The Boy Allies with Uncle Sams Cruisers
Ensign Robert L. Drake
Part 4 out of 4
Frank returned his revolver to his pocket.
Jackson, who had been carried beyond Captain Jack by the impetus of his
spring when Captain Jack stepped aside, now wheeled about and returned
to the attack, his gleaming knife rised above his head. Captain Jack,
with no weapon in his hand, although he wore both revolver and knife in
his belt, waited for him calmly. His arms were spread wide apart and
both feet were implanted firmly in the ground. He smiled slightly.
Apparently he presented an uninviting aspect, for Jackson hesitated in
his rush. This hesitancy caused his undoing.
Captain Jack leaped forward with a mighty spring. His strong right arm
encircled Jackson's neck, while his left hand clutched Jackson's knife
arm. Jackson was borne over backwards and Captain Jack went down on
top of him.
There was a sharp snap and the knife that Jackson held went flying
through the air. Captain Jack's powerful fingers had broken the man's
wrist. At the same moment Captain Jack drove his right fist into
Jackson's face. Then he got to his feet and faced the others.
"Any more of you want my job?" he cried, his face red with anger.
No man stepped forth.
"I thought not," said Captain Jack. "Very well. Now, you have heard my
proposition. You are free to accept or refuse it at your pleasure. As
for me, I am going through with it, anyhow. Which of you are with me?"
Came cries of "I am, Captain! I am," and the men rushed forward.
Captain Jack smiled again. He was his old self now. He turned to
Frank and Jack.
"You see," he said quietly, "I was sure of my men."
"Well, you know how to handle them, that's certain," said Jack
admiringly. "Tell them to follow us back to the fort. Then we'll lay
Captain Jack gave the necessary command. Frank led the way back. The
men followed, talking excitedly among themselves, all save Jackson, who
was carried by two of his comrades.
PLANNING THE ATTACK
"Think I'll have a little confab with my friend Virginia," said Jack,
soon after they had returned to the fort.
"With whom?" asked Captain Jack.
"Oh, we haven't told you about that, have we?" said Jack. "I mean the
United States cruiser Virginia. I picked her up on the wireless
"You did, eh?" laughed Captain Jack. "Did you give them our location?"
"I didn't know it," said Jack.
"Well," said Captain Jack, "if you'll let me do the talking this time
I'll give it to them."
"Better give them the location of the submarine base, instead," said
Jack. "We'll make our start tonight, and it might be well to have a
cruiser or two drop in at the finish. But I didn't know you were a
"I'm not much of one," returned Captain Jack, "but I'm not so bad,
The two went into the wireless room, where Captain Jack adjusted the
receiver over his head. Then he began to flash the Virginia call into
space; and at last he got an answer.
"Kaiserland?" came the query.
"Yes," Captain Jack flashed back.
Captain Jack hesitated a moment and then replied:
"So you have captured the other party, eh?"
"No, we've just joined forces. We are going to raid the German
submarine base tonight."
"Are you telling the truth or trying to throw me off the trail?"
"I'm telling the truth. The man you talked to yesterday is here, if
you care to talk to him."
"Let me talk to him."
Jack took Captain Jack's place at the wireless. It took some
conversation to convince the commander of the Virginia that all was
well but Jack did it at last and gave the location Captain Jack gave
"We haven't been able to pick up any wreck," said the Virginia, "and we
had about given up hope of finding you. We tried all night and all
morning to pick you up."
"We were busy," said Jack.
"You must have been," was the answer. "You say you will make the raid
"Yes; when can you get on the ground?"
"Not before morning. Maybe you had better wait so we can join forces."
"Not much," Jack flashed back. "This is my, plan and I'm going to do
"All right, but be careful. I'll put other vessels in this water in
touch and have them on the scene as soon as possible."
"All right," said Jack. "How many vessels in these waters?"
"Half a dozen."
"Well, you'd better get as many of them as possible on the scene," said
Jack. "There might be a slip, you know."
"I'll do the best I can. Good-by and good luck to you."
"Good-by!" flashed Jack.
"Not much help to be expected from that source, unless we wait," the
lad said to Captain Jack.
"Well, we don't want to wait," said the chief of the pirates.
"Right you are as you are."
"I'm just as anxious for action."
They returned to the other room, where Jack called a council of war.
"The time to strike is now," he said when the others had gathered
around the table, all except the pirates, who were still outside.
"I agree with you," said Frank. "How long a march is it, Captain
"If we leave here two hours before dark we will reach the base soon
after midnight," was the reply; "but if you will allow me, I have a
plan to suggest."
"Let's hear it, Captain," said Jack.
"To my way of thinking," said Captain Jack, "it would be better if we
attack from two places."
"Two places?" echoed Frank.
"Yes. My plan would be to send the bulk of the men afoot, while I pick
a crew for my submarine and strike from the sea."
"By Jove!" said Jack. "A first class idea! But will not the German
submarine base be mined?"
"It wasn't when I was there before," said Captain Jack significantly.
"Otherwise I would not have come out whole with a submarine."
"That's true," said Jack. "Well, I agree with you. Yours is by far
the best plan. How many men do you need aboard the submarine?"
"Not more than fifteen. The others will go a foot."
"There is a hitch in this plan, though," said Frank.
"What is it?' demanded Captain Jack.
"Well, your men may be willing to follow you all right, but will they
follow me, or Jack here? You can't go by land and by sea both, you
"By George!" exclaimed Captain Jack. "I hadn't thought of that.
However, I have no doubt it can be remedied."
"I think I can point out the remedy," said Captain Glenn.
"What is it, Captain?"
"Well, Frank and Jack here know something about submarines, they tell
me. My advice would be to put one of them in command of your men
aboard the submarine rather than in command of the land party. Chances
are none of your men know aught of navigation and would have to depend
upon the man in command, whereas, on land, they might think they could
shift for themselves."
"I am of your opinion, Captain," said Captain Jack, "and shall act upon
your advice. Now, is Templeton or Chadwick the better man for the
"I fancy one will do as well as the other," put in Williams.
"Personally," said Frank, "I should like the job myself."
"It's yours, then," said Captain Jack briefly.
"Maybe the men will object," said Frank.
"Let 'em," returned Captain Jack. "I'll fix that."
"That's arranged then," said Jack. "Next thing, Captain Jack, is to
select the men for the crew. Williams, you'd better go aboard the
submarine as first officer."
"Suits me," said Williams briefly.
"I'll draw up a list of the crew," said Captain Jack.
He produced an old envelope and a lead pencil and scribbled. Directly
he pushed back his chair.
"That's done," he said. "What next?"
"What's the lay of the land, Captain?" asked Jack.
"Well," replied the pirate chief, "I'll give Chadwick here a chart that
he will find sufficient for his purposes. I made it, thinking I might
want a second submarine some day."
"But how about the land party?" asked Jack.
"The German base," said Captain Jack, "extends along the southern
extremity of the island for perhaps a mile. You see, therefore, that
it's small. I don't believe there are more than a dozen submarines
there. Whether there are more large raiders, I can't say. I wouldn't
be surprised, however, if the one you put a torpedo into the other
night was the last. That would mean that ashore, besides whatever
number of the submarine crews that are aboard their vessels, there
would be comparatively few men. We'll count the submarine crews as
twenty-five men to a ship. That's 300 men. There may be an additional
hundred men on the ground, but I doubt it."
"But they must have some means of protection," said Jack. "Big guns,
and rifles a-plenty."
"Rifles, yes," was the reply, "but few big guns. They feel so secure
in their hiding places that they have made use of their guns mostly to
arm merchant raiders."
"I see," said Jack. "Well, we'll have to leave something to chance.
Now the question arises as how best to destroy the place, submarines
"Well, I can fix that, too," said Captain Jack. "Bombs are the things
to do the trick. Half a dozen bombs scattered about and timed nicely,
and there won't be a German submarine base at this time tomorrow."
"All right so far as the land side goes," said Frank, "but how about
"Mines," said Captain Jack quietly, "timed to explode simultaneously
with the bombs ashore. You can lay them from the submarine."
"By Jove!" said Jack. "You'd make a first class combined
general-admiral, Captain Jack," declared Captain Glenn.
Captain Jack smiled slowly.
"I've had all this planned for many a day," he said quietly. "I didn't
know when the Germans might declare war on me, and when they did I was
determined to exterminate them."
"Well, plans thus being decided upon," said Frank, "there is nothing to
do but await the hour of departure."
They discussed the plans in detail while they waited, however. At four
o'clock Captain Jack got to his feet.
"Time to get busy," he said.
IN THE NIGHT
Frank took command of the submarine. As he had feared, there was some
protest among the men Captain Jack had decided upon to man the vessel,
but the pirate chief soon overcame this. Therefore, when the submarine
put off from Kaiserland, the men were anxious to obey the lad's every
From the fort to the place where the submarine lay the paths of both
land and sea parties lay together. According to Captain Jack's
calculations the start from this point, if made simultaneously by land
and sea forces, would enable both to reach their destination at
approximately the same hour, if the submarine was held to five knots an
hour. It had been deemed advisable for the undersea craft to go some
distance from land and then run south submerged.
From the deck of the submarine Frank waved a band to his friends on
shore. The others stood watching while the vessel crept through the
water. At length, upon Frank's order, it submerged.
Captain Jack ordered his men south.
The land party now was divided into three sections. Captain Jack led
the main body, composed of twelve men. Jack had the same number under
his command. Counting Timothy and Allen, Captain Glenn commanded
While Jack was nominally in command of the party, it had been decided
that it would be wise to let Captain Jack show the way, this because
the pirates would feel more secure under his guidance. They moved
south at a rapid walk.
Darkness fell and still the marchers made their way through the thick
trees and underbrush. The march would be a long one, so after two
hours' walking, Captain Jack slowed his men down a trifle.
At 10 o'clock Captain Jack called a halt in the darkness. He glanced
at his watch by the dim light of the moon, and passed the word for Jack
and Captain Glenn, who approached a moment later.
"Half an hour's march and we shall be within sight of the base," said
Captain Jack. "The Germans have felled trees between them and the
forest proper, apparently with the idea of preventing a surprise from
this direction. We'll have to trust to luck and the darkness to get us
safely across opening."
"We'll take it at a run," said Captain Glenn.
"That will be the best way," Captain Jack agreed, but I figure we had
better approach from different points. Templeton, I'll wait here with
my men while you make a quarter of a mile detour to the right. Captain
Glenn, you do the same to the left. I'll wait here fifteen minutes.
When you see the first of my men move across the opening, you follow
"A good idea," was Jack's comment.
"Don't forget," Captain Jack said, "that the main thing is to get the
bombs planted without being discovered. If we can do that without
interruption, it would even be well to draw off without firing a shot.
But the bombs must be placed squarely within the German settlement or
our work will count for nothing."
"Right you are, Captain," said Captain Glenn.
"Very good, then. Now, you fellows get to your places and then move
toward the clearing. As soon as you see my men moving across the
Jack and Captain Glenn returned to their commands and gave the
necessary marching orders. The men moved off in the darkness.
Less than an hour later Jack stood in the shelter of a large tree at
the very edge of the clearing. In the distance he could make out what
appeared to be numerous buildings. This was the point, the lad felt
sure, where the blow would be struck.
In his left hand Jack carried a small but powerful bomb, which had been
provided by Captain Jack. The fuse attached would burn fifteen
minutes. In the time after it was lighted this meant that the
attacking party had fifteen minutes to get out of the way before the
explosion occurred. Captain Glenn and Captain Jack carried similar
Jack kept his eyes upon the place where Captain, Jack's party soon was
to move across the open. For five minutes he gazed without result, and
then he saw several shadowy figures stealing across the clearing.
Jack turned to his men with a command.
"March!" he ordered.
He placed himself at their head and they dashed through the darkness at
A quarter of a mile on the other side of Captain Jack's party, Captain
Glenn also had ordered his men forward.
Meanwhile, what of Frank and the submarine?
Shaping his course by the chart which Captain Jack had given him, Frank
kept the course accurately. The speed of the vessel was maintained at
five knots, in accordance with Captain Jack's calculations. As Frank's
watch showed half past eleven, he felt that the time to exercise the
greatest caution had come.
The lad turned the wheel over to Williams and took the latter's place
at the periscope. Directly he was able to make out the coast line, and
even at this distance he felt certain that he could make out a long row
of buildings in the background. The submarine was, of course, still
too far away for possible vessels, which would lie low on the water, to
be within the lad's range of vision.
"Where are the mines?" the lad asked Williams.
"Foot of the ladder, sir," was the reply.
"Yes, sir, and anchors, too, sir."
"Good! Of course, we'll have to come to the surface to let them go."
"Of course, sir."
'Then be ready when I give the word. I can't pick up any submarines at
this distance, but they may all be upon the surface as well as resting
beneath the water."
"I'm ready, sir."
"Torpedoes all right?"
"Yes, sir. I just examined them ten minutes ago."
"Guess there are no other precautions we can take," said Frank. "Be
ready to grab a couplr of mines and follow me on deck when I give the
word." Frank turned and summoned one of the pirate crew, a negro, who
answered to the name of Jefferson.
"Jefferson, take the wheel," he said.
Jefferson did so, grinning.
"Slow to two knots, Williams," ordered Frank.
Williams signaled the engine room and the pace of the submarine slowed
down until the vessel was barely moving through the water.
Frank glanced at his watch. It was 12 o'clock.
"Fifteen minutes in which to lay the mines," he said to himself. "They
must explode at 12:30 --"
At 12:10 the submarine emerged from the depth and floated calmly upon
the surface of what appeared to be an artificial harbor. Frank and
Williams, leaving Jefferson at the wheel and ordering the engines
stopped, sprang on deck, carrying two small packages each. These,
bound in little tin boxes, were the deadly mines.
"One off here, Williams," said Frank, putting one on deck and glancing
at his watch.
The hands showed 12:15.
"We'll have to work fast," said Frank.
Quickly Frank dropped one of the mines over the port side of the
vessel, aft. Williams followed suit to starboard, forward. Frank poked
his head down the hatchway and yelled:
"Full speed, ahead, Jefferson!" The vessel dashed forward. "West by
north five points!" yelled Frank.
The submarine veered sharply.
Two minutes from where the first mines had been dropped overboard,
Frank and Williams let go the remaining two. As they did so, Frank
perceived several long shapes emerging from below. He took one look
and then dived below with a cry to Williams:
It was true. Attracted by the impending danger in some unaccountable
fashion, the German terrors of the deep were coming from fancied
security beneath the waves for a look around.
Frank grabbed the wheel from Jefferson and turned the head of the
submarine due north. He rang for full speed ahead.
At almost the same instant one of the German submarines espied the
stranger in the midst. There was a hail across the water. Then a
torpedo flashed close to the Roger.
Again Frank glanced at his watch. It was 12:25 -- only five minutes
were left in which the pirate submarine might reach a place of safety.
Frank feared to give the signal to submerge for the reason that the
speed of the craft would be impeded.
It was better to run the gauntlet of the submarines on top of the
water. Torpedoes passed close, but Frank maneuvered the little vessel
from port to starboard and back again so rapidly that none struck
And at last Frank, watch in hand, felt that the submarine was safely
out of the danger zone. His watch showed 12:30.
Frank strained his ears to catch the explosion that would tell him the
deadly mines had done their work.
CAPTAIN JACK PAYS
The attacking party, led by Jack Templeton, Captain Jack and Captain
Glenn, advanced across the clearing toward the unsuspecting German
settlement at a run.
The distance was perhaps two hundred yards and Captain Jack felt that
if this distance could be transversed without discovery, the success of
the raid was assured.
But the distance was not to be covered without discovery.
Half way across the open a shot rang out. This was quickly followed by
three more. One of the men under Captain Glenn's command pitched
forward on his face.
"Forward, men!" cried Captain Glenn, springing forward faster than
Captain Jack and Jack Templeton also urged their men to redoubled
Within the German lines, Jack saw men running forward. Apparently the
German officers were trying to get their men in formation to ward off
an attack. The enemy had no means of ascertaining the strength of the
attacking party, attack was ordered.
Although Frank did not know it, it was the sounds of the firing on
shore that had brought the German submarines in the harbor from the
depths, upon command, to lend a helping hand if need be.
A volley broke from the three divisions of raiders as they dashed for
the German lines. Now that their presence had been discovered there
was no reason for further efforts at concealment, and Captain Jack and
the other leaders had no mind to be fired upon without returning the
The result of the volleys, the raiders had no means of determining, but
they felt sure that some of the bullets had found human marks. Time
after time the Germans fired at the advancing' men, but as the latter
showed no signs of giving up the attack the German commander ordered
his men to fall back toward the water's edge. He naturally supposed
that, his base having been discovered, he was being attacked in force.
He could have no idea that the raid was being conducted by a small body
of desperate men.
The plan of the German commander was to make a stand at the water edge
and then rush his men aboard the flotilla of submarines should he be
pressed too closely.
This decision was fortunate for the raiders, for had the Germans made a
determined stand the attack must have failed.
Captain Jack's party was the first to reach the settlement. Volley
after volley they poured into the Germans. Jack and his men arrived
next, and soon Captain Glenn's command, bearing down from the flank,
reinforced the first arrivals.
Captain Jack hurled his bomb as far forward as possible at precisely
12:15. From their sections of the field Jack and Captain Glenn
followed suit at the same time. Then each commander ordered a
As the raiders turned and ran, the German commander's first thought was
to order a pursuit. But he changed his mind quickly, for he feared the
retreat might be only a ruse to draw him on. For that reason he
ordered his men to stay, for the moment, where they were.
As members of the raiding party dashed back over the ground they had
traversed, however, the German rifles poured volleys after them.
Captain Jack was bringing up the rear of his party. So it was that no
man saw him suddenly pitch forward on his face. Captain Jack drew
himself slowly to his feet and as slowly retreated again. There was a
terrible pain in his left side and he realized that a German bullet,
entering his back, had gone clear through him. Blood flowed profusely
and the pirate chief knew that he was badly wounded. Nevertheless, he
did not call after his men, but followed them as swiftly as he could.
Now the German commander decided that the retreat of the foe was not a
ruse to draw him on. He ordered his men forward and volley after
volley was fired over Captain Jack's head at the retreating pirates.
At the edge of the forest beyond, the pirates turned, and then, for the
first time, they realized that Captain Jack had been left behind. Wild
yells shattered the stillness of the night. In the face of almost
certain death, the pirates wheeled and dashed to the rescue of their
But the Germans also were dashing forward. As Captain Jack saw his men
rushing back to him, and realized the fate that threatened them, he
waved them away, shouting:
"Go back! I'll make it, all right."
Then, as the pirates disregarded this and still came on, he ordered
them again to fall back.
"Don't forget the bombs!" he cried.
There are few men who will advance into the face of certain death.
These pirates were not of these few. A quarter of a mile away to
either side, it was impossible for Jack or Captain Glenn or their men
to render assistance; and now the other pirates turned again and took
to their heels.
So Captain Jack was left alone to face the oncoming Germans.
First Captain Jack took time to glance at his watch. The hands pointed
"I would like to live five minutes yet," he muttered.
He discarded his now empty rifle and produced his pair of automatics.
The Germans, seeing but one man opposing their path, rushed forward to
make him a prisoner.
"Crack! Crack! Crack! Crack!"
Both of Captain Jack's revolvers were flashing fire.
"Crack! Crack! Crack! Crack!" they spoke again.
And so until each weapon had been emptied of ten shots. Captain Jack
hurled his useless weapons in the very faces of his foes and again
produced his watch.
The hands showed 12:30.
"Time!" said Captain Jack, and at that moment a German bullet laid him
But Captain Jack was not dead. He raised his head and listened; and
then what he waited for came.
There was a terrible rumble and roar, followed by two ear-splitting
blasts. These were quickly succeeded by others. The ground rocked and
swayed. Men, huge wooden buildings, steel and iron within the German
lines went sailing high in the air, to come down for miles around.
Terrible screams and groans and curses shattered the night, quickly
followed by more detonations somewhat muffled, as the mines dropped
from the pirate submarine exploded beneath the water.
The waves were lashed into a frenzy. The ground trembled for long
minutes and seemed on the point of dropping into the bowels of the
And then it began to rain men and debris.
Great rocks, brought up from deep in the earth, fell on all sides of
the place where Captain Jack lay wounded unto death, but as though by a
miracle none touched him. Where the pirates were still racing for
safety, with Jack and Captain Glenn at their head, trees were uprooted
and toppled over. The rain of steel and iron and rocks carried even
there, and the men threw themselves to the ground and put their arms
above their heads.
And then, as suddenly as it had begun, the rain of missiles ceased.
Jack got to his feet, as did his men. Rapidly he led them back toward
where a moment before had been a German submarine base.
There was no base there now. Nothing but ruin and destruction and
death. The German submarine base, submarines in the harbor, men who
had inhabited the place, had passed into oblivion.
The raid had been complete.
Captain Glenn also returned to the front with his men, and the pirates
who had been under Captain Jack's command, dashed back to search for
The sea had now become calm again and Frank ordered the submarine
headed for the harbor. Half an hour later he went ashore, accompanied
by Williams and every member of the crew.
Frank was appalled at the extent of the destruction. Rapidly he passed
through the ruins toward the forest beyond, where he knew he would find
Jack or some trace of him. And there he came upon the sad band of
Into the midst of these Frank forced his way. In the center, his head
on Jack's knee, was Captain Jack. Blood flowed from wounds in the back
of his head, from his forehead and from his sides. He was
But as Frank bent down beside him, the pirate chief opened his eyes.
He saw Jack and Frank and smiled his old smile.
"Was the raid a success?" he asked feebly.
"It was," replied Jack quietly. "Not a German left alive, nor one
stone upon another nor a submarine in the harbor."
"Good!" said the pirate chief. "I would like to speak to my men."
At a signal from Jack these gathered around him.
"Men," said Captain Jack, "I am going to a land where there is no
piracy and no wars. But before I go I want to tell you that I repented
of my evil ways before it was too late; and I want the promise of each
one of you that from this time on he will lead an upright life -- a
peaceful life at such time that his services are not being employed in
the service of his native land. I want to shake hands with each one of
you and hear your promise."
Sadly the men filed by him and there was none who did not promise
freely all that the pirate chief asked. Then they stood near with
Captain Jack shook hands with Williams and Captain Glenn.
"You see I was to be trusted, after all," he said.
Captain Glenn pressed the hand but made no reply.
From the distance there came a dull rumble. Frank stood up and gazed
toward the harbor through the darkness. Suddenly a powerful glare
lighted up the shore.
"What is that?" demanded Captain Jack, freeing himself from Jack and
getting to his feet in spite of his wounds.
"Searchlight," replied Frank briefly. "Probably the Varginia
approaching to give us aid."
"We don't need it now," said Captain Jack.
He extended a hand to Jack and one to Frank and the lads pressed them
warmly. As they stood thus, Captain Jack's body swayed slightly and
became limp. Gently the boys laid him on the ground. They bent over
to catch the sound of his voice.
"Tell America that I have been of some good after all," said Captain
Jack, pirate chief, in a low voice.
And so he died.
From across the sea came the sound of a big gun. Swiftly toward the
island of Kaiserland came the American cruiser Virginia.
Here, beside the body of the dead pirate chief on an uncharted island
in the South Atlantic, ends our story. Subsequent adventures of Frank
Chadwick and Jack Templeton will be related in a succeeding volume,
entitled "The Boy Allies with the Submarine D-32; or, The Fall of the
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