Presently she returned with two bottles. In one was the tarantula, an especially large and hideous specimen, hairy and black, with dull red tinges. In the other the vinagrone, yet more hideous. She went down to the side of the house and emptied both into the wide-mouthed bottle. He told her, directly, that he was passing through Arizona to hunt and to look to certain mining interests he held there. And he stayed, talking with her and her husband about the country and the towns and posts he had visited, until long after luncheon. Then Cairness, having to ride to the salt lick at the other end of the ranch, up in the Huachuca foot-hills, suggested that Forbes go with him.
"It is curious," she said, "but it has always seemed as though English were not my native tongue."
"Kiss me," said Felipa.
There was a mutilated thing that had once been a man's body on the floor in the half-burned log cabin. And in another room lay two children, whose smooth, baby foreheads were marked, each with a round violet-edged hole. Beside them was their mother, with her face turned to the rough boards—mercifully. For there had been no time to choose the placing of that last shot, and it had disfigured cruelly as it did its certain work. Brewster was silent, but he neither flinched nor cowered, nor yet shifted his eyes.
Moreover, Landor was very ill. In the Mogollons he had gathered and pressed specimens of the gorgeous[Pg 134] wild flowers that turn the plateaux into a million-hued Eden, and one day there had lurked among the blossoms a sprig of poison weed, with results which were threatening to be serious. He rode at the head of his column, however, as it made for home by way of the Aravaypa Ca?on. It is one thing to be sacrificed to a cause, even if it is only by filling up the ditch that others may cross to victory; it is quite another to be sacrificed in a cause, to die unavailingly without profit or glory of any kind, to be even an obstacle thrown across the way. And that was the end which looked Cabot in the face. He stood and considered his horse where it lay in the white dust, with its bloodshot eyes turned up to a sky that burned like a great blue flame. Its tongue, all black and swollen, hung out upon the sand, its flanks were sunken, and its forelegs limp.
"Look out for the little customer, will you?" he said to the medical officer. "He's a great chum of mine. Many's the can of condensed milk and bag of peanuts the ungrateful young one has had out of me." "What are you doing here?" he asked in the White Mountain idiom; "you aren't a Chiricahua."