rapidly, and, but for an
exceptional word now and again, he found it very plain sailing.
Here is what he read:
WEST COAST OF AFRICA, ABOUT 10 DEGREES SOUTH
LATITUDE. (So Mr. Clayton says.)
February 3 (?), 1909.
It seems foolish to write you a letter that you may never see, but I
simply must tell somebody of our awful experiences since we sailed from
Europe on the ill-fated Arrow.
If we never return to civilization, as now seems only too likely, this
will at least prove a brief record of the events which led up to our
final fate, whatever it may be.
As you know, we were supposed to have set out upon a scientific
expedition to the Congo. Papa was presumed to entertain some wondrous
theory of an unthinkably ancient civilization, the remains of which lay
buried somewhere in the Congo valley. But after we were well under
sail the truth came out.
It seems that an old bookworm who has a book and curio shop in
Baltimore discovered between the leaves of a very old Spanish
manuscript a letter written in 1550 detailing the adventures of a crew
of mutineers of a Spanish galleon bound from Spain to South America
with a vast treasure of "doubloons" and "pieces of eight," I suppose,
for they certainly sound weird and piraty.
The writer had been one of the crew, and the letter was to his son, who
was, at the very time the letter was written, master of a Spanish
Many years had elapsed since the events the letter narrated had
transpired, and the old man had become a respected citizen of an
obscure Spanish town, but the love of gold was still so strong upon him
that he risked all to acquaint his son with the means of attaining
fabulous wealth for them both.
The writer told how when but a week out from Spain the crew had
mutinied and murdered every officer and man who opposed them; but they
defeated their own ends by this very act, for there was none left
competent to navigate a ship at sea.
They were blown hither and thither for two months, until sick and dying
of scurvy, starvation, and thirst, they had been wrecked on a small
The galleon was washed high upon the beach where she went to pieces;
but not before the survivors, who numbered but ten souls, had rescued
one of the great chests of treasure.
Of the many men Virginia had met during the month at Singapore von Horn had been by far the most interesting and companionable.Page 9
A score of muskets belched forth their missiles at the fearless girl behind the scant shield of the machine gun.Page 16
As Professor Maxon eyed the man before replying to his abrupt request, von Horn noted a strange and sudden light in the older man's eyes--a something which he never before had seen there and which caused an uncomfortable sensation to creep over him--a manner of bristling that was akin either to fear or horror, von Horn could not tell which.Page 21
As von Horn and Professor Maxon talked together in the laboratory before the upsetting of vat Number Thirteen, a grotesque and horrible creature had slunk from the low shed at the opposite side of the campong until it had crouched at the flimsy door of the building in which the two men conversed.Page 24
Virginia tried to cry out again--she tried to turn and run; but the horror of her impending fate and the terror that those awful features induced left her paralyzed and helpless.Page 27
For several minutes they fought thus until the younger man succeeded in getting both hands upon the throat of his adversary, and then, choking relentlessly, he raised the brute with him from the ground and rushed him fiercely backward against the stem of a tree.Page 32
"Where could that horrid creature have come from that set upon me in the jungle and nearly killed poor Sing?" she asked.Page 33
" "I truly believe that he is mad," said von Horn, "nor could you doubt it for a moment were I to tell you the worst.Page 34
Your father told me it in so many words when I asked his permission to pay court to you myself--you are to marry Number Thirteen when his education is complete.Page 36
It seems almost too good to be true that I shall.Page 50
Whether man or beast she could but conjecture and so she stood with every nerve taut waiting the thing that floundered heavily toward her.Page 64
All were winded, but when those who were left of the eleven original antagonists drew back to regain their breath, the young giant gave them no respite, but leaped among them with the long lash they had such good reason to hate and fear.Page 82
No sooner had Bulan and his party disappeared in the jungle than Barunda and Ninaka made haste to embark with the chest and the girl and push rapidly on up the river toward the wild and inaccessible regions of the interior.Page 88
"What girl, Tuan Besar?" inquired the wily Malay innocently.Page 95
Always just far enough behind to be out of sight, he kept pace with the little column as it marched through the torrid heat of the morning, until a little after noon he was startled by the sudden cry of a woman in distress, and the answering shout of a man.Page 121
On and on they trudged, the man often carrying the girl across the rougher obstacles and through the little streams that crossed their path, until at last came noon, and yet no sign of the river they sought.Page 124
"Yes," replied the man.Page 125
Moaning and sobbing Virginia threw herself upon the body of the man she loved, while Professor Maxon hurried to her side to drag her away from the soulless thing for whom he had once intended her.Page 127
a moment later he raised them and looked about him.Page 130
This seemed likely in view of the fact that we were assured by enemies of Muda Saffir that you were not in his possession, and that the river we were bound for would lead your captors most quickly out of the domains of that rascally Malay.