Page:Life among the Apaches.djvu/126

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first act of Caballo en Pelo was to signalize his people not to approach our camp, which was located on a sand-spit, with three hundred yards clear rifle range on all sides not covered by the river. He then went on to disclaim any inimical design, quoting the fact that he and his chief men had sought us unarmed, when they might have overwhelmed our paltry force with hundreds of warriors. He also stated that they had no hostile feelings toward white men coming from the east, but would oppose all from the west, as they had learned that a force from that quarter was being prepared for a campaign against them. They were not at war with Americans generally, but solely with those whom they expected from California with warlike intentions. Caballo en Pelo then asked if he and his companions were to consider themselves prisoners. To this home question Dr. Webb, who was in charge of our party, directed me to answer—yes, they were; and would be held as such, until the launches they had taken from the soldiers were produced for our passage across the Colorado, and they had given satisfactory evidence of their peaceful intentions. This abrupt announcement was not pleasing to our savage guests, who exhibited alarm, mingled with half-uttered threats of vengeance; but the old motto, "in for a penny, in for a pound," was the only one we could adopt under the circumstances, and our resolution was as unalterable as the laws of the Medes and Persians.

Dr. Webb furthermore informed the Yumas that they must order their warriors, who were gathering thickly on our side the river, not to approach within three hundred yards, adding, "we suspect your motives, and intend to have the first blood, if any is to be shed. Your chief men are in our power. Your people can kill us, as they