For rush of action for genuine and startling surprise, and for bubbling good-humor, Rex Beach here outstrips himself. The scene is Panama.
e tables come laughter and snatches of song; waiters dash hither and yon. It is all very animated and gay on the surface, and none but the closely observant would note the weariness beneath the women's smiles, the laughter notes that occasionally jar, or perceive that the tailored gowns are imitations, the ermines mainly rabbit-skins.
But the eyes of youth are not analytical, and seen through a rosy haze the sight was inspiriting. The college men selected a table, and, shouldering the occupants aside without ceremony, seated themselves and pounded for a waiter.
Padden, the proprietor, came toward them, and, after greeting Anthony and Higgins by a shake of his left hand, ducked his round gray head in acknowledgment of an introduction to the others.
"Excuse my right," said he, displaying a swollen hand criss- crossed with surgeon's plaster. "A fellow got noisy last night."
"D'jou hit him?" queried Higgins, gazing with interest at the proprietor's knuckles.
"Yes. I swung for hi