pirate swear, but his best efforts
would have seemed like those of a tyro alongside of Perry's masterful
and scientific imprecations.
Once more I tried my hand at the wheel, but I might as well have
essayed to swing the earth itself. At my suggestion Perry stopped the
generator, and as we came to rest I again threw all my strength into a
supreme effort to move the thing even a hair's breadth--but the results
were as barren as when we had been traveling at top speed.
I shook my head sadly, and motioned to the starting lever. Perry
pulled it toward him, and once again we were plunging downward toward
eternity at the rate of seven miles an hour. I sat with my eyes glued
to the thermometer and the distance meter. The mercury was rising very
slowly now, though even at 145 degrees it was almost unbearable within
the narrow confines of our metal prison.
About noon, or twelve hours after our start upon this unfortunate
journey, we had bored to a depth of eighty-four miles, at which point
the mercury registered 153 degrees F.
Perry was becoming more hopeful, although upon what meager food he
sustained his optimism I could not conjecture. From cursing he had
turned to singing--I felt that the strain had at last affected his
mind. For several hours we had not spoken except as he asked me for
the readings of the instruments from time to time, and I announced
them. My thoughts were filled with vain regrets. I recalled numerous
acts of my past life which I should have been glad to have had a few
more years to live down. There was the affair in the Latin Commons at
Andover when Calhoun and I had put gunpowder in the stove--and nearly
killed one of the masters. And then--but what was the use, I was about
to die and atone for all these things and several more. Already the
heat was sufficient to give me a foretaste of the hereafter. A few
more degrees and I felt that I should lose consciousness.
"What are the readings now, David?" Perry's voice broke in upon my
"Ninety miles and 153 degrees," I replied.
"Gad, but we've knocked that thirty-mile-crust theory into a cocked
hat!" he cried gleefully.
"Precious lot of good it will do us," I growled back.
"But my boy," he continued, "doesn't that temperature reading mean
anything to you? Why it hasn't gone up in six miles. Think of it,
"Yes, I'm thinking of
Stepping within he crossed the room to a door which opened at the foot of a narrow stairway--a.Page 1
Prim's boudoir, the chaste elegance of Jonas Prim's bed-room with all the possibilities of forgotten wallets and negotiable papers, setting his course straight for the apartments of Abigail Prim, the spinster daughter of the First National Bank of Oakdale.Page 9
Apparently sleep could never again come to those heavy eyes.Page 15
Men usually know more about the morals of men than do women.Page 21
"But you called me 'Kid' and that's my name--I'm The Oskaloosa Kid.Page 36
"I guess me an' The General'll sit where we damn please, an' youse can take it from me on the side that we're goin' to have ours out of The Kid's haul.Page 38
"Let me go.Page 41
It was uninjured and with it in his hand he continued toward the cellar door.Page 44
Outside the house he came upon the girl and the youth standing in the sunshine of a bright, new day.Page 46
"What yer lookin' fer is Sears, Roebuck & Company.Page 47
" The Oskaloosa Kid peeled a five dollar bill from his roll and proffered it to the farmer.Page 58
"I believe he has discovered a great deal that will help us in locating the man we want.Page 59
You can shoot if they don't stop when you tell 'em to.Page 67
Then come night we go 'way.Page 68
Case paused and gasped--horrified.Page 69
I don't know how much to believe, or whether to believe any of it; but we can't afford not to run down every clew.Page 75
In addition to the meat and potatoes there was one vegetable in a side-dish and as dessert four prunes.Page 77
"I tell you I seen him," asserted one of the party.Page 85
Burton," Jonas Prim's voice was crisp and cold.Page 100
121 5 wont.