“Mr. Darrin required more than the full count to come back. The fight is therefore awarded to Mr. Treadwell.”
FIGHTING THE FAMOUS DOUBLE BATTLE
“It wasn’t fair,” hissed Midshipman Page hotly.
“It was by a mighty small margin, anyway,” quivered Farley.
“I don’t feel whipped yet,” remarked Dave quietly.
“Oh, well, Darry,” urged Farley, “don’t feel humiliated over being thrashed by such a human mountain of a top classer.”
Dave, whose chest had been heaving, and whose lungs had been taking in great gulps of air, suddenly pushed his second gently away.
“Mr. Treadwell, sir, will you come over here a moment?” he called. “And also the officials of the fight?”
Treadwell, with a self-satisfied leer on his face, stepped away from his seconds coming jauntily over.
Midshipman Edgerton and Wheeler followed in some wonder.
“Mr. Treadwell,” began Dave, looking full into the eyes of his late antagonist, “I have no fault, sir, to find with your style of fighting. You behaved fairly at every point.”
“Thank you, sir,” interjected the big midshipman grimly.
“The verdict was also fair enough,” Dave continued, “for I am aware that I took a hair’s-breadth more than the count. Still, I do not feel, Mr. Treadwell, that the result was decisive. Therefore I have to ask of you the favor of another early meeting, for a more definite try-out.”
Treadwell gasped. So did his recent seconds and the late officials of the fight. Even Farley’s jaw dropped just a trifle, but Page’s face flushed with new-found pleasure.
“Another fight, sir?” demanded Midshipman Treadwell.
“Yes, sir,” replied Darrin quietly.
“Oh, very well,” agreed Treadwell, nonchalantly. “At any time that you wish, Mr. Darrin—any time.”
“How would fifteen minutes from now do?” demanded Dave, smiling coolly.
Treadwell fairly gasped, though only from sheer astonishment.
“Why, if your seconds and the officials think that fair to you, Mr. Darrin,” replied Treadwell in another moment, “I am sure that I have no objection to remaining around here a little longer.”
“Do you insist on calling for the second fight within fifteen minutes, Mr. Darrin?” asked Second Classman Edgerton.
“For my own part, I do,” replied Dave quietly; “I leave the decision to Mr. Treadwell’s courtesy.”
“Well, of all the freaks!” muttered Mr. Wheeler, as the two fight officials walked aside to discuss the matter.
“Darry,” demanded the agitated Farley, “are you plumb, clean crazy?”
“Do you know what we’re fighting about, Farley, old man?” asked Dave very quietly.
“No; of course not.”
“It’s a personal matter.”
“It’s a matter in which I can’t accept an imitation whipping.”