Page:Boys of the Fort.djvu/197

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179
A PANTHER IN CAMP.

"We will camp out where we are," said Captain Moore. "It is useless to think of covering the distance in the dark. Besides, we might fall into some trap."

A storm had been threatening, but now the clouds passed and the night proved clear and pleasant. It was decided that two men should remain on guard at a time, each taking a turn of three hours.

The young captain slept from nine o clock until three in the morning. Then he awoke with the feeling that further sleep was out of the question. Getting up, he walked to a nearby brook, intending to wash up and obtain a needed drink.

While Captain Moore was in the vicinity of the brook something stirring in the bushes attracted his attention.

"Carwell, did you see that?" he asked, of the guard who was nearest to him.

"See what, captain?"

"That thing in yonder bushes."

"I see nothing, sir."

"Something is moving there. Come here and look."

The private did as commanded, and both gazed steadily into the bushes.

"By Jove!" exclaimed the young officer at length, "Do you see what it is now, Carwell?"