. entiy she drew the sled and
. minutes later, with Eddie's
718 THE COMPANION 88%<?>’233 FOR ALL THE FAMILY December 18,1919 %%
E53 than quarter of an hour after Ann
L Russell had set out to see why her father
was late to dinner she had found hlln
lying helpless among the snow-rapped rocks
not far from the motor boat he had been
repairing. He had started home when the
snowstonn bcgan and while swpping from
boulder to boulder had slipped and fallen vio-
lently. llis left leg had snapped just below
the knee. In that plight he had lain exposed
to the storm for seine time, and his blue lips
and w&k voice showed that he was in a
Aun, with her skirt cracking in the blasts.
fetched her brother Eddie's new sled, got her
father upon it and star
drag hlru home. After they
always pulled through, rising ' ,.
each time from the yawning guifs '
more and more heavily, like a
half-drowned creature fighting
for its life. All was a chaos of
sound and snow and leaping
bad water had broken up.
Many of the buildings had
ing the town, less than a
'le away, and in front
water. Ann did not know whether or not the of it stretched the idle pier. Ann had not ex-
dory was sinking. lfer sturdy young arms
pecfed to nnd a boat there: nevertheless, she
vibrated painfully to the thmst and yank of was disappointed when her search came to
the seas at the blades of the oars.
naught. Baffled, though not conquered, she
The darkness of a declining winter after- retreated to the small spot of bare ground in
noon was deepened by the storm; snow blasts the lee of the mess hall to think it over.
The sound of something
left the beach the going was
mnlparatively easy, and pres-
its burden across t
kitchen of the cottage. Ten
help, she had removed her
father’: boots and oiiskins
and had put him to bed on a
mattress laid near the range
When she had put a. sauce-
pan of broth on the fire she
slit the clothing on the injured
leg. Even her inexperienced
eye could see that it was a
mean break; but she must do
her best, nevertheless. In the
woodshed was the crate that
had lnclosed Eddie's sled. She
broke off several narrow pieces
of wood 9-nd got some long
linen strips from the rag bag.
Then she proceeded to splint
the broken limb.
When she had Enisheri, Mr.
Russell said, as he wiped the
sweat from his forehead:
"You're smart. Ann. And
those Red Cross lectures you
went to were worth while, I
Ann gave him a cup of hot
broth, but it did not check his
shivering. She put more cool
on the stove and brought him
another hlan ket. ills color and
weakness alarmed her; she
decided that she must get the
doctor. What if her father
should get pneumonia on top
of his injuryl
“Be good, Eddie. Sister is
going to get Dr. Maynard,”
she whispered to her brother,
um um Movzn MONK AND non:
run: near or an wzionr
Dwain IV 0 A. tulxll
of the building immedi-
ately attracted her atten-
tion. With a sudden rush
of hope she remembered
that a big bell had hung
there. Probably it was
there yet, and the whip-
ping bell rope was what
The contractor had been
demolishing the mess ball
when the coming of cold
weather had put a stop to
the work. Among the piles
of boards near by he had
left two ladders Ann took
the lighter of the two and,
placing it against the
eaves, soon climbed to the
roof. There her difficulties
began, for though the eaves
were low the ridgepole
was high. The slope was
sharp, and the heavy roof-
ing paper was slippery
Blinded and buffeted by
a snow-laden wind, she
found it no easy task to
crawl up that steep roof.
But at last she managed
to gain the ridgepoie, and
to her joy she found that
the bell was still there,
swinging in a cage at the
very peak. A section of its
rope hung down against
the end wall, thrashing it
like a whiplash.
Lying close to the edge
of the roof, she tried to
seize this agile rope. It
eluded her fingers a dozen
times, and in her earnest-
ness she forgot how pre-
when they had hastily eaten
dinner. “Take care of father.”
Mr. Russell had sunk into a done, and Ann
did not think it wise in wake him. Ilanging a
lantern on her arm, she set out ihron:;h the
storm for the little pool where the motor boat.
But all hope of using the craft Vanished when
she found the engine partly dismemlxnrcd.
After a moment of dismayed thought, Ann
squared her shoulders resolutely. There was a
sharp knife among the tools in the cockpit, and
'this she slipped into her pocket. It might be
useful in cutting off her oilskins in rake of
trouble. Then she got back into the dory and
hid the lights of the town. Ann had only the
vaglxest idea of her course until a sudden
louder churning of tossing waters reached her
ears The next moment the dory was among
the bawli boulders of Little Wood Island, and
the starboard oar was wrenched from her
hand. its butt gave her a stinging upper out
under the chin.
Cluwhing the other oar, she rose to leap,
and as the bout cureened toward a flat rock
she half jumped, half fell, out upon it. A
higher rock lay close b)’. and. aided by strands
of imthery seaweed, she pulled herself up on
rowed out through the narrow entrance of the it
pool into the dangerous seas
Almost instantly the bout threatened to get
out of control. Sow rising swiftly on the crest
of a wave, now lunging madly into a trough,
it drifted away from the point The bay was
not only the short cut to town in winter; it
was just now the only way. for in such bitter
weather no woman and few men, Indeed, could
have made the seven-miletrip by land through
the gathering snowdrifm
Sometimes it seemed to Ann that the boat
would turn turtle in the bursting seas, but it
we will take-also your horse. It Is not a
pleasant country to walk in. Yet-who knows?
We may return, and your white skin makes a
good target. "
He turned to his men witha word of com-
mand. They rode, splashing, out of the stream.
One caught MacDonald's horse; others divided
his clothes and equipment among them. Then,
jeering at him, they rode off in the direction he
hnd meant to take.
They had left him his life, it was true, but
he wondered whether, indeed, he should not
have been better of! if they had nnishmi him
with a merciful bullet. The sun and sand nmi
alkaline water, old friends to the bandits,
were to him terrifying foes. Alrartly the sun
had got to his hard. Ile felt the first symptoms
of that terrible heat exhaustion which takes
the place of sunstroke in those latitudes. Stag-
gering diuily across the stretch of sand to the
shade of the first big cottonwood, he lay there,
gasping for hreath. His body felt like a furnrwr-,.
For some time MacDonald lay in anguish;
She was on the very edge of the island. Two
big waves bunt beneath her and oiled the
boat. and when the spent swash of the last
was sacked bzwk she sprang down and ran
for the crown of the beach. she reached it be-
fore the pursuing water could do more than
clutch at her rubber boots.
Without a moment of delay she started to
cross the island. It was uninhabited and had
always been so except for a brief period when
private enterprise had tried to run a summer
mrnp there, which ticks and mosquitoes and
no bud no strength to move, he could not get
his breath. and there was a racking pain In his
side. After a while; however, as the heat of
the day lessened. his breath 12 e natu-
rally, the pain left him, and he found strength
to sit up.
Imnlng weakly against the cottonwood, he
looked round. The grove was a. hundred yards
long nnd hnlf as wide. Beyond it. in every di-
rPci.ion as far as the eye could see, stretched
the grim da-swrt backed by forbidding moun-
mins. The thought of traveling afoot in his
]vr0i4(>'nt condition over those weary miles he
had come on his horse that morning was sick-
ening, and yet with his returning strength
had come a. new desire for life, and he knew
tlmt his life would be worth little if the re-
turning bandits found him there.
GI-ttlnlz to his foot, he gingerly inspected the
grove. Them was no cover there worthy of the
niune. Neither was there any place of conceal-
mt-nt that his smarting eyes could detect in
the surrounding desert. Iii: decided to risk
violent gust of wind destroyed her balance,
and a flying sheet of heavy paper struck her
like a runaway kite. The blow was a violent
one, and Ann was swept over the edge.
But a sudden jar stopped her downward
plunge at its very outset; Ann found herself
suspended upright in mid-air forty feet above
the frozen ground. ller tough oilskins had
providentiaiiy caught on is projecting nail.
When at last she dared to move, a few care-
ful eliorts convinced her that she could never
pull herself up to the roof. Xeither could she
quite reach the bell rope, which had lodged
across a piece of loose roofing paper that the
wind had jammed against the cage. As she
cast a desperate look round her, she noticed a
big iron staple in one of the boards near at
hand, and, peering down the well, she made
out a little shelf or plntfonn five feet or less
She remembered having seen a flagpole at
that end of the mess hall. Evidently it had
passed up through the staple and a slot visible
in the projecting pair: its butt had rested
on the small shelf. Unquestionably the pole
must have weighed much more than she did;
staying in the grove until night fell, for his
shoulders and back were a fiery red, and when
he got out of the shade be felt as if a branding
iron had been pressed against his flesh.
lie had decided to make tracks when night
should fall. but where to? Now that his clothes
and his money were gone he could not hope
to pursue his scheme to desert even if he could
cover the dismnce to the railway. All his
bright visions In that direction were gone.
There was nothing to do except to return to
ramp and take his medicine. And what a re-
turn that would bel Ile had not only lost his
horse, his arms and his uniform, but he had
lost them without any resistance on his part:
and the reason he had not been able to oder
any resistance was that he had neglected the
first duty of a soldier. By the time he had gone
over and over his situation in mind he was in
such a state that his fate at the hands of the
bandits seemed of little concern to him.
The afternoon worn on. The distant moun-
tains turned purple; the shadows from the
thrashing about the peak s
therefore the shelf would sustain her if she
could gain it. Once her feet were on it she
could reach the bell rope, and when that was
in her hand she could summon help for her
father-and herself. if she failed to land on
the shelf-but she must not fall.
With the knife in her left hand she reached
up and began went away at the stiff jacket; she
worked mrefuliy, though somewhat blindly.
for she had to keep her eyes on the iron staple,
which her right hand gripped At the fourth
out there was a quick sag and a. ripping sound.
She dropped the knife instantly, and, just as
the cloth gave way, her left hand joined her
right in a grip upon the staple Iler body
dropped downward, and her feet struck the
Ann immediately leaned out to the right and
seized the bell rope. A moment later the strong
clanging of the bell resounded. Surely the
sound would reach the u1a.inia.ud,'over the
narrow channeL If it were heard, some one
would come Ann did not question that. The
town knew too well the mysteries and the
tragedies of the sea ever to ignore any signal
that seemed to come from it, especially in a
Though she soon grew very tired, she did
not dare stop ringing for more than a minute
at a. time Her legs became even more tired
than her arms, and the only way she could ease
them was by alternately shifting her weight
from one to the other. The strain was becom-
ing unendurable, when it occurred to her that
she might make use of the bell rope
Leaving a. long, loose end. she tied the rope
to the staple, and, passing the free end round
her body just under the arms, she knotted it
again to the staple. The loop supported her
fairly well, and she found great relief in lean-
ing back against it.
The relief, however, was only temporary.
Her arm moved more and more mechaniwiiy.
Gradually she let the bight of the rope take
more of her weight. The brazen clamor of the
bell came to her ears- with lessening distinv.-tr
ness. At tima she was not conscious of any
sounds from hell or storm. Her head began to
sag. Forty feet below was the bare ground,
frown as hard as marble.
Again and again she painfully shook off the
leaden lethargy. Iler pulls at the bell rope he-
urme more spasmodic. At intervals she roused
herself and made the hell peal lustiiy, but
her efforts grew steadily fewer.
The last thing she remembered was wrap-
ping the siack of the rope round her am as a
further precaution against failing.
It must have been very soon afterwards that
the piercing note of a boat siren brought her
back to consciousness. In a dare, not fully
grasping the signinoance of the sound, she
tugged frantically at the bell. In answer the
whistle shrieked, full of power and encourage-
ment. “Whoever you are and wha.tever’s the
matter with you, I'm coming," it seenml to
The how light flashed suddenly into the range
of Ann's vision, and the boat came swinging
and swashlng up to the pier. What comfortable
noises its spitting engine madel Two lights
presently detached themselvw from it and
rapidly drifted along the pier. A big voice
was lifted in a sat hail.
Being sailors, Capt. Grummer and his two
men brought Ann to the ground without dim-
ulty. A few minutes afterwards she was in
the hot engine room of the fast tug Gloria li.,
which had turned her stem to the wind and
was racing back to the mainland to get a doctor
for Mr. Russell.
The storm was weakening when Ann, her
quest ended at but got back to the little cot-
tage Eddie had fallen asleep on the lounge.
Iler father was awake and in some pain from
his broken leg. but Dr. Maynard soon had
that scientifically set The doctor stayed until
morning, and, thanks to his care, no complica-
tions set in. In the course of time his patient
was able to get about again as freely as usual.
cottonwoods marched across the desert in
lengthening strides. A coyote barked. A cool.
ness crept into the air that brought him new
strength. Yet it reminded him of the cold night
that would surely follow. In mmp he slept
under two blankets and was none too wann.
What should he do when night set in?
The sun. dmplvins abruptly behind the west-
ern hills. flung a banner of glory half round
the honzon and made of the eastern moun-
tains majestic mthedmls But their beauty
was lost on Macflonald. lfow gladly would he
have exchanged their grandeur for the cheerful
banter of the evening measl
lie got wearily to his feet He had eaten
nothing since morning, and the wenirenin:-'
edects of the heat were still on him. Yet, un-
less he Intended to remain in that spot, he
must be moving. Night was coming swiftly.
He took his directions from the last glow of
the setting sun and set out.
lie had not taken a dozen stzeps from tin-
border of the grove when he cried out with n