Hardy Boys 06: The Shore Road Mystery: The Shore Road Mystery | Chapter 11 of 27 - Part: 1 of 3

Author: Franklin W. Dixon | Submitted by: Maria Garcia | 4403 Views | Add a Review

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CHAPTER V

Strategy

FRANK awoke to see blurred reflections from the water on the dark boathouse ceiling. His clothes felt damp, and he was conscious of a heavy feeling in his head.

As Joe stirred alongside him, Frank scrambled to his feet, then helped his brother to get up.

“Jack’s boat—it’s gone!” Joe said groggily. “Did you get a look at the men who attacked us?”

“No, but whoever grabbed me and clamped that cloth over my face was strong. Wonder what knocked us out?”

“Some kind of liquid gas is my guess,” Joe answered.

After informing Chief Collig of the attack upon them and the stolen Dodd boat, many unanswered questions filled the Hardys’ thoughts as they drove home. Who were the men who had gassed them and taken the Dodd boat? Could they have been Shore Road thieves, who also had planted a stolen car at the Dodd farm? Did they know anything about the clue to the Pilgrim treasure? Above all, what had become of Jack and his father?

Frank looked worried. “We feel sure the Dodds aren’t car thieves, and what happened tonight at the boathouse makes me think more than ever that they didn’t run away.”

“You mean they were not only kidnapped, but maybe harmed?”

“That’s right,” said Frank. “Tomorrow let’s forget the car thieves and start a hunt for Slagel.”

The next morning Frank and Joe worked on their battered short-wave radio, then cycled into town. When they reached the Bayport business district, the boys paused for a moment at the corner of Main and Larch. Frank gave Joe one half of a penciled list of hotels and rooming houses and the copy of the Slagel photograph they had made.

“Righto,” said Joe. “See you in an hour at this corner.”

The boys separated, Joe taking the north end of Bayport and Frank the south. An hour later neither Hardy had yet come across a Slagel registered in any of the hotels. None of the desk clerks had recognized the photographs.

During the second hour, Joe had no success. Only five names were left on his list.

“You have any luck?” he asked Frank hopefully when they met to compare progress.

Frank wiped his brow. “Not a thing. I covered all the waterfront places and saw the registers myself. How about you?”

“No.”

Frank read down his list. “Well, this last run ought to do it. Fingers crossed!”

But the boys’ final circuit turned up no leads. Disappointed, the brothers headed through the center of town for home.

“Slagel may still be in the area, but staying in another town,” Frank remarked.

“At any rate,” Joe declared, “I guess we’ll have some more footwork cut out for us.”

At the Dock Street traffic light Joe noticed a heavy-set, well-dressed man getting into a taxicab.

“Frank! That’s our nameless visitor from New York!”

The brown-and-white cab pulled out and headed toward the western side of town. The boys decided to follow on their motorcycles.

Moments later, the taxi wound under an overpass and came to a stop at the Bayport railroad station. Parking nearby, the Hardys followed as the man purchased a ticket in the waiting room, then boarded a waiting New York train.

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