The Professor and the others remained on board, while the party made the preliminary examinations of the immediate neighborhood. John formed two parties, one under command of Muro, and the other of Uraso. The boys were with Uraso, while he was with Muro. The object was to find out as quickly as possible what they would have to meet, and the result would enable them to determine the future plans.
"It is understood, now," remarked John, "that the two exploring parties shall take the two courses outlined, Muro and his men, to go directly east, while Uraso will take a course to the northeast, and proceed in that direction for three hours, and then the two parties are to turn toward each other, and mutually report. This will give us an opportunity to find out something, unless the island is a very large one, and requires subsequent exploration to ascertain whether it is inhabited."
John had purposely selected the route to the east, as he saw the high elevation in that direction, and George laughed, as he said, slyly: "John is still after the caves," and Harry laughed, as he recalled the keenness with which John had arranged the trips.
John did make his way to the highest points, and soon learned, from the observations, that the island was inhabited, but the trip of the boys was more exciting, so we shall more particularly detail their adventures.
Before they had gone two hours evidences grew thick and fast that tribes inhabited the island. Muro, and the different men, were continually finding traces, none of them, however, which indicated that the people were near at hand, or that the telltale marks had been recently made.
But now signs began to be apparent to the boys also; the bones of animals, lying around the spot where a fire had been gave them the first real sensation. Muro glanced at the boys, and at some bones, and the action on his part was so peculiar, that George quietly remarked:
"Muro looked so peculiarly at me when I glanced at the bones, over there, that I wonder what he meant?"
"I saw it too," answered Harry. "Let us have another look at them;" and acting on the suggestion they went over. Muro followed. They did not appear to pay any attention to him; but he was quick to join them, and as he did so he slowly nodded his head.
"Are they human remains?" said Harry, as he turned to Muro, questioningly.
"Yes; and this is not the first we have seen," he answered. "We may find them now at any time. I am now sure that there are several tribes here."
"What makes you believe so?"
"Because we have found different kinds of hair, which is usually the best evidence of the differences in the tribes, as each has its own peculiarity."
"Savages, and cannibals!" said George reflectively.
"But we must go on. We have still an hour in this direction before we turn to the south and east," said Harry.
There was more caution now exercised, and the speed was accordingly reduced, in view of the especial care which they took. In order to understand what happened the reader should know something of the nature of the country.
Some places in Wonder Island had the same sort of timber and undergrowth, and they went through some dense forests, in which vines and small brush made traveling difficult. They had to cut their way through some of this vegetation.
The land was not low or flat. If it had been there would have been a dense jungle. Sometimes they passed through half-grown forests, and these places were the most difficult to scour, because an enemy might be within fifty feet, and not be discovered.
It was in just such a place that they received their first surprise; a shower of arrows, so thick that they instantly knew it could not have been made by only a dozen or so. Some of the arrows found their marks, and two of the men sank down, while Muro coolly drew one of the crude missiles from his arm.
"Drop down!" cried Muro.
There was not a savage in sight; still a number of arrows fell around them. "Remain quiet, and I will find them?" said Muro, as he crept forward quietly through the dense grass.
George and Harry followed, although it was evident it was not Muro's wish. Before they had gone ten feet, Muro turned, and pointed ahead. "They are there; at least one party. Get ready for a shot."
The savages, noting the quiet in their front, now cautiously peered through the bush, and the boys saw the most hideous countenances. "We might give them a round," said Muro, and after carefully aiming, the guns spoke.
The simultaneous explosion of the three guns, raised pandemonium on all sides. They were now surrounded by at least a hundred of the savages, but for some reason the little party of twenty awed them, and instead of making a charge, they rushed toward the place where the three victims of the gunshots lay.
Muro's arm was bleeding profusely, and George quickly bound it up, while the enemy were hesitating. "Do not shoot, unless they rush at us. I will talk: to them, and try to get an understanding."
Then, in a loud voice Muro called to them, saying they were friends, and not enemies. There was no response. Thinking that they knew nothing of the dialect, he tried another, and the only response was the evident determination of the savages to attack again.
The boys and Muro could plainly hear their chattering, but the latter said that what they were saying was not intelligible to him, and that they must now prepare for a fight.
"Get your guns ready, and be prepared for a charge. If they come so close that you cannot use the guns, then we must be prepared to meet them with our knives, and we must all stand together, and not become separated."
Instead of attacking, however, there was silence, after the first excitement. "They are trying to find, out what struck their comrades when we fired," remarked Muro.
"Yes; I think it was a big surprise."
"I recall," continued Muro, "when we had our first brush with you that we could not find the arrow which we supposed was made by your bullet. That frightened us more than anything else."
There was not the slightest movement on the part of an enemy for a full half hour. This is the most trying sort of tactics. If you can see the enemy, or note that he is doing something, there is some relief to the tension, but where he can neither be seen, nor heard, it tries the nerves of the strongest man.
Muro knew that this inactivity on the part of the savages had its purpose. Probably, they intended to remain there until night, and overwhelm them in the rush. Muro had other plans, however.
"We cannot remain here. We must make the attack. Remain here, and permit me to feel out their positions, and also to determine what they are doing." He glided away from them noiselessly, and how he kept the tall grass and weeds from swaying, the boys could not determine at that time.
It did not take Muro long to see the situation. They were surrounded by a cordon of savages, and while spying, saw a new lot of them coming up. The plan was plain enough, and it meant a fight now, or a night defense.
When he returned, he had his plans formed. "They are being reinforced, and we have, probably, a hundred and fifty, or more, around us. John is, no doubt, too far away to come to our assistance, and our only hope is to attack them now, so we might as well take the necessary steps."
While on his investigations Muro had discovered a fallen tree, which was not more than fifty feet to their left. "We must reach that tree, and by digging a shallow trench at one side, can easily defend ourselves, as well as pick them off at our leisure."
Slowly they moved, in crawling attitudes, toward the place indicated. The tree was not a large one, but it made an admirable breastworks, and with their knives each man dug out a shallow hole, piling up the earth beyond the hole, so as to shelter them from the arrows, which they knew would be rained on them.
This work required a full half hour, and when it was completed, and Muro had satisfied himself that each one was supplied with sufficient ammunition, he was ready for the second stage of the game.
"We must attract them, by some form of action. I will take three with me, and crawl forward, until we can catch glimpse of some of the watchers. Those we will attack, and then fall back, and do the same on the other sides."
Muro indicated those who were to follow, and after going only a short distance the boys heard the shots, then four more. This brought the sounds of voices from every direction. Muro and his men, during the excitement, crawled to another portion of the line, and repeated the manoeuver.
This, for the moment threw them into consternation, but they quickly rallied, and now it was plain that they were pressing forward to rush the position occupied by the boys. It was now obvious that the precaution of making the defensive position, as Muro had suggested, was their only salvation.
DISCOVERY OF A NEW ISLAND, AND A SAVAGE TRIBE
Nothing could describe the uproar that the second volley created in the ranks of the besiegers. Yell after yell came from the hundreds of throats that were about them. It was now war to the end. There could be no compromise.
While the boys had been in many difficult and trying experiences before, this was the first time that they grew pale, and had strong misgivings. They knew, however, that the object of the shrieks and yells of savages were for the purpose of driving terror into the hearts of their foes.
In this respect it might not thus affect them, but when they considered the overwhelming numbers around them, we cannot blame them for feeling alarmed.
They were coming forward, and on all sides. "Remember, what John used to tell us: it is the shots that hit which count. Fire deliberately, and keep together. Do not use your revolvers until they are close, and you cannot use the guns."
Closer and closer they came, and Muro and the men were silent. "Now, get ready! Shoot deliberately!"
The first salvo was fired. It was a staggering blow. They reloaded, while the enemy was trying to recover, and the second volley belched forth.
Then, when the execution was noticed, and they saw their people fall all about them, they charged forward in one mass, and the boys looked at each other, for a moment, and George reached over and gave Harry's hand one pressure, and then turned away and began to fire as fast as he could aim the weapon.
They were still coming on. The demons were nearly up to the log. For some reason the savages did not heed those who fell. It had not struck terror into their hearts, as the boys hoped. How would this end? The enemy was now too close to make their guns of any use. The revolvers were drawn, and the cracks from them became almost a continuous roar.
They were still coming. Soon the ammunition would be gone. The boys realized this. They were determined to die fighting, and they began to feel for their knives which must be the final act in the great tragedy.
Then they heard something louder than the cracks of their own weapons and the shrieks of the devils around them. Some one was shooting. They could see the startled faces of the savages, as they turned and swung around. The attack ceased, and Muro sprang up on the log, with a yell.
Could he be mad? The boys were stupefied. "Come on!" cried Muro. "Here is John!"
This announcement, coming at an unexpected moment, was such a reaction to the poor boys, that they could hardly raise themselves. Another volley; they could hear it now. There was another yell from the savages, and then they could be seen rushing through the brush.
The men with John ran up, and John struggled forward through the weeds. "Are you hurt?" asked John, as he sprang to the side of the boys.
"No! no!" cried George, and he fell down, overcome with the excitement, while Harry could not speak for a moment.
"That was a close call," said John. "We heard the first shots an hour ago, and we turned to take this direction. Then we heard nothing for a long time, and as we were coming over the hill beyond the firing commenced but we could see nothing, so we hurried forward and soon saw the smoke, and then the savages coming from the bush, and directly to the east we noticed fifty or more coming this way, but they are not here yet."
"I wonder how many attacked us?" asked George.
"It is difficult to tell, but it is safe to say that there were at least two hundred in the fight. Oh, no; the boys will not follow them up very far," said John, as Harry looked apprehensively toward the direction that John's men were going.
He blew the whistle, and gradually the men straggled in, reporting that the savages appeared terror-stricken, as they had had no idea that there was another force in the neighborhood, and they did not stop to consider the possible number.
"I am sorry for these poor people," remarked John. "We must hunt up the wounded."
Searchers were set to work, and the wounded, when found, were carried to an open place beyond, and their hurts examined and bandaged. At first terror showed itself on their faces, but as John and Muro, together with the boys, washed their wounds, and wrapped bandages around the limbs, they lay there and marveled at the actions of their enemies.
More than two dozen had been killed, and forty-two wounded, nearly all in the legs or bodies, those having arm wounds being enabled to get away.
On Muro's orders a watch was set on the movements of the savages, and from time to time reports were brought in concerning them. They had retreated eastwardly, and were now off less than a half mile, where they were assembled, and evidently debating the situation.
John and Muro well knew that their present force, now numbering forty-one, and all well armed, would be more than a match for the savage force, still, it would not be advisable to prolong the explorations for the day, as it was desirable to report the situation of affairs to the Professor.
After making the sufferers comfortable they started on the march back to the ship. During the period while caring for the wounded, John and Muro tried to engage the savages in conversation but all attempts to learn their language failed, and, as they were about to leave, John said to Muro:
"Do you think that man is a chief?"
"I know he is; I spotted him from the first, and saw from his actions, and the fact of his being obeyed, that he was a man of some authority."
"I agree with you," said Uraso, "that he is the one we must take with us."
A litter was quickly improvised and the savage gently laid on, and with this, as their only encumbrance, they started for the return march. Five of the men had been wounded, all in the arms and body, and none of them dangerously, so that there was no trouble in the march.
They filed out to the west, avoiding as much exposure as possible. Muro's men had been on the observing line, and at Muro's suggestion they occasionally showed themselves, so as to assure the natives that they were still holding their ground.
As the two forces were starting for the ship, Muro prepared a decoy, so that the savages could see what appeared to be two figures. Then he hurriedly told John what he had done, and the march began, as rapidly as possible, at first, and a rear guard was provided to watch the movements of their enemies.
Two miles beyond the scene of the fight the party halted, and George was assisted to climb a tree, from which point they might be seen.
"I can see them plainly," he called down. "They are now around the wounded. I cannot see what they are doing, but there is a big crowd."
He waited for some time, and then cried out: "I believe they are coming this way. I think it is time for us to be moving." And George slipped down, as John gave the order to go on.
The rear guard, with John and Uraso, were now following up behind the marchers. "Go on, without stopping," he said, as they took up their positions.
The boys begged to be permitted to remain with the rear guard, but John refused to have them exposed. In an hour and a half they ascended an elevation from which the ship could be seen in the bay to the southwest.
During that time only once had the runner returned from John to notify them of the progress of the natives. The last information, therefore, was about a half hour before, and it was now obvious that the savages were determined to follow them up, and this would bring them within view of the vessel.
Before descending the last declivity that led to the beach, John and the Chief appeared, and told the boys that all of the tribe was behind them, and that the cause of the pursuit was, unquestionably, to recover the Chief who had been taken along.
At the suggestion of John three shots were fired to attract the attention of those on the boat, while several of the fleetest runners speeded down the beach and quickly advised the Professor of the situation.
Two boat loads of warriors were quickly sent to shore, and when John and the party with him came up to the beach, the savages had reached the crest of the hill, and ranged up in line, but halted to witness the spectacle before them.
The wounded chief was taken to the vessel, and the Professor immediately gave him the best care, but he remarked: "This man is desperately wounded, and will require the best of attention to enable him to pull through."
All the men were finally placed on board, and their experiences related. An immediate consultation was held. John and the boys insisted on remaining with a sufficient force to enable them to carry out their explorations, but the Professor seemed to oppose it.
"I quite agree with you that, from what John has said, there are reasons aside from the cannibals over there, why we should explore it from one end to the other."
The boys cast a side glance at John. Did John find something that made him so insistent to remain? They repressed their curiosity, however, for the time. To their minds they thought the natives were the incentive, notwithstanding the terrible fight they had just engaged in, although they were willing to take the risk.
But it was finally settled. John was to have the force now on board, and he, with the boys, was to explore, and, if need be, to conquer the natives on the island. The Pioneer would, in the meantime, sail to Wonder Island, and return with food and ammunition, and reinforcements.
There was thus left at their disposal fifty-five men, with a fair supply of ammunition. Uraso and Muro were to be of the party, as events just related showed that there was serious work to do before they might be able to return.
That night, while making the final arrangements on the vessel, the boys sought John, and asked him more particularly concerning his trip.
"We have had no opportunity to speak to you, but the Professor said you had learned enough about the island to determine you to explore it fully," said George.
"That is true. I have found what I believe to be the identical spot described in the charts, and I have found the solution, I think, of Walter's note and of the skull."
This was, indeed, something of importance to them, but John informed them that for certain reasons it might be better to defer the explanation until they had made the final explorations.
The boys knew he must have some pretty good reason for thus explaining and laying the matter before them, and they forebore further questionings.
The next morning, when all the supplies and ammunition had been taken off, and the final good-byes were said, the party stood on the shore while the Pioneer slowly moved out, and was soon racing before the wind on its way to Wonder Island.
A council was held before they attempted to march into the interior. "I have every reason to believe that the band which we met yesterday is in the immediate vicinity, and that they have been watching our movements," remarked John.
"In that case," remarked Uraso, "I favor the route to the east, which, while it may offer us still greater obstacles, in view of our observations there, still it might enable us the more quickly to overcome the tribe we have just met."
The boys looked at each other significantly. "I wonder what Uraso can be talking about? There must be something very much out of the usual, in the eastern part of the island."
"I am interested in knowing what he means by 'the observation' they made there," responded Harry.
FIGHT WITH NATIVES AND RETURN TO WONDER ISLAND
When the Pioneer sailed for Unity it was with the understanding that she was to return within a week or ten days. At a cliff in the headland, which jutted out on the southern side of the bay, a sort of post office station was established, because if the ship should return while they were in the interior, it would be well for the commander of the Pioneer to know where to go in the event that the eastern or the northern coast should be much more convenient for John and his party.
It was nearly a hundred miles from the Island to Wonder Island, and there would be no occasion for the Professor to hurry back a relief, except to supply additional ammunition, because they did not for an instant expect to meet a tribe that would give them such a fight.
There was still enough to provide, probably five rounds per man, so that it made them a pretty respectable fighting force. The weather was such that the force on the island did not require tents for shelter, and with the native fruits the party could well subsist for quite a time without assistance.
It was agreed that the party should keep together, and no straggling be permitted, as it was evident they had a very bitter foe to deal with. The severely wounded Chief, who was taken along, was under the personal charge of the Professor, the understanding being that as soon as his wounds were satisfactorily progressing, an effort would be made to open up communication with him, and through that channel they could reach the inhabitants of the island, and thus advise them that they did not mean to do them an injury.
"I wonder if that isn't the real reason why John does not want to go for the fellows who attacked us," asked George.
"That may be so. It never occurred to me before. It seems to me, though," answered Harry, "that they will get but little out of that fellow in a week's time. You know they are very much reserved at times."
"Or stubborn," suggested George.
One of the things that John was careful about related to the organization of the force, so that it would at all times be ready for action. In order to carry out this idea and make it effectual, he divided the fighters into two squads of twenty-five men each, under the commands of Uraso and Muro, the arrangement being such that one squad should have charge of the patrolling and picketing for a period of two days, and then the other should take charge for a like time.
There was always the most perfect accord between the two Chiefs, and John wisely allowed them to arrange those matters in such a way as would be most satisfactory to them.
Before noon the following day the force marched out from Security Harbor, as they had named the bay, and took up the trail made by John and his party two days before.
"We have names for the two islands, and for about all the principal points, but we have no name for this place," said Harry, as they were marching along.
"Quite true," answered George, reflectively. Then, with a laugh, he said: "As they have cannibals here, according to the evidence so far gathered, I think Maneta would be a name that would tell the story about as well as anything." And George laughed as he made the suggestion.
He was an adept in applying names, being generally the first to make suggestions in that direction, and he was rarely at a loss for an apt designation.
The route was over a country which was rich in vegetation. During the first ten miles the ascent was gradual, and the fruit and nuts were abundant, while new species of trees and flowers attracted the boys.
"Harry and I have found a plant that has flies and other insects all over the leaves, and I believe it actually catches and holds. Here is a sample," said George, as he presented a branch to John.
John examined it carefully. Then he said: "This is a plant of which we have several in the United States, but none which are as active. This is called Venus' Fly Trap."
"That is curious," remarked Harry. "I wouldn't have paid any attention to it but I saw a fly alight on it, and these little feelers seemed to close around it, and hold it."
"It works on that plan exactly. It is in that way it gets its food."
"But why should the feelers be able to grasp the fly the moment it touches the leaf?"
"Do you recall about what the Professor told you of the peculiar power of plants to absorb food of particular kinds by a faculty called irritability?"
"Yes; I remember."
"By means of that, plants are enabled to select just the kinds of substances that they want, and can digest. If you will carefully notice the leaf, after it has seized a fly it will be observed that the leaf exudes a watery substance, and that has the property of digesting the fly, or of converting the liquid part of the insect into a form of food which is taken through the leaf, and from the leaf it goes into the plant itself."
"I thought plants got their food from the roots only?"
"Leaves are just the same as roots. They are terminals, and moisture as well as foods, such, for instance, as nitrogen, is absorbed and fed to the plant through the leaves."
As they progressed they could see evidences of human occupation, and in many places the remains of fire. It was while making a detour from the regular route taken by John that they saw the first startling thing.
It was found at a place where a rude hut was discovered in a dilapidated condition. Directly behind the hut was a raised sort of dais, supported on two posts, and this was filled with human skulls, all in an advanced stage of decay.
It was noticed only by accident, as the area around the hut was thickly grown up by the vegetation. The boys were naturally startled at the sight.
"What does that mean?" asked Harry.
John replied: "This is evidence that the people here are head hunters."
"What do you mean by head hunters?"
"Certain savages have the belief that their importance depends on the number of heads they can capture."
"Where do they get them?"
"It is necessary for them to kill their enemies, and impale the heads, or nail them up to their huts."
"Is it a religious ceremony?"
"In some cases that is so. In some tribes the object is merely to show bravery and manliness. The more heads a man possesses the braver he is."
The vicinity of the hut was carefully examined, and Uraso brought to John a very curiously arranged shell, with a handle to it. It was, in fact, a rattle. John took the article, and after examining it for some time, remarked:
"These people will be difficult to deal with; very difficult."
"Why do you form that conclusion from the examination of the rattle?"
"This is a vele."
"A vele; and what in the world is that?"
"A vele is a sort of hoodoo; it is something that many natives believe in with such tenacity that if any one having this rattle points to him and declares him veleed, and announces that the veleed one will die the next day, he will lay down and actually expire as predicted."
"Do you believe such tales?" asked Harry.
"Of course those stories are hard to understand, but the missionaries on the Melanesian Islands vouch for many things similar to that. In 1871, Bishop Patterson, one of the missionaries, was murdered by the natives of those islands, and many of the facts in regard to their customs were then established."
"But how do they work the vele?"
"The place where the vele is worked to the most unlimited extent is in the Island of Guadalcaner, one of the Solomon Islands, although it has its counterpart in many other places. The vele rattler is carefully kept in a bamboo box, and when the owner wishes to destroy an enemy he takes the vele, and searches for him.
"In doing so he must not be seen by any one. If he is seen the vele will not be effective. When he finds his enemy the vele is pointed to the man, and the rattles shaken, and while doing so the one exorcising the spell must turn his face away and utter curses. As soon as his enemy hears this, he turns to see who has veleed him, and he then glances around to see if any one has seen the vele."
"Are you sure that the rattle is for that purpose?"
"There is no question of it, and it is an evidence that the natives are intensely superstitious, and such people are very difficult to deal with."
"I suppose we shall have witch doctors to deal with here?" asked George.
"That is a very natural supposition."
"Did you see some of these things when you came over here yesterday?"
It was evident to both boys that they were going direct to the mountains, and the general character of the surroundings reminded them so much of the mountains on Wonder Island, that they felt assured John would be able to find the cave for which he was searching.
That night they encamped on a small stream which was, no doubt, formed by a spring, as its waters were deliciously cool, and refreshing.
During that night, shortly after twelve o'clock, the boys heard the most peculiar noises, like a doleful, continuous cry, echoed and reechoed from hill to mountain,—something indescribable, but they refrained from saying anything to John about it.
Some of the boys who were present and heard it were singularly affected, and it must be said that the boys themselves, notwithstanding the experiences they had passed through, were not altogether composed in their minds.
When Uraso and Muro appeared next morning, after a night of scouting, they were startled by the accounts which were furnished, as to the number and warlike character of the inhabitants, and a council was held to decide whether it would be advisable to proceed with their limited force.
If they knew, beyond question, that the island was occupied by another tribe, it might enable them to make peace with one of them, and thus pave the way for approaching these people.
It was unfortunate that the first contact with the natives brought them into open hostilities, much as they desired to avoid it, but it was too late now.
"From your investigations," said John, addressing the two chiefs, "can you give any idea of the number of natives in this tribe?"
"We were unable to get near the village, but during the night we touched three different parties, one over by the high ridge, one a mile to the front, and the other over in the open ground not far from the place we had the fight. If I can judge anything by that I should say they have a number of warriors," answered Uraso.
"That does, indeed, look as though they are ready to meet us from whatever direction we may attack them," remarked John.
"The thing which is the most singular to me," remarked Muro, "is the way they are coming at us after the fight over there. If they were a weak lot they would draw off, and keep away from us, and that makes me think they have a lot of warriors, and are simply waiting until they can collect all of them."
"We must do one of two things," ventured John, on reflection. "Either to go on with the men we have, or to wait until the Pioneer returns, and then go back with her and fit out a force of ample size to meet them. It is our wish to win over the people by peaceful means, but our weakness may be the worst possible way of accomplishing that purpose."
Uraso and Muro were both in favor of returning and waiting for the Pioneer, as they knew it would be likely to show up within the next three days, and their views decided the matter.
"Under the circumstances we must leave this place before it is too late in the day, or we may have trouble in reaching the landing, although we can easily hold them off with our rifles, but we must avoid bloodshed," and on this point John was insistent.
The camp was astir and all the equipment in hand within fifteen minutes, although they had not yet partaken of breakfast. Uraso took the first turn, as commander of the rear guard, while the main body hurried on to cross the valley, before the savages could get the first notice of the retirement.
Notwithstanding the great caution displayed, several shots were heard before the slope on the other side was reached, and they knew that Uraso was engaged.
It is difficult, sometimes, to know just how information travels among savage people, but in this case, the peculiar beatings of the drums which could be heard in the dim distance, was sufficient to satisfy Muro that they had watchers, and a signaling means from treetops and from the crests of the great hills all around them.
An hour afterwards Uraso's men were seen in the distance, and, although they had fired no more shots, it was evident that the natives were now in force and pressing against him with all their might. Only the consummate skill of Uraso prevented them from rushing the men under his command.
But the top of the hill was reached; the landing was not much more than a mile beyond that, and John hurriedly took a half dozen men, and George and Harry with him, in order to select the final line of defense within reach of the landing place, while Uraso and Muro held them in check.
The boys were ahead of the little party, swinging along and trying to get to the elevated point which John indicated as the most available place, when two powerful natives sprang across their path, and before either could draw a weapon, they were pounced upon and seized by two more who approached from the rear.
With great presence of mind Harry cocked and fired the gun which his captors were struggling for. The shot went through the arm of the native who had seized George, and the latter, now free, raised his rifle and brought it down with all force on the nearest one.
John and the men with him needed no further information as to the situation. They were practically surrounded. That was his first thought; but, as no more natives appeared, and the two remaining savages started on a run it began to be evident that they were only scouts who expected an easy capture of the two boys.
There was no more straggling or running ahead after that. Uraso and the rear guard came up with a rush on hearing the shots, but were reassured when they saw the party intact.
The heights were gained, and before they could arrange for the defense the natives appeared from three quarters, and held off a quarter of a mile beyond.
During the following day John tried to establish communications with the natives, but they rebuffed all efforts, and the arrival of the Pioneer was anxiously awaited.
On the third day the natives were observed closer at various points, and they began to grow bolder, but at noon of the fourth day the sharp eyes of Muro discovered the glimpse of a sail to the west.
Within two hours the form of the ship could be seen. The Pioneer was making for the landing, and a cheer went up from the men at the welcome sight.
There was not much difficulty in descending the cliffs and establishing communications with the vessel, and within an hour they were aboard and the natives could plainly be seen coming down the opposite slope waving defiance to the ship.
The next day the Pioneer sailed up Enterprise River. The people in Unity were anxious to learn of the new island, and to hear of the exploits with the savage tribe which the boys had encountered.
"The Treasures of the Islands," the next book in this series, relates the further experiences of the boys upon their return to Rescue Island.
THE BOY GLOBE TROTTERS
By ELBERT FISHER
12mo. Cloth. Many Illustrations. 60c. per Volume
This is a series of four books relating the adventures of two boys, who make a trip around the world, working their way as they go. They meet with various peoples having strange habits and customs, and their adventures form a medium for the introduction of much instructive matter relative to the character and industries of the cities and countries through which they pass. A description is given of the native sports of boys in each of the foreign countries through which they travel. The books are illustrated by decorative head and end pieces for each chapter, there being 36 original drawings in each book, all by the author, and four striking halftones.
1. FROM NEW YORK TO THE GOLDEN GATE, takes in many of the principal points between New York and California, and contains a highly entertaining narrative of the boys' experiences overland and not a little useful information.
2. FROM SAN FRANCISCO TO JAPAN, relates the experiences of the two boys at the Panama Exposition, and subsequently their journeyings to Hawaii, Samoa and Japan. The greater portion of their time is spent at sea, and a large amount of interesting information appears throughout the text.
3. FROM TOKIO TO BOMBAY. This book covers their interesting experiences in Japan, followed by sea voyages to the Philippines, Hongkong and finally to India. Their experiences with the natives cover a field seldom touched upon in juvenile publications, as it relates to the great Hyderabad region of South India.
4. FROM INDIA TO THE WAR ZONE, describes their trip toward the Persian Gulf. They go by way of the River Euphrates and pass the supposed site of the Garden of Eden, and manage to connect themselves with a caravan through the Great Syrian Desert. After traversing the Holy Land, where they visit the Dead Sea, they arrive at the Mediterranean port of Joppa, and their experiences thereafter within the war zone are fully described.
THE NEW YORK BOOK COMPANY 147 FOURTH AVENUE NEW YORK
THE "HOW-TO-DO-IT" BOOKS
BY J. S. ZERBE
CARPENTRY FOR BOYS
A book which treats, in a most practical and fascinating manner all subjects pertaining to the "King of Trades"; showing the care and use of tools; drawing; designing, and the laying out of work; the principles involved in the building of various kinds of structures, and the rudiments of architecture. It contains over two hundred and fifty illustrations made especially for this work, and includes also a complete glossary of the technical terms used in the art. The most comprehensive volume on this subject ever published for boys.
ELECTRICITY FOR BOYS
The author has adopted the unique plan of setting forth the fundamental principles in each phase of the science, and practically applying the work in the successive stages. It shows how the knowledge has been developed, and the reasons for the various phenomena, without using technical words so as to bring it within the compass of every boy. It has a complete glossary of terms, and is illustrated with two hundred original drawings.
PRACTICAL MECHANICS FOR BOYS
This book takes the beginner through a comprehensive series of practical shop work, in which the uses of tools, and the structure and handling of shop machinery are set forth; how they are utilized to perform the work, and the manner in which all dimensional work is carried out. Every subject is illustrated, and model building explained. It contains a glossary which comprises a new system of cross references, a feature that will prove a welcome departure in explaining subjects. Fully illustrated.
12mo, cloth. Price 60 cents per volume
THE NEW YORK BOOK COMPANY 147 FOURTH AVENUE NEW YORK
The Ethel Morton Books
By MABELL S. C. SMITH
This series strikes a new note in the publication of books for girls. Fascinating descriptions of the travels and amusing experiences of our young friends are combined with a fund of information relating their accomplishment of things every girl wishes to know.
In reading the books a girl becomes acquainted with many of the entertaining features of handcraft, elements of cooking, also of swimming, boating and similar pastimes. This information is so imparted as to hold the interest throughout. Many of the subjects treated are illustrated by halftones and line engravings throughout the text.
LIST OF TITLES
ETHEL MORTON AT CHAUTAUQUA ETHEL MORTON AND THE CHRISTMAS SHIP ETHEL MORTON'S HOLIDAYS ETHEL MORTON AT ROSE HOUSE ETHEL MORTON'S ENTERPRISE ETHEL MORTON AT SWEET BRIER LODGE
Price 60 cents per volume; postpaid
PUBLISHED BY The New York Book Company 147 FOURTH AVENUE NEW YORK, N.Y.
The Mountain Boys Series
1. PHIL BRADLEY'S MOUNTAIN BOYS 2. PHIL BRADLEY AT THE WHEEL 3. PHIL BRADLEY'S SHOOTING BOX 4. PHIL BRADLEY'S SNOW-SHOE TRAIL
These books describe with interesting detail the experiences of a party of boys among the mountain pines.
They teach the young reader how to protect himself against the elements, what to do and what to avoid, and above all to become self-reliant and manly.
12mo .'. .'. .'. Cloth.
40 cents per volume; postpaid
THE NEW YORK BOOK COMPANY 147 FOURTH AVENUE NEW YORK