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The City of Numbered Days   By: (1856-1930)

The City of Numbered Days by Francis Lynde

First Page:

THE CITY OF NUMBERED DAYS

by

FRANCIS LYNDE

Illustrated by Arthur E. Becher

Charles Scribner's Sons New York 1914

Copyright, 1914, by Charles Scribner's Sons

Published August, 1914

TO MY WIFE

[Illustration: "What would I do? A number of things." Page 91 ]

CONTENTS

I. THE HEPTADERM 1

II. J. WESLEY CROESUS 19

III. SANDS OF PACTOLUS 48

IV. A FIRE OF LITTLE STICKS 66

V. SYMPTOMATIC 79

VI. MIRAPOLIS 104

VII. THE SPEEDWAY 119

VIII. TABLE STAKES 130

IX. BEDLAM 145

X. EPOCHAL 151

XI. THE FEAST OF HURRAHS 178

XII. QUICKSANDS 196

XIII. FLOOD TIDE 208

XIV. THE ABYSS 232

XV. THE SETTING OF THE EBB 244

XVI. THE MAN ON THE BANK 263

XVII. THE CIRCEAN CUP 273

XVIII. LOVE'S CRUCIBLE 284

XIX. THE SUNSET GUN 301

XX. THE TERROR 322

ILLUSTRATIONS

"What would I do? A number of things" Frontispiece

Brouillard had to look twice before he could attempt to classify her, and even then she baffled him 46

"It's all gone, little girl; it's all gone!" 242

Brouillard got between 342

The City of Numbered Days

I

The Heptaderm

It was not characteristic of Brouillard the Brouillard Grislow knew best that he should suffer the purely technical talk of dams and reservoirs, bed rock anchorages, and the latest word in concrete structural processes to languish and should drift into personal reminiscences over their first evening camp fire in the Niquoia.

Because the personalities were gratefully varying the monotonies, and also because he had a jocose respect for the unusual, Grislow was careful not to discourage the drift. There had been a benumbing surfeit of the technical talk dating from the day and hour when the orders had come from Washington giving Brouillard his step up and directing him to advance with his squad of Reclamation Service pioneers upon the new work in the western Timanyonis. But, apart from this, the reminiscences had an experimental value. Grislow's one unamiable leaning manifested itself in a zest for cleverly turning the hidden facets of the human polygon up to the light; and if the facets chose to turn themselves of their own accord, as in Brouillard's case, why, so much the better.

"As you were saying?" he prompted, stretching himself luxuriously upon the fragrant banking of freshly clipped spruce tips, with his feet to the blaze and his hands locked under his head. He felt that Brouillard was merely responding to the subtle influences of time, place, and encompassments and took no shame for being an analytical rather than a sympathetic listener. The hundred odd men of the pioneer party, relaxing after the day long march over the mountains, were smoking, yarning, or playing cards around the dozen or more camp fires. The evening, with a half grown moon silvering the inverted bowl of a firmament which seemed to shut down, lid like, upon the mountain rim of the high walled valley, was witchingly enchanting; and, to add the final touch, there was comradely isolation, Anson, Griffith, and Leshington, the three other members of the engineering staff, having gone to burn candles in the headquarters tent over blue prints and field notes.

"I was saying that the present day world slant is sanely skeptical as it should be," Brouillard went on at the end of the thoughtful pause... Continue reading book >>




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