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The Mermaid of Druid Lake and Other Stories   By: (1872-1908)

The Mermaid of Druid Lake and Other Stories by Charles Weathers Bump

First Page:


Mermaid of Druid Lake





Author of "His Baltimore Madonna," etc.


Copyright 1906 by Charles Weathers Bump

All rights Reserved

Acknowledgement is Given to the Baltimore News for Aid in Reprinting these Stories

Presswork by

The Horn Shafer Company Baltimore. Md.

Twelve More Stories

The Mermaid of Druid Lake 5

The Goddess of Truth 18

A Daughter of Cuba Libre 30

A Two Party Line 43

Timon Up to Date 57

The Night that Patti Sang 67

An Island on a Jamboree 81

Alexander the Great 93

Breaking Into Medicine 104

The Pink Ghost of Franklin Square 119

The Vanished Mummy 127

"Mount Vernon 1 0 0 0" 139

The Mermaid of Druid Lake

If Edwin Horton had not had a sleepless time that hot June night it probably would never have happened. As it was, after tossing and pitching on an uncomfortably warm mattress for several hours, he had dressed himself and left his Bolton avenue home for a stroll in Druid Hill Park just as the dawn made itself evident. That was the beginning of the adventure.

Not a soul was in sight when he reached the driveway around the big lake, and he let out to take a little vigorous exercise, breathing in the fresh air with more enjoyment than had been his for some hours.

About half way around he stopped suddenly and rubbed his eyes to make sure he was not dreaming. For a curve in the road had brought him the knowledge that he was not alone in his appreciation of the early morning hour. Seated beside the water, on the rocks that line the lake shore, was a damsel a rather good looking one, as well as he could judge at the distance of a hundred yards. She was leaning on her left elbow and looking out over the lake in rather a pensive, dreamy attitude. Of course, young ladies don't ordinarily get up before dawn to go out to Druid Hill Park for the purpose of sitting alone beside the broad sweep of city water, and Edwin naturally felt some surprise at the novelty of the sight. Besides, she was inside the high iron railing, and he wondered how she had got there.

In the intensity of his interest he slowed down his pace as he drew nearer along the roadway. Should he watch her unobserved for a while to ascertain her purpose? Should he frankly hail her and ask whether she objected to company? Should he well, the damsel settled his doubts for him just then by discovering him. She appeared startled, and he fancied she half meant to plunge into the lake. Then she changed her mind, gave him a bewitching little smile and raised her free hand to beckon him. Edwin needed no second invitation. The novelty of the situation was too alluring to resist.

In another moment he had scaled the fence and was clambering awkwardly down the rocks. And as he came close he found her a very pretty damsel indeed, with youthful, rosy cheeks, fetching blue eyes and long, light tresses that hung unconfined from her head down upon the sloping rocks behind her. She was smiling, and yet he thought he detected a renewed disposition to slip away from him before he had drawn too close.

Then he had a shock.

She was only half a woman!

The other half of her was fish scaly fish partly submerged in the waters of the lake!

He paused irresolutely. It was all right, you know, to read about mermaids in old mythologies and fairy tales. But to encounter one in this year of Our Lord, so near home as Druid lake! Oh, fudge! the boys at the Ariel Club would never get through "joshing" him should he ever say he had seen such a thing. It could not be true; it was too amazing! He was a fool to let his nerves get the better of him. He had better cut out those visits to the river resorts, or next he would be seeing pink elephants climbing trees. First thing he knew he would wake up in that stuffy room at home... Continue reading book >>

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