The horse stopped, and she reeled blindly in her seat into a pair of strong arms that caught her and drew her down. A voice was saying words she could not hear, but she knew the voice so well. And she smiled and dropped her head down upon her husband's shoulder. "Just鈥攋ust in time," she whispered very low."Mr. Brewster has just been here," she said at length, and she played with the lash of her whip, avoiding his eyes, which was also a new way for her.
Then Brewster began to listen.She was frightened now. The quirt fell from her hand with a thud. She loosed her hold upon her long riding skirt and tripped over it.
"No," she said shortly. "You had better bet.""Don't bring them into it," he implored. "If you will not come away, I will tell you now, Felipa, that I love you." He was more in earnest than Landor had been. She felt that herself. His voice broke, and he paled.
It was a halcyon time for the press. It approved and it disapproved, while the troops went serenely on their way. It gave the government two courses,鈥攔emoval of the Apaches, one and all, to the Indian territory (as feasible as driving the oxen of Geryon), or extermination鈥攖he catchword of the non-combatant.[Pg 329]
The tufts were fuzzy yellow instead of gray, and the miniature face had not yet grown tanned and hard with the wind and the sun, but those were mere details. The general effect was perfect. There was no mistaking that the lively fraction of humanity in the Reverend Taylor's arms was the little Reverend. That was the only name he went by, though he had been christened properly on the day he was six months old, Joshua for his father and Randolph for his mother, in memory of Virginia, and her own long maidenhood. She was herself a Randolph, and she wanted the fact perpetuated. But in Tombstone, Joshua Randolph Taylor was simply the little Reverend.
"Kiss me," said Felipa."I don't mind, and neither does Captain Landor." Her guardian had recently gotten his captaincy.And the next day she knew. When she came out in front of her quarters in the morning, rather later than usual, there was a new tent beside the hospital,[Pg 81] and when she asked the reason for it, they told her that a wounded Apache had been found down by the river soon after the shot had been fired the night before. He was badly hurt, with a ball in his shoulder, and he was half drunk with tizwin, as well as being cut in a dozen places.
It was still early. The mountain echoes had not sung back the tattoo of the trumpets as yet. There was a storm coming on from the snow peak in the west, and the clouds, dark with light edges, were thick in the sky. Lawton was sober enough now. Not so far away in its little pocket among the hills he could see the post, with all its lights twinkling, as though one of the clear starry patches in the heavens were reflected[Pg 205] in a black lake in the valley. And the road stretched out faint and gray before him."He's coming back from Tombstone with some money, ain't he?"
Chapter 18Landor paid very little attention just then, but that same night he had occasion to think of it again.
There was but one other resort. The exasperated, impotent press turned to it. "If the emergency should arise, and it now looks as though it may come soon," flowed the editorial ink, "enough resolute and courageous men can be mustered in Tombstone, Globe, Tucson, and other towns and settlements to settle the question, once and forever: to settle it as such questions have often been settled before."
And he understood that the shadow must rise always between them. He had never expected it to be otherwise. It was bound to be so, and he bowed his head in unquestioning acceptance.Then she came forward, holding out her hand in the most matter-of-fact way, if, indeed, any action of a very beautiful woman can be matter of fact.详情
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