|Newspaper Title||The Queenslander (Brisbane, Qld. : 1866 - 1939)|
|Trove Title||The Terror of Moggil-Moggil|
The Terror of Moggil-Moggil.*
"Vengeance is Mine; I will repay." (Christmas Supplement to THE QUEENSLANDER)
By MARY HANNAY FOOTT.
Mistral, the great steeplechaser, had come to Myandetta on his way North, and would be there for another three days. Since Landsborough and his camels had
spelled at the station, thirty years before, there had been no such stirring event in that quiet bend of the Darling. To Mr. Ferrers himself, who as a young fellow had carried off the Limerick Grand National, and raced himself out of house and home, Mistral was no less than a royalty. Flora, his second wife, whose not inconsiderable money had given him another chance in life, and who prayed to his gods devoutly always, offered up at the great horse's shrine a precious little hoard of ninety-day maize she had meant for the garden. Even Jim Ferrers, Flora's big stepson, who tried to hate racing for the ruin it once had brought, was in a white heat of excitement over Mistral's coming, and hovered about the horse with worship ping eyes. As for the men on the place, Mistral's points, pedigree, and perform ances were all they could think or speak of from the moment he arrived at Myan detta and they were told his name. His groom had "a soft job," they found, so plenty of time to spend with them. For Mr. Newbolt, his owner, did every thing himself for Mistral. The horse fol lowed him about like a child, whinnied at sight or sound of him, nuzzled him when he was near, but to every one else showed the temper of a particularly male violent fiend. One person alone, of all at Myandetta, looked coldly on Mistral—little Nancie Jeune, Mrs. Ferrer's niece. She was used to be first. Now Mistral had ousted her from her place. And Jim had forgotten to take her out in the canoe when he came home from the run, he was so busy fixing up things for the horse—sending one little
gang of blacks off to the river to fetch the half-tank that served for a ferry-boat, set it in a corner of the yard, and fill it with water, and another to cut piles of bush hay for fodder and bedding, and trusting no hand but his own to wedge the slip- panel and make every doubtful rail fast. After a while, when she found that nobody had thought to look for her to make one in the pleasant party having tea and cake in the little drawing-room, Nancie set off by herself to the river, that lay shimmer ing enticingly, all red and gold, in the level sun. In the falling dusk, an hour after, a horseman crossed the shingly ford above Myandetta Bend, and rode out from the blue river mist towards the homestead. The mare he was riding had been bred on the place, and whinnied joyfully to her old companions as her rider, dismounting, led her, bridle on arm, to the little side gate of the flower-garden, where Mrs. Ferrers ran beckoning him as he came. "Oh, Banning," she exclaimed, "have you seen Miss Nancie? I have just missed her --- Was the canoe at the ford when you crossed?" "I didn't notice, ma'am. I was trying for tracks of poor Lizbeth—she's run off on me again." "Foolish girl!— But she always went off like that, every now and then. I told you, you know." "You did, ma'am. I never thought though she'd keep to them ways once she'd a home of her own. But what about Miss Nancie? Surely she's not gone on the river, this hour, her lone? " "I—don't—know," Mrs. Ferrers said, trembling. "Could you wait just a mo ment while I get Mr. Jim to come here? And let go your horse --. Oh ! it's Ranee, isn't it? How well she is looking! You can't go any further to-night." As Mrs. Ferrers hastened back to the house, Ranee whinnied again. This time a loud answer came from the yard, and the stroke of angry hoofs, as Mistral dashed round and round his prison, fain to be free. Mr. Ferrers, Mr. Newbolt, and Jim flung themselves out of French windows and over the veranda at the sound, and made for the centre of disturbance, ready for war, but stopped short at sight of Mrs.
Ferrers. "It's Banning and Ranee," she said in a quivering voice. "We must get him to help us if Nancie has lost herself in the mulga—l can't find her anywhere. Per haps she is drowned." "Nonsense, Flora," said her husband. "Nancie has curled herself up with a book, as usual, and gone to sleep." "Glad to see Ranee looking so well. Banning. And I hope Lizbeth is well, too, and keeping steady. By the way, have you brought any message from Mr. Bradford?" "No, sir. I'm hunting for Lizbeth. She's left me again." "Don't worry, man. Lizbeth's all right. She'll be back as soon as her wild fit is over. And don't be hard with her when she comes home." "Me hard with her!" Banning muttered under his breath as Mr. Ferrers strolled back with his guest to the house. "If his missus was out her lone in the bush he wouldn't sit down to wait for her!" At the first word of Nancie's being missing Jim Ferrers had set off at the double to see whether the canoe were in its place by the ford, and found it was gone. Now he came running back, heaping maledictions on every one in the place, himself more than all, for having lost sight of Nancie and letting her go her ways. _________________________________________ * "Moggil-Moggil." Accents fall on first and last syllables of the compound. _______________________________________
Pale and angry, he rushed into the dining- room, where the others had seated them selves, holding out to them a handful of small green weed. As he thrust it into the circle of lamplight for his father to see, yellow drops splashed from his shaking fingers and stained the cloth. "She's gone!" he said; "gone! The poor little thing's taken the canoe. Beasts that we are to forget about her! And the river's coming down—look at the weed!" The other men sprang to their feet. They knew what it meant. There had been no rain anywhere near, but heavy rains there must have been further north. That small weed was the sign of big water on its way from the Warrego or Culgoa to swell the Darling to flood. Glad enough they had always been to see it in the yellow "new water" that brought it in its flow. But now—Nancie was somewhere afloat on the path it must take; alone—a mere sheet of bark between her and the deepening river. Every man on the place, white and black, was off by the early moonrise to seek for Nancie, in eager haste; some of them riding across the flats towards one or other of the lower bends, others follow ing on foot the course of the river down stream. Banning, with one foot in the stirrup, caught sight of Newbolt flinging down the top-rail of the slip at the yard, and hurried across, meeting him as, bare back on Mistral, be cleared the rails he had left.
"Can you swim, sir?" he said; "if you can, will you come to the island with me?" "But that's up the river," said Newbolt. "Could she get the canoe past the ford to go there?" "It's only a sheet of bark. There would be water enough on the shingle any time for that. Miss Nancie used often to make my missus take her up to the island — she lived at Myandetta before we were married. It's the likeliest place."
"Then we'd better push on across coun try. The water goes over the island in anything of a flood." "And there's no knowing how soon." After half-an-hour's ride, as they emerged from the interlacing mulga on to an open box-flat, the sharp tap of a toma hawk broke the stillness, and looking to wards where the sound came from they saw a next-to-naked figure standing—in toe-niches apparently—midway up the trunk of a huge bare tree. "Lizbeth! Lizbeth! My girl!" Ban ning called aloud. "Come with us to Nancie. She's out in the river." Lizbeth slid to earth in a moment, and, tossing a skirt over her head as she came, glided swiftly to meet them. "My missus," said Banning in a joyful tone. "She's strong in the water. She won't see Nancie drown." He slipped from the saddle and walked by Lizbeth's side, leading Ranee the while. Presently Mistral gave a loud snort, whereupon Banning said gently to Liz beth: "The horse can't stand them 'possums, Lizbeth. Couldn't you chuck them away?" Lizbeth flung the string of opossums from her, and the tomahawk after them. "I'm ashamed. Will," she said. "Don't be angry with me, Will." Newbolt saw, in the bright moonlight, that Lizbeth was a handsome half-caste girl. Her look was gentle and winning, for all her gipsy ways, and her voice and accent were like a lady's. All this, with her penitent and submissive attitude, marked Lizbeth out, quite unmistakably, as one of those lucky beings to whom much is wont to be forgiven. A narrow belt of scrub lay betwixt the box-flat and the river bank. As they threaded a way through the tangle they heard Nancie calling from the island: "Cooee! Cooee! Jim! Jim!" Lizbeth answered the same moment, yodelling a word or two in Koornoo—the dialect of the Myandetta blacks—in a high pitched musical note that must have car ried far up and down the river. Nancie, recognising the cry, yodelled in reply: "Tuena! Tuena!"—Lizbeth's native name.
The next instant they stood on the river bank facing the island. Nancie, plain to be seen in her white linen frock, was seated in a curve of a low-hanging gum branch, some way out from the rushy marge of the island. The canoe, they learned later, had come to grief against the end of the branch, which was hidden beneath the new-risen water. Nancie had clung to the branch as the canoe was swept down stream, and hauled herself up to the curve where she was perched when they found her—safe enough but for the rise in the river. The island, once a point of the near bank, whence it had been cut in some fierce rush of the river, stood a little lower, on the side facing them, than the red-earth cliff whence it had been torn. On its farther side it sloped to a broad reach of shingle and loosened stone, melting into reedy flats beyond, creviced with old flood channels already ashine with water. It would be no hard matter to ride ashore with Nancie on that side, once a man made his way to the island. But betwixt it and where they stood the pent-up cur rent ran so swift and strong that even a powerful swimmer would not be able to go straight across. "Mistral could clear it," said Newbolt, measuring the jump with his eye, "but he's got such a brute of a temper I doubt whether he'd carry the girl. I'll go a bit higher upstream and swim over from there."
Dismounting as he spoke, he handed his bridle to Banning, tore off coat and boots, " and ran off to do as he said. Banning, though, was never a man to stand by and look on when there was danger to face or work to do. He knew himself weak in the water, but so long as he sat in the saddle with Ranee under him he was as good as the best. "Hold on to him like grim Death, Lizbeth," he said. "It's Mistral, the great steeplechaser. Ranee'll do it—you'll see!" Then turning the mare for as much of a take-off as the narrow open allowed, "Ranee!' he cried; "over, my gir!" and the next moment landed on the island shore. "All right, Mr. Newbolt!" he shouted from the other side. But Newbolt had seen the great jump, and, like the good sportsman he was, entered into the triumph of rider and horse. "Well done!" he shouted, and, racing back to Lizbeth and Mistral, took his horse's bridle from her hand and said, with such a clap on the shoulder as he would have given to a friend: "That's a man for you, my girl! And that's a mare!" Lizbeth's eyes were ashine with tears of pride and joy. "Yes, sir, she said in a trembling voice, "the best man in the world ! And the pluckiest little mare! She's safe." They watched Banning help Nancie along the bough to the island shore, lift her to Ranee's back, shorten the near stirrup for her, and pilot her through the foaming shallows—waist-deep himself sometimes, and all but swept off his feet—to the half flooded flats beyond. It would be a long ride, in and out the waterways, to the bank facing Myandetta homestead, but Banning knew every step of the way, and so did Ranee, too. Once they were there it was only to cooee for the boat and Nancie would soon be safe at home.
As they turned to go towards the sta tion, Newbolt leading Mistral as he walked by Lizbeth's side, "treating her," as she told her husband afterwards gratefully, "as if she were a lady," Newbolt said to her: "What can I do for your husband, to show him how much I think of him? Is there anything you've heard him say he'd like very much to have?" Lizbeth laughed, forgetting for the mo ment her white-woman shame at having been caught by this kindly and most wor shipful stranger—the great Mistral's master no less, yet brotherly as he was brave—garmentless as a camp black-gin, and behaving like one. "Only one thing, sir," she'answered. "And he can't possibly have that." "Tell me what it is, though," Newbolt persisted. "If you ask for a silk gown, I've heard say, you'll get the sleeve of it." "There's no sleeve to this gown, sir." "Tell me the name of the gown, and we'll see." "Well, sir, it's a very queer thing you should have asked me about that,--you being Mistral's owner. It was when the "Queensiander" came awhile ago, and I read it to Will—for he can't read for him self—and there was all about Mistral and the great steeplechase he won at Rand wick, and his picture taking up a whole page. We've got it pasted, up in the hut." "Well, come Lizbeth, finish!" "Then Will said, sir, that if he'd ten thousand pounds he'd gladly give it if it would buy the horse. That he'd rather have Mistral than the crown of England." "Ten thousand pounds wouldn't help him to Mistral. He hasn't his price. And I agree with him about the crown. No, the silk gown can't be had, certainly. You see, Lizbeth. nobody else can stand Mistral, but he and I are good friends. I could no more part with him than you could part with your Will." "I know, sir. But you made me tell you." "And I'm very glad I did, because— but you must keep it dark, Lizbeth, for I've refused it to other people—though I can't give him the gown, I think there's a way in which I can give him the sleeve."
CHAPTER II. "Time you put Curly in the way of earn ing his living, Jim, don't you think?" remarked Mr. Ferrers one evening to his son as they were having their after-dinner smoke—"unless you mean him for beef." "Jim isn't a cannibal," exclaimed Nancie severely from her perch on the arm of the weather-beaten cane lounge where Jim lay stretched at his ease. "It isn't cannibal to eat beef." "It is if the beef was a friend—like Curly." "Curly isn't a calf now, Nancie. I'd hardly call him a steer—such a mountain of meat as he is, and such a fool as he looks, following his old mother about, and running after you for bits of cake like some pet." "He is a pet; I love Curly." "And then," said her uncle, adding on to the indictment—for he enjoyed "getting Nancie's back up"—"the fellow is a regu lar loafer; has never done a day's work in his life." "Like yourself, Uncle!" "What! You little minx!" "It's true, though. When Mistral was here and Mr. Newbolt last year, and Dr. O'Reilly came, Mr. Newbolt said to him one day that Jim was a glutton --- " "One for you, Jim!" said his father, laughing. "A glutton for work—not a greedy. Then Dr. O'Reilly said, 'He is. Jim's uncle—'does the deportment.' " "It's true," said Mr. Ferrers. "There's precious little deportment to be got from you, Jim—any more than work from me." "I hate deportment," said Nancie. "And I like for Jim not to be nice to horrid people. At the last races we went to at Sturt, when Mr. Bradford kicked poor Silvertail so horribly for not winning in the Ladies', and he came over when
we were going and wanted to help putting in the horses, Jim called him 'Mr.' and asked him not to come near them for fear of their bolting if they smelt the blood on his boots."
"You ought not to repeat things, Nancie. But I'm glad to know it, Jim. I wouldn't have blamed you if you had given him a hiding." "Oh, Newbolt did that for him after the women had gone." "I think Curly knows you've got a down on him, Uncle," said Nancie after a while. "He hasn't shown up with the milkies to-night or this morning."
"Don't worry." said Jim, "Curly never goes far. I'll have him home for you sometimes to-morrow—go after him my self. So you can bake him a cake of welcome—he'd bar fatted calf, I suppose— first thing in the morning."
True to his word, Jim was off next morning to the milkies' range before the stars were off the sky. Making a wide circle about a favourite camp of theirs, a little bay of deep grass sheltered with sandalwood, he came on the almost fresh tracks—day old, perhaps—of a ridden horse, with the fainter footmarks of a single beast here and there. They led towards the boundary of Bradford's place, where Banning and Lizbeth had their hut, and an hour after sunrise Jim pulled up at their door.
Lizbeth, a pattern of housewifely neat ness, as Mrs. Ferrers had brought her up to be, came out to greet him, aflush with pleased surprise at seeing one of the Myandetta family, all so dear to her.
"I'm looking for Curly," said Jim, dis mounting as she came. "I picked up some tracks that I fancy were his coming this way. Did Banning say whether he had chanced across him anywhere about?"
"No, Mr. Jim. If he had, though, he'd have given him a shoot back home, you may be sure. Won't you stop for a while and let me make you a cup of tea? I can't offer you anything of a breakfast, for we're quite out of meat. Will is to go to the station and fetch some when he's been round his sheep." Jim waited for the tea and some dainty "puff de loonas," as Lizbeth called them— little cakes of light bread dough fried in well-clarified fat—and ate and drank with boyish enjoyingness, for all his 23 years. Afterwards he returned to the track.
When Jim came to realise, after a fur ther hour's ride, that, whatever their windings, purposeful or not, the main direction was always towards Mr. Brad ford's head station, suspicion arose in his mind, and he resolved, at whatever risk and cost, to see the thing out. The day before, however, had been a hard one for his horse no less than for himself, and he drew aside into the sandalwood for a while to spell Dolo and stretch his own long legs on the thick soft grass, bleached white almost by the mid-winter frosts. He meant to camp only for an hour, but what with the day before's tiredness, the early breakfastless start, and the hospitalities of the hut, Jim fell fast asleep, and never woke until late in the afternoon. Dolo, short-hobbled with a couple of straps, was easily caught, but by the time Jim had threaded all the turnings and twisting of the tracks—for there had been many a break-away on the route—and he found himself nearing Bradford's head station, the sun was low in the west, and the smoke of a fresh-lit fire was blowing along the ground from the yard. As he cantered up to the rails he saw three men in the killing-yard—Bradford himself, his Chinese cook, and Will Ban ning. A new slaughtered beast hung low from the gallows, his hide, with the sever ed head beneath, on the ground. Bradford was washing his hands in a bucket, the cook busy filling a big tin dish from the carcass. Banning, with clean hands and his shirt and trousers spotless of blood, was standing a little way from them beside the now fiercely-burning fire.
As Jim flung himself off the horse and over the rails Banning stooped suddenly, dragged a fragment of hide red-hot from the heart of the roaring blase, and thrust it into the slack of his shirt, betwixt it and his naked skin.
Jim seized hold of the hide and turned it over before Bradford could stop him. There was a rough square cut out of the near shoulder, and Jim scattered the fire- sticks apart to rake for it in the coals, but in vain. "That's Curly's head, Mr. Bradford," he said; "I've run his tracks and yours driving him from Myandetta." "You lie!" exclaimed Bradford. "The steer-was a clearskin."
"The days of clearskins are over thls side of the river," said Jim. "I can swear both to head and hide, though you've done away with his brand. If you'd scorched every hair of it, I'd swear to that skin. And there isn't a man in the district brands his cattle like that, on the shoulder, excepting my father. Banning, you know that's the steer—speak out like a man!"
But as Jim turned to Banning the poor fellow dropped in a heap to the ground, There was a charred patch in his shirt that showed as he fell, and Jim knew in a moment what Banning had done when he stooped to the fire.
"Come, Will," he said quietly, going over to help him to his feet, for the others made never a move, "better let me see you home to Lizbeth."
Banning looked up at the young fellow with his honest eyes, and whispered hoarsely: "You're a white man, Mr. Jim." Jim went and fetched Ranee from where she was tied up. and Dolo with her, helped Will to the saddle, and rode away at a slow walk by his side. As they were leaving the yard Bradford called after Jim suddenly: "Perhaps there has been a mistake," he said. "If the steer you were looking for doesn't turn up, and you still fancy it's this one, take any you like from my killers when you want beef." "I mean to," Jim Ferrers called back, "whenever I want it."
He kept his word, and in time Bradford came to see he was like to pay a long price for Curly. . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Whilst Banning was in the Sturt Hos pital ill with blood-poisoning, besides the horrible injury to his side, where the square of red-hot hide when removed had torn away with it flesh and skin, a letter came for him one day in the station mail bag.
Mr. Bradford guessed at once it was from Mr. Newbolt, by reason of the curious, rather scrawly monogram on the flap, formed of racing insignia embossed in that perfervid sportsman's colours, en hanced with gold. After Mary Newbolt came home from her English school and a dowager aunt who was an expert in "properness," she broke Newbolt of this and some other rather spready[?] ways. Meanwhile there was no one to keep him true to "form"--outside the turf, of course, for there he was faultless—the straightest of owners, the "prettiest" rider.
Bradford fingered the letter for awhile, wondering what Newbolt could possibly have to say to Banning. Even he, small heed as he ever gave to the observance of neighbourly good faith and honour, ought to have known that Newbolt was not one to try and tempt another man's servant away from his master. Yet he muttered to himself, as a pretext for breaking open the envelope: "It's to offer him a billet, I daresay. I'd better see what he says before sending it on to Sturt."
"Dear Sir"—so it ran, and Bradford sneered at the courteous words—"If your mare Ranee has a colt to Mistral, and you care to let me have him, you need only name your price. If her foal turns out a filly, I would also be glad to have her, in case you thought of parting with her.
"But if you would wish to keep the colt or filly, and to give it a good chance on the turf, I would be just as well pleased to have a share. This I would pay your own price for. I would, besides, be respon sible for keep, training, travelling expenses, and all other usual outlay.
"The reasons I write now, to be before- hand with any other offer, are these two: "First, many a one will try to get a Mistral colt or filly from you, and I could not stand knowing the creature had fallen into the hands of any one that would treat it as I saw poor Silvertail treated by her owner, once when she failed to get placed in a race at Sturt."
Bradford had not forgotten how Newbolt handled him on the occasion, and the caution to Banning cut deep. "Second," the letter went on, "Mistral is dead. He was galloping at the tail of a little mob, put into the home-paddock with him for company, when a yearling in front of him trod on one end of a dead branch, sending the other end up. Mistral came down upon it, and it pierced his chest. He must have been missed from the mob just after, for when the stockman went up the paddock to look for him he found Mistral standing with his chest as if propped up on the stake. When he pulled it out the blood rushed from the wound, and Mistral fell dying at his feet. "After your wife has read you this, I should wish you to take it to Mr. Ferrers and get him to advise you. Mistral leaving no progeny, unless, as I hope, by Ranee, makes whatever she may have the more valuable. Mr. Ferrers had a great deal to do with racing in the old country, and the knowledge that you may soon have a Mistral colt or filly will be quite safe with him. Tell no one else, or it may be taken from you when it comes. Remembrances to your wife.—Faithfully yours, " HENRY NEWBOLT."
Will Banning, wearing his heart out in the Sturt Hospital, suffering and in risk of his life by reason of the gallant rash deed done to ward off disgrace and ruin from the man he served, would have been rejoiced indeed to have such a letter. The simple, courteous, "one man to another" tone of it, the candour, honesty, and gene rous dealing, would have helped him to worry less over the shame he felt reflected upon him in the matter of Curly. And it would have been easy enough for Mr. Bradford to send Lizbeth in to him with the letter.
Llizbeth had not gone off in her black gin fashion for some months back now; she knew now that the "sleeve of the gown" that Newbolt had promised her for Will, to mark his admiration of Ranee's jump at the island, was a son or daughter of Mistral by the beloved, beautiful mare Mr. Ferrers had given her as a girl -- Ranee that she had taken day-old from her dead mother's side, made to drink of her own cup, sleep by her own bed. She had no wish now but for Will to be well and for Ranee to want nothing that she could give her, suffer for want of nothing that she was able to do for her. Lizbeth would have loved to have Newbolt's letter to read to Will.
But she never knew of it. Bradford burnt it as soon as he had read it, and set to work to carry out a certain plan.
CHAPTER III. Whilst Banning was in the Sturt Hos pital, Lizbeth looked after the sheep- paddocks he had charge of on the Myan detta boundary.
She used to saddle up Ranee and ride her away from the hut and wherever she thought her tracks would be seen. The rest of her boundary-"riding" she did on foot, leading the mare. The evening of the day he read New bolt's letter, Bradford rode down to the river past Banning's hut, turned back as if struck with a sudden thought, and stopped at the gate, rapping upon it for Lizbeth to come to him.
When she appeared Bradford remarked, with a casual sort of air, "Oh, Mrs. Ban ning, it has just struck me Jim might like to spell that mare of yours. I will send you down Lurline to ride, if you like." "Thank you, sir," said Lizbeth, glad enough of the offer, and went to work cut ting bush hay and tossing it into the little yard of the hut for fodder for Ranee as
soon as Lurline should come to take her place. Lizbeth was afraid to Iet Ranee go into the bush, for it was now far on in the year; at any time the mare might need special care.
Lurline arrived next morning before the stars were off the sky, and Lizbeth left Ranee shut up in the yard, a couple of buckets of water set for her in a shady corner, and a huge pile of bush hay that she could help herself to at will.
When she came home a little before sun down Ranee was gone. The gate was fast, as she had left it, and she walked around the outer side of the fence looking for the place where Ranee, as she supposed, had jumped over. There was no sign of a jump, but close to the water buckets, where the ground had been moist in the morning from their overflow, there was the track of a booted foot, by the size the foot of a man. It was growing dusk by this time, and Lizbeth knew she must not risk over-running the tracks, so forced herself to stay indoors for that night. Meanwhile she put together a good gathering of rations, and strapped them up in a pack, to be slung blacks' fashion, next day, from her shoulders, and wrote a message for her husband in case he should return whilst she was away. He would not be able to read it, but he would know it was from her, and that she had not gone off in the old way for a spell of black's life, for when her wild fits took her she used to disappear without word or sign.
With the first of the daylight she saddled Lurline, fixed the swag on the mare's back, and began casting about for the track of the man who had robbed her of Ranee. She did not find it. but after a while she came upon the track of a ridden horse with another track alongside that she knew to be Ranee's. It led her to wards the home station, and as she drew near she hid her swag in a patch of sandal-wood and rode Lurline up to the station store.
The Chinese cook, the only person to be seen about the place, came over civilly to see what was wanted.
"I want some strychnine," she said, "for the dingoes. It's in little bottles -- white, sparkly stuff—on a rafter in Mr. Bradford's office. ls he at home?—or did he leave you the key?" What Lizbeth wanted, of course, was to know Mr. Bradford's movements. The cook, not unmoved by Lizbeth's charms of dark clear skin and deep black eyes, held up a long, yellow finger cautioningly and said in a whisper: "The boss no-good man! He got plenty money, sheep, evelything -- and he steal! Steal Myandetta steer. Steal your old man's mare." "Ranee?" "Yes, last night he fetch her. He think I not know. He put her in buggy this side pole. Thlee other horses with her. You see Ranee can't break away."
"Put Ranee in a buggy! Where has he gone to? When is he coming back?"
"Queensland, Missie. He got big place there close up Mr. Newbolt's place. Once me cook there. He not say when he come back."
Bradford had a long start of Lizbeth, but there had been some thunder- showers on the border, and a mob or two of travelling cattle had gone along what there was of the road, trampling the wet black soil into a morass of glue. A dozen spare horses, wired for from Sturt, were camped awaiting him the other side of the crossing, but even with the frequent changes thus provided it was hard enough to make anything of a stage. Ranee, who had never been under harness in her life before, suffered severely the seventy odd miles to the border, but after that ran with the loose horses comfortably enough. It was not till the black soil was done with and they had the red ground under their feet that she was put in the team again. And then Bradford sent the black boy that had met him on ahead to camp with the loose horses at the hot springs on Moggil-Moggil, until he came. Midway between Moggil—Mr. Newbolt's place— and the southern border Lizbeth caught him up. The food she had carried was done, and she had lived as she could for the last hundred miles, yet when she stepped out from the gloom of the pine forest and stood confronting Bradford she looked in every way his better—unkempt as she was and travel-stained—straight and strong, and fearless, the fire of defiant rage in her wild black eyes.
Ranee, poor Ranee, was in a black sweat with terror and pain, but she gave a feeble little whinny of welcome as Lizbeth sprang to the leaders' heads.
"Let go my mare!" she cried. "Let her go! Can't you see her trouble is on her? Brute that you are, and no man."
The team had pulled up when Lizbeth seized the leaders—quiet, poor wretches, broken-spirited and spent—and Bradford flung the reins on their backs and set Ranee loose. He was in no mind to risk losing a Mistral foal. Dripping sweat as she went, the mare laboured toilfully into the thick of the pines to hide herself there with her pain. Lizbeth went after her, found her, and fondled her, the two ming ling their tears.
Did you know that a horse—alone, I think, of dumb creatures shares with humankind the merciful gift of tears? If you do not know it, or if you disbelieve, go some raw night nearing the morning to one of your city cab stands. There, at that hour, poor broken-down creatures, pent in foul stables by day, lest the law should espy and rescue them, stand wist ful and shivering, tears raining slow from their hollow eyes. You will find them— or the white salt trace of them—on many and many a one.
Bradford turned out the other three horses, fixed himself up in a comfortable camp, and awaited events. He had plenty of tucker and tobacco, and a jar of whisky, far too good for the likes of him.
Lizbeth. he knew, had footed it for over two hundred miles, but her eating and
drinking, or her going without, seemed to him no concern of his. Finer foal was never tongued-over by proud mare-mother than Ranee's big black colt, dead Mistral's son. Lizbeth kissed the white star on his forehead with pride ful joy—and she noted with special triumph the "Mistral mark" of the near hind foot in his baby track on the sand— an impress, within the clean-cut outer ring of the hoof, as of a three-toed foot. Mr. Newbolt, she recollected, had remark ed to Will about this that there had once on a time been a breed of horses all of them three-toed. They had lived in days, he said, when the horses had to fight tooth-and-nail for themselves, in a world of devouring, scaled beasts. Mistral, he sometimes thought, had harked back to their savage ways, and the three-toe mark was the sign of it. When the colt was a half-day old Liz beth became alive to her hunger and dirt. Leaving mother and son asleep in a nest of pine needles hollowed deep in the yielding sand, she set off to gather some food for herself, and to wash off the dust and caked mud that clung to her from her many miles of travel. Waist-deep in the water of a narrow lagoon she heard a shot, then a wild, un earthly scream. With her wet clothes clinging to her she flung through the water and breast-high reeds, and dashed through the pines to where she had left the sleeping mare and foal. The Mistral colt, tied up in a blanket, as a kitten might be tied in a handker chief, lay kicking and struggling, and banging his head on the ground. Ranee was dying. A stream of blood ran from her neck, and made red pools in the sand. Bradford, revolver in hand, was standing by. Lizbeth flung herself on the poor mur- dered creature, crying "Ranee! Ranee!" with heart-broken sobs betwixt each utter ance of the name, Ranee the while, with wistful eyes set on her face, till they could see no more. Deaf and blind, in her passion of rage and grief, Lizbeth never knew when Bradford lifted the foal and carried him away.
Fixing up his three horses in unicorn, Bradford made off at the best speed they could raise, keeping the foal well under his feet for fear of his hurting himself in his struggles. He knew Lizbeth would follow him up, and kept a lookout, but saw no sign of her all day. He lay down in his clothes at night, on the sand, and did his best to keep awake till morning, but by midnight was fast asleep. Just before starlight was over he felt himself suffocating. Some one was holding a piece of furry skin over nostrils and mouth. Wide awake in a moment, he knew that his life was in danger from some strong and resolute enemy; for no feeble hands could have held the fur so tight pressed against his face. It must be a black, he surmised, who had stolen upon him thus to murder him, for the smother ing of a sleeper by means of an opossum skin so used he knew to be a practice amongst blacks intent on stealthy murder, and the time chosen for the attempt the boats betwixt midnight and dawn, when sleep is the heaviest amongst their own people. The thing that saved Bradford was the habit he had of sleeping with his arms thrown upward from the shoulders, half-encircling his head. The moment he recognised what was happening he brought down his hands close to his head—and grasped in each of them a smooth small wrist. Holding fast to them, he forced back the stifling fur, with a strong effort gained his feet, and found that his assail ant was Lizbeth. He dragged her to the buggy, got some splicing cord he had with him, and tied her fast, with her arms drawn tight around the trunk of a great tree. Then he went to make sure that the Mistral colt was safe. But the Mistral colt was gone. Bradford stood confronting Lizbeth in the opening dawn. "Take your choice, woman," he said— "one of two things. Tell me where you have planted the foal; or make up your mind Banning is done with you." Lizbeth made no answer. "Don't be a fool, girl. Up to now, Ban ning has always been glad for you to come back to him, whenever your wild fit was over. He believes that all you make off to the bush for is to hunt and live like the blacks you came of; I will open his eyes: I shall write to him to the hospital and tell him you followed me here, came to my camp in the starlight—here on Moggil- Mogill." Still Lizbeth said not a word.
"He will get the first person that comes to read him the letter. It will be all over Sturt. At Myandetta, where they have tried to make a white woman of you, they won't let you cross the door. Banning will kill you if you show your face at the hut." Bradford, still getting no answer, left Lizbeth awhile and went casting about for her tracks, to help him to find the foal. There is no better time to see a track plain than at sunrise, whilst the night's dew stays undried. Moggil-Moggil is in the heart of the hot- spring country. There were great mud mounds near, covered, some of them with short close grass, others with a high reed- like growth. From one of the latter, close by, ran a narrow trickle of hot water, spreading as it neared Bradford's camp into a marshy stream, and leaving every where as it flowed a snow-like deposit of soda. Failing to find any tracks, Bradford began to follow the stream towards its source. Lizbeth, he thought, might have walked with her feet in the water. Suddenly he found himself sunk in warm sand, all but knee-deep. Getting out with some trouble, and back to firm ground, he gave up his search, and went again to see what could be done with Lizbeth. . . . . . . . . . . .
When Lizbeth came to herself her wrists were still tied, but she was loosed from the tree, lying in the warm current of the little soda-stream. The last thing she recol
lected was Bradford fetching something over from the buggy—it seemed to be part of the harness from the glimpse of it she was able to catch over her shoulder—and menacing her with it as he came, then one blow that burned across her back like red- hot iron.
Now the sun was high overhead, and as she half rose to crawl to the shade of some bushes near, she heard the jingle of horse-bells and the noise of running horses. A moment or two after, the horses ran out from the timber, and, slackening speed as they came, spread themselves out to crop the fresh green feed showing wherever the warm underground water had made its way to the surface. Soon after there came the pleasant smell of cattle and a big mob of "mixed" came following the route of the horses—cows with young calves, mostly, perhaps, born on the road, bullocks, and heifers, and steers. The drovers gathered dead timber for their fire and camped for dinner just outside the forest, letting the cattle spread at will, like the horses, to enjoy the luxury of green feed.
Lizbeth guessed that the mob had come a long journey already northward, be cause of some of them being lame —evi dently footsore—and also because numbers of them, after tasting the soda-spring water, turned away without drinking, as if new to the soda-ground. From where she sat crouched in the shadow of the bushes, she was able to note every movement of the drovers and their charge. Amongst these latter was a little cow with her calf, noticeable by reason of her being of a different breed from the others—a Devon, while they were Short horns. She seemed so footsore and leg weary as scarcely to be able to walk, and lay down with her calf, heedless of water or grass. When the mob went on, one of the drovers tried to get her to rise and follow, but she sat fast and would not stir. The man dismounted, and seemed to be trying to coax her, and Lizbeth thought she must have been reared a pet, for she licked his hand as a dog might do. In the end he had to leave her.
When the last of the travellers had been some time gone, Lizbeth rose and made her way, stiff and in pain as she was, to the further side of the mud-mound whence the soda-spring flowed. Here, at its foot, stood a little "dead" mound, waterless now, but penetrated still from below by warmth from the underground water and stream. In a scooped-out nest in the mound, screened by the surrounding reeds, lay poor Ranee's son. Lizbeth took him up in her arms and carried him over to the Devon cow.
CHAPTER IV. The white ants had got into the Myan detta house many years back, and there had been frequent patching and renovating to repair what they had ravaged. At last Jim Ferrers declared that there must be a new house, and that it must be built of stone. His father was delighted with the notion, and looked forward to the congenial task of supervising the business. Jim, however, knew that if once Mr Ferrers took charge the result would be some sort of castle instead of a plain, four-square house, and that then the next thing called for would be furnishings to match. So he cast about for some way of preventing all this, for the money at command for the new house was no very large amount. From the time of Nancie Jeune's escapade, when she got herself wrecked at the island, there had been constant dis cussion with regard to her going to school. Jim now suggested that Mr. Ferrers and his wife should pay a visit to England with Nancie, and leave her at school there where Mr. Newbolt's sister Mary was. None of them had ever seen Mary, but Mr. Newbolt had often spoken of her on his short visits to Myandetta, going to and from his place in Queensland, and they all liked him so much they felt sure they would love Mary at sight. She was three or four years older than Nancie, but a great deal younger than her brother, who, indeed, had stood for father and guardian to her since her early childhood.
Though Jim, who had a small share in the place, would not sanction the spend ing of any of his step-mother's money on the new house, considering that she had already done more than was fair for the family she had married into, there could be no objection to her doing as she liked with her own money for her own pleasure and benefit. It was certain she would
enjoy going to England, which she had left as a girl, and she could not have been happy without her husband and Nancie.
However, as all Australians remember, within a week of leaving port, the ship the Ferrers sailed in, the Mansar, struck an uncharted rock in our own seas, and Mr. and Mrs.
Ferrers were among the many who perish ed. Nancie, whom poor Lizbeth had made a wonderful swimmer, saved herself by her extraordinary skill, pluck, and powers of endurance, floating and swimming by turns for many long hours until rescued, as if by miracle, by an English-bound steamer. When news of her safety came, Jim Ferrers decided that her aunt's intention must be carried out. He had Nancie placed at the school where Mary Newbolt was, and sent Newbolt a letter for Mary—to be forwarded if her brother approved—be
speaking her friendship for Nancie. When Newbolt replied, mentioning that Jim's letter had been enclosed in one of his own and posted to Mary, he went on to say: "Now that you wish to get quit of your interest in Myandetta—as you tell me (and, indeed, I don't wonder, after your sad bereavement)—may I make you an offer?
"Will you come up here, have a look at the place, and if you like the look of things, put what money you care to into it as a partner to that extent, or come as manager. The fact is, Ferrers, I am afraid that living alone here at Moggil- Moggil is playing the deuce with my nerve. I know you will keep this to your self—l have had an extraordinary hallu cination more than once lately. I have
fancied that I saw old Mistral. You know that the poor fellow has been dead these three years. "Then there are some queer things hap pening. For instance, last month a mob of fats from Bradford's place in this district were camped one night on a little bit of open country, where there are hot springs, when some alarm was raised. The cattle stampeded, and the drover lost every hoof of them. No doubt a fair number may have made back to Bradford's, but a good many of them, and some of the horses, got into the springs, and died in the most horrible way. "The drover declares some unearthly monster rushed out from the timber and attacked an old camp-horse a man on watch had standing-by saddled, and the horse rushed screaming into the middle of the mob, with blood spurting from his neck. They couldn't find out what had hurt him, for he was one of the horses that got swallowed up in the mud-springs. And there have been some other strange things." Jim Ferrers accepted the invitation at once. He had already found a buyer for Myandetta. The share of the purchase money that he considered Mrs. Ferrers would have left to Nancie if only she had ever given such matters a thought he placed for her in the hands of trustees. Then, all the Myandetta business being done with, he set off to ride to Moggil- Moggil. Besides the horse he was riding he had one with a pack-saddle carrying some rations and his kit, with a couple of spare horses to spell the others. As he came to the out-station he saw Banning riding towards him, leading a pack-horse. Jim drew up as Banning came near, halting as if to speak to him. "I'm off to the Never Never, Banning," he said gaily, "you seem to be on the move yourself." "I was on my way down to Myandetta, Mr. Jim, to ask you to take me on." "I wish I could," said Jim. "I don't fancy going off with no mate and horses to see to on strange country. But I couldn't take away a neighbour's man and the neighbour himself three hundred miles off at the time." "I'm not in Mr. Bradford's employment, Mr. Jim. I got my walking-ticket from him this morning." "In that case we can go on together. I'm going to Mr. Newbolt's place, Moggil- Moggil. He always asks after you when he comes or writes. Oh, by the way, he wrote to you once, he says, and never got an answer. It was just after he lost old Mistral."
"I was in the hospital about then. Mr. Bradford would have got the letter." Banning's brows met as he strove to think out the problem of the undelivered letter. "Did Mr. Newbolt say what the letter was about, sir?" he asked. "Yes. To say he'd give you anything you liked for Ranee's foal if you didn't want to keep it. Or that he'd have it trained, and all that for you, and go shares. And he asked you not to let it fall into the hands of—a person he'd once seen ill-using a filly that lost a race." "Bradford," remarked Banning. "He got that letter. I'd never have let on to him that Mistral sired the foal." "I wish I'd known it before," Jim ex claimed passionately. "Why, Banning, that scoundrel read your letter, and—you remember poor Curly?—he has somehow got hold of your mare—murdered her, very likely, not to have her seen mothering the foal. He's got the foal. And I begin to think there has been foul play with more than the mare—with your Lizbeth." "Let me find he's laid a finger on my girl," said Banning, "and I'll make him curse the day he was born." Ranee and her Mistral foal seemed to have gone from his memory. . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Early one morning, after something like a week on the road, Jim Ferrers and Ban ning arrived in the bit of hot-spring coun try that lay just within the southern boundary of Moggil-Moggil. A stock-road ran from east to west across the run; a track branching from it midway betwixt the boundaries it cut led north ward to the homestead, which stood on a fine permanent creek, well away from the soda-ground.
As they were following the main track, making towards the turn off, they came upon a log-built sheep-yard, put together some long time before—as was easily to be guessed from the stumps about showing that the saw, not the axe, had been used on the timber, but topped up quite evenly with fresh-cut small stuff—saplings, boughs, and bushes, all still green -- to make it fairly sheep proof. No break was to be seen in the rough fence, but within lay a heaped-up huddle of, to all appear ances, slaughtered sheep. Moggil-Moggil was a cattle station, they knew, but it was possible that Newbolt kept a little lot of sheep for killing, and had them shepherded here on the boundary. The dingoes, they thought, must have got into the yard in the night, and the shepherd, most likely, was gone into the station to report the smash, for there was no one in sight. As they left the track and rode over to the yard to see whether there was any thing they could do for the sheep or their owner, they ran into the deep-dinted tracks of a couple of ridden horses, both of them shod, galloping full stretch away from the yard towards the south. The yard itself there was a horrible sight— torn, mangled, trampled sheep, strewn everywhere about, caught in forks of the fence timber, and heaped high in the corners. What ground was left visible amongst them had become a reeking muck of blood. "This is no dingoes' work, Will," said Jim. "Now what could it have been that made such havoc amongst the sheep and sent men and horses flying for their lives?"
"I never seen the likes of it," Banning replied. "Either there's wild beasts in these here parts as we didn't get down
on the Darling, or else the devil himself must have took a hand in this here game." As he spoke he flung the bridle on his horse's wither and set off to look for any track there might be of some unknown beast, making a wide circuit outside the sheep-trodden ground over which the gathered mob had been fed to the yard. The shod horses, by their environing tracks, seemed to have been doing sentry- go about and about the yard before the stampede. Perhaps they had smelt the enemy before the attack, lurking near, and had become restless and fearful. At last Banning espied a track that was neither of theirs. There was but a single one discernible, and when he lit upon it and knelt on the ground to scan It the closer, his sun-browned face turned gray. Lifting his head he signed to Jim to come to him. Jim, too, changed countenance when he saw it. It was an almost circular dent like the round of a horse's hoof. Within the en closing ring was the impress as of a three- toed foot. "You recollect that track, sir? —where Mr. Newbolt jumped Mistral out of the Myandetta yard, the night Miss Nancie got wrecked on the island?" Jim nodded silently. "Mistral's the only horse ever I seen with that make of hoof—and Mistral's been dead nigh on to three years." Nothing more was said until they were nearing Moggil homestead, when Banning remarked as if talking to himself: "I don't blame them drover fellows for clearing out when he come. He was a devil to every one only his master, even when he was livin'. But he was the grand est horse ever I seen." . . . . . . . . . .
The sheep were not Newbolt's it proved, but if they had been he could scarcely have been more upset than he was when he heard what had happened. When Banning mentioned the three-toed track, however, he seemed a good deal re lieved. Afterwards, when they were by themselves, he remarked to Jim: "I'm confoundedly glad not to be the only man that has fancies about Mistral. I was afraid I might be getting a little queer in the head." . . . . . . . . . .
As time went on, the mysterious attacks at dead of night on stock, and by-and-by even on men, in the Moggil-Moggil hot spring country became both frequent and serious. At last no one but a stranger to the district would camp for the night alone or with stock of any kind in that portion of the run, and the savage creature, beast, spectre, or fiend, that waged war so implacably on every living thing it could reach came to be known far and wide as the "Terror of Moggil- Moggil."
CHAPTER V. "Mary is to come home this year," said Newbolt one night, when he and Jim Ferrers were reading their English letters, just come by the Warrego mail. "So Nancie tells me," said Jim. "She wants me to let her come home, too, with your sister." "What do you say, Jim?" Newbolt asked after a while, "to my going home and fetching them out here together?" Jim seized on the offer. For a long while he had been anxious about Newbolt. Whenever there was word of alarm being given or harm done by the Terror, New bolt was wretched, and out of spirits for days after. The thing had certainly come to affect his nerves in a most serious way. "Best thing you could do," said Jim. "And don't be in a hurry back. Have a
little run about the Old World whilst you're there." This was generous of Jim, for he had gazed at the many portraits of Mary Newbolt and drunk in the charm of her letters from the meagre bits of them read, now and then, by her brother. And he longed to meet Mary as he had never longed for anything in the world before. "The girls would enjoy it, I daresay," said Newbolt reflectively. "Not a bit more than you would your self. Wire for your berth when the mail goes down to-morrow. Then you'll have to go." Newbolt was not hard to persuade, and Jim carried his point. . . . . . . . . . .
Nancie had been starved of worship and attendance since she lost her uncle and aunt, and when she found the old delight ful life of queenship begin anew as soon as she passed from her English school into Mr. Newbolt's time-being guardianship, she could not feel grateful enough to Mary and to him. Australian girls are wont to know their own minds, and Nancie, though still in her early teens, told herself that Mary's brother must not end his career as her cavaliero servante—when their travel to gether ended. When she laid herself out to bewitch him, and he yielded rejoicingly to her charm, Mary used to watch the pair with kindly, amused eyes. It was Nancie's idea that they should not tell Jim Ferrers when to expect them, but should drop in upon him at Moggil- Moggil as a surprise party. Mr. Newbolt agreed that this should be done, and Mary did not seek to dissuade. Thus it happen ed that, just when Jim was engrossed in efforts to insure their safety and rid the place of the horror that haunted it, the Newbolts and Nancie were almost beside the door. . . . . . . . . . .
The time was drawing near when, as Jim reckoned, his partner and the two girls must soon be about to take ship back to Australia again, and he resolved to do his very utmost to be quit of the Terror before they came to Moggil, no matter what might be the cost. He wrote to one or two of the neighbouring station-owners and managers, suggesting that they should unite to make a thorough search of the hot-spring plain and the adjacent forest and ranges, to find and destroy the wild thing that had its lurking place some where there. Jim scoffed at the notion of anything not of the earth having to be reckoned with in the carrying out of his plan. Bradford's place was nearer to Moggil than were some of those whose owners had been asked to join the search, but Jim had not written to Bradford, and when the party met at the Moggil homestead on the morning agreed upon, he was much sur prised to find him amongst them.
The fact, however, was that Bradford had by this time a special interest in the destruction of the Terror, for the creature, finding his old fields deserted, had taken to roaming the country in quest of victims. Bradford, who was putting on sheep, had got a little lot of stud rams up from the Wagga district. They had hurried through the dangerous part of the road, and were penned in a new-built yard close to Brad ford's own house. But the Terror had tracked them, it seemed, from his old range. In the morning the few left alive had to be put out of their pain. And the night's work had left Bradford some couple of thousand pounds poorer. It was dangerous following the grassy ways, in and out, betwixt the mud springs, for in many a place there was a soft spot giving upon depths unfathomable. All the men went very cautiously to work, how ever, and when Banning, who, with others of the stockmen from adjoining stations,
was among the party, called out "Track!'* they looked well to their footing as they rode across to join him. Bradford, even warier than the others, fell somewhat to the rear, leaving a rather considerable space betwixt himself and the rest of the company. Just as he did so a miniature coach came in sight, with a dusty string of loose horses in its wake, going up from the timber on to the hot-springs track. There were three people in the coach, Mr. Newbolt and two ladies. The men who had come with Jim Ferrers knew their old neighbour at once, and flung off to meet him, shouting their "Hullos!" as they galloped across, Jim with the rest. Suddenly there was a fierce scream, as of menace and measureless brute anger. They checked their horses and turned at the cry. A huge black horse had risen from ambush amongst the giant reeds, and was making straight for where Bradford sat in the saddle alone. A cry of horror broke from one and all, then a groan as they saw Bradford dismount, setting his own horse betwixt him and the one that threatened him. A prudent thing of him to do, doubtless; yet not one of them all but himself would have thought to do such a thing—nor have done it if he had thought.
They rode at top speed to try and save him, running numberless risks in the treacherous ground, doing all that might be to draw the assailant from him to themselves. For Bradford, in the shock of the surprise, had let fall his revolver, and there was no recovering it. The murderous mad creature seemed not to see Bradford's horse, which stood shuddering in panic as if beset with fire, unable to move from the place of danger. As the black horse made for him through the reeds Bradford backed towards a huge mud mound whence trickled a warm soda spring, his eyes on the eyes of his enemy. Then, from behind the great mound, a flying figure came, intent to save him—a dark-skinned woman, gray-haired, sparsely clad; her worn face beautiful for the moment, alight as it was with pity and brave resolve.
She set herself betwixt Bradford and his assailant, waving her arms and calling wildly in some strange tongue to the horse. The horse paid no heed to her, though, but leapt past her upon Bradford with a horrible cry. In a moment the two — horse and man —were wound together into a ghastly, writhing heap, caught beyond rescue in a seething whirl of boiling mud. . . . . . . . . . . "He was Ranee's foal," said Lizbeth. "Mistral was his sire. Poor fellow, he was mad from the time he was born. Ranee had been badly knocked about. Perhaps that did it. But he never would have done the least harm to me. "When—some one—stole the little mare, I tracked them here to Moggil. Then—the person—shot Ranee to have the foal for himself, and not get found out by her brand.' "I tried to kill the man, but I've al ways been sorry since that I tried. "Mrs. Ferrers taught me far different from that. She said never to take revenge, but to leave it to God to deal with the wicked. She will forgive me, though, when she knows I tried to save him at the last." "But, Lizbeth," said her husband, "why was it you never came home to me all these years?" "Because—he—said he would write to you and tell you I had followed him—for himself. "Often and often, Will, I have been to the hut and watched you, and wished you would love me again and not turn against me because of—his —lies." "I've never but loved you," said Ban ning. "I'd not have believed him if he'd dared to say it. But I'm glad he got what he deserved. Your hands would have been clean although you'd killed him." "Lizbeth is right, Banning," said Mary Newbolt. "It is not for man to visit sin on man. 'Vengeance is Mine; I will re pay' saith the Lord.' " (The End.)
The Imperial Canal in China is the long est in the world, and connects no fewer than forty-one cities in the course of its eight hundred miles. John Alexander Dowie is stated to be making arrangemenfts for the construction of an airship at Zion City. He purposes to use it in carrying on his religious work throughout the country.