Chapter 146835524

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Chapter NumberVIII
Chapter Title
Chapter Urlhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article146835524
Full Date1891-06-25
Page Number1
Corrections0
Word Count1804
IllustratedN
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleThe Narracoorte Herald (SA : 1875 - 1954)
Trove TitleO'Neil M'Darragh, the Irish Detective; or, The Strategy of a Brave Man
article text

CHiPTEB VIII.

The position in whioh the detective found himself was In many phases the meat awk ward,he hade verbeenin during his whole professional career.

Little time was left, however,™ lor him to

think matters over.

The man at the window called out:

" See here, 'Duchy, if you move a step, Gr attempt to c ffir any resistance, I willtheot 1 Youmust surrender quietly, or you are a dead man !" - . !

. " Bang in the door, boys 1" said the man . with the gun, addressing his companions. :?

Bang! bang! hang! hammered the men at the doer with a heavy log, which they had secured from a neighbonring wood

pile.

O'Neil stepped towards the door, when the man with the gnn called out:

" Hold'on there, stand, you rasoal, or by thunder I?ll shoot'!"'

The banging at the door continued, and efter a moment, with a terrible crash it fell

in.

•*Now, seize him, Jake and Bill!'' called the man with the gun.

The two men addressed rushed- into the room, and violently seized hold of the detec

tive.

The latter offered ho resistance, although

his blood boiled.

" Disarm him 1" called Tom.

The men searched the seeming Dutchman in a bungling sort of manner, but tbey man aged to discover a pair of pistols and a huge

bowie-knife.

" By George! the "rascal is a walking ar senal 1" exclaimed Jake, as the formidable weapons one after another were produced.

After the men had disarmed him, they procured a rope and bound his hands.

Not until he wsb disarmed and his hands securely tied did Tom lower the gun. 3 ?'

•?Where did you put the body, you rascal 1"

asked Jake,

" Vot body do yer mean ? By Jimerala rusa 1 you fellers moost be some grassy mans vothaf escaped from some asylums, dot you come undt play der debit mit a quiet man is

dis fusion."

'• We will show you how grazy we ore, you assassin-hand it will be all the better for you, though, if you own up at once."

" Vot moost I own 2 By golly 1 I don't know vot yon fellers were talking abocdt at

all."

*'You will find out whatwa were talking about. What have you got in that bag 5"

" In dot bag ? Dot vos -not mine bag. How de debil vould I know vet was in dot bag ?"

One of the msu opened the bag, and the blood-stained clothes tumbled out upon the

door.

As the men beheld its contents roll out, all blobd-staihed as they" were, a cry of-horror burst from thair lips, tpd one of them, in the excitement of the moment, struck the detective a powerful blow, whioh knocked him over in one corner of the room.

The officer lay where he fell.

He did not utter a cry or say cue word, although there was a strange gleam in his

eyes.

" You hadn't ought to have dene that Jake, "exclaimed the man called Bill, and he went to assist the prisoner - to his feet again. -

" By Jingo 1 Iconldn't help it," said Jake ; adding: " I feel just like tearing the cursed

murderer limb from limb!"

" Don't do it again, that's all," said Bill. " The man's hands are tied, and you must

not strike him."

As the Dutchman was assisted to his feet, and heard what Bill said, he exclaimed:

" You vas a shentlemans, undt I tank yon, I don't know how it vas dot you arrest me undt tie mine hands, but if I was guilty effer so much, it ieh not right dot you abuse me until you foundt oudt how it was."

The men now held a few minute's consul

tation.

Bill was in favour of taking their prisoner

. straight to gaol,

Jake and Tom, on the contrary, were wild over the anticipated glory of their achieve ment, and wanted to add to their laurels by finding the body of the slain.

. The men now commenoed to search about theplace.

Half an hour was spent in this way, but their efforts were not rewarded,

! At length Tom said ;

! " We might as well take cur nrisoner, and deliver him over to the gaoler.""

It was finally decided that the plan pro posed was the hist. • : H

0~Ncii M'Darragh was a very cool \ men. .

He had, as we have before seated, been in [ many a tight place, but his present position i was by far the meet tryieg he had ever

been called upon to extricate himself

[ from.

| ' He wa3 led from the cabin with one of his i captors on either side, while Tcra marched j.behind with bis gun cocked and ready for j any emergency.

j A3 they moved along through the woods, j Jake once more attempted to prevail upon | the supposed murderer to make a cbnfes | sion.

i Addressing the prisoner, he ssid:

J " Hid' iycu any confederates in your

i crime?':

."•.Ob, go avay yon vas graay i" answered . the Dutchman.

! At this moment the party arrived at the | verge of a little woodland creek, when an ex Citing incident occurred.

The detective had been so passive, and had walked along so unresistently, that his cap

tors had let np a little in their careful watch-:

fulness.

As they approached the creek mentioned at the clo3<? of ourprevicuschapter. tksdetec

tive looked around and -noticed. that the man.

behind, thinking everything safe and right,

had brought bis gun to his shoulder.' j

Upon arriving at the shore cf the creek as. • mentioned, Bill, one of lbs ir.ca walking} bsside the prisoner, involuntarily leaped across, leaving only one man fceEitie ths .captive.

" It was at this moment that the exciting incident 'oecnrred. \

fa <Thc5Sei^atiye 88 tbcugh- by magic freed! his hands, and as quick as lightning tbrow ing cut his foot, he gave Jake a trip, and by the aid of hie head gave him a push which

Eestjhirn pitching heailcng into the]

water.

Havingihus disposed of one of his captors O'Neil turned like a flash, and before Tom knew what bad occurred, he, too, was cent flying towards the creek.

- Away sped the prisoner, now free.

Bill, in-the present emergency, proved to be. the master spirit, and his orders were obeyed.

" Get a horse and ride to town as quick as you can," he called to Jake, as the latter dashed away.

I " Now, then," raid Tom, " we must traok j

! him."

The men started in pursuit,

j Less than five rnmntc= had passed when | they started to recapture their lest prisoner

and they had not proceeded a hundred yardsj j when they met an old men coming'throagn [

the woods towards them. <. 3

Tom sndi Bill came rushing up, breath- j

lesely, to the old man, and both asked, ex citedly : : ?? 1

|! Did you sees man—a Dutchman—run ning through the woods here?"

" I heard the crash cf some one running through the woods here," replied the cid

man.

la what direction?" asked Bill. " Bight here to my left."

But in what direction did he appear to be j

heading?"

"Toward the road yonder,I fancy,"

Without another word Tom and Bill

dashed7 cfi in the direction indicated by the

old man.

As they disappeared from view a low,

strange, quiet laugh burst from the eld man's j lips, and ho moved straight Eleng toward

the creek where the prisoner had succeeded ! in making his escape.

As the old mas who had es^ed, but had not. seen, a man running approached the spot beside the creek whew the fracas had

taken place, he espied & canvas beg lying on : the ground.

" Juer as I thought," he inntiered. j And- approaching deliberately, ha picked up the hag and started back in the direction whence he had just come.

"Moving rapidly along, after going some distance, he stooped down and picked up a

coat.

A few feet farther on he picked up a vest, and still a little farther he picked up a pair of pants, and close by he took from a bush a nicely-made tow-coloured wig.

It was a remarkable fact that all these ether articles of clothing bore a striking re semblance to the clothing , that bad been worn by the Dutchman, and the wig, even in colour, favored the hair which had seemed to ornament the same individual's head.

Having gathered all of these articles, the old man took the wig and put it into bi3 pocket.

Then taking the bag, he took out the blood-stained clothes and substituted those he had picked up.

Having madcthe exchange he walked back to where he found the bag and laid it back again.

'• So far so good," he muttered, and walked

away with the blood-stained garments under i

his arm.

In the meantime, Jake had run like a deer 1 through the woods until he came to the open

fields."

In one of the latter (he saw a horse grsa-! ing. 1 5

Approaching the animal he caught him and mounted, and, being a good horseman,

like most countrymen, he gailopped the 1

animal to P ? .

In a rapid, concise manner, he told the' whole story, dwelling with particular empha sis on the fact ef the discovery of the blood stained garmente.

As a matter of course, the story spread over the township like wildfire, and at least a

hundred men were speedily upon the road, I

hastening toward the woods where the exoit icg event had transpired.

In the meantime the district justice was

not idle.

. P—— was a railway and telegraph station, and messages were sent in every direction, giving a description cf the cscsping Dutch man, and ordering his arrest at sight wher

ever found.

At length night fell, and the searching parties began to return to the township.

.The last to come in was Bill and hie com panion, Tom.

As each party oarne in, th&y made their way

to 4he eppft-houee. j

As stated, the last to come in were Bill and Tom.

After dark they had gone to the place be- j side the creek where the prisoner had broke away from them.

Here they found7 the bag containing the blood-stained clothes, and brought it along

with them.

As they know its contents they did not open it.

When they arrived at the school house they ! were told to tell their story, which they did,! and the most interested listener was Jona-1

than Turner.