Newspaper Page Text
out at his suburban home. Here's the
"How long will you hold open for
me?" asked Norton, meaning how long
would the city editor wait for the
- "Till one-thirty. You ought to be
back by midnight. It's only eight
"All right; Henderson's approach
able. I may get a good story out of
"Maybe," thought Gregg, who had
lost nothing of this conversation.
It was his opportunity. He imme
diaely left the zone of the city desk
for a telephpne booth. But as he
passed the line of desks and busy
? reporters he did not note the keen
. . . . ....... .... . ...... ..
I.: , X.........
Norton Was at His Desk.
cerutiny of a smooth faced, gray haired
inan who stood at the side of Norton's
desk awaiting the reporter's rpturn.
"Why, Jones," cried the surprised
Norton. "What are you doing all this
way from home?"
"Orders," said Jones, smiling faint
ly as he delivered a note to the re
"Not that am aware of. Miss Flor
ence was rather particular. She want
ed to be sure that the, note reached
your hands safely."
"And do you mean to say that you
came away and left her alone in that
Again Jones smiled. "I left her well
guarded, you may be sure of that. She
will never run away again." He wait
ed for Norton to read the note.
It was nothing more than one of
those love orders to come and call at
once. And she had made Jones ven
ture into town with it! The reporter
smiled and put the note away tenderly.
And then he caught Jones smiling, too.
'Tm going to marry her, Jones."
"That remains to be seen," replied
the butler, not unkindly.
"Well, anyhow, thanks for bringingt
the note. But rye got to disappoint
her tonight. I'm off in a deuce of a
hurry to interview General Hender
son. I'll be out to tea tomorrow. You
can find your way cut of this old fire
The moment he turned away the
smile faded from Jones' face, and with
the quickness and ,noiselessness of a
cat he reached the side of the booth in
which Gregg believed himself so se
cure from eavesdropping. The half
dozen words Jones heard convinced
him that Norton was again the object
of the Black Hundred's attention. He
had seen the man's face that memora
ble night when the balloon stoppedI
for its passenger. Before Gregg came
out of the booth Jones decided to over
take him and forewarn him, but un
fortunately the reporter was nowhere
There was left for Jones nothing
else but to return home or follow
when he came out. As this right he
knew Florence to be exceptionally well
guarded, both within and without the
house, he decided to wait and follow'
When Braine received the message.
he was pleased. Norton's assignment
fitted his purpose like a glove. Before
midnight he would have Mr. Meddling
Reporter where he would bother no~
one for some time-if he proved tract
able, If not, he would never bother
any one again. Braine gave his or
ders tersely. Unless Norton met with
unforeseen delay, nothing could pre
vent his capture.
-When Norton arrived at the Hen
derson place, a footman informed him
from the veranda that General Hen
derson was at 49 Elm street for the
evening, and it would be wise to call
there. Jim nodded his thanks and set
off in haste for 49 Elm street. The
footman did not enter the house, but
hurried down the steps and slunk off
among the adjacent shrubbery. His
miAssion was over with.
The house in Elm street was Braine's
suburban establishment. He went
there occasionally to hibernate, as it
were, to grow a new skin when close
pressed The caretaker was a man
rightiy called Samson. He was a
bruiser of the bouncer type.
It was fast work for Braine to get
out there. If the man disguised as a
footman played his eards badly Braine
is1 paid up, C
would have all his trouble for noth
Ing. He disguised himself with that
infernal cleverness which had long
since made him a terror to the police,
who were looking for ten different
men instead of one. He knew that
Norton would undorstand instantly
that he was not the general; but on
the other hand he would not know
that he was addressing Braine.
So the arch-conspirator waited; and
so Norton arrived and was ushered
Into the room. A single glance was
enough to satisfy the reporter, always
keen eyed and observant.
"I wish to see General Henderson,"
he said politely.
"General Henderson is doubtless at
his own hcuse."
"Don't be alarmed - yet," said
"I am not alarmed," replied Norton.
"I am only chagrined. Since General
Henderson is not to be found here
I must be excused."
"I will excuse you presently."
"Ah! I begin to see."
"Indeed!" mocked Braine.
"I have tumbled or walked Into a
"A keen mind like yours must have
recognized that fact the moment you
discovered I was not the general."
"I am indebted to the Black Hun
"Precisely. We do not wish you ill,
"To be sure, no!" ironically. "What
with falling safes, poisoned cigarettes,
and so forth, I can readily see that
you have my welfare at heart. What
puzzled me was the suddenness with
which these affectionate signs ceased."
"You're a man of heart," said Braine
with genuine admiration. "These af
fectionate signs, as you call them,
ceased because for the time being you
ceased to be a menace. You have
become that once more, and here you
"And what are you going to do with
me now that you have got me?"
"There will be two courses." Braine
reached into a drawer and drew out
a thick roll of bills. "There are here
something like $5,000."
"Quite a tidy sum; enough for a
chap to get married on."
The two eyed each other steadily.
And in his heart Braine sighed. For
he saw in this young man's eyes in
"It is yours on one condition," said
Braine, reaching out his foot stealthily
toward the button which would sum
"And that is," interpolated Norton,
"that I join the Black Hundred."
"Or the great beyond, my lad," took
up Braine, his voice crisp and cold.
Norton could not repress a shiver.
Where had he heard this voice before
...Braine! He stiffened.
"Murder In cold blood?" he managed
"Indefinite imprisonment. Choose."
"I have chosen."
"H'm!" Braine rose and went over
to the sideboard for the brandy. "I'm
going to offer you a drink to show you
that personally there are no hard feel
ings. You are in the way. After you,
our friend, Jones. This brandy Is noti
poisoned, neither are the glasses.
Choose either and I'll drink first. We
are all desperate men, Norton; and we
stop at nothing. Your life hangs byi
a hair. Do you know where Har
Norton eyed his liquor thoughtfully.
"Do you know where the money Is?"
Norton smelt of the brandy.
"I am sorry," said Braine. "I should
have liked to win over a head like
Norton nonchalantly took out his
watch, and that bit of bravado per
haps saved his life. In the case of
his watch he saw a brutal face behind
him. Without a tremor, Norton took
up his glass.
"I am sorry to disappoint you," he
said, "but I shall neither join you nor
go to by-by."
Quick as a bird shadow above grass,
he flung the brandy over his shoulder
Into the face of the man behind. Sam
son yelled with pain. Almost at the
same instant Norton pushed over the
table, upsetting Braine with it. Next
he dashed through the curtains,
slammed the door, and fled to the
street, very shaky about the knees, if
the truth is to be told.
General Henderson's views upon the
latest Balkan muddle were missing
from the Blade the following morn
ing. Norton, Instead of returning to
the general's and fulfilling his assign
ment like a dutiful reporter, hurried
out to Riverside to acquaint Jones
with what had happened. Jones was
glad to see him safe and sound.
"That new reporter started the
game," he said. "I overhead a word
or two while he was talking in the:
booth. All your telephone booths are
ramshackle affairs, you use them so
constantly. I tried to find you, but
you were out of sight. Now, tell me
"Sh!" warned Norton as he s~aied1
Florence coming down the stairs.
"I thought you couldn't come!" she
cried. "But ten o'clock!"
"I changed my mind," he replied,
He caught her arm in his and drew
her toward the library. - Jones smiled
after them with that enigmatical smile'
of his, which might have signified
Irony or affection. After hall an
hour's chat, Florence, quite aware
that the two men wished to talk, re
At the door Norton told Jones what
had taken place at 49 Elm street.
"Ah! we must not forget that num
ber," mused Jones. "My advice is,
keep an eye on this Gregg chap. We
may get somewhere by watching him."
"Do you know where Hargreave Is?"
Jones scratched his chin reflectively.
ow to The Tim
in the game a:
r you might b(
CONTINUED FROM LAST WE
Norton laughed. "I can't get any
thing out of you."
"Much less any one else. I'm grow-!
ing fond of you, my boy. You're a.
"Thanks; and good-night."
When Olga Perigoff called the next
day Jones divested himself of his liv
ery, donned a plain coat and hat, and
left the house stealthily. Today he
was determined to learn something
definite in regard to this suave, hand
some Russian. When she left the
house Jones rose from his hiding place
and proceeded to follow her. The re
sult of this espionage on the part of
Jones will be seen presently.
Meantime Jim went down to the
office and lied cheerfully about his
missing the general. Whether the
city editor believed him or not is of
no matter. Jim went over to his desk.;
From the corner of his eye he could
see Gregg scribbling away. He never
raised his head as Jim sat down to
read his mail. After awhile Gregg
rose and left the office; and, of course,
Jim left shortly afterward. When the
newcomer saw that he was being fol
lowed, he smiled and continued on his
wa . This Norton chap was suspi
cious. All the better; his suspicions
should be made the hook to land him
with. By and by the man turned into
a drug store and Jim loitered about
till he reappeared. Gregg walked
with brisker steps noiw. It was his in
tention to lead Norton on a wild goose
chase for an hour or so, long enough
to give Braine time to arrange a wel
come at another Pouse.
Norton kept perhaps half a block in
the rear of his man all the while. But
for this caution he would have wit
nessed a little pantomime that would
have put him wholly upon his guard.
Turning a corner, Gregg all but
bpmped into the countess. He was
quiek enough to place a finger on his
.lips and motion 1 :s head toward a
taxicab. Olga hadn't the least idea
who was coming around the corner,,
but she hailed the cab and was off in
it before Jim swung around the cor-:
Jones, who had followed the count
ess for something over an hour and
a half, hugged a doorway. What now?
he wondered. The countess knew the
man. That was evidence enough for
the astute butler. But what meant
the pantomime and the subsequent
hurry? He soon learned. The man
Gregg went his way, and then Jim
turned the corner. Jones cast a wist
ful glance at the vanishing cab of the
Russian, and decided to shadow the
shadower-in other words, follow the
reporter, to see that nothing serious
The lurer finally paused at a door,
opened it with a key, and swung it
behind him, very careful, however, not
to spring the latch. Naturally Jim
was mIghtily pleased when he found
the door could be opened. When
Jones, not far behind, saw him open
the door, he started to call out a warn
ing, but thought the better of it. If
Norton was walking into a trap it was
far better that he, Jones, should re
main outside of it. If Jim did not
appear after a certain length of time,
he would start an investigation on his
No sooner was Jim in the hallway
than he was set upon and overpow
ered. They had in this house what
was known as "the punishment room."
Here traitops paid the reckoning and
were never more heard of. Into this
room Jim was unceremoniously
dropped when Braine found that he
could get no information from the res
The room did not look sinister, but
for all that It possessed the faculty of
growing smaller and smaller, slowly
or swiftly, as the man above at the
lever willed. When Jim was apprised
In the Case of His Watch He Saw a
Brutal Face Behind Him.
of this fact, he ran madly about in
search of some mode of escape, know
ing full well in his heart that he
should not find one.
Presently the machinery began to
work, and Norton's tongue grew dry
with terror. They had him this time;
there was not the least doubt of it.
And they had led him there by the
nose into the bargain.
Twenty minutes passed, and Jones
concluded it was time for him to act.
He went forward to try the door, but
this time It was locked. Jones, how
ever, was not without resource. The
house next door was vacant, and he
found a way into this, finally reaching
the roof. From this he jumped to the
other roof, found the scuttle open, and
crept down the stairs, flight after
flight, till the whir of a motor arrest
Conspirators are often overeager,
too. So intent were the rascals upon
the business at hand that they did
not notice the door open slowly. It
did not take the butler more than
a moment to realize that his friend
and any was near certain death. With
es, and. get the
e Pastime will
ad win the $
cumt off in the
EK-LOOK FOR NEXT ISSUI
an oath he sprang Into the room. gave
Braine a push which sent him down
to join the victim, and pitched into the
other two. It was a battle royal while
it lasted. Jones knocked down one of
them, yelled to N.n, and kicked the
rope he saw down into the pit. One
end of this rope was attached to a ring
in the wall. And up this rope Norton
swarmed after he had disposed of
Braine. The tide of battle then
swung about in favor of the butler,
and shortly the fate reporter and his
Up This Rope Norton Swarmed.
.oompanion were made 1 join their
chief. * '
Jones stopped the machinery. He
could not bring himself to let his en
emies die so horribly. Later ho knew
he would regret this sentiment.
When the people came, summoned
by some outsider who had heard the
racket of the conflict, there was no
one to be found in the pit. Nor was
there any visible sign of an exit.
There was one, however, built
against such an hour and known only
to the chiefs of the Black Hundred.
And still the golden tinted bank
notes reposed tranquilly in their hid
The Masked Ball.
About this tiniie-tha~t is to say,
about the time the Black Hundred was
stretching out its powerful secret arms
toward Norton-there arrived in New
York city a personage. This person
age was the Princess Parlova, a fabu
)ously rich Polish Russian. She leased
a fine house near Central park and set
about to conquer social New York.
This was not very difficult, .for her
title was perfectly geniuine and she
moved in the most exclusive diplo
matic circles in Europe, which, as
everybody knows, is the most brilliant
in the world. When the new home
was completely decorated, she gave
an elaborate dinner, and that attracted
the newspapers. They began to talk
about her highness, printed portraits
of her, and devoted a page occasion
ally in the Sunday editions. She be.
camne something of a rage. One morn
ing It was announced that the Princess
Parlova would give a masked ball to
formally open her hoine to society;
and it was this notice that first
brought the Princess Parlova under
Braine's eyes. He was at the Perigoff
apartment at the time.
"Well, well!" he mused aloud.
"What Is it?" asked Olga, turn!ng
away from the piano and ending one
of Chopin's mazurkas brokenly.
"Here is the Princess Parlova in
"And who is she?"
"She is the real thing, Olga; a real
princess with vast estates in Poland
with which the greedy Slav next door
has been very gentle."
"I haven't paid much attention to
the social news lately. What about
"She is giving a masked ball to for
mally open her house on the West side.
And it's going to cost a pretty penny."
"Well, you're not telling me this to
make me want to know the princess,"
said Olga. petulantly.
"No But I'm going to give you a
letter of introduction to her highness."
"And you are going to ask her to
invite two particular friends of yours
to this wonderful ball of hers."
"Indeed." ironically. "That sounds
all very easy."
"Easier than yon think, my child."
"I will not h::ve you call me child!"
"Well, then, Olga."
"That's better. Now, how will it be
easier than I think?"
"Simply this, the Princess Parlova is
an oath bound member, but has not
been active for years."
"Oho!" Olga was all animation now.:
"You will go to her with a letter of
Introduction-no! Better than that,
you will make a formal call and show
her this ring. You know the ring," he
said, passing the talisman to the count
ess. "Show this to her and she wifl
> wonderful st
show each ch
1,OOO. Be s
midst of the s
obey you in eerything. She will have
"Very good," replied Olga. "And
then tho program is to insist that she
Invite Florence and that fool of a re
porter to this ball. Then what?"
"You can leave that to me."
"Haven't all these failures been a
"No. my dear. I was born optimis
tic; but there's a jinx somewhere in
one of my pockets. Time after time
I've had everything just where I wanted
it, ond then-poof! It's pure bald
luck on their side, but sooner or later
the wheel will turn. And any chance
that offers I am bound to accept.
Somehow or other we may be able to
trap Florence and Norton. I want
both of them. If I can get them snug
ly away, Jones will be forced to draw
"Is there such a man?"
"You saw him that night at the
"I have often thought that perhaps
I just dreamed it." She turned again
to the piano and began humming idly.
"Stop that and listen to me," said
Braine, not in quite the best of tem
pers. "I'm in no mood for whims."
"M~usic does not sooth your soul,
"If I had one it might. You will
call on the Princess Parlova tomor
row afternoon. It depends upon you
what my plans will be. I think you'll
have little trouble in getting into the
pre-zence of her highness, and once
there she will not be able to resist
And go she did. The footman in
green livery hesitated for a moment,
but the title on the visiting card was
quite suMicient. He bowed the count
ess into the reception room and went
in search of his distinguished mis
The Princess Parlova was a hand
some woman verging upon middle age.
She was a patrician; Olga's keen eye
discerned that instantly. She came
into the reception room with that dig
nified serenity which would have im
pressed any one as genuine. She held
the card in her fingers and smiled in
quiringly toward her guest.
"I confess," she began, "that I re
all neither your face nor your name.
am sorry. Where have I had the,
honor of meeting you before?"
"You have never met me before,
your highness," answered Olga
"You came on a charity errand,
"That depends, your highness. Will
you be so good as to glance at this?"
Olga asked, holding out her palm
upon which the talisman lay.
The princess shrank back, paling.
"Where did you get that?" she
"From the head," was the answer.
"And you have followed me from
Russia?" whispered the princess, her
"Oh, no. The Black Hundred is as
strongly organized here as in St. Pe
tersburg. But we always keep track
of old members, especially when they
stand so high in the world as your
"But I was deceived and betrayed!"
exclaimed the prince'ss. "They urged
me to join on the ground that the
organization was to attempt to bring
about the freedom of Poland."
Olga shrugged. "You were rich,
highness. The Black Hundred needed
"And you need it now?" eagerly,
believing that she saw a loophole.
"How much? Oh, I will give a hun-:
d.ed thousand rubles on your prom
ise to leave me alone. Tell me!"
"I am sorry, your highness, but I
have no authority to accept such an
offer. Indeed, my errand is far from
being expensive. All the Black Hun
dred desires is four invitations to
this ball which you are soon to give.
That should not cause you any alarm.
We shall not interfere with your so
journ in America in any way what
soever, provided these invitations are
"You would rob my guests?" horri
"Positively no! Here is a list of
four names. Invite them; that is all
you have to do. Not so much as a
silver spoon will be found missing.
This is on my word of honor, and I
never break that word, if you please."
"Give me the list," said the princess,
wearily. "Who gave you that ring?"
"No; here in America." Olga dipped
into her handbag and produced a slip
of paper. This she handed to the
princess. "Here is the list, highness."
"Who Is Florence Hargreave?"
"A friend of mine." evasively.
"Does she belong to the organiza
"'Then you have some ulterior pur
pose in having me invite her?"
"I have," answered Olga sharply;
"but that does not concern your high
ness in the least."
The princess bit her lips. "I see
your name here also; a man named
Braine, and another, Norton."
"Say at once that you do not care
to execute the wishes-the commands
--of the order," said Olga coldly.
"I will do as you wish. And I beg
you now to excuse me. But if any
thing happens to any of my personal
"Well?" haughtily from Olga.
"Well, I will put the matter in the
hands of the police."
"But so long as your personal
friends are not concerned?"
"I shall then of necessity remain
deaf and blind. It is or.e of the pen
aities I must pay for my folly. I wish
"And also good riddance," mur
ry, "The Mi
apter as it apI
.e that your:
reured Olga und-s her brcath as she
rose and started for the hallway.
Thus It was that when Norton went
to the office the next afternoon he
f'md a broad white envelope on his
desk. Indifferently he opened the
Eame and his eyee bulged. "Princess
Parlova requests" and so forth and so
on. Then he shrugged. The chief had
probably asked for the invitation and
he would have to write up the doings,
a phase of reportorial work eminently
distasteful to him. He went up to
the city desk.
"Can't you find some one else to do
this stuff?" he growled to the city
The city editor glanced at the card
and crested envelope. "Good Lord,
man! Nobody in th!s ocflea had any
thing to do with that. What luck!
Our Miss Hayes tried all manner of
schemes, but was rebuffed on all
sides. How the deuce did you chance
to get one?"
"Search me," said the bewildered
"If I were you I'd sit tight and take
it all in," advised the editor. "It's
going to be the biggest splurge of its
kind we've had in years. We've been
working every vire we know to get
Miss Hayes inside. but it was no go.
This princess is not onto the game
yet. In this country you get into so
ciety cr you don't through 'the Sun
"Hanged if I k.ow who wished this
thin- on me."
"akli phil-sopicall'y," said the
editor sarcastirly. "The pr'ncess
won't bite you. S':e may even have
seen ycur picture-"
"Cet out!" grumbled Norton, turn
He would go out and see Florence.
On the way out to Riverdale he came
to the conclusion that the list of the
prIncess fell short and some friend of
his who was helping the woman out
suggested his name. It was the only
way he could account for it.
But whern he learned that Florence
had an !r.ritation exactly like his own
and that she received it that morning
he br2ame suspicious.
"Jones, what do you think of it?"
"I think it was very kind of the
Countess Perigoff suggesting your
name and that of Florence," said the
"Olga?" cried Florence, disappoint
"It is the only logical deduction I
can make," declared Jone. "They are
both practically Russi-.ns."
"And what would you advise?"
"Why, go and enjoy yourselves.
Forewarned is forearmed. The thing
Is, be very careful not to acquaint
any one with the character of your
disguise, least of all the Countess
Perigoff. Besides," Jones added smil
ing, "perhaps I may go myself."
"Goody! I've read about masked
balls and have always been crazy tc
go to one," said Florence with eager
"Suppose we go at once and picki
out some costumes?" suggested Nor'
"Just as soon as I can get my hat
on," replied Florence, happy as a lark.
"But mind," warned Jones; "be sure
that you see the costumer alone and
that no one else is about."
"I'll take particular care," agreed
Norton. "We've got to do some hus
tling to find something suitable. For
There Was a Secret Exit.
a big affair like this the town wIll be
ransacked. All aboard' There':u room
for two in that car of mine; and we
can have a spin besides. Rang
Florence laughed, and even Jone:s
permitted a smile (which was not
grim this time) to stir his lips.
A happy person is generally un
observant. T~wo happy person~s to
gether are totally unobservant of
what passes around them. In plainer
terms this lack is called love. Ad
being franikly in love with each othcr,
neither Norton nor Florence observed
that a taxicab followed them into
town. Jones. not being in love. w::s
kccnly observant; but the taxicab
took up the trail two blocks away, so
the matter wholly escaped Jones' eye.
The two went into several cos
tumers', but eventually discovered a
shop en a side street that had been
overlooked by those invited to the
masquerade. They had a merry time
rummagirng among the camphory
srelling boxes. There were dominoes
of all colors, and at length they agreed
>ears in The
Chi~dren Cry for Fletcher's
The Kin You Hlave Alhays Donght, and v hich has been
in rs;e w over 30 years, has borne the signature of
and his be made under his per
sonal supervision sicC its infancy.
. Allow no one to deceive you in thI.
All Counterfeits, Imitations and "jst-as-good" are but
Experiments that trifle with and endw--:cr the health of
Infants and Children-Experence against Esperiment.
What is CASTORIA
Castoria i a harmkess Snlhstitutc for Castor Oil, Pare
goric, Drops and Soothing Syrups. I is p leasant. It
contains neith-r Ophim, Morp'hino rA' oth.c- Narcotic
substance. Its ago i- its guarantee. It dtsWorens
and allays Feye-ishness. For more than thirty years it
hlas been in ustant use for the reiCf of Constipation,
Fiatulemyx, t;nd Coic, all Teething ' r-. .bles and
Diarrha-a. it r:-:iates the Sto:raek :md Bowels,
assimilates .he Food. giving healthy :md. tural sleep.
The Children's Panacca-The Mother's .'icndc
GENUINE CASTORIA ALWAYS
te Signature of _0_
Bears the Signature of
ln Use For Over 30 Years
The Knd 'You Have Always Sought
THE CENTA.; COMPANY. NCW YCRK CITY.
\$TAG~ sz A N
You'll be surprid ho :-r-..r.l.yo
can keep your ore Oy ce: - with
a good durable pai ... 7
G ve us the dim r
show you how- y-ou c''n wi,1.. a -.c . sonable
outlay for tmaterial nd ar
Against all other paints,. we s31 the Stag Paint as
?the best paint money and ordaa er. p:oduce.
"ONE GALLON MAKS TWO"
SC. R, Sprott, F. D. Hunter,
SPresident and rea~s. Vice-President and Sec.
Mannmng, Sa C.
2 Cotto &e ed Products a
digh Grade Fertilizers
Yhur Spring Needs
We Have The Goods For X ou
P~orchi Rockers, Swings. and Lawn Goods. We 3
ave tne Celebrated White Mointain Refrigerators
and Freezers: Coolers. Side Walk Suikeys, Co-Carts, 3,
Hioosier Kitchen Cabinets, Oil Stoves, Screcen Door and 3
SWindows. Ranges and Stores. In fact, we have the -j
m z:nost comfplete stock of
~ ve p~.idHouse Fnrnishings vo
eve opnedin Sumter Dropintseuswnyo
com tosumter. Cash or Credit. "The Store Accom- 3
W.Fon i ~ S.HELLY & SON,
P-.,c..,,i ostoe, sumter. S,..