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The day book. [volume] (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, July 06, 1914, NOON EDITION, Image 21

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1914-07-06/ed-1/seq-21/

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"Vr-wa ijif-i-fc!iiy"f
"Come back when you get ready.
Leave manana."
The next day toward sundown,
Ramon found him at the corral.
"Your hands?" asked Ramon.
"Better. Let's pull out tonight."
"Bueno at what hour?"
"Right away."
Bill mounted and they rode out of
the yard together, leading the pack
animals. Ramon stopped before an
adobe house on a side street, and
went in. Bill saw the flutter of a
white dress. He waited outside, sick
at heart. Ramon joined him and they
went forward. When they dipped
down from the mesa into the cool
night shadows of the desert, Ramon
took off his hat and lifted his hand
wearily to his forehead. "Dios," he
murmured, "I would that I need
never return."
They pitched camp at midnight,
and Ramon shouldered the heavy
work, sparing Bill's hands. In the
months that followed they became
friends as only men who love the
desert can. '
One night Bill brought in a moun
tain sheep.
"Grub's holdin' out fine." Bill
lighted his pipe and sat watching the
dancing shadows in the fire.
"Si. How long have we traveled?"
" 'Round about four months, I cal
culate, by the washin' we done." They
fell silent.
Ramon finally sat down by Bill and
rolled a cigaret. "Are .you happy?"
he asked suddenly.
Bill moved nearer the camp fire
and propped his head on one hand.
"Nobody's happy. The best we can
do is to forget, for a little bit, the
things we oughter remember.4'
' "But a man cannot stay out here
forever. Maybe you have nothing
on your soul "
"We all do some things it ain't
pleasant to remember. But I didn't
have nothin' to do with that Tiair
brandin'." "I knew it," Ramon said. "But I
was powerless."
Bill guiltily remembered his plot
ting. "It's harder to be sinned against
than to sin." Bill said slowly, thereby
I unveiling what Had been sacred for
five years.
"That is hard but it is the sinner
who has to pay for his crime. And
he must keep on paying."
"We got to pay, somehow, for
everything we get. I've thought a
good deal about what I'll have to pay
for the thing I've got to do." He
quietly placed a new log on the coals
and waited for it to blaze. "I've got
to kill him when I find him. It ain't
a pretty story," he said wearily. "I
like to forgeMt that's why I ain't
looked for him. I'll run across him
some day that's the way things
happen. An' I'm waitin' just like I
have been waiting since that night
I come home and found her gone.
It's all happened Jots o' times, I
reckon. I married'her an' I had to
go away once. When I came back
all the windows was shut down, an
everythin' 'was dusty. There was a
letter but she didn't tell me the
man's name. It's him I'm waitin
for." He fumbled in his wallet and
brought out the photograph of a wo
man. "The Lord makes some wo
men too good lookin'," he said, brood
ing over the pictured face.
"When was it, Bill?" Ramon asked.
His voice was shaking, and it was the
first time he had used the Christian
"At Palomas five years ago." He
gave him the picture.
"Madre Dios," Ramon whispered,
and put his head down on his arms.
The picture dropped into the fire,
and Ramon reached for it.
"Don't touch it!" Bill said. He
kicked it deeper into the coals. "She
don't want to see this. He stood up,
waiting. His face was white, and
the pupils of his eyes were distended
and blackened.
Ramon got up. "I am ready," he
said wearily. "It has been hell
straight through."
Bill looked at him, feeling a tor-

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