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HOME > Children's Novel > The Moving Picture Boys on the Coast > CHAPTER V. A NEW KIND OF DRAMA
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 “And so you really got what you went for; eh, boys?” asked Mr. Alden, of Big B , as the trio rode in. “Well, you had luck.”  
“Both kinds—good and bad,” remarked Hank, as he told how, after getting the rare films, they had nearly been lost again.
“And you rescued your enemies, too? What became of Munson?”
“Oh, he and his crowd went off by themselves,” explained Blake. “They felt badly about us beating them.”
“I’ve got a surprise for you, Joe,” went on the proprietor.
“What sort?” asked the lad, eagerly; “is my father——?”
“No, not that; but Sam Reed is back here again, and he can tell you what you want to know. He came the day after you left.”
“But I did better than that!” exclaimed Joe. “I met my uncle, and I’m soon going to find my father, I hope,” and he related his meeting with the trooper.
“Good!” cried Mr. Alden. “Here comes Sam now. I told him you might be along soon,” and he turned to introduce a rather shiftless-looking cowboy who sauntered up.
“Pleased to meet you,” said Sam Reed. “I never cal’lated when I that there letter that I’d ever see you in flesh and blood. I’ve got your pictures, though,” and he showed those that had appeared in a magazine, giving an account of the work of Joe and Blake.
As might have been expected, Sam knew nothing of Joe’s father. The best the cowboy had hoped to do was to put the boy on the track of Mr. William Duncan, and, considering that Joe’s uncle, as I shall call him—though he was really only a half-uncle—had in the army, Mr. Reed would probably have had hard work to carry out his plans.
“Well, I’m glad you met your relative, anyhow,” said Sam to Joe; “and I wish you luck in looking for your father. So he’s somewhere on the southern California coast?”
“Yes, in one of the lighthouses,” explained Joe. “My uncle didn’t know exactly where, but I can easily find out from the government office when I get on the coast.”
The boys were made welcome again at Big B ranch, and talked over once more the exciting time that had happened to them there when the Indians stampeded the cattle.
“Here are the films you left with me,” said Mr. Alden, giving the boys those they had made of the cattle stampede and of the cowboys doing their . “And so you got other good ones?”
“Yes, fine ones,” replied Blake. “And we must soon be getting back to Flagstaff. We have stayed away longer than we meant to, and Mr. Hadley and Mr. Ringold may need our services.”
But the boys at the ranch would not hear of their starting for a few days, and so Joe and Blake stayed on, being royally entertained. They witnessed a round-up and the branding of cattle, but could get no pictures, as their films were all used up. However, the subjects had often been filmed before, so there was no great regret.
Then came a time when they had to say farewell, and they turned their horses’ heads toward Flagstaff. The cowboys gave them a parting of cheers and blank , riding madly around meanwhile.
“It reminds me of the Indian attack,” said Blake.
“Yes,” Joe. “I wonder if we’ll go through another scare like that?”
“I hope not,” his chum; but, though they did not know it, they were to face many more in the pursuit of their chosen calling.
The ride to Flagstaff from Big B ranch was without incident. It was through a fairly well settled part of the country, as settlements go in Arizona, and they made it in good time. Joe often talked about the strange fate that had put him on the track of his father.
“I wonder what kind of a man he’ll be?” he often said to his chum.
“The best ever!” Blake would answer; “that is, if he’s anything like you—and I think he must be.”
“That’s very nice of you, and I hope he does turn out to be what I wish him to be. I can’t even picture him in my mind, though.”
“Well, I should think he’d be something like your uncle—even if they were only half-brothers.”
“If he is, I suppose it will be all right, though Uncle Bill is a little too wild to suit me. I’d want my father to be more settled in life.”
“Well, it won’t be a great while before you know,” consoled Blake.
The boys received a royal welcome from Mr. Hadley and the members of the .
“Oh, but it’s good to see you back!” exclaimed Birdie Lee to Blake, as she shook hands with him, and if he held her fingers a little longer than was necessary I’m sure it’s none of our affair.
“So you didn’t get scalped, after all?” remarked C. C., gloomily, as he surveyed the boys. “Well, you will next time, or else they will hold you as captives.”
“Oh, stop it, Gloomy!” called Miss Shay. “What do you want to spoil their welcome for, just as we have a little spread arranged for them?” for she had gotten one up on the spur of the moment, on sighting the boys.
“A spread, eh? Humph, I know I’ll get indigestion if I eat any of it. Oh, life isn’t worth living, anyhow!” and he sighed heavily and proceeded to practice making new comical faces at himself in a looking-glass.
“Well, I’m glad you boys are back,” said Mr. Ringold a little later at the feast, at which C. C. ate as much as anyone and with seemingly as good an appetite. “Yes,” went on the theatrical manager, “I shall need you and Mr. Hadley right along, now. I am going to produce a new kind of drama.”
“I—er—I’m afraid I can’t be with you,” said Joe, hesitatingly. “I am at last on the track of my father, and I must find him.”
“Where is he?” asked Mr. Ringold, when the lad had told his story.
“Somewhere on the Southern California coast. In a lighthouse—just where I can’t say. But I am going there, and so you will have to get some one else, Mr. Ringold, to take my place. Blake can stay here, of course, and make moving pictures, but I——”
“I’m going with you,” said his chum, simply.
There was a moment’s silence, and then the theatrical manager exclaimed:
“Well, say, this just fits in all right. There’s no need for any of us to be separated, for I intend taking my whole company to the coast to get a new series of sea dramas. The Southern California coast will suit me as well as any.
“Joe, you can’t shake me that way. We’ll all go together, and you’ll have plenty of chance to locate your father!”

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