The Mucker

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 114

her delight that Byrne
was still on his feet, fighting. Foster and Norris were pushing their
man back--they were in no danger.

Quickly she ran toward Byrne and the samurai. She saw a wicked smile
upon the brown face of the little warrior, and then she saw his gleaming
sword twist in a sudden feint, and as Byrne lunged out awkwardly to
parry the expected blow the keen edge swerved and came down upon his

She was an instant too late to save, but just in time to
avenge--scarcely had the samurai's sword touched the mucker than the
point of Oda Yorimoto's short sword, wielded by the fair hand of Barbara
Harding, plunged into his heart. With a shriek he collapsed beside the
body of his victim.

Barbara Harding threw herself beside Byrne. Apparently life was extinct.
With a little cry of horror the girl put her ear close to the man's
lips. She could hear nothing.

"Come back! Come back!" she wailed. "Forgive me that cruel laugh. O
Billy! Billy! I love you!" and the daughter of old Anthony Harding,
multimillionaire and scion of the oldest aristocracy that America
boasts, took the head of the Grand Avenue mucker in her arms and covered
the white, bloody face with kisses--and in the midst of it Billy Byrne
opened his eyes.

She was caught in the act. There was no escape, and as a crimson flush
suffused her face Billy Byrne put his arms about her and drew her down
until their lips met, and this time she did not put her hands upon his
shoulders and push him away. "I love you, Billy," she said simply.

"Remember who and what I am," he cautioned, fearful lest this great
happiness be stolen away from him because she had forgotten for the

"I love you Billy," she answered, "for what you ARE."


"Until death do us part!"

And then Norris and Foster, having dispatched their man, came running

"Is he badly hurt, madam?" cried Captain Norris.

"I don't know," replied Miss Harding; "I'm just trying to help him up,
Captain Norris," she laboriously explained in an effort to account for
her arms about Billy's neck.

Norris gave a start of surprise at hearing his name.

"Who are you?" he cried. "How do you know me?" and as the girl turned
her face toward him, "Miss Harding! Thank God, Miss Harding, you are

"But where on earth did you come from?" asked Barbara.

"It's a long story, Miss Harding," replied the officer, "and the
ending of it is going to be pretty hard on you--you must try to bear up

"You don't mean

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