Young Klondike's ice boat express, or, The golden cave on the glacier


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Young Klondike's ice boat express, or, The golden cave on the glacier

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Young Klondike's ice boat express, or, The golden cave on the glacier
Series Title:
Young Klondike
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Author of Young Klondike ( Old Miner )
Place of Publication:
New York
Publisher:
Frank Tousey
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English
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1 online resource (31 p.) ;

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Dime novels ( lcsh )
Gold mines and mining -- Fiction ( lcsh )
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serial ( sobekcm )

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University of South Florida
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University of South Florida
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The University of South Florida Libraries believes that the Item is in the Public Domain under the laws of the United States, but a determination was not made as to its copyright status under the copyright laws of other countries. The Item may not be in the Public Domain under the laws of other countries.
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025503740 ( ALEPH )
15005620 ( OCLC )
Y14-00018 ( USF DOI )
y14.18 ( USF Handle )

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Issued Weekl1-B11 Subscriptioit -$%.50 year. Entered as .Se_ cond Class Matter at the New Yo1 k Post Office, by Frank Tousey. No. 25. NEW YORK, J!EBRU.ARY 8, 1899. Price 5 Cents. : / .. "Jump, Edith! Jump, Dick!" cried Young Klondike-. "The ice boat is going into the gorge. for your lives!" Editll sprang off, landing on the ice safely but Dick missed his footing and the Unknown went sprawling on his back, but Young Klondike still clung to the ice ooat.

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Stories of a Gold Seeker. Issu e d Weekly-B y S11bscription 8 2 .50 p e r ytar E1t tered as Se c o n d C lass Matter a t the New Y ork. N. Y Pos t Offic e March 15, 1898. Ent e1e d acc o rding to Act o f Congress 1 : n the_year 1 899, in t h e o.{!ice of the Lib1 arian of C o n g ..ess, Washington, D C by Frank 1 'ouse y, 29 West 26th Street N ew York. No. 25. NEW YORK, February 8, 1899. Price 5 Cents. -ORTHE GOLDEN CA VE ON THE GLACIER, BY AUTHOR OF YOUNC KLONDIKE. CHAPTER I. PROSPECTING IN CARIBOU CREEK. "NED, this is awful slow work. I No wood, that' s a fact, Dick," cried Ned. "With out wood no fire." 1 "This means a long journey up the creek to Klondike mining generally is, Dick That's n e w experience for us." no I get it." "If we o nl y had some wood." "But we haven't, so there's no good t a lking. If w e strike it rich, and I think we shall, our l abor w ill be well paid for." The two speakers-both young men-had just survey ed Caribou creek and fixed upon the spot where they w ere now w orking. The creek was in Valde s Bay, o n the Gulf of Alaska, and it w a s as wild and dreary a place as can well be i m agine d. Nothing but bare rocks, ice and snow, with the sea beyond. Not a tree or vestige of vegetation to be s ee n an ywhere. The winter had just beguq, but the creek was not -yet frozen over. The ground t o a depth o f many feet was frozen as solid as a rock. It always is in these parts. When wood is obtainable great fires -are b uilt to thaw out the gro und, and after this has been d o ne sufficiently digging begins. As there was no w o od, the two y o u n g men were obliged to use a drill. Then with rendrock cartridges they intended to blow out the hole. "We'll have all our work f o r nothing!" exclaimed Dick, s udd e nly. "Why?" "Because the cartridges are fro zen, and w e've nothing to tha w them with. It should be understoo d that rendrock freezes at a high temperature, and when a cartridge is frozen it is practically useless. "l have it!" cried N ed, sudd e nly. "We're going to break up c amp, anyway, so we m a y well make use of our log hut." They soon h a d a sma ll fir e burning, and Ned, sitting before it, bega n to tha w out the c artridges, turning them round and round, so that no one p art of them s hould g e t too hot. "Dick, the y 're cooked to a turn. Now, to use them." Whe n the cartridge was placed in the hol e a c a p with a long fuse was attached to it. "All' s ready, Dick! c ried Ned. "Ge t b a ck quick! I'm going to touch it off!" Saying this, Ned lighted the fuse. Dick had run back quickly, and Ned lost no time in following his example. Where they were working was just on the edge of the creek, which too k a sudden turn a few yards above them. "Look, look!" cried Dick. The two young men stared in amazement at a strange -looking obj ect tha t came round the b e nd. A great threecornered s a il was sprea d, a nd the mast which supported it rose out o f what appeared to be a raft. On the raft a m a n w a s standing. "That beats ev erything N e v e r saw such a craft as tha t in my life b e fore, N ed Dick excl a imed. But Ned was not thinkin g of this. Sudd e nl y the danger in which the man on the r aft was occurred to him.

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-2 Y OUNG KLONDI KE'S ICE B OAT EXPRE SS. The strange vessel was sailing rapidly to the very "Say, mister," said a small voice, "any more of spot where the explosion was about to take place. them blamed fireworks about?" The rendrock would blow the craft and its occupant The boys were delighted to find he was alive, and to pieces. immediately they helped him out from under the "Hello, mister! Hello!" shouted Ned at the top bank, where he was taking refuge. -0f his voice, running up the creek as he spoke. .As soon as he was on land again he began to abuse "Great Heavens! He'll be killed!" cried Dick. them, jumping round to shake the water off himself, "Back! Back!" shouted Ned, excitedly. and speaking as he did so. The man on the raft never moved. His back was "What in thunder are ye doing, anyway ?" he de-towards the boys, and he was looking across the river. manded, angrily. "Nice young fellers and no mis .All their shouting did not make him turn round, take, setting traps for strangers. Darn ye, a little .and the two young men made enough noise now to, more, and I'd have been a goner." wake the dead. "We are prospecting for gold," shouted Ned, in "He can't be alive!" cried Dick, "or he'd hear us." the man's ear. "Supposing he's deaf?" "Old, am I?" asked the stranger, fiercely, mis That must be it. How can we warn him? To understanding what had been said, as deaf people think of the poor creature being blown to pieces is will. "Say, I may be old, but I'm young enough to .awful. Why not put out the fuse?" J lick you two, anyway. What the blazes do you call "Don't monkey with that, Dick. It's certain death yourselves?" to do so. It's burned too far down." "Golden & Luckey." "Hello! Hello!" The stranger could not hear Ned. He stared Dick had his hands to his mouth still shouting in a vacantly at him. last vain attempt to warn the man on the raft of the "Write it down, Ned," said Dick "Talking to danger into which he was drifting. him makes one dead tired." Ned realized that these proceedings were useless. Ned followed the suggestion at once. 1 .A good idea occurred to him, however. Taking a pencil from his pocket, he wrote: "We "Though he's deaf as a post, Dick," he cried, "I belong to the firm of Golden & Luckey." guess he ain't blind." The man gave a great jump as he read it. With that Ned picked up a piece of rock about the "I am Ned Golden," wrote Ned. "That is Dick size of an orange. He threw it so it passed over Luckey," he also scribbled in pencil, to Dick the man's head and fell into the water in front of him as he did so. with a great splash. "Then you be Young Klondike !" cried the Needless to say he turned at once to know where it stranger. came from. There was an angry look on his face. Ned nodded his head. "Keep them blamed stones to yourself," he "Course I've heard of both of you, misLer Every-shouted. body in .Alaska has. Speak a bit quick and I may Ned and Dick were pointing to the ground that manage to hear you." they had mined, trying their utmost to show the man The stranger was quite right. From Dawson City on the raft the danger that threatened him. to St. Michael, and from the latter place to Juneau, "If he's ever done any mining, Ned, he'll know I the firm of Golden & Luckey was a household word, what we mean," cried Dick. and there was not a miner who had not heard of or "He sees it!" slrouted Ned. seen the two daring young men .At this instant the brown face of the stranger be Strange .to say the man appeared to hear them came as pale as the snow around him, and a look of now. terror came over it. This lasted for a moment or two only, during which the man appeared bewildered. Clearly he did not know how to act. Then he made a rush across his raft, going headforemost into the water as far from the shore as possible. .A,s he disappeared there was a tremendous ex plosion. It seemed to shake the earth. Huge masses of earth and rock flew in all directions. When all was quiet again all that remained of the strange craft were some pieces of wood drifting on the water. The explosion had blown it to atoms. "Where's the man?" cried Dick. "He must be drowned." Ned had a shrewd suspicion that the mention of his name had had a magical effect upon him. ''I'm a ruined man," whined the stranger. "Ruined! Nonsense!" cried Ned. "It doesn't take much money or time to build such a raft as that. .A few logs and some cord and there you are." "Say, Young Klondike, that wasn't just an every day sort of raft. .Anyway, the boat tnat it was carrymg wasn't." "The boat it was carrying?" "Sure. The c,raft with the big sail was an ice boat." ".And what good is an ice boat?" asked Ned. You can't sail over snow on an ice boat." "But you can over a glacier, young feller." "What glacier ?"

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.. YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 3 "The Valdes glacier. Say, you must have heard shall sail with it right down Caribou creek again. of it." May I ax, mister, if I'll find you here ?" "Oh, that glacier. Why, yes, I should think I "Don't know why you shouldn't," said Ned. "We have. But you ain't going to sail about on this have a good many days' work before us. It's no easy glacier all winter just to amuse yourself, are you?" job blowing up this frozen ground." "Young feller, I'm a poor man-poorer. now than I "You ain't got no grub, mister, and something ever was in my life before, and you bet I haven't any warm to drink, eh?" time for playing. Hiram Hart's my name-old "Plenty, over there in the hut. Hello, Dick, there Hi they mostly calls me. I've done pretty well they are, coming up the valley." everything since I came North, a nd nothing's panned Two people had just emerged from the canyon. out well, and now to finish the business, you've One was a girl, and even at the distance at which blown my darned old craft to pieces, and what am I I she was it was clear that she was graceful and pretty. to do ?" The other was a man of rather remarkable appear" Don't let that worry you. I'll give you the monance, at least for Alaska. ey to build another," said Ned. He was quite short and bad on a pair of high cavalry "You will?" cried Hart, looking doubtfully at the boots which came considerably above his knees. On young man. his head was a tall hat. "Certainly." When he saw Ned and Dick he commenced to run, For Ned Golden this was an outlay not. worth think-shouting to the girl to do t'ie same. In a few mining of, for he was a millionaire many times over. utes he had joined the two boys. Since be bad come to the Klondike his luck had been Catching sight of Hiram Hart be stared hard at wonderful, and be and his partners owned many valu-him for a few moments. able mines, besides having large sums to their credit Then he suddenly pounced upon him and seized him in several banks in San Francisco and Dawson City. by both wrists. "Yes, you shall have the boat for sure," said Dick "By the Jumping Jeremiah, there's my man now !" Luckey, "only you haven't told us yet what you're be cried, as he sprang forward, and be and Hiram, going to do with it." locked in each other's arms, rolled over into the hole "To make money with it, to be sure." which the boys bad just made. "Make money!" repeated Dick. "Don't quite see how you're going to do that." "Run an express, boss, that's what." CHAPTER II. "An express!" THE ICE BOAT EXPRESS IS BUILT. "You bet! An ice boat express right across the THEY were out of the hole in a moment, the little Valdes glacier. There's a whole lot of folks what man dragging his prisoner with him. wants to work up to Dawson City, and they'd go I "Ye gods and little fishes, I've got you at last!" Copper river way if it wasn't for that tarnation gla-he cried. "Hold on, though! Wrong again! Beg cier, and besides, there's the diggings in there that I pardon, friend. I see that I've made a mistake!" takes some. Tacking across it's darned slow work. "Tarnation !" exclaimed Hiram, rubbing his head, Enough to scare any chap. Flying's different, and which bad been bumped violently aga.inst the rocks, by gosh, it's fiying's the word for it on my craft. "are you crazy, mister?" 'Stead of days, it'll be a few hours." "Crazy ? Not much! A little error on my pa.rt. "I like this idea," said Ned. Don't you, Dick?" No man is infallible." "Yes; I believe Mr. Hart is on the right track.1 "You mustn't take any notice of him," said Ned. There's money in bis scheme." "It's a way he bas. This is my friend, the Un" It shan't be my fault if he doesn't try it, any, known." way," said Ned. "How long will it take you to get "Then, by gosh, the sooner he changes his way another boat built?" he asked. the pleasanter it's going to be for everybody. Young "A week," replied Hart. j fellers, i{ he hadn't been a friend of yours, I'd have "What's the cost?" filled him with lead." Old Hi looked at Young Klondike cunningly. He The Unknown was fond of playing this kind of was thinking how high it would be safe to strike him. trick. "Ought to get it for five hundred dollars," be He was a detective by profess10n. _an over the said. world he had traveled, looking for a mysterious in" Very well; here's the money." dividual whom he called "bis man." Saying this, Ned Golden took a big roll of bills out No one knew what crime this man had committed, of his pocket, and banded over five of one hundred dol-nor who be was. lars each to Hiram Hart, who clutched them eagerly, Neither did anybody know the Unknown's real stowing them away at once. name. He bad been with Ned and his friends for a "Where's the boat. to be built?" asked Dick. long 1 ; ime now, and Zed was the only name to which "Up the creek at Tanana-a ten mi.le tramp, boss. he would answer; this was short for Zedekiah, which That's nothmg, though. When the craft's fimshed I he claimed was his Christian name.

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YOUNG KLONDIKE S JUE BOAT EXPRESS. "Well, Edith," said Ned, turning to the girl, "you haven't brought back any game." "Didn't fire a shot, Ned; saw nothing." "Just as I told you, so Dick will have to live on canned goods still." The girl's name was Edith Welton. Ned had saved her from a shipwreck on the way to Alaska, and since then she had traveled everywhere with the two boys and the Unknown, sharing all the dangers and privations which fell to their lot. She was a full partner in the firm of Golden & Luckey. At this point Hiram Hart called attention to the fact that he was still fasting. He was taken to the hut, where he had a good meal. "Guess I'll push on, boss," he said, speaking to Young Klondike, "so's to make Tanana before dark. So long. You'tl see me and my ice boat mighty quick, I'm thinking." Edith asked for an explanation as soon as the man had gone. The reference to the ice boat puzzled her. "I don't think we'll ever see him again," she said, when she had heard the story. "Why not?" "He's no good. I could see it in his face. He looked quite bad enough to be the man the Unknown is looking for. He has your money, and that's all he wants." "What is the next move, dear boy ?" asked the Unknown. "Have you arranged a programme." Yes," laughed Ned, "a very simple one. We have to sink a shaft here, and try for gold. Get a move on you, Zed." The two boys and the Unknown went to work, whilst Edith busied herself in the hut in preparing all," said the Unknown. "Wish we hadn't come away round here on a fool's errand." "I'm dead sure there is," answered Ned. We got our information from parties who ought to know, and I propose to follow up the work. Just listen. I'll tell you what my plan is." "Go on." "We'll make our winter camp right here on Car ibou creek." "By the Jumping Jeremiah," cried the Unknown, "it's impossible. There's nothmg left to eat but snow, and cold diet never agreed with me." "What's the matter with going to Tanana for supplies?" "The place where Hiram Hart is having his ice boat built?" "The same, Dick. We'll start right away." "I think it's too late," said Edith. Better wait till to-morrow.'' "I vote with Edith," said the Unknown. "Recol lect it's a case of tramping. If we had our boat, it would be different. That's smashed, you know." "What do you say, Dick?" ''"I say let's go on the move at once. We've no time to waste, Ned. We can fit out at Tanana and be back here rn a couple of days, so that we can put in a lot of work before the snow comes." "Two against two," cried Ned. "I change my vote," exclaimed the Unknown. "You desert me?" asked Edith. "Why?" "Duty beckons me to Tanana, Edith. I have a, presentiment I shall find my man there.'.' The preparations for departure occupied a few min utes. supper for them. It was very laborious. They saw that the hut was securely fastened. Then As fast as a hole was drilled, a rendrock cartridge taking their rifles they started. was exploded. It took them six days to reach the They had nothing but their game to carry. There black sand, eighteen feet from the surface. was no occasion to take any food, for they had only Then the gold washing began. ten miles to walk. This work proceeded rapidly. There was an abun-It would be easy to find the way. It was simply a dance of water near at hand. question of following the creek till they came to the The sand was dumped into the rocker. Then the town. water was poured in, passing out the other end. The ground was covered with snow to a great All day they worked without result. Not one dol-depth, but as the surface was frozen a hard crust was lar's worth of gold was obtamed. formed upon which walking was quite easy. "Suppose we throw this up, Ned," said the UnThey had not stopped srnce they left Valdes Bay, known. "I'm fond enough of work, but not when and would not have done so now if it ha. d not been for it's useless." Dick. "Yes," laughed Ned. "We know you llke work, He pointed to some marks on the snow. Zed. You shall help sink the shaft six feet deeper. "Bear!" he said. Maybe it'll pan out better." "No doubt, but that's nothing to us." Two more days were occupied in drawing dirt from "It's a good deal. I'd like to have a slice of bear the shaft and washing it. A little gold was left in meat, a .nd I say we'd better hunt that bear." the rocker, but the quantity was so small that it did "Not on your life !" not encourage them to proceed. "You don't need to look far for him !" cried the Dick now proposed to stop work. Unknown. "There's brother bear sitting on the rock "I don't say get right away, Ned, but at any rate winking his eyes at us." we'll try another spot. We haven't struck the right "I'll make him wink the other eye!" exclaimed place." Edith, laughingly, as she b1ought her rifle to her "I'll be blest if I think there's any gold here at 1 shoulder.

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l YOUNG KLONDli:E'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 5 Edith was the crack shot of the party, having had long practice in the Tule lands of California. Bang! The firing of the shot and the disappearance of the hear seemed to take place together. At any rate, the bear was no longer to be seen. "You hit him, Edith!" cried Diel\, excitedly. "Per haps he's not dead, but he soon will be. I'll make a goner of him." Saying this, Dick dashed up towards the rocks where the bear was when he was first seen. More leisurely the others followed him. Suddenly, they saw Dick throw up his hands and topple forward. Where he had gone was more than they could say. "Dick! Dick!" shouted Ned, as he ran forward. No reply came. Edith turned pale. "He may be killed," she gasped. The Unknown kept his thoughts to himself. In less than two minutes all three stood at the place from which Dick had gone. The edge of the rock was as smooth as glass. The Unknown grasped Ned by the arm just as he was sliding down. "There's to reason why you shouldn't look for Dick," said the Unknown, "but not that way." The ground on the other side of the rock sloped towards the river. It was not very steep, and nothing but its slippery surface made the descent difficult. "He's missed his footing and slid right down!" cried Ned. "We shall find him. Dick, Dick!" Again there was no reply, and this fact alarmed the three friends. Cautiously they descended, making as little noise as possible. Then, peering around the corner, a fearful sight met their eyes. Dick was lying on his back on the ground near the edge of the creek. Over him was standing a great black bear. "If he moves he's a dead man," said the Unknown. Young Klondike's heart almost ceased to beat. "We cannot save him!" he gasped. Bang! "That settles him, I think," said Edith, quietly. She had acted while the others were talking. And her shot told. The bear was mortally wounded. He rolled over instantly, his huge body falling off the bank into the creek. So they resumed their journey, eventually reaching Tanana just as it was dark. "Suppose we try to find Hiram Hart," said Dick. "You don't have to look far, dear boy," the Un known observed. "If that isn't his voice my name is--" Your name?" "Ned, I think we agreed my name was Zed." Out of a hut came a flying body, followed by the report of several shots rapidly fired. The flying body was a man who almost knocked Young Klondike down as he flew past. He landed in the snow where he lay motionless. Hiram Hart, sure enough," said Ned, bending over him. "Is he dead ?" asked Dick. '' No, he's breathing, right enough. He doesn't appear to have been hit." "Not by a bullet," said the Unknown, "but by a club. Look here, his skull's cracked. What's to be done with him?" "We can't leave him here. We'll carry him in." The owner of the hut strongly objected, but changed his mind when Ned told him who he was and offered to pay for the care bestowed upon him. "He's no good, Young Klondike," said the man. "Carne back here with five hundred dollars, and where is it now? Not a red in his pocket." "He was going to buy an ice boat with the money." "What Did he work that old racket on you? Ha, ha Old Hi's pretty slick. Do I think he'll die? Can't say, only we won't wear very deep mourning if he does. Why was he thrown out? He got into a row with another man who's skipped." It was decided to stay where they were for the night as there was plenty of room. The two boys and the Unknown had beds in the kitchen, and Edith found herself very comfortably off in a sort of storeroom, which was dry and warm. "Evidently this is the place where we have to buy all the supplies for our winter camp," said Young Klondike, next morning, as they were having breakfast. "That saves a lot of trouble," cried Dick. "How's Hiram Hart to-day?" "Better, Edith, but it will be a long time before he will be about again." "I knew he was no good. But still, I'm glad we met him." Dick sprang to his feet. "I know who fired that shot I "Why?" Thanks, Edith," he I "Because it has put an idea into my head. Why exclaimed. "You're not hurt?" inquired Ned, in amazement. "Bruised a bit, that's all. I slid down the rock where the bear was waiting for me. Anyway, I have some fresh meat." "Not an ounce on your bill of fare to-night," laughed the Unknown. "He's in the river." "Come! Come!" cried Ned. "Talk as we go. vVe've lost too much time already. We can't bother to get the bear." shouldn't we have an ice boat ourselves?" "And run over the Valdes glacier on it. Hurrah!" cried Dick. great I Beat a winter camp out of sight. A precious lot more fun in it, and money too, I'm thinkmg. Anyhow it will be a change." The Unknown supported the proposal instantly. The prospect of running through the terrible cold of a Klondike winter was not an attractive one, although they had done this the winter before. l

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r 6 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BO.A.T EXPRJISS. "Dear boy, you must do it," he said. "You can J that height, and then you'll have plain sailing before have your ice boat built right here. If old Hi could y9u." get one, you can. I like to see the firm of Golden & Luckey branching out into new lines." "If we can get the boat," said Ned, "We will certainly give it a trial. We will see about it at once.'' It was found there was no difficulty in the way. There was plenty of wood at 'fanana, and a man who was able to build an ice boat. In a rough kind of way it is true, but sufficiently strong for the pur pose. "We shall want to get in a supply for the winter," said Ned. "So we may as well take it down with us to Valdes Bay, and store the stuff in the log hut there." This seemed to be a very sensible plan, so it was adopted. In six days the ice boat was finished. On the seventh a raft left Tanana carrying all the party, as well as Young Klondike's Ice Boat Express. Is there much ice, Zed ?" "Thirty miles straight ahead, Dick. The glacier is in a valley about three miles wide, bounded by great hills, whose peaks are perpetually covered with snow." "What a fearful place!" cried Edith. "It don't sound nice a bit." "Fearful? Why, it's great, Edith !" exclaimed Ned. "Imagine an ice boat flying across that gla cier at about the rate of an express train, which we shall do if we get some wind. By gracious, I wish we were there now !" "We shall be, old man, before we strike that glacier," said Dick, "if we don't get along. Have you noticed we haven't moved a yard the last fifteen minutes?" "By the Jumping Jeremiah, but that's true!" cried the Unknown, glancing towards the shore. "There's a sort of eddy here," said Ned. "This CHAPTER III. seems to fix us in one spot." THE ICE BOAT EXPRESS CROSSES THE GLACIER. "I know what we can do," exclaimed Dick; "we'll push the raft along; we have a pole." ON the way down the creek to Valdes Bay Young 1 "L t' tr t Klondike's party discussed their plans. .e s Yi 'anyway. They had ample time to do so for the raft occupied This plan was not successful. The reason was that little of their attention. the water was much deeper than they had expected The current carried it along, and at the kept it away from the bank. same time to find it, and so the pole would not reach to the bot tom. "What's to be done?" asked Dick. "We must tow the raft," answered Ned. The Unknown whistled. "There is not much to settle," said Dick; "when we get to Valdes Bay we strike right out for the glacier." "Just where is this glacier" asked Ned "I'd like' "Phew!" he exclaimed. "Do you mean to walk to know that." along the bank dragging the raft after you ? I don't "Look on the map, Ned. That will tell us." iike that.", This seemed a reasonable suggestion and it was "It W,?n t be very hard work. It will fl.oat easy adopted. The Valdes glacier was, however, not enough. marked down on the map, which is not to be won"Try it, try it, by all means," answered the Un dered at, seeing that it is only quite recently this known, briskly. "I'll sit on the raft and steer it. country has attracted attention. You must have some one here to keep it clear of the The Unknown sat smiling, and Dick happened to bank. That's a fair division of labor." look at him and saw that he had something on his "I have a better plan than that," said Edith. mind. "Why not hoist the sail of our ice boat? That would "I'll bet Zed knows something about it. There's take us along." not much he doesn't know!" he exclaimed. "Famous!" cried Ned. "That's the idea." "What I do know about it," said the Unknown, "Great! How strange we never thought of that," "is from hearsay. I've never been there, dear remarked Dick. boy." To run up the sail was an easy matter. In a few "Well, tell us what you've heard." minutes the great three-cornered sheet of canvas was "And where you heard it," Ned remarked. "If it spread out so as to take the wind. isn't reliable it will be thrown out of court." For awhile the craft lay becalmed on water. "Before you were out of your beds this morning I Not a breath of air ruffled the surface of the creek, had a chat," said the Unknown, "with a man I met but it was not long before distant waves at the rear at Tanana. He'd never been across the glacier, hut showed that a breeze was approaching, for the sail he'd met several men who had. It starts near Valfilled and the raft began to move through the water. des Bay at a height of nearly five thousand feet above "Hurrah now we're off !" shouted Dick. sea level." "Great Scott!" cried the Unknown. "Too much "Five thousand feet !" exclaimed Dick. "Why, off. The wind's carrying the ice boat off the raft. we can't sail our ice boat up such an ascent as that." In a minute we shall all be in the water." "You don't have to. You'll have to drag it up to "Down with the sail!" shouted Ned, jumping up j

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YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 'T and running toward the mast. ."Give me a hand ] no other peak near Valdes Bay. As I understand it. here. Quick!" that is our road." Almost instantly the great sail was lowered, com"Then off we go," shouted Ned. "You take hold ing down so quickly, that the spar narrowly escaped of this rope with me, Zed. Dick can take the hurting some one. other." "Another moment," said Dick, "and we should "And I will help him," cried Edith. have been overboard, and have lost all our stores, "No, no, Edith. We don't need your help." and perhaps our ice boat into the bargain." "But you'll have it all the same," said the girl, "Our own fault," said Ned. "I thought the grasping the rope. "I'll take my shartj of the work weight of the stores and of ourselves would have been so long as I can." .enough to keep the ice boat steady. That's where I They reached the foot of the pass without diffi-was wrong, but we can easil5r put things .straight. culty. It's only necessary to lash the ice boat to the raft For the first mile or two the ascent was very grad-with some stout cords." ual, a.nd t.lie surface of tne snow being frozen hard. After this was done progress was rapid. The wind the ice boat glided readily along. continued to blow steadily at the stern, so keeping the After this all was changed, for so steep did the assail out, it. caught the breeze and took the craft along. cent become that at times it seemed as if it would be The journey to Valdes Bay was made well under impossible to proceed. It was only by the greatest, all the circumstances, and it was not quite noon when exertion they were able to drag the ice boat along. the log hut was sighted. Once it sank through the snow and had to be dug By the time the ice boat was off the water, the out, which took up a lot of time. va.rious goods it carried had been stored away it was "In half an hour it will be dark!" cried Dick .. nearly dark, so it was decided that the night should "What shall we do?" be passed in the log hut, and that an early start "Take no notice of the darkness,'' answered Ned should be made the next morning. I "We'll go right ahead." Whilst Edith was preparing a good supper, Ned, "Dear boy, I differ with you,'' said the and the Unknown_ were busy loading t_he ice boat I "In the darkness the whole lot of us stand a very with the stores it was mtended to carry with them. good chance of falling into a crevasse, one thousand "We'll do everything to-night,'' said Ned, "so feet deep. Now, as I know my man isn't at the bot that we can start to morrow morning directly we've tom I, for one, won't take the risk." had breakfast." "Then you expect us to stay here all night, Zed?',. After supper Ned played the banjo and Edith sang. "Sure. There's some hemlock trees growing way Quite a pleasant time was spent before they all re-over there. We can cut some branches and make a tired for the night. good shelter. Travel by night when you must, Ned, "That's the last breakfast you'll cook for us for but not unless. Look!" cried the Unknown pointingsome time, Edith," said Ned, as they gathered around ahead to a great fissure in the rock. "Where shouldi the table next morning. we have been, if it had b een dark?" Edith stared at him in surprise. Ned force of the Unknown's argument. "Why, you never thought you were going with Taking their axes the boys clirn bed up to the hemus, did you?" asked Dick. "You didn't suppose we locks, and lopping off a quantity of branches, they should take you to such an awful place as the Valdes threw them down to the Unknown who carried them glacier is said to be?" to the boat. With the aid of some uprights sunk in "I didn't waste any time thinking about it, boys, the snow, a very fair shelter was made, and as there and I'm not doing any thinking now,'' replied Edith. seemed no prospect of a storm they looked forwa,rd to, "I've been everywhere with you before, and I'm go-the night without uneasiness. ing now. That's enough." Daylight found them on their way again, the Edith took her rifle and left the hut. weather still being fine. Hour after hour they toiled "Guess if she says she'll go, she will,'' muttered up the slope, and when darkness came Ned insisted Ned. that they should proceed. "There's not much doubt about that, dear boy,'' "We have a lantern,'' he said. "We can't camp remarked the Unl\nown. "So I advise you to-waste here." no more time in talk. You ought not to have sprung "Yes,'' cried Edith. "And I will carry it. I can it on Edith so suddenly as you did." go on ahead, and if there is a crevasse I shall warw The party had harnessed stout ropes to the ice boat. you." With these it was intended to drag it up the steep This precaution turned out to be unnecessary. !n-ascent. deed, the route improved somewhat, which was very Their way lay toward a narrow pass in the mounwelcome, for the two boys and the Unknown were altains, about three miles from the hut. most worn out. "Have we to go up there?" asked Dick, pointing "A light!" cried Dick, suddenly, after they hadi toward the mountain that lay right ahead. been traveling thus for some time. "It must be so,'' answered the Unknown. "There's "It's the lantern Edith's carrying,'' said Ned.

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r 8 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. "No, no It's further away, Ned." quarter the time If it's a deal, put .your packs "Hello! hello!" cried the Unknown. aboard, for we start right now." "Who the mishief are ye?" answered a voice. When the seven people and all the freight were on "Good!" exclaimed the Unknown. "That clears the ice boat there was still an abundance of room. the situation. Thought it might be Indians." This was satisfactory. The next question was would They found it was a party of three men camped the weight be too great for the carrying power of the under a shelter made of hemlock boughs. sail? They sprang up, brought out a lantern and gazed "If it doesn't go to-day, it never will!" cried Dick, in amazement at Young Klondike and his party. "for there's a grand wind blowing." "Thunder! what have ye there, young feller?" Up went the sail. The breeze filled it in a moment. -cried one man, staring hard at the ice boat. "A fly"She moves!" cried Ned. "I can feel it." ing machine?" "Moves! Ye gods and little fishes!" shouted the "No, an ice boat. I'm going to cross the Valdes Unknown, a moment later. "She flies!" glacier on it," answered Ned. So far as speed was concerned the ice boat was a "By gosh! you're at the edge of the glacier now. success. You'll see that soon as it's light. Me and my part-It traveled along the smooth surface of the glacier ners here didn't like the look of it, so we reckoned I at a terrific gate, stopping for nothing. we'd turn back." The surface of the glacier at times resembled a roll" Did you want to cross it?" inquired Ned. ing prairie, and up and down the hollows, frozen some" Sure. That's why we're here. We came from \ thing like waves of the boat fairly flew. 'Tanana, thinking we'd strike Copper River Valley. Ned and Dick were wild with delight. EYen the No such luck. Say, I'm an old hand in these parts; Unknown seemed to be enjoying himself. Edith bear trapping about Alaska most all my life, but this shouted gayly each time the boat took a flying leap blamed glacier beats me. I don't want any of it." over one of the ice mounds. After a consultation it was decided to halt and "This is the sort of switchback for me," she said. build the best shelter they could; fortunately there were plenty of hemlocks near. Ned and his friends made themselves as comfort :able a s they could till morning, and as soon as it was .daylight they saw the great glacier before them. It glowe d like a mirror beneath the sunlight. On each side of this great sheet of ice towered huge peaks covered with snow. As far as the eye could reach there was nothing but ice and snow to be seen ; no trees, no vegetation, not ;a, living thing. "Just as you described it, Zed," said Dick. "It 3.ooks terrible, but it's a fine sight all the same." The three strangers were looking on, too. "Gentlemen," said Ned, "I'm going to start across the glacier in a few minutes. If you like to pay the lJrice, you can go along, too. The ice boat's big lace less than twenty-eight cents a pound, and I'm mg's a fine enough sport m its way, but a little of it .only asking about a and get you over, too, in would do for me."

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YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BO;\'r EXPRESS. 9 "It's not sport with me, but business," replied l "'Cause there's a lot of fellers what wants to go Ned. with you. Enough for two loads I reckon." "Business !" "You can't have all you want in this world," said "You bet it is. I'm not running an Ice Boat Ex-a voice. "Your friends will have to wait, Casey." pr.ess for my health. I'm here to run to and fro "Zed!" cried Dick, surprised at the Unknown's. across the glacier carrying freight and passengers. sudden entrance. It's easy enough. You see those three men? Well, "What do you mean?" asked Ned. I brought them and their packs safely over, and "When our friend Casey has left us," answered what's to prevent me bringing others?" the Unknown, "matters can be explained." Casey was delighted. Casey took this as a pretty straight hint to clear He saw a golden vision before him. Young Klon-out, so giving the Unknown an angry look, he left;, dike's Ice Boat Express would be the means of est.abwithout making any more remarks. lishing a regular trade route from Valdes Bay to the As soon as he had gone the Unknown opened the Copper River Valley, and no one would reap more door and called to some one who had bee: waiting benefit from this than Casey himself. outside. It was the old miner who had crossed on the, "Walk right in, Young Klondike," he said. "This ice boat. is my shanty, and all that's inside belongs to you and "This is Ben Daniels," said the Unknown, introyour friends. You own the place while you're here. ducing him with a wave of the hand. "I've hau a Come, boys, step lively; the door's open." very pleasant talk with him and I want you to hear There was a very noisy crowd in the saloon, so Ned it, Ned. I tell you it's mighty interesting." Dick and Edith were glad to avail themselves of I "Yes. Ben Daniels is my name," said the old room which Casey showed them. I miner, "a.nd there's no one in, the Klondik.e can say a "But where's Zed?" cried Dick, suddenly. I word agamst it. Boss, you re blamed rich, I know,. "Zed? I thought he was with us. He walked but I can make you richer." down from the ice .boat with us. Wonder where he The boys looked at him in surprise, but nothing was. can be? I was going to say we'd better have dinner," said and he went on. continued Ned, "but I don't want to begin without "It's like this. I came up these parts to g e t gold the Unknown." I'd heard tell about, and not far from here, either.'" "l saw him last talking to that old miner we "In Copper Valley?" Ned. brought across the glacier,'' said Edith. "No. On the glacier.'' "Then he can't be far away. I'll find him.'' "Gold on the glacier? Nonsense, man!" Ned came back in about ten minutes, but the u n"Not in the ice, boss. But there's a big cave in on e knvwn was not with him. of the peaks on the north side. All we've got to do is "Couldn't see him anywhere. However he added to find it, and that's dead easy. I wouldn't let on to. "he's sure to turn up before long. I'm those fellers I was with, but I trust you, mister.'' myself about him.'' "This is a strange story,'' said Ned. "I expect if Whilst they were eating, Dick spoke about the we go we shall have all our trouble for nothing." future. "Not likely. When my pardner Jim Norwood was "This ice boat business may be great fun," he dying at Litka he told me 'bout it. And, say, Jim wasn't the chap to dream, neither. His head was said, "but I don't see much profit in it." "w d ht d 1 level. \Vhat J im says goes e ma e eig y o lars on tlus trip anyway, "Th 't b h Dick," answered Ned. "Three passengers at t ere can e any arm m searchmg for the en cave said Dick "E r d 't fi cl t dollars each and five hundred pounds of freight" I h ',th t d i on n i we "Eighty dollars!" repeated Dick. '(Joor s have wats e 1 1 mwuc 1 t 1 ime.,, N l Wh N o arm a a c go answered ed wor c y, ed, we wont be able to sail our boat "H h ,,, 'd th U k perhaps more than two or three times a week. us sai e n puttmg his finger That's small business for Golden & Luckey, isn't it? on his lips m a very mysterious manner. "We We ought to be out looking for gold. There must be shall .have. to be careful, Ned. There are a lot of plenty of it here.'' men _m this camp who want to cross the glacier,. and if we attempt to go away without them we may have to fight for our boat." "What, on a glacier?" "No: but in Copper River claims to be had.'' Valley there's good "There's an easy way to get over that difficulty,'" Well,. let us put in a few weeks with our boat, Dick. We shall have all the winter before us for prospecting.'' Casey came in at this moment. "Young Klondike," he said, "a word with you." "Say it,'' answered Ned. H What time does your boat sail to-morrow?" "Why?" said Ned. "How?" "Wait till it's dark, Zed. Then we can drop out. of this window. Our ice boat is upon th'c glacier with all the stores aboard. Once there, no one can stop us.'' "Daniels had better meet us there, say in an hour,'' observed the Unknown. "It may cause suspicion if he's shut up here too long with us.''

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10 YOUN G KLONDIKE S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. "I'll be on time, boss," said Daniels, as he left The wind was not favorable for sailing directly to the room. this boundary, but by tacking it was eventually "You seem anxious to go, Zed," exclaimed D ick, reached. and yet I'm sure you don't think much o f our Then the search for the wonderful cave began. -chances." Ben Daniels was the only person on the boat who "It's rainbow gold we're after, Dick, but I'd thought of finding it. The others supposed it only t o rather be chasing that than do nothing. exist in the imagination of the dead Jim Norwood, To leave Casey's turned out an easy matter. Ben's friend, but after a short search along the foot Casey and his friends were all drinking, so what-of the cliffs Ben stopped. -ever noise Ned and his friends made was lost amid "The cave, the cave!" he shouted. "By gosh, I the din that arose in the front of the house. knew Jim wasn't a dreamer. Here it is!" Outside they met a man with a lantern. "Yes, th:i.t's a cave right enough," said Ned, "and He recognized Young Klondike immediately, having a mighty big one, too!" seen him at Casey's. "Big enough to take the ice boat. "Hurry on !" cried Ned. "We've no time to talk "Yes, Zed Come," cried Ned, springing on to the now. ice. "We'll drag it over there. It's quicker work This haste seemed to confirm the man's suspicions. now than sailing would be." "You're shaking us, mister!" he exclaimed. "Say, I The ice boat, mast and all, entered the cave easily that won't do. Hello! Jim! Joe! Boys! Hello! enough, and the sail was left standing, there being no The ice boat is going to start!" reason to lower it. The man's shouts, given in a fog horn voice, brought All were hungry, but no one thought of eating. the crowd out of Casey's, and a wave of his lantern They were all so eager to explore this wonderful led everybody to where he was standing. cave. Ned and the rest were already on the run, moving Lanterns were liO'hted and the gleam they O'ave <>ver the snow as fast as possible At their heels were I was sufficient to the way, but not enough to fu::Y ,,, light up the roof. Thus, they calculated that the cav. By the they ,, ern was of a great height. uld not T his was soon done and the boat brought to a stop. lift their picks, and when they lay down to rest they Covering themselves up with bearskins, and keep were asleep in a moment. A few hou r s later they ing every part of their bodies away from the cold, were busy again. they slept on their ice boat till morning comfortably Rapidly, considering the nature of the work, the nough. shaft deepened. The northern boundary of the glacier was t hen seen Dick was sending up bucketfuls of dirt, and on the to be about a mi l e away. It was a range of high second day, after their arrival at the cave, they mountains, rising in some places p:>rpendicularly from struck t.he black sand where the gold ought to be. t.he ice not less than one thousa.nd feet. j "Keep u p that fire, Edith," cried the Unknown.

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I I 1 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOA'I' EXPRESS. 11 "I'll be back in a minute," and he hurried out of the towards the entrance to the cavern, followed by Ned cave. and Dick, who had made their way out of the shaft. "There ought to be gold in that/' exclaimed Dick, They could hear the voices of several men, and a as Ned hauled up a bucket filled with black sand. noise as if some heavy object was being dragged "Wash it, and see how it pans out." along. "Wish the Unknown would lend a hand," said Ned. Out on the ice something large and white rose up "So he will, dear boy," answered the Unknown, into the darkness. appearing out of the gloom. "I'm on this scene, and "Great Heavens!" cried Ned, astounded at what I've brought something with me. Look! I've just I he saw. "It's the Ice Boat Express!" cut this great block of ice, Ned. You'll have to boil it down to get water to do the washing with." The dirt was dumped into the rocker. Daniels was more anxious than anyone to find out how much gold it contained. He was too impatient to wait until the ice was melted. "Haul away, Ned!" cried Dick, just as Daniels threw the water into the rocker. "You don't need to wait for washing," said Edith. "Look, the sand's filled with small nuggets." "And flake gold, too," added the Unknown. "This is a good strike." Meanwhile Daniels, who was staring into the rocker, was speechless with amazement. "I'm an old miner," he gasped at length, "but this beats me, boss. How gold should you say there might be in that pan, mister?" "By gracious, it's rich and no mistake!" exclaimed Ned. "There must be over one hundred dollars' worth.'' "There's three hundred if there's one," shouted Daniels, wild with excitement. "Jim, old pard, you made no mistake when you talked to your mate 'bout this cave." Everybody was hard at work now. The Unknown cut the ice, Edith melted it, and Ned, Dick and Daniels worked in the shaft and washed the dirt. In two days they had taken twelve hundred dollars' vrorth of gold out of the shaft. Then they cut drifts in several directions, and working on continuously, at the end of one week they had brought up seventy thousand dollars' worth of gold. "If there's better business in the world than this,'' said the Unknown, "I want to know where it is." "And it gets richer all the time,'' cried Ned. "What shall we do with the gold?" inquired Dick. "Put it on the ice boat, mister,'' suggested Daniels, "so that any time we want to skip, all's ready." "But we don't want to go yet." "Great Heavens! no," cried Ned, "or if you do, you'll leave me behind." "And me, too, you bet." Whilst Dick and Ned were cutting another drift, Daniels busied himself in carrying the gold from the mouth of the shaft, where it was lying, to the ice boat. CHAPTER V. THE FIGHT FOR THE ICE BOAT EXPRESS. NED, Dick and the Unknown had whipped out their revolvers instantly. "Bring back that boat!" shouted Ned. "There's going to be trouble if you don't." A burst of defiant laughter came from the ice boat. "Ha, ha, Young Klondike !" cried a voice, "this boat is now mine. Take it if you can !" Ned and his two companions began to shoot. Prompt measures were absolutely necessary if the boat was to be saved from the gang who were going off with it. Bang! Bang! Shot after shot was fired, but it did not appear that any harm was done. It was too dark to see the out lines of the men with the boat. The white sail was all that was visible, and that not very distinctly. "Let's chase them!" cried Dick. "They've not got the boat moving yet. We may be in time to save it." "Dick's advice is good,'' said the Unknown. "The nearer we get the more chance we shall have of get ting the best of these thieves." Running across the ice was not very easy, and they made but slow progress. However, they did advance, and the ice boat was still in the same place. It was evident, from the words they heard, that those on boa.rd the boat had found some difficulty in managing it. "Out with you !" cried a voice that seemed famil iar to Ned. "Jump on the ice and turn the head of the boat round. Then we shall get the wind." "They're stranded!" shouted Ned. "Quick! Quick! We shall have them now!" "Not on your life came the quick reply from the boat. The boys fired. The men in the boat immediately returned fire. They blazed away furiously, but Ned and his companions did not stop to shoot, for they wanted to get to close quarters with the enemy. A few yards more, and they would be near enough to fire with effect. "They're off!" cried the Unknown. "Look! I can see the sail moving and hear the cutters grinding the Edith was prepa!'ing a meal. The Unknown was ice." hauling up the dirt from the shaft. "Good-by, Young Klondike !"cried a voice from All at once a fearful scream was heard coming from the boat. "You'll have to tramp now, same as we the mouth of the cave. The Unknown started, dropI had." ped the bucket almost on Dick's head. Then he set off I Ned fired and so did Dick and the Unknown, but the

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12 YOl'NG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. shots were sent at random and had no effect in stopping the boat. "Ye gods and little fishes!" cried the Unknown. "But we are getting it in the neck now. Our boat gone and our gold, too." "And that's not the worst ex cl a imed Dick. "All our stores were on board as well." Ned gave a shout. "We shall have that boat yet," b e cried. "Look! it's coming right round now. They ca,n't sail it, that's what's the matter, and they've run right up into the wind." What Ned said was true enough, for the ice boat had executed a semicircle and was actually coming back towards the boys, slowing down gradually as it did so. Don't you think Hart ought to pay for it. We must hurry back to the cave a,nd see what has happened. Everybody lend a hand, and we C'.1n drag the boat easily.'' When they arrived at the cavern they found Daniels lying on some bearskins near the fire, with Edith bending over him. "How is he, Edith ?" inquired Ned, anxiously. "I'm pretty right, boss," Daniels replied quickly, before the girl could speak. "Those cusses hit me a. smart crack on the head, though. Lucky they didn't; shoot, or I'd be a dead man now. Say, we'\e lost our boat and our gold and food, but there's heaps morn gold in this cave." "The ice boat's there," said Ned, pointing to the entrance to the cavern. "Vve had a close call of los-Ned rushed towards it, followed by the other two. ing it, but somehow we didn't." "$urrender!" he cried, leveling his revolver at the Daniels had received an ugly blow on the head men on the boat. "If you don't I'll shoot you !" which had rendered him unconscious for a time, but Instantly two men sprang from the boat and thanks to Edith, he soon recovered. S h e bathed hi s dashed along across the ice. wound and bandaged it, and it seemed as if he would "Cowards!" roared a savage voice. "By gosh, soon be well again. we might' have held out against them if you'd had Till daylight a watch was kept. Ned, the Unknown any sand in you." and Dick took turns at standing sentry, because it "Do you surrender!" asked Ned, still covering was just possible tha, t and his gang might re-the solitary man on the boat. turn and cause trouble. All was quiet during the "The game's up. You play the strongest hand, night, but in the morning quite a crowd of peopl e Young Klondike. Reckon you have me this time." were seen coming across the ice towards the cave. "We'll have those other two fellows!" cried Dick. Ned knew at once that they came from Copper "Let them go!" exclaimed Ned. "It's not worth Centre, because amongst them he recognized Jim while to trouble about them."' Casey. "Thought I knew you," said the Unknown, taking "You're Young Klondike, I'm told," said one of a good look at the prisoner. "Ned, this is an old the crowd, when he \vas n ea,r enough to speak. friend of ours, Hiram Hart, the man we met at Cari-"That is what I am called," answered Ned. bou creek." "I'm chief of the vigilance committee of Copper "The man to whom I gave five hundred dollars!" Centre, mister, and my name is Burton, Phil Burton. exclaimed Ned. "You have a fine idea of gratitude, I want to have a talk with you. We're in a heap of Mr. Hart, I must say!" trouble in Copper Centre, and, boss, you "re the cause "You stole my scheme, mister," answered Hart, of it." defiantly. "You'd never have thought of the Ice "l?" cried Ned, in surprise. Boat Express if it hadn't been for _me." "Yes, you and your Ice Boat Express. It's like this," "I gave you money to build another," replied Ned, Burton went on. "Everybody up the Copper River "and you squandered it all. Then I took the matter Valley's heard of your boat. It got about that you in hand myself. I gave you one chance, and I don't were up here with it to run peopl e over the Valdes intend to give you another. Get up and go!" glacier. What's the consequence? Mighty unpleas" Go !" echoed Hart. ant for decent citizens, let me tell you. All the "Skip is the word," said the Unknuwn. "We gamblers, claim jumpers and all-round toughs in the find we can get on very well without you." valley have collected at Copper Centre for you to "You don't mean to say you're going to turn a take them over the ice." feller creature off like this, no food, no drink;, and a "But I'm not running an express for that class of long tramp before him on this infernal glacier. people," replied Ned "I shouldn't get a cent out of "That's exactly what you wished us to go through," one of them, and this is a matter of business with answered Ned. "Now, be off, or you'll get hurt. me, Mr. Burton." I'll shoot if you don't travel." "I put it to you on public grounds, Young Klon-Hart saw by Ned's face that there was no hope for dik e In the intflrest of law and order, you ought to him, so growling like a bea.r, he stepped off the boat oblige us. I know you've done a good deal for other on to the ice, and slunk a\\Tay in the darkness. towns when they've asked you. \ on't you help "Great H eaYe ns cried Ned, as soon as he was us?" gone, I'm sorry I let him escape so easily." "How many are there?" inquined Neel. "We're better rid of him," said Dick. 1 "'Bout fifty, and not all toughs, mind. There's "Yes, but supposing poor old Daniels is dead. some respectable citizens amongst them, too, who l I

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YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 13 "ant to get way to the coast before the winter I "Boss, I'll leave my pile with yqu. When I want sets in. Y ou'. d bet tu make up your mind and come it I'll let you know." back to the town. "Let's take the g old with us into Copper Centre," "Very well, I w ill, said Ned, after a few moments' thought. I think I ought to help you out of this trouble and I will." What did I tell you, Casey?" cried Burton, turning to the saloon keep er. I said Young Klondike was white and by gosh he is, too. When shall you be along?" "Can't say exactly when," answered Ned. "Maybe to-day. Anyway, it will be soon Oh! one moment before you go. How did yo u know we were in this said Dick. "Better not," the Unknown remarked. "There's no bank there, or any other safe place." "Then we'll carry it o n the boat!" cried Dick. "Won't it be very heavy," inquired Edith. "l should think it would interfere with our sailing?" I believe it would Edith," said Ned. "Suppose we leave it in this cave, at any rate for the present. It will be easy enough to find a hiding place for it. we can bury it in the ground, and no on e but one of us will know where to look for it." cave?" d Ned's plan was at once adopted, because it seeme Some toughs who reached the town to-day told to be the most sensible course to pursue. The gold us so." h was put in a hole several fee t deep, in a place w ere "A man named Hart with them?" in quired Ned. no one was likely to seek for it. "Yes, we left him in Copper Centre." The Ice Boat Express soon landed the party in Cop Well, good-day, gentlemen,you'llseemeshortly." per Centre, where they were warmly welcomed by The c itizens went away in a good temper, for they the citizens. were delighted at the prospect of being rid of the turbulent element that had lately crowded into it. "It w ill take some weeks," said Dick, as soon as he anu his friends were alone, "to carry that crowd over the ice "What if it does ? "Why, Ned, it means that we shall have to give up mining here." "I think it will be best to do so. We've located t he gold Let the working of it wait till the spring. Then we can put a gan g on to work it. In the winter it would be a hard job to feed them and keep them alive Don't you think so, Zed?" "I'm with you, Ned," replied the Unknown. "Be sides, I think we ought to fire that cr...iwd of toughs out of the town. CHAPTER VI. A LEAP FOR LIFE. YOUNG KLONDIKE was instantly surrounded by a crowd of people, who all wanted to make the first trip on the ice boat. These were the respectable citizens who were anx ious to quit Copper Centre, as the winter would soon be upon them. The tough element was in no such hurry. Whilst Ned was conferring with the vigilance committte as to how the matter should be arranged, Daniels went around with his gun looking for Hart. He could not find him anywhere, and it would have been well if he had stayed quietly at the hotel. The exertion caused a relapse, and the result was "By gosh!" said old Daniels, "all I want is to get that Daniels was put to bed in a semiconscious state, my hands on that man Hart. He's the cuss that hit suffering from the effects of the blow on the head. me over the head. I know that because I heard one The upshot of Neel's talk with the vigilance corn of the gang call him that-and gee whiz, I'll get mittee was that it was decided to get rid of the tough square with him! How the mischief he knew me in element first. here is more'n I can make out." "Let's run them out of the town like greased "I can't understand it, either," said Ned. lightning," said Phil Burton, "the others can wait." very soon recovered from that blow he got at Tanana, Three successful runs were made across the glacier anyway." with the Ice Boat Express, and this made such a sen I think," observed Edith, "that when we were sible impression on the tough element, that the town talking about this cave with Ben Daniels at Casey's began to breathe more freely, a nd the labors of the some one must have overheard us. Hart must have vigilance committee were materially lightened. arrived at Copper Centre inquiring for the ice boat, The trip across an d the return journey occupied a and have met with the people who listened to our day, and e::.ch night when the party returned they talk. Perhaps he knew them before." went always to see how Ben Daniels was, for they all "Edith, I declare you have the best head of any of liked the sturdy old miner. Ben was getting along us," exclaimed Dick. "Don't you think so, Zed?" well, but most of the day he had to keep his bed. "l'm tired of saying so," answered the Unknown. The third evening he said he had something im There's nothing to keep us here any longer, is there, portant to tell them. Ned ?" "It's like this, boss," said D an i e ls ; "I just man" Nothing. We must decid e what to do with the aged to crawl down to the bar toclay, and I'm gold, though. A share of it b e longs to D aniels, which I blamed glad I did There's a game going on Some he can have if he likes and dispose of in any way that I of t he crowd are \YOndering where our gold is. 'Cause suits him." I Hart and his ga.ng knew we had some."

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14 YOU.NG KLONDI KE' S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. "Did you hear this?" asked Ned fastened, and lashed tightly underneath the boards "Heard some fellers talking, but my ears wasn't of the express. This done, they sailed back to the sharp enough to catch all they said. Anyway, they're town. after our gold, which they reckon is in the cave Next day some respectable citizens were to be carhidden away somewhere. There's a gang going off ried across the glacier, but among the crowd wait-in a few days to look for it." ing to go were Hart and a friend of his, a particu" Do you know the men?" asked Dick. larly tough specimen, known as Indian Jack. "Never set eyes on 'em before. What's to be done, "By the Jumping Jeremiah!" cried the Unknown, boss?" where did you spring from? T:bought we'd lost "The gold must be removed," answered Ned. you. What's your now?" "That's sure. What to do with it is puzzling me. "I'm going to move, so's Indian Jack," answued Now, Zed, here's a chance for you to make your Hart. "They don't like us here." mark. Give us your opinion." "Like you!" exclaimed Phil Burton, the chief of "Dear boy, my advice is to land the gang on the the vigilance committee. "You bet your life we other side of the glacier. Once there, I shan't be don't! If you're here after to day, it's on the nearmuch afraid of their working their way back to the est tree you both swing. I'm not talking tbrouf!;h cave." my hat. What I say goes, and I give you fair warn" But the trouble is to know them, Zed. How can ing, mind." we make sure that we have them all?" "There's a friend of ours, Hart, gunning for you," "Right, Ned, right !" cried the Unknown. "Some said Dick. one else have a say now. Dick's been doing a lot of ''Daniels, you mean," Hart remarked. "I know thinking, for I've had my eye on him." where he is; he's in bed. Guess if he knew I was "l think," said Dick, "we ought to move the here he'd crawl round, though, so, Young Klondike, gold away from the cave gradually. It's a heavy if you don't want trouble you'd better start." load, too heavy the ice carry all I' Neel was too disgusted with Hart to speak to him. at once. Say we take a tlurd each time. He had done what he could for the man who had re" But how shall it?" cried Edith, "and 1 paid him with the basest kind of ingratitude. Still, what are we to do with it? he was better away, so Young Klondike made no ob" We can carry it in a bag, lash it underneath the jection to his going. ice boat, in fact," answered Dick. "We have the Once more the run across the glacier was a success. material, for we brought away a lot of canvas from Hart's eyes gleamed viciously when he saw Ned colTanana in case anything happened to our sa,il." lecting the money that the respectable citizens paid "Your plan's all right, Dick," cried Ned, "and as for the voyage. for disposing of the gold why that's easy. We'll Doubtless he wa.s regretting that the Ice Boat Ex-send a message down to Juneau, asking our bankers press did not belong to him. there to arrange for the transportation. They'll send I As soon as the express arrived, a man came out right up." from a shelter formed of hemlock boughs laid a .gainst "So that's settled, boss," said Daniels. "Now I'll a cross bar, and ad vanccd to meet Ned. sleep easy, for I was worried and no mistake. Didn't "You are Young Klondike, I believe," he said. like -our gold going into the pockets of a lot of toughs." "Yes. And who are you?" The rest of the evening was spent in makjng a "I was sent here from Juneau in reply to your mes-strong canvas bag to hold the gold. It was formed sage. I came from the bank there, and you will see with material of double thickness, and sewed up very from this letter I give you that I am what I claim to strongly. be." It was no use taking the gold from the cave yet, be"That seems to be all right, Dick, doesn't it?" cause the agent from Juneau would not have arrived said Ned, passing the note to Dick after he had read at the other side of the glacier. it. Some days later, however, Ned thought it might be "Yes. I recognize the cashier's writing." safe to do so. Accordingly, on a return trip across "Have you an escort with you?" asked Ned. the glacier to Copper Centre, the ice boat was sailed "I have three men besides myself, all well armed. across the valley to the cave, having no one on board Your gold will be quite safe with me. I intend to but Ned and his friends, and carrying a large place it on board a vessel m Valdes Bay and will come quantity of wood back for the rest. When shall you be here with some The use to which this was to be put was soon more?" seen. The soil that covered the gold had already "To-morrow," said Ned. "I will bring a parcel hardened, and it was necessary to thaw it out; so a similar to this." big fire was built over the spot, and they had nothThe agent gave Ned a receipt for the moneying 1io do but wait patiently till it had burned itself about twenty-five thousand dollars-in due form, out. which Ned carefully put m his pocket. In all matters To get the gold out now was an easy task, and of business the boy was very exact. in a Vf&ry short time the bag was filled, securely "Come, come," said Ned, "we must get back. I d s (

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YOUN G KLONDIKE S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 15 Recollect we have t o go t o the cave again. Why don t you come, Zed?" "I was thinking, Ned," answered the Unknown "our friend Hart's a pretty tough character, but he's a gentleman com pared to Indian Jack. Suppose they should take it into their heads to hold up the agent and his escort.'' 'I only hope they will," laughed Ned. "In that case the world will get rid of two men of no account. "Dear boy, that's a way of looking at it that didn't occur to me, but it's a mighty sensible one. Let us hope for the best. he ad d ed as a head came ou t from under the hemlock she lter bu t here he is after all.'' "Ye g ods and little fishes!" shouted the Unkno wn,. excitedly; "I'd know that face in a thousand. Hi Hart, by all that's wonderf ul." N o t on l y Hart, b u t his friend, Indian J ack, were under the shelter. Now they came crawling out,. looking half frozen, as no doubt they were. "So we can't lose you !" said Ned, sternly. "It's not our fault this time, Young Klondike, l swear it's not!" cried Hart. "We've been here, rne and Jack, ever since you left us yesterday." "What out in last night's storm?" "You bet we were," replied Hart, shivering as he spoke. "We shall fly back cried Edith. "What a wind there is. Ned, I've enjoyed these trips on the ice boat more than anything we've done since we came to the "But you must be crazy! Why didn't you go on Klondike.'' I to Tanana with the others?" demanded Ned. They stopped at the cave and got another bag of "Boss, fools. We didn't stay here gold not wastino a moment for there were evident cause we liked 1t, but cause we had to. The crowd that a was Soon after they I you across was most all respect-reached Copper Centre it burst in all its fury. There ab;; citizens, to say.' ,, was not much snow principally sleet and rain but the Me and H1 was a bit off color, put m Indian Jack. wind blew with a ,,'iolence that can scarcel.); be im "Exactly Jack's explained it. vVell, boss, they agined. wouldn't have us 'long with them, nohow, said they'd "It's well we are where we are," said the Unknown. "If this storm continues we can't get across the gla cier to-morrow, as we promised the agent." "That won't make any difference," Ned remarked, "because it's certain he won't be waiting for us. In such fearful weather he would not dream of leaving Valdes Bay.'' shoot us if we didn't skip." "But you could have gone to Tanana by your selves," said Ned "Hart knows the route, anyway.'' "That's just what we couldn't do," replied Hart. "They swore they'd hang us if we came within a mile of the town.'' "You've brought all this on yourselves," said Dick. However, the weather next day was very different. "That's quite true, Dick," said Ned, drawing him The s.un was not shining, there was no rain, to one side, where Edith and the Unknown joined had g,one down considerably. Ben Damels them. "It's quite true, and really they don t deserve was still too weak. to travel, and .as were no pas-any pity. Still, after all they're human beings and sengers to be earned, Ned and lus friends had the Ice we can't leave therri here to starve. If we do, by to-Boat to themselves. I morrow morning they'll be corpses.'' The Journey proved long and ted10us. \ "But what can we do with them?" asked Dick. More than the wind died right away, and then, "Can't land them in Copper Centre again, that's. of course, the boat stopped, for a boat can be be certain," replied the Unknown. "The vigilance calmed on the ice as well as on the sea. committee wouldn't stand for that." "Whistle for a breeze, Ned," cried the Unknown. "Then they must stay here!" cried Dick. "It looks as if we'll be here all night.'' "That doesn't follow," answered Ned. "We will "No," exclaimed Ned, "not if we have to get out take them to the cave and leave them there." and drag it. If the wind doesn't come soon we'd bet"So that they can get the rest of the gold we've ter strike across the ice to the cave, because it's nearburied." er than the town.'' "That's in no danger," said Ned "They have no "Hurrah !" cried Dick; "the snow's blowing in tools to dig with, and if they had they couldn't thaw clouds back there on the glacier. "We shall get it the earth without wood. Hart, supposing we land in a minute or two. Hang on to the sheet, .Zed! you at the cave, can you manage to take care of your Here it comes!" selves afterwards? You mustn't show up in Copper The boat traveled well the rest of the way, slowing Centre, mind.'' down occasionally, but never quite stopping. "We have friends in Copper Valley, on the river, The agent was not on land as they hoped. Young Klondike. Give us enough food for two days,. "I didn't expect he would be here," said Edith. land us at the cave and we don't ask no more.'' "You recollect bow long it took us to travel from "Very well, it's a deal," cried Ned. "Jump Valdes Bay to this point? We didn't give him enough aboard! We're off!" time; we should have allowed two days." "But the agent?" said Edith. "He had enough time, Edith," Ned remarked. "He won't be here to-day. Round with tlle boat,. "It was last night's storm that delayed him. My!" that's right. You take the rudder, Dick/' Ned con

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16 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. tinued. "I'll look after the sail. Right across the glacier first; it's a case of tacking, but we shall get there if the wind holds, and I think it will." Hart and Indian Jack sat by themselves talking in .a whisper and apparently having a good deal to say to each other, for they kept up an incessant conver sation. As no one else had the slightest desire to talk to either of them they met with no interference. The boat had not gone very far when Hart suddenly sprang to his feet and rushed at the Unknown, whom he grasped by the throat. At the same time Indian Jack sprang towards Ned. "You have gold on this boat!" cried Hart, sav agely. "Give it up or we'll kill the lot of you:" Dick rushed to help the Unknown. In doing so he let go the rudder, and at once the boat swung round, altering its course instantly and .rushing headlong towards a frightful crevasse parallel to which they had been sailing. Hart and Indian Jack saw the danger instantly .and sprang off on the ice. "Jump, Edith! Jump, Dick!" cried Young Klon -0.ike. "The ice boat is going into the gorge! Jump for your lives !" Edith sprang off, landing on the ice safely, but Dick missed his footing and fell, while the Unknown went sprawling on his back, but Young Klondike still clung to the ice boat. Seizing the rudder .he tried to turn it away from the crevasse. CHAPTER VII. A STARTLING SURPRISE AT THE CA VE. DICK and his two friends turned round in time to :see the ice boat fall into the crevasse, carrying Ned acles before, but I do now. right down there?" How goes it, Ned? All "Nothing the ma.tter with me, feel rather lone some, that's all," laughed Ned The others laughed, too, being glad to do so, for the strain of the last few minutes had been fearful. "The quest.ion is," said Dick, "what is to be done next?" "There's no question about that," cried Ned. "The first thing to do is to get me up on the glacier beside you." "But how can we do it? We haven't any kind of a rope up here." "I have plenty on the boat. I'll try and throw a coil up to you, so stand by to catch it." The distance Ned had to throw the rope was not far, so at the very first attempt he made a success ful cast, the Unknown catching it as soon as it came within reach. Ned fastened it firmly around J1is body, and Dick, Edith and the Unknown slowly dragged him up. As soon as he was on the glacier, they crowded round him, examining him with great curiosity, for they could not believe he was unhurt. Yet such was the case, and so far as could be seen there was not a scratch upon him. "What became of the others?" asked Ned. "What others?" "Indian Jack and Hart. A good thing if they went headfirst into the crevasse." "Ah! but they didn't," answered Dick. "Look' across the glacier and you'll see the two scoundrels slinking away. There they go, Ned. Shall we giYe chase?" with it. "No. Let them skip. We are well rid of them, They were powerless to prevent this, and for a few and I hope we'll never see them again. It's dead sure moments they were so stunned by the fearful catas-they won't want to run up against us after what hap trophe that they remained perfectly still, staring at pened on the ice boat to-day." .each other in dismay. "Dear boy," said the Unknown, "excuse me dif" Ned! Ned!" cried Edith, frantically. "Oh! fering with you so soon after your restoration to us, Dick, we shall never see him again." but I do hope we shall see them again, especially Dick made no reply, and he and the Unknown, both Hart. I want to settle accounts with him." too overcome to speak, approached the crevasse. They "Well, Zed, I won't stand in your way. Now we went slowly as if dreading to look upon an awful I must get to work, for we have a heavy job before us spectacle-the mangled body of their companion. It won't be child's play getting that ice boat up "Hello came a cheerful voice, proceeding from here." "the depths of the crevasse, "is everybody safe?" "We shall never do it, Ned," cried Edith. "We "Ned!" cried Dick and the Unknown in one might as well not attemptit." breath. I "But we must get it. What are we to do on this Instantly they rushed forward, Edith, recovering glacier without our ice boat? How are we going to herself, going with them, and when they looked down move our gold from the cave? The boat can't fall into the abyss they saw an astonishin g l:iight. any further and that's a consolation, and I don't think The ice boat had fallen not more than forty or fifty it's jammed so tight that it can't be moved." feet, and its further descent had been stopped. "We'll try, Ned," said Dick, "but Dreckon Edith's It was wedged in between the two walls of the I right. We've had our last run on the. Ice Boat Ex crevasse and lay in an almost horizontal position, with press. What do you say, Zed ?" Ned standing upright upon it. So fa, r as could be seen, \ "Don't disturb him," laughed Edith. "He has his the boat had suffered no injury. I thinking cap on." "By the Jumping Jeremiah," cried the Unknown, "He had, Edith," answered the Unknown, "but "'This beats the deck. Can' t say I believed in mir-it's off now." l I J

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YOUNG KLONDIKE S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. l '7 As the Unknown usually thought to good purpose I A close examination of it was now made, and the they all listened eagerly to what he had to say. framework was seen to be in good condition. The "Something like this," said the Unknown, "hapmast had been loosened slightly, but the sail was in pened to me when I was yachting on the Nile. The tact. A few minutes' work made the mast as solid man at the helm went to sleep and the ship sailed as it was before, and when all the other stores were right over a cataract, and--" put aboard, the express was quite as ready to sail as "The wind blew it back again," laughed Ned, in-it had been before the accident. terrupting him. "Yes, I know, it's quite a common "Now off we go!" cried Ned. occurrence in those parts." "But where ?" asked Dick. "It's true, as sure as my name is Simon Salt," .'Back to Copper Centre, of course. Is there any cried the Unknown. other place for us to go to?" "Hurry up, Zed!" exclaimed Dick. "You know "There's the cave, Ned." we believe everything you say, but let us hear what "But we can do nothing there now. We have one connection there is between your wonderful yacht and load of gold on our boat already, and that's just as our ice boat?" much as we can carry." "We hauled the yacht back, and she had a bigger "The cave! The cave, I say!" cried the Unknown. drop than this boat, too," continued the Unknown. "I've my reasons for it." "How did we do it? Same way we're going to get "Afraid that Hart and his friend have stolen our our own craft out of the hole, I'm thinking. We gold? Nonsense!" said Ned. "Supposing they couldn't pull her up if it wasn't for that rock"-he found it, what could they do with it? How could pointed to a high rock which rose out of the ice-" for they carry it away, and where would they take it?we couldn't stand the strain. Now with the ropes because we know they dare not show themselves in twisted around that stone it's only a matter of time." Copper Centre again?" "Hooray! the Unlmown's struck it this time!" "We'll get back to the town, Ned," said Dick. cried Dick. "Well, well, do what you like, dear boys; it won ? t "Oh, don't follow my advice," said the Unknown. I matter much. [begin to think I'm no good," grum" I'm only a dreamer. I imagine things, I--" bled the Unknown. "Shut up !" cried Ned. "Lend a hand here, Zed. "Come off that, Zed. Don't make us tired. I tell You and Dick must lower me down." you we're going." "Going down again? For what, I'd like to know." As .Ned spoke the wind caught the sail, filling it in" Isn't it necessary for somebody to pass the rope stantly, and the ice boat bounded .away a.long the round the boat ? I'll go down and do it, and when glacier, making a bee line for Copper Centre. I'm through you haul me up a .gain, for we shall want When they had gone a few miles the wind shifted tlrn strength of all hands to raise the express. I'm 1 and it was necessary to tack, and in doing so they >Yere ready, lower away." brought in the direction of the cave, but it was still a Even Edith lent her assistance now, fearful that the considerable distance away. strain upon the Unknown and Dick would be too "Hart and Indian Jack made for the cave," said great. Edith, a,bruptly. But this was proved not to be the case, for Ned re"You must have good eyes, Edith, if you were lieved them of a good deal of his weight by placing able to see as far as that." his feet on the side of the gorge as he went down. "There's no need to look very far, Ned," answered It was some time even now before work could act-the girl. "They've left their trail on the snow, and .ually begin on the boat. First of all, everything of a if you examine the glacier closely you can see the footmovable nature had to be drawn up, otherwise when prints." the boat was being h a uled to the; surface, all portable "Gracious but that's true. Edith, you're the articles would have fallen overboard, and have been cutest of us all, for we never noticed anything, which lost in the crevasse. isn't to be won dered at, seeing there's scarcely any Ned tried to get at the gold underneath the boat. impression." He wanted to send this up, for it was very heavy, "So I suppose we do go to the cave now, Ned," re-but he found it impossible to do so. marked the Unknown; "the old detective was not so "Can't be helped," he cried "We must do the far wrong after all." best we can as it is The ropes are fastened firm "We'll look in at the cave certainly," answered now, so haul rne up, for I can do no more down here." Ned, "not because there's any need for it, b.it the It was a tedious business getting the boat out of wind's blown us this way, and we rnay as well go in as the crevasse, and an exhausting one, too. But for the we're passing. expedient of passing the rope around the rock, as sug" You have to find it first," cried Dick. "Steer in gested by the Unknown, it would never have been I close to the rocks; that will give us more chance." done Slowly but surely the work proceeded, until at It was perfectly dark now. They had several lan Ia.st Young Klondike's Ice Boat Express was once terns burning on the boat and these gave some light, more on the glacier, where it was greeted with a lou d but the distance that was illuminated was not great. hurrah. Ned was following Dick's advice, though it was

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18 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. dangerous to do so, for at any moment the boat might ] known, slowly, "and it's a blame sight more like crash into the rocks. crying than laughing he feels." "This won't do!" cried Ned; at length. "If we I "Our gold!" shouted Ned, loudly. want to find the cave, let's get to work the proper "Gone!" cried Dick, thunderstruck at this un-way. We might as well look for a needle in a bundle looked for occurrence. of straw as go on like this." "No need to ask who has it," said Edith. "Im-" Very probably we've passed the cave," said agine the look on Ben Daniels' face when he hears of Edith. it." "That's what I'm thinkmg. Round with the "They must have had tools; a pick and shovel for helm!" cried Ned. certain," said Ned. "Now, we know that H art and Dick, without knowing why the order was given, Indian Jack had nothing of the kind." obeyed it instantly, bringing the boat up into the "Not whe11 they left us," Dick remarke d. wind, and, of course, it came to a standstill at once. "But where could the y have got them? Maybe "We must search for the cave on foot," said Ned. it's some one else b een at work here." "If we follow the rocks we're bound to strike it." "Hart and Indian Jack," s a id the Unknown, firml : y. Along they went, carrying two lanterns with them. I "That's my verdict, and I stick to it. To pass the The third the y l eft burning on the ice boat so that it's night h ere now is out of the qu e stion, of course, for whereabouts might be marked. we must g e t on their trail right away." Ned was in rather a bad temper, for he had been "Out with the boat!" crie d N eel, excitedly. ''We'll anxious to get back to Copper Centre, and h e looked sail to Copp e r C entre." upon the visit to the cave as a pure waste of time "The y won't g o the r e." Consequ ently he was not greatly intereste d, when a "But we m a y he a r of them there. They d are not shout from the Unknown proclaimed that he had cross the glacier towards Caribou creek, knowing found it. that w e \Ve r e at that end of it. B e sides they couldn't "Before we go in," s a id the Unknown, "I've some-carry the gold across. I don't want to lose that gold, thing to propose. We have plenty of w9od in the I can t e ll you, but I think l ess of that tha n of squar cave, and we have our store s on the ice boat. Now, ing accounts with Hart." why shouldn' t we pass the night here. We can make '.'Bravo !" cried the Unknown. "Now, you're of a roaring fire and be quite as warm in our bearskins the same mind as me. Th at's the way to-talk, Ned." as we should be at the town." The detective hustle d about as he talke d, unfasten" That's the best speech you made to-day, Zed," ing the ropes that h e ld the boat to the rock, and the n cried Dick. "I'm dead tire d. Hauling that ice boat helping Ned and Dick to dra g it out of the c a ve to the was no joke, and I guess we're all in about the same glacier. state." A moment later the express was flying over the "I know I am, and I did very little of the work," ice, those on board of it k e eping a close watch as they said Edith. went for the men who had stolen their gold. "Very well, we stay here the night," assented Young Klondike. "That's settled!" exclaimed the Unknown. "Now bring the ice boat under cover." This was the work of a few minutes, the express be ing place d a few yards inside the cavern, but fearing that Hart and Indian Jack might be about, the bo a t was s ecured by ropes, one end of them being pa,ssed around the mast, the other around some projecting rocks. "Not good enough, Ned," crie d the Unknown. ''I'll stand guard all night in c a se that man Hart tries to play me a tricko Wha t in thunder !" he sud denly shouted, breaking off short. The fire w a s blazing brightly now, for Edith and Dick had made it whilst Ned and the detective at tended to the boat, and the flames lit up every part of the cavern. "What in thunder!" repeated the Unknown, gaz ing with a startled expression towards the farther end of the cave. "By the Jumping Jeremiah!" "He sees a ghost!" cried Ned, laughingly. "No, my man! Run to earth at last!" exclaimed Dick, with a fresh burst of laughter. "He sees a big hole in the ground !" said the UnCHAPTER VIII. ANOTHER ICE BOAT ON THE GLACIER. COPPER CENTRE was reached without anything hav ing been seen of the two thieves Late though it was, the arrival of the ice boat created some excitement and miners came out of their huts to s e e what the matter was. Outside Casey s Ben Daniels was standing, the old miner having heard that Young Klondike h a d come. "Bad n e ws, Ben," said Ned quietly to him. "Keep what I say to yourself, for we don't want everybody to know what's happened. All the gold left in the cave has been dug up out of the ground and made away with." Daniels gave a savage cry. "Tell me who it was," he said in a hoarse vo!ce, speaking quietly but with great bitterness, "and by gosh, I'll let daylight into him!" "Reckon there are two or three others willing to have a hand in the fun, Daniels," said Ned, "but w e must get within striking distanee before we can do anything." "But, say, boss, who did it?" "We have no absolute proof," answered Ned,.

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Y O UNG K L ONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 19 "but we are pretty sure who it was. Hart and In dian Jack. Seen anything of them round Copper Centre to-night?" "Hart in Copper Centre !" cried Daniels. "Well, I should smile !" "Say, was you looking for Hi Hart here, Young Klondike?" asked Jim Casey, the saloon keeper, who had heard the name mentioned. j "I want to find him. Has anyone here seen any J thing of him to-day?" inquired Ned. "Thunder! is it ijkely ? Say, boys," said Casey, turning to the crowd, "any of you fellers set eyes on Hart?" The answer to the inquiry was a loud burst of laughter. Boss," said Phil Burton, the chief of the vigil ance committee, "look for Hart anywhere 'cept in taken place, for he was well acquainted with the Un known's peculiarities He knew that to question the Unknown now would be to get either evasive replies or no answer at all. Therefore he refrained from saying anything, but DiP,k and Edith's curiosity was too great to allow either of them to keep silent. "Say, Zed!" cried Dick, as the Unknown put his head inside the door of the room, for about the fifti eth time that morning, "what's the secret? You look as if you'd got something on your mind." The Unknown said nothing. He simply smiled and walked away. "Zed Zed !" cried Edith, sharply. "You make me mad. I'm just dying to hear you talk, and you won't tell me a thing." The Unknown looked at a clock. 1 Copper Centre. Old Hi knows there's a rope waiting "In fifteen minutes I shall have something to for him here, and you bet he'll fight shy of our town. say," he said, and disappeared again. But what might you want him for?" "That means," said Ned, "when it's daylight. "Nothing of any importance," sa.id Ned, deter-Dick, you and Edith ought to know it's only wasting mined not to disclose what had happened. time to try and draw anything out of the Unknown ,If you should see him," observed the Unknown, when he doesn't want to talk. He shuts up like a "just say we were asking for him, that's all." clam." Ned, Dick, Edith and the Unknown, along with "Time !"cried theUnknownfourteenminuteslater, Ben Daniels, shut themselves up in a room in Casey's, bursting into the room in a state of great excitement. whilst the crowd dispersed, some of the men tumbling "It's light now. vVe must be off." into their beds, from which the disturbance had drawn "But I absolutely decline to go," said Ned, "unthem, others going back to the bar. less I know where I'm going and for what purpose." "We must' hold a counsel," said Ned, while they "Dear boy, nothing in theworldiseasiertoanswer. all stared blankly at each other. "We've been You're going across the Valdes glacier in the direccheckmated. The game's gone dead against us so far. tion of Caribou creek to get the gold and the men who We must decide on our next move." stole it." "We haven't the least clew," remarked Edith. "But who says they are there?" I "Those two men seem to have vanished in a most "I do, Ned," answered the detective. mysterious manner." "When did you find that out?" asked Dick, laugh" This is a good time for the Unknown to show his I ingly. skill. What's the good of us having our own detect"Dreamt it in the night, Zed!" ive," inquired Dick, "if he can't advise us in this "Come, come," cried the Unknown, "these quesemergency." tions tire me. Do as I tell you, and I promise you, "Ah! but he can advise you, dear boy,'' said the I that you shall not go half a mile without agreeing Unknown, promptly. with me. Ned, I give you leave to pitch me off the "And what is your advice, Zed?" boat if I'm wrong." "To sleep. We can do nothing in the dark. Be"I take you at your word, Zed," exclaimed Ned, lsides, they say the night brings counsel, and in the "so look out." morning we may hit on something good." There were a number of people to see the ice boat "Well, sleep let it be," cried Ned, with a dissatisfied leave, and some two or three miners would have been 1 air. "But mind, to-morrow we start out after those glad to have crossed the glacier, but Young Klondike two men, and we won't let up till we run them down." explained he was taking no passengers that trip. "Bully for you, b6ss !"cried Daniels. "I'll be with "Half a mile, mind," said Dick. "Don't forget you, for now I'm all right again." your promise, Zed." Long before it was light the next day, they were "I'll be the judge of the distance!" cried Edith. all astir, waiting for day to come, and this would not "Don't expect any mercy from me, Zed, for I'm right be till after nine o'clock. I out of patience with you." Dick, Ned and Edith had a good deal to say to each "I'll trouble you to let me steer this craft," said other, Daniels joining in the talk occa 8 ionally, but the Unknown, much to everybody's surprise, for he the Unknown kept silent. The detecti,e's move-had never been seen to handle the tiller before. ments were mysterious. He seemed trying t.o keep Neel gave way to him, and the detective, pressing cool, and was in a state of suppressed excitement all his tall hat tightly down on his head to prevent it the while. from being blown away, took up his station at the Neel knew that something of importance must have helm.

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r 20 YOUNG KLONDIKE S IUE BOA'l' EXPRESS. The two boys, Edith and Daniels were staring in I this was not a difficult matter, b ecau se the runners direction now, seeking some explanation that had cut deep marks in the ice. would justify the Unknown's confidence. The boat made one of its rapid trips, for the wind They looked right and left, and saw on one side two was behind it, and it tried the strength of the mast miles of ice, and a mile on the other, and in front to stand up against the strain that was put upon it. upon mile of ice, shining like silver in the sun. Noth"There's the crevasse into which you fell," cried ing but themselves appeared to be on the Dick. "_Look, Ned, those two scoundrels took big 1 glacier. chances m the dark, for the trail of their boat is al" There!" cried the Unknown suddenly, in tones of most up to the edge of the abyss." 1 triumph, "I said I would give you a proof, and there 1 "Shows what men will do for the sake of gold," j it is!" I said Edith. As he said this, he pointed towards some marks 'Yes, miss," observer_ Daniels, "it's an old miner upon the ice. \ like me can speak to "I see those marks plain enough," cried Ned, scorn-The Unknown at tl11s pomt surprised everybody by fully. "And of course I know what they are. It is stopping the boat. the trail left by the ice boat passing along.'' "There's a piece of paper on the ice, dea r boy," he "And that's my proof," persisted the Unknown. explained "It's stucl{ in a crack, and that keeps it "By the Jumping Jeremiah, while you folks were from being blown away." sound asleep, I was at work, and the night was half "I'll get it!" cried Dick, jumping from the boat over before I struck this trail." as he spoke. He picked up the paper and came back. "You could strike twenty such \ .rails," said Dick, "Why, Ned," he exclaimed, as he perused it. angrily, "for we've passed over here often enough.'' "Your writing on it;, beyond a doubt. Look!" ''Something wrong with Zed," remarked Edith. Ned gra.sped it eagerly. "Pity there's no doctor in these parts, for I'm sure "A letter I wrote!'' he cried, turning pale. "It he's in a very bad way." looks to me as if things were much worse than we The Unknown was not angry in the least degree. ever expected. This letter is one I sent some time He looked from one to the other with an amazed ex-back to the bank at Juneau asking them to fetch our pression on his face. gold. When their agent met me here he had this "What! Don't any of you see?" he demanded. letter with him." "You don't? Well, that's mighty stra.nge. Here "How does it come on the ice ?" asked Edith. goes for the explanation then. Look well at this "I can only think of one explanation," answered trail, Neel, that runs alongside us.'' Ned. "It was here that Hart and Indian Jack landed "I've been staring at it for ten minutes." when they jumped from our boat just before it went "Do you notice that it's at least eighteen inches into the crevasse." narrower than the trail left by our boat?" "By the Jumping Jeremiah!" cried the Unknown, 1 "By gracious!" cried Ned, "so it is." "Hart must have held up the agent." "Ah! now you begin to see," exclaimed the Un-"It's a sure thing," said Ned. known. The sca l es drop off your eyes, don't they? "By gosh!" cried Daniels, savagely, "he's got i Ye gods and little fishes! there's another ice boat on all our gold except what we have on this boat now.'' this glacier, and I was the man that found it out." "Every nugget," sa id Ned, and the more reason 1 Anybody could see the difference in the width of the why we must hunt him down. "We've come to the two trails now it had been pointed out. end of the glacier now, and we may as well start after "I take back all I said, Zed!" cried Edith. him. Depend upon it, Hart and Indian Jack have "You're great !" struck out for Caribou creek." "Well, you've certainly made a valuable disI "Why not hide the boat in one of the clefts in the covery," said Ned. "Hart must have had an ice rocks, Ned," asked Dick. boat built, and that accounts for his long stay in I "There's no need. Neither of the two scoundrels Copper Centre. He must have got it on to the will look for it, for they saw it dash into the creglacier, somehow, in the darkness, and had it stowed I vasse, and of course they think it's done with." away somewhere.'' I "That's true," replied Dick, "but why shouldn't "Onr chances of getting the gold back don't look we look for Hart's boat., It mo.st be near here." very bright," said Dick. "He's had a long start, 1 "Reckon it is," answered Ned, "but let that wait. and must have reached the other side of the glacier, We must find those rascals first." almost as soon as we got to Copper Oen tre last night." "It's going to be a blame slow business, this get" But you'll follow him, won't you, boss?" inquired ting down the rocks," exclaimed the Unknown, :'llip-D::i.niels, anxiously. ping as he spoke. "You bet I will. I don't turn back when I begin a ( "Then why in thunder do you wear those big thing. We'll run him to earth," answered Ned, "if I boots?" cried Ned. "Why don't you dress like we have to go down to the sea to do it." I other people?" There was only one thing: to do now, and that was "Why am I here at all," groaned the Unknown to keep close to the trail left by Hart's ice boat, and I as he rubbed himself. "Why didn't I find my man

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YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 21 years ago and save myself from wandering in Si-[Edith, who had joined Ned on the rock. "That's beria, the Soudan and fifty other place<;?" what the noise means." "You just quit that!" cried Ned, laughing, how"Great Heaven, if that's so the agent is a dead ever, as he spoke. "You've never been within five man!" cried Ned. "Daniels, we must save him if we thousand miles of the Soudan, so don't give us any can." more of that talk. Step as lively as you can, and Daniels had not waited for this. Already he had keep a good lookout, all of you. If Hart sees us first passed\ around the base of the rock, and was going as he may do some mischief." fast as he could towards the place from which the More than an hour must have passed and no signs noise had proceeded. of Hart or agent had been seen. As a matter of At this point Edith incautiously stood up, and in fact they had only gone a few hundred yards, owiug doing so the lantern she carried was instantly seen, to the dangerous descent. anj two shots came whizzing her way. "The trail, such as it is, separates here," said Ned. The &ip of the bullets was heard as they past Ned. "Dick, you and the Unknown go one way. Edith, and the girl, so it was evident that Hart had seen I and Daniels will take the other track. By doing them. this we're bound to fall in with them, and either "Stay here, Edith!" shouted Ned. "Daniels, we party is strong enough to tackle Hart aud Indian must rush on these men and finish this business, or Jack." they'll finish us, sure." "I forgive them if they escape me," growled "Better keep back, Young Klondike!" cried Hart, Daniels, striding over the rocks as he spoke, whilst out of the darkness. "Me and my pard ain't in a. Dick and the Unknown went off in the other direction. I very good humor just now. What may you want, In less than half an hour, to make matters worse I boss?" night came on, and in order 1:0 proceed it was neces"Our gold, you blame thief!" shouted Daniels, sary to use lanterns. Without them, at any moment, hoarse with passion. "You're in a tight corner now,, they might have fallen over a precipice, and with Hart, and we'll see you don't get out of it." them they made fine marks for the men they were Again the report of a rifle was twice heard. engaged in tracking, so there was danger either way. "That's our answer!" roared Hart, defiantly, as "Listen!" said Edith, putting her hand on Ned's he and Indian Jack both fired. arm, "didn't you hear something?' "I'm hit!" shouted the latter, a moment later. "'Twas a six-shooter, boss," cried Daniels. "Thunder l but the bullets are just a bit too liv ely, "Then be silent," answered Ned, hastily, "for pard. Seems as if they. could see us." that shot must have been fired by the enemy. Hart gave a cry of rage now, for he saw what it Neither Dick nor the Unknown can have got so far was that had drawn this deadly fire on himself and down yet. Keep close together now and have your his associate. rifles handy." The agent had opened the door of the hut slightly On they went again until they were suddenly and had shown a light. At once Edith, Daniels and brought to a standstill. From the other side of a high Ned bad brought their rifles to bear on this point. rock which stood in their path, words spoken in loud "You've signed your own death warrant!" shouted tones came. Hart, turning towards the hut. "Come, Jack, we The first speaker was Hart. They recognized his have him now." voice. The two ruffians rushed at the open door, expect"Here's the last chance I give you!" he cried. ing to find it shut in their faces, and that they woulsible, so that they might take part in it. "Is it Hart?" called the Unknown. "That's who it is," answered Ned. "There's a. but over there, and when we came up we found them attacking the bank agent." "Then he's alive l That's good news !" cried the Unknown. "He was a few minutes ago, but I can't say whali may have happened since. Down with you, Zed!" A bullet whistled past.

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w 22 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. "There's no good in targets of I run_ning any risk, for this ledge of rocks we're for those fellows to practice on," Young Klondike behmd contmues for a good distance added then. I When they judged they were in line with the side of "I can see something moving !" cried Dick, sud-the hut they halted. denly. The Unknown took the lantern and placed it on the "It's moving toward us," added Edith, covering top of the rocks. the object with her rifle as she spoke. "Who are Out with that liO'ht !" cried Ned angrilv ?" J. J'OU "Who is it who's so foolish as to show them where ";Put a bullet into the critter, miss," said Daniels, we are?" "and ask the question afterward." Don't shoot I am a friend "The bank agent!" cried Ned. "This way, sir. Can you see us ?" "No." "I'm that cuss," said the Unknown, "and you'll just allow me to say there's nothing foolish about it, Ned. I wanted to find out whether they could see us, and as they haven't fired, it's a dead sure thing they can't." N ed raised the lantern above the rock for an in"Well, there is something in that." stant in order to point out their whereabouts to the I "I should think there was. The road to the hut is agent, and at once several bullets came whistling by, clear now," said the Unknown. "Let us attack it at showing that the enemy was near and keeping a close once." watch on everything that happened. The agent now speedily joined the others, who were hiding behind the rocks. Young Klondike,'' said the agent, recognizing .Ned, "you have come just in time to save your gold and me, too." "Where is the gold?" asked Ned. "There's a hut over there," said the agent; "Hart and his friend made a prisoner of me and shut me up in it while they were away. I managed to free i, myself. I could have got right off, but I had the gold to think of, and thought I could hold the hut against them. But I found I could:p.'t, for the door wasn't strong enough, so out I slipped and found you." "So Hart and Indian Jack are in the hut now?" inquired Ned. "Scatter yourselves !" cried Ned, "and get to the place as quietly as possible. Leave the lantern where it is. We want no light." Cautiously the advance was made, every body taking part in it, for Edith had refused to stay behind. They were no longer moving over rocks, but crossing the snow so that their feet made scarcely any noise. Not a sound came from the hut, nor even when they got close to it did they hear anything. "Some trickery!" muttered Ned. "They're laying a trap for us." The agent caught Ned by the sleeve. "Look!" he said, in a whisper. "The door of the hut is open." "Then they must be inside ready to shoot us down," answered Ned. "There's not a doubt of it," answered the agent. "I was just able to see them glide in there as I came The Unknown was hammering against the hut with away." the butt of his rifle. Come out of that !" he shouted. You can't "Thank goodness, we have those men at last," cried Edith. get away now, so the less trouble you make the better "But we haven't got them, Edith," Dick observed, it will be for you. "and it won't be an easy matter to get them either. "That doesn't draw them," said Dick. Two men can do a lot of mischief when they're firing "I've a suspicion," said the Unknown; "that we'v from behind walls." been left again. You can't hear a sound l Why ? be "True enough, dear boy," said the Unknown; cause there's nobody to make any noise. Ned, let' "but as a rule the only opening to fire from is the make a rush all together atid take our chance." door. We know where that is, so we'll attack the It was decided to do so, and with Ned and the Un hut from the other side." known at their head, the party dashedthrough th "We'll wait here till morning if we have to, and open door, expecting to be greeted with a few bullet ke e p a clos e watch," said Ned. "The lantern, the lantern!" cried the Unknown "That won't do, Ned," exclaimed the Unknown. excitedly. "We'll see what's going on here. It' "They could get out of the hut in the darkness. It's certain our men have run. Show the light her dead easy to do that, and we'd look like a lot of fools Dick," he added, as it was brought to the hut. when daylight came." Dick swung it around, lighting up every part of th "Then we must make an attack at once !" cried small hut as he did so. Ned. "You're quite right, Zed, there's no time to "By the Jumping Jeremiah!" cried the Unkno w waste; we must get right to work. Where should "it's empty! JlJ.st as I thought! Ye gods and littl you say the door of the hut was?" fishes, the gold's gone, too !" "As near as I can judge we're facing it now," said "The gold gone !" shouted Daniels. "That can' the agent. be!" "Very well; we'll work on that basis and attack it "Find it, find it!" retorted the Unknown. "If it' 1 worn the side. We can get quite close to the hut here show it to me!"

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Y OUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 23 "Was the gold in the hut when you left it?" asked Ned of the agent. "It was," answered the latter, "and it was in the same state as when you delivered it to me on the glacier. The sailcloth in which it was packed has never been opened." "Say, boss," cried Daniels, "they must have buried the stuff under the floor of the hut 'fore they skipped." "Impossible," replied Ned. "The ground's hard as a rock. One look will show you this earth has not been touched. The gold has been carried away." "Blame strong men those," said the Unknown, "to walk off with tha. t load. I know what it weighs, for I helped to carry it out of the cave when it was lashed to the ice boat, and by gosh, it nearly broke my back in two." "Anyway we shan't settle the question by staying here," said Ned. "Let us find Hart, and we shall find the gold." "It's a poor show we have," observed Dick. "Not the slightest clew, and so dark that we couldn't see them if they were right in front of us." "Bu't. we could hear them," cried Edith. "One thing is sure," said Ned. "We know very well they didn't go down towards Caribou creek when they left the hut. If they'd done that they must have pa. ssed us. Let us go right ahead and take our chances." "And lock out for the bag of gold as we go," cried Dick, "for likely enough they had to drop it." "We can't look for the gold without using the la .ntern," said Edith, "and that would give us away." "You bet it won't, answered the Unknown. "They won't fire on us. I'm dead sure, for that would show us where they were. Anyway let them fire if they like and we'll take our chance of being hit." The Unknown hastily took the lantern from Edith. "Reckon I'll carry that myself," he said. "Edith, you get behind. It's safer." To follow a trail on frozen snow is not easy at any time. But to find a trail in the dark to which there was not the faintest clew, was almost an im possibility. "We might just as well have made ourselves at home for the night in the hut," sa id Dick. "I have it!" cried Ned, suddenly. "I know where they are !" "You know?" exclaimed the Unknown. "I admit I don't, and yet I imagine I was rather a star in the detective line." "You don't shine very bright just now, Zed," retorted Young Klondike. "Why, of course those men have gone back to the glacier. They must have left their ice boat there, and they've made tracks for it." "Right you are, Ned," cried the Unknown, "and we'll make tracks for them, too, once we get back to the trail that leads up the gorge, and it won't take us long to reach the glacier." Everybody felt that Ned's theory was the correct one, and now it seemed strange that it had not occurred to anybody before. At once they retraced their steps, and less than half an hour's walking brought them to the path down which they had come when they descended from the glacier. To some extent they were familiar with the road, having passed over it more than once, so this enabled them to make more rapid progress than they had been doing since they had left the hut. Daniels still continued to lead the way. His haMed of Hart was intense, and he meant to put a bullet into him if he got within range. Once he thought he saw Hart in the darkness, and quick as a fl.ash his rifle was at his shoulder and he fired. Ned was angry. "Daniels," he said, "this isn't the way to f).nd those men. You've given them notice of our approach, so that they can get out of our way." "Boss, thought I saw the blame skunk. But you're right, and I'm going to keep quiet now." "We've lost the trail,'' cried Dick, at this "I'm dead sure this isn't the way we came." "That doesn't matter," answered Ned, "because the glacier is ahead of us, and it's not important where we happen to strike it. We'll be on the ice in a few minutes now." This statement caused everyone to. be silent, be cause even the sound of their voices might be suffi cient to warn Hart and the other man of their approach. They were almost out of the gorge, and the darkness was less impenetrable than it had been. "The glacier!" cried Dick, suddenly. "Silence l" said Ned. "But there's no harm, Ned, in talking now," said Dick, "for it's right in front of us." "And there's something more right in front of us," cried the Unknown, excitedly. "Look l Look l By the Jumping Jeremiah l there's Hart's ice boat on the glacier. Ye gods and little fishes l we have them now!" CHAPTER X. A RACE ACROSS THE GLACIER. "WE must chase them!" cried Ned. "Perhaps that's our boat they have,'' exclaimed Edith. "No, no, Edith,'' answered the Unknown. "The sail's not big enough. Let tis hope, though, that nothing has happened to our boat. Those men may have smashed it, for all we can tell." "We shall soon see,'' cried Ned, dashing across the ice toward the spot where the ice boat had been left, followed by all hands. It was an anxious moment for everybody, for it was very probable that Hart and Indian Jack had destroyed Young Klondike's ice boat, and in that case there would be no chance of capturing them. However, this apprehension to be groundless, for appar ently the ice boat was just as they had left it.

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----24 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. "Hurrah !" cried Dick. up!" "Now we'll shake them I and the Unknown instantly changed his course to suit, The whole party jumped on board, Ned instantly took the helm, but the boat did not move because the sail did not fill. The Unknown and Dick, seeing what was the matter, sprang off, and in an instant they had turned the stern of the boat in the right direction, and so strong was the breeze that the craft was on the move before Dick and the detective were on board again. "They're a mile ahead, I reckon," said the Un known. "That's not very far, we shan't have much trouble in catching them,'' said Ned. "It's dead easy!" cried Dick. "Why, Ned, we're sailing half as fast again as they are. Their sail is getting plainer every minute." "The boat's flying, there's no mistake about that," said Ned. "What fools those fellows must have been not to have taken our boat and left us theirs. Then the laugh would have been on us." "They had plenty of time to ruin our boat if they liked," said Edith. "So we must be grateful to them for not doing it." "So grateful, miss," said Daniels, turning round with a grim smile on his face, "that I'll save them from hanging, anyway. I'll put some lead into them." Excitement ran high now on Young Klondike's Ice Boat Express. Every moment the distance between the two boats was lessening, and very soon they would be within speaking distance of each other. Daniels, rifle in hand, was sitting up in the bow of the boat ready for business. Guess I may as well do something,'' he said, quietly, and with that he began to fire at Hart's ice boat. "Stop!" cried Ned. "There's no need to kill those men. We. will capture them and run them out of the country." "Let's run them out when they're dead, boss," said Daniels. "Then we'll know they won't get back." And the old miner continued to fire. "Let him have his way, Ned," said the Unknown. "It's too dark, in all probability for him to hit any body, and if he does I shan't feel very bad about it." "Take the helm," said Ned. "I'm going to have a talk with those fellows. I'll7just give them a chance before Daniels has killed them off." Handing the tiller to the detective, Ned crossed the boat, going over to where Daniels was sitting. "Hello !" he cried. "Hold on there You can't get away, so why don't you stop? Do you hear me?" "What's the use of talking to dead men, boss ?" said Daniels. "Reckon I've fixed 'em." "Maybe you have," answered Ned, waiting in vain for an answer to his demand. "Anyway, we'll see in a moment or two, for we're almost up with them." Ned's boat overhauled Hart's, even quicker than he had expected. The wind had suddenly changed, and was now sailing across the glacier towards the great crags that rose above the ice. As he did so, Hart's boat took a sudden turn, traveled slowly about twenty yards, and then came to a standstill. "You surrender?" cried Ned, as he watched this maneuver. "Stop her, Zed Quick! Quick!" "Stop her, it is!" answered the Unknown, bringing her up short as he spoke, "Now to settle accounts with Hart!" cried Dick, as he followed Ned off the boat. "Guess I'll just look at the corpses," said Daniels, doing the same. The Unknown, Edith and the agent were crossing the ice rapidly, all carrying rifles and ready to shoot in case there was any need. Ned and the Unknown arrived at the boat together, and astounded at what they saw, they looked on in perfect amazement, for Hart's ice boat was deserted. "By the Jumping Jeremiah!" cried the Unknown. "Hi Hart's the slickest cuss we've run up against. He's made a show of us, that's what he's done." "Thunder !"exclaimed Daniels, as he looked in vain for the bodies of the men he had shot, as he supposed. "Why, they must have tumbled off the boat." "That's what they've done," said Dick; "no doubt they're lying dead on the glacier." "Hope so, anyway," growled Daniels. "Then they're not far away," said the Unknown, "because the boat only altered her course about fifty yards back. That must have been the time when the man at the helm was settled." "I can't make this out !" cried Ned, "why the tiller's tied fast. Look at it." "Ye gods and little fishes!" exclaimed the Un known, bending down to take a good look. "I see it all. That cuss has fooled us all the way round." "But I don't see it," said Ned. "To me the whole business is quite mysterious. Whom have we been chasing across the glacier, Zed ?" "Dear boy, we've been having all the fun to our selves. We've had a hot pursuit after our ice boat with nobody on it." "Nobody on it?" "You bet there wasn:t a soul on board," said the Unknown. "Hart and Indian Jack reached their ice boat after they got away from th_ e hut. Then they set a trap for us. They lashed the tiller and fixed the sail. Then when we came on the glacier thejr saw us. Instantly they started their boat before the wind and we saw it, as they knew we should and gave chase. That's the explanation of the mystery, and it's all just as clear to me as if I'd seen it all." "Likely enough you're right,'' said Ned, "but still you'll admit that these proceedings are strange. Why should they risk the loss of their ice boat?" "To get rid of us, Ned. They have two-thirds of our gold and that's worth keeping. By sending us off on this fool's errand they got time to slip right away. Hart's getting deeper in my debt every day.

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YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 25 There's going to be trouble between us when we I meet." "Guess we've talked enough," cried Ned. "Words won't catch those fellows and won't do us any good either. Sleep's the best thing for all of us, so we'll run to the cave which is not far away. You sail Hart's boat, Dick, and we'll start at once." The two boats ran along in lively fashion until the cave was reached. "Wonder Hart didn't take the cave along," growled Daniels. "Mighty good of him to leave it behind." "Ned! Ned?" cried Edith, suddenly. Young Klondike turned quickly towards the girl, thinking frorri the excited way in which she spoke that some danger threatened her. Dick and the Unknown hearing her, hurried over at once. "The gold's gone!" cried Edith. "That's no news," answered Dick. "Thought you were going to say it had come back." "But they've taken the rest of it, the package that was under our ice boat," persisted Edith. "What!" cried Ned. "No, no, Edith, that can't possibly be." But stooping down as he spoke to see if it was so, he found he had correctly stated the position of af fairs. "The gold's gone, that's sure," said Ned, "but still I don't think they have taken it. Probably it's fallen off on the glacier." "The cords that lashed it to the boat are cut clean through," said Dick. "That's proof enough. Well, this beats me," said Ned, disgustedly. "It's a blame fine thing, this mining gold for Hart," cried Daniels. "By gosh I'm through with I it." "Boys, I'm out of business," said the Unknown. "My man will get right off now. Hart's done me, :and I've taken my shingle down. I'm a detective no longer." "Good for you," said Dick. "That's about the most sensible thing you've said for some time. Take a rest, and get your eyes peeled, and in time you may amount to something." In the morning the Unknown wa.s nowhere to be : seen. He was not in the cave, and he was not visible -0n the glacier. Evidently he had made one of his mysterious disappearances. "We shall see him again," said Dick. "I'm not so sure about that," Edith remarked. "I don't think he liked what you said, Dick, about getting his eyes peeled." "Pshaw! A little thing like that wouldn't trouble the Unknown, Edith. Why, Ned and I have given him that kind of talk often." Edith prepared a good breakfast, and as it was a long time since any of them had had a meal, it was thoroughly enjoyed. "Say, boss," said Daniels, "seeing we're here, we might's well get to work." "What kind of work?" asked Ned. Mining." "There's no need," cried Dick. "Besides, we've got all the gold there is here." "Reckon the fl.rm of Golden & Luckey's about all right," answered the old miner, "but where does Ben Daniels come in? Hart's got my share, and by gosh, I didn't come all the way round here from Sitka to starve. My old pard, Jim Norwood, told me this cave was full of the yellow metal, and I'll work it alone if you fellers won't lend a hand." "It was my intention, Daniels," said Ned, "to put a gang of men on to work this place in the spring. If there's any gold to be got at easily, a few days' work here won't hurt us. Besides, we may as well stay where we are for a time, so that the Unknown may know where to find us in case he comes back." Ned's reason for remaining was a very good one, so it was decided to commence work at once. Daniels, after some prospecting, fixed on a place where a shaft was to be sunk, some distance further from the entrance to the cavern than where the gold had been obtained before. A great wood fire was made at the place indicated, and log after log was thrown in it, so as to keep it blazing for a long time. This softened the ground very much, so that they were able to get out the earth. The bank agent was still with them, for they had brought him across the glacier on the ice boat. He went to work with the others, hauling the dirt out of the shaft, and sometimes taking a turn at digging. It was slow work, and before they reached the black sand three days had passed by. The agent and Edith now boiled down the ice for washing purposes, and this kept them busy, for a quantity of water was needed. "It's a big strike," cried Ben Daniels. "I'm dead sure of it." "I've seen nothing yet," said Ned, "to cause me to agree with you. Out of all the sand we've washed we haven't got an ounce." "It's the look of the stuff, boss, I'm building on." I'd like to see some color, Daniels." "Guess we'll go a bit deeper." "No harm in doing so, though I'm not expecting to find much." "That's a nice frame of mind to be in," cried Edith, with a laugh. "Then you won't be disappointed, Ned." Not only did they dig deeper, but as Daniels was not satisfied, a drift was run and many buckets of dirt were hauled up and washed m the rocker. "Don't waste an ounce of it," Daniels," said Dick. "It's a great strike, I don't think." Daniels was bound to confess that a good trial had been made. "I think there's a pile of gold in this cavern yet," he sa. id, "only we haven't struck it." "Out of the whole lot of us," said Dick, "there's only one man who's shown any sense."

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.. 26 YOUNG KLONDIKEs ICE BOAT EXPRESS. "And who's that?" asked Edith. I the whole party on board. All were in the highest "The Unknown," was Dick's answer. "He's off spirits, for the prospects were good. It seemed as if somewhere enjoying himself, while we've been workI the long fight against Hart was about to be brought ing like You bet the Unknown knows I to a victorious conclusion. what hes domg. When they came to the end of the glacier they left "Bully for you, Dick!" cried a familiar voice. their boat, and started to descend the gorge to Caribou "Even if he hasn't got his eyes peeled." creek. "The Unknown!" everybody exclaimed, surprised On the way plans were discussed. It was absolutely to see him walk into the cave so unexpectedly. necessary that great caution should be used, for Hart "By the Jumping Jeremiah, it's what there is left was a very wily foe, and no doubt would be keeping a of him anyway," answered the detective. "Boys, close lookout for Young Klondike. I've been living principally on fresh air the last few Once out of the gorge traveling along the side of days and the diet's not very satisfying. Got :1ny the creek was easy, and the Unknown prophesied that grub in the house?" they would be at Hart's hiding place before the day "It's your own fault," said Ned. "There's plenty I was over. of food here. No one asked you to get out. What The path led between two high rocks which preventmade you do so?" 1 ed them from looking far ahead, but soon sounds came "Duty, dear boy, duty, Ned. I'm in the detective to their ears which told them that people were near. business again. Everything's going along well now, "Maybe it's Hart," cried Daniels. for I've found Hart's hiding place at last." "Too many people talking for that," said the Unknown, "unless he's got a regular gang with him, CHAPTER XI. and I hardly think that." BEN DANIELS' LIFE IN DANGER. "If he has we shall have our work cut out for us. "IF that's true," said Ned, "it's great news." We won't go a step further!" exclaimed Ned. "Keep "Great ne -ws !" cried Daniels. "Well, I guess it your rifles ready, we may have some shooting to is. Great 'nough to make me throw up mining." do." "You can bet it's true," said the Unknown. "I'm All this talk had taken place very quietly, so that giving you no ghost story. I've seen Hart and In-none of it reached the ears of the approaching party. dian Jack with my own eyes." The consequence was that they were completely as1 "But how did you manage it?" asked Ned. tounded when a sudden turn in the path brought them "Where are they?" in sight of Young Klondike and his friends. "I left them between the mouth of Caribou creek Ned and his party were surprised too. and Tanana, pretty near the town." They had not expected to see so many people, for "In a hut?" not less than twenty men composed the crowd which "No, Ned. They've a small hut in the rock, hard-confronted them now. ly big enough to be called a cave, and there they've "That's him?" cried a voice, which shook with taken shelter. This is how I got onto them. I reck-1 passion, as a man forced his way through the crowd oned it was no use tramping about the country, and I toward Ned's party. "That's him!" repeated the also had a notion that they would be moving towards man in a tone of great anger. "I see the old villain, some town, so I settled down in a kind of shanty, and by gosh, he shan't escape me!" from which I got a good view of the creek. 'They The speaker brought his rifle to his shoulder at can't go by without my seeing them,' I said to my-once, and covered Ben Daniels with it. His compan self, and sure enough, the second day along they ions imitated his example, and instantly Ned and his came." friends found themselves looking down the barrels of "You shadowed them, Zed ?" twenty guns. "You bet I did. Tracked them to their den, and The boy was astounded but not terrified, for he then skipped back here like greased lightning. This knew no reason why bis life should be threatened. time, Ned, we really have them. There is going to Perfectly cool, he walked forward toward the stran-be no hitch now." gers. "Think they have the gold with them?" asked "Back !" cried the man who s':lemed to be acting Dick. as leader. "Not a step further if you want to live!" "I'm dead sure of it. Why, I saw them moving "Mayiinquirewhatthismeans ?"said Ned, speak-one bag, anyway." ing quite calmly. "I'm off !" cried Daniels, springing to his feet. The boy concluded _that some mistake had been "Not alone?" inquired Ned, laughing. "You'll made, and that a few moments' talk would put things wait for us, won't you?" right. "Guess you don't mean to waste much time here, "Ask that old cuss," replied the other man, pointboss, do you ?" asked Daniels. ing again to Daniels. "Not a minute," replied Ned, "we're all ready to "But he knows no more about it than Ido," said start out with the boat. Let's go!" Ned. "How should he?" The ice boat was soon flying over the glacier with "Say," said one of the strangers, "are we going

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YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 27 to hang about here all day ? We've got business to "Stand forward, Dupree, and tell your story," attend to; let's do it." said Dick Tredway. "Right you are, mister," said the leader, addressThe man who had first pointed out Daniels then ad-ing Ned again. "You are my prisoners." vanced to the front. "Prisoners!" repeated Ned, scornfully. "I accuse that man," he said sternly, indicating "That's what I said." Ben Daniels, "of being a thief. He robbed me of all "But you have to take us first." my gold." "That's done. Look!" The face of Daniels was a study now. It was livid Ned turned round, and there he saw that his re-with passion. Indignation made him speechless for a treat, if had wished to retire, was cut off. Dur-few moments. ing the talk seven or men had made their way "A thief!" he cried savagely, finding his voice. over the rocks, and postmg themselves at the rear of "You call me that. Me old Ben Daniels known Young Klondike, the latter found himself between in these parts these twent; yea .rs?" two fires. I Daniels would have rushed at his accuser, but two Ned did not experience any feeling of fear, only an-strong men held his arms. ger ''Yes,'' repeated Dupree, '' I call you a thief be-He was furious at finding himself treated in such a cause you are one. I came over from Canada with way without any reason. my friends here after gold. I was lucky and got fif" You seem to be the leader of this gang," he said, teen thousand dollars' worth. You came to my hut addressing the man who had done most of the talk-where it was hidden and stole it. You were recog ing, "and so I ask you to explain to me what all this nized,.for people saw you slinking away." means. Surely there must be some mistake. Who "It is not true," said Daniels, firmly. "l never set are you, anyway?" eyes on you before, and I don't know where your hut I'm not ashamed of my name, it's Dick Tredway," answered the man. "But, say, this is no place to do the business. Bring these men along, and we'll soon settle their hash." The mob closed in on Young Klondike and his friends, who made no attempt at resistance, feeling sure that it would do no good. Now they were hurried along toward Tanana, none of them being treated harshly except Ben Daniels, against whom, from time to time, savage looks were directed and threats were made. "Can you understand this, Ned?" asked Dick, in a low voice. "It's a mystery to me. I'm all in the dark," an swered Ned, "but. I feel sure that we shall come to an explanation soon. What's your idea about it, Zed ?" "By the Jumping Jeremiah!" cried the Unknown. It's bad. We're cornered." "Cornered! By whom?" "You bet this is Hart's gang," answered the Un known. "I'm expecting every minute to see him and Indian Jack show up." "If you're suspicions are correct, Zed, we're in a tight place. Let's hope you' are wrong, and I think you are, because Daniels seems to be the man they're dead sore agamst, not us." "Halt!" cried Dick Tredway, at this point, and under a large tree the whole crowd stopped, the Un known glancing around in every direction for some signs of Hart, and his companions looking on with an expression of absolute wonderment on their faces. "Mister," said Dick Tredway, "we're peaceful men, and we're going to carry this thing through right. There's going to be nothing crooked about us." "Hut what does it all mean?" asked Ned, im patiently. is." The Canadians laughed The indignation of Daniels seemed to amuse them. Ned thought he saw a way of setting matters right. "When did this robbery take place?" he asked. "Yesterday." "Then Daniels is innocent beyond a doubt," cried Ned, triumphantly, "for he has been with us for sev eral weeks t.raveling about on the Valdes glacier in our ice boat." "An ice boat, an ice boat !" cried twenty voices. "Well, what of it?" asked Ned. "Do you disbelieve me?" "Guess we don't," answered Dick Tredway, "only it's like your gall to admit it. Why, the cuss that robbed Dupree was known to have an ice boat, and we were on our way to the glacier now, thinking we'd get across to Copper Centre where he'd likely enough gone. Better hold your tongue, mister. You only do your friend harm." "I can put matters straight," said the Unknown, coming forward. "Who in thunder are you, anyway?" "I'm a detective." "A detective By gosh, you look like a cross be tween a parson and a trooper," answered Dick Tred way, casting his eyes from the Unknown's tall hat to his big cavalry boots. "Th. is man, our friend," said the Unknown, "is named Ben Daniels. The fellow you're after is called Hart, Hiram Hart. We know him. He's a thief, claim jumper and all around tough. At this moment we're on our way to his hiding place to ca.pture him and get back seventy-five thousand dollars' worth of gold he's stolen from us." "No good, mister," said Dick Tredway. '"Twon't wash."

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28 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S IUE BOA'l' EXPRESS. ======================:==============-===========You don't believe me?" asked the Unknown, IJ going on. Two men had climbed the tree and were anxiously. busily engaged in fixing the rope. "You bet I don't, not one word. You're a slick saw .that. nothing more could be G.one He cuss and you can talk smooth, but fairy tales don't go that his friends had made a brave .fight f.or here. We've ot our man and we mean to stick to his llfe and ne thanked them warml:r, Ned m particg ular, and he wrung the boy's hand m grateful recoghim." "But what are you going to do with him?" cried Dick, who saw that matters were getting serious. "You'll see. Boys," said Dick Tredway, "guess nition of his conduct. Ned was deeply affected, and Edith was almost heartbroken. 1 "Never mind," said the brave old miner. "Don't you've heard enough." J take on so. It's got to be, though I'd like to haYe "We want no more jaw," cried several men. squared matters with that blamed cuss, Hart, before "And we won't have any, either. What is it to I the y strung me up." be? What's your verdict?" The Unknown had been walking up and down "Death!" came in one shout from twenty angry quickly with his hands behind his back in a very dis-men. turbed state of mind. He was trying to discover "Mister," said Tredway, turning to Daniels, and somewayinwhichDaniels'innocencemightbeproved. speaking in the most matter of fact, way, as if the "Will nothing satisfy you?" he cried suddenly, thing was of no importance, "you've got to swing. stopping in front of Tredway. Guess we won't hurry you for a few minutes, but "Nothing but this man's death." don't keep us waiting long." "Evidence can be obtained from Copper Centre to Ned was aghast. Up to now he had not realized prove our friend's innocence," pleaded the Unknown. the seriousness of the affair, not dreaming that "That will take time, we can't w ait. This man what was going on constituted a trial. It was has got to die, and die he shall at once, and by gosh, clear now that these Canadians were in dead earnest if you give me any more of your jaw, I'll string the and the life of old Daniels was in peril. whole blame crowd up. Guess you people make me "You slia.ll not touch him he cried, sternly, plant-tired.,, ing himself in front of Daniels.' I know him to be "you cannot make the same answer to me,,, said white. To hang this man will be murder." Edith, boldly confronting Tredway. "Guess it's better to run the risk of m aking a mis"Hush, Edith, hush!" said Dick, quickly. "Don't take," was Tredway's cold-blooded ans wer, "than make this man worse." to let this cuss go. Who are you, anyway?" "He dare not lay hands on me," said Edith, proud" My name is Golden, Ned Golden, of the firm ly. "I have a proposition to make, and I insist that of Golden & Luckey. This is my partner, Dick it shall be listened to." Luckey." Edith's beauty and daring made a deep impression "Never heard of either of you. Did you, boys?" on Tredway and his friends, and her assurance so as "Not much." tounded them that no one interrupted her. "But you must have heard of Young Klondike," "My proposition is this," continued Edith. "You persisted Ned. "That's a name by which I'm known say Daniels is the thief. We say it is a man named everywhere." Hart. I am satisfied when the two arc together "We never heard of that, either." that Dupree, the man who has been robbed, will find "Surely, that can't be possible," Ned said, resolved he has made a mistake. They can be brought to to do his utmost to save Daniels. "I'm a millionaire. gether, for we know where Hart is and will produ.ce Your friend Dupree claims to have lost fifteen thou-1 him." sand dollars. Release Daniels and I will pay the "You know where he is," repeated Tredway, money." \ doubtingly. "Have you got the in your pocket?" in-1 "Yes, I give you my we do, only we want quired Tredway, sarcastically. time to lay our hands on him. You cannot refuse "No, but I will write you out a check for the I my request. We were going to capture him when amount." I you stopped us." "What are you giving us?" cried Tredway, angrily. The Canadians together for some time, "A faro bank's the only kind of bank you know their talk being extremely animated, as if they were anything about." not all in agreement. "But what Mr. Golden says is quite true," said the "Miss," said Tredway, at length, towards bank agent from Juneau, stepping forward. I am Edith, "because a woman most of us the agent of a bank at Juneau in which his firm haYe cided to give your friend a show. We will wait laro-e sums deposited. Mr. Golden's check is as good I twenty-four hours for you to make good your offer. as I If you're not here to the this man must Dick Tredway gave a contemptuous laugh, and ab-swing. For twenty-four hours he is safe. Have no solutely refused to listen to one word more. fear. Though I'm rough, miss, as you've seen, I'm All this time the preparations for the lynching were square. I don't go back on my word."

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YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BO.AT EXPRESS. 29 "He is saved !" cried the Unknown. "Come, Ned, we won't lose a minute. Ye gods and little fishes, what a day this has been!" "Hurrah!" shouted Ned, intensely relieved to hear the sound of his friend's voice. "He's alive at any rate. We're coming, Dick? Where are yeu ?" "Here." CHAPTER XII. In a few minutes they had him on his feet again. SAVED BY A SHOT. He was quite unhurt, having fallen down the rocks "You spoke just in Lime, Edith," said Ned, as into a deep drift formed of soft snow. This had althey were walking away. "Very lucky you hit on most buried him, and it was because he was covered that idea." with snow that he could not make himself heard for "Very fortunate it was Edith who proposed it," I some time. observed Dick. "If either of us had done so, they'd "Dick's all right, Edith!" cried Ned, for Edith have refused the request otfhand." was in a fearful state of mind up above. "I look up011 Daniels as quite safe now," said Ned. "But what are we going to do?" asked Edith. "Don't you, Zed?" / "This is a regular blizzard. I can't get along." "Why, yes,' answered the Unknown. "Hart's "We must try. Remember, the life of Ben Daniels hiding place is not very far away. We can reach it is at stake," said Ned, "and every minute counts." in a few hours, capture him and get right back. All "Yes; t.ry, Edith," urged t .he Unknown. this trouble is caused by those Canadians. Imagine, Bravely they all struggled on, Edith fighting the they'd never heard of Young Klondike. Where in thun-storm as well as the others. At last, it was apparder have they been? By the Jumping Jeremiah, ent to everybody that a halt must be made. they're little better than savages !" "We must seek shelter," cried Ned. "To go on is Talking as they went, all in good humor over the certain death, for we shall all perish in the drifts." turn affairs had taken, the ground was quickly cov"What shelter can we find?" asked Dick. ered. The. Unknown, who knew the secret of Hart's "We'll take any. How about this rock?" Ned hiding place, went on in front, acting as guide. said. "It shields us from the wind, anyway." Leaving the level ground tha. t ran alongside Caribou It was no time to be particular, and so they took creek, the detective now struck out for the moun-the first chance that offered itself. They were sheltains, and naturally progress at once became slower. tered from the wind, and the snow passed them by, "Is it far now, Zed?" asked Young Klondike, as but they had to endure the cold, which was intensely they climbing up the snow-covered rocks. piercing. "About three miles, Ned." For hours they remained thus, cold in bcidy, and "I'm g'lad it's no more." sad at heart, for as they waited they knew that their "Why, are you tired ?" friend's life was slipping away. "No, but just look round, Zed; unless I'm very Several times Ned made bis way around to the wind-much mistaken, we're going to have a storm. ward side of the rock which sheltered them, hoping There's every sign of it." to find that the storm had abated, and as soon as the These words made everybody anxious, for they wind had lessened in violence, the journey was reknew that Ned's judgment was rarely at fault in such sumed. matters. In less than fifteen minutes the storm "Three hours wasted!" cried Ned. broke loose. The wind blew furiously, right in their "Never mind that," said the Unknown, in good faces; and the snow almost blinded them. To make spirits again. matters worse darkness came on. "The wind's dying down every minute, and the "I'm gone!" shouted Dick, suddenly. snow's almost gone. An hour's walk will bring usto The cry was followed by a crash, and the rest of Hart's den. Allow, say, an hour to fix things up the party were horror-stricken. with him, and four hours to get back. Why, Ned, "Dick!-Dick!" cried Ned, "where are you? we'vegotlotsoftime. It'sdeadeasy. Thecountry Speak !" is still safe." "We must find him !"cried the Unknown. "Dick I "Shall we find the place in the dark?" Dick!" "Why, yes, and for a certain reason I don't think it No reply came. The fears of the boy's friends inwill be a hard matter, either," answered the detect-creased. ive. "I'm going right down where he fell!" cried Ned. This reply was somewhat obscure, but no remark "I can't stay here doing nothing. Come with me, was made. Zed, and show me a light." Silently they trudged along, all being now in good It was dangerous work to climb down these slip-shape except the bank agent. This kind of life was pery rocks in the darkness, but the thought of Dick's new to him, and be confessed that be was nearly experil was uppermost in Ned's mind, and he was ready hausted. to brave any danger for the sake of his friend. A drink from the Unknown's fl.ask, which was used "If he could only say something," said the Unonly for medicinal purposes, gave the man some known. "That would give us a clew." strength, and the prospect of beingnear his journey's "Help Help!" cried a faint voice. end, further revived him ..

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30 YOl"NG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. "I thought so!" cried the Unknown suddenly. detective, "for he has prepared his defenses. From "A light!" exclaimed Ned, glancing up. behind the stone breastwork he's raised, he could shoot "A fire, Ned, a fir e," continue d the detective. us all down without being hit." "He has a fire in his hiding place as I expected, and Edith and Dick fired togethe r now, and Hart that is the light we're looking at now." laughed defiantly. ,,. "He must feel safe," said Dick, "to be daring "Waste your powder, Young Klondike!" he enough to light a fire." shouted. "Blaze awa. y you won't hurt us. So you "With all their smartness," said the Unknown, are not dead after all!" "these fellows act at times. I was follow" we must negotiate," said Ned, after a moment's ing my man in Australia in '83. I could tell you such thought. a yarn about it. "It's evident that he has the best end of this deal, "Drop it We don't want to hear it !" cried N ed'. and in order to save D a ni e ls we must make terms." "Come, come, what's to be done? You've seen this "It's pretty tough on us," said Dick, "to have to place by daylight, and ought to be able to advise crawl in front of this man. us." I "Just listen to wha t I have to say, Dick. Hello, "And so I can, dear boy. We will creep right up Hart!" shouted Ned as loud as he could. to the mouth of the cave and when we show ourse lv e s suddenly, Hart will have nothing t.o do but surren der. If be doesn't he will be shot down." "He must b e take n a live if po ssible," cried N ed. I want to hand him over to the Canadians as I said we would." "That goes, Ned, I'll remember what you say. I'm off," said the Unknown. "After me, all of you, and no noise mind." They were silently nearing Hart's hiding place. Their lantern had been extinguished, and there was nothing to show their whereabouts. Suddenly a surprising event happened. No rifle was fired, but a shower of rocks began to fall about them, not small stones but great rocks which would have dashed their brains out if their heads had been struck. "I'm hit I" cried the bank agent, with a howl of "You ain't dead, Young Klondike!" answered Hart. What's up now?" "Let's call a halt. We've been fighting long enough. Hand back our gold and we'll let you go." "Say, that kind of talk don't go here. If any fel ler wants any of my dust, by gosh, he has to take it from me". You hear that? Well, Young Klondike, that's the last word you'll hear me say." Ned called to him again, but he received no reply. "So that negotiation, as you call it, was soon over," said Dick. "Hello! where's the Unknown?" "Great Heavens! he can' t have fallen down the rocks!" "I saw him climbing up towards Hart's cave while you were talking," said Edith. '" That's good Then we needn't worry about him I'm afraid, Edith, that Daniels is a doomed man. It's certain death to attack Hart_ Two men can hold pain. that cave against twenty." "Not badly?" asked Ned, anxiously "Not if you know the way in, dear boy," said the "No, b11t it pains me. A rock caught me on the Unknown from above. shoulder. We shall be killed if we stay here." "So you're back again, Zed?" "Ha! Ha!" laughed a voice from above, which "Yes, Ned, and with good ne\.vs, too. By the they knew to be Hart's. Jumping Jeremiah, we have Hart this time! He "So you don't like your reception, eh? Thought to doesn't know the surprise that is being prepared for take old Hi Hart by surprise, did you? Not much! I h i m. Listen, Ned." saw that little runt of a detective hanging around, "Go on. We're quiet enough." and I knowed you'd be on hand pretty quick. Down I "I've foun d another way into Hart' s cave." with the rocks, Jack! I rriean to smash the whole "You have?" cried Ned, surprised at the startling crowd this time !" piece of news. "Where?" Indian Jack went to work with a will now. Ned "By the roof. Mind, I don't lay claim to being a .nd the others remained motionless, saved from death extra smart because I've found it out. It was an ac b y a projec ting ledge of rock which kept the others cident," continued the Unknown, "and I was blame from falling upon them. 1 near my end, I t e ll you. While I was prospecting up "Stones all gone!" said Indian Jack at last. above I nearly went through a hole, and by gosh I "Guess they've done the job," answered Hart. looking down I saw the flame from Hart's fire, so I "Can't hear a sound, now, Jack, so I'm thinking 1 knew what it meant." we ve sent the whole show over into the gorge. We'll "We can get in tha t way?" have a look in the morning." "Sure, Ned." "He thinks we're dead," whispered Ned. "A "We must lead him to think we are still here," said g ood chance to surprise him.'' Young Klondike. "Edith and the agent shall stay "But he's at the mouth of the cave," replied the where they are, and begin a hot fire on the mouth of Unknown, "so we can't." the cave. This will make Hart think anattackisgo" We must attack the place then?" ing to begin. Dick, I and you, Zed, will drop down "And be shot down, Ned. It won't do," said the into the cave and finish him."

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YOUNG KLONDIKE'S ICE BOAT EXPRESS. 81 "A good plan," assented the Unknown, "'and we "Two minutes to noon!" cried the Unknown now. can't getto work too soon." 'We are in time!" exclaimed Ned. "We have The darkness which had appeared to interfere with only this small hill to climb." t0heir plans befriended them now, for it prevented They breasted it at a run, making Hart and Indian Hart from noticing Ned and his two companions as Jack, their prisoners, do the same, and breathless they climbed up the rocks to the bluff above the they arrived at the top. mouth of the cave. Then a cry of horror burst from their lips. J Edith, timing the proper moment well, began to "Stop Stop cried Ned. fire and so did the agent. "We have the man!" shouted the Unknown. "Blaze away!" shouted Hart, defiantly. "Chip "But we are too late!" added Dick. as many corners off the rocks as you please. It don't Just as they reached the summit of the hill, poor hurt me. Ha Ha Young Klondike struck a snag old Daniels, with the rope around his neck, was lifted when he ran up against me." off the ground and strung up to the tree. And what did you strike?" said a voice behind The Canadians took no notice of the frantic cries of Hart. Young Klondike and his friends. In a moment DanThe man turned instantly, and so did Indian Jack. iels would be strangled. I:Iart's face became ashy pale, and though he tried to Suddenly a sharp report rang out, the rope which speak he could not utter a sound. was around the tree parted, and Daniels dropped to There stood Ned, Dick and the Unknown, all with the ground. their rifles to their shoulders, covering Hart and In-Edith had saved the. old miner's life by an extra-dian Jack, and holding both men at their mercy. ordinary shot, even for her. Seeing Daniels' peril, and "Do you surrender?" asked Ned. that not a moment was to be lost, she had fired with" That's my answer!" exclaimed Hart, throwing 1 out any delay, and the bullet severed the cord by down his rifle. "Your hand's too strong, pard, and which the man was hanging. I know when I'm beat." The Canadians, furious, were about to attack Young "We have them!" cri(;d Ned, going to the mouth Klondike and his friends, when Dupree, the man who of the cave. had been robbed, interfered. He was eager to let Edith know, and she and the "They have the right man now,'' he cried. "I girl came up at once. made a mistake. The other is innocent." Shall we tie their hands behind them ?" asked Hart protested his innocence, but unfortunately for Dick. him, certain papers were discovered on his person "No, we must do nothing to delay their movewhich had belonged to Dupree, and he could not ex ments, See, day's coming, so they can't run away, plain how they had come into his possession. for we can cover them with our guns. Off with you, What happened to him and his partner, Indian Hart, get a move on you right now!" Jack, is not precisely known, for Young Klondike and "Say, if you're going to do for me, why wait? his friend, having recovered the gold in the cave, went Get the job over, pard," on to Tanana, but it is certain that after this day "Never mind what I mean to do," answered Ned, neither of the two scoundrels were ever seen again. sternly. "You obey my orders, that's all I want." It was in Hart's cave that all the gold that had There was still a chance of saving the life of Ben been stolen was found, and Daniels' share of it was Daniels, but it all depended on the speed with which given to him. The rest was transported to Juneau by they were able to get back. At noon precisely the the bank agent. twenty-four hours grace expired, and Ned was satis-Young Klondike made Daniels a present of the Ice fled that Dick Tredway and his Canadian friends Boat Express, as he had no intention of going back would not wait another instant. to the Valdes glacier at present. Hart could not understand the frantic haste which Young Klondike, at another time, found himself in-Young Klondike displayed, and when he asked for an volved in adventures even more startling than the explanation none was given him. ones just narrated. These will be found fully described On they went, falling sometimes in their ea. gerness, in the next number of this series, entitled : "YouNG but picking themselves up and going on again as fast KLONDIKE AND THE MAD MINER; OR, LOST IN THE as ever. GREAT SWAMP."

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PAGE 34

"Mind you don' t commit yourself, Grunt," said a quiet voice beside him, and tha boatswain, turning beheld a handsome young fellow, whom the crew called Captain h arry to his face, and Handson:.e Harry behind his back.


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