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Indian Valley Record
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November 14, 1940     Indian Valley Record
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November 14, 1940
 

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Thursday, November 14, 1940 INDIAN VALLEY RECORD I - b i FREDERIC F. VAN DE WATER CHAPTER IX--Continued --ll-- "If," I went on, "you'll let me keep my amateur standing, I'll be very glad to escort your niece. Otherwise, as I told you, I'm busy." " 'Pride goeth before destruc- tion,' " Miss Agatha informed me. "Why don't you finish it?" I asked. " 'And a haughty spirit before a fall.' " She stared at me for a long mo- ment. Then she nodded. "Yes," she told me, "I suppose You're right. Will you be here at eight, David?" "With pleasure," I said and, gath- ering up my copy, went back to the Workroom. If Lyon had not opened the door of his apartment as I left Miss Aga- tha's, I should have forgotten him ' entirely. "Hello," said he. "I'd just about given you up and was on my way out for a paper. Come in." His flat was bright with lights but it had a feeling of emptiness. He explained as he took my hat and coat that Ions and Everett had gone for a walk. "He's a lazy dog," Lyon said eas- ily; "takes no exercise, whatever, and of course when there's a strain, it simply pulls him all apart. Here We are." He had led me into the living room and pointed to the trophy above the mantelpiece. I admired it and with an effort kept from looking behind the couch where the black- bearded body had lain. Lyon ran through his collection With the engaging pride of a child, taking down sabers, claymores, ra- Piers, thrusting them upon me to swing and balance while he chat- ted of their history and where andI how he acquired them. It was pleas- ant to see a middle-aged man so openly gleeful. "Here," he said at last, his leash. cry face glowing, "are my best be- loveds," and opened a long rose- Wood box. From chamois easing, he drew one forth, an epee de combat, end handed it to me tenderly. It was a beautiful weapon, a little longer than "the French dueling sword---a full Yard I Judged from the etched steel shell of the guard to the button of Waxed thread that blunted the point, Yet sweetly balanced and easy to rny hand. "Like it?" Lyon asked artlessly. "Very much," I told him. "It Would be a joy to use." He looked wistfully about the room. "I don't suppose," he mused, "that we could. I sayl Let's shove the sofa aside and try. Oh come," he urged as I hesitated, "Here are masks"--he lifted them from the Wall--"and we shan't need gloves. Indulge an old man whose fencing days are over, Mallory. Just for a minute or so. It will be all I can stand, I assure you." He had stripped off his Jacket as he talked. His enthusiasm and the pleading of the sword in my hand impelled me to follow him. We thrust the sofa against the wall, put on our masks, and faced each other. "En garde," he cried in an odd voice. His blade darted for my throat. Instinct alone prompted my parry. He caught my thrust on his guard and the shell uttered a high clear note. His riposte grazed my arm. The fury of his attack startled me. I shifted so that light fell upon his weapon. The button that made mine harmless was missing from his. The blunt, nail-head point had bro- ken off. The new steel of the frac- ture was a flickering spark before me. I cried a warning and lowered my blade. Lyon Ferriter laughed harshly and lunged. CHAPTER X m Body, not mind, saved me. The reflex centers that keep half-forgot. ten training helped my sword to en- gage and delay his. I leaped back- Ward barely in time and he had me in a corner. I could retreat no far- :ther. Our blades bound. There was no sound but our breathing and the whisper of steel on steel. In that odd instant of delay, neither of us .spoke. I knew it was useless to repeat my warning and he, em- barked on his purpose, had no need for words. I parried the deadly spark of that unguarded point. As- tonishment's half-palsy had van- Ished. Understanding came in that split second, as lightning bares a landscape. His face was blurred by the mask but I could see purpose in the pose :of his body; could feel it in the vigi- lant movement of his blade along my own. I felt little fear. It was :hard to recognize death in a famil- iar and heretofore safe sport. Shame was uppermost in my mind, and ,shame sired anger. Thought of my own stupidity row- sled me. By a pose of mystery, by fatuous hints to Everett and Lyon I had asked for this. I had stuck ~rny neck out. While his brother and ,sister found an alibi elsewhere, Lyon would silence me so deftly that, no :matter what others might suspect, he would be safe. I wondered what 'he thought I knew that made my murder necessary--and then had time for no ~urther thought. His sword had felt and tested and -tapped mine. Automatically, I had ,responded. He feinted now to lift ~) ~ VAM Ol V~ATRR ~/. N.U. ,%1 my guard and followed with a lunge overcoat and hat, thrust myself into that I barely turned. He caught my Jacket. I kept my eyes on him. my riposte. For an instant we faced His expression was so perfectly as- each other, tonished that it quickened a doubt. A strange calm held me. I had This made me angry at myself and fathomed his purpose and now I I snapped: understood how he would perform it. He was a trained fencer, strong- er if no quicker than I. He held his weapon delicately in the French fashion. He could have run me through before now, if he had wiped away his instinctive regard for my utterly harmless sword. But he could not--or would not. The zest of con- test had him. Eventually he would kill me, foully if necessary, but first he would match his skill against mine, seeking a fair opening through which to drive his point. Steel's sibilance broke now and then in the high thin chime of blade upon resonant shell guard, an inno- cent, mocking sound. I fought care- fully, knowing that my first mis- take would be my last and. in the fascination of contest, he tolerated me. Defense would not serve me. He could at any minute catch my harm- less blade in his free hand and drive his own point home. My sole, frag- ile chance lay in a trick. It could be attempted only once. It must be tried before the already aching mus- cles of my sword arm grew weary. The blades engaged and parted with clicks and brief sharp sigh- ings. The shell guards rang bright- ly. We moved against each other, "Whatever is on your mind will have to be unloaded while 1 shave." cat-footed, sharp-witted, tight-bod- ied. And I felt myself tiring. I forced ell myself into desperate assault. My purpose needed the deft- ness of long practice, which I lacked. Strength it demanded too, and I doubted if I had enough, but it was my only chance. The apparent wildness of my at- tack pleased Lyon. He must have seen in it the flurry before the end, and so he contented himself merely with parrying my weapon, wait- ing until my vain fury should flag. I thought I heard htm chuckle as he turned aside my thrust. And then, for a flash, his blade was where I I wanted it. I threw my life into! the trick d'Armhaillac had taught me. My sword whipped about his in clumsy imitation of the French. man's deadly cutover. I heard him gasp. I saw the epee half torn from his hand. He was quick in recovering, but I was swifter. I leaped forward to pass him and, in the leap, brought my own weapon down like a whip across the knuckles of his sword hand. He grunted. Behind me, I heard the ringing clatter of the dropped epee. I reached the table and tore off the mask with my left hand. My right gripped the ornate hilt of a sixteenth-century Italian rapier. With the long blade ready, I whirled. Lyon had made no effort to re- trieve his fallen sword. He had tak- en off his mask and was sucking with a slight frown the hand I had struck. His calm was more shock- ing than fury. It saved his life for, at the instant, I should have run him through right gladly. Lyon looked up from his injury with a rueful smile and his words made me feel that I had reached in dark- ness for a step that was not there. "Effective," he said quietly, "though perhaps not quite ortho- dox." He seemed for the first time to see the long sword in my hand and lifted his eyebrows. He was still breathing fast but was quite unruf- fled. I wondered, for a wild in- stant, which one of us was mad. His dignity, the normal furnishings of the room, mocked my recent ter- ror. Yet I kept the rapier ready. "Entirely unorthodox," I agreed, striving to match hie self-possession, "but necessary. And now that we've --enlightened each other, I'll be. go- inf." His bewilderment, as I backed toward the door, gathering up my outer clothing, made me feel siUy. "I don't understand," said Lyon slowly. "Neither," I told him, "do I." With the table between him and me and the door behind me, I let go of the rapier and laying aside "You can stop registering purity of heart. Look at your apes." He stared at the weapon on the floor before him, glanced at me in something like fright and, bending, picked it up. He reached out his left hand and tried the broken point with his thumb. "My God!" he said at last. "Exactly," I answered. Color quickened his tanned face. He looked from me to the weapon and back again. "It's--it's--why--" he babbled and then burst out: "Good Lord, Mal- lory, I might have killed you." I admired his acting--if acting it were---and was ashamed of myself for even questioning its fraudulence. I said: "That was my impression, too." "You thought," he groped, "you thought that I would--I never looked. The button must have snapped--it must be about. Ah!" He bent down on his side of the table and rose with the little blob of waxed thread in his hand. It wab- bled on his trembling palm. "It snapped off," he said In a hushed voice. "It must have when I tried the steel." The memory of the weapon, flung ~cellingward by its own resilience shook my belief. Lyon rocked tt further now by asking in mixed in. dignation and reproach: "Why didn't you tell me, man? Am I not in enough trouble without --that?" He swore proficiently. I asked: "Are you deaf, by any chance? Or maybe it's just a bad memory. I did. tell you. Perhaps I should have stopped to write." Lyon looked at me a long min- ute. His question .was simple and dazing as a punch in the Jaw. "Didn't you know that I was deaf?" I pulled myself together and Jeered: "Congratulations on a fast recov- ery." He shook his head. "My boy, I can read lips, but I'm quite deaf." The smile vanished from his lean face and dim horror succeeded tt. "I heard you call," he said. His voice shook a little. "I couldn't tell what you were saying. Your face was masked. I thought--" He broke off savagely and shrugged. "What in hell," he stormed, "do you care what I think? Or for my apology? Or for the fact that I'll never touch sword again? You thought, you had every right to think --But why, Mallory, in heaven's name, should I want to kill you?" I didn't know whether he were honest or not. I knew that I could serve "myself best by letting him think I believed him so. "That question," I told him, "also occurred to me." He drew himself together with a shudder. "Well," he said and gave a crook- ed smile, "you've given me some. thing else to think about, anyway. If the police had found a second body--I wish there were something I could do or say or offer as apology for--" "Let it go at that," I broke in. I picked up my hat and coat and left. He made no movement to follow me. I had a bare hour to change and return to the Paget apartment when I reached my lodging house. I gal- loped up the stair, thrust open the door and paused, staring. "HI, accomplice," said Jerry Cochrane, "I began to think you'd moved again." He sat beneath the lighted wall bracket and gave a bland smile. I was not too hospitable. "Whatever," I told him, "is on your mind will have to be unloaded while I shave and dress, rye got a date." "Oh-he," crooned Cochrane, and looked at me with fake mildness. "Something more important than your duty to your paper, for which every reporter worthy of the name would give his life blood?" "In round numbers, about a thou- sand times as important---to me." I told him where I was going while I stripped off coat, vest and shirt. He said mildly: "For a country lad, you aim high, Mister." I let that pass. Cochrane droned: 1t~ "I've found out something." "So what?" I wasn't encouraging. He blinked and beamed. "You remember the guy I told you about, who w~nt gold hunting with Lyon Ferriter, and never came back?" The question stopped me as I turned toward the bureau for my shaving kit. I nodded. "Horstman, wasn't it?" "The same." Cochrane droned. "This Everett Ferriter, the broth- er, does he look like a Heinie? "Is this," I asked, rasped by the knowledge that he hid something, "a game of twenty questions? If so, let's postpone it. Look like a Heinie? Of course he doesn't. He's got a phony Oxford accent, a little waxed mustache, a faintly mauve manner and a letch for cologne. He wears a funny expression, half hau- teur, half imminent sneeze. He's no German." (TO BE CONTINUED) By VIRGINIA VALE (Released by Western Newspaper Union.} THE Pennsylvania State Board of Censors recent- ly banned Paramount's "The World in Flames," which is as hard to understand as their banning "The Ramparts We Watch." The official ruling--- "In the judgment of the board this picture has a tendency to corrupt and debase morals, and it is not proper." The picture is a factual record of the past 20 years, and stresses the need of our nation's preparedness. It had its first public showing in Washington, D. C before an audi- ence of high officials of the federal government, and received the un- qualified approval of such national defense leaders as the secretary of the navy and the secretary of war. Henry Fonda's all in favor of liv- ing in glass houses. The room he likes best in his own house is the break- fast room, which is built entirely of glass bricks. The light seems to flow from the walls in cheer- ful, spirit, boosting doses, and he's found it, the best cure for before - breakfast blues, even when he has to get up at the Henry Fondu crack of dawn to be at the studio on time. Fanny ("Baby Snooks") Bricu strings right along with him. She had a huge hole cut in one of the walls of her San Fernando valley home and filled itwith glass blocks--- they let In plenty of daylight, but as they're non,transparent they don't make her feel like a goldfish. It's news that Parumonnt won in the scramble to buy the screen rights to Ernest Hemingway's splen- did novel, "For Whom the Bell Tolls"--the price was $I00,000. It's u tory of war-time Spain, with a love story even more beautiful and thrilling than the one in "Farewell to Arms." The hero' role is perfect for Gary Cooper, who' had long discussions with the author about it. "Land of Liberty," the feature picture which was the contribution of the motion picture industry to the New York World's fair and the San Fran- cisco exposition, will be distributed na- tionally by Metro- Goldwyn - Mayer. Plans call for donat- ing the net amount derived from the re- lease of the film to welfare work among soldiers and sailors Botts Davis by the American Red Cross and similar organizations. The picture tells the history of America from the days before the coming of the white men to modern times. Included in the list of stars appearing in individual sequences of the story are Bette Davis, Spencer Tracy, Claudette Colbert, James Stewart, George Arliss, Margaret Sullavan, Walter Houston, George Raft, and many other headliners. ----~6---- It took a month for Paramount to persuade one of Detroit's huge au- tomoblle companies to let them use the Interior of the plant to film certes for "Reaching for the Sun," a tory of the automotive Industry. Joel MeCrea and Ellen Drew are co- starred, and the cast includes Al- bert Dekker, Eddie Bracken and Billy Gilbert. Just before Ray Heatherton went on the air for Westinghouse's "Mu- sical Americana" somebody asked him who composed "Annie Laurie," which he was to sing. Somebody else piped up and said, "Robert Burns, of course." Heatherton would have won money on that question on a quiz program, for he happened to know that Burns was no musi- cian, and didn't even write the words of the-popular old song. Furthermore, he knew its history --that it developed as the result of s romance between William Doug. lag, a young Scotsman, and the real Annie Laurie; because her hard. hearted father objected to the re- manse, Douglas went off to the Flemish wars without claiming her a his bride. The verses, composed by Douglas, were found by Lady John Douglas Scott, who was a dis- inns relative of Annie Laurie's, and she altered the word and composed the music. ODDS AND ENDS--Frunces Lang. ford s deep voice is attributed to the loss of her tonsils . . . The sponsor, of the Tom Mix radio series will conNnu it, despite his death, us an inspiration to young Americans "Boom Town" has been so suceasJ/ul &el Muir pr paring "Leads,ills," 'Jl rrin8 Yitden Lsigh, ]areas Stewart and Clark Ceble ; it's laid in the Colorado m~ s~np in Or 1870S . . . 1] you b~dOnl so Kenny Baker fan club, Im rqmdy to c lebrate Ksnny Baker Du7 m No~em. ber 205h. Approximately s~ty 01 the ]en clubs have se't :hut doy aside his, ond will give him a plaqua at his brmulaast. Washington, D. C. PLAN INQUIRY OF CORRUPTION Now that the election is over you will see the justice department fo- cus attention on certain graft-ridden cities, chief among them being De- treat. There, a group of high-up politi- cians are sure to be indicted for operating a liquor ring. They will be charged with diverting funds from state liquor stores. Basis of the indictments will be sending "hot" money through the U. S. mails, an offense which the justice department used for the first time with definite success in Louisiana. Since then the Supreme court has uplmld the justice department, so this new means of cleaning up local scandals will be used extensively. Most Republicans will not believe it, but the justice department had the indictments all prepared before elections. But since some of the high Republican leaders of Michi- gan politics are going to be indicted, Justice prosecutors decided to with- hold action until after November 5. They didn't want to be accused of playing politics. * $ ARGENTINE GIGOLOS The Good Neighbor policy has been promoted in many ways, from tariff lowering to flag raising, but never before has attention been giv- en to the offending gigolos of Holly- wood. Now, however, the combined good will of Nelson Rockefeller and John Hay ("Jock") Whitney is be- ing exerted to reform the Hollywood practice of making every gigolo an Argentine. Mr. Bockefeller, who is the gov- ernment's co-ordinator of Latin- American efforts, has dispatched Mr. Whitney to Hollywood to see what the film industry can contrib. ute to the Good Neighbor program. He will make at least one specific suggestion, namely that Argentina does not like to be represented as a nation of gigolos. The gigolo mischief was corrected earlier with respect to France. We had a big film market over there, and when French opinion objected to Hollywood practice of making ev- ery gigolo a Frenchman, Hollywood bowed, and picked on Argentina. EUROPEAN COMMUNISM One development you don't read much about in the cables from Eu- rope, but which is causing plenty of worry on the part of Britain's no- bility, is the rapid development of Communism in central Europe--- particularly Czechs Slovakia, Aus- tria and Hungary. You have to remember that the Communists were strong in Czechs Slovakta before the German inva- sion, and that for a time they more or less dominated Vienna. Also there was a day when the Bela Kun Communist government ruled Hun- gary. While these movements were stahaped out, or kept under cover in the past, intelligence reports now indicate that they are making rapid sub-rosa progress again. In Czechs Slovakia, for instance, the Kladno coal miners staged such a serious revolt against German officials that the latter backed down. Some of the communistic activity is directed against the Nazi over- lords, but some Is not. As a matter of fact, some of it, particularly in Germany itself, fits into the Nazi scheme of things, for Germany to- day is probably more socialized than Russia. Also it is always im- portant to remember that before Hitler, the Communist party was one of the strongest in Germany. After Hitler, most of the Commu- nists merely became National So- cialists. All of which indicates that Am- bassador Joe Kennedy's dismal pre- dictions may be right, and that Europe will witness a social and economic revolution if the war con- tinues. However, this movement in the end probably will be the chief means of ending the war. * @ $ MERRY-GO-ROUND It will surprise no one if some of the Latin-American military men now touring the U. S. as guests of the army will participate in the oc- cupation of Martinique under Joint Pan-American auspices. Roosevelt is anxious to make the taking over of French possessions a truly good- neighbor enterprise. To prevent profiteering on the vast supplies of food that will be neces- sary for the enlarged army and na- vy, defense commission experts are making a survey of all food stocks in the country, while discussing plans with agriculture department officials for the purchase of farm surpluses. NATIONAL DEFENSE LETTER8 You might suppose the army air corps spends all its time preparing the air defense of the country. But a large number of officials and clerks are engaged in the silly busi- ness of answering letters from a zealous public with half-baked ideas. From Hoople, N' D.~ comes a let- ter saying, "I have an idea for di- recting bombs dropped from air- planes. Just tie a carrier pigeon to the bomb and drop it overboard." Five copies were sent to various de. uartments. All went to the air corps. Bright and Cheerful l What do the flowers say, that" nod at you from field and garden and lane? I think they say "Be cheerful; look as bright as you can. Leave off frowning, and cheer other people up; smiles cost nothing, but can often lift the shad- ows and bless the heart." Biliousness ? Headache ? Gas ? Write for free week's trial of OSR Vegetable Tablets. Standard Remedy Co 11 Candler Bldg Baltimore, Md. ---Adv. Slow in Deciding Hear one man before you an- swer, hear many before you de- cide. 8 simple steps begin amazing relief in a iiffv ~ LTo milers h~. 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