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THURSDAY, JAN. 23, 1941
MAN By H.C WIRE W. N. U SERVtCE Cop^'ri^k-t itf 2) iQpplrt.0*. SYNOPSIS CHAPTER I—Summoned to the ranch in central Nevada, desert-wise Wait Gandy is on his way to help his old range partner, Bill Hollister. Riding through unfamiliar country. Walt is stopped short by a girl— who holds a rifle in firing position. She knows him. tells him how to get to the ranch, and tells him that they will meet again. Walt is allowed to ride on. CHAPTER II—Within a quarter of a mile from his destination, Walt is stopped again. This time by a grotesque, misshapen man who tells him to get out and then tells him the CC crew is in Emigrant, the closest town, for an inquest Someone has been murdered. CHAPTER III—Riding to the inquest in Emigrant, Wait leaves his horse at the liv ery stable. Before attending the inquest he asks a few questions. Cash Cameron, owner of the ranch, is in trouble. A hard but honest man. Cash has many enemies. Gandy’s eye is caught by a roan horse tied near the doorway. It belongs to the girl who stopped hnn earlier in the day. CHAPTER IV—Chino Drake, former cook at the ranch, has been murdered and Sheriff Ed Battle is trying to pin the blame on Cash Cameron. The girl is called to the stand. She is Helen Cameron. Cash’s daugh ter She seemingly faints and. as Gandy rushes to her aid. slips something in his hand. It is the bullet from Drake’s body. CHAPTER V—Walt rents a post office box and leaves the bullet in it. Leaving the post office he is accosted by a dark, swarthy man who offers him a job. He draws the man out. finds that he wants to usurp Cam eron's public range land. Gandy then turns him down in biting fashion. The man leaps at Walt, who whips hipi after a hard battle. The man is Pete Kelso, foreman of the 77 ranch, an outfit hostile to Cameron. CHAPTER VI—Gandy is called to the sheriff’s office, where he meets Hollister and Sheriff Battle. Hollister, this time, is really glad to see him. Battle tells Hollis ter that Cameron is through! CHAPTER VII—Hollister and Gandy re turn to the C. There they find Cash Cameron and Bent Lavic, the crippled man who stopped Gandy on his previous visit. Paul Champion, a young cowpuncher, is with them. Later Gandy meets Horsethief Fisher, another employee. Walt is still unable to find the root of difficulties. Neither Cameron nor Hollister will talk. Hollister, however, borrows two hundred dollars from Gandy. CHAPTER VIII—That evening Walt meets Helen Cameron in the kitchen. From the first he has been drawn to her. Then she tells him that Bill Hollister is one of the finest men she has ever known. The words, though he has known her thoughts before, hurt him. CHAPTER IX—The bawling of cattle that night brought Walt out to investigate. He thinks that bawling is caused by the smell of blood! Curious, he steps in‘o the saddle shed. Then the shed door opens slowly. In the darkness he smells perfume. It is Helen. Angry, she leaves, but not until she warns him to forget the C. CHAPTER X—Walt tells Hollister that he wants information. Hollister tells him that Cash Camcron, thought to be worth a for tune, is Art broke. The murder of Chino Drake may be his finish. Gandy knows that any one of three people may be responsible for Drake's death. He also points out to Hollister that Ranger Powell, Cameron's alibi for Drake’s death, has disappeared. CHAPTER XI—Riding the range Hol lister and Gandy meet Pete Kelso and two of his hired men. Hollister wants no gun play, but in self defense. Gandy is forced to shoot one of Kelso's men. (Now go on with the story) “Walt Gandy, you have got to leave this ranch. It was a mistake for you to come. It will be a greater mistake for you to stay any longer. You’ve got to go.” Very evenly the speech was given, but toward the end a little catch came into that determined tone. Leave the ranch. Walt Gandy turned his head away, looking out of a window into the fading afternoon. Did she know what she was ask ing? He did. It was not a feeling of the mo ment, aroused because she was so plainly in desperate trouble, but one that had grown steadily since the first instant of their meeting—he wanted to be with this girl always Helen Cameron meant more to him than anything else in the world. “But first,” she was saying, “I want you to give me something. I want the bullet I passed to you at the inquest the other day.” He brought his eyes back, meet ing the unreadable darkness of hers. “Not unless you tell me why you want it,” he stated flatly. “That bullet is the only thing I know about “That bullet is the only thing I know about for certain.” for certain my key maybe to un lock a few blind doors.” “Walt Gandy,” Helen asked, lean ing toward him across the table top, “did anyone ever tell you that some doors should never be opened? I want that bullet for the best of rea sons. No, 1 can’t explain. I can’t, Walt.. But perhaps if you knew one thing .’r A look of despair came upon lips momentarily closed she spread her hands hopelessly, and then said, “It’s always true that one lie has to be covered with another, and an other. Bill Hollister lied at the Chino Drake inquest.” Inside Walt Gandy everything seemed to stop. He sat like stone. Steadily Helen went on: “He lied about being on the south rims that day the cook was killed. I know, because I was on the south rims then myself. Bill wasn't there. Now will you give me the bullet?” He shook his head. “I haven’t got it.” “But you can get it for me.'” she said quickly. “Can’t you?” “Tomorrow, maybe, in town. I suppose we’ll be called in for a hearing over Powell.” “And then, Walt, you’ll go.” The girl's voice was all at once surpris ingly tender. Gandy looked at her. “You'll tell me nothing, Helen?” “Only this, there’s going to be no war on the Emigrant range, no more killing. I'm working our troubles out here.” “You are!” Then Walt Gandy’s smile came slowly, the fine lines crowfooting his bronzed skin. “All the more reason for me to stick. Do you think for a minute I'd quit? Curiosity if nothing else would keep me hanging around. But I’m in this as much as anybody. I’m in the groove, and I’ll see where it leads, regardless!” “You mean that?” “Why not?” Helen Cameron half rose from the bench, hands on the table edge, and once more the color was gone from her face. She dropped back. “You don’t know what you’re doing! You can’t! What if you are in it? Go ahead and throw your life away and even that wouldn’t stop all this horror! But I can stop it—and I’m going to!” She’d try, no doubt of that, in whatever way seemed open. Yet to Walt Gandy a forced note in this breathless outburst had too much the sound of lashing herself into do ing something almost beyond her nerve. His glance shifted out the win dow into rapidly graying afternoon. He avoided her desperate eyes, but could still hear the overwrought quickness of her breathing. Abrupt ly it ceased and then in a darting look he caught the focus of her gaze fixed beyond him. Slowly, Gandy turned, and was aware that he had been sitting with his back to the closed hallway door. In the instant of that discovery he knew the meaning of the girl’s look. They were not alone in (his house! He sprang up. But Helen was ahead of him in reaching the door. Backed against it, both hands be hind her gripping the knob, she con fronted him cold as steel: “Don’t you dare!” Gandy reached in under his coat, came out with the thirty-eight, and at sight of it her face blanched. She choked. “Walt!” came from lips that were suddenly trembling. Sharply he said, “I don’t want to hurt you. But I’m going in.” With his left arm around her he took the two small fists in his one. She struggled. “I’m sorry,” said Gandy. “Things like this have gone far enough. I’m going to see who is in there—who has been listening to my talk!” He had the girl at one side of the casement now, released her abrupt ly, grabbed the knob and flung the door inward. In the same move he thumbed back the gun hammer. The door banged hollowly. Noth ing sounded after that. For a sec ond Gandy waited, then stepped from the kitchen into a dim part of the house where he had not been before. CHAPTER XIV CASHtire 30 Ki CAMERON had built early on Emigrant Bench, and he had put up a house with the thick log walls and deep windows of a fort. The kitchen wing with storage shed and foreman’s quarters had been added later. That was mod ern of mill-sawed boards, battened on the outside, painted white with in. But as Walt Gandy passed from Ijhe kitchen, through a short hallway into the great front living-room, it was like stepping back half a hun dred years. For this main part had kept the look of Cameron s pioneer ing. By the glint of rifle barrels he made out a gun rack near the fire place. Dark outlines of chairs showed against the plastered wall. A Navajo rug woven in an old four corners-of-the-earth pattern made a long gray patch upon the floor. Oth er pieces of furniture were no more than vague forms, grouped mostly around the chimney end. From the moment of entering here Gandy’s eyes had been pulled re peatedly to the fireplace maw. Now he stood squinting at the black square until suddenly his nose brought definite knowledge before sight registered what he was squint ing at. The red eye of a cigarette stub glowed in the fireplace ash. Lavic? Had he circled from the junk shacks and come in by tht ront entrance? But Gandy had vatehjed from the window,, and nq one had crossed the open front clearing. Besides that, Lavic wouldn’t matter he was deaf. His soundless movement carried him on to a door which must lead into the family wing of the house. By this time he knew the front room was empty. He paused. “Walt! Listen to me!” Appealing hands gripped his right arm. Whis pering, Helen begged: “Don’t! You can’t help. I’m working this out, everything! You must not go any farther.” But Gandy shook his head. He freed his arm from her tightening fingers. The door gave more easily than he expected, as if it had been closed not quite far enough for the latch to click into place. It opened wide at his touch, and before him was a small plain cubicle with a desk, a chair, and a cot Cash Cameron’s office, disordered, empty. Immediately on his right was a door leading to the inner court formed by the house wings. Gandy sprang across to it, found it un locked. Whoever had been here was gone now. But there was still another pas sage ahead. He moved rapidly along this, seeing a bedroom on the left of it, and then the last room of the family wing at the end. Helen Cameron was no longer be hind him. In her father’s office she had turned back. Walt stopped, for the door was open, and he stood motionless, brought up short on the threshold of the girl’s own four walls. It was a large, airy place, with windows on three sides, cur tained, a fleece rug on the floor, in timate with her things that revealed unguardedly the girl who lived here. Horsethief Fisher’s voice blared suddenly outside. Gandy jumped back along the passage. By the time he had reached the kitchen the old bronc rider and Paul Champion had tramped in. Helen was putting plates on the dining-room table. “Man an’ child!” Horsethief burst out. “Give us grub!” He hung his battered black hat on its own particular wall peg and reached under the sink for the wash pan. “Say, Miss Helen” he called. “Someone leave here just now? Paul he was ahead of me coming along the north pasture and thought a rid er took off southwest.” From his position, entering the kitchen from the living-room, Walt Gandy could not see the girl. Wheth er she signaled Fisher or not, he couldn’t tell. Without pause nor change in his conversational tone, Horsethief fin ished, “But the kid he gets ideas sometimes. I guess he didn’t see no one.” In another step Gandy could look at Helen Cameron. She was mo tionless beside the long ranch table, a dish in her hands. “Walt,” she said quickly, “I haven’t told them. You’d better.” He nodded and went to the wash bench where Fisher and young Champion were bent over, dissolv ing gray dust from their faces. “We found Ranger Powell this after noon,” he said. “Been dead some time.” Two dripping faces turned. Horse thief Fisher looked up, made no re ply, bent again and went on wash ing the back of his neck. Paul Champion stood up full height and opened his mouth. “Jeez,” he said, drawing it out. “Where’s the boss?” “Cameron won’t be around for aw'hile,” Gandy told him. “Hollister will be back some time tonight. Horsethief, after we eat I’m coming down to your bunk house. Wait there, will you?” Fisher and Paul Champion were in the middle of the bunk room, near an iron barrel stove that had no fire. A single oil lamp gave dim yellow light. So savagely was he gripped in the urge to smash through any more barriers and evasions, that Gandy.’s stride carried him on close to Horse thief Fisher, and before the bronc rider had gathered what was hap pening, an elbow was hooked around his neck, and a hard fist was push ing against his nose. “If you don’t open up and talk to me,” said Gandy, “I’m going to crack your skull and see what’s in it!” Then he grinned, dropping his arms. “Horsethief, for Lord’s sake let’s go at this thing fifty-fifty! “I think you’re the only man on the that has nothing to hide. I’ve listened to a lot of talk that tells nothing now I want to hear some without a joker in it. What do you say?” Horsethief Fisher stared, blinking sun-squinted eyes. Then the round face wrinkled with good humor. It lasted but a moment. Sober ing, he said, “You’re right, Gandy. Plenty of side-mouth talkin’. Nothin’ straight out.” He wiped an open hand downward over his face as if to iron off the wrinkles a slow movement, consid ering Walt Gandy during the proc ess. “I’ve been afigurin’ on you,” he admitted. “Maybe you’re the man I been lookin’ for. Hollister, well, something’s happened to Bill lately. Cash he’s kept away from gun-fightin’ too long. And Miss Hel en shucks, I don’t know, she’s all balled up somehow.” Gandy propped himself against a post supporting double bunks and took papers and tobacco from the side pocket of his coat. “Paul,” he asked, turning to the boy whose ears were visibly stick ing out, “rustle some wood and build us a fire, will you?” “Sure!” As young Champion went out he took his belt and big forty-five from a nail next the door. “Now then, Horsethief,” said Gan dy, “tell me who rode off when you came back to the place tonight. I know it’s true, because somebody was at the house before I got there. Who was it?” “Man,” Fisher declared, “I don’t know but I sure wish I did!” His squinted blue eyes shone with honest eagcrnc s. “I do.” he ex plainer,. “becau’ e 11' rin’ THE BLUFFTON NEWS, BLUFFTON, OHIC myself that K was time thi2 game of guesswork ai 1 see just who had stacked the is! I owe Cash Cameron a debt u I’d like to pay back by fightin’ for the C. But where do a fellow be wn? When the cook was found dead I had my hunch. But now w. I Pow ell .” He raised hard hands and let them fall. “Make a guess. Gani'v urged. “About tonight, I me in T.ho could have been there in the iJLse while the rest of us were a and who might have been k off across the bench when you came in?” Horsethief shook bald head. “I didn’t see. It v s Paul who caught sight of someone on a smoky blue, thought he did anyway. But the only man that rides a smoky blue in these parts, couldn’t have been on the C. Leastwise he’d be a fool if he did come sneakin’ around now.” “Who’d that be, Fisher?” Gandy asked. “Jeff Stoddard.” In the act of rolling a cigarette, Walt Gandy’s fingers stopped move ment, and his brown eyes lifted for a long studying look at the man be fore him. “Stoddard. Owner of the 77?” Horsethief Fisher nodded. “Only one I know of ridin’ such an animal. But Stoddard ain’t set foot on the place since Bent Lavic began takin’ pot-shots at him two year ago. Leastwise, I always figured it was Lavic. And now with Cameron and Stoddard on the peck over winter range in the sink, it don’t seem no way sensible that Jeff should show up here.” He looked along the bunk at Fish er, who had backed against the edge and sat down. “What was Bent Lavic shooting at Stoddard for?” “Judas, I don’t know! Except that the old fellow is nuts. Hasn’t Hol lister told you about him?” “Some. Lavic aimed to be king cowman here, and isn’t, and seems to hold it against Cameron. That it?” “Hates Cameron.” said Fisher flatly. “Hates Hollister, too. I’ve seen it the last couple of months. Man, I wouldn’t trust that old roos ter the other side of a fence, lest I could watch him! “But then, there’s Helen. Bet he burns candles to that girl like a fel low does in church to one of his saints! He sure worships the kid. So when Jeff Stoddard took it into his noodle to come courtin’ a couple of year ago, I figure it was Lavic who used to singe his ears with a rifle bullet quite too frequent when night time came and Stoddard started home.” Silent for a moment, Walt Gandy rolled the paper ball in tightening fingers. Then he looked down and met Fisher’s gaze. “Helen in love with Stoddard, was she?” “Naw, school-k:d stuff,” the man declared. “She was nineteen. Stod dard must have been thirty-five. Cash, he didn’t like it so much, and the thing was ended.” Walt Gandy said nothing. He stood motionless, leaning with a shoulder braced against the bunk support, but with a body gone all at once cold from more than the chilled air of the room.” For it was plain to him now who had been in the house with Helen this afternoon. (To be continued) LaFayette Mrs. Burt Shields of Greensburg, Indiana was Thursday dinner guest of Mrs. T. W. Desenberg. Mrs. T. J. Ludwig entertained the country club Wednesday. Eleven members were present, Mrs. John Lyle was a guest. Mr. and Mrs. Edgar Patton and son of Findlay were Thursday even ing visitors of Mr. and Mrs. D. A. Patton. Visitors at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Doit Hall Thursday were Mr. and Mrs. George Vorhees of Lima Mr. and Mrs. J. V. Vorhees, and Mrs. Edna Hall. Wm. (Bud) Vorhees has returned to work after spending a week with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. J. V. Vorhees. Mr. and Mrs. E. N. Holmes of Cleveland were Thursday guests of Mr. and Mrs. T. W. Desenberg. Miss Lillian Desenberg returned Sunday from a visit with friends at Greensburg, Ind. Saturday evening guests of Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Hall were Mr. and Mrs. Herschel Snyder, Mr. and Mrs. Elza Heiser, Mr. and Mrs. Walter Oberdier and Mr. and Mrs. Doit Hall. Mr. and Mrs. John Barges of Lima were Sunday guests of Mrs. Louisa May. Mr. and Mrs. J. F. McCague and Mr. and Mrs. Claire McElwaine and daughter were Sunday dinner guests of Mr. and Mrs. Dorance Thompson. Wednesday evening the teachers had a party for Mrs. Silas Diller at Bluffton. For Vigor and Health— include meat in your menu. Always ready to serve you. Frosh and I Rockport Mr. and Mrs. J. O. Cupp spent Thursday and Friday with Mr. and Mrs. Delmar Smith and family at Avon Lake. William Cupp was a Saturday evening guest of his sister, Beatrice a student nurse in Toledo hospital. Mr. and Mrs. F. C. Marshall and son Robert and Mes. M. R. Bixel of Bluffton made a business trip to Toledo last Saturday. William Cupp and Lloyd Cook are among those who have been called to army training and will report for duty in Toledo, Thursday. Mesdames Francis and Orlo Mar shall attended a postponed meeting of the Advance Club of Pandora in the home of Mrs. Grace Cox in Bluffton, Saturday evening. Supt. I. C. Paul of the Beaverdam schools and a group of his teachers, Messrs. W. H. Crider and Wilber Byerly and the Misses Magdalene Bixel. and Mabel Hesser attended services at the Presbyterian church Sunday morning. Herbert Marshall Jr., a senior in Farm Management at Ohio State University was a week end guest of his parents, Mr. and Mrs. H. B. Marshall. W. E. .Marshall and Glen May berry attended a meeting for town ship trustees of Allen county held at the court house in Lima last Thursday. Mr. and Mrs. Walter Cupp, sons William and Richard and daughter Margery were Friday evening sup per guests of Mr. and Mrs. D. C. Campbell. Mr. and Mrs. Orlo .Marshall were entertained at dinner Sunday in the Risser home near Pandora, Sunday. Other guests were the Misses Chris tina, Phoebe, Emma and Clara Bas inger, Mr. Edwin Basinger and Mr. Otis McBride and sons Halton and John of Lima. Several f(om here are planning to attend the annual business meeting of Lima Presbytery and Ptesbyterial to be held in the Market Streei church in Lima next Monday. Mrs. W. E. Marshall spent Thurs day in the home of her brother Harrison Bassett in Bath township, near Lima. .Mrs. Stewart Berryhill who has been in Lima for more than a week with serious ear trouble is slightly improved at this writing. Mrs. Mary Sylvester spent the past week with her mother, Mrs. Alfred Reichenbach. Mr. and Mrs. Rudolph Larsen and three children of Barbersville. Ky., spent Saturday with Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Amstutz. Mrs. Marion Hixon spent Friday with Mr. and Mrs. Joe Bogart in Beaverdam. Mrs. Roy Clemens has been bedfast the past week with the flu. Mr. and Mrs. Edgar Begg enter I I I' Through special arrangements with the mag azine publishers offer America’s finest farm and fiction magazines- in combination with our newspaper—at pri cannot be duplicated this long list of favorr at selection today! This Newsf I Year, tun Five Magazines all for price SHOWN all six ONLY $300 for both NEWSPAPER AND MAGAZINES I chUd Llfevi^ld ’___2.75 Christian HeroW____? k Collier’s W eekiy___, 2-, 1 y -_ nicest —....... fig’ THIS OFFER IS FULLY GUARANTEED tained a group of young people in their home last Wednesday evening in honor of William Cupp who leaves Thursday for camp. Those present were: William and Richard Cupp, Pearl Kieffer, Ralph Marshall, Do lores. and Homer Bowers, Zerrene and Morris Kidd, Rebecca Marshall, Nancy Mayberry, Rev. and Mrs. C. A. Armentrout, Miss Edythe Cupp, Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Brooks, Earnest, Mary and Virgil Basinger, Wanda Martz, Dale Fruchey, Jack Mamborg, John Rower, Alice and Ray Riggen bach. Mt. Cory Evangelistic services at the Evan gelical chuich have been postponed for at least one week, on account of the flu epidemic. Rev. E. I. Obee was one of the speakers at a missionary rally of the Ohio Eldership of the Churches of God. Services were held Sunday afternoon and evening at the First Church of God, in Findlay. His subject was Missions in Japan. Mr.-,. Esther Nusbaum of Findlay Mrs. Mary Hoch of Rawson and Mrs. J. O. Kinstle and daughter were Lima shoppers Tuesday. Mr. and Mrs. Roscoe Blakesley of Bluffton Mr. and Mrs. John Myers, of Findlay, spent Sunday afternoon with Mr. and Mrs. J. S. Baker and family. Mrs. Earl Guin and Miss Gertrude Stratton called on Mrs. Mary Bolick last Tuesday afternoon. Minor Bolick has returned to work in Findlay after a two weeks’ visit with his mother, Mrs. Mary Bolick. Mr. and Mrs. Earl Nonnamaker and daughter Norma of Lafayette Mr. and Mrs. Leonard Nonnamaker of Lima, were recent guests of Mr. and Mrs. W. A. Nonnamaker and Mr. and and Mrs. John McVetta and sn Johnie Bill. Miss Susanne Wooley was a Fri day evening supper guest of her andparents, Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Renninger. Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Bowersox of 'hnsville were Sunday guests of r. and Mrs. J. H. Bowersox and family. Mr. and Mrs. Herbert Bach of ledo Mr. and Mrs. Alonzo Myers as son ’Pommy were Sunday dinner guests of Mr. A. E. Myers and sons 1‘aul and Harold. John Myers of Findlay was an afternoon caller. Mrs. Joe Naylor is a surgical patient at Bluffton Community hos pital. Mrs. Pearl Jordan and daughters Thelma and Ruth and Mrs. Larena Guin were Lima shoppers Saturday. Mr. and Mrs. Alonzo Myers and son Tommy were Sunday evening visitors in the Lehr Green home. Mr. Clarence Straker of Lima called on Mr. and Mrs. J. White on Thursday of last week. Mrs. Amstutz and daughter Aud- ccs that simply i e! 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