In the Depths of the Dark Continent (Illustrated) by Cornelius Shea

In the Depths of the Dark Continent (Illustrated)

byCornelius Shea

Kobo ebook | August 1, 2013

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The Vengeance of Van Vincent.
By the author of "The Wreck of the 'Glaucus.'"


The little village of Edgewater was covered by the inky pall of night.
The big clock on the steeple of the town hall had just tolled the hour of twelve.
Ever since night set in the clouds had been heavy and threatening, and as the midnight hour arrived the storm burst forth in all its fury.
The wind arose to a perfect hurricane, and the rain came down in torrents.
Van Vincent, a bright, handsome youth of eighteen years, who is to figure as the hero of this story, was awakened from his slumber by the creaking of the beams and timbers in the old-fashioned house he called his home.
Van was an orphan, as far as he knew, and lived with an uncle, who was reported as being very wealthy, though the house he lived in and his everyday appearance would not lead anyone to think so.
The last Van had ever heard of his father he had gone to Africa with an exploring party.
That was fifteen years before, and up to this time none of the party had ever returned.
Ralph Vincent, the uncle of Van, had given the boy a good education, and obtained for him the situation of bookkeeper in the largest store in Edgewater.
Consequently Van loved and respected his uncle, who had often declared that the boy should inherit what little he possessed in earthly goods.
As Van was awakened by the violence of the storm on the night upon which our story opens, he felt rather uneasy.
He had been aroused from a bad dream, and it took him several seconds to realize that he was home and in bed.
"My!" he exclaimed, leaping out of bed; "this is a fearful storm. I must close the window."
He started toward a window, the sash of which was lowered slightly, allowing the rain to dash into the room.
Just as he did so he heard a blood-curdling cry that nearly froze his soul with horror.
"Help! murder! mur——"
For the space of ten seconds Van stood as if transfixed.
The terrible cry came from his uncle's room, which was on the first floor, and almost directly beneath him.
The boy knew, too, that it was his uncle's voice that uttered the cries, and seizing a revolver from the drawer of the bureau in his room, he darted downstairs.
Reaching the door of the room whence the cries came, he found it locked.
Van Vincent was not the sort to be balked very easily when he started to do a thing. Taking a few steps back[Pg 2]ward, he let his whole weight go against the door and forced it from its hinges.
The next instant he was in the room.
Almost the first object he saw was a man clambering from an open window.
He raised his revolver, but too late! the intruder dropped to the ground below and was lost in the storm and darkness.
Van made a move to spring through the window after him, but a faint voice coming from the bed checked him.
"Van, c-c-come h-e-re!"
The next moment the boy was at the side of the bed, where his uncle lay in a pool of blood, breathing heavily.
"Van, I have been murdered!" exclaimed Ralph Vincent, faintly.
The look on his uncle's face told Van that what he said was true.
Just at that moment an old man called Ben, who was the only male servant about the house, came rushing in the room in a terrified manner.
"Oh, Lord!" he exclaimed, wildly. "Whatever has happened, Mr. Vincent?"
"Silence, Ben!" spoke up the dying man. "Van, hand me a glass of brandy and I will try and describe my murderer so that you may hunt him down and bring him to justice."
Half bewildered, Van did as he was directed, while the servant strove to quench the blood that was flowing from a ghastly wound in his employer's side.
Instead of making him rally, the glass of brandy set the dying man to coughing, and when the spell ceased he was so weak that he could not speak above a whisper.
He managed to articulate the words:
"Doc Clancy—an old enemy to our family—sandy mustache—thumb missing from right hand!"

Title:In the Depths of the Dark Continent (Illustrated)Format:Kobo ebookPublished:August 1, 2013Publisher:Lost Leaf PublicationsLanguage:English

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