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At the Breaks. From "1b the Breaks of Sandy." The Infant ofthe Guard. From "Civilizing the Cumberland." "Hev you ever searched for a dead man?" From "Man-Hunting in the Pound." Hall stood as motionless as the trunk of an oak. From "The Hanging of Talton Hall.~ To the Breaks of Sandy We all knew plainly that that was what he said. " Give him plenty of line. Don't strike yet-not yet. Don't you know that he's just running for a rock~ Now he's swallowing the minnow-head first. Off he goes again-now's your time, man, now-wow! " When the strike came and the line got taut and the rod bent, Tiger would begin to leap and bark at the water's edge. As Dan reeled in and the fish would flash into the air, Tiger would get frantic. When his master played a bass and the fish cut darting circles forward and back, with the tip of the rod as a centre for geometrical evolutions, Tiger would have sprung into the water, if he had not known better. And when the bass was on the rocks, Tiger sprang for him and brought him to his master, avoiding the hook as a wary lad will look out for the sharp horns of a mudcat . But the bass were all little fellows, and Tiger gurgled his disgust most plainly. That night, Josh and I comforted ourselves, and made Dan and Willie unhappy, with tales of what we had done in the waters of the Cumberland-sixty bass in one day-four four-pounders in two hours, not to mention one little whale that drew the scales down to the five-pound notch three hours after I had him from the water. We recalled-he and I-how we had paddled, dragged, and lifted a clumsy canoe, for four I6g Blue-grass and Rhododendron days, down the wild and beautiful Olinch (sometimes we had to go ahead and build canals through the ripples ), shooting happy, blood-stirring rapids, but catching no fish, and how, down that river, we had foolishly done it again. This was the third time we had been enticed away from the Oumberland, and then and there we resolved to run after the gods of strange streams no more. Fish stories followed. Dan recalled how Oecil Rhodes got his start in South Africa, illustrating thereby the speed of the shark. Rhodes was poor, but he brought to a speculator news of the Franco-Prussian War in a London newspaper of a date five days later than the speculator's mail. The two got a corner on some commodity and made large money. Rhodes had got his paper from the belly of a shore-cast shark that had beaten the mail steamer by five round days. That was good, and Willie thereupon told a tale that he knew to be true. " You know how rapidly a bass grows~ " We did not know. " You know how a bass will use in the same hole year after year~ " That we did know. " Well, I caught a yearling once, and I bet a man that he would grow six inches in a year. To test it, I tied a little tin whistle to his tail. A year later we 17° To the Breaks of Sandy went and fished for him. The second day I caught him." Willie knocked the top-ashes from his pipe and puffed silently. " Well?" we said. Willie edged away out of reach, speaking softly. " That tin whistle had grown to a fog-horn." 'Ve spared him, and he quickly turned to a poetico-scientific dissertation on birds and flowers in the Blue-grass and in the mountains, surprising us. He knew, positively , what even the great :Mr. Burroughs did not seem to know a few years ago, that the shrike-the butcher-bird-impales mice as well as his feathered fellows on thorns, having found a nest in a thorn-tree up in the Blue-grass which was a ghastly, aerial, Indian-like burying-place for two mice and twenty song-sparrows. So, next day, Willie and I turned unavailingly to Melissa, whom we saw but once speeding through the weeds along the creek bank for home and, with success, to Nature; while the indefatigable Jash and Dan and Tiger whipped the all but responseless waters once more. We reached camp at sunset-dispirited all. Tiger refused to be comforted until we turned...


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