Young Klondike's lost million; or, The mine wreckers of Gold Creek

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Young Klondike's lost million; or, The mine wreckers of Gold Creek

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Young Klondike's lost million; or, The mine wreckers of Gold Creek
Series Title:
Young Klondike
Author of Young Klondike ( Old Miner )
Place of Publication:
New York
Frank Tousey
Publication Date:
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1 online resource (30 p.)


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

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University of South Florida
Holding Location:
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.
Resource Identifier:
025493867 ( ALEPH )
15005882 ( OCLC )
Y14-00024 ( USF DOI )
y14.24 ( USF Handle )

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IF GJIUJ I Isll'Ued &mtMcm.thl11-B11 Subscription $1.25 pet' 11ear. Emtered as Second Class Matter at the New York, N. Y;, Post O.ffice, March 15, 1898, b11 Frank To-usey No. 11. NEW YORK, August 3, 1898. --== 0 R ===--Price 5 Cent& a.. l HE MINE WRECKERS-Of (iOLD CR.E-EK. Bx AurttoR oi'XouNq KLONDIKE': ..... _.;::. .. --.,,.,,,.. At the same instant every window of the hut was darkened. There were eight windows visible ; at every one of the eight appeared a man wearing a red shirt and a slouch hat, and eight ri1les w ere thrust out, coveFing Yo ung Klondike and his friends. =


Ouer 72000 New & C.d f.. u. Lib aries in Ctccri, Lchu..11p.;J;e, Bet, Madison & Washington 45 S. HALSTED ST., Chicago, UI, Stories of a Gold Seeker. Issue d Semi-Monthly-By Subscription $1.25 p e r y ea?'. E11te?ed as Second Class lriatter tit the New York. N. Y., Post Ojfioe, March 15, 1898. Entered accordiug to Act fJf Congr es s in the 11ear 1898, in tl>e office of the Librarian of Congress, H ashinoton, D. C., by F'rank '1.'ousey, 29 West 26th Street New York. No. 11. NEW YORK, August 3, 1898. Price 5 Cents: Young Klondike's Lost Million; OR, THE MINE WRECKERS OF GOLD. CREEKl BY AUTHOR OF YOUNC KLONDIKE. CHAPTER I. NED GOLDEN'S SECRET. DA wsoN CITY is a lively place at night a t all times of year, but with a big difference, according what time you take it. In the winter, when it is almost all night and there is almost no day, and the thermometer stands anywhere from zero to fifty below, the streets of this now famous mining town are deserted, and the life is all in doors. Big s::i.loons in frame shanties are running full blast, big gambling rooms ditto, but on the street there is no one out for pleasure, and those who show themselves for business make the best time t. to a grizzled miner who stood smoking a pipe and studying the passengers as they came down the gang-plank, and asked who the young man was. "Why, he's one of our biggest mine owners," was the answer. "That's Dick Luckey of the great firm of Golden & Luckey. Of course you've heard of them?'' "Well, no, I can't say I have," replied the tender foot, as the new-comers on the Klondike are some times called. "Hain't heard of Golden & Luckey? Gee whiz! Whar you been all this last year? Thought every body in the States had heard of them," wa1 the drawling reply. possible, darting out of one shelter and making a quick rush for another, all muffled up to the eyes. "Well, then, here's one who hasn't. Who are they and what are they?" In summer the life moves out on the streets to a great extent, the doors of the saloons and gambling "Biggest claim o ; ymers on the Klondike, that'& dens are wide open, and the rolftgh, red-shirted miner what. They own claims all over, and are worth three and the newly arrived Klondiker, with his store millions at least." clothes, soon to be discarded, are to be seen talk-j "So?" said the tenderfoot; "and ain't they just ing "mine and "big strike and "new diggings got the right sort of names, too." 1on all sides. "That's what they have! Ned Golden, he's the One evening in the month of July a young man senior, but we call him Young Klondike He used to came hurrying out of the Victoria Hotel, and passbe a poor clerk in New York and came out here with ing through the groups of idlers which hung about out a dollar-look where he is now." the piazza and on the street, made his way rapidly "Right you are, if he's worth what you say, that's wward the levee, where a steamer from Seattle had great. Who's the young fellow you just spoke to? just come in loaded down with Klondikers to that exThe partner?" tent that it was a. wonder she did not sink in the "That's what l Dick Luckey was a poor.New York Yukon. clerk, too, but he's a big bug in Dawson now, and As he passed among the crowd on the levee the don't you forget it; then, besides them two there's young man was greeted on all sides. Mr. Zed, he's with 'em, and Miss Edith "\Velton, a It was, "good-evening, Mr. Luckey," here, &nd lady what Young Klondike rescued from the wreck of "fine evening, Mr. Luckey," there. a steamer on the voyage to Juneau. Look! There's Everyone seemed to know him, and one of the newMr. Zed now, and Miss Welton is with him-there's comers who had been among the first to land, turned three of the firm of Golden & Luckey, and let me tell j


YOUKG KLONDI&E'S LOST MILLION. you they could buy and sell half of your beggarly 1 or not is a question. It wouldn't surprise me a bit if grubbers down to Frisco; yes, that's what!" 1 he didn't show up till morning, but when he does Thus saying the grizzled miner touched a match to I come he'll be pretty sure to have something to tell." his pipe, and the tenderfoot turned away. Quick moves and prompt action-that was alwa,rs Dick Luckey had already met his friends on the the style of the firm of Golden & Luckey-and to this steamer. Soon they passed that way, and the tender-they rightly attributed a great deal of their foot saw a very pretty girl and a short, thick-set man, On this occasion they went further down the levee, wearing a rusty "plug" hat .and high cavalry boots, and passed through a big wooden gate into a boat walk toward the Victoria Hotel in company with the builder's yard, where there was a little pier project-junior partner of the Klondike's richest firm. ing out into the Yukon. "Where did you leave Ned?" asked Dick, as they To this pier a handsome naphtha launch,;or unusual >valked along. size, lay moored, and alongside of it was a boat loaded "We didn't leave, he left us," replied the little down with goods carefully packed under a tarpaulin. man. "We've got to go right back, Dick, and you What these goods were did not appear, but we may must go with us. We'd better take the launch and mention that they were mining tools of every descrip start now." tion, a store, and great hampers of provision's, such "Well, everything is all ready if you want to go," as experience had taught these old-time Klondikers said Dick. "I have attended to that." were best adapted to a new camp. "I knew you would," added Edith. "If we had Was Golden & Luckey about to engage in a newbeen sure that you were at Dawson, we'd have s ent enterprise then? you word instead of coming, but you sec we weren't, I It looked very much that way. and the Unlmown thought it would be safest to come." I They went aboard the launch and made themselves Neel?'' I comfortable there. "Went off up the creek. We signaled the steamer Dick took charge of the engine and the Unknown .and they took us on board and here we are." proceeded to cast off. u And as sure as my isn't Snooks, Ned has There was no noise and fuss about it. 'Struck something rich," laughed the little man, Edith and the Unknown made no more of r eturning whom Edith had alluded to by the singular name of over thirty miles of the Yukon than they would o f the Unknown. going quietly to bed in the Victoria Hotel. Concerning which name a word of explanation, and It was a charming night. The stars w ere shini1lg-then we launch right out into our story and don't and the moon would soon be up over the big :r.noun turn aside again. tains opposite Davvson City, mountains lying so near The little man was a sort of silent partner in the the metropolis of the Yukon, and yet scarcely trodde n firm of Golden & Luckey and they called him the Unby the foot of man. known, because for some unexplained reason he re-After they were well under way, Dick bega,n to ask fused to tell his name. questions again, for be it understood that Dick had Although Ned Golden, otherwise Young Klondike, been off on a trip to the Owl Ureek diggings, owned and Dick Luckey had been associated with him ever by his firm, and had not seen Young Klondike, his since they came to the gold diggings, they had not partner, in two weeks. the faintest idea who he really was. "'\Vhat in the world do you suppose Ned is on to All they actually knew was that the Unknown now?" he asked. "To me all this is a mystery, you_ ... posed as a detective, and claimed to have traveled the know." world over in search of a mysterious criminal whom "And so it is to us," replied Edith. "The story is he called "his man. just this, Dick, we came down. from El Dorado Creek, Who this man was, or why the detective-sought him, and instead of finding Ned, as we expecte d, found a was one of the mysteries; so was his real name, for he letter waiting for us,. saying that be had gone down would never tell it to a living soul. to Gold Creek." Sometimes his partner1;1 called him Zed, and people "Yes,'' broke in the Unknown, ,, and that letter about Dawson came to know him as Mr. Zed. Alto-told us to write one for you, telling you t q get every gether he was a very curious character, this Unthing ready to start a new diggings at a moment's known. notice, and--" "It's settled, then, that we get on the move at "And I know all that,'' interrupted Dick. "Whe:r:. once?" asked Dick as they walked along. you saw Ned at Gold Creek what did he say to you? "That's what!" replied the detective. That's what I want to know." "Decidedly!" added Edith. "Huh!" said the detective, "then you'll have to "Then we'll go straight for the launch, for the want., for that's just what we haven't got a chance sooner we start the better." to tell you. He wouldn't say anything at all." "How long will it take us to run down to Gold Strange." Creek?" asked Dick. "No, it ain't. N cd gets those mysterious fits on "Oh, we'll be there by midnight,'' replied the de-him once in a while." tective, "but whether we find Young Klondike there "Catches them from you, perhaps." .:


\ YOUKG KLONDIKKS LOST MILLION 3 "Ye gods and little fishes, no I say no. There never was such a frank aud open character as I ain in the whole world." "When you are asleep; your mouth is open then, but asleep or awake nothing ever comes out of it about yourself." "By the Jumping Jeremiah, that's a gross libel. I won't ta,ke it a,t all. "Leave it alone then. Look here, did you see Ned?" "Yes, we did. He met us there and tolu us to get right back." "And that's all?" "All of any consequence. Oh, I tell you Young Klondike has struck something rich, and like a sen sible fellow he's keeping dark about it until it takes proper shape. Now, then, Dick, I'm going to sleep, for it wouldn't surprise me a bit if I didn't get much chance the last half of the night." Thus saying the Unh'llown curled himself up in the corner of the launch and was o1f in the land of od in no time. And the launch ran on down the Yukon, skillfully managed by Dick Luckey, the heavily loaded trailing behind. And that trailing boat acted as a drag; it was after one o'clock before Dick turned into the mouth of a small creek on the lP-ft hand side of the river. Edith pvinted out the place. Here the banks were low and yvell overgrown with clumps of bushes. A hundred Indians might have been lurking there, but they never would have known. Dick woke up the detective as soon as they turned into the creek. The Unknown leaned over the side of the boat, washed his face, shook himself, and then declared that he was ready for business. "This is the place all right, Dick," he said, "but you'\e got to go further up the creek to the hut." "That's easy done if there's water enough to fl.oat the launch." "There's lots of it. It would take a small steamer." "How far is the hut?" "Oh, about a quarter of a mile. I shouldn't think it was much more." "There's the hut," exclaimed Edith. You can see it now." The hut stood on a projecting point of land at some little distance ahead. It was a rude affair built of logs, but had one peculiarity about it-it was all win dows There were two on the ground floor, open ing in front, and two more opening on the side toward them, besides which were three dormer windows opening off the roof, giving light to the loft over the main room. Such a structure seemed altogether out of place in this lonely spot, and Dick was puzzled to know why it should ever have been built. "What in thunder did they put so many windows in that hut for ?" he exclaimed. "You tell me who built it, and I'll tell you why the windows are there," replied the Unknown. "I've seen nothing like it nowhere, and that's the reason I'll never tell you why it was built the way it was." Dick watched the hut as they a pproached Don t see anything of Ned yet," he exclaimed "Shall I give him a call?" "r wouldn't," replied the detective, "you can't tell at a lt \vho may be lurking about here. I say we'd do better to keep quiet until he comes." "I sup.pose it is so, but-look there! Look there !" It is no wonder that Dick was startled and thus ex claimed. Suddenly the lonely hut on the point was taken out of the darkness and shadow in which it stood, and brilliantly illmni\>.f-" Lights appeafect at every window-ghostly lights shining without any apparent reason. Dick stopped the launch instantly, and all sat there and stared. Was this part of Ned Golden's secret? There were the lights, but our Klondikers could see no one in the but. I t was certainly a very mysterious affair. CHAPTER I I. MORE MYSTERY ABOUT THE HUT. "Shall we meet Ned there?" "THERE'S Young Klondike now!" "I'm sure I can't tell you. He left us and went As the mysterious lights in the hut suddenly van still further up the creek. All I know is that he told ished, which they did in a moment, a young man ap-us to meet him there." peared on the opposite shore of the creek. "Which we'll do. Ned must have some good He came out from among the bushes, rifle in hand, reason for all this." and stood staring attentively at the hut and the "It's his secret and we must respect it," said boat. Edith. "Hello!" cried Dick "Ned! Hey, Ned!" "That's what we will," replied Dick, "but what "Hello, Dick!" wa,<; the reply. "By gracious, worries me is the idea of Ned being here alone. I what'& going on over there in the hut?" don't like it. There may be Indians about or some I It was easy to ask the question, but, of course, Dick gang of toughs. I really don't know what I should had no means of answering it. do if anything was to happen to Ned." I The launch was nearer the place where Ned Golden


4 YOUNG LOS'l' I stood than it was to the hut by_ a good deal. Dick "I have spoken!" cried Ned, with a theatrical drove it over against the shore, and Ned sprang wave of his hand. aboard. It was all a joke, and the detective knew it. "It's very mysterious," he said. "When I left Fact was, Ned Golden had no other motive for keep-that hut there was nobody in it. Who can be there ing his movements secret than to treat all his friends now?" to a surprise. "Don't ask me," replied Dick. "Of course I know "I don't understand about this light business in nothing about it." the hut at all," he said, suddenly changing the sub" Of course not if you've just arrived. ject. "Hadn't we better get over and see what it's "That's what we have." all about?" "When did you leave Dawson?" "That's what we ought to do," replied the detectt Dick named the time, and Young Kfondike declared ive. "One thing is certain, the hut was deserted J that they had made a good run." when we left it this afternoon." Well, I thin].{ so," said the Unknown. We "And I don't see a sign of any one over there now," haven't lost a minute. Here we are, bag and bag-said Dick, "and I've been watching close, too." gage, and all ready to follow our lead e r to the North "We' ll go over and have a look," declared Nod; Pole if necessary, but by the Jumping Jeremiah, I "drive ahead, Dick. This mystery must be ex must know what's the cause of our being treated to plained." a display of fireworks like that!" Dick started the launch going and they landed on "Give it up. It's all a mystery to me," replied I the opposite bank of the creek. Ned. They were close to the hut now and lost no time in "It' s nothing to do with your secret then?" asked going up to it. Edith. Dick lighted a lantern and the y w ent in and ex" Nothing at all. I haven't been at the hut sinoe amined the hut in every part, finding no one there, you l eft." and what was more, discovering no possible explana" Where h::we you been?" asked the Unknown. tion of the mysterious light. "What's your name old man?" dem a nded Ned, "Well, it beats me!" cried Ned. "l can' t under-suddenly turning on the detective. stand it at all." "Tom Collins," replied the Unknown, gra vely. "I think," said Edith, rathe r nervously, "tha t All laughed, and the conversatton d:ropp ed. we'd b ette r stay in the launch until daylight. I don't Dick and Edith understooc l t 01:Ut g".Kiondike like the idea of sleeping in the hut." was not ready to talk out fre e ly. No one disputed this; in fact, it seemed a better Having the utmost confid e nc e in his shrewdness, plan all around, and it was carried out. they were willing to wait until he was. Of course it was Dick's.turn to slee p, and N e d d e In the next breath Ned explained his motive. clared that he had b een up all the night b e fore and "Look here, Zed, I've made up my mind to one wanted his sleep, too, so the Unknown, who was now thing," he declared p e rfectly fresh, remained on the watch. What's that?" asked the Unknown. Ned, Dick and Edith slept until long after daylight. got to tell your name." In fact, it was six o clock before they were up. "Who says so .?" The Unknown was sitting quietly on the bank, r e ad" I say so. Here we've known you for more than ing an old San Francisco paper, with his rifle by his a year and if you were to die to-morrow I should not side. know what name to put on your coffin plate." He declared that there had boon no alarm all night "That's right as it stands, but I should t-ell my -that absolutely nothing had occurred. name before I kicked the bucket;dear boy. "And that makes it all the more mysterious," re" The deuce you would You might be shot, or plied Young Klondike. "We can' t do anything until drowned or hung or any other old thing-then what we know what it means. Let's go up again and have would we do ?" a look at the old shebang by daylight. By gracious, "I'll take a day off and decide what's that? How came it here?" "Don't trouble yourself vVe are going to force They had walked up the bank and were close upon your hand-or at least, I am."-"" the hut now. "And how?" No wonder Ned was startled, for there right before "Shan't let you into this deal till you tell." the door of the hut, lay a pile of golden nuggets as "Oh, very well Then I'll stay out." big as a bushel basket. -"You'll miss it if you do. It's the biggest one yet. Nothing of the kind had been there when they ldt I'm going to make a million this time. the hut to go back to the launch. "Hooray for our side!" "Nuggets! By the Jumping Jeremiah, nuggets!" "But it won't be your side unless yott tell your cried the Unknown. name. I'm going to ba.r you right out." "That's what!" exclained Ned, "but how in thun; "By the Jumping Jeremiah, we'll see about that der did they come here?" I'm coming in "More mystery," said Edith.


YOUNG LOST MILLION. 5 "l don't object to gold," added Dick, "but I must and the Unlmown made some wise remarks to that say I don't relish seeing it dumped down at our feet effect when the la.unch began to move through it, for in this sort of fashion. It don't suit me for a cent." there had been no stopping after they were driven TheJ;. stood for a moment staring at the gold, and away from the hut. scarcely knowing whether to advance or retreat. "We've got to go away up to the head of the creek, "There's a string to every nugget, I'll bet," said and we may as well go now as any time," was what the Unknown at last. "All the same I'm going to Young Klondike said, adding: "Drive her ahead, find out if they are real." Dick! Whoever those fellows are, they've got posHe stepped forward and stooped down to pick one session of the hut, and I mean to let them hold it, but up, when all at once a thunderous voice sang out from if they come bothering about up here, that will be inside the hut: quite another thing." "Drop it! Drop it Don't you touch that gold!" lt was a run of nearly two miles up to the head At the same instant every window of the hut was waters of the creek, and half a mile more brought darkened. them to the base of the mountain, which rose to a There were eight windows visible; at every one of height of some two thousand feet above them, barren the eight appeared a man wearing a red shirt and a and grim, without a tree of vegetation on its frown slouch hat, and eight rifles were thrust out covering ing side, for the lava did not offer a chance even to Young Klondike and his friends. fir trees to take root; it certainly was a poor place "Move on out of this, Young Klondike!" shouted to tie up, but when one is out gold digging, one does one of the men-which one they could not tell. "Move not pay the least attention to this sort of thing, and on right now and make yourself scarce, or we'll drop no one was surprised when Ned announced that this all four of you in your tracks !" was the place where he intended to make his camp. Ned started to answer, but before he could say two "Hello !" cried the Unknown, "we've got to the words every rifle was discharged. end of our journey, have we? By the Jumping JereOf course they could not have been aimed at our miah, I'd like to know how you expect to build a Klondikers for there was no damage done, but it sent I house here on this infernal black rock." them hurrying down the hill to the launch. "You're dead wrong all around," laughed Ned. "Move on up the creek We can't fight that gang!" "In the first place it ain't rock, it's lava; in the next gasped the Unknown. "This is the time for disapI don't intend. to build a house, 1 me:m to put up a v earing; we'll come back and do them up later on.'$ tent. I suppose you brought the tents along with Dick started the launch going, and up the creek they you, Dick?" went flying. "That's what I did," replied Dick; "they are in As they rounded the point and looked back at tke the boat with the rest of the things.'' hut again, they saw that the red shirted figures had 1 "Then let's get them out right away and make disappe.ared from the windo-ws. ourselves comfortable before we begin to talk." The hut was as silent and deserted to all appear-The boats were then made fast to the rocks at the ance as it had been when they first came in sight of foot of the rise, and the unpacking of the big hamper it the nie-ht under the tarpaulin began, everyone keeping a sharp lookout for the toughs. CHAPTER III. DOWN IN THE OLD CRATER. WHEN onEl{thinks of Alaska being a volcanic country, it alvrnys seems as though there must be some mistake. Nevertheless it is no such very long time ago, since there were active volcanoes in Alaska. Some say there are still, although others deny it, which being the case, we won't undertake to say which is true. But it is entirely certain that the mountain in which Gold Creek has its rise was once a volcano. On its side-the side down which the creek comes tumbling, we mean, is a great mass of old lava thrown about in every direction. It had originally spread itself in one vast sheet at the foot of the ri!!le and the creek wore its way through it. Very desolate it all about the old lava beds, The mining tools were taken out and laid in a con venient hollow in the lava; then came the small hampers of provisions and other things, and last of all an oblong box containing two tents, neatly folded up in small compass, one large and the other small, and both of the very best pattern that money could buy. It took but a short time to put them in position and get u the little stove which came along, too, so that a fire could be built at any time they might haYe fuel to kindle it with, which certainly was not the case yet, for there was not a stick of wood as big -as your thumb to be seen anywhere around, "I think we may a well have some b r.; b e fore we begin discu pg our prospects," remarked Young Klondike. ow then, what do the rest of you say?" "I say yes, most decidedly," replied Dick. "I don't know how you feel, Ned, but I am as hungry as a wolf." "If you a .sk me how I feel," broke in the detective, "I shall tell you that I'm that hungry that I'd eYen undertake to cook the breakfast if we had any wood to


6 YOUNG KLONDIK LOST MILLION. cook with, and that's saying a good deal, for, as you al'e all very well aware I don't like cooking for a cent." "I'll take you up and give Edith a rest on the cooking," said Ned; "there's wood enough, plenty of it." "And where?" "Within fifty feet of where you are standing at the present moment." "Blest if I can see it, then!" said the Unknown, looking about at the barren prospect. "Walk straight ahead and you'll see it." "And I'll run into the mountains-that's what!" "Do as I tell you," laughed N ed, and when the Unknown did it, he found a great pile of dry branches lying at the foot of the mountain in a deep impression in the "Wood enough to last us a week How in thunder did it get here?" he exclaimed. "Must have been washed down from the mountain last spring," answered Ned. "All I know is I found it there, and that's why I pi.eked out this place for our camp." "Which reflects equal credit on your judgment and common sense. We'll light the fire and go about getting breakfast at once." They all loaded themselves down with the wood, and in a few moments had a good fire blazing in the little stove, but Edith would not hear to any one cooking the breakfast but herself, and a first rate one it proved to be. "Anything the matter with telling us what we are here for now, Mr. Young Klondike?" asked the Un known. "Nothing at all. W are going down the mountain," replied Ned. Down the mountain You mean up.' "No, I don't; I mean down." "Down on the other side, after we get up?" "No ; not on the other side at all." "What in thunder do you mean then?" "You puzzle me, too," said Edith. "If it was the Unknown who made all this mystery, I shouldn't wonder, but when it comes to you, Ned, I can't see what you are driYing at, for it ain't like you one bit." Young Klondike laughed. "Oh, it is only a little fun," he said. "I am pre paring a surprise for you-that's all." "By the Jumping Jeremiah, you have surprised us already," sa. id the detective. "Here you go, suddenly running away down the Yuko:q into the un heard of region where nobody ever goes, and then you send for us to follow you and add mystery to mystery by sending us flying back to Dawson again after Dick, and then down here again and-ye gods and little fishes, there's no telling where you won't send us next." "It will pay you "Perhaps it will; your ventures usually do pay, I'll admit that; but look at all the mystery that's been crowded on top of it. Take that affair of the hut for instance; and now you begin talking about going down a mountain without going up. What in t.lmnder does it all mean?" "Let me explain," replied Ned, laughing. "I claim the right to have my little mystery as well as you, Mr. Detective, and now here it is and you will see I am no fool." All gave Ned close attention, for they felt that the explanation which was coming was sure to mean a new golden discovery if nothing more. "It happened one night about six weeks ago," began Ned. "I was walking up and down in front of the Victoria Hotel, in Dawson City, when a poor fel low all in rags came hobbling along, supporting him self on two sticks. I saw at a glance that the man had had his feet badly frozen and was ma,imed for life, 1mt I saw something else besides that. His pinched face and trembling step showed me that the poor fellow was hungry-in fact, that he was staring. He was an old man, too, which made it all the worse. "I went right up to him, and said: "'My friend, you are hungry. Can I help you at all?' "'I am l ;mngry,' he replied. 'The fact is, young man, I am starving, but I don't believe you can help me much, for I'm suffering with a terrible diseasecancer of the stomach ; if I had a million of money it would do me no good.' Here was a sad case, and I felt for the old fellow, so I asked him why he did not try to get back to the States where he could have doctors to attend him and have proper care. "'That's what I want to do,' he answered. 'There's a steamer sailing for St. Michaels to-morrow, and I'd go if I only had the money, but the fact is, pard, I'm busted, I hain't got a blame cent.' "' That cuts no ice,' said I, 'there are plenty here in Dawson who will help you, and I'm one of them. Come to the hotel to-morrow, and I'll go with you to the steamer, and see what can be done.' The old fellow thinked me, but didn't seem quite satisfied to let it go so. "'Fact is, I may not need anybody's help,' he said. 'I'm looking for the gent they call Young Klon dike. If I could only strike him I could get all the cash I wanted. The greatest favor you can do me is to help me t:.nd him; anyhow, you might tell me if he's in town.' "Well, well!" cried Dick. ''He struck the right man that time, didn't he ?n "That's what he did," replied Ned. "I made up my mind then and there that something was coming out of it, so I told him who I was." "What did he say?" asked Edith, who was be coming intensely interested in all this. "Well," replied Ned, "he just stood still and look ed at me. "'So you're Young Klondike?' he said. 'Well, well I've been looking for you for the last three weeks.' "'For what?' I asked. 'To sell you a claim,' he ansvrnred. I it bl it \ T b t a :li. n l { ;l a : :; 1 h: ur h ] ao Jn 'v VJ ar id in u


YOUNG ::UILLION. 7 "Of cours e I told him that while I had all the claims wanted, I "\\as always open to new deals if I could ee any money in the m. There's a million in this,' he answered. 'Boss, worked all last winter down on the mountains at he bead waters of Gold Creek. I dug out all of a illion, and froze myse lf and starved myself a-doing t, only to see the dust slip through my fingers in he end. It ain't the claim I want to see so much as tis that there lost million. You've goL money, and ou've got health and strength, and you can g e t it, ut I'm all played out and never can. All I want is o go down to 'Frisco and die among my friends, for ie I must, and nothing under Heaven can save me JOW .' "The n you took him right up-stairs into your room nd listened to his story," said the Unknown. "Of ourse, that's wha.t you did, Young Klondike. ou on't haYe to tell me.'' "That's it," replied Ned, "and I'll tell you hon stly I nev e r grew so excited in my life." "1fll the story to us then and give us a chance to et excited too.'' Young Klondike had just come to the most exciting )art of his narrative, and all waited eage-i;ly for what e was going to say next, but Ned seemed bent on eeping up the mystery, for he broke the thread off hort by saying : and the rest I'll you after we o down the mountain, unless you want to hear it bad '..otlgh to make the Unknown tell his name." "Pshaw That's easy settled," cried the detec,iYe. "My name is Q. Philander Snodgrass. Go -ight on!" "Prove it," said Ned, with a merry twinkle in his !ye. "How the mischief am I to prove it ?" '"By producing a certificate of your baptism.'' "Can't. I was baptized in church, and. the next \ay the church burned down; the records were all lestroyed." "Then you don't hear the rest of the story till we o down the mountain. All. I shall say is that old Jim dug a million in this mountain, more or less. Uterhedug it he lost it suddenly. Where it went to > my mystery ; how it went is pa.rt of it, too, but I :han't say any more. Now, let's start.'' And as no persuasion could prevail upon Ned to go urther, they began to get ready for their start hen and there. Ned now explained that they had to go up tbe nountain before they could go down, at which the Jnknown seemed greatly relieved. "That's one mystery off the books," he said, "and 've no doubt the others will drop off in due time. are we going to do with the boats?" Leave them here," said Ned ; of course, we an't carry them up the mountain with us.'' "Oh, can t we, indeed," retorted the detective. "I idn't know but you'd discovered some way of run ing them up. Never mind ; we'll make packs of our shall we ? Or do we leave them here?" "We carry all we can. The rest we'll come after later." "Suppose those fellows we saw down a t the hut come after it sooner, in short, before we get back?" "We'll have to take our chances." "Suppose we hide boats and all in the hollow where we got the wood?" suggested Dick. Dick's suggestion was carried out, and after tha t they started up the mountain, each member of the party being loaded down with all they could carry. It was a beautiful day, cool and pleasant-just the day for such a journey, and although it was hard climbing the way did not seem long. When they reached the top, after scrambling over the rough lava heap for the best part of an hour, they were treated to one of those amazing views which only the Klondike country could afford. For miles and miles, as far as the eye could reach, the famous of the Yukon lay spread out at their feet. Far in the distance up the valley faint columns of smoke could be seen rising. Neel declared that this was Dawson City ; but even with a glass they could not make out the buildings at all But this was not the only smoke. Ob, no! There were great clouds of it to be seen between the mountain and Dawson in many places, and again in the other direction toward Forty Mile. This smoke marked the different working mines, for everywhere in the Klondike country where a claim is being worked, the frost has to be extracted from the ground by means of great fires. Winter and summer it is there. "Those must be the Cherry Creek claims on the other side of the mountain," remarked Dick. "That's what they are," replied Ned. "There's half a dozen working mines down there, but they've got nothing at all to do with our affairs, although after we accomplish our purpose I intend to go back that way and see what the Cherry Creek mines are like." "Good idea," said Edith. "I've heard so much about those mines, that I'm anxious to see them, and I shan't mind the extra journey one bit.'' "What's the next step, Young Klondike?" asked the Unknown. "Are we to be allowed to penetrate further into your lordship's secrets or not?" "Go on and see if you can find out the next step for yourself," replied Ned. "I'm tired; I'm going to stop here a little while and rest." "All right. I don't object. Bet you a new hat I can penetrate your mystery," laughed the Unknown. I'll go with you," said Dick. "Go it," replied Ned. "Now then, Mr. Detective, sho\\I that you a,re up to your business. There was a million dug on this mountain and that million van ished suddenly; see if you ca.n find out where it came from, and where it went to. I know both, and I'm going to tell Edith while you are gone.'' "Tell it then, and I'll bet you what you like I shall be able to give you points when I come back,"


8 YOUNG LOST MILLION. chuckled the Unknown, and off he went with Dick. he saw them coming, he determined to hide it un 0 They pushed on over the cap of the and dis-der a big mass of rock." appeared down on the other side. "And it is there still? He hasn't been able They were gone the best part of half an hour and get it out?" : then Dick came hurrying back alone. "Wrong! Listen and you'll hear. Old Jim pried up "Hello!" cried Ned," where's the Unknown?" the rock with his crowbar, and braced it up with stone 1 "Gone down the old crater, Ned. By g-racious, and put the gold bags under it." s it is risking his life. I tried my best to stop "Yes, l him, but he wouldn't Jisten. He told me to follow or "Well, all this time the mine wreckers eomri go back just as I pleased, and as I didn't want to ing down into the crater as fast as they coul break my neck here I am." Having hidden bis gold, old Jim knocked out t "Pshaw!" cried Ned, "there's no danger what-props and let the rock drop, when to his surprise, anh ever of breaking one's neck. I expected the Unknown that of the mine wreckers, too, the rock sudqenly di t would find the crater all right, but I didn't think he'd appeared before his eyes, and the result of nearly S\ be fool enough 'to go down without coming back to year's labor was gone in an instant." ask me whtLt I knew about the place." "Where? Where did it go?'' cried Dick. i "We'd all better go down after him, hadn't we?" "Where did it go? Why down into another bi asked Edith. hole like this to be sure, and there it is now, and the "That's what we'll do," said Ned, "but we'll leave it is likely to stay. Now, Dick, you lmow the whol1 the traps here. I don't propose to spend the night in story, except that it's my belief those fellows wt. the crater after what l've heard." caught sight of are the same old mine wreckers, le( Yes; the Unknown had discovered part of the by a notorious Italian tough named Tony Tosti .. \.Yi secret. may find the gold and we may not, but l'm dead sm This mountain was in fact nothing more nor less we shall hear from them sooner or later, you'll see.' than an extinct Yolcano. There are many such in The whole story was told now. Ned's little my Alaska. In most instances the craters are not very tery was a mystery no longer, but the Unknown lu.t{ strongly marked, but this volcano had evidently been started another by disappearing down the crater. quite recently in eruption. Ned blamed himself for this not a little. I wish I hadn't !tarted him off," he sai<\ "There's no telling when 1 may see him a

Y O UNG K LONDIKE'S MILLION 9 e of Nature had opened a nar-I "I ain't a bit afraid," replied Edith. "You know rift m the mountam. I never was the one to hold back. y descending here there was a gradual slope into "Never. I'm willing to take all chances myself, crater, and just no hard climbing to do at all. and you, Dick?" I own they went as easy as you please, finding "With you every time," said Dick "I won't demselves at last far below the mountain peak. sert the old Unknown, but I tell you honestly I don't othing-was seen of the Unknown, and indeed they believe we shall ever see him again." lost the location of the spot where they had seen There was no denying that the case looked very waviug his hat on the rock, when suddenly Ned bad for the detective, and the thought of what his ck out of the rift on to a broad level. fate might have been cast a deep gloom over all. ere stood a solitary hut surrounded on all sides Meanwhile, Young Klondike had completed his one by rugged rocks story, by showing the place where old Jim Prodgers' n front there was a sharp descent still further million had disappeared. n into the bowels of the earth. .All this was done before they decided to go back to 'This is the place!" exclaimed Young Klondike. the peak and get their traps. ere's where my lost million went down to China! Ned led them into the narrow space back of the 11 I ever get it up again? Well, we shall see." hut, between which and the side of the crater was a. CHAPTER IV. DOWN! DOWN! DOWN! proved to be one thing to get down into the ter, and quite another to find the Unknown. oreover, Ned was soon able to locate the rock ere they had last seen the detective which was just the hut, but so situated that old Jim Prodgers' mer residence could not be seen from it. Below the rock was the last descent into the mounn, a deep, dark .hole, out of which some traces of phurous vapor came rising, showing that the vol o was not yet entirely extinct. f the Unknown had gone on down into that hole, re to be very little hope that he would ever ne up again. he boys called again and again-shouted at the of their lungs-did everything to try to make the ective bear, in fact, but were not able to get any ponse. aturally this was alarming, but the situation re ined. unchanged up to the time that Ned declared y ought to start back after their belongings left the peak. t had originally been Ned's intention to go into p on the peak and not occupy the hut, for the son that the rocks were very loose and disinte iated all around the sides of the crater, and every w and then great masses would fall off and go irling down into the pit below. ccasionally a piece would land on the level where hut stood, narrowly running the risk of crushing to powder. There were many such rocks scattered all over the el and not a few very near the hut . "'We ought not to risk sleeping here," declared "but now that we've got the Unknown on our nds, after the usual fashion, perhaps we'd better 1 k it. Echth, what do you say?" ragged break in the level on which the hut stood. Edith peered down into its cavernous depths, but could see no sign of the bottom. "Is that the place?" she asked "That's the place, sure," replied Ned. "It answers to old Jim Prodgers' description perfectly. There's a million dollars down at the bottom of that. hole." "And what are you going to do about it?" "Do ? I'm going down after it. That's what I put. up ms little fifty thousand dollars for." "It was an awful risk," said Dick. "I don't be lieve you'll ever see a cent of it again." "Don't yqu be so sure. Even if I don't, though, I shall never shed a tear." "We've got money to burn, it's true, but all the same I don't see much sense in dumpmg it into a hole in the ground like this." "Don't you fret; it will come out again all right," said Ned, confidently. "I tell you that man's story is true." "Has any one ever seen the gold smce it went down ?" "Not that I know of "You believe there is a cavern under here, and that this hole opens into it ?" "How can I believe anything else ? That's plain on the face of it." "Then what's to hinder these mine wreckers from having found some way into the cavern, or even fro m going down through this very hole?" There was nothing of course, and Ned feeling that. Dick was entirely right changed the subject and began to talk about the Unknown again. Soon after that Ned led his companions farther along the level and showed them a great mass of loose rock which had tumbled down from the heights above. '"l'here's your mine," he said. "There's where old Jim Prodgers' lost million came from, and after we find it there's nothing to hinder us from digging it out and getting another." Dick looked at the rocks dubiously. There did not. seem to be much chance for gold digging there.


10 YOUNG LOST .MILLION. "Do you really believe it, Ned?" he asked. "I shoul!l about as soon think of looking for go1d under a New York sidewalk as behind all those rocks." "That's where you are dead wrong then," said Ned, "for the gold is there. Now, look here, Dick, I've done more studying on mining matters than you have-let me explain. You know that a fissure vein -that is a vein of gold quartz between walls of gran ite or slote, or any other kind of rock-practically has no bottom." "I've beard so." It is so. The bottom of a fissure vein has iiever been reached yet in any mine on the face of the earth. The ve\n may pinch or grow narrower, but you don't to the end of it, and if you only go down far enough it is sure to widen out again sooner or later; the only question is to get down on the vein." "Is this a fissure vein?" "Yes, it is. I've located it on the surface and I know. It is a true fissure vein of the most marked kind. Now you see this vein was disturbed when the crater opened here, and the whole side of it lay ex posed at this great depth when old Jim Prodgers first struck it. Of course it wasn't placer digging. The gold did not lie loose in the shape of dust and nuggets we have been :accustomed to work it, but all the same there was dead loads of it there. Prodgers used to ha1nmer it out of .the quartz the best way he could and there was of it left behind on the,,., dump to make. any man rich. He estimated that besides the million he got, fully another million went to waste." "That's big talk," said Dick, "but how came these rocks here? Tumbled down from above, I suppose?" "That's what they did. The rocks are constantly falling here in the crater, a:nd on the night these fell Jim Prodgers thought the whole mountain was coming down, so he told me.:' That's what made him decide to quit, for he had, enough, and, of course, he could not hope to remove all these rocks alone. Thunder! Here comes one now !" Suddenly there was. a sharp, cracking sound heard overhead and down the side of the crater a huge mass of rock came tumbling. It struck the level almost at Young Klondike's feet, and turning over went on down into the pit. They listened breathlessly, but heard no further smmd. "Good Heavens, has that place no bottom?" ex claimed Dick. that the unfortunate detective had fallen into the b tomless pit. So Ned and Dick went back up through the rift i brought down their traps, leaving Edith behind the hut to watch for the Unknown. They had to make three trips before they could / all the things down. At each return Edith reported everything quiet, The fear they had felt for their friend now beca almost a certainty. It began to look very much as if they had seen last of the Unknown. This made poor Ned unspeakably wretched. His little joke in keeping up the mystery had tun out most disastrously. All night long he paced up and down in front of hut on guard, listening, watching, hoping, but sign from the detective came. It was a sad party which sat down to break! next morning. "I suppose we shall have to give Zed up," remarl Dick. "Of course, ;ve should have heard .from :t by this time if he had been still alive." Ned turned his head away and made no reply. "Don't talk about it, Dick," said Edith. "Do you see how bad N cd feels." "It's all my fault," said Young Klondike, brokeli "It all comes from my ridiculous joking, but done is done, and can't be undone, and I say let's right to work just as though it had never occut'." "That's agreed," sa d Dick. "We'll drop the s1 ject forever, but---" Here Dick's voice broke, and Editl1 actually sb tears, for they all felt dreadfully, very fond the Unknown. But our Klondikers were not the sort to waste t' in idle regrets. As soon as breakfast was over, they went right work. "The plan is first to get dO\vn into the cavern hind th1:; irnt," said Ned, "and I feel sure that it < be done." "Yes, but how?" asked Dick. "We'll find out. To begin with we want to see h( deep it is. I'm going to let the lantern down." Thus saying, Ned took his longest rope and tied t lantern onto the end of it, lowering it into the cave The rope ran out its full length of fifty feet, ands the lantern did not touch the bottom. Looking down into the hole, they could see it swi1 ing there, but its light only showed them em1 "It's fearfully deep, there's no denying that," respace. plied Ned. "You see now the danger of this place. This made Ned think twice about being let do So far, the hut which Jim Prodgers built has escaped, into the hole. but there is no telling when a rock will strike it and And yet they knew that this pit was certainly knock it to smithereens." bottomless like foe other, for they threw down sU: It was not a pleasant thing to contemplate, but after stone, and each time they could hear the thud they could not desert the Unknown. it struck the rocks below. If no accident had happened to him, they knew There was another rope at hand, about thirty [1 that sooner or later he was bound to return to the long, and this was spliced to the first one, and they level, but all were impressed with the horrible fear l the lantern down again, but with the same result.


i in YOUNG LOST MILLION. .a Still this did not argue that the bottom was far beDown he went whirling into that strange cavern low eighty feet, for the deeper the lantern went the which had swallowed up old Jim Prodgers' lost mill less light it seemed to give. ion, with the lantern's lurid light reflected against "I'm going to try it," exclaimed Young Klondike, the rocks on all sides. at last. "Hit or miss I'm going down." He realized fully that death must follow the break" No, no!" said Edith. "Don't you think of it, ing of the rope, or if it should happen to slip through Ned." Dick's hands so fast that he could not hold it. "Yes, I'm goihg to do it," persisted Ned, but I Still Ned kept perfectly cool and watched the rocky won't run any risk. What we want is more rope, and sides of the cavern as he flew on. It was the black I believe we can find it in the hut if we look." est rock he had ever seen, but once he caught the There was quite a collection of old mining tools in glimmer of gold. the loft of the hut which had not been examined as He could see it running down in a long line like a yet. yellow streak. Ned and Dick now went into the loft and began All in a moment it vanished and Ned went whirling overhauling them, and there, sure enough, was. a on. good strong rope about a hundred feet in length. We spE:akas though this remarkabJe descent occu-With this the lantern was tied a .gain, and with a I pied considerable time, but actually it was. only a singular result. minute or so before Ned saw the bottom beneath Before its full length was run out the light suddenly him. d isappeared. I At the same glance the mysterious disappeara11ce "It's gone out," said Dick. of the lantern was explained. Ned pulled up, and in a few seconds there was the The bottom; which Ned was only a projecting light again. shelf of rock, occupying about half the space of the "What's that mean?" asked Edith. cavern. "Blest if I understand it," replied Ned, and once Beyond this the descent continued. \Vhen the lanmore he lowered the lantern. tern was let down it cleared the shelf and passed be, All in a mi\rnte the light vanished again, but when yond it, but Young Klondike managed to swing himN cd pulled up there was the lantern burning still. self inward now, and planted his feet upon the rock. "There must be bottom there and a second hole in "Are you all right?" yelle d Dick. it," declared Dick. "All right!" shouted Ned, and taking the lantern, "It looks tike it," said Ned; "anyhow we can't he knee led down a,nd lowered it into the dark opening make anything out of this sort of business. I'm before him. going down to see what it means." A diabolical, blood-curdling laugh rang out through They knew it was of no use to try to hold Young the cave. Klondike back onee his mind w:as made up, so they did It came suddenly, ec!ioing and re-echoing far below not try. him. Ned then took a sma.11 tree trunk which seemed to Thep it died away, and all was still. have been left over from the building of the hut and "Great Scott Wha. t was that?" thought Ned, placed it over the hole, bracing it firmly with stones. I his hair having a very decided tendency to rise. To this he attached a pulley block, and got the rope Again the laugh was heard-this time nearer. working well tl1rough it. The echo was tremendous. It was repeated over Dick an d Edith then took one end the fall thus and over again. arranged, and Ned fastened other under his Then it died awa,y and all was still. arms. Ned to peer down into the hole. "All ready!" he He could see but little, but one glance showed hi1n "I'm ready," replied Dick. "For Heaven's.sake do that here was no abrupt descent like the one from be careful, Ned!" above. "Don't you fret. I'll take care Hold hard Here The side of the hole toward him sloped off grad-goes ! ually. Any Qne could easily walk down, it seemed to : Fearlessly Ned jumped into the hole. Ned, but he could not follow the slope far, for it The force of his weight almost pulled Dick and passed under the rocks and disappeared. Edith after him, but they held on bravely. "Of course there is someone down there," thought Down went Young Klondike! Down! Down! Ned, and he drew his revolver. "All right. I'm Down! ready for them. By Jove, they are coming now!" A stone went rolling down the slope; he could hear CHAPTER V. footsteps; someone was puffing and blowing like a THE UNKNOWN BOBS UP SERENELY AND NED SEES THE GOLD. lT was a startling sensation for Ned Golden. Never m all h1s adventures in the Klond1ke had there been anythrng equal to 1t. grompus. Ned's heart gave a great bound, for he th.ought he recognized that sound as something he had heard many times before. "Zed! Zed!" he shouted.


12 YOUNG MILLION. "Hello!" the answer. a goner sure, but fate wouldn't have it so. I landed "Hooray !" cried Ned. "Dick Edith He's on a ledge about twenty feet down, and there I stuck here and hung with my head all swimming ; a step forThen a plug hat appeared in the hole and the ward would have sent me whirling to destruction. I Unknown bobbed up serenely. couldn't have got up if I'd tried for a we.ek, and so He was as smiling as ever, but so out of breath after turning the situation over in my mind for awhile, from the weight of a big bag which he carried on I determined to go on. ;' his back that he could scarcely speak. "To go on ?" "Hello, Young Klondike!" he panted. "You're "Yes." there, are you? Say, you can't tell 'me anything "But where?" about lost millions! By the Jumping Jeremiah, "Into the rocks." your secret is no secret a t all, for I know more than ".Ah there was an opening there?" yon. Here lend me a hand and help me out of this Yes, there was, and a long, winding tramp it led infernal hole." me, too, but I came out at last into a big cavern, and Ned's joy was so great that he hardly knew what there I spent the night, because I didn't know what he said or did. else to do . It was a lucky thing that I happened to Catching the Unknown's hand in his strong grip, have two or three boxes of matches with me, for if I he pulled him up out of the hole and down tumbled hadn't had them I never should have found the gold." the heavy bag at his feet. I "It's down there?" asked Ned, pointing to the "Ha! Ha! Ha!" laughed the Unknown. "What's I hole. the matter with the old detective now? Does he un"That's what it is. Six bags of it just like this. I derstand his i..msiness or qon't he? What d'ye say?" I found that there was a way up h e re, and so I took "Ned! Hello Ned! What's the matter?" Dick's one bag, and was coming up when I heard you hollervoice was heard shouting down from above. ing. That's all there is to it, Young Klondike. I "Surprise him. Don't give me away," said the dedon t care a rap a bout hearing your secret now." tee ti ve "Did you all think I was lost? Oh, no They talked further, the Unknown giving additional Ye gods and little fishes, I've had a time of it, though, details of his experiences in the cavern. but trust me for turning right side up with care." Meanwhile, Dick began ca.lling again. "I'll never worry about you again," laughed Ned. "We've got to satisfy him," ::;aid Ned. "Of course "Never But it's a shame to keep Dick in suspense. he thinks you are lost, and that makes him terribly I can't make him hear as well as he can me it worried about me." see1ns." Shake the rope "Send up the gold. That will pacify him," He'll know you are all right, chuckled the Unknown. then." Ned did it and Dick stopped calling. "See that bag?" said the Unknown. "Well, rather! It's the gold!" "It's gold, I don't know anything more." It's old Jim Prodgers' treasure, of co:irse." "''Not all of it. Only part. Plenty more where that came from, dear boy." "Open it-let's have a look!" cried Ned, all ex dtement. The Unknown gave one of his chuckling laughs, which awoke the echoes again, a .nd untied the string which secured the bag. It was full of coarse gold, mingled with crushed quartz. Ned knew that he was looking at a portion of the lost million, and bis excitement was so great that he could not help throwing up his hat with a joyful shout. "Where did you gr_,t it?" he cried. "Down below there? How did you get there ? Tell me all about it! I'm wild to know!" "I'll see if I can make him hear," said Ned. "Dick Hello, Dick!" 'There was no answer. While Dick's voice carried down well enough, it was evident that Neel's would not carry up. Ned shook the rope and it was shaken from above in return. "You try it, Zed," he said. "Your voice will carry better than mine-perhaps y ou can make him hear." "Won't do iti-! I want to surprise them !" "But what am I to do ? I want him to pull up on the rope." "Holler again! Try!" "Dick Dick yelled Ned, at the top of his lungs. This effort did the business. "Hello !" called Dick. "Can you hear me ?? "Yes!" "Pull up when I shake the rope again-can yo11 hear that?" W t U k I l d d f "Yes, all1'ght '" hy,' said he n nown, ve 1a a euce o a time. You see, I made a slip and w ent down further Ned then tied the bag securely to the rope allll into the crater than you seem to .have gone." shook it again. "Into the bottomless pit?" Dick immediately pulled up. "Well, now, it is a bottomless pit, and don't you "By the Jumpmg Jeremiah, it gives a fellow cold forget it. When I took that tumble I thought I was I chills to see it go," said the Unknown.


YOUNG KLONDfKE'S LOS'f MILLION. 13 "I suppose you thought you were booked to re"You and Dick Let Edith stay where she is !" main below ground all your life?" laughed Ned. "Not much I won't," cried Edith. "If there's any "That's what I did before I heard you hollering. possible way of arranging it, I'm going down with Listen Dick has got the gold now." the rest." "Hooray! Hooray!" Dick was heard shouting "Why, it's easy arranged, of course," said the Unabove. known. "Here, give us that other rope." "Let down tl:fe rope!" yelled Ned. "I'd like to know what you are going to do," said "Have you got any more stuff like this?" called Dick. Dick. "Show you in a minute, just as soon as I find out "Lots more! Let down the rope!" how big a hurry Ned is in. Hey, Young Klondike! Down the rope came tumbling. Hey! Hello, down there in the hole!" "Tie it under my arms, dear boy," said the detec"Hello!" came the faint response. tive. "Now for my surprise." "Any hurry?" When the Unknown was secure he gave the rope a "Not a bit!" terrible yank. I "We'll be with you in a minute Edith is coming, It took all the strength Dick and Edith could mustoo !" ter to pull him up. "She can't How can we get up again if there You can imagipe their amazement when instead of ain't someone to work the rope!" Ned they saw the Unlmown's plug hat come up out "I'll fix that. What's the row?" of the hole. "There's someone below." "Hello! Here comes the crazy detective bobbing "The deuce you say! Who is it?" up serenely," he cried. "Hooray for our side! "Don't know." We've got the lost million! Hooray!" ,. "Seen 'em?" Edith and Dick could hardly find words to express "No; only hear them. Don't stay talking, we the1r joy. want to go for the balance of the gold." The Unknown told a little of his story, and the rope "All right. vVe'll be with you in a moment." was let down again for Ned. The Unknown then spliced the short rope on to the Dick ran it out to the full length and sho._uted to end of the long one and had a double fall of equal i Young Klondike to take hold. length. There was no answer. I To the end he tied a knot so that it could not run The rope bung limply in the fall. Ned did not seem through the pulley block, testing it in every way. to respond. "That will bear me all right," be said, at last. "What's the matter?" yelled the Unknown in his "Now then, Edith, you first." fog-horn voice, which he knew well enough, Ned must "Who goes last?" asked Edith, holding back. hear. "I do, of course." Still there was no answer. "But how? Who is going to let you down ?" They called and called and yet it was just the same. "I'm going to let myself down hand over hand." Where was Ned ? "You can never do it What was the matter down in the hole? "Ob, yes, I can-can't I, Dick?" CHAPTER VI. THE MINE WRECKERS SHOW THAT THEY STILL LIVE. JUST as Dick was beginning to grow seriously alarmed, the rope was violently shaken. "Hello, up there Hello Ned's voice could be heard faintly shouting. The Unknown. could not but notice how different the sound was from when they heard Dick's voice down in the hole. "Young Klondike is all right !" he cried. "Bully for him. Wait a moment! What's he saying? I want to hear." "Come down! Come down!" Those were the words which were heard far down "I shouldn't wonder. Zed can do most anything when he tries." "I can do it-never you fear," said the Unknown, confidently. "But suppose the knot slips through the block?" "It won't; there's no chance of it." "The thing that's worrying me," said Dick, "is how the first one is going to get back again if we all go down." "Don't let it fret y0u. I can go down hand over hand, and I can .1come up hand over hand, too." "If I was only sure of it." "You may be, then. I cq,n do it !" "What did you splice the rope for?" "So that I wouldn't have to do it. With a double fall, one of us can pulI Ned up, and ho can pull the rest up." "But your double fall when the rope will be all pulled out to the knot when you go down?" in the hole. "We'll be with you in a moment !" "Plain enough. I shall back the rone through the shouted the pulley and make the double fall all right." j "That's enough, I won't say anothel' word,' Unknown. "Do you want us both?"


YOUNG KLOXDIKE'S iosT MILLION. laughed Dick. "The fact is you are equal to any when old Jim Prodgers lost his million," said the deemergency. Edith, it is perfectly safe to go." tective, confidently. "There it is, dear friends." And so they all went down the hole, the Unknown "And the gold?" asked Ned. dropping hand o\er hand as proposed. "Look here !" Dick and. Edith looked around the narrow cave curThe detective led the way around behind the rock. 10usly, for, it was all new to them. There lay the bag-s of gold. "Whats the row?" demanded the detective as j Tl soon as he had explained to Ned how he meant to 'ie;y were all bu.t one, which had broken work the rope, for was the first question Young j open, its contents bemg spilled out over the floor of Kl d.k l d the cave. on i e as rn "I heard somebody pounding dowB. below there," "By thunder, we've found it!" cried Ned. "Who replied Ned. "The noise has stopped now." says I didn't do well to give fifty thousand dollars for "You say you went down to see what it meant?" a million? Has anybody got anything to say now?" "Yes." "Nobody," said the detective. "It was a big "Well, what did you find ?" I scheme. Only thing is can we get the blame stuff to "Nothing. I only went a little way. The noise a of saf.etr,,? Hello! There goes that infernal stopped then." poun mg agam "Heard it since ?" They could distinctly hear it. The sound seemed "Yes, two or three times. There it goes again to come from a point at some little distance along now." the wall; a series of dull thuds against the rock. They listened. A dull pounding could be distinctly "This must be investigated," said the detective. heard down in the shaft. "As for me, I've got a theory about it right now." There's someone there, sure," declared the de-He picked up the lantern and hurried forward. tective. "Come, I don't like this for a cent, seeing "How about the gold ?" asked Ned. "Shall we that the balance of the lost million is down there in leave it where it is ?" the cave." "Can you suggest a safer place?" "We'd better allgo, down at once. Bytheway I "No; Idon'tknowasican." what did you do with the bag of gold?" "Then let it stop there. By the Jumping Jere" Put it in the loft of the hut," said Dick. "It miah, I want to know what that infernal hammering ought to be safe enough there." means !" "Ob, I suppose it had. I'm bothered about it al-They reached the place in a moment. though I wish we had our gold and were out of this The pounding still continued. place." Our Klondikers stood watching, and could see the "We'll a move," said the detective. "Don't rocks tremble under the blows. you worry' young Klondike It will come out all "There's someone in behind there, sure," said Ned. right." "There's more than two ways into this mount-ain." "Who's worrying! Come on!" exclaimed Ned, "But the third one do.n't go the whole distance, seizing the lantern. and they are trying to make it," added the Unknown. "Let me go first said the detective taki oth "That's what's the matter with the dog." ' n,,., e "W t d N d "D t lantern from him. "I know the way and you don't." ai sa1 e on say a word. Lets The Unknown then led the way down into the hole. JUSt watch see what. will come of all this." It was easy going and the ysoon found themselves They for as much as ten min-in the big cavern which the detective had described. utes, du:mg all which time the pounding continued. It was a vast affair, so large that they could not ceased, and they could hear voices see the end of it. talkmg m behmd the rocks. Beyond the place where they came down the roof The explanation was plain enough. There was anrose to an immense height. other cave behind the rocks, and several persons were By this time the pounding had ceased. in it trying to break through. The Unknown waved the lantern about, but they "They'll make a go of it sooner or later," said the were not able to see any one. detective, in a whisper, for they all saw the necessity "I can't imagine what it mea .ns," he said. "There of lowering their voices now. "See how the rock has seems to be no one here, and I can' t believe any one cracked and crumbled. They are taking a rest, but has been here since I've been gone." just wait till they start up again. This time they will "Where's the gold?" demanded Dick. break through." "Ah, ha! You are there, are you?" chuckled the "Get the shooting iron ready," said Dick, "we detective. "Golden & Luckey haven't got millions may have serious work to do here." enough-they must have more, eh? Well, you shall The rifles had been brought with them down into have your way .. I'll take you right to the gold." the e;ave and were now carefully exammed. There wa s :;i. big broken mass of rock lying near the Edith and Dick took up their stations on one side bottom of the slope of the opening and Ned and the detective on the "That's the rock that came down through the hole I other. {E Jn ?o :t "] e : n1 r11 ne 1 s ec J w 5.o ]


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S l"J.081' :\lILLION. 15 ere they watched and waited until at last the nding began again. or a few moments the blows came thick and fast. twas soon evident that the rock was yielding. 'They'll be through m a second," said the detect ; "better put the light out before they get onto us. e may have to stand on the defensive at any mo nt now." he lantern was then extinguished and, as it proved, e too soon. !l at once the wall fell in with a tremendous sh, the broken stone scattering about in every ection. 'Hooray! We've clone it at last!" a voice shouted. iVhere's Tony? Call him up!" o.mebody whistled then, and a light flashed. t shot straight into the cave, and the watchers i able to see several faces peering in through a at ragged opening in the wall. 'Phew!" thought Ned. "Those are the same fel s we saw in the hut !" e recognized them fully, especially one man with ig blonde beard. 'If these ain't the mine wreckers, I don't know o they are," Ned pondered, but still as the figures the break made no move, he made none, and did give the signal to fire arranged. 'Come on, Tony! Come on!" shouted the bearded 11. 'I'm a-coming," :mswered a voice in the distance. ida you breaka through ?" 'That's what we have. There's a thundering big e here." 'He! He! Is dere, dough. Vell, data de place! gold million gf' down dere. He He V ell ve a him now." wm you?" thought Ned. "We'll see about t." e scra-pcd his foot on the rock, which was the sig agreed upon for a quick attack. nstantly four rifles rang out, echoing and re-echo-through the cave. 'Jerusalem crickets!" yelled the bearded man. 'm shot!" hen there was a scramble and the light went he stood there in the darkness, Neel could hear mine wreckers running away from the rocks. But not now. There was a million at stake. Ned was determined to secure that million at all hazards. So they ran on through the interior cave firing as they went. The cave soon narrowed down until it became a mere tunnel. I Here they caught sight of the mine wreckers who were lighting their ws,y by means of a reflecting lan-tern. "Fire!" shouted the Unknown. "Sweep the scoundrels off the earth!" Everyone let fly, but it seemed to have no other effect than to send the men on all the faster. In a moment they passed out of sight, and our Klon dikers found themselves in complete darkness. Of course they had to stop and light the lanterns, and by that time even the footsteps of the retreating enemy ceased to be heard. "We made them dust, that's sure," said Dick, "but it seems to me we want to find out what became of them if we can." "We c:yi do it. All we've got to do is to push ahead," said the detective; "come on." ''Do you think any of them were hit?" asked Edith. "One fellow, said he was," replied Ned. "Such gentlemen seldom lie." "But he ran right on." "Perhaps he got it in the arm," said Dick. "I don't think he woum have hollered out the way he did for nothing." "That's right," added the Unknown. "He was hit, fast enough, but probably it was only a flesh wound. Here's the turn they took right ahead of us. Now, we shall see where they went." They passed around the bend in the tunnel, and to their surprise broad daylight burst upon them. In a moment they came out into the open. At their feet the valley of Gold Creek lay spread out before them. Looking down the rugged slope they could see the mine wreckers making their way over the rocks as fast as they could go. "Draw back," said the Unknown. "We don't want to let them see us. My idea is that they fancy they ran against a much stronger force than they actually did." "Yet if they are the men we saw in the hut, they must have known we came up on the mountain," re marked Dick. CHAPTER VII. "My theory is," said Ned, "that they were not armed-that they had no idea we were on the same BACK AT THE OLD HUT. lay as themselves. In fact, I don't believe they know who we are." 'FOLLOW 'em up !" cried the detective. "Don't "Ain't that the hut'. down there?" exclaimed grass grow nuder our feet Follow 'em right up, Edith, suddenly, and she pointed far down the valley v !" along the windings of the creek. t another time Young Klondike might have hesi"Surely it is," answered Ned. "Of course it's the ed about giving chase to such a notorious gang of hut. We've come out on the end of the mountain. ghs as he knew the mine wreckers to be. j You see, those passages go winding around."


. -t 1 6 YOUN G KLONDrKE' S (LOST MILLION . "Best thing we can do is to get back to the cra-1 everything went as smooth as glass until they ca ter," said Ned "We've nothing to stay here for pretty close to the mine wrecker's hut. now. Let's go for our million and get out." "We want to look out for ourselves now," said This was the signal for a start. detective "Drive ahead at top speed, Dick C They returned through the caves, a,nd carried the we are past this blessed old ranch we are safe.." bags up to the bottom of the hole It seemed as if fate was against them. Here the Unkno>vn showed that he was as good as Just as they came abreast of thehut, the Unkno his word. who vvas doing the steering, managed to run He managed to force the knotted end of the rope launch against a rock. down through the pulley, working the rope up and "Look out Look out I" shouted Dick, but it up, until at last the knot came down into his hand. too late. "Tha.t's the talk !" he exclaimed. "Now, therv The heavily loaded launch struck the rock with who'll go up first?" rific force, tearing a great ragged hole in her bo"l"I" "Edith," said Ned, promptly. "The old fall may She began to sink insta.ntly. break, and in that case I shall want her to be safe Ned had just time to throw his arms around E "Do you think I'd want to stay up there alone?" and lift her ashore when the launch went down. replied Edith. "I'd a great deal rather be down here Dick and the Unknown had to swim for it, and so with you, and ill" any case I could get out the other Young Klondike himself. "" way." The tow-line was broken, and the boat with its J 1I'll go, then," said Ned, "and then you can folof tools and provisions drifted 0n. low. Dick and the Unknown can load on the gold." "Look out for Edith!" shouted Ned, and he sl1 "Pleasant occupation!" chuckled the detective boldly out through the icy water, secured the i "By the Jumping Jeremiah, when gold come:;s this and brought it ashore. way I wouldn't object to keep loading it on all "Well, by the Jumping Jeremiah, this 'is a night." job!" said the Unknown ruefully, as wet and d The plan was carried out. Soon all the party were ping they all stood on the bank before the hut. "1 at the hut in the crater with old Jim Prodgers' lost ::iomeone please kick me? This is all my fault. million lying on the floor at their feet. responsibte for the whole shooting match! 'l'h"e "Business, business !" cried the detective "Look your lost million down at the bottom of Gold Cr at it Look at it Unto him that hath shall be Young Klondike. Too bad Too bad!'; given! Was ever a million made easier than this?" "It is your fault,'' said Dick ngrily. "A b But they had not secured it yet by any means. cat could do better than you've done-yes!" The return journey lay before them and its dangers The Unknown pulled off his old plug hat,' and t were like the detective's name-unknown. ing it over, struck himself on the top of the head 1 Talking matters over it was decided to start back the crown three or tour times. after dark, as they did not care to pass the mine "That's right Lay it on! Lay it on thick!' wrecker's hut in the daylight. cried. "Shall I jump into the creek and drown A hard task lay before them to get the gold up out self? Shall I beat my stupid brains out against of the crater, and it was a dangerous one, too, climb side of the hut? What shall I do, boys? Only ing up over the rocks loaded down with those heavy me and I'll do it That's the sort of hair-piu I ai bags. "Nonsense! What's the use talking,'' said 1 It took three trips to get them all up, and by the "Here we are tied up in the most unfortunate p time they had accomplished it, and were safe on the possible What are we going to do about it? Tl top of the mountain, they were glad to rest for a full ain't the use in crying over spilled milk." hour before starting down to their old camp. "Milk is one thing and a million of gold is anot Then came another tug. Three trips down and Young Klondike." three up the mountain again was no joke "But we know where it is-that's comfort. Night was close upon them before the gold was all "So did the old woman who dropped her silver safe aboard the boats. pot down the well." As for the mining i;ools, they were left behind. To "We can get the gold up all right if we are g attempt to reopen the buried mine was something not tJie chance." to be thought of. for a moment. "Well put, but how about the mine wreck1 Rich it might be, but Golden & Luckey owned oth-Will th':ly give us the _chance?" ers just as good, which could be worlrnd without the "We'll find that out later. There's no use in 1 difficulties and dangers which 'vent along with this. rying. Let's go up to t he hut and take posse "We're all right up to the present time," cried and make ourselves comfortable for the night. Young Klondike, as Dick started the naphtha engine "Look here," said Dick, "that's a risk I don't gomg. "All aboard for Dawson City! Off we go." like running. We'rn got our tent, suppose we p And Ned took up his banjo, which always went it here and put in the night in sight of our dro" along on these trips, and began to play. million. Wouldn't that be a great deal better? The la.unch plowed its way down the creek, and inclined to think it would


f r ; . YOUNG LOST MILLION. 1, 17 Ned pointed up to the sky. It had overyou know, Zed, that I begin to feel that we shall cast; there was every appearance of rain, and rain in ne\er succeed in getting it to Dawson City. I don't Alaska is pretty apt to mean a downpour. know whether I'm right or not, but somehow I can't "Ye gods and little fishes l" cried the Unknown, I get the idea out of my head." "there's going to be a big storm. I hadn't noticed I "If we don't, I shall start for the North Pole it before. It won't do to have Edith out here in the straight," replied the detective, "for as I have said rain." once or twice before, it is all my fault." "Don't any of you think of me," said Edith. "I They returned to the hut, and for the next tvvo can stand whatever the rest of you can." hours made themselves as comfortable as possible. "It's the hut, I guess," said Ned, after a moment's Not another word was said about the lost million, thought. Anyhow, we'll go up and see how things which was certainly a most sensible wa y of handling are. If there is going to be a big storm I'm no more a very disagreeable matter. anxious to sleep in the tent than any one else, and beNed played the banjo, Edith sang, and the Unwhat would it amount to? We might just as known told his usual ex:travagant stories. well be in the hut as out here, in case the mine Meanwhile, the rain was coming down harder than wreckers decide to make an attack." ever. It was a perfect deluge by eleven o'clock when "That's sound sense," said the Unknown. "The Edith retired to the loft and Dick and the Unknown hut it is. We'll go now." stretched themselves out by the fire. Although they thus reassured themseh-es, none of Ned had agreed to keep watch for the first part of our party felt very pleasantly about going into the the night, for the detective declared that he had not hut. slept a wink the night before. They ha,d saved their rifles by throwing them ashore, It was dreary work sitting there alone listening to and they started up the slope well armed, but feeling the Unknown's heavy snores. decidedly nervous. Toward midnight, Young Klondike grew so sleepy Young Klondike fully expected to see the red-that he almost lost himself several times. shirted mine wreckers appear at the windows again, He got up, opened the door, and looked out. and it is safe to say that the others felt just the A wild dash of rain struck his face and drove him same. i back. But nothing of the sort occurred.' As he looked off throug1h the gloom he could see As. before, the hut seemed to be deserted. that the creek was rising,', They went in, and Ned searched the place carefully, It had already ad its banks, and a little looking in every hole and' corner of the loft, but find-further rise would bring it up to the level on which ing' nothing to arouse his suspicions in the .least the hut stood. greQ: , .. "There's going. to be trouble here," thought Ned. the were all saftff it "I can't help feeling A little more of this and we soon began to rain they were brought up hut. won't get away from here in a week." Anticipating the storm the boys and Ned shut the door and' sat down by the fire again. brought in great armfuls of dry wood, and ::i. roaring He had not the least intention of going to sleep, but fire was built on the hearth. just the same he did, and next he knew he awoke with Edith then went to work cooking supper. It a start to find his head on the. table. ; and when he seemed to be a foregone conclusion that they would looked at his watch he founQ. also that it, was after have to remain in the hut all night, so they deter-one o'clock. mined to make themselves as comfortable as they Ned sprang up and rubbed his eyes. could. "Confound it I'm a great one to keep watch !" he By nine o'clock it was pouring in torrents. exclaimed. "Good Heavens I hope no one woke up It was anything but pleasant. Aside from the and caught :ine at this. Wonder how the storm is dangers of the hut there was the gold at the bottom -getting on outside?" of the creek to be thought of. He hurried to the .. !l9or and threw it open. Of course the creek was bound to rise and there An exclamation of surprise escaped him as he looked was always the chance of the launch shifting.its posi1 out. tion. Ned asked the Unknown what he thought. The creek had risen to within a few feet of the door"I don't think it will move much," said the detect-step. ive. "The weight is very great. That's why the As far as the eye could reach it was all water. launch got the knock it did; besides it's wedged in The boat, which had been dragged up over the bank there against the rock." with great labor, was no longer to be seen. They could see the wreck distinctly enough'. As Ned gave a cry of dismay, and all in the same infar as Ned could determine, there had been no change stant he heard in the distance a cry of another kind. of position since it went down. "Help! Hel'p !" carrie faintly over the waste of "\Ve'll take it easy," he said. "What's to be is water. "If you've got a boat for Heaven's sake come to be, and we can't help it There seems to be a out and get me I shall dronn." fatality attending old Jim Prodgers' lost million. Do


18 YOUNG KLONDIKF.l'Si LOST MILLION. UHAPTER VIII. J around a mass of rocks further up the line of the creek. K. THE MAN ON THE RAFT. There was a man crouching on the raft, which was bobbing up and down, now himmering along on top ..a "HELLO I Hello!" shouted Ned at the top of his of the water, now half under it, and then again en. t lungs! tirely submerged. "Hello! Here I am coming down the creek!" came The man seemed to be holding on for dear life. As a the answer. near as they could make out in that dim light, he was lr "What's the row, Young Klondike?" cried the some miner-at least, he looked like one in his red Unknown, starting up, and up sprang Dick, and then shirt, big boots and slouch hat. both were treated to the cry again. "Steer this way !" shouted Ned. "Pull off one of ,, "By the Jumping Jeremiah, we are stalled here in the boards and steer for the light."!" exclaimed the Unknown. "This "I don't care how tough heis,"headded; "we is a pretty kettle of fish." can't stand by and see him drown." ) d "Who do you suppose it is that's out there, Ned ?" The man managed to rip off one of the boards of demanded Dick. which the raft was constructed, and by its aid began ;h "Don't asl{ me What are we going to do?" steering for the hut. "Help him if we can. Where's our boat?" "You ain't Tony Tosti," he called out, as he ap-,s "Gone, I suppose. I can see not.bingof it." proached. "Heavens I know you now It's Young 0 '"-' a "By gracious, we ought to have taken it inside the Klondike What on earth brought you here?" hut! Who ever would have supposed the water was "Jim Gannon as I'm a sinner!" the detective cried. ,i going to rise like this?" And indeed it was a man whom they all knew well, ?' "Too late now," exclaimed the detective. "No a:n honest fellow who at one time had worked for ,. doubt the old tub is serenely floating down the Yukon Golden & Luckey up on El Dorado Creek. 1 now. It's a lucky thing we brought in the grub, and "Work her along Jim! Work her along! You'll 'e p such of our traps as we did." be sure to make it. We are all here." "There goes that fellow again!" cri:ed Ned, as once And Gannon did adually manage to work his raft 1 more the man's voice calling made itself heard. to the door. ll The sound was nearer now. Ned and Dick were all ready to lend him a helping It was the same old cry for help, but still they hand, and he came sta.ggering into their midst wet coqld see nothing. and dripping, while the Unknown caught hold of the b Heard as it was over the waste of water, it sounded raft and made it fast to the hut. t' almost ghostly. At all events it gave Ned a cold "Pull off your clothes, man; and rub yourself down ;' shiver as he listened to it. with a dry towel before you get your death," cried id He went in and got the lantern, and stood waving the detective. J it at the door. But the poor miner just keeled over and fainted. v "Shall I call up Edith?" asked Dick. It only needed one glance to see that he was far gone o "Why, there's no use as things are at present," with exposure, and if one could judge by his pinched d said the detective. "Let her sleep. Ned, have you face with hunger as well. P got your night glass? I'd like to have a look off "Why, this poor cuss used up," exdaimed there." the detective. "We'll have to give him a drink of 1 "If it ain't in that old grip of mine, I left it in the whisky and pull off his clothes for him, or he'll die on locker of the boat," replied Ned. "I really don't re-our hands." member whether I took it out or not." It took ten minutes of good hard work before they "May I look ?" got the man back to his senses. "Certainly, or I will; but the thing't locked." 'l'hen he sat crouching by the fire, wrapped in a l "I'll look," said the Unknown, and sure enough he blanket, while his clothes were hung up to dry. found the glass in the grip. "What in the world brings you here, Jim?" asked Levelling it across the water he gazed long and Young Klondike, as soon as the poor fellow was able earnestly, but declared that he could see nothing. to The fact is, it needed some light even for a night ."Why, boss, I've been mining up on Cherry Creek glass, and there was next to none then. the last three months," was the reply, "and mighty The cry, meanwhile, had ceased to be heard, a.nd hard luck we've had there, and that's right." Ned began to think the poor fellow had been drowned "Haven't you struck anything! I've heard it said 1 and said as much, when all at once the shout came that the Cherry Creek claims were panning out pretty again. well." y "Hello Hello Is you, Tony Tosti?" the "They did pan out well as far as that went. There voice called through the gloom. was nothing to hinder a man making a fair return for "A friend of the mine wreckers' gang, by gracious!" a day's work down on Cherry Creek any time since 1 exclaimed the Unknown, and then a.11 of a sudden we struck it. but we've been twice cleaned out by the they caught sight of a raft which came whirling I mine wreckers who hang around Gold Creek. Tony ('


\-'. YOUNG KLONDIKE'S LOST MILLION. 19 s gang, and as hard a set as is to be found on Klondike, and list night they came again and a clean sweep. ast night! Do you mean to-night. We saw this afternoon." o, I don't mean to-night. I mean last night as I say. Boss, they killed six of my company, rove them what was left into the mountains. I ed to cross over to Gold Creek and got separated the rest and that was the way I came to be d Gannon went on to tell how he had built the ut of boards belonging to a shaft house at a de d mine which Ned and his friends remembered g passed far up on Gold Creek. he country is all under water there," he added. s is going to be the biggest flood on record, but oss, what are you fellows doing here? Don't now that this is Tony Tosti's hold out? Sure as ing he's goin.g to come back here with his whole Dick objected. "I wouldn't try," he said. "You'll get the cramp sure." "Not a bit of danger. The only thing that wor ries me is whether you will be able to hold the raft in position if I make the,dive." "Guess I could do that all right, but what good would it do to get one bag ? If we can't get a.ll I say let all remain as they are. :But Ned was bent on trymg, so Dick was persuad ed, as he usually was. Young Klondike then undressed himself and pre pared for his Gee The water is as cold as ice," said Dick, dipping his fingers in. "It's cold, and don't you forget it," replied Ned, "but I don't care a rap for that. Here goes." Throwing up his hands Ned made the dive. As he disappeared under the water, Edith suddenly came to the door and shouted : "Oh, Dick! Come! Come, quick!" Then she turned and disappeared inside. sooner or later. What are you going to do ,,, I Dick was thrown into a terrible excitement. He found himself between two fires, so to speak. ight," replied Ned. "Yes, we know it, but we Evidently there was trouble in the hut-Edith's eather-bound here, too." whole manner showed it, but on the other hand he 's a blame bad place to be weather-bound in couldn't desert Ned, whom he could see moving about let me.tell you, but say, haven't you got some over the launch. here? I'm almost starved." "Dick! Dick!" shouted Edith again, this time from y fed their visitor then, and sat talking till dayinside the hut. "Coming! Coming." cried Dick and then all in a word was said about the sunken million. The an instant two shots rang out with muffled sound. ., ive gave the boys a word of ca.ution about that. Dick was wild! He did not know which way -'s all very well for Gannon to talk as he does," turn. cl, privately, "but you'll recollect, Ned, that he Then to his immense relief Ned came flying up to lways a. pretty tough citizen himself." the surface. ve been thinking," replied Ned. "I couldn't get it!" he gasped. "I couldn't rise have I. How do you figure it out?" with the gold." don't figure it out. One thing is sure, though, "Get aboard! Get aboard!" cried Dick. "There's ected to find Tony Tosti here. Perhaps he tells trouble in the hut." uth about the wi-ecked mines on Cherry Creek "Trouble in the hut? What do you mean?" erhaps he doesn't-we'll see." I "Edith wants us! There's been firing." Edith had come clown and not a "Get over there as quick as ever you cari !" gasped urpr1sed to learn of the changes the mght had Ned, pulling on his trousers. "It's that man Ganht. non! I was afraid of it! He's no good and never akfast was started going, and while they were was I I wish to gracious we'd left him on the raft!" g for it the boys boarded Gannon's raft and d out upon the swollen creek. water had fallen a. little, but it was still up to or of the hut. CHAPTER IX. boat had vanished; but when they succeeded ting the raft into position over where the launch NED, SINGLE-HANDED, ATTACKS THE GANG. een sunk, to their great joy they were able to at it was still there. NED felt seriously alarmed. storm was all over now and the icy water of I As for Dick, he was half wild to think of what reek was as clear as a bell. might have happened to Edith. Then there was the y could distinctly see the launch still lodged I Unknown! Why bad not he put in an appearance t the rock and there were the bags of gold ly-through it all ?" the bottom. The great weight had kept the As Dick paddled for the hut he told just what had down. Everything was there undisturbed. happened. gracious, I could easy get one of those bags," I All was as still as Sunday now. They called again ed. "I've a great mmd to do it, too." and again to Edith, but got no response.


20 1 YOUNG KLONDIKE'S LOS'f MILLION. When they reached the door Ned sprang off the raft, and was through it in an instant, leaving Dick to make fast. He was standing in the middle of the floor alone when Dick sprang through the door. "They are gone! They are all gone!" he cried. "Oh, Dkk, what does it mean?" "Don't ask me!" groaned Dick. "Oh, Ned, some thing terrible has happened You're right when you say it's Gannon's work." "But I don't understand it. I can't make head or tail of it. Where can they have gone to with the water all ar.ound the hut ?" "We must go on the hunt," said Ned. here. These hills are all volcanic in their format and are just' riddled with tunnels and caves. L stop and think a minute. Here we are up against, side of a hill. On the other side is the valle. Cherry Creek; more than lil.:ely this passage 1 right through to Cherry Creek Valley, same as the case up on the mountain. Of course, the r wreckers know all these passages, and there you They built the hut here because they knew that t could get in and out secretly, and that's what it means." \ "Tell me how those came in that night, and It was so clear that Ned's reasoning was corr then I'll tell you how the U nlmown and Edith went that the question S@.emed hardly worth discussing out, for as sure as you live, Ned, it was the same further. ,. way. The real question was what to do. "H k 1" d N d "I h ar crie e ear someone movmg I If it had been any one else but the Unknown t about under here. I didn't know there was a cellar would have instantly started after him, but t under the hut." knew the detective's habits so well that they "I don't believe it now! It's a cave, and don't you I not feel the. concern about him they would have forget it. There is someone coming-look-look!" about another. The wall of the hut was boarded up on each side of Then there was the million dollars in gold to be the big fire-place, anu as Dick spoke the boards on sidered. Very naturally they wanted to keep a wa the right side began to tremble and shake. on it. All at once a sliding panel moved aside, and Edith's "We can't all leave here with the gold at the face appeared in the opening. tom of the creek, that's sure," said Ned. "Dick,. "I can't find him!" she exclaimed. "I can't find stay with Edith, and keep an eye out for the gold. him. I've been as far as I dare to go." take my rifle and go down into the cave, and see "Edith, what has happened?" cried Ned, running can find the Unknown." forward and helping her out of the hole. At first Dick and Edith were rather unwilling "lt's the Unknown. He went in here after that man agree to this, but Ned persisted, and taking his ri Gannon," replied Edith. "Boys, I was up in the loft he passed through the secret panel, and descen when I heard the Unknown suddenly give a shout. I the ladder, soon found himself in the cave. don't know just what happened, for when I came hur-It was perfectly dark here, but as Ned had ta rying down the ladder I saw this panel open. I could his lantern with him he had no difficulty in mak hear Zed shouting: call Ned and Dick! call 'em quick! his way along. I did call, but you wouldn't come and then hearing shots, I couldn't stand it any longer, and went The cave was much like the one leading out of through the hole my elf, but it hasn't amounted to old crater, a mere tunnel thrqugh the rock. much:, for I haven't found Zed." Its general direction was westward. Ned saw tl "Well, this does beat everything!" exclaimed Ned. it must lead out to the Cherry Creek valley proYid. it passed through the mountain .. as he assumed it "It just seems as though we never would get through our troubles. What did you find down there, Edith? He hurried on seeing nothing and hearing noth' that indicated the presence of the Unknown, until Tell me quick before I start down myself." last after a walk of at least twenty minutes he cau "Why, there's a cave," replied Edith; "that is, if you can call it a cave, for it is really not much more than a passage in under the rocks. It's as dark as midnight and terribly rough. I'm sure I can't tell you where it leads to. I followed it as far as I dared." "And didn't you hear anything more of the Un known ?"demanded Dick. "Not a thing. I couldn't hear a sound, not even a footstep, but the passage went straight on." "Gannon is in with the Tosti gang, that's all there is about it," declared Ned. "He tried to give tl::e Unknown the slip but the old man was too sharp for him. He'll turn up all right. You'll see." "This accounts for the appearance of those men in the hut that night," said Dick. "We know >vhat al that meant now." a glimpse of daylight ahead. "I'm coming out," thought "I shall be of the mountain in a minute, sure." He pushed on, and presently did come out on side of the hlll overlooking Cherry Creek. Here he paused for a few minutes and around. There were three mines far down the valley. He could see the shaft houses distinctly; there w men moving about. Ned put his glass to use and able to see that one party was panning gold on bank of the creek. At the next mine they seemed to be hoisting; could see great buckets of sand and gravel go tum bl down the dumps. It did not look at all as though the wreck


YOUNG KLQNDIKE'S LdsT MILLION. 21 out the Cherry Creek people, as Jim Gan-I won't do I've got to get him out of there if it takes had said. a leg!" s Ned stood there looking, he was seized with a It was easy enough to say this, but how was it to den idea. be done ? I believe I'll go down there and get some qf those Had Young Klondike courage enough to attack ple to help us," he determined. "If I don't know this gang single-handed and alone? m at least they must have heard of me, and, of Ned had courage enough for any move, however rse they will be willinO' to make a common cause bold, but the only question was would the move pay. h against this About that he felt rather doubtful. He wanted time e had no sooner conceived the idea than he started to think. arry it out. Just then the Unknown, who had evidently .grown houldering his rifle he hurried down the hill and tired of lying there, broke out in his usual style. covered about half the distance to the nearest "Say, boys!" !J.e exclaimed, "what's the use of ft, when suddenly he saw a man's head pop up keeping me tied up in this style? You've got me, and behind a mass of loose rock right ahead. I'm willing to admit it. I couldn't get away if I tried. oung Klondike was as quick as lightning. What in thunder is the use of making me any more s the head came up he dropped and lay flat on the uncomfortable than you have to? Say?" "Well, I don't know as there's any use," drawled 1 ncl. . Gannon. "Got you-of course we've got you, Mr. 1e man was lookmg down toward the mmes ta.kWh t' 1 1..... t h t I fi I a s-yer-name. a ways ge w a go a v.;r. in everything with a glass. I 1,, went for you and I got you-that s right fte r a moment he turned his glass and looked up "It will be right after you untie my feet and let me hill, but Ned was now not to be seen. sit up," said the Unknown. "Gannon, you're a bully That's one of them," thought Young Klondike. boy and no mistake! Just think of it! When I saw ore than likely the gang is hiding there." you sneaking down through that secret panel I fol e watched, and in a moment the head disappe::tred. lowed you and fired at you." hen it came up again and another came with it, "Yes, and blame near shot me, too." another and another-there were four heads "Which is what I ought to have done, my dear felYe the rocks now. low. Didn't you humbug me even then into thinking e glass was pn.ssed around, and all iook a look that you were working for Young Klondike's interu the creek. ests? Didn't I follow you as meek as a spring lamb oon after that the four men came out into full right into the arms of your friends here? By the Jumping Jeremial1, I didn't suppose it was possible hey were big, rough, red-shirted fellows, the for me to be such a fool !" e Young Klondike had seen before. Gannon laughed at this and all hands joined in. fter another keen look around they went sneaking They began to poke fun at the detective, but did n the mountain toward the mines. not make much out of it, for be was good for them s soon as they were well out of sight, Ned was on every time. move, too. "Come, come!" he said at last, "let me up, boys. e did not venture to stand upright, but slinging I tell you it can't do you a bit of harm. My legs are over hi s b .ack went creeping along on all fours as stiff as a couple of ramrods-;yes, that's right." il he was w1tlun a few feet of the rocks, from lJe-"Of course it's right,'' chuckled Gannon. "That's d which the men had appeared. . what we arc out for to make you fool as comfortable s he drew near he could hear voices talking among j as possible-over the left. Look llere, boss. I'm rocks. . . going to make a proposition to you." ed took off his hat, raised lumself caut10usly to a "All right. I am open to any proposition. Fire el with the top of the rocks and looked down a.way." was just as he had expected. There was a deep "You and YounO' Klondike were up on the mounlow behind the rocks, and some of the mine wreckers tain, weren't you ?<;, / e there. "That's a question, and not a proposition." ed counted six, and one of them was Jim Gannon, "Answer my questions first ;i,nd the proposition o appeared to be on perfectly good t-erms with the will come later." hen as Ned looked a little further along his breath e fast, for there was the Unknown a prisoner, nd hand and foot. e was lying on his back with his plug hat standon the rocks nearby, and he looked a.bout as unfortable as it was possibl.; for a man to look. By Jove, they've got him !" thought Neel. "For e the Unknown has let himse lf be nipped! This "Why, certainly we were,'' replied the pnknown, promptly. "I'll answer any question you've a mind to put." "It will pay you to do it. You went up there to look for the million in gold old Jim Prodgers lostain' t that right?" "Thati's right. Sure it' s right." "Did you find it ?" "Find the million?"


' 22 YOUNG LOST MILLION. "Yes, of course; you know what I mean?" Now, all this the Unknown said with an air of trutl "Certainly we found gold up there, but it wasn't that was so convincing, that Gannon and the min old Jim Prodgers' million. Oh. no!" wreckers seemed to believe it at last. "What do you mean?" H e went into the most minute details, and seeme1 "It was two million to find no difficulty in adding lie to lie, but it did hin "Two! Come now, come now!" little good, for they did not untie his legs, and he wa "Oh, that's right, and don't you forget it. Vlhen still kept in his uncomfortable position on the rocks. Young Klondike sets out to do a thing he always "Now, looker here,'' said Gannon, at last. does it in big style. What's a million to him, say?" don't know whether you are lying or not, and I don' "He's got enough of them, and that's right,'' care a gosh hang-no. If you know where that gol1 growled Gannon, "but that's neither here nor there. is you've got to take us to the place and show it, am What we want to know is where the gold is now !" if you don't, Young Klondike will, for we are going t "Oh, I'll tell you, if you'll let me sit up," replied capture you all. Oh, yes That's what You can' the detect. i ve. "Of course, I'll tell you. I know escape us none." when I'm well otl' every time." "No, I don't suppose we can,'' said the U nknow11 "You'll tell us now." "I'm quite prepared for that. When are you goini "No, no A bargain is a bargain." up to the hut to do the job?" 1 "Who made a bargain with you? Tell it right "Want to know?" out." "'By the Jumping Jeremiah, yes! I wouldll' "Didn't you say you were going to let me sit up if have asked if I hadn't wanted to know." I'd t ell?" "Well, then, it will be in about half an hour, jus "No, I didn't say anything of the sort, but I will as soon as Tony Tosti gets back from Cherry Creei! though, if you'll ten me all I want to know." You see, I don't mind telling you that we mean t "Spit out your questions. How can I answer them clean out them mines to-night-the whole bunch c before they are asked?" them. Then we are going to skip off for St. Mid "Not very well, perhaps. You lost that gold by I ael's and quit the country, but we want that there los the flood-ain't it so?" million, or two million, or whatever it really' amount The Unknown at this burst out with one of his to. Yes, sir! It's going along with the rest of ou h haul." horse laug s. "So? Of course it ain't so," he cried. "Certainly "That all?" demanded the Unknown. "Is tl,i it ain't so. What put that idea into your head?" really all you want ? Isn't there anything more?'' "Come now, come now I know Young Klondike's "All except Young Klondike-we mean to take hiI 11 l alone-, too." ways we enoug 1. "You may think you do, but you don't know a.ll 1 "Come! That's consoling. Yon don't mean t of them, or you wouldn't have no such idea as that. kill him, then?" We never brought the million down the mountain"Kill a goose who can la y us such a big golden eg, oh, no." as he? Not much We'll let the rest of you go an "What! What!" cried Gannon excitedly. "Do take him along. A million will buy him. We'll.IE you mean to tell me that you left the gold up on the you know where to send the cash." mountain?" The Unknown was about to make some reply, whe "Why, sure." chancing to raise his eyes, to his utter amazement, b "Go on, now!" saw Ned standing at t he beginning of the slope whic "Wish I could. Ye gods and little fishes, you'd see led down into the hole. how fast I'd go, if I was able.'-' The backs of the mine wreckers were Ml.rned an "Where is the gold if it didn't go down to the bot-they could not see. t om of the creek in your launch ?" Then Young Klondike did as bold a thing as wa "Why, up on the mountain still. We left it at ever done by boy or man. the bottom of the crater, and 'cause why? Because Suddenly raising his rifle he began firing. we couldn't get it out." "Corne on, boys!" he shouted. "Come on! Clea "At the bottom of the crater? Rats, rubbish! 'em out !" You don't mean that." Bang! Bang! Bang! Ned's Winchester talke "No, I don't mean at the very bottom-of course in tremendous style as he came rushing down tli we didn't get there." slope. "Then what do you mean? Are you jollying us or "Here they come Here they come !" bawled tl: what?" Unknown. "Fly and save :)'ourselves! Young Kl01 "Well, now, come, Gannon. You ain't green dike has got twenty men behind him up on tl:: enough to think I'm feeling so very jolly,'' drawled rocks!" t be Unknown, in his comical way. "I mean the cave It was the very boldness of the boy's act that di where you fellers broke in-that's what I mean. it. Th ere's a hole there forty or fifty feet deep, and the The mine wreckers were panic-stricken in an i1 gold's at the bottom of it. Oh, yes; that's right." stant.


YOUNG LOS1' MILLION. 23 Two dropped wounded and the rest ran down the rocks as though Satan himself was at their heels, while Ned sprang into the hollow still banging away. CHAPTER X. THE BIG FIGHT ON CHERRY CREEK "JUMP, Zed! Run for your life They'll be right back in two shakes!" That's what Young Klondike said to the Unknown when with a few quick strokes of his knife he set him free. "You can just bet your swrnt life I'll jump like a rabbit !" chuckled the detective. "I knew you'd come, dear boy, but I didn t think you could do it alone." The detective sprang to his feet, and following Ned closely, ran up upon the rocks. In a moment the mine wreckers saw them and knew how thoroughly they had been fooled. But it was too late to do anything then. Ned and the.detective had a good start. What was more, Ned had kept in mind the opening oi the tunnel, and in a few moments they were inside. A few shots from the mine wreckers flew after them so they passed out Of sight. It was a useless effort. Ned and the Unknown only laughed at it. As they ran on the detective explained what little of the situation he did not already know from the con versation he had oYerbeard. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, we must go for them fellows!" he cried. "They're a tough gang, and don't you forget it! I'd walk from here to Juneau to get square with that Gannon-yes, I would!" "We ca,n do it, and we must !" replied Ned. "I tell you what, we'll leave the lost million where it is, and start right out to help those unfortunate fellows on Cherry Creek." It was a noble resolve, and one quite characteristic of Young Klondike, for Ned always had more thought for others than himself. The passage of the tunnel was made in short time, and there was Dick at the foot of the ladder ready to meet them .. He shouted to Edith that they were coming, and she came running down with her usual warm wel come. It was a joyful time all around. Back in the hut again, they fastened the panel so that it could not be opened, unless the mine wreckers knocked the whole hut over, and then sat down to discuss the situation quietly. "\Ve've g-ot to get the best of tho\')e fellows somehow," declared Ned, "and I say let's drop everything else and go right at it. Zed, do you seriously think they will wait until night before they make their at"Anything to hinder us from running down Gold Creek in the boat, and so along the Yukon to Cherry Creek, and then up the mines?" "It will be pretty heavy pulling with all our traps." "We'll leave the most of them behind. Only take provisions enough to keep us from starving." "Then we might do it." "How far do you call it?" "Hard to say; about twelve miles, perhaps." "That is five miles down Gold Creek, two miles along the Yukon and five miles up Cherry Creek to the mines." "Something like that, I can't say positively, but that's about the idea." "We'll try it," said Edith. "I'm sure we can make it -\vork, and as for the lost million, even if we never see it again we've got enough without it, I'm sure." It was determined to lose no time, but to start at once. Edith went to work to prepare a good dinner, how ever, for all hands were hungry, and Ned declared that they must eat before they thought of making a start. While these preparations were being made a good sharp watch was kept o'n the secret panel, you may be sure. Once Ned thought he heard someone moving about behind it, but if there really was anybody he did not stay long, for when Young Klondike came to listen more attentively he could hear nothing at all. Shortly after dinner they started down the creek. The water had fallen somewhat and as they passed over the place where the launch sunk they could dis tinctly see it below. "Hope to goodness they don't take a notion to come snooping about here!" exclaimed the Unknown. They can sec the bags as plain as day." "We've got to take our chances on that," replied Ned. "Anyhow, they can't get at them till the water falls and we shall be back with the Cherry Creek miners to help us long before that." "Do you mean to bring them back ?" asked Edith. "Yes, if we can't knock the gang out any other way, we'.ll a.11 come back and have a second fight here." But !;bis was counting before they were hatched, for who could tell what was to happen at Cherry Creek. The run down Gold Creek was accomplished without much difficulty. Little rowing was necessary, for the creek ran like a mill race, and all they had to do was to keep the boat in the middle of the channel to go flyiug along. Soon they entered the Yukon, and then the real labor of the journey began. To pull a small boa t with four people in it up against the Yukon, is no easy task. tack?" "Yes, I do. From what I heard I think there is no doubt about it." The hoys tugged and strained at the oars, but Tony Tosti say, seemed to make but little headway. i "By the Jumping Jeremiah, this is bard lines!" l


24 YOUNG KLO:NDlKE!B, LOST said the Unknown, at last. di'ke. I'll take a ha.nd." "Let up, Young Klon"Oh, it ain't necessary," replied Ned. "We are working along well enough." "We'll get there in time," said Dick. We are coming along.'' "Coming? So's Christmas You'd better let me take an oar." "No, sir! I won't do anything of the sort," said Ned, "at least not until I'm played out." "Same with me," added Dick. "You just sit still and take it easy." "Well, then, if you won't let the crazy old detect ive take anything from you, will you take something from him?" "And what?" asked Ned. "A bit of advice." Did I ever refuse ad vice from you ?" "Never that I know of. Will you take it now?" "Yes, if you have it handy. How am I to it? In pound lots or by the ton?" "In four words, Young Klondike." "Speak those four words " Keep nearer the shore." "What good will that do?" "Current ain't so strong." whereupon the others immediately took to their heels and ran awa:m The boys sprang out of the boat and pounced upon the wounded savage who was trying to crawl away among the bushes. The poor wretch in his broken English immedia,tely began to plead for his life. "No kill! No kill!'" he cried. "Red Dog be white boy's slave. Oh, yes. No kill!" "Get up," said Ned, sternly. "We don't want to kill you even if you did try to kill us." The Indian instead of obeying crouched at Ned's feet. Red Dog make mistake,'" he said. Heap big mistake. All Indians make mistake. Tink you bad white men. Tony Tosti's men-oh, yes." "Hello!" cried the Unknown, "so you know Tony Tosti's gang ?" "Yes, yes Reel Dog know. Him heap bad man. Oh, yes!" "There's a chance to work a point here," whispered the detective. "Get up, Red Dog. If you'\e got a bullet in your shoulder I'll take it out." At first Red Dog could not believe in the genuine ness of their good intentions, but as soon as he was convinced that it was kindly meitnt he readily submitted himself to the Unknown. ''Yes, but the woods are mighty thick and come right down to the water's edge. We'll be dead cer-The detective was considerable of a surgeon, and tain to run into some snag or other." after examining the declared that if Red Dog "All right. Have it your own way, then." could stand it, he could easily take the bullet out. "No, I shan't. I mean to have it yours. We'll "Take him out then,'" said the Indian. "Take pull in nearer the shore." him out now." . Tl d tl t d f d tl U And he stood up and let the Unknown dig lus pocket 1ey were soon un er 1e rees an oun ie n. . . k d' t' f ll 'fi d kmfe mto the qmvermg flesh without makmg a. nown s pre ic u veri e sound. It was far easier pullmg. I Every now and then they would strike an eddy, or a few moments the Unknown succeeded in ex-back current, which sent them flying forward at a I tra.ctmg t?e bullet. great rate. The Indian seemed very grateful, and "hen the deB t 1 th l d h ood 1 k th tective bound up the wounded shoulder he took off a u even w ien ey 1a no sue g uc ey . . t 1 f th th h d d th .d handsome bearskm robe which he wore and offered 1t wen a ong ar easier an ey a one m e m1 -to him. dle of the stream. But every situation has its trials, and this brought its owl) a few moments later; and very startling they "No, no, keep it, I keep it," said the detective. "It was all a mistake. We don't want to hurt good In dians. Look, Red Dog, we are hunting for scalps, but not Indian scalps. The men we are after are It was when they caught one o_f the eddies-perhaps Tony Tosti and his gang." were at the time. the strongest. one they had yet. "Me help! Me get plenty of help!" de. Ned and Dick, to help matters along'. a few J cla .red Red Dog, emphatically. "Tony Tosti hea rigorous strokes, and away they went ftyrng with such bad man!" p speed that they were thrown against a projecting point of land with such force that the Unknown could not steer past it. The bow of the boat was actually thrown up on the shelving beach, and before the boj;S could make a move or even exclaim, six Indians sprang out of the thicket with loud yells, and began brandishing their tomahawks. Edith flung up her rifle and Ned and Dick shipped their oars a .nd ma,de a grab for theirs. Edith fired, taking one of the Indians in the arm and sending him reeling back among the bushes, "Will your friends fight for us?" asked Ned. Red Dog declared that they would, and when Ned asked him where they were and how soon he could get them, he assured him that they were close by, and that he could have them there in a few moments' time. Then Red Dog went on to tell in his broken way, that he was chief of a small band of Indians, and how the mine wreckers had attacked the village, killing several men. They were out for revenge, it seemed, and after some consultation the boys decided that thpy could


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S LOST 25 not do better than to take up with these dangerous He jumped up in the boat and waved both hands allies. above bis head. d "Hello, there Hello!" he shouted. "Don't be Red Dog then retired into the forest an soon re. t b afraid We are friends !" turned with .his e.ntire band, some twen y m num er. But the miners seemed rather distrustful until the Some carried rifles, but for the most part they were Th tl t a ild sl1out d ti b a d arrows canoes came nearer. en iey se up w arme wi 1 ows n K 1 It' y Kl d'l I Ned received them warml v and there was a general 'I It's Young londike s oung on 1 rn .J H H '" shaking of hands and all sorts of promises on both ooray. oorayB. t B I th .._ '" lled "Hello there, ar rown s au you. ye sides. the Unknown, for the leader of the Cherry Creek "Tell your men, Red if they help me and party was none other than one of the Golden & will come to Dawson I will give them good canoes, L k ld k h t ,, uc ey so wor men. and blankets, and rifles and everythmg t ey wai:iOf course our party was received with open arms, This was the sort of talk that takes the Indians and when Ned explained the situation, Bart Brown every time. and all hands thanked them heartily for coming. "It's a big thing if we can only handle them," said "We were afraid when we saw the Indians," cried the detective, "but how we are ever going to get Brown, "but we are more afraid of the Tosti gang. them up Cherry Creek is more than I can see." They've attacked us several times, and we've been "Perhaps they have canoes," said Ned. robbed of as much as a hundred thousand dollars in "Perhaps they haven't. If they had reckon dust by them altogether. Tosti has often threatened they would have said something about it before this." to clean us out and take the mines away from us alto But the Unknown was entirely mistaken, for right gether, and I believe that this is the time he means to then Red Dog asked where they were going, and if try to carry out his plan." all came out right. "Let him," replied Ned. "If we don't give them ''Up Cherry Creek," replied Ned. a great old shaking up my name ain't Golden. Let "Tony Tosti not up Cherry Creek!" replied Red him try it if he dares." Dog, emphatically It was determined that the Indians should go into "But he will be to-night." hiding in a deep gully just back of the mines. "Does white boy know?" Red Dog agreP-d to this plan readily enough, and the "Yes, I know ; I'm sure of it." canoes were pulled up on shore out of sight . "Then Red Dog will go with him. White boy go Then Ned and Dick inspected the diggings on in boat; Red Dog go in him canoes." Cherry Creek. "Have you got canoes ?" Ned demanded. He found the mines fairly rich, but being worked Red Dog's answer was that they had plenty, and be by very primithe methods. led the way across the point, and there, concealed in a "You could make a fortune out of them, boss," little cove, were canoes enough to easily carry the ensaid Brown, "but we have no proper tools, and what's tire band. more we can't get them in Dawson now, not even for "This is immense!" cried the detective. "We've money." got force enough to lick the stuffing out of Tony "I can fit you out," said Ned, "and I'll do it, too. Tosti's gang I laid in a big stock last fall. They are up at my "That's what we want," said Edith. "It's a big place on El Dorado Creek. I'll ship you down a com stroke of luck. I felt nervous about it before, but I plete outfit just as soon as I can get back." feel sure now that we shall be able to carry our plans "We shall be very thankful to you," said Brown, out to success." "and we'll pay the full market price." Certainly it looked so. The Indians were very "No, you won't!" replied Ned, heartily. "All we friendly. They told Ned that it was only a mile fur-want is wha.t they cost us. Golden & Luckey are al ther to the mouth of Cherry Crook, and R!3d Dog also ways ready to help a brother miner out." declareci that the twelve miners there had been often "Golden & Luckey are a credit to the Klondike," threatened by the mine wreckers, but so far had been said Brown. "Things would go better if there were able to hold t0hem at bay. more of your sort." Then he went on to tell how many mines had been "They'll go better on Cherry Creek after we get broken up by the gang, and many other interesting rid of Tony Tosti's gang," said Ned, "and that's things about them, all of which Ned was glad to know. what we are going to do to-day." Then they all embarked and went on up Cherry Then Brown inquired what brought the boys down Creek. in that section of the country. As they neared the mines, they were soon disNed replied vaguely that they were out prospectcovered. ing, but very properly avoided all mention of the lost The miners, some fifteen in number, ran to arms million. and put themselves in readiness to attack. The afternoon wore away and eyening c;ame, but "They are afraid of us," said Ned, "but they'll as yet they had neitherseen norheardanythingofthe change their tune when they find out who we are." mine wreckers.


26 YOUNG LOST MILLION. "They won't show up till nine o'clock, and you needn't expect them," said the Unknown; "but I haven't the least doubt that you'll see them then." At half-past eight Ned had an interview with Red Dog, and the Indian chief renewed his promise to stand by them. He seemed very grateful for what had been done for him, and N e-0. felt no fear of the band turning against them when the time came Before nine sentinels were placed at each of the mines to keep a sharp lookout in case of an attack, but the rest of the miners concentrated in one. of the shaft houses where Ned, Dick, the Unknown and Edith were, too. We'll be ready for them when ever they show up," declared Ned. They did not have long to wait after that. Within twenty minutes one of the sentinels at the next shaft house suddenly raised a red handkerchief on the end of his rifle. This was the signal that the mine wreckers had been seen and the whole party was thrown on the alert at once. Ned immediately sent a messenger to inform Red Dog. As yet he could see nothing himself, but within five minutes he perceived several armed men creeping down the opposite hill, which had been the scene of their adventures 'the night before. Remember it was still light. The Arctic day is a long one. The sun had not yet set. "They are coming," said the detective. "Give me your glass, Yeung Klondike. I want to see if I can recognize any of those men." Ned handed over his glass, and after a 1ong look the detective declared that Tony Tosti was in the lead. "There are thirty of tpem altogether," he added, and Ned smiled as he thought what short work they would be able to make of the gang. It was decided to let them come close to the shaft houses. \ As no one showed themselves the mine wreckers grew bolder. They soon came out into plain sight, and crossing the creek began to ascend the hill on which the mines stood. "Come out of there, Brown Come out and sur render!" shouted Tony Tosti. This was what Ned had been waiting for. "Fire! Let them have it!" cried Young Klondike, and this time it was he who ran the red handkerchief up. Tony Tosti took the signal for a challenge perhaps, for he and his men began blazing away, and came dashing up the hill. They did not get far. Instantly every rifle from the shaft house spoke With a wild war-whoop, Red Dog and his band came rushing up out of the hollow, and firing as they ad vanced, dashed down the hill. "Surrender, Tony Tosti You can' t escape us shouted Ned, recklessly running out of the hut. He opened fire on the leader of the mine wreckers. The gang halted. Tony Tosti drew a bead and fired. "Heavens I'm shot !" cried Young Klondike, stag gering back, and the blood came streaming down all over his f::i-ce, while Edith, with a cry of terror, ran round and caught him in her arms. CHAPTER XI. RAISING THE GOLD. "NED! Ned! Oh, what shall I. do? Oh, Dick! Ned is killed!" Poor Edith was almost beside herself then. "Nonsense There's nothing the matter with me at all!" cried Ned, pulling himself away. "It's jus1' a scalp wound. Let 'em have it, boys I Let 'em have it !" and the brave fellow fired and started off down the hill. It was hardly necessary. The mine wreckers had by this time caught sight of the Indians, and began to comprehend how the case stood. For an instant they wavered and then turned and ran for their lives. But not all, by any means. As many as seven fell wounded, but the rest made their escape across the creek, plunged in among the rocks and djsappeared. The Indians then took up the chase, but our Klondikers held back. Ned had arranged all this beforehand He was most anxious to return to the hut to look after the lost million, so the programme was that Red Dog follow up the gang. By ten o'clock the Indians not having returned and nothing more having been seen of the mine wreckers, our friends bade good-by to the Cherry Creek miners, and started to return to Gold Creek. They met with no adventure on the way, and by sunset-that was nearly eleven o'clock-came in sight of the mine wreckers' hut. The water had gon13 down very considerably. Gold Creek had now returned almost to.its natural limits. There was no sign of any one in or about the hut as they pulled the boat up on shore. "I don't believe any one has been here," declared Ned "It looks exactly as we left it." "You can't tell," replied Unknown. "You stop here and I'll sneak up and see." "No, no !" cried Dick. "Let's all keep together." "That's what," added Ned. "There must be no separation now." So they all started for the hut together, but a sharp lookout was maintained, you may be very sure. It proved to be entirely unnecessary, for the hut was deserted. j


YOUNG KLONDIKES MILLION. 27 1 Moreover no one had been there as far as they puld make out. The secret panel was nailed up just Is they had l eft it when they went away. "I guess we are safe," said Ned. "We gave those ellows such a shaking up that it ain't likely they'll other us any more." "WhJit's to be clone with the wounded men we left t the mines?" asked Edith. "I never thought to quire before." "Oh, Brown will take care of them till they have covered," replied Ned, "and I've agreed to send me of the Northwest police down here just as soon we get back to Dawson." "And the rest?" They are in the hands of Red Dog." Edith shuddered. She knew only too well what that meant. It was very unlikely that the Indian chief would ow the mine wreckers much mercy if they fell into hands. The first question now was supper and the next the st million. Now was the time to recover the gold, and Ned was etermined to work at it all night if necessary. While Edith was preparing the meal Young Klon 'ke pulled out on the creek and stopped over the ace where the wreck of the launch lay. It was not easy to see down into the water even ith the lantern to aid him. etl tried in every way, but was not able to deter ine whether the gold was still there or not. "We shall have to wait for daylight," he thought, nd then he started again for the hut. Daylight was due between twelve and one, for the mmer sun in the Klondike country does not remain ng away. Dick, Edith and the Unknown, indulged in a little eep, but Ned kept on, and awakened his mpanions as soon as the sun showed itself above e hills. He and Dick then took the boat and pulled right t to the place where the launch lay. Now they could see it plain enough. It lay wedged against a rock under about six feet f water. The bags of gold were all as they had been left, emingly not one missing. ''"Hooray for our side!" shouted Dick. "It's all ght l Jim Prodgers' lost million will soon be a found illion again." "vVe won't holler till we are out of the woods," re ied Ned. You don't anticipate any trouble, do you ?" "No, no l I can stand on the bottom and pass the gs up. It's only a little over my head now." It proved to be just as easy a task as Young Klon ke had anticipated. He stripped off his clothes and plunged boldly into e creek. Planting both feet firmly on the launch, Ned was le to raise the bags without any difficulty. The water was icy cold, to be sure, but he cared nothing for that. Bag after bag was passed up to Dick, and stored away in the boat. The weight caused it to sink so in the water that Dick became seriously alarmed. "Say, Ned!" be exclaimed, when Young Klondike came up for breath, "this old tub is never going to hold it all-never in the wide world!" "\Vho says so?" laughed Ned. "It will work all right." "And carry us, tool No, sir!" I say it will Don't you fret ; the boat is stronger than you think for." Down went Ned again, and up came another bag of gold in a moment. Each additional bag brought the boat down lower in the water. Ned soon saw that Dick was right. "I don't believe it will carry all," he said, dubi ously, wading out on shore. "What in thunder are we going to do about it, Dick ?" "Don't ask me, because I'm blest if I can tell you," replied Dick. "You see the condition of things now." "I see. It's bad. "Of course we can't hope to carry any of our traps." "Never expected to do that anyhow, but I did think it would take the gold." "Well, it won't." "I see it won't now. What's to be done? I don't know unless we build a raft." "And take it in tow ?" "Yes." "We might do that." "It's risky. If we happen to run into a rock or anything, away goes the gold, and, besides, there's danger of the raft upsetting if we don't balance it just right." But it was perfectly evident that they would be forced to try it. In fact, the boat was already so overloaded, that Ned felt it safer for Dick to pull ashore before the remain-der of the bags were added to the pile. Dick worked the boat ashore as carefully as he could, and with Ned's help the gold was unloaded. The Unknown now joined them, but Edith remained in the hut asleep, as the boys had not considered it necessary to disturb her. I suppose you are going to build a raft," said the detective, taking in the situation at a glance. "That's what we've got to do," replied Ned. "There's no help for it, as you can see for yourself "Well, then, I'll go right at it," said the detective. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, I've got to do something to pay for my passage. It seems to me as though I'd been nothing but a bother and a nuisance this trip." "Don't say that. Who found the lost million?" replied Ned. "Well, you can charge it to me if you want to, but


28 YOUNG LOST MILLION. hasn't that been a nuisance? Never mind. I'll make I Again it came. up for it. Ye gods and little fishes, I can work." Someone was beating against the panel for all the. So the Unknown pulled off his coat, went up to the were worth, blow after blow. hut, got an ax and began cutting down young cedar trees which grew plentifully along the banks of Gold Creek. He soon had enough felled to build the raft, and by CHAPTER XII. that time Ned and Dick were through with their work. The last bag of gold was now safe on shore. Ned then dressed himself and Edith was called. "Wake up! Wake up!" shouted Young Klondike, under the trap door leading up to the loft. "The lost is found Old Jim Prodgers' million is ours again!'"Three cheers!" cried Edith. "I'll be with you in a m oment, boys Anything been seen of the en emy since I went to sleep?" Ned replied in the negative and left Edith to dress. With the help of Dick and the Unknown he bound together the small cedar trunks, having fortunately, a good supply of stout cord which was heavy enough for the purpose. By the time Edith bad breakfast ready the raft was completed and everything in shape to load the gold on. Breakfast was served in the hut where there was a table and plenty of dishes. Of course they discussed the mine wreckers as they I ate. "It would be a bad job if they should happen to show up now," the Unknown was just remarking when all at once heard a curious sound behind the secret panel which brought everybody up stand ing with a start. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, there's someone there now!" breathed the Unknown. Ned ran to the panel, put his ear against it, and list en ed. "That's what there is," he said. "There is cer tainly someone there." "Can you l}ear them talking?" whispered Edith. "It seems to me that I cap." "I'm sure I hear voices. I can't make out what they are saying, though." "We must move quick," declared Dick. "They'll try to break through, sure. If we could only get a 1 start before they do it." "Run out and begin loading up, you arid Edith," said Ned. "We'll keep a watch here." "The gold first?' asked Dick. "The g old first every time, of course. Hustle now Don't let grass grow under your feet." They had not been gone two minutes before mat ters came to a crisis. After a brief silence, during Ned allowed him self to indulge in the hope that whoever was behind the panel had gone away, a sudden violent blow was struck against it on the other side. "There you are They're at it!" breathed Ned, seizing his rifle. THE LAST OF THE LOST MILLION. BANG Bang Bang The attack on the secret panel kept ight up. bad not been made of good cedar vrnod, it must haY yielded long ago. With their rifles ready for instant action, Ned an the Unknown stood grimly watching, ready for what ever might occur. "Aren't they most cried Ned, impatiently. Then he called to Dick through the door. "All ready now!" came the answer. "The las bag is on, but how about our traps?" .Let everything go! We'll bring along the pro visions ; the rest of the things can stay where the.) are." Bang Bang! Bang Thick and fast came the blows on the panel. It did seem as if the wood must yield. Ned seized the provision hampers, and the Un know took the ax. They ran out of the hut and joined Dick and Edit in the boat. They were not an instant too soon, either, for all i the same moment there was a loud crash inside the hut. "They're in! By gracious, they're in!" cried Ned. "That's what!" echoed the Unknown. "Same old gang, too! There' s Tony Tosti Take that, you sucker! Ha I I knocked his hat off, anywa. y Now, by the Jumping Jeremiah, come on and I'll knock o your head." Suddenly the chief of the mine wreckers appeare in the doorway with a crowd of men behind him. The Unlmown's shot did take his hat off, and then the fighting began again. "Stopa dere Stopa! Stopa right away quick o we kill!" T<\sti cried, and, the shots came thick an fast. "Duck I Keep down out of the wa)' !"shouted th U known. fired again and so did Edith, but Ned and Dick were rowing, and, of course, could not work their rifles too. The U nknown's shot flew wide of the mark this time, but Edith's took Tony Tosti in the right shoul der, and he dropped his rifie with a yell. "Pull! Pull!" cried tbe Unknown, as the mine wreckers faltered, gathering around their wounded companion. And pull Ned and Dick did for all they were worth. In a few moments they were out of range and making good time down the creek. Now for the time being they were comparatively


YOUNG KLONDIKE'S LOST MILLION. 29 for the bluffs along the bank of the creek were I If bis rifle can carry that far mine can carry the o steep and :i:-ocky that it was next to impossible balance of the way," said Edith, coolly. "How far or the mine wreckers to follow them on shore. are we now from the mouth of the creek, Ned." The boys pulled in between these bluffs and were "About three hundred yards. It:s right around soon out of the way of the bullets, and the Yukon that bend." lay right ahead. "That's enough l Hello l another shot l We're "We're safe! Hooray! We are safe!" shouted in range now all right enough. Here goes!" the Unknown. The shot struck the water right alongside the boat. And they all thought the detective right until a It was plain that the mine wreckers were not good ew moments later when all at once two boats ap-marksmen, but nevertheless, no one could doubt that ared behind them coming rapidly in pursuit. they meant to shoot to kill. "Well, I vow !" cried the detective. There they "Now, then, the Winchester talks," said Edith, rel By the Jeremiah, we don't get coolly. id of them as easy as we thought! The fight is on Bang gain, boys l They are after us We can't slip them She fired. ow, but where in Sam Hill did they get the boats?" One of the oarsmen on the right gave a yell and Puzzling enough it seemed, but it would have been dropped his oar. They could see that he had been s plain as it was puzzling if they had only known that struck in the shoulder from the way his arm fell to his he two boats had lain concealed among the bushes side. 11 the time they were in the hut. Bang Young Klondike's party had never observed them, Another shot. ut as they belonged to the mine wreckers it is not at An oarsman on the left dropped his oar with an11 strange that they should be able to put their fingers other yell, handling himself in precisely the same way. n them as they did "Three cheers for our Edith !H shouted the UnNed _at once saw that matters were likely to take a known. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, you've nipped rious turn. two of them and no killing yet." In some way the mine wreckers had given Red Bang l og s band the slip, and here they were close at their Then it was another and then another. eels, breathing threats of vengeance and sending There was now only one man left in the boat able shots spinning toward the raft and boat. to help himself. He fired as the others had done and "We've got to shoot to kill, that's all there is about equally without avail, for Edith nipped him, too, and ," said the detective, grimly. "The whole gang is the boat floated helplessly down the creek, the men ot there, but they outnumber us two to one, and yelling and shouting to their friends in the other mething definite has got to be done." boat. 1dith looked grave. "Ye gods and little fishes You've fixed them all, There was no better shot in all Alaska than this Edith!" cried the Unknown, "and not a man killed. ave girl, but shooting to kill was something she Well upon my word, my dear, you a ,re a wonderful uld not bear to think of-in short, it was enti:rely shot." t of Edith's line. "Will you tackle the other boat now ?" demanded "That's -vhat the situation is," replied Ned. "If Dick. e can only once make the Yukon, we shall be all "I will as soon as it comes in range ; ght. Come, Edith, what do you say?" replie,d iNed "I won't shoot to kill, but I'll shoot to stop "How much does it lack ?" em," said Edith. "If I can fix them so they "Mind your rowing, Dick We're coming into the n't handle the oars, will that do?" Yukon now l .First thing you know you'll run against "We don't ask for a .nything more," declared the that rock!" tective, becauseOh, ye gods and little fishes, The rock in question was right across the mouth of at's enough!" the creek, and Ned spoke too late. Edith sighted the canoes over her Winchester. Dick took a wild stroke, and the mischief was done. '"l can do it with the six in the first boat,", she The boat grazed its edge, and was thrown violently id. off, but the raft struck full against it; the heavy bags "Now?" demanded Ned. "Are we in range?" of gold shifted, and before one could have said Jack "They are steadily gaining on us-we will be in Robinson, it tilted up and over it went, the bags slidnge inside of a minute and a half." ing off as easy as you please, splashing into the water "Don't say a word Le.ave it all to ]jdith," said one after the other, until the last one had disappeared. e detective. "She don't promise more than she Fatal blunder It upset more than the raft-more perform." than all, Young Klondike's plans, for the boat "'ent 'uddenly one of the mine wreckers in the first boat over, too, dragged down by the weight of the raft, rew up his rifle and fired. and everybody found themselves in the water. he shot struck the water within a few foot of them, I It was a hot time-we should sa.y a cold time-all tit fell just short of the boat. around.


30 YOUNG KLONfHKE'S LOST MILLION. .L To scramble out on the rock was easy enough, but there they were almost at the mercy of the enemy, for only Edith managed to hold on to her rifle, and the second boat of mine wreckers was bearing down upon them full speed. "By the Jumping Jeremiah, we're in the soup now!" cried the Unknown, "and the lost million is lost for fair. Fire, Edith Jfire We'll defend our selves until the last !" And Edith did fire, and so did the mine wreckers. The shots came whirling around the rock, and there is no telling what the end might have been, but just then the whole affair was changed by the sudden appearance of a sma,11 fleet of canoes around the point which marked the junction of Gold Creek with the Yukon. It was Red Dog and his Indians. Young Klondike gave a shout, pointing to the mine wreckers. "Help us, Red Dog Help us !" he cried. There was no need of the appeal. Red Dog had seen the situation, and that was exactly what he had come for. The instant they were in range the Indians opened. fire with arrows and rifles, and the mine wreckers were driven back up the creek. Then Young Klondike's party was rescued from the rock and the Indians rowed them up to Dawson City, where Ned rewarded Red Dog and the entire band in a manner which could not have been more liberal if old Jim Prodgers' million had been saved instead of lost. Next day the North west police started down for Gold Creek to drive the mine wreckers from tbe neigh borhood, but they only found the wounded prisoners at the Cherry Creek diggings. Tony Tosti and his gang had disappeared, and were never heard of again. Not a bit disheartened by the loss of his million, Young Klondike immediately started on another money-making scheme, which brought with it a train of interesting adventures. This affair will be found fully detailed in the next number of this series, entitled "YOUNG KLOKDIKE'S GOLD SYNDICATE; OR, BREAKING THE BROKERS OF DAWSON CITY." 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