"Hard on the corpse, then, too. Here's a really lovely one!"
"Yes, that's a ghost mask, and beautifully ornamented. That's to charm the dead man back to earth again."
"Does he come?"
"They say he does, and brings presents to his family. Now, here's a skull mask. This is Toltec, and is used to denote the impending murder of a chief. This merry event is gracefully described as a 'going-away,' and this mosaic mask is hung on his ancestor-post by way of recompense."
"It's got me!" said Goring, seriously. "I'm going to study up these matters. I'm already interested—I mean it."
"You can't help being, once you start in," Clearman told him. "Now, here's the Mudhead. Perhaps the plainest, least melodramatic of the whole bunch in appearance, but one of the most feared. The Zuni Indians pray to him, and watch their step mighty carefully, lest they offend him."
"How did you come to take up this study, Mr. Clearman?" Nan asked, curiously.
"Because my ancestor, Dathan Clearman, did before me. He was a traveler and an antiquarian, and he started this collection. But he believed in the Magic himself, at least, I think he did. I have his old diary, and it seems incredible, I know, but he was nearly as much under the spell of these things as the savages themselves."
"And by the way, dear," said Carlotta, "I found a few more leaves of that old diary today."
"You did! Where are they?"
"I'll give them to you later. If I give them now, you'll immerse yourself, and be lost to us all." She smiled at him, and he resigned himself to her decree with a whimsical scowl of impatience.
"And have you no belief in the Magic part of it?" asked Jack Raynor, looking at the King of Clubs a little quizzically