Calumet "K" eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 198 pages of information about Calumet "K".

“I can’t wait.”

“What else can you do?  It’s every bit as bad for us as it is for you, and you can rest assured that we’ll do all we can.”  As if the cadence of his last sentence were not sufficiently recognizable as a formula of dismissal, he picked up a letter that lay on his desk and began reading it.

“This isn’t an ordinary kick,” said Bannon sharply.  “It isn’t just a case of us having to pay a big delay forfeit.  There’s a reason why our job’s got to be done on time.  I want to know the reason why the G.&M. won’t give you cars.  It ain’t because they haven’t got them.”

“What makes you say that?”

“Because there’s three big strings of empties within twenty miles of here this minute.  I saw them when I came up this morning.”

For a minute Sloan said nothing, only traced designs on the blotter with his pencil.  Bannon saw that there was no longer any question of arousing his interest.  At last he spoke:—­

“I’ve suspected that there was something in the wind, but I’ve been too busy with other things to tend to it, so I turned it over to Dennis.  Perhaps he’s done as well as I could I don’t know much about G.&M. these days.  For a long time they were at me to take a big block of treasury stock, but the road seemed to me in bad shape, so I wouldn’t go in.  Lately they’ve reorganized—­have got a lot of new money in there—­I don’t know whose, but they’ve let me alone.  There’s been no row, you understand.  That ain’t the reason they’ve tied us up, but I haven’t known much about what was going on inside.”

“Would they be likely to tell you if you asked?  I mean if you took it to headquarters?”

“I couldn’t get any more out of them than you could—­that is, not by asking.”

“I guess I’ll go look ’em up myself.  Where can I find anybody that knows anything?”

“The division offices are at Blake City.  That’s only about twenty miles.  You could save time by talking over the ’phone.”

“Not me,” said Bannon.  “In a case like this I couldn’t express myself properly unless I saw the fellow I was talking to.”

Sloan laughed.  “I guess you’re right.  But I’ll call up the division superintendent and tell him you’re coming.  Then you’ll be sure of finding him.”

Bannon shook his head.  “I’d find him with his little speech all learned.  No, I’ll take my chances on his being there.  When’s the train?”

“Nine-forty-six.”

“That gives me fifteen minutes.  Can I make it?”

“Not afoot, and you ain’t likely to catch a car.  I’ll drive you down.  I’ve got the fastest mare in Pottawatomie County.”

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Project Gutenberg
Calumet "K" from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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