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Chapter 19 "Good-By, Pete!"

  • Charlie Chan lived in a bungalow that clung precariously to the side o_unchbowl Hill. Pausing a moment at the gate, John Quincy looked down o_onolulu, one great gorgeous garden set in an amphitheater of mountains. _eautiful picture, but he had no time for beauty now. He hurried up the brie_alk that lay in the shadow of the palm trees.
  • A Chinese woman—a servant, she seemed—ushered him into Chan's dimly-lighte_iving-room. The detective was seated at a table playing chess; he rose wit_ignity when he saw his visitor. In this, his hour of ease, he wore a lon_oose robe of dark purple silk, which fitted closely at the neck and had wid_leeves. Beneath it showed wide trousers of the same material, and on his fee_ere shoes of silk, with thick felt soles. He was all Oriental now, suave an_ngratiating but remote, and for the first time John Quincy was reall_onscious of the great gulf across which he and Chan shook hands.
  • "You do my lowly house immense honor," Charlie said. "This proud moment ar_ade still more proud by opportunity to introduce my eldest son." He motione_or his opponent at chess to step forward, a slim sallow boy with ambe_yes—Chan himself before he put on weight. "Mr. John Quincy Winterslip, o_oston, kindly condescend to notice Henry Chan. When you appear I am givin_im lesson at chess so he may play in such manner as not to tarnish honore_ame."
  • The boy bowed low; evidently he was one member of the younger generation wh_ad a deep respect for his elders. John Quincy also bowed. "Your father is m_ery good friend," he said. "And from now on, you are too."
  • Chan beamed with pleasure. "Condescend to sit on this atrocious chair. Is i_ossible you bring news?"
  • "It certainly is," smiled John Quincy. He handed over the message from th_ostmaster at Des Moines.
  • "Most interesting," said Chan. "Do I hear impressive chug of rich automobil_ngine in street?"
  • "Yes, I came in the car," John Quincy replied.
  • "Good. We will hasten at once to home of Captain Hallet, not far away. I be_f you to pardon my disappearance while I don more appropriate costume."
  • Left alone with the boy, John Quincy sought a topic of conversation. "Pla_aseball?" he asked.
  • The boy's eyes glowed. "Not very good, but I hope to improve. My cousin Willi_han is great expert at that game. He has promised to teach me."
  • John Quincy glanced about the room. On the back wall hung a scroll wit_elicitations, the gift of some friend of the family at New Year's. Opposit_im, on another wall, was a single picture, painted on silk, representing _ird on an apple bough. Charmed by its simplicity, he went over to examine it.
  • "That's beautiful" he said.
  • "Quoting old Chinese saying, a picture is a voiceless poem," replied the boy.
  • Beneath the picture stood a square table, flanked by straight, low-backe_rmchairs. On other elaborately carved teakwood stands distributed about th_oom were blue and white vases, porcelain wine jars, dwarfed trees. Pal_olden lanterns hung from the ceiling; a soft-toned rug lay on the floor. Joh_uincy felt again the gulf between himself and Charlie Chan.
  • But when the detective returned, he wore the conventional garb of Los Angele_r Detroit, and the gulf did not seem so wide. They went out together an_ntering the roadster, drove to Hallet's house on Iolani Avenue.
  • The captain lolled in pajamas on his lanai. He greeted his callers wit_nterest.
  • "You boys are out late," he said. "Something doing?"
  • "Certainly is," replied John Quincy, taking a proffered chair. "There's a ma_amed Saladine—"
  • At mention of the name, Hallet looked at him keenly. John Quincy went on t_ell what he knew of Saladine, his alleged place of residence, his business, the tragedy of the lost teeth.
  • "Some time ago we got on to the fact that every time Kaohla figured in th_nvestigation, Saladine was interested. He managed to be at the desk of th_eef and Palm the day Kaohla inquired for Brade. On the night Kaohla wa_uestioned by your men, Miss Egan saw Mr. Saladine crouching outside th_indow. So Charlie and I thought it a good scheme to send a cable of inquir_o the postmaster at Des Moines, where Saladine claimed to be in the wholesal_rocery business." He handed an envelope to Hallet. "That answer arrived to- night," he added.
  • An odd smile had appeared on Hallet's usually solemn face. He took the cabl_nd read it, then slowly tore it into bits.
  • "Forget it, boys," he said calmly.
  • "Wha—what!" gasped John Quincy.
  • "I said forget it. I like your enterprise, but you're on the wrong trai_here."
  • John Quincy was greatly annoyed. "I demand an explanation," he cried.
  • "I can't give it to you," Hallet answered. "You'll have to take my word fo_t."
  • "I've taken your word for a good many things," said John Quincy hotly. "Thi_egins to look rather suspicious to me. Are you trying to shield somebody?"
  • Hallet rose and laid his hand on John Quincy's shoulder. "I've had a har_ay," he remarked, "and I'm not going to get angry with you. I'm not trying t_hield anybody. I'm as anxious as you are to discover who killed Da_interslip. More anxious, perhaps."
  • "Yet when we bring you evidence you tear it up—"
  • "Bring me the right evidence," said Hallet. "Bring me that wrist watch. I ca_romise you action then."
  • John Quincy was impressed by the sincerity in his tone. But he was sadl_uzzled, too. "All right," he said, "that's that. I'm sorry if we've trouble_ou with this trivial matter—"
  • "Don't talk like that," Hallet broke in. "I'm glad of your help. But as far a_r. Saladine is concerned—" he looked at Chan—"let him alone."
  • Chan bowed. "You are undisputable chief," he replied.
  • They went back to Punchbowl Hill in the roadster, both rather dejected. A_han alighted at his gate, John Quincy spoke: "Well, I'm pau. Saladine was m_ast hope."
  • Chan stared for a moment at the moonlit Pacific that lay beyond the water- front lamps. "Stone wall surround us," he said dreamily. "But we circle about, seeking loophole. Moment of discovery will come."
  • "I wish I thought so," replied John Quincy.
  • Chan smiled. "Patience are a very lovely virtue," he remarked. "Seem that wa_o me. But maybe that are my Oriental mind. Your race, I perceive, regar_atience with ever-swelling disfavor."
  • It was with swelling disfavor that John Quincy regarded it as he drove back t_aikiki. Yet he had great need of patience in the days immediately following.
  • For nothing happened.
  • The forty-eight-hour period given him to leave Hawaii expired, but the write_f that threatening letter failed to come forward and relieve the tedium.
  • Thursday arrived, a calm day like the others; Thursday night, peaceful an_erene.
  • On Friday afternoon Agatha Parker broke the monotony by a cable sent from th_yoming ranch.
  • "You must be quite mad. I find the West crude and impossible."
  • John Quincy smiled; he could picture her as she wrote it, proud, haughty, unyielding. She must have been popular with the man who transmitted th_essage. Or was he, too, an exile from the East?
  • And perhaps the girl was right. Perhaps he was mad, after all. He sat on Da_interslip's lanai, trying to think things out. Boston, the office, the ar_allery, the theaters. The Common on a winter's day, with the air bracing an_ull of life. The thrill of a new issue of bonds, like the thrill of _heatrical first night—would it get over big or flop at his feet? Tennis a_ongwood, long evenings on the Charles, golf with people of his own kind a_agnolia. Tea out of exquisite cups in dim old drawing-rooms. Wasn't he mad t_hink of giving up all that? But what had Miss Minerva said? "If your chanc_ver comes—"
  • The problem was a big one, and big problems were annoying out here where th_otus grew. He yawned, and went aimlessly down-town. Drifting into the publi_ibrary, he saw Charlie Chan hunched over a table that held an enormou_olume. John Quincy went closer. The book was made up of back numbers of th_onolulu morning paper, and it was open at a time-yellowed sporting page.
  • "Hello, Chan. What are you up to?"
  • Chan gave him a smile of greeting. "Hello. Little bit of careless readin_hile I gallop about seeking loophole."
  • He closed the big volume casually. "You seem in the best of health."
  • "Oh, I'm all right."
  • "No more fierce shots out of bushes?"
  • "Not a trigger pulled. I imagine that was a big bluff—nothing more."
  • "What do you say—bluff?"
  • "I mean the fellow's a coward, after all."
  • Chan shook his head solemnly. "Pardon humble suggestion—do not los_arefulness. Hot heads plenty in hot climate."
  • "I'll look before I leap," John Quincy promised. "But I'm afraid I interrupte_ou."
  • "Ridiculous thought," protested Chan.
  • "I'll go along. Let me know if anything breaks."
  • "Most certainly. Up to present, everything are intact."
  • John Quincy paused at the door of the reference room. Charlie Chan ha_romptly opened the big book, and was again bending over it with every show o_nterest.
  • Returning to Waikiki, John Quincy faced a dull evening. Barbara had gone t_he island of Kauai for a visit with old friends of the family. He had no_een sorry when she went, for he didn't feel quite at ease in her presence.
  • The estrangement between the girl and Jennison continued; the lawyer had no_een at the dock to see her off. Yes, John Quincy had parted from her gladly, but her absence cast a pall of loneliness over the house on Kalia Road.
  • After dinner, he sat with his pipe on the lanai. Down the beach at the Ree_nd Palm pleasant company was available—but he hesitated. He had seen Carlot_gan several times by day, on the beach or in the water. She was very happ_ow, though somewhat appalled at thought of her approaching visit to England.
  • They'd had several talks about that—daylight talks. John Quincy was a bi_fraid to entrust himself—as Chan had said in speaking of his stone idol—of a_vening. After all, there was Agatha, there was Boston. There was Barbara, too. Being entangled with three girls at once was a rather wearing experience.
  • He rose, and went down-town to the movies.
  • On Saturday morning he was awakened early by the whir of aeroplanes above th_ouse. The American fleet was in the offing, and the little brothers of th_ir service hastened out to hover overhead in friendly welcome. That day _pirit of carnival prevailed in Honolulu, flags floated from every masthead, and the streets bloomed, as Barbara had predicted, with handsome boys i_potless uniforms. They were everywhere, swarming in the souvenir stores, besieging the soda fountains, skylarking on the trolley-cars. Evening brough_ great ball at the beach hotel, and John Quincy, out for a walk, saw tha_very spic and span uniform moved toward Waikiki, accompanied by a fair youn_hing who was only too happy to serve as sweetheart in that particular port.
  • John Quincy felt, suddenly, rather out of things. Each pretty girl he sa_ecalled Carlota Egan. He turned his wandering footsteps toward the Reef an_alm, and oddly enough, his pace quickened at once.
  • The proprietor himself was behind the desk, his eyes calm and untroubled now.
  • "Good evening, Mr. Egan—or should I say Mr. Cope," remarked John Quincy.
  • "Oh, we'll stick to the Egan, I guess," the man replied. "Sort of got out o_he hang of the other. Mr. Winterslip, I'm happy to see you. Cary will be dow_n a moment."
  • John Quincy gazed about the big public room. It was a scene of confusion, spattered ladders, buckets of paint, rolls of new wall-paper. "What's goin_n?" he inquired.
  • "Freshening things up a bit," Egan answered. "You know, we're in society now."
  • He laughed. "Yes, sir, the old Reef and Palm has been standing here a lon_ime without so much as a glance from the better element of Honolulu. But no_hey know I'm related to the British Admiralty, they've suddenly discovere_t's a quaint and interesting place. They're dropping in for tea. Just fancy.
  • But that's Honolulu."
  • "That's Boston, too," John Quincy assured him.
  • "Yes—and precisely the sort of thing I ran away from England to escape, a goo_any years ago. I'd tell them all to go to the devil—but there's Cary.
  • Somehow, women feel differently about those things. It will warm her heart _it to have these dowagers smile upon her. And they're smiling—you know, they've even dug up the fact that my Cousin George has been knighted fo_aking a particularly efficient brand of soap." He grimaced. "It's nothing I'_ave mentioned myself—a family skeleton, as I see it. But society has od_tandards. And I mustn't be hard on poor old George. As Arthur says, makin_oap is good clean fun."
  • "Is your brother still with you?"
  • "No. He's gone back to finish his job in the Fanning Group. When he returns, I'm sending Cary to England for a long stop. Yes, that's right—I'm sendin_er," he added quickly. "I'm paying for these repairs, too. You see, I've bee_ble to add a second mortgage to the one already on the poor tottering Ree_nd Palm. That's another outcome of my new-found connection with the Britis_dmiralty and the silly old soap business. Here's Cary now."
  • John Quincy turned. And he was glad he had, for he would not willingly hav_issed the picture of Carlota on the stairs. Carlota in an evening gown o_ome shimmering material, her dark hair dressed in a new and amazingl_ffective way, her white shoulders gleaming, her eyes happy at last. As sh_ame quickly toward him he caught his breath, never had he seen her look s_eautiful. She must have heard his voice in the office, he reflected, and wit_urprising speed arrayed herself thus to greet him. He was deeply grateful a_e took her hand.
  • "Stranger," she rebuked. "We thought you'd deserted us."
  • "I'd never do that," he answered. "But I've been rather busy—"
  • A step sounded behind him. He turned, and there stood one of those ubiquitou_avy boys, a tall, blond Adonis who held his cap in his hand and smiled in _evastating way.
  • "Hello, Johnnie," Carlota said. "Mr. Winterslip, of Boston, this is Lieutenan_ooth, of Richmond, Virginia."
  • "How are you," nodded the boy, without removing his eyes from the girl's face.
  • Just one of the guests, this Winterslip, no account at all—such was obviousl_he lieutenant's idea. "All ready, Cary? The car's outside."
  • "I'm frightfully sorry, Mr. Winterslip," said the girl, "but we're off to th_ance. This week-end belongs to the navy, you know. You'll come again, won'_ou?"
  • "Of course," John Quincy replied. "Don't let me keep you."
  • She smiled at him and fled with Johnnie at her side. Looking after them, Joh_uincy felt his heart sink to his boots, an unaccountable sensation of age an_elplessness. Youth, youth was going through that door, and he was lef_ehind.
  • "A great pity she had to run," said Egan in a kindly voice.
  • "Why, that's all right," John Quincy assured him. "Old friend of the family, this Lieutenant Booth?"
  • "Not at all. Just a lad Cary met at parties in San Francisco. Won't you si_own and have a smoke with me?"
  • "Some other time, thanks," John Quincy said wearily. "I must hurry back to th_ouse."
  • He wanted to escape, to get out into the calm lovely night, the night that wa_uined for him now. He walked along the beach, savagely kicking his toes int_he white sand. "Johnnie!" She had called him Johnnie. And the way she ha_ooked at him, too! Again John Quincy felt that sharp pang in his heart.
  • Foolish, foolish; better go back to Boston and forget. Peaceful old Boston, that was where he belonged. He was an old man out here—thirty, nearly. Bette_o away and leave these children to love and the moonlit beach.
  • Miss Minerva had gone in the big car to call on friends, and the house wa_uiet as the tomb. John Quincy wandered aimlessly about the rooms, gloomy an_ereft. Down at the Moana an Hawaiian orchestra was playing and Lieutenan_ooth, of Richmond, was holding Carlota close in the intimate manner affecte_hese days by the young. Bah! If he hadn't been ordered to leave Hawaii, b_ad, he'd go to-morrow.
  • The telephone rang. None of the servants appeared to answer it, so John Quinc_ent himself.
  • "Charlie Chan speaking," said a voice. "That is you, Mr. Winterslip? Good. Bi_vents will come to pass very quick. Meet me drug and grocery emporium of Li_in, number 927 River Street, soon as you can do so. You savvy locality?"
  • "I'll find it," cried John Quincy, delighted.
  • "By bank of stream. I will await. Good-by."
  • Action—action at last! John Quincy's heart beat fast. Action was what h_anted to-night. As usually happens in a crisis, there was no automobil_vailable; the roadster was at a garage undergoing repairs, and the other ca_as in use. He hastened over to Kalakaua Avenue intending to rent a machine, but a trolley approaching at the moment altered his plans and he swung aboard.
  • Never had a trolley moved at so reluctant a pace. When they reached the corne_f Fort Street in the center of the city, he left it and proceeded on foot.
  • The hour was still fairly early, but the scene was one of somnolent calm. _ouple of tourists drifted aimlessly by. About the bright doorway of _hooting gallery loitered a group of soldiers from the fort, with a sprinklin_f enlisted navy men. John Quincy hurried on down King Street, past Chines_oodle cafes and pawn shops, and turned presently off into River Street.
  • On his left was the river, on his right an array of shabby stores. He pause_t the door of number 927, the establishment of Liu Yin. Inside, seated behin_ screen that revealed only their heads, a number of Chinese were engrossed i_ friendly little game. John Quincy opened the door; a bell tinkled, and h_tepped into an odor of must and decay. Curious sights met his quick eye, dried roots and herbs, jars of sea-horse skeletons, dejected ducks flattene_ut and varnished to tempt the palate, gobbets of pork. An old Chinese ma_ose and came forward.
  • "I'm looking for Mr. Charlie Chan," said John Quincy.
  • The old man nodded and led the way to a red curtain across the rear of th_hop. He lifted it, and indicated that John Quincy was to pass. The boy di_o, and came into a bare room furnished with a cot, a table on which an oi_amp burned dimly behind a smoky chimney, and a couple of chairs. A man wh_ad been sitting on one of the chairs rose suddenly; a huge red-haired ma_ith the smell of the sea about him.
  • "Hello," he said.
  • "Is Mr. Chan here?" John Quincy inquired.
  • "Not yet. He'll be along in a minute. What say to a drink while we're waiting.
  • Hey, Liu, a couple glasses that rotten rice wine!"
  • The Chinese man withdrew. "Sit down," said the man. John Quincy obeyed; th_ailor sat too. One of his eyelids drooped wickedly; he rested his hands o_he table—enormous hairy hands. "Charlie'll be here pretty quick," he said.
  • "Then I got a little story to tell the two of you."
  • "Yes?" John Quincy replied. He glanced about the little vile-smelling room.
  • There was a door, a closed door, at the back. He looked again at the red- haired man. He wondered how he was going to get out of there.
  • For he knew now that Charlie Chan had not called him on the telephone. It cam_o him belatedly that the voice was never Charlie's. "You savvy locality?" th_oice had said. A clumsy attempt at Chan's style, but Chan was a student o_nglish; he dragged his words painfully from the poets; he was careful to us_othing that savored of "pidgin." No, the detective had not telephoned; he wa_o doubt at home now bending over his chess-board, and here was John Quinc_hut up in a little room on the fringe of the River District with a husk_ailorman who leered at him knowingly.
  • The old Chinese man returned with two small glasses into which the liquor ha_lready been poured. He set them on the table. The red-haired man lifted on_f them. "Your health, sir," he said.
  • John Quincy took up the other glass and raised it to his lips. There was _uspicious eagerness in the sailor's one good eye. John Quincy put the glas_ack on the table. "I'm sorry," he said. "I don't want a drink, thank you."
  • The great face with its stubble of red beard leaned close to his. "Y' mean yo_on't drink with me?" said the red-haired man belligerently.
  • "That's just what I mean," John Quincy answered. Might as well get it ove_ith, he felt; anything was better than this suspense. He stood up. "I'll b_oing along," he announced.
  • He took a step toward the red curtain. The sailor, evidently a fellow of fe_ords, rose and got in his way. John Quincy, himself feeling the futility o_alk, said nothing, but struck the man in the face. The sailor struck bac_ith efficiency and promptness. In another second the room was full of battle, and John Quincy saw red everywhere, red curtain, red hair, red lamp flame, great red hairy hands cunningly seeking his face. What was it Roger had said?
  • "Ever fought with a ship's officer—the old-fashioned kind with fists lik_lying hams?" No, he hadn't up to then, but that sweet experience was his now, and it came to John Quincy pleasantly that he was doing rather well at his ne_rade.
  • This was better than the attic; here he was prepared and had a chance. Tim_nd again he got his hands on the red curtain, only to be dragged back an_ubjected to a new attack. The sailor was seeking to knock him out, and thoug_any of his blows went home, that happy result—from the standpoint of the red- haired man—was unaccountably delayed. John Quincy had a similar aim in life; they lunged noisily about the room, while the surprising Orientals in th_ront of the shop continued their quiet game.
  • John Quincy felt himself growing weary; his breath came painfully; he realize_hat his adversary had not yet begun to fight. Standing with his back to th_able in an idle moment while the red-haired man made plans for the future, the boy hit on a plan of his own. He overturned the table; the lamp crashe_own; darkness fell over the world. In the final glimmer of light he saw th_ig man coming for him and dropping to his knees he tackled in the approve_anner of Soldiers' Field, Cambridge, Massachusetts. Culture prevailed; th_ailor went on his head with a resounding thump; John Quincy let go of him an_ought the nearest exit. It happened to be the door at the rear, and it wa_nlocked.
  • He passed hurriedly through a cluttered back yard and climbing a fence, foun_imself in the neighborhood known as the River District. There in crazy alley_hat have no names, no sidewalks, no beginning and no end, five races liv_ogether in the dark. Some houses were above the walk level, some below, al_ere out of alignment. John Quincy felt he had wandered into a futuris_rawing. As he paused he heard the whine and clatter of Chinese music, th_licking of a typewriter, the rasp of a cheap phonograph playing America_azz, the distant scream of an auto horn, a child wailing Japanes_amentations. Footsteps in the yard beyond the fence roused him, and he fled.
  • He must get out of this mystic maze of mean alleys, and at once. Odd painte_aces loomed in the dusk; pasty-white faces with just a suggestion of quee_ostumes beneath. A babel of tongues, queer eyes that glittered, once a lea_and on his arm. A group of moon-faced Chinese children under a lamp wh_cattered at his approach. And when he paused again, out of breath, the patte_f many feet, bare feet, sandaled feet, the clatter of wooden clogs, th_queak of cheap shoes made in his own Massachusetts. Then suddenly the thum_f large feet such as might belong to a husky sailor. He moved on.
  • Presently he came into the comparative quiet of River Street, and realize_hat he had traveled in a circle, for there was Liu Yin's shop again. As h_urried on toward King Street, he saw, over his shoulder, that the red-haire_an still followed. A big touring car, with curtains drawn, waited by th_urb. John Quincy leaped in beside the driver.
  • "Get out of here, quick!" he panted.
  • A sleepy Japanese face looked at him through the gloom. "Busy now."
  • "I don't care if you are—" began John Quincy, and glanced down at one of th_an's arms resting on the wheel. His heart stood still. In the dusk he saw _rist watch with an illuminated dial, and the numeral two was very dim.
  • Even as he looked, strong hands seized him by the collar and dragged him int_he dark tonneau. At the same instant, the red-haired man arrived.
  • "Got him, Mike? Say, that's luck!" He leaped into the rear of the car. Quic_ble work went forward, John Quincy's hands were bound behind his back, _ile-tasting gag was put in his mouth. "Damned if this bird didn't land me on_n the eye," said the red-haired man. "I'll pay him for it when we get aboard.
  • Hey you—Pier 78. Show us some speed!"
  • The car leaped forward. John Quincy lay on the dusty floor, bound an_elpless. To the docks? But he wasn't thinking of that, he was thinking of th_atch on the driver's wrist.
  • A brief run, and they halted in the shadow of a pier-shed. John Quincy wa_ifted and propelled none too gently from the car. His cheek was jamme_gainst one of the buttons holding the side curtain, and he had sufficien_resence of mind to catch the gag on it and loosen it. As they left the car h_ried to get a glimpse of its license plate, but he was able to ascertain onl_he first two figures—33—before it sped away.
  • His two huge chaperons hurried him along the dock. Some distance off he saw _ittle group of men, three in white uniforms, one in a darker garb. The latte_as smoking a pipe. John Quincy's heart leaped. He maneuvered the loosened ga_ith his teeth, so that it dropped about his collar. "Good-by, Pete!" h_houted at the top of his lungs, and launched at once into a terrific struggl_o break away from his startled captors.
  • There was a moment's delay, and then the clatter of feet along the dock. _tocky boy in a white uniform began an enthusiastic debate with Mike, and th_ther two were prompt to claim the attention of the red-haired man. Pet_ayberry was at John Quincy's back, cutting the rope on his wrists.
  • "Well, I'll be damned, Mr. Winterslip," he cried.
  • "Same here," laughed John Quincy. "Shanghaied in another minute but for you."
  • He leaped forward to join the battle, but the red-haired man and his frien_ad already succumbed to youth and superior forces, and were in full retreat.
  • John Quincy followed joyously along the dock, and planted his fist back of hi_ld adversary's ear. The sailor staggered, but regained his balance and wen_n.
  • John Quincy returned to his rescuers. "The last blow is the sweetest," h_emarked.
  • "I can place those guys," said Mayberry. "They're off that tramp steame_hat's been lying out in the harbor the past week. An opium runner, I'l_amble on it. You go to the police station right away—"
  • "Yes," said John Quincy, "I must. But I want to thank you, Mr. Mayberry.
  • And"—he turned to the white uniforms—"you fellows too."
  • The stocky lad was picking up his cap. "Why, that's all right," he said. "_eal pleasure, if you ask me. But look here, old timer," he added, addressin_ayberry, "how about your Honolulu water-front and its lost romance? You g_ell that to the marines."
  • As John Quincy hurried away Pete Mayberry was busily explaining that the thin_as unheard of—not in twenty years—maybe more than that—his voice died in th_istance.
  • Hallet was in his room, and John Quincy detailed his evening's adventure. Th_aptain was incredulous, but when the boy came to the wrist watch on th_river of the car, he sat up and took notice.
  • "Now you're talking," he cried. "I'll start the force after that car to-night.
  • First two figures 33, you say. I'll send somebody aboard that tramp, too. The_an't get away with stuff like that around here."
  • "Oh, never mind them," said John Quincy magnanimously. "Concentrate on th_atch."
  • Back in the quiet town he walked with his head up, his heart full of the jo_f battle. And while he thought of it, he stepped into the cable office. Th_essage he sent was addressed to Agatha Parker on that Wyoming ranch. "Sa_rancisco or nothing," was all it said.
  • As he walked down the deserted street on his way to the corner to wait for hi_rolley, he heard quick footsteps on his trail again. Who now? He was sore an_eary, a bit fed up on fighting for one evening. He quickened his pace. Th_teps quickened too. He went even faster. So did his pursuer. Oh, well, migh_s well stop and face him.
  • John Quincy turned. A young man rushed up, a lean young man in a cap.
  • "Mr. Winterslip, ain't it?" He thrust a dark brown object into John Quincy'_and. "Your July Atlantic, sir. Came in on the Maui this morning."
  • "Oh," said John Quincy limply. "Well, I'll take it. My aunt might like to loo_t it. Keep the change."
  • "Thank you, sir," said the newsman, touching his cap.
  • John Quincy rode out to Waikiki on the last seat of the car. His face wa_wollen and cut, every muscle ached. Under his arm, clasped tightly, he hel_he July Atlantic. But he didn't so much as look at the table of contents. "W_ove, we advance," he told himself exultantly. For he had seen the watch wit_he illuminated dial—the dial on which the numeral two was very dim.