She could not have touched him more nearly. He came to her with burning eyes.
“How do you know? What makes you think so?”
She told him, briefly and simply, giving more detailed reasons.
Without a word, he turned and left her. She could hear him rushing through the hall, traced his progress by the slamming of the door, and presently caught sight of him running toward the corral. He did not hear, or heed, her call for him to wait.
The girl hurried out of the house after him, in time to see him slap a saddle on his bronco, swing to his seat lightly, and gallop in a cloud of dust to the road.
Valencia waited for no more. Quickly running to her room, she slipped on a khaki riding-skirt. Her deft, tapering fingers moved swiftly, so that she was ready, crop in hand, booted and spurred, by the time Juan brought round her horse.
It took but an instant to lift herself to the saddle and send Billy galloping forward.
Already her cousin had disappeared in great clouds of dust over the brow of the hill.
Dick Gordon and Davis were sitting on the porch of their cabin, which was about an eighth of a mile from the main buildings of the Corbett place. They had returned the day before from Santa Fe, along with two deputy sheriffs who had come to arrest Pablo and Sebastian. The officers had scoured the valley for two days, and as yet had not caught a glimpse of the men they had come to get. Their inquiries were all met by a dogged ignorance on the part of the Mexicans, who had of a sudden turned surprisingly stupid. No, they had seen nothing of Pablo or of Sebastian. They knew nobody of that name—unless it was old Pablo Gardiez the senors wished to see. Many strangers desired to see him, for he was more than a hundred years old and still remembered clearly the old days.
Gordon laughed at the discomfiture of his sleuths. “I dare say they may have been talking to the very men they wanted. But everybody hangs together in this valley. I’m going out with them myself to-morrow after the gentlemen the law requires.”
“No, I wouldn’t do that, Dick. With every greaser in the valley simmering against you, it won’t do for you to go trapsing right down among them,” Davis explained.
“That’s where I’m going, anyhow—to-morrow morning. The deputies are staying up at Morrow’s. I’m going to phone ’em to-night that I’ll ride with them to-morrow. Bet you a new hat we flush our birds.”
“What’s the sense of you going into the police business, Dick? I’ll tell you what’s ailing you. You’re just honing to see Miss Valdes again. You want to go grand-standing around making her mad at you some more.”
“You’re a wiz, Steve,” admitted his friend dryly. “Maybe you’re right. Maybe I do want to see her again. Why shouldn’t I?”