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Andy the Acrobat   By:

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ANDY THE ACROBAT

Or

Out With the Greatest Show on Earth

BY

PETER T. HARKNESS

Author of

CHIMPANZEE HUNTERS, CIRCUSES OLD AND NEW, HOW A GREAT SHOW TRAVELS, ETC.

1907

CONTENTS

CHAPTER

I. EXPELLED

II. HOOP LA!

III. DISASTER

IV. A BUSINESS PROPOSITION

V. THE CIRCUS

VI. CIRCUS TALK

VII. A WARM RECEPTION

VIII. "COASTING"

IX. GOOD BYE TO FAIRVIEW

X. A FIRST APPEARANCE

XI. SAWDUST AND SPANGLES

XII. AN ARM OF THE LAW

XIII. ON THE ROAD

XIV. BILLY BLOW, CLOWN

XV. ANDY JOINS THE SHOW

XVI. THE REGISTERED MAIL

XVII. A WILD JOURNEY

XVIII. A FREAK OF NATURE

XIX. CALLED TO ACCOUNT

XX. ANDY'S ESCAPE

XXI. A FULL FLEDGED ACROBAT

XXII. AMONG THE CAGES

XXIII. FACING THE ENEMY

XXIV. ANDY'S AUNT

XXV. A BEAR ON THE RAMPAGE

XXVI. A CLEVER RUSE

XXVII. A ROYAL REWARD

XXVIII. "HEY, RUBE!"

XXIX. A FREE TROLLEY RIDE

XXX. WITH THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH

XXXI. CONCLUSION

ANDY THE ACROBAT

CHAPTER I

EXPELLED

"Andrew Wildwood!"

The village schoolmaster of Fairview spoke this name in a tone of severity. He accompanied the utterance with a bang of the ruler that made the desk before him rattle.

There was fire in his eye and his lip trembled. Half of the twenty odd scholars before him looked frightened, the others interested. None had ever before seen the dull, sleepy pedagogue so wrought up.

All eyes were fixed on a lad of about sixteen, seated in the front row of desks.

The name called out applied to him. It had been abbreviated so commonly, however, that its full dignity seemed to daze him for the moment.

Andrew Wildwood slowly arose, his big, fearless eyes fixed dubiously on the schoolmaster.

"Yes, sir," he said.

"Step forward, sir."

Andy Wildwood did so. He was now in full view of the other scholars. Mr. Darrow also arose. He thrust one hand behind his long coat tails, twirling them fiercely. From the little platform that was his throne he glared down at the unabashed Andy. In his other hand he flourished the long black ruler threateningly.

He pointed a terrible finger towards two desks, about four feet apart, at one side of the room. The desk nearest to the wall had its top split clear across, and one corner was splintered off.

"Did you break that desk?" demanded the pedagogue.

Andy's lips puckered slightly in a comical twist. He had a vivid imagination, and the shattered desk suggested an exciting and pleasurable moment in the near past. Some one chuckled at the rear of the room. Andy's face broke into an irrepressible smile.

"Order!" roared the schoolmaster, bringing down the ruler with a loud bang. "Young man, I asked you: did you break that desk?"

"Yes, sir, I'm afraid I smashed it," said Andy in a rather subdued tone. "It was an accident."

"He was only fooling, teacher!" in an excited lisp spoke up little Tod Smith, the youngest pupil in the school. "He broke the desk, but say, teacher! he did it yes, sir, Andy did the double somersault, just like a real circus actor, and landed square on both feet!"

The eyes of Andy's diminutive champion and admirer sparkled like diamonds. A murmur of delight and sympathy went the rounds of the schoolroom.

Mr. Darrow glared savagely at the boy. He brandished the ruler wildly, sending an ink bottle rolling to the floor. As a titter greeted this catastrophe, he lost his temper and dignity completely.

Springing down from the platform, he made a swoop upon Andy. The latter stood his ground, and there was a shock. Then Andy was swayed to and fro as the schoolmaster grasped his arm.

"Young man," spoke Mr. Darrow in a shaking tone, "this is the limit. An example must be made! Last week you tore down the schoolhouse chimney with your ridiculous tight rope performances."

"And wasn't it just jolly!" gloated a juvenile gleesome voice in a loud whisper.

The schoolmaster swept the room with a shocked glance. It had no effect upon the bubbling over effervescence of his pupils... Continue reading book >>




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