The drum thundered more loudly, became unbearable. They were clear of the town and in the bush at last; huge fires gleamed through the trees, and the mob spilled into the grove. The cripple and the mamaloi were beside him still.
In the grove, with the drums—more than one of them now—palpitating unceasingly, the dancing became wilder, more savage. In the light of the fire the mamaloi swayed, holding the screaming child, and close to the flames crouched the cripple. The hymn had given place to the formless chant, through which the minors quivered like the wails of lost souls.
The scales fell from Simpson’s eyes. He rose to his full height and stretched out his arm, demanding silence; there was some vague hope in him that even now he might guide them. His only answer was a louder yell than ever.
It took form. Vieux Michaud sprang from the circle into the full firelight, feet stamping, eyes glaring.
“La ch vre!” he yelled. “La chevre sans cornes!”
The drums rolled in menacing crescendo, the fire licked higher. All sounds melted into one.
“La chevre sans cornes!”
The mamaloi tore the child from her neck and held it high by one leg. Simpson, seeing clearly as men do before they die, flung himself toward her.
The cripple’s knife, thrust from below, went home between his ribs just as the mamaloi’s blade crossed the throat of the sacrifice.
“So I signed the death-certificate,” Witherbee concluded. “Death at the hands of persons unknown.”
“And they’ll call him a martyr,” said Bunsen.
“Who knows?” the consul responded gravely. “Perhaps he was one.”
By COURTNEY RYLEY COOPER and LEO. F. CREAGAN
From American Magazine
The entrance of Martin Garrity, superintendent of the Blue Ribbon Division of the O.R.& T. Railroad, had been attended by all the niceties of such an occasion, when Martin, grand, handsome, and magnificent, arrived at his office for the day. True to form, he had cussed out the office boy, spoken in fatherly fashion to the trainmaster over the telephone about the lateness of No. 210, remarked to the stenographer that her last letter had looked like the exquisite tracks of a cow’s hoof—and then he had read two telegrams. A moment later, white, a bit stooped, a little old in features, he had left the office, nor had he paused to note the grinning faces of those in his wake, those who had known hours before!
Home, and stumbling slightly as he mounted the steps of the veranda, he faced a person in screaming foulard and a red toque, Mrs. Jewel Garrity, just starting for the morning’s assault upon the market. Wordlessly he poked forward the first of the telegrams as he pulled her within the hall and shut the door. And with bulging eyes Jewel read it aloud: