Monday, 2 December 2013

Incas Treasure House -Pt 4

The Open Road for Boys, 1932 February
The Incas' Treasure House –Part 4 of 5
By A. Hyatt Verrill
From The Open Road for Boys magazine 1932 February. Digitized by Doug Frizzle, December 2013.
Illustrated by Heman Fay, Jr


The Story So Far


Bob Stillwell and Pancho McLean become lost in the Andes on their way to La Raya, a mining camp in Peru where Bob's father is manager. While lost they save the life of an Indian chief, disabled by a jaguar. Because of this they are well treated by the Indians of the chief's village. The boys find these Indians different from all others and they conclude that they are a lost tribe, living as did the Indians under the Incas before the time of Pizarro. They discover a temple with amazing golden ornaments and relics of the Spanish conquest.
Having recovered, Tonak starts with the boys and two young Indians, Kespi and Kenko, for La Raya, but first, because Bob and Pancho saved his life, Tonak shows them a fabulous treasure which the ancestors of his people kept from Pizarro's clutches, and tells them that they may take with them as much of it as they can carry.

CHAPTER XII AMAZEMENT!
GLEAMING, flashing in the glare of the torches were jewels of every hue. Bob and Pancho found themselves almost blinded by the brilliancy of the precious stones. Like living fire they scintillated and sparkled—blue, green, purple, lavender, crimson and dazzling white. Never, the boys thought, had white men looked upon such a vast treasure. Here, as Tonak had said, was wealth which they could carry—riches in condensed form—and though ignorant of the value of jewels, they realized that a pocketful would be worth hundreds of pounds of the yellow gold."
They plunged their hands into the chest, lifted the emeralds, rubies, sapphires, diamonds, topazes, amethysts and countless semi-precious stones and let them trickle in showers of flame between their fingers. Could it be possible the glorious things were real, that they were seeing, handling such gems as neither they nor anyone else had believed existed: limpid green emeralds as large as pigeons' eggs, blood-red rubies the size of marbles, ropes of iridescent pearls from Lake Titicaca, topazes carved to represent the sun, fire-flashing diamonds set in beautifully wrought ornaments of gold; golden and silver flowers with petals of gems, golden insects with jeweled eyes and wings, golden ears of maize with kernels of pearls and husks of silver, the finest examples of Incan and pre-Incan art, the work of the incredibly skillful goldsmiths and lapidaries of the vast ancient Incan empire!
The Indians stood silent, motionless, watching the boys and waiting for them to help themselves to the vast treasure.
"My heavens!" sighed Bob. "I can't believe I'm not dreaming. There must be millions and millions of dollars' worth of jewels here."
"Fortunes!" agreed Pancho. "When are we going to wake up?"
"Better fill our pockets before we do," said Bob.
"I'm going to take these that are set in gold," declared Pancho. "And one of these gold ears of corn." He turned to Tonak. "Do you really mean that we are to have all we can carry?" he asked. "We have done nothing to deserve so generous a reward and this gold and these jewels must be very precious to you."
Tonak nodded and spread his hands in a wide gesture that seemed to sweep over the entire contents of the room.
"All you wish of the treasure is yours," he said, "nor do we feel that we give too much. The fearlessness with which you saved my life and the friendliness with which you have lived among my people make us most willing that you should choose and take all that you can carry. There will indeed be ample left, for we five can take away from the entire treasure only as little as five ants could carry at one time from an anthill. Yes, my sons, it is yours."
Again and again Bob and Pancho expressed their thanks to the Chief and for some time examined the jewels and with many exclamations of wonder and astonishment laid aside those which most appealed to them. Taking Tonak at his word, they also handed over to the Indians all which they could carry.
At last their task was done, and with a final long look at the astounding heap of treasure which remained, they turned toward the doorway, and with Tonak in the lead, again traversed the various passages and at last stepped out into the sunlight. It seemed strange enough to come back to their own world after having lived for a few moments in an era that had ended centuries before. Carefully the Indians replaced the stones and then with scarcely a backward glance set off down the trail.
"I wonder," said Bob, "if we shall ever come back for any more of this treasure. There is no doubt in my mind but that Tonak would be more than glad to let us come again."
"I don't know about that," said Pancho. "He isn't going to take any chances of having the location of this wealth discovered. These Indians must have guarded it most carefully or some inkling of its whereabouts would have leaked out during the last few hundred years. He has paid his debt to us, but of course he doesn't want the hoard plundered, and if I am not mistaken, would never again be willing to bring us here."
"You may be right," said Bob, "and anyway, I wouldn't want to come back for any of the treasure without his permission; but all the same, it will do no harm if we try our best to remember how to reach this place. I'm going to watch for landmarks carefully and note them down so that I won't forget them."
"That's all right with me," assented Pancho. "I'll do that too, but I don't believe we have a chance in the world of ever being able to return to this spot. These Indians will see to it that they leave too confused a trail."
So, concentrating their minds on the character of the surrounding hills and valleys, the boys followed silently in Tonak's footsteps, wondering how long it would be before they would reach La Raya.

DAY after day they plodded steadily on, sometimes following narrow paths, at other times proceeding where no trail was visible; turning now east, now north, now west, now south, until the two boys were hopelessly confused and had not the most remote idea of the general direction in which they had traveled.
"It's lucky Tonak knows the way," panted Bob as they climbed a long slope. "Sometimes I wonder if he really does or is just going round and round, as much lost as we were on the other side of the mountains. If he does know where he's headed for, how on earth does he find his way?"
"I guess it's instinct," replied Pancho. "Same way pigeons and toads and other things find their way home. He knows where he's going all right."
Though the journey was long and the boys desperately footsore and weary, they at least did not suffer for want of water or food. The Indians carried a good supply of parched corn, barley meal, dried beans and jerked meat; the country through which they passed, though often barren, was cut by many small streams; and while game was scarce, still hardly a day passed that Pancho did not shoot something. At night the boys threw themselves down utterly tired out, but the Indians made nothing of it. Even burdened with their loads of over one hundred pounds each, Kespi and his brother seemed never to tire, and Tonak, who had so recently recovered from injuries that would have left a white man a semi-invalid, kept up his same swinging pace for hours on end with never a sign of weariness.
Frequently Bob or Pancho asked the chief how much farther they would have to go or how many more days it would be before they arrived at La Raya—and he invariably replied in some unintelligible metaphor or declared he could not say, as it all depended on how fast they traveled.
By the end of a week the trip seemed like an endless nightmare. It did not appear possible that they could have walked steadily for seven days without seeing a single human being, a house or a village. To be sure they had passed within sight of several ruins of ancient buildings, but the entire country seemed devoid of human life, a wilderness of hills and valleys, of dark cañons, of broad punas and grassy upland plains, of tumbling mountain streams, gleaming silvery lakes and distant phantom-like mountains.
They camped wherever the end of the day found them—sometimes in the shelter of a pile of rocks, sometimes in a cavern in the hills, sometimes in hastily constructed huts beside streams or ponds. One morning they came to a large lake that barred their progress and the boys groaned as they thought of being forced to tramp the long way around it. Then to their surprise the Indians threw down their loads and, wading knee-deep into the water, commenced gathering great bundles of the tall, inch-thick reeds that grew everywhere in the shallows. These they placed in bundles on the ground and lashed them together with withes and roots.
Kespi grinned when the boys questioned him and informed them he and the others were making a balsa.
"We know just about as much—or as little—as before," complained Bob. "What's a balsa, anyhow?"
"Looks as if they were making some kind of boat!" Pancho said.

IT WAS soon evident that a boat was precisely what the Indians were making, for they worked rapidly, tying bundles of reeds together, lashing these bundles into place, and forming a canoe-shaped affair some twenty feet in length by six feet in width. Within three hours from the time they had begun work the strange craft was completed, and as the astonished boys looked on, two of the Indians lifted the little vessel to their shoulders, carried it to the shore of the lake and placed it on the water.
"Well I never saw anything like that!" cried Bob. "Come on, let's see if it'll hold us!"
The balsa seemed scarcely affected by their weight and was so buoyant, dry and steady that the boys shouted with delight.
The Indians seemed vastly amused at all this enthusiasm. To them the balsa was nothing extraordinary, for similar boats had been used by Peruvian Indians for thousands of years. Having loaded the supplies and armed themselves with poles cut from a hillside thicket of poplars, they clambered aboard and pushed off.
This is something like!
"This is something like!" declared Pancho, as the buoyant craft moved toward the center of the lake. "Wish we could travel this way all the time!"
"You bet!" agreed Bob heartily. "But look there! Ever see so many ducks and geese and—say, what are those two big white ones with the black necks? Try a shot. They ought to be fine eating."
As Pancho threw a shell into the chamber of his rifle the Indians grasped his intention and slowly guided the balsa toward the unsuspecting waterfowl. Not until he was within easy range did Pancho risk a shot. Then he brought down one of the big black-necked swans. As the flock of birds rose with a terrified squawking and a roar of beating wings, he fired twice more and three ducks fell splashing to the water.
"Great!" cried Bob. "That was swell shooting—three ducks in two shots and on the wing!"
Pancho grinned. "Swell nothing," he declared. "I couldn't help hitting them, they were so close together. But— Well, what do you think of that?" Kespi, not to be outdone by the white boy, had jerked a woven woolen sling from his girdle, had hastily fitted a round stone from a wallet at his side, and whirling it about his head had sent the stone whizzing after the birds. As Pancho spoke, one of the flock plunged headlong to the water.
"Guess you aren't such a crack shot after all," laughed Bob, as he saw Pancho staring in surprise. "If an Indian can knock one of those fellows over with a stone from a sling you ought to get three of them with two rifle bullets."
Gathering up their game, the party continued on their way, following the winding sheet of water for mile after mile between the hills. Not until they had reached the head of the lake did the Indians pole the balsa into shoal water and draw it up on the shore.
They dined royally that night on roast duck, and afterwards the boys slept like logs. It was broad daylight when Pancho awoke. Rubbing his eyes he sat up, glanced about to see if the Indians were cooking breakfast, and then suddenly wide awake, he leaped to his feet shouting excitedly to Bob.
The Indians were nowhere in sight!
"Wha-what's the matter?" asked Bob sleepily, yawning as he sat up. "Why all the shouting?"
"The Indians!" cried Pancho. "Tonak, Kespi, Kenko—they're not here!"
"What?" exclaimed Bob getting to his feet and staring about, blinking in the bright light. "Not here? Well, what of it? Most likely they've gone for a swim."
"I hadn't thought of that," Pancho admitted. As he spoke he hurried toward the spot where they had beached the balsa. Neither the Indians nor the craft were anywhere to be seen.
"They're not at the lake!" cried Pancho. "And the boat's gone too!"
"Well, they've left everything behind them—if they really have gone," Bob informed him. "The gold and jewels they were carrying are here. I guess they're somewhere near. Why should they run off, anyway? You don't think they'd desert us, do you?"
"I can't believe they would," declared Pancho. "But just the same, it's mighty queer—the way they've gone off without saying anything, and they've taken the boat. I admit I'm scared. We can never find our way alone!"
"If they've taken the boat," Bob said, "that explains it. They've gone fishing."
"I'll soon find out," declared Pancho. "I can see all around from the top of that hill."
Without waiting for Bob, he hurried off toward the crest. As he reached the summit and glanced about, he stood staring, open-mouthed, incredulous. Within a quarter mile of where he stood, a stream flowed around the base of the hill, its banks fringed with aspens. And there, in plain sight beneath the trees, were tents, tethered horses and mules, men! For a brief moment Pancho gazed at the seeming apparition, too amazed to utter a sound. Then he let out a yell like a Comanche. “Whoop-eee! White men, Bob! Come on!"
Bob gave one glance at the camp among the aspens, and with a yell that outdid Pancho's, dashed after his comrade.
At sound of the wild shouts, the men camped beside the stream turned with one accord and reached for their weapons. They had thought there were no human beings except themselves within a hundred miles. Who could these two be?
"Hey, who in time are you?" demanded a tall, rawboned fellow. "What's chasin’ you?"
Before Pancho or Bob could gasp out an explanation, a man emerged from the door of a tent nearby. "What's up, Haskins?" he asked.
Bob wheeled at the sound of the voice. His eyes grew round, his jaw gaped. Then—"Dad!" he shouted, and fairly threw himself upon the astounded figure before the tent.

CHAPTER XIII  SURPRISE
At the sound of the boys' shouts
MR. STILLWELL was too surprised to utter a word. He had known nothing of the boys' disappearance, he had thought them safe at La Raya, and here they were dropping out of a clear sky as if by magic. "Good heavens, what are you doing here, Bob?" he gasped when he found his voice. "Why aren't you at La Raya?"
"Gosh, Dad, but it's good to see you!" cried Bob. "But what are you doing here? Searching for us?"
"No, son, why should I be searching for you? I'm on my way back to La Raya. Been examining prospects for the past month and more. How did you know where to find me?"
"It's a long, long story, Dad, and we haven't had breakfast yet. Our Indians ran off and left us. We'll tell you all about it while we eat. But didn't you know we were lost?"
Mr. Stillwell shook his head. It was hopeless to make any headway until he could get a connected account of the mystery. "All right," he agreed. "You arrived just in time for breakfast—never knew you to miss a meal yet—so come along and eat, and let's see what sort of fairy tale you can think up to explain why Pancho and you are here."
"Well, first thing that happened," mumbled Bob as he helped himself to an immense flapjack, "the car skidded and was wrecked and the chauffeur was killed. Then Pancho and I decided to walk to Palitos and—"
"Lost your way of course," his father interrupted. "Well, go on."
As they ate, the boys described their adventures while Mr. Stillwell and Haskins listened attentively. When they reached the point where they told of having saved Tonak's life and of living in his village, Bob's father again interrupted.
"Never mind about all the details," he said. "I can guess that part. I suppose eventually the Indians guided you out for La Raya, and if I'm not mistaken you said they deserted you. When was that?"
"Last night," said Pancho.
"Say, wasn't that a wonderful coincidence, Dad?" cried Bob. "There we were, camping almost within sight of each other and never dreaming of it, and then the Indians happening to go off just at that particular time."
"Coincidence nothin'!" growled Haskins. "Them Injuns knew we was camped here. They figgered it out to leave you flat soon's ever they brung you within sight of us. But I'd like to know why they done it. Injuns don't do nothin' without a reason. I—"
"And they left their packs, too," exclaimed Bob. "And—galloping catfish! I'd forgotten all about it." He jumped up, his mouth full of food. "Say, we'd better go back before some one finds all that gold and stuff over there at our camp!"
"Gold!" cried Mr. Stillwell. "What gold? What are you talking about, Bob?"
"Why, the gold they gave us. Gee whiz, we haven't told you about that yet. You see—"
The men scarcely heard his words. They were gazing at the gleaming objects Pancho had nonchalantly placed on the table before them. "We got these, too," he announced. "Are they worth very much?"
"Jumping Jupiter! Am I seein' things?" gasped Haskins. "Worth very much? Oh, my everlastin' sainted aunt!"
"Where on earth did you get those?" asked Bob's father in awed tones as he picked up one of the flashing gems. "This—why don't you know, don't you realize this is an emerald—a jewel? It must be of great value!"
"Yea, verily!" declared Haskins, leaning forward and peering at the stone with burning eyes. "If it didn't have that there hole into it I'd say 'twas worth all of ten thousand!"
"Ten thousand dollars!" cried the boys.

HASKINS sank limply into his camp chair, threw up his hands and groaned.
"While we're skinnin' these darned hills an' a-walkin' our feet off lookin' for some outcrop of pay dirt these two human horseshoes are a pickin' up jools like they were daisies!" he exclaimed.
"Gee, I wish we'd brought more of 'em," lamented Bob. "There was a whole chest full of—"
"Hold on, son!" cried his father. "Let's have this straight. Where did you find these? What about the chest? You didn't mention it when you were telling your adventures."
"Well, you didn't let me," Bob reminded him. "You said never mind about what happened after we got to the village. But there's a lot more to tell. We found a temple—"
"With mummies and an old fellow in armor and a gold sun—" put in Pancho. "And Tonak told us he'd make us 'great chiefs' in our own country and gave us these and the gold. Showed us a large treasure they'd been guarding for hundreds of years in a big pyramid. Tons of gold and silver and a chest full of these stones. And—"
"He told us to take all we wanted, but we couldn't carry very much," added Bob. "Just the gold the Indians could tote and what we put in our pockets. But Tonak said we were welcome to go back and get more whenever we wanted to."
Mr. Stillwell almost collapsed as he listened to the boys' amazing statements. "If these stones weren't here before my eyes I wouldn't believe a single word of what you've said," he declared. "What do you make of it, Haskins?"
The foreman sat up with a jerk. "Make of it!" he cried. "Why, these two boys have seen what folks have been huntin' for close onto four hundred years—Atahualpa's treasure! They get plumb lost an' just by bull luck find the old cacique bein' chawed by a cussed tiger, an' here they be with their pockets stuffed full of jools an' nobody knows how much gold lyin' around loose over to their camp. Oh my aunt!"
The boys started to disgorge the contents of their pockets, but Mr. Stillwell stopped them.
"Don't!" he exclaimed. "Not here, boys. I think my men are honest, but there's a limit to temptation for any native. Come into my tent—you, too, Haskins, and we'll see what loot you've got and put it under lock and key."
When at last the boys had emptied their pockets the two men sat gazing at each other with wide eyes.
"I haven't the most remote idea what this is worth," said Bob's father. "Have you, Haskins?"
The miner shook his head. “If them stones wasn't so badly cut and wasn't bored I'd guess they'd be worth close to quarter of a million," he announced. "But as 'tis—"
"As it is," declared Mr. Stillwell, interrupting him, "in my opinion they may be worth fully as much or even more as archeological specimens."

THE two boys scarcely could believe their ears. A quarter of a million! A fortune! And they had taken but a fraction of the contents of the chest!
"Whew!" whistled Pancho. "Then there must be billions in that place!"
Mr. Stillwell smiled. "Scarcely that," he said. "It takes almost two tons of solid gold to be worth a million—and a billion is one thousand millions or over two thousand tons of gold, my boy."
"Well, it looked to me as if there were thousands of tons there," declared Bob. "What was it old Tonak said about all the llamas it took to bring it there?"
"He said it required two thousand yanaconas and forty llama trains to carry it," announced Pancho. "What are yanaconas? I suppose they're some kind of Indians."
"They be," Haskins replied. "That's Quichua for porters. They carry about seventy-five to a hundred pounds. Are you dead sure the old boy said two thousand?"
"Well, he didn't say exactly that," Pancho admitted. "He said, 'Yanacona-kuna Ishcaica mitikuna huranga.'"
"That's right, by hooky!" Haskins declared. "Twice ten hundred. And how many llama trains?"
"Chusgo-Chunga," replied Pancho promptly.
"Forty all right," affirmed the miner. Then, after a moment's mental calculation: "Tie me down, Stillwell!" he exclaimed. "If the ol' Injun told the truth, more'n seventy-five tons of gold were brung by them there porters even if they only lugged seventy-five pounds apiece. And close onto twenty ton more must 'a' been on them llamas—forty trains is four hundred critters more or less. That's more'n a hundred ton of gold, Stillwell, not countin' them there stones—over fifty millions lyin' in that there place a-waitin' for us to walk in an' take it!"
Mr. Stillwell shook his head and smiled. "Even if there are one hundred tons of gold and countless gems in that remarkable treasure vault," he said, "there are a great many matters to be considered and not a few difficulties to be overcome before we can 'walk in an' take it.' "
"Well, what's the use of talking about that now?" demanded Bob. "Let's go over and get that gold at our camp. First thing you know someone'll run off with it."
Half an hour later, the gold had been safely hidden away among Mr. Stillwell's mineral samples without, apparently, arousing any suspicion among the muleteers and other natives. Orders were given to break camp and before noon the cavalcade was again in motion, wending its way slowly toward distant La Raya.

AS THE boys rode along they told of many incidents which they had not mentioned before, but their thoughts naturally centered on the treasure they had seen and the small fortune they now possessed. They were greatly disappointed when they found that Mr. Stillwell could not at once go back with them in search of the treasure. "It would take weeks," he declared, "perhaps months to locate the spot, even if we ever found it. As a matter of fact I don't believe you boys have the remotest idea as to where it is."
They admitted that they did not.
"It may be in any direction from here then," he continued. "I'm inclined to think those Indians deliberately took you a roundabout route, and the only chance of finding it again would be by airplane."
"I been wonder in' why them Injuns left you boys when they did," observed Haskins, "but I reckon I know. That ol' cacique, to save a lot of travellin', brung you down to where he savvied we'd be an' set you down where you couldn't miss findin' us. He's a wise ol' bird an' wasn't takin' no risks of bein' trailed back to that there treasure house of hisn."
"But why should he object to taking us back there?" asked Bob. "He said we could have all the treasure ye wanted."
"Lord love ye!" exclaimed Haskins with a laugh. "You weren't takin' what he said for what he meant, were you? Injuns is like Spaniards that-a-way. If they like you or owe you somethin', they'll say a lot more'n they mean jus' to be per-lite like. A Spaniard'll tell you his house an' all in it's yourn. But jest try to take it!"
"Well, maybe you're right," sighed Bob. "Anyway, we shouldn't really complain even if we never find the place again. We're both pretty rich."
His father smiled. "I'm afraid, son, you'll find you and Pancho are not as wealthy as you imagine. Most of these gems are antiquities and cannot legally be exported from Peru. Even if the gold were melted down and the gems recut, and thus destroyed as far as their archeological value is concerned, you would still be liable to have one-half of all the valuables seized by the government. It would be treasure-trove and according to law Peru claims fifty per cent."
"Then—but, Dad, that isn't fair!" cried Bob. "Tonak gave the things to us—we didn't find them."
"You'd have a mighty hard job trying to make the officials believe that," laughed his father. "I advise you boys to be very careful of what you say—don't mention treasure or Tonak's gift or, for that matter, anything about the hidden village, its people or the temple. The less said the better."
"You're dead right, Chief," exclaimed Haskins. "What folks don't know won't bother 'em, an' there ain't no danger of their knowin' nothin' less'n the boys spill the beans."

COMPARED to trudging on foot over the punas and across the mountains, camping wherever night found them and depending on chance game and the coarse food of the Indians, the boys found their present journey almost luxurious. They had horses or mules to ride, they slept on comfortable cots in tents, and they had an abundance of food. Although Mr. Stillwell and Haskins were both accustomed to hardships, they saw no reason in being uncomfortable when it could be avoided. This was a company expedition, and neither money nor equipment had been spared to render it as successful as possible. Because considerable sampling had to be done, a gang of laborers had been taken along, in charge of Haskins. In addition to these ten fellows—all Slavs or Russians, there were two "powder-men," Chilean "Rotos" of Spanish blood; a Peruvian surveyor, Señor Laranaga; Mr. Stillwell's Chinese cook, a coal black Jamaican, Tom, who cooked for the men; four Quichua Indian "arrieros" or muleteers; and half a dozen Cholo roustabouts and servants, while finally, there was a red-headed, bow-legged Texan named Masden, universally known as "Red," who was in charge of the live stock and packing.
Although Mr. Stillwell believed his men honest, he felt that his precautions in keeping the gems and gold out of sight were fully warranted. The men were a far from prepossessing looking lot, especially the laborers who, as Pancho remarked to Haskins, looked "more like pirates than miners."
Haskins, however, rated them differently. "Them!" he exclaimed. "They haven't the nerve to do nothin'. Now it's different with them two Rotos, who are plumb p'izen no matter where they be. Too danged ready with a knife an' short-tempered as a rattler. Just the same, them two ain't lookin' for trouble. What's that? The Cholos? Lord love you, son, them an' the Injuns is jus' about as dangerous as them llamas. You could load 'em down with gold and tell 'em to lug it down to La Raya alone an' they'd do it. But what you boys worryin' over? They's three of us white men—me, the boss an' Red—an' say, you ought to see Red when he get's het up!"
"Seems to me there are four white men," observed Bob. "You didn't count Señor Laranaga."
"Shucks, he's a Peruvian," replied Haskins. "Course I s'pose he is white, but we wouldn't never count on a native if it came to any trouble—not that they's a mite of chance of it. Even Red don't savvy what you two brung in."
"I wonder," mused Pancho a little later when Haskins had ridden off with Bob's father to look at a crimson patch on a hillside that indicated a lead-silver outcrop, "I wonder if Haskins really isn't worrying some over all our stuff."
"Nonsense!" declared Bob. "Why should he? No one knows about it. What put that idea into your head?"
"Well, nothing very much," replied Pancho thoughtfully. "Only I noticed that he's been wearing a revolver. And last night I woke up and heard someone moving about and peeked out and saw him."
Bob laughed. "Red carries a revolver, too," he reminded Pancho. "And why shouldn't Haskins be moving about at night? He's in charge of the outfit, after Dad, you know. It's his business to see that everything's all right."
"Well, maybe," admitted Pancho, "but he just said a few minutes ago that even Red didn't know anything about—well, about our things—and yet I saw him whispering with Red last night."

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As an armed forces brat, we lived in Rockcliff (Ottawa), Namao (Edmonton), Southport (Portage La Prairie), Manitoba, and Dad retired to St. Margaret's Bay, NS.
Working with the Federal Govenment for 25 years, Canadian Hydrographic Service, mostly. Now married to Gail Kelly, with two grown children, Luke and Denyse. Retired to my woodlot at Stillwater Lake, NS, on the rainy days I study the life and work of A. Hyatt Verrill 1871-1954.