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Under Arctic Ice   By: (1900-1981)

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Transcriber's Note:

This etext was produced from Astounding Stories January 1933. Extensive research did not uncover any evidence that the U.S. copyright on this publication was renewed.

The Table of Contents is not part of the original magazine.

A Sequel to "Seed of the Arctic Ice"

Under Arctic Ice

A Complete Novelette

By H.G. Winter


I An Empty Room II The Crash III The Fate of the Peary IV "No Chance Left" V Last Assault VI In a Biscuit Can VII The Awakening VIII The Duel

[Sidenote: Ken Torrance races Poleward to the aid of the submarine Peary , trapped in an icy limbo of avenging sealmen.]


An Empty Room

The house where the long trail started was one of gray walls, gray rooms and gray corridors, with carpets that muffled the feet which at intervals passed along them. It was a house of silence, brooding within the high fence that shut it and the grounds from a landscape torpid under the hot sun of summer, and across which occasionally drifted the lonely, mournful whistle of a train on a nearby railroad. Inside the house there was always a hush, a heavy quiet restful to the brain.

But now a voice was raised, young, angry, impatient, in one of the gray walled rooms.

"Yes, I rang for you. I want my bags packed. I'm leaving this minute!"

The face of the man who had entered showed surprise.

"Leaving, Mr. Torrance? Why?"

"Read this!"

[Illustration: She was fastened in the mud of the gloomy sea floor. ]

As if, knowing and therefore dreading what he would see, the attendant took the newspaper held outstretched to him and followed the pointing finger to a featured column. He scanned it:

Deadline Passed for Missing Submarine

Point Barrow, Aug. 17 (AP): Planes sent out to search for the missing polar submarine Peary have returned without clue to the mystery of is disappearance. The close search that has been conducted through the last two weeks, involving great risks to the pilots, has been fruitless, and authorities now hold out small hope for Captain Sallorsen, his crew and the several scientists who accompanied the daring expedition.

If the Peary , as is generally thought, is trapped beneath the ice floes or embedded in the deep silt of the polar sea floor, her margin of safety has passed the deadline, it was pointed out to day by her designers. Through special rectifiers aboard, her store of air can be kept capable of sustaining life for a theoretical period of thirty one days. And exactly thirty one days have now elapsed since last the Peary's radio was heard from a position 72° 47' N, 162° 22' W, some twelve hundred miles from the North Pole itself.

In official circles, hope was practically abandoned for the missing submarine, though attempts will continue to be made to locate her....

"I'm sorry, Mr. Torrance," said the attendant nervously. "This paper should "

"Should never have reached me, eh? Through some slip of the people who censor my reading matter here, I read what I wasn't supposed to that's what you mean?"

"It was thought better, Mr. Torrance, by the doctors, and "

"Good God! Thought better! Through their sagacity, these doctors have probably condemned the men on this submarine to death! I haven't heard a word about the expedition; didn't even know the Peary was up there, much less missing!"

"Well, Mr. Torrance," the attendant stammered, more and more unsettled, "the doctors thought that that any news about it would well, upset you."

The young man laughed bitterly;

"Bring on my old 'trouble,' I suppose... Continue reading book >>

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