hardly spoken when a curious sound was heard, followed instantly by a lrnavy thud in the distance, and the ground trembled beneath tbeir feet. "That's it There goes another one!" cried the Unknown. ''The blame thing keeps on dropping like that all the time. Come on and see the nuggets, boys. By the Jumping Jeremiah, the woods are full of them." He hurried forward into the tunnel, swinging his lantern, and they presently came to a place where a.


26 Y OUNG KLONDIKE'S C ARD. large quantity of the gravel had fallen and lay strewn I The Unknown then started off swinging his lantern across their path. and chattering away about the peculiarities of Joe Regardless the danger of another drop, Ned Dusenbury. kneeled down and began pulling over the gravel. At every turn Ned expected to see that singular "It's just chock full of nuggets," he declared. individual, but he did not appear. "Couldn't very well be richer. I cnever saw any-O.n they went. The tunnel seemed interminable. thing equal to it yet." For a while it would slope upward and Ned began "But," said Dick, looking around fearfully, "this to wonder if they were coming out on top of the place is liable to cave in any time. It's just as dan-ridge; again it would take a deep dip downward and gerou. s as it

------------------------YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. 27 =-===================-===========================--;==:========================= "It's the underground hut!" cried Ned. "Well, well, this is a surprise !" They a.U passed in through the opening. It seemed strange to find themselves back in their old quarters again. No one had ever thought of the board being movable, or dreamed of the existence of the cave during the days they spent in the hut. But being at home again, so to speak, they imme diately set out to make themselves comfortable. Edith declared that they should have breakfast at once. It was a cold spread, though, for they did not dare to start a fire in the little stove, for fear of the smoke attracting the attention of those overhead. While they ate, they discussed the situation. The main thing was to keep the Trump Oard a secret from the rushers until the law could be com plied with and the land above the tunnel secured to them for its whole length. We may as well turn in and get a little sleep," remarked the Unknown, at last. "If Dusenbury comes back he'll soon make his presence known, and as for Oodmore and his gang we are safe enough from them for a few hours yet." There were no two opinions on this subject, for all were pretty well tired out, so they tumbled into their old places and were soon off in the land of Nod, in "He who fights and runs away may live to fight another day, dear boy. Anything the matter with that maxim ? I say again let's go." "So do I," added Edith, coming down the ladder. "Let's go right out by the way we came in and join the rushers at their camp. We've got friends enough there to protect us against t1ie toughs every time." Crash Bang l Right then the boards were heard falling and men's voices calling to each other overhead. "l give in-we'll go," said Ned. The Unknown pushed aside the board and Edith slipped through the opening. The Unknown and Dick followed, but before Ned could get through Cool Ood more and three toughs came bursting in the hut. "Hold on there, Young Klondike !" shouted C0d more. "It's war to the knife between us. We've got old scores to settle and you don't escape us so!" Cool Oodmore was fighting drunk and looked desperate as he whipped out a revolver and fired point blank at Ned. CHAPTER which delightful country they remained until, all at HOW THE UNKNOWN'S TRUMP CARD FAILED TO WIN once, Young Klondike found himself suddenly broad THE GAME. awake and sitting bolt upright in his bunk. What had aroused him? IF Cool Oodmore had been sober no doubt Young It seemed as if something had happened; Ned had Klondike would have met his end then and there in an indistinct idea that he had heard something in his the hut, but as it was the ball flew wide of its intended sleep. mark. It was dark in the hut, for the Unknown's lantern Ned did not atten1pt to return fire, but dodged had gone out. through the opening und was able to put the board Had he been dreaming ? back into place. It seemed as though it must have been so, for all He ran toward the light which was flashing ahead was silent now. of him and joined his friends. He listened and waited but nothing occurred, and "Hurt?" demanded Dick, who ran to meet him. he was just about dropping off again, when all at I "Not a. bit of it. They saw me, though. It was once there was a thunderous noise overhead. Cool Oodmore who fired. They are after us-here Ned knew instantly what it mea ,nt. they come." Someone was cutting through the boards at the "Run! Run !" cried the U nkno-wn. "vVe'll fight top of the shaft. if we have to, but not while our legs will help us out." "Dick! Dick! Wake up!" he shouted. "SomeAnd the Unknown fl.ashed his lantern forward in one coming down l" such a manner that it gave no assistance to those beDick was out of the bunk and on his feet in an inhind. stant and so was the Unknowri. "Hold on there! Stop or we'll blow you to blazes!" I hear I'm awake I'm coming clown too shouted Cool Oodmore. "We know all about your called Edith from the loft. big bonanza and we'll head you off yet." The boys seized their rifles and prepared to defend shots came whizzing after them, but they themselves. ran straight on gaining steadily on their pursuers, "They'll not drive us out of here if I know it l" who were unprovided with a lantern. cried Ned. "Here I am and here I propose to stay-At last they could hear no more of them, and as what's the matter with you, Zed? What are you Edith was pretty well winded they slackened speed. shaking your head at me for?" "I guess we are safe enough now," said the Un-" By the Jumping Jere11iah, a man has a right to known. "That talk of heading us off is all poppy shake his head if he wants to, and I'm doing it becock. I don't believe they know anything about my cause I say let's don't stay here-let's go." I trump card at all." "ls a man to be driven off his own ground?" "They've got mine all right then," replied Ned,


28 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CARD. "but, of course, they can't hold it. Just let us get out of this snap and we'll join the rushers our selves." They walked on and were making good time, when the Unknown suddenly declared that there was sand in his boots and that he could walk no further until it was out. "You keep right on, I'll overtake yo u, 4e said. Don't stop for me, please." Never dreaming of what this might mean, Ned, Dick and Edith walked on. They had not gone a hundred yards when a frightful crash was heard behind them. "For Heaven's sake!" gasped Edith, clutching Young Klondike's arm. It had come at last. A vast mass of gravel had fallen, the tunnel was choked up, retreat cut off, and the Unknown nowhere to be seen. To describe the sense of horror which came upon Young Klondike and his friends, would be quite im possible. Words fail us. They stood there dumb. "Oh, Ned! It's terrible, terrible!" wailed Edith, at last. any digging to be done, we may as well do it on t.he other end and take our chances on finding poor Zed." They started back for the other end of the shortened tunnel, overawed by the situation, and it is unnecessary to say thoroughly frightened, although neither one showed it by so much as a sign. "It's my opinion the heaviest fall was on the other side," Ned remarked, quietly. "It wouldn't surprise me a bit if the whole shaft was choked up. I'm afraid the poor Unknown's trump card will never take a trick." By this time they had reached the blockade, and were standing hopelessly surveying it, when all at once a light flashed on the gravel before them. "What in the world!" cried Ned, wheeling around suddenly, to behold the little old man of the mountain standing in the tunnel facing them. He held a lighted lantern in his hand, but did not have the trunk strapped to his back. "Well, boys, it has come at last he said. I looked for this years ago. Where's your friend?" "Lost! Lost in the gravel there!" answered Ned. "How came you here Can you help us to get out of this?" "It's tough on the Unknown. I'm afraid he's a goner!" gasped Ned. He shouted to the detective; so did Dick, whose "How I came here don't amount to anything," re-voice was louder than Ned's. plied the man, "but as to getting you out I can do There was no answer then, but when they called a it. I'm sorry for your friend. He was a good man. second time they thought they heard a cry. Well, we must all die. Boys, do you remember me?" Strangely enough, it did not seem to come from be"Dusenbury," said Dick. hind, but ahead. "Yes, and that's really my name. I suppose I'm a What was to be done? .... crank. They say I am. I don't care for gold. I've The tunnel was completely blockaded. known where millions upon millions lay now these Again and again they shouted but there was no many years, bl:lt I wouldn't put out my hand to take answer now. it. Too late now The millions of my friend's old "We'd better.hurry out by big shaft and get I will never be seen back to Rocky river for help," said Ned, hollowly. I Has the shaft filled up? asked Ned. "Just what we'll do," replied Dick, "but will it do "C?lla_psed entirely. _The whole ridge is any good? Poor Zed! I'm afraid it's all up with The smkmg of the glacier was only the begmmng. him." There may be another collapse in a minute which will They ran on, but worse was to happen. With the close on us. Com_e, if your friend has escaped i.t is shaft almost in sight another crash came this time by a miracle. If he is under the gravel there we can't in front of them. help him. By the way, what was his name?" It was awful in its intensity. The whole mountain "We can't tell you," replied Ned. "We never seemed to tremble, and down came a vast mass of knew it." gravel, choking up the passage before them and en"What? He your partner and you not k11ow his veloping them in a cloud of dust. name?" "We're lost!" cried Ned. "'Heavens! The rest "That's the truth, strange as it may seem." of it will be down in a minute. What are we going "Then there are other cranks among these mount-to do now?" ains besides me, it would appear. Well, boys, I'm It was a momentous question. harmless, I like to collect plants and live with N a .ture Here they were prisoners in tunnel and liable to here, in this Arctic w\lderness, which was a wilderness be crushed to death at any moment. yesterday, but is so no longer. I shall leave these "It looks _very much as though we were here to mountains now that the rush has come to Rocky stay," said Ned, at last. "Well, here's an end to. river, and push on further into the wilderness out of all our fine schemes." thP. way of man. Come, follow me." "Can nothing be done?" asked Edith. Certainly, the man seemed anything but mad, or lf "What can we do? Dig out? I guess not:'' his brain was in a measure touched he was, at least, "At all events we n.ust try," said Dick. "It won't harmless as he said. pay us to stand idly here." He walked back by the way they had come with "Don't propose to," replied Ned, "but if there's 1 dignified tread. Ned wondered how he could


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S TRUMP CA.RD. 20 mistaken him for a common miner when they met I "Hands up there, Young Klondike !" cried Cod before. I more. "You can't escape us! By time we've got He tried to question him further, but the man did I you now !" not seem to want to talk. I He covered Ned with a cocked revolver, while Jerry Presently, when they had almost reached the block-Pilcher and another seized Dick, and two others got ade he turned ll;,Side and passed through a narrow hold of Edith. break in the wall, a mere slit it seemed. In the deep It was all done in a moment and resistance seemed shadows it was barely visible. Neither Ned nor his impossible. companions had observed it before. Before they realized where they were at they found "Is this the way out?" asked Edith. themselves prisoners in the hands of the gang. Dusenbury made no answer. He seemed to have "Put down that revolver, Cool Codmore," said talked himself out. Ned, quietly. "You won t make anything by this Hurrying on up a narrow path, steadily ascending move. What do you mean by this attack anyhow? he suddenly passed out of sight; the boys and Edith Stand aside and let us pass." following, they fouud themselves on the ridge the "Not on your life !" sneered Codmore. "What do very point where the little old man had so strangely, we mean? Why, we mean business; we meau tbe big disappeared. bonanza, and we are going to come out top of the "Where is he?" exclaimed Ned. "By gracious, heap! Looker hyar, Young Klondike We've had he's gone again !" enough of your airs, and we mean to take you down It was a fact. Dusenbury had vanished in his several pegs. That mine down there by the under-usual mysterious way. ground hut is going to belong to us, and so is the big To be sure, there was plenty of chance for it here. nuggets. But we't satisfied with that. We un He might have gone into the thick grove of fir trees derstand there's more yet, better yet, richer yet a little further up the ridge, in which he might be One of our boys has had his eyes and ears open, and hiding, or he might have gone on toward the shaft we know. Where's your big bonanza-the hole you and lost himself among the big rocks, or even down call your trump card?" upon the sunken glacier, for the way was not impas"Do you suppose I'll ever tell you?" replied Ned. sable here. "Do you think for an instant that you can force me Ned called him, but got no answer. into anything like that?" "It is useless to waste time looking for him," he "Well, I can try," growled Codmore. "Look out declared. "He went away because he wanted to go, now It's coming! We are going to do you. On e and the chances are we wouldn't find him if we tried. two--" Let's hurry on toward the camp." Did he mean to fire at the word three? By this time it was broad daylight, and the camp If he did he missed his mark, for he never got that of the rushers lay in full view before them. far. As far as they were concerned all danger seemed to j Ned leaped upon him, wrenched the revolver away have passed. j with one hand, and caught him by the throat with They could see the prospectors moving about the the other. camp. In a twinkling they were struggling desperately-Doz ens of tents had been put in place along the struggling right at the edge of the cliffs which over-banks of Rocky river. hung the sunken glacier. Great fires were burning-all along. the line; pros"Help! Take him off! He's strangling me!" pecting had evidently begun on an extended scale roared Codmore. Many of these men were Young Klondike's friends, "Don't interfere! I'll shoot!". shouted Ned. and he well knew that he bad only to say the word to "Either this man has got to go down or I have Be get all the help he wanted to attempt the rescue uf ware!" the Unknown. Now, Ned did not mean down the precipice. All "We'll get right over to the camp," said Dick. he thought of was forcing Cool Codmore to the "There ain't a moment to be lost if we still have any ground, but over the precipice they went, just the I:ope of rescuing poor Zed." same. One false step on Young Klondike's part and Th ey hurried on along the ridge. Presently dedown he went, pulling Codmore after him, who gave 'scending they came to a place where the camp was a despairi,ng yell. no longer visible. Here it was necessary to pass "Oh! Oh!" screamed Edith, struggling with her through a deep hollow where there were many big captors. rocks piled up helter skelter. It looked as if some Dick in his desperation tore himself free and knocked giant had thrown them there as a boy might throw down both men, joining in the rush to the edge of the down a handful of pebbles. cliff, a rush which was checked in short order, for at As they were passing among these rocks, Cool the same instant shouts and hurried footsteps were Codmore and Jerry Pilcher with a dozen or more heard at the top of the rise on the other side of the drunken toughs behind them suddenly sprang into hollow, and a crowd of men came rushing down. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, they've killed Young


30 YOUNG KLONDIKE 'S TRUMP CARD. Klondike!" shouted the voice of the Unknown. I and everybody else welcomed Young Klondike as the "Kill 'em! Capture 'em! Sweep 'em off the earth! I leader of the Rocky river rush. Don't let a man escape!" The little old man of the mountain was never seen It was the Unknown alive and well, followed by 1 again. fully fifty honest miners, but there was no need of any Two weeks later Rocky river was as flourishing a killing so far as avenging Young Klondike was con-camp as there was on the Yukon, or the Klondike, cerned. either, for that matter. For at the same instant Ned bobbed up serenely Young Klondike's Trump Card proved the king pin over the cliff, dragging the limp form of Cool Codof the camp, and is being worked yet with astonish-more after him. ing. success. They had only :a.Uen about five feet, landing on a The big nugget proved worth more than twenty rocky shelf, but Codmore struck his head and was thousand dollars, and is now on exhibition in the stunned and thus proved easy game for Ned. Dawson City Exchange. There was great rejoicing all a.round as soon as the But the Unknown's trump card failed utterly. The toughs were secured, which took just about two min-shaft was quite choked up. Young Klondike has or and a half. gamzed a compar.y to open it, so it may be heard of "So you thought I was dead, did you?" exclaimed later on. the Unknown. "Well, I thought the same of you, Meanwhile, although the Trump Card was paying but it seems the cave-in left us both alive. I just rewell, Golden & Luckey could not rest idle. turned tq the hut and came with help to rescue you New adventures of a startling nature were upon all-ye gods and little fishes It seems that I was them within a very short time. just in time." The account of these happenings form the most in-lf there was any more of our story to tell we should teresting story of the series. It is the next to be iscertainlJ tell it, but such is not the case. j sued, and is entitled "YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ARCTIC Cool Codmore and his toughs were run out of camp, TRAIL; OR, LosT IN A SEA OF IcE." U-sef-u.1 a:n.d I:n.s"tr-u.c"ti ve :Books. HOW TO BECOME A BOWLER-A complete manual of bowling. Containing full instructions for playing all the standard Ameri can 11.nd German games, together with rules and systems of sporting in use by the principal bowling clubs in the United States. By BarLholomew Batterson. Price 10 cents. For sale by all newsdealers in the United States and Canada, or sent to your address, postage free, on receipt of the r,rice. Address '.Frank Tousey, West 26th Street, New York. MULDOON'S is one oC the most original joke books ever published, and it is brimful of wit and humor. It contains a large collection of songs, jokes, conundrums, etc., of Terrence Muldoon, the great wit, humorist, and practical joker of the day. We offer this amusing book, together with the picture of "Muldoon," for the small snm of 10 cents. Every \Joy who can enjoy a good substantial joke should obtain a copy immediately. Address Frank Tousey, publisher, 29 West 26th Street, New York. HOW TO WRITE LETTERS-A wonderful little book, telling you how to write to your sweethea.rt, your fathei-, mother, >

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