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Chapter I. Into the Primitive "Old longings nomadic leap,Chafing at custom's chain;Again from its brumal sleepWakens the ferine strain." Buck did not read the newspapers, or he would have known that trouble was brewing, not alone for himself, but for every tide-water dog, strong of muscle and with warm, long hair, from Puget Sound to San Diego. Because men, groping in the Arctic darkness, had found a yellow metal, and because steamship and... more...

THE INDISCREET LETTER The Railroad Journey was very long and slow. The Traveling Salesman was rather short and quick. And the Young Electrician who lolled across the car aisle was neither one length nor another, but most inordinately flexible, like a suit of chain armor. More than being short and quick, the Traveling Salesman was distinctly fat and unmistakably dressy in an ostentatiously new and pure-looking buff-colored suit, and across the... more...

JULYMAN TELLS OF THE "SLEEPER" INDIANS Steve Allenwood raked the fire together. A shower of sparks flew up and cascaded in the still air of the summer night. A moment later his smiling eyes were peering through the thin veil of smoke at the two dusky figures beyond the fire. They were Indian figures, huddled down on their haunches, with their moccasined feet in dangerous proximity to the live cinders strewn upon the ground. "Oh, yes?" he said.... more...

CHAPTER I THE MAN IN THE CLOAK. A man enveloped in a handsome grey cloak groped through a dark alley which led into the fashionable district of the Rue de Béthisy. From time to time he paused, with a hand to his ear, as if listening. Satisfied that the alley was deserted save for his own presence, he would proceed, hugging the walls. The cobbles were icy, and scarce a moment passed in which he did not have to struggle to maintain his... more...

The Seizure of the “Zenobia”. The Zenobia—A1 at Lloyd’s—was a beautiful little clipper barque of 376 tons register, and so exquisitely fine were her lines that her cargo-carrying capacity amounted to but a few tons more than her register tonnage; in fact, the naval architect who designed her had been instructed to ignore altogether the question of cargo capacity, and to give his whole attention to the matter of... more...


A Hunting Party. On the western bank of the Mississippi, twelve miles below the embouchure of the Missouri, stands the large town of Saint Louis, poetically known as the “Mound City.” Although there are many other large towns throughout the Mississippi Valley, Saint Louis is the true metropolis of the “far west”—of that semi-civilised, ever-changing belt of territory known as the “Frontier.” Saint Louis... more...

CHAPTER I EVENING IN GLENAVELIN From the heart of a great hill land Glenavelin stretches west and south to the wider Gled valley, where its stream joins with the greater water in its seaward course. Its head is far inland in a place of mountain solitudes, but its mouth is all but on the lip of the sea, and salt breezes fight with the flying winds of the hills. It is a land of green meadows on the brink of heather, of far-stretching fir woods... more...

INTRODUCTION Now that this book is printed, and about to be given to the world, a sense of its shortcomings both in style and contents, weighs very heavily upon me. As regards the latter, I can only say that it does not pretend to be a full account of everything we did and saw. There are many things connected with our journey into Kukuanaland that I should have liked to dwell upon at length, which, as it is, have been scarcely alluded to.... more...

I Captain MacWhirr, of the steamer Nan-Shan, had a physiognomy that, in the order of material appearances, was the exact counterpart of his mind: it presented no marked characteristics of firmness or stupidity; it had no pronounced characteristics whatever; it was simply ordinary, irresponsive, and unruffled. The only thing his aspect might have been said to suggest, at times, was bashfulness; because he would sit, in business offices ashore,... more...

CHAPTER I MOTHER AND SON A woman, tall, somewhat angular, dark of hair and eye, strong of features—a woman now approaching middle age—sat looking out over the long, tree-clad slopes that ran down from the gallery front of the mansion house to the gate at the distant roadway. She had sat thus for some moments, many moments, her gaze intently fixed, as though waiting for something—something or someone that she did not now see,... more...