Nick Carter, Detective: The Solution of a Remarkable Case

CHAPTER IV.
SHADOWING.

Nick did not rush from the saloon as soon as the two men left, but sauntered carelessly to the bar, paid for what he had eaten and drank, and then went slowly out.

As he had suspected, they were not far away. They were standing upon the curbstone apparently engaged in earnest conversation, but in reality waiting to see if they would be followed.

The fact that they were so cautious, gave added zest to the chase.

Nick sauntered carelessly past them, to the avenue which was only about two hundred feet farther on.

A hall-way door between two stores stood conveniently ajar on the opposite side, and he entered it with the air of one who lived there.

Pausing in the dark hall-way, he began a rapid change in his disguise, and presently he looked like an old man in poor circumstances who worked hard all day, and took an airing and a glass or two of toddy in the evening.

Five or ten minutes passed, and then the two men suddenly separated, the one called John going away rapidly in the opposite direction, and the captain jumped upon a car that was passing at that moment.

He took his stand upon the rear platform with his back toward the car, as though he thought that he might be followed.

A car was coming up the avenue. It had to pass between Nick and the car that the captain had boarded.

For a moment, Nick would be screened from view from the platform of the down-town car.

He utilized that moment to the best advantage.

He leaped nimbly into the street and succeeded in getting two doors away before the cars had passed each other.

When they had passed, he was standing idly before the door of a "gin-mill" leisurely picking his teeth, as though he had just come out.

Presently he walked down the street, rather rapidly, to be sure, but not fast enough to excite the suspicion that he was following anybody.

Soon a second car overtook him, and he got upon the front platform.

The two cars were less than a block apart, and the detective could see his man easily.

At Fourteenth street the captain turned and abruptly entered the car on which he was riding and passed out upon the front platform.

Here the spasmodic flashing of a match presently denoted that he was lighting a cigar.

Then, with a quick run, Nick left his car and overtook the one in which the captain was a passenger, and going inside, seated himself at the forward end.

"This is more comfortable," he thought. "It is much less work to watch him from here."

Block after block was passed, but the captain showed no sign of leaving the car, nor did he, until it reached the end of the route at the Astor House.

Then he stepped off and boarded a south-bound Broadway car, upon which he remained until it reached South Ferry.

There the captain took the Hamilton Ferry boat, landed in Brooklyn, and started away down the street along the water-front.

Nick followed for a mile or more, when suddenly the captain turned and went out upon a pier.

"He will stop and look around when he gets out there," thought Nick, "so I will wait here."

He dodged into a deep shadow close to the water's edge, just where a boat was tied by a rope to a cleat upon the dock.

"The very thing!" thought Nick.

In an instant he had untied the rope and seized one of the oars; the next, he was sculling the little craft rapidly and silently along in the shadow of the pier.

Suddenly the man whom he was following, paused. Then turning, he came to the edge of the pier and looked over, full at Nick.

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