“But we have much more to see, caballeros,” interposed Don Luis.
“If you will be kind enough to indulge me here, for a few minutes more, I shall be grateful,” Tom informed him.
“Oh, very good,” assented Don Luis, with a shrug of his shoulders. “But it is not my purpose to tire you with too many observations on our first trip through the mine.”
With a fine sample of Castillian courtesy and patience, Don Luis waited, smoking, until Reade had quite finished his inspection.
“I am now at your service, Don Luis,” announced the young chief engineer, rising and going toward his employer.
The remaining four tunnels of El Sombrero Mine were visited. In each tunnel was the same pile of ore awaiting them, and it all looked good. That in number three was the richest ore of all.
“Now, I think we have seen enough for today,” announced Don Luis, when they had inspected number three tunnel.
“Then if you will go along and let me join you later, I shall appreciate it,” Tom suggested politely.
“You wish to linger?” queried Don Luis, looking amused.
“I wish to see a blast made here,” Tom replied.
“I, too, would like to see one,” Harry added.
“Then we will wait for you,” agreed Don Luis, with a sigh that contained just a trace of impatience.
A drilling and a blast were made. Again a lot of poor rock was loosened. Tom and Harry collected specimens, labeling them.
“Now, we will return to the house,” said Don Luis.
“I would really like to put in a long day here at the mine,” proposed Reade, reluctantly.
“To-morrow, then,” nodded Don Luis. “But, for to-day, I am tired of this place. There is much about which I wish to consult you, caballeros, at my office.”
Tom glanced swiftly, covertly at Harry, then responded:
“In that case, my dear Don Luis, we are wholly at your service.”
THE MINE THAT DID AND DIDN’T
At the head of the shaft, Nicolas, the servant, awaited them.
“Nicolas, you rascal!” exclaimed Don Luis, angrily. “You have not been attending your caballeros.”
“Your pardon, excellency, but the automobile moved too swiftly for me,” pleaded Nicolas. “All the way to the mine I ran, and here I have waited until now.”
“Keep pace with your duties hereafter, scoundrel,” commanded Don Luis, angrily.
Nicolas stepped meekly to the rear of the party. It was his business to attend Tom and Harry everywhere. In Mexico one of the grade of gentleman, if he wishes only a glass of water, does not go for it; he sends the attending servant.
This time Nicolas slipped up on the front seat of the car beside the chauffeur. The car traveled at a high rate of speed over the rough road.