“Hey, Bracken! Jimmy!” shouted Jack Barnes, jumping out upon the little wharf. Marjory gave him her hands and was whisked ashore and into his arms. “Run into the boathouse, dear. I’ll yank this stuff ashore. Where the dickens is Bracken?”
The boathouse door opened slowly and a sleepy young man looked forth.
“I thought you’d never come,” he yawned.
“Wake up, you old loafer! We’re here and we are pursued! Where are George and Amy?” cried Mr. Barnes, doing herculean duty as a baggage smasher.
“Pursued?” cried the sleepy young man, suddenly awake.
“Yes, and shot at!” cried Marjory, running past him and into the arms of a handsome young woman who was emerging from the house.
“We’ve no time to lose, Jimmy! They are on to us, Heaven knows how. They are not more than ten minutes behind us. Get it over with, Jimmy, for Heaven’s sake! Here, George, grab this trunk!”
Anderson Rectifies an Error
In a jiffy the fugitives and their property were transferred to the interior of the roomy boathouse, the doors bolted, and George Crosby stationed at a window to act as lookout.
“Is it your father?” demanded the Rev. James Bracken, turning to Marjory. Young Mrs. Crosby was looking on eagerly.
“Mr. Brewster is at home and totally oblivious to all this,” cried Jack Barnes. “I don’t know what it means. Here’s the license, Jimmy. Are you ready, Marjory?”
“This is rather a squeamish business, Jack—” began the young minister in the negligee shirt. He was pulling on his coat as he made the remark.
“Oh, hurry, Jimmy; please hurry!” cried Marjory Brewster.
“Don’t wait a second, Jimmy Bracken!” cried Amy Crosby, dancing with excitement. “You can’t go back on them now!”
Three minutes later there was no Marjory Brewster, but there was a Mrs. John Ethelbert Barnes—and she was kissing her husband rapturously.
“Now, tell us everything,” cried Mrs. Crosby after the frantic congratulations. The Reverend “Jimmy” Bracken, of the Eleventh Presbyterian Church, was the only one who seemed uncertain as to his position. In the first place, old Judge Brewster was a man of influence in the metropolis, from which all had fled for a sojourn in the hills. He and his daughter were Episcopalians, but that made them none the less important in the eyes of “Jimmy” Bracken. In the second place, Jack Barnes was a struggling lawyer, in the Year of our Lord 1880, and possessed of objectionable poverty. The young men had been room-mates at college. Friendship had overcome discretion in this instance, at least. The deed being done, young Mr. Bracken was beginning to wonder if it had not been overdone, so to speak.
“I wish somebody would tell me!” exclaimed Jack Barnes, with a perplexed frown. “The beastly jays shot at us and all that. You’d think I was an outlaw. And they blazed away at Marjory, too, hang them!”