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--and the best of friends; but “But you love me, Betty?” I want a wife. I am no longer I placed my hand again over content to be a pal, and ge her two small ones, and looked treasure-seeking for the plea- steadily into her big brown sure of seeing you and listening eyes; but the long lashes fell, to your dear voice. I must as though she were afraid of have you for my very own, what I might read there. Any one oan be your friend-I “Sootoh people are shy of am your lover,"
that word, Bob," she said hesiAt last Betty raised her long tatingly. “I can't say it-bat lashes and looked me in the I do like you a lot." eyes, with a shy smile in which "Then withdraw that silly there seemed a bint of fear. oondition about the little pio
“I wish we could have tures, and promise to be my stayed longer on the old terms, wife.” Bob. It was so jolly; and I don't “I want time to get used to want to grow up,” she said. it all," she answered, shaking
"If you care for me, Betty, her head gently. “Read the the new terms will be to the little pictures, Bob. There is old like-like-ohampagne to time enough. I feel so young ginger-ale.”
to promise to marry any one." "I wonder!” she said doubt- “It isn't any one-it is me fully. Then, as though shak- we are talking about. I don't ing off her fear and indecision believe the pictures will ever with an effort, she sat up and be solved, and I don't want to drow her hands away from wait years for you, Betty. It mine. “Bob," she said, “I is so unnecessary.” ghan't promise you now.
Bat Betty stook to her point. very, very fond of you. You I argued it all ways with her, know that quite well. I'll but the cipher had oome to make & bargain with you. be a kind of mild obsession, Come! Read me the little and I could not force it out of pictures, and I'll marry you as my track. I know that Betty soon as you like !"
loved me, 88 surely as I knew I shook my head at that. my own feeling for her. One
, “No, no! I cried. “Don't gets to know. "
There oan be stake our love upon a chanoe few proposals made in which like that! The cipher may there is much doubt of the never be solved, and are we to answer. drag on and on apart beoause It was a most aggravating of a mere puzzle that doesn't situation, yet there was nothing even oonoern either of us?"
for me to do but submit. I “I don't say that, Bob," had at least the consolation of replied Betty with a sweet knowing that it would all come sunny smile. “I don't say I right in the end. Curiously will never marry you until the enough, I did not feel spurred pictures are read, but that I on to solve the cipher as will marry you as soon as you quiokly as possible in order to read them."
obtain my reward. I had struggled so often with those So we lay there silent upon baffling piotures already, that the pungent springy heather, I felt that there was nothing with the hot July sun beating more to be done-nothing but down upon us, each busy with wait patiently until Betty thoughts of the other, and woald tire of the searoh and each, after the recent intimate be my wife of her own free talk, shy of meeting the other's will
From where we lay on the the moving white dots that warm hillside
were sheep. glorious panoramio view of the As I lazily glanoed over this distriot, and of the Firth of panorama, I pioked out BlackClyde with all its islands. I dykes and the wood where I have already described how had found Roy mourning over muoh I was struok by the his injured wife. Saboonbeauty of the Clyde in an early sciously I oounted the hills that part of my story, but it is lay between us and the wood. necessary that I dwell for a I oalled up in my mind that moment upon the foreground scene in the moonlit olearing, of our landsoape.
where Roy sat moaning at the Immediately beneath us, and base of the rough stone cairn. less than half a mile away as How clearly could I recall the the orow_flies, lay Hopeton- sounds of that night — the the Big Hoose, as the country clatter of the wood-pigeons in people oalled it. Looking down, the trees overhead and the one oould trace the whole strange ories of Roy in his course of the Hopeton Burn to trouble! I had never returned the spot where it flowed into to the spot. the Firth.
Gradually an idea orystalThe ranges of low hills on lised in my mind. I counted either side of the glen were those hills again—this time beneath us, for the hill upon with my senses fully alert. My whose slope Hopeton was built heart beat faster as excitement was the highest of the knolls grew upon me. I lay perfeotly in the neighbourhood. So, still and oalled before my eyes from where we sat, we looked a facsimile of the little pictures down upon the summits of —for I needed no paper to the other hills, each with its refresh my memory. . . rough cairn of stones. On A few minutes passed in the right side of the glen, silence. My mind was intent 88 we faced the sea, the slopes upon the little piotures, to the were purple with blooming exclusion even of Betty. heather, but the range on the At last I heaved a great sigh loft was grazing land, and of relief and sat up. bere and there one could see “Tell me, Betty," I said, “ in
what direction does Blaokdykes She was so astonished that lie from here?”
for a moment she made no “Over there, stupid. Don't resistance to my Oaresses. you see the farm ?” she an- Then, reoovering herself, she swered, misunderstanding my struggled free and started question.
away from me with flushed “Yes, yos! I see it all right," face and startled eyes. I said hastily. “But where "Have you gone mad, Bob?" does it lie by the compass ?” she exclaimed. “You had no “Um! Let me see.
right!--" That is north, and that is “I have the right, my darwest,” rominated Betty, wav. ling. You are mine," I cried ing her hand in the directions exultingly. I believe that in as she named them. “I should my excitement I executed a say Blackdykos lies about south- wild stop - danoe among the west."
heather. Seeing, however, that “Right you are! I thought Betty was really becoming 80,” I oried exoitedly. “Now frightened by my mad doings, tell me, how far is it from I stopped to reassure her, Hopeton to Blackdykes--as “It is all right, dear. I am the crow flies ?”
not mad," I said more quietly. “Why do you want to know “But I have read the little that?" inquired Betty lazily. piotures—and I am going to She could still see no point marry you as soon as all the in my questions, and would not arrangements can be made." hurry with her answers. “Any. Betty looked at me soeptihow, I can't tell, none of my oally. family having ever been orowe.' “You are joking!” she said,
“Do be sensible, Betty. This “You can't possibly have done is serious !”
it so soon." At that she sat up and “But I have," I replied. looked at me strangely. “Come, let's sit down, and
“Whatever is the matter, you shall be convinced.” Bob? Why, you
Why, you are quite I put my arm around her, panting with excitement." and pulled her down upon
“Tell me-how far is it the heather. I could feel the from Hopeton to Blaekdykos- furried beating of her heart as the crow flies "
beneath her breast. Betty, “About two miles, I should too, was beginning to experithink. But why
ence the excitement of the I did not give her time to chase. finish her question. I pioked “Now then, my dearest, here myself up from the heather, are the little piotures," I said and before Betty had realised exultingly, taking the copy my intention, I had oaught her from my pooket. “Ioan read by the hands, raised her from them like print now that I the ground, and, olasping hor have got the idea." in my arms, oovered her face “Read them to me, then," with ki8808.
Betty demanded. “Explain
afterwards, but read them to
cried Betty me now.”
excitedly. “Go on. It must be "Vory well," I agreed. so!”
“Then you really will marry “Two milos south-west of me soon?” I demanded. Hopeton, on the left of the “Don't tease, Bob, like a Hopeton Burn, there is a wood dear,” she answered coaxingly. on the north-east slope of the “Follow the little pictures. fourth hill in the range, bount- “Then we have the hills. ing from the top of the glon. There are four of them with In this wood there is a clear the zigzag lines underneath. ing, and in the middle of the These lines mean water-not olearing a rough stone cairn, necessarily the sea Dig down three feet under the thought — 80 why not the cairn, and you will find a chest Hopeton Burn, with the hills oontaining the Hopeton trea- above it?" sure!
That is clear enough, “True,"agreed Betty. “But is it not?”
how will you account for the “It is quite clear," Botty anohor, if you are going to do agreed. “But is it right? I away with the sea ?” don't see how you can read all “We were wrong there too,” that long story from the I replied.
the I replied. “It isn't an anohor. piotures."
But we have not come to that “I admit that I have spun yet. We are just at the four it out to the fullest, but all hills. This thing roads from the essentials are there, and left to right, in lines, like & you may be quite certain it is book. So we follow along the right-it oan't mean anything four hills with the burn flowing else. Look, what is the first below, and on the fourth hill, picture?”
which is just two miles as the “The Tanish orest," replied orow flies from Hopeton, we Betty. “You said long ago find a wood on the norththat it was only there as east slope. There is the Hamish's seal to the paper.
wood.” “I was wrong," I admitted. I pointed to the peouliar “It means much more than markings above the slope of that. You know that the the hill. orest is carved above the poroh “These, I suppose, are trees, of Hopeton? Well, this orest then," said Betty. “But why gives us the starting - point. are they flying in the air?” It stands for Hopeton. The “It is only a oonventional next bit is easy. You have a way of showing them," I orow-or rather very orude explained. “Old Hamish may conventional diagram of sorow have seen some Chinese prints -long straight line, the in whioh this method is figure two in Roman pamerals, adopted, or he may have and the letters S.W. That oan invented it himself to make bis only mean “Two miles as the oipher more obsoure."
“I should like to be able to
oompliment him on his suo- myself, I had forgotten the oobs,” Betty remarked. “Now little pictures and the Tanishes 0088
come to the square of with all their discords. stars. What do you make of “Bob, Bob, this will never them?"
do," said Betty, sitting up and “Troes again," I replied. smoothing her hair where it “They are fir-trees shown in had become ruffled in my plan – a kind of bird's-eye embrace. “We are being view of them. They represent horribly selfish. Think of the trees surrounding the these poor people anxiously olearing in the wood. In the waiting for you to read the middle is the cairn--it is there, little pictures to them !” for I have seen it and then “Ignorance is bliss," I we have the direotion, Dig answered lazily. “They don't down three feet under the cairn know that I have solved the and you will find a ohest con- thing, so they are no more taining the Hopeton treasure' anxious than usual. Don't be It is a piok or mattook-not so praotioal, my dear.” an anchor-you see!”
"But it is getting towards “Clover_boy !” exclaimed evening, and it will be dark Betty. “You must be right. before the treasure is found." It is all as plain as a pikestaff “Never mind. Let's keep
-one you know it. How you the secret to ourselves until ever got on the right track I morning, and then they will can't understand.”
have a full day before them," “It must have been the I proposed. I did not care a
& prize you promised me that sorap about the treasure. All stirred up my intelleot," I that I wanted on earth was replied. “ Yet I was not besido me there on the hillconscious of it at the time. I top. Is it to be wondered at was thinking of that night that I preferred to stay where when I found Roy and Marie I was? in the wood, and at the same Bat Betty would not have time I was looking at the hills. it so. She was full of ouriosity The whole thing oame upon me and anxiety about the treasure, in & moment, Yet it must and nothing would satisfy her have been my prize that was but that we should rush down behind it all. Betty, I am to the bill to Hopeton at once have my reward ?”
and organise the treasureBetty laid her lovely head hunt. gently upon my shoulder.
“How are we to account to “Yes, Bob," she whispered, the Laird for the fact that and snuggled close with a sigh you are acquainted with the of content.
oipher?” I asked. “He is not It was some time later that on the best of terms with you we awoke once more to the as it is, and he may make a realities of life. It was Betty fuss." who first returned to the prac- "He will be too exoited over tioal side of things. For finding the treasure," Betty