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2i8 BERT WILSON AT THE WHEEL

" You did nobly, boys," he exclaimed, but there
was a catch in his voice, and his face looked gray
and drawn, " you did great work, but I would
not consent to your racing again for all the
money in the world. It is altogether too danger-
ous."

But by this time the defeated boys belonging
to Mr. Thompson's troop had recovered a little
from their chagrin, and now elbowed their way
through the crowd, headed by their leader arid
Ralph Quinby.

Like the clean-cut and manly fellow that he
was, Ralph walked up and shook hands with Bert
and Dick in turn.

" Well," he said, " you fellows certainly put up
a great race, and we have nothing more to say.
It was simply a case of the best car winning,
that's all."

Bert appreciated his manly spirit, and replied,
" It was simply a matter of the " Red Scout "
having a little more speed. If we exchanged
cars, you would win and we would lose. You
gave us a hard tussle up to the last second."

All the other boys showed the same feeling as
had Ralph, and both parties separated with mu-
tual expressions of esteem and good will.

All the members of Mr. Hollis's troop that
could do so crowded into the " Red Scout," and
various good-natured farmers volunteered to



THE RACE 219

make room in their capacious wagons and take
the rest home. Room was even found for Don,
who had been an excited spectator of the race
and was now regarded by the jubilant boys as
their mascot.

" It's little enough to do at that," remarked
one husky agriculturist. " Vd be willing to cart
the whole outfit over and back a dozen times for
the sake of seeing another race like that. I wish
old Dobbin could hike along like them things."

And in this he expressed the general sentiment
of the crowd.

As they traveled campward through the cool
twilight the boys shouted and sang, and in a
thousand other noisy but harmless ways found a
vent for their overflowing enthusiasm.

Bert and Dick were the heroes of the day, as
they well deserved to be. The race was run
again at least a hundred times, and by the time
they struck camp they had quieted down to some
extent. Their beloved car had, of course,
reached camp ahead of them, and now, as they
alighted and caught sight of Bert and Dick, their
enthusiasm flamed up again, and cheer after
cheer resounded through the silent woods.

At last they cooled down sufficiently to go to
bed, but it was a long time before they finally
got to sleep. Bert and Dick shook hands before
parting to go to their different tents. For a few



220 BERT WILSON AT THE WHEEL

seconds tHey looked into each other's eyes, and
the grip of their hands tightened before they
finally separated and said good night. For when
two good comrades meet danger face to face and
win out, a new and never-to-be-forgotten bond is
j riveted between them that lasts through life.

• • • • *

It was a wildly hilarious group of campers who
sat down to a piping hot breakfast the next morn-
ing. Some, indeed, had hardly slept at all, so
great was their rejoicing at the " Red Scout's "
glorious victory. They had won and the much-
vaunted " Gray Ghost " had had to " take their
dust." What if it were their last day in camp?
As Jim, who was famous for mixing his figures
of speech, said, " The camp, anyway, was break-
ing up in a blaze of glory." Every exciting detail
of the great struggle was rehearsed and enlarged
upon, times without number. They crowded
round the splendid car and praised it and patted
it as though it were alive and could understand
how proud they were of its victory.

And Bert! If he had been anything but the
fine, manly fellow he was, he would have been
utterly spoiled by the plaudits heaped upon him.
He had been their hero before; now he was their
idol. His skill, his judgment, his nerve, were
dwelt upon to the exclusion of everything else;



THE RACE 221

but he modestly disclaimed any credit and put it
all up to the car. " This is the fellow that did
it all," he said, patting the great machine affec-
tionately.

"Yes," quoted Dick,



u <



This is the steed that saved the day,
By carrying Sheridan into the fight
From Winchester, twenty miles away,'

but all the same," he went on, " the steed saved
the day because Sheridan was on his back, and
the " Red Scout " saved the* day because Bert
Wilson was at the wheel." And to this the whole
camp gave a thundering chorus of assent.

And Bert was at the wheel that afternoon,
when, after " three times three " given for the
" Red Scout " and its driver, the noble car stood
panting, crowded to the guards with as many as
could tumble in, ready to lead the way to the
station where they were to take the train to the
city.

" I tell you, Tom," he said, as he grasped the
wheel and the great car sprang forward, " I
never expect to have so much pleasure and excite-
ment in my life as I have had this summer."

But Bert was mistaken. A broader field and
greater triumphs lay before him — exploits that



222 BERT WILSON AT THE WHEEL

would tax every ounce of brain and muscle; vic-
tory snatched from defeat amid the applause of
excited thousands. How he met the test and won
his fight will be told in the next volume, " Bert
Wilson's Fadeaway Ball."



THB END



THE BERT WILSON SERIES

By J. W. DUFFIELD



An excellent series of stories for boys, full of out-
door life and adventures, athletic sports, etc.
Wholesome, clean and instructive.



BERT WILSON AT THE WHEEL

An absorbing story of automobile exploits, abounding in
stirring experiences and exciting adventures.

BERT WILSON'S FADEAWAY BALL

How a baseball pennant was won by the masterly pitch-
ing of the young Freshman recruit is told in crisp, snappy
fashion, with a wealth of thrilling detail that will delight
the lovers of the great national game.

BERT WILSON, WIRELESS OPERATOR

Perils of storm and shipwreck, head-hunters and pirates,
are woven into a romance of compelling power that chains
the attention at once and holds it to the end.

BERT WILSON, MARATHON WINNER

How the pick of the world's athletes struggled for
supremacy and how the representative of the Stars and
Stripes carried off the crowning victory at the great
Olympic games.



Others in preparation

i2mo, clotk, with four illustrations in each, by
H. G. Richards.

Price each, 60 cents.



SULLY AND KLEINTEICH— NEW YORK



THE BERT WILSON SERIES

By J. W. DUFFIELD



THE FOLLOWING TITLES ARE
IN PREPARATION

BERT WILSON AT PANAMA

A host of thrilling adventures is woven into this stirring
story of the young American who thwarts by his quick wit
and determined courage a plot to destroy the great canal.
Brimming with interest from cover to cover.

BERT WILSON'S TWIN-CYLINDER RACER

A motor-cycle romance of speed and daring that will stir
the blood and make the heart beat faster. How sheer pluck
that refused to be downed won out against foul play and
tremendous odds.

BERT WILSON ON THE GRIDIRON

The "never-say-die" spirit of college football that makes
it such a glorious game sparkles on every page. A gripping
story of ''bucking the line" and "going round the ends,"
culminating in the great run down the field in the last min-
ute of play that snatched victory from defeat.

BERT WILSON IN THE ROCKIES

Full of life and spirit, dash and danger in the wild regions
of the West. The picturesque figures of the fronteir — greas-
ers and grizzlies, rustlers and road agents — appear in ad-
ventures that make one throb and tingle with excitement.



i2mo, cloth, with four illustrations in each, by
H. G. Richards.

Price each, 60 cents.



SULLY AND KLEINTEICH— NEW YORK



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By Archibald Williams
Author of "How It is Done," "How It is Made," "How It Works."
This is just the book for the active youth who has got beyond the period when he
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illustrated with useful diagrams drawn exactly to scale.

1 2mo . Cloth, 450 pages, with numerous illustrations and diagrams.
Price $1.20 net

HOW IT IS DONE

OR, VICTORIES OF THE ENGINEER

By Archibald Williams

Author of "How It is Made," "How It Works," "How To Make Things."

Describing in simple language how the great engineering achievements in all parts

of the world have been accomplished. It is a book brimful of interest for everybody,

and especially to the younger generation with a turn for engineering in any of its

many branches.

12 mo. Cloth. 450 pages, with 268 illustrations and diagrams.
Price $1-20 net

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AND SHADOW SERIES

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AFTER LONG YEARS, and Other Stories

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TOLD BY GREAT MEN

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By A. E. BONSER

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A BOOK OF BIRDS AND BEASTS

OR

THE LAW OF KINDNESS

1 34 pages and 32 colored illustrations
Price, net $1.00

It is full of interesting stories, all about animals and their doiags, and of such a character
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— The Dial

- New York



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Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. 8 colored illustrations.
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4 colored illustrations.



Water Babies. -


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The King of the Golden River.


- 8


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a


Arabian Nights.


5


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66


Gulliver in Lilliput


- 4


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te.


Don Quixote.


4


a


a


Stories from Hiawatha.


- 6


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66


Tanglew ood Tales.


4


a


66


John Halifax's Boyhood


- 4


a


(6


Tales of a Grandfather.


6


a


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David and Emily.


- 6


a


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Nell and Her Grandfather.


4


a


a


Stories from Spenser.


- 8


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Rose and the Ring. -


4


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a


Knights of the Grail.


- 8


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a


Sir Thomas Thumb.


8


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66


Linden Leaf. -


- 8


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Undine. - - -


8


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Maggie and Tom Tulliver.


- 4


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Children of the Old Testament.


6


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Children of the New Testament.


- 6


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66


Six Gifts.


6


a


66


Kingsley's Heroes.


- 4


a


66


Adventures of Ulysses.


6


a


66


Golden Deeds. -


- 6


a


66


Stories from Tennyson.


6


a


(6


Tales from Shakespeare.


- 6


a


C


Stories from Chaucer.


4


a


i 6


Cox's Greek Heroes


- 4


a


■ 6



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Online LibraryJ. W DuffieldBert Wilson at the wheel → online text (page 12 of 12)