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Before his time the pursuit of aeronautics had taken two divergent lines, and had developed on the one hand balloons-large apparatus lighter than air, easy in ascent, and comparatively safe in descent, but floating helplessly before any breeze that took them; and on the other, flying machines that flew only in theory-vast flat structures heavier than air, propelled and kept up by heavy engines and for the most part smashing at the first descent. ... He devised an arrangement of contractile and absolutely closed balloons which when expanded could lift the actual flying apparatus with ease, and when retracted by the complicated musculature he wove about them, were withdrawn almost completely into the frame; and he built the large framework which these balloons sustained, of hollow, rigid tubes, the air in which, by an ingenious contrivance, was automatically pumped out as the apparatus fell, and which then remained exhausted so long as the aeronaut desired.
...We can guess with some confidence now that it must have been drifting about in his mind a great deal during the day, and, from a little note to his physician complaining of persistent insomnia, we have the soundest reason for supposing it dominated his nights,-the idea that it would be after all, in spite of his theoretical security, an abominably sickening, uncomfortable, and dangerous thing for him to flap about in nothingness a thousand feet or so in the air.
...Yet, however much the thing was present in his mind he gave no expression to it until the very end, and meanwhile he went to and fro from Banghursts magnificent laboratories, and was interviewed and lionised, and wore good clothes, and ate good food, and lived in an elegant flat, enjoying a very abundant feast of such good, coarse, wholesome Fame and Success as a man, starved for all his years as he had been starved, might be reasonably expected to enjoy.
...And to that end, while all the world was reading of the certain failure of the new flying machine, MacAndrew was soaring and curvetting with great amplitude and dignity over the Epsom and Wimbledon divisions; and Banghurst, restored once more to hope and energy, and regardless of public security and the Board of Trade, was pursuing his gyrations and trying to attract his attention, on a motor car and in his pyjamas-he had caught sight of the ascent when pulling up the blind of his bedroom window-equipped, among other things, with a film camera that was subsequently discovered to be jammed.
2. The Magic Shop
3. The Valley Of Spiders
4. The Truth About Pyecraft
5. Mr. Skelmersdale In Fairyland
6. The Story Of The Inexperienced Ghost
7. Jimmy Goggles The God
8. The New Accelerator
9. Mr. Ledbetters Vacation
10. The Stolen Body
11. Mr. Brishers Treasure
12. Miss Winchelseas Heart
13. A Dream Of Armageddon
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