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H Captain In the Ranks ??? By... GEORGE CARY Copyright. 1904. by A. S. Btmet Q Co.. Publiakara. 154 Fifth Arenne. N?W York ^IIArTER XXXI. WHEN Duncan and Temple wont to Barbara's fire for their breakfast after tbe workmen bad been served both wore quick witted euough to seo th.it Um little lady waa lu 110 condition to endure emotion of any kind. She had stet* little on the Dight before leaving Tn itv. very little more at tlie night camp during the Journal and not at nil on the tight Of her arrival. Her lim words indicated a purpose on her port to fen 1 off all talk that might touch Opoa personal matters. "Good morning, gentlemen." she said. "I'm very well, thank you. 80 you needn't ask me about that, espe? cially as tliero are more important things to bo discussed, i brought ali the supplies I could, hut after seeing the mon eat I realize that we shall mr. short of food very soon. How mauj more days are there?" "Four more, Including today."" "Then you must telegraph at onc< to Cairo for more beef or we shall rui short. Please go and telegraph a once, Guilford. Then come back ant your breakfast will be ready." When he had gone the girl turned t< Temple and said: "Everything* is ready for you two Bob will serve it. I think I'll go anc sleep a little now." With that she tripped away to th< eauvas covered wagon which Duncai had detaiued at the camp to serve hei as sleeping quarters. Late in the evening of that day ttM two teamsters, who had started earlj In the morning on their return jouruej wi lb the other wagon, rode back lute camp. They had been obliged to aban don their wagon, wholly unable tc make their way farther owing to tnt floods. "Then we shall get no more provi? sions," said Barbara sadly. "And that's a pity," answered Tem? ple, "for tbe men's spirits have greatly revived under tbe stimulus of your im? proved commissariat. Miss Barbara. How long will your supplies last?" "I've enough coffee, flour and molas? ses," she answered, "to last through, but the fresh meat will be exhausted by tomorrow night. The hams will help out for breakfast, but they won't go far among 200 men. I'm sorry 1 couldn't have brought more." "You could not have got through ai all if your loads had been heavier," said Duncan. "We must simply do tht best we can. I still have hopes thal we shall win." "Oh, we must win, you know. You mustn't allow yourself to think of any? thing else." a a a a a a a It was 0 o'clock on the morning ol the last day when the night gave Its first intimation of a purpose to come to an end. In the slow coming gray of the dawn the torches still flared, cast? ing long and distorted shadows of the work weary men as they continued their toil. During that last night the entire company had been kept nt work In a last desperate effort to accomplish the end so vitally necessary. All night long Duncan had done what he could to encourage the toilers, while Temple had given his attention to such devices as might shorten tho task or otherwise facilitate its doing. All night long Barbara had busied herself furnishing limitless coffee as an atonement fer the Insufficient food the men had had since ber supplies of meat ran out two days before. During the last half hour the rain lad almost ceased, and Guilford Dun? can had indulged an anxious hope that the skies might clear away with the fcunrise, but just as the gray of morn? ing began to give light enough for tho workmen to see without the aid of the torches the downpour began again more pitilessly than ever. Its discouraging effect upon the al? ready exhausted men was instantly apparent A dozen of them at once quit work and doggedly sat down In tho mud of the embankment. Two or three others, reckless of everything but their own suffering, stretched them? selves at full length to sleep where they were, too weary and hopeless now even to seek the less uncomfortable spots to rest their wornout bodies. "Six hours more," said Duncan, look? ing at his watch. "Only six hours be? tween us and triumph. Only six hours, and we must lose all simply because the men are done up." "We'll do it yet," answered Temple. "We never eau. Those fellows are done for, I tell you. I know the symp? toms. They've lost their morale, lost "May 1 spend $2,000 if I get this job done by noont'* the ambition for success. I've seen soldiers fall in precisely that way, too far gone even to shelter themselves from a cannonade." For the first time in his life Guilford Duncan realized that there is such a thing as the impossible. The simple fact was that the long strain had at last begun to tell, even upon his resolute spirit. For three days and nights now he had not slept. For three dave and nights be bad not sat down. For three days and nights he had beou wading In water and I struggling in mud and exhausting all | his resources of mind and character in efforts to stimulate the men to con , tinned endeavor. I ""He was playing for a tremendous [ stake, as we know. Ills career, his ; future, all that he had ever dreamed of i of ambition, hung upou success or fail | ure In this undertaking, and now nt last sud in spite of his heroic struggle failure stared him lu the face. And apart from these considerations of self Interest there were other and higher things to be thought of. If he failed now an enterprise must be lost lu which he had labored for a year to Induce others to Invest millions. At last this resolute mau whose cour? age had Maned unconquerable was discouraged. "Might as well give lt up." said Will Hallam. "The HMO simply will not work any louger." "It isu't a case of will not, but of cannot,* answered Duncan. Barham beard all as she hovered over the fire of logs and busied herself with her tasks regardless of rain and weariness, regardless of every consid? eration of self. She wore no wraps or protection of any kind against the tor? rents of rain. "They would simply bother me," she said when urged to protect her persou. Her face was flushed by the heat of tbe fire, but otherwise she was very pale, and her tightly compressed lips were livid as slie straightened herself up to answer Duncan's despairing words. "You are wrong," she said. "They can work a little longer If they will. It is for us to put will Into them. Call them to the fire, a dozen or twenty at a time, for breakfast. I've-something new and tempting for them?something that will renew their strength. You and Captain Hallam and Mr. Temple must do the rest." A dozen of the men had already come with their tin cups to drink again of the strong coffee that Barbara had been serving to them at Intervals throughout the night. She had some? thing more substantial for them now. She had by her a barrelful of batter, and she and tho negro boy, Bob, each with two large frying pans, were mak? ing griddlecakes with astonishing ra? pidity. To each of the men she gave one of the tin plates with half a dozen of the hot cakes upon it, bidding each help himself to molasses from the half barrel, from which for convenience of ladling Bob had removed the head. "This ls breakfast," she said to the men as they refreshed themselves. "There'll be dinner, and a good one, ready when the work is done." The men were too far exhausted to greet her suggestion with enthusiasm. The few words they spoke in response were words of discouragement and even of despair. They did not tell her that they had decided to work no more, but she saw clearly that they were on the point of such decision. The breakfast she was serving comforted them and gave them somo small meas? ure of fresh strength, but lt did not give them courage enough to overcome their weariness. The girl saw that something more effective must be done. She puckered her forehead quizzical? ly?ofter her manner when working out a problem In arithmetic. After a lit? tle the wrinkles passed away, and, lift? ing her eyes for a moment from her frying pans, she called to Captain Hallam; "Would you mind coming here a aalnuto?" she asked Tho mau of affairs responded weari j, but promptly. 'What Ls If. Barbara?" "May I spend $2,000 If I get this Job lone by noon? That's the last min? ute, Mr. Duncan tells rae." f<Bnt how can you"? "Never mljtd how. May I have the $2,000 V "Yes?-twenty thousand?any anr.ount, i If only we succeed In pushing that cur on rails across thc county line before I the clock strikes 12." "Very well. I'll see what I can do. i Mr. Duncan, can ycu cook griddle? cakes?" "Happily, yes," answered he. "I'm ac old soldier, you know." "Very well, then. Please come here and cook for a little while-Just till I get back. 1 won't be long." Duncan took command of her two frying pans. A little amused smile ap? peared on bis face as he did so la spite of his discouragement and melancholy. But to the common sense and sincerity of the girl there seemed nothing lu? dicrous in setting him thus to the un ; dignified work. Intent upon her ! scheme, she darted away to where the several gangs of men were still mak? ing some pretense of working. To each gang she said: "I've got f2,000 for you men If you stick to your work and finish lt before noon today. I'll divide the money equally among all the men who stick. It will be $10 apiece or more. Of course you'll get your triple wages be? sides. Will you keep lt up? It's only for a few lours more." Her tone was eager and her manner almost piteously pleading. Without the persuasiveness of her personal appeal it is doubtful if the men would have yielded to the temptation of tho extra earniug. Bren with her influence add? ed more than a third of them?those who had already cast their tools aside and surrendered to exhaustion?refus? ed to go on again with a task to which they felt themselves hopelessly un? equal. But In every gang she address? ed there was a majority of men who braced themselves anew and respond? ed. The very last of the gangs to whom she made her appeal put their response Into tho form of a cheer, and instantly the other gangs echoed it. "What on earth has that girl said or done to the men to fetch a cheer from them?" ejaculated Will Hallam. "Reckon 'Little Missie's' jest done be? witched 'em." resoonded Bob as be ?floured batter Into .his pans. A moment lator Bnrbara, with a face that had not vet relaxed Its look of in? tense earnestness, returned to the fire and resumed her work over the pans. "Thank you, Mr. Duncan," was all she said in recognition of bis service as a maker of griddlecakes. But abe added: "The men will stick to work, now, i think?or "most of them, at any rate. Perhaps you and Mr. Temple can do something to shorten it?to lessen the amount." Then, turning to Bob, she said: "Bring the bog. Bob, its quickly as you can. There's barely time to roast it before noon." The men had nearly all had their breakfast now, so that the making of griddlecakes had about ceased. Hal? lam, Duncan and the young engineer, Temple, taking new courage from Barbara's report, were going about among.the gangs, wading knee deep in water and mud and giving such di? rections ns were needed. Duncan especially was rendering service. As an old soldier who had had varied experience In the hurried construction of earthworks under diffi? culties he was able in many ways to hasten the present work. Oue thiug be hit upon which went far to make suc? cess possible. That end of the crib which reached and crossed the county line offered a cavernous space to b# filled In. lt was thickly surrounded by trees, and Duncan ordered all these felled, directing the chopping so that the trunks and branches should fall Into the crib. Then setting men to chop off such of the branches as pro? truded above the proposed embank? ment level and let them fall Into the unoccupied spaces be presently had that part of the crib loosely filled in with tangled timber and treetops. Gangs of men were meanwhile push? ing cars along tbe temporary track and dumpiug their loads of earth among the felled trees. Duncan, With a small gang, was extending these temporary tracks along the crib as fast as the earth dumped In provided a bed. This work of filling was very slow, of course, and when Duncan's watch showed 10 o'clock he was well nigh ready to despair. Uuder the strain of his anxiety he had forgotten to take any breakfast, and tlie prolonged ex? posure to water and rain hud so far depressed. his vitality that he now found a <chlll creeping ever him. He hurried to Barbara's fire for some cof? fee and a few mouthfuls of greatly needed food. There for the first time he saw what Barbara's promised din? ner was to be. The two separated halves of e dressed hog hung before and partly over the fire roasting. "Where on earth did you get that?" be asked in astonishment. "Bob gol It last night," she answer? ed, "and dressed lt himself." "But whore, and how?' "I don't know yet. He laughs when I ask questions. I'm sorely afraid Bob stol? the hog from somt farmer I sent him out with some money to buy whatever meat he could find, for I saw that the men must have substan? tial food. He came back about day? light and told me he bad a dressed hog 'out dar in de bushes.' He gave me back tho money. I'll make him tell me all about it this afternoon. If he stole the hog wc can pay for lt And meanwhile the men shall have their dinner. How ls the work getting on?' "Rapidly, but not rapidly enough, I fear. I must hurry back now." "I'll go with you," said the girl. "Bob can watch the roasting," for Bob had reappeared at the fire. "But you can't go with me," replied Duncan. "The water's knee deep and more between here and tbe crib." "It can't make me any wetter than 1 am now," replied the resolute girl ss she set off in Duncan's company. At tbe crib she studied the satiation critically. She knew nothing of engi? neering, of course, but she had an ibuudance of practical common sense. "What time ls lt now?" she asked liter she had watched the slow prog? ress of the work long enough to esti? mate the prospect "Half past 10." "Then we've only an hour and a half more. It isn't enough. You can never fill that hole in time." "I'm afraid we can't. I'm afraid we've lost In the struggle." "Oh, no; you mustn't feel that way. We simply must win this battle, In ono way or another." Duncan made no answer. There seemed to him no answer to be made. The girl continued to look about her. "Is the end of the crib at the county line?" she asked. "Yes, or, rather, the line Iles a little way this side of the end of the crib." Again she remained silent for a time before saying: "There are two big tree trunks lying longways there In the crib. They ex? tend across the county line. Why can't you jack them up Into place and lay your rails along them without filling the space and without usiug any ties?" For half a minute the young man did not answer. At last he exclaimed: "That's an inspiration!" Without pausing to say another word Duncan started at a run through the water till ne reached the mud em? bankment. Then he run along that to the point where Temple was superin? tending the earth diggers. "Quit this quick," he erlod, "and hurry the whole force to tbe crib! I seo a wuy out! Order all the Jack screws brought, Dick, and como your? self In a hurry!" Tho two great treo trunks were quickly cleared of their remaining branches by the axmen. Then Tem? ple placed the jackscrews under them and sot to work to raise them into tbe desired position so that they should He parallel with each other at the track level, with a space of about four and a half feet between their centera. As the Jackscrews slowly brought them Into position Will Hallam and Duncan, one at either end of the logs, directed men in the work of placing log supports under them. At half past ll Temple announced that the great tree trunks were in place. Instantly twenty axmen were set at work hewing a flat place for rails along the top of each log, while other men as fast as the hewing ad? vanced laid and spiked down the rails. At five minutes before noon a gang of men, with shouts of enthusiastic triumph, seized upon the dumping car which stood waiting and pushed it across the line. As this last act In the drama began Guilford Duncan seiz? ed Barbara by the elbows, kissed her in the presence of all, lifted ber and j pmceq ncr rn tnt* moving car. "You have saved the railroad," he said, with emotion in his voice, "and you shall, ht? Its first passenger." * 'tr ? aa a a It was ten days later when Barbara reached home again after a wearisome Journey through tbe flooded dlstrfet un That evening Duncan stood face to face with her. der the escort of Duncan and Captain Will Hallam and with the assistance > of Temple ut tbe heud of a gang of his ready witted miners. That evening Duncan stood face to face with her In the little parlor. Without preface he asked: "Will you now say 'yes,' Barbara, to the questlou I asked you so long ugo?" "I suppose I must" she nnswered. "after?nfter what you did when you set me In tbe car that last day of the struggle." TOE IND. ynii !?? i i STEVENS WHEN YOU SHOOT ! You waac to HIT what you are aiming at ?be it bird, beaut or target. 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