“Dan Baxter!” he cried in astonishment. “Dan Baxter!”
At this cry the person turned and his lower jaw dropped in equal astonishment.
“Who—er—where did you come from?” he stammered.
“So this is the vessel you shipped on?” went on Sam. And then he called out: “Dick! Tom! Come here.”
For a brief instant Dan Baxter’s face was a study. Then a crafty look came into his eyes and he drew himself up.
“Excuse me, but you have made a mistake in your man,” he said coldly.
“What’s that?” came from Sam in bewilderment.
“I am not the party you just named. My name is Robert Brown.”
“It is?” came from the youngest Rover. “If that is so, you look exactly like somebody I know well.”
By this time Dick and Tom came hurrying to the spot, followed by Dora, who happened to be on deck.
“Dan Baxter!” came from Tom and Dick simultaneously.
“He says he isn’t Dan Baxter,” said Sam.
“Isn’t Dan Baxter? Why, Baxter, you fraud, what new wrinkle is this?” said Dick, catching him by the arm.
“Let go of me!” came fiercely from Baxter. “Let go, I say, or it will be the worse for you. You have made a mistake.”
“No mistake about it,” put in Tom. “He is Dan Baxter beyond a doubt.”
IN WHICH THE ENEMY IS CORNERED
The loud talking had attracted the attention of Captain Blossom, and now the master of the Golden Wave strode up to the crowd.
“What’s going on here?” he demanded of the Rover boys. “Why are you not at work, as I ordered?”
“I have made an important discovery,” answered Dick. “Is this your passenger, Captain Blossom?”
“He is. What of him?”
“He is a thief and ran away from San Francisco to escape the police.”
“It’s a falsehood!” roared Dan Baxter. “They have made a mistake. I am a respectable man just out of college, and my father, Doctor L. Z. Brown, is a well-known physician of Los Angeles. I am traveling to Australia for my health.”
“His real name is Daniel Baxter and his father is now in prison,” said Tom. “He robbed us of our money and some diamonds while we were stopping at a hotel in San Francisco. The detectives followed him up, but he slipped them by taking passage on your ship.”
“I tell you my name is Brown—Robert Brown!” stormed Baxter. “This is some plot hatched up against me. Who are these fellows, anyway?” he went on, turning to the captain.
“They came from the steamer we ran into,” answered Captain Blossom.
“I never saw them before.”
At this moment Dora touched the captain on the shoulder.
“Please, captain,” she said, “I knew Dan Baxter quite well and I am sure this young man is the same person.”
“It aint so. I tell you, captain, it is a plot.”