The Liberty Boys' invisible foe, or, Fighting death in the dark

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The Liberty Boys' invisible foe, or, Fighting death in the dark

Material Information

The Liberty Boys' invisible foe, or, Fighting death in the dark
Series Title:
Liberty Boys of "76"
Moore, Harry
Place of Publication:
New York
Frank Tousey
Publication Date:
Physical Description:
1 online resource (28 p.) 28 cm.: ;


Subjects / Keywords:
Dime novels. ( lcsh )
History -- United States -- Revolution, 1775-1783 ( lcsh )
serial ( sobekcm )

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of South Florida
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
The University of South Florida Libraries believes that the Item is in the Public Domain under the laws of the United States, but a determination was not made as to its copyright status under the copyright laws of other countries. The Item may not be in the Public Domain under the laws of other countries.
Resource Identifier:
025745119 ( ALEPH )
72801842 ( OCLC )
L20-00166 ( USFLDC DOI )
l20.166 ( USFLDC Handle )

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A Weekly .Magazine containing Stories of the American Revolution. idwrd lrrcld!J-B!J Subacription $~. 50 pa year. J::11hrr

• THE LIBERTY BOYS OF '76 A Weekly Magazine Containing Stories of the American Rev oluti on lBStUd Wukl11-B11 Stwscriptwn '2,50 per vcar. Entered as &ctmd Olas• J',fal.ter at the Neu, Y<>rk, N . 1'., Post Office, Fd>ruar11 I, 1901. E,itertd accurding to Act of Oonqrus:, the 11ear 1908, in the o(fice of the Librarian o/ Congress, Washington, D. c . , b11 Fran k Touse11, r'UblisMr, U Union Square, New Y<>rk. No. 400. ~:rEW YORK, CHAP'rER I. A~ .ADVEXTURE 0~ THE ~{Ot,;NTAJ~. "Hello, Bob, I'm afraid there is trouble." "Yei::, no hor e can come down the mountain like that without mashing omcthing, Dick . " The boyi, were riding along a rough country road in the hawangunk Mountains, in New York, one day in July. A few mile,; away wa the ancient settlement of 1Iini s ink, between the Wallkill and :ravci::ink. Count P11la ki and hi:a: legion had been tationed at ~Iini . ink during the winter ,m get out. "\\' ere you going down?" be asked. "Ye,, to :Minisink," , $aid one, "but I could never trubt myself with that horse again." " .. Tot if I drave it? I think I could manage him . " "I, would want to see you do it .fir,;t." "I wouldn't go around the bend for anything,'' declared the other girl. Dick had got the horse greatly quieted by this time, and now Rob picked up the rein and got in. "How did it happen?" he a ked. ".Are you used to driving?" "Oh, ye . , but ally i a better driver than I am." "I think someone alarmed him, or he rnddenly dasbecl forward, and the reins slipped out of my hand. " "I know you said so, ally, but we saw no one." "Very true, He ter, but there wa a peculiar ouncl and then--" Dick cast a sudden look at one of the wheels, but said nothing. Tt wa on hi side, the girl being: on the other. "Drive on around the turn, Bob," said Dic k, 'to rive him confidence." Bob did so, and Dick, with a switch that he quickly tore from a tree, removeil something from the wheel. "Better walk on a little, young ladie .,'' he $aid . Bob drove on leisurely, his hor:a:e trotting along ide, a.nil the girls following. Then Dick threw away the witch, wheeled and followed. "I think you can tn1st Bob Estabrook/' he said. "You do not wii-h to walk, I uppo . c ?" "That i preferable to being dashed down the side ot the mountain," said Sally. "It look ~afe enough now," added Hester. "Come on, then. The road is steep, but perfectly safo here, a. there are no sharp turns."


2 THE LIBERTY BOYS' INVISIBLE FOE. "Yes, I know, but I am naturally nervous after what has happened," said Hester, "and--" "Will you go i I do, dear?" asked Sally. "Why, yes, I suppose so, but--" Bob had stopped. "Here are Mark and Jack, our dashy twins," he called out. Two fine looking boys. somewhat younger than Dick and Bob, w13re seen coming up the hill. They wore the Continental blue, one being a seco]'\d lieutenant. He was. },fark )forrison, his companion, riding a beauti ful bay mare, being Jack Warren. The boys were fast friends, and inseparable compan ions, and for that reason Bob Estabrook had laughingly alluded to them as twin . There "ere many other just such twin among the Lib . erty Boys. "Here are two bovs, either of whom can be trusted to drive you down," said Dick, "or Bob will do .. o." "There's your chance, Jack," whispered Mark, who was a bit of a tease. "You might get one 0 them for a sweetheart, and you know--" "That you are a donkey," Jack chuckled. "I think we'll walk," said Hester, mo t unexpectedly. "You can have my bay mare, Uis ," said Jack. "She is used to girls. l\fy sister has ridden her often." "My gray is at your &ervice," said )lark to Sally. "I wouldn't trust any horse just now," said Hester. "I'll go with the lieutenant," Sally suddenly declared. "Oh, well, in that case--" "Come along then," and in a few minutes they were in the chaise going down hill, Bob driving, while Dick led his horse. "Bob cut yon out, Master Jack," laughed Mink. "You have very little spunk to--" "Ilumbug! But I say, Dick, there was an accident?" "There might have been a very serious one i Bob and I had not come up in time." ' W11at was the cause of it?" "I think a yellow snake must have frightened the horse. At a.ny rate there was a dead one twined in and around the spokes of one wheel." "A, rattler? I don't wonder he was frightened. And I suppose the rattles kept up a constant clatter all the way, and kept him frightened?" "No doubt. Were you going anywhere particular?" "~ o, just for a ride." "Then you'll be back before dark?" "Yes." "A~l right," and the boys separated. CHAPTER II. SECRET ENE.urns. Continuing up the hill, :Mark and Jack at l ength came to a point where they had a most extensive prospect. 'rhey halted and sat in their saddl e , ' looking off across hill and valley , forest an(\ mountain, wood and stream, in silent admiration of the lovely panorama spread before them. At length Jack spoke. "There's 1.he camp of the Liberty Boys over yonder, he said. "Ye , you can see the tents very plainly." "But, ~lark, there are fire o,•er there," pointing. "What are they? Is there another camp?'' "There i,; smoke rising above the thi c k e t, for a fact. It ma.y be a woodchopper's camp, Jack.'' "Yes, but I don't know of any oYcr that way, }lark, and it doe , not look like that sort of fire." "What s ort does it look like?" "The men would not be getting their suppers now, ~nd we don't hear the sound of axes." "It is too far away for that, Jack." "I don't know. The air i.:; very clear, and we are well aborn the spot. We should hear a ound like that of the blow of un ax if there were woodm e n at work.'' "It might be a forest re ." "It looks to me like the council fire of a party 0 Indians." "But, Jack, we don't know that there are any about." "Nor do we know that there aren't any. It looks rea sonable, doesn't it? Ilere is ~[inisink, insufficientl y t.le fended, and we know that the Indians have attacked it before, and that they have always had an eye on it." "Yes, I know that, Jack. It i no\\ ' over a hundred years ago and more that a great battle wa., fough t on this very spot." "Yes, and the Indians have wanted Minisi.n k e ver ince." 1 "Do you think the Indians are in the ncighboThood ?" "I don't lmow, but I do know that that look su s piciously like the smoke from a council fire." "I must say that it does, Jack, and perhaps we had better iell Dick." "Yes, if lie has not alreadv seen it, he will want to know about it." • They were turning to go when a shot rang out sharply upon the s 111 ummer air. Then a bullet whizzed past Jack's head within an inch of it. They both .:;aw a puff 0 white smoke in the bushes some distance to one side. Both ' fircd at it in a moment. They hii.d often been under fire and did not know fear. Upon firing, they both dashed toward the bushes and leaped to the ground. Plunging into the bushe s the y looked hastily about. . They heard hurried footsteps, and now saw tracks aud broken bu s hes. The trail led to the edge of a steep bank, and ~ ud denly ended there. There were rocks on either side along the edge of the bank, and he'1tlight have run along them a distance and plunged into the bushe.s again. The rock left no trail and the earch was practically at mma . The boys returned to the road, got upon their horses and rode away.


THE LIBERTY BOYS' INVISIBLE FOE. I ~'Who could our invisible foe have been, Jack?" a.ked Mark. "I don't .know. A Tory mo t likely." "Yes, I suppose so. There are many hereabouts." 'It was lucky we moved when we did, for if we had not, one 0 us would haYe c:uught that shot." "So we would." "A Dian that will shoot at a fellow like that, without warning, is a contemptible fellow, worse than a rattler," eaid Jack, decidedly. "So he is, and the Torie~ gC'narally are of that e:lass, and the Indians are all like that." ":N' ot all, ~!ark. The Oneida., and some of the , outh ern tribes are our friends.'' "\Vell, the exception only proves the rule," ,-hortly. ome ddanc<> down th hill, well past where the rescue of the two girls took ph~e, they saw a rough looking man sit.ting on the cloor~tep of a little stone house. The boys were 1miYer,;a1ly courteous to all whom they met, and they wished the man good afternoon. "It'd be better if you rebels wasn't prowlin' erbout," the man growled. ~'H'm! I did not expect to stir up a pig," muttered Jack, under his breath . Mark said nothing. The man., evidently disappointed at not receiving an answer, snorted: "It won't be a good mornin' fur yew rebels putty soon. Huh! think yer look :fine, don't yer?" "Some ore-headed Tory, I suppo e," said ).lark, as the boys rode on. "Ya, rebels!" the man shouted. "Yew ju t wait. Yew'll be drove out erfore ver know it." "I wonder if the . coundrel know, anything?" said Jack. "Perhaps not. The e :follows are an abusive lot. That was probably only a boast." "Yes, I suppo.e so." Farther on they came to a pleasant looking house by the road ide, and under the tree saw the two girls. "Hello, here's where they live, eh?" said Mark. "Why don't you top and make a call, Jack?" "Why don't :You 7'' "Oh, but I've got a girl, and you haven't . " "You don't know i I have or not, you old tease," with a laugh . At that moment a middle-aged man with a crabbed look suddenly came forward and said sharply: "There's no use in your stopping, 'cause you're not wanted. We've had rebels enough here, for one day, and--" ' "You'd better wait to see if we want to stop, you old crab!" retorted Jack, hotly. "No impertinence, you rebel, or I .hall call one 0 the arm bands and have you chastised." "Call ahead," mid Jack. "We ride along quietly, and you insult us. Then you say I am impertinent, and threaten to have me cha tised. Go ahead and do it." "Good fellow!" chuckled )fork, admiring Jack's defiant attitude. Sally now came forward and said: "Uncle Titcomb, your conduct is inexcusable. The boys gave you no cause for offence. I beg you will pardon this rudeness/ to Jack. "If you say so, Miss, I will, but your uncle's surly tem per may get him into serious trouble one of the e days." f'Why, you impertinent young rebel," snapped the other, "you won't have a leg to stand on i a few--" Then he , uddenly went off in a great rage, leaving his sentence unfinished. 'l'he boys rode on, as Sally returned to the shade of the tree~, ancl Jack said: "That makes two threats in a ,hort time, Mark, besides that shot on the mountain . What doe-it meari?" "It looks as if trouble were brewing, Jack.'' ' It all started with a rattler, and they're the biggest breeders of trouble you can find," laughed Jack. The boys reached the camp at length and immediately went in search of Dick and Bob. Both were startled at the tory the boy. told them. "'\\nat doe it mean, Dick?" af>ked Bob . "It means that some invisible foe is at work. How great our peril is we h--:now not, but it must be met resolutely." In the early evening, there being a new moon and the stars shining brightly, some of the Liberty Boys were having upper at the edge of the camp . A kettle ~at near the fire, and one of the boy had just put clown a bucket 0 water, which he had brought from the spring. The white tents on the slope near by gli tened in the light of the moon, the fire blazed merrily, the boys laughed and chatted gaily, and there was nothing to indi cate that something terrible was about to happen. Dick later came along and stopped or a moment to chat with the boys. Then, with not the lea t warning, a shot was heard, and one of the boys sitting near the fire, fell upon his face and lay still and silent. As the fatal shot rang out, Dick ha tily caught up a brimming bucket of water and dashed it on the fire, extinguishing the flames. At the same time the startled boys began hurrying away into the woods beyond the camp. • CHAPTER III. A 3WST PERSISTENT FOE. A cloud of steam arose, but in a moment all was dark at that part of the camp. The moon shone on the white tents on the .lope, but at the foot, where the fire had been, all was dark. The boys, from their shelter in the woods, looked warily out. From the other part of the camp Liberty Boys came hastening to learn the meaning of that sudden shot. Then a nightowl hooted. This was a signal from Dick. • It meant that there was danger, and that the boys must be cautious. Then, gliding noiselessly alongside bu bes, be ide fallen trees, and behind rocks, the boys stole forward.


'l'HE LIBERTY BOYS' INVI IBLE FOE. There wa no light to betray them now, for the moon only lighted the tops of the bushes. All wa ' dark in that part of the camp, but all wa, :1ctivity as well. 'I'he bo y were trying to di~cover their invisible foe. lfa.pidly and silently they glided toward the thicket whence the deadly shot had been fired. A. they crept on they , ignalled to each other in order that no mistake might be made. ' tcalthily they drew closer to the thicket, closing in so a to surround anyone who might be there. "Whoever you are," said Dick, "come out before we .fire.'' 'l'here was no 11n'wer. "This is the last warning," 10aid Dick. "If you do not <:ome out before I count three, your blood will be on your own head." Then he began to count lowly and di tinctly. "One!" There was no answer, no stir in the bu hes. .,,Two!" " till there wa,' no sound, no motion. <'Three!" Every boy threw him,elf flat upon hi face and fired. There was thu' no dan~cr of their being hit. All of them fired at the thicket. There wa no answering cry, no sound of a falling body, only the echo of the volley from the circling hill ' . Then the boys dashed into the bushes and litera}ly tore them to pieces. There was no one there. The invisible foe of the Liberty Boys had evidently left the bu he . immediately after firing that fatal shot. There wa no sign of anyone there now, and the secret

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