“That’s right! Howl!” cried Harry, exultantly. “Now, for a surprise.”
The second stone flew with better speed, carrying away the fellow’s hat without hitting his head.
“Hey, you, stop that!” roared the fellow.
From behind the bushes all was quiet. The camp prowler stood up straight, staring to see whence the next stone would come. After nearly two minutes he bent to pick up the case of biscuit that he had dropped.
Smack! Even as his nearer hand touched the box a sharp stone struck the back of that hand, cutting a gash and causing the blood to spurt.
“I’ll have your scalp for that!” howled the enraged man. Making a pretty good guess at the direction from which the stone had come, the fellow started toward the brush on a run.
“Here’s where you get all of yours!” chuckled Harry Hazelton. Still crouching he let three stones fly one after the other. The first struck the prowler in the mouth, the second on the end of the nose and the third over the pit of his stomach.
“You two-legged Gatling gun!” howled the fellow, shaking with rage and pain. He halted, shaking his fist in the direction from which the stones had come.
Another lot of stones flew toward him. The prowler waited no longer, but turned, making for Gage’s camp as fast as he could go.
“That ought to hold those rascals for a little while,” speculated Harry. “But, of course, there’ll be a come-back. What’ll they do to me now, I wonder?”
By way of precaution Hazelton cautiously shifted to another hiding place. Within fifteen minutes he saw the same prowler stealing back into camp. When the fellow was near enough, Harry let fly a stone that dropped near the rascal’s toes.
“Hey, you stop that, or I’ll make you wish you had!” roared the fellow, shaking his fist.
Harry’s answer was to drive two more stones in, sending them close to the fellow, yet without hitting him.
Again the man shouted at him, though he did not attempt to come any nearer to so expert a thrower of stones.
Then, suddenly, just behind him, Harry Hazelton heard a sound. In the next instant two men hurled themselves upon the young engineer, pinning him to the ground.
“I ought to have suspected this!” grunted Harry inwardly, as he fought back with all his strength. He might have succeeded in slipping away from the two men who sought to pin him down, but the third man, still aching from contact with Harry’s missiles, now darted into the scrimmage, striking several hard blows. Harry was presently conquered and tied.
“Take the cub to his own camp!” sounded the exultant voice of Dolph Gage. “With one of the pair tied, it won’t be hard to handle the other whenever he happens along.”
TOM’S FIGHTING BLOOD SURGES
“Take another hitch of rope around that young steer,” Dolph ordered, after he had flung Harry violently to the ground.