A SMALL CLOUD
Fred was relieved when he discovered that Thomas Jefferson was eager to go back to the camp and avoid all further questioning.
The actions of the Navajo, however, increased Fred’s feeling of anxiety. He watched the Indian until he was convinced that he was trying to avoid any further interview. Then the Go Ahead Boy moved silently around the camp to the place where the guide was sleeping.
Fred’s hand placed lightly upon the face of Zeke at once aroused the guide who quickly sat erect. Fred meanwhile had dropped on the ground by his side and as he did so he said, “Don’t move, Zeke. Don’t get up. I’ve got something I want to tell you.”
“What is it, lad?” whispered Zeke, at once complying with the suggestion.
Thus bidden Fred related his discovery of Thomas Jefferson returning from the rim of the Gulch. He also gave his reasons for believing that the Navajo had been having an interview with some one on the sloping side of the Gulch. He expressed fully his suspicions that the unseen man was one of the two unwelcome white men who had visited the camp several times.
In low voices Fred and the guide conversed for several minutes. When the conversation at last was ended and all of Zeke’s questions had been answered the guide said to Fred, “Now see that you keep this to yourself. I’m hopin’ that we shan’t have any serious trouble, but I don’t like the way it looks. Don’t tell any of your pals about it.”
Fred promised to carry out the suggestion although he had expected to tell John at least of the discovery he had made.
It was long before the excited boy was able to sleep, but when at last his eyelids closed they did not open until the party was already astir.
When breakfast had been eaten Zeke approached the place where Fred was working on his pack and said in a low voice, “I want you to come with me.”
“Where?” inquired Fred.
The guide did not reply to the query, but without any delay Fred arose and followed him as he led the way to a place below the rim. There to his surprise Fred saw Thomas Jefferson, evidently awaiting their coming.
As soon as the guide and the Go Ahead boy arrived, Zeke said to the Indian, “Now then, Thomas Jefferson, I want you to tell us what you were doing last night. I don’t want any nonsense about it either. You answer my questions straight or there’ll be trouble for both of you Navajoes.”
Fred was certain there was a sharp gleam in the eyes of the Indian but he did not respond to the suggestion of the guide. Quietly seating himself he faced them both and evidently was waiting for Zeke to begin his cross examination.
“Thomas Jefferson,” said Zeke sternly, “weren’t you sent east to be educated in the schools?”
“Yes,” replied the Indian simply.