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Reed Anthony, Cowman eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 286 pages of information about Reed Anthony, Cowman.
written George Edwards from Denver that I expected to go to Missouri, and asked him to take my horses and go out to the little ranch and brand my calves.  There was no occasion now to contradict my advice of that letter, neither would I go near the Edwards ranch, yet I hungered for that land scrip and roundly cursed myself for being a fool.  It would be two months and a half before spring work opened, and what to do in the mean time was the one absorbing question.  My needs were too urgent to allow me to remain idle long, and, drifting south, working when work was to be had, at last I reached the home of my soldier crony in Washington County, walking and riding in country wagons the last hundred miles of the distance.  No experience in my life ever humiliated me as that one did, yet I have laughed about it since.  I may have previously heard of riches taking wings, but in this instance, now mellowed by time, no injustice will be done by simply recording it as the parting of a fool and his money.

CHAPTER VII

The Angel

The winds of adversity were tempered by the welcome extended me by my old comrade and his wife.  There was no concealment as to my financial condition, but when I explained the causes my former crony laughed at me until the tears stood in his eyes.  Nor did I protest, because I so richly deserved it.  Fortunately the circumstances of my friends had bettered since my previous visit, and I was accordingly relieved from any feeling of intrusion.  In two short years the wheel had gone round, and I was walking heavily on my uppers and continually felt like a pauper or poor relation.  To make matters more embarrassing, I could appeal to no one, and, fortified by pride from birth, I ground my teeth over resolutions that will last me till death.  Any one of half a dozen friends, had they known my true condition, would have gladly come to my aid, but circumstances prevented me from making any appeal.  To my brother in Missouri I had previously written of my affluence; as for friends in Palo Pinto County,—­well, for the very best of reasons my condition would remain a sealed book in that quarter; and to appeal to Major Mabry might arouse his suspicions.  I had handled a great deal of money for him, accounting for every cent, but had he known of my inability to take care of my own frugal earnings it might have aroused his distrust.  I was sure of a position with him again as trail foreman, and not for the world would I have had him know that I could be such a fool as to squander my savings thoughtlessly.

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