Brewster was silent, but he neither flinched nor cowered, nor yet shifted his eyes.
"I don't know what has been said, Major, but something more than just what's in the papers must have gotten about. That sort of mud-slinging is too common to cause comment, even. It must be some spite work. There's no reason to suppose, surely, that after a quarter of a century of gallant service he's been and shown the white feather. He's awfully cut up, really he is. He's noticed it, of course, and it's too deuced bad, kicking a man when he's down sick and can't help himself.""What!" ejaculated the general. He was moved altogether from his imperturbable calm.
The fall had knocked the breath from his body. The under dog did not answer."No," she said shortly. "You had better bet."
The tears trickled down the withered cheeks, and Crook gave a shrug of exasperation and disgust. "Your story of being afraid of arrest is all bosh. There were no orders to arrest you. You began the trouble by trying to kill Chato." Geronimo shook his head, as one much wronged and misunderstood. "Yes you did, too. Everything that you did on the reservation is known. There is no use your lying."
Taylor shrugged his shoulders. "Quien sabe? Can't prove it by me. Just vamoosed. Fell in love with a little terrier of a Greaser half her size, and cleaned out. Lawton was in here a day or two ago, lookin' for her and raisin' particular Cain with whiskey and six-shooters鈥攂awlin' about her all over the place."
"They could kill a good many of us before they died out, if we would sit still and take it," Landor objected."And your knife."
The Declaration of Independence roused the screeching eagle of freedom in the breasts of all the white men. With the Mexicans it was a slightly different sentiment. At best they could never be relied upon for steady service. A couple of months' pay in their pockets, and they must rest them for at least six. It is always to be taken into consideration when they are hired. They had been paid only the day before. And, moreover, the Greaser follows the Gringo's lead easily鈥攖o his undoing.
"But that is sport," she answered carelessly."I beg pardon," said Brewster, pointedly, accentuating the slight awkwardness.
The general refused the withered hand he put out, and looked at him unsmilingly. The feelings of the old chief were hurt. He sat down upon the ground, under the shadows of the cottonwoods and sycamores, and explained his conduct with tears in his bleary eyes. The officers and packers, citizens and interpreters, sat round upon the ground also, with the few Indians who had ventured into the White-man's camp in the background, on the rise of the slope. There was a photographer too, who had followed the command from Tombstone, and who stationed himself afar off and took snap-shots during the conference, which, like most conferences of its sort, was vague enough.It went well enough for a time, and the hills seemed coming a little nearer, to be rougher on the surface. Then the double-loaded horse fagged. Cabot felt that it did, and grasped hard on the burning cantle as he made his resolve. When Landor used his spurs for the first time, he loosed his hold and dropped to the ground.
[Pg 139]"I don't know," Cairness answered, with a lightness that was anything but cheering.详情
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