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The Washington times. [volume] (Washington [D.C.]) 1902-1939, May 14, 1916, SUNDAY EVENING EDITION, Image 14

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THE WASHINGTON TIMES; SUNDAY, MAY 14, lOlffi
.Written by Hereward Carrington.
Dramatized by Charles W. Gbddard,
CtpyHght, 1111, by ins 8tr 'Company.
All rorsl(jn Nights rUssrvdi
.
' - . ., ' ' III I I I I I I I I Ml.
- - rrs " r " . ' ", fn .. L 1 7- . ,, 5 ; stf r -
lllvllYivl Iv D rlylu Moti(m?ictoel)iaffla
i
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: l
(Synopsis of PrccccdlnB .Chapters).
f Pr. Fayson Alden,. a physician who hae
prat many year atudylnif the occult
and eplrltlsm, dltcoVtrs the plotting o(
liana of dsvll worshipers ,to cause. th
, death of Myra Maynard, a beautiful heir
, In order that her fortune may paia
to them, according to the aecret will of
her father, a former member of their
aoclety, Myra'a mother, greatly opposed
to all aiudy of the psychic, Ignores hie
offer to, help protect tha air', and the;
physician burglarises the reeldenc In or
der tojearn the method of the evil work
en. Its discovers that Myra la a sleep
walker, and Interrupt her just in time to
prevent her suicide on theeve of her
eighteenth birthday, as her two sisters
had already done,
Arthur Vartiey. a wealthy clubman, who
, la, a suitor for Myra'a hand., la In reality.
In league with the members of the Black
Order although he endeavors to per
suade the master to spare the girl life.
. A? second .attempt on Myra'a life la made
'by the sending of an Oriental flower which
open at' night, liberating -a poisonous
vapor: but Dr. Alden's suspicion has
. caused the flower to be. carried to his own
bedroom. He Is almost dying from Its
noxious effects, when Myra, who has
learned the art .of crystal gaxlng from
him, Is warned if 'his trouble. She saves
hlillfe. .. '..
' The following day the doctor hypnotises
Myra In his laboratory, and her astral
' body 'la projected to the secret meeting
place of the Black Order men. With In
cantatlons and the science of brack
. magic they endeavor, to cut the 'astral
thread" between the spirit and the body.
They almost succeed, but "prayer tri
umphs where science falls.", and the doc
tor and the. girl's mother brlrtg bock her
spirit n .time, to save her life.
CHAPTER XVII.
The Friendship of Hajl.
DR. AI.pEN r.urred his. Imp-Ulence
with difficulty, ns ho fumed
nhout'. thp laboratory. Ho de
termined that he would nover
risk. Myro,'nb(o ilrr lyvavpraiectlrn
of tho astral body, for the membors of
Itih ninnk Order hnfl struck Utnn the
most cunnntng of psychic traps.' , I
fcI ptaycddlrcctly, jnt? XHlti:Mni$f"
ho. muttered. "JjSt'Prdf. Hail advlfcoh ,
me more of their methods... ;,Tf,crnder
why he takes.o lonE.';"' . .fi
Psyson Albert ran; up .W ' "Hindoo
xricnu onco more to urge speed
VI amEormng'nttonc jaiavo.flnUneJ.llkefTfghtenecr-rabblts
tho nccossm yqquume, my f tlond," was .as? they dd- so the balloons became
th.ra!,d rcKrt'.. ... ,r J ';! . ' i." ltangled In the branches of a low-spread-
On second thftught," cont-uel Al-1 ing kC,dr tree,
den. "they nre undoiibtodlv? watchlne . rri ,ij ,. n.i m.r.
my house,
e. It onld be fatal Tor us Jo I
do, seen togoiner. now.- Moei - me - some - i
where, nnd
inn tionenu unon lt.tnnt I will
give thorn tho slip from this ot,J, if yju j
. --.-- -. -.-r.' - 1- - - .
can (if tno tamo innre.'
"Splendid. Dr. Alden. We mny as
well get near the order meeting, place.
If you will take n taxlcnti to Vimsovor
street' nnd liclmont boulevard you will
striko a corner nf tho park. Oo doun
tho path and kcrp walKIng until you
Traoh the rvetlc tii-Mg, Uuyond this Is
a small summer ho jso. .1 will bo there,
waiting for you. It will tik! vou near
ly half an hcur to Teach the plnco from
your home, 1 will hi-lni: the oostumeu
with mo for Immediate, fiction."
'The doctor hurriedly obeyed Instruc
tions alter assuring ntmseir
lfpnce moro
that his revolver wag .in .working qrrter
and lanfelv stowol atmy in nl.1 niD
pocket. ,
The rendezvous was, on Ihe outskirts
oi ino city anu was a icuiouk nuo w
htm. '
Burnt last no rouna trro aaric-BKinnca
Mudqnt of the occult biding his time In
the covert of tho matte summer houso.
The . two men erected each, other
warmly. It was evident that thelrr was
a friendship Jioyond mrp words. Alden
and HnJl hod been working for many
months on tho Investigation of the mys
tetloun workings of tho Black Order.
So. It was that tho Hindoo's success In
gaining membership was a triumph for
tiro two of them. ...
It had ben n difficult task, as Alden
realized from the lonr description of the
tortuous Initiation' with which his friend
now regaled him. ...,,. ...
"I ,have Indeed descended into the
rinnth of horror durlnc tho three days
of my Initiation. That Is why you did
not hear from me' sooner." ended up
Hajl. "But the terrific battle with Miss
Maynard's spirit was tho most harrow
ing adventuro of them alL I felt certain
that Bhe was doomed. How did you save
Alden described' his own sensations
nnd tho final surprising efficacy of
prayer. Ho. then eagerly demanded to
know more about the ruling spirit of the
devil-worshipers. ...
"I know nothing .about him, except
that he Is a foreigner, not nn American.
The order is one of the most ancient
origin thousands of years old, I have
bebn told. The order had been practi
cally wiped out in Europe because of the
great war, but the- master Intends Marl
ing branches throughout the United
Stntes within tho next .f ow.wceks- If. he
succeeds. Heaven help the hapless coun-
try !'
Alden's firm mouth tightened In an
Ironical smile. . .
VH will nover do it, for I Intend to
cnHi hs career of crime within the hour.
YdU must teach mo' the' signs and pass
words, so that we may get him to
gether," .he, answered. ''It was a won
derful thing that we came together,
Professor Hajl, after all your studies in
Europe and- the East, for We shall do a
wonderful servlco to humanity."
"It Is so. Woll, the secret entrance to
the. underground meeting room Is .riot
over a ten minutes' walk from here. Wo
may. as well be preparing for tthe at
tempt." . . ,
t Whllo Hajl was rehearsing tho physi
cian in the symbols and cabalistic words
of the devil ritual, the prime 'spirit of
the black .magicians was attending to a
strange rehearsal of his own.
1 In the open air, within the stone en
1 olmmrn of an old house Isolated from
any immediate neighbors, the Master
was adjusting a rcsplratlng mask. It
was similar to those worn on the battle
fields and In tho trenches of Europe for
the protection against poison gas as
saults. ... . ,
" On an old stono bench lay a box whose
label-declared that it contained "One
gross of Marvel rubber toy balloons."
Beside the box were two metal tanks
containing some curious gas which was
the evident reason for the protective
mask which now covered the evil face
completely.
The Mcster carefully filled one of the
deflated balloons which ho took from
their cose, studying the pressure of the
vapor with satisfaction. He used gas
from each ono of the tanks until the
balloon vs almost bursting. Tying Its
.mmirh with strnntr white thread, he
bobbed it up nnd down. It might have
seomo' p. chiidisn nction, except ior un
ominous caro with which ho held his
gi'nrdcd head awav fr&m the toy.
Ho Jabbed tho taut rubber with a pin.
and It oxolodod, to leave ,a tiny puff
of crten vapor in the air.
He nodded approvingly and removed
thi mask, after making sure that the
fumes had disappeared. Behind, tho
bench were two moro resplrdtlng masks,
which he placed In the side' of tho
.tanks. Then with his cunning smile,
registering supremo sclf-satlsfacllon,
h roth td Into the houso through a rat
tling, toltody doorway. ,
' Hn rappared presently, leading two
nviubers of thv cult.
"Before you fill tho balloons mnko
uro to hnvn tho marks adjusted."
"was tho curt command. "Then obey mv
Instructions to the letter. I will not fall
this1 lime" "...
He disappeared at his' two asslstnnto
Chedlentlv imitated tho mysterious
worlt Thr M'lerl pirre lh"n fortv nf
Hie ba1!"'"!'- ' '"- -r-,","llig si!lflcd.
Then tying the toya together In tho
manner of- street venders, thev re
moved their masks and entered ' tho
Dortnl.
CHAPTER XVIII.
The Hall of Mysteries.
ALUE
thel
LDKN and Hajl had complted
their preparations.
Well, aro wo ready for tho
l.nlnnM a Sluf iUm. fflntnt
"Yds. and here Is where wo separate."
replied Hajl. "I will go down thla short
road .while .you walk through tho un
derbrush until you reach tho top of tha
knoll. From thero we can see the old
fnrmbtusc which I. am sure. covers tho
underground meeting place. I can take
you from the hill to the entrance- that
they seldom use. There wo will meet,
and ho pointed out the spot
The two went their ways, Alden ting-Una-
wllh a new thrill of adventure as
he tcnllzed that his great hope was at
lar-t to. b realized.
How surprisingly our ambitions work
out. For months he had wanted to en
ter thp Black Order, and yet now that
the moment was at hand, through a de
vious rnd unexpected course, he could
barely realize the certainty of it,
"It seems too good to be true -If I
can rnly surprise tho leader himself,
catch the spider In his own web, before
he Is warned, what a triumph!" he told
himself.
The Hindoo walked along-more slowly,
a watchful eye out for observers.
His cautlpn was well taken, for he
suddenly stepped behind an evergreen as
ne heard voices.
Two men extricated themselves from
tho opening of . great hollow tree, not
ten feet from his hiding place, Thoy
bore In their hands the strings of the
bobbing balloons, which they handled
gingerly. .
Tho Hlnddo'a Jaw Tell. Here' were two
of tno ovtl brethren, and the purpose of
their atrance burden perplexed him.
.Ha steDDcd behind the' brush to get-a
better and more protected view. Ills
foot' crunched a 'dried twig. The Arst'of
me .coupie neara mo no;se, ana ne can
ed to his comrade.
i.'.There'J some one over there. Qulok,
this' way Ao ,the road."
rne twain .rusrjea tnrougn me micKci
':r,nv ih.". .
a man up, the hill!" an-
- were1 hl, mate.' csoving Alden In the
in.. --
uioiaiico.
tltfttnn,..
The two quickened their steps, unseen
y tho physician. '
liut on of their balloons became loos
cned from the pack and remained
tamrled In the branch of the cedar tree.
When they had disappeared Hajl step
ped to the balloon to ponder over its
mystery. He caught at the string to
pull Is away. As ho did so the delicato
rubber burst!
The Hindoo saw the cloud of greenish
vapor and put his hand into It, drawing
it dock toward nis nostrils.
"Oooh!" he groaned as he staggered
unsteadily.
- His senses swam and he tried to sun
port himself by holding' tho bobbing
J cedar branch. As everything grew black I
'aDoUt him he gave a faint call: "Help,'
doctor, help!"
Alden caught the sound, and rushed
down the hill,' regardless or the switch
ing and scratching ot the thicket's twigs
against his faco as he forced his way to
the side of his friend.
"Rrcat Scott!" ho exclaimed, on the
sight. Then. Instinctively, he leaned
over tho unconscious man to begin arti
ficial respiration. A few movements of
tho arms and a rhythmic pressure' on
the lung box brought Hajl back to con
sciousness. "What on earth happened to you?"
demanded Alden, in natural excitement
"That! That!" was all ,hla- companion
could hoarsely enunciate, 'pointing to
ward the dangling string and the frag-,
mt'iitarv shreds or rubber.
Alden reached for the remnants and
sniffed them, to lerk his head back
with a ivry expression.
"Uuh!' he muttered, as he choked
slightly. "No wonder. It's probably
cvnogen mixed with some lighter gas.
That's one of the most deadly vapors In
thu world."
1K1I had regained his voice enough to
explain tho identity and the strange ap
pearance ot the two men.' '
"They are on some new campaign of
devlitrv. I wonder where they aro
gclr.R?" mused thn Oriental.
"I know where they arc going," was
the doctor's firm conviction. "And that
is toward the Maynard home. We must
set back there at otfcel Mvra's Ufa is
In the greatest danger yet, for that gas
IS (leadlv and instant poison. Bo sure,
Hnji. that they have some definlto man
ner In which It is planned to get that
poison to her.-"
"True." agreed tho. other. "But we
must losr no tlmo in getting into the
,oider. This hollow tree Is the secret en
trance men " I .iomyouiooui.i ni,i ,001
dotn used, and we had best make quick
wprk of tho matter, now that we are
here. Then we can hurry back to Miss
Jlyra's home in that taxlcab which you
kept waiting on the boulevard."
Hall carried with him the satchel con
taining tho two costumes for them to
wear. , ,
"I'orhps you ore right, my friend.
But let us uso every second. What had
we better do now?" Alden was for onco
abstracted with his double problem,
and ho looked In helpless perplexity at
his mentor.
"Put on this gown and hood, over
which I worked so hard, to conv from
my own. Then wo will slip back into
the passage from tho rear."
No sooner suggested than done; within
another three minutes the two adven
turers were picking their way cautious
ly along a roughly excavated eubter
'ranean passage.
Alden's pocket lamp was useful, for
the surface of the ground was uneven.
He flickered It only occasionally, whllo
the Hindoo kept a warnlpg hand of
guidance upon his arm.
"What awful, smell Is that?" inquired
Alde'n, suddenly.
"It Is the Infernal incenBe," whispered
the other. ."Be ve.ry quneU now, for we
aro directly under one of the chambers.
Come, we must climb the circular stair
way to the entrance door."
They cautiously ascended, as Halt led
the way with sure est ens. The Hindoo
had made the most of nis opportunities
ror study, and ins unow edite oi me
labyrinth maze brought them soon to
the main portal of tho ordor chamber.
Here ho gave three knocks with
clenched knuckles.
A tiny panel slid up and the vestlbul
was diffused with n-sdft glow of. green
light from a curiously wrought metal
lantern above the door.
Tha two hooded lls-ires were in tho
view of the questioning' eyes within,
Hajl Imitated .to tho letter by Dr, Al
den. gavo the devll-worahlper'n sign,
lists clenched and pressed against tho
cheeks through the disguising masks
and thumbs unturned like horns on
either aide of the head.
There was an Instant silent pause.
Tncn a series ot rnymmio xnocas
came from the opposite stdo' of tho big
portal. Hajl replied with seven knocks,
repented thrice.
Alden, mindful of his careful tutoring,
did the same, stepping In front of tho
Hindoo to accomplish this necessary
signal.
"What Is tho word, brother?" came a
honrso query from tho cautious slit.
Alden leaned forward and whlsnercd
the Sanscrit phrase which ho had mem
orised. . The door swung back upon Its hinges.
and he entered. As' ho did so, his right
hand slid around to mo opening in the.
black gown which was fastened from
behind.
no whipped tno revolver rrom nis
nocketi and before the lone guardian
tt the order room realised what had
happened Its muszle was pressed
against nis ncsru m
Alden leaned forward to whisper
hoarsely: "If you make ono sound, it
will bo your fasti"
Tho (nan drew hack, but1 Hnjl's wiry
hands wero gripping his arm. The
menacing revolver was Jabbed still
harder against his breast. He surren
dered discreetly.
Tho black hood was Jerked from his
head and used by the Hindoo, twisted
Into a roll, as a gag, to bo drawn
tlgTitly and firmly about his -mouth.
Haji produced some lengths of rope,
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which wcro bound securely about his
ankles and. wrists. Kor good measure,
Alden' forced the subdued man to the
floor. When, faco downward, his wrists
ana anicies were nouna togomor. rno
physician' "was certain now that his
premier prisoner could not crawl
otway; ' f
"W'hero ' is the other room?" asked
Aiucn. fn' a whisper, as ho rounded out
this .task. '
"Thero," and Hajl pointed a nervous
hand to the left. "Behind' the altar."
Tho Hindoo had given tho physician a
lengthy description. Illustrated with
several diagrams, during their talk In
tho rustic summer house. So, confident
ot his knowledge. Alden advanced. Hajl
essayed -to follow him, ond he turnecr
with a shake of tho head,
"No; watch this man;" he may provo
dangerous," Whispered the doctor. "I
wri reconnolter and return at onco."
Hajl nodded, but his curiosity was
natural. It was also extremely cost-
He watched' Alden disappear through
tho btack velvet curtains Into tho other
compartment. The room, with which he
was already familiar, seemed thorough
ly harmless. The Incense was burning
feebly, with a few twining lines ot
black smoke, which rose to loso them
selves In the dark corners about the
two bronze Idols which adorned tho
rear of tho room with their squat
forms.
Hajl satisfied himself that his prison
er was absolutely helpless and that
with hie face down he could not even
watch his own actions.
Then tho Hindoo wulked sofUy to tho
curtains to peer forth at tho proceed
ings In the next room.
As he did so, an eerie thing oc
curred. Without a sound of warning, ono of
wiu tuois oegan 10 cnange us pose from
tno rigid cross-legged attltudei A foot
advanced ana me ngure slid to the
uour wun me sinuous ease of a ser
pent!
A bronze-hued arm disappeared Into
tho depths of the black wall, and a
glittering dagger was drawn forth!
The barefooted Idol glided toward, the
prostrate prisoner, as Hajl watched the
actions of his friend, with his hoart pro
truding through the curtains Into the
next room!
There Was a soundless alaah nf th
.knife, and tho ropes about hands and
aPKios wero cuti
The dagger was laid noiselessly upon
tho floor beside the liberated man. The
Idol returned to Its poso in the dim
light, with face averted as It had been
before!
The prisoner suddenly realized that
he had been unplnioned. He cautiously
turned his head, wondering who could
have performed the mlraclo.
But tho devil-worshlpors wero tco
accustomed to surprising powers to
waste- many thoughts In wondering
about, causes!
Tho man craftily reached forth his
hand for the knife, which ho drew un
der him.
Then ho resumed his position faco
downward.
"I wonder what Alden can bo doing?"
thought Hajl, for his friend had disap
peared from vlow within the Inky In
terior of the other room. Not evon the
little electric torch was now In evidence.
He turned to look at his prisoner, and.
rcasntircd. peered through tho curtains
once again. As he did so the recumbent
member rose to his krlee's, and' with tho
dagger drawn rushed upon tho un
guarded Hajl!
CHAPTER XIX.
The. Magnetic Hand.
H
AJI heurd the rufihinsr feet In
time to dodgo forward, as tho
dogger went over his shoulder!
Ho struggled to reach his ro
voiver. hidden llko tho rtqctor'a In n hip
pocket, under tno gown, uut ror mo
minuto ho wau tangled in the curtain
and the block folds of his disguise. .
He sprang away, retreating behind tho
altar, ns tho other pursued him with
tho knife. Neither. made a soundl Nor
did thn obliging Idol even seem to open
an eyo for a peep at the strange
struggle.
The revolver was reached, and Uie
other member of the cult now .dashed
for the door, roalitlng tho futility ot
lighting bullets with steel. ,
llajt hesitated to shoot for an Instant
fearing to betray tho work of tho
doctor.
Tho instant's delay permitted tho
other to encapo Into tho subterranean
passage. Tho Hindoo rushed after him,
weapon drawn,' this tlma determined to
tako n 'pot shot. I)ut tho other had
disappeared on though by magic.
As ho paused, wondering which of tho
devious diannolN to follow, tho idol
again canto 'to aotlon. The flguro slid
down frbm Its pedestal once rnoro. With
that sornontlno swiftness which charac
terised its movement boforo it gilded
across toward tho open door.'
There was a olang and a clatter of
closing bolts and a heavy chain lockl
Hajl turned to find himself locked outl
As he beat furiously upon the door
with tho butt of his rovoiver, he called
tho passwords vainly.
Tho guardian Idol noiselessly returned
& tTHE,
to his cross-legged pose and tho room
reverberated with tho unavailing alarms
of tho excited Hindoo without!
Within another secret room of the
devil worshipers' den a number of the
members, lying at caso on black-covered
couches, wcro brought to their feet by
tho cries of a follow of tho clan qutsldo
a grated door.
"Quick, brethren! We arc attacked!"
As they rushed to admit hlmf tho mas
ter of ceremonies appeared from an
other inner doorway, his hand com
mandlngly raised.
"Fear not. brethren. Tho master bids
you assemble In tho pit. All will be
well."
As ho snoko there were grunts of
wicked anticipation: well did they know
the fate which yawned for an Intruder.
They donned their masks nnd black
gowns, and following tho leador
marched Indlan-fllo through the pas
sageway. Hajl, hiding in one of the re
cestca of the way, waited until tho last
man had passed him and then quietly
Joined them without attracting atten
tion. Tho Hindoo had replaced his
weapon and hoped to regain the vantage
which his curiosity had, forfeited.
Within the Stygian maze of passages
Alden had found himself completely be
wildered. Hajl had not learned all: the
deceiving black curtains which hung on
all "sides had cunningly led to a series
of underground rooms, each like Its
neighbor, until he Anally paused in
despair.
He drew the flashlight again, and its
rays disclosed tho first object which ho
had seen in several minutes Of walking.
It was tho carven figure of satan
protruding from the wall like a gar
goyle of Notre liame.
"Wein there's n familiar face!" mut
tered the physician. He drew hit re-
tfilunf a nil nilirntinaH ts it'll 11 tha Imn trt
standing before It absorbed in the weird"
artistry of the carving.
as no aid so ne neara a demoniac
laugh behind him; he whirled about, but
saw no one. Tho remainder of the room
disclosed to the searching shaft of his
lamp nothing but the interminable black
curtains!
Then came his next surprise!
A soft glow of blood-red light began
to spring up around the room, from
hitherto Invisible discs on wails, on
Moor, on the celling!
He looked about In natural alarm, as
thn light Increased in brilliancy, until
It was painfully dazzling.
The, as he looked down at his feet,
ho became aware that a circular pit
was opening about him, leaving him
standing on a small round platform.
Uclow ho could see nothing except the
piercing, biting effulgence of crimson
light, which Beemed to burn with Its
tremendous- sharpness.
Tiio physician, scientist that he was,
had seen no illumination of this naturo
before, and he could not fathom the
mystery of It.
TMoro was a curious vibration In tho
nlr; it seemed ns though the ether were
throbbing with some strango, terriblo
torce of naturo!
Alden looked about him. squaring his
shoulders gallantly, to await the worst,
Tho floor steadily sank, as though Into
tho liquid depths of red, volcanic Inva-
Ho wns tomptcd to Jump nnd yet It
was Impossible to reach tho sides of
the opening, with such a slender pur.
chase for his feet. Ho soomed on solid
support, despite tho tiny radius, and
so he waited.
"Well, whore aro you? Who are
you?"
' He spoko to empty walls, at first
yet, again and again enmo the cackle of
unholy mirth again behind him, and
this tlmo over his head,
"Well, at least ho'a the most ingenious
tlend in tho world," was tho physician's
grudging mental compliment to tho un
known, "Are you afraid, black master of tha
dovil worshipers?" cried the physician,
defiantly. ,
"No. Are vou?" camo tho nnt rortlv.
aa tho voice of tho guiding spirit of the
evil brotherhood camo from tha very
poweis oc mn eartn neiorn mm,
Alden roallzed the hopelessness of his
position, for tho time being. In a spirit
of bravado he Jammed tho revolver Into
his pocket through tho flllt in' tho
black gown. Then ho turned ,to speak
to tho unseon observer.
. "All this Illumination Is very pretty,
but I am not afraid. I came her to
see you. and I would llko to succeed."
As he spoke 'a long metallic: arm slid
down behind him, unseen Iron fingers
extended. Thero was a snapping of
high-power electric flashes as tho ston
revolver drawn by tremendous mag
netic force suddenly shot from his
pocket into tho waiting finger. Tho
arm was drawn with equal suddenness
Into tho space above, and aa he whlrlod
nbout, realising that his weapon had
disappeared, ho clapped his hand to the
empty (racket with almost a'terrorlced
feeling of apprehension. Kvcn 'the
looso cartridges In his pocket had dis
appeared in tho same mysterious man-
nnrl
"Inasmuch as It Is vour last wish TJrT
earth. I will grant it. xou may, now
sen me." chanted tho mocking voice.
riefore him the face of the evil pon
tiff of tho dovil cult gradually material
Ited into view!
The master held his hands against his
cheeks in tho customary "thumbs-up"
posel ,
TACJ. OT 3HB GRaNDMBSTCB
Despite Dr. Payson Aldon's gnllant
determination, a chill of almost super
stitutlous 'terror paralyzed him for the
nonce! This ecrlo business, tho weird
lights, tho mysteriously disappearing
weapon all these were enough to shake
tho spirit out of any normal man. And
despite his study of psychic things, tho
doctor was essentially normal In every
thing. Ho gulped, pressed his hand to a drip
ping, cold forehead, as tho master
chortled merrllv In his crocodile gleo!
"What do you mean by all this? I
want to get out of here." began tho
doctor, when he found his tongue
The other laughed cynically.
"What do you menn by coming here?"
was the answer. In rasping tones. "You
hnvo seen what no stranger Is ever
fitlnwed tn aee the Bed Flower Of the
Blnck Death' Even ns you forced
yourself Into these, sacrosanct domains
against my rules to do mo unto death.
I sentence you to be buried nllvo as tho
luii-lnnlni, nt vmit- Tiiinlnhment !"
iVHiiiiiiiin :"-! --- '--"-:--.. ,
A a tho
nail-snui eyes laugnea in
Bloating- cleo tho faco began to fade
from view.
Alden felt a new blbrant, and he
looked down. . . . . , , J
Tho pedestal upon which he hod been
captive was beginning to sink Into tho
great crater of burning fumlnoslty.
The taunting laugh echoed again In Its
ubiquitous way.
Ho wns tempted to leap anywhere,,
anyhow I Yet thore was nowhere to
leap!
"And as you breathe your last Myra
Maynard will lcavo this mortal ife. Ha,
ha! Ha. ha. ha!"
The laughter semed to swell by some
fiendish acoustic device until It roared
and thundered around him like tho hur
ricane howling through the entrance of
somo great grotto!
It was maddening, tearing at his very
soul. ....
"This must be a nightmare." aiut
terlpg, ho pinched his arms and cheeks.
"Or I'm going Insane!"
But ho realized too horribly well that
it was not a dream. His cheeks were
wet with perspiration, cold despite tha
hctxt of tho awful engulfing waves of red
"'Well, I guoss It's all over," ho mut
tered, desperately, certain that he was
to bo plunged into somo great furnace.
Then suddenly tho light disappeared!
Everything was black about him. Ho
was still descending slowly. But thero
Was not a sound. It waB cold now;
raw, biting cold, which ate into the
marrow. ....... ...
There were sharp blasts from ono side
and then tho other of wet wind which
caused the "goose flesh" to evidence it
self all over his body.
He blew upon his aching Angers to
warm them. His knees became weaker,
until at last ho sank down to squat
nnnn thn round ton of tho pedestal.
There wns only silence, so oppressive
that ho felt that ho could hear it! He
sat there, waiting, he know not what!
CHAPTER XX.
The Balloon Peddler.
M
YRA MAYNARD wns embrold
erlng some dainty feminine
mystery as her mothor eat on
the other side of tho library
table reading aloud some of the society
gossip of the morning paper,
But Myra wob neither n'good listener!
nor an deft with her needle as usual.
Her mother paused to study the girl's
abstracted expression with growing
anxiety.
"Myra?"
Tho girl did not reply.
"Myra, my dear. Aro you thinking
about this spiritualistic business again?
I wns spenklng to you."
"Oh. mother dear. I beg your pardon.
My mind Is Just wool-gathering, and; I
didn't hear you. It's nothing serious."
"What Is worrying you, child?
Myra sighed, returning her needles,
multl-hued threads nnd tho llnon to the
wicker sewing basket.
"I am wondering why Dr. Alden has
not telephoned me. You remember, ho
promised that ho would be careful, but
I am so afraid that something has hap
pened to hlmr
Bh. twisted her slender white flw
nervously. Mrs. Maynard tossed the
paper to the table, almost glaring at
tho, girl, as' the maternal indignation
boiled and bubbled.
"Now, Myra, my little girl. Wo may
as well have a' little common sense talk
right now, I cannot understand why
this precious Dr, Alden should Interest
you! You have only known him for a
fow days. He has burdened your mind
with a lot of wretched, stupid. Imprac
tical piffle, which he calls 'psychlo
science.' And today, In particular, he
was responsible for your going through
a most dreadful ordeal not to mention
my own Bufferings!"
"Mother, darling rou are the most
darling mother In the world there aro
somo things you seem unable to under
stand. Sometimes I feel.as though I wero
oiaer than you, ana mat you- aro just
a big, sweet girl and that I'm your
don i - can't you see now mucn ur. ai
den did for mo already? He saved my
lire tne omer nignt."
Mrs. Maynard threw up her hanks dls
pnrnglngly. .
"Yes. and what of it? It Just happen.
cd that In some way he Interrupted
your sleep-walking, which you Inherited
from your father. I appreciate that,
dear: but I1 do want you to stop thoso
experiments with hypnotism and magic,
nnd the rest of thla silly rubbish. You
are too ypupg a girl to bo filling your
brain with such old 'wives' tales. And
Dr. Alden Is too old a man to be doing
I. Wt... I. I -nflr.lv tnft nM tnf Mil"
... , ., IIV W V.V .- w - rfw.
Myra became Indignant in turn. Here
wns the nuestlon which always raises
obtcctlons In the mind of a miss Just
escaping from her teens.
"Indeed I do not see why? I am
eighteen now and many girls are mar
ried when they are sixteen to much old
er men than Dr. Alden and much
worse-looking ones besides!"
Mrs. Maynard sensed tho drift of My
ra's thoughts.
"Why. I thought" rou liked1 Arthur
Varnerl" .......
Myra'a cheek crimsoned, bewltchlngly,
as she averted her face, and the sprang
up.' Sha' walked around the' table to
kiss her mother, although the- blush
still remained. . . . .
"Dear." I don't know exactly what I
do think. Arthur is a dear fellow-so
thoughtful and so strong. Yet he Is an
Idler and does nothlnc but arc) around
his. clubs, or motoring, or eating, or'
here her vftlce took on a serious' tono
"drinking. Mother. I may bo a silly
girl, and almost a prude, but It does
seem to me as though Arthur Is dissi
pating terribly oblate
Mrs. Mavnard was silent,
"lf looks changed, mother. He used
to be ro cheery, so strong, while of lata
ho seldom looks mo in -me eye wun
that oM lollv way of his. I am disap
pointed in Arthur." and Myra walked
pensively to the window. . ".But I do
'wish pr. Alden would telephono to let
me know that he'has' not' done anything
rash."
She looked down.the drlvewajrtoward
tho street. , J ... . .
"OK. sect hi. fDnny man selling bal
loons. ,1 haven't seen one since wc were
down at tne seasnore. Ana, iou, moiu
er, there comes Arthur Varnev now!"
Mrs. Maynard was cheered at the
thought of a little conversation on sub
jects which she understood. Varney's
conversation 'Was: never Intellectual
enough to adduce headaches.
"I'm glad." she said. "We'll have a
latin tea and his favorite-marmalade."
Myra was watching In surprise. ,'.
Why. he'j talking to the balloon man.
Surely. Arthur Wouldn't' buy. a balloons-
how absurd I''
fvi-n lniKrh.rf. anil then Mw -with IUr.
prise that -the nCddfer -was walking up
Din li-lv. VltVi tiar frlnnrl. '" i
Myra went to meet him at the door.
as Mrs. Maynard ordered Willis to pre
Dffro'th'a tessat. '
"Hello. Mvrn! This man tried to sell
me some balloons. I thought you might
want some yourself." ne jestingly
greeted her.
"Of course not. I'll tako. nothing less
expensive than a hydroplane or a Zep
pelin. These are -entirely too small.
answered-the girl. "Come In. for I am
worried and want your advice. What
were' yoit talking about so earnestly to
your balloon merchant? Were you ex
plaining the beauties of our architec
ture? t saw yo.u pointing up toward
mr'window?"
The sharp eyes somehow seemed to
have embarrassed, tho visitor, who hesi
tated1 tinounen jaugnea genially,
"No. I Was -lust asking him how high
these .balloons would ny.
I'm always
interested
in scientific
subjects, you
know."
'Well. I don't want any balloons, so
go away Mr. Balloon Man, and sell
your airship to the boys down the
street, at the schoolhouse." and Myra
closed the door behind her visitor.
"What is worrying you. dear rlrl?"
asked Varney, pressing her hand ten
derly, as they entered the drawing
room.
He frowned ever so slightly nr he felt
the Angers drawn quickly away from
his own.
"I can't think why Dr. Alden has not
telephoned me as he promised he would.
You know he Is Investigating the Black
Order, and I am afraid that something
has happened to him."
"The Black Order? Whatever may
that be? I think that man has studied
too much. Or more than' likely he does
what most doctors are said to do uses
tho hypodermic needle to Increase his
Imaginative ability."
Airs. Maynard looked up startled.
"Do you mean that he uses 'done."
Arthur? Oh, how dreadful!"
Myra shot an indignant glance.
"Arthur, that j is a cowardly remark.
You should say it to his face."
nut Varney shook his head wisely.
Take Iron, Says Doctor, if You
Want Plenty of "Stay There"
Strength Like an Athlete!
Ordinary Xuxated Iron Will Make
Delicate, Nervous, Ilundovru I'eoplo
SOo per cent Stronger 'In Two
Weeks' Time. In Many- Oases.
NEW YORK. N. Y.-Most people fool
Ishly seem to think they are golmr to
get renewed health nnd strength from
some stimulating medicine, secret nos
trum or narcotic drttc. said Dr. Sa'ier.
I a well known specialist who has Studied
I ...IaI.. knit. 1h .Ul .a..h... .. vr. .........
.wuciy uuui ill .ilia vuumijr aim ,iiu,c,
when as a matter of fact, real and true
J -trjngth riLttJo
the strength out of their food because
thoy haven't enough Iron In their blood
to enablo It to change food into living
matter. From their weakened, nervous
condition they know something Is wrong,
put mey cuin ten wnat, so tney Gener
ally commence doctoring for stomach,
llvor or kldncy trouble or symptoms
of some other ailment caused bv tho
Inck of Ironjn tho blond. This thing
mnv f-n nn fnt v.Rn. whllfl thn nntlflnt
surfers untold agony. If you aro not
strong or well, you owe-lt to yourself
to make the following test. See "jow
long you can work or how far you can
walk without becoming- .tlrd,. Next
inks two Ilvu grain tahloti of ordinary
iiuxated iron three- tlmen per day after
meals for two weeks. Then test your
strength again ami see fdr yourself how
much you have gained. lhnvaaopn
dozens of nervous, rundown people who
were alllnir nil the while: double nnd
even triple their strength and endur
nd entirely get rid of all symp
"It. Is not k: bad guess all that
rambling talk about spirits and magi
cal writing, messages from the spooks,
and Australian bodies or whatever it
wns he called them."
Airs. Maynara, was scolding Willis for
his tardiness,
"But, Myra," spoko up Vnrney,- "if
you nre worried about the. poor fellow,
why not let us tako a walk, you and I,
over to the police .station, -on the other
avenue. Dot your hat and cloak, and
we'll put the bluecoata on his trail, to
protect -him from the wicked goblins."
Mvrn bit her Up.
"It fs more serious than vou suspccU
I think that Is a god' idea. We'll ho
right back, mother, for tea. But. first,
I am going to call up Dr. Alden's office
on thn telephone, to make; sura that ho
Is not in. Then I'll run upstairs and,
get mv hat" . ....
As she sat down at the library table.
Varner walked toward the window. He
seemed dissatisfied with tho hanging of
the shade. He DUlled It down a few
I feet and then up.
think?" he inquired, surveying; it nerv
ously. Outside, Just beneath the window of
Myra'a room the balloon peddler had
let looso his balloons two or three at a
lime, by a strango coincidence. Just aa
the ourialn was dipped. ,
The fellow, regardless of the value
of his wares, had foolishly liberated
them until at last two of them bobbed
Into the open window, as they glided
up the house close to the walls. Tho
light spring wind, blowing- In through
the opening, assisted' him in his curious
purpose.
Then tha balloon merchant allnrMtA
down the drive again, as Myra. vainly
attempted to get a reply from tho doc
tor's house.
CHAPTER XXL
Buried Alive.
STRANGE things, had been happen
ing .during thla same interval,
which explained why the physi
cian was not in his own comfort
able laboratory, -
At last a dim light, this time of that
evanescent green which percolates Into
the depths of ocean water, had taken
the place of the Aamlng red.
I'ayson Alden's optic nerves still
smarted from the actinic burn to ho
earlier hue, and he felt a sense of relief
as ho suddenly roallzed the pedestal
had ceased moving.
Ho looked nbout him, and perceived
that ho was In a pit-like, room, draped
like the others in black cloth.
To his astonishment he wag sur
rounded .by thirteen black coffins, stand
ing on end. tho panels of which sud
denly opened. ' "
Thirteen men. as though at some given
signal, stepped out. raising their left
hands to point 'at his breast, as they
muttered a weird chant beneath the
muffling folds of their black hoods. .
Alden made a lurch toward one of
fthem, and a quick blow sent the first
gowned ngure to tne ground, but tho
others were' upon him. It was a short,
bitter struggle. In a trice he was bound
hand and foot, and forced to sit upon
one ot the coffins.
At a raised hand from a leader, one of
the figures walked to the aide of the
room, drawing forth a pick and shovel
from some concealment.
Ho began to -dig.-a. grave In- the soft
earth of, the subterranean . room. No
sound except tho steady -plcklng-and the
occasional scrape of the shovel came to
Alden's cars.
Ono by one the men left, apparently to
prepare -some further rite In the- hor
rendous' ceremony. , .
He 'began to 'count the strokes of tho
pick, speculating dumbly how many
would be necessary to finish the grue
some task. Something kept him silent
words were so hopeless, so mocking lit
this wretched fragment of time left to
him. His senses began to reel, as he lost
count of the pick blows.
All sense of time seemed tp have left
him : It was a hundred years pf racking
meditation between every down stroko
Ul Ulai 1.1 uc, eiwiiiiis met..
He closed his eyes, to bar the sight
As he opened, them, during a sudden lull,
he saw that all, the gowned figures were
gone but the grave-digger.
This man approached him with tho
startling message, whispered hurriedly;
"Be careful. Doctor, It Is I, Hajl. Don't
struggle save your breath, and I will
get you out They have gone for more
men. Sssh!"
And he dug more Industriously than
ever, as the members began to Ate into
the room again.'' Two of them swung
braziers containing that sickening In
cense, and Alden fairly gasped for
breath in the dark air.
At last the task was1 finished, and the
prisoner was lifted by strong hands,
rougniy snovea into nis corcin ana me
lid placed on it "
The physician Ailed his lungs with as
much air aa possible, and then breathed
easily. How Hajl could get him out of
this fearsome predicament he could not
Imagine. Yet, the brilliant Hindoo, who
had studied in all parts of the world,
whoso word had never yet, failed, must
know some secret means, as yet un
dreamed of by the other members.
Alden know that the air In the coffin
would supply his heart with enough
oxygen for perhaps thirty minutes;
then -It would all be over.
He felt tho coffin dropped Into tho
grave, and then the blood-freezing
sound of the dirt thrown on the box
came tn his ears.
He could detect the pounding down of
the soil on the shallow grave, and the
last recollection before he became un
conscious was tho rhythmic beat of the
feet on the soil above him.
The devils were dancing their Jublla-
(Contlnued on Fifteenth Page.)
toms of dyspepsia, liver and .other
troubles in from ten to fourteen days'
time simply by taking iron In tho propor
form, and thin after thev hart in ann-.n
cases been doctoring for months with
out obtaining any benoflt. But don't
ine mo oia iqrms or reduced Iron, iron
acetate or tlncturo of Iron simply to
save n few. cents. You must take iron
in a form that can bo easily absorbed
and assimilated like rruxated Iron If you
want It to do you any good, othcrwlso
It may pnovn worso than useless. Many
an athlete or prlzo flghtri has won tho
uuy Bimuiy uec&usc no Knew me sccroi
of great strength and endurance and
filled his blond with Iron before ho
went Into tho nffray, while many
another hnx gone down to Inglorious do
feat simply tor tho lack of iron.
NOTK Nuxutnl "Iron rn-ointneniM ato.
by Ur. 'Bauer, Is one of the newvr organlo
Iron compounds. Unlike the olilor Inortanla
Iran products. It Ic easily assimilated, floes
not Injure the teetb, mck thorn blacir, nor
upset tho stomacht on tltn contrary, it Is a
most potent remedy. In nearly all forma of
Indigestion, .an well an for nervous, run-down
condition)). The Manufacturers have ouch
great confidence In Nuxatrd 'rou tha: they
offer to forfeit tlM.OO to nny eharttalile Insti
tution If they cannot take any man nr
woman uiulir CO nho lacks Iron and Increase
lhlr strength SCO per cent or over In four
weeks time prpvliVd they have no serious
c-rsunlo trouble. Thoy also otfr to refund
your money lf.il does not at least double
I time. It Is dispensed In this city by Jaa.
your etrengin nna entiuranca in isn oaya
- 1 0'Donnell'a Drug Store. I'eopla's Drag Btore
- '.nd all other druggt.t

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