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Newspaper Page Text
The sides of the old circus tent
flapped lazily in the breeze. The
inmates were up and stirring and
the hum oj voices was heard on
the morning air. Through an
opening in die side of the tent
was thrust a bushy head, a pair of
bright eyes peered in, then an ur
chin cautiously entered. The man
ager, hearing a slight noise, look
ed up and saw something that ap
peared to be a buridle of rags. But
out from this handle came a voice:
"Say, mister, are you the boss?"
The manager curtly replied:
"Yes, what do you want?"
"Want a job with your show,"
the boy answered.
The manager's eyes twinkled
as the boy came nearer. ".What's
your name? Where do you live?"
-"Johnny. Nowhere," sharply
answered the boy.v "I'm just a
travelin'. Can I get a job ?"
"Well, we are needing some
help a man, though," the mana
ger hastened to say as the little
face brightened up. Instantly a,
grimy little hand was placed in
his and an eager voice replied:
'I'm your man."
From that moment "Johnny
Nowhere," as he, men dubbed
him, was an essential part of the
circus and a source of amusement
to mosl! of its members. '
His duties were many, but he
never grumbled. Bright and early
every morning his cheery whistle
was heard above t,he other rioises
common to a circus tent.
One morning, however, no
cheery whistle was heard; "no
Johnny appeared. The manager
went to the animal tent and
found him lying on a bundle of
His face was pale and drawn,
and around his mouth were lines
of suffering. Johnny;tried to rise-,
but fell back with a moan of pain.
The manager reached his hand
toward him and asked: "Johnny,
Stifling a moan, Johnny re
plied: "Nothing, only I rode Fire
fly yesterday in the circus ring
"Well, go on," insisted the
"AndT missed her back when I
jumped through the hoop, and,"
with a glimmer of a smile, "I
think I broke a slat. It's nothing,
though. I'll soon be all right."
Stooping, the manager lifted
Johnny and tenderly carried him
to another tent. While carefully
removing the clothing from the
wounded side he saw long marks
as if a heavy whip had been used
on the body. Looking down into
the honest'face, he asked : "John
ny, what else happened yester
day?" But Johnny's lips were closed
and his eyes were looking straight
at the wall of the tent.
"You didn't get those marks
when you fell from Firefly, did
"Then where did you get
"I don't want to tell," cried
Being forced to tell, Johnny re
lated how each day he had been
compelled by the horse trainer to