Infomotions, Inc.The Bobbsey Twins in a Great City / Hope, Laura Lee



Author: Hope, Laura Lee
Title: The Bobbsey Twins in a Great City
Publisher: Project Gutenberg
Tag(s): freddie; flossie; bobbsey; bert; bobbsey twins; laddie; twins; tommy todd; ice; uncle jack; asked flossie; boat; asked freddie; bunny brown; old woodchopper; new york; big; answered freddie; added flossie
Contributor(s): Smith, Caroline F. [Translator]
Versions: original; local mirror; HTML (this file); printable
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Rights: GNU General Public License
Size: 46,993 words (really short) Grade range: 5-7 (grade school) Readability score: 80 (easy)
Identifier: etext15169
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Title: The Bobbsey Twins in a Great City

Author: Laura Lee Hope

Release Date: February 25, 2005 [EBook #15169]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ASCII

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[Transcriber's note: An illustration was included in the original text
that did not belong in the story. It appeared in the first chapter after
the paragraph ending "But they are pretty good skaters for such small
children." The omitted text reads [Illustration: AT SEVEN O'CLOCK A SUPPER
WAS SERVED.--P. 129.]]



The Bobbsey Twins
in a Great City


BY

LAURA LEE HOPE

AUTHOR OF "THE BOBBSEY TWINS," "THE BUNNY
BROWN SERIES," "THE OUTDOOR GIRLS
SERIES," ETC.


_ILLUSTRATED_


NEW YORK
GROSSET & DUNLAP
PUBLISHERS

[Illustration: THE CHILDREN WERE DELIGHTED WITH THE STORE CAMP.

_The Bobbsey Twins in a Great City. Frontispiece_--(_Page_ 165)]



=BOOKS BY LAURA LEE HOPE=

12mo. Cloth. Illustrated. Price, per volume,


=THE BOBBSEY TWINS SERIES=


THE BOBBSEY TWINS
THE BOBBSEY TWINS IN THE COUNTRY
THE BOBBSEY TWINS AT THE SEASHORE
THE BOBBSEY TWINS AT SCHOOL
THE BOBBSEY TWINS AT SNOW LODGE
THE BOBBSEY TWINS ON A HOUSEBOAT
THE BOBBSEY TWINS AT MEADOW BROOK
THE BOBBSEY TWINS AT HOME
THE BOBBSEY TWINS IN A GREAT CITY
THE BOBBSEY TWINS ON BLUEBERRY ISLAND


=THE BUNNY BROWN SERIES=


BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE
BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE ON GRANDPA'S FARM
BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE PLAYING CIRCUS
BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE AT AUNT LU'S CITY HOME
BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE AT CAMP REST-A-WHILE
BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE IN THE BIG WOODS
BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE ON AN AUTO TOUR


=THE OUTDOOR GIRLS SERIES=


THE OUTDOOR GIRLS OF DEEPDALE
THE OUTDOOR GIRLS AT RAINBOW LAKE
THE OUTDOOR GIRLS IN A MOTOR CAR
THE OUTDOOR GIRLS IN A WINTER CAMP
THE OUTDOOR GIRLS IN FLORIDA
THE OUTDOOR GIRLS AT OCEAN VIEW
THE OUTDOOR GIRLS ON PINE ISLAND


GROSSET & DUNLAP, PUBLISHERS, NEW YORK.

COPYRIGHT, 1917, BY
GROSSET & DUNLAP.

THE BOBBSEY TWINS IN A GREAT CITY




CONTENTS

CHAPTER                             PAGE

    I. THE ICE-BOAT                    1

   II. BUILDING THE "BIRD"            13

  III. A RUNAWAY                      28

   IV. THE OLD WOODCHOPPER            36

    V. GLORIOUS NEWS.                 46

   VI. ON TO NEW YORK                 59

  VII. ON THE EXPRESS TRAIN           68

 VIII. A LONG RIDE                    80

   IX. IN THE STORE                   90

    X. LOST UNDERGROUND              104

   XI. FREDDIE AND THE TURTLE        116

  XII. IN THE THEATRE                127

 XIII. THE "RESCUE" OF FREDDIE       137

  XIV. THE STORE CAMP                153

   XV. SAD NEWS                      161

  XVI. THE BIG ELEPHANT              170

 XVII. CALLED HOME                   181

XVIII. A QUEER RIDE                  191

  XIX. THE GOAT                      202

   XX. MR. BOBBSEY COMES BACK        214

  XXI. UNCLE JACK'S REAL NAME        225

 XXII. REUNITED                      233




=THE BOBBSEY TWINS IN A GREAT CITY=




CHAPTER I

THE ICE-BOAT


"Oh, there comes my skate off again! Freddie, have you got any paste in
your pocket?"

"Paste, Flossie! What good would paste be to fasten on your skate?"

"I don't know, but it might do _some_ good. I can't make the strap hold it
on any more," and a plump little girl shook back her flaxen, curling hair,
which had slipped from under her cap and was blowing into her eyes, sat
down on a log near the shore of the frozen lake and looked sorrowfully at
the shining skate which had become loosened from her shoe.

"Come on, Flossie!" called the small, plump boy, just about the size of
his sister, and with her same kind of light hair and blue eyes. "There go
Bert, Nan and Tommy Todd 'way ahead of us. We'll never catch up to 'em if
you sit here. Come on!"

"I can't help sitting here, Freddie Bobbsey! How am I going to skate on
only one skate?" asked the little girl.

"Put on the other, and come along."

"I have put it on, lots of times, but it comes off every time I skate a
little bit. That's why I want some paste. Maybe I could paste the strap
fast around my shoe."

"I don't believe you could, Flossie," and this time the small, plump boy
stopped skating around in a ring--"grinding the bar," as it is called--and
glided toward his sister seated on the log. "Anyhow, I haven't any paste.
What made you think I had?"

"Oh, you carry so much stuff in your pockets I thought maybe you'd have
paste."

"I might if it was summer, Flossie, and I was making kites with Bert. But
I haven't any paste now."

"Then have you got a postage stamp?"

"A postage stamp? Of course not! What good would a postage stamp be to
fasten your skate strap?"

"Well, a postage stamp has paste on it, hasn't it? Anyhow, it's sticky,
'cause I got some on my tongue once, and I just know if I could only
fasten down the end of this skate strap, to keep it from flopping up, and
coming out of the buckle, I'd be all right. It's the flopping end that
comes loose."

"Well, pooh! a postage stamp wouldn't be any good!" cried Freddie. "If you
did stick it on it wouldn't last more than three strokes. A postage stamp
wouldn't go far at all!"

"Some postage stamps do!" exclaimed Flossie. "Mother got one on a letter
the other day and it had stuck itself on half-way round the world--she
told me so. And if a stamp sticks half-way around the world I should think
it would stick while I skated down to the end of the lake."

"Huh! That's different!" half grunted Freddie, for, just then, he was
stooping over tightening one of his straps. "Anyhow, I haven't got a
stamp."

"Well, maybe you could fix my skate so it wouldn't come off," suggested
Flossie. "I've tried and tried, but I can't, and I don't want to stay here
all alone."

"Why Flossie Bobbsey! I'm with you!"

"I know, but Nan and Bert are away down at the other end, with Tommy Todd,
and Bert is going to buy hot chocolates. I know he is, 'cause he said so.
I don't want to miss them."

"Me neither! Wait and I'll see if I can't fix your skate, Flossie."

Freddie was small--he and Flossie were the smaller pair of Bobbsey
twins--but he was a sturdy little chap, and living out of doors, and
playing games with his older brother Bert had taught Freddie how to do
many things. He put Flossie's skate on her shoe, tightened the strap, and
then made it still tighter by putting some pieces of wood under the
leather loop.

"There!" he exclaimed, as he stood up, having been kneeling in the snow on
the edge of the lake. "I guess that will hold, Flossie. Now come on, and
we'll see how fast we can skate."

Together the brother and sister started off. This time Flossie's skate
seemed to be all right, needing neither paste nor a postage stamp to hold
it on, and in a little while the smaller twins had caught up to Bert and
Nan, their brother and sister, who, with a boy neighbor, named Tommy Todd,
had slowed up to wait for them.

"What kept you?" asked Nan. "Did you try to do some fancy skating,
Flossie?"

"I guess Freddie stopped to see if there wasn't a crack in the ice where
he could get some water to play fireman," remarked Bert with a smile, for
his small brother was very fond of this game, and his best-liked toy was a
small fire engine, which, when a spring was wound, could squirt real
water.

"No, I didn't stop at any cracks!" exclaimed Freddie earnestly. "Cracks in
the ice is dangerous--Daddy said so. It was Flossie's skate."

"That's right--it kept coming off," explained the blue-eyed girl. "But
Freddie fixed it, and he didn't have to use a postage stamp, either. Did
you, Freddie?"

"Nope."

"Well, I guess they know what it means, but we don't!" laughed Nan, taking
her small sister's hand. "Come on, now, you little twins. I We waited for
you, so we could all have hot chocolate together. You didn't get cold, I
hope, stopping to fix your skate, Flossie?"

"Nope! I'm as warm as butter!"

"What does she mean by that?" asked Tommy Todd. "I often hear my
grandmother say she's as warm as toast, but _butter_----"

"Well, when it's Winter, like it is now, you have to warm your butter so
you can spread it on your bread," explained Flossie. "So I'm as warm as
butter now."

"I wish I was!" cried Bert. "I'm getting a chill standing here waiting for
you two! Come on, now. Skate lively, and we'll soon be there," and he
pointed to a little candy and soda-water stand near the lower end of Lake
Metoka, on the frozen surface of which the children were skating.

In the little cabin, which in Winter was built over the stand to make a
warm place for skaters, hot chocolate and other drinks could be had, and
Bert had promised to treat his brother and sisters, as well as Tommy
Todd.

"Don't skate too fast," begged Flossie. "My skate _might_ come off again,
though Freddie fixed it pretty good."

"If it comes off again I'll skate and carry you on my back the rest of the
way!" cried Bert. "I want something hot to drink. But mind you!" he cried,
as he saw a mischievous look on his little sister's face, "don't dare make
your skate come off on purpose! I don't want to carry you unless I have
to."

"All right, Bert. I'll skate as fast as I can," promised Flossie.

The five started off, Tommy Todd skating beside Flossie to help her if she
should need it. Tommy was a sort of chum of both pairs of twins, sometimes
going with the older ones, Nan and Bert, and again with Flossie and
Freddie. In fact, he played with these latter more often than with Nan and
her twin, for Flossie and Freddie had played a large part in helping Tommy
at one time, as I'll explain a little later.

It was a fine Winter's day, not too cold, and the sun was shining from a
clear sky, but not warmly enough to melt the ice. The steel skates of the
five children rang out a merry tune as they clicked over the frozen
surface of the lake.

"Hurrah! Here we are!" cried Bert at last, as he skated on ahead and sat
down on a bench in front of the "Chocolate Cabin," as they called the
place. He began taking off his skates.

"Come on!" he called to the others. "I'll order the chocolate for you and
have it cooling," for there was more trouble with Flossie's skate and Nan
had stopped to help her fix it.

"Don't order chocolate for me, Bert!" called Nan. "I want malted milk. The
chocolate is too sweet."

"Guess you're afraid of your complexion, Sis!" laughed Bert, as he went
inside the little wooden house.

"Oh, Flossie, take both your skates off and walk the rest of the way,"
advised Nan, after she had tried, without much success, to fix the
troublesome strap. "We'll get there sooner."

"All right," agreed Flossie. "It's a bother--this skate. I'm going to get
a new pair."

"Maybe a new strap is all you need," said Tommy. "You can get one in
there," and he nodded toward the little cabin.

A little later the five children were seated on stools in front of the
counter, sipping the warm drinks which made their cheeks glow with
brighter color and caused a deeper sparkle in their eyes.

"This is great!" cried Tommy Todd.

"That's what!" murmured Freddie, his nose deep in his cup.

"Don't forget about my strap," came from Flossie.

"Oh, yes," agreed Bert. "We don't want to have to drag you all the way
home." The man who sold the chocolate and candy in the cabin also had
skate straps for sale and one was soon found that would do for Flossie.

"Now my skate won't come off!" she cried, as once more they were on the
ice. "I can skate as good as you, Freddie Bobbsey!"

"Let's have a race!" proposed Freddie. "Bert and Nan can give Flossie and
me a head start, 'cause they're bigger than us. Will you?" he asked his
brother.

"Yes, I guess so. A race will get us home quicker, and we're a little
late."

"We'll let Flossie and Freddie start ahead of me," suggested Tommy, who,
being a little elder than the two smaller twins, was a little better
skater.

"All right," agreed Bert. "Any way you like. Go ahead, Floss and Fred.
Skate on until I tell you to wait. Then I'll give Tommy a starting place
and, when we're all ready, I'll give the word to begin."

Flossie and Freddie, hand in hand, skated ahead a little way. But
Freddie's skate went over a little piece of wood on the ice and he tripped
and fell, pulling Flossie down with him. The two plump twins were in a
heap on the ice.

"Hurt yourself?" asked Bert, as he started toward them, to help them up.

"No--no--I--I guess not," answered Flossie, who was the first to get up.

"We're all right," replied Freddie. "The ice was soft right there."

"I guess it's because they're so fat, that they're soft, like a feather
pillow," laughed Tommy. "They're getting fatter every day."

"That's what they are," agreed Nan with a smile. "But they are pretty good
skaters for such small children."

"Everybody ready?" asked Bert, when the two small twins had taken their
places, and Tommy Todd was between them and Bert and Nan.

"All right," answered Freddie.

"I am, too," came from Tommy.

"Then go!" cried Bert, suddenly.

The skating race was started. Merrily clicked the runners on the hard ice,
leaving long white streaks where the children passed over. Flossie and
Freddie were skating as fast and as hard as they could.

"They are very anxious to win," said Nan, who was skating beside her
brother.

"Yes, but they can't keep going as fast as that all the way home."

"You're going to let them win, aren't you?" asked Nan.

"Sure I am! But they're so sharp we don't dare lag much behind. We must
make a spurt toward the end, and pretend we did our best to beat them.
Tommy Todd may come in ahead of them, though."

"We can skate up to him and tell him not to," suggested Nan.

"Good idea!" declared Bert. "We'll do it."

The older twins skated a little faster to overtake Tommy, who was some
distance behind Flossie and Freddie, when suddenly Nan gave a cry and
clutched Bert by the arm.

"Look!" she exclaimed, pointing with her hand.

"An ice-boat," remarked Bert. "And going fast, too!"

"Yes, but see! It's coming right toward Flossie and Freddie, and they're
skating with their heads down, and don't see it! Oh, Bert! Yell at them!
Tell them to look out! Yell at the man in the ice-boat!"

It did indeed seem a time of danger, for a swift ice-boat--one with big
white sails and runners, like large skates under it, was skimming over the
frozen lake straight for the smaller twins.




CHAPTER II

BUILDING THE "BIRD"


Flossie and Freddie, anxious to win the skating race, were bending over
with heads down, as all skaters do who wish to go fast and keep the wind
from blowing on them too hard. So they did not see the ice-boat coming
toward them, for the craft, blown by the wind, made hardly any noise, and
what little it did make was taken up by the clicking of the skates of the
smaller twins.

"Oh, Bert! Do something!" cried Nan.

"Yes, yes! I will--of course!"

Bert shook off Nan's hand, for it was still on his arm, and started to
skate toward the twins as fast as he could. He hoped to reach them in time
to stop them from skating right into the path of the oncoming ice-boat.

But he soon saw that he was not going to be able to do this. The ice-boat
was coming toward the small twins faster than Bert could ever hope to
skate and reach them.

"Yell at them!" shouted Nan. "That's the only way to stop them! Yell and
tell them to look out!"

Bert himself had decided this was the best thing to do. He stopped skating
and, making a sort of funnel, or megaphone, of his hands, he cried out:

"Flossie! Freddie! Look out! Danger--the ice-boat!"

Just at this moment, whether it was because of Bert's shouts or because
they were tired of going so fast and wanted a rest, the two children
leading the skating race stood up straight and looked back. They saw Bert
pointing toward them and then they glanced at the ice-boat. It was very
close, and Flossie screamed.

At the same time the man who was steering the boat saw the children. With
a shout that echoed the one given by Bert, and the screams of Nan and
Flossie, the man steered his boat to one side. But he made such a sudden
change that, though he steered out of the way of Flossie and Freddie, he
nearly ran into Tommy Todd. That small boy, however, was a good skater
and stopped just in time, for he had seen the ice-boat coming.

Then with a whizz and a clink of ice, as the runners of the boat scraped
big chips from the frozen lake, the skimming boat shot past Nan and Bert,
not doing a bit of harm, but scaring all five children very much.

"Sorry! Didn't see you! Next time----"

This was what the man in the ice-boat shouted as he whizzed by. His last
words seemed whipped away by the wind and the children did not know what
he meant.

"Maybe he meant next time he'd be sure to run into us," said Tommy Todd.

"Oh, he wouldn't do _that!_" declared Bert "That was Mr. Watson. He buys
lumber from my father. I guess he meant that next time he'd give us a
ride."

"Oh, my!" exclaimed Nan. "Would you ride in one of those dangerous things,
Bert Bobbsey?"

"Would I? Well, just give me the chance! How about you, Tommy?"

"I should say so! They're great!"

"Oh, I can't bear them!" went on Nan. "Please let's stop and rest. My
heart is beating so fast I can't skate for a while."

"All right--we'll call the race off," agreed Bert. Flossie and Freddie
were a little startled by the closeness of the ice-boat, and they skated
back to join their brother and sister.

And while they are taking a little rest on the ice I shall have a chance
to let my new readers know something of the past history of the children
about whom I am writing.

There were two pairs of Bobbsey twins. They were the children of Mr.
Richard Bobbsey and his wife Mary, and the family lived in an Eastern city
called Lakeport, which was at the head of Lake Metoka. Mr. Bobbsey was in
the lumber business, having a yard and docks on the shore of the lake
about a quarter of a mile from his house.

The older Bobbsey twins were Nan and Bert. They had dark hair and eyes,
and were rather tall and slim. Flossie and Freddie, the younger twins,
were short and fat, with light hair and blue eyes. So it would have been
easy to tell the twins apart, even if one pair had not been older than
the other. Besides the children and their parents there were in the
"family" two other persons--Dinah Johnson, the fat, good-natured colored
cook, and Sam, her husband, who looked after the furnace in the Winter and
cut the grass in Summer.

Then there was Snoop, and Snap. The first was a fine black cat and the
second a big dog, both great pets of the children. Those of you who have
read the first book of this series, entitled "The Bobbsey Twins," do not
need to read this explanation here, but others may care to. In the second
volume I told you of the fun the twins had in the country. After that they
went to the seashore, and this subject has a book all to itself, telling
of the adventures there.

Later on the Bobbseys went back to school, where they had plenty of fun,
and when they were at Snow Lodge there were some strange happenings, as
there were also on the houseboat _Bluebird_. There was a stowaway boy--but
there! I had better let you read the book for yourself.

The Bobbsey twins spent some time at Meadow Brook, but there was always a
question whether they had better times there or "At Home," which is the
name of the book just before this one.

You, who have read that book, will remember that Flossie and Freddie
found, in a big snow storm, the lost father of Tommy Todd, a boy who lived
with his grandmother in a poor section of Lakeport. And it was still that
same Winter, after Tommy's father had come home, that we find the Bobbsey
twins skating on the ice, having just missed being run into by the
ice-boat.

"My! but that was a narrow escape!" exclaimed Nan, as she skated slowly
about. "My heart is beating fast yet."

"So's mine," added Flossie. "Did he do it on purpose?"

"No, indeed!" exclaimed Bert. "I guess Mr. Watson wouldn't do a thing like
_that!_ He was looking after the ropes of the sail, or doing something to
the steering rudder, and that's why he didn't see you and Freddie."

"What makes an ice-boat go?" asked Freddie.

"The wind blows it, just as the wind blows a sailboat," explained Bert,
looking down the lake after the ice-boat.

"But it hasn't any cabin to it like a real boat," went on Freddie. "And it
doesn't go in the water. Where do the people sit?"

"An ice-boat is like this," said Bert, and with the sharp heel end of his
skate he drew a picture on the ice. "You take two long pieces of wood, and
fasten them together like a cross--almost the same as when you start to
make a kite," he went on. "On each end of the short cross there are double
runners, like skates, only bigger. And at the end of the long stick, at
the back, is another runner, and this moves, and has a handle to it like
the rudder on a boat. They steer the ice-boat with this handle.

"And where the two big sticks cross they put up the tall mast and make the
sail fast to that. Then when the wind blows it sends the ice-boat over the
ice as fast as anything."

"It sure does go fast," said Tommy Todd. "Look! He's almost at the end of
the lake now."

"Yes, an ice-boat goes almost as fast as the wind," said Bert. "Maybe some
day----"

"Oh, come on!" cried Flossie. "I want to go home! I'm cold standing here."

"Yes, we had better go on," said Nan. "I'm all right now."

As the five children skated off, no longer thinking of the race, Nan asked
Bert:

"What are you going to do some day?"

"Oh, I don't know. I haven't got it all thought out yet. I'll tell you
after a bit."

"Is it a secret?" asked Nan, eagerly.

"Sort of."

"Oh, please tell me!"

"Not now. Come on, skate faster!"

Bert and Nan skated on ahead, knowing that Flossie and Freddie would try
to keep up with them, and so would get home more quickly. But they did not
leave the smaller twins too far behind.

A little later the Bobbseys were safe at home. Tommy Todd went to his
grandmother's house, and Flossie and Freddie took turns giving their
mother an account of their escape from the ice-boat.

"Was there really any danger?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey of Bert.

"Well, maybe, just a little. But I guess Mr. Watson would have stopped in
time. He's a good ice-boat sailor."

"But don't let Flossie and Freddie get so far away from you another time.
They might have been hurt."

Bert promised to look well after his little sister and brother, and then,
having asked his mother if she wanted anything from the store, he said he
was going down to his father's lumberyard.

"What for?" asked Nan, as she saw him leaving. "Is it about the secret?"

"Partly," answered Bert with a laugh.

Two or three days later the Bobbseys were again out skating on the ice,
Nan and Bert keeping close to Freddie and Flossie. They had not been long
gliding about when Freddie suddenly called:

"Oh, here comes that ice-boat again!"

"Surely enough, it is!" added Nan. "Oh, we must skate toward shore! Come
on!"

"No need to do that," replied Bert. "It isn't coming fast, and Mr. Watson
sees us."

"He's waving his hand at us!" cried Flossie. "I guess he wants to give us
a ride. Come on, Freddie!"

"Here! Wait a minute!" called Bert "Don't get into any more danger. But I
believe he _is_ going to stop," he went on, as the ice-boat came slowly up
to them. Then, as it swung up into the wind, with the sail loosely
flapping, Mr. Watson called:

"Come on, children, don't you want to go for a ride?"

"Oh, let's!" cried Flossie, clapping her hands.

"And I want to steer!" added Freddie.

"No, you can't do that!" exclaimed Nan. "Oh, Bert, do you think it would
be all right for us to go?" she asked her older brother.

"I don't see why not," said Bert. "The wind doesn't blow hard, and Mr.
Watson knows all about ice-boats. I say let's go!"

"Oh, what fun!" cried Flossie and Freddie.

They took off their skates and walked toward the ice-boat. Mr. Watson
smiled at them.

"I'm so sorry I nearly ran into you the other day," he said. "I did not
see you until almost the last minute. So I made up my mind the next time I
saw you on the lake I'd give you a ride. Come on, now, get aboard!"

"He talks just as if it was a real boat!" laughed Flossie, for, living
near the lake as they did, and often seeing boats at their father's lumber
dock, the Bobbsey twins knew something about water craft.

"Well, of course, this isn't as big as some boats," said Mr. Watson, "but
it will hold all of us, I think."

The children saw where there was a sort of platform, with raised sides,
built on the center of the crossed sticks, and on this platform were
spread some fur rugs and blankets.

Mr. Watson saw to it that the little children, especially, were well
wrapped, and then, telling them all to hold on, he let out the sail and
away flew the ice-boat down the frozen lake, fairly whizzing along.

"My! how fa-fa-fast we go!" gasped Nan, for really the wind seemed to take
away her breath.

"This sure _is_ sailing!" cried Bert, and then Nan noticed that her
brother was looking at different parts of the ice-boat, as if to find out
how it was made.

Flossie and Freddie were having lots of fun holding on to one another, and
also to the sides of the ice-boat, for the craft slid this way and that so
quickly, sometimes seeming to rise up in the air, that it was like being
on the back of a horse.

But the Bobbseys liked it, and the ride in the ice-boat came to an end all
too soon. With sparkling eyes, and red, glowing cheeks, the twins got out
close to their father's lumber dock, calling their thanks to Mr. Watson.

"I'll take you again, some time," he answered, as he sailed off down the
lake.

"Ah, ha! And so my little fat fireman had a ride in an ice-boat, did he?"
cried Mr. Bobbsey that night, when he came home from the office and heard
the story. "And how did my little fat fairy like it?" And he lifted up
first Freddie and then Flossie to kiss them. "Fat fireman" and "fat fairy"
were Mr. Bobbsey's pet names for the smaller twins. Bert and Nan had had
pet names when they were small, but they were too large for them now,
growing out of them as they grew out of their clothes.

"Oh, it was glorious!" cried Nan. "Sailing in an ice-boat must be like the
way it feels to be in an airship."

"I'm going up in an airship when I get big!" cried Freddie, making a dive
after Snoop, the cat, who was hiding under the table.

"Have you heard yet whether you are to go?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey, of her
husband, when the noisy greetings to the children were over.

"No, not yet," he answered, and he made a motion with his head, as if to
tell his wife not to speak of a certain matter before the children.

"Oh, I saw you wink!" cried Nan, clapping her hands. "What does it mean?
Is it a secret, Momsey?"

"Well, yes, Nan. You shall be told in plenty of time, if anything comes of
it."

"Oh, that's two secrets!" cried Nan. "Bert has one and now there's one
here."

"What is Bert's secret?" asked Nan's mother.

"I don't know yet; he won't tell me."

"Yes, I'll tell you to-morrow," said her brother. "But what's this about
Father going away, Mother? Are we going too?"

"Supper am ready, chilluns!" exclaimed the voice of Dinah, the cook, and
that ended the talk about secrets for the time being.

"But when are you going to tell me _yours?_" Nan managed to whisper to her
brother when the dessert was being served.

"Come down to the lumberyard to-morrow afternoon," he whispered. "It's
almost done."

Without telling Flossie or Freddie anything about it, Nan slipped off by
herself the next afternoon, and from the watchman in her father's
lumberyard learned that Bert and another boy were in one of the sheds. As
Nan came closer she could hear the noise of hammering and sawing.

"Oh, Bert, what are you making?" cried Nan, as she saw her brother and
Tommy Todd busy with sticks, boards, hammer and nails.

"This is the _Bird!_" cried Bert, waving a hammer at something that, so
far, did not look like much of anything.

"A bird?" cried Nan. "It looks more like a scare-crow!"

"Just wait until it's finished!" said Tommy Todd. "When we get the sail
on----"

"Oh, Bert! is it a _boat?_" cried Nan eagerly.

"Yes, it's going to be an ice-boat, and I've called it the _Bird_," was
the answer. "I got the idea of building it after I'd seen Mr. Watson's.
Father said I might, and he gave me the lumber, and let me have a
carpenter to help, for Tommy and I couldn't do it all. But now the
ice-boat is almost done and in a few days I'll sail it."

"And may I have a ride?" asked Nan.

"Of course. I'll take the whole family," said Bert. "Just you wait," and
then he and Tommy went on hammering and sawing.




CHAPTER III

A RUNAWAY


"All aboard!"

"Don't forget your baggage!"

"This way for your tickets!"

"The ice-boat _Bird_ makes no stops this side of the lake! All aboard!"

Bert Bobbsey and Tommy Todd thus were calling at the end of one of the
lumberyard docks one day about a week after Nan had seen her brother
building the ice-boat. Coming down the dock were Mr. and Mrs. Bobbsey,
with Nan, Flossie and Freddie. Snap, the big dog, was bounding on ahead
through the snow, barking joyously. He enjoyed fun as much as any one.

"All aboard! Please hurry up!" cried Bert.

"Why, I thought this was a _special_ trip you were giving us, and we
didn't have to hurry," laughed his mother.

"It is," Bert said. "But you see you can't sail an ice-boat if you haven't
any wind, and I want you to have a ride before the wind dies away, as it
might. So come on, get on board!"

"I want to steer!" cried Freddie.

"No, you must not," said Nan.

"Yes, I must. I know how to steer a motor boat, and I can steer an
ice-boat, I guess," and Freddie was very sure about it.

"After a while, maybe," agreed Bert. "But an ice-boat is different to
steer from a motor boat. I'll show you how, though."

Mr. and Mrs. Bobbsey got on the little platform which Bert had built as a
sort of open cabin. It had old carpets and rugs on it, and there were
blankets and robes to keep the passengers warm. After some failures Bert
and Tommy had finally managed to finish the ice-boat. It was not as easy
to build as they had expected, but Mr. Bobbsey's carpenter had helped
them.

The boat had been tried out on the ice, and had sailed well. Mr. Bobbsey
had Mr. Watson look at it, and that gentleman had said it was safe to ride
in. Then Bert had finally gotten his father and mother to promise to take
a trip in the boat, bringing Nan, Flossie and Freddie with them. Mr.
Bobbsey had, before this, been given a ride with Bert and Tommy, so he
knew the two boys could manage the boat fairly well. Tommy and Bert had
had several rides by themselves. Now they had company.

"Are you all ready?" asked Bert, after he had seen his father and mother,
his sisters and brother, get on board the _Bird_.

"All ready," answered Mr. Bobbsey. "Don't go too fast at first, and take
your mother's breath away."

"I won't!" promised Bert. "Are those two little ones covered up all
right?" he asked, nodding toward Flossie and Freddie.

"Yep! We're as warm as--as popcorn!" cried Flossie.

"With butter on!" added Freddie.

"Well, you certainly ought to be good and warm," laughed Mrs. Bobbsey, as
she tucked the robes closer around the two smaller twins.

"All aboard!" called Bert, and then, moving slowly at first, the ice-boat
glided away from the lumber wharf, skimming over the lake with the entire
Bobbsey family, not counting, of course, fat Dinah and her husband, who
stayed at home. Nor was Snoop, the black cat, along. Snap, the dog, ran a
little way, but when he found the ice-boat was going too fast for him, and
when he noticed that he was slipping too much, he gave a sort of good-bye
howl and went slowly back to shore.

"Isn't this great?" cried Bert, as he steered the ice-boat out into the
middle of the lake.

"Wonderful!" cried Nan, her hair flying in the wind and her cheeks almost
as red as roses. "I don't see how you made it, Bert."

"Well, it wasn't easy. How do you like it, Freddie?"

"All right. When can I steer?"

"Oh, maybe after a while," said Bert, with a laugh. "Say, we're going
fast, all right."

"Yes," agreed Mr. Bobbsey. "I think the wind is getting stronger instead
of dying out, Bert."

"It does seem so. Well, all the better. We won't have to walk back if it
keeps on this way. We can sail to the end of the lake and ride back."

"Are you sure you can manage the boat yourself?" asked Bert's father, "She
seems pretty big."

"Oh, Tommy and I sailed her in a stronger wind than this. And we have a
heavier load on now, which makes it all the safer."

Mr. Bobbsey himself knew how to sail an ice-boat, but he wanted to let
Bert do as much alone as he could, for this is a good way for a boy to
learn, if there is not too much danger.

"And the worst that can happen," said Mr. Bobbsey, in a whisper to his
wife, "is that we may upset and spill out."

"Oh! But do you really think there is any danger of _that?_"

"Well, there may be. Ice-boats often upset, but we can't fall very far,"
and he looked down at the ice, which was only a few inches below them.
"And we have so many robes and blankets that falling would be like
tumbling into bed. There is no danger."

The wind was blowing harder and harder. It was sweeping right across the
lake and forcing the boat down. The steel runners clinked on the ice, now
and then scraping up a shower of icy splinters that sparkled in the sun.
On the other side of the lake were other ice-boats, and Bert wished he
could have a race with some of them. But he knew his mother would not like
that now.

"Can't you make it go a little slower?" asked Flossie, after a bit. "Every
time I open my mouth it gets filled with cold air, and it makes me want to
sneeze."

"I can't go any slower than the wind blows," answered Bert. "Turn your
back to the bow, or front end of the boat, and you can open your mouth
easier then."

Flossie did as she was told and felt better. Meanwhile the _Bird_ was
living up to her name, and skimming along swiftly. Bert held to the
steering handle, now and then tightening or loosening the rope that was
fast to the sail.

"Want any help?" asked his father.

"No, thank you, Dad. I want to manage it all by myself as long as I can."

"Isn't it my turn to steer?" asked Freddie, when they were half-way down
the lake, toward the end farthest from the town, where there were deep
woods on either side.

"No, not yet!" exclaimed Bert "Don't touch anything, Freddie!" he went on,
for his little brother was reaching out toward the sail. "I'll have to
wait until the wind doesn't blow so strong before I can let your steer,
Freddie."

"But I want to steer when we're going _fast!_" cried the little fellow. "I
know how to do it. You just----"

Freddie never finished what he was saying. Whether he touched anything, or
whether Bert was afraid he would, and so pulled on the wrong rope to keep
it out of Freddie's way, was never known.

Suddenly the ice-boat gave a quick whirl to one side, like a boy or a girl
on roller skates going around a corner. It went around so quickly that it
tipped half-way over. Mrs. Bobbsey and Nan screamed. Mr. Bobbsey called to
Bert to be careful, but it was too late. Bert had lost his hold of the
rudder and the sail rope.

The next second Bert shot out of the ice-boat, and slid along on his back.
A moment later his father and mother were also spilled out, followed by
Nan. Then the ice-boat, not having such a heavy load aboard, settled down
on the ice again, and started to run away, or, rather, blow away.

Right before the wind it flew, and Flossie and Freddie, being well tucked
in among the robes and blankets were not spilled out. They stayed on
board; and Mr. Bobbsey, sitting up after he had slid some distance across
the ice, saw the _Bird_ scooting down the lake, carrying his two smaller
twins with it.

"Oh, the ice-boat is running away with Flossie and Freddie!" cried Nan, as
she, too, saw what had happened.




CHAPTER IV

THE OLD WOODCHOPPER


While Mr. and Mrs. Bobbsey, Bert and Nan picked themselves up from where
they had fallen and slid along the ice, the ice-boat, with Flossie and
Freddie snugly tucked in among the blankets and robes, was skimming down
the lake, blown by a strong wind.

At first the two small twins hardly knew what had happened. They had felt
the ice-boat tilt to one side, they remembered that they had nearly fallen
out, and then they had sailed on again. It was not until Flossie opened
her eyes (she always shut them when anything surprising was happening)
that she saw she and Freddie were alone in the _Bird_.

"Why! Why!" she exclaimed. "Where are Daddy and Mother?"

"Yes, and Bert and Nan?" added Freddie. "Where is everybody?"

Then the two small twins looked back over the icy lake and far behind them
saw their father and mother, with Bert and Nan, standing on the ice and
waving their hands.

"Oh, they've jumped off and left us to sail the boat alone!" cried
Freddie. "Now I can steer! Isn't that good?"

Flossie was not quite sure that this was "good," but, for a few seconds,
she believed what Freddie had said--that the others had jumped off the
ice-boat. She did not know that they had been spilled out, as Bert said
afterward.

"Now watch me steer!" cried Freddie, crawling back toward the tiller,
which was the last thing Bert had let go of, as he shot from the boat.

"Oh, can you?" asked Flossie. "Do you think you can steer?"

"Of course I can," was the answer. "You just watch me. I'll make this boat
go faster!"

"But you want to be awfully careful, Freddie."

"Oh, I'm always careful, ain't I?"

"Well, I s'pose you are--most times," answered Flossie, somewhat slowly.
She did not wish to hurt her twin's feelings.

"Oh, I know what I'm doing," was Freddie's confident reply. "You just
watch me! I'll make this boat go just as fast as anything!"

As it had happened, a rope had become caught around the tiller, or handle,
of the rudder, thus holding it so that the ice-boat sailed straight before
the wind. Otherwise it would have darted from side to side, and perhaps
Flossie and Freddie would have been tossed out as the others had been. But
it so happened that they sailed along nicely, no one being at the helm.

Straight down the lake sailed the _Bird_ with the two little twins aboard.
They had been a bit frightened at first, but now Freddie was thinking only
of how he could steer the craft, and Flossie was waiting to see what her
brother would do.

"I wonder what they're waving to us for?" asked Flossie, as she looked
back and saw the frantic signals of her father and mother, Bert and Nan.
"And they're running after us, too!" she added.

"Maybe they want us to come back," suggested Freddie. But as the ice-boat
was too far away for the older Bobbseys to make their voices heard by
Flossie and Freddie, Mr. Bobbsey and the others could only wave their
hands.

"We must catch that boat!" cried Bert. "No telling what it will do to them
if it upsets. Come on! Run, everybody!"

He set off as fast as he could go, his father with him, while Mrs. Bobbsey
and Nan came along more slowly.

"I guess they want us to come back and get them," said Freddie. "They must
be tired. Well, I'll steer the boat back and we'll give them a ride. Won't
it be fun, Flossie?"

"Ye-yes, maybe. If you can do it."

"Do what?"

"Steer the ice-boat back."

"Of course I can do it!" cried Freddie. "I can squirt water from my fire
engine, can't I? And that isn't any harder than this."

Freddie did not know so much about ice-boats as he thought he did, and
when he had crawled back to the tiller, still held fast in a loop of the
rope, the small boy found it harder to move than he had expected. Flossie
stayed among the rugs and robes.

Freddie knew enough about boats to be sure that to steer one the tiller
ought to move from side to side. So, finding that the rope, which was fast
to the sail, was keeping the rudder handle from moving, he began to loosen
the coils.

As soon as he did that the rudder moved from side to side, and this, of
course, made the ice-boat do the same thing.

"Oh, dear!" cried Flossie, "don't jiggle it so, Freddie!"

"I--I can't--help it!" chattered Freddie, his words coming jerkily, for he
was being "jiggled" himself, as the rudder shook from side to side in his
hand. "This--this is the way to--to steer an ice-boat."

"Well, I don't like it," Flossie announced, "It makes me homesick!"

"Do you mean--_seasick?_" asked Freddie, trying his best to hold the
tiller still.

"No, I mean homesick! I want to go home!"

"But we're having a nice ride, Flossie."

"I don't care! I want papa and mamma! I can't see them now!"

The ice-boat, sailing down the lake, had turned around a point of land,
and this hid from view the rest of the Bobbsey family.

"I'll turn around and go back and get them," Freddie said. By this time he
had taken the rope from the tiller, so the rudder handle moved freely from
side to side. And then, all of a sudden, the _Bird_ shot ahead more
swiftly than before.

The wind was blowing more strongly, and when Freddie moved the rudder he
steered the ice-boat so that the wind sent it straight ahead instead of a
little to one side.

"Oh! oh!" cried Flossie, "this is too fast! How can we stop the ice-boat,
Freddie?"

"I--I don't know," answered the little boy. "Don't you like to go fast,
Flossie?"

"Not so fast as this. I can't make my nose work--I can't get any air!"

Indeed they were sailing even more swiftly than when Bert was steering,
and Flossie was frightened. So was Freddie, but he was not so quick to say
so.

"Please stop the boat!" cried Flossie again.

"Well, I'll try," promised Freddie. "I guess this is the rope you pull
on," and he took hold of the one fast to the end of the sail--the rope
that kept the big piece of white canvas from blowing away.

Freddie pulled on this, but it could not have been the right rope, or else
he pulled it the wrong way, for, in an instant, the ice-boat seemed to
"stand on its ear," as Bert spoke of it afterward. Flossie and Freddie
were almost tossed out.

"Oh, don't do that!" cried the little girl.

"I--I didn't mean to," Freddie told her. "I guess I pulled on the wrong
rope. Here's another. I'll try that."

By this time the ice-boat was more than two miles down the lake, for the
wind was blowing hard and the _Bird_ sailed swiftly. The children could
not see their father, mother, Bert or Nan now. They would soon be at the
end of the lake, and before them Flossie and Freddie could see big drifts
of snow near the edge of the frozen lake and between it and the forest
beyond.

"I--I guess we'd better stop pretty soon," faltered Freddie. "If we don't
we'll run ashore."

With all his strength, he pulled on another rope, at the same time shoving
the tiller over as far from him as it would go. The result was a surprise
to him and to Flossie. The ice-boat turned quickly, and then, like a
frightened horse, it darted toward shore.

Over the ice it skimmed. Then it turned up on one side, buried the bow, or
front part, deep in a big snow drift and with another motion sent Flossie
and Freddie, together with the robes and blankets, flying into a pile of
soft snow. Down came the Bobbsey twins with a soft thud, not being in the
least hurt.

For a moment neither of the children spoke. Then Flossie, brushing the
snow from her face, looked around, and seeing Freddie near her, doing the
same thing, she asked:

"What--what happened?"

"I guess I steered right up on shore instead of away from it," replied
Freddie. "I must have turned the handle the wrong way. Are you hurt,
Flossie?"

"Nope. Are you?"

"Nope. I hope the ice-boat isn't broken. Bert wouldn't like that. Let's go
and look."

As the children floundered out of the snow, which had been left from a
storm that had swept over the country before the lake had frozen, they
heard a voice calling to them. Looking in the direction of the woods, they
saw coming toward them an old man, wearing a big, ragged overcoat, a fur
cap and mittens, while over his shoulder was an axe.

"Oh! oh!" said Flossie in a low voice. "Who--who's that, Freddie?"

"Oh, I know him. That's Uncle Jack, the woodchopper. He'll help us get the
boat on the ice again, and I can sail it back home."

"Nope!" cried Flossie, shaking her flaxen curly head. "I'm never going to
ride in an ice-boat with you any more. Never! You go too fast, and stop
too quick. I'm going to _walk_ home!"

"What's the matter, children?" asked Uncle Jack, and he came plowing his
way through the snow. "Ah, your ice-boat is upset, I see! Well, you two
are pretty small potatoes to be out sailing alone. 'Most froze, too, I'll
warrant ye! Come on to my cabin. It's warm there, whatever else it is!"
and he helped Flossie and Freddie from the snowdrift.

"Thank you," said Flossie. "But we're not potatoes, Uncle Jack."

"Well, little peaches, then. Anyhow, your cheeks look like red apples,"
said the man, laughing.




CHAPTER V

GLORIOUS NEWS


"How did it all happen?" asked Uncle Jack, a little later, as he led
Flossie and Freddie along a path through the snow to his cabin in the
woods. "Why are you two out ice-boating alone?"

"The rest of 'em spilled out," answered Freddie; "and I upset Flossie and
me when I pulled on the wrong rope. But we're not hurt a bit. It was fun.
Wasn't it, Flossie?"

"Ye--yes, I--I guess so."

"Hum! You're part of the Bobbsey twins, aren't you?" asked the old
woodchopper, who made a living by cutting firewood and kindling wood in
the forest, where he lived by himself in a lonely cabin all the year
around.

"Yes, we're the littlest ones," answered Flossie. "Bert and Nan are
bigger, but they fell off, too."

"So falling from an ice-boat doesn't go by sizes," laughed the old man.

Then, taking turns, Flossie and Freddie told the story of the runaway
ice-boat, and of having left the rest of their family several miles away
on the ice.

"We tried to stop, but we couldn't," said Flossie. "And, oh, dear! I
wonder where Daddy and Mother are now." Flossie spoke as though it would
not take much to make her cry.

"Don't worry," said Uncle Jack, as every one around Lakeport called him.
"If your father and mother don't come for you I'll take you home."

"It--it's a long way to walk," said Freddie with a sigh. "And I guess
Flossie is hungry. Aren't you?" he asked of his little sister.

"Well--a little," admitted the blue-eyed girl twin.

"How about you, little man?" asked Uncle Jack.

"I--I guess I am, too," Freddie admitted. "Have you got anything to eat?"

"Well, maybe we can find something in my cabin," said the old man. He had
left his axe sticking in a tree near where the ice-boat had run into the
snow bank, and was leading the children along by either hand. Flossie and
Freddie looked up into his kindly, wrinkled face, the cheeks glowing red
like two rosy apples, and they knew they would be well taken care of.
Uncle Jack was a fine, honest man, and he was always kind to children,
who, often in the Summer, would gather flowers near his lonely log cabin.

In a little while Flossie and Freddie were seated in front of a stove, in
which crackled a hot fire, eating bread and milk, which was the best the
woodchopper could offer them. But they were so hungry that, as Freddie
said afterward, it tasted better than chicken and ice-cream.

"Haven't you got any little girl?" asked Flossie after a while.

"No, I haven't a chick or a child, I'm sorry to say."

"My father would give you a chicken if you wanted it," said Freddie. "And
some days _we_ could come and stay with you."

"That last part would be all right," said the old man with a smile; "but I
haven't any place to keep a chicken. It would get lonesome, I'm afraid,
while I'm off in the forest chopping wood. But I thank you just the same."

"Didn't you ever have any children?" asked Flossie, taking a second glass
of milk which the kindly old man gave her.

"Never a one. Though when I was a boy I lived in a place where there were
two children, I think. But it's all kind of hazy."

"Where was that?" asked Freddie, brushing up the last of the bread crumbs
from his plate.

"I don't remember much about my folks. Most of my life has been spent
working on farmers' land, until I got so old I could not plow or cut hay.
Then the man who owns this forest said I might come here and chop
firewood, and I did. I built this cabin myself, and I've lived all alone
in it for many years."

This was so, for Jack had been in the woods from the time when Bert and
Nan were babies, so Flossie and Freddie had often heard their older
brother and sister say.

"Haven't you any folks?" asked Freddie.

"Well, I seem to remember that once I had a brother and a sister. But I
lost track of them, and they lost me, I guess; so where they are now, if
they're anywhere, I don't know. I'm all alone, I guess," and the
woodchopper's face was sad.

"Never mind! We'll come to see you," said Flossie, with a smile. "But now
maybe we'd better start home, Freddie. Papa and Mamma may be worried about
us."

"I'll take you home, if you've had enough to eat," said Uncle Jack.

"Oh, we've had plenty, thank you," said Freddie. "But it's a long way to
go home. If I could sail the ice-boat back----"

"I don't like that boat!" cried Flossie.

"How would you like to ride on a sled?" asked the woodchopper. "In a sled
drawn by a horse with jingling bells?"

"That would be _fine!_" cried Freddie, clapping his hands. "But where is
he--the horse, I mean?"

"Oh, out in my little stable. I built a small stable, as well as this
cabin, for I have to haul my wood into town to sell it. I'll get my
bobsled ready and tuck you in among the blankets that spilled from your
ice-boat. Then I'll drive you home."

Flossie and Freddie liked this plan, and were soon snugly tucked in among
their own robes, for the ice-boat had upset not far from the woodchopper's
cabin.

"Your folks will likely be worried about you," said Uncle Jack, "so I'll
get you home as fast as I can, though my horse isn't very speedy. He's
getting old, like myself."

"You don't _look_ old," said Flossie kindly.

"Well, I am. I'm old and full of pains and aches."

"Have you got a stomachache?" asked Flossie. "If you have my mother could
give you some peppermint."

"My pain is in my bones and back; peppermint isn't much good for that. I
guess I need to go to a hospital. But never mind me, I must look after you
children now."

Along through the snow jogged the woodcutter's horse, his bells jingling
as he hauled the sled over the road that led along the shore of the lake.

"What'll we do about Bert's ice-boat?" asked Flossie.

"I'll look after it until he comes for it," said Uncle Jack. "It isn't
damaged any, and it will be all right. Few folks come down to this end of
the lake in Winter. I have it all to myself."

"You must be lonesome," remarked Freddie.

"I am, sometimes. Often I wish I had folks, like other men. But it isn't
to be, I reckon. G'lang there, Bucksaw."

"Is that the name of your horse?"

"Yes. Bucksaw is his name. Pretty good for a woodchopper's horse, I
guess," and the old man smiled.

While Flossie and Freddie were being driven home by the woodchopper, Mr.
and Mrs. Bobbsey, with Bert and Nan, left far behind on the ice when the
_Bird_ upset, were much worried and excited.

"What can we do?" cried Bert.

"We must go after those children!" exclaimed Mrs. Bobbsey.

"That's what I'm going to do," Mr. Bobbsey remarked.

"If I could borrow one of those ice-boats over there," put in Bert,
pointing toward some on the other side of the lake, "I could sail down and
get them."

"No more ice-boats to-day!" said Mrs. Bobbsey. "Oh, I do hope nothing
happens to Flossie and Freddie!"

"I don't believe they'll be hurt," said their father. "Even if they fall
out they can't get much of a bump on the ice, and if they run ashore, as
they're likely to do, they'll only fall in the snow. Don't worry."

"But we _must_ go after them!" cried his wife.

"Just what I am going to do. Bert and I will go to shore, hire a team and
drive down the lake after them. The road runs right along the lake shore
and we'll be sure to see them, or hear something of them. They'll be all
right."

It did not take Mr. Bobbsey and Bert long to get started on the search for
the missing ones, for Flossie and Freddie in the ice-boat had sailed
around the point of land, as I told you, and were out of sight of their
folks.

Mrs. Bobbsey and Nan were taken home by some friends who happened to pass
the lake in their automobile, and half-way to the woodcutter's cabin,
though he had no idea the children had been there, Mr. Bobbsey and Bert
met them being driven to Lakeport by Uncle Jack.

"Oh, there's Daddy!" cried Freddie.

"And Bert!" added Flossie, as she saw her brother. "Your ice-boat's all
right," she added. "We just fell out of it."

"Are _you_ all right?" asked Mr. Bobbsey, stopping his horses.

"Fine!" cried Freddie. "And we had bread and milk."

"Well, I'm sure I'm much obliged to you, Uncle Jack," said the children's
father. "It was very kind of you."

Then Flossie and Freddie told their story, and the woodchopper told of
having seen them tossed into the snow and of how he helped them out, and
then Mr. Bobbsey told what had happened to him, the children's mother,
Bert and Nan.

"I just pulled on the wrong rope, that's all, and I guess I steered the
boat crooked," said Freddie with a laugh.

"You're lucky it was no worse," remarked Bert, laughing also. "But as long
as you two are all right, and the _Bird_ isn't damaged, I'm glad."

Mr. Bobbsey was also, and then he took the children into his sleigh,
driving home with them while Uncle Jack turned back.

"I like him," said Flossie, speaking of the old woodchopper to her father.
"He hasn't a chick or a child and he lives all alone in the woods."

"Yes, poor Uncle Jack doesn't have a very happy life," said Mr. Bobbsey.
"I must see what we can do to help him."

Little was talked of in the Bobbsey home that afternoon and evening but
the adventure with the ice-boat, and what had happened to Flossie and
Freddie when it ran away with them.

The next day Bert and Tommy Todd got the _Bird_ back and had fine times
sailing in it. Flossie and Freddie, as well as some of their friends, were
also given rides, but Bert cut the sail smaller so his boat would not go
so fast, making it safer.

When the Bobbsey twins were not ice-boating they were skating, or building
snow forts or snow men. Once Flossie and Freddie built a little snow house
and got inside it with Snoop, the black cat, and Snap, the dog.

Everything was very nice, but the house was so small that, when they were
all in it, there was not room for Snap to wag his tail. And as there never
was a dog yet, with a tail, who did not want to wag it, you can easily
guess what happened.

Either Snap wagged his tail in the faces of Flossie and Freddie or he
whacked Snoop with it, and as the cat did not like that she ran out of the
snow house.

But Snap kept on wagging his tail, and as Flossie and Freddie made him get
to one side when he did it the only other place he had to wag it was
against the sides of the snow house.

Now these snow sides were not very thick or strong--they were not made to
be wagged against by a big dog's tail, and, all of a sudden, Snap wagged
his tail right through the snow house.

Then, with a swish and a swush, down the snow house toppled right on the
heads of Flossie, Freddie and Snap. Snap gave a howl and dug his way out.
But the two small twins were laughing so hard that it took them a little
longer to dig their way out.

They were not hurt in the least, however, and they thought it great fun to
have the snow house fall on them when Snap's tail wagged too hard.

It was about a week after the funny ice-boat ride that Mr. Bobbsey came
home from his office a little earlier than usual. He was smiling, and when
his wife saw him she asked:

"Did it come?"

"Did what come?" asked Nan. "Are we going to have a new automobile,
Mother?"

"Not yet, Nan."

"Then what came?"

"Glorious news!" cried her father, catching her up and kissing her.
"Glorious news came in a letter. We are all going to a great city!"

"To live?"

"No, just on a visit," said Mrs. Bobbsey. "Oh, it is good news! I have
been wanting to go for a long while. Come in, Bert--and you too, Flossie
and Freddie--and hear the good news!" she called to the other twins.
"Daddy has glorious news for us!"




CHAPTER VI

ON TO NEW YORK


"Are we going?" cried Flossie, when she heard that the family was about to
make some sort of a journey.

"And can we take the ice-boat?" Freddie asked eagerly.

"Yes, of course you're going," said Mrs. Bobbsey.

"But no ice-boat," added Bert. "There's no chance to sail one in New York
City--and if there was we wouldn't have time."

"Oh, are we going to New York?" cried Flossie.

"Yes," her father nodded.

"Then I'm going to take my fire engine!" cried Freddie. "They have fires
in New York, don't they, Daddy?"

"Plenty of them, I think. And they have big engines there to put them
out--larger ones than we have in Lakeport. But now let's get quiet so I
can tell Mother and you the news."

Then, with the smaller twins cuddled up on his lap and Bert and Nan seated
near their mother, Mr. Bobbsey told the news. He was going to start a new
business, from which he hoped to make a great deal of money, and he had to
go to New York to see about it. The trip would take the best part of a day
from Lakeport, and Mr. Bobbsey would have to stay in the big city several
weeks.

He had long promised his wife that when the time came to go to New York he
would take her and the whole family with him, and that time had now come.

"When can we start?" Flossie inquired.

"To-night?" asked Freddie eagerly.

"Oh, indeed not!" laughed his mother. "It will take at least a week to get
ready, and perhaps longer. You children have to have some new clothes, and
Daddy has to look after his business here. I think we will close this
house, and Dinah and Sam can visit their friends."

"What about Snap and Snoop?" asked Flossie.

"Oh, let's take them!" begged Freddie.

"It would be no fun going to New York with pet cats and dogs," said Bert.
"They'd only be in the way or get lost."

"I wouldn't want either one of 'em to get lost," put in Flossie.

"Then we'll leave them with Dinah," said Mother Bobbsey, glad that that
part was over. Every time they went away it was always hard to get the
younger twins to consent to leave Snoop and Snap at Home.

"It will be great, going to New York!" cried Bert. "I want to see some of
the flying machines I've read about."

"And I want to see some of the lovely stylish dresses the girls wear as
they ride on Fifth Avenue," declared Nan. "Mother, do you think I could
have a _real_ dress from New York?" she asked in a whisper. "Not one
that's _too_ stylish, of course, but so I could say it came from New
York."

"I guess so," and Mrs. Bobbsey smiled. "But let's hear what Flossie and
Freddie most want to see in New York," and she looked at the two small
twins.

Flossie and Freddie thought for a moment, and then the blue-eyed boy,
shaking his flaxen curls, cried:

"I want to see a big fire, and watch the firemen put it out. But I hope
nobody gets hurt!"

"That last part is good, anyhow," said Mr. Bobbsey. "And how about my
little fat fairy?" and he playfully pinched Flossie's plump leg. "What do
you want to see?"

Flossie did not answer at once, but when she did she cried:

"A monkey!"

"A monkey?" repeated her father.

"Yes, the monkeys in the park. I read about them, and how they do such
funny tricks their cages. That's what I want to see--the monkeys in the
park."

"Oh, so do I!" cried Freddie. "Can I see the monkeys and a fire too?"

"Well, I guess so," answered his father. "But we will hope no big fires
will occur while we are in New York. As for monkeys, I guess there will be
plenty of them in the park."

The children were so excited, thinking about the trip to the great city
of New York, they could hardly sleep that night, even though they stayed
up later than usual.

And the next day a busy time began. Mrs. Bobbsey had to see to getting
ready the clothes for herself and the children. At this Nan helped some,
but Flossie and Freddie could not, for they were too small. Bert ran on a
number of errands for his father, before and after school, for the
children had their lessons to do even while getting ready for the trip.

Of course they could not go to school in New York very well, but Mr.
Bobbsey arranged with the teachers in Lakeport that the twins could make
up, when they came back, any lessons they should miss. And as Nan and Bert
were ahead of their class, and as Flossie and Freddie were only in the
"baby" grade, where they did not have hard lessons, as yet, staying from
school would do not great harm to any of them.

But at last all was ready for the start. The trunks and valises had been
packed, the children had said good-bye to their many friends and
playmates, Dinah and Sam had gone away and the dog and cat had been sent
to board near the cook's home until the Bobbseys should come back.

Mr. Bobbsey had left his business with his partner to look after, and Bert
had said Tommy Todd could sail the ice-boat as much as he pleased while
Bert was in New York.

"Well, I guess we're ready to start," said Mr. Bobbsey, when the house had
been locked and the big automobile that was to take them to the station
was puffing out in front. "All aboard!"

"This isn't the train, Daddy!" laughed Nan.

"No, but we'll soon be there," her father answered, "Come along."

Into the automobile they piled, parents, twins, baggage and all, and off
they started. On the way to the depot Flossie cried:

"Oh, there's Uncle Jack!" and the sled of the woodchopper was seen moving
slowly down the village street, with a load of logs piled high on it.

"Poor old man," murmured Mrs. Bobbsey, "Did you see if you could help him
in any way?" she asked her husband.

"Yes, I have arranged it so that Uncle Jack will have plenty of food this
Winter. He can keep warm, for he has a stove and can cut all the wood he
wants. I sent our doctor to see him. But Dr. Haydon thinks Uncle Jack
should go to a hospital."

"Then why don't you send him? He was so good to the children----"

"I know he was, but he won't go to the hospital. He says he knows it costs
money and he won't let me spend any on him. But when I come back from New
York I'll see what I can do. I think he'll be all right for a while, poor
old man."

Uncle Jack, sitting on top of his load of wood, saw the children in the
automobile and waved to them. The Bobbsey twins waved back.

"We must bring him something from New York," said Freddie.

"We could get him a little toy chick, and then he wouldn't be lonesome.
Maybe he'd like that," added Flossie.

Little did the two small Bobbsey twins think what they would help to bring
back from New York for the poor, old woodchopper.

The train for New York was on time, and soon the twins, each pair in one
seat, with Father and Mother Bobbsey behind them, were looking out of the
car windows, happy and joyous as they started on their journey.

They were on their way to the great city of New York.

I shall not tell you all that happened on the trip. It was not really
much, for by this time the twins had traveled so often that a railroad
train was an old story to them. But they never tired of looking out of the
windows.

On and on clicked the train, rushing through the snow-covered country, now
passing some small village, and again hurrying through a city.

Now and then the car would rattle through some big piece of woods, and
then Flossie and Freddie would remember how they were tossed out of the
ice-boat, and how they had been so kindly cared for by Uncle Jack in his
lonely log cabin.

It was late in the afternoon when, after a change of cars, the Bobbsey
family got aboard a Pennsylvania railroad train that took them over the
New Jersey meadows. They crossed two rivers and then Flossie and Freddie,
who were eagerly looking out of the windows, suddenly found themselves in
darkness.

"Oh, another tunnel!" cried Freddie.

"Is it, Daddy?" asked Flossie.

"Yes, it's a big tunnel under the Hudson River. In a little while you will
be in New York."

And not long afterward the train came to a stop. The children found
themselves down in a sort of big hole in the ground, for the Pennsylvania
trains come into the great Thirty-third Street station far below the
street.

Up the steps walked the Bobbsey family, red-capped porters carrying their
hand-baggage, and, a little later, Flossie, Freddie and the others stood
under the roof of the great station in New York. They were in the big
city, and many things were to happen to them before they saw Lakeport
again.




CHAPTER VII

ON THE EXPRESS TRAIN


Mr. Bobbsey wished to ask one of the railroad men in the big station some
questions about the trunks, and he also had to send a telegram, so, while
he was doing these things, he told his wife and children to sit down and
wait for him. Mrs. Bobbsey led Nan and Bert and Flossie and Freddie to one
of the many long benches in the large depot, but the two smaller twins
were so excited at being in such an immense place that they had not been
seated more than a few seconds before they jumped up to gaze all about
them. Bert and Nan, too, though older than their brother and sister, were
much astonished at what they saw.

"Why--why!" gasped Freddie, "it's bigger than our armory at home!" for in
Lakeport there was a big hall where the soldiers drilled.

"It's three times as big," said Flossie.

"Four!" declared Freddie. "Come on!" he called to his sister, "let's see
how long it takes to walk around it."

"Don't go too far away," said Mrs. Bobbsey, who, for the moment, did not
realize how really large the station was. "Don't get lost!" she went on.

"No'm, we won't!" promised Flossie and Freddie.

They started off to walk around the large depot, which, as you who have
seen it know, takes up a whole New York City block, or "square," as you
will say if you live near Philadelphia.

Mr. Bobbsey's business took him a little longer than he expected, but as
Bert and Nan begged to be allowed to buy a little candy at the newspaper
stand near them, and as Mrs. Bobbsey wanted a magazine, the getting of
these things took a little time, so the three did not notice how long Mr.
Bobbsey was away from them.

When he came back, having sent his message and found out what he wanted to
know, the twins' father asked:

"Where are Flossie and Freddie?"

"They're walking around, just seeing how big the station is," said Nan.

"Trying to find out how much larger it is than our armory at home," added
Bert with a laugh.

"Well, I hope they don't get lost," said Mr. Bobbsey, "This place is a
good deal larger than our armory. I'd better go to look for them," he went
on as a glance around, near the news stand, did not show the two little
ones anywhere in sight.

"I'll come with you," offered Bert.

"No, you'd better stay here with your mother," said his father. "I don't
want you getting lost, too." And he smiled at his son. "Stay right here.
I'll not be long."

But if Mr. Bobbsey thought he was going to find Flossie and Freddie soon
he was disappointed. He wandered about under the big glass roof, which at
first the two younger twins had taken for the sky; but he did not see
Flossie or Freddie.

"Has yo'all done lost suffin, boss?" inquired one of the colored porters.

"I'm looking for my two little children," explained Mr. Bobbsey. "They
wandered away from their mother."

"Oh, don't yo'all worry 'bout _dat_, boss! Chilluns gits lost heah ebery
day, an' we all easy find 'em ag'in."

"Oh, I'm not worried," answered Mr. Bobbsey, with a smile. "But it is time
for us to go, and I want them. Did you see them--two little ones--about so
high," and he held his hand a short distance above the stone floor. "They
have light hair and blue eyes."

The porter thought for a moment. Then he said:

"Well, to tell yo' de truff, boss, we has about seben hundred blue-eyed
an' light-haired chilluns in heah ebery day, and we has de same number ob
dark ones, so it's mighty hard t' 'member 'em all."

"Yes, I suppose so. Well, I'll walk about I dare say I shall find them."

"I'll tell some ob de udder men," offered the porter. "We often has t'
pick up lost little ones an' take 'em to de waitin' room. Ef yo' doan't
find yo' tots yo'se'f, stop in dere."

"I will," said Mr. Bobbsey, and he was about to walk on when the porter
called to him:

"Heah comes a light-haired, blue-eyed gal now, an' she's runnin' like
she's in a hurry. Maybe she's yo'rs."

Mr. Bobbsey looked up in time to see Flossie running toward him from the
front part of the station. She seemed much excited, and when she neared
her father she called:

"Oh, Daddy! guess what happened!"

"I'm afraid I haven't time," said Mr. Bobbsey quickly, "We must hurry
away. Where is Freddie?"

"That's what I mean! Guess what happened to him," went on Flossie, who was
rather out of breath.

"I can't," said Mr. Bobbsey. "Tell me quickly, Flossie. Is he hurt?"

"Oh, no; he's all right. But he's gone off down the street, and he went
into a store where there was a lot of bugs in the window, and he says he's
going to buy some. I want some bugs, too!"

"What in the world is she talking about?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey, who from
where she sat had seen her husband and little girl and had hurried on to
join them.

"She says Freddie went down the street," explained Mr. Bobbsey, "and that
he----"

"Yep! He went in a store with a lot of bugs in the window!" said Flossie
again. "They're great big bugs and they walk around and around and
around!" and she shook her flaxen head as hard as she could, as she often
did when excited.

"What in the world do you mean?" asked Nan, who, with Bert, now joined
their father.

"Freddie must have gone outside the depot to go down a street," said Bert.
"Maybe she means he went into an animal store, where they sell monkeys and
parrots."

"No, they weren't any monkeys--nor parrots, either," said Flossie. "But
some of the big bugs were green like a parrot. And we didn't go outdoors,
either."

"Then show us where you did go," ordered Mr. Bobbsey quickly. "I think we
can find Freddie that way. Did you go into the store with him?" he asked
his little girl.

"Nope. I ran back to get the money to buy the bugs that crawl around and
around and around, and go in a little door all by theirselves!" said
Flossie, who was not breathing so fast now.

"What is it all about?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey. "We seem to have found a queer
part of New York as soon as we arrive."

"It's over this way," and Flossie, taking her father's hand, pulled him in
the direction from which she had come. Up a flight of broad stone steps
she led him, the others following, until, as they approached the main
entrance of the station, Flossie pointed and said:

"There's the street with all the stores on it. Freddie went down there,
and we stopped in front of a window where the bugs are, that go around and
around and----"

"Yes, dear, we know all about how they go around," said her mother, with a
smile. "But show us where Freddie is."

"Just down the street," said Flossie. "Come on."

"Oh, I see what she means!" exclaimed Mr. Bobbsey. "It's the arcade. This
is part of the depot--the vestibule, so to speak," he went on. "It's the
entrance, and it is so big that there is room for stores on either side.
It does look like a street."

And so it did, except that there were no automobiles or wagons in it--just
people hurrying along. On either side of the arcade were stores, where
fruit, candy, toys, flowers and other things were sold. You can imagine
that a station which has room in it for many trains, automobiles and
thousands of people easily has room for stores also.

"Come on--right down this way!" called Flossie, hurrying ahead of the
others, "I'll show you where the bugs are."

"The bugs that go around and around and around," laughed Bert, in a low
tone to Nan.

"Oh, I do hope Freddie hasn't gotten into any trouble," sighed Nan, who,
though she was only ten years old, felt much more grown up than either
Flossie or Freddie.

"Here are the bugs!" cried Flossie, a little later, and she stopped in
front of a station toy store, in the window of which a young man was
showing how big tin bugs would move along on a spring roller that was
fastened beneath them. There were green, red, yellow and spotted bugs,
and they did indeed go "around and around and around," as Flossie had
said, and some of them steered themselves, when started by the young man,
into the door of a little pasteboard house, where all the toy tin bugs
seemed to live.

"There's Freddie now, buying a bug!" cried Flossie, as she saw through the
store door her brother talking to a clerk. And the clerk was showing
Freddie how the bug "walked" on the wooden roller which answered for legs.

"I want a bug, too!" Flossie cried, and into the store dashed the little
girl. "I've brought back Papa and Mamma and Bert and Nan," Flossie
explained to her brother. "They all want to see the bugs."

"Well!" exclaimed the man in the store. "This is going to be a busy day
for me, I guess," and he smiled at the Bobbsey family.

"Can I have three of these bugs, Daddy?" asked Freddie, just as if he had
caused no trouble at all by going off as he had done.

"I want three, too," echoed Flossie.

"Oh, what funny looking things!" cried Mrs. Bobbsey, as the clerk sent
the bugs crawling "around and around."

"They are very amusing," said the salesman, "and just the thing for
children. They can play many games with them and keep out of mischief."

"They'll have to be pretty good to keep _these_ youngsters out of
mischief," said Mr. Bobbsey, with a smile. "Yes, Freddie, you may have
some bugs, and Flossie also. How about you, Nan and Bert?"

"I'd rather have that small aeroplane," said Bert, pointing to one that
could be wound up with a rubber band and would fly for some distance.

"And I'd like that work basket," said Nan.

"Well, we'll get you all something, and then we must start for our hotel,"
said Mr. Bobbsey. "Come, Freddie, pick out the bugs you want, and don't
run away again. You might get lost, even if you are only in the railroad
station."

"I couldn't get lost--Flossie knew where I was," said Freddie. "I sent her
back to bring you, so you could pay for my bugs."

Then the two younger Bobbseys looked over about all the toy tin bugs in
the station store, and finally picked out those they wanted, though it
took some little time. Bert's and Nan's gifts were wrapped up long before
Freddie could make up his mind whether to take a blue bug, striped with
green, or a purple one, spotted with yellow, finally making up his mind
that the last was best.

Then, after all the baggage had been collected, the family was ready to
start for the hotel where they were to stay while in New York. Mr. Bobbsey
wanted to get a taxicab, but Flossie and Freddie had heard of the elevated
trains, which ran "in the air," and they wanted to go in one of them,
saying it would be such fun. So, as it was almost as near one way as it
was the other, Mr. Bobbsey consented, and they set off for the elevated
railroad.

"Oh, there goes a train!" cried Flossie, as they came in sight of the
station, which was high above the street, set on iron pillars, some of
which also held up the elevated track. "Just think, Freddie, we're going
to ride on a high train!" Flossie was quite excited.

"I hope it doesn't fall," said Nan.

"They're made strong on purpose, so they won't fall," said Bert.

Flossie and Freddie ran on ahead up the elevated stairs, and just as their
father was buying the tickets, to drop in the little box where the
"chopper" stood, working up and down a long handle, a train rumbled into
the station.

The iron gates of the car platforms were pulled back, several persons
hurried off and others hurried on. Flossie and Freddie, thinking this was
the train their parents, Bert and Nan, were going to take, and, being
anxious to get seats near the window where they could look out, rushed
past the ticket chopper, darted through the open gates and into one of the
cars.




CHAPTER VIII

A LONG RIDE


Flossie and Freddie, scurrying through the gates of the elevated car just
as the guard was about to close them, saw inside two rows of seats on
either side, there being very few passengers in that coach. Thinking their
father and mother, with Bert and Nan, were right behind them, the two
little twins felt no fear, but rushed in, each one anxious to get a seat.

"I'm going to sit by a window!" cried Freddie.

"So'm I!" added Flossie, and both were soon kneeling on the rattan seats,
with their noses fairly flattened against the glass of the window. The few
passengers in the train smiled, for they knew the children must be from
somewhere outside of New York, as the little folk of that city are not so
eager to see the sights amid which they live.

It was not until the train had started, and had gone several blocks, that
Flossie and Freddie thought of their father and mother. They were greatly
interested in looking out of the windows, and watching the train rush past
at the level of the upper stories of the houses and stores along the
streets. It did seem so queer to them to be riding in a train high up in
the air, instead of on the ground.

"It's lots better than a tunnel, and I used to think they were lots of
fun!" said Flossie, fairly bubbling over with joy.

"It's great!" cried Freddie, and he flattened his nose out more than ever
against the glass, trying to look around a corner. For he had seen in one
window of a house a boy dropping from the window of his home a basket on a
string, and Freddie wanted to see why he was doing this.

It is no unusual sight in New York, to see children, not much larger than
the small Bobbsey twins, traveling about alone, so the other passengers
and the trainmen, after the first few smiles, paid no attention to Flossie
and Freddie. But the two themselves, after their first wonder at the
sights they saw, began to think of their father and mother, as well as of
Bert and Nan.

"Where are they?" asked Flossie, after a bit, as she turned around and sat
down in her seat.

"Didn't they--didn't they come in after us?" asked Freddie, his chubby
face taking on a worried look.

"I--I didn't see them," returned Flossie. "Maybe they're in another car.
Let's go to look!"

To say a thing was generally to do it, with the smaller Bobbsey twins, at
least, and no sooner did Flossie say this than Freddie was ready to go
with her on a hunt for the others. The children slipped from their seats
and started for the door while the train was moving swiftly, but a guard,
who is a sort of brake-man, stopped them.

"Where are you youngsters going?" he asked good-naturedly.

"We want our father and mother," explained Freddie. "They must be in
another car. We hurried on ahead."

"Well, it wouldn't be the first time that has happened," said the guard,
with a laugh. "But I guess you're a little too small to go navigating
around from car to car when the train's moving. What's your father's name?
I'll have him called out for in the other cars."

"He's Mr. Richard Bobbsey, of Lakeport," said Flossie, "and my mother and
sister and brother are with him. My sister is Nan and my brother is Bert.
This is my brother, Freddie."

"Well, now I guess I know the whole family," laughed the guard, the other
passengers joining in a smile. "I'll see if I can find your folks for you,
though it's queer they haven't been looking for you themselves. You stay
here."

The guard started to go through the other cars of the elevated train, and
Freddie called after him:

"If you find my father, please tell him to open the box and take out the
yellow bug."

"The yellow bug?" repeated the guard in some surprise. "Is your father an
animal trainer?"

"Oh, no," said Flossie, seriously. "Freddie means one of the tin bugs
that go around and around and around. And, if you please, I want a green
one."

"Say, I wonder what kind of children these are, anyhow," murmured the
guard. "Guess they must belong to a theatre or a circus."

"They look nice," said a man sitting near the door.

"Oh, they're all _right_, that's sure. Well, I'll see if I can find their
folks for 'em."

Elevated railroad men in New York get used to doing queer things, and
seeing strange sights, so it did not cause much excitement when the guard
went into the different cars calling for Mr. Bobbsey. He had to come back
to his own car once to call out "Forty-second Street," and to open the
gates to let passengers off and others on. Then he closed the gates and
called out: "Fiftieth Street next," After that he went again into the cars
he had not been in before and called for Mr. Bobbsey, But of course that
gentleman did not answer, being a station or two behind by this time.

[Illustration: "WHERE ARE YOU YOUNGSTERS GOING?"

_The Bobbsey Twins in a Great City. Page_ 82]

The guard, not being able to find Mr. or Mrs. Bobbsey, or Nan and Bert,
came back to where Flossie and Freddie were now rather anxiously
waiting.

"Did you find him?" asked the children eagerly.

"No, I'm sorry to say your father isn't on this train. But don't worry.
I'll look out for you, and your father is sure to come for you sooner or
later."

"Did you find any of the bugs?" asked Freddie.

"That go around and around and around," added Flossie.

"No," said the guard, laughing, "I didn't. What about them?"

Freddie explained what he meant, and asked if the train could not be
stopped while he went into the nearest toy store to buy some more of the
tin, crawling toys. But the guard said this could not be done.

"I don't just know what to do with you," he said, scratching his head. "If
your father thought, he could telephone to any of the stations where our
train will stop--this is an express train and does not make many stops
after Sixty-sixth Street till the end of the line. He could have the
agent there take you off and keep you until he could come. Or, I might
take you to One Hundred and Fifty-fifth Street, which is the end of the
line, and have the agent there take charge of you. I don't know what to
do."

Just then Flossie thought of something:

"Oh, Freddie!" she cried. "We haven't any tickets or any money, unless you
have some, and the conductor will put us off!"

"I've got five cents," said Freddie, taking it out of his small pocket.

"That's only enough for a street-car ride, and this is the elevated
railroad," replied his blue-eyed sister. "Oh, what shall we do?" And there
was just a little tear in each eye as she looked at the guard.

"What's the matter now?" he asked kindly. "Do you want a bug?"

"No--I mean yes, but not now. We haven't any tickets and the
conductor----"

"Didn't you drop your tickets in the chopper's box at the station where
you got on?"

"No. We ran on ahead," explained Freddie.

"Ho! I see! You were so small that the ticket chopper didn't see you.
Well, don't worry--it will be all right. The road won't lose much by
carrying you two."

"You could send the bill to my father," said Flossie. "That's what mother
says when she goes to buy things at the store."

"That will be all right," the guard said. "I'll see that you're not put
off until the proper time comes. And you save your five cents," he added
to Freddie, who was holding up the nickel. "You might want to buy some
peanuts."

"Oh, that's so--for the monkeys in the park!" cried Freddie. "I forgot we
were going to see them!"

By this time some of the other passengers were interested in the children,
asking them many questions and learning the story of their coming to New
York on a visit.

"They don't seem worried," said one woman. "And they're quite lost in this
big city."

"Oh, we've been lost before," said Flossie easily. "Lots of times!"

"In the woods, too," added Freddie. "And we heard funny noises. But we
weren't scared. Were we, Flossie?"

"Nope. We'll just keep on riding now until Daddy comes for us. It's fun, I
think."

"And we don't have to pay for it, either," said Freddie, with
satisfaction, as he put away his only piece of money. "I'm going to save
this for peanuts for the monkeys."

"Will you save some for me?" asked Flossie. "I'm getting hungry."

"Maybe we'll eat these peanuts all ourselves," said Freddie, after
thinking about it for a moment. "We can get some for the monkeys later
afterward. I'm hungry, too."

"Well, you've got quite a long trip ahead of you," said the guard in whose
car they were. "It's quite a ride to One Hundred and Fifty-fifth Street.
I'll ask the gateman at the next stop if your father has telephoned about
you. Just sit still."

And so Flossie and Freddie, in the elevated express train, were having a
long ride all by themselves. They were not frightened now, for they were
sure their father or mother would come for them soon, as he had done the
day they were spilled out of the ice-boat and were taken in by Uncle Jack.

"I wonder what that nice woodchopper man is doing now?" asked Flossie.
"Uncle Jack, I mean."

"I hope his pain is better," said Freddie. "Maybe we could get him work
here on the elevated railroad, chopping tickets at the station." When
people drop their tickets into the glass boxes at the elevated or subway
stations they are "chopped" into fine pieces by the men who pump the
handles up and down. "Uncle Jack chops wood," went on Freddie, "and he
could easy chop tickets."

So Flossie and Freddie kept on with their long ride, talking and looking
out of the train windows.




CHAPTER IX

IN THE STORE


Mr. Bobbsey bought his tickets, put his change in his pocket, and turned
to gather his little party together to take them through the gate, past
the ticket chopper.

"Why, where are Freddie and Flossie?" he asked.

Mrs. Bobbsey, Nan, Bert, none of them, had seen the little twins rush past
the ticket chopper and on to the train. All began to turn here and there
excitedly, looking about for the blue-eyed boy and girl.

"Now, now," said Mr. Bobbsey, "don't worry. You, Bert, and your mother and
Nan will wait here at the head of the stairs, while I go down to the
street and see if the children went down there again. I'll not be gone
long. If they are not close at hand, I'll come back to you before making
further search. Now, as I said, don't worry. In a city children are
always quickly found."

Mr. Bobbsey did as he said, but, of course, saw nothing of Freddie and
Flossie, who were now having a very nice ride and a very good time indeed
on the elevated express train.

By this time the ticket chopper, the agent who sold tickets, the station
porter and several persons who were waiting to take a train, had heard
from Nan and Bert what had happened. These people offered all sorts of
advice, but Mr. Bobbsey thought it best to listen to that of the ticket
agent, who, of course, would know more about the elevated trains than
persons who only rode on them two or three times a day.

The ticket chopper had seen the children rush by him and on to the train,
but they had gone by so quickly that he had not been able to stop them,
and, as there were a good many people on the platform, he did not know to
whom they belonged. So he told the ticket seller and Mr. Bobbsey that
Flossie and Freddie had taken the last express train that had passed the
station.

"It would have been easy enough to stop them if you'd only known it at
first," said the ticket seller; "but they've got the start of you now, and
after Sixty-sixth Street these express trains make only a few stops before
they reach the end of the line. But I can telephone to one of the ticket
sellers at one of the uptown stations and have him meet the train and take
the children off."

"What will he do with them?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey.

"Oh, he'll keep 'em safe till you folks get there. The trains run pretty
close together at this hour of the day. Your husband can get uptown after
'em so quick that they won't have to wait long."

"What shall we do?" asked Bert.

"We will all go on together," answered his father. "I wish we had taken an
automobile to go to the hotel, and then this would not have happened. But
Flossie and Freddie would have been disappointed if they had not had the
first ride in an elevated train. However, I'm sure it will all come out
right."

The ticket agent went into his little office to telephone on ahead, and
have Flossie and Freddie taken from the train and held until their parents
could claim them. Meanwhile Mr. Bobbsey and the others waited until this
was done before getting on the train that was to take them far uptown in
New York.

Something was the matter with the telephone in the first station which the
ticket seller called up. He could not get the agent there to talk to him
over the wire until the train in which Flossie and Freddie were riding,
had whizzed on, after making a short stop.

"Well, I'll catch them at the next station where the train stops," the
agent said. This time he managed to get in touch with the agent there, but
when the latter understood, and ran out to hail the train, it was already
in motion and could not be stopped.

"Well, the third time is always lucky," said the ticket seller who had
offered to do what he could to help Mr. Bobbsey. "I'll be sure to catch
them now."

He talked over the telephone to another agent and this one answered back
that the train was just then pulling out of his station.

"But I'll yell at one of the guards," this agent called into the telephone
instrument, "and tell him to put the children off at the next stop. I'll
do that," and he rushed out to try to call to one of the trainmen.

"That will be One Hundred and Twenty-fifth Street," said the first agent,
as he came out of his little office. "That's the best I can do. Your two
little children will be put off the train when it makes the stop there,
and the ticket agent will look after them until you get there. You can
wait for the next express, or you can take a local train here and change
to the express at Sixty-sixth Street."

When the next train came along, they got on, eager and anxious to catch up
to the missing children. In order not to be bothered with the
hand-baggage, Mr. Bobbsey had called a taxicab and had had the chauffeur
take it to the hotel were they were to stop, which was an uptown hotel,
near enough to Central Park for Flossie and Freddie to walk over to see
the monkeys as often as they wished.

Meanwhile the two runaway children--who really did not mean to run
away--were in the express train speeding along. After their first
surprise at finding themselves alone, they were not frightened, but
continued to look out of the windows and to wonder at the many sights they
saw.

"Well, we'll be at the end of this run some time," said the guard, who had
been talking with Flossie and Freddie.

"What will you do with us then?" the little boy asked.

"Turn you over to the agent, unless we have some other word about you,"
the trainman answered. "Wait, we're going to stop here, and there may be a
message." He hurried out on the platform.

As the train was leaving that station Flossie and Freddie saw the ticket
agent run out, waving his hand, and they heard him shout something to
their guard. When the latter came into their car again he said to Flossie
and Freddie:

"That message was about you two. The agent said two lost children were on
this train and that they were to be put off at the next station and left
until their father came for them. You're the only lost children I know
of."

"And we're not lost so _very_ much," said Flossie slowly. "'Cause _we_ are
here. It's Daddy and the rest who are lost."

"Well, they'll soon be along--coming on the next train," said the guard.
"I'll turn you over to the agent at One Hundred and Twenty-fifth Street
and you'll be all right."

This was done. The train came to a stop; many passengers got off and a
kind woman took Flossie and Freddie in charge and saw that they got inside
the elevated station, where the agent, who had been telephoned to, knew
about them and was expecting them.

"Now, just sit right down here and be comfortable," the agent said to the
Bobbsey twins. "You'll be all right, and your folks will soon come for
you. I have to sit in the office and sell tickets."

The kind woman called a good-bye to the children and went away; so Flossie
and Freddie were left by themselves in the elevated railroad station at
One Hundred and Twenty-fifth Street.

For a while they sat quietly, watching the people come in to buy tickets
or get off trains. The agent did not pay much attention to them, being
very busy, for it was toward the close of day when the rush was like the
morning, greater than at other times.

"Say! What's that?" suddenly asked Flossie, holding up her chubby hand to
tell Freddie to stop whistling, which he was trying to do.

"What's what?" he asked, looking at his sister.

"I hear music," went on Flossie.

"So do I!" exclaimed Freddie.

They both listened, and from somewhere outside they heard the sound again.

"It's a hand organ!" cried Flossie.

"No, it's a hand _piano!_" said Freddie. "Hear how jiggily the tune is."

"Well, it's the same thing," Flossie insisted, "I wonder if there's a
monkey with it."

"Let's go downstairs and see," proposed Freddie.

Once Flossie or Freddie made up their minds to do a thing it was almost as
good as done--that is, if it were not too hard. This time It seemed easy
to do. They looked toward the little office in which the ticket seller had
shut himself. He was busy selling tickets.

"He'll not see us," whispered Freddie. "Besides, we're coming right back
as soon as we see the monkey."

"And we'll give him some peanuts," added Flossie. "You can buy some with
your five cents, Freddie. And we won't give them _all_ to the monkey. I
want some."

"So do I. Come on, we'll go down."

The agent seemed to have forgotten them. At any rate his door was closed
and he could not see them. None of the passengers, hurrying in to buy
tickets, paid any attention to the Bobbsey twins. So, hand in hand,
Flossie and Freddie went out of the station, and down the long stairs to
where they could hear the music of the hand piano.

It was being played by an Italian man in the street, almost under the
elevated station, and, as Flossie leaned over the stair railing to look
down, she cried out:

"Oh, there is a monkey, Freddie! The man has it on a string!"

"That's good. Do you see peanuts anywhere?"

"Yes, there are some at that stand near the bottom of the stairs. Don't
lose your five cents!"

"I won't!"

Freddie hurried down with Flossie. He bought a bag of peanuts, and the
children hastened across the street to where a little crowd of boys and
girls stood in front of the hurdy-gurdy, or hand piano, listening to the
music and watching the monkey. This will draw a crowd, even in New York,
where there are many more and stranger sights to be seen.

"Oh, isn't he cute!" cried Flossie, tapping her feet on the sidewalk in
time to the music.

"He's coming over this way," said Freddie. "I'm going to give him a
peanut."

"But don't let him get the whole bag."

"I won't. Here, Jacko! Have a peanut!" and Freddie held out one to the
hurdy-gurdy monkey.

The long-tailed animal lost no time in making a grab for it, and soon he
was chewing it hungrily. The man grinding out the music shook the cord
which was fast to a collar around the monkey's neck. What the street piano
man wanted was pennies and five-cent pieces put in the monkey's red cap.
Peanuts were good for Jacko, but money was better for his master.

The monkey well knew what the jerks meant on the cord around his neck.
They meant that he must scramble around in the crowd and hold out his cap
for pennies. The monkey would much rather have eaten peanuts, but even
monkeys can not do as they like in this world.

So, with a chattering sound, and with another look at Freddie, who tossed
him a peanut, the monkey, catching the dainty in one paw, started to try
to collect some money.

But he must have been a hungry little monkey, for, when he looked at
Flossie, and saw on her hat what he thought were red cherries, that monkey
made up his mind to get some of them if he could. Though the cherries were
made of celluloid, they looked very real, and they might have fooled even
a boy or a girl, to say nothing of a monkey.

So with a quick bound Jacko--which seems to be the name of all those
long-tailed chaps--was perched on Flossie's shoulder, tearing at her hat
with two paws, trying to pull off what he thought were ripe, red cherries.

"Oh! Oh!" screamed Flossie. "Oh, stop!"

"Wait till I get hold of him!" cried Freddie.

"Come away! Come away froma de littlea gal!" yelled the piano Italian.
Some in the crowd laughed and others screamed.

The monkey kept pulling and tearing at Flossie's hat until he had pulled
it from her head and then, jumping down off her shoulder to the ground,
the animal crouched under the piano and began pulling off the red
cherries. But one bite told him they were not real, and then, perhaps
frightened at what he had done and fearing he would be punished, the
monkey tried to run away.

But he was held by the string on his collar, and the Italian, perhaps
afraid that he would be made to pay for Flossie's hat, which his monkey
had torn to pieces, pulled Jacko to him, perched him on his shoulder and
hurried away, wheeling the street piano.

"Oh, Freddie! Freddie! What shall I do?" cried Flossie, as she looked at
her sadly torn hat.

"It's a shame," said a woman in the crowd.

"You'll need a new hat, little girl," said another woman.

That gave Freddie an idea. If his sister needed a new hat he was the one
to help her get it. He looked up and down the street. Across the way was a
large drygoods store, in one of the windows of which were many hats and
other things for girls and ladies to wear.

"Come on, Flossie!" cried Freddie, clasping her hand. "I'll take you
there."

"Where?" she asked. Tears had come into her eyes when the monkey tore her
nice, new hat. But she did not really cry. "Where are you going to take
me, Freddie?" she asked.

"Over to that big store; and we'll buy a new hat for you," said the little
fellow. "Then we'll go back to the station and wait for Daddy and the
rest. Come on. I'll get you a new hat."

Flossie wondered how Freddie was going to do it, but she did not ask.
Leaving the torn hat in the street, she went with her brother. He led the
way into the big store, which, though it was not one of the large ones of
New York, was much bigger than any in Lakeport.

"Well, little ones, what can I do for you?" asked one of the tall men in
the store, as Flossie and Freddie strolled in. "Are you with your
parents?"

"No, sir, we're all alone," spoke up Freddie. "We were lost on an express
train, but we're waiting for my father and mother and Bert and Nan. But a
monkey chewed up Flossie's hat and I want a new one for her. You sell
hats, don't you?"




CHAPTER X

LOST UNDERGROUND


Flossie and Freddie looked up at the tall man, who smiled kindly down at
them. He seemed to be laughing at something, though whether it was
Flossie's flaxen hair, now rather tangled because the monkey had pulled
off her hat, or because Freddie looked so funny asking his question, the
children could not tell.

"So you want a hat for the little girl?" asked the floorwalker, as the man
was called. He walked up and down in the store to see that the clerks
waited properly on the customers, and he told strangers where to go.

"Flossie wants a hat," went on Freddie. "The monkey ate the cherries off
hers."

"No; he didn't really _eat_ them," Flossie explained, anxious to have
everything just right. "He _tried_ to chew 'em, but he didn't like 'em.
Anyhow, my hat's gone!"

"What kind of a hat did you want?" asked the store man, not quite sure how
to treat the children.

"One with feathers on," suggested Freddie.

"No, I want one with flowers on!" insisted Flossie.

"How much did you want to pay?" asked the man, shaking his head in a
puzzled way.

"My father will pay," replied Freddie, "You just send the bill to him--Mr.
Richard Bobbsey, of Lakeport. He has a lumber mill and----"

"What seems to be the trouble?" broke in a new voice, and the two
children, as well as the floorwalker, turned to see standing near them a
stout man, with gray hair, who was smiling kindly at them.

"Oh, Mr. Whipple!" exclaimed the tall man, glad to have some one else to
help him. "I don't know what to do about these children. They want a hat
for the little girl, and----"

"It's because a monkey ate Flossie's hat!" broke in Freddie. "We're lost.
We were on an express train, but we got off and we heard music and please
charge it to our father--charge the hat, I mean, not the music, for we
didn't pay anything for that. Did we Flossie?"

"No; but I'm not going to have a hat with feathers on. I want one with
flowers on, and I wish mamma was here--or Nan--to help pick it out."

"I'll help you," offered Freddie kindly.

"I guess you had better come with me," said the stout man, who, as the
children learned afterward was Mr. Daniel Whipple, owner of the big store
into which Flossie and Freddie had wandered. "I'll take you up to my
office," Mr. Whipple went on, "and you can tell me about yourselves. I'll
try to find your folks for you."

"And can I get a hat?" asked Flossie.

"Yes, I think so," the store owner answered. "Send one of the clerks from
the children's hat department to my office with some hats that will do for
this little girl," he went on, and the floorwalker said he would.

"We'll be all right now, Flossie," said Freddie, as they followed their
new friend. In a little while Flossie was fitted with just the hat she
wanted, and Mr. Whipple was listening to the story told in turn by the two
children.

"Your father is probably on his way up to get you now," said Mr. Whipple.
"He'll expect to find you in the elevated station, but you will not be
there. I'll send one of my clerks over to tell the agent you are here, and
to send your father over when he comes. But I think I'll keep you two tots
here, because----"

"We might get lost again--we get lost lots of times," said Freddie with a
smile. "It's nice here. I like it!" and, very much at home, he looked
around the office of the store owner. It was almost closing time, and Mr.
Whipple was wondering whether in case the children's father did not come
it would not be better to take them to his own home, when the clerk came
back from the elevated station with Mr. Bobbsey himself.

"Oh, Daddy!" cried Flossie and Freddie.

"Well, you two certainly gave me a fine chase!" exclaimed Mr. Bobbsey,
with a smile, hugging his "little fat fireman" and his "fat fairy," one
after the other. "Where in the world have you been?"

"Oh, we heard a hand organ and we went to look at the monkey and it chewed
Flossie's hat and we're here!" gasped Freddie, all in one breath.

"And I got a new hat, and you'll please pay for it, Daddy," added Flossie.
"And did you bring my bugs--the ones that go around and around and
around?" she asked.

"Yes, Flossie, I have them. But what's all this about a hat?"

"I bought her a new one," explained Freddie, "but I didn't have any money
to pay for it, so we charged it."

"The little girl seemed to need one, Mr. Bobbsey," said the store owner.

"Oh, that will be all right, I'm glad to pay for it, Mr.--er----"

"Whipple is my name," said the store man. "Daniel Whipple."

"Whipple!" exclaimed Mr. Bobbsey, and a thoughtful look came over his
face. "Daniel Whipple," and he seemed to be trying to think of something
he had heard a long while before.

"Yes; you may have seen it in my advertisements. I advertise in the
papers every day."

"Ah, yes, I presume so," said Mr. Bobbsey. "Thank you very much, Mr.
Whipple, for looking after the children for me. I reached the One Hundred
and Twenty-fifth Street elevated station a little while ago, and the
ticket agent there was very much excited because the children had slipped
out while he was in his office.

"We were just trying to think where they could have gone, when your clerk
came up to say they were here. Now I'll take them to their mother, who is
quite anxious about them."

"I can well believe she is," said Mr. Whipple. "Come and see me again," he
invited Flossie and Freddie, who, after their father had paid for the new
hat, went away with him.

A little later they were safe in the hotel where the Bobbsey family was to
live while in New York. Mrs. Bobbsey, Bert and Nan were already there, and
quite glad to see the two runaways, you may be sure.

"What a lot of adventures you must have had!" cried Nan, when Flossie and
Freddie had told her a few of the things that had happened.

"We did!" laughed Freddie. "You ought to have seen that monkey's face when
he bit on those make-believe cherries on Flossie's hat!" and Freddie
laughed loudly.

"Anyhow I got a new hat!"

"That Mr. Whipple was a fine man," said Freddie.

"Indeed he must be," agreed Mrs. Bobbsey, and then, seeing a strange look
on her husband's face, she asked:

"What is the matter? Are you worried?"

"No, but I am trying to remember where I have heard that name before. But
so much has happened to-day that I can't recall it."

It had been indeed, a full day since the Bobbsey twins had left their home
in Lakeport that morning, and Mrs. Bobbsey insisted on Flossie and
Freddie, at least, going to bed early. This the small twins were glad
enough to do, after they had told Nan and Bert the different things that
had happened after they got on the express train.

"It was an awful splendid store," said Flossie, in speaking about Mr.
Whipple's establishment.

"Bigger'n any store in Lakeport," added her twin.

"And the nicest clerks that ever was," went on Flossie. "Why, one of 'em
had a whole counter full of cologne, and she squirted some on me when I
went past, and it smelled awful good!"

After breakfast the next morning, when Mr. Bobbsey had finished sending
some telegrams and telephone messages, he asked the children what they
first wanted to see in New York.

"The monkeys!" cried Flossie and Freddie.

"I want to go on Fifth avenue and see the lovely shops and stores," said
Nan.

"And I want to go to the history museum and see the stuffed animals and
the model of a whale," said Bert, who had been reading of this.

"Well, how would you like to go and see some live fish?" asked Mr.
Bobbsey. "That ought to satisfy all of you, and Nan can see some stores on
the way to the Aquarium. I have to go downtown in New York," he said to
his wife, "and I can take the children to the Aquarium at the Battery as
well as not."

"All right," said Mrs. Bobbsey. "If you'll do that I'll stay here and
rest. Afternoon will do for me to go out. Now mind, Flossie and Freddie,
don't get lost again!"

The small twins promised they would not and soon all four were on their
way downtown with their father. This time they went in the subway, or
underground road, which, as Freddie said, was like one big, long tunnel.

"We'll get out at the Brooklyn Bridge or City Hall Park," said Mr.
Bobbsey. "I have to see a man in the City Hall, and from there we can walk
to the Battery, as it is a nice day. Or we can ride, if you get too
tired."

The children were sure they would not get too tired, and a little later
they all got out at the subway station at Brooklyn Bridge.

There were many persons hurrying to and fro, trains coming in and going
out, and lights all over, making the children think it was night, though
it was in the morning.

"Wait here just a minute," said Mr. Bobbsey, showing the twins a less
crowded place where they could stay. "I want to get a magazine over at the
news-stand," he added.

The magazine he wanted had been put away under a pile of papers, and as
the boy was getting it out Flossie caught sight, down the platform, of a
man pasting up on the advertising boards in the underground station, some
new posters.

"Oh, maybe it's signs about a circus, Freddie!" cried the little girl
"Come on and watch!"

Freddie was always ready to go, and he had darted off after his sister
down the long platform before Bert and Nan saw them. When the two older
children missed the younger twins they looked hurriedly about for them.

"There they are--watching that bill-poster," said Bert. For the
underground subway stations are much used by advertisers, gaily colored
sheets of paper being pasted on boards put there for that purpose.

"You mustn't run away like that!" said Nan to Flossie, as she came up to
her sister, to lead her back.

"We wanted to see if it was a circus poster, but it isn't," returned
Freddie.

"Well, come on back. Daddy will miss us," declared Bert. He started
back--at least he thought he did--for the place where their father had
told them to wait for him. But the subway station under the New York
sidewalks was so large and rambling, there were so many stairways leading
here and there, up and down, and there were so many platforms that it is
no wonder Bert went astray.

"Where are you going?" asked Nan at last.

"Well, I was trying to find the place father told us to wait," Bert
answered.

"It's over this way," said Nan, pointing just the other direction from the
one in which Bert was walking.

"All right, we'll try that, but it seems wrong," he stated.

They walked a little way in that direction. They saw nothing of their
father, however, and there were fewer people on the platform where they
now were.

"Oh, dear!" cried Flossie, "I'm thirsty! I want a drink!"

"So do I!" added Freddie.

Nan and Bert looked about them. They were still in the underground
station, and they could see trains coming in and going out, and crowds of
people hurrying to and fro. But they could not see their father nor the
place where he had told them to wait. At last Nan said:

"Bert, I don't know where we are! We're lost!"




CHAPTER XI

FREDDIE AND THE TURTLE


Bert Bobbsey looked all around the big underground subway station before
he answered Nan. Then he took off his cap to scratch his head, as he often
did while thinking. Next he looked down at Flossie and Freddie.

If he thought he was going to find the two little twins in a fright at
what Nan had said about being lost, Bert was mistaken. The two
flaxen-haired tots were looking down the long platform, into the gloom of
the long tunnel of the subway.

"Aren't they funny, Freddie?" asked Flossie.

"Yep, awfully funny," was Freddie's answer.

"What's funny?" asked Bert, wishing he could see something at which to
laugh.

"Those red and green lights down the track," explained Freddie. "They
blink so funny and come up and go out----"

"Just like winking at you," said Flossie. "I like it down here. It isn't
like the dark tunnels we went in on the steam cars."

"Well, I'm glad _somebody_ likes it," said Bert to Nan. "But say, how do
we get out of here?"

"I'm sure I don't know," she said. "When I ran after Flossie I didn't look
which way I was going."

"I didn't, either. Queer how we could get lost in a place like this," and
Bert seemed worried and spoke more loudly than he intended. Freddie heard
what his brother said and looked up quickly.

"Are we _really_ lost?" he asked.

"It seems so," answered Nan. "I ran after you two, and we have walked
about so many platforms and up and down so many stairs that I can't see or
remember the place where Father told us to wait for him."

"Well, there's no danger, that's sure," said Bert. "It's a queer place to
be lost in--a subway station. I was never in one before, but if we stay
here long enough Dad is sure to find us. Here comes somebody now, looking
for us, I guess."

A man in a blue suit, carrying a red lantern, and with white numbers on
either side of his cap, walked toward the four twins.

"Is your name Bobbsey?" he asked.

"Yes; but how did you know?" was Bert's question.

"Your father sent me to look for you. He guessed you must have wandered
away, and he thought it best to stay where he told you to wait, and let
one of us find you. A lot of men are hunting up and down the different
platforms for you."

"Well, I'm glad you found us!" sighed Nan. "We didn't know what to do."

"Just come with me," said the subway guard. "I'll take you to your
father," and he did, leading the children down a long platform and over a
sort of bridge, then down a flight of steps. Though they did not know it,
the twins had wandered quite a distance from the place Mr. Bobbsey had
left them.

The subway station was a rambling place, with several doors to go in by
and come out of, a number of platforms and stairways, and wiser persons
than four small children could easily become confused there.

When Mr. Bobbsey came back, after buying his magazine, and could not find
his children, he guessed what had happened, and wisely asked a guard to
make a search, instead of doing it himself.

"For I don't come to New York often enough to be sure of finding my way
around in all the odd nooks and corners," said the lumber merchant.

"And it wasn't a circus poster at all!" said Freddie, after Flossie had
told what had caused her to wander away. "It was only about chewing gum."

Speaking of chewing gum made Flossie remember she was thirsty, and after
Mr. Bobbsey had thanked the man with the red lantern, and had explained to
Freddie that it was used to stop trains in case of an accident, the
Bobbsey party went up out of the underground station and into a candy
store.

"I know what I'm going to have!" exclaimed Freddie.

"So do I!" cried Flossie.

"Chocolate soda!"

"Yes! And I want plenty of cream on top!"

"Suppose they haven't got any chocolate soda?" remarked Mr. Bobbsey, with
a twinkle in his eye.

"Oh, I know they've got chocolate soda," remonstrated his little son.
"They always have chocolate soda at soda fountains! Don't they, Flossie?"

"Of course they do! I don't think it would be a real soda fountain if they
didn't have chocolate soda," replied the little girl.

"I think I'm going to have an orange phosphate," said Bert.

"And that is just what I am going to have too," added Nan.

"Phosphate!" cried Freddie in wonder. "I wouldn't drink any phosphate!
That's what they make matches of."

"Oh, just hear that!" cried Bert, laughing. "Freddie thinks they make
matches of phosphate."

"They do, too!" answered the little boy.

"You are thinking of phosphorus, Freddie," explained Mr. Bobbsey. "That is
different, and it is poisonous." Then the drinks were ordered and quickly
served.

"And now I want to go to see the big fish!" said Freddie, sipping the last
drops of his sweet drink. "Are there any animals in the 'quarium, Daddy?"

"Well, there aren't any lions or tigers," answered Mr. Bobbsey. "We'll go
to see them later in Bronx Park. But, of course, fish are animals. It
won't take me long to run into City Hall and see my friend. Then we'll go
to the Aquarium."

Left on the top steps of the City Hall building, this time the Bobbsey
twins were found safely there when their father came out, and a little
later they were on their way to Battery Park in a Broadway street car,
that ran on the ground.

"We've ridden under the ground in the subway, over the ground in the
elevated and now we're riding _on_ the ground," said Nan. "New York is a
funny place!"

The Aquarium, as those of you know who have seen it, is in the round,
brown stone building, on a point of land almost the very end of the island
of Manhattan. It is where the North and East rivers come together to form
New York Bay, and, years ago, this building was where the immigrants, or
people who came to the United States from other countries, were kept for a
while until they could be sent out West, or down South, or wherever they
wanted to go.

Now it is a place where many fish, big, little, ugly and beautiful, are
shown in tanks of water so the boys and girls can see what strange things
are in the ocean, rivers and lakes of this world.

Led by Mr. Bobbsey, Bert and Nan, with Flossie and Freddie trailing on
behind, walked around the big building, looking in the glass tanks wherein
swam the fish.

"What's over there?" asked Freddie, pointing to where a crowd of people
were standing near some pools in the middle of the floor.

"Oh, different big fish--a sea lion, alligators and turtles," said Mr.
Bobbsey.

"Let's look at the sea lion!" called Flossie.

"I want to see a swimming turtle," said Freddie. "I had a mud turtle once,
but he went away."

"You shall see everything," promised Mr. Bobbsey.

They went over to the pool, where a number of large alligators, and one
crocodile, were lying in or out of the water. Some were lazily swimming
about, and the crocodile was asleep out on the stone ledge, with his big
mouth wide open.

"He's waiting for some one to come along and feed him," said Bert.

"I guess he'd eat a lot," laughed Freddie, looking at the rows of big
teeth in the crocodile's mouth.

They passed on to the pool of the sea lion. That sleek, brown animal was
swimming about like a big fish, now and then stopping under one of the
pipes where the water ran into his pool, and holding his mouth under the
little stream as though taking a drink. Now and then he barked like a dog.

Around the stone ledge, or wall of the pool, was a wire grating, and near
the floor was a sort of pipe running all around, so the smaller children
could step up on this to look in--something which the big folk did not
have to do.

"Be careful!" cried Nan, as Flossie leaned well over the edge to get a
better look at the sea lion. "You might fall in."

"She could get a ride on his back if she did," said Freddie.

"Well, I'm not going to!" exclaimed Flossie, drawing back, a little
frightened, as the seal splashed the water right under her, some drops
going in her face.

They watched the seal for a while, went over to the other tanks, where
some sturgeon and other big fish swam about, and then Freddie called:

"I want to see the big turtles! Where are they?"

"Over here," said Mr. Bobbsey, leading the way toward the south end of the
building near the tank, where the green moray--a sort of big eel--was
lying half in and half out of a piece of sewer pipe put in his tank to
make him feel more at home. "There are the big turtles," and Mr.
Bobbsey lifted Flossie up over the rail so she could look down more
easily.

There were some very large turtles in the tank, swimming by moving their
broad flippers. Sometimes they would swim about close to the white tiled
bottom of the tank, but the water was clear, so they could be seen easily.
Again the turtles would rise to the top, so that their big, hard shells
were out of water, like a raft which the boys build to play with when the
city's vacant lots or country meadows are flooded in the Spring.

In one end of the tank was a big turtle--the largest of all--swimming by
himself, and overhead, hung by a wire from the room, was a stuffed one,
larger yet. This, so a sign near it said, was a "leather-back turtle," and
when alive had weighed eight hundred and fifty pounds.

"Whew!" whistled Bert, looking at the big, stuffed fellow. "He could swim
around with two or three boys on _his_ back."

"I'd like to have had a ride on him," cried Freddie. "But this one is
pretty big, too!" and he pointed down at the large swimming turtle, which,
just then, stuck his head up out of the water. He seemed to be nearly a
yard long and almost as broad.

"Oh!" screamed Flossie, as she saw the big turtle so close to her. "Can he
get out of the water, Daddy?"

"No, indeed," laughed Mr. Bobbsey.

"I can't see him very good," said Freddie, and he gave a little jump up
from the foot-rail on which he was standing.

Freddie must have jumped up harder and farther than he had any idea of,
for before Bert, who was standing near his little brother, could put out a
hand to hold him, the flaxen-haired twin had fairly dived over the rail,
and down into the tank he fell with a great splash.

No, not such a great splash, either, for Freddie did not fall directly
into the water. Instead, only his two fat legs and feet went in, for the
small boy landed, sitting right up on the broad back of the big turtle!
Right down on the turtle's back fell Freddie Bobbsey!




CHAPTER XII

IN THE THEATRE


There was a scream from Nan, another from Flossie, and a sort of grunt of
surprise from Bert, as they saw Freddie disappear over the railing of the
tank, and come into view a second later on the back of the turtle, which
was as much surprised as, probably, the little boy himself.

"Here, Freddie! What are you doing down there?" asked Mr. Bobbsey, before
he thought what he was saying. He and his wife had so often to ask what
Flossie or Freddie were doing, as the smaller twins were so often in
mischief, that the father did it this time.

"Oh, the turtle will eat him up! The turtle will eat Freddie up!" cried
Flossie.

Freddie, too, after the first shock of surprise, was frightened, and as he
clung with both hands to the edges of the turtle's shell he looked over
his shoulder, toward his father and the others, and cried:

"Oh, get me out, Daddy! Get me out!"

The cries of the children, and the call of Mr. Bobbsey, had drawn a crowd
around the turtle pool, and among the throng were some of the attendants
on duty in the Aquarium.

"What's the matter?" asked one, elbowing his way through the crowd to the
side of Mr. Bobbsey, who was trying to climb over the rail to go to the
rescue of his little boy.

[Illustration: "FREDDIE FELL IN!" "HE'S ON THE BACK OF A BIG TURTLE." _The
Bobbsey Twins in a Great City. Page_ 128]

"Freddie fell in," explained Bert. "He's on the back of the big turtle!"

"Good land!" cried the man. "What will happen here next? Come back, sir,"
he went on to Mr. Bobbsey, "I'll get him out for you."

"Then please be quick. He may fall off and the turtle may bite him or
drown him," said Freddie's father.

"Well, the turtle _could_ give him a bad bite," returned the Aquarium man.
"But if he holds on a little longer I'll get your boy."

The man jumped up on the ledge of the pool and made his way to the piece
of wood that held up the heavy wire screen which divided the turtle pool
into two parts, keeping the one big turtle away from the others. All this
while Freddie sat on the shell of the big turtle, his chubby legs dangling
in the water, and his hands grasping the edges of the shell behind the
front flippers. The turtle's neck was so short that it could not turn its
head to bite Freddie, nor could the big flippers reach him. As they had no
claws on the ends, they would have done no harm, anyhow, if they had
brushed him.

The greatest danger was that the turtle might suddenly sink down to the
bottom of the pool, and, though it was not very deep, it was deep enough
to have let Freddie drown.

Even though the small boy could swim, the turtle might attack him, or
knock his head under water, which would have been a great danger to
Flossie's brother. But, so far, the turtle did not show any wish to sink
below the water. It was frightened, that was certain, for it splashed
about in the pool and swam as fast as it could, carrying Freddie with it.
Freddie was such a small chap, and the turtle was so large, that it did
not mind the weight on its back. But there was no telling when it would
sink down.

"Take me off! Take me off!" cried Freddie again.

"That's all right," said the Aquarium man. "Don't be afraid, little boy.
The turtle won't hurt you, and we'll soon have you off his back. He won't
bite you, and you're having a fine ride!"

Freddie, it seemed, had not thought of that before.

"That's so!" he exclaimed, and his face did not show much fright now. "I
am having a ride, ain't I?"

Flossie heard this, and then, instead of being afraid her brother would be
hurt, she cried out:

"Oh, I want a turtle ride, too!"

"No!" exclaimed Mr. Bobbsey, who was not so worried, now that he saw the
Aquarium man on his way to get Freddie. "One turtle ride is enough for the
family. Hold fast, Freddie!" he called, as the turtle came around on the
side of the pool near to where the Bobbseys stood.

By this time the man was out on the middle of the wooden piece that held
the heavy wire netting, and as the turtle swam near that the man leaned
over and quickly lifted Freddie from the swimming creature's back.

"There you are, my boy!" cried the man, as he held Freddie out to another
attendant who had come to help. "Now you're all right except for wet feet,
and we can dry them for you in the engine room."

"We have to keep the boilers going in Winter to warm the water for the
tropical fish," said the man to Mr. Bobbsey. "Take your little boy there
and we'll dry his shoes and stockings."

"Thank you," said Mr. Bobbsey. By this time Freddie was safely out of the
turtle pool, and the big creature, relieved of that strange thing on his
back, had sunk down to the bottom of the pool, as though to hide away. It
was lucky he had kept himself afloat as long as he had, or Freddie might
have been wet all over.

"Well, you do seem to have the queerest things happen to you, Freddie,"
said his father with a smile. "What will you do next?"

"I--I couldn't help this, Daddy," said the little fellow. "I--I just
slipped!"

"Well, don't do it again," said the Aquarium man, with a smile. "If you
had fallen in the other pool, where there are half a dozen turtles, though
none as large as the one you rode on, you might have been bitten. But
you're all right. Now come along and we'll dry you out."

It was an easy matter to dry Freddie's feet and legs in front of the warm
furnaces in the boiler room, but his shoes and stockings did not get rid
of their wetness so soon. And, as Mr. Bobbsey did not want to wait, he
sent one of the attendants out to buy new shoes and stockings for his son.
With these on, and carrying the damp ones in a bundle, Freddie was soon
ready to go home.

"I guess I've had enough of the 'quarium," he said. "Anyhow I had a funny
ride."

"I should say you did!" agreed Bert. "I wish we had a picture of you
riding around on the back of that turtle."

Mrs. Bobbsey was at first alarmed, and then she laughed, when told of what
had happened. She made Freddie drink some hot milk, so he would not get
cold, but he told her the water of the turtle pool was warm, as it always
is in Winter, and he said: "I don't think I'll even have the snuffles,"
which he did not, as the next day proved.

For two or three days Mr. Bobbsey was busy attending to his business in
New York, but he found time to take the children to see the many sights.

"I want to go on a ferryboat and across the Brooklyn Bridge," said
Flossie, one day.

"Oh, I want to go on a ferryboat too. And I want to see what makes the
ferryboat go!" cried Freddie eagerly.

"All right; I'll take you out to-day," answered Mr. Bobbsey. "And I'll
show you as much of the ferryboat as I can," he added.

Then they went across the Brooklyn Bridge on a car, and later on they took
quite a trip on the ferryboat to St. George, Staten Island, and back, and
Freddy even got a glimpse into the engine-room of the boat and went home
satisfied.

"There is so much to see!" exclaimed Nan, after a day spent in the Bronx
Park, where there are many animals. "_I_ don't believe we could see it
_all_ in a year."

"That's right," agreed Bert. "But we're going to see something good this
afternoon."

"What?" asked Flossie. "Are we going to another 'quarium?"

"No, to a matinee in the theatre," said her larger brother. "It's an awful
funny play--anyhow, the billboard pictures are."

"Are we all going?" asked Freddie.

"Yes," answered Mrs. Bobbsey. "We are all going."

Much excited over the joys before them, for in Lakeport there was only one
theatre, and plays did not show there often, the Bobbsey twins made ready
to go to the matinee. Flossie and Nan wore new frocks, and Bert and
Freddie had new suits, so they were quite dressed-up, they felt.

The play was a very amusing one, and the children laughed so hard that
Freddie at last rolled off his seat and had to be picked up by his father.

But this only made all the more fun, and the people around the Bobbsey
family joined in the laughter when an usher helped Mr. Bobbsey place
Freddie in his proper place again.

Then the curtain went down on the first act, and as the lights were turned
up the children looked about them. Freddie found himself seated next to a
boy about his own age, who, with an elderly lady, had come in after the
performance began. This was why Freddie had not noticed his little
neighbor before.

"Isn't this a dandy show!" cried Freddie.

"The best I ever saw," answered the boy. "What's your name?"

"Freddie Bobbsey. What's yours?"

"Laddie Dickerson. Where do you live?"

"We live away up in Lakeport, but we're staying at the Parkview Hotel."

"Why--why, that's where _we_ live, my mother and my uncle and my aunt. My
father is dead. We live at the hotel, except in the Summer, when we go to
the seashore. What floor are you on?"

"The tenth. I know 'cause I holler it out when we come up in the
elevator."

"Why, _we_ live on the tenth floor, too," said Laddie Dickerson. "It's
funny I never saw you."

"And it's funny I never saw you," replied Freddie. "Say, come and play
with me, will you?"

"Sure I will! Well have lots of fun. I've got a train of cars."

"I've got a fire engine!" said Freddie, his eyes big with delight. "Oh,
what fun we'll have!"

"Hush, Freddie dear," said his mother, for the little boy was talking
rather loudly. "The curtain is going up again."




CHAPTER XIII

THE "RESCUE" OF FREDDIE


During the rest of the play the attention of Freddie and Flossie, who sat
near him, was divided between Laddie, the new boy, and the things
happening on the stage. Both were so jolly--the funny things the actors
did and the chance of having a new playmate--that the two smaller Bobbsey
twins did not know which was best.

"Don't you like this show?" asked Freddie of Laddie, when the curtain went
down again.

"Yes. It's great! But I'm glad you're comin' to play with me," Laddie
answered.

"So'm I," answered Freddie. "You're glad too, aren't you, Flossie?"

"Of course I am," said the little girl.

"Does _she_--_she_ play with you?" asked Laddie, nodding his head toward
Freddie's little sister, as if in surprise.

"Of course she does. We have lots of fun. Why?"

"But she's a _girl!_"

"Of _course_ she's a girl," agreed Freddie. "She couldn't be my sister if
she wasn't a _girl_. I've got another sister, too, but she's bigger. She's
sitting on the end of the row. She plays with Bert and Flossie plays with
me. We're two sets of twins. Don't you like girls?"

"Well, I don't know," said Laddie slowly. "I never played with 'em much.
I--I like your sister, though. She can play with us. Do you ever play
store?"

"Lots of times," said Freddie. "We take some dirt for sugar, some little
stones for eggs, some big stones for loaves of bread, clam shells and
pieces of tin for dishes--we have lots of fun like that. But we haven't
had any fun that way since we came to New York. I fell on a turtle's back
in the 'quarium, though, and had a ride."

"You did!" cried Laddie, so loudly that many persons in near-by seats
turned to smile at him.

"Sure I did," answered Freddie. "I'll tell you about it. I was scared at
first, but----"

"Laddie, dear, the curtain is going up and you had better keep quiet,"
said the elderly lady who was with the new boy.

"Is she your mother?" Freddie asked.

"No, she's my aunt. My mother is out in California, but she's comin' home
soon, and I'm glad of it, though my aunt is awful nice."

"Hush!" exclaimed Mrs. Bobbsey, thinking it was Freddie talking, for now
the last act had started. So the two little boys quieted down, each one
resolved to start talking again as soon as he could.

The last act of the show proved to be uproariously funny, and Freddie
laughed and laughed until he was in danger of rolling on the floor again.
But he was held fast in his seat, and so that danger was averted.

"Say, Freddie, wouldn't you like to be an actor man?" questioned Flossie,
during a brief interval in the play.

"Sure, I'm going to be an actor man when I grow up," responded her brother
quickly.

"But you're going to be a fireman too, ain't you?" queried his sister.

"Of course! I'm going to be an actor man and a fireman too," replied
Freddie. "I can act in a theatre when there aren't any fires to be put
out."

"But what would you do if you were all dressed up as an actor man when you
had to go out to ?" asked his sister.

"Oh, I'd just tell the people that I couldn't act any more, and then I'd
run right out and get my engine," answered Freddie simply.

"I guess I'd like to be an actor man too," put in Laddie. "I heard a big
boy tell once that they earn bushels and bushels of money."

"Sure, they do," answered Freddie. "They make a thousand dollars a minute,
I guess."

The play ended in a jolly lot of fun and music, and everybody was laughing
when the final curtain went down. Fathers and mothers, who had come to
bring their children, talked with one another, though they were strangers,
and it was because of this that Mrs. Bobbsey, when Freddie and Laddie
started to talk together again about the turtle ride, nodded and smiled at
the elderly lady with whom Laddie had come to the theatre.

"My little boy seems to have taken quite a fancy to yours," said the
twins' mother.

"Oh, he isn't my boy, though I love him as though he were," said this
lady. "Laddie is my sister-in-law's boy, but she is in California. My
husband and I are taking care of Laddie."

"And Freddie is coming to play store and steam cars and automobile and
steam engine, with me, and--and----"

Laddie paused, trying to think of something else.

"Fireman," said Freddie. "We're going to play fireman."

"Oh, yes," agreed Laddie. "I forgot about that. We're going to play
fireman."

"And I'm going to play with 'em," added Flossie.

"Yes, she can come," said Laddie to his aunt. "I guess I'll like her,
though I don't know much about playin' with girls," he added.

"Well, you seem to have it all settled," laughed his aunt. The Bobbseys
and their new friends were standing in the theatre aisle, waiting for the
crowds ahead of them to pass out.

"We're strangers in New York," added Mrs. Bobbsey. "We are staying at the
Parkview Hotel----"

"Why, that's where my husband and I have been living for a number of
years," said Freddie's aunt. "My husband has a department store in Harlem,
but he likes to live in this section. I like the hotel very much. Won't
you let me call to see you?"

Mrs. Bobbsey said she would be very glad to, and so the two ladies, having
thus met, became friends, which Laddie and Freddie had done a little while
before. Laddie's aunt, whose name was Mrs. Whipple, said she would be glad
to have Freddie and Flossie, as well as Nan and Bert, come in to play with
Laddie.

"Though I am afraid your two larger twins are rather old for our small
boy," said Mrs. Whipple, who had no children of her own.

"Yes, Nan and Bert are getting a little older," said Mrs. Bobbsey. "But
Freddie and Flossie will be delighted to have a new play-fellow."

So it was arranged that the next day the two small twins were to go to the
Whipple apartment to play with Laddie, and Flossie and Freddie could
hardly wait for that time to come.

"Oh, I think New York is just the _nicest_ place!" said Flossie, as she
talked with Freddie about whether or not she might bring one doll with her
when she went to Laddie's hotel home.

"It's dandy!" said Freddie. "Don't you wish you were coming with us,
Bert?"

"Pooh! Dad is going to take _me_ to see the airships go up down at
Governor's Island. They go up even in Winter, for the airmen want to get
used to the cold, I guess," Bert said.

"Oh, I want to see the airships!" cried Freddie. "Can't Daddy take me,
too?" he asked his mother.

"Well, not this time, Freddie," said Mr. Bobbsey. "You and Flossie are
going to have some fun with Laddie. I'll take you later."

And with this the small twins had to be satisfied. So, while Nan and Bert
were taken downtown, to get a glimpse of the airships flying over New York
bay, which the bird-like craft did, in charge of army officers, who
wished to learn to fly, even when there was snow on the ground, the small
twins, taking some of their toys with them, went to the hotel rooms where
Laddie Dickerson lived with his aunt.

"Did you bring the bugs that go around and around and around?" asked
Flossie, as their mother knocked at Mrs. Whipple's door.

"Yep," answered Freddie, "And I brought my toy fire engine, too. I wonder
if she'll let us squirt real water?" and he nodded toward the door that
was not yet opened by Laddie's aunt.

"You mustn't do that unless you are told you may," said Mrs. Bobbsey. "If
you squirt water you may spoil the wall paper."

"We'll be careful," promised Freddie, and then Mrs. Whipple's maid opened
the door, and the twins went in to have a good time.

Laddie was very glad to see them, and he was much amused at the
"go-around" bugs. He had a number of toys of his own, and when the
children were tired of playing with them, and with those the Bobbsey twins
had brought, they began to have a make-believe store.

"I've got some real store boxes and things," said Laddie, as he brought
them out from his play-room.

"Oh, they _are_ real!" cried Flossie, as she saw them. "Isn't they grand!
Where'd you get 'em?"

"My Uncle Dan gave them to me," said Laddie. "He keeps a real store, and
he sells hats and dresses and lots of things."

"What's the name of his store?" asked Freddie.

"He's Daniel Whipple," answered Laddie. "He is my mother's brother--her
name was Whipple, too, before she was married to my father. And my middle
name is Whipple. I go to my Uncle Dan's store lots of times; it's an awful
big one."

"I know it is!" cried Freddie. "I've been in it!"

"You have?" cried Laddie in surprise.

"When?" asked Flossie. "When were we in Laddie's uncle's store?"

"Don't you 'member?" went on Freddie. "It was the time the monkey chewed
your hat, Flossie. We went into a store to buy a new one, and Daddy came
there and found us and the man's name was Whipple."

"That's right--it was," agreed Flossie. "Oh, isn't that _funny!_ And now
we're playing with _you_, Laddie."

"It is queer, I'm going to tell my aunt."

And when Laddie did, Mrs. Whipple remembered having heard her husband tell
about the two little lost children who came into his department store
after a street-piano monkey had spoiled a little girl's hat.

"And to think _you_ two are those same children!" cried Mrs. Whipple. "It
is quite remarkable, and New York such a big place as it is. I must tell
my husband. He's Laddie's uncle, you know."

"I've got another uncle, too, but we don't know where he is," went on
Laddie.

"Is he lost at sea?" asked Freddie. "If he is, I know how to find him.
Just ask Tommy Todd's father. He was shipwrecked, and me and Flossie found
him in a snow storm."

"You must tell me about that some time," said Mrs. Whipple. "But Laddie's
other uncle isn't lost at sea, so far as we know. It's too sad a story to
tell to children. But Mr. Whipple has a brother, who is also a brother to
Laddie's mother, but this brother has long been lost."

"How'd he get lost?" asked Freddie. "Did he go to the store and couldn't
find his way back?"

"No, my child. It was different from that. I'll tell you, perhaps, another
time. Go on with your play now."

So Laddie, Freddie and Flossie went back to their "store," and had lots of
fun. Then they played other games, using Freddie's fire engine and
Laddie's train of cars, and even Flossie's doll, who rode as a passenger.

"Well, what'll we do next?" asked Freddie, when he and Laddie had taken
turns squirting water from the fire engine in the bath room.

"Let's play automobile," said Laddie. "I can get----"

He stopped talking and seemed to be listening.

"What's the matter?" asked Flossie, as Laddie hurried to a window that
looked down into a side street.

"It's a fire!" cried Laddie. "I can hear the puffers! Come on! It's right
down this side street!"

Flossie and Freddie looked out of the window long enough to see a crowd of
people in front of a store not far from the hotel, which was on a corner.
And in the street, which was a side one, as Laddie had said, were a number
of fire engines.

"Let's go down!" cried Freddie, all excited at what he saw.

"Oh, you mustn't!" gasped Flossie.

"Course we can," declared Laddie. "My aunt always lets me look at a fire
when it's near here, and this is awful close. Maybe this hotel will burn
down."

"Oh-o-o-o!" cried Flossie. "Where's my doll?" And she ran to get her pet.

"Come on, we'll go!" said Freddie to Laddie. "Girls don't like fires, but
we boys do."

"Sure," said Laddie. "We'll go, all right. My aunt's looking out the front
window, and we can go out the side door and down the elevator," he went
on. "I know all the elevator men, 'cause I've lived in this hotel a whole
year. My aunt won't care 'cause she won't see us, so she won't be
worried. I don't like her to worry."

"Me either," said Freddie. So the two little boys, making sure Mrs.
Whipple was still looking from the front windows of her apartment, to see
what all the excitement was about, stole out of a door into the side hall
and so reached the elevators.

"Down, George!" called Laddie to the colored elevator man.

"Down it am, Master Laddie," was the good-natured answer. "Where is yo'all
gwine?"

"To see the fire," was the answer. "Don't he talk funny?" asked Laddie of
Freddie, as they left the elevator at the ground floor.

"He talks just like our colored cook, Dinah," said Freddie. "Did you ever
see her?"

"Nope."

"You ought to eat some of her pancakes," went on Freddie. "I'll write,
when I have a chance, and ask her to send you some."

"Oh, hear the engines whistlin'!" cried Laddie. "Hurry up, or maybe
they'll be gone before we get there."

The fire was not near enough to the hotel to cause any danger, though many
of the hotel guests were excited, and so no attention was paid to the
small boys, Freddie and Laddie, as they hurried out to see all that was
going on. There was a crowd in the side street and more engines and hook
and ladder trucks were dashing up to help put out the fire.

From the blazing store great clouds of black smoke were pouring out, and
firemen were rushing here and there. Laddie looked for a while at the
exciting scene and then he called to Freddie:

"I'm going back and get my aunt. She likes to look at fires."

"All right; I'll wait for you here," Freddie said. They had been standing
not far away from the side entrance to the hotel, and as Laddie turned to
go back after his aunt, Freddie walked down the street a little way,
nearer the fire.

"I can see Laddie and his aunt when they come," thought the small boy.

But just then a bigger crowd, anxious to watch the fire, came around the
corner, and, rushing down the narrow side street, fairly pushed Freddie
ahead of them.

"Here! Wait a minute! I don't want to go so fast!" cried the little
fellow. "I want to wait for Laddie!"

No one paid any attention to him, and he was swept along, half carried off
his feet by the rush, until at last he found himself standing alone,
almost in front of the burning store.

"Oh, I can see fine here!" thought Freddie. "I wish Laddie and his aunt
would hurry and come here. Wow! This is great!"

Freddie was so excited watching the puffing engines, seeing the big black
clouds of smoke, and the leaping, darting tongues of lire from the windows
of the burning building, also watching the firemen squirt big streams of
Water on the blaze, that he did not think of himself, and the first he
realized was when some one shouted at him:

"Stand back there, youngster!"

Freddie did not know he was the "youngster" meant, and stood where he was.

"Get back there!" cried the voice again. "You may be hurt!"

But Freddie was busy watching the fire. He wished he had brought his own
little engine with him.

"I could squirt water on some of the little sparks, anyhow," he said to
himself. "I guess I'll go back and get it, and find Laddie and his aunt."

Freddie was about to turn when suddenly he saw a fireman in a white rubber
coat, which showed he was one of the chiefs, or head men, rushing toward
him.

"Get back! Get back!" cried this fireman. "Don't you know you're inside
the fire lines!"

Then for the first time Freddie noticed that back of him was stretched a
rope, behind which stood the crowd of men and boys. Freddie was so small
that he had slipped under the rope, not knowing it. He had either slipped
under himself or been pushed by the throng.

"Get back! Get back!" cried the fireman.

The next instant there was a loud noise, as if a gun had been fired, and
Freddie felt himself being lifted up and carried along quickly.




CHAPTER XIV

THE STORE CAMP


The noise like a gun which Freddie heard was made when something exploded,
or blew up, in the burning store, and at first Freddie thought he had been
blown up with it and was flying through the air.

Then, as he opened his eyes (for he had closed them when the strange thing
began to happen) he saw that he was in the arms of the fireman with the
white rubber coat, and the fireman was smiling down at him.

"Am I--am I hurted?" Freddie asked.

"Bless your little heart! Of course not!" was the answer. "But you might
have been if you had stayed where you were--not so much hurt by the fire,
for that's almost out--as by the crowd. How did you get past the fire
lines?"

"I--I didn't see 'em," said Freddie. "Back in Lakeport, where I live, we
don't have fire lines, though I've got a fish line."

"Humph! You're from the country, all right. Where do you live, and how
comes it your father let you out in the streets during a fire?"

"I live in the Parkview Hotel and my father didn't let me out. He's gone
to see the airships with Nan and Bert, and Laddie and I came out to see
the fire ourselves. Flossie stayed with her doll. Laddie went back to get
his aunt, 'cause she likes fires--I mean to see 'em--and I waited for him,
and--and----"

"Yes, I guess you don't know _what_ happened next," laughed the fireman.
"But as I want to telephone to headquarters about one of the engines that
is broken, I'll use the hotel 'phone, and, at the same time, take you back
where you belong. You're too little to get inside the ropes at a New York
fire."

"I'm going to be a fireman when I grow up," said Freddie, as the assistant
chief carried him into the corridor of the hotel.

"Well, that won't be for some time yet, and while you're waiting to grow
up don't go too near fires--they're dangerous. There you are, and I think
some one is looking for you," the fireman went on, as he saw a lady
rushing toward him when he set Freddie down.

"That's my mother," said Freddie.


"Oh, Freddie! Where have you been?" cried Mrs. Bobbsey, for when she heard
of a fire she went in search of the two small twins, and could not find
them in Mrs. Whipple's rooms.

"I've been to the fire, and I was rescued," answered Freddie. "He did it,"
and he pointed to the white-coated fireman.

"Oh, he really wasn't in any real danger," the assistant chief said,
taking off his heavy helmet and bowing to Mrs. Bobbsey. "He was inside the
fire lines and I carried him here."

"Oh, I can't thank you enough!" cried Freddie's mother. "I never knew him
to do such a thing as that before. But he is simply wild about fires!"

"Yes, most boys are."

Then the fireman telephoned about the broken engine. Freddie told his
mother how he and Laddie came to go down to watch the "puffers" (part of
which story Flossie had already told Mrs. Bobbsey), and then along came
Laddie and his aunt. Mrs. Whipple was almost as much worried as was Mrs.
Bobbsey.

But everything came out all right; no one was hurt, and the fire, though
it badly burned the store in which it started, did not get near the hotel
or any other buildings.

But Freddie could not forget about his "rescue," as he called it, and when
his father, with Nan and Bert, came home that evening the story had all to
be told over again.

"But you and Laddie did wrong to go down to the fire without telling
Laddie's aunt," said Mr. Bobbsey to his small son. "You must never do it
again!"

"I never will," promised Freddie. "But I was rescued all right, wasn't I?"

"I guess so," and Mr. Bobbsey had to turn his head away so Freddie would
not see his smile.

Laddie, Flossie and Freddie soon became fast friends, and when the smaller
Bobbsey twins were not being taken about New York, to see what to them
were very wonderful sights, they were either playing in the rooms of Mrs.
Whipple or in their own at the hotel.

Bert and Nan were a little too old for this kind of fun, but they met, in
the same hotel, a brother and sister of about their own age--Frank and
Helen Porter--with whom they had good times.

Mr. Bobbsey had to spend many days looking after the business that had
brought him to New York, but Mrs. Bobbsey was free to go about with the
children. She took Nan and Bert shopping with her sometimes, leaving
Flossie and Freddie with Mrs. Whipple. This suited the small twins, for
Laddie and they were great friends and played well together.

Other times Bert and Nan would go to the park, or somewhere with the
Porter brother and sister, and Mrs. Bobbsey would take Flossie and Freddie
to a matinee or the moving pictures.

"Oh, I think New York is just the nicest place in the world," said Nan one
afternoon, after a trip she and Bert had had on top of a Fifth avenue
automobile stage, Frank and Helen Porter having gone with them.

"Yes, it is nice," agreed Bert "But it's nice in Lakeport, too. You can't
have fun riding down hill here, and the skating isn't as good as on our
Lake Metoka. And I haven't seen an ice-boat since we came here, except in
moving pictures. I wonder how Tommy Todd is making out with mine."

"Hasn't he written to you?" asked Nan.

"No; but he promised he would. Guess I'll write him a postal now and ask
him how the _Bird_ is sailing."

"And I'll write to some of the girls in Lakeport," said Nan.

I had forgotten to tell you that some time before this, Mr. Whipple, the
man who owned the store where Flossie's hat was bought the day the monkey
chewed up hers, had met the two smaller twins in his wife's rooms one day,
when Flossie and Freddie had come to play with Laddie.

"Why, those are the two little children who were on the elevated express,"
said the store owner, in surprise.

"That's so, you do know them, don't you?" returned Mrs. Whipple.

"I should say I did!" cried her husband, and he told all that had
happened, while Mrs. Whipple related how Laddie, Flossie and Freddie had
come to know one another in the theatre.

Mr. Whipple, at another time, once more met Mr. Bobbsey, whom he had seen
that day in the store, and the two families became very good friends,
though Mr. Whipple was so busy he did not have much time for calling.

One evening, however, Mr. Whipple came home from the store rather earlier
than usual, and, finding Flossie and Freddie in his apartments playing
with Laddie, the store-owner asked:

"How would you youngsters like to come and see a woodland camp--a camp
with tents, a real fire, where a man is cooking his dinner and all that?
How would you like it?"

"Oh, please take us!" begged Laddie.

"Where is it?" Freddie asked, ready to go at once.

"In my store," said Mr. Whipple.

"A store is a funny place for a camp in the woods," said Freddie. He and
Flossie had often pretended to camp out in a tent made from a blanket or
quilt, and they knew what it meant.

"Well, you just come and see it," laughed Mr. Whipple. "If your folks say
it's all right, I'll take you all to-morrow."

"Oh, we'll come!" cried Freddie. "I love a camp!"




CHAPTER XV

SAD NEWS


Bert and Nan Bobbsey were so interested when they heard that Freddie and
Flossie were going to see some sort of a camping scene at Mr. Whipple's
store that they, too, begged to be allowed to join the party.

"Come right along!" exclaimed the merchant. "The more the merrier. I hope
you'll like it."

"Is it a real camp, with trees and all?" asked Freddie.

"Well, there are some real bushes, and make-believe trees," said Mr.
Whipple. "I couldn't grow real big woodland trees in my store, you know.
But the tent is real, so is the fire, and the men who are camping out eat
real food."

"I'd like that part," said Flossie.

"Well, come along, then," invited Mr. Whipple.

Mrs. Bobbsey, as well as Mrs. Whipple, were to go with the five children,
and they made up a merry party as they set out for the uptown department
store.

"Oh, we're going in an automobile!" cried Freddie, as they came out of the
Parkview Hotel and saw a big car standing at the curb. The chauffeur got
down off his seat and opened the door as he saw Mr. and Mrs. Whipple.

"Yes, this is our machine," said the merchant. "I don't care much for
riding around New York, though in the Summer I take long trips in the car.
But as we have so many children with us to-day," and he looked at Nan,
Bert, Flossie, Freddie and Laddie, "it will be better to go in the
machine."

On the way up, through the streets of the great city, the Bobbsey twins,
as did Laddie, looked out of the windows at the many sights. Once Freddie
saw a fire engine speeding on its way to some blaze.

"Oh, let's get out and watch!" he begged.

"Of course we can't do that!" said Mrs. Bobbsey.

"But maybe the fireman who rescued me will be there," went on Freddie.
"I'd like to see him again."

"I'll take you around to his fire house some time," promised Mr. Whipple.
"Won't that do as well?"

Freddie thought it would, and then he noticed a street piano, on top of
which perched a monkey.

"Maybe that's the one who tore your hat, Flossie," he said.

"No, this is a bigger one," returned the little girl. "Besides, if he is
the same one I don't want to see him. I feel sorry about the nice cherries
on my hat."

"Don't you like the one you and your brother bought in my store?" asked
Mr. Whipple, with a laugh.

"Oh, yes, it's awful nice," said Flossie. "But it hasn't any _cherries_ on
it. But I like it just as well," she went on quickly, thinking, I suppose,
that it might not be polite to say she did not.

"And now for the woodland camp!" cried Mr. Whipple, as they got out of his
automobile in front of his store. "You see," he explained to Mrs.
Bobbsey, "I sell a good many things that campers use--tents, pots, pans,
fishing rods and lines, lanterns, axes, cook stoves, boats, canoes, guns
and so on. Every year I set up, on the top floor of the store, a sort of
woodland scene--a camp. I get real bushes from the woods and some logs.
Then my men fix up a place to make it look as nearly like the real woods
as we can. We have real moss and dirt on the ground, and a little spring
of water. There is a real tent--two of them, in fact--and in one there are
cots for sleeping, while in the other the meals are cooked.

"I hire some real campers to stay in my store camp, and they live almost
as they would if they were actually camping out. This is to show the
people how to use the camping things I sell. It is a new kind of
advertisement, you see."

"And a very good one, I should think," said Mrs. Bobbsey.

"It sounds great!" cried Bert. "I wish we could go camping! Do you think
we ever could, Mother?"

"Well, I don't know," answered Mrs. Bobbsey slowly. "I did hear your
father say something about going to camp this Summer, but warm weather is
a long way from us yet. We'll see."

"Oh, I believe we can go camping!" cried Nan to Bert in an excited
whisper, as they entered the store elevator. "Won't it be wonderful?"

"Great!" said Bert "I wouldn't want anything better than to camp on an
island in some lake."

By this time they were up on the top floor of the big department store
owned by Mr. Whipple, and at one end the twins and Laddie could see a
number of persons.

"That's the camp," said Mr. Whipple. "I don't believe you've seen it this
year, have you, Laddie?"

"No, Uncle Dan. Is it different from last year?" for the store-owner had
the camp set up each Winter.

"Yes, it's a little different. There is a new kind of tent, and the men
are different."

Mr. Whipple found a good place for the children to look in on the store
camp. As he had said, there were the two tents, and, on some earth and
moss between them, a real camp fire was burning, while a man, dressed just
as you have seen campers in pictures, was cooking something in a pot over
the blaze.

In one tent a table was set for a meal, and while the Bobbsey twins and
the others looked on, the two men and a boy, who made up the store camping
party, put their food on the table and began to eat.

They acted as though they were in a real camp, and as though they were not
being watched by hundreds of eyes. They talked among themselves, washed
their dishes after the dinner and then shot at a target with a small
rifle, which sent out real bullets.

The boys--Bert, Freddie and Laddie--liked this part very much.

"It certainly looks like the real thing," was Bert's remark. "And the best
part of it is, everything is so new and clean."

"It makes me feel hungry to look at 'em eat," was Laddie's comment.

"Oh, look at them shoot at that target!" cried Freddie excitedly. "I'd
like to do that."

"You'd have to be careful, so that you didn't shoot yourself," replied his
brother.

All about the tents in the store camp were things Mr. Whipple sold for
those who wanted to take them to a real camp.

"There are some things here I'd like when I go camping," said Bert. "I'm
going to ask my father to get them," he told Mr. Whipple.

"That will be nice. I asked your father to meet us here and have lunch,"
said the store owner, for there was a restaurant in his building. "I
thought perhaps he'd like to see the camp himself."

"I'm sure he would," said Bert. "I hope he comes."

Then the Bobbseys and others looked at the camp some more, Bert being very
much interested in a small canoe, which, he said, would be just right for
him and Tommy Todd to paddle.

"Wouldn't you let me paddle with you?" asked Nan. "I know how--a little."

"Sure I'll let you," agreed her brother. "Oh, I do hope Dad will let us go
camping!"

Mr. Bobbsey came in a little later, and he liked the store camp very much.
He said he and his wife had talked of going to a camp in the Summer, and
taking the children with them, but it was not all settled as yet.

"There's no better fun than camping out," said Mr. Whipple. "I used to do
it when I was a boy, and I made up my mind that if ever I kept a store,
which I always wanted to do, I'd sell camping things in it. And that's
just what I'm doing," he added with a laugh.

"Doesn't this place make you think of our woods at home?" asked Nan of
Bert.

"Yes, it does look like the woods around Lake Metoka," was his answer.

"And it's just like the place where Uncle Jack has his camp!" cried
Freddie.

"Have the children an uncle who is a camper?" asked Mr. Whipple.

"No," answered Mr. Bobbsey, "but there is an old woodchopper, who lives in
a log cabin near our town of Lakeport. He makes a living by chopping
firewood. He lives all alone, and really sort of camps out. Every one
calls him Uncle Jack. He was very good to Flossie and Freddie one day when
they fell out of Bert's ice-boat.

"Poor Uncle Jack!" went on Mr. Bobbsey, with a sigh. "I am sorry to say I
have bad news about him," he went on to his wife, but the children heard,
though he spoke in a low voice.

"Uncle Jack!" cried Nan. "I hope he isn't dead!"

"No," answered her father, "but he is very ill, and he must go to a
hospital, I am told. It's too bad about him."




CHAPTER XVI

THE BIG ELEPHANT


"What's the matter with Uncle Jack?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey, "and how did you
hear about him, Richard?" she asked her husband.

"I had a letter from my bookkeeper," was the answer. "Before we came away
I left word that the poor old man must be looked after, and I arranged to
have news of him sent on to me. To-day I got a letter which says he is
much worse than he has been, and really needs to go to a hospital. I think
I shall have to raise the money to send him."

"Who is he?" asked Mr. Whipple. "I am interested. Who is this Uncle Jack?"

"He's just the nicest man!" cried Flossie. "He took us in when Freddie
upset the ice-boat, and----"

"I didn't upset the ice-boat--it upset _itself!_" Freddie cried.

"Easy now, children! Don't dispute," said Mrs. Bobbsey gently.

"Uncle Jack is quite a character around Lakeport," went on Mr. Bobbsey. "I
don't know all his story, but he has lived in the woods for a number of
years. Where he was before that I don't know."

"He don't know hardly anything about his folks, Daddy!" piped up Freddie.

"How do you know?" asked Mr. Bobbsey.

"He told us so," put in Flossie. "It was that day he took us in his house,
after we got spilled from the ice-boat."

"Well, perhaps that is right," said Mr. Bobbsey, when the two small twins
had told what Uncle Jack had related to them. "They really know more about
him than I do. All I know is that he is a good, faithful old man. He sells
us wood and many of my friends buy of him. We help him all we can.

"I suppose he must have had _some_ folks once upon a time, but, as he
says, he has lost track of them. The bad news I have about him is that he
needs to go to the hospital. I think he will not get well if he does not
have a good doctor. He was so good to my children that I want to help
him, and I am going to tell my bookkeeper to arrange for sending Uncle
Jack where he can be taken care of. I'll pay the bill. He wouldn't take
the money from me, but he won't know about this."

"Just a minute," said Mr. Whipple, as he led the way down to the
restaurant in his store. "You say this old man lives in the woods?"

"Yes, he is a regular woodsman. He was a hunter and trapper once, I
believe, though he has spent most of his life working for farmers. He
loves now to live by himself in a sort of camp."

"I love camping myself," said Mr. Whipple, "and that is why I am so
interested in selling things for campers. I love anybody who loves the
woods, and, while I do not know this Uncle Jack, I'd like to help look
after him."

"I shall be very glad to have you join me," said Mr. Bobbsey; and the
twins, listening to this talk, though they did not understand all of it,
knew that their old woodsman friend was going to be cured if it were found
to be possible.

"We'll join each other in looking after him," went on Mr. Whipple. "You
must let me pay half." And to this the children's father agreed. He said
he would write back at once to his office, and tell some one there to look
after the old woodchopper.

"Is there any other news from Lakeport?" Mrs. Bobbsey asked her husband at
the restaurant dinner table, while the children were busy talking among
themselves.

"No, not much. Everything is all right, I believe. I have some news for
you, though, Bert," he went on, as his older son glanced across the table.

"What is it?" Bert questioned. "Did Tommy Todd go through the ice in the
_Bird?_"

"No, but it has to do with the ice-boat. He went in a race in her on Lake
Metoka, and, what is better, he won."

"Hurray for Tommy Todd!" cried Bert, so loudly that persons at other
tables in the store dining room looked over and smiled, at which Bert's
ears became very red.

"Did you hear anything of my friends?" asked Nan.

"No, my dear," answered her father. "And the reason I happened to have
news for Bert was because Tommy's father wrote to me about some business
matters, and Tommy slipped in a little note himself. Here it is, Bert."

It was just a little letter telling about the ice-boat, and Tommy
expressed the wish that Bert would soon come home to help sail it in other
races.

"I'd like to be back in Lakeport," said Bert, "but we're having such a
good time here in New York I don't want to leave. Guess I'll write and
tell Tommy so."

After dinner Mr. Whipple showed the Bobbseys and Laddie about the big
store, and each of the children was allowed to pick out a simple gift to
take away. Nan took a pretty ribbon; Bert a book he had long wanted;
Flossie a piece of silk to make a dress for her doll, and Freddie saw in
the toy department a little hose cart which, he said, was just what he
wanted to go with his engine. Mr. Whipple gave it to Freddie, who was very
much pleased. For his present from his uncle, Laddie picked out a little
gun, which shot a cork.

"I can't break any of the hotel  windows with this," he said to his aunt.

"Did you ever break any windows?" asked Flossie, rather surprised.

"Once. I had a little wooden cannon that shot wooden balls. I shot one
right through the window of our parlor, and the next ball hit George, the
elevator boy, who was coming in with a telegram."

"And after that I had to take the cannon away from him," said Mrs.
Whipple, with a smile. "But I think the cork pop-gun will be all right."

Never had the Bobbsey twins had as much fun as they did the day of their
visit to Mr. Whipple's store. They were sorry when the late afternoon gave
the signal for starting back home.

"But we'll have fun to-morrow," said Bert to Nan, as they reached their
hotel.

"How do you know?" she asked.

"'Cause I heard Daddy tell Mother he was going to take us to Bronx Park to
see the animals."

"Oh, will we see the monkeys?" cried Flossie, who heard what her older
brother had said.

"Well, there are plenty of them there, so I've read," went on Bert, "Big
ones, too."

"I like little monkeys best, even if one did pull my hat to pieces," went
on Flossie. "Oh, I wish to-morrow would hurry up and come."

To-morrow finally did come, after the Bobbsey twins had gone to bed,
though when it came it was to-day instead of to-morrow. But that's the way
it always happens, doesn't it?

"All aboard for the Bronx!" cried Bert as, with his sisters and brother he
followed Mr. Bobbsey into the subway train that would take them to the big
animal park.

If ever you are in New York, I hope you will go to see this place. There
are many strange animals in it, and it has beautiful birds and gardens
also. Of course, when the Bobbsey twins went it was in Winter, and most of
the animals had to be kept shut up in their cages in the warm houses.
Some, however, like the deer, buffalo and other cattle, could stay out of
doors even in cold weather.

There were so many things to see, even though it was Winter, when the park
is not at its prettiest, that the Bobbsey twins hardly knew where to look
first. Flossie and Freddie were anxious to get to the house where the
monkeys were.

Some of the larger ones were uglier than they were funny, and in front of
the cages were many persons who never seemed to tire of looking at the
queer tricks the "four-handed" animals played on each other. You might say
a monkey had five hands, for those that have tails certainly use them as
much as they do their paws.

"Oh, look at that one big monkey, chewing a straw just like some of the
men in front of the hotel at home chew toothpicks," said Nan, pointing to
a chimpanzee crouched in a corner of his cage. He did, indeed, look like a
little old man thoughtfully chewing on a toothpick. And he was so natural,
and so much in earnest about it, that the Bobbsey twins, all four of them,
burst out laughing.

This seemed to surprise the chimpanzee. He darted toward the front bars of
his cage, shook them, as if in anger, and then ran into a corner, turning
his back on the people.

"Just like a spoiled child," said Mrs. Bobbsey.

"Well, where shall we go next?" asked Mr. Bobbsey, for whenever he and his
wife took the children on a little pleasure trip, the parents allowed the
twins to choose their own places to go, and what to see, as long as it was
all right.

"Let's go to see the elephants," cried Freddie. "I haven't seen any since
we went to the circus."

"I want to see 'em too, and feed 'em peanuts!" added Flossie.

"No one is allowed to feed the animals in the park," said Mr. Bobbsey. "It
isn't good for them to be eating all the while, and I suppose an elephant
would keep on eating peanuts as long as you'd feed them to him. So we
can't offer the big animals anything. They get all that is really good for
them."

As it was cold, the elephants were all inside the big elephant house, with
its several cages, in the front of which were heavy iron bars, set wide
apart.

"They are close enough together to keep the elephants in," said Mr.
Bobbsey, when his wife pointed out these bars, "though I suppose some
animals might get out between them."

"Whew! they _are_ big!" cried Freddie, when he stood close in front of one
of the cages, or dens, and saw the elephant swaying to and fro back of the
iron bars. "I wouldn't like one like him to step on me."

"I should say not!" laughed Bert. "Even a baby elephant would be too
heavy. Look at this one stretch out his trunk to us. He wants something to
eat, I guess!"

The big elephant, in front of whose barred cage the Bobbsey twins stood,
did seem to be begging for something to eat.

Flossie had carried from the hotel a rosy-cheeked apple, which the waiter
had given her at breakfast. Not wanting to eat it, she carried it with her
to the park, and had it in her hand.

Now, for some reason or other, probably without thinking, she held it out
to the elephant. The big animal saw what she was doing and turned toward
Flossie.

"Oh, you mustn't feed the elephant!" cried Mrs. Bobbsey. "It's against the
rules."

"I'm not feeding him, Mother," Flossie answered. "I'm just lettin' him
_smell_ it. It smells awful good!"

And just then the apple slipped from Flossie's hand and rolled or bounced
straight into the elephant's cage, between the iron bars.

"Oh, my nice apple!" cried the little girl, and before any one could stop
her she had crawled under the front rail, and had run in between the bars.
Right into the cage of the big elephant ran Flossie after her apple.




CHAPTER XVII

CALLED HOME


For a moment Mr. Bobbsey, as well as his wife, was so surprised at what
Flossie had done that neither could say or do anything. They just stood
and looked at the little girl who was walking toward the apple, which lay
in the straw just in front of the big elephant. Nan and Bert, however,
together gave a cry of fear and Bert made a jump as though he intended to
go into the elephant's cage, also.

His father, however, stepped in front of him, and said quietly:

"One child in there is enough at a time. I'll get Flossie!"

And Flossie, not at all thinking of danger, if danger there was, kept
going on to get her apple.

The elephant, as it happened, was chained by one leg to a heavy iron ring
in the side of his cage, and he could move only a short distance. But he
was so anxious to get the apple that he stretched his legs as far as he
could, pulling hard on the chain, and then he stretched out his trunk.

And truly it seemed made of rubber, that elephant's trunk did, from the
way he stuck it out. But, stretch as he did, the elephant could not quite
reach the apple, which he wanted very much.

"No, you mustn't take it!" Flossie was saying. "You can't have my apple! I
was only going to let you smell it, Mr. Elephant. It isn't good for you to
eat it, my mother says. I'll take it back and maybe some day I'll bring
you another."

By this time Flossie was almost within reach of her red-cheeked apple,
but, what was worse, she was also almost within reach of that trunk,
which, however soft and gentle it might seem when picking up a peanut, was
very strong, and could squeeze a big man or a little girl very hard
indeed--that is, if the elephant was a bad one and wanted to do such a
thing.

"Oh, Flossie! Come back! Come back!" cried Mrs. Bobbsey, who had been so
frightened at first that she could not say a word.

"I want to get my apple," answered the little girl. "The elephant can't
have it! I only wanted to let him smell how good it would taste if he
could eat it."

She was stooping over now, to pick up the fruit, and the tip of the long
trunk was brushing the fluffy hair on Flossie's head. Nan covered her face
with her hands, and Bert looked eagerly about, as though for something to
throw at the big animal.

Mr. Bobbsey was climbing over the rail that was in front of the elephant's
cage, and the people around were calling and shouting.

The elephant really did have the end of one of Flossie's curls on the tip
of his trunk, when along came one of the keepers, or animal trainers.
Somebody had sent him word, that a little girl was in one of the animal
cages. The keeper knew right away what to do.

"Back, Ganges!" he cried to the big elephant. "Get back there! Back!
Back!"

The elephant raised his trunk high in the air, and made a funny trumpeting
noise through it, as though half a dozen big men had all blown their
noses at once. Then, as the keeper himself went in between the bars, the
elephant slowly backed to the far end, his chain clanking as he did so.

"There! I got my apple!" cried Flossie, as she picked it up from where it
had rolled in the straw. And then, before she knew what was happening, the
keeper picked her up and carried her to the outside rail, where he placed
her in Mr. Bobbsey's arms.

"Oh, Flossie! Flossie!" cried Mrs. Bobbsey, with tears in her eyes. "Why
did you do it?"

"Why, I had to get my apple," answered the little girl. "Did you think the
elephant would bite me?"

"He might," said Mr. Bobbsey, who was a little pale. "You must never do
such a thing again, Flossie, no matter how many apples roll into
elephants' cages."

"Oh, Ganges wouldn't have hurt her," said the keeper. "At least I don't
believe he would, though he might have pinched her with his trunk if he
had gotten the apple and she had tried to take it away from him. He's a
very gentle elephant, and in the Summer many children ride on his back
about the park."

"Oh, could I have a ride on his back?" asked Freddie, who had been
anxiously watching to see what happened to Flossie.

"Not now, little man," answered the keeper. "It is too cold for the
elephants to go out of doors now. If you're here in the Summer you and
your sister may have lots of rides."

"Then I'm coming in the Summer!" cried Freddie.

"Oh, I don't believe I'd ever let you go near an elephant!" said Mrs.
Bobbsey. "I was so frightened when I saw Flossie."

"There really wasn't any danger!" said the keeper again. "Here, I'll show
you how gentle Ganges is."

The man went in the cage and the elephant, whose name was Ganges, seemed
very glad to see his keeper. When the man called out an order the elephant
lowered his trunk, made a sort of loop at one end, and when the keeper
stepped in this the elephant raised him high in the air.

"I have taught him two or three tricks," said the man, coming back to the
railing, outside of which stood the Bobbsey twins, their father and mother
and a crowd of others who had heard what had happened. "He is a good
elephant."

"Couldn't he have my apple?" asked Flossie. "I'm not so very hungry for
it, and if I want one Daddy will get me another. Won't you, Daddy?" she
asked, kissing her father, who was still holding her.

"I will if you promise never to go inside an elephant's cage again," he
answered.

"Oh, I never will," said Flossie. "Here, you give him the apple," she
said, holding it out to the keeper. "I guess he wants it."

"Oh, he _wants_ it, all right!" laughed the man. "And, though it is not
exactly according to the rules, I guess it will be all right this time.
Here you are, Ganges!" he called. "Catch!"

The big elephant raised his trunk, making a sort of curling twist in it,
and when the keeper threw the apple Ganges caught it as well as a baseball
player could have done.

The next moment Flossie's apple was thrust into the elephant's mouth, and,
as he chewed it, his little eyes seemed to twinkle in delight.

"He likes an apple just as much as I do," said Freddie. "Elephants is
queer!"

"Don't try to go in there to feed this one peanuts!" said Bert, fearing
that the little twin boy might try to do as his sister had done. Generally
Flossie and Freddie wanted to do the same things.

"No, I won't go in," Freddie said.

Having swallowed the apple, the elephant held out his trunk toward the
Bobbseys again. He was asking for "more," as plainly as though he had
spoken.

"No more!" called the keeper, and this the elephant seemed to understand,
for he lowered his trunk, and backed into his corner, throwing hay dust
over his back as he did in the Summer to keep the flies from tickling him.

"Well, I guess we've seen enough of elephants for one day," said Mrs.
Bobbsey. "I thought I should faint when I saw Flossie go into that cage. I
wish I could get a cup of tea."

"We'll go and have lunch," said Mr. Bobbsey. "It's about noon, I think."

They went to a restaurant near a great round stone, which was perched on
the top of a big ledge of rock, and when Freddie wanted to know what it
was his father told him.

"That's a rocking stone," said Mr. Bobbsey. "It stands there on a sort of
little knob, and it is so nicely balanced that a man, or two or three
boys, can easily push it and rock it to and fro."

"Do you mean one man can move that big rock?" asked Bert.

"Yes, he can make it rock, but he can not make it move off the rock on
which it rests. Come and try."

Bert and his father pushed their backs against the stone, and, surely
enough, they could make it rock an inch or two back and forth. Freddie
helped, or at least he thought he did, which is the same thing. But the
stone really did rock, and the children thought it was quite a wonderful
thing. Sometimes your heavy piano, if it stands on an uneven place in the
floor, may be rocked back and forth a little. That's the way it was with
the rocking stone. The restaurant where the Bobbseys ate was named
"Rocking Stone," because it was within sight of the queer rock.

I have not time to tell you all that the Bobbsey twins saw and did in
Bronx Park that day. But they had a fine time, and Flossie and Freddie, at
least, wanted to come back the next day.

"There're lots of things that we didn't see," remarked Flossie.

"Yes. And I want to rock that big stone again," added Freddie. "Why, it
rocked back and forth just as easy as a cradle!"

"Oh, Freddie Bobbsey! The idea! To make out that big rock was like a
cradle!" cried Flossie.

"I didn't say _it_ was like a cradle. I said it _wobbled_ just like a
cradle," replied Freddie. "Daddy, can we go back again to-morrow?"

"I planned to take you to the Natural History Museum to-morrow," said Mr.
Bobbsey. "There you can see all sorts of stuffed animals--walruses almost
as big as a small house, a model of a whale and many other queer things."

"Oh, do let's go!" begged Bert.

"We will," promised Mr. Bobbsey, but when the next day came the plan of
the Bobbseys had to be changed.

In Mr. Bobbsey's mail that morning was a letter from his bookkeeper at the
lumberyard, which, when Mr. Bobbsey had read it, made him thoughtful.

"I hope there isn't bad news," said Mrs. Bobbsey.

"No, not exactly _bad_ news," was her husband's answer. "But I think I
shall have to go back home."




CHAPTER XVIII

A QUEER RIDE


Nan and Bert, who were in the room with their mother and father when the
letter was read, looked quickly at Mr. Bobbsey. Flossie and Freddie had
gone to the next apartment to play with Laddie.

"Does that mean we've got to go back?" asked Bert.

"We haven't seen half enough of New York," added Nan.

"Oh, no, you won't have to come back with me," said Mr. Bobbsey. "You'll
stay here at the hotel, and I'll return in a few days."

"What's it all about?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey.

"Uncle Jack," answered her husband.

"You mean the woodchopper who was so kind to Flossie and Freddie?"

"Yes, and because he was so kind I can't refuse to do what he wants me
to."

"What is it he wants you to do?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey. "Did he write to
you?"

"No, he got some one to do it for him, and my bookkeeper sent the letter
on to me."

"But I thought Uncle Jack was going to the hospital," Bert said.

"So he is, Son. In fact, he is in the hospital now, but he is so ill that
they fear he will not get better, even if the doctors do all they can for
him. He is afraid he might die and he wants to see me before then. He says
he has something he wants to tell me."

"What do you suppose it can be?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey.

"I haven't the least idea. Perhaps it's about his folks. He may have found
some of them, or know where they are. If he has any relations they ought
to know about him, and not leave him among strangers. Of course I'll do
all I can for him. Mr. Whipple has given me some money to spend on Uncle
Jack, so I think the poor old woodchopper will be all right, if he can
only get well."

"Then you're going to see him?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey.

"Yes, I think I had better," answered Mr. Bobbsey. "He did me a great
favor, caring for Flossie and Freddie, and I must do what I can for him.
He says it will make his mind easier if he can talk to me before the
doctors try to make him well in the hospital."

"Then we can't go to the Natural History Museum to-day!" exclaimed Nan.

"Oh, yes; your mother can take you."

"I fear I can't tell you, as well as Daddy can, about the different
things," said Mrs. Bobbsey, smiling; "but I'll do the best I can."

"Oh, Momsey! Of course we love to have you!" cried Nan, kissing her
mother.

"I know, but you want Daddy, too! I don't blame you. But we must give him
up for a little while, if it is to help Uncle Jack."

"Oh, of course we will!" cried Nan, and Bert nodded his head to show that
he agreed.

"I'll just about have time to catch a train for Lakeport," said Mr.
Bobbsey, looking at his watch. "Where are Flossie and Freddie? I want to
say good-bye to them."

"They are playing with Laddie," said Mrs. Bobbsey. "I'll get them."

The two younger Bobbsey twins felt sorry that their father had to go away,
but they were told he would soon be back again. But as Flossie and Freddie
were having such fun playing with Laddie, they did not really think much
about Mr. Bobbsey going away, except for five minutes or so.

"Give our love to Uncle Jack," said Freddie, as he kissed his father, and
started back for the Whipple rooms, where he and Laddie were building a
bridge of books for the toy train of cars to cross a river, which was made
of a piece of broken looking glass.

"And here's an extra kiss I'll give you for him," said Flossie, as she
hugged her father in bidding him good-bye. "I love Uncle Jack."

So Mr. Bobbsey went back to Lakeport, and Mrs. Bobbsey got ready to take
Nan and Bert to the Natural History Museum. At first it had been planned
to take Flossie and Freddie, but, as they said they did not care much
about stuffed animals, and as they were having such fun with Laddie, Mrs.
Whipple told Mrs. Bobbsey she would look after the smaller twins and give
them their lunch.

"Then I'll leave them with you," said the mother of Flossie and Freddie.
"I hope they will be no trouble."

"I'm sure they'll be all right," said Laddie's aunt. "Don't worry about
them."

So Flossie, Freddie and Laddie built the bridge of books, and on it safely
ran the toy locomotive and cars over the river of shiny looking glass.

When they grew tired of this game they played automobile. To do that
Laddie had to turn an old rocker upside down and stick on one leg a broken
drum he had left from his Christmas toys. The drum was the steering wheel,
and it made enough noise, when pounded on with a stick, to pretend it was
an automobile horn.

Flossie and Freddie rode in the back part of the overturned chair, and
Laddie sat in front of them and made believe he was a chauffeur of a
taxicab, running about the streets of New York.

As Laddie knew the names of many places where the real taxicabs stop, he
could call them out from time to time. So that Flossie and Freddie went
to the Grand Central Terminal, to Central Park, to the Public Library and
many other places (make-believe, of course) in the queer pretend
automobile.

"Oh, I'm going to stop off at the Public Liberry!" called out Flossie,
while the play was going on.

"What you going to stop off at the Public Liberry for?" asked Freddie.

"I'm going to get a great big picture book," returned the little girl.

"'Bout Cinderella?" questioned her brother.

"No. I'm going to get a picture book with all kinds of stories in it."

"We can't stop now!" yelled out Laddie. "We're three blocks past the
liberry already."

"Well, then I won't bother," answered Flossie.

After that they played steamboat, a tin horn being the whistle, which was
tooted every time the boat stopped or started. This game was great fun,
and the children played it for some time until down in the street Laddie
heard the tooting of fire engines and the clanging of bells.

"Oh, there's another fire!" he cried. "Let's go down to see it."

"No, indeed!" cried Mrs. Whipple, with a laugh, coming into the room just
then. "No more fires for you boys. You can look out the window, but that's
all."

And so they had to be content with that. The fire did not seem to be a
large one, though it was somewhere near the hotel.

Down in the street were a number of engines and hose carts, and also two
police automobile wagons, which had brought the officers who were to keep
the crowd from coming so close as to get in the way of the fireman.

But there is not much amusement in looking out of a window at a fire which
cannot be seen, and Flossie, Freddie and Laddie soon tired of this fun--if
fun it was. Mrs. Whipple had left the room, to see a lady who called, when
Freddie, taking a last look from the window to the street below, said:

"I know how we could have some fun!"

"How?" asked Laddie.

"Get in one of the police wagons and have a ride," went on the small
Bobbsey boy.

"Oh, let's do it!" cried Flossie, always ready for anything that Freddie
proposed. "How you going to do it?" she asked her brother.

"Why, we can go down in the elevator," Freddie said. "There's nobody in
the police wagon now, for all the policemans are at the fire, but we can't
see them or it. And the driver on the front seat of the wagon won't see us
if we crawl in the back."

"Oh, so he won't!" cried Flossie. "'Member how we crawled in the empty
ice-wagon once?" she asked Freddie.

"Yep. I tore my pants that day. But we had a nice ride. We'll have a nice
ride now," he went on. "We can get in when they don't see us."

"But when the policemans comes back from the fire they'll see us and maybe
arrest us," said Laddie in a whisper.

"They won't if we hide under the seats," returned Freddie. "See, there are
long side seats in the police automobile wagon, and we can lie down under
'em and make believe we're in a boat."

"Oh, if it's a make-believe game, I'll do it," said Laddie. "I guess my
aunt won't care, as long as it isn't goin' to a fire."

"Then come on," answered Freddie.

One of the police patrol wagons, or, to be more correct, automobiles,
stood near the curb not far from the front entrance to the hotel. It had
brought several policemen to the scene of the fire, and was waiting to
take them back.

As Freddie had said, the chauffeur on the front seat could not see what
went on in the back of the wagon, for there was a high board against which
he leaned. And there were two long seats, one on each side of the auto
patrol, under which three children could easily hide if the police were
not too particular in looking inside their wagon as they rode back to the
station house.

The three children hurried out into the hall and got in the elevator,
which Laddie called to the floor by pressing the electric signal button.

"Am yo' all gwine far?" asked George, the colored elevator boy, as he shot
up to the tenth floor and opened the door.

"I guess not very far," answered Freddie. None of them knew how long a ride
they would get.

Out the front entrance of the hotel went the three tots. Because of the
fire no one paid much attention to them, and the hotel help were used to
seeing the children come and go, and perhaps thought Mr. and Mrs. Bobbsey,
or Mrs. Whipple, were not far away.

So Flossie, Freddie and Laddie had no trouble in getting out, and then
they walked quietly down to the automobile patrol. No one was near it, for
automobiles--even police ones--are too common to look at in New York,
especially when there is a fire around the corner, even if the blaze is a
small one.

So, as it was, no one noticed the children climb into the patrol, and the
driver, half dozing, did not hear them.

As Freddie had said, there was plenty of room for such small tots as these
three to crawl under the long seats. And when they were stowing themselves
away, Freddie found some blankets, which covered himself, his sister and
Laddie.

"Now they can't see us!" said Freddie. "But we must keep still!"

"Hush!" cautioned Flossie. "Somebody's coming!"

And somebody was coming. It was the policemen coming back to take their
places in the patrol, for the fire was out. Laughing and talking, they
took their places on the long seat, never noticing the children hidden
below.

And, a few seconds later, away started the automobile, taking the two
Bobbsey twins and Laddie on a queer ride.




CHAPTER XIX

THE GOAT


Everything would have been all right if Flossie had not sneezed. At least
that's what Freddie said afterward, and Freddie ought to have known, for
he was right there. Laddie Dickerson did not say it was Flossie's fault,
but then it is only brothers who say such things to their sisters. And
Freddie did not really intend to make Flossie feel bad.

"But we might have had a bigger ride if you hadn't sneezed," said Freddie,
after it was all over.

"Well, I couldn't help it," was what Flossie said. "And I guess you'd have
sneezed, too, if that fuzzy blanket kept tickling your nose; so there!"

It was in the police patrol automobile that Flossie sneezed. With Freddie
and Laddie, she was having a ride, you remember, the three children
having hidden themselves under the seats, wrapped up in blankets, when the
machine stood in front of the hotel while the policemen were at the fire.

For a time the two small Bobbsey twins and Laddie rode along in silence,
the policemen not knowing the children were at their very feet. And after
they had ridden about ten blocks, Flossie sneezed.

"A-ker-choo!" she cried, when a piece of the fuzzy blanket tickled her
nose. "A-ker-choo!"

"Hello! What's that?" asked one of the policemen in the automobile.

"Sounded like a sneeze," said another.

"Sure it was a sneeze," came from a third.

"Maybe it was Mike, the chauffeur," suggested the first officer.

"It didn't sound like him," ventured a policeman, close to where the
driver sat behind his wooden back-rest. "I say, Mike!" called the
policeman, "did you sneeze?"

"Nope! Haven't time for sneezes now," answered the chauffeur.

"Then it was back here in this automobile," went on the first policeman,
who was quite fat.

"Maybe it was a cat," suggested some one.

"Or a dog," added another.

Just then Freddie laughed--snickered would be more like what he did, I
suppose--and once more Flossie sneezed. And Laddie snickered, too. They
really could not help it any more than Flossie could help sneezing. For
the two boys thought it very funny to listen to what the policemen were
saying about Flossie's sneezes. And when the little girl's nose was
tickled the second time by the fuzzy blanket, and she sneezed again, and
the boys laughed or snickered--the policemen knew where the noises came
from.

"It's in here--right in our automobile!" said the fat policeman again.

"And it sounded right at my feet," added another.

Then all the policemen in the automobile leaned over and looked down. Even
Flossie was laughing now, for it all seemed so funny, and she was
wondering what her father and mother would say.

The laughter of the children made the blankets, under which they were
hiding, shake as though the wind was blowing them, and seeing this one of
the officers pulled loose one corner of the robe and there he saw Flossie,
Freddie and Laddie.

"Well, I do declare!" cried a policeman with a red mustache. "It's
children!"

"Three of 'em!" cried another.

The the two Bobbsey twins crawled from under the seat, and Laddie came
with them, to stand up in the swaying automobile between the two rows of
policemen.

"Where in the world did you come from?" asked one officer.

"Under there," answered Freddie, and he pointed to the place where the
blankets were still rolled up.

"And how did you get there?"

"We crawled in to get a ride," said Flossie, "and I couldn't help
sneezing. That fuzzy blanket tickled my nose so!"

The policemen laughed at this.

"But who are you and where do you belong?" asked one of the officers who,
having some stripes on his sleeve and some gold lace on his cap, seemed to
be the leader.

"We're part of the Bobbsey twins," said Freddie. "The other half of
us--that's Nan and Bert--have gone to see a stuffed whale."

"No, the whale isn't stuffed--it's the sea lion, or wallyrus--I forget
which," put in Flossie. "The whale's only made out of plaster and wood."

"Well, anyhow, Nan and Bert are there," said Freddie.

"And you're here," said the red-mustached policeman, "That's easy to see,
though what he means about being half of the Bobbsey twins is more than I
can guess. How many is twins, anyhow?"

"Two," some one said.

"We're four--that is, two sets," explained Flossie painstakingly. "Bert
and Nan are older than us."

"Oh, I see," said the policeman whom the other officers called Captain, or
"Cap." for short. "Well, where did you come from and where are you going?"

"We live at the Parkview Hotel," said Freddie, "and we got in here to have
a ride. We didn't think you'd find us so soon."

"It _is_ too bad," said the captain, with a laugh. "And I'm afraid I can't
give you a ride any farther than to the station house. I suppose you know
who you are and where you live," he went on, with a smile; "but, as we
have to do things by rule in the police department, I'll have to make
sure. So I'll take you to my office and telephone to the hotel. If I find
you belong there I'll take you back."

"Then we'll have another ride!" said Flossie. "That will be nice, won't
it, Freddie?"

"Um, I guess so. Only I'd like to sit out in front with the driver as long
as you sneezed and told 'em we were here."

"I didn't sneeze any more than you giggled!" cried Flossie. "And, anyhow,
I couldn't help it. That fuzzy blanket----"

"Of course, that was it!" laughed the captain. "Never mind. No harm has
been done, and you shall have a ride back home. Though I think, for the
sake of your folks, I'll send you back in a taxicab, instead of in this
patrol auto, and with an officer in plain clothes, instead of one wearing
a uniform. It will look better at the hotel," he explained to his men.

"Sure," was their answer.

And so the two little Bobbsey twins and Laddie were given a ride to the
precinct station house in the big automobile patrol, and they sat on the
laps of the kindly policemen.

Quite a crowd of children gathered around the doors of the police station
as Flossie, Freddie and Laddie were lifted out of the automobile, and
there were all sorts of stories told about them. Some believed the
children had been rescued from the fire; others that they had been taken
from a robbers' cave, and still others that these were the children, who,
playing with matches, had caused the fire.

But all these guesses were wrong, as we know, Flossie, Freddie and Laddie
had just gone for a ride, and they had one, though it did not turn out
exactly as they expected. However, they had a good time.

It did not take the police captain long to find out that what Freddie had
said was true--that the three youngsters lived at the Parkview Hotel.

"Your aunt has been looking all over for you," said the captain to Laddie,
after telephoning. "I sent word that I'd soon have you safely back, and
you mustn't run away again."

"I asked him to," said Freddie, telling the truth like a little man. "I
asked him and Flossie to come."

"Well, next time you'd better ask before you crawl into a police
automobile," said the captain, with a laugh. "You can't always tell where
it is going. However, no harm is done this time. Come and see me again,"
he added.

Then the captain called a taxicab and sent the children to the hotel in
charge of one of his policemen, who did not wear a uniform. This was done
so no crowd would gather in front of the hotel to stare at Freddie,
Flossie and Laddie, as would have happened if a policeman in uniform, with
his bright brass buttons, had gone with them.

"Oh, Laddie! how could you do it and worry me so?" cried Mrs. Whipple,
when her little nephew had come back to the hotel with the Bobbsey twins.

"I asked him," said Freddie, willing to take all the blame. "We wanted a
ride and we just crawled in and hid. I'm awful sorry."

"And I'm sorry I sneezed," said Flossie. "If I hadn't maybe we'd have had
a longer ride."

"No, we wouldn't," declared Freddie, shaking his head. "We got to the
station house, anyhow, and that's where the automobile lives when it isn't
workin'. Anyhow, we had fun!"

"Yes, we did," said Laddie; "and I liked it."

"But you mustn't go away again without telling me," said his aunt.

"I won't," he promised.

"Next time we'll take you with us," said Flossie. "You'll like it, only I
hope a fuzzy blanket doesn't make you sneeze."

So the Bobbsey twins, with their little friend, had a ride away and a ride
back again, and when Mrs. Bobbsey came home that afternoon from the
Natural History Museum with Bert and Nan, and heard what had happened, she
was so surprised she did not know what to say.

Of course she made Flossie and Freddie promise never to do it again, and
of course they said they never would.

"I never saw such little tykes as Flossie and Freddie have gotten to be
lately," said Mrs. Bobbsey to Nan that night.

"This being in a big city seems just to suit them, though," returned Nan.

"Yes. But I wish your father would come back. I feel rather lost without
him in this big hotel."

"I'm here," said Bert, with a smile.

"Yes, you'll have to be my little man, now. And do, please, keep watch of
Flossie and Freddie while your father is away. There's no telling what
they'll do next."

And really there was not. For instance, who would have supposed that a
goat--

But there, I'd better start at the beginning of this part of my story.

It was a few days after the ride in the automobile patrol that Mrs.
Bobbsey received word that a friend whom she had known when they were both
small children was living in New York. This lady asked Mrs. Bobbsey to
call and see her.

       *       *       *       *       *

"We do not live in a nice part of New York," wrote the lady--who was a
Mrs. Robinson--in her letter, "for we can't pay much rent. But our
apartment house is not hard to reach from your hotel, and I would very
much like to see you. Come and bring the children. They can watch the
other children playing in the streets. I know the streets are not a very
nice place to play in, but that's all we have in New York."

       *       *       *       *       *

So Mrs. Bobbsey decided to call on her old friend, whom she had not seen
for many years. She said she would take Flossie and Freddie with her. Nan
and Bert were going to a moving picture show with another boy and girl and
the latter's mother.

Mrs. Robinson lived on the east side of New York, in what is called an
apartment house. Some called them tenements, and in them many families are
crowded together, for room is very valuable in the big city of New York.

After Mrs. Bobbsey had talked for a while with her former girlhood friend,
Flossie and Freddie, who had been sitting still in the parlor, asked if
they could not go out in the street and watch the other children at play.

"Yes, but don't go off the steps," said their mother.

The two Bobbsey twins promised, but something happened that made them
forget. This was the sight of a red-haired, snub-nosed boy, driving a
goat, hitched to a small wagon, up and down the street.

"Oh, look at that!" cried the excited Freddie. "Isn't that great!"

"It's cute," said Flossie. "I wonder if he'd give us a ride?"

"Let's ask him," said Freddie. "I've got ten cents. Maybe he'd ride us for
that. Come on!"

And so, forgetting all about their promise not to go off the steps of the
apartment house where their mother's friend lived, the two small Bobbsey
twins hurried down to look at the goat.




CHAPTER XX

MR. BOBBSEY COMES BACK


"Hey, Jimmie! Give us a goat ride, will you?" called a boy in the street.

"I will for two cents," answered the red-haired lad driving the goat and
wagon.

"Aw, go on. Give us a ride for a cent!"

"Nope. Two cents!"

"Oh, did you hear that?" asked Flossie of Freddie. "He gives rides for two
cents."

"Then we'll have some," said Freddie. "How many rides can you get for ten
cents?"

"A lot, I guess," said Flossie, who forgot all about the number-work she
had studied for a little while in school.

"Hey!" called Freddie to the boy with the goat. "We've got two cents--we
want a ride."

The boy, who was sitting in an old goat wagon, pulled on the reins and
guided his animal over toward the curb.

"Does you really want a ride?" he asked, "No foolin'?"

"No foolin'," answered Freddie. "Sure we want a ride. I've got five
cents." He showed only half of the money he had in his pocket, keeping the
other nickel back.

"I'll give you an' your sister a ride for dat!" cried the goat boy, not
speaking the way Freddie and Flossie had been taught to do. "Hop in!"

"Can I drive?" asked Freddie.

"Nope. I'm afraid to let youse," was the answer. "Billy's a good goat, but
you see he don't just know you. Course I could introduce youse to him, an'
then he'd know you. But first along you'd better not drive him. I'll steer
him were you want to go. I gives a ride up an' down de block fer two
cents," he went on. "Course two of you is four cents."

"I've got a nickel," said Freddie quickly.

"Sure, dat's right. I forgot. Well, I'll give you both a ride up and down
de block and half way back again for de nickel."

"Here it is," said Freddie, handing it over, as he and Flossie took their
seats in the goat wagon. There was plenty of room for them and the
red-haired driver. Other children on the block crowded to the curbstone
and looked on with eager eyes as the Bobbsey twins started on their ride.
Mrs. Bobbsey, talking with her friend in the darkened parlor, knew nothing
of what was going on.

"Say, he is a good goat," said Freddie, when they were half-way down the
block.

"Sure he's a good goat!" agreed the boy, whose name was Mike. "There ain't
none better."

"It's lots of fun," said Flossie.

It was a fine day, even if it was Winter. The sun was shining brightly, so
it was not cold. What snow there was in New York, before the Bobbseys came
on their visit, had either melted or been cleaned off the streets so one
would hardly know there had been a storm.

"I wish we had a goat," said Freddie, when the ride was almost over.

[Illustration: "I WISH WE HAD A GOAT," SAID FREDDY.

_The Bobbsey Twins in a Great City. Page_ 216]

"So do I," agreed Flossie. "Let's ask Daddy to buy one," she suggested.

"We will," said Freddie.

"I'm goin' to sell dis goat," put in Mike.

"You are? Why?" cried the Bobbsey twins.

"'Cause I'm going to work. You see I won't have time to look after him. I
bought him off a feller what moved away, an' I keeps de goat in Sullivan's
livery stable. But I have to pay a dollar a month, an' so I began givin'
de boys an' girls around here rides for two cents to pay for Billy's keep.
But I can't do dat when I goes to work, so me mudder says I must sell 'im.
I don't want to, but I has to."

Flossie looked at Freddie and Freddie looked at Flossie on hearing this.
Neither of them said a word, but any one who knew them could easily have
told that they were thinking of the same thing--the goat.

"Well, I'll ride you back to where youse got in me wagon," said Mike, "and
then your nickel's about used up."

"Oh, I've got another!" cried Freddie eagerly. "We want more ride. Don't
we, Flossie?"

"Sure we do! Oh, it's such fun!"

So they rode up and down the block again, and when that was over Flossie
and Freddie spent some time talking to Mike.

By this time Mrs. Bobbsey had ended her visit and had come out to look for
her children.

"I thought I told you not to go off the steps," she said. They were down
the street looking at the goat.

"Well, we didn't mean to," admitted Freddie. "But we did so much want a
goat ride."

"And we had ten cents' worth!" laughed Flossie.

Mrs. Bobbsey smiled. It was very hard to be cross with these small twins.
They never meant to do wrong, and, I suppose, taking a ride up and down
the block was not so very bad.

"Good-bye!" called Freddie to Mike, the goat boy, as Mrs. Bobbsey led her
children away.

"Good-bye!" added Flossie, waving her hand.

"Good-bye," echoed Mike.

"And don't forget!" said Freddie.

"No, I won't."

Mrs. Bobbsey might have asked what it was Mike was not to forget, only she
was in a hurry to get back to the hotel, and so did not question Freddie.

When they reached their rooms they found a letter from Mr. Bobbsey, saying
he would have to stay in Lakeport a day longer than he expected. But he
would soon be in New York again, he wrote.

Bert and Nan came home from the moving pictures, saying they had had a
delightful time.

"So did we--in a goat wagon," cried Freddie.

"And Freddie and me are goin' to----" began Flossie, but Freddie quickly
cried:

"Come on and play fire engine, Flossie!" so his little sister did not
finish what she had started to say.

It was the next day, soon after breakfast, that one of the hotel
messengers--a small colored boy--knocked on the door of the suite of
apartments occupied by the Bobbsey family, and when Mrs. Bobbsey answered,
the colored boy said:

"He am downstairs, Ma'am. He am in de lobby."

"Who is?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey.

"De boy what wants to see yo' little boy, Ma'am."

"Some one to see Freddie? Who is it?"

"I don't know, Ma'am. He didn't gib no name."

"Oh, perhaps it is Laddie," said Mrs. Bobbsey. "Bert, please go down and
see, will you? If it's Laddie, who wants Freddie to play with him, I don't
see why he didn't come here. But go and see."

"Oh, I know who it is," said Freddie, "You don't need to go, Bert. Just
give me five dollars, Mother, and I'll buy him."

"Buy him? Buy what?" asked the surprised Mrs. Bobbsey. "What in the world
are you talking about, Freddie?"

"Mike, the goat boy. He's brought Billy here, I guess, and Flossie and I
are going to buy him. Can't we, please?"

"What? Buy a goat when we're stopping at this hotel?" cried his mother.
"Bert, do go and see what mischief those children have gotten into now. A
goat! Oh, dear!"

"I'll go with him, 'cause Mike don't know Bert," offered Freddie.

"And I want to come!" said Flossie. "I want to see our goat."

"Your goat!" cried Nan.

"Yes, we're going to buy him. Mike brought him to sell to us."

And that is what had happened. When Mrs. Bobbsey followed Bert and Freddie
down to the hotel lobby, leaving Nan to look after Flossie in the rooms,
this is what she saw:

Out at the side entrance to the hotel was the goat and the rickety express
wagon, in charge of a red-haired, snub-nosed boy, Mike's small brother.
Mike himself, rather ragged, but clean and neat enough, was in the lobby,
sitting at his ease on one of the big leather chairs, waiting.

"I've brought de goat," he said to Freddie, as soon as he saw that small
Bobbsey with Bert.

"What does it all mean?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey, while a crowd of the hotel
guests and help gathered about.

"Why, your little boy, Ma'am, what I rode in me goat wagon up and down our
block, said you'd buy Billy when I was ready to sell him. I'm ready now,
'cause I'm goin' to work. So I brought de goat an' wagon here to de hotel,
just as your little boy made me promise to do. It'll be five dollars for
de goat."

For a moment Mrs. Bobbsey did not know what to say. Then she turned to
Freddie and asked:

"Did you really tell him you'd buy his goat, Freddie?"

"I said you'd buy it for Flossie and me. Won't you? We can have such fun
with it!"

"A goat in a New York hotel!" cried Bert, laughing, "Oh, dear!"

"Hush, Bert," said his mother. "Freddie did not know any better. Of course
we can't keep it," she said to Mike, "and I'm sorry you had the trouble of
bringing him here. My little boy didn't stop to think, I'm afraid. He
should have told me. But here is a dollar for your trouble, and I think
you can easily sell your goat somewhere else."

"Oh, yes, I can easy sell him," said Mike. "But your little boy made me
promise to bring Billy to dis hotel to-day and here I am, 'cordin' to
promise."

"Yes, I see you kept your word," and Mrs. Bobbsey could not help smiling.
"But really we have no place to keep a goat here, and we could hardly take
it to Lakeport with us. So I'm afraid Freddie will have to do without it."

"All right," said Mike good-naturedly, as he took the dollar.

Of course Freddie and Flossie were disappointed at not having the goat and
wagon, but they soon forgot that when their mother promised to take them
to see another play that afternoon.

"It's a wonder Flossie or Freddie didn't try to bring the goat up to our
rooms in the elevator," said Bert, when they were in their apartment
again.

"Well, he was a good goat!" declared Freddie.

"And he could go fast," added Flossie.

"I was going to play fireman with him when we got back to Lakeport," went
on Freddie. "Now I can't."

"I think you'll have just as much fun some other way," said his mother,
laughing.

Three days after that, when Mrs. Bobbsey came in from shopping with the
two sets of twins, she heard some one moving about in their apartment as
she entered.

"Oh, it's Daddy!" cried Flossie, as some one caught her up in his arms.
"Daddy's come back!"

"I'm so glad!" called Freddie, running to get a hug and kiss from his
father. "And we almost had a goat!" he added.




CHAPTER XXI

UNCLE JACK'S REAL NAME


"Well! Well!" laughed Mr. Bobbsey, when he heard what Freddie said.
"That's great! Almost had a goat, did you? I must hear about that!"

"But first tell us about Uncle Jack," begged Nan. "Is he going to get
better?"

"Oh, I hope he is going to get better!" broke in Freddie. "It isn't a bit
nice to be sick. You have to stay in bed, and sometimes you have to have
your head all bound up, and sometimes you have to take the awfullest kind
of medicine ever was."

"You don't always have to stay in bed when you're sick," put in Flossie.
"And sometimes the medicine isn't bad a bit. It's sweet and nice."

"But tell us about Uncle Jack," begged Nan again. "He'll get better, won't
he?"

"That is something the doctors can't tell," answered her father. "I saw
him in the hospital."

"Was he glad to see you?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey.

"Well, to tell you the truth he didn't know me. He was very ill and was
out of his head with fever. I did what I could for him, and saw that he
would be well taken care of, and then went to Mr. Todd's house to stay all
night. I said I'd go back to the hospital in the morning, but Uncle Jack
was no better, and, after waiting two or three days, I decided to come
back here."

"Didn't he know you at all?" asked Nan.

"No, he was out of his head with fever all the while. Before I came, he
had told some of the doctors that he had something very important to tell
me--something that had to do with his friends or relations, they said. He
would tell no one else but me, but when I got to his bedside he could not
talk so that I could understand him. So really I don't know any more about
him than before. I don't even know what his real name is.

"Sometimes he used to call himself Jackson, and again it would be some
other name. I think he may not have known who he really was. But if he
does, it will be some time before he can tell me, or any one else. He was
still out of his head when I came away."

"Are you going back?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey.

"Not until they send for me, which will be when he takes a turn for the
better or worse. I want to do all I can for the poor old man, for he was
so good to Flossie and Freddie. But now tell me about the goat."

Freddie and Flossie took turns doing that, and a very funny story they
made of it, too. Mr. Bobbsey laughed, and laughed again. Then he had to
hear about everything else that had happened while he was in Lakeport.

"And now tell us what happened there--I mean besides about Uncle Jack,"
said Nan. "Did you see any of my friends?"

"And did you see Bessie Benton?" Flossie asked, naming a little girl with
whom she often played.

"Yes, I saw Bessie," said Mr. Bobbsey, "and she sent you her love."

"Did you see Tommy Todd?" Freddie queried.

"Yes; I stayed at his house."

"How is the ice-boat?" asked Bert.

"Well, there has been a thaw, as you know, and there isn't enough ice in
Lake Metoka on which to sail the _Bird_. I guess Tommy'll have to wait
until you get back there, Bert. We'll have more cold weather yet."

"Oh, are we going to leave New York?" asked Nan sorrowfully.

"We can't _live_ here," said her mother. "We've stayed longer now than I
thought we would. Have you much more business to look after?" she asked
her husband.

"It will take about two weeks more, and then I think we'll go back to
Lakeport. But you children can have plenty of good times in two weeks, I
should think."

"Of course we can!" cried Bert. "And when we get back home----"

"Are we going camping?" interrupted Freddie. "Flossie and I want to go
camping in the woods."

"On an island in a lake," added the little girl. "And we can take the
bugs that go around and around and around and--and----"

"And the bugs that go around and around will catch all the mosquitoes that
fly up and down, up and down, and bite us!" laughed Mrs. Bobbsey. "Yes, we
certainly shall have to take the 'go around' bugs to camp with us,
children."

"Do you really think we can go camping?" asked Bert of his father.

"Well, I don't know. We'll see."

The Bobbsey twins, both sets of them, did indeed have many more good times
in New York. I wish I had room to tell you about them, but I have not
space. They went to see many sights, paid another visit to Central Park
and Bronx Park and saw many nice plays and moving picture shows.

Mr. and Mrs. Whipple and Laddie often went with the Bobbseys on little
excursions about the great city. Laddie and the children became better
friends than before, and Mrs. Whipple said her little nephew had never had
such good times in all his life.

"He missed his mother greatly before your children came to this hotel,"
said Mrs. Whipple to Mrs. Bobbsey.

"When is Mrs. Dickerson coming back from California?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey.

"When it is warm here. She can not stand cold weather. But she did not go
out to California altogether on account of the climate."

"Didn't she?"

"No. You have heard my husband speak of a long-lost brother--also a
brother of Mrs. Dickerson's, who was a Whipple before her marriage."

"Yes, I heard something about that."

"Well, for a number of years my husband and Mrs. Dickerson have been
trying to find this lost brother. And there was a rumor that he had gone
to California when a boy and had grown up among the miners near San
Francisco. It was to find out, if possible, whether or not this was so,
that Mrs. Dickerson went out West. Though, to be sure, the Winters here
are hard for her to endure."

"Did she have any success in finding her brother?" asked Mr. Bobbsey.

"No," answered Mrs. Whipple, "she did not, I'm sorry to say. She and my
husband feel bad about it. But he may be found some day. He has been
missing many years."

It was two or three days after this talk that, one evening, Mr. and Mrs.
Whipple and Laddie were in the hotel rooms of the Bobbseys, paying a
visit, when a telegram was brought up for Mr. Bobbsey.

"It's from Lakeport," he said, as he opened it and saw the date and the
name of the place from which it had come.

"From Lakeport?" asked Mr. Whipple, as Mr. Bobbsey was reading the
message. "That's where the old woodsman lives, isn't it?"

"Yes," answered Mrs. Bobbsey. "And, though he is very ill, he is being
well looked after, thanks to the money you gave for him."

"Oh, I didn't give much. It was your husband who did the most. I was glad
to help, for I always have a soft spot in my heart for those who camp in
the woods. How is Uncle Jack, by the way? I believe that's his name?"

"Yes, that _was_ his name," said Mr. Bobbsey in a queer voice, as he held
the telegram out to Mr. Whipple.

"It was his name--what do you mean?"

"I mean that he has come to his senses now. The doctors have operated on
him and he will get better. There was an injury to his head that made him
forget much of his early life. But now he is all right and he remembers
his real name."

"What is it?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey, while the others breathlessly waited for
an answer. "What is his real name?"

"John Whipple," was the answer. "That's what this telegram is about.
Though everybody called the woodchopper Uncle Jack, his real name is John
Whipple!"




CHAPTER XXII

REUNITED


The Bobbsey twins were not as much surprised at what their father said,
after reading the telegram, as was Mr. Whipple. He fairly jumped up from
his chair, on hearing what Mr. Bobbsey answered, and reached out his hand
for the message.

"His name is Whipple!" cried the department store owner. "Are you sure his
name is John Whipple?"

"That's what the telegram says," went on Mr. Bobbsey. "You may read it. It
seems he asked to have it sent to me as soon as he knew he was getting
better, and when he remembered who he was. He says he remembers he had a
brother and a sister."

Mr. Whipple seemed very much excited. Even Flossie and Freddie, young as
they were, could tell that. He took the telegram from Mr. Bobbsey, but he
did not read it. Instead he looked at the children's father and asked:

"Do you know this old woodchopper very well?"

"I have seen him a number of times," said Mr. Bobbsey, "and he often comes
to my house with loads of wood. The children know him, too. I have told
you how he helped Freddie and Flossie out of the snow bank and took them
to his cabin."

"What sort of looking man is he?" the store owner questioned eagerly.

Mr. Bobbsey described Uncle Jack's looks, and also told of his having come
to Lakeport a number of years before, from where, no one knew. He made
friends and lived in the woods. That was all that was known about him.
Few, if any, had known his name until now.

"And so he is John Whipple," said Mr. Bobbsey, rather talking to himself
than to any one else. "Strange that he should have forgotten it all these
years, I wonder if I can find his folks. Why, your name is Whipple!" he
said to Laddie's uncle. "Do you know who Uncle Jack might be?"

"I think I do," said Mr. Whipple slowly, and his voice trembled. "I think
he is my long-lost brother, and the brother of my sister--he is Laddie's
other uncle! Oh, if it only turns out that way!"

"Is Uncle John found?" asked Laddie, who, with his playmates, Flossie and
Freddie, began to understand a little of what was going on. "Is Uncle John
found?"

"We hope so, my dear," said his aunt gently. "How can we make sure?" she
asked her husband.

"There is only one way," he said.

"You mean to go to Lakeport?"

"That's it. Where can I find him?" asked Mr. Whipple of Mr. Bobbsey.
"Uncle Jack, I will call him, until I make sure he is my long-lost
brother," he added.

"He was taken to a private hospital, not far out of town. I'll be very
glad if you and your wife, and Laddie, as well, will come back to Lakeport
with us. Then you can see Uncle Jack and make sure whether or not he is
your brother."

"I'll be glad to do that. But I thought you were going to stay in New
York for some time yet."

"We can go back to-morrow if need be," said Mr. Bobbsey. "My business is
now in good shape, and I can come back here if there is any call for me."

"Oh, let's all go back to Lakeport!" cried Freddie. "Maybe then we can
have a goat, Flossie."

"Oh, may we, Mother?" the little girl demanded.

"I'll buy 'em a goat--two goats--if this news proves true," said Mr.
Whipple. "Oh, I do hope I have found my brother!"

"How did he get lost?" asked Mrs. Bobbsey.

"It happened when my sister and I were very little children. John was
somewhat older. Our parents died, and distant relatives, living far away
from our home, took charge of my sister and me. John, who was a half-grown
boy, stayed with the family of a neighboring farmer, who had been friends
of our parents, and the relatives took my sister and me away with them.

"Shortly after this the farmer lost his money, his farm, everything, and
soon after moved away, taking John with them. News of this did not come
for some time to our relatives, and when it did and they began a search
for John, all trace of him was lost. They learned that the farmer had died
in a public hospital in a strange city, and all trace of his widow and
John was lost right there.

"When I became old enough, I started to look for John, but could not find
him. My sister could not, either, though lately she heard he was in
California, but it was not true. And so, for many years, we have been
trying to find John Whipple. And at last I know where he is!"

"Let us hope Uncle Jack is your brother," said Mr. Bobbsey gently.

"We will soon know," said Mrs. Whipple.

The stay of the Bobbseys in the great city of New York came to a sudden
end, but they had had a good time, and might come again some time.
Besides, Mr. and Mrs. Whipple were going back with them, to see if the old
woodchopper were really the long-lost man, and Flossie and Freddie
thought that almost as good as if they had stayed in the city.

"And Laddie is coming, too!" cried Freddie. "We'll have heaps of good
times."

"And maybe we'll get a goat," said Flossie. "If we do, I'm going to drive
him sometimes."

"Yes, you can," agreed Freddie.

Mr. Bobbsey closed up most of his New York business matters, and Mr.
Whipple, with his wife and Laddie, got ready to go to Lakeport with the
Bobbseys. Word was sent to Dinah, the fat cook, and her husband, Sam, to
get the Lakeport house ready for the family and for the Whipples, who
would stay with them for a short time.

Another telegram came from the hospital about Uncle Jack. It said he was
doing well, and that his mind was clear. He was certain he was John
Whipple, and that he had relations somewhere. But, for fear there might be
a disappointment, after all, no word was sent him about Mr. Daniel
Whipple's coming on. Nor was Laddie's mother, in California, told. They
wanted to make sure there would be no mistake.

Once more the Bobbsey twins were in the big Pennsylvania station, and
Freddie almost made the whole party miss the train by stopping in the
arcade to show Laddie where the bugs, that went "around and around and
around," had been bought.

"See what beautiful colors they are!" exclaimed Freddie. "Green and blue
and red and brown and pink and yellow and--and--oh, every kind!"

"And you ought to see how fast some of 'em go around!" exclaimed Flossie.
"They just keep on going around and around and around till sometimes you
can't most see 'em go!"

"And you wind 'em just like this----" explained Freddie, making a queer
little movement with his chubby hand.

"Oh, I know just how they go," said Laddie. "Didn't I see yours run?"

"Come, children, we'll have to hurry," said Mr. Bobbsey. "We don't want to
miss the train."

"I want some of those bugs," said Laddie wistfully.

"We can get some later," replied his aunt.

"But they may be all gone when we come back!"

"I don't think so," his aunt replied. "See! They have a whole store full
of them." And then the crowd hurried off to catch the train.

In due time they arrived in Lakeport, and when Flossie and Freddie rushed
into the house, almost knocking down dear old fat Dinah, they found
Splash, the big dog, waiting for them. And Splash did really knock Flossie
down, he was so glad to see her. But she was so fat that, really, falling
just to the floor did not hurt her at all. And, anyhow, she sat down on
the tail of Splash, so it was like a cushion, only, of course, he could
not wag it until Flossie got up.

"Oh, chilluns! how glad I is t' see yo' all!" cried Dinah, trying to hug
all four of them at once.

"And here's Laddie," said Flossie. "Aren't you glad to see him?"

"Co'se I is, chile! I lubs yo' all!" and she hugged Laddie, too.

Leaving his wife at the Bobbsey home, Mr. Whipple went with Mr. Bobbsey
to the hospital where Uncle Jack (as they still called him) had been
taken.

The old woodchopper was much better, though still weak and ill. One of the
doctors had told him some one was coming to see him, and had said it might
prove to be some one who knew about his brother and sister. Poor Uncle
Jack's eyes filled with tears.

"Oh, I only hope it is true," he said.

Mr. Whipple walked softly into the hospital room. After a short talk with
the old woodchopper, Mr. Daniel Whipple cried:

"It is true! I am your brother! Oh, John, I have found you at last!"

There was no doubt of it. After further talking it over between them, Mr.
Daniel Whipple and Mr. John Whipple made sure they were brothers. And when
Uncle Jack (as many still kept on calling him) got better, every one could
see that he and Mr. Whipple, the department store owner, looked very much
alike, except that the woodchopper was older.

But I must not call him a woodchopper, for he was that no longer.

"You are coming to live with me," said his brother Dan. "I have enough to
look after you. No more hard work for you!"

"I am very happy," said Uncle Jack. "Bless the dear children; they helped
you to find me as much as any one did."

"Yes," said Uncle Dan, as the Bobbsey twins called Laddie's uncle, "if
Flossie and Freddie hadn't fallen off the ice-boat I might still be
looking for you, John."

And so, as you have read, everything came out all right. Uncle Jack, in a
few weeks, was able to leave the hospital, quite well again, though he was
very weak, and he was old. He grew stronger in time, but of course no
younger, though he lived for a number of happy years with his brother.

Laddie stayed in Lakeport over two weeks, and he had many good times with
the Bobbsey twins. His mother, as soon as the weather became warm, came on
from California and said she had never seen Laddie play with two children
he liked more than he did Flossie and Freddie. Bert and Tommy Todd sailed
the ice-boat, and it did not upset again, though once it came very near
it. Flossie and Freddie were given the cart and goat they so much wanted,
but I shall have no room here to tell about the fun they had with them.

"Well, it certainly was a dandy Winter," remarked Bert one day, when the
air felt like Spring.

The Whipples, taking Uncle Jack with them, had gone back to New York, and
the Bobbseys were alone.

"It will soon be Summer," said Nan. "I wonder what we shall do then. Where
are we going to spend our vacation, Mother?"

"Oh, I think Daddy has some nice place picked out."

"Let's try to guess!" said Nan to Bert.

But they did not easily do that, and as I do not want to keep you
guessing, I will say that the children did have a fine time that Summer.

Where they went, and what they did while there, you may find out by
reading the next book of this series, to be called, "The Bobbsey Twins on
Blueberry Island." There they went camping, and----But I will let you read
it for yourselves.

"Freddie! oh, Freddie!" called Flossie, coming into the house one day
about a month after they had come back from New York. "Where are you,
Freddie?"

"I'm out in the kitchen gettin' some bread an' jam," he answered. "What
d'you want?"

"Lucy Turner is with me," went on Flossie. "She says we haven't got any
bugs that go around and around and around, and I want to show her. We have
got 'em, haven't we, Freddie?"

"Course we have. I've got one now going around and around and around my
plate that had bread and jam on it--but there isn't any on it now, 'cause
I ate it all up!"

"Oh, come on and we'll get some, too!" cried Flossie, and she and her
little girl playmate were soon having fun with Freddie. And there we will
take leave of them.


THE END




THE GIRLS OF CENTRAL
HIGH SERIES

By GERTRUDE W. MORRISON

=12mo. BOUND IN CLOTH. ILLUSTRATED. UNIFORM STYLE OF BINDING.=

Here is a series full of the spirit of high school life of to-day. The
girls are real flesh-and-blood characters, and we follow them with
interest in school and out. There are many contested matches on track and
field, and on the water, as well as doings in the classroom and on the
school stage. There is plenty of fun and excitement, all clean, pure and
wholesome.

THE GIRLS OF CENTRAL HIGH
  Or Rivals for all Honors.

A stirring tale of high school life, full of fun, with a touch of mystery
and a strange initiation.

THE GIRLS OF CENTRAL HIGH ON LAKE LUNA
  Or The Crew That Won.

Telling of water sports and fun galore, and of fine times in camp.

THE GIRLS OF CENTRAL HIGH AT BASKETBALL
  Or The Great Gymnasium Mystery.

Here we have a number of thrilling contests at basketball and in addition,
the solving of a mystery which had bothered the high school authorities
for a long while.

THE GIRLS OF CENTRAL HIGH ON THE STAGE
  Or The Play That Took the Prize.

How the girls went in for theatricals and how one of them wrote a play
which afterward was made over for the professional stage and brought in
some much-needed money.

THE GIRLS OF CENTRAL HIGH ON TRACK AND FIELD
  Or The Girl Champions of the School League.

This story takes in high school athletics in their most approved and
up-to-date fashion. Full of fun and excitement.

THE GIRLS OF CENTRAL HIGH IN CAMP
  Or The Old Professor's Secret.

The girls went camping on Acorn Island and had a delightful time at
boating, swimming and picnic parties.

GROSSET & DUNLAP, PUBLISHERS, NEW YORK




THE TOM SWIFT SERIES

By VICTOR APPLETON

=12mo. CLOTH. UNIFORM STYLE OF BINDING. COLORED WRAPPERS.=

These spirited tales convey in a realistic way the wonderful advances in
land and sea locomotion. Stories like these are impressed upon the memory
and their reading is productive only of good.

TOM SWIFT AND HIS MOTOR CYCLE
  Or Fun and Adventure on the Road

TOM SWIFT AND HIS MOTOR BOAT
  Or The Rivals of Lake Carlopa

TOM SWIFT AND HIS AIRSHIP
  Or The Stirring Cruise of the Red Cloud

TOM SWIFT AND HIS SUBMARINE BOAT
  Or Under the Ocean for Sunken Treasure

TOM SWIFT AND HIS ELECTRIC RUNABOUT
  Or The Speediest Car on the Road

TOM SWIFT AND HIS WIRELESS MESSAGE
  Or The Castaways of Earthquake Island

TOM SWIFT AMONG THE DIAMOND MAKERS
  Or The Secret of Phantom Mountain

TOM SWIFT IN THE CAVES OF ICE
  Or The Wreck of the Airship

TOM SWIFT AND HIS SKY RACER
  Or The Quickest Flight on Record

TOM SWIFT AND HIS ELECTRIC RIFLE
  Or Daring Adventures in Elephant Land

TOM SWIFT IN THE CITY OF GOLD
  Or Marvellous Adventures Underground

TOM SWIFT AND HIS AIR GLIDER
  Or Seeking the Platinum Treasure

TOM SWIFT IN CAPTIVITY
  Or A Daring Escape by Airship

TOM SWIFT AND HIS WIZARD CAMERA
  Or The Perils of Moving Picture Taking

TOM SWIFT AND HIS GREAT SEARCHLIGHT
  Or On the Border for Uncle Sam

TOM SWIFT AND HIS GIANT CANNON
  Or The Longest Shots on Record

TOM SWIFT AND HIS PHOTO TELEPHONE
  Or The Picture that Saved a Fortune

TOM SWIFT AND HIS AERIAL WARSHIP
  Or The Naval Terror of the Seas

TOM SWIFT AND HIS BIG TUNNEL
Or The Hidden City of the Andes


GROSSET & DUNLAP, PUBLISHERS NEW YORK





THE MOVING PICTURE GIRLS
SERIES

By LAURA LEE HOPE

Author of "The Bobbsey Twins Series."

=12mo, BOUND IN CLOTH. ILLUSTRATED. UNIFORM STYLE OF BINDING.=

The adventures of Ruth and Alice DeVere. Their father, a widower, is an
actor who has taken up work for the "movies." Both girls wish to aid him
in his work and visit various localities to act in all sorts of pictures.

THE MOVING PICTURE GIRLS
Or First Appearance in Photo Dramas.

  Having lost his voice, the father of the girls goes into the movies and
the girls follow. Tells how many "parlor dramas" are filmed.

THE MOVING PICTURE GIRLS AT OAK FARM
Or Queer Happenings While Taking Rural Plays.

  Full of fun in the country, the haps and mishaps of taking film plays, and
giving an account of two unusual discoveries.

THE MOVING PICTURE GIRLS SNOWBOUND
Or The Proof on the Film.

  A tale of winter adventures in the wilderness, showing how the photo-play
actors sometimes suffer.

THE MOVING PICTURE GIRLS UNDER THE PALMS
Or Lost in the Wilds of Florida.

  How they went to the land of palms, played many parts in dramas before the
camera; were lost, and aided others who were also lost.

THE MOVING PICTURE GIRLS AT ROCKY RANCH
Or Great Days Among the Cowboys.

  All who have ever seen moving pictures of the great West will want to know
just how they are made. This volume gives every detail and is full of
clean fun and excitement.

THE MOVING PICTURE GIRLS AT SEA
Or a Pictured Shipwreck that Became Real.

  A thrilling account of the girls' experiences on the water.

THE MOVING PICTURE GIRLS IN WAR PLAYS
Or The Sham Battles at Oak Farm.

  The girls play important parts in big battle scenes and have plenty of
hard work along with considerable fun.

       *       *       *       *       *

GROSSET & DUNLAP, PUBLISHERS, NEW YORK




THE BOBBSEY TWINS BOOKS

For Little Men and Women

By LAURA LEE HOPE

Author of "The Bunny Brown" Series, Etc.

=12mo. BOUND IN CLOTH. ILLUSTRATED. UNIFORM STYLE OF BINDING.=

Copyright publications which cannot be obtained elsewhere. Books that
charm the hearts of the little ones, and of which they never tire. Many of
the adventures are comical in the extreme, and all the accidents that
ordinarily happen to youthful personages happened to these many-sided
little mortals. Their haps and mishaps make decidedly entertaining
reading.

THE BOBBSEY TWINS

THE BOBBSEY TWINS IN THE COUNTRY

THE BOBBSEY TWINS AT THE SEASHORE

THE BOBBSEY TWINS AT SCHOOL

  Telling how they go home from the seashore; went to school and were
promoted, and of their many trials and tribulations.

THE BOBBSEY TWINS AT SNOW LODGE

  Telling of the winter holidays, and of the many fine times and adventures
the twins had at a winter lodge in the big woods.

THE BOBBSEY TWINS ON A HOUSEBOAT

  Mr. Bobbsey obtains a houseboat, and the whole family go off on a tour.

THE BOBBSEY TWINS AT MEADOW BROOK

  The young folks visit the farm again and have plenty of good times and
several adventures.

THE BOBBSEY TWINS AT HOME

  The twins get into all sorts of trouble--and out again--also bring aid to
a poor family.

       *       *       *       *       *

GROSSET & DUNLAP, PUBLISHERS, NEW YORK





THE BUNNY BROWN SERIES

By LAURA LEE HOPE

Author of the Popular "Bobbsey Twins" Books

       *       *       *       *       *

Wrapper and text illustrations drawn by

FLORENCE ENGLAND NOSWORTHY

       *       *       *       *       *

=12mo. BOUND IN CLOTH. ILLUSTRATED. UNIFORM STYLE OF BINDING.=

This new series by the author of the "Bobbsey Twins" Books will be eagerly
welcomed by the little folks from about five to ten years of age. Their
eyes will fairly dance with delight at the lively doings of inquisitive
little Bunny Brown and his cunning, trustful sister Sue.

BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE

  Bunny was a lively little boy, very inquisitive. When he did anything, Sue
followed his leadership. They had many adventures, some comical in the
extreme.

BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE ON GRANDPA'S FARM

  How the youngsters journeyed to the farm in an auto, and what good times
followed, is realistically told.

BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE PLAYING CIRCUS

  First the children gave a little affair, but when they obtained an old
army tent the show was truly grand.

BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE AT CAMP REST-A-WHILE

  The family go into camp on the edge of a beautiful lake, and Bunny and his
sister have more good times and some adventures.

BUNNY BROWN AND HIS SISTER SUE AT AUNT LU'S CITY HOME

  The city proved a wonderful place to the little folks. They took in all
the sights and helped a colored girl who had run away from home.

       *       *       *       *       *

GROSSET & DUNLAP, PUBLISHERS, NEW YORK




THE BOYS OF COLUMBIA HIGH SERIES

By GRAHAM B. FORBES

Never was there a cleaner, brighter, more manly boy than Frank Allen, the
hero of this series of boys' tales, and never was there a better crowd of
lads to associate with than the students of the School. All boys will read
these stories with deep interest. The rivalry between the towns along the
river was of the keenest, and plots and counterplots to win the champions,
at baseball, at football, at boat racing, at track athletics, and at ice
hockey, were without number. Any lad reading one volume of this series
will surely want the others.

THE BOYS OF COLUMBIA HIGH
Or The All Around Rivals of the School

THE BOYS OF COLUMBIA HIGH ON THE DIAMOND
Or Winning Out by Pluck

THE BOYS OF COLUMBIA HIGH ON THE RIVER
Or The Boat Race Plot that Failed

THE BOYS OF COLUMBIA HIGH ON THE GRIDIRON
Or The Struggle for the Silver Cup

THE BOYS OF COLUMBIA HIGH ON THE ICE
Or Out for the Hockey Championship

THE BOYS OF COLUMBIA HIGH IN TRACK ATHLETICS
Or A Long Run that Won

THE BOYS OF COLUMBIA HIGH IN WINTER SPORTS
Or Stirring Doings on Skates and Iceboats

=12mo. Illustrated. Handsomely bound in cloth, with cover design and
wrappers in colors.=

       *       *       *       *       *

GROSSET & DUNLAP, PUBLISHERS, NEW YORK





THE OUTDOOR CHUMS SERIES

By CAPTAIN QUINCY ALLEN

The outdoor chums are four wide-awake lads, sons of wealthy men of a small
city located on a lake. The boys love outdoor life, and are greatly
interested in hunting, fishing, and picture taking. They have motor
cycles, motor boats, canoes, etc., and during their vacations go
everywhere and have all sorts of thrilling adventures. The stories give
full directions for camping out, how to fish, how to hunt wild animals and
prepare the skins for stuffing, how to manage a canoe, how to swim, etc.
Full of the spirit of outdoor life.

THE OUTDOOR CHUMS
Or The First Tour of the Rod, Gun and Camera Club.

THE OUTDOOR CHUMS ON THE LAKE
Or Lively Adventures on Wildcat Island.

THE OUTDOOR CHUMS IN THE FOREST
Or Laying the Ghost of Oak Ridge.

THE OUTDOOR CHUMS ON THE GULF
Or Rescuing the Lost Balloonists.

THE OUTDOOR CHUMS AFTER BIG GAME
Or Perilous Adventures in the Wilderness.

THE OUTDOOR CHUMS ON A HOUSEBOAT
Or The Rivals of the Mississippi.

THE OUTDOOR CHUMS IN THE BIG WOODS
Or The Rival Hunters at Lumber Run.

THE OUTDOOR CHUMS AT CABIN POINT
Or The Golden Cup Mystery.

=12mo. Averaging 240 pages. Illustrated. Handsomely bound in Cloth.=

       *       *       *       *       *

GROSSET & DUNLAP, PUBLISHERS, NEW YORK






THE MOVING PICTURE BOYS SERIES

By VICTOR APPLETON

=12mo. BOUND IN CLOTH. ILLUSTRATED. UNIFORM STYLE OF BINDING.=

Moving pictures and photo plays are famous the world over, and in this
line of books the reader is given a full description of how the films are
made--the scenes of little dramas, indoors and out, trick pictures to
satisfy the curious, soul-stirring pictures of city affairs, life in the
Wild West, among the cowboys and Indians, thrilling rescues along the
seacoast, the daring of picture hunters in the jungle among savage beasts,
and the great risks run in picturing conditions in a land of earthquakes.
The volumes teem with adventures and will be found interesting from first
chapter to last.

THE MOVING PICTURE BOYS
Or Perils of a Great City Depicted.

THE MOVING PICTURE BOYS IN THE WEST
Or Taking Scenes Among the Cowboys and Indians.

THE MOVING PICTURE BOYS ON THE COAST
Or Showing the Perils of the Deep.

THE MOVING PICTURE BOYS IN THE JUNGLE
Or Stirring Times Among the Wild Animals.

THE MOVING PICTURE BOYS IN EARTHQUAKE LAND
Or Working Amid Many Perils.

THE MOVING PICTURE BOYS AND THE FLOOD
Or Perilous Days on the Mississippi.

THE MOVING PICTURE BOYS AT PANAMA
Or Stirring Adventures Along the Great Canal.

THE MOVING PICTURE BOYS UNDER THE SEA
Or The Treasure of the Lost Ship.

       *       *       *       *       *

GROSSET & DUNLAP, PUBLISHERS, NEW YORK





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