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The Big-Town Round-Up by William MacLeod Raine

Clay left her and turned to the driver


got yore chance now, Annie. Tim will hop off that fence he's on and light a-runnin' straight for you if he thinks you've ditched 'Slim' Jim."

She shook her head slowly. "No, I'll not t'row Jim down. I'm through with him. He lied to me right while he knew this was all framed up. But I wouldn't snitch on him, even if he'd told me anything. And he didn't peep about what he was up to."

"Forget Jim while you're thinkin' about this. You don't owe Jerry Durand anything, anyhow. Where would he have Kitty taken? You can give a guess."

She had made her decision before she spoke. "Gimme paper and a pencil."

On Clay's notebook she scrawled hurriedly an address.

"Jim'd croak me if he knew I'd given this," she said, looking straight at the cattleman.

"He'll never know--and I'll never forget it, Annie."

Clay left her and turned to the driver. From the slip of paper in his hand he read aloud an address. "Another five if you break the speed limit," he said.

As Clay slammed the door shut and the car moved forward he had an impression of something gone wrong, of a cog in his plans slipped somewhere. For Annie, standing in the rain under a sputtering misty street light, showed a face stricken with fear.

style="text-align: justify;">Her dilated eyes were fixed on the driver of the taxi-cab.



The cab whirled round the corner and speeded down a side street that stretched as far as they could see silent and deserted in the storm.

The rain, falling faster now, beat gustily in a slant against the left window of the cab. It was pouring in rivulets along the gutter beside the curb. Some sixth sense of safety--one that comes to many men who live in the outdoors on the untamed frontier--warned Clay that all was not well. He had felt that bell of instinct ring in him once at Juarez when he had taken a place at a table to play poker with a bad-man who had a grudge at him. Again it had sounded when he was about to sit down on a rock close to a crevice where a rattler lay coiled.

The machine had swung to the right and was facing from the wind instead of into it. Clay was not very well acquainted with New York, but he did know this was not the direction in which he wanted to go.

He beat with his knuckles on the front of the cab to attract the attention of the driver. In the swishing rain, and close to the throb of the engine, the chauffeur either did not or would not hear.

Lindsay opened the door and swung out on the running-board. "We're goin' wrong. Stop the car!" he ordered.

The man at the wheel did not turn. He speeded up.

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