Page:Life among the Apaches.djvu/66

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I called to José, and asked: "Are there any Indians close by."

"No, sir," he replied, "but they are coming this way."

I instantly jumped from the cot, thrust two six-shooters in my belt, took two more in my hands, one in each, ordered José to sling the carbine over his shoulder and carry the double-barreled gun in his hands, and telling the boys to keep close to my side one on the right and the other on the left I sallied from the tent with the determination to take these captives to the Commissioner, for his disposal.

We had not proceeded twenty yards before a band of some thirty or forty surrounded us, and with menacing words and gestures, demanded the instant release of their captives; but, having made up my mind, I was determined to carry out my intention at all risks. I told José to place his back to mine, cock his gun and shoot the first Indian he saw bend his bow or give sign of active hostility; while, with a cocked pistol in each hand, we went circling round, so as to face all parts of the ring in succession, at the same time warning the savages to keep their distance. In this manner we accomplished about two hundred yards, when my situation was perceived by several gentlemen of the Commission, and, drawing their pistols, they advanced to my aid. The Indians relinguished their attempts and accompanied us peaceably to the Commissioner, to whom I surrendered the boys and detailed the affair. The boys were respectively named Savero Aredia and José Trinfan, the former aged thirteen, and a native of Bacuachi, in Sonora, and the latter aged about eleven, and a native of Fronteras, in the same State. The next day at night, Mr. Bartlett sent them to the camp of Gen. Garcia Conde, the Mexi-