Page:Yule Logs.djvu/410

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394
ON A MEXICAN RANCHE

look for work, as I could hear of none here, and as I came down upon the road I saw your coach ahead of me. I was a quarter of a mile behind when I heard some shots fired, and thinking that I might be of some use, I rode on at full speed, and of course did what I could."

He was speaking very faintly now, and Don Garcia said, "We will talk it all over later on; at present it would be best if you could doze off to sleep."

Harry Denham, although still little more than a lad, had led a life of adventure for the past five years. He was but fourteen when his father, a consulting physician, died suddenly. Harry had been a year at Rugby, and would have returned to school in the course of a few days, when his father's death deranged everything. His mother had died some years before, and his brother Tom, who had now been a year at Cambridge, was his only near relative. The day after the funeral Tom returned from a visit to the office of his father's trustee, with whom he had had a long talk.

"What day do you think I had better go down to school, Tom?"

"Well, Harry, I am sorry to say that I think there is very little chance of your going back at all, or of my returning to Cambridge."

Harry opened his eyes in surprise—"Why not?"

"Well, because as far as I can see at present we are in a hole altogether. Mr. Ellerman has been telling me that, so far as he knows, there is really no property whatever. You see father had for years very uphill work. When ten years ago he moved into Harley Street, and set up as a consulting physician, he thought that, having made his mark as one of the staff of Guy's, and having a good private connection, he could soon obtain a practice. However, for the first three or four years it came in but slowly. Of course his expenses were heavy with this house and his carriage and all that sort of thing, and he had to