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THE HAYS FREE PRESS THURSDAY, JUNE 2, 1921.
We Homesteader By Robert J. C. Stead Author of " The Cow Puncher." Etc TOustrattons by IRWIN MYERS Copyright, All Right Reset-red CHAPTER XI. ardlnr ha overcoma whatever scruples Riles had, and the scheme is simply on a of robbery. Harris and his son are directed to an old cabin In the mountains, where they are to meet the owner of the coal mine." There, while Harris is asleep. Allan, watching, shoots and kills an intruder (Riles), not knowing his identity. Gardiner. Trom the window, sees the shooting and enters the cabin, seeking the money, in the dark ness Allan grapples with him and is shot, staggering out Into the open. Harris, aroused from deep slumber, seises Oar diner and in the ensuing fttruggle bites his opponent's" thumb. Kiudintf him. Gar-, diner escapes with the money. Travers. who knows Gardiner and has suspected foul play, comes to the cabin and Is seized and gagged by Harris. Sergeant Grey of the Royal Northwest Mounted Police, sent by the banker from whom Harris had drawn the $J0.(Kk. arrives, and they convey Allan to Arthur's ranch, where, unknown to them. Beulah and her mother are staying. CHAITER XII. Allan's wound Is dressed and his condition declared hope ful. Beutah and her father, ift mutual sorrow, become reconciled, and the old feeling of love and respect Is revived In the Harris family. The father sees that bis greed for wealth has blinded him to the finer things of life. He. however, believes Travers Is the criminal who shot Allan and robbed him. Beutah maintains her faith In her lover and visits him in his celL There they plight their troth. Travers tells her he will clear up the mys tery when the inquest on the body of Riles Is held. CHAPTER XIII. Gardiner Is compelled to attend the inquest and his evidence, of course, tends to convict Travers of th crime. Reulah Insists that he uncover bis hands, and when he does so the marks of the wounds made by Harris teeth during their struggle In the cabin are revealed. He is formally charged with the robbery and pretends to commit suicide by swallowing poison. In the ex citement he Is left alone and escapes. Sergeant Grey follows him, finding- where he has fallen to death over a precipice. Harris sanctions the betrothal of Beulah to Jim Travers. and the happiness of the family Is restored. A letter from the lawyer who had been given power to sell the Harris farm reveals the fact, which had been forgotten, that the deed to the original Harris homestead was In the wife's name and therefore could not be sold. The J-'O.OuO represented only the land which had afterward been acquired by Harris. With the old love and trust renewed, the pair, with Allan restored to health. Journey back to the "Homestead" of their youth. With the progress of Travers nar rative all eyes hud turned to Gardi ner, hut. whatever his inward emo tions.' he i inwardly showed no signs of discomfiture. "This seems to be a day of strange tales. lie said to the coroner, "and the last we have heard is stranger than the first. Of course, it is quite absurd on the face of it. The suggestion that I would be a par ty to robbing Mr. Harris of $20,000, and so balk a transaction in which I stood to make a profit of more than twice that amount. Is too ridiculous for discussion. I didn't say so before, because it didn't seem to bear on the case, but I have at home a telegram which I received a few days ago from the New York investors, offering me a personal commission of 20 per cent on the transaction if I was able to get this property for them at the price they had offered. So, from a purely selfish point of view, you see where my interests lay. But there are oth er reasons for this fine tale which you have just heard. To spare the feelings of some present, I intended to say nothing of them, but if I must tell what I know, why. I' must tell what I know. This man Travers was a farm hand working for Harris on his farm back in Manitoba. Harris is or was well-to-do, and Travers ac cordingly mustered up an attachment for his daughter. This the young la dy, it seems, was foolish enough to re turn. They " "That'll do, Gardiner," Interrupted Travers, in a quiet, vibrant voice. "You are getting away from the sub ject." "On the contrary, I'm getting close to the subject a little too close for your comfort, it seems." "I am not investigating any family closets." said the coroner. "You will have to show the counectiou between these matters and the Inquiry we are making." "I will do that 'In a moment, sir," Gardiner returned. "Rut I cannot show the Connection until I have shown the events that are connected. Travers had trouble with Harris and had a tight with Allan. Then he and the young lady ran away. They have both beei. Jn this part of the country' for some time. Iiut Travers plan to inherit the Harris property . was up set on account of the girl quarreling with lu r parents, and his ardor seems to Jtjave cooled ort noticeably. Iiut he was as keen fur the property as ever. Riles was a weakling in the hands of a man like Travers. and no nnibt he betrayed- the fact that Harris was taking his money with him Into the hills. Then the two of them framed up the plan which has resulted In the death of one and the arrest of the other." ) During these exchanges the sympa thies of the jurors seemed to veer from side to side. The theories pro pounded " were so contradictory that opinions wavered with each sentence of evidence. But a new bolt waa ready for the shooting. "Mr. Coroner," said Beulah, rising and pointing at Gardiner, "will you make that man take his gauntlets There seemed an ' Instant recession of the bloodfrom Gardiner; ftirP. But it .was for the instant o;ily. "My hat Is oil." he said; with a smile. "Is that sufficient?" "Make hi in take them off!" Beulah Insisted. "There is no rule against wearing gauntlets In a coroner's court." said the coroner. "I do not see the point of your objection. "Make him take them off." said Beulah. "As the young lady insists," said the coroner, turning to Gardiner, "1 suggest that you comply with her re quest." "I should be glad to," said Gardi ner, "but the fact i3 I have a sore hand. When I was giving the horse medicine the night Travers left me alone the brute nipped me a little, and I have been keeping it covered up since." "Make him take them off." said Beulah. "Why should you be so insistent? said the coroner. "Surely It make no difference ' "Only this difference. You have heard my father's evidence of the fight In the old house. The man with whom he fought will have tooth marks In his hand. Make him take them off. Or if you won't look at Siese hands." She seized Jim's hands in hers and held them up before the coroner and the jury. "Any tooth marks there? . Now make this other man show his." For a moment all eyes were on Travers' hands. In that moment Gar diner rushed for the open window, and in another Instant would have been through it. had not the quick arm of the policeman intercepted. "Not so fast, ray man." said Grey. "Now we will. see this hore bite of yours." Gardiner made no further re sistance, and he drew the glove from his hand. There was a fresh scar on the right thumb. The coroner examined It carefully. When he spoke it was In the voice of a. Judge delivering ' sentence. "That is not a horse bite." he said. "Those are the marks of human teetli !" Gardiner smiled a faint smile. "Well, what are you going to do about it?"' he said. "We are going to put you in Trav ers' place-and tender him our apolo gies," said the coroner. But Travers had crowded Into the center of the circle. "Gardiner," he said, "if you weren't under arrest I'd thrash you here and now. But you can at least do something to square yourself. Where is that money?" "That's right. Jim. Everyone thinks of what is nearest his heart." "You scoundrel ! You know why it is near my heart. You have robbed Mr. Harris of all that he had spent his whole life for. You will have no chance to use that money yourself. You are sure of your living for the next 20 years. Why not show that you are not all bad that you have some human sentiments In you? It seems as little as you can do." "There may be something in what you say." said Gardiner. "I have a slip of paper here with the key to the secret." He reached with his finger and thumb In his vest pocket and drew out a small folded paper. This he un folded very slowly and deliberately before the eyes of the onlookers. It contained a small quantity of white powder. Before any hand could reach him he had thrown his head back and swallowed It. "Too late!" he cried, as Grey snatched the empty paper from his lingers. ' "Too late ! Well, I guess I beat you all out, eh? And, as I said before, what are you going to d about It? Twenty years, eh, Jim? You'll be, scrawny and rheumatic by that time, and the beautiful Beulah will be fat and figureless. Twenty years for you, Jim, but 20 minutes for me and I wouldn't trade with you, damn you ! I beg the pardon of the ladies present. One should never for get to be a gentleman, even when when " But Gardiner's breath was begin ning to come fast, and he' raised his hands to his throat. A choking spell seized him, and he would have fallen had not the policeman and the coro ner held him on his feet. "Let me lie down." be said, when he got his M I "Have I Got to Die- on End, Like a Murderer? breath. "Let me He down, can't you? Have I got to die on end, like a mur derer ?' They !eil him to the adjoining room, where l:e f.Ml r.pon the bed. The mus cles of hi great arms and neck were work ins in contortions, and his tongue seemed to fill his mouth. "Most extraordinary," said the coro ner. "Strychnine, doubtless. We can't do much for him, I'm afraid. We might try some mustard and hot wa ter. Mis. Arthurs." "Take your time. Lil." whispered Arthurs. "You may save your coun try a long board bill." But Lillian Arthurs' abhorrence of Gardiner's per fidy had been overwhelmed in a wave of sympathy for a suffering fellow be ing. She hurried to the kitchen, while the men of the party filed down the stairs and out Into the yard. John Harris was 'the last to leave the house, and he walked slowly, with bare, bowed head, into the group who were excitedly discussing the amazing utnr events had taken. He took no part In their conversation, but stood a Uttle apart, plunged deep In his own inward struggle. At last he turned and called his wife in the kitchen door. "Bring Beu lah," he said. The two women joined him. At first Harris stood with face averted, but in a moment he spoke in a clear, quiet voice. "I haven't played the game fair with you two." he said, "and I want to say so now. Perhaps It would be truer to say that I played the wrong game. Twenty-five years have proved it was the wrong game. Now, without t a penny, I can start just where I start ed 25 years ago. The only difference la that I am an old man Instead of a young one. I'm going to take an other homestead and start again, at the right game. If Mary will start with me." She put her hand In his, and her eyes were bright again with the fire of youth. "You know there Is only one answer, John." she whispered. Harris called Travers over from the group of men. "There's one thing more." he con tinued. "When I started I had only a wife to keep, and I don't intend y take any lugger responsibility now. Allan will be having a homestead of his1 own. Jim Travers, I am speaking to you ! I owe you an apology for some things and an explanation for some things, but I'm going to square the debt with the only gift I have left." The light breeze tossed the hair of Beulah's uncovered head, and the light of love and health glowed in her face and thrilled through the fine symmetry of her figure. "Take her. Jim." he said. "She is a goodly gift." said the young man reverently. "You think so now." said her father. "You know nothing about it. In tweg-ty-five years you will know just how great a gift she is or she will not be worthy of her mother." Harris and his wife were gazing with unseeing eyes Into the mountains when Arthurs handed them a letter. "It came in the mail which the boys brought out this morning," lie said, "and I forgot all about It until this minute." .It was from Bradshaw. Harris opened It Indifferently, but the first few lines aroused his interest, and he read it eagerly to the end. "My dear Harris." it ran, "on re ceipt of your telegram I Immediately opened negotiations through my con nections looking to the sale of your farm with its crop and equipment, complete &s a going concern. I suc ceeded In getting an offer of the $40,- 000 you set on It, and had all the pa pers drawn up, when I discovered that among us we had made a serious omis sion. You will remember that, a good many years ago, when you were tak ing on some fresh obligations, you transferred the homestead into your wife's name. I assured the purchaser that there would be no difficulty about getting title from your wife, but as' all the buildings ' are on the homestead quarter he would agree to nothing bet ter than paying $20,000 for the rest of your land, leaving the homestead quarter, with the buildings, stock and implements out of the transaction. As his price seemed a fair one for the balance of the property, and as I as sumed your need of the money was urgent, I closed a deal on that basis, cashed the agreement and remitted the proceeds to you at once by wire. 1 trust my actions in the matter meet wltt your1 approval. . "Yours sincerely. "GEORGE BRADSHAW." Ilarris placed the letter in the hands of his wife. She tried to read it, but a great happiness enveloped her as a Hood sand the ' typewritten characters seemed to swim before her. "What does it mean, John?" she asked, noting his restrained excitement. "What does it mean?" "It means that the homestead quar ter was not sold after all that it is still yours, with the buildings, and ma chinery, and stock, and this year's crop just ready for cutting." She raised her eyes to his. "Still ours, John, you mean. - Still ours." In the rapid succession of events everyone seemed to have forgotten, or disregarded, Gardiner. But at this moment the doctor came rushing out of the house. "Gardiner's gone!" he exclaimed, as he came up to the men. v Some of the party removed their hats. "Oh, not that way not that way! exclaimed the doctor. T mean he's gone skipped beat.lt, If you tinder stand. Most extraordinary I I was taking his pulse. - It was about n,ormal, and he seemed resting easier, so I slipped, downstairs foe the. fcaifSofe. When I went baek 1 was only gone a moment there wasn't a sight or sound of him." Sergeant Grey conducted a swift examination, not of Gardiner's room, but of the one in which Allan was ly ing. He was rewarded by finding the little slip of paper, with a few crys- i tals of powder still clinging to it. The coroner examined the crystals through his magnifying glass; then, somewhat dubiously, raised them on a moistened finger to his tongue, and after a mo ment's hesitation swallowed fn an im pressive, scholarly fashion. "Saecharum album!" he exclaimed. "Common white sugar! Most extraor dinary !" But Sergeant Grey was at the open window. It was only an eight-foot drop to the soft earth, and to the po liceman there wa..s no longer any mys tery in Gardiner's disappearance. The mock suicide was a carefully-planned ruse to be employed by Gardiner if the worst came to the worst. "I want all of you men, and a horse for each," said Grey, quickly, turning upon them like a general marshaling his officers. "There are a dozen differ ent trails he may follow, and we must put a man on each. I will give imme diate pursuit, in the hope of riding him down before he can throw us off the scent and I will leave it to you. Mr. Arthurs, to organize the posse and scour the whole country until he is lo cated." Grey knew that the main road, If followed far enough, dwindled into a pack trail, which In turn semed to lose itself in the fastnesses of the moun tains, but in reality opened into a pass leading through the range. He gave Gardiner credit for knowing as much, and concluded that the fugitive would make a bolt straight through the mountains. ' t An hour's hard riding brought him Into a tremendously rough country, where the trail at times was nothing more than a narrow defile or ledge, and sheer walls of rock rose thou sands of feet above, their giant edges cutting the blue sky like the teeth of a mighty saw. Far below, a ribbon of green and white, the river rolled !n its canyon. Here and there a thin stream of water sprayed down the mountain side, cutting a damp, treacherous belt across the trail. But at one such spot Grey's heart leaped within him, for there, unmistakably clear In the thin soil and soft rock, were the marks of a horse's shoe, not an hour old. A few minutes later he saw Gardiner swinging round a spur of rock half a mile further up the pass. Suddenly, at a turn in the path, his eye caught a sight which made him throw his horse back on his tracks. A sheer precipice fell away a thousand feet below him. and beetling cliffs cut off the sky above. Across the path trickled a little stream. And there In ' the stream, so clear they could not be misread, were the marks cut by a horse's feet sliding over the preci pice. The policeman dismounted carefully. There was scarcely room for him to pass his horse on the narrow ledge. Where the stream had worn it it sloped downwards at an uncomforta ble angle. He knelt beside it and traced the marks of the shoe-calks with his finger. They led over the edge. Eighteen Inches down the mountain side was a fresh scar where steel, had struck a projecting corner of rock. A thousand feet below the green water slid and swirled in the bed of the canyon. THE END. GLYCERINE MIXTURE FOR GAS ON STOMACH Simple glycerine, buckthorn bark, etc., as mixed in Adler-i-ka relieves ANY CASE gas on stomach or sour stomach. It acts on both upper and lower bowel and removes all foul mat ter which poisoned stomach. Often CURES constpaton. Prevents appen dicitis. The INSTANT pleasant action of Adler-i-ka surprises both doctors and patients. One man who suffered five years from indigestion and constipation was helped by ONE dose. C. A. HARKNESS, Druggist. SIX GILLETTE BLADES WITH HOLDER . $1.25 PREPAID In Attractive Case S Satisfaction Guaranteed or Money Refunded This offer for a limit ed time only. Remit by money order or cash (no stamps) Frad Razor Co. -1475 Broadway NEW YORK CITY Bosch h-T ention Magnetoe for Fordsoii Tractors The High Tention Magneto has been demonstrated beyond any question to be a great improvement over the old method of ignition on the Fordson. Many users claim that it doubles the power, and eliminates 90 of the ig nition troubles. While we do not make this claim for it, yet we are convinced that it is a good investment for any one. The immense demand for this Magneto, is proof of its merits. We have succeeded in getting a few of them, and hope to be ableto get more of them, but do not wait until the day before you want to use the tractor, and then ex pect to get them without delay. Come in and look it over, and place your order. FERGUSON BATTERY & ELECTRIC CO. Hays, CARL LEIKER, the southside Implement Man has recently secur ed the exlusive agency for the John Deere Implements consisting of Plows, Cultivators, Listers, Van Brunt Drill, Etc. If you need any thing in this line call me up at HAYS, KANSAS I TVTTT A 'Yes, we are prepared I IVlJ-ixx A O to take care of your needs in Meats, Groceries, Fruits and Vegetables. T. G. Reed Sons HAYS, KANSAS Having sold my farm west and 3 miles south of miles east of Ellis on ' TIIESD ay, m commencing at 10 o'clock a.m. the following property : LIVE STOCK 20 head of horses from 3 to 10 years old, 8 extra good milk cows, 1 roam bull coming 2 year:, old, 3 bucket calves and about 200 Plymouth Rock Chickens. FARM MACHINERY 1 Hodge Header; One 12-25 Case Ga Engine; 1 four bottom disc engine plow; 1 double 16 dic engine disc; 1 double 12 disc horse disc, nearly new; 1 McCormick Corn Binder, nearly new; 1 Superior 10 disc drill with press; 1 Van Brunt 10 disc drill with press; 1 eight hole lister with tetters; 2 John Deere Sulky Plows; 2 twelve inch John Deere Gang plows; 1 fourteen in Oliver Gang plow; 1 John Deere Double row Weeder; 2 Cultivators; 2 Harrows; 1 Maunre Spreader; 1 Grain Elevator; 1 Side delivery Rake; 1 Wagon Hay Loader; 1 McCormick Mowing Machine; 1 ten foot McCormick Hay Rake; 1 ten foot John Deere Hay Rke; 6 Wagons, 2 new; 1 Spring Wagon nearly new; 1 Top Buggy; 3 Header Boxes; 2 Hay Racks; 8 Sets Work Harness; 1 Louden Hay Stacker with cable and fork.; Household Goods and many other articles too numerous to mention. FREE LUNCH AT NOON TERMS All sums under $10 cash. On. all sums over $10 a credit of four months time will be given with interest at 8 per cent. 3 per cent off for cash. LEWIS JOMKfSOBJ, Owner ISAAC ZEIGLER, Auctioneer. Kansas IIC1S1E1Y Sift. I will sell at Public Sale 9 miles Hays and 7 miles south and 3 PHILIP JACOBS, Clerk4 E 7, 192!