The Mucker

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 237

boy back
a whole lot. I guess she'd look better still ef he walked in on her some
day."

"I'll do it," cried Eddie. "The minute they get money for the pay I'll
hike. Tell me your name. I'll ask her ef she remembers you when I get
home. Gee! but I wish I was walkin' in the front door now."

"She never knew my name," said Billy; "but you tell her you seen the bo
that mussed up the two yeggmen who rolled her an' were tryin' to croak
her wit a butcher knife. I guess she ain't fergot. Me an' my pal were
beatin' it--he was on the square but the dicks was after me an' she let
us have money to make our get-away. She's all right, kid."

There came a knock at the outer office door. Eddie sprang back into
the front room, closing and locking the door after him, just as Barbara
entered.

"Eddie," she asked, "may I see the prisoner? I want to talk to him."

"You want to talk with a bank robber?" exclaimed Eddie. "Why you ain't
crazy are you, Miss Barbara?"

"No, I'm not crazy; but I want to speak with him alone for just a
moment, Eddie--please."

Eddie hesitated. He knew that Grayson would be angry if he let the
boss's daughter into that back room alone with an outlaw and a robber,
and the boss himself would probably be inclined to have Eddie drawn and
quartered; but it was hard to refuse Miss Barbara anything.

"Where is he?" she asked.

Eddie jerked a thumb in the direction of the door. The key still was in
the lock.

"Go to the window and look at the moon, Eddie," suggested the girl.
"It's perfectly gorgeous tonight. Please, Eddie," as he still hesitated.

Eddie shook his head and moved slowly toward the window.

"There can't nobody refuse you nothin', miss," he said; "'specially when
you got your heart set on it."

"That's a dear, Eddie," purred the girl, and moved swiftly across the
room to the locked door.

As she turned the key in the lock she felt a little shiver of nervous
excitement run through her. "What sort of man would he be--this hardened
outlaw and robber--this renegade American who had cast his lot with the
avowed enemies of his own people?" she wondered.

Only her desire to learn of Bridge's fate urged her to attempt so
distasteful an interview; but she dared not ask another to put
the question for her, since should her complicity in Bridge's
escape--provided of course that he had escaped--become known to Villa
the fate of the

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