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|Rudder Grange||Frank R. Stockton|
Treating of a Novel Style of Burglar
|Page 3 of 6||
I confess that I was not very anxious to look him up, but I followed the boarder, as he slowly made his way toward the kitchen door. As we opened the door we instinctively stopped.
The window was open, and by the light of the moon that shone in, we saw the rascal standing on a chair, leaning out of the window, evidently just ready to escape. Fortunately, we were unheard.
"Let's pull him in," whispered the boarder.
"No," I whispered in reply. "We don't want him in. Let's hoist him out."
"All right," returned the boarder.
We laid our pistols on the floor, and softly approached the window. Being barefooted, out steps were noiseless.
"Hoist when I count three," breathed the boarder into my ear.
We reached the chair. Each of us took hold of two of its legs.
"One--two--three!" said the boarder, and together we gave a tremendous lift and shot the wretch out of the window.
The tide was high, and there was a good deal of water around the boat. We heard a rousing splash outside.
Now there was no need of silence.
"Shall we run on deck and shoot him as he swims?" I cried.
"No," said the boarder, "we'll get the boat-hook, and jab him if he tries to climb up."
We rushed on deck. I seized the boat-hook and looked over the side. But I saw no one.
"He's gone to the bottom!" I exclaimed.
"He didn't go very far then," said the boarder, "for it's not more than two feet deep there."
Just then our attention was attracted by a voice from the shore.
"Will you please let down the gang-plank?" We looked ashore, and there stood Pomona, dripping from every pore.
We spoke no words, but lowered the gangplank.
She came aboard.
"Good night!" said the boarder, and he went to bed.
"Pomona!" said I, "what have you been doing?"
"I was a lookin' at the moon, sir, when pop! the chair bounced, and out I went."
"You shouldn't do that," I said, sternly.
"Some day you'll be drowned. Take off your wet things and go to bed."
"Yes, sma'am--sir, I mean," said she, as she went down-stairs.
When I reached my room I lighted the lamp, and found Euphemia still under the bed.
"Is it all right?" she asked.
"Yes," I answered. "There was no burglar. Pomona fell out of the window."
"Did you get her a plaster?" asked Euphemia, drowsily.
"No, she did not need one. She's all right now. Were you worried about me, dear?"
"No, I trusted in you entirely, and I think I dozed a little under the bed."
In one minute she was asleep.
The boarder and I did not make this matter a subject of conversation afterward, but Euphemia gave the girl a lecture on her careless ways, and made her take several Dover's powders the next day.
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