They did this and soon the medication began to take effect, making them feel better.
“What an experience!” Bess said. “Tell us the rest of the story.”
“We think someone from Crocodile Island buried a pistol there and then left E-fee behind.”
“How did you know that?” Danny asked.
“Here’s proof.” George said, and pulled the pistol out of her pocket.
“What!” Bess shrank back in surprise. “Where on earth—”
“It was buried on the key,” George explained, “E-fee dug it up. Since he knew where it was, we figure he saw his master bury it. We brought the pistol to give to the authorities.”
“Is—is it loaded?” Bess asked, uncomfortable at the thought.
“Relax. It’s empty,” George said.
Danny asked whether they intended to return the dog to his master. At once George answered, “Not on your life! I’ll find a nice home for him.”
Danny said he was glad to hear this because he felt it would be unwise to keep the animal at the Cosgrove home. “Some of your enemies might track it down, and then we’ll be in trouble. You might be accused of stealing E-fee!”
“I agree,” Nancy said. “Do you think we should drop him off at the animal shelter?”
“That’s a good idea,” Danny replied.
Nancy now asked, “How about those mosque toes? We have never seen a swarm like that before.”
“In Key Biscayne and other inhabited keys they have mosquito control, which takes care of the problem. The insects breed only in deserted little islands like the one you were on. Lizards act as natural balancers.”
George remarked, “If they eat that whole swarm, they’re sure to have indigestion!”
The others laughed, then Danny said, “Usually mosquitoes are bothersome only during the rainy season. I didn’t think you’d encounter any at this time of year.”
“All right, we forgive you.” George grinned.
“Thanks.” Danny now asked, “Do you want to go periscope hunting again or do a little more sightseeing?”
“Neither!” Nancy said quickly. “All I want is a shower and some more of that soothing lotion.”
“I second the motion,” George added. “Let’s head for home.”
After the group docked in Key Biscayne, they brought E-fee to the animal shelter. The girls felt bad about leaving him, but just then a woman and her little girl stopped and asked if they were looking for a home for the dog.
“Yes,” Nancy replied.
The child was already patting the dog, whose tail was wagging happily. The little girl looked up. “Mommy, can’t we take this one? I love him already.”
The woman smiled and said to Nancy, “Is he gentle?”
“Oh, very, and a good watch dog.”
The little girl gave E-fee a tremendous hug. Her mother said to the man in charge of the shelter, “We’ll take E-fee and give him a good home. By the way, what does his name mean?”
“Dog—in Seminole,” Bess answered, and the little girl giggled.
Nancy, Bess, and George left the shelter, happy that E-fee would be living with kind people instead of suspected criminals.
Their next stop was police headquarters, where George turned in the pistol and explained where it had come from. An officer dusted it for fingerprints while they waited, but unfortunately there were none except George’s.
“It’ll be difficult to trace the owner,” the officer told them, “unless we can find a bullet fired from this gun.” He thanked the young people for bringing the weapon in. Then they left.
“And now into the tub!” George said gleefully when they reached the Cosgrove home.
“After I take a shower,” Nancy said, “I’ll be ready for another bit of sleuthing. I’d like to see a submarine. Danny, do you think there might be one in port at the Key West Naval Base?”
“It’s possible,” he replied. “I don’t know if they’ll let you go aboard, though.”
“We can try. If we tell them about the mysterious periscope at Crocodile Island, they might.”
George chuckled. “Of course they will. How could anyone ever say no to Nancy Drew?”
Exciting Phone Call
After the girls had bathed and changed into fresh clothes, they went into the living room and told their hosts about the adventure on the uninhabited island.