Young Denny nodded, smiled faintly as he rose to his feet to meet the announcer, who crossed and placed one hand on his shoulder and introduced him. Again the applause went throbbing to the roof; and again the echo of it after Jed The Red had in turn stood up in his corner. The referee called them to the middle of the ring. It was quiet in an instant so quiet that Old Jerry's throat ached with it.
It was after he had sunk back with a sigh of relief on finding that a train for "Pittsburgh, Chicago and the West" was not his that he discovered that an empty seat at his right had been occupied during his strained interest in the announcer. Glancing around he saw that the occupant was the well-dressed, good-looking youth who had been seated next to him before.
It was in full operation; our Inter-Allied news-tape was clicking; the low voice of the announcer droned through the silence. I started toward the tape, but Argo waved me away. He had volunteered us nothing, and again Georg advised silence. Argo had given his orders. Through a window I saw men carrying apparatus from the house. A small metal frame of sun-mirrors, prisms and vacuum tubes.
They knew he could drive four horses, because he said he was an old stage driver, and when he got in the chariot with the Roman suit on gleaming with gold, and the brass helmet, and the cloth of gold gauntlets, and stood up like a senator, gee, I was proud of him, and when he and the female drove out of the dressing-room and halted by the door for the announcer to announce the great Ben Hur chariot race, I got into the chariot behind pa, and told him he must win the race, or the people of Scranton would mob him.
But while they were still struggling to find answers to the knotty riddles, they nearly went over backward in their chairs as another familiar name sounded in their ears. The announcer was giving Joe's name this time, and all Herb and Jimmy could do was to sit and look at each other and mutter inarticulately as Joe recited his selections.
He looked out past the ropes and saw faces hundreds of them dimly through clouds of tobacco smoke. He could only distinguish those at the ringside. He saw Charlie Chaplin, the famous film comedian, looking at him. There was Jack Dempsey, the world's ring champion, towering up in his seat. There was "Come on, kid," the announcer was calling to him from the center of the ring.
"Don't get rattled, and you'll go over all right. From what Mr. Brandon has told me, you don't either of you rattle easily, though." "We're ready any time you are, sir," was Bob's comment. "All right, then," said Mr. Allard, crisply. "It's time now, Morton," addressing the announcer. "You can go ahead and announce Layton's act."
The model having finally been extricated, amid much laughter, and poor Tom having offered mortified apologies, the announcer made known that Hiram Nelson's Doodlebug monoplane would essay a flight.
Men came from the dressing-rooms and whispered in the ear of the announcer who sent them back hurriedly. The crowd was becoming impatient. There were no more pugilists to introduce and the man in the ring walked to and fro mopping his perspiring brow.
"Not exactly," said Craig, "though yes, they will be moving in another sense. Now, if we are all ready, I'll switch off the electric lights." The calcium sputtered some more, and a square of light was thrown on the sheet. Kennedy snapped a little announcer such as lecturers use. "Let me invite your attention to these enlargements of finger-prints," he began, as a huge thumb appeared on the screen.