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About The Falls City tribune. (Falls City, Neb.) 1904-191? | View Entire Issue (June 24, 1904)
DARKEST RUSSIA '
BY H. On..TTAN DONNXLLZ :
Copyright , 1890 1 . bJ Street I ; Smith , AU rights tClencd.
' Q.ul Nazlmoff said little. But It
wad evident that the story had made
a deep Impression upon him , and that
, $ . his gratitude to Cobb was too great
: at the time to trust himself to its ox
, pressIon In words.
r Cobb found himself the center of an
admiring audience , and aU the warmth
f11 of congn.tulatlon he received would
' L have made any man feel proud to bo
rthe hero of the hour. He tried hard
r to put an end to the scene. It was
J becomIng somewhat embarrassirtg to
, find himself the center of attention. In
vain he protested that he had done
no more for Alexis than any man
would have done for another under
"But you forget , " urged one of the
Russian naval officers present "that
your .own life was to be spared. You
were merely to be held for ransom.
- 0 . . By this act you periled that life , to
save that of a stranger. "
"WeU , " replied Cobb , with a smile ,
"we've an got to take chances In this
A score of Interrogations as to wl1Y
he was alone followed , and Cobb , In
Ih spite of hIs desire to let the matter !
- drop , found It Impossible to avoid an :
Septimus Cobb was a KentuckIan
. by birth. From his earliest youth he
had been of a rovIng , adventurous dts .
position. At the outbreak of the war
he had raised a company of cavalry ,
and step by step had won promotion
until he was In command of a brigade.
The close at the war found him with
the possession of the title "General , "
a fund of splendId physical health , In
domltable courage , restless energy ,
ant.\ \ . an unsatisfied ambition. He was
p&34h'He ! wanted wealth , and he went
For years after he led the life of
thousands at restless adventurers In
the far West. Editor , miner , specu-
lator-everythlng by turns. Two fortunes .
tunes made-and lost. He came East ,
got Into oil , made a third fortune-
and lost that. It was while casting
about for the easiest and quickest
means of making a > > urth fortune that ,
hearing of the marvelous development
. . r l i
t t 't1t ' I , Iff' ' &fiqFf & I
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t" " I ; ! : , ; nsp + ' _
"Always on ze go , " repeated the b..o-
nen. "How II which
, of Ru'jn all territory on the shores
. of th'o I3Iack Sea , he determined to in
j vestigato Its possibilities. A sy ndi-
'I. ' e P . was formed , and Cobb , as its
J , representative , with unlimited credit ,
and plenary powers , was sent to pros-
poet the new oleaginous territory.
, After some years spent In the neigh-
r borhood of paku , the center of the
' Russian oil country , stories began to
t reach Cobb of marvelously rich gold
deposits In Turkestan. To thInk , ' with
i ' him was to act. It was necessary to
keep his destination a secret for , If
the tales ot the new El Dorado were
true the moment they became known
- - - - - -
In Europe and America , It was as ' certain - , .
tain that thousands would flock to the
scene as It was that the diamond
mines of AfrIca , and the gold discoveries .
erles of Australia , attracted adventurers -
ers from all parts of the world. TakIng - .
Ing a small steamer , Cobb crossed the
Caspian Sea , and guided by a rough I
map of the country , pushed Into the
Interior. He had a march of weeks ,
perhaps months , ahead of hIm , but he
was undaunted. His escort supposed
him an American mIssionary , and he
took no pains to undeceive them. It
Is true that his missionary labors pro
duced no fruit , nor was the faith of
his escort whether Greek Church or
Mohammedan , unsettled by hIs argu- .
ments. But he pushed on for a field
that promised to reward his exertions ,
and had just b gun operations when
he was surprIsed , seized and overpow-
ered by the roving Turcomans. He
had really no fear of death , nor was
his life In much danger ; but he was
placed In confinement until his dlspo
sltlon could be determined upon by
his captors and the amount at his
ransom agreed to. Alexis told the rest
Qf the story.
Cobb had explained much of his ca-
reer as accounted for his presence ,
and when he concluded the avalanche
of congratulations began once more ,
and was only stopped by the sound of
Everybody became silent and list-
The aIr was strange to most ot those
But when Cobb'e face brightened ,
and he exclaimed , "The Star Span
gled Banner"-for that was the _ alr-
everybody understood the delicate
compliment conveyed when Paul Na-
zlmoff had given a whispered order to
a servant and the American air was
played In honor of the American guest.
As the last notes died away , Paul
Nazlmoff taking one hand and AlexIs .
the other , led Cobb In front of the ;
assemblage and "Viva la America ! " '
was given with hearty good will and
Then the assemblage began to gather .
er Into knots and groups-but everywhere .
where Cobb and Alexis and the adventure -
venture formed the subject of conver-
sation. A score of Invitations to the
greatest houses In Russia had already
been showered on General Cobb. He
had accepted half a dozen-one In par-
ticular , that had been pressed with
great earnestness. That one came
from the Baroness van RhJneberg.
"You are so grand , brave , " said the
baroness. "You will In St. Peters-
burg long stay ? "
"Not very long , I am afraid , " answered -
swered Cobb. "You see I am a bird
of passage-always on the go. "
"Always on ze go , " repeated the bar-
oness. "How Is which ? "
Cobb smiled. "How Is which"
struck him as a perfect gem.
"Always on the go , " he explained ,
"means that I remain here a little time
-then go somewhere else-then travel -
el again-and so on. "
"It I now understand , " replied the
baroness. There was the suggestion
of a sigh as she spoke. It did not
escape the notice of Cobb. "I would
to be always on ze go , like sometimes
myself , but I must be always on ze
stay-1 am atone , " and the voice be-
came softer as the baroness cast down
Cobb was about to reply when Lord
Fltzroyat , who hall been an Interested
spectator , sauntered up. The baroness
was betraying altogether too much
Interest In the stalwart American to
please his lordship who had been
wavering for some time on the verge
of a proposal.
"Well , baroness , our American
friend seems to have covered himself
with glory. "
Cobb detected a covert sneer In the
"Zat Is so ! He Is a brave man and I
R. bIg man. Big men are brave , 19 It
80 not ? "
The baroness looked innocently
enough at Lord Fltzroyal a8 she
spoke , but her glance bad first rested
on the American. There could hardly
have been a greater contrast. Cobb
strong , straight , massive and mngni
ficently proportioned ; Fltzroyal thin ,
puny and narrow chesteil.
The shot told.
Fltzroyal looked annoyed.
He turned his attention to Cobb.
"Mr. Cobb seems quite at home In
Russia , " he said.
Cobb measured him with his eye.
"Ycs , " he drawled In reply. "Ameri-
cans generally arc more at home In
Russia than Englishmen are. We
never tried to kick them when they
were down. "
"Zat Is good-zat Is so-Is It so not ,
Lord 1"ltzroynI1" exclaimed the bare
Before Fltzroya1 could reply a hush
fell on the assembly. From beyond
the masses of tropical plants which
2- if- w _
4 WarA/Vl : ' "
masked the apartment where the orchestra -
chestra was concealed came the exquisite .
qulslte strains of a Russian air , played
on the violin b0. . master hand.
As the last notes died away the
storm of applause broke out with spontaneous '
taneous enthusiasm. "Bravo ! encore ! "
came from all points of the room.
"Exquisite ! " "What a master
touch ! " "What splendid technique ! "
"Superb ! " were expressions ! heard on
Paul Nazlmoff was delighted.
"Father , " said Alexis , "tha Is In-
deed a troat. It Is years since I have
heard anything that approached such
a brilliant performance. " He sighed.
His father watched him narrowly.
The wound then , had not entirely
Katherine Karslcheft broke the
silence. "I sometimes wonder how
the lower classes can cultivate such
"Yes It really Is extraordinary , "
replied Fltzroyal , answerIng the count-
ess , who had spoken loud enough to
be heard by all who were near. Then
Fltzroyal saw still another chance.
"The lower orders , Mr. Cobb , have
some things that we don't possess
by birthright of nobtUty. "
The fact that every person In the
room , except Cobb , so far as 'ltzroyal <
knew , bad 0. title , made the remark
Looking his Questioner straight In
the eye Cobb said : "Yes ; brains for
"Let us have 'God Save the Czar'-
one solo. " It was Alexis who spoke.
"By aU means. " "Yes ! Yes ! " "God
Save the Czar ! " came from aU sides.
Paul Nazlmotr raIsed hIs finger and
a servant approached.
"Tell the man who played to come
Into the salon. I desire hIm to play
before my guests.
The servant retired.
A mInute later he returned , and
hesitatingly approached Count Nazi-
motr , who was seated with Countess
The count looked up. "Well ? "
The servant said something In a low '
"What ! " Count Nazlmott arose.
"Sar that I command It. "
The words were uttered too loudly
not to attract attention , and IDu11.
IRK looks were directed to the speak-
er. Paul Naztmotr laughed. Not a
pleasant laugh this tlmo. 110 Was an
noyed "What think you , friend ?
This great genius , whose playing you
did him the honor to admire , actually
had the Insolence to Rend me a reply
begging to be excused ! "
A chorus of laughter followed
The Idea was too absurd. A dozen
explanations were offered ; the servant .
vant had not understood ; the player
did not know ; the man was Insane ;
and so on. It never occurred to any
that a mere musician would send such
a message to Count. . Nazimoff ; ' ,
The servant entered again. V , I
This time he was in terror. The t
man faIrly shook. " , + .
"Come here ! " saId Count Nazlmofr. . _ . _ . . , ; . . . .
There was a painful silence In the ' " ,
The man approached. " . .
Again he whIspered In a low voice ;
and then teppcd quickly back , as If , ' ,
fearful of a blow. . , :
Paul Nazlmoff looked up. His face ' .
was livId wIth rago. His eyes fairly '
blazed wIth anger. "What , dog of a . ,
serf ! This message to me ! " ' In <
spite of himself ho fairly shouted ,
The group of servants near the entrance . J
trance were trembling now. , " ,
The guests were aghast at the terrible -
! rlble outburst ot their host. But Na d- .
moft was beyond control. "Hanajka ! " ' :
he shouted to nn upper servant , "fol-
low Azof here ! Stop ! BrIng your
whip ! Drag the player here by force
-by force , do you hoar ! " and with a
terrible oath , which fortunately was
lost In the confusion , Nazlmolf , almost
choking with rage , sank Into hIs chair.
The silence was only broken when
a moment later Count Nazlmoff arose. - .
"Your pardon , friends , your p rdon. . "
I . His voice was hoarse. "But what
thlnlt you of this last reply that yonder .
der dg dared to send to me by my
servant : ' 1 am neither the servant
nor the serf of Count Nazlmoff ! I ,
shall not play God save the Czar ! ' By "
Heaven ! we shall see ! I shall make '
the dog play here before you until you
bid him go , and then he shall be
flogged before he Is Dung from my .
! "A hundred lashes at least , " suggested .
I gested the countess.
, "With the double knout , " added .
The other guests said nothing. They
waited , wIth bated breath and painful
interest , the ending of the scene. Men
stood with compressed lips ; ladles sat
In nervous apprehension ; Paul Nazi- ' V
motr walked up and down like an
There was a sound outside-a Hcuf-
fie. Some confusion. All eyes were
directed toward the spot , and a moment
mont later , with an astonishment none
could repress , came the simultaneous
exclamation : . ,
"A woman ! "
( To bo continued. )
His Family Record. . / ; : -
Representative Littlefield of Maine
tells this :
"A really good minister generally
has a ready answer for him who . "
would cast a slur on the Bible or on
religion. It seems that the good Lord
has furnished them with the ammunition - . " .
tlon which Is always ready to be fired
Into the scoffer and sinner.
"In my state a good minister bad 1
an appointment to preach at one ot
the small places , a rough.and.ready
sort of joint , where the men didn't
care much how things went. It was
Saturday evening when the minister
rode up to the only hotel or boarding i ;
house In the place , and he was soon
surrounded by several of the men
who bad been Imbibing In the speak-
easy. One of them asked :
" 'Be you the parson Who has come
here to preach ? ' ,
" 'Yes , sir : calmly and poUtely fa- '
plied the minister.
" "Vell , parson , can you tell me and
my friends how old the devil Is ? '
" 'Keep your own family record , my
friend , ' was the quick answer as the
minIster dismounted and walked Into
the hu.se.-Washlngton TImes.
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