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.