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MASON CITY GLOBE-GAZETTE MARCH 21 mm 1931 MAD LAUGHTER 1. ._......., .' l "*Â»'Â« 1 Â»'"*TM^-rÂ«iÂ»AÂ»pcijiTlot-Â«Â»nuoÂ»ii!tÂ» ^^ /A THRHJJNG MYSTERY STORY .+ by MILES BURTON CHAPTER 40 ' I ing of mystery about, the place,,a suggestion of voices whispering i:t. Dick's search of the yard did ^pt| the inaccessible cornices of the roof. Dick 'shivered reveal anything of moment. Th place was littered with fragnient of disused machinery, which Dick slight knowledge of engineerin told him had not been used for th last fifty years at least. A shaf very similar In appearance to th . one he had already examined on th moor, -had been -sunk in one corne of the yard, and this showed sign of more recent clearing. A ste structure had been erected abov It, to which was attached a puljj Over this ran a cable, disappearin In one direction down the shaft, an In the other thru a hole in the wa of the building. "Don't go down the mine, daddy, quoted Dick to himself. "Well, don't know, that I want to, particu larly, tip I suppose there's a cag of some sort at the bottom end o that cable, and a winding engine a the other, inside the., building, 'don't see much to write home an tell mother about In this-blesse yard. If I'm to find anything it wi be inside the building itself. Th point is, how the deuce am I to ge to?" The door leading, from the build ' ing into the yard was as solid-look ing as the gate had been, and wee fitted with a latca and a formidable,, looking lock. "It -looks as if I'm much forrarder,. after all m trouble," murmured Dick, laying hi hand on the latch reflectively. To his astonishment, the door was unlocked. "That's queer," muttered Dick, a he walked thru the door. "Ther can't be anything very valuable in here, if they leave the place open like that. I believe I've come on fool's errand, after all." It took a few seconds for his eyes . to become accustomed to the com parative gloom of the interior lighted as it was by a single window set high In the wall. He then perceived that he was in a. flagged room, which had once evidently baen the winding-house of the mine. The cable, which he had 'already 'seen leading down to the shaft, came thru the hole in the wall to an old- fashioned winch, actuated by a pair of massive handles. Obviously the only means of raising- the cage was by man-power. In contrast to the winch, and standing beside it, was a modem melting-furnace, with a row of crucibles and -Ladles. And In a corner of the room, were stacked' a number of pigs of metal, apparently lead. , Â· . pick looked at these things with interest The old man at the Anchor 'and Hope had been wrong, then, In his conjecture. The High' Mendip Mining syndicate- had not removed ' everything of value from their premises. The lead, and also the furnace and its appurtenances, would certainly be worth removing -"and selling, if the syndicateÂ· was '-concerned to realize its assets. .On the-other hand, if the syndicate was merely a cloak for the gang controlled by the Funny Toff, they would not worry about such trifles before their dispersal. It seemed pretty clear that this must be the case, and that the place had merely been, retained by the gang as one of its depots. Its isolated position made it ideal for such a purpose. Dick could see at a glance that no serious attempt at mining cpu|d possibly, have been made. : A hand-raised cage coulc never bring enough ore to the surface to make 'the place a commercial success, even }f the ore existed which seemed unlikely. Besides .. there was no sign of any apparatus for smelting the ore on'any thing like a largo scale. Yet some ore hai undoubtedly been smelted 1 , as th furnace and tha pigs of lead proved Was this only a blind, in case som inquisitive person .should penetrat into the works? ; 'The wind had increased to gal force, roaring angrily ab.out the de serted building. Stray currents of found their way in thru the un glazed 1 window, raising eddies dust, and causing e. loose sheet corrugated iron somewhere to cla 1 ter maddeningly There was a fee ia spite of himself, and. drew his coat more closely round him. It was just the spot where death' . might lurk, violent and terrifying. Brooks' .face had worn a Â· look of terror, Sir Eclric had said 1 ; he had seeri all the horror of death approaching. And Brooks had died in that very spot, of that Dick felt certain. In an attempt to avert the causeless panic which he felt closing round him, Dick endeavored to reconstruct the secene. Brooks'had found'his way here, .following some clew picked up In Wapping. Or, was it not more likely that the clew had been purposely dropped at his feet, Â·that he,had been lured here of sel purpose? Then, when he least expected, he had been assailed by superior force, his feet arid hands bound, and lowered Into the shaft Dick imagined the heavy creaking of the winch as the cage descended until it reached the invisible choking gas. . This would never do. Dick repressed with 'a supreme effort, the overwhelming instinct which nrgec him to escape from the place and its horrible associations, and proceeded with his exploration. ' The room- in which he stood occupied, Dick re'gkoned, about half of the building. A second door was set inside -a dividing wall, and this door, Dick discovered, was also unlocked. He passed thru it, and found himself in an unlighted space where he was forced to use his torch in order to see where he, was going. The rays of the torch revealed a huge cellar- like space, which, in the days when the mine was working, had evidently been used for the storage of ore, since the floor was still scattered with small fragments of galena. Off this main cellar, two smaller cellars opened, each closed with an iron door swung on rusty hinges. So much Dick perceived before ais eyea fell upon a small pile of :imber, stacked away in a corner. He walked.up to this, and examined t idly. It seemed to consist of roken pieces of packing^ases, and Dick was about to turn away from t when he caught sight, beneath he roughly-piled wood, of a nearly lerfect case, the shape of which im- nediately struck him as familiar. He pushed some of the wood aside, ntil the whole bulk of the case was evealed. It was exactly similar to he case In which Brooks' body had eea packed. Â· This was yet another fact con- Inning what was now practically certainty. The furnace in the uter room had evidently been de- vered In these two cases, which ad been thrown aside here after letr contents had been unpacked. 3ne had been chosen as being of a uitable size and shape to.: contain a dead body. The other had been eft here. Dick felt a thrill of satisfaction at this new discovery. Nobody could oubt now that this was where Brooks had been done to death. But a moment's reflection showed htm bat this evidence by itself was of 'ery little -value.' The point to be ascertained was not so much where Brooks had died, as who murdered him. And so far he had discovered nothing which threw any upon the identity of the men who had used the premises of the Syndicate. (TO BE CONTINUED) NELSON VISITS HERE J. A. Nelson of Decorah, prominently mentioned as an appointee for the state board of education, was a Mason City visitor Thursday. Mr. Nelson is an attorney. Two years ago he was a candidate for the republican nomination as representative in congress.. 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