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Full Online Book HomeLong StoriesThe Moving Picture Boys On The Coast - Chapter 7. At The Lighthouse
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The Moving Picture Boys On The Coast - Chapter 7. At The Lighthouse Post by :ecdavis Category :Long Stories Author :Victor Appleton Date :May 2012 Read :821

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The Moving Picture Boys On The Coast - Chapter 7. At The Lighthouse


The two boys talked for some time with the old fisherman, and then Blake whispered to Joe:

"Why don't you ask him where the lighthouse is where your father is supposed to be, and the best way of getting to it?"

"I will," replied his chum.

"The Rockypoint light?" repeated the fisherman, in response to Joe's inquiry. "Why yes, I know it well. It's only a few miles from here. You can see her flash on a clear night, but you can't make out the house itself, even on a clear day, because she's down behind that spur of coast. From the ocean, though, she's seen easily enough."

"And how can we get there?" asked Blake.

"Well, you can walk right down the beach, though it's a middlin' long tramp; or you can go back to town, and hire a rig."

"We'll walk," decided Joe. "Do you happen to know of a Mr. Duncan there?" He waited anxiously for the answer.

"No, lad, I can't rightly say I do," said the fisherman. "I know the keeper, Harry Stanton, and, now I come to think of it, I did hear the other day that he had a new assistant."

"That's him!" cried Joe, eagerly.


"My father, I hope," was the reply, and in his joy Joe told something of his story.

"Well, you sure have spun a queer yarn," said the old fisherman, "and I wish you all sorts of luck. You'll soon be at the light if you go right down the beach. I'd row you down in my dory, only I've just come in from taking up my nets and I'm sort of tired."

"Oh, we wouldn't think of asking you," put in Blake. "We can easily walk it."

"Some day I'll take you out fishing," promised the man. "And so you're here to get moving pictures; eh? Well, I don't know much about 'em, but you couldn't come to a nicer place than this spot on the coast. And you only have to go a little way to get right where the real surf comes smashing up on the beach. Of course, as I said, we're so land-locked just here that we don't see much of it, even in a storm. Moving pictures; eh? I'd like to see some."

"I guess you can be in them, if you want to," said Blake. "I heard Mr. Ringold say he had one drama that called for a lot of fishermen."

"Me in moving pictures!" cried the old man. "Ho! Ho! I wonder what my wife'd say to that. I've been in lots of queer situations. I've been knocked overboard by a whale, I've been wrecked, and half drowned, and almost starved, but I've never been in a picture, except I once had a tintype taken--that was when I was married," and he chuckled at the remembrance. "These movin' pictures aren't like tintypes; are they?"

"Not much," laughed Joe, as he and Blake moved off in the direction of the lighthouse, calling a good-bye to their new friend. They had told Mr. Hadley, in starting out that morning, that they might not be back until late, for Joe had a half notion that he would try to find the lighthouse that day.

"I wonder what I shall say to him, when I first see him, Blake?" Joe asked, as they trudged along.

"Why--er--I hardly know," replied his chum. "I never found a lost father, myself."

"And I never did, either. I guess I'll just say: 'Hello, Dad; do you know me?'"

"That sounds all right," said Blake. "He sure will be surprised."

The walk was longer than they had thought, and when noon came they still had some distance to go. As they were hungry they sought out a fisherman's cottage, where, for a small sum, they had a fine meal. Starting out again, they turned an intervening point of land about three o'clock, and then came in view of a lighthouse, located on a pile of rocks, not far from the high-water mark.

"That's the place," said Blake, in a low voice.

"Yes," agreed Joe. "It looks comfortable and homelike, too."

Back of the lighthouse was a small garden, and also a flower bed, and a man could be seen working there. His back was toward the boys.

"I--I wonder if that's him--my father?" said Joe, softly. "He seems to be very old," for they had a glimpse of a long white beard, and the man seemed to be bent with the weight of many years.

"Go up and ask," said Blake. "I'll wait here."

"No, I want you to come with me," insisted his chum. "You were with me when I first heard the good news, and now I want you along to hear the conclusion of it. Come on, Blake."

"No, I'd rather not," and nothing Joe could say would induce his chum to accompany him.

Their talk had been carried on in low voices, and the aged man, working in the garden, had apparently not heard them. He continued to hoe away among the rows.

"Well, here goes!" exclaimed Joe, with a sigh. Now that he felt he was at the end of his quest his sensations were almost as sorrowful as joyful. In fact, he did not know exactly how he did feel.

Walking up toward the old man, he paused, and then coughed slightly to attract his attention. The lighthouse keeper turned, surveyed the boy and in a pleasant voice asked:


"If--if you--are you my father?" asked Joe, in trembling voice, holding out his hands.

"Your father!" cried the man in unmistakable surprise. "What is your name?"

"Joe Duncan."

"Joe Duncan? Did Duncan have a son?"

"Yes, and I'm the boy!" went on Joe, eagerly, yet a doubt began creeping into his heart. "But are you Mr. Nathaniel Duncan?"

The old man paused a moment, and then said gently:

"No, my boy. I'm Harry Stanton, keeper of Rockypoint light."

"But my father!" exclaimed Joe. "I understood he was here! Where is he?"

"He was here," went on Mr. Stanton, as he leaned on his hoe and looked compassionately at the lad standing before him; "but he went away more than a week ago."

"Gone away!" echoed Joe. "Did he--did he get my letter?"

"I don't know whether it was your letter or not," said the keeper. "One came for him the day after he left. It's here yet. It was from Flagstaff, Arizona, I believe."

"That's my letter!" exclaimed Joe. "And he never got it! Poor Dad, he doesn't yet know that I'm alive!" and he turned away with tears in his eyes.

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