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"Here's your money,” Gardner re dismiss the matter from his mind. The peated.
following morning a telephone call from The clerk started from his reverie, in the hotel office interrupted his breakfast: stinctively extending one thin hand for “A gentleman in the lobby to see you, the money, his fingers shaking as he sir." counted it.
“Who is he?" Gardner inquired. "I send it to you?”
"Smith, Professor Ezekiel Smith. He “No, I'll take it with me," Gardner in
says you don't know him but he wants to formed him.
see you on a matter of great importance." Again the clerk stopped to stare at the “Show him up." Gardner replied. carving, his skin appearing a somewhat
A few moments later a bell boy duller shade of green; but he made no
knocked at his door and stood aside as effort to hand over the dragon. Gardner
Gardner admitted his visitor, a thin, waited impatiently, tapping his fingers
little figure of a man in a long black coat on the counter.
that flapped about his slender legs as he “My dragon, please."
moved. One hand clutched a soft, black With an evident effort the clerk pushed
felt hat; the other toyed nervously with a the money from him. “No, please, I not
white shoe-string tie that had a tendency sell the dragon today."
to slip to one side of his not over-clean "Why not?"
collar. His mild blue eyes behind the "It—it velly bad day to sell dragons." thick lenses seemed fixed in a perpetual "Rubbish!" Gardner snorted "You've
timid stare. already sold it to me. Hand it over or I'll “Have I the honor of addressing Mister call the police."
Gregory Gardner ?" he began in a halting With the mention of the word, “police," the clerk collapsed. Perhaps he had had
Gardner bowed and pushed forward a past experiences with the police which he chair. “Will you sit down ?" did not care to have repeated; perhaps The professor took it; and resting his
little room over the shop hat on knee, turned a mild face toward which would not bear investigation. At Gardner, but his eyes immediately fixed any rate he again picked up the dragon themselves
the dragon which and made for the curtained door at the Gardner had placed on top of the book rear of the shop.
shelves behind him. "Here!" Gardner called sharply, “never “I see you appreciate a good carving, mind wrapping it up. I'll take is just the Mister Gardner. Your dragon, may I
The clerk returned and gave over the "Why, yes," Gardner said, reaching for dragon with a reluctance he could not the toy. “I think it rather neat myself." conceal. "Velly bad luck,” he observed The professor studied the dragon carewith perfect gravity, "velly bad luck." fully and placed it on the table before he
“Oh, I guess not," Gardner remarked spoke again. "Frankly, Mister Gardner, I cheerfully. “Anyway, I'm the one that's came to see you about this very dragon." taking the chance." He tucked the "I'm afraid you're mistaken about dragon under his arm and walked calmly that,” Gardner replied. “I bought this out of the shop, the clerk staring after dragon only yesterday at a little shop in him.
China Town. You evidently have the Back in his rooms, Gardner studied the
wrong dragon." dragon minutely; but he was unable to The professor shook his head, smiling. discover any peculiarity except superior "No, Mister Gardner, this is the one." workmanship. As far as appearances Gardner regarded him attentively. Unwere concerned, it was a mere Chinese doubtedly the man was a little demented. toy. With a sigh of disappointment, he "You're a collector of carvings?" he suggave up the riddle and began the more gested. important task of dressing for dinner. The professor laughed nervously. “No,
He was not, however, to be allowed to Mister Gardner, I'm only a teacher. I
way it is."
never collected anything in my life but my ing on you again, say tonight?" salary, and sometimes not even that.” "If you come early, yes.'
"Then I don't quite understand. What "Nine o'clock?" is it you want to find out about the “Excellent." dragon?"
"You may expect me at that time, "Pardon me, Mister Gardner, but I Mister Gardner, and good-bye." have come to buy it."
They shook hands and the little pro“I'm sorry to disappoint you," Gardner fessor shuffled to the door. After he had replied flatly, "but I have no intention of
gone, Gardner again examined the selling it. It affords me too much dragon. The morning sunlight streaming amusement."
across it caused its tiny red eyes to gleam The professor stared at him question with an unholy light. The dragon did ingly. “I—I don't know what you mean possess a curious fascination. As he by amusement, sir, but I'm extremely gazed at it, Gardner would have sworn sorry you will not sell. Doubtless it is it winked at him. Bosh! he told hima small matter to you, but to me it is of self, the thing was beginning to get on great importance. I would be willing to
His dragon was no different give you double what you paid for it.' from any other dragon, and the China "I don't wish to part with it."
Town shops were full of them. Professor “Even for fifty dollars?" He eyed Smith was a little bit queer, that was all. Gardner eagerly.
Tonight he would give the dragon to the "No."
poor fellow and have an end to it. And "One hundred dollars then? I am a yet, was the Chinese clerk who sold him poor man, Mister Gardner, but”.
the dragon queer, too? It was not a Gardner shook his head. "I told you I very probable coincidence. The more he didn't wish to"
thought of it, the more perplexing the “Two hundred dollars! Surely you affair became. He was in the act of will sell it for two hundred dollars." putting the dragon in its place on the Gardner was amused at his persistency.
book shelves when an idea occurred to “No, you haven't yet named my price. him. Slipping into his coat, he left the Still, I might be induced to part with the room, taking the dragon with him. In the dragon for a very much smaller sum than lobby he stopped long enough to see the the last you named upon one condition." dragon locked in the hotel safe until his "What is the condition?"
return. Then he walked briskly in the “That you tell me why you are
direction of China Town. anxious to possess the dragon."
Professor Smith was punctual to the The professor slowly turned his hat
It was precisely nine o'clock around on his knee. “I regret it ex
when he presented himself, timid and tremely, Mister Gardner, but that is im courteous as usual. possible."
"Mister Gardner," he commenced, “And I regret it extremely that I can't glancing up at the dragon, “I have desell it."
cided to offer you three hundred dollars The professor considered for a moment.
for the dragon, a price, which you must "Is there anything else that would induce know, is far than you to change your mind?"
can afford to pay—even if the Gardner nodded in the negative. dragon is an heirloom. “Nothing."
"An heirloom," Gardner replied, "why, With a wistful smile, the professor it can't be over ten years old now; and arose. “I cannot entirely give up hope. how did it happen to be in a Chinese Mister Gardner," he said. "Perhaps I curio store. Your story doesn't ring might comply with your terms if I only true." had time to think it over."
“Be that as it may, Mister Gardner, I “Take all the time you want. I'm not am here to offer you three hundred likely to sell it to anyone else.”
dollars.” "Then I may have the privilege of call Gardner arose, lit a cigarette, and
walked to the window without replying and continued to search frantically among The professor fidgeted restively in his the bits of green stone. "It must be chair. “You will not sell ?" he inquired here," he muttered to himself. "It must plaintively.
be here. There wasn't another one with "No," Gardner said bluntly, without the same mark. I marked it myself. It's turning around. “You know the condi here or else- or else I've been doubletion I have made. Nothing will make me crossed by the Chink. No, he wouldn't change my mind."
dare to do it. It must have been the "Perhaps this will."
right one.' A sudden change in the man's tone "Anything wrong with my dragon?" caused Gardner to wheel sharply. He Gardner asked innocently. found himself gazing into the business end "Oh, damn you and your dragon!" the of a wicked looking revolver.
professor shrieked, wild with
rage. A startling metamorphosis had taken
“While I've been wasting my time here place. The plaintive note in the pro
that Chinaman has been making his getfessor's voice was gone; the mild blue away. Oh, if I could only get hands on
him. I'd" eyes were now the blueness of steel; the once trembling hand held the revolver “My dear fellow," Gardner suggested with perfect steadiness. “Now, Gregory soothingly, perhaps if you'd explain” Gardner,” he commanded, "you'll do as
“Explain!" the professor shouted, "I've I say, and do it quickly if you know lost enough time as it is. You sit down what's good for you. Put the dragon on
in that chair. Quick, now!" the table.”
Gardner hesitated, shrugged his Gardner, nonplussed, removed the
shoulders with an air of complete bewildragon from the book shelves and placed derment, and seated himself in the chair. it in the centre of the table.
With a skill that showed practice, the “There's a poker at the side of your professor quickly bound him, using a fire place. Get it; but don't come too
silken rope borrowed from the portieres. Stand by the table."
At the door he paused to turn out the Again Gardner obeyed.
lights. "Now, my curious friend, I am going "You needn't disturb yourself to phone to show you why I wanted your pretty for a bell boy to show me out,” he said toy. Hit the dragon with your poker." ironically, "I'll find the way myself.” “Do what?" Gardner asked.
The door of the apartment closed softly "Hit the dragon with your poker. Can't behind him. you understand .plain English, man? Hit
It took some time for Gardner to work it! Break it!"
himself free. When he had succeeded, he Gardner did as he was directed. The
turned on the lights and brushed the redragon broke into a dozen pieces. The
mains of what had been the green dragon sight seemed to delight the professor. "Good work,” he chuckled. “Now lay in the table he took out another green
on to the floor. Then opening a drawer down the poker and stand on the other dragon, apparently identical in every deside of the room."
tail with the one he had just broken. Still keeping Gardner covered with his
“If the professor had observed closely." weapon, the professor moved to the table
he chuckled to himself, "he would have and began searching among the scattered
discovered that the dragon I smashed for fragments of the dragon. Whatever he
him was not the one he examined this sought was evidently missing, for the
morning, thanks to the fact that I found expression of utter disappointment that
a duplicate for him in China Town this came on his face was too apparent to go
afternoon. Now we'll see"unnoticed. “That dragon!" he snarled,
He had placed the dragon on the table. “where did you get it?"
Now he struck it a sharp, quick blow with "In China Town," Gardner replied.
the poker. It splintered into pieces. "Why?"
Among them, gleaming iridescent in the The professor disregarded the question
(Continued on Page 93)
! croon to babeE had expected, when sent from the seemingly to sobo in the singer's throat as
States, to be employed in the Com- it blended with the silken, rythmic vibrapany's office at Honolulu. Instead I was tions of his accompaniment. And then it marooned on the diminutive island of rose on the crest of the crescendo with a Lanai—scarce ten miles in breadth—in sudden, uncontrollable outburst of feeling charge of a motley gang of rum-soaked as if intended for some Omnipotent in the vanilla-bean pickers who knew not even Infinite, until at last, tenderly sweet, it the definition of the word "work." The melted away into the dusky haze of air was obsessed with the sickly-sweet oblivion. odors of tropical flora. The scorching I was rooted to the spot in hypnotic sun made my head ache; and the more I fascination for some moments after the thought of taking a dip at Waikiki, with a song had ceased.
Who was this myscertain Marian Young, or holding four terious singer of seductive song which kings at the Outrigger club, the more my seemed to call me, as the music of the head ached. That was my first day on Pied Piper charmed the children. In spite Lanai, and I was to remain there I knew of a sprained ankle I stumbled through not how long.
the tangled masses of aromatic ferns and After a half-eaten dinner in a cock- waxen-leaved creepers with agility. Again roach-infested mess-room, I strolled sea it coursed through my brain—the pathetic ward along a wild-pig trail. My thoughts solemnity of that chant. were filled with gloomy, disjoined remin In the limpid twilight I glimpsed a tiny iscences and I was lonesome.
valley draped with a soft and purple make matters worse, some Kanaka, with down like a vaporous amethyst. Beneath guitar, was beginning a chant. Not many a hau tree, before a palm-thatched hut, notes had been struck before I hesitated sat a man in likeness to The Thinker; to tread, lest the sound of my footsteps and on his lap his guitar. drown out his harmony in my receptive He started suddenly at my approach mind.
and turned full to me a pair of haunting His voice was adapted to the pathos of eyes, and a face that was furrowed with that weird Hawaiian melody. It sprang youthful age.
youthful age. I was about to beg his into being, soft and mellow-sounding as a pardon for intruding upon him, so un
ceremoniously, when I found myself, in of Japanese as well as Hawaiian. In vain speechless surprise, shaking hands with a I protested. He would not listen-but school acquaintance of but a few years dismissed me from him. previous Kimo Kanalie.
“But to Konakua great respect is due. After the banalities of a pleasantly re For ironclad was his rule, that his minianewed friendship, Kanalie cleared his ture kingdom remain pure and untaintea throat and fastened his gaze upon some with the blood of foreign element. Not a indistinct object in the semi-darkness, then drop of strange blood sported through began his tale in response to my queries. their veins. No maiden or youth had “King Hokalau was my sire. He pos
adopted the haole sins or become shiftless sessed, in the interior of Maui, a vast ex
and lazy from rum and squareface-gin; panse of land. All that where now and in consequence the halcyon days of stands the Johnson Sugar Plantations, the the olden-time still held place under King ranches of the Irvines; the Babels; and Konakua's regime, as they did no elsebeyond to the town of Wailuku, was our
where in Hawaii." domain.
He paused for a moment and laid aside “When
father felt the austere hand of Time pressing his brow, he called me “One day," said Kanalie, returning to to his side. You will remember that I his tale, “when I had long since returned was unable to pursue my studies at home, there came to me a runner from school on account of father's illness." Konakua who bade me haste to see him.
"I remember you left rather suddenly," I lost no time in setting out. I knew that I replied.
the great chief had, at last, become con"I reached his bedside just in time, vinced of my sincerity. went on Kanalie, “ for that night, life filed
"Gone was his lithe and supple step from him. It was his last wish that I the keen eye and lion-heart which had acquaint myself with the daughter of made him famous as an athlete and Konakau, the greatest of all Maui chiefs, warrior. Instead came a greeting from a and seek her for my bride. And Konakua man whose strength had fled. would be a valuable advisor and a power “ 'Draw close to me,' said the chief. ful ally to me in time of need.
And when I sat at his feet, he also said: "The daughter of Konakua! How can 'I am old! The icy hand of Death floats I best describe her? There are no words above me like a drifting leaf, awaiting to in the haole (white) vocabulary that suf summon me into the Eternal Silence. You fice. For she was a dazzling completeness are not a great chief; but I cannot deof beauty-radiant with the beautiful part from my people without leaving them glamor of stainless maidenhood and a leader. You are my choice. You will halcyon innocence.
have the Lily; may you both be I nodded a silent approval, during happy.' ' which time Kanalie gave a light to his
"How impressive!" I exclaimed. "What cigarette. By the flare of the match I became of him?" could see his eyes gleam.
Kanalie commanded silence with a ges“And we loved," he resumed. “It was ture of his hand. a love, delicate and pure-all in the flush "A night of canoeing elapsed, and ere and heyday of youth and happiness. Ah, the morn with its perfumes and haze of Herbert! What is greater than the love pensive light, we had gained the crest of of a pure woman?"
a pali (precipice). Well concealed from "Nothing greater," I agreed. Didn't-" chance discovery by a prolific screen of
“But Konakua would have none of it," greenery was a cave. continued Kanalie, ignoring my interrup
"'This,' said the chief, 'is the royal tion. “He said that no wastrel, whose mausoleum, where rest the bones of my geneology was compounded of vagrant ancestors.' strains, could flow with the royal blood of I raised a questioning glance. the Konakuas. His high medicine man
"The custom of ages," explained held it that my veins possessed the blood Kanalie, "the secret burial ground.