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Title: Radio Boys Loyalty - Bill Brown Listens In
Author: Aaron, Samuel Francis, 1862-, Whipple, Wayne, 1856-1942
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Radio Boys Loyalty - Bill Brown Listens In" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

                           RADIO BOYS LOYALTY

                         BILL BROWN LISTENS IN


                             WAYNE WHIPPLE
                     Author of "Radio Boys Cronies"


                              S. F. AARON
                   Co-author of "Radio Boys Cronies"

                            MADE IN U. S. A.

                        M. A. DONOHUE & COMPANY
                            CHICAGO NEW YORK


                            Copyright, 1922,
                            Hurst & Company

                          Printed in U. S. A.


                         BILL BROWN LISTENS IN

                                CHAPTER I


"They've got a splendid broadcasting station at the Tech, Bill."

"I know it; hence my general exuberance. And if we don't get at it once
in a while, it'll be because we can't break in."

"What do you want to shout into it first off?"

"Why, I thought you knew, Gus. I've got it all fixed, date and time, for
Professor Gray and Mr. Hooper to listen in. They're the chaps that are
responsible for our getting into the Tech and they deserve our first
message. I'll explain to President Field and I know he won't object."

"What's this you were telling me about hazing?" asked Gus, but as though
really little interested.

"Terry Watkins was telling me; his cousin went there. Lost a new hat the
third day, a pair of glasses the fourth and most of his clothes the
fifth. His dad has a lot of dough, so he needn't have minded, but that
won't be the case with us. I guess it's me for carrying a gun."

"If they're mean enough to pick on you, old scout, I'll carry one, too,
but I think you'll be exempt. If I'm to be a victim, I reckon I'll have
to grin and take----"

"No; you won't, either. We've come here to study--not to fool--and we
haven't got money to spend on ruined duds just to gratify a lot of
chumps. There are better things, too, than a gun; not so crude and not

"I can imagine," laughed Gus, and turned again to watch the fleeting

The chums journeyed in silence then, their minds busy conjecturing what
their experiences and adventures were to be, after they became students
of the Marshallton Technical School, which they were rapidly approaching
and from which they held high hopes of gaining much knowledge. The
institution, despite its modest name, was nothing less than a university
of broad constructive teaching, with departments of engineering,
electricity, chemistry, manual training and biology.

It was within the first two of these departments that William Brown and
Augustus Grier were to concentrate their mental efforts. They had, as
already related, earned this long-hoped-for opportunity to gain
technical knowledge and training by showing what they could do along
these lines. They had installed a small water-power plant and an
electric lighting system for the Hooper estate, and had also won greater
credit for constructing high-class radio receivers through which they
had heard a no less personage than Thomas A. Edison speak. The boys had
been saving their earnings to meet tech school expenses for at least a
year. Their high school records, good common sense and scientific
inclinations had been such as to receive the plaudits of their teacher,
Professor Gray, and the members of their class.

Intense application and mental force characterized William Brown, who
was called "Billy" by the high school girls--fine, bright-minded young
women--and "Bill" by the boys. He was just Bill to nearly everyone. His
friends referred to him as the school genius; and such he had proved to
be on more than one occasion. Though compelled by a twisted leg to use a
crutch and to abstain from strenuous physical participation in sports,
he was a favorite. All saw his worth, and Professor Gray said of him
that he possessed the mind of a philosopher and the expressiveness of a

Cheerful, delighting in the strength of others, Bill's natural love of
friendly contests and admiration for physical prowess impelled him to
adopt as his best chum Gus Grier, who had much in common with him
concerning mechanical matters. Gus was in many things almost the exact
counterpart of the lame boy.

Gus was bright, shrewd, practical, reticent. He had the sort of
mentality that made him a good follower, with enough native wit to
discover his own limitations and to acknowledge Bill's superior
characteristics. Both displayed that loyalty of friendship whose rare
quality has made notable history. Sometimes their classmates called the
boys David and Jonathan, or Damon and Pythias; sometimes, the head and
body, the former referring to Bill and the latter, with no less
admiration, to Gus because of his splendid athletic ability. The muscles
of Gus were quite as remarkable in their way as Bill's brains; and both
boys were modest, aiding one another in every time of need, doubling all
their efforts with the term "we," which Bill used oftenest.

If Bill mastered a mental problem it was: "We did it by this method." If
Gus entered upon a trial of strength or physical skill it was: "We'll do
our best," and then: "Well, we won, but it was no cinch"--in deference
to the efforts of a beaten opponent. All this was a matter of course.
And now, regarding the present, either friend might have said, "We've
passed our exams and we're going to Tech."

"Guilford! Guilford! All out for Marshallton!" shouted the brakeman, and
in half a minute the boys were climbing into a taxi bound for the
school; in half an hour they were facing the great buildings which stood
for so much learning, and in half a day they had matriculated and were
of the student body.

                               CHAPTER II


"Come here quick and watch this!"

"What's going on? I've got this letter----"

"This is some livelier than letter writing, Bill," Gus declared, and a
moment later Bill was of the same mind.

The boys gazed out of the window of their room in the school dormitory
to witness an upper-class reception of one of the freshmen, a lad of
almost tender years, yet husky and of undoubted good nature. He was
expensively dressed to begin with, a little foppish in appearance even,
and it was known that his people were very wealthy. Such as he, then,
could well afford the sacrifice demanded of him to become a member in
high standing of the Marshallton student body. Whatever was done, short
of actual physical injury, must contribute to the violently initiated
youth's general glorification, at least this was the popular impression.
It occurred to but few to make serious objections to that which was
customary in the school.

Hazing, long since taboo or forbidden in many educational institutions,
was still a part of Marshallton Tech, by reason of the belief that a
high mentality and virile spirit demanded the extreme mental and
physical show-down which hazing is wrongly supposed to bring out. Though
severe enough, perhaps the initiations were not so terrible as to call
for much complaint.

"By cracky, that's rotten!" exclaimed Gus, as he watched the progress of
the affair.

"Worse than mean!" agreed Bill.

This comment was called forth as the victim, in his efforts to escape
from his tormentors, had his coat and vest torn from him. In a little
time his shirt was reduced to ribbons. A fine gold watch and its broken
chain lay on the ground among the feet of the struggling boys, and an
unsuspecting heel soon reduced the time-piece to little more value than
the metal in the case. A wallet slid out of a pocket and disgorged from
its folds considerable cash and paper, some of which the bystanders
gathered up with much difficulty. The freshman's panama, kicked about in
the dust, was not rescued until it resembled an uprooted weed.

"We wouldn't enjoy being treated that way," commented Gus, the

"We couldn't afford it," amended Bill, the practical. "That sort of
thing may be well enough for rich fellows, though I think it's rank
foolishness at any time. But, Gus, we've got to dodge it in some way."

Gus made no reply. He was thinking that his chum was right, but,
still interested in the excitement without, he left the usual
whatever-it-must-be with Bill. When Bill spoke again, some few minutes
after the well-hazed youth had made a get-away, Gus listened with

"We can get the materials," Bill finished, "and it won't take long to do
the work."

And it did not. Having procured a permit from the professor of
physics--and no one could have refused Bill with his convincing
tongue--the boys returned well loaded to their room. They took from a
paper packing box, whose contents had been hidden from the curious, a
lot of wire, some switches, some acid and a number of storage battery

On their way from the central building the chums had been stopped by a
number of upper classmen. It was mid-afternoon, an optional study or
playtime, and just the hour for brewing mischief. This is what happened.

"Come on there, Freeporters! Put down those boxes; we have a little
business to transact with you," the spokesman called.

Gus gazed calmly at the five militant youths in front of him. Without
undue egotism, he possessed an easy confidence, and he knew that,
barring some bumps and scratches, that bunch would need assistance in
hazing him. He would have complied forthwith, had not Bill given an
ultimatum. With a small box under his left arm, he shifted his crutch to
his left fingers and slipped the free hand into his pocket, drawing
forth about the wickedest-looking pistol that any thug would use. The
five began backing away, the spokesman turning quite pale and the
others, no doubt, feeling much as he looked.

"Would you Indians want to haze me?" Bill asked.

"Aw, no. You're exempt, of course. We don't bother with cripples, kids,
old ladies nor natural criminals." This attempt to be witty trailed off

"Well, my friend here is carrying glass and we can't tarry now. Any
interference with him will result in my turning criminal instanter, and
I'm keen to do so. Go on, Gus."

Gus went on, and Bill, with weapon still in hand, followed after. He
turned to call back to the flabbergasted five:

"You can find us in our room any time after to-day. Getting hazed is
really great sport, and we won't pull any guns on you then!"

Hardly half an hour elapsed before there came a knock at the door of the
room occupied by Bill and Gus. A moment before, Gus had been down to get
a pair of pliers that had dropped out of the window and two wide-eyed
lads in the hallway had hailed him:

"That crutch-thumper that rooms with you is in for the G. B.," one had
said and the other had added:

"Say, he must be a blamed fool to carry a gun and pull it here. 'Prex'
won't stand for that."

Bill called a "Come in" in answer to the knock, and no less than
President Field and Professor Whitcomb, both looking very stern,

"Brown and Grier, I have heard with real pain and very great surprise,
after the letter from Professor Gray highly recommending you two lads,
that you have so soon shown utter disregard for the rules, the standing,
the decency of our institution by carrying and drawing a deadly weapon,
a pistol, and on slight provocation. This is deserving of instant

"Sure is, Doctor Field, if it were so. But it isn't. And please, also,
do not hold the idea that it was on slight provocation. They were going
to haze us, or rather Gus here, Doctor. We had just seen something of
this sort, with the result that Fleming, of Chicago, had a ruined suit
and panama, a fine watch destroyed, and a lot of money and papers
probably lost. We came here to study; our means are limited; if we met
with such a disaster our finances wouldn't stand it and we'd have to go
home; that's all there is to it. Now, I can't offer you a cigar, Doctor,
because you don't and I don't smoke, but if I did I'd probably carry
them in this case."

With that Bill drew forth the nickeled pistol again, snapped it open and
disclosed a rather unique cigar case which he extended toward the men.

"Oh, you mean that this thing was----"

"Just that, Doctor. I hope we have respect for the institution to which
we have come for a much needed and wanted education. But I saw no harm
in fooling those chaps who think they have the right to compel us to
lose a lot of time and money. Am I right?"

President Field was human; he tilted back his head and laughed most
heartily, nudging the professor also, in quite a boyish way.

"We are greatly relieved, and I wish you had scared those young rascals
more than you did. Professor, we shall simply have to put a stop to this
hazing--stop it under pain of dismissal. And this joke, now--it should
be mentioned at chapel, eh? I really want to thank you, young gentlemen,
for doing the school a distinct favor."

"We hope to add to the joke somewhat by to-morrow, if you will kindly
hold up that hazing ban for one day."

"And how is that, may I ask?"

"Would you mind if we keep it a small secret until then? We can promise
to refrain from anything dreadful."

"But then we----"

"Please, Doctor. This, if you will trust us, will do more real good than
anything the faculty can do in the way of _verboten_. Just twenty-four
hours, Doctor."

"Well, well, we shall see. From what Gray wrote, I think we may trust
you. Good evening, boys."

                               CHAPTER III


At the long supper table in the spacious basement of the dormitory, many
curious glances were aimed at Bill and Gus, and many a terse remark was
shot at them respecting their departure from the honorable ways and the
rules of the school. Most pronounced were the expressions of wonder over
the fact that the carrier of concealed weapons had not been expelled, or
suspended at once. Finally a sophomore whose influence seemed to count
most gave voice to the prevailing sentiment:

"Well, I must say if that gun had been pulled on me, I'd have made the
cad use it."

"I'll bet you would, too, Siebold!" declared an admirer.

Bill got on his feet and there was an instant hush. There was something
to expect from the daring and apparently successful gunman. He laughed,
and that also charged the atmosphere. When he spoke he had undivided

"You would have run like any other scared puppy," Bill said to Siebold.
"We would have listened to you ki-yi-ing for about a mile. Say, look
here, you hazers: You're a bunch of muts! Hear me? The whole lot of you
couldn't haze anybody that puts up a fight, if you played anyway fair
and gave a little notice. We'll give you a dare, Siebold, you and all
your deputies, though I suppose you'll send them and hang back yourself.
We'll be ready to take all the hazing you fellows can give to-morrow
afternoon at about three o'clock; only there isn't one of you who will
have the nerve to show up. Oh, 'no weapons?' That was only a cigar case
I pulled on you to-day. It wouldn't shoot, but, by cracky, it worked!"
And Bill laughed, with Gus and a few others who admired the boy's nerve.

There was a sensation at once. Never before in the history of the school
had a freshman dared the upper classmen to haze him, or had named the
time and place. Would such a plan hold out?

It would, and it did. The very novelty of the thing had assured it, as
Bill expected. Some little time before the hour given, a number of
would-be spectators began to gather in the hallway, as Bill and Gus,
studying in their room, could tell from the tramping of feet outside
their door. Then there was the louder tramp of feet coming nearer and
without a preliminary call or knock the door flew open. The chums looked
up from their books with well simulated surprise. In the doorway and
crowding behind stood several upper classmen and easy confidence was
written all over their eager faces.

"Come right in, gentlemen; we are at your service," said Bill.

"Ho, men! What's this? Wire entanglements?"

The question was opportune; flimsily stretched across in front of the
attacking party and about shoulder high were some copper wires, and
about equally spaced below were others. It could be seen that these
offered no serious check, as anyone could spread them apart and push
through. It was evidently with this intention that the hazers fairly
struggled through the door in the effort of each to be first--at least
half a dozen youths had their hands on the wires. Then Bill leaned back
against the wall and his hand came in contact with a button.

Pandemonium! Cries of distress, yells of something more than discomfort,
howls of dismay, calls for succor--the S O S in other than code signals.
This was a very pretty chorus increased by some others who, hastily
coming to the rescue, also became entangled. The rest, chiefly
onlookers, refrained from too close acquaintance with the very apparent
cause of all the trouble. But the truly crucial part of the crisis was
due to the fact that those who suffered by contact with the wires found
it impossible to get away from the source of distress.

                               CHAPTER IV

                         GOOD WILL AND FIXTURES

Bill made another motion touching the wall button, and instantly, with a
combined and very audible gasp, the seven youths relaxed, got away from
the wires and stood up. There would probably have been a general retreat
mixed with a volley of expletives hurled at Bill and Gus, had not Gus
taken a hand in the prevention of this, as planned. A stream of water
from a long syringe, aimed over the heads of the sufferers, had cleared
the doorway of spectators. The jerk of a ceiling cord slammed the door
shut and it was deadlatched, requiring a key to open it. The would-be
hazers, thus trapped and fearful of attempting a further attack, turned,
perforce, to face their captors.

But there was one fellow, Albert Shurtlief, who so deeply resented the
electric shocking that his desire for instant retaliation robbed him of
caution. He was coming right over the wires again and did get partly
through before another touch of the wall button gave him a second siege
of writhing. The others looked on in wonder, convinced that the best
thing they could do was to remain quiescent. Gus said:

"Let up on him, Bill, and if he wants to come through----"

Again the button. The still furious sophomore did get past the wires and
was going to make a rush at Bill when Gus stood in his way.

"Now, please. You ought to go a little slow." That was a way Gus had in
making a protest against what might end in a scrap. But without further
ado, Shurtlief, who was commonly known as "Scrapper Bert," let fly an
angry fist right at Gus' exposed jaw.

If the electrically charged wires had surprised the mischief-making
upper classmen, the sudden collapsing of their fistic champion shocked
them even more. Scrapper Bert was rather noted for his prowess. No one
cared to put on the gloves with him, nor to gain his displeasure. To see
the new boy, a "measly freshman," not as tall, as heavy nor as old as
Bert, catch the assailant's hard-driven fist in the palm of an instantly
extended hand and then let drive with his own right a neat, short-arm
uppercut that got Bert just where he had meant to get Gus, was a needed
lesson to the smug conceit that too often goes with added school years.
Bert, from a seat on the floor, which he had taken without choice of the
spot, regarded his opponent through half-closed eyes with a certain
nonchalance, his anger fled. He slowly got to his feet, climbed back
through the wires without further thought as to their being charged, and
stood with his companions, quite submissive and mute.

As usual on all occasions demanding words, Bill's tongue was loosened:

"Look here, fellows, we want to give you the right dope on this thing:
You see we are here to study--to try and go through if our money holds
out. Our people are not rich and, like Tom Edison when he was a boy,
we've got to hustle on short allowance. And we really can't afford to be
hazed, as you did that new chap yesterday. If we had to buy new clothes
and watches and caps, we'd have to quit school--see? And we knew you
never missed anybody much, so we naturally, asking your pardon, got up
this nice little reception for you. Now to get right down to brass
tacks, you see our position and respect it--everyone of you--and,
putting yourselves in our position, you don't blame us, nor hold any
grudges; isn't that so?"

Siebold, spokesman, made reply, after thinking a little.

"Oh, well, I suppose all is fair in war. You've had your innings now, of
course, but we'll have ours later." And then he added: "We'll get you."

From what Doctor Field said, Bill and Gus knew better. Hazing would be
broken up on pain of expulsion, as it should be in all schools where the
attendance is for business purposes, the getting of a technical
education as a means of livelihood. The boys felt that perhaps in a
college art course, where education becomes much play on the part of
well-to-do lads, class fracases, bowl fights, initiations and the like
may not be amiss, but they did not intend to let open brutality rob them
of their chance to study. And, however sure they felt that Siebold's
threat was idle, there would be a satisfaction in winning their own

"Now, that's just what we want to talk to you fellows about," Bill
declared. "You don't want to think about 'getting' us. We want you to
call this all off and for good; we want you to give your word on it;

"No; we can't--" began Siebold.

"Won't, eh?" Bill's words came sharp and clear. "Well, then, take a
little more treatment for your blamed foolishness." And Bill touched
another button.

The contortions, the writhings, the shrieks and cries that followed
quite surpassed the former exhibitions. The well-worn woolen rug that
fitted from wall to wall across the end of the room where stood the
seven seemed to be charged with red hot needles. Suddenly these ceased
to leap and jump and burn; the old rug and the hidden wires under it
were again quiescent. But the strident voices of the afflicted prisoners
were not silenced, though the late lamentings were given over to a
medley of condemnations, appeals and pleadings.

"Say, go a little slow on this!"

"Call it off, confound you!"

"Are you trying to electrocute us?"

"Say, Brown, please----"

"Let's call it quits, fellows!"

"We'll call it quits if you want. I suppose we've got to hand it to you
two." This last from Siebold.

"Going to call it all off, then? Give us your word! We can't believe
that any fellows in Marshallton Tech would go back on their word." Bill
was smiling genially.

"That can't be called in question. All off. You're exempt." There was a
general acquiescence to this. The door slowly and to the seven quite
mysteriously swung open; the seven started to file out.

"Good-by, fellows, and no hard feelings. We were only having a little
fun with you as you were going to have with us. You can't----"

"Well, but you two have still got to remember," said Siebold, shaking
his finger at Bill and Gus, "that you are freshies and must keep in your
places. You've got a little the better of us this time, but----"

"Golly, Dan," spoke up a fellow hazer, "a _little_ the better? Strikes
me we've all been good and licked and these chaps ought to get the
credit for----"  The voice died away along the hall and Bill turned to
his chum.

"We don't want any credit, do we, Gus? But we will get it just the same
when this gets out. I sort o' think our little stock has gone up about
one thousand percentum, even though we _are_ freshies."

This proved quite correct. In a few minutes a lot of freshmen had
crowded into the room and there was a sprinkling of sophs also.
Questioned eagerly, Bill explained quite freely the purpose of the
encounter and its result. Whereupon a big, fat soph declared quite

"Huh! They were easily licked. No pluck. You're lucky to have run into a
bunch of quitters."

"You wouldn't have quit, eh, Jumbo?" ventured another, grinning.

"Huh! Nothing like this contraption--" began the husky fellow, advancing
and laying his hand on the top cross wire.

"Not even for a little thing like this?" queried Bill, reaching the wall

"Ow! Blazes! Quit! Don't! Oh, darn! Stop! Turn--it--off! E-e-e-e-e-!
Help!" And the instant the stabbing current ceased, Fatty fell back from
it and glared at Bill.

"You really can't blame them for quitting, can you?" asked Bill, and for
answer the husky soph turned and fled from the room, followed by the
jeering laughter of the crowd.

And that ended it. After Bill had asked the crowd if any or all of them
wanted to test the "convincer," as he called the electrical rigging, he
bade the onlookers who filled the hallway a pleasant _au revoir_, and
Gus again pulled the strings that closed the door.

                                CHAPTER V

                            FAME AND FINANCES

Nothing could have taken place to put the lads from Freeport on the
pedestal of fame more noticeably than this experiment. They had easily
and modestly staged a complete breakdown of the hazing habit at
Marshallton Tech. Strangely perhaps there was no blame nor suspicion put
upon Bill and Gus for the subsequent edict from the faculty forbidding
it. That seemed to be considered a natural aftermath to the news of the
electrical reception of the hazers.

The stunt did more than earn the boys a large share of fame. It made
them so deservedly popular, even with most of the upper classmen, that
they soon counted a good many friends and a considerable number of
patrons for radio construction. It is a rather odd fact that methods
already mastered by those of their own age appeal to boys more than the
teachings of their elders. So, although the students were getting, or
had got, the theory of radio activity and the practice of wireless fully
stuffed into them, they turned often to Bill and Gus for help. There
were a number of the well-to-do, even among the seniors, who wanted
radio receivers made, or coaching in making their own, and to this Bill
and Gus responded out of school hours, with the consent of the
president, thus earning a good many dollars.

So as not to interfere in any way with the school-shop program, and not
to crowd those lads who were finding the room in the shop and the tools
to their advantage, Bill and Gus rented an unused storeroom in the
basement of the dormitory. They cleared it out, sent for their own tools
at Freeport, purchased others--a foot-power lathe, a jigsaw and a hand
wall-drill--and put up some benches. Besides working therein themselves,
they charged also the modest price of twenty-five cents an hour to
others mechanically inclined.

The liberal-minded school faculty found no fault with an arrangement
which could only mean a more thorough learning and a finer comradeship
among the students. The professors, who often visited and even worked in
the little shop--some of them paying their quota also--came to refer
familiarly to the place as the "commercial and sales department."

Professor Grant, the very able teacher of physics, who possessed far
more theoretical knowledge than practice, gave the boys many valuable
ideas out of class, and got some himself, being also a deadhead. And
Search, the manual-training teacher, who knew the use of tools as a bee
knows honey, got a few ideas while imparting many, as he also was made
welcome to tinker around the boys' shop.

These were truly strenuous days and weeks for Bill and Gus. They had
little studying to do, for Bill grasped problems as a trout takes in
minnows, and he needed but to coach Gus briefly. The latter spent only a
quarter-hour each day in the gym, never indulging in contests, but
content to work hard at the things that best kept him fit. He had
elected not to put himself under the instructor, grudging the time. But
one day when he went over and, with his bare, work-hardened fists,
punched a lively rubber bag for several minutes, Professor LeRoy, who
had been watching, came to Gus with almost a demand that he join the
boxing class in view of the Marshallton Tech entering contests with
other schools during the coming winter. But Gus declined.

"No; I haven't the speed and I am weak with my left, as you may have
noticed. Hurt it once on a lathe in my father's shop; never will be any
good for quick work."

"We will overcome that," said the instructor, "develop it."

"Also," declared the boy, "I have neither the time nor the inclination.
Must work and nothing much else. But I thank you, Professor."

"Sorry, my boy; you've certainly got a wicked right and you can use the

"I'd want to use both," asserted Gus, laughing.

As for Bill, the hours each day and all of Saturday spent in the shop
sufficed for exercise; the rest was spent in study, brief eating and no
more sleep than he needed. And nearly every moment that could be spared
found both boys in their shop.

They had under way the construction of five radio receivers of the finer
type, for each of which they would get sixty dollars, the materials
costing about fifteen dollars. These receivers were equal to more than a
thousand miles, with strong, durable batteries and very wide
amplification. As with their first radio and the one for their good old
friend, Mr. Hooper, they made nearly all the parts themselves, even to
the switch arms, contacts, buzzer and binding posts, cutting all threads
with a fine set of standard taps and dies.

They also had two crystal sets to make, for which they charged twenty
dollars each, and made a profit of seventeen dollars over the cost of
the materials.

The most interesting was the making of four portable sets, with vacuum
tube detectors and loop aërials not over six inches in diameter, each
packed in small, neatly made wooden cases about the size of an ordinary
paper shoe box, the lids when opened forming the upright panels and the
loop aërials hinged to open out and upright. Being rather unique in
design, and satisfying fads for unusual construction, the boys felt they
should get at least fifty dollars for each of these sets, the materials
costing about twelve dollars.

Earning enough in this way to help them along very nicely with their
schooling, and being more deeply interested in their work than in
anything else, it was not surprising that Bill and Gus found little time
for play.

When they had finished one of the larger and two cheaper sets, that upon
installation at fraternity and boarding houses were found to work most
satisfactorily, the cash was quickly paid over. Bill divided it equally
and handed half to Gus.

"No, you don't, old fellow!" Gus demurred. "You get this and you can pay
me a sort of wages if you want to, or you needn't. You did all of the
planning, the--" He got no further for Bill started in with this
indignant tirade:

"You're a fatheaded, heterogeneous, quadrangular parallelepipedon! What
are you trying to get through your topknot, anyway? Don't we always work
together? Isn't it a partnership?"


"'Butter bill'? Sure. This will pay our bread bill, too, and our entire
board bill for some time. And what we'll get out of these other sets
will see us through all of next year nicely, without worrying. Then
something will turn up for the third year. Now, then, will you write to
Cotton & Staples for that additional wire, or shall I?"

"I will, of course, but this money----"

"Oh, shut up! If you say another word about it, I'll lam a battery coil
at you--'b'gorry'--as Mr. Hooper says. Well, now, reckon I'd better turn
up and thread some more binding posts."

                               CHAPTER VI

                             ANOTHER FELLOW

It was in and over the work of the boys' shop that Bill and Gus first
met the Italian student. Among the upper classmen they had noticed a
small, olive-skinned, black-eyed chap, with a rather solemn face, who
appeared to be very reticent. It was said that he was a close and a
bright student who, though not lacking for money, took little interest
in sports, belonging only to the "bruisers," as the boxing class was
called. One afternoon, with Gandy, who was getting a radio set made, the
stranger appeared and stood in the doorway, gazing at the busy workers.
At first neither of the radio experts saw him. Then he advanced.

"I have the desire very much to make for myself complete a radio
getter--ah--what you call? Yes, a receiver." He addressed Gus, who was
laying out the hook-up for a crystal set.

"There's nothing very hard about it," Gus replied, looking up with his
ready smile and scrutinizing the Italian boy.

"You pay the right here, the privilege; is that not so?"

"Yes, we rent the room," said Gus.

"Ah, so; but I mean--" The newcomer turned partly toward Bill who drew
near at the moment and had overheard the question.

"You mean we charge those who work here? Yes, for the use of our tools
and machines, but not for any hints and advice we can give. The school
shop is at your mercy, too, without charge, as you know."  Bill also
sized up his questioner with a certain curiosity and was pleasantly

"I do not like the school shop. There are so very many con--con--what
you call it? Yes, conflicting. I should like--prefer--choose to come
here, if I may do so."

"Come along. You keep account of your own time here, and you can pay us
when you like. You can get your own materials, or we can get them for
you at the prices we pay. We bought up some old pieces of furniture
cheap to cut up for bases and cabinets--enough walnut to make a hundred.
No charge for it. Help yourself."

"You are, I wish to say it, veree liber--kind--generous. It is too
little that you pay--charge, I mean it. I will ask for your materials
and I will commence--begin--start, eh? on to-morrow. Will that be

"Any old time. If we are not here, walk in and go to it. Check your
hours up on this pad, see? What is your name?"

"Anthony Sabaste it is. I am called Tony by most. My country it is
Italy, but American I now am. My father is of the city--living there.
Here, now, I will pay you five dollars on acc----"

"No, you won't," said Bill. "We'd rather have you pay after a while and
you can see that the work goes all right. Here, I'll show you the

"Ropes? But I care not to make--build a ship. It is a radio----"

"Oh, sure, I get you; but that's only slang. You have been here long
enough, I should guess from your talk, to get on to our American guff.
Well, we're glad to know you, Mr.----"

"Sabaste, but I best like--I prefer calling me Tony. It means in your
language, I get on to it, as fine, grand, fat--no--but swell
out--somebody much, eh?"

"It does, sure! I'll introduce my partner, Augustus Grier; Gus for
short, or he'll get mad. They call me Bill Brown, generally forgetting
the Brown, even here at school, where 'most everyone gets his last name.
First names are more friendly."

"I like it, too. In my native it is more mostly Signor, even to
young--what you call it? Kids, as us, eh?" Tony smiled genially, his
face lighting up most agreeably. "Some they call me 'Wop,' or

The boys learned that the intelligent young foreigner was in the
graduating class which had escaped a lot of practical radio work; that
he kept much to himself, either because of a real or fancied notion that
social lines might be drawn against him, or because he was naturally
unsocial. But after he began the making of a radio set and came in daily
contact with Bill and Gus, the young Italian seemed to grow a little out
of himself, becoming less reticent and secluded. The good fellowship of
two lads a little younger than he, both giving him friendship and
confidence, laughing at his errors of speech in perfect good nature and
without ridicule, and at their own foibles as well, compelled the
Italian boy to like the country of his adoption much better than he had
before. This he expressed to Gus:

"You like me--no, I mean I you like. Yes, that is making to laugh, eh?
Funny, very. Well, I mean to say it, you and Bill very much also. Why
not? You love the live. You love the study. You make the happiness. You
have the great--the large, eh? the big heart. All to you is nice and
fine and it is equal to the doing, but you say it, it is worth the
while. This makes good-will and kind thoughts to others, also by
others--no; from others. You are like one _dolce_ picture in my home. It
is by two little birds fabricating their nest and all the time thus they
are of song, singing, gay with living and working, helping so much
always also to make all the country, this old world happy and
satisfy--content. So, to my--to me, you are really it, eh? You are the
real thing."

"If Bill had heard you say all this, Tony, he'd declare you're both an
orator and a poet," said Gus, laughing.

"And neither am I. But of my country there are many of such, and of
learning also, science, the great learning. Many large men of the
yesterday and many of the to-day also. In this work, too, the first, for
is not Marconi----"

"Say that name to Bill and hear him shout some praises."

"So? And will Bill speak good--noble--high of Signor Marconi? Then I,
too, can speak noble of Signor Edison, the American. But what say now if
I can tell it to you that my father, he is one sure and big friend of
Signor Marconi. Our home, in Italia, what you call--the estate of us, it
is not much a great distance from Signor Marconi of his estate. Often I
have seen him. And so you understand?"

"By cracky! Radio must have been in the air over there and you caught
it!" declared Gus. "Nobody could have it down any more pat than you
have. Bill and I have got some dandy ideas from you."

"That we have," agreed Bill, thumping in. "What is it now, Gus, that our

"Why, Bill, Tony knows Marconi! Just telling me about it." And Gus went
on briefly to repeat that which the Italian had related. Bill, to use a
terse but slangy term, proceeded to go up in the air.

"Why, holy cats, Tony, you are from henceforth the cheese! This school
has gone wireless mad,--you know that,--and the country is pretty much
in the same fix, and for the reason that radio is about the biggest
thing in the world. And, fellows, this just fits. We are doing
things--everybody is--in radio and now we are going--this school is
going--to honor the situation if we can start it that way. For, fellows,
Marconi's yacht, the _Elettra_, is in New York Harbor, with Marconi on
board most of the time. And Tony, we'll get Doctor Field to let us have
a whack at the transmitter and you can talk to your friend, or telegraph
your dad and have him come up and radiophone Marconi. And then we'll
listen in for his reply, for I've read he's awfully fine and
good-natured. Isn't that so?"

"It is so, sure and indeed!" declared the Italian youth. "I am
overenjoyed; you say so, eh? that we shall do this. Let us now go, upon
this moment, and talk to the good doctor. There will be no lecturing at
this time over the casting abroad----"

"The broadcasting transmitter? No, we can surely get a whack at it."

                               CHAPTER VII


Doctor Field, much interested, accompanied the boys to the school
broadcasting room, and after determining from some data at hand the wave
lengths that would be receivable on the Marconi yacht, Tony began
talking earnestly, almost too rapidly, into the horn, the crack and
buzzing of the battery charges making a sound like that of a rifle
gallery. The president, Bill and Gus also had receiving 'phones clamped
to their ears.

"If he doesn't mind, you might ask him to reply in English, please,"
requested the Doctor, and Tony nodded.

And presently a reply did come, though in Italian. Tony got it, at some
little length; then with a gesture of disappointment he turned to the

"It is an attend--an assister. He informs me that the wireless wizard,
Signor Marconi, whom I explain is a friend to me and my family and he
know our name, that the signor is away on the earth--no, on land, you
say it,--attends some occasion, or is entertain of American friends and
he will not return this many hour. So that it is no value, or you say
useless, to cast wide to him again now at this moment and I am, as you
say, deject?"

They all laughed and cheered Tony with the assurance that there would be
another occasion. Then Bill offered his idea to the president:

"Doctor, we have a notion that this radio business right now ought to
have a sort of celebration 'most everywhere; and our school might set
the example. Radio is getting to be an awfully big thing, nearly as big
as the movies. And now here's Marconi. Couldn't we start a general
hurrah for radio, bring the apparatus down to the assembly room, have a
big concert, send out some messages and get Tony here, who knows
Marconi, to give us a talk on the inventor of the wireless when he was a
boy, and that sort of thing? Of course, if this would interfere with
studies, or----"

"It need not, Brown, it need not in the least," agreed the president. "I
like your idea immensely and I foresee some features that we can add.
Suppose we fix it for the latter part of this week, handbill it in the
town also and make it a gala occasion. It is another way of calling
attention to the school and the kind of work we do here. You will all
help Professor Grant and the janitor with the mechanical details, which
should not take long. And if Sabaste will communicate with Marconi so as
to make sure we can get a message from him, that will be the climax."

The idea proved immensely popular. There are many such plans for calling
students together to instil interest in various things that prove "wet
blankets" when put into operation, but radio, as elsewhere, had taken
the school by storm. Separate departments had been organized this year
for it. It was equally an interesting plaything and a source of mental
gymnastics. It was a matter of curiosity, and not to be interested, was
to be out of the swim.

Bill got busy, as hardly ever before in his strenuous career. Because of
his uncertain English, Tony balked at giving an address on Marconi, so
Bill copied facts and wrote the whole thing out for Tony to memorize,
putting in many of the Italian's phrases, corrected. And getting the
_Elettra_ again, Marconi's former and youthful neighbor was able to make
a date for a message from the wireless wizard on the evening of the
radio celebration.

That night there was a crowd in the assembly room. Every student was
there, half the town, many people from the country around and a few
friends of the school from various distances. Doctor Field introduced
the occasion briefly. Professor Grant gave a talk on the history and
rapid growth of radio communication. Professor Judson, assistant in
physics, talked on the "little bottles," as the vacuum tubes are often
called. Professor Search talked on the possible future of radio. Then
the Doctor arose again and said:

"We want to have members of our student body, also, express to you our
interest in this great subject. We are fortunate to have this year a
pupil who, though yet a freshman, has shown an unusual grasp of the
technicalities of radio. I am going to ask Mr. William Brown to explain
briefly some of the methods employed in building, or selecting, a radio
receiving set, such as those he has been engaged in making here at the
school. His associate, Mr. Augustus Grier, who is an artist, in
mechanical matters at least, will aid Mr. Brown at the blackboard."

Bill laid aside his crutch and hobbled forward to the platform, followed
by Gus, whose easy motions were in direct contrast. A round of applause
greeted the boys. This was increased and a burst of laughter added when
Gus took a piece of chalk and with a few quick strokes made what suggested
a broadcasting station, with a rooster shouting "cock-a-doodle-doo" into
the transmitter. Then he drew a lot of zigzag lines to indicate the
Hertzian waves, and at the other end of the board, a hen listening in and
registering horror when she hears the sounds translated into "quack,
quack." Meanwhile, Bill had plunged headlong into his subject.

                              CHAPTER VIII

                              RADIO GALORE

"A good many folks," said Bill, "get scared when they think about radio
construction. The big words come at them all in a bunch like a lot of
bees, and it is to dodge. And when they go to the dictionary they are
lost for sure. Potentiometer, variometer, variocoupler, radio frequency,
amplification, loop aërials, audion and grids--no, I am not saying
these words to show off. They are only a part of radio terminology. And
you've got to get 'em, or you might as well take radio theory and
construction on faith and be satisfied simply to listen in.

"Anybody can commit these words to memory without a dictionary, and
that's where my partner shines. He has heard the big words so much that
he talks them in his sleep, and he ought to know all their meanings, but
the one most his size is 'grid.'"

Here Gus drew a much scared boy, with hair on end and knees knocking
together, surrounded by a lot of the words that Bill had pronounced.
Then Bill, putting his hand to the side of his mouth and leaning toward
his audience as though in confidence, said in a stage whisper:

"He's doing that to show that he knows how to spell these words.

"To be serious about it, if I'm allowed," continued Bill, "this subject
of radio is a coiner in every way. Just think of someone saying
something in San Francisco and someone else in Maine listening to it,
and without any speaking tubes, nor wires to carry the sound along! A
good many folks are wondering how it happens--how speech can be turned
into electricity that goes shooting in all directions and how this is
turned back into speech again.

"Well, it's done on the telephone, over wires. The voice in the receiver
is turned into electric energy that passes over the wires and at the
other end turns again into sounds exactly like the voice that started
it. But somebody found out that this same energy could be shot into the
air in all directions and carried any distance, maybe as far as the
stars, and then when pretty much the same principles were applied to
this as to the telephone, with some more apparatus to send and catch the
energy, why, then, that was wireless.

"It is really too bad, with all the useless short syllables in our
language going to waste, that the fellows who got up the terms for radio
work couldn't have used words like 'grid,' for instance. They could have
called a variocoupler a 'gol,' a potentiometer a 'dit,' an induction
coil a 'lim,' (l-i-m) and a variable condenser would look just as pretty
if it were written out as a 'sos'--but no! They forgot the good example
set by the grid, the volt and the ohm and they went and used

"I'll tell you another thing that makes this electro-motive force as
used in wireless easier to understand. It is the sun and its light. A
great scientist, Doctor Steinmetz, says that light and electric waves
are the same thing. Perhaps they are, though they surely work
differently under different conditions. But if the sun has an awful lot
of heat it can't send it ninety-five million miles--not in reason! The
heat only makes light and that light travels through space. It reaches
the atmosphere of our earth and is converted into heat again. Perhaps
light of the sun and stars and the reflected light of the planets do not
shine through space as light, but as radio waves that either by our
atmosphere, or by our electrical conditions here are converted into
light again,--but this is hardly open to proof even."

Bill glanced at the blackboard; Gus had drawn a big sun, with radiating
rays, a grinning face, a small body with one short leg and two gesturing
hands and had labeled it "Bill Brown, radio radiator." Bill made a
motion of his thumb toward the caricature, then spread his hands in mock
despair, but not without a side glance expressing pride in his
lieutenant's performance, all of which pleased the audience immensely.

Then Bill proceeded: "This electro-motive force which travels around and
through our little earth is what we can actually experiment with. We do
not know just what it is, but we are finding out pretty fast what it
will do. Perhaps there is hardly any limit to what it will do. It is
generated for power and light and heat, for carrying signals and sounds
over wires and through the air. What next? Just now we have got all the
thinking we can do about radio. It is the sixth wonder that electricity
has sprung upon us. I guess we won't include electrocution.

"Now, there's no use going into technicalities about construction,
that's a thing that must be studied out and thought over, not mussed up
in a talk like this. I'll say this much, however, it is the vacuum or
audion tube detector that gives results, and the application of a loud
speaker is only possible with a vacuum or audion tube. It is as easy to
build a vacuum tube set as a crystal set and only a very little more
expensive. So, whether you are building or buying a set, make it a good
set, something that you can hear with a good many hundred miles.

"Now, you can buy the parts and build a receiving set that will
generally give more satisfaction than a bought set." (Bill stepped over
to the blackboard and took up a pointer.) "I may need this for this
partner of mine if he persists in caricaturing me instead of drawing
what we want. We'll make things about four times as big as they ought to
be. You can use an aërial outdoors, which everybody now understands,
or, just as well and a lot handier, a loop aërial indoors, the bigger
the better, but two feet in diameter is big enough.

"Here is your base and upright panel and this is the way to hook up or
wire the parts. Here's your aërial and its ground, between which is
placed your variable condenser and tuning coil, thus, off here between
condenser and coil comes the wire to your vacuum tube, with its fixed
condenser and grid leads, the wire being connected directly to the grid,
while here the wire from the tube plate is connected with the six-volt
storage battery and in turn with the phones, like this. Then, from the
phones to the ground wire, the wire is carried thus through a secondary
dry cell battery, on each side of which the wires are taken off to a
rheostat, though my partner has sketched this to look more like a bird
after a caterpillar.

"I am not going to tell you how to make all these parts--if I did you'd
probably go to sleep, if you are not half way there already. So, if you
can't find out how to make the parts, or contrive them in some way
yourself, why, then, you'd better buy them. Only you can make the base
and do the wiring, attaching and so forth. Even my partner can do that
if he is watched pretty closely; it is almost as easy as making a sketch
of it.

"If any of you really want to know how to build a radio set in a
practical, get-there way, all you'll have to do is to get Doctor Field's
consent and come round to our shop in the basement of the school
dormitory and we won't soak you much. I thank you all for your

Very warm applause indicated the approval of the audience, as Bill and
Gus left the platform. Again the president arose to say:

"Another of our students has a message for us in regard to radio. Among
the notable pioneers and probably one to give the subject its greatest
practical impetus is William Marconi, whose name is familiar to you all.
The great inventor is now an honored guest of this country, his yacht
_Elettra_ lying off our shores. It seems doubly fitting that more than
special mention should be made of him, and as Mr. Antonio Sabaste was,
in his native land, a neighbor of Marconi, his father being really a
friend of the wizard, I think we shall listen with pleasure to what this
student of the school has to say."

                               CHAPTER IX


"My native country," said Tony, speaking very slowly in an effort to get
the construction of his sentences in accordance with Bill's coaching and
as per his written arrangement, "is Italy; my adopted country is
America. I say both with pride, and therefore you can imagine with what
delight I speak about one of the greatest of Italians and one of the
greatest among the scientists of the world, to Americans who perhaps
most appreciate and make use of his discoveries.

"Guglielmo Marconi lived not far from Bologna. His father's estate is
called 'Villa Griffone.' Not far from these many acres was my former
home, and my father, who is a little older than Signor Marconi, knew him
well, as well indeed as anyone might know one who was from boyhood a
rather shy, retiring fellow, with a mind given over largely to
mechanical experiments and caring very little for playfellows.

"Signor Marconi, the elder, was proud of his son's tendencies and gave
him mechanical toys when Guglielmo was only a little fellow. His mother
was a beautiful English or Irish lady and she also encouraged her son in
his tastes. Electricity had a strange fascination for the boy and as he
grew older and began to grasp the theories and methods employed in its
use he addressed himself more and more to electrical phenomena, never
being content with mere performances, but being eager to know the
precise methods of application and effect.

"At first Guglielmo had tutors and he led them a merry chase to keep up
with his questions. Then, when still young, he was sent to an advanced
school in Leghorn, later entering the University at Bologna. But with
all that he learned of theory and practice concerning what had become
his hobby, he obtained more knowledge at home, for his investigations
were not along discovered routes, but in new fields.

"When Guglielmo was only sixteen his father had provided him with all
the instruments and apparatus he could wish for and he knew no handicaps
of this kind.

"In this country a poor boy, without social hindrances, has an equal
chance with a rich lad. In my native land, in Europe I think, the lad
with means has a better opportunity. Here you have many great men in
every walk of life who have been poor, but over there that is a rare
thing. Wealth brings opportunity and quick recognition. Guglielmo had
this advantage, but if he had not also possessed an earnest, painstaking
and brilliant mind he could have gained no distinction. Most of his
acquaintances led pleasure-loving, easy, indolent lives and he could
have done the same thing. Therefore, what credit is due Guglielmo for
the great success he has achieved!

"While Guglielmo was still in his teens he turned his father's estate
into a vast laboratory and experimenting station. His great success
seemed to come from using all outdoors as his workshop.

"In this way he learned the magic of sound waves and vibrations, so that
he could send his 'telegrams' without a wire. His first experiments were
for only a few yards. Then he made the distance longer and longer,
little by little, till at the end of five years of constant, persevering
trial, with thousands of failures to be sure, he sent an air message two

"Of course, people made fun of him. They thought he was a crank, if not
downright crazy and said that his father was very foolish indeed to
encourage him in wasting so much time and money in a way that every
person with common sense could see was worse than merely simple.

"Guglielmo set his rude transmitting apparatus on a pole on one side of
a field and on the other side a corresponding pole was set up and
connected with a receiving apparatus.

"The young inventor's interest must have been keen and his hopes high as
he sat and watched for the tick of his recording instrument, that he
knew should come from the spark sent across the field. Weeks had been
spent in the building of these instruments, now to be tested.

"Suddenly the Morse sounder began to record the distant transmission and
the boy's heart gave an exultant bound--the first wireless message had
been sent and received.

"Many experiments followed. Varying heights of poles were used and it
was found that the distance could be increased in proportion to the
altitude of the poles.

"In these first experiments of the young inventor he used practically
the same methods that he employs to-day. The transmitting apparatus
consisted of electric batteries, an induction coil by which the force of
the current is increased, a telegrapher's key to make and break the
circuit. Batteries were connected with the induction coil and the
telegrapher's key was placed between the battery and the coil.

"One spark made a single dot, a stream of sparks the dash of the Morse
telegraphic code, and with this crude apparatus, sometimes failing to
record the signals, Marconi labored with growing faith. He knew he was
on the right track and persevered. When he had succeeded in sending a
message two miles through the air, Guglielmo determined that it could be
two hundred, or two thousand miles, but he chose a shorter distance to
prove his theory. He went to the English Channel and before long the
world was astounded to learn that this young stranger and experimenter
had sent a wireless message over thirty miles. A little later dispatches
were sent through the air across the English Channel and received from
the Isle of Wight to Land's End, more than one hundred and eighty miles

"This youth, twenty-one years old, had succeeded in accomplishing a feat
the possibilities of which can hardly yet be conceived. Then Marconi
came to London to upbuild and link nation to nation more closely. He was
well received in England and began his further work with all the
encouragement possible. A series of tests followed that were astounding.
Messages were sent through walls, houses, through hill and dale, proving
beyond a doubt that the electric waves penetrate everything.

"A few years later, when Marconi was twenty-four, he made wireless
reports of the Kingston regatta for evening papers in Dublin, Ireland.
This attracted Queen Victoria's attention at her summer residence at
Osborne House, also on the Isle of Wight. At this time the Prince of
Wales, who afterward became King Edward the Seventh, was ill on his
yacht. This was soon connected with the Queen's summer castle and one
hundred and fifty messages passed between the suffering prince and his
royal mother.

"All these wireless marvels--they seemed miracles then--made William
Marconi world-famous before he finished his twenty-fifth year.

"But Guglielmo--I like the Italian pronunciation of his name better,"
continued Tony, "for I am afraid, if I did geeve the English form, I
should turn it into Beel." He smiled at our hero who had come down from
the platform to a front seat and sat listening intently, and Bill Brown
shook his head deprecatingly.

"Guglielmo did not cease with these triumphs. No, not he. He saw success
only in greater distances and he went at this problem with his usual
quiet determination. He made no announcements, but sailed for the Island
of Newfoundland and there he set up his instruments in an old barracks
at the mouth of the harbor near St. Johns. In a few days his
preparations were made, quite secretly. His plans were communicated to
no one, except his assistants, for he knew there would be the general
skepticism concerning his effort to send wireless messages across the
Atlantic Ocean, but he felt assured of success. A transmitting station
had been established near Poldhu, Cornwall, the southwestern point of
England. The aërial wires were on masts two hundred and ten feet high.

"As an aërial Guglielmo sent up a large kite made of bamboo and silk,
flown on a wire, of course; the wind increased, snapping the wire and
blowing the kite into the ocean. Thereupon Guglielmo used a balloon
filled with hydrogen gas and sent it up when the weather was clear, but
the balloon broke away and disappeared.

"It was on December 12, 1901 that he sent up another kite. This held at
an elevation of nearly four hundred feet, and then, after having cabled
his assistants to begin sending certain signals previously agreed upon,
at a certain hour in the afternoon and continuing until night, Guglielmo
made allowance for the difference in time and sat with the telephone
receiver at his ear, listening, wondering, hopeful. It must have been a
moment of almost painful expectation. He looked out from his position
high on the cliff and could see the dim, rocky outlines of Cape Spear,
the most eastern point of the North American continent. Beyond this
rolled the blue Atlantic, two thousand miles across which was the coast
of the British Isles. Only two persons were present in the old
barrack-room besides the inventor. There were no reporters--no one had
been apprised of the attempt. Marconi's faith in the success of his
experiment was unshaken. He believed from the first that he would get
signals across the great stretch of ocean.

"Suddenly there was the sharp click of the instrument that could only
come from some electric disturbance; but it was not the signal. Marconi,
without excitement, asked Mr. Kemp, the assistant, to take the telephone
receiver connected with the instrument and listen for a time. A moment
later, faintly, yet distinctly and unmistakably, came the three clicks
indicating the dots of the letter S, according to the Morse code, the
signal that had been agreed upon with the assistants on the English
coast. A few minutes later more signals came and the inventor and his
assistant assured themselves again and again that there could be no
mistake. Thus was tested successfully one of the great scientific

"Then the achievement was given to the public, after two days of
repeated signaling. The honors that were at once heaped upon Marconi
would have turned the head of anyone less modest and sane. From every
quarter of the world came plaudits. The cable company, fearing injury to
its business, demanded that he cease operations in its territory, which
was a high compliment, indeed. The people of the Colony of Newfoundland
honored him, wondering at his youth; he was then only twenty-seven, but
an experimenter of wide knowledge.

"Such was the practical achievement upon a great discovery reached by
Marconi the Italian and now, more correctly, the cosmopolitan. Though he
still makes his home in his native land, he belongs to all countries, to
all oceans, for it is everywhere now that his great discovery is made
use of. No need for me to mention the present day uses of wireless
telegraphy and radio communication aided greatly by the inventions of
others. But it is to Marconi these owe their initial adoption."

                                CHAPTER X

                                A MESSAGE

A round of applause was given the Italian lad as he was about to leave
the platform. Suddenly Tony stopped and held up his hand for silence.

"You must not--ah, applaud to me for this speaking. I have the inspire
to do it, yes, but not the words entire. So it is my friend Brown who
set me correct on the words and the speeching. We are then both equally
the speechers, my friend Bill Brown and I."

The applause was continued now,--a goodly number appreciated the honesty
of this declaration. Tony had taken his seat. The president arose and
began to talk again, but could not be heard for some mischief-making
students who kept up the racket.

Gus leaned over and spoke to Tony and then to Bill. Without more ado
Bill got up, grabbed Tony's hand and the two got out on the floor, faced
about and bowed. The clapping took a spasmodic leap and ceased.

Bill pushed Tony away from him and limped back several feet. Then he put
his hollowed fist to his mouth and shouted into it:

"This is broadcasting station P D Q! I hope you are listening in!"

Tony caught the idea at once and put his hand to his ear. Bill

"Strikes me this crowd here is crazy! A noisy bunch! Maybe they think
we're candidates for mayor, or something! This radio business is some
pumpkins; eh, boy? I'd radiophone you a message in Italian, only I've
left my dictionary at home! Well, I guess they've looked at us long
enough now, so let's switch off!"

Amid laughter, the boys returned to their seats.

"This is a gala occasion," said Doctor Field, "and you must bear with
the exuberance of our youthful enthusiasts. We have one other
interesting experience for you, demonstrating the wonders of radio. Now,
then, Mr. Sabaste, if you will----"

Tony and Gus quickly left the room. Presently, through the open door and
from above, sharp, cracking sounds something like miniature pistol shots
were heard. There was also a droning buzz and the sound of a loud
speaking voice, the words unrecognized. The president added:

"Mr. Sabaste is now broadcasting a message, in Italian, to the yacht
_Elettra_, outside New York harbor. He previously appointed this hour to
send such a communication to none other than _Signor_ William Marconi,
asking him for a message to our school. We hope Sabaste may be

In a few moments the sounds from the transmitter in the broadcasting
room ceased. There came a brief period of expectant silence, some of the
audience staring about uncertainly, others more intelligently looking at
the big horn of the receiver on the platform table. The time lengthened.
It threatened to grow a little tedious. Then as Tony and Gus hastily
appeared in the doorway, the sound of a human voice and good, clear
English words emanated from the horn.

"The yacht _Elettra_, Marconi speaking. My young friend, the son of my
friend Sabaste, now a citizen of America, has asked me to send a word of
greeting to the Marshallton Technical College,--I hope I have the name
correctly. I confess my being called on seems rather unusual, but yet I
am glad to be able to communicate with an American educational
institution, especially one devoted to physical knowledge, mechanics and

"It is not unlikely you have among your students some future great
inventors--perhaps some Edison, Bell or Morse--time will only determine
this. America is a nation of inventors--the leaders in this mechanical
age. Study, close application, the not too stringent adherence to
formulæ and old methods are bound to win. Inspiration, vision, the
seizing of opportunities to improve, the wish to gain something
desired--these are the keynotes to success in the field of mechanical
endeavor and scientific discovery. In the words of one of the greatest
Americans who had visions and did things: 'It is up to you.' I wish your
school and its students every success."

The voice in the horn ceased to be heard. There was a moment of
breathless silence, as everyone in the audience, with attention riveted
on the radio receiver, listened for other words to follow. Then once
again the Doctor was on his feet.

"We shall later radio our gratitude to Mr. Marconi for this kind and
helpful message which is a fitting climax to our wireless celebration.
We feel that our students have been benefited and inspired and we hope
you have all been entertained. Good night."

                               CHAPTER XI

                             FEUDAL FOOLERY

There seemed to be a dissatisfying influence, a feeling perhaps akin to
envy, or at least as offending class pride in the sentiment that arose
among a certain clique concerning Bill Brown. The boy had become popular
and it was thought by some unduly, or somewhat undeservedly so. Bill's
classmates had not shown this tendency, or if so individually it was not
made evident. But to certain older fellows, that a mere freshman should
so shine both in the opinion of teachers and the student body generally,
seemed most inconsistent.

Siebold, the moving spirit of wholesome mischief among the upper
classmen, seemed to be the chief instigator of the tendency to belittle
Bill, aided by one Luigi Malatesta, a Sicilian. Siebold never had
forgiven Bill and Gus for the electrical trap sprung on his hazing
party. He had a certain following that shared most of his opinions and

Malatesta was also a soph, with a very decided penchant for getting into
trouble and showing temper. It might have been expected that between the
only two natives of Italy in the school there would be at least some
fraternal feeling, but these lads appeared instinctively to avoid each
other, and Tony's being a senior, made this easily possible on his part.
Malatesta, seeing that Bill and Gus were both exceedingly friendly with
Tony, seemed to take especial pleasure in making contemptuous remarks
concerning all three, or in making offensive, insulting gestures that
they could not help seeing. At first this was altogether puzzling
because the motive was not apparent. It became more evident, however,
following an incident.

Bill and Tony were coming from the school library, to be followed later
by Gus, who remained to add some notes. The subject with which they were
all wrestling covered voltmeter tests and relative amperage, principally
with regard to battery construction. The boys were building their own
batteries and must make no mistakes.

Bill was thumping along, talking, and Tony listening, as usual. They
came through the double swinging doors of the dormitory on the way to
the shop and passed a small group of upper classmen in the hallway,
Malatesta among them, holding forth. The two went down the basement
stairway, a door closed behind them and they were alone. Tony stopped.

"I may ask you, _mio amico_, you did see that fellow, my countryman, up

Bill nodded, wondering.

"Well, it is so," continued Tony, "that he watches us--you because of
me, and me because of--to tell you it is something, shall I? Yes, it
will give me satisfy. That Malatesta--Luigi his name it is--why you
think he comes on this school? I will say he comes to spy to me. Perhaps
you think this is absurd quite, but not so. In Italy his people and my
people are at fighting--no, you call it 'scrap,' eh? We make war, by
family. My mother's people, one of the years long ago, kill one of this
fellow's people at the town _festa_ and they seek to kill all her people
and my father's people take no part--know nothing. But when my father
meet my mother and they are declared to marry, then the Malatesta fight
with him and his people. Is it not strange and very ridiculo?

"And now I am come to the family war because no more longer a little
child and this Luigi he swear he look after me here in America, and
already I see the poniard lifted to strike at my breast, but I shall
dodge and then maybe use my own, though hating the vendetta--feuds. Why
shall all this be? How have I made anger and strife with these
assassins? But to reason with them is to invite a more insult than
death. You understand my telling?"

"Sure I do," said Bill. "It is what we call in this country a feud, but
it is rotten. Why don't you go to the Doctor and----"

"Oh, no! My friend Bill, you cannot intend so. That would be
poltrone--coward! We fight without people stopping--to end, if must be."

"But a fellow like that--to come to school here just----"

"Oh, but he is smart, Luigi Malatesta, and to him learning is also good,
though some of his people are low and many years ago they were of the
banditti. And some were of the boat builders and some were rich."

The boys had reached the shop and were still alone. Bill forgot his
loved problems in trying to comprehend this state of affairs.

"But I can't understand how such a thing could really be," he said. "We
have the black hand, it is true, but----"

"Ah, no, this the black hand is never!" declared Tony. "This is of
families--not to rob, though maybe they do rob in time and ask of
ransoms. Such was done by some Malatesta of my mother's cousin and he
was lost to us, never returning."

"But, confound it, Tony, here he wouldn't dare----"

"Here he will dare more than in Italy, because there all who make family
wars are suspect and many such quit and have become friends when time
goes, but other forgetta never. This Luigi he forgetta never, and maybe
you will see. We--my father thought we had left behind this fighting,
but to this country also come Malatesta, for small is the world and
large is hate."

Bill pondered this and turned to his work, but dropped his tools in a
moment, explaining to Tony that there were other figures they must have
for calculating the strength of the battery and he would go back and
tell Gus.

Bill reached the basement stairs, and in an alcove, alone, as though
seeking to hide, was the fellow Luigi. He turned sharply, facing Bill
and glaring in evident resentment at the latter's broad, curious stare.
Then the Sicilian spoke:

"Well, you see me. I it is, freshman. Stare at me some more as if I were
something to step on and I will give you more reason to stare."

"What's the matter with you, you, you--" demanded Bill, stopping short
and much incensed.

"Ah! Wop? Guinea? Dago? Sphagett--so I am insulta--is it? And by a

"I'd rather have short legs than short brain."

"I like you so well I smash you in the face!"

Suiting the action to the word Luigi advanced upon Bill, who turned and
swung his crutch menacingly.

What then would have occurred it is impossible to surmise, for the
crippled boy was handy with the familiar implement that so readily could
be used as a weapon, though the Italian was sturdier, heavier and much
older--in fact, although small, he was almost a man.

But just at the moment there was a quick, descending footfall on the
stair and the door opened. Gus, with wide eyes, stared at the near and
unequal combatants.

"Hold on!" said the big fellow, glaring. The Italian hesitated, though
but for a moment. "You wouldn't really hit a fellow who is lame, would

"Ah, get away! Go off!" snarled Malatesta, attempting to thrust Gus
aside as the strapping youth stepped in front of him. But the thrust was
futile and then Luigi, growing furious, struck at Gus a powerful blow.
The fellow was muscular and quick, but there was no thought behind the
blow. And there was in contrast a smile on the face of the easy,
athletic American.

The Italian's fist was clutched by a ready hand, much as a baseball
would have been caught, and then a very differently directed fist shot
out and came in contact with Luigi's upper stomach--he got that
generally final solar plexus blow. Luigi gave a soft, aching grunt and
sank to his knees, then to his elbows and rolled over on his side, in a
half-minute more sitting up and gazing around, but still in pain. He was
again alone.

                               CHAPTER XII


"I suppose now we'll all get blown up, or poisoned, or something," Bill
said to Tony, after telling of the eclipse of Luigi Malatesta.

"Oh, no; the Malatesta are foemen worthy of our steel, to agree by an
English poet; is it not?"

"'Foeman worthy of a steal,' I guess you mean," laughed Gus.

"Yes, that's more like it. I wouldn't trust that pig-faced villain
across a ten-acre lot with a ten-cent piece!" declared Bill.

"The soul of honor doesn't dwell in a husky guy who'd strike a cripple,"
said Gus. "And I bet a cow he's going to stir up more trouble around
here before he quits maneuvering."

Tony made no reply, but stood for a long time, gazing at the floor.
Presently only the sound of tools and machines was heard in the shop.

It is not probable that Luigi told of the precise outcome of his clash
with Bill and Gus, though he may have said enough to influence sophomore
sentiment against Bill's standing in the school. At any rate, the
feeling grew in strength and spread until it became a subject of comment
among freshmen and seniors who were inclined to sympathize with the
brainy and keen-witted lame boy. At least he had many friends, both high
and low, and most of the teachers admired him openly.

So far the sentiment had been rather more doubtful and erratic than
determined. There had been nothing to warrant the assumption that Bill
thought himself more intelligent than the sophomores, or members of his
own class. His radio knowledge was somewhat a thing apart and in that he
shared with the less obtrusive Gus.

And then the lightning struck, suddenly and hard. Once each week an
outsider from the engineering department of some big industrial plant,
or large university, lectured to the entire student body of the
Marshallton Tech in the assembly-room, and there were some of these
talkers who got much pleasure out of it. Not only was it interesting to
hold forth to a lot of eager, responsive boys on subjects that elicited
their curiosity, as the building of great dams and bridges, the
tunneling under mountains, the erection of mighty machines, but it was
also diverting to hear their various comments which also led to a
comparative estimate of their understanding.

Davidson, chief mechanical engineer of a great mill building
corporation, was especially interested in the personal equation
concerning the students, particularly after Bill Brown bad asked him a
lot of questions, some of which he had replied to rather lamely. Even
more as a matter of getting back at this young investigator who sat with
a crutch held before him and regarded these replies with a smile than
for the desire to measure minds, Davidson gathered a few catch problems
that were stumpers, and upon his third visit, after talking awhile he
switched off on the subject of problems, short cuts to solutions and
then put a question, looking hard at Bill, as though uttering a

"Now, how would you go about it," he shot at his audience, "if you were
asked to measure the cubic contents of an electric light bulb?"

A number of smiles greeted the question; these may have been from lads
mostly in the advanced courses who knew the trick. The lecturer asked
for hands to be raised by those who thought they could do it, and noting
with satisfaction that the crippled boy was not among the number who
responded, he began hearing them, one at a time.

"Measure it outside and allow for the thickness of the glass," said one

"But how about the carbon inside?" asked Davidson.

"Break the glass and measure the loop," called out a soph.

"How many of you would go at it in that way?"

A number of hands went up, some rather reluctantly, as though their
owners scented a trick.

Davidson still eyed the cripple. "How would you do it?" he asked.

Bill shook his head and said, "It is that old trick of Edison's and it's
dead easy. I guess a good many of our fellows know about it. You simply
punch a hole in the bulb, fill it with water, pour it back and measure
the water."

"Yes; that's right. It is really the only sure way," said the man, his
manner showing disappointment.

"Oh, no; it isn't, begging your pardon. Oh, no, not the only way," said

"Well, now, how else----"

"Put water in a graduated glass, stick the bulb in up to the plaster
seal and note the increase. Then break the glass and the carbon and put
that in separately, deducting the last amount from the first."

Davidson scratched his head. "Yes; that would do it, of course, too,

"But you said the other was the only way," insisted Bill.

"Oh, well, the only quick and sure way. Of course, there are other

"I'm sorry to have to disagree with you, but my method is just as sure
and quicker."

"It might do--it might do! You seem to be ready with short cuts in
mechanics. How would you quickly divide a board seventeen and
three-eighths inches wide into five equal parts? Can anyone here do it?"

"That's easy," said Bill.

"Well, then, how about this one? If a pint cup----"

"Your question about dividing the board is too interesting to pass over
so hastily," interrupted Professor Search. "If you will pardon me, I
would suggest that Brown go to the board and demonstrate it."

"Will you let Grier do it? He knows that old trick, and he is handier
with the chalk than I."

Gus went forward, took a two-foot rule from his pocket and laying off
two parallel lines seventeen and three-eighths inches apart, laid the
rule diagonally across them so that the space would measure twenty
inches. Then he ticked off at the figures four, eight, twelve and
sixteen. Laying the rule straight across from an outer line to the first
tick he turned and announced:

"Each space is practically three and fifteen-thirty-seconds inches."

This brought forth something like applause, along with many very audible
remarks, such as: "Pretty cute." "Handy." "Where'd he get it?" "Can't
fool either of 'em, can you?" "Those fellows are practical, that's

Mr. Davidson smiled sort of absently. He had to give approval, but
dropped the question rather abruptly, going back to his last problem.

"Now, see if you can tell me this: I have a half-pint cup even full of
water, the liquid exactly level with the edge of the glass. About how
many one-inch brads must I drop into the cup before the water overflows?
Water, you understand--not oil, nor molasses. This is an old experiment
and it concerns a well-known physical law. If anyone has seen it done he
will kindly remain silent. Now, who will make a guess as to the number
of nails?"

Every brow was wrinkled, except those of a few conclusion jumpers of
whom there must be some in every crowd. One of these latter fellows
shouted at once: "About a half dozen and it'll slop over!"

"It'll take only one or two," said another.

"Not more than a dozen, anyway."

But the others, mostly lads capable of real mental exercise, were all
cudgeling their brains. It was a subject which had much to be taken into
consideration. Presently one senior spoke up:

"It ought to take more than an ounce of them."

"Nearly as much, anyway."

"More. That'll fool you mightily."

"It looks as though a few brads would do it, but it will take a lot."

"And why?" asked Mr. Davidson. "Come, what do you say about this?" He
again appealed to Bill, turning then also to Gus.

"Well, sir, I think I can see that it will take nearly all of that box
of brads, perhaps a hundred. It is a matter of cohesion and even water
possesses that, so that to overflow, it will have to rise a good deal
above the rim. The area of the glass plus the rise that will be required
for the overflow will be, in solid contents, easily as much as that box
of loosely filled brads; if they were melted down they wouldn't be
greater than the water area. It is a good deal like the loading of a
boat: the displacement is a uniform, compact mass; the load is a jumble
with more air space than material. And it is like the floating of a
heavy iron pot."

For answer the lecturer turned and drew a half-pint of water in a glass,
brought from his pocket a box of brads and began dropping, one at a time
and counting, them into the water. There was profound silence. As the
number increased, reaching above two score of the small nails, there
began to be heard comments here and there.

"Zowie! Who'd a thunk it?"

"Better just dump 'em all in and start over."

"Don't reckon those nails are soaking the water up; eh?"

"If it were molasses you could fill it half full of brads before it
would slop over."

"Say, look, he's up to sixty! Would you believe that?"

"Hey there, Fatty, you guessed one nail; didn't you----"

"Sixty-eight, sixty-nine, seventy; looks to me like a spill pretty

"When the freshet starts----"

"It'll drown a lot of people."

Mr. Davidson stopped dropping the nails into the tumbler and held up his

"There it goes, boys--the first drop over! Eighty-two brads. You can see
who guessed best. The cohesion of the liquid explains it, as our young
friend here has said. I'm glad you have one thinker among you. Now I
want to tell you something about the installation of machinery by
individual motors driven by a central generator, as compared to the
drive from a mill long countershaft and pulleys." And he proceeded with
his talk.

Yes, the lightning had struck. From this moment the respect shown to
Bill, and to Gus also, by those who had no desire to do otherwise was
really almost overdone, his classmates being generally proud of him, and
the teachers and seniors pleased to have him a member of the school. But
the sophs mostly grew more inclined to consider both boys a menace to
their peace of mind.

                              CHAPTER XIII

                               QUICK WORK

"I must have to report to you the utter spoil of your shop and your
work; also my own complete!" Such was the breath-taking remark of Tony
Sabaste, as he stuck his head into the room of Bill and Gus and regarded
the boys at their studies soon after daylight.

With no more than a word of surprise or doubt the young mechanics
followed their Italian friend into the basement and were not long in
finding his words true.

The crown plate of the drill had been broken in two with a hammer and
probably the same means had been used to crack the lathe pulley and
smash some of the tools. Materials were not harmed, but the work just
begun on two new radio sets of the better value, along with Tony's
efforts, was reduced to splinters.

The door of the shop had never been locked; the miscreant had entered in
the night and engaged in the work of destruction.

"Well, who----?" began Bill.

"Ah, say not that question," said Tony. "Do not you know? Is there a
doubt; even one? I have no enemy in the school but one, and who

"Oh, sure, anyone but friendly, innocent Bill would know. Malatesta, of

Gus was ready with short cuts to names as well as to problems, his
genius for detection having been proved in a like instance, before this.
He went over and picked up a hammer, holding it by the head and scanning
the handle.

"Here, I suppose, are some thumb prints," he said; "it only remains for
us to get hold of----"

Gus was interrupted by the sudden entrance of a member of the senior
class, Jim Lambert, who had but a few days before completed a crystal
radio set in the shop. He gazed about him.

"About as I thought. This is rotten, fellows, and if I know anything, it
is going to be paid for."

"Who will--?" began Bill.

"Let me tell you. I room right above here, as you know. Late last night,
very late, probably toward morning, I was wakened by a noise. I listened
and heard the sound of a blow that was surely down here. Then I heard
some more noises, muffled, though,--the floor, you know, is fire-proofed
and thick. I didn't wake Smith, but I got up and went to the door and
looked out. I hadn't been there two minutes before I was aware that
someone came up out of the basement and was standing in the hall. I
think he must have suspected something, for he came along toward my door
and I got inside and closed it, with my hand on the knob so as not to
click the latch. Then I felt a pressure on the door--the fellow had the
nerve to try it. He wanted to see if it was open, probably thinking it
was left ajar and he may have seen the light from the window, pulled it
open then and there he was--pretty much through the door before I closed
it. Well, I just surprised, I guess."

"Who, who?" from Bill.

"Why, Malatesta, of course," said Gus, with positive finality.

"Say, young fellow, you've got it. Good guesser. He must have some
grudge against----"

"What said he? How explain?" demanded Tony, visibly excited, his dark
eyes glittering with wrath.

"Not a word. Just grinned and turned away as cool as a glacier and
mosied off. Said I: 'Well, what are you after?' But he made no reply and
beat it."

"If this isn't the limit!" Bill exclaimed.

"It'll be his limit! Come on! The Doctor is an early riser and we'll see
him at once," Lambert urged.

"But we aren't going to squeal on a--" Bill's loyalty to school
practices was extreme.

"Oh, yes you are in this case! This is no prank. It's a crime, and it
would be another to keep it to myself. Loyalty to the school demands
that we squeal. To be sure we have only circumstantial evidence----"

"No, actual," said Gus, holding up the hammer. "Let's get the man and
we'll do the rest with some ink, a piece of paper and a magnifying

"Glory! That's the cheese! I never thought of that," Lambert said,
leading the way out of the building and to the office, discussing the
case further on the way. The boys met the Doctor returning from an early
morning walk, which was a habit with him, and within the office he heard
Lambert's report calmly.

"We cannot call in any of the teachers, or the janitor, as hardly anyone
is up yet. We shall have to handle the case without gloves and depend on
you boys. You will understand my position, so I will ask you, Lambert,
to bring Malatesta here at once, saying I wish to see him. Wake him, if
need be."

"But if he refuses at this hour?" asked the senior.

"But will he, if it is at my request?"

"Very likely. I know him. Rage, scare, ugly, even knife; no telling!"
Tony declared.

"Then we had better wait for the janitor. Go call him."

"No, Doctor, please," urged Gus. "I'll go with Lambert and we'll fetch
him here. And he won't hurt anybody."

"But can you be sure of this? We always try to avoid publicity in
matters of this kind. It would be best to have Malatesta here this
early, before most of the boys are up and about, but there must be no

"You may be sure there will be no trouble," Gus insisted. "Bill can tell
you why. It's really quite simple."

"Well, at least call on Malatesta and tell him. I will call the

Gus and Lambert hastened away. Bill, also eager to have the Sicilian
apprehended at once, and knowing Gus would put it over, sought to detain
the Doctor. Tony, like-minded, aided in this. In a few minutes Lambert
was knocking on Malatesta's door, Gus having gone to his own room.

There was no response at first; then, a sleepy grunt. The time was yet
an hour or more before the first rising bell, so this early summons
might properly be resented. But when Lambert called in a low voice: "I
have a message from Doctor Field," the Italian's roommate, Johnston, a
morose, dull-witted chap whose whole mind was bent on keeping up with
his classes, made reply:

"Who do you want?"

"Both of you," said Lambert, which was true, for he knew he could not
enter without seeing Johnston also.

At that Johnston got up, opened the door and Lambert entered, in his
hand a paper which he made a pretense of consulting, as though it were a
memorandum of his errand, his real purpose being to hold off until Gus
appeared. Somehow the senior had faith in this quiet, smiling, precise

Then Gus came swiftly along the hall and through the room door,
advancing near the bed still occupied by the Italian. Lambert, rather
inclined to dodge trouble, stepped back a little. Said Gus:

"Malatesta, Doctor Field wants to see you at once. He wants no fuss,
Johnston, he said, so please let on to know nothing about it. Come
on!"--this to the Sicilian.

"What to see me about?" demanded the Italian, angrily. "Well, I will
presently see him--go tell him that! It is not yet the time for school.
I am yet wishing to sleep a little. Good day to you."

"You get up and into your duds! This is no joke." Gus advanced a step.

"And who are you to so order of me? Get out of this room!"

"Come on, you! If you don't slide out of there in about three shakes
we'll drag you out and take you up as you are."

Malatesta got out, but not in the spirit of obedience demanded of him.
He tossed the bed clothes aside and, to the astonishment of all three
beholders, proved to be fully dressed, excepting his coat and shoes.
With his feet on the floor, he quickly reached behind him and drew forth
a long-bladed clasp-knife, flinging it open with the dexterity of long
practice. But Gus was quicker. In two seconds the fellow was staring
into the muzzle of a revolver.

"Put it up if you don't want to look like a sieve. Now, then, shoes.
Coat. And put down that knife. That's right. Now move!"

Malatesta was not equal to any further braggadocio. Intuition goes far
at such times, and there seemed to be something about this holder of the
more powerful weapon that demanded respect. The fellow hardly gave a
second glance at the gun, but stepped into his shoes. Without stopping
to lace them, he grabbed his coat and got into it as he headed for the
door. The march to the school office, single file, Luigi, Gus and
Lambert in the order named, was as silent as it was hasty, Gus thrusting
the pistol, a real one this time and loaded, into his pocket as they
went. Nor did he need to draw it again.

"Luigi Malatesta, I am sorry to have been compelled to bring you here at
this hour," said the president, "but you are suspected of----"

"Oh, I know! But me it was not! Yet I know who, though to tell I shall
never do."

"How do you know? Were you present, then, when the injury was done?"

"No, not present, but I know."

"You must tell us----"


"Why not?"

"It is not the way of the school to blow----"

"Pardon me, please, Doctor, but we won't get anywhere this way,"
interposed Bill when Gus nudged him. "If I may suggest----"

The president had come to regard this boy as possessing ideas and he
hesitated. Bill turned to Gus who stood with the hammer and a magnifying
glass held behind him.

"Please have this man," said Bill, indicating the Italian, "make a print
of his thumb--this way." Bill smeared some ink on a blotter and took up
a bit of white paper. Malatesta frowned, then smirked, then laughed.

"And why not may I?" he questioned. "This will make of these villains

The animal-like snarl that the Sicilian put into this last sentence did
not gain him any sympathy, but there was only confidence in his quick
motions and ready compliance. He stepped to the desk, pressed his thumb
on the wet ink spot, then on the white paper, fell back a few steps and
glared defiantly. Gus brought forth the hammer and the expression on
Malatesta's face changed somewhat.

Silence followed as the Doctor took up the hammer handle and went over
it with the magnifying-glass, paused at a spot where the handle would be
most commonly held and examined the surface long and carefully. He
turned to the thumb-print on the paper, then back again to the handle,
comparing the two impressions. Presently he glanced at Bill and then at
Gus, nodding; he turned to Malatesta.

"We do not wish to let such an unfortunate circumstance as this become
hurtful to the school by making it public. The janitor will be here in a
moment. He will accompany you to your room and you will obtain your
property and leave at once. When you return this way I shall give you
the sum paid us for your tuition. The school will make good the damage
you caused. Ah, here is Royce now." The president proceeded to instruct
the janitor.

Lambert, followed by Bill and Gus, returned at once to the dormitory,
after a word of caution from Doctor Field, and, aside from the fact that
Malatesta left before the school was fully awake, the students knew

The injury to the shop was kept as secret as possible. In a few days the
work went on as before, only one other fellow besides Lambert knowing
there had been a smash-up. So that incident was closed, but out of it,
or as a part of it, more serious circumstances showed that Malatesta,
wherever he may have gone, had by no means forgotten the feud that now
included Bill and Gus as well as Tony.

Gus was never questioned as to his possession of a revolver which made
his wild west method of intimidating Malatesta possible. Probably the
Doctor believed the cigar case had been used again.

                               CHAPTER XIV


Siebold, a keen-witted fellow and an athlete, was the leading spirit
among the sophomores of Marshallton Tech. He was class president, stood
easily at the head of his classes, if head there was, and in most things
he admittedly surpassed his fellows. His people being well-to-do, he
indulged in all the little "side kicks," as the boys termed sports,
social diversions and the like.

A really fine chap was Siebold, though he possessed one unfortunate
failing--he persisted in holding to a grudge; and he had never forgiven
Bill and Gus for that hazing fiasco, nor for bringing down the scorn of
the school on what had been considered a harmless kind of fun.

Of course, the school had a debating society, of which the membership
was from all classes. Bill joined it; Gus did not, and it was the only
thing in which they acted separately, with the exception of the
gymnasium. Bill was sorry he had joined the society, for upon being
chosen one of the three speakers on one side of a subject so decidedly
in their favor that the question should never have been selected as
offering a negative, Bill had so completely overcome the opposition led
by Siebold, who especially prided himself as a debater, that his
opponent and his mates were held up to much ridicule. Whereupon the
breach widened, and Siebold took many occasions to show a paltry spite
against Bill and even toward Gus because he was Bill's chum.

In the gym, Siebold also shone as a good boxer, fencer and wrestler.
This rarely brought him into contact with Gus who, during his short
exercise, avoided others. Tony, however, was willing to become a victim.
The young Italian liked to put on the gloves, as he was quick, strong
and good-natured; but the instructor had, for some reason known only to
himself, passed him by.

Late one afternoon Gus stopped pulling weights to watch Siebold box with
a big soph who was a mark for quick, scientific work and whose heavy
punches and swings often fell short of their aim. Tony also was an
interested spectator and came forward with the request that Siebold show
him some of the points he had mastered. Whereupon Siebold had the
Italian lad put on the gloves with Sadler and the big fellow promptly
hit Tony and knocked him off his feet.

The Italian's dark eyes flashed fire, but he smiled and came back. The
instructor refused to let the bout continue, saying that Tony must gain
more experience. Gus called Tony over.

"I don't want to butt in," he said, "but I didn't like that. You could
learn that game. Would you mind if----" he hesitated modestly.

"Could you show me? Everything you do so verra good."

Tony was so eager that Gus consented. They agreed to come to the gym at
a time when no one, not even the instructor, was there. Then, in
addition, Tony bought a set of gloves so that the two could practice in
the shop now and then. A month went by. Cold weather came; then the
Christmas holidays. Bill and Gus went home for the one big day, and came
back to study and to continue their shop work; but Tony was away for ten
days, during which he took a few lessons from one of the best teachers
of the fistic art that could be found.

"He said I am now there," gleefully announced Tony when the three got
together again; "and that I can learn one poco, for I did puncha him
times several and he no hit me sempra. I think you," his dark eyes
appraised Gus, "are quite--no, I not throw bouquets--are gooda as he."

"Oh, not so good as Ben Duffy? I know all about him. I went once with my
city uncle to see him fight. He's a crackerjack, sure."

"But he not poka me more as you do," argued Tony.

"Well, I've been studying your defense longer--it's mine too, you know.
That's the reason." The generous Gus smiled. "Anyway, let's go to the
gym to-morrow. I want to see how you mix it up now with Sadler."

Tony did "mix it up" much to Sadler's discomfort. Siebold stepped up:

"Say, Italy, where did you get it?" And Tony, proud, ever eager to give
credit to a friend, nodded toward Gus.

"To him I do owe it. He one granda master with the feest."

"So? Expert electrician, mechanic, sport spoiler and bruiser, eh? Some
combination." And Siebold turned away with something too much like a
sneer on his fine face. Gus was hurt, but smiled, as usual. Tony
resented the slur.

"For all which," he said, "the cervel--the brain, is required, eh?
Maybe, Soph, if you brain ancora had you could beata heem--but no so

"No? I'll bet a sardine that you could put it all over him," Siebold
said, desiring to mollify an upper classman. Tony laughed.

"No; not coulda you ancora, nor any other one in this school."

Siebold turned away, as he added: "You won't have a chance to prove
that. I pick my company. But you will get another go at Sadler after I
give him some more pointers." It was evident that the leader among the
sophomores was something of a snob. A little later his prediction came
true regarding Sadler and Tony.

Gus was again a witness to the bout. It had become noised around and the
gym held a goodly crowd of students. At such times the instructor,
though interested and often a witness, dodged participation because of
the slugging tendency and its possible effect on the school if he
encouraged such a thing.

Tony went into the game with a smile. Sadler, though generally
good-natured, was serious and determined from the start. He got a number
of stinging cracks on his ribs and in the stomach, Tony hardly being
able to reach his head. Beaten again at points, landed on five times as
often as he landed, he began to resort to a waiting game, for there was
no doubt he could stand punishment. Stand it he did until Tony got
enough confidence for infighting, though he should never have attempted
to swap punches with such a big fellow.

Suddenly Sadler caught the smaller man starting a short arm upper cut
for the jaw and he took it open, delivering at the same instant a hook
that no man when giving a blow could hope to block. He caught Tony
coming in and that lent additional momentum to the blow which got Tony
on the side of the neck, over the artery, and it was as clean a
knock-out as could be given. They carried the Italian to a wrestling
mat, fanned and bathed his face, and when he came to and sat up, Siebold
was there with his ready tongue.

"He's too heavy for you. No fellow could hope to stand up to Sadler at
his own game. I told you so."

Gus saw Tony's real hurt and was incensed. "Oh, don't you believe that,"
he said to Tony. "Another time----"

"Huh, fellow! Maybe you think you could stand up to Sadler. I'd like to
see you, or anyone here, even the instructor." He glanced around. "Could
they, Mr. Gay?"

"Well, perhaps not. Sadler has the punch and you can't hurt him," said
the instructor, coming up. "Feel all right now, Sabaste?"

Nothing more was said about another bout, but the subject stirred the
crowd so that it could not die out entirely. Three or four days later
the instructor and Siebold entered the gym together, and stopped to
watch Gus punching the bag. Siebold had never seen anything quite so
snappy as that. Mr. Gay made some remarks.

"That fellow must have had some instructions under a strong teacher--
there's good material there! Say, look at the way he plays a tattoo
and swings, too, and gets away from it. Foot work, my boy--foot work!
You're good, Siebold, but we haven't anything like that in the school.
I had no idea of it."

"Shucks! All the same I'd like to see him swap cracks with Sadler," said
Siebold doggedly. Just at that instant Sadler came lumbering in with a
dozen other fellows at his heels.

"Better not start anything rough," cautioned Mr. Gay.

But Siebold paid no heed. He walked over to Gus and addressed him

"Say, would you have the nerve to fight Sadler?"

"Fight? Fight? Why, man, I have no reason to. I haven't anything against
him." Gus was indignant. "And as to boxing bouts, I'm not in this game.
Too busy!"

"Shucks! One way to whitewash a little streak of yellow." This with a

Suddenly the kindly smile on Gus's manly face faded out. He stepped
quickly in front of Siebold.

"You can't say that to me! I'll fight you here and now; bare knuckles if
you like."

Mr. Gay overheard the conversation and came back to the boys.

"None of that here," he said. "If you want to have a friendly bout with
the gloves, all right--even to a finish--but no bad blood."

Gus turned away. So did Siebold. Sadler, who was tired of being punched
at Siebold's request, would prefer to do a little looking on. With
satisfaction he saw Mr. Gay take his hat and leave the building. The
instructor may have seen a scrap on the way and wished to evade
responsibility. He was anxious to be popular with the boys.

Sadler offered a few suggestions. Immediately several boys surrounded
good-natured Gus and shoved him into the open center of the room. Then
they did the same to Siebold, but with more verbal persuasiveness and in
a moment the two were facing each other, and a pair of boxing-gloves was
handed to each.

                               CHAPTER XV


The freshman's smile had returned, and he stood with the gloves swinging
by the strings from his hand. Siebold, who really was no piker, was
slipping on his gloves and having them laced up. Gus wished Bill to talk
for him--and Tony too--not that he needed moral support, but it was
pleasanter to have good friends along than to be entirely surrounded by
opponents. However, he felt quite equal to the physical task, and as
ready to stand his ground morally.

"See here, you sophs," he said. "I'll box and gladly, but not in the way
Siebold wants to."

"Aw, what do you care how the other fellow feels? It's a bout just the
same; isn't it?"

"But Mr. Gay doesn't want us to show any hard feelings," Gus urged, "and
he's decent to us. I don't believe Siebold really thinks I'm
yellow--_do_ you?"--this last to his intended opponent.

"Looks like it," growled Siebold, showing more indignation than he
really felt. Had he permitted himself to use his reason, he would only
have admired Gus and would not have quarreled with him. Probably it was
nothing more than an uneasy conscience that now asserted itself and made
him add, in self-defense: "I guess you're yellow enough."

Gus had but one reply to make to that--and his answer was not verbal. He
did not again take his eyes from Siebold, but he pulled on the gloves,
laced the right one with the clumsy stuffed thumb and his teeth. Then he
stepped forward. Siebold made a feint of extending his hand for the
customary shake; but Gus ignored it and the next moment the two were at
it in a way that showed clearly the desire to hurt each other and to
disregard the mere matter of points. It was a slugging match from the

Siebold was no mean antagonist, and he had some tricks worthy of the
prize ring. Moreover, he was a little taller, a little heavier and had a
longer reach than Grier. Immediately it became apparent that he was
trying for a knock-out--he meant to put Gus away and to do it as quickly
as possible.

But Gus did not mean to be put out, and it became as quickly evident
that he was quite capable of making Siebold work hard even to hit him.
Siebold would bore in, drive for the jaw or stomach, and either miss or
land lightly; but he would nearly always get a stinging crack in
return--delivered at the same instant that his own blow was blocked, or
in the fraction of a second after he had only struck the empty air.
Still, these blows of Gus's were not paralyzers--they were just
weakeners. They made Siebold angry enough to spend his strength in
getting back at the chap who could land in just when and where he

Siebold's nose ached and bled; his eyes smarted, and one was closing.
His stomach, too, was sore, and somehow he could not help but feel that
his blows were growing futile. At the end of the fifth round, as he sat
back on a bench, letting some of his would-be handlers fan and sponge
him, he looked across at Gus, standing there, refusing all half-hearted
offers of attention and gazing at him with a smile on his unmarked face,
the sophomore champion began to wish he had not got into this fuss. Then
he grew furious at the thought that he was not making good.

A few minutes later, near the end of the sixth round, he began to try
for clinches in order to save himself, but somehow his wary opponent, as
quick on his feet and as strong with his hands as he was at the start,
was still adept at hitting and getting away. Just then Sadler, who, with
watch in hand, always made a little step forward as he called the end of
each round, put out his foot when Siebold was facing him and the
sophomore, tired and eager for a minute's respite, started to get back
and lowered his guard. And upon the instant of shouting the word Gus,
with his back to Sadler, let go with his right.

Siebold crumpled up like a rag. Sadler, slow to begin counting, stood
over him a moment. Gus drew back and with the first excitement he had
shown jerked his gloves off and tossed them wide. The boys crowded in,
gazing at Siebold who lay with white face and sprawled out like one
dead. Gus heard Sadler's count reach eight; then stop. Someone said:
"What's the matter with him, boys?" They had not seen a fellow lie so
still and show not even the flicker of an eyelid. One boy stooped down
and lifted Siebold's arm, calling to him: "Wake up! Are you hurt?" A
doctor's son got down and put his ear to Siebold's heart. "Gosh,
fellows! It's stopped! He's--he's dead!"

Gus pushed the boys aside. He had hit Siebold over the heart harder than
he had intended. What if the blow had proved fatal? Most unlikely; more
than once he himself had been struck that way. It had hurt him, and once
it brought him to his knees, but it had never made him unconscious. He,
in turn, got down and put his ear to Siebold's side. In the excitement
both the doctor's son and Gus had listened at the right side and no one
had observed the mistake. They were all looking on with horrified faces.
Gus could hear nothing; he touched the prostrate youth's cheek; it was
cold. He rose with something like a sob.

"Fellows, I didn't mean to do it. I didn't know he couldn't stand it.
But he can't really be much hurt, can he? Why, I--he----"

Again Gus knelt and listened for heart beats. He slumped down, feeling
as though his own heart would stop, too. In his daze he heard someone
talking on the telephone at the far end of the gym and dimly
distinguished the word "doctor." He got to his feet then. No one opposed
him. He must get Bill, good old Bill, to speak for him and tell them
that he had not meant to hurt Siebold. They must know he was not
murderously inclined, and that he hated to hurt anyone, anything, an
animal, a bug even; also that he would not run away if they wanted to
arrest him.

In a sort of trance he reached his room, where he found Bill and Tony.
Gus fell into a chair, almost sobbing.

"Bill, old fellow,--we boxed,--Siebold! And I--I've--I guess I've killed
him! I didn't mean to, Bill, you know that. Tell them I didn't; that
I'll be here and go to prison without a word. And write home, Bill, and
tell them----"

"Oh, stuff!" said Bill. "I don't believe it! Tony will go see about it.
At the gym, Gus? Yes, at the gym," nodding to the Italian.

Tony was gone. Bill stood by Gus, his hand on his chum's head. Seldom
was there any real show at tenderness between these lads, but there was
a loyalty there that made such a demonstration unnecessary.

"It isn't so, Gus--and even if it should be--anybody knows it was an
accident, and you won't be arrested. At least not in a criminal
way--only in the matter of form. The president will understand. And,
Gus, we can get together money enough to defend you--legally--even
though we have to quit school."

"_You_ sha'n't quit school!" said Gus. "Not if I have to do time! No,
sir! It doesn't matter much about me, but you--you're not to be in this
at all, except I don't want us ever to be not chums, Bill."

Rapid footsteps were coming along the hall then; the door opened and
Tony and Sadler burst into the room.

"He's all right, Grier. He's come to."

"Yes, _mio amico_; Siebold, this Sadler say, is again recover. You no
need longer to fear. But, ah! They tell it to me that he a sight
presents. He will go to his classes the observed. And it serves him all
the right; is it not so? And the most to do is to explain the Doctor for
you--which we all do."

                               CHAPTER XVI

                           ONE WINTER SATURDAY

Marshallton is a village with nothing more than two general stores
sufficient to cater to the needs of the near neighborhood and the Tech
students. Guilford, nine miles away, is the railroad town and, now and
then, for extra supplies the Tech boys may spend a dull half hour each
way on the trolley to visit the quiet place which holds no other
attraction than the stores.

Bill, Gus and Tony, eager to get some radio supplies that might as well
have been ordered from the city, obtained leave to run over to Guilford
and back. To show his appreciation of their friendship, Tony decided to
treat Bill and Gus to a taxi ride; so he 'phoned to the town for one. It
came and the three piled in, much elated over the prospect of a pleasant
shopping trip, though the weather was a little stormy.

The purchasing took all that was left of the morning. The boys gathered
their things into bundles and, at Tony's command, made straightway for a
restaurant. Being a senior, he claimed entire charge of these freshmen.

"You not respon--no; it is that you are irresponsible," he said as he
demanded the privilege of paying all expenses. "We will get," he
laughed, "some spaghetti and I show you to eat. You like eet?"

They did. The clean tables and pleasant interior were attractive. The
boys stamped the newly fallen snow from their feet, and opened their
coats to the genial warmth. Then they turned to meet the waiter and
glanced up with something of a shock. Luigi Malatesta stood before them
and addressed them collectively:

"I am proprietor of this. We serve only gentlemen. You will go

Gus leaped up, forgetting the fright after his last fisticuffs. He
wanted to punch this villain again.

"Listen, you confounded nuisance! This is a public place and we
demand--" He got no further, for Tony's hand was on his arm.

"Attendate, _mio amico_--wait! Would you eat eats in a such place? We
might all getta the poison here. Mucho better we go of our selves."

Malatesta beat a hasty retreat. The lads went out and along the street
to another place equally attractive and there they ate unsparingly, the
while discussing their latest experience, though Tony was silent on
that. Finally Bill and Gus fell into his mood. They came out of the
restaurant after an hour, to find that the storm had increased, a stiff,
knife-edged wind driving the snow horizontally and making drifts. The
taxi driver at the garage looked dubious, but agreed to try for
Marshallton. The worst that could happen would be a night spent at some

The storm increased rapidly, the snow turning partly to sleet piled up
in long windrows across all half-sheltered places, leaving open spots
bare, so that the road resembled the storm waves of a white and foaming
ocean. The car skidded along on icy ground one minute, and the next its
wheels were buried in caked drifts.

The boys were peering out, watching the strange effects of the storm,
but noting with greater concern the slowing up of the taxi. Then they

"Reckon we can't make it," said the jolly, round-faced taxi driver. They
could not stay there in the road. It was imperative that they should
find a shelter somewhere. Not half a mile ahead there was a farmhouse in
which they might all be made welcome and comfortable.

Again the man had proved to be correct. The boys agreed that forecasting
the weather and the social geography of that region were in his line. He
tried to run on again, but the starter refused to boost the engine and
the battery nearly gave out. Bill insisted that they crank up and not
exhaust the battery, else they would come to a dead stop. Gus and Tony
lent a hand in turning the engine over and soon they were again bucking
the drifts, stalling the engine two or three times within the next three
hundred yards. A drift faced them that was altogether beyond hope, and
before they drove into it, Bill insisted that they back over the thinner
snow to the side of the road so that they would not be hit by another
car if one should pull through such roads.

"Now then, you fellows!" said Bill, as usual assuming command where
anything important was at stake. "Go on to the farmhouse and bunk, if
they'll have you. I'll wrap up in these robes and be as warm as toast
here in the car." It was an enclosed tonneau, the window sashes fitted
tightly and two big robes promised a little comfort.

"Yes, _you will_," said Gus sarcastically.

"_Not!_" declared Tony. "We can easy carry you. You say it--pig-on-back?"

The taxi driver joined in and helped the two boys in this, also.

"Did you say there's a farmhouse just on ahead, Mr.----?" asked Gus.

"Merritt is my name," answered the driver.

"And a roadside is your station. You're fast in the snow and you cannot
go and you're mad at all creation," said Bill.

"You're right, son, about bein' stuck, but I ain't mad. Reckon I stand
to lose on this trip, but----"

"No, my friend; you will not lose one cent," exclaimed Tony. "More, you
shall make well. We are not the unappreciatives, ever. Show us this
farmer estate and entitle us to be his guests and you shall want for
nothing--eh, my friends Bill and Gus?"

"You've said it, Tony, and you are the cheese."

"Ah, no; I am but the macaroni. Do you think this farmer will cook the

"Not likely, but Farrell sits down to a good table, I reckon," Merritt
ventured. "Well, young fellers, let's mosey on. It'll be stiff goin',
though 'tain't more'n a quarter of a mile now."

It was stiff going. Bill managed to get through the thin places and they
helped him through fast increasing drifts, Gus at last getting him on
his back for a "gain," as he expressed it, of fifty yards. Then Tony
took a turn for a like distance, and Gus and Mr. Merritt crossed hands
to "carry a lady to London"; so they would have got Bill along for a
considerable distance had they not come opposite the end of a lane, with
the dim outline of a house standing back.

Up the lane they went, hearing the muffled barking of a dog. The side
door of the house opened, a big farmer with a huge voice greeted them
cheerily. He was in his shirt sleeves, which argued for comfort inside
the dwelling, and there was an air of comfort in the broad hallway that
was gratifying. The three were received like young princes and ushered
into a large sitting-room. From their chairs before a big stove, a
pleasant woman and two young girls rose to welcome the wayfarers.

Merritt they knew by name, and he began an apologetic effort to account
for their coming, but Bill took the matter in hand.

"Mr. Farrell, aren't you? And I suppose this is Mrs. Farrell. My name is
Brown and these are my friends, Mr. Sabaste and Mr. Grier; we are all
students at Marshallton. Went in to Guilford to the stores and couldn't
make it going back, though Mr. Merritt put up a good fight with his
little car. And now we are going to ask you if you can keep us for the
night,--table and spare room? Anything that is handy, for we don't want
to give you trouble and we'll pay----"

"Ah, the best. As if you are one fine hotel, because no such could give
to us more of comfort." This from Tony, who was always most liberal and
eager to please. So saying, he pulled out ten one-dollar bills and
gallantly tendered it to the lady, with a nod and smile at the farmer.

"That's right. The wife has all the trouble. You boys are welcome; eh,

"But John, this is too much. I could not accept such a large amount for
so little."

"Mother," said one of the girls, coming forward, "you should not accept
anything at all."

"Well, now, Mary, I guess you're right. This is our daughter, young
gentlemen, and she always has her way."

"But she has not consider the way to justice," said Tony, his black eyes
flashing conviction. "We give that, or we not remain; even it is too

"Yes, considering the storm, our predicament and our coming in on you
this way, unasked, we can't consent to less," Bill added.

"Mabel, come here, girl," said the housewife, laughing. "This is my
niece. She's making her home with us. Now, all you young folks and Mr.
Merritt enjoy yourselves while I get supper and father does the barn

The boys never forgot that long, yet all too short winter evening; the
wholesome food; the dish of home-made candy; the fireside game of
"twenty questions"; the music played by Mabel on the old-fashioned
square piano, while Mary and Tony danced; the lively conversation and
Bill's exhibition of so-called mind reading--really muscle reading,
during which, with Mrs. Farrell and Mabel holding his wrists, he found,
blindfolded, a hidden pocket knife.

Merritt had slipped out early to open the radiator of his car, which he
had foolishly forgotten to do. He had come back and called Bill aside
for a moment.

"There's another car down the road, just beyond mine; a big one and
nobody about. I went along apiece to look at it and I think I know who
it belongs to--that there new Eyetalian hash-house feller in Guilford.
Only one car there like it and that's his'n. You was askin' about him
bein' in Guilford."

"Yes. We know him and he knows us. He could have found out you were
taking us home and then have seen your car here and waited."

"You mean follered you? What'd he want to do----?"

"Is he still in his car?" interrupted Bill.

"I reckon so; think I saw four fellers in it. They can keep warm there
and every now and then run their engine a bit to keep her from freezin'

"They'll be drifted in, won't they?"

"Reckon not, with a big car like that; and the storm's goin' to quit."

"But that won't let us go on to-night. And what is that Italian up to?"
Bill dismissed the subject with Merritt, but resolved to tell Gus,
though not Tony, as it would put a damper on their friend's peace of
mind. What harm could come of Malatesta's being here? He could not
approach the house without alarming the Farrell dog and that was
assurance enough. And Bill could not help being doubtful as to the
Sicilian's being really dangerous. There might be such a thing as
carrying this grudge business to extremes, but hardly here and in this

Bill and Gus spent the night in the best spare room, under the heavy
covers of an immense fourposter. They slept through the cold night like
inanimate objects. Tony, alone, occupied a room which had evidently been
that of an only son who had gone away to the Great War to remain away
forever. There was crape hanging over the frame of a picture showing a
sturdy, manly looking fellow in khaki. From the appearance of things,
Tony, also, should have passed a comfortable night. Merritt was tucked
away to his entire satisfaction.

                              CHAPTER XVII


In the morning Bill and Gus were up at daylight, as was their habit. The
storm had ceased, and it was turning warm, the snow melting already. The
boys went to the barn to help with the milking; they got in some wood
and performed other chores. Mr. Farrell, coming in, declared with his
hearty laugh that they could stay as long as they might wish to, for
they had certainly more than earned their food and lodging. As they went
in to the breakfast table he said.

"Mother, better give that other young fellow his money back. Where is
he, anyway? Not down yet?"

"Not yet," said Mrs. Farrell, "though I called him twice."

"I'll get him up and down," said Gus, going toward the stairway.

"Father, have you seen Gyp?" asked Mary Farrell. "I've called him too,
but he doesn't come for his breakfast."

The farmer shook his head and, stepping to the back door, whistled
sharply and at length. Turning to come in he heard a low whine and a
quick search found the dog, lying on his side and unable to rise, his
eyes dull and bloodshot, his tongue protruding. Mr. Farrell had seen
something of the sort before. He picked up the poor little beast and
carried him to a warm bed by the kitchen stove.

"Sarah, he's been poisoned! Nothing else. Getting over it, though.
What--?" And then they heard Gus calling from above.

"Bill! Bill! Come up here, quick! Tony's gone!"

It was true and the manner of his going was very apparent. The room had
been entered from without, noiselessly and by experts. Taking advantage
not only of the lad's sleeping soundly, the housebreakers had used some
anæsthetic, for a wad of cotton that smelled like a drug store lay on
the carpet. Tony had evidently been roughly dressed. His collar, necktie
and cap lay on the bureau and his stockings on the floor. That he had
been carried out of the window and to the ground was certain. The two
ends of the ladder had left their imprint in the snow in the sill and on
the ground. The ladder itself had been thrown among the bushes.

Kidnaped! There was no question about that; but how could such a thing
have happened? A sturdy boy, able to put up a fight, and the thing done
so silently as not to waken a soul in the house. Healthy, sound
sleepers, depending on a dog--and that poor beast put down and out. Poor
Tony! What would they do with him!

Bill and Gus hastily related their affair with the ugly Sicilian and
that of which Tony had told them. They at once found that the big car
had turned about and gone. Footprints in the snow proved that the
occupants of the car had been the kidnapers.

The farmer and his family were duly excited over the case. Nothing so
dramatic had ever before happened to them. Merritt was also wrought up
to a pretty high pitch, for Tony had hired him very generously. The
young Italian had shown himself to be a courteous, well-bred gentleman
and had commanded respect. The manner of his disappearance, and the
possible tragedy lurking behind it, had earned the sympathy of them all.

But the Farrells deferred everything to Bill and Gus who were both eager
to act, and to investigate the too evident, yet mysterious crime, though
they were rendered helpless by the snow-piled roads.

"We'll have to use your 'phone, Mr. Farrell," said Bill. "We will pay
all the tolls. We've got to make this thing known and put Tony's people
wise. His father's a wealthy Italian banker in the city, and he'll begin
to move things when he hears about this." He turned to Gus: "If we could
only get to the school and get a whack at the transmitter, couldn't we
make things hum?"

"Why, my lads," said Mr. Farrell, "that is just the thing to do and I
can get you there in a hurry. These automobiles have got it all over our
horses for speed, but not for power. My bays will land you at the school
in short order and through the biggest snow that you ever saw. Wait till
I hitch them up to the Dearborn."

He was as good as his word. After promising to keep the Farrells and
Merritt posted as to the progress of the hunt for Tony and its outcome,
they were on the road behind a pair of splendid, steaming, plunging
horses, and soon back at the Tech. The Doctor, about to depart for
church, was startled by the news, and he at once turned the transmitting
station over to the boys, going himself to the 'phone and keeping it
busy. Mr. Farrell remained a short time. Then wishing the boys success,
he departed.

The county detective, the mounted police force, the city force and a
private detective agency were all informed of the circumstance, with a
full description of Luigi Malatesta. The incident became a "nine-days'
wonder" in the newspapers. Soon it was learned that the Sicilian had, on
the very day before Tony's disappearance, sold his restaurant in
Guilford for a song. He had disappeared with several others,
questionable characters with whom he had been associated, and on whom he
had evidently relied to do the kidnaping. It was discovered also,
through the confession of a Sicilian suspect, that Tony had been
shadowed for weeks as he went about the school.

But all knowledge of the boy's whereabouts was totally lacking. Clues
were run down without success. The search had failed. Mr. Sabaste, with
a famous detective, came to the school and talked with Bill and Gus. He
went with them to see the Farrells, where he investigated every detail.
The search went far and wide, with no trace of Tony.

The banker offered five thousand dollars for information that would
insure his son's return, and smaller sums for any positive data, which
might lead to the arrest of the kidnapers. Tony's mother was dead. An
older brother who had been in business in the far west was once a victim
of the Malatesta clan. In spite of every possible effort, the
disappearance of the boy remained a mystery; nor could any of the
Malatesta relatives, known by various names and suspected as
accomplices, be found.

Bill and Gus were now in possession of one of the finest radio receiving
sets that could be made, and several other students had purchased
similar, or less perfect, sets from the boys. Whenever opportunity
permitted they either had the loud speaker on, or sat with the 'phones
clamped to their ears, listening in and having much amusement with the
various broadcasters, public and private. It was a liberal education to
hear a tenth of what was going on, besides the regular concert program
each evening. But most in their thoughts was the hope, often expressed
between them, of hearing something that might in some way reflect on the
kidnaping mystery, for the boys missed their kind and courteous Italian

                              CHAPTER XVIII

                          DIPLOMACY THAT FAILED

"Gus, I can't get it out of my head," said Bill one day, "that we're
not, as they say in diplomatic language, entirely _persona grata_ here.
At least, not as we should want to be if we have the proper loyalty to
the school. We have our friends, of course, among seniors, freshmen and
even some of the sophs, but the sophs generally have very little use for
us. Even some of our own class, in the sports, have a big leaning toward
Siebold and his bunch, and they like to go along with the shouters."

"Well, I guess they'll have to go along, then," remarked Gus

"But Gus, it's a reflection on us. We ought to be in as good fellowship
as anybody. Now that we've made out so well in our radio work and are
not nearly so busy, with the rest of the term all lectures and exams,
you know, we might gee in a little with the social end of it. And
sports, too, Gus. I can't do anything but look on and shout, but

Bill's remarks were inspired by a glimpse across the greensward at a
bunch of fellows on the ball field, evidently at town ball and practice.
With the coming of spring and warm weather the Tech ball team had been
newly organized and put at practice. The next month would see them
crossing bats with Guilford Academy, Springdale School and other nearby
institutions. There was great rivalry between the home team and Guilford
Academy, which had a strong team, and was much the better of the two,
except that the Tech School had acquired, through Siebold's efforts, a
very good outside pitcher who kept the Academy lads guessing much of the
time. The winning of games, therefore, during the preceding season had
been pretty even, Guilford leading by one.

And then, at the behest of older and more judicial heads, representatives
of the League of Schools had met and decided that each team must play
only with members of its student body, hiring no semi-professional
pitchers, or even coachers, thus making the contests entirely fair.

A result of this was that in the games of this season Guilford, with a
pitcher from among its fellows who had previously given his services to
other teams as well, simply ran away with Marshallton Tech, winning one
game by the score of fifteen to two and the other was a shut-out.

"Gus, I've bought a ball and I've got Sam Kerry, who says he used to
catch for his home team somewhere in the west, to agree to keep his
mouth shut and pass a few with you, off somewhere where nobody will

"Righto, old Bill! Anything you say--but what's the idea?"

"Well, Gus, I don't like Guilford's swamping this team in the way it
has, and I propose to try to stop it." Bill's lips were compressed and
he had that look in his eyes that meant determination.

"But Siebold--" began Gus.

"Doesn't entirely run this school, nor its ball team, even if he is
captain and general high muck-a-muck," declared Bill.

It was with extreme satisfaction that Bill sat on a log at one side of a
path in the woods and watched little Kerry, who proved to be no mean
hand at stopping all kinds of balls, nearly knocked off his feet by the
machine-gun-like pitches of "that other fellow from Freeport," as Gus
was sometimes called.

One early afternoon the gym instructor also sat by Bill and watched the
performance. Mr. Gay had promised secrecy, but not to refrain from

"I'll say he has not only got command of his ball and three good styles,
but he also knows some tricks that ought to worry any man at the bat.
Throw that waiting ball again, Grier!" the instructor called. "I want to
watch that--oh, fine! It looks like a hard one and a fellow will strike
over it nine times out of ten. Well, I've got this to say: If we expect
to win any games we've got to have a fellow like Grier in the box, but
Siebold will stick to Maxwell who is about a fifth rater--at his best."

"But has Siebold all the say?" Bill queried.

"A good deal of it. You see his father backs up the boy in everything,
and he has put the club on its feet financially, in a bigger way than
even the Guilford team. Moreover, the elder Siebold's money built our
grandstand, the dressing-rooms and hired our pitchers for quite a while.
So young Siebold can afford to play politics and insure a following,
which nobody, even the professors, can stop. And the faculty and the
Doctor don't bother over the matter. That chap is going to be a state
senator, or a Congressman some day, I have no doubt."

"It won't work, though, Mr. Gay," declared Bill, "because it isn't
justice. Others besides Siebold are interested in and loyal to the
school. We want to see our team win, don't we?"

"Yes, of course. I'm going to shoot that at Siebold and, if you'll let
me, I'm going to hint that we have a pitcher among us who outranks his
choice in all the high points."

It was on the next afternoon, which was rainy, that Bill found the
library pretty full of readers and among them were six or seven of the
ball team. He took a seat beside Dixon and directly across the table
from Siebold and Sadler. He turned to Dixon:

"When is the next ball game?" he asked.

"We play Springdale next Saturday, but they're easy. The last game with
Guilford is Saturday week."

"It's too bad that we get licked so unmercifully when there's no need
for it," Bill remarked.

"No need for it? No, there's no need for it, but----"

"I suppose we have needed it to put some sense into us, but no longer.
It would be pretty easy to clean that bunch if we went at it right."

"How easy?" asked Dixon.

"Why, you know without asking that. Putting a good man in the box and
another behind the bat, of course."

"Where'd you get your good man?"

"Here in the school."


"I guess you'll have to keep your eyes open. Anybody ought to----"

"Listen to this, Siebold." Dixon leaned over the table. "Brown says
we've got pitching material----"

"Well, what of it? Don't I know it?"

"It's a blamed sure bet he doesn't know it, or if he does he ought to be
jailed for conspiracy to beat the school team," laughed Bill, still
addressing Dixon.

"How's that, Brown? What's your dope?" ventured Sadler, who alone really
dared to question Siebold's authority. Bill went on, in forcible
language, for he was aware that Siebold was listening, and repeated what
he had said to Mr. Gay and to Dixon. The argument about every one in the
school being interested in the success of the ball team seemed to strike
home, and several boys gathering round began to make comments favorable
to the sentiment. The librarian came over and objected to the talking.

"Let's go down to the gym and talk this thing over," said Sadler. "Brown
will spring this man on us if we'll try him--eh, Brown?"

"Why, sure," said Bill, rising.

"Come on, Siebold."

"Too busy reading. Nothing to it, anyway." Siebold didn't even look up
from his book.

"Is that so?" Sadler was angry. It was evident that he was willing to
oppose the captain. Bill thought he saw an opportunity right here.

"He has only one vote," he said, "and I understand that all of us who
care to may have a say. I know several fellows who----"

Bill got no further. Siebold began to see that it might be best to
permit no defection from his ranks and no outside interference. He
followed the others out and across the campus, no word being said all
the way by the several boys who, in part, made up the executive
committee on baseball. They filed into the gym and got Mr. Gay into
their conference.

"Now, then, Brown, what have you got under your skin?" said Siebold

"You heard me in the library," said Bill.

"Balderdash! There isn't a fellow in the school who can pitch like

"Oh, yes, there is, Siebold," said Mr. Gay. "There's no one who can play
first base like Maxwell and your first baseman says he has a glass arm
and is done. We have a pitcher who can pitch."

"That's the cheese!" said Maxwell. "I've told Siebold all along he ought
to replace me."

"Who is this wonderful guy?" asked Siebold.

"I'll bet it's that other fellow from Freeport," put in one of the
captain's staunch supporters.

"Call it off in that case," Siebold demanded.

"No, we won't call it off. We'll try him at practice," said Sadler.

"Who's captain of this team? We'll play in our present positions, all of
us, or we won't play at all."

"That's right," echoed two or three followers. Bill laughed.

"Will you accept a challenge to play a school scrub team?"

"No, nor that. Waste of time----"

"That's nothing but silly stubbornness," said Sadler, with rising wrath.
"Wouldn't it be just like practice? You're a fatheaded----"

"Oh, now, see here, Siebold," interposed the instructor. "You can't
refuse that. It will only bring out the best players and strengthen the

"Well, then, if Mr. Gay says so," Siebold agreed, "we'll play you and we
can shut out any bunch you can get together."

                               CHAPTER XIX

                               A SHUT-OUT

Bill turned to Sadler. "You're with us?"

"Sure, Siebold has a substitute for right field."

"I'm with you, too," said Dixon. "Put Longy in my place, Cap."

Siebold grew angry. "You fellows have been kickers all along, and now
you think that will weaken us. Well, if Ritter can't take a fly better
than you can, you big stiff, I'll assassinate him; and Long is as good a
short stop as you are, Dixon."

"We have four other substitutes and I'll promise three of them for our
scrub team, Brown," Sadler declared.

"All right; that's seven fellows and we can pick up two more, surely.
Let's hunt them up right now," demanded Bill.

They did. As it was clearing, they went to the diamond and after a
little practice all round at town ball, Bill watching closely, they got
into the places best suited to each player and then elected Bill manager
and Sadler captain. The big fellow and Dixon had discarded their suits
for plain shirt and trousers, and a small collection was taken up for
pants and some extra gloves. Mr. Gay gave them a catcher's mask and some

The next afternoon, the challenge having been formally given, the match
between the regulars and scrubs took place, Siebold winning the toss and
taking the bases, Mr. Gay acted as umpire.

Maxwell seemed to be in better form than usual. Perhaps because he found
a "ragged lot of players," as Bill put it. The scrubs had not fully got
together and they went out, two on strikes, and Sadler's fly was caught.
The regulars went to bat, laughing, Siebold straddling the plate.

Gus stood in the box, smiling. He nodded to little Kerry behind the bat
and Kerry inclined his head to the left. Sadler and Dixon were watching
closely. Could the new pitcher on whom Brown appeared to stake so much
really do anything? If he could send them over the way he boxed, thought
Sadler, "good night"! Brown was all the time springing something worth
while. That was just why he and Dixon had been willing to make a final
kick at Siebold's arbitrary rulings. And now here was Siebold himself,
one of the surest batters in the team, facing the unknown quantity.

Gus put on no gimcracks nor did he make fancy swings. He merely made a
step forward, raised his arm to throw and held it about two seconds--then
there came across the plate something more like a streak than a ball--so
it seemed to Siebold--and little Kerry, who had been squatting, nearly
went over backward with the loud plop in his glove. Siebold stood, dazed.

"One strike!" called the umpire.

The ball went back to Gus who took it out of the air as if he were
plucking at a snowflake. Again the step forward, the raised arm and the
ball came along swiftly at first, then slower, much slower, but keeping
up. Siebold's heart sang. He would take this thing on the end of his bat
and lift it beyond any hopes of a fielder's reaching it--it meant a
two-bagger sure. He struck; there was no contact of bat and ball; a
fraction of a second later the sound of the ball in Kerry's glove told
him he had "missed it by a mile," as Sadler bawled it out.

"Two strikes!"

Siebold looked mad now. He was being tricked--that was certain. He would
show this fellow if he could do that again! The ball came along swiftly,
but too high. It was "one ball," and he waited. The next was fairly
swift, but it was going to bounce before it struck, yet it lifted and
passed right over the plate almost a foot high and Siebold wondered why
he had not swiped at it.

"Striker out!" called the umpire, and the captain of the regulars
angrily threw down his bat.

Wilde came next. He was the regulars' catcher, and the best batter of
the team. Siebold stood, watching closely, a scowl on his face. Almost
the same tactics were played, without Wilde ever knowing where the ball
was! Another chose three bats before he got one to suit him--this fellow
was Kline, the bunter. More than once he had made his base and let
fellows on bases in by bunting one at his own feet and in such a manner
that it rolled slowly toward the pitcher.

Three balls were called against Gus. The regulars commenced to smile and
Siebold's eyes sparkled. Then three streaks came, all over the plate,
waist high and "striker out" sounded the third time. The regulars went
to the field, the captain walking slowly and thoughtfully.

Gus went to bat and struck out. Little Kerry lifted a fly to left field
that the fielder muffed and let roll, so that Kerry slid into second
when the sphere was coming back again. Morton, a new man, struck out as
though he were not sure whether he was fighting bears, or was merely in
a debate, and Dixon hit a grounder to second and was caught out on
first. Still no runs.

Gus always had the short step forward, always the uplifted arm that did
not double forward at once. It was possibly confusing, instead of a
notice to the batter to get ready, as one might have imagined. Quite a
number of balls were called against Gus--fast, slow ones, up-shoots--but
never four. Three batters went out in quick succession.

In the third inning Maxwell slowed up a little and the scrubs became
wider awake. One of the new men who had, he declared, played ball very
little and never shown a genius for hitting, sent a liner between
pitcher and first that put him on his base. One of the regulars' former
substitutes hit another grounder that let him on first and the new man
on second. The third and fourth man, their second time at bat, struck
out again and then came big Sadler to the plate. His very first crack
sent a fly so high and wide that the center and left fielders fell all
over themselves in their effort to get it, while the center man made a
wild throw, so that Sadler rather easily accomplished a home run.

It was three runs for the scrubs, as Gus again struck out. The third at
the bat for the regulars proved to be "ancient history," another
expression of Sadler's, with this difference: Siebold took his base on
four balls, but he didn't get any farther than first.

Little Kerry knocked another liner and this the man on second dropped,
the short-stop getting it too late to first. Morton again went out.
Dixon hit a liner for two bases that let Kerry in and again the new
genius proved himself such by getting in a fly that on errors put him on
third. Once more a substitute who after two fouls knocked a ball almost
within reach over the first baseman's head, made another home run on
errors. The fourth was caught out on a foul, the fifth struck out and
Sadler knocked another fly that was caught. Six runs for the scrubs--the
regulars nothing.

Smiling, Gus came again to the box. Three batters in quick succession,
after only three balls were called for two of them, struck out. They
seemed to have no idea where the balls were passing, and little Kerry
staggered back with every one sent in, though he, too, was smiling. And
then, before the regulars could again take their places, something else

Siebold merely said: "Hold on, fellows!" He walked straight up to Gus,
caught him by the arm and pulled him over toward Bill and Mr. Gay.

"See here," said Siebold; "I'm no piker. I've been dead wrong and nobody
has to tell me. So, Grier, honestly I never saw such pitching outside of
the national leagues. And if you'll let me, I want to be friends, and I
want you on the team. Mr. Gay, you're right: Maxwell on first and you,
Grier, in the box. Are you with us?"

Siebold extended his hand and Gus shook it warmly. The captain turned to
Bill. "You, too. We have to thank you for this business, the best stroke
of luck we have ever had."

Bill shook Siebold's hand with as much gusto as he would have that of
any downright hero. A fellow who could muzzle his pride and do the
square thing in this manner, especially after he had been licked in a
way that hurt, was a real man.

"And look here, Brown! I've generally messed up this captain business
and the managing too; and you have got together a team in short order
that I wouldn't have believed could have slammed us for six runs. Will
you manage us? I'll see that you are elected. Grier can be cap----"

"No, sir," said Bill. "Gus doesn't want to be captain. You'll remain
captain, Siebold, or we'll both take our doll clothes and go home. But I
will try my hand at advising, if you wish. 'Two heads,' you know----"

"Hurrah!" shouted Siebold. "Brown is manager! And we've got a pitcher
now! We're going to lick those Guilford fellows so bad they'll think
they've got brain fever!"

                               CHAPTER XX

                      MARSHALLTON _versus_ GUILFORD

Bill for once laid aside everything but his studies to give his
attention to the game with Guilford Academy, the last athletic contest
of the school year. It was played at Guilford, where the grounds were
fenced in and tickets of invitation given. As manager of the visiting
team, Bill had his quota to distribute in and outside of the Tech. With
his characteristic thoroughness he saw that no one was slighted who was
at all worthy, rich or poor. This was not so liberally managed at the
Guilford end.

The grand stand was pretty well filled, but Bill had reserved some good
seats and to these he conducted the Farrells and their niece, stopping
to tell them that Gus was pitching and that they must root for
Marshallton, which of course they did. After this, with some tickets
left over, Bill went outside and skirted the grounds, finding a dozen
youngsters hunting holes in the fence, and to these he gave his
remaining tickets. Not so long ago, he had been just such a youngster
himself, and he had an abounding sympathy for those who possessed the
keenest capacity for enjoyment, but were excluded without just reason.

The game was typical of such contests between schools of the kind in all
except the performance of Gus in the box. That youth, always smiling,
never self-conscious enough even to acknowledge the plaudits meant for
him, not only pitched with professional skill, but in his every movement
showed a grace which demanded attention.

From the first inning the result was a foregone conclusion. The home
team held the visitors to no runs and went to bat with the utmost
confidence, only to be retired, one, two, three, on strikes. They shut
the visitors out again, and two of them got on bases to remain there and
die. They let Siebold come home on Wilde's fly and errors and were again

They repeated this, with little Kerry at bat and only one of them made a
hit, the ball lodging in the pitcher's extended hand. They fought hard
and retired the Techs for three more innings, meeting the same fate
themselves. Then their pitcher weakened and the team went to pieces,
with three men on bases, and Wilde let them all come home on a long
grounder, but himself died on second, with two others out on strikes.

They went to pieces again when Sadler knocked a fly over the fence and
made a home run, or rather a home walk, and they again were retired in
rapid succession. Score, six to nothing, and the Marshallton crowd,
including the dignified president of Tech, the instructors to a man, the
Farrells and a lot of other sympathizers yelled their throats sore, a
bunch of fans going for Gus, hoisting him on high and marching around
with him, singing a school chantey:

             "He's the stuff,
             He treats 'em rough,
             He gives 'em easily more than enough.
             He's awful tough
             He is no bluff,
             He made 'em look like a powder puff.
             He's fast and quick,
             They couldn't handle ball or stick.
             He's winning Dick,
             They got his kick,
             They think they're slaughtered with a brick!"

And so on for half a dozen or so silly verses of the kind, Gus,
meanwhile, suffering both physically and mentally, for being thus tossed
about is by no means comfortable, and his modesty was such as to make
him want to run and hide.

And then the gang went for Bill, but Doctor Field protected him and they
expended their enthusiasm on Captain Siebold, Sadler and little Kerry,
the catcher. After which Guilford asked for a return match, but the term
was nearly ended and that must go over until next year.

"I wish," said Bill to Doctor Field, as they journeyed homeward, "that
Tony Sabaste could have been here to see this game."

                               CHAPTER XXI

                                 A CLUE

Exams and exercises were over and the students mostly gone. A few
remained to brush up on studies, or to complete work begun in the shop.
Bill and Gus were among these. They had an order from one of the
professors for a very fine radio receiver and it was not quite finished.
The matron and cooks had vanished and the boys had to get their own
meals. As one after another of the lingerers left, the dormitory became
quieter, almost oppressively lonesome, to Bill at least, who was social
by nature; but Gus, the hermit, rather enjoyed it.

Listening in over the radio was not neglected. It served to cheer the
monotony. Not only were the boys alive to the advertised concerts and
entertainments, but they caught a tangle of outside waves that was often
quite amusing.

Only two more days were required for them to finish their job. They had
decided to let their receiver remain, as they were to occupy the same
room next term, and now two receivers at home would serve. The loud
speaker had been removed, adjustments made, and now Bill sat at the
little table with the 'phones clamped on his ears.

Suddenly he called to Gus: "Get 'em on! Get em' on, quick! Somebody is
sending a message out to Marconi--only the end of it now, though."

"--be most honored, I assure you," came through the air. "Several whom I
think you will be glad to meet will be there and we shall be glad to
have a word from you." There was a pause.

"It's an invitation to a banquet, or something," Gus said.

"Sure. I wonder if he's going to accept." This from Bill.

"When did he come back? I thought he sailed away last fall."

"Been back a week; read it in the paper. He's on his boat again, the
_El_--listen! He's talking."

"Marconi speaking. Gentlemen of the Society of Electrical Research, I
shall accept with much pleasure, but please do not put me down for an
extended speech. Only a few remarks--probably on my subject. But I shall
make no reference to Mars; my interest in that is almost nil. That is a
newspaper romance, and I am really getting very tired of being
misunderstood. I would be very glad if, in the course of the evening,
someone would jestingly refer to this and absolve me from holding such
untenable ideas. I thank you. I shall be there."

"Gee-whiz, Gus, I wonder if the time will ever come when we'll get
invitations like that, eh? And say, he doesn't take any stock in that
message-from-Mars foolishness."

"Well, I guess it's silly, all right," Gus agreed.

"Why, sure. They can't even tell if Mars has any life on it, and if it
has, it is mighty unlikely that any kind of creatures have developed
brains enough to understand radio. Shucks! No real scientist will waste
his time on any guesswork like that. We want to know more through the
telescope first."

"But maybe the telescope can't tell us--then what? We want to get at it
anyway we can, don't we?"

"Oh, I suppose, in any sensible, possible, likely way, but not on such a
supposition. It would be like shooting at the moon: _if_ a high-powered
gun could get its projectile beyond our attraction of gravitation and
_if_ it were aimed right, why, then the shot might hit the mark. Too
blamed many 'ifs.' And some of the greatest astronomers say Mars isn't
inhab--what's this?"

A very distant, not easily understood voice came to them. There seemed
to be some interference which not even their well-made loose coupler
could filter out. Apparently there could be nothing very entertaining
about this, except the desire to get the better of a difficult task.

"-- Atlantic. Latitude 39 -- -- -- chased her, but -- lost --. The fog
was -- -- --. On board, when start -- -- transferred, we think. Headed
west. Got a radio from the Government tug Nev -- --. Think it must have
been the same. Putting in toward Point Gifford, they said --. Think they
have landed by now. Better opportunity to demand ransom from the --.
Italian all right; sure of that. -- The banker will -- -- -- -- --. So
you be -- -- -- --."

The voice died away; a few clickings came and then silence. Bill turned
to Gus. In matters of jumping at conclusions, he had long learned to
depend most on his chum's undoubted talents, just as Gus, in most things
mental, played second fiddle to Bill.

"Say, Gus, could it be--?" Bill whispered.

"Sure is! Nothing else. Ransom, banker, Italian."

Gus felt no uncertainty. "They're after them, sure. Mr. Sabaste has had
the hunt kept up on land and sea--we know that. And this is just a
clue--an attempt to get on the trail again. Point Gifford--Bill, I know
that country. Went all along the coast there once with Uncle Bob. You
remember when? He was cutting timber down in the coast swamps. I
explored--great place for that! Sand dunes, pines, inlets; awfully wild.
Some old cabins here and there."

"They're landing there. Gus, I'll bet they're going to bring--do you
think it can be Tony, Gus?"

"Who else? They're trying to make Mr. Sabaste pay a ransom and they're
going to be in a place where they can make sure of getting it. What Tony
said about the Malatesta bunch being short of money must be true, and I
guess that restaurant business made it worse. They're going to try to
make a pretty sure thing----"

"But Gus, this radio was intended for somebody on shore who will watch
them and maybe nab them."

"No, indeed. They're not likely to nab them. They have already landed,
you see, and the detectives will watch the Upper Point, which is the
only landing place. But if these chaps are foxy, they will come to the
Lower Point, ten miles south, and cut across the inlet and the
thoroughfare in a small boat. Then their yacht, or whatever she is, will
sail up past the Upper Point, put to sea and the detectives will think
she has given up the idea of landing. I rather think I'm on to what
their scheme will be. An old oysterman showed me what some smugglers
did, and got away with it for a long time. I guess the state police
never have got on to this."

"Well, then, Gus, it's up to us to tell----"

"With several thousand dollars to save for Tony's dad? And who would
believe a couple of kids, anyway?" demanded Gus.

"But how----?"

"Let them watch the Upper Point, and if they land there, all right. I'm
going down to hunt over the Lower Point."

"You, Gus? But these fellows are a bunch of desperate scamps; gunmen, no
doubt. There'll be a lot of them, maybe----"

"No; not more than two or three. Luigi Malatesta, his brother, I think
from Merritt's description, and an accomplice or two."

"Four, Gus; maybe more. You wouldn't have a chance----"

"Well, not in a stand-up fight, I suppose. But they won't be suspecting
a kid in old fisherman's duds, and I can do some bushwhacking, I guess."

"But if you get hurt, Gus?"

"Well, there's a lot more like me everywhere. Another brother at home,
too. I'm going to try for it, Bill. I'm not going to tote a pistol, but
take Dad's hammerless, double-barreled shotgun. He has quit hunting, and
he said I could have it. They'll think I'm just a native."

"But where are you going to hang out? Your Uncle Bob isn't there any

"With old Dan, the oysterman. He'll be tickled, I think, and I'll pay my

"Don't get hurt, old fellow. I wish I could go with you."

"You bet I wish you could, Bill. But you pick up what you can and maybe
you'll have a chance to get it to me in some way."

"Oh, Gus, I know a scheme: That portable set we made Tompkins--it's in
his room. He would be tickled, for he liked Tony, and he has gone to
Saranac Lake. They've got one up there, so he didn't take this. We'll
get in his room and get it for you to take along. Then I'll stay here,
glue my ear to the phones and radio you everything I know, for they are
all away, and I can use their transmitter."

"Portable idea is fine, Bill, but all the rest is bunk. What, really,
can you do here?"

"Well, then, I know: We'll swipe the keys, unhook the school
transmitting set and I'll go with you and set it up at Oysterman Dan's.
Then we can work together."

"Fine! But how about the license?"

"Got one. Merely change of locality, and my own license will let me
operate anywhere. Let's get busy."

                              CHAPTER XXII

                           AT OYSTERMAN DAN'S

It was a good cause, yet the boys were up against a doubtful procedure.
The janitor of the school was a good-natured, but stubborn chap. He
liked Bill and Gus, but they knew he would never let them take anything
from the buildings without special consent. And while there was no time
to get this permission, Bill and Gus knew that all concerned would be in
favor of their motive. If they injured anything they knew they would
more than make it good; or that Mr. Sabaste would make it good. Even Mr.
Hooper would, if called on.

So they wrote a note to Mr. Hooper, explaining fully what they intended
doing and requesting that he reimburse the school for any loss or injury
to the broadcasting instrument in case anything happened to both of
them. Then they placed this letter where it would be found in their
room, with a request to the finder to deliver it.

The janitor, they knew, was a bug on fishing. Bill coaxed him to take a
day off while they watched the place. He did this, and while Mrs. Royce
was strenuously engaged with her housework, the boys got the keys to the
radio room. The rest was easy, even to fixing up camouflaged parts that
would befool Mr. Royce, if he should enter the room. They got the
apparatus in parts to their own room, where they packed it up, and Gus
climbed into Tompkins' room through the transom, handed out the portable
set and got out the way he got in.

The next day, again sending for Mr. Merritt and his taxi, they were on
their way to the station at Guilford, and from there by train to the
shore, Gus debouching at a convenient junction for a two-hour trip home,
while Bill patiently waited. When Gus got back to the junction he had
the shotgun and some old clothes for both, though Bill might have no
need to disguise.

Reaching the terminus of the railroad, the boys hired a rather
dilapidated team of mules drawing a farm wagon, with youthful driver to
match, and made a long, slow journey, especially tiresome to these
eager, expectant lads, that landed them by the most direct route at
Oysterman Dan's little cottage.

The old fellow came out and was so delighted to see Gus that he gave him
and Bill a real welcome. He was a bachelor who lived alone, but lived
well. He kept to himself and yet was not averse to having a little
company of his own choosing. Apparently he would not have wanted more
entertaining fellows than Bill and Gus, or better listeners, for he
liked to spin yarns. When he found the boys insisted upon paying him for
board and lodging and certain privileges he was further pleased. Let
them put up "one o' them thar wirelesses?" He sure would and welcome. It
would be a "heap o' fun," and when they told him of the purpose of it he
was elated.

Nothing could have been more characteristic of the imagination and
optimism of youth than the making of all these extensive preparations on
the merest guesswork, and after the boys had arrived on the scene, not
half a mile from Lower Gifford's Point, doubts began to assail Bill with
much force.

"By jingo, Gus! Here we are, at considerable expense and a deal of
trouble, taking it for granted that we're going to do wonderful things,
and we even don't know that the theory we are working on is worth a
blamed thing."

"Oh, yes; we do," said the intuitive Gus, who, looking like a woebegone
swamp dweller, had just come in from the dunes. "And soon we'll know a
whole lot more. I just saw two gunners in the woods above the point, and
if they aren't Italians I don't know one."

The boys were a long day putting up their transmitting instrument, with
its extensive aërial stretched between tall pines near the cottage.
They would depend on the portable receiver.

And then, leaving Bill listening, poring over books, or chatting with
old Dan, when the latter was off the water, Gus got into his ragged togs
again, took his gun and started out prowling. And he prowled wisely and

                              CHAPTER XXIII


"Hey, fellow! What you do?" The voice came from among the pines, and Gus
turned to see a dark-skinned, black-eyed young man, of about twenty-five
or more, coming toward him. Gus stopped.

"You shoot in these woods?" asked the man.

"I reckon I might an' I reckon I do if I kin find any durn thing fer t'
shoot," said Gus, easily falling into the native vernacular.

The man approached and the boy quickly observed that the pocket of the
loose coat, worn even this hot day, bulged perceptibly, and the man put
his hand within it. He showed an interest in the shotgun and extended
his hand.

"Where you get so fine gun, eh?" he questioned.

"Man give her t' me fer beatin' him at shootin'." This was literally
true, the said man being Mr. Grier. "He's a sportin' feller, but he
don't shoot no more. Hain't seen him round these here parts fer two

The fellow took the fowling-piece and looked it over. He said:

"I buy her, eh?"

"You couldn't buy her if you had her heft in gold," said the boy. "An'
you couldn't shoot her, anyway--not to hit anything. Could you get a
bird with her goin' like a bullet through these pine trees? Shucks! I

"No! Yes? I get you shoot for me, eh?" handing back the gun.

"Shoot fer you? How?"

"You don't like law policemans, eh?"

"You wouldn't like 'em if they chased you fer shootin' when the game
laws was on."

"I think of that. You come into woods along of me, now, eh? I show you
what do and how make large lot money. Big! And maybe how shoot
policemans to keep away. Big money you get."

"Lead me to it!" said Gus, his swift guess at what might be coming
making him shove in a less backwoodsy phrase.

Without another word the man started along a tortuous and narrow path
and Gus followed for more than half a mile. They were just off the
thoroughfare when they started, but the youth could hear the distant
booming of the ocean waves on the beach before they stopped.

To the right, with a roof seen above the low underbrush of young pines,
holly and sweet gum, was a building of some kind toward which the path
turned abruptly. A hundred yards ahead the woods ceased, and Gus knew
that beyond were the ever-shifting sand dunes crowned with their
short-lived scrub oaks or pines and tufts of beach grass which bordered
a wild and lonely shore for many miles. Twelve miles to the south was a
somewhat popular seaside resort.

Gus had not crossed the woods at this spot, though he had at some other
very similar places. He had been all along the beach and had boated on
the thoroughfare clear to the inlet. This was nowhere deep enough for
even a large sloop. But he was thinking less of this than of a very
possible opportunity that seemed to loom ahead.

"What your name?" asked the Italian.

"Sam is my name," said Gus.

"Now then, Sam, you stay here. If some man who no business has here come
to look, you give order to go--see? You say this your father's ground
and no--what you call?--trespass. All this day you stay. To-morrow you
come, also. Two dollar you get each day, eh?"

"Thought it was _big_ money. Mebbe I'll have t' shoot somebody an' I
will, quick. But----"

"We give three dollar, Sam, and you stay with us. If not and somebody
comes you get nothing but this." The man slapped his pocket. "But no, we
friends, eh? And you will shoot?"

"You bet I will!" said Gus, and meant it. But whom would he shoot? He
was not saying.

The man went toward the building and presently came back with a modern,
high-powered rifle. He edged off through the woods to the left. After a
while he came back with another fellow and they fell to talking in a
language which Gus could not understand. They stopped for the new man to
look Gus over and the boy turned his head to gaze at none other than his
late schoolmate and bitter antagonist, Luigi Malatesta!

The general resemblance between the two men made Gus know that he had
been talking to the older brother. Luigi, the younger, went off. At that
distance he could not have recognized Gus, though for one moment the boy
had a queer feeling, a real bit of fright, but not enough to rob him of
the quick sense to be ready with his gun if his enemy had guessed his
identity. On second thought Gus felt pretty sure that if he kept his
ragged hat well pulled down Luigi would never know him.

And Gus was tremendously elated, so much so that he could hardly keep
from prancing or slapping himself; but the danger of what he meant to
do, and to do quickly, kept him from undue exuberance.

The elder Malatesta brought one other fellow, evidently an American, to
take a squint at Gus. Gus called the Italian over:

"How many of you got here, hey? I don't want t' shoot one of----"

"Not any more; three of us; you four."

"What is all this fuss fer?" asked Gus.

The fellow seemed to ponder a moment. "I tell you," he said, as though
with sudden conviction. "In the hut yonder is crazy man. Our brother,
yes. We love heem, ver' much. But he malsano--insane--lika fury.
And we disgrazia. But he not go to a silo--hospital and treat bad.
Oh, no! We swear it! They want getta heem. We hid heem and give heem
treatment--medicine, lika say great doctore. Doctore come two
day--more tardo. We guard brother ver' fierce--fight--fight! No let
go--no let policeaman come. See?"

Gus nodded slowly. It was a well-told yarn, a plausible lie. In a good
cause could he not take a turn at that?

"By cracky, you're dead right t' make 'em mind their own bizness! It's
your bizness, ain't it? I'd serve 'em that-away, too. I'll bluff 'em,
an' shoot, too, if I got t'. Where's these other two standin'?"

The man indicated a spot to the left, another beyond the cabin, and his
own position toward the beach. They probably stood on sentry duty most
of the time. Gus was given the most dangerous place, the one most likely
to be the way of approach. Well, he'd better act, and quickly, if he
didn't want the officers of the law to step in ahead and spoil his own

Gus waited until he felt sure the men had taken their places again. Then
he contrived a neat bit of strategy that was almost too simple. He meant
to get a peep in yonder building, or hut, as the elder Malatesta had
called it, and he meant to do this at once. Rapidly and silently he
sneaked through the woods until he stood close behind the American
gunman who sat drowsily on a log, his gun across his knees.

"Say, bo, get next. They's a couple o' men sneakin' through the woods
round beyon' you. They ain't comin' my way. Lay low an' watch 'em." The
man crouched.

Gus crept back and then out toward the beach where, by sheer good luck,
he came across both Malatesta brothers talking. When they were still at
a little distance from him he told them the same story and instantly the
elder was on his guard while the younger brother left, crouching as he
progressed toward his station. Gus, also crouching, went back quickly.

The boy felt sure that these fellows were armed and that they would
remain fixed for a very considerable time--all of them well out of sight
of the building. Cautiously at first, then almost running, Gus followed
the path right up to the door of what was really a stout log cabin, the
one window barred with heavy oaken slats, recently nailed on, and the
door padlocked. Gus went straight to the window, thrust aside a bit of
bagging that served for a curtain and peered within. Speaking hardly
above a whisper, he said:

"Hello, in here! Who are you? Is it Tony Sabaste?"

                              CHAPTER XXIV

                              THE PRISONER

"Well, what do you want? Who are you?"

Gus felt his heart almost leap in his bosom. The voice may have been a
little huskier, with an accent of suffering and despair, but it was

"Keep very quiet, Tony. I'm not supposed to be here, but out yonder,
guarding the path. Paid to do it, you understand? But lie low until
to-morrow. Then----"

"But tell me; I seem--I--who can you be? Oh, what----?"

"Oh, you don't know me, sure enough. I'm Gus, Tony--Gus Grier. Bill
Brown and I are down here to get you. We--, but that must keep. Lie low,
old chap. I've got to get away now and go awfully careful, but it'll be
all right----"

"Oh, Gus! My friend Gus! You here and for me? I believed the world--but
no matter now. Oh, my good friend Gus, you will not never give up? You
will--oh, my friend----"

"Go slow, Tony, not so loud! Do you think we would come this far and
then go back on you? I must get away now--right off. Lie low."

Gus felt an almost irresistible desire to break open the window or the
door at once and get his friend out. Then, if need be, fight their way
to safety, but common sense told him that the certain noise of doing
such a thing would be heard and perhaps his effort defeated, with great
danger to himself, and Tony, too. If there had been but one guard or
even two--but three were too great odds.

Back he went to his position, and there he watched for the rest of the
day, elated with his discovery of Tony, saddened by the delay, grinning
at the thought of the Malatesta and their confederate compelled to
watch, almost motionless, for the supposed prowlers.

At last darkness threatened. Those small banditti, the mosquitoes, as
bloody-minded as the Malatesta, began to sing and to stab. The assassin
owls made mournful cadences in keeping with the scene and its
half-tragic human purposes, while the whippoorwills voiced the one
element of brightness and hope.

The young fellow in the narrow, dark, log-walled cabin, with its barred
window and padlocked oaken door, had been long disconsolate. But now,
for the first time in many days, hope came to him as he walked back and
forth, fighting pests, still tortured in mind, fearing failure,
wondering, praying, yet proud and never beseeching, waiting for another
and perhaps a brighter day.

For three months he had been a prisoner, waking from a fevered sleep
after a long illness, his splendid constitution alone serving to doctor
him, he had found himself mysteriously at sea, in the locked cabin of a
tossing yacht that knew no harbor of rest. He had been denied even the
chance to talk to, or to know his jailers. He had managed to keep alive
on the rough, often unpalatable food poked under his door. There was no
response to his callings, hammerings or threats. A less balanced,
hopeful, kindly, gentle fellow would have gone insane.

Then, gagged and bound, he had been dumped about almost like a sack of
wheat and landed in this horrible place alongside of which his prison
room in the yacht was a palace. Now here for the first time had come a
friendly voice, that of more than a friend, indeed, and he had again
seized upon hope.

Yes, he would lie low, be patient, hope on and wait.

                               CHAPTER XXV


"Bill, Bill, we've found Tony! Saw him a little in the dark and talked
to him. We're going to get him out, Bill!" And Gus, after bursting in
with this good news, told his chum and old Dan all about it. Then they
held a council of war.

It was pretty certain that the Malatesta had no means of radio
communication, as they could not have burdened themselves with the
apparatus, nor could they have confined their communications to one
person. That they were seeking ransom money was also pretty certain, and
they were in a position to get it, too.

Bill, Gus and old Dan laid some plans, carefully considered from every
angle, and with the impetus of youth to be acted upon at once. Having
put their transmitting station in operation, Bill got busy on the wires,
and on a wave length of 360 meters, began broadcasting notifications to
Mr. Sabaste and to the police relative to Tony's whereabouts.

"Mr. Angelo Sabaste, do not send ransom money. Mr. Angelo Sabaste, do
not send ransom money. Please convey this message to Mr. Angelo Sabaste,
banker, of New York City, do not send ransom money. Police departments
and coast patrol, send swift vessels all along the coast to Lower Point
Gifford, and the lower inlet to head off any foray from the sea on the
part of those who may have caught this; also to prevent escape of
kidnapers from the inlet.

"Send men to surround the point and cut off escape by land along the
peninsula north of the inlet; also to watch the lower thoroughfare. Some
men meet the senders of this at Oysterman Dan's, in neck of woods above
Lower Point Gifford, to raid kidnapers' roost from there, and effect
rescue of young Anthony Sabaste.

"Station men and vessels to-night. Watch all landing places around Lower
Point. Be prepared for trouble. Kidnapers armed and will shoot. Anthony
Sabaste in small cabin in pine woods about one mile north of inlet. Hard
place to find. Guarded by three men.

"This is William Brown speaking, at Oysterman Dan's cottage--for
Augustus Grier, also. Have situation well in hand. Please radio reply at

Bill switched off his batteries and clamped the 'phones of the receiver
to his ears. He had to listen in for but a few moments.

"Police Department, City. West Rural Section speaking. We are in direct
communication with East State Mounted Force and contingents and will
relay, acting in unison. Also in communication with coast patrol who
also have your radio, no doubt, and will act independently. We are
sending men and will make raid in morning, closing in north of Lower
Point. Men sent to Oysterman Dan's house to-night. Coast patrol will
also go out to-night. Will advise you personally in the morning. Have
Dan send boat for men across thoroughfare to Stone Landing. If men not
there by three A.M., go to Possum Beach and wait."

Bill still listened and the message was repeated, almost verbatim; then
silence. He communicated the information to Gus and old Dan, and the
oysterman went off to tidy up his boat for the trip. Bill and Gus
decided to snatch a little sleep. Old Dan, who had napped in the
afternoon as usual, agreed to wake them before he left at about two
o'clock, which he did.

"Bill, I've got a hunch we are going at this thing a little too fast,"
said Gus.

"How too fast? We can't delay at all, can we?"

"But suppose, when the police make their raid, these Malatestas get
desperate and mad enough to kill Tony? They're a bad lot. I've a notion
we ought to get Tony out of there before----"

"The iron gets too hot, eh? I guess you are right, Gus."

"Look, Bill, here's a scheme. What if we work it this way?" Gus
proceeded to outline a plan with every detail of which Bill agreed; and
it called for action.

Taking the revolver and some extra cartridges, Bill hobbled along by
Gus, who gave him a lift, now and then, piggy-back. The boys made their
way south for more than a mile along the thoroughfare swamp edge. Then
they turned sharply on a path across the wooded peninsula to the beach,
and went another half mile among the dunes. A very tall pine tree
against the sky-line gave Gus his bearings. A little below that they
stopped, and Bill found a comfortable hiding-place among scrub pines,
with the boom of the breakers in his ears and the sea breeze keeping off
the mosquitoes.

Gus cast about silently for the path that led in to the kidnapers'
cabin. Finding it with some difficulty in the darkness, he noted certain
landmarks and went back to Bill. Agreeing on signals in whispers, Gus
went back to the path and struck a match, whereupon Bill fired a shot,
and immediately afterward, another. Then Gus swiftly made his way
directly toward the cabin, and when near it, called softly:

"Hello, hello, you fellers! It's me, Sam."

There was a very profound silence for a few minutes. Gus called again:

"Hello! It's me, Sam. Don't shoot!"

And very much with his heart in his mouth, but still determined, he
advanced, crouching low so that a bullet would most likely pass high
over him. Suddenly a figure appeared directly in front of him and a
flashlight was thrown in his face for an instant. Gus knew that he had
been identified.

"Lay low," he whispered, not forgetting to keep up the dialect. "They're
out there, somebody--sneakin' along in the open. I seen 'em an' let fly
at 'em an' they shot back, but I run on down the woodses. Git yer gang
an' come along so's we kin head 'em off if they start in here."

"How we do that? We stay here an' fight 'em, eh?"

"An' that'll give 'em the lay o' this place. We want t' draw 'em up the
beach. Chase along up through the woodses an' come out 'bout a mile
above and shoot oncet er twicet. Two of us kin do that an' two kin lay
out yan at the end o' the path an' watch fer any of 'em startin' in this
away, an' then you kin lead 'em off. See? That's the way the smugglin'
fellers do it."

The plan must have looked good to the fellow still in the darkness; Gus
did not know to whom he was talking, but he heard the man walk away
rapidly. He waited, as though on pins, and in a moment three figures
loomed before him, one voice questioning him again. The boy tactfully
repeated his suggestions--then turned back with them as they started
forward, evidently agreeing.

One fellow, Gus could see, was rubbing his eyes. All carried guns.

Two men kept to the path that led toward the beach edge of the woods.
Another and Gus went straight on. Presently Gus suggested that they stop
and rest awhile; then move on farther up, stop, scatter a little, and
listen. He would sneak out into the open, he said, and look around.
There was no danger of his being seen. It would be best to remain thus
for an hour or more--perhaps till morning, mosquitoes or no mosquitoes.
A grunt signified agreement.

The boy crept out toward the dunes and on, until he felt sure he could
not be heard. Then, with the smooth, hard sand for a track he ran,
softly on tiptoe, until once again he came below the tall pine. A low
hiss thrice repeated was answered, and he found Bill in the same spot.

"They're all stuck along in the woods yonder," Gus whispered. "If you
hear them moving off toward the cabin again, shoot. If they go on, shoot
twice. If they come your way, lie low. Here goes for Tony, old scout!"

Gus had some difficulty getting to the cabin from the south side. He
missed it once, got too far into the woods, turned, regained the dunes,
struck in again and this time started to pass within a few yards of it,
but by merest chance saw the gable end against the sky.

                              CHAPTER XXVI

                             A CALL FOR HELP

Again Gus approached the cabin, feeling sure now of the outcome of the
plan. He reached the clump of thick pines below the tall one and turned
to make the bee-line in, not a hundred yards from the building, when the
alarm notes of a ruffed grouse reached his ears. It was just ahead, the
angry, quick, threatening call of a mother bird, disturbed with her
young, quick to fight and to warn them of danger. Might not this be a
weasel, fox or mink that had sneaked upon her? But if so, it would be
the note of warning only, to scatter the little ones into hiding-places
while the hen sought a safe shelter just out of the reach of the
marauder and after she had, pretending a hurt, led it to a distance from
the brood.

But this was different. The grouse had played her usual trick of decoy,
no doubt, and failing in this had returned to attack something regarded
as a larger enemy. She would know better than to include deer, or the
wandering, half-wild cattle of the peninsula as such. There were no puma
and few bear in these woods, and surely none here. What then could the
disturber be but a man? Gus well knew the ways of these knowing birds.

The boy's advance now became so cautious as to make no audible sound even
to himself, such being possible over the pine needles. Slowly he gained a
vantage point where again the roof gable was visible against the sky. No
sound ahead, except the mother grouse making the sweetest music
imaginable in calling her young ones together during a half minute. The
coast must be clear,--but just as the boy was about to go boldly forward,
a flash of light shone about him and his staring eyes discerned, not
thirty feet away, the three watchers standing together. They had
returned, probably by pre-arrangement and had met in the roadway. Now
they were silently listening for the fourth fellow--himself. One chap,
thinking that they were not observed, had struck a match to see the time,
or to light a cigarette. Had they been looking in Gus's direction they
might have seen him. Presently, mumbling some words, they all went on
again toward the cabin, and Gus, sick at heart because seeing now no
chance for a renewal of his effort, turned back after an hour to where
Bill waited.

"Why, Gus, they came out here, all of them together and went part way
over to the beach, then returned almost right away. I could hear only
their voices at first, but when they came back they passed close enough
for me to hear a little of what they said, I think it was the Malatesta
that we know. He was declaring that 'he,' and I guess he meant you, must
be the same. Do you think he knows you, Gus?"

"I don't know. They must be suspicious of my story, or my purpose,
anyway, or they would have stayed out and watched. Perhaps one of them
followed far enough to hear me head out this way. Anyway, they think the
cabin is the safest place. We can't do anything now, so let's go back
and hit the hay."

They went back, Gus to throw himself on old Dan's couch and sleep like a
dead man and Bill to take up the receiver phones, nodding over the
table, to be sure, but remaining generally awake. For two hours he kept
catching odd bits of no importance through long intervals. Then suddenly
he sat up and, reaching over, poked Gus with his crutch. After two or
three hard pokes Gus opened his eyes.

"Say, somebody's calling for help! I can't get it right, I reckon
they've taken Tony away and out to sea again. Can't tell who it's from;
it's all jumbled, anyway. Done now, I guess."

"But what was it?" asked Gus, now very wide awake.

"It came like this, in code," said Bill. "The 'S.O.S.' several times.
Then: 'Aground. Rounding inlet, east channel, headed out. Hurry.' There
was a lot of stuff in between, but not intelligible."

"Can it be Tony?"

"Who else?"

"But would they let him broadcast anything?"

"Gave them the slip, maybe."

"What'll we do?"

"You say it."

"Well, then--rounding east channel of inlet, eh? Tide going out. Likely
they'll stick on the shoals. If only Dan were here now."

"What then?"

"Why, we'd take his catboat and overhaul them. They'll probably stick
going about and the wind's dead against going out. But Dan----"

"Isn't here, but I am. I'll go forward with the gun and you can handle
the _Stella_. Let's go!"

They went. It was but the work of a few minutes to gain the landing,
hoist sail, cast off and reach down the bay, the wind abeam. Bill got
into a snug place at the mast, Gus held the tiller, each boy firmly
determined to do something that might call for the utmost daring and
swift action.

Turning into the wind at the inlet, the boys went about first on the
starboard tack and then luffed a half dozen times to get through into
the broader water; but the sand bars were erratic. Gus knew two that
were fixed from the set currents; other might change every few days.
Bill crept to the rail and gazed ahead; there had been a moon, but it
was cloudy.

Fortune favored them, however. At the moment that they were about to hit
a narrow sand bar, the clouds parted and Bill gave a yell. Gus also saw
the line of white and shoved over his tiller, missing the bar by the
closest margin. In deep water again they swept across the inlet as the
clouds darkened the moon and they were suddenly confronted by a splotch
of white. They swerved once more just in time to avoid striking the
stern of a small schooner fast on a bar, only her jib flapping in the
breeze, not a light showing.

Gus put the _Stella's_ head into the wind and close-hauled the boom, but
she fell away slowly. He told Bill to hail, which was done with a truly
sailor-like "Ahoy!" repeated many times, and followed by the
landlubber's "Hello, there!" but without getting an answer. Gus had to
work around to get the wind so as to come up again. Still there was no
reply to the hailing, and without more ado the _Stella_ was put
alongside of the schooner, going also aground, but lightly.

"You grapple and hold her, Bill. I'll board her and see what's what,"
said Gus, pistol in hand, stepping over the schooner's rail.

Swiftly, without hesitation, he rounded the cabin, peered down the small
companion-way and shouted into the cabin, door, calling loudly. Then he
went back, got the _Stella's_ lantern, and Bill, having made fast,
limped along after, gun in hand. The two silently explored every nook
and cranny finding, to their utter astonishment, no one aboard. The door
to one of the staterooms, however, was fastened.

"I wonder if somebody is in there," whispered Gus.

"Must be. Looks funny. Let's call," Bill suggested.

"I guess we'd better beat it and mind our own business," said Gus,
loudly. "Come on, we don't belong here at all."

Had the boys been suddenly confronted with a genie, at the behest of
Aladdin's lamp, their surprise could not have been much greater than at
the response from within the room. It was a girl's voice that reached
them, and though very sweet and low it was full of trepidation.

"I hear you. What can you be plotting now? If you intend to kill me you
will have to destroy this boat to do it, for I'll surely kill you if you
try to break in here. Now, you'd better listen to me again. Sail back
and I'll see that you're not arrested and--I'll get you a reward. You
will only get into jail by this----"

"I guess, Miss, you're talking to the wrong party," said Bill.

"You're mistaking us for somebody else," asserted Gus.

"Oh, who are you, then?" came the voice.

"Two fellows at your service. We got a radio at Oysterman Dan's and
thought we could rescue----"

"I sent it. I got to the wireless when they were working to get us off.
But please tell me exactly who you are."

"We are Marshallton Tech boys, down here on vacation,--that's all."

"Oh, you are? We know the professor of political economy----"

"Jennings? He's one of our favorites--fine chap."

"And that was where that boy was kidnaped, too."

"The same. He never turned up." Bill nudged Gus.

"Two weeks ago I was at Guilford and saw the ball game with Marshallton
Tech," said the voice.

"Hooray! Right out here with me is the pitcher who won that shut-out for

"No! Do you really mean it? And then it was you who hailed and came
aboard just now, and the others have not returned? I can trust you,
can't I?"

"Why not? We're really harmless. But tell us who are these fellows?"

"I do not know, except that they are scoundrels and thieves,--of that I
am sure."

The door suddenly opened and a figure stood before the boys, something
white, glistening and menacing in her hand. An arm was outstretched to
turn a switch. With the flooding light Bill and Gus beheld a very pretty
girl of about their own age, who smiled at them and hastily held the
revolver behind her. Reassured, she calmly continued:

"I am Lucy Waring. May I ask----?"

"My chum here is Gus Grier and I am Bill Brown."

"I shall be indebted to you forever," the girl said graciously. "You see
I am in an awful fix. Those men deliberately stole our boat. This is my
father's auxiliary yacht, the _X-Ray_. My father is Doctor Louis Waring,

"The great Doctor Waring, nerve specialist?"

"Nerves, yes. I believe people call him great sometimes. You see we have
a summer home at Hawk's Bill, just below the inlet here, and we girls,
my two sisters and some friends are there now. Father and Mother are
coming down to-morrow. I'm fond of boating, and sometimes, just to be on
the water, I come down and sleep in the yacht. To-night I did and I
waked up to feel that we were adrift and sailing, with somebody on
board--two, I think. While I was wondering what to do, one came and
tried my door and called to me, I said something to him, you may
believe! But he would hardly listen to me, though he couldn't force the
door and I told him I'd shoot if he did. Presently we went aground and
the men went back and started to work with the motor. I slipped out and
got at the wireless, locking my door after me and locking the wireless
room door. I don't know how they didn't hear me, though they were making
an awful racket trying to hammer something. I sent several messages,
then I listened and still heard them talking and slipped back. They
couldn't get the engine to run--it can hardly be cranked, but it has a
starter which they didn't understand. About half an hour ago they went
off in the dory and I thought they were returning when you came."

"And you have no idea who they are?"

"None whatever. I only know that the talk of the one that called to me
sounded as though he were a foreigner, perhaps an Italian--about the
other I couldn't say. They surely meant to steal this boat, and if they
had not stuck here, I don't know whatever would have become of me. And
now, may I ask of you to----?"

"Start that motor and get you back? You sure may--and it ought not to be
much of a job."

"My father will liberally reward you."

"We don't want any reward, Miss Waring. Doing mechanical stunts in
trying to rescue people is our specialty."

                              CHAPTER XXVII

                               UNDER FIRE

"I have a hunch," put in Gus, "that those fellows may come back any
minute, possibly with some means, or hoping to get this boat afloat. We
don't want them to catch us off guard."

"I'll stand watch," said the girl. "The slightest intimation----"

"Good. Let's look at that power plant," demanded Bill.

It was a matter of minutes only, although the time was lengthened by the
boat thieves' having hammered the gearing that connected with the
starter, trying to slide it along on its shaft key in order to permit
the cranking. They had failed in some way, however, to manipulate the
gas and spark.

The boys had slipped the gearing into place again and the adjustments
had been made, when a call from the girl made the busy lads grab their
weapons and get up on deck, Bill being almost as quick as Gus.

Not fifty yards away and plainly seen in the now unclouded moonlight, a
skiff was approaching. The boys, lying flat on the deck and peering over
the rail, and the girl, crouching in the companion-way, could see three
persons in the dory. Gus again told Bill to hail.

"Ahoy, there! Back water and stay where you are! What do you want?"

The rhythmic beat of the oars continued, rapidly lessening the distance.

"Halt, or we'll shoot! If you don't want to get sunk and have your
carcasses filled as full of holes as a pepper-box, you'll sheer off!"

This had its effect. The oars were held and pushed to check the motion.
No word came in reply, but Gus plainly saw an object that resembled a
gun barrel come from a vertical to a foreshortened position. This was
sufficient for drastic action, though the boy was averse to compelling a
tragedy. With careful aim he sent a load of shot just over the heads of
the boatmen, then instantly fired another into the water at one side.
Almost immediately a shot came in reply, the bullet glancing from the
cabin roof.

Gus slipped in two more shells and coolly waited, knowing that there was
only a remote possibility that the shots from the dory would do any
great harm, but intending, if the rascals fired again, to give them a
real taste of buckshot firing, at the bow of their boat first, to
splinter and sink it gradually; then at the men if they persisted.

The dory turned about quickly. The oarsman was evidently in haste to get
away. Then came a hail:

"Say, you! What you do in thata boat? That our boat! Get out, I say to
you! We want to come aboard and go on away!"

Gus had heard that voice before. It belonged to one of the Malatesta.
Did they have Tony with them? Were they making a terrible effort to
escape in this way from the peninsula, and get to sea again? How then
would they secure the hoped for ransom? Or were they merely going to
hide the _X-Ray_, expecting to use her if their scheme fell short? Bill
had sensed the situation.

"_Your_ boat, is she? You'll find her back at Hawk's Bill where she
belongs, and in a little while you're going to find yourself in jail.
Beat it now while the water's fine!"

The oarsman was nothing loath. Either he was not the bravest in the
party, or else he had the keenest appreciation of the odds against an
exposed position. In a very few minutes the dory was a mere gray wraith
on the water, but there it hung. Evidently the rower was overruled by
others less cautious, or of the certain conviction that at the distance
the yacht was a better mark than a rowboat.

Bill had the motor going in a jiffy. Gus was at the wheel, crouching.
Throwing in the reverse clutch he sent the boat off the sands. Then,
letting Bill hold her steady, dropped the _Stella's_ sails, cast her
loose at the end of a hauser for a tow rope, paid it out from the stern
and went back to the wheel.

He was about to swing round and head back into the narrow channel free
from sand bars, which he could discern by the rougher water, when
bullets began to come from the dory. They were aimed at the wheel and
whether sent low or not, the trajectory, even from a high-powered gun,
would pull them down to the danger level. One struck the mast directly
in front of him. One hit the deck and glanced singing. The music from
another flattened bullet was stopped by the water beyond.

Gus wanted desperately to get behind something, for this firing might
mean death or wounding at any moment. But he held on, hoping shortly to
get out of range. Bill, at the rear hatch, called to Gus to set her and
come below, and Gus called back that they'd be aground again in a minute
if he did. Then a brave deed was done.

The girl, perhaps as fully aware of the danger as the boys, leaped into
the cabin, came out with two chairs and some cushions, erected a
barricade alongside of Gus and said to him:

"I want to get back and we can't stop, but most of all I want you to be

Then she gave a sudden cry and staggered into the cabin. Gus called
Bill, who limped across quickly. The shots continued, and one hit the
chairs. Gus wondered where it would have hit him. Presently they were
too far away for the shots to reach them, for they had entered the
narrow bay.

                             CHAPTER XXVIII

                             ANOTHER SCHEME

Bill was not cut out for a nurse. His sympathies were large, but his
fingers, deft at managing fine mechanical apparatus, were all thumbs
when it came to anything even remotely concerned with human anatomy. The
girl had been hit in the shoulder, undoubtedly a mere flesh wound, and
the bleeding must be stopped. Lucy was very pale, but there was never a
tear, nor the least indication of her fainting. She merely held her arm
down and watched, with most rueful countenance, the blood dripping from
her finger tips upon the polished floor.

"I'll get Gus," said Bill, almost ready to weep at the sight the girl
presented. She had torn her dress from her shoulder and a seared gash
was disclosed which she could not well observe.

Gus pointed out the course to Bill, then went into the cabin. In a
minute or less he had searched and obtained clean rags, torn strips from
them, found a nearly exhausted bottle of vaseline, coated the rag with
it and, with a deftness almost worthy of a surgeon, washed the wound
with a quick sopping of gasoline. Then as more blood was flowing, he
bound up the shoulder and arm so that the flow stopped and by its
coagulation germs were excluded. Whereupon Lucy sought a couch where she
lay, exhausted, and with a decided desire to cry, while Gus went back to
the wheel.

                    *       *       *       *       *

"You shall hear from father and mother and all of us. They will be here
early and father must see you." This was the very earnest declaration of
the elder Waring sister, a young woman of twenty-five or more, "I cannot
alone express our thanks, our deep gratitude----"

"To use a rather slangy expression--please 'forget it,'" said Bill,

Lucy, supported by another older sister, could only thank the boys with
her pretty eyes. She did make so bold as to hold the hand of poor Gus
until he turned a fiery red. Blushing herself, even through her pallor,
she still persisted in trying to show her appreciation and admiration.
Bill had to grab and pull his stammering chum away.

The run back in the _Stella_ was made in rapid time to her owner's slip.
And there, the morning light just beginning to show in the eastern sky,
the boys found an odd-looking fellow busily getting ready to cast off a
fishing skiff. He was one Pepperman, commonly called "Swamp" for short.
He was something of a crony of Dan's and the boys had seen him before.

As they headed in they made out the identity of "Swamp." Gus suddenly
had one of his ideas. He conveyed it to Bill in few words:

"We'll get 'Swamp' to go to those Malatestas and tell them he can steal
them a boat. Then we'll get Tony away if he's still there. You talk to

"Hello, Mr. Pepperman! Going fishing?" began Bill, as they made fast and
lowered sail. "Yes? Expect to catch much? No? Well, I know something
that will bring you in two hours more money than in three weeks of the
best fishing you ever had."

"Swamp" wanted to know how such a thing could be done. Said Bill:

"Dead easy! You take a walk right away down through the pines toward the
Point. Know how to whistle a tune? Sure; well then, come over all the
tunes you know. Let on you're hunting for special fish bait or
something. Sheer off toward the big pine and keep through toward the
ocean. You'll meet somebody likely. Don't get curious, but talk fishing
and boats. Tell them you take folks fishing and that you have a dandy
boat all ready--a fast one. They'll probably want to see her. Tell them
you keep her up here, but if they'll hang off shore at the Point you'll
sail her around there. Then, when they leave for the Point and you're
sure of it, you come up the bay side road and tell us. We'll be waiting.
How much is there in it? Twenty-five dollars, Mr. Pepperman, if your
errand turns out successfully. Is that enough?"

"I reckon hit air," remarked the sententious "Swamp." "When do I git the

"Any time--to-day," said Gus, and without another word the lanky fellow,
laying aside his tackle and bait of crab meat, was off into the woods.

Hardly an hour passed before Gus remarked to tired and sleepy Bill:
"Somebody's coming. I'll bet it's 'Swamp.'"

It was, and he reported the exact carrying out of the plan. Two men,
young fellows, one very dark-skinned, the other light, and both carrying
guns, had started to the Point to wait for him. The other man,--there
had been three along the wood road--had headed up into the nearer woods
along the ocean side.

"You go back and wait for Dan," said Gus to Bill. "I'm going to make one
more try for Tony."

                              CHAPTER XXIX

                           AT THE CRACK O' DAY


There was no reply. Gus called again, more sharply, but still fearful of
being heard. Silence. There could be no delay in action. With his nerves
still a-tingle, the boy seized a stout bit of wood, evidently cut for
the fireplace, inserted it between the window bars, bore down and with a
low squeak of protest the nails came out. Another pry, with the sill for
a fulcrum, and there was a hole big enough for a body to get through.
The bit of wood now acted as a step and in a moment Gus was inside the

At the extreme end, lying against the logs, lay a figure. Gus instantly
stooped to shake it. Tony waked up with a cry of alarm.

"Don't, don't yell, Tony, it's Gus! Get up and come quick!"

Nothing more was required of Tony. He was instantly awake and in action.
Not another word passed between the boys--but was that cry heard by the
kidnapers?--the rescuer wondered--and with reason. They must be off

To the window! As Tony drew near it, pulling Gus by the hand across the
dark room, he paused. Outside there was the faint sound of a step. Tony
uttered a faint "sh," and grabbed Gus by the arm. It was the elder

"Ah! So? You make get-away. I fix that." The next instant the muzzle of
a rifle was poked through the broken place--poked well through, and
possibly this shrewd defier of law and order never made a greater
mistake, which he recognized when he felt the muzzle seized and bent

He pulled the trigger, but the bullet buried itself harmlessly in the
wall of the cabin. Malatesta attempted to jerk the gun away, but Gus,
fortified by the leverage against the sill and the window bars, held on,
his own weapon crashing to the floor. How Tony managed to dive through
that hole as he did, landing squarely on his enemy neither he nor Gus
ever could figure out, but when Gus found the weapon free in his hands,
picked up his own gun and followed Tony he found the insensible
miscreant, who had received a sufficient smash in the jaw from Tony's

"We must fly, my dear friend Gus," said Tony, "for now they will
come--those other two!"

"We will stay right here and give them a pleasant reception," said Gus.
"I will watch on the path, Tony. You take this gun. But first get a
rope, quick! Tie that chap's arms behind him and search him for
automatics, or anything."

It was but the work of a few minutes. Malatesta seemed to hesitate about
coming to his senses. This was a good thing for the success of the
subsequent capture; for the elder brother might have called out and
warned his two confederates.

Gus told Tony to guard the far side of the cabin and arranged that
either must come at the call of the other. They must shoot only when

Back came the younger Malatesta, their better known enemy. From behind a
bush Gus poked his shotgun muzzle into the fellow's ribs, told him to
drop his rifle and stick up his hands. As he did this, he uttered a
frantic yell of warning. Then he, too, was seized and bound.

They waited long and eagerly for the American accomplice. Would he sneak
through the woods and try to surprise them? To guard against this, Gus
left Tony with the two prisoners, thus reversing the conditions under
which he had lately been held. There was no glee, no revengeful spirit
shown by the fine-minded Italian youth, but a keen sense of satisfaction
and determination glowed in his eyes.

Gus scoured the woods, hoping to find the accomplice, who would not
recognize him as an enemy. But the fellow was gone. It was an easy thing
for him to hide there--but not so easy to get away altogether, past the
cordon of police now swarming over the peninsula. But he did get away,
for he was never heard of again.

                               CHAPTER XXX

                              MORE MESSAGES

Oysterman Dan's little cottage became the scene of more than a reunion
of old friends and of glad father and son. The news reporters also came,
and, somewhat to his disgust, old Dan had to submit to his "pixture
bein' took," along with the banker, Bill, Gus, Tony, and some of the
insistent police and detectives who are often too eager for notoriety.

The Malatesta brothers, too, were not forgotten. Before they were taken
off to a well deserved imprisonment, they were pictured and thus
indelibly branded. Later they were returned to their native country.

All this business having been accomplished and Oysterman Dan rewarded
utterly beyond his imagination, Mr. Sabaste took command with a lavish
hand, and the return of the four principals, by yacht and motor car,
became a gala affair. Bill and Gus refused beyond parley to accept the
reward Mr. Sabaste had offered. What the boys had done was in friendship
only. Expenses? The banker had the say as to that.

Tony, in spite of his long imprisonment, was speedily restored to his
happy, kindly state of mind. A long, roundabout trip took them all back
to the Marshallton Tech where the late unfortunate could again outfit
himself from an ample wardrobe, while Bill and Gus restored, with the
janitor's knowledge, the radio transmitting set and the portable
receiver. A new receiving set was to be completed soon and set up for
Oysterman Dan.

The Farrells were visited; Tony went to the room he had occupied, but he
could not remember a thing that had occurred there in connection with
his mysterious disappearance. The farmer's wife and daughter set them
all down to a good, old-fashioned American dinner that the Sabastes
laughingly declared did not need spaghetti to make it perfect.

Then, at the school again, the banker requested the use once more of the
radio transmitter. Bill sat, listening in. Gus and Tony stood in the
doorway, talking of school days.

"This is Angelo Sabaste speaking. I wish especially to convey a message
to my old friend Guglielmo Marconi, on his yacht, the _Elettra_."

Then followed many words in Italian, interspersed only here and there
with an American proper name.

At the end of the message there was the usual pause. The banker took up
the phones, Gus and Tony rushed to others. Presently they heard, in
quiet, even tones, the hoped-for reply in English, as Mr. Sabaste had
requested it should be:

"Senatore Marconi sends congratulations to Signor Sabaste that his son
is restored to him and that two criminals, though they are our
countrymen, are to be sent from America, where too many such have come
and belittled the name of Italy. But men like Signor Sabaste will lift
that estimate.

"Senatore Marconi suggests, at your request, that the finest reward that
could come to these young Americans who have shown such loyalty to your
son, with such ingenuity and mechanical ability, is that they be
encouraged to complete their technical education and then, with your
son, to use their talents in a commercial way. Again congratulations for
your son and those young Americans and--the best of success!"

How Mr. Sabaste, eager to carry out this suggestion from the famous
inventor of wireless communication, joined with the boys' old friend Mr.
Hooper in the establishment of a company in mechanical and electrical
engineering, under the name of The Loyalty Company, will be told in
"Bill Brown, Radio Wizard."

                                THE END

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