Hugh gave an agonized glance at the baby. To leave his charge was unthinkable: even more so was to keep the Boss waiting. Even his second of hesitation brought an angry roar from the big man. There was only one thing to do. He swooped on the baby, gathered him up under one arm, and fled.
The Crowe baby yelled, kicked, and struggled. Never in his short, triumphant life had he been so mishandled. Twice Hugh almost dropped him, saving him by grabbing wildly at his woolly jersey. Big Dan stared blankly for a moment.
Then he gave a deep chuckle.
"Look here, Polly!"
Mrs. Dan came out and gaped.
"Whatever's he doing? It's Mrs. Crowe's kid!"
"He's doubling two turns," said her husband, still chuckling. "I sent him for Pazo, an' he's evidently on duty with little Crowe. Never saw one of my hands do that bef ore, did you, Polly?"
"I did not. Poor youngster—he looks as if you'd scared him into a fit!"
"Well, I didn't scare him into forgettin' the baby, anyhow," Big Dan said. "Hope Mrs. Crowe won't see."
Pazo fortunately came out of the menagerie tent as Hugh neared it. He delivered his message in a shrill cry; the baby gave a final, convulsive wriggle, and they subsided on the grass together. Pazo looked amazed, but went off, and Hugh panted with relief. He feit the baby all over, deciding that nothing was broken.