Chapter 65802651

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Chapter NumberLXI
Chapter TitleWHAT'S IN A NAME
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Full Date1889-02-22
Page Number0
Word Count2300
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleKyabram Union (Vic. : 1886 - 1894)
Trove TitleMy Plucky Boy Tom; or, Searching for Curiosities in India for My Show
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THEY YOUNG FOLKS. ;.MY PLUCKY BOY TOM ; OR, SE.&ROHIND FOR CURIOSITIES IN : INDI& "FOR MYi BOW. - ? P. T.oBARn "ow. CeAerzIn LXI.-' Wnsa's Lr A NAE P' The laugh, biyob d qijestion, war on Tom Bradford,- who realised most vividly the exhibition he had made of himself. .Whcn' his friends gathered about the lad, nndho found thatnot so inich nas a thread of clothing was scorched, he acknowledgcd thrt he had been" properly, even if severely, puunWied for his slighting remarks about Iji, the Magician of.the Niacim. " tAll the sase,' addhtlie pluckyyymnseter, is the beat was shoved off, and .while Zip ate the food brought to him, I don't believe that any person in this world possesses super nattiral power. Don't ask me' to try and explain what I sawi'with my own eyes,' he hastened to add, observing the inquiring look of Ned? Hartley, ' for; 'so far ats that goaes, no one can make clear any of the countless phenomena around us.' SIWe won't enter upon a discussion,' re marked Mr. Godkin, . bat we will ail admit that Iji is the most wonderful person in his line' that we have ever known.' ! There can be no question aboutthat,' re-` plied Tom.' ' " ' Why didn't you offerhimn an engagminlent for Mr'. Barnum F' asked Hadley, with' a 'r' Do yoit'now I'we thinking of thlat very thing when lie breathed. on me l. After'that, my : attcntion' w?s '`occupied entirely with' other matters,' added Tom, with a laugh. It was no more than half an hour later that the flat-boat rounded a sweeping bond in the stream, and the eyes of the hunters rested on a tall, spider-likoe structure spanning the current. That was thu railway bridge over which the trains' ran daily each way between ,Bombay, on the western coast, and Madras, on the Coromandel coast of the southern portion of tihe Bay of Bengal. At the point where the creek, down which they were drifting, debolsueled into the Kircshna River, was the station, where our friends intended to load their cnriosities on the cars, ind then break up and scatter to their different destinations. Ned Hadley, as he annolnced, was going to IIyderaba'd; not that there was any speeial need of doing so, since his gun and cap had been restored to lhim by the lMagician of the Nizam, but lie would have been reckless beyond justification to re-enter the dangerous region he had just left behind, without com pany. le expected tomeet friends in IHydera bad, withl whornm h would make arrange mIent alouthis futllre movements. Mr. Godkin and Tom Bradford decided to return to the vicinity of Lucknow, to completo the work they had undertaken with the three natives, Jo, Jack, andl Jim. When they should socuro enough to consti tute a fair assortment, they would ship them from Lucknow to Calentta, the two friends hearing them' company. At the latter city they would hold themselves subject to my instructions. Athoor and Zip wpre to go to Madras, with tile lion, moaphilonl, iand spitfire, remaining and giving them every attention, until the vessel fromn Caletta should touch at that point and tako thea saboard. Then the ser vices of the two natives would be finished for the time, snd they 'were sure to receive libenrl psy for their vuluable work. As Athoor had promisedl, the party found excellent facilities for shipping their prizes castward, the little railway station being the point whence some of the most remarkalle curiosities found iti all India were despatched to the civilised regions of the globe. First of all, a large, strong cage, etanding on an open car upon a side track, was shaped up for the lion. '1 bst that lthat had been so 'wonderfully docile ever sincee his conquest by Tom Bradford, now showed for the first time an ugly disposition. en slt Tnmo attempted to' lead him to the cage, he refused to enouter, and growled in such I threatening way that his friends held their guns prepared to shoot, if necessary. More than lcae he seemnd about to spring upon the lad, who not only tugged at the lassoo,'but spoke so him in lhs hsarpest tolnes. The beast must have hald some idea of the prison-liko charanter of the cage into which they were tyring to coax hin, for, after stepping quite close to it, Ihe draw back with sueh a inddell flirt tlhat Tom, who was hold ing the other end of the rope, was almost thrown to the ground. 'Heo's got to go in,' exclaimedl te boy, angered sat the resistoico of the king of beasts ; ' anyway, ho esha'n t go back to the woods, if we have to shoot hiim to prevent it.' The two natives at the station had had much experience in persuading wild creatures to walk into new quarters, and they now want to the help of Tom, who Ihad declined the services they offered from the first. One of them brought forward the quarters of a calf killed a short time before. The lion instnntly caught the scent and bounded at the native, who dexterously flung the meat front him to the further side of the cage. The brute leapo:l into the cage :after it, and catchiug it up in his mouth, whirled about to dash out again. He was ia moment too late. The other native, who knew theo imeaning of the mansuvreo slipped the door, shut and secured it in a'twaukling. Tho cage was of the strongest make, the iron bars which composocd the front and also the door, being an nch anud a half in dia meter, and strongly fastened in place. Through the litton, top, sides, alnd back ran a network of iron, the whole naking the strunture powerful enough to resist the fury of the mightiest of beasts. Th?i nago of the lion when he. discovered that, in spite of himself, he was imprisoned, was fearful to witness. Uttering a roar that nmdo 'everything tremble, he dropped the meat,and, springing at the bars, seized thern with 'his teeth, as thougdl he expected to snap every oneso asunder. . i Infuriated at their resistance, he crouched at the rear of. the cage, fand boumding for ward, threw the whole weight, of' his body against the rods, as though he would drlve 'temn from their fstoenings by the , sheer momncatum of his body. ' - The impact was ou prodigious that the' struclture swiyed like a ship in i storm, nud even the two natives fiarcl for a few misnutes that it would be tulilbled over osi its side. Fortmnately, lhowever, the lion did not con tinuo this display of his fury formers than a few ninutes. HIiis neuivo jawn partled, and' tlrnling his head sideways, he seized the inimmovabla rods with hIis teeth, tugging at thie amo time with hiss paws. Theni he tried desperately to force tlM ars alpart by drivilg h is head bU twacn them. All in vain. Hu ws caugbht beyond the posibllity of freeing himself. While the apctators wore wiatching his manifestations with no little misgiaving, the lion oeoned suddenly tobm allu tdiat his struggle was a hIspolesa orie. He became mnotiolless, and stnudlng np right, looked into thie fices of. tie aspLutators with ail cxipreioni so toulhing t its reproof that'voryl ner, thllroblsel is symipaty. . : 'Pourfellow,' nmururedTom; 'I'mnsorry for you, lint. businescs is busieics, isnd we cnn't help matters.. :onuaro too vasluable to be nsdt free again.'1 '. The dethroned kinlg of beasti destroyed the ajeetyof his conduct by. walkiung to thel fsrtacF ido of thIe nagn,'d ropphg.un his ?HY ncproceeding deliberately to cat the venr ?lll h was tho bnit that lured himlto hisi dqoq.. ' ' '.. .. . . The opelitorsliuglhed 4t tIsa eudden" d-' sneelt from lie ouelhlns to thie ridiae'aois.. The dliftlla lty of ti thisk wij oyair with the paprisoymernt of tJuc boout. A sicull" ca nge was dyevoted, to tle oupl~slla, lndi saiumowhpt aisilisir on'e hi . er jaws ant stect .3ja. Qedkn s hn to mniw hi ?y out. " " 'J?'v e ? f thl liPn tduk~i~ U~ lo th plnn

room of a car intended for such purposes,;I while the two smailer ones' were placed in a second car. This done, nothing remained except for the native a?ents to signal the eastward bound train, which was due in the course of a couple of hours. The train for the west was not expected until considerably later. It was nearly live hundred miles byrail to 3Madras, so that quite a journey awaited the curiosities and their kee?ere. Almostot on time, the rumble of the ap., preaching cars was heard, and a few minutes later it rounded a curve and, entered upon the high bridge which spanned the stream down which the fthat-boat had floated. The native agenits had everything in such. readiness that only a brief halt was re-? quired. 'Tih engine dLsconnected, ran i?pon tho .siding, took the two cars contaiimng the curiosities, then backed inr ahead of the remaining cars, and shortly after steamed away on its long journey to the chief East Indian city of the Coromandel coast. Athoor and Zip waved their :friendr good bye, they watching the vanishing train with a fccling of 'mlnedss at parting company with the inatives,'who had attached thenelvecs to them by their faithfulness nind undaunted courage. . The train thundering eastward was similar in many respects to those which may be seen to-day in many parts of England. - The engine and cars were made in trat country innd shipped by way of the Suez Carml to India, where they hadcen in er-. vice several years. Sovencars, beide the two taken on 'at the smallstation,'mcomnpsed the train, several of .hioh -?? biiit'to arr- frioght and luggage; and tho reatwer'o devoted ti passengers. Athior took his' phico iti the ompartiimnt used by the smokers, where he found himself in the company of several native merchants an d traders and several Englishmen, whose talk showed that they were on a hunting jaunt in India. Feeling no disposition to converse, Athoor lit his long-stemmed hookah and quietly puffed it, as the cars moved at only a modo rate pace toward the south.east. It was characteristic of Zip that hie should talke his place in the car containing the lion's cage ; for, sinuc the obstreperousness of the beast at the station, he felt as though it was his duty to look more closely after him, though what the native, single-handed rand aloneo, could do in the event of trouble, it would be hard to say. I amu quite sure that you have concluded that now, since the lion, mouphilon, and spit. fire were safely on the cars, and fairlystarted on their journey to Madras, under the charge of two skilled natives, all trouble with themn was atan n d. Unfortunately, this was far from being the case. About the middle of the afternoon, when Athoer had laid aside his pipe, and was sink ing into a doze, he was startled by sus:h da fierce screeching of the steam-whistle and the terrific jolting of the cars, that he, like the rest of the passengers, sprung to his feet knowing that some accident had taken place. Tlhrusting their heads out of the windows, they saw that the three front cars, including the two with our curiosities on board, had been derailed. The engine remained on the track, as did? those that followed the three named, but the latter had rnm downc a declivitysix or eight feet in height, ainldthefrontcar had turned corn pletely over, flinging the lion's cago beyond it and upon one end. As rnay be supposedl, the beast was in a state of frantic excitement, roaring, dashing against the bars and rmaking such frenzied efforts to escape, that Athuor and Zip be. lieved lie must succeed. Zip, who had iocompanied the car in its flight efro the rails was considerably bruised and shaken tip, but his activity and freedom of movement enatbled hint to srvoe himself from serious hurt. When the passengers witnessed the panic of the lion, aind felt he would soon be free, they were terrified almost out of their senses, nd deuandled 'that the officials should rttuch theo engine' to the rest of the tranh, rind steaml awary front the spot with all haste, leaving the lion and his companions to trheir fate; The ofleirils would have done this, but for one fact. While waiting fat the station for the train, Tom Bradford had chalked in huge letters on the side of each of the two car tihe following:- "p. . BAT. l'ZT~U , " B rIDGENPOT, " Coun11, "U.S.A." That was enough to prevent any such threatened abandonment. Tlhe train guards, and evn the driver and stoker, kew tero by reputation. They knew, too, that despite the fact tihat they were on time opposite side of tihe, world, I would Ihold their corpora tion to a strict' aroount, as they would in turrn hold their employees, for any such dero liction of durty. Besides, I Ihave reason to belioge the oflicials felt kindly toward me. At any rate, when the lion had become somewhat quieted, they, with the help of of the braver passengers, seot to work with such vigour that tihe aeges and their oceu pants were secured in place on the other cars, it being necessary to abandon tihe two that were derailed, they being useless, and after several hours' delay, tire journey was resumed. I may add that nothing further worthy of note befel our friends and their curiosities on their way to Madras, where they arrived at last in' good form. (To no co-rrua:sn.)