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On the broken siding are the sound grows louder, and added remains of the million-frano to it the distant “chug-chug" train, still waiting to be oalled of a little motor-engine..... for. There the old truoks have Gradually all sound dies stood patiently for more than away, until subtly close two years — war, death, and comes the subdued throbbing swaying battle raging round of the engine again, muffled them month after month. And to the utmost, getting nearer bit by bit they have been and nearer through the insplintered and chipped by creasing darkness. endless thousands of flying Then suddenly this daring bullets — some are completely intruder is close by, gliding shattered with bursting shells up in the gloom, under the --and long wiry grass, springvery noses of the Huns. There ing up from the gravel tries are sounds of men movingto cover their rusty, rotting hushed voices, hoarse orders, skeletons. But the majority the rattle of a stono kicked are game still-battered and in the dark, then silenoe. neglected, a bit rooky in the Another rocket flares ap, its knees, but still holding up radiance revealing & dim their burden,
squat shape on the metals The evening deepens, and not a dozen yards away, and the warm dusk merges into a scattered group of shadows the late summer night. Away moving rapidly in the direcover the little billook on which tion of the train. Then dark. the village churoh onoe stood, ness again. a sudden dazzling white rocket Time slips by, and still no soars upward, oasting a vivid sign that two opposing armies glare over the scene of gaunt are orouching in ditohes waitdesolation. As it dies away ing to murder each other only the sharp “rat-at-at-at-at- a few yards away. Only now at-at” of a machine-gun breaks and again a stray bullet comes out. ...
whining overhead, lost in the But there is another sound, dark. But the whole time there faint and far away as yet,& is something hidden, muffled, very suggestion of steel mov- going on by the train,-an 06ing on rusty steel-wheels on oasional clink of iron on iron, a railway metals. The faint footstep, a hoarse voice. ...
A month later, the evening to the rusty, dejeoted old again, the same awful scene of truoks? desolation, the same machine- At first glance there is no gun obat, the same sudden change visible—the same shatglare of rookets. But a subtle tored sides, the same dischange has come over the jointed, hopeless look. But old train-what has happened there are other signs: a very badly-smashed truok has van- whole complete train - damished and the gap closed up; aged, limping, and perilously exles look dark with oil, weak — but & complete train wounded trucks have been nevertheless. bandaged with wood and wire; And, above all, there is an in fact, the onoe helpless, hope- air of hopefulness-ears prioked loss string of wreckage has up, expectanoy about it, which changed mysteriously into & is almost human.
during eeks. The repaired. Fun.
Away down the track an eleo- pers. The valuable but disabled tric torch winked in the dark- train had been patched, reness, and the locomotive, which paired, and oiled; each truck had been steaming slowly, drew had been carefully nursed back to a halt, panting gently. to some semblance of its former
Not a light glimmered any- mobility, and had been exerwhere : the opon oab, draped cised by hand, laboriously, heavily in saoking and tar- during the dark nights of the paulins, had the appearance of past weeks. The rails had all à small tent. Inside, the dim been carefully repaired — all glow from the fire-door, re- this under the nose of the Hun. Hected from the roof and sides, And now the time was actually revealed the dingy brass-work here. The engine, shrouded so -gauges and fittings of the that no triokle of light should old goods engine. The fire- betray its presence, was waitman — palpably in uniform ing—full in the open-for the under his filthy overalls—was signal to steam up cautiously, studying the steam-pressure couple on to the train, and gauge, while the driver was make a dash for safety. peering cautiously out through The officer oommanding the å fold in the tarpaulin. Sud- English guns, so cleverly condenly he saw the pitohy dark- cealed in the ruins near the nens illumined by a wavering station, had agreed to open white glare as a trenob-rooket, rapid fire at a certain time, seemingly perilously close, shot and the success of the scheme up,-instinotively he crouched largely depended on the noise back into the shadow. But of the guns covering the noise the light faded, fliokered, and of the moving train. Even died down, plunging everything more, success depended upon in redoubled darkness—and all the ability of the poor maimed was quiet again. But the trucks to hold together during driver swore softly to himself that last furious rush through in impatience.
the darkness. Everything had been care. The time was one o'clook in fully planned, and was being the morning — the sky comcarried out under the leader- pletely overoast, and fine misty ship of the lieutenant of sap- rain falling.
station, hacentis certain scheme and the succeeded on the noise
And now, as the driver the enemy. The orderly havthought of these things, and ing disappeared in the dark. the precious minutes slipped ness, the lieutenant turned his by, he swore softly to himself, attention to the train, in He was very near the train, order to assure himself that and at almost any moment his all was correot. Two men presence might be discovered were stationed at the first by the Hun ... and the time truck to effect the coupling; was past when the guns should one other was aoting as guard open fire.
on the last doddering skeleton
of a large van. His daty was In the battery position all to signal the engine as soon as was darkness except for å his van had passed the boundglimmer of light coming up ary switoh, and then pray hard the steps of a cellar, from that his perilous peroh would under a sandbag hanging in hold together till they reached the doorway of the battery safety. office. The room -- or rather All was in order, but why dug-out - whence the light the delay? Five minutes had emanated was a typical pio- passed, and no sign of life from ture. A plank table mounted the battery. Impatiently the on old ammunition boxes and lieutenant walked in the direocovered with a rough blanket, tion of the platform, a vague another box acting as chair uneasiness in his mind. Hardly oooupied by young gun had he reached the shadow of ner officer, smoking a pipe, the buildings than & groan and studying an old copy of reached his ears.
La Vie Parisienne' by the A moment later he nearly aid of a fliokering, sizzling stumbled over the prostrate acetylene lamp. A few maps, unconscious body of the the telephone, and a 'Kir- runner. A brief examination ohener' completed the scene. showed him merely stunned
Glancing at his watoh, the by a stray bullet striking his young officer reached to the helmet, 80 the lieutenant telephone. ... “Turn out hurried on to the battery. numbers two and four ... load and stand by." Then A third time the engineresuming his pipe he became driver was in the aot of swearonce more immersed in 'La ing, when suddenly a leaping, Vie.' He was to wait for a sign blinding flash, followed infrom the lieutenant of sappers. stantly by a deafening roar, · · · · · · oame as a surprise and a relief
In the station, the lieutenant, simultaneously. Within a few having signalled the engine to seconds the toroh winked again, stop, despatohed & runner to and the engine was moving, the battery two hundred yards the driver still peering abead, away. He dared not flash & advanoing cautiously, feeling signal, beoause the light would, his way foot by foot through in all probability, be seen by the gloom towards the train.
en Tho on tonightmust be abown incokon, swa train of veritate at
... The flame and orash of of wreokage with one hand, the guns was very near now, waved the other towards Hunwhen suddenly a hoarse voioe land, and then, turning toolose below. ... Instantly the wards the engine, flashed the brakes-just in time; with a signal to speed up. faint oliok and gentle bump Seldom had such a sight the coupling was made. been witnessed - & veritable
And now the most oritioal nightmare train of wrecked, stage. Would the trucks stand broken, swaying trucks, whirlthe strain? If one broke down ing and buoketing through the the whole scheme must be aban- night. And not one broke doned, for to-night in any case. down.
The engine reversed gear, Even the staggering van, and gently, gingerly pulled at with the guard oursing and the first truck. The track praying and laughing at once, oreaked, strained, moved, and got safely away, though how passed the whispered jolt down was a miracle explicable only the whole train. The watohers to those patient Frenohmen waited, tense with excitement. who had laboured night after The enemy was being roused night tuning up and wiring by the gun-fire, and rookets together the wreckage in were leaping up in quick preparation for this great 8000ession, ...
Slowly - gently — yard by In the battery position the yard they rept away—those din had died down—the guns old trucks, — not a wheel were covered up,-and in the squeaked or jammed. Slowly dug-out cellar the lieutenant they gathered speed, and 8 of Sappers and the English faint rumbling began. Would officer olinked glasses. the Huns hear? But the guns It was two o'olook, and the were doing their share splen- rain was still falling. didly, and a continuous roar “A votre santé, m's'r." drowned all sound of the now “Here's luokand jolly well fast- vanishing train. One by done, old boy. How muoh did one they limped over the you say? Eight hundred boundary switch till the last thousand franos, in spite van had passed it. The guard, of the damage - eb? Some sitting on the floor, his legs haul.” swaying over the edge — for “Pardon, m's'r? you — you there was no side left — and speak too fast! I must go. olinging to a broken piece Au revoir."
THE UNKNOWN COLT.
A STORY OF THE GALWAY PLATE,
BY JAS. R. MARTIN.
MR LUCIUS O’DEARA, as he going to lose or going to appeared on the race cards, win ?” to leave Johnny absobut who was more correctly lutely speechless. The group and generally known as of his quondam friends added Johnny Deery, had had & a few well - chosen embellish. bad day – to use his own ments, and turned their baoks words, “The divil & worse." on him, leaving him feeling It was not the mere loss singularly alone in the world. of the money that troubled He made for the stand, which him so completely, although was rather empty at the mothat was a terrible thing; ment, and, taking ap a posibut that is a oatastrophe that tion in the top corner, turned the best of good sportsmen up the collar of his waterwho make the most careful proof-it was raining a little and intrioate "arrangements" -and faced the world alone, are sometimes subjeot to, with as truoulent a demeanour and must be borne with 88 he could at the moment Spartan heroism. The sting command. of his position lay in the faot His misfortunes were not that, when he told his tale to unnoticed. A fresh - looking & group of friends with whom girl, wearing blue flowers in he had been raoing for some a big hat, and dressed in years with varied fortune, he what her father described found & most unsympathetic as “five pounds' worth of a audience; and Ned Lalor, his skirt on her back," followed partioular chum, had evidently him with sympathetic eyes, caught the voioe of the meeting and, abandoning her own when he told him with em- private programme - which phasis, “ The divil mend you!” was one of vigorous and Miles Doyne, his boon com- somewhat boisterous flirtation panion in many a racing turn, as oooasion offered - engaged had taken up the parable to play a woman's part to and spoken to him with such this defeated knight. And anotion and fervour, and in here let me say that if this such highly ornamented and girl spent her money on pioturesque language, that it adornment, she earned every hardly required his final taunt penny of it; and her father, of “What the divil was the whilst oriticising her extravause of having anything to do ganoe, had to admit that there with a man who wouldn't tell was not a “finer warrant to you the truth, whether he was milk a cow or do anything
kirt on pounds of describing