Page:Biagi - The Centaurians.djvu/272

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The Centaurians

the Propellier. The new machine is a great improvement upon the old one; the defects of the first are remedied in the second—don't advertise it."

He showed me two or three tiny wheels, several great long screws and rivets, and two gigantic pieces of filigree work cast in glittering metal.

"Pure gold," he informed me, "cast in crystal molds over a furnace of electricity. It took me several days planning and figuring for the molds, yet, by George! the factory delivered them in a few hours. That's rapid work for you! Molds should always be of crystal."

"But the gold!" I interrupted; "is the whole machine to be cast in gold?"

"Of course! What of it?" he cried. "It's manufactured by wholesale and on the market like lumber. Look here."

He opened the adjoining room and showed me the gold stacked up in blocks ready for use.

"Is it absolutely pure?" I asked.

"Well," he replied, "it's stood every test I've made upon it. Beyond doubt it's the same article that's so scarce on our side. I held out for steel, but the durability of gold was pointed out, and it was explained the Propellier would be in the museum for all time, and gold was the metal. I wouldn't argue with them. They are going to publish books with exquisite illustrations, the date and details of when Potolili first sighted us and the car. Little guide books will be issued, explaining all about the strange little steel car and gold Propellier, presented to the people of Centauri by the renowned