“Yes, and then I ran back to the radio table and telegraphed to Max Handy at Rockport,” added Hal, taking up the narrative at this point and indicating a disposition to volunteer details more readily. “While I was still in the act of sending, two of the them appeared and seized me. They took me into their rowboat with Bud at the landing and rowed to a yacht almost a duplicate of Mr. Perry’s. We were confined in the cabin until after dark and then put ashore on an island half a mile from here. That was the last we saw of them.”
“But how did you get away?” asked Cub.
“We flagged a motor boat just a little while ago. There were two men and two boys in it. We told them our story and they volunteered to bring us back here and see if you had returned. Hello, Uncle James,” addressing Mr. Baker and seizing the latter by the hand. “I didn’t recognize you at first, though I knew you were coming.”
“Where is Alvin?” asked Mr. Baker anxiously. “Didn’t you see him on the island over there?”
“No,” Hal replied with a look and tone of surprise. “That is another desert island—not a person there.”
“What does that mean?” demanded Mr. Baker, turning to the prisoner. “You told us all three of the boys that you took away from here were together on that island over there.”
“I didn’t mean that,” the fellow snarled, with something of a look of confusion, however.
“Well, what did you mean?”
“I meant they were on two islands not far apart; the other fellow is on the island a little further on.”
“Is that motor boat that brought you here down at the landing yet?” Mr. Baker inquired.
“Yes,” Bud replied.
“I wonder if we couldn’t induce them to make a run over to the island where this fellow says he left my son and bring him here.”
“I think they’d be glad to do it,” Bud replied. “They seemed to be very much interested in this affair and offered to do anything they could to help us.”
“All right; suppose you go down there and tell them the situation. I suppose we could wait till Mr. Perry gets back, but I can’t stand any delay that isn’t absolutely necessary.”
“Why, where has your father gone, Cub?” asked Hal.
“He started out to get police help,” answered the boy addressed. “His first call was to be at Rockport, but no doubt he’ll come right back here when he gets the message I sent for him. I telegraphed to our wireless friend, Max Handy, and asked him to go down to the docks and tell father what happened since he left. He’s on the way now; maybe he’s talking to father this minute.”
“What was it that happened?” Bud inquired.
Cub gave a description of the visit of the four “owners” of Friday Island and the dispute that resulted in making a prisoner of one of them and sending the other three away on a mission of restitution.
“I thought when I just saw you come up from the landing that they had released you according to agreement,” he added; “but on second thought, I decided they couldn’t have had time to do that; besides, when they left us they went in the other direction.”