“You’ve got the right idea!” declared Bob. “We’ll be fighting soon enough. But Iggy, do you see that fellow over there?” and he pointed to Captain Dickerson.
“Sure I see him. Him was the man what saved us at the fire.”
“Exactly. And he went over toward the Germans, didn’t he?”
“I thinks me he did,” admitted Iggy.
“When did you see him last?” asked Franz, as if this was a trial and he had the examination of witnesses in hand.
“We saw him between our lines and the German forces, and he wore a German uniform,” declared Bob.
“And now he wears an American outfit,” added Roger.
“That settles it!” declared Roger. “The verdict is unanimous. Captain Dickerson, as he calls himself, is a spy, and it’s our duty to denounce him!”
“Yes,” said Sergeant Jimmy, “he saved our lives—there’s no doubt about it. But he’s a spy. It breaks my heart to do it, but duty is duty! We’ll have to expose him!”
He looked at Roger and Bob. Solemnly and mournfully they nodded their heads in assent.
“I don’t know as much about it as you three fellows do,” said Franz, “but it sounds as though you’d have to. Tough luck, but it’s got to be done.”
“How about you, Iggy?” asked Bob.
“I fights mit youse,” said the Polish lad simply, “and what you says I say!”
“That ends it!” went on Jimmy. “I’d rather lose ten times five thousand francs than do this, but—well, let’s get it over with, and then we’ll jump into the fight and try to forget it.”
He walked up to the group of officers, in the midst of which still stood the captain. Jimmy saluted Major Wrightson, the senior officer then present, and when the latter looked at the lad, seeing that he had something to say, Jimmy spoke:
“My comrades and I,” he said, indicating his four Brothers, “wish to denounce that man as a German spy!” He spoke quietly, and pointed an accusing finger at Captain Dickerson.
“What’s that?” cried the major, in great surprise.
Jimmy repeated his statement, and as he did so he kept his eyes on the face of the accused. The latter smiled faintly, but did not seem at all alarmed.
“Have you any evidence to support this amazing statement?” asked the major.
“Plenty,” answered Jimmy, and then, briefly, he told what he and his chums had seen. During the dramatic recital, which was corroborated at several points by Roger and Bob, as well as Franz and Iggy, the captain never said a word. He continued calmly smoking a cigarette he had lighted.
“Can this be possible?” exclaimed a lieutenant, and he seemed to shrink away from Captain Dickerson.
“Have you anything to say regarding the accusation of these lads, Captain Dickerson?” asked the major, at length.
The accused flicked away the end of his cigarette. He looked at the boys, smiling cynically, and then answered calmly: