Dave Dashaway, the Young Aviator. Or in the Clouds for Fame and Fortune - Roy Rockwood - ebook

Dave Dashaway, the Young Aviator. Or in the Clouds for Fame and Fortune ebook

Roy Rockwood

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In the tradition of the Bobbsey Twins and the Hardy Boys, Dave Dashaway’s adventures continue with a race around the world! Created by the Stratemeyer Syndicate and issued under their popular house name Roy Rockwood from 1913 to 1915, „Dave Dashaway” is a five volume series of aviation adventure tales for boys. Never was there a more clever young aviator than Dave Dashaway, and all up-to-date lads will surely wish to make his acquaintance. In his very first story we find out how the hero ran away from his miserly and cruel guardian, met, befriended and fell in with a successful airman, and became a young aviator of note. It’s a good old fashioned tale about an adventurous boy at the dawn of the aviation age. There’s impossible coincidences, dastardly villains, and a young hero determined to do right.

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Liczba stron: 204

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Contents

I. DAVE DASHAWAY'S MODEL

II. FROM THE CLOUDS

III. BREAKING AWAY

IV. DAVE DASHAWAY'S HIDEOUT

V. MAKING OFF

VI. CADMUS

VII. ROBBED

VIII. A STARTLING SURPRISE

IX. MAKING HIS WAY

X. AT THE HANGARS

XI. THE AIR KING

XII. A NEW FRIEND

XIII. A START IN BUSINESS

XIV. HIS FIRST AIRSHIP RIDE

XV. THE PARACHUTE GARMENT

XVI. THE YOUNG AVIATOR

XVII. KIDNAPPED

XVIII. AN ALL-NIGHT CAPTIVITY

XIX. ANOTHER MISTAKE

XX. IN TRAINING

XXI. THE AMATEUR TROPHY

XXII. A NIGHT ADVENTURE

XXIII. A GREAT SURPRISE

XXIV. SOMETHING WRONG

XXV. CONCLUSION

I. DAVE DASHAWAY’S MODEL

“You don’t mean to say that new-fangled air ship of yours will fly, Dave Dashaway?”

“No, it’s only a model, as you see.”

“Would the real one go up, though?”

“It might. I hope so. But this is a start, anyway.”

“Yes, and a fine one,” said Ned Towner, enthusiastically. “You’re a smart boy, Dave, and everybody says so.”

“I wish my dear old father was living,” remarked Dave in a tone of sadness and regret. “There wasn’t much about sky sailing he didn’t know. In these times, when everybody is so interested in airships, he would be bound to make his mark.”

The two, manly-appearing youths stood in the loft of the dilapidated old barn of Silas Warner’s place in Brookville. It held a work bench and some tools, and on one end of the bench was the model at which they were looking.

It was neat enough and intricate enough, being made by a mere lad, to have attracted the attention of any inventor or workman. An outsider, however, would have been puzzled, for while its shape suggested a bird kite with an umbrella top, it had so many rods, joints and levers that a casual observer would have wondered what they were all there for.

Dave showed a good deal of pride in his model. It had cost him all his loose change to buy the material to construct it, and many a busy hour during the preceding few weeks. He sighed as he turned from it, with the words:

“All I need now is some silk to cover those wings. That finishes it.”

“Then what will you do?”

“Well,” replied Dave vaguely, “then I hope I can find some practical airship man who will tell me if it’s any good.”

“Say, it will be a fortune if it works, won’t it, Dave?” exclaimed Ned.

“Oh, hardly that. They are getting up so many new kinds all of the time. It would get me into the swim, though. All I want is to have a chance to make the acquaintance of some expert airman. I reckon the flying fever was born in me, Ned.”

“Well, that’s quite natural,” responded Ned. “Your father must have been famous in his line, according to all those scrap-book articles you showed me the other day.”

“Anyhow, I’m getting tired of the dull life I’m leading here,” went on Dave seriously. “I’d like to do something besides slave for a man who drives me to the limit, and amount to something in the world.”

“Good for you!” cried Ned, giving his friend and chum an encouraging slap on the back. “You’ll get there–you’re the kind of a boy that always does.”

“Hey, there! are you ever going to start?” rang out a harsh, complaining voice in the yard outside.

Dave hurriedly threw an old horse blanket over his model and glanced out of the window.

“It’s Mr. Warner,” he said, while Ned made a wry face. “I’ll have to be going.”

Old Silas Warner stood switching his cane around and growling out threats, as Dave reached the yard and crossed it to where a thin bony horse and an old rickety wagon stood. The vehicle held a dozen bags filled with potatoes, every one of which Dave had planted and dug as his hardened hands bore proof.

“You’ll quit wasting my time, Dave Dashaway,” carped the mean-faced old man, “or there’s going to be trouble.”

“I was just showing Ned about the loft,” explained Dave.

“Yah! Fine lot of more valuable time you’ve been wasting there, too,” snorted old Warner. “I’ll put a stop to some of it, you mark me. Now then, you get those bags of taters down to Swain’s warehouse and back again afore six o’clock, or you’ll get no supper. There’s a lot more of those taters to dig, but an hour or two this evening will finish them.”

Dave’s face was set and indignant, but he passed no more words with the unreasonable old man who called himself, and was in fact, legally his guardian.

“I’ll keep you company as far as our house,” said Ned, as Dave got up into the wagon seat, and he climbed up beside his friend, heedless of the grumblings of the old man about over loading.

“He’s a pretty mean old fellow,” flared out Ned, as they drove out of the yard and into the country road leading towards the town. “It’s the talk of the neighborhood, the way that old miser makes you work.”

“I wouldn’t mind the work if he would only treat me half human,” replied Dave in a subdued tone.

“It isn’t in him to do it,” scolded Ned. “If I was in your place I’d just cut out, and let him find some other fellow to do his slaving. Why, my folks say your father left enough to take care of you in a good way. And send you to school, and all that. I’d find out my legal rights, if I were you, and I’d fetch that old fellow to time.”

“It would be no use, Ned,” declared Dave. “I tried it once. I went over to Brocton, where the lawyer of my father’s estate lives, and had a talk with him.”

“What did he say?”

“He said that my father had left no property except the old hotel at Brocton. It is old, for a fact, and needs lots of repairs, and the lawyer says that this takes most of the income and makes the rent amount to almost nothing. I found out, though, that the lawyer is a relative of Mr. Warner, and that Warner gives most of the repairing jobs to other relatives of his. I went and saw the court judge, and he told me that Mr. Warner’s report, made each year, showed up clear and straight.”

“Judge another relative of old Warner?” insinuated Ned.

“I shouldn’t wonder.”

“Neither would I. It’s strange to me, though, Dave, that your father ever made such a notorious old skinflint your guardian.”

“He didn’t,” asserted Dave.

“Who did, then?”

“The court, and I had no voice in it. Mr. Warner let me stay at the school I was attending when my father died, for about a year. Then he claimed the estate couldn’t bear the expense, and he has had me home ever since.”

“Why don’t they sell the old hotel, and give you a chance to live like other boys who are heirs?” demanded Ned, in his ardent, innocent way.

“Mr. Warner says the property can’t be sold till I am of age,” explained Dave. “That time I went away and got work in the city, I even sent Mr. Warner half of what I earned, but he sent the sheriff after me, made me come home, and said if I tried it again he would send me to a reformatory till I was twenty-one.”

“Say that’s terrible!” cried Ned, rousing up in his honest wrath. “Oh, say–look there!”

“Whoa!” shouted Dave, but there was no need of the mandate. In sudden excitement and surprise he had pulled old Dobbin up dead short. Then he followed the direction indicated by the pointing finger of his companion. Both sat staring fixedly over their heads. The air was filled with a faint whizzing sound, and the object that made it came within their view for just a minute. Then it passed swiftly beyond their range of vision where the high trees lining the road intervened.

“An airship–a real airship!” cried Ned with bated breath.

“Yes. It must have come from the big aero meet at Fairfield,” said Dave.

“Is there one there?”

“Yes. I read about it in the paper.”

Both Dave and Ned had seen an airship before. Besides two that had passed over the town the day previous, they had once witnessed an ascent at a circus at Brocton.

Every nerve in Dave’s body was thrilling with animation. He had dropped the lines, and Dobbin had wandered to the side of the road seeking for grass, nearly tipping over the load. Dave righted the wagon.

“Say,” spoke Ned, “stop at the house, will you?”

“What for?” inquired Dave.

“I want to ask the folks to let me go to town with you.”

“I’ll be glad to have you, Ned.”

“All right. You know the common is right on top of the hill, and one of the fellows said they could watch the airships yesterday for miles and miles.”

A turn in the highway brought the boys to the Towner place. Ned ran into the house and soon returned all satisfaction and excitement, his pockets filled with cookies and apples.

“Mother says I can go with you, Dave,” he said. “I can help you unload, and we can drive over to the town common and join the crowds.”

Dave’s head was full of airships, and the incident of the hour made him forget his troubles. He and Ned chatted and lunched animatedly all the way to Brookville.

The business part of the little town was located on a hill, as Ned had said, but they did not go there at once. The warehouse where Dave was to deliver his load of potatoes was near the railroad, and there they drove.

They found no one in charge of the office, and had to wait till the proprietor arrived, which was nearly an hour later. It was quite six o’clock before they got the potatoes unloaded. Then Dave drove up the hill.

Quite a crowd was gathered in the public square. The boys hitched old Dobbin near the post office and joined the throng.

Everybody was talking airships. It seemed that half-a-dozen had passed in full sight. Three of them had sailed directly over the town. One of them had dropped about a hundred printed dodgers, telling about the aero meet at Fairfield, and Dave was glad to get hold of one of these.

The excited throng was in great expectation of the appearance of another airship. It was getting on towards meal time, and quite a number had left the common, when a chorus of sound echoed out:

“A–ah!”

“There’s another one.”

“Hurrah–look! look!”

“A–a–ah!”

The last utterance expressed disappointment. A swift sailing aeroplane had come into view, circled, and was lost to sight over the crest of a distant hill.

There was a great attraction for the chums in the crowd and bustle about the common. It was quite dusk before they started away. Dave realized that he would have to account for every minute of his time, and expected a scene when he got back home. He had seen so much, however, and heard so much talk on his favorite theme, airships, that a glimmering idea came to him that he was soon to know more of them.

Dave kept up his spirits bravely, and he and Ned chatted over dreams and plans to find a chance to get over to Fairfield some day soon, and view all the glories of the great aero meet close at hand.

It had become quite dark by the time they neared the turn in the road leading to the Towner place. Old Dobbin was plodding along the dusty road at his usual leisurely gait, when suddenly Ned stretched out his hand and caught the arm of his comrade in a great state of excitement.

“Whoa!” he cried. “Do you hear that, Dave?”

“Sure enough,” responded Dave, checking the horse, and both of them sat rigid on the wagon seat and stared up into the sky.

“It’s another one of them,” said Ned. “Listen.”

There was a quick snappy sound, like the sharp popping of an exhaust.

There was a flashing streamer of light, outlining a dark object that both the entranced lads knew to be a belated airship making its way homeward.

At that moment something swished through the air. Dave did not see it, he rather felt it. Before his senses had fairly taken it in, however, old Dobbin made a jump.

Ten feet ahead the slow going animal plunged, as Dave had never seen him do before. Then he made an affrighted veer. Over into the ditch went the crazy old vehicle with a crash. Dave, clinging to the seat, was simply flung sideways, but his companion was lifted bodily. Head over heels out of the wagon went Ned, landing sprawling in the mud.

II. FROM THE CLOUDS

“What’s happened?” shouted out Ned Towner, in dismay and confusion.

“Dobbin ran away, that’s all,” replied Dave quickly.

“Why?” asked Ned, righting himself and looking around him in a puzzled way.

“Something struck him.”

Dave made the declaration as he dismounted cautiously from the wagon. Dobbin lay on his side as if perfectly satisfied with a rest in the soft dirt. One wheel of the wagon was splintered to pieces and the wagon box had caved in on one side.

“Hold his head till I slip the traces,” ordered Dave.

They got Dobbin to his feet and managed to pull the wagon up the slight slant.

“Whew!” whistled Ned, “here’s a pretty bad wreck.”

“Yes,” assented Dave soberly. “I don’t know what Mr. Warner will say about it.”

“Let him say!” flared out Ned. “The old thing was ready for the junk pile, long ago.”

“That won’t help much,” said Dave.

As he spoke Dave went over to a stretch of broken fence and dragged a long rail up to the wagon. This he strapped to the hub of the broken wheel.

“I guess the wagon will drag home,” he observed, as he hitched up Dobbin anew, “but we will have to walk.”

“Say,” broke in Ned suddenly, “you think something hit the horse and started him up?”

“I am sure of that,” declared Dave.

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