Page:Yule Logs.djvu/432

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416
ON A MEXICAN RANCHE

don't say it is not sweeter to get both gold and revenge at one stroke. I know where the two men who got away are, and they will be glad to join me; they are but two days' ride away, but I suppose a few hours earlier or later would make no difference to you. It is on the road back to the hacienda."

"That will do very well. Mind you do not bring my name into the matter with them; simply say you want to revenge your brother's death."

"I understand, señor," and Juan dropped back to his comrades. Before the end of the day, however, Don Pedro had formed another plan, which he communicated to Juan that evening.

"You understand," he said, "you will get those two men you spoke about, and half-a-dozen others; I shall get eight or ten of our own men, say twenty in all—that will be enough. My business must be settled first; after we have gone, you and the other two can carry out this affair with that accursed Englishman. There will be no risk in it, for when I have once got the girl, Don Garcia will be glad enough to hush up the affair."

Three weeks afterwards Harry Denham was preparing his breakfast, which consisted of slices of venison that he had shot an hour before, when the dog suddenly pricked up its ears with a low warning growl.

"What is it, Don? Is some one coming? Yes, you are right," he went on, after stopping to listen for a moment, "I can hear horses' hoofs." He went to the door, and opening it, looked out; then he gave a sudden exclamation, ran in and seized his rifle, and then ran out again. At a distance of a hundred yards Isabella Novales was riding at full gallop, while half that distance behind were some twenty horsemen, evidently in hot pursuit of her.

"Go in, Don," he said sternly as the dog was about to leap forward; "go in and lie down."