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|At The Rainbow's End||Jack London|
|Page 4 of 6||
"Gentlemen," interrupted the policeman, "this 'ere mate o' mine is Jack Sutherland, owner of Twenty-Two Eldorado--"
"Not Sutherland of '92?" broke in the snow-blinded Minook man, groping feebly toward him.
"The same." Sutherland gripped his hand.
"Oh, I'm after your time, but I remember you in my freshman year,- -you were doing P. G. work then. Boys," he called, turning half about, "this is Sutherland, Jack Sutherland, erstwhile full-back on the 'Varsity. Come up, you gold-chasers, and fall upon him! Sutherland, this is Greenwich,--played quarter two seasons back."
"Yes, I read of the game," Sutherland said, shaking hands. "And I remember that big run of yours for the first touchdown."
Greenwich flushed darkly under his tanned skin and awkwardly made room for another.
"And here's Matthews,--Berkeley man. And we've got some Eastern cracks knocking about, too. Come up, you Princeton men! Come up! This is Sutherland, Jack Sutherland!"
Then they fell upon him heavily, carried him into camp, and supplied him with dry clothes and numerous mugs of black tea.
Donald and Davy, overlooked, had retired to their nightly game of crib. Montana Kid followed them with the policeman.
"Here, get into some dry togs," he said, pulling them from out his scanty kit. "Guess you'll have to bunk with me, too."
"Well, I say, you're a good 'un," the policeman remarked as he pulled on the other man's socks. "Sorry I've got to take you back to Dawson, but I only 'ope they won't be 'ard on you."
"Not so fast." The Kid smiled curiously. "We ain't under way yet. When I go I'm going down river, and I guess the chances are you'll go along."
"Not if I know myself--"
"Come on outside, and I'll show you, then. These damn fools," thrusting a thumb over his shoulder at the two Scots, "played smash when they located here. Fill your pipe, first--this is pretty good plug--and enjoy yourself while you can. You haven't many smokes before you."
The policeman went with him wonderingly, while Donald and Davy dropped their cards and followed. The Minook men noticed Montana Kid pointing now up the river, now down, and came over.
"What's up?" Sutherland demanded.
"Nothing much." Nonchalance sat well upon the Kid. "Just a case of raising hell and putting a chunk under. See that bend down there? That's where she'll jam millions of tons of ice. Then she'll jam in the bends up above, millions of tons. Upper jam breaks first, lower jam holds, pouf!" He dramatically swept the island with his hand. "Millions of tons," he added reflectively.
"And what of the woodpiles?" Davy questioned.
The Kid repeated his sweeping gestures and Davy wailed, "The labor of months! It canna be! Na, na, lad, it canna be. I doot not it's a jowk. Ay, say that it is," he appealed.
But when the Kid laughed harshly and turned on his heel, Davy flung himself upon the piles and began frantically to toss the cordwood back from the bank.
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