In something over an hour a pair of rowboats came along filled with youngsters who thought it great sport to rescue the pair in the marooned canoe, and who promptly discovered the cause of the trouble. It was an iron kettle full of stones, fastened to the bottom of the canoe with a long wire, which had wedged itself in among the branches of a submerged tree in the river and anchored the canoe firmly.
“Somebody’s played a trick on us!” exclaimed Miss Peckham wrathfully. “Somebody at camp deliberately fastened that kettle of stones to the bottom of the canoe to make it hard for you to paddle. That’s just what you might have expected from those girls. They’re playing tricks all the time. They have no respect for anyone.”
Monty turned a dull red when he saw that kettle full of stones, and he, too, sputtered with indignation. “Low brow trick,” he exclaimed loftily, but he felt quite the reverse of lofty. “This must be Cousin Judith’s doing,” he continued angrily, remembering the subtle antagonism that had sprung up between his cousin and himself.
His dignity was too much hurt to allow him to follow the rest of the party now. Disgusted, he turned back in the direction of camp. By the time he arrived he began to feel that he did not want to stay long enough to see the enjoyment of his cousin over his discomfiture. He announced his intention of leaving that very night, paddling down the river to the next landing, and boarding the evening boat.
Miss Peckham suddenly made up her mind, too. “I’m going with you.” she declared. “I’m not going to stay here and be insulted any longer. It’ll serve them right to do without my services as councilor for the rest of the summer. I’ll just leave a note for Mrs. Grayson and slip out quietly with you.”
When the expedition returned the following day both Pecky and Monty were gone.
Bengal raised such a shout of joy when she heard of the departure of her despised councilor that her tent mates were obliged to restrain her transports for the look of the thing, but they, too, were somewhat relieved to be rid of her.
The reason of the double departure remained a mystery in camp until the very end, but there were a select few that always winked solemnly at one another whenever Dr. Grayson wondered what had become of his largest camping kettle.
The long anticipated, the much practiced for Regatta Day had dawned, bringing with it crowds of visitors to Camp. It was Camp Keewaydin’s great day, when the Avenue and the Alley struggled for supremacy in aquatics. The program consisted of contests in swimming and diving, canoe upsetting and righting, demonstrations of rescue work, stunts and small canoe races, and ended up with a race between the two war canoes. Visitors came from all the summer resorts around, and many of the girls’ parents and friends came to see their daughters perform.