“I rather think,” Ned replied, “that they have planned to do that a little later on. We ought never to have taken such chances.”
“You can’t have a chicken pie,” grinned Jimmie, “unless some one kills a chicken! No more can you find out what’s goin’ on by sittin’ down in an old house an’ waitin’ for someone to bring you the news in a New York newspaper! We had to keep cases on this chap, didn’t we?”
“I think you would talk slang if you were drowning,” Ned smiled. “Anyway,” he added, “we’ve caused Rae, if that is his name, to show his hand. That is something.”
“If we never get away,” laughed Jimmie, “we can leave the information to our friends in a will! I wonder if this gazabo will get Frank and Jack?”
“Possibly,” Ned answered.
“They seem to be puttin’ most all the Americans in China out of circulation!” said the little fellow. “Wonder if that old gear-face thinks he can guard us an’ sleep, too? Say, you watch your chance, Ned, an’ I’ll roll over and geezle him an’ you get out of the house. Roll out, tumble out, any way to get out! There,” with a sigh of disappointment, “there’s another Chink in the game. Listen to what they are saying!”
TWO BLACK BEARS IN TROUBLE
Jack and Frank sat long by the window, waiting for Ned and Jimmie to return. The doors of the adjoining rooms were wide open, so they had a full view of the lower floor.
There were windows, unglazed like that which looked out on the Gulf of Pechili, too, and the lads could see for some distance along the street which ran parallel with the one upon which the miserable old structure faced.
Presently a mist crept over the sky, and black clouds rolled in from the threatening canopy over the gulf. There was evidently a storm brewing, and, besides, the night was coming on.
In spite of the fact that they had a good view all about them, so far as the house and its immediate vicinity was concerned, both boys felt that almost indescribable sensation which one experiences when being observed from behind by keen and magnetic eyes. They were not exactly afraid, but they had premonitions of approaching trouble.
“I wonder what’s keeping Ned?” Jack asked. “Hope he hasn’t gotten into trouble.”
“Oh, he’ll look out for that!”
“Of course! Ned’s no slouch!”
While the boys cheered themselves with such remarks as these, the rooms grew darker and the black clouds from off the gulf dropped nearer.
“What an ungodly country!” Jack exclaimed. “I feel as if I were surrounded by snakes, and all kinds of reptiles. How would you like to take a New York special, just now?”
“I’m not yet seared of the job we are on,” Frank replied, “but I’d like a half decent show of getting out alive. I feel like we were in a hole in the ground, with all manner of creeping things about us. The very air seems to be impregnated with treachery and cunning.”