A v./EEKLY. PUBLICATION DEVOTED TO BOADER issued Weekly. By Subscnption $2.50 per year. Entered as Second Class Matter at New York Pvst Office by SrREET & SMITH, 238 Wllliam .St N. Y. No. 40. Price, Five Cents. HHANG HIM
I Iuwll Weellly. By S1'bscnptwn lz.so per year. Entere d a s Se cond Class Mt1tter at the N. Y. /'ost Of/ice, S T REET &: SMITH, 3J8 Wi?liam St., N. Y. Entered according" f.o A c t of Conp-ess i n tlte y e ar'""' ,n the Ojjipe of the Librt1r1iJn of C anp-ess, Waslttn![lo11. I). C No. 40. NEW YORK, February 15, 1902. Price Five Cents. Buffalo Bill and the Prairie Wolves; OR, HUNTING THE BANDITS OF BONEY ARD GULCH. ,..,,.,. ..... -By the author of "BUFFALO BILL." . p CHAPTER I. ........... MAKING AN ENEMY. "Down on your knees and apologize to this you11g \ lady, or the sun shines through you l" This order was backed by a large revolver in the fist of Buff a lo Bill. The man so menaced looked but once, and his kne e joiuts relaxed. As he was obeying, the young girl who was tl1e caus e of the altercation, clasping her li ttle white hands, stare d with surprise tu be the center of this su dd en a nd terrible scene. To Miss Minnie Mo11ntrose the street of Goldee n a was as odd as one of Japan. With i ts blue or red flannel shirted miners-for it was in the Black Hills diggings and washings-its few Chinamen, an Indian or two. blanketed and plumed, and the gamblers in broadcloth, the finest of linen and the brightest of diamonds, it was thrilling to her, fresh from the East. \ She had come out of the Goldeena House, when: : her father was recruiting after the stage coac i : journey from Sidney, on the North Platte, to see tlie town. Separated mysteriously from her French maid, her attendant, and bewildered by being about the only one of her sex in the motley and noisy crowd, s he was suddenl y accosted by one whom she had known briefly in the Eastern cities. This wa s he who cowered under the frontiersman >s gun.. Baron Chillturn, as he had styled himself while pretending to be an English noblemau, had vanished when his swindle was unmasked. He must have fol lowed her, though, when her father came West to speculate with his capital in Hills mines.
THE BU ff 1\LO BBLL STORKiES,. He had been a ssured by a correspo11c1 e11t i11 ,vl1om l i e believed reliance could be placed to any amount, but who was in collusion with Chillturn, that tin had been found in the place, at1d some 'Welsh miners, familiar with the way to work it, were on t11e spot tu develop it. How else would tlie British baro11 have appeared in her path and taken advantage of their being face to face to repeat his odious offering of a which she would have spurned, even if she had still hi111 a peer. She had no time to more than rebuke him, for, prompt as the eagle to swoop, one of the bystanders had struck him and literaily brought the cowardly insulter to her feet. "I-I am not a stranger to the lady," stammered the latter, with a face more red with baffled spite and rage than pallid with fear; "I-I am sorry I have made a mistake. I humbly apologize to her--" "Oh, I do not want your excuses," said William Cody, haughtily. "It is a good thing for you that you did not get worse.'' And pY the frown on his handsome face the hearers knew that he was speaking the. trnth. "Lave-ho!" said the famous hunter, then seeing that the tenderfoot did not understand the old moun taineer's cry to rise, he added in the same tone of careless con tempt, "Git up and dust; you are, in spite of your headlight pin :rnd fine ruffle s but a low9own cur. And no muttering, or I may be goaded into mopping the gutter with you." Baron Chillturn slowly rose, flushed with shame, for the bystanders did not spare their laughter. He darted a baleful glance on the borderman and on the girl, and his lips muttered a threat including both. "Swallow yotir venom, or I shall hnrry you on!" said Bill. He seemed to regret that be was letting off this genteel ruffian so lightly. 13ut a light hand was laid on bis arm. It was Miss Yiountrose. "Please do not make any mor e of this. He is s ufficiently pm1ished." "Not to my me.asurement, but-he Ji.as gone. Never mind, little girl--" A young lady of eighteen was a girl in Bill's eyes. "If ever he hovers aronnd you again you mention Buffalo Bill as wantiug to see liim, and c outinue this conversation.'' Then seeing that tile pretty lips were framing a phrase of which h,e detested for rm act of natural gallantry, he hastened away. He was glad to spy an acquaintauce in a saloon doorway. "You will have to excuse me, miss," he said, hurriedly, in his voice, so gentle when addressing wotnell. 'My frjeuds wait. Oh, no thanks, please." Aud making a sweeping bow with his sombrero, he mingled with the det)arting crowd. The lady was joined by her maid, who began her apologies fot having beeu lured into parting company with a nimble but with a false glance. Minnie saw through her by this episo de. She cut her apologies short with a sharp, "That will do! Follow me to the hotel!" and as the mixed assem_ blage made way with the d .ouble respect for one so 'beauteous and good, and for whom the King of fhe Plains had intervened, she briskly returned to the house which she ou ght not to have quitted under treacherous guard. In the meantime. tl1e wretch who had been chastised for his insolence had shrunk into the first doorway. A man was standing in this doorway. It was the place know11 amm1g this medley of pine shanties and portable frame houses as the Dobie House, becau. se made of sun-baked bricks. It was a gambling and drinking den of the worst species Its rival was the Robb.ers' the flaunting tent half w
THE BU ff J\LO BILL STORIES. 3 On his side the pretended baron regarded the gam ing expert clo s el y He saw a s lender, alert, graceful man, rather showy than soli _d; evidently powerful, though nicely proportioned. A prize fighter would not have cared to grapple with him, for it would be like an elephant fighting a tiger. Neither may win, but both die of death wounds. He was attired in black of the best quality. He with diamonds, the real thini:, with a sort of taunt among his villainous -assoc iates of "Take if you dare!" Ah, nobody felt like tackling Fly Frank for a jewel or two. He was the quickest with the kni fe, Mexicans not barred, in Goldeena. "Come to size you, sir," said Frank, all of a sud den, as the other seemed to dilate to his right dimensions tinder the searching "it licks me how you let Buffier Bill tread you down in the dirt, as a fellow m ight s a y. I supp' ose it was because you were not well heeled. Well, there is sound hoss-sense in that. It is not a mus sel of use carrying p istols unless you are lightning to use them as these fojin-fighters, like Buffier, a11d his pal, Texas Jack youder, tu say nothing of our Marshal Wild Bill, who is u s suspicious from over the1e. They do not drink much, they fight shy of professionals at throwi11g the b ones or fum bling the pasteboards, but they can s hoot some." 'fhe E11glisliman ::;aid nothing, but in his eyes, a s he turned them to where his late punisher was talking with his friends and the high constable of the towu, was an exces s of hate which mad e Prank h o t all over. "I see. I have not m istaken you. \Vell, you are a rarity to take that s as s from any man and bide your time to sarve it b ack scorching. Say mis ter, 'vere you ever in Sain' Lou?'' Saint Louis? Perhaps. Why do you ask?" 'Cause I thought yo u might want to buy the bowie knife I offered y ou there in Bartlemy's Gilded P a rlor, in '82." "Eh?" "Just what I am saying. I am the broken sport wbom you leut a cool thousand to wben you was asked, on tlie pledge of a fancy toothpick, inlaid with gold and dotted with rubies-it was a keepsake of mine, and I would not lose it for anything Here, do you remembe r it, though not me?" 'l'he Britis h baron glanced at the magnificent d agger knife which the gambler showed, and nodded. "I recaJJ you now," lie said. "I w ish you had slipped that into my hand a minute ago." ''For what good? Bu filer would have pistoled you straight Besides, y ou and I could not have run the t own, for he is among mates here-I mean in the village-with Wild Bill the Marshal, and 'l'cxas Jack just come to town." "I still wish you would lend.me your arms." rrhe two villains exchanged a bright look. They understood each other. "Come in. Out in the open is not healthy," said Frauk. Aud he pulled tl1e stranger, not reluctant or frightened now, within the gaming house, not in full blast this early hour. Frank drew his old acquaintance into a corner farthest from the street. "Friend,'' began Frank, in a low voice, "yon staked me when. I was pumped out among them Mississip' sports, and I am just yourn body, boots and soul, see! I am pooty well tired of these mo1111tai11 men, and these plainsmen the fun in the towns. Why don't they stick to shooting Injin and huffier and antelopes-and leave to the gentle man's games? Fust thing they know, tl1ey will be cleaned out, and think themselves lucky to have the prairie dogs' holes to creep into. n "You a r e talking," s aid the Englishman, "as though you had a couple of hundred men at your back.'' The gamble r darted a quick glance all nround, even at the brick wall where they stood, and suspicious as a catamount, he suddenly drew the long-bladed knife wh.ich he had shown to his compariio11. Reaching out, he darted the steel-armed hand, litl1e and taper as a lad y 's, in at a crevice in this wall. "Ouch-guard me, oh, God!" whined a voice in Spanish on the other side. They both heard the steps o f some man. "That was a spy," remarked the gamble r, calml;., as he withdrew the knife ari::! looked at the reddene d point "Luke," added to the bartender, who roused up from behind the counter at this cry of pain, you are letting your customers git crowded. Send a man round to see who sneaks up to listen in your corral. 11 Two of the servants sallied out t o search tl1e premises for the wounded eavesdropper. "'l'o resume," went on the gambler, unruffled.
4 THE BUFFALO BILL STORIESo "You are right. I have got at least a hundred, who are worth the average five hundred when properly handlecl." "Then you are--" "Just a sporting gent here, but a little out yonder on the high land they call me the King Bird of the Buzzards. '' "The Bnz?.:anls of the Boneyard ?" said the other, turnin"g more pale ti1an he did when under Buffalo Bill's revolver. He had the name correct. He need not have been in Goldeena long to know the reputation of the bandits, of whom Fly Frank proudly proclaimed himself the captain. The Boueyard was the name given to the gulch to the southeast of the town. An abandoned surface working where a Wajaja Indian first discovered goid in the '6o's, and showed the Shi!1ing Stone to Nelson the Squawman-so many dead bodies were seen bleaching in its dark bottom that it was shunned by all. At first, perhaps, these grim piles were believed to be the remains of men aud mules, who had misstepped on the old road called Dead Mule Trail, alo11cr the mountain side. Bnt soon, as the ruffians "' flourished in the saloons and showed trophies remem-bered as belonging to missing miners, the whisper ran that they were the corpses of the murdered. CHAPTER II. 'fHE POISONED BLADE. Well might Baron Chillturn shiver at the mention of the Boneyard and this new friend's avowal that he was the master of the villains who carpeted its hollow with the ghastly relics, t1nrecoverable from sue.Ii depths. Frank smiled with glee. He judged that l1is h earer wonld 11ot he so impressed by a commou horror. "Good!" said the Eni;:lishman, overcomiug a disgust which, after all, would be out of place; "I think-as I have plenty of dollars and so ouly need your help-we shall strike a bargai1i." "You have only to lead-I will follow Ol\ I do not want your gold. x will aid you to my level best for the hatred I bear Bnfrler Bill and bis companions of the Plains and Sierras. Do you know, they have talked about our jig being up, aud that they were twisting the ropes for us.'' In spite of his nerve, Chillturn felt a cold shudder run rou1Jd his neck. "Wild Bill said that he was only waiting for the call of his friends. But decking the telegraph posts with live men is a game two can play at. I bet that my Buzzards can git the pull over them honest galoots .in a tug of wa1. Th-:y went to the bar together like brothers. A little more a11d they would have drunk out of the same glass. Before they bad emptied a bottle they were concocting a scheme to be revenged upon their mutual foes, all the honest men who blocked their way to running the town on their own lines. "J\fark this," said the Englishman, gravely. "Mr. Mountro.se is enormously wealthy. He can be held to ransom the five figures in dollars, and I have a little scheme to lower the tide of his golden flood, which I will describe to you hereafter. And another thino I want to lower-that is, his daughter's pride. "' I offered her my hand once, and she refused me. So she shall yet go d own on her l.,:nees and beg to me, more abjectly than I was made to do to her. That \'\las my weak mome11t such as all have once in a life. I shall weaken no more. Then, there is another thing." He lowered his voice, and contiuued in the other's ear: "You waste your time picking off these goldscrapers one by one. Why not wait till the Deadwood coach has all the month's clean-up aboard and swipe in the entire lot?" "A good idee," exclaimed the King Bird of the Buzzards, with his eyes sparkling. "It is simply to waylay it on the road; I noticed plenty of good ambushe s along the road hither; and, thongh I do not pretend to the woodcraft of 'Texas Jack, with whom I hunted and camped down Sonth, I am not a fool when turned loose on the plains for all that. No more 11ibbling at the onter edge-let us bite deep. In one swoop.we may gather in the' gold for the Omaha Bank, the girl :md her fat11er ,, "It is a go," cried Frank, delighted. "But first "Firs t of all, o m rev-enge ou these self-appointed regulato rs of our morais, and on the whole town that grinned at my beiug bulldozed into excusing myself to that girl." "On the whole town? Is not that a large order?'1 questiouedthe fly one, aghast at the other's audacity.
THE BU ff' /\LO BILL STORIESo 5 "I would fire it from. end to eud if I have to run through it wi tli the torch in my own hancl." "Bravo! that is the talk! You are fit to be my lieutenant." And the bandit leader, melted by the liquor, clapped the Englishman on the back. "Your lieutenant, old man," cried the other, as if proudly, but under his breath he muttered, as they clinked glasses: "Waiting to be your chief." "Hear me! here is confusion to Marshal Wild Bill and all the other :Bills who oppose the lovers of fun! as for the Jacks, we shall turn them down." \Vhile these two worthies were plotting and mnrder, to say nothing of kidnaping and highway robbery, the objects of their scheme were talking abont them. "Where did he drop into?'' '"Tl1at varmiuJ:?" queried Texas Jack, looking rollnd from where the three bordermen stood, 'vhom a sculptor would admiringly have chosen for the Three Graces of \Vestern manhood. "Skulked into some congenial hole, I reckon." "He got into tow with the Gambolier, Fly Frank,'' answered the Marshal of Goldeena. ''Birds of a feather, you know." "Ay, they may hang together in tlie strongest sense of the word," remarked Bill Cody. "I ought not to have let him gc so free. If we Jet these scallawags hook decent folks in such fashion, ,..,..e should have no one comit'lg out to the West." rrhey were interrupted by a man who ran up to them eagerly. He had a swarthy complexion, and he was a New Mexican-Marcial, by name. He had lialf his face swathed in a fresh bandage, and he was in pain, but his eye5 had 11ot lost luster. "What is the matter, l\Iart?" questioried Wild Bill. ''Hear the report first," gasped l\larcial, with an effort. 'The 111 n from the East whom Buffalo Bill made knock lmder is taken up into the arms of Fly Frank--and do you know what I have heard? Frank boasts that he is the captain of the Buzzrr in through a crack. He fetched me. I made light of the cut. I returned to the listening place, when I ought to have washed the gash. But I heard the plot. Yes, they are going to burn the town and take revenge on Buffalo Bill. Be ahead of tbem-remember Marcial, who was ever an American, though some sneered at him as a Greaser, and get the first blow in." Texas Jack had lowered the speaker's head on his bent knee, b11t already the muscles of the neck were shaken by spasms, more short and severe at each attack. Rolling his great black eyes, the New :Mexican died at the feet of his friends. "Revenge?" repeated Texas Jack, flinging down his hat ,and kneeling by the body. "He,s gone upthat solll of ,his was white, boys. He dragged me across the Frio, in the inllndation, on a raft of cane when the Navajoes were hotfoot at our heels." "Fire the town?" mused Wild Bill, full of pride at having the safety of the settlement under his care. "He bid us strike quick!" So said Texas Jack. He and Wild Bill took a forward.-step toward the Dobie House, but with a hand on one; shoulder of each, Buffalo Bill detained them. "Hold on-play cautious," said he. ''This Frank is no slouch. He is not there now, waiting to be picked off He who uses poison knives is treacherous as a wolf. Let us 'not be hasty lest we him and his gang the hint to What I want is the whole lot in the net. All their necks wrung by the same noose would not repay the community the lo ss uf one true man like this.'' And he bowed to the remains of Marcial, whom,
6 THE BUFF J\LO BLL STORIES. at a gesture from the marshal, two of his posse removed to the sheriff's office. "Let us spend the niglit in gathering evidence and marking down tlic Buzzards. Then, in the we will so11nd the alarm-bell and lug the entire collection of the Rogues' Gallery of Goldeena before the justice. On the cold heart of Marcial, the nrnrdered, I swear that they shall have justice meted out to them." Any sympathizer with the robbers who heard this threat, spoken with calm decision, must have sneaked away with fear that the Buzzards would croak joyously never again. CHAPTER III. THE BAD OMEN. It was midnight. Tlie drink and gaming-saloons were in full blast. Texas Jack and Wild Bill were receiving the re-ports of agents who had gone the rounds to order the members of the Good Citizens' League to be ready for rough work in the Cody was making a tour to see if the Buzzards were on the alert. But never were the streets-Goldeena had three, the Main and two parallel-more deserted' and quiet. Only a conple of men with the watering cart were going up and down the back street, sprinkling the heavy dust of the dirty roads, which made life a burden when the wind threw it up in whirls. But if the watchers had been Jess intent on seeing if the rovers of the worse sort were up to mischief, they might have noticed the queer antics of these scavengers. Besides, instead of being the low-type Huns who usually slaved in the night amid the refuse, the cartmen were white men, merely disgnised in soiled rags. And had one forgotten to hold the nose in "I am not playing cards any more," said Buffalo Bill. "Still, me and Bill will look in npon yon later on, if only to bring yon a run of luck," said Wild Bill. Jack went on to the Robbers' Roost, while the others returned to the store. l'v 1eanwliile the men with the explosive oil had dis charged their errand and their cargo. "This village was too previons," muttered one, who m those who knew would have recognized as Fly Frank, who had put his own shottlder to the wheel. "It is time it went up, like Elisha's car. All fixed, boyees. Git out lively after touching off the fire works, and come back with the band, ready to sail in and take advantage of the uproar to pillage." His men nodded, and he walked on, a little in doubt what to do with himself Then, throwing off the rags, he showed tiiat he wore a suit of velveteen and furs, sttch as the Scotch Canadians sport in the Northwest, and sometimes startle the natives with below their border. He donned a pair of red side whiskers and a sandy mustache, and being able to patter broken Englis h with a French-Canadian accent, he expected to palm himself off as a stranger. lt was hazardous, for he was g oing right into the Robbers' Roost, where he was a nightly patron. "Nothing venture, nothing win," lie muttered, not without misgiving. "That new pard of mine is to meet me there. I am much off the track if he does not turn out a ver y fiend incarnate. \Vhat nerve to stand that set-down from Buffier William! It makes my blood boil to think of it--I wonld eat the heart of the galoot that downed me like that.'' He looked round, but on the sky was not the least red glimmer, so that he might rely on it that bis men had not untimely set tlie torch to the doomed buildings He then entered the gambling saloon 'l'wo lusty fellows at the door eyed him sharply-
THE BUfF ALO BILL STORIESo 1 they were not the usual guards. \Vild Bill had replaced them b y followers of his own. But the disguised gamble r was not to be identified in Ids charige of.countenance. "Let the sucker pass," muttered one. "This is the last grab game these fakirs will play." Frank looked round like a stranger, but any oue could tell that he was not bewildered, or interested in the motley Men of all nations jostled one another to get near the tables, where different games went on with but one identical feature; they won in the long run against all players. Most of the notorious criminals, the men with a record for crime were absent. The rumor that tl;e Goldeenians were gping to kick had flitted about. Fly Frank was set back by this. Bnt after a while he remarked a peculiar movement which escaped the others. Now and then a man who came up to the board to lose a little pile, drew back with an expression of displeasure, and as if trying to find his way out by the b:.ick entrance into the corral behind, disappeared up a low flight of steps. Frank recognized these men as adherents, or, at lea s t, .those who had winked at the carryings-on of his fellows. He knew, too, that by this exit any oue could go up to the one story above the saloon. "It is a meeting," he thought. ranged by this English deep one. would not want for helping hands. stowed himself?" "It 11as been arHe said that he But where has he Not among the customers of tl i e green cloth, or the bar. Nobody like Chillturn was seen. But after a time, having stared everywhere else, the gambler perceived that old Sch the saloon-keeper, had reenforced hmself for the night liours with a young man of bis nationality. At least, this stranger \.Yore a bland face, a shaggy yellow mustache, thick and heavy, aud his light eyes seemed sky color in the crossing rays of the dozen oil lamps illuminating the El Dcrado, as Peter Schwearin called his den. He had the G erman's silent tongue, too, but he served mfaed drinks-all from the same cask of whisky-with the dexterity of the champion bartender of a leading hotel. "That's my man or he's not here," thought Frank. He W
;n-JE BUFF f\LO Bill STORIES. same time, 'I'exas Jack, smiling quietly in a wa y most provokiug, tuok his winnings off his opposing color. Frnuk turned partly away, but a laugh of derisiou at iiis defeat checked him. lt nlso made him biind to the certaiu f'ign fro111 the pretended bartender tha t he was to play no more. He fished u p fro:n a poucit in his hip a chamo is leather bag, and triumphantly poured from it a qua11-tity of pure gold in spangles lar:;e s cales, and grains. Chillturn, leaning over the bar, as much attracted as tlie rest at this kind of duel between Texas aud the false Canadian, looked aghas t. This bag of dust was stolen from him-his n e w partner hacl picked liis pocket while vowing good fellowship! Vvl10 shc ulcl be trnstecl murderers and pillagers deceive their pals? But this wa s not all-tlie los s of the gold he c ould overiook, cousidering the King Bird of the Buzzards offererl allia11ce The bag contained more tha11 gold. For the stuff, the sallow cashier gave tl:ree sums in coiu. 'l'wo of them were lo s t when, snddeuly, Texas Jack, who had been looking at the leather pouch iu a more and more enwrap t mauner, thrus t oufliis h
THE BUFF A.LO BILL STORIES. 9 several shots rang out. The lamps aimed at by CHA P'rER IV. the coucealed desperadoes above were extinguished. THg FIRE-FIGHTERS. 'rheir smoke and that of the guus commingled. "Here, I have them!" ro:,ired Texas Jack, like a Chillturn had already shot out two of the lamps wounded lion, as lie recognizec1 in the alarmists his when his companion was just recovering from his,_ brothers of the rifle and bowie. stupor at this turniug of the tables. In auother second, afraid of being bllrned, BuzNot O!le by one, but by groups, the lights w ere zards, wounded and scorched, players, stra11ge1s, all thus put out. The horrified aud startled mob gazed were burled into the street b y an explosiou. 'l'he fire at the last o'ne or two aud as tliey suffered the fate of liad peuetrated the dugout which Pete Schwearin the rest, fell away fro111 the center where Texas f'tyled his wine vaults, and ignited a barrel of spirit$. Jack was t':ing to get a shot at Frank and his Usually a fire in such a town of cloth nnd plauk is friend. difficult to cope with. But wlien the frail habitations Some tumbled toward the door, some to thP. rear, were saturated with rock oil, salvatio!l was impos-but here the stairs were cumbered by the men who sible. had begun the shooting. They rushed down to the Over Goldeetla more red flare tba11 smoke was ris-call from Chill tum: illg, an
THIE BUFF /\LO BttlL STORIES. Jts next neighbor was the large.st-the store. It was also tbe League's main post. tained extra ar111s and ammunition. "\'olunteers to save the powder," shouted Bill. general It con-Buffalo "I am with you," sai<'I YVild Bill, simply. "Just wait tjll 1 tighten this rag."He was seamed with a pistol ball across the chest, and was adjusting a bandage. He was grimed with charcoal and darken('cl with smoke. rrhe e:icctiemeut had enlarged his eyes, aud he was now the lion iu activity. 'l'he terrifying expression of Lis daunting e-.:es had made the bauditti recoil and feel !t?lad to be just on the edge of pistol range. Thrilled by his bra very, three men, though tired and one wounded by a falling roof tree, joined the two bordennen. The crowd looked on as the five vanished in the swirls of smoke enveloping the store. The Buzzards for a space refrained from the lo;1g snapshots to learn the issue. "vVhat, backing out?" said Bufft1lo Bill, rnmdng up and standing in the open space where the Buzzard's bnllets commanded none to cross. "Are you to stand by aud let others save the supplies that should carry yon through the winter?" "Bnt it is powder, Bill," said an old man, appeal iug with a gesture for him not to enter the circle of peril. "Powder be blasted-I--" A new spirit seized the citizens, and made the craven bold-the exhausted spirited. Man and boy, old and young, they set to work, and Buffalo Bill, who had seen many a border city go up a cracker, led them intelligently. The best shots and those who had ammunition were detailed to keep the Buzzards back, and, if possible, drive them out of the town. All the others hunted for water and wet blankets filled bud;;ets and tried to stop the spread of the fire'. Already a great pile of the stores was placed on a bare lot nf ground, and covered, with blankets streaming with water; these provisions would be available. Seeing the heap of saved stores rise into a mound, and the powder being brought out which might be soon used again5t him and his, Frank the Fly foamed at the mouth. "If they save them, we are Jost. If we destroy their eatables and the cartridges, they must abandon the camp town, and we can pick and choose for our home in the ridge. See?'' Yes, his scoundrels saw clearly. They nerved themselves for a charge. As for Chillturn, who had shot every charge off, he was drunken with bloodshecl. "I am coming along, Frank," he said. "Let 11s annihilate the pack. I feel my breath oppressed while that braggart who humbled me struts among these half-baked cakes." With a handkerchief tied round his head, with his eyes shining in their blackened sockets like a maniac's, and his shirt front smeared with gunpowder, he looked a Satan, a1id, more than their leader, he had the ruffians up to the front in their skirmishiug with the citizens. On seeing him so wrapped in slaughter, these men. lrnd given him a new name. "Britisher baron l:>e dashed," the lieutenant, Tom Turmoil, had said, in an interval in the riot, "he is a boss blooclspiller, and don't yon forgit that." The bloodspiller boss was at the heig t of popularity among these rovers. And when he supported the captain in his proposal for a conclusive raid they clustered about him. : With the .command to rush, given by a whisper and a sign with the hands armed with pistol and knife, the brigands advanced through the smoke down the clevasta ted street. 'I'here was. a lull. rrhe fire-fighters were congratulating themselves 011 what they had snatched from destruction. They panted and stretched their limbs as they l(,)oked on the pile of salvage and had almost forgotten their particularly as the latter's dropping shots lincl ceased to pester them. When the Buzzards made their rush, they ha
THE ALO BILL STORIES. 11 He tore with a fevered hand the strips.of burned linen and cloth off his breast. "I am not a coyote cnb." "Miud my bite all the same," said the English man, cliaffing at the hunter keeping him from following the bandits ou their rush. For Bill bad takeu up the first weapon haudy, oue of those iron-shod ox-;!oads <>ud1 as the old farmers used to wield a11d the Mexicans still know, :and with this he parried the other's substit11te for a sword. "Kill, kill!" yelled Cl.iillturn, to tlle bandits, feel ing tha t with ti1eir late c aptain dashed to e:1rt1J by Buffalo Bill aud kept down by feet trampling to and fro that he was the chief. : 1 guess," interrupted B11ffalo Bill, beginning to thrust with his short pike, after having warded off a couple of sweepir.g strokes, ''I guess that I can sup ply you with all the killing you will want.,, Their combat went on with the singular weapons with even more vigor and fury than all the other hand-to-hand conflicts combined. In the steam, smoke and fumes of the petroleum, the fighters seemed imps in the place below. Imps strnrrnling with human souls to hurl them into the furnaces. For some time the _cra?:ing of metal upou metal was heard, disturbed only by a chance popping of firearms, wiiicb seemed but in the more savage and deadly clash of the rude swords and spears. 'l'he fighters staggered on the dirt soaked with blood, and cumbere d with the fallen. Oaths and groans were heard oftener tiian shouts and rallying cries. But such duels were too ferocious to be long maintained. 'rhe bandits, infuriated by the loss of their chief and emboldened by success on the whole rewarding their audacity, returned from sweeping the street as far as the Goldeeua House. At the doors of that building, which the fire had spared, _they had made prizes. Several of the guests, standing there to see the and the affray, were dragged into their midst. Among them were included Miss Mountrose and her father, a gray-bearded, stout iu the East, kept out of all street scuffles by his dignity, he had contemplated tlie fire and the riot with the amazement of a man dropped from a comet. 'ro him, these bra\e men repelling the ruffians were sa \a ges. The bandits had r.o t recognized the girl as tiie caus e of their present commander being lrnmiliated. Tliey had suapped them up. To bandits they were born their prey. But when Chillturu sr1w them return with these captives, he ga\'e a :;hout of infernal happiness. "Tom Turmoil, you ::ire a foll-jeweled 'hllnter,' eighteen karats fiue, and I am your hest fricnc tight for'ard. Hold 'em tight. They are just what I lrnve hungered for." ''Dou t hustle for more till you can keep wbat ypu have got," said Bill, redoubling bis attacks. "You, the handful for me?" s11eered the Britisher. "Lay on, boys-with this one laid low, the town is ours.'' Buffalo R ill was in the center of a group of the bandits who had made a set on him, and were trying to crush him by 11umbers. 'rhen the others, obeying tllose who guarded the captives, and ordered them to help the new chief, added their forces to the few who had sustained Chillturn in his duel. They drove Wild Bill and his helpers to the wall of the store. There, backed to it, wielding their weapons with tired muscles, for they had been fighting the fire before coping with the villains, they lo!t hope. They seemed to see unavoidable death hovering over their drooping heads. They warded and hit out, with spliute ed clubs and pistols reversed to become billies, like machines. They had lo s t the alertness an i1ad hauled bim out
12 THE BU ff /\LO BILL of a mass, and were apparently about to cut his throat. But a new turn was given wheu they saw Buffalo Bill was holding a keg of powder in his hands. He lifted th is right up at arm's length, al though it seemed heavy and the effort was palpable "Look here," he said, in a lower tone, but the same incisive voice. "Into the fire this keg of powder goes, and, in a second, we shall be quit of ye all though we go, too. -Do you draw off-or shall this send all to doom?" lle strode out of the group two steps, beyond the astonished Frank's reach, aud helcl the keg within the doorw::iy. As if to emphasize his threat, a gush of fire lit up all the iuside aud shone with weird glory on his inspired visage. "He'll do it, durn his hide," grnmblecl Tom '"i'urmoil, and, without waiting for orders he shoved from bis liauds the girl and the guests of the Goldecna Honse to one side. She fell into her father's liands, but if he heaved a sigh uf relief she did uot sob or weep. "Yes, we get out," added Chillturn, sullenly, as he drew back his improvised sword from menacing Wild Bill. "1'his hand is yours, but I shall have your scalp yet.'' The two forces separated, and faced one another with baffled spite and ill-suppressed hatred. ln the clear space between Buffalo Bill stood master of the positiou. No one doubted. They knew that he would rather remove those villains from the earth at the cost of these better lives than see them s.ack and pillage as rulers of the town. As the robbers were slowly withdrawing, while fasciuated by the keg which contained death for the multitude, Bill smiled. In the confusion, it was not noticed that Texas Jack, insensible from a blow on the head, must have b een borne away by the brigands. Ou the other hand, their leader remained at the feet of the savior of the town. With a last effort before he W:!S fully overpowered, Frank had thrown his knife toward his men, retiring. It was the token of captaincy in the band, and, as such, Chillturn gladly picked it 11p. "The villains," muttered Buffalo Bill. "Oh, that ever we were unable to stay them--" "All the worse," said the marshal, binding a scarf about his strained knee, "that they have carried away Texas Jack with them." "Then we follow," said Bill, with renewed animation. "Let's arm and make a start on the trail. '"exas Jack among those devils, with that head devil the Englishman--" "Bill," broke in a voice from one of the bodies on the ground, "you will have to strike many a blow, but with no good. If you had all the sogers aud all the Government scouts you led into battle at Birdwood Creek, you will not enter the cave of the Buzzards.'' It was Fly Frank, and he wore a grin of exultation as he hurled his threat. With a reaching out of his hand, Buffalo Bill caught him by the collar and dragged him into a sitting position by the heap of stores uearest. "You have said too much and too little," cried he. "It don't take me long to remember how you Buzzards got possession of that natural fort. When the Nez Perces were chased right through here with old Chief Joseph, a band ran for that hole in the summit and fouht off the scouts 011 their trnck. No 011e could fiud their iu, but it appears yon scoundrels have another kind of luck than bo11est meu. You took the stronghold by guile or strength, and-you hear me speak? yoll must deliver the pass to llS. ,, "You are too fast, Bu filer. You may remember well how we rustlers got into the Buzzards' Nest, bnt forget tbat it is prisoner for prisoner, and that ) our pard, Texas Jack, is in the cold grip of my merry men.'' '"!'hey dare not harm a hair on his head," replied Buffalo Bill, contemptuously. "But as for yon-the pass, o r we pass you on to the judge whom nothing man offers ca 11 bribe." "You have got a killing line on to me, Bill, I allow," said Fly Frank; "but we are sworn above all not to betray the secret entrance. I won't speak." "Then you shall swing, with all the prisoners of your g-aiig who have a gasp iu them," interrupted Wild Bill. "There will be a day of execution in Goldeena such as man's eyes never gloated on since Slade aud his twenty pulled the ropes .tight in Vir ginny City." ''I expected to dance in air, Bill,'' replied the gambler, with the calm of the reckless Western sport. "Swing and be durned I carry the secret with me, and it will cost you an army to get home with the Buzzards. You hear me!'' and he chuckled. 'l'he citizens had gathered round. The fires had burned out. '"rhe morning light glided the mountain tops. On Dnle Trail they could see the shadowy forms of the successfnl bandits, filing over the height. "Hark ye, Frank," said Buffalo Bill, "nothing but your holding the p::iss to your cuttbroat>s lair saves you on a narrow chance. Lead us to the i11let and you shall have a horse, a gun and cartridges, a day's grub and wa t er, and twenty-four hours law. After that, count on it that Wild Bill and I are cam ping on your trail." "I am mum." ''Say you so?') But as he glanced round, such was the firmness with which the robber shut his jaws that he and the rest lost confidence that they could p11t a screw on. White face s, and black, brown and yellow, all wore
THE BUFFALO BILL STORIES. 13 a thwarted look. Unconsciously, Bill let his vexed glance wander and it stopped at a face which alone smiled feebly bnt with a different It was that of a half-breed Crow and Pawnee, a second thief, who might have attained eminence as a Government scout, bnt was too fond of the Fool's Water, or strong drink. ''Tawatsee," said Bill, with hope in his heart, as the red man's smile broadened a little. "Speak, Good Heart-for you are a chief, and are invited to the council of captains I have not seen the Crows since you weut 011 t lie reservation in the Judith Basin, but my brother is a braye and he speaks wisdom." The Indian had h.elp ed iu the fire-fighting as be came a man. "Very good, this i s very good," s aid he, gratified at being singled 011t from the crowd, as all eyes were bent upon l1i111. "Chief, you are right. Your red brother brings the means to make this enemy of whi te and red alike speak about the way in. There is a hi dden way in. It i s a talk of tlie lodges." Frauk lost color a s the Indian spoke. He kne w their cunning i11 tortures. And n o t three days before he bad jostled this man aside, as he was intoxicated a11d called him a d og. "Chief, he must be made to spe:ik," said Buffalo Bill. "Go rigl1t ahead with handling him. He is too tough for us." 'rhe Crow-Pawnee poiuted to the two tall pine staffs which ornamented tile plaza or square of the towu. On high days and holidays, they flew the flag of the State and that of the United States. 'rlie fire had n o t hurt even the halvards as it streamed over them. "Brjng them down in a bow, each," went 011 the Iudiau ; ''tie to each foot of the silent dog, and be fore he will let them b e cnt loose to rend him in twain, as the lightning splits the cedar, be will tell the worci of the pass.'' "Do this," said Buffalo Bill. 'fwo light men shinued up the poles, aud secured the halyards r espectively to the tips. 'l'wenty men hung on to the ropes, new and bearing the strain well, so as to beud 011e after another. While bowed, the rope was made fast in each instance to the other mast. When this was done in both ca ses the spars crossed near the axes and were held so; within the poles the shape was of a pointed arched window. ''Swap ends," said Wild -ill, alluding to Fly Frank. The willing citizens held up the gambler-robber, inverted him a11d in this upside-down position, now superintended by the Crow, fastened a leg to each rope in such a way tha t, when tl1ey should be severed below where he was attached, the masts would be released. By their spring, the man would be torn asunder. "You see," said Wild Bill, as he looked on the bandit, "any one can walk into a village, but the thing is to get safely out." "Speak," said Buffalo Bill, sternly. "This is playing low down on a wi1ite man, '\mut tered Frnnk, unrelenti11g. Stand by to cut free," s a id Wild Bill, and two meu, each with an ax, prepared t o l e t t h e poles take their spring into the old upright p osition. The gambler threw a despairing look around. Not a regretful eye met his; h e had robbed, murdered and swaggered too long. ''Once-twice--'' At three times the ropes would be pnrted, and the gambler llismembered. But his pale lips were glued together. He meant to die firm to his blood-cemented m1th to t!ie Ring of Crime. Wild Bill, like a judge confronted hy a prisouer "mute by malice," was about to order the execution when an unexpected interrnption came. l\liss Mo nn trose breaking away from her father, who wanted to sl1ield lier from tile horrid sight, spraug between the dealer out of wild justice and the c ulprit. 1Jo," she pleaded, in her sweet voic e-woman's voice was such a rarity out there then that it sounded strangely on those e ars. "You have all shown yourse lves so brave aud noble to-night that I cannot bear to think tlwt the clay shall be branded by an act of cruelt y Spare him. Try him before a court for wh a t he has clone; but do 11ot, I pray you, treat him wit!1 the inhumanity which, 110 doubt, he has exhibited to others. Not the law of 'An eye for an eye' is now ruling in our country-but 'Forgive us a s forgive others.' It was a brief sermon, but none the less effective. "All right," said Buffalo Bill, the first to recover from his change of feeling. "No, it ain't all right," interposed Fly Frank. "I am 11ot wntb this fuss over. But she has melted the lump of ice that I called Y heart. I am lath to go back on my pals, but, after all, they have had their glut in raiding this settlement. It won't be quits till you have a fair bout with them. But mind yon, it will be a hard .l<:not to chop-grappling with them on their own grounds. Here goes-let me loose, and I will lead you to the inlet. The rest consarns yourselves. Man can't put it no straighter:, I judge." "Yon put it square, Frank,'' said Buffalo Bill, making a sign for the a xmen to set down their tools and untie the prisoner. They were not sorry; like the two Bills, this bit of Indian practice was repugnaut to their hearts. Once again the gambler-robber's empurpled face whitened out into a natural color. He looked glum as the Crow himself, for one does not walk toward death with a blithe heart. "A close shave," he muttered. "Them angels al-
t4 THE BUFFALO BILL STORIES. ways come in handy for a man in distress bless 'em. If it were not for you, miss," he said, raising big voice a s M iss Mountrose, her act accomplished, shrank b ack to her fatlier's side, "I should be dead." ''Silence!" said Buffalo Bill. "A tten ti on, for we are not going to allow Jack to stay long in y o u r companions' blood-stained hands. After arming and getting a bite to eat on the quick-step we make for the mo1111tai11s Deliver the entry to u s and you go, as promised." 'l'he King Dird of the Buzzards bowed his l 1 e a d. But it was as much a s anythi11g to conceal a singular smile which flitted across his cotmtenance The Crow chief looked at the men unrigging the flag staffs of the ropes so they s l1ould fly back into the up and down position, with a s our grimace. "A snake, lie mumbled. "He will be no good till crus hed. He arme d himself for the warpath. He w ent afte r the marshal, and s aid: "Chief, me cltief-me want to go on the path t o the Buzzarcls' Nest." "'fawatsee, yo u are welco m e And keep au eye on that rnau. I have no s to c k in him, in spite of h i s submiss i 011. ' The Crow slapped tlte handle of his gun in a meaning way. CHAPTER V. THE TRAITOR'S PORTION. Fly Frank acte d his deception well. No one could find a flaw in his behavior as he conducted the party, with Bt1ffa l o Bi l l, t o the deliverance of Texas Jack, unles s lie had bee n sacrificed for those bandits perished in the difficulty with Guldee n a's citizens. The order of the march. was good; from the_Sierrn, if the robbers had sentinels poste d, it mus t have looked hard to teat. Besides, the special guard over the prisoner who had turned guide, another surrounded a cannon, bought to celebrate national holidays and carrying a six-pound baII. For the convenience of carriage, as soon as they rose a bove the foothills the ordnance was taken to pieces; four men carried the gun, two each w J 1eel, and four more the carriag e and ammuni tion. While they were dismembering tbe cannon, there was a slight al nn11. The lookouts repeated the warning of T awatsee that an enemy was in their path. But this lone man approached steadily in spite of the threatening attitude "'Of the volunteers. Wl1en within caII he declared himself a friend. "Oh, it is ouly Slim Sim!" said a prominei1t citizen, not a bit sorry that this individual was no herald of the enemy's corps Slim Simson was a peddler, who kept a little store where he sold goods at extravagant prices, but on time to the miners. Nobody but Frank knew that this rogue was a receiver of tbe bandit's pillage. He used to go down on the line in construction, the Missouri Pacific, Denver and Omaha and iJell jewelry, and odds and ends, wbich might be identified iu Gold eena, to the workmen of the contractors. Not a son! s11spected this double dealing. But Buffalo Bill w a s not prepossess ed by his hatchet face, cleep, small eyes, thin, firm lips sly look, and slender frame. Tbe dealer in notions fell in line with such good grace that it would break one' s h eart to refuse him. His explanation of his being in the gulch was satisfactory. He a sserted that he had not seen anything of the robbers, altho11gh hinting that at least one suspicious character had hovered round the entrance to the rav i n e as thongh in hiding. Buffalo Bill seemed to guess who this might be, for be cut s h ort further questioning of the recruit, and, the g11n ?eing clismonnted he ordere d the forward move again. F rn n k led them along the n e w coach road toward the s outh, but abruptly diverging, he tracked back to the mountain. The trail gradually rose. A path led almost straight upw
THE BUFFA.LO Bill STORHES,, "He sav s th:it h e se e s Sioux Jndii rns, and that he cannot be. mistaken.'' In fact, th e Indian h a d made the sign of ''the Sioux"' i 11 two way s, and, lastly, a s the Dakot a s or Brolhers Looking dow11 into the dF.ep cleft b etween the piles of granite, jasper, a11d saudstone, held togethet by bunch grass and artemisia, he d escried a sol itary mat1 deviousry windi11g h i s way b y w ading up the bed of the water. It filled the dalle, or troug h, aud only a stout aud experienced trailer would have adopted this course. Only such as Buffalo Bill and this Indian c ould have recognized the face at this di s t ance. "Wild Bill-good-he is n o t creeping along like a water-duck for nothing. Tl1 e robbers will be sur prised.'' He chuckled, for there was 110 one to hear him. This discove r y he did not si gnal to Buffalo Bill, as he knew the two to be brothe r s and he supposed tliat Wild Bill had not come with the p a rty for good reasons. Stare a s h e might, he could see 110 way .ove r the gorge to tha t other side where the bandits had their retrea t. The n he descende d. When on the ridge, he. caught sight once more o f .the wanderer iL1 the torrent, who made a si g n to h i m that he had seen his h ead outlined on the erlge. He waved a n arm and sank down. "Well?" ques ti o n e d Bill, knowing that the scout would not report without dell!and. "No sign. But I have seen a brother in the d ee p." This was uttered in the ear of Bill, so that the guide could n o t hear a word. The captain of the party nodded. The marshal was acting in concert. "But the way over and in?'' The Indian shook his head. There was no shame in being beaten. Franl.;; grinned. "Go on," said Bill, and the Crow took his place at the head of the line, with the gambler next, u11der the leader's rifle. He was sure to fall dead, if h e darkened its si ght. They went on for a mile, skirting the side of the ravine. The path ran al ong a beach, for the m ost part, as level as if laid out by man. All at once Bill and the red man gave a start at the same time. They had perceived, before the citi-. zens, two or thrne threads like cobwebs, stretched w_ith an elegant curve across the aby ss. "The way," s aid Frank, c almly. Jn fact, on approaching, they saw that the thin threads were rope s rudely made. They formed a foot p<.tb, two other ropes, a yard above them, and about the same distance apart, serve d as guide lines. But looki;ig from one across the chasm, bridged thus frailly, thos e who were not used to heights, such as the pl ainsme n, a ud Indians might be pardo u e
THE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES. l From the ledge where the party had halted, and the gun was se t on its carriage, and the wheels fastened ou, the only wa y was a goat's path. It wound so as to lead from ou e natura l shelf to another, and only by d egrees the summit. The Docked One knew the top. It wa s a hill, with an immense view of nearly a hundred miles. Wl1en they got upon it, it was deserted, even by the vultures which sometimes held a gorging party on the v e rg e T11c Old Trappe r took a good surv ey, and bade hi s companions return. "All's well," h e reporte d to Buffalo Bill, impa ti ently awaiting. "Nary sign of Iujin or rustler. The place is as lone as wben Adam wa s a little b oy. And h o t l Jerusalem, how scorching hot! D eclar' to high heaven that the sun has sucked up the Lookin' glass Lake, as the g a l s I showed up here two years ago, put the name to it, so tliat you could not moisten the tongue of a lizard." Well, how was he to know, si11ce he had not looked properly for footprints, that the bandits liad emptied the pond. They bad, under the astute directions of-their uew chief, carried out all the water and poured it 011 the thirsty soi l among the marble in a balf-circle. 'l'he horn5 of this half moon line ended at the verge of the cliff. The crescent comprised a g o o d slice of land, and as the bluff was scooped ont under by the north wind, 'it projected over the ledge on whicl1 the robber-hunters \Vere now gathered. 'l'he sunbeams had dried the surface again and 110 one could guess tl:at deviltry was at work. Thus reassured, and the cannon planted to com111a11d the bridge, Bill 'ordered the crossing. First, 'to be certain that a door of some sort did exist behind the creepe r s forming a screen ove r against them, he ordered fom men, who _had placed chain shot in their guns, to fire a volley at this green veil. 'l'he ch a in shot were rudely made by linking split bails with fragments of an old steel watch-guard in pairs. 'l'bey had the effect wanted. Where they struck the vines, tbey cut the stems and down came a of some yards, not wholly detached. But pretty soon the mass fell by its owu weight, and hu11g. 111 the cle
THE BUFFALO BILL STORIES. 17 hand, using only the other to hold on by in the crossing. "It is well1 said the captain. ''Get on." The file of three advanced, more and more slowly and cautiously they reached the middle. TLe ropes had relaxed. The least push outward rendered the guide ropes useless as they opened out and would only drag the venturers to one side or the other and cause their fall. The main rope also sagged tremendously under the triple weight. Perhaps it was inte1 ded to be crossed by but one person at a time. 'l'awatsee walked unhurried, with the co11fidence of one who was on safe ground. With his knife between his lips, he wore a fiendish grin, and while his e_yes searche d all the crevices of the rocks in front nnd all the holes in the vines, his ears were listening to what went on behind him. No white man, save such as had slept at his campfire, like Buffalo Bill and his friends, did Ire trust. He was not mistaken. Frank and Slim Sim were equally unreliable. / They had got to the middle of the rope without a sign to reward a doubter. Here the curved rope took the upward bend. It is, in rope-walking, tlie hardest part of the task. 1t gave the bandit some excuse to go slower still. At a certain moment, indeed, Slim Sim, who almost fell up against him, had to prod him with his pistol and urge him on. Those on the bank behind heard him say: "Make haste!" But they did not bear the added sentence: "Will our friends inside draw the latch?" it may well be understood that it was thus worded to pre vent tlie Crow chief, whose knowledge of English, was not so deep, fr o m suspecting collusion. Fly Frank, joyful at this proof that his guard was a friend at his back, did not trust bis tollglle. He bowed his head in assent. Taking advantage of this lowering of the only object which intercepted his firing on the Indian, the artful Simsory pulle d the trigger. It looked to those on the bank that he was firing on the prisoner who, perhaps, had revolted. But it was the redskin who was struck. He gave a yell, muffled, because he kept his teeth close on his knife and tliey saw liim half turn as though to face his slayer. But the wound was too severe, or his strength failed him. He let go the hold on the side rop es. He pitched forward clean off that which his toes bad clutched. 'l'hey lost sight of him iu the veil of green, vine and leaves, shot loose and hanging, as stated, from the verge of the shell before the ever closed door . It was not held by enough tendrils to snppo1'1 this accession of weight. The green bonds snapped all to gether-the mass slid off, 110 doubt enveloping his body with its serpentine twiners, as he caught it with a death clasp. Do .vn, down, it fell, with accelerated speed, till it lauded on the bank of the torrent. Not in the water, for they heard uo splash. But on the stones, with a dull smash-from which resulted echoes as if the cannon had boomed. Simson and Frank scrambled together to the ledge, but as they reached it, the ropes parted with their mad leap and simultaneous landing. They hung there, with toes dug in and fingers driven like spikes into the crannies of the rocks. Their backs, exposed to the Goi deena party, were fair marks which the hitter of a barn d oor with an old army gun could not miss at twenty-five yards. But so far, although the Indian. had been sl a in, it looked as though Sim had ollly mis-shot in trying to punish t b e guide for The shot and the crash, again, had wakened nobody on the sides reached by them. The door seemed sealed up. Not an eye gleamed at the wicket, which ellabled one within to reconnoiter who knocked at it. Of this Bill was sure. He had his nnerririg rifle raised, and he would have made him sightless who th us peeped. If the two meu purposed trickery, they were under fire and cou1d be punished. They might be punished by Heaven, for there they clung over a precipice of two hundred feet, unabl e to climb up for fear of dislodging the stones they scratched into, with nail and tooth. All he1d their breaths to see them, as we see such sitnations, in uightmare, aud all sighed as the pistol, with which Slim Sim had shot the Crow chief, left his hand, wanted to strengthen his precari o us hold, and fell so far that its reaching grou11d wa s not heard. "Stay w l : ere yo11 are," thundered Buffalo Bi11, never long in coming to a conclusion. "If you rise, off go your head s.'' He pointed tile brass g1111 at the door; he was going to fire over the men on the brink, and hoped to smasli in the cover to that ingress. If the loaders had shoved in a few musket balls to re-enforce the stone used for ball, Heaven help the pair! Only veteran soldiers can bear to have cannon fired over th e m. "Fire!" said BilL In the midst of the roar a high, mad laugh of joy from the spot ciimed at, seemed to hurl defiance. The ball struck the door and burst off one plankthe inner one, crossing it, was of hemlock, and though splintered, resisted its penetrati@n. The ball remained embedded there like a huge bolt iron. At the disch:irge, Sim had been frightened; he trembled so that he lost his hold-he made an attempt to get a fresh one, but he slipped. He came down to
18 THE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES. t he niche where his companion in the fix was more :;ecurely nestling. "He! p he gasped. "Go to tbe devil," said 1-"ly l1'rank, bel i eving th ;;t be was about to try to oust him fro m his p l ace. He reached out one leg and d ealt a kick on t l1e other's side. "After what I did for you-oh, you ungratef ul hound-may your end-be-more dreadful-than m ine--" The last words wete uttered in space for Simson was dropping. He turned twice, being such a light weight, within sight of the spell-bound watchers before he disap peared in fhe darkness of the gorge bottom. '11he crash was but slight. Tl1ese on the other ledge heard it not. A sound m-0re appalling engrossed them. Behind them, in the bluff, shaken by the concussion of tlie great gnn, a mysterious crackling and grating w a s going on. The water, seeking its level, had trick led down ward by a tholisand apertures. Like the cleft b y a large saber, it had detached the face of the cliff. Already over hanging and top heavy, such a disruptive cau s e ''' as equal to an earthquake. With a sudden shriek of the grinding tone and the gravel, the vast m ass toppled forward. "Down flat and let it pass over," s crea m ed Buffalo Bill. This sage warning-the only practica l counsel was spoken too late. The pile collapsed r ight npon his hapless comrades. He himse lf at the marg in had jnst the time to dri\'e the muzzle of his rifle into the ground where he stood to anchor himse lf. Upon him came the edge of the earthen wall-on the others, the bulk of it. He bore the brunt well, but it blinded him and m:ade his head beud. He was smothered in d11st, scribbed with sand iu every pore, brought to his knees. But the rifle barrel had held. Two beside him were less s h ielded. They re mained o n the crumbling marg in, c ra cking with the b l ow, bnt they were s mothered-the weight had d eprived them of breath. In the ruins the r est were buried. For a moment, as he tried to collect his s enses and clear his e y es, lie believ e d that all ha d peri s h ed of h is co...:!111and. But presently a h e ad and baud & app eared bae and there wounded with the j a g ged block of ma rble, which their blood veined with r eel, p o w d ered w i th s a nd Dazed, moving like figure s of machiue r y tt1ese wretches. pulled themselves out and stag:.!ered b 1in d l y down the mountain side. It w a s 1.Jy pure in stinc t that they thus fled ho m eward. Bu f falo Bill dared not re c a l l them; what could he offer them now whom he had led into this death-trap? What an oversight to trus t the reconnoiteriug of th i s undermined ground to the sapheaded Trapper Bossley ? He was alone "'ith t h e d ea d under that pile of stuff, wh i ch i t ould t ake a corps of sapi:. er s and miners to relll o ve . Alone? Not entire ly for a sueering v oic e came from over the a b yss: ''W e fight iu our own way, M r. Cod y 11 H e looked, shaking the dust out of his long hair, and beiie i d Chilltnrn. Flushed with gladness at this whole sale destruc tion, he had the aspect of the brigand chie f i11 all resp e cts. CHAPTER VI. .JACK ROPED. "Villain; kill me, undefe nd e d, as snits such fighters as y ou," almost pleaded Bill, humb led b y this crushin g blow. "I probably shall," was the quiet aud he artless reply. "B11t b e fore we procee d to bus i ness, let me fini s h with this whimpering cnr at my f e et. 11 Silenced by the enormity of the ruin wrought to the p arty which he had fa ls el y piloted, Fly still c linging to the brim whence he bad kicked 111s p artn er in m is ery, bad in a low v o ice appealed to Chi llturn fr o m the t ime wh e n he had seen him come out of the cave throug h the shattered d o o r 'l'he Eng li shma n adyanc ed t o the fr a il b order, and without a twiuge gaz ed on the wretch w h om he had s u pe rs e d ed. "What do y ou want of me?" sa id h e ('Nothing," r e tt)rned the gambler, fr oz en by the tone, "only life. Lend me your hand--" "I am to o content with the berth you placed me in. It enables me to r e ven ge myself splendidly on m y en e mies. I had no idea that out here one might rei g n a king on the Sierra, or, >pon m y honor, I s h ould l 1ave traveled into the W est long before.,, "But I lure d tho se fools into t h is trap. I knew you would b e warne d of our coming by .Slim Sim." "Just s o H e brought 11s word in time for the prop e r preparations to be made for their recept ion. I owe 11im s omething for that. They would not have broke n into our fort, in s pite of their howitzer, with out extreme l oss, but thanks t o this trick of the c n v e -in, th e y have b ee n more cleanly repuls ed. I be liev e that the y who c ra wl e d out of tlie rubbisblooking like ants whose hill has b e en kicked to piece s -will never return t o s t o rlll th e Nest of the Buz zard s.'' H e laughe d s o s a va g ely that ti1e gamble r had bare l y t h e stre n g th to say ho a r s el y "Help me up-my hands are opening-I will be y o ur s e r va n t y our slave-I know s o many dodges I--" Gambler Frank felt the ground splitting up,_ tlie stones loosening, and the fib ers of the plants snap-
THE BUFFALO BILL STORIES. 19 ping on all sides. In those careless eyes above him lie read not a word of humanity. "I am lost1 he muttered. "\Vha, 'tis to take a snake to your bosom. May all tbe curses--" At this moment the E11glishman drew back, but with a final kick. A yard of the soil wa s pushed out ward. Fly Frank was beginning the des'cent which he had hurried Slim Sim into taki11g just as selfishly. "'l.'hief, you stole even yonr name-Fly Frank, why do you not fly?" And laughing at lits own brutal and stnpid jest, he did not try to trace the gambler's foll by the sound of his touching the j11tti11g reeks and that of hi s r each ing the bowlcler s "I am the chief, indeed,,, was all he said. Disgusted by this murder, Buffalo Bill stooped to catch up the disabled rifle which lie had thrown down in spite, to hurl it at the miscreant. "Stop!" shouted Chill turn, ''or you die. I am not, perhaps, your equal in loug shooting, but at this sort ra11ge I can drop you. I want you to see tl1e piece which I kept for yo11r pleas ure. Who i s there? Briug forth Tex a s Jack?" "Jack? Oh, Heaven!" groaned Bill. "I had forgotten that Jack was in that hell-hound's jaws." He let the gu11 fall again, and, clasping his hands, wrung them in the i 11tensity of his grief and distress At the same time, the doorway of the cave was blocked by five or six bandits. In their mids t, pinioned carefully, so afraid were they, even with a score against Texas Jack, was this p oor friend of Buffalo Bill. He looked round, dazed for an instant by the coming out into the light from the underground dark. By the magnet of trne friendship drawn to the object on the heap o f fallen matter opposite, he recog his old pard. "Bill?" he said; "I knew I should see you once more before I went through." ''Yes, and shall see him through tlie halter," said Chill tum. Then, making signs which the bandits comprehended with a sharpness that showed how well he had already drillecl them, they carried them into execution without delay. Above their heads, probably used as a crane when the rope bridge was thrown across the gulf, a pine tree sl anted. Time and a cnt or two with an ax had lopped off most of the boughs. It stuck out like the jibboom of a ship. It was not difficult, though dangerous to one who was not a seaman, or a muleteer accu stomed to heights, to go up aud out to its end. Hanging over the chasm, a Mexican adjusted the end of a hide lariat to the tip of this spar. He let the noose hang down, and by swinging it to and fro l1elped 011e of his fellows to catch it and draw it in. In another minute while he descended, the noese was placed round tl1e neck of Texa5 Jack. Tliey pnshed him to the broken edge. It was plain that nothing on the level where the group stood could rescue the doomed one. 'I'hat anything would stay the hanging, he who looke:l at the smiling, iu Clexible face of the Boss Bloodspiller might never expect. "At the word, push him off," said the bandit chieftain. Two men s to: x l ready to push Jack off the fragile footi11g He would drop ten or twelve feet from the slack of the lasso, a11d, with his neck broken, swing in the g11Jf at the e11c1 of t h e attachment to the pro jectin g tree, the bob of a gigantic vendulum. Bill exchauged a farewell look with him. He let his disheartened vision fall to a lower step. \Vliat was his amazemeut-he dared not feel any relief yet-to catch the 1111ique glitter of an Indian's glassy eye. Yes, unde r the fe e t of the bandits, impossible for t iie m to divine his presence, in a niche of the cl iff Tawatsee was crouching. \Vhen the vines feli he had not dragged to death by them. He was there, w h o l e i11 bones and heart; with his scalp ing knife in his hand, and his gnn unfired at his back. Bill r ead what was in his s o nl. "At least they may hang Jack, and they may riddle me with bullets-but one shot of the chief will revenge us. He is to kill that cursed rascal, if he has to follow him till their locks are gray." He looked up so lightene d and invigorated that the enemy wa s startled. "Oh, your tnrn next!" he said. "Push!" The two bandits united their efforts. Jack was unable to resist the shove but he had his foot sufficiently in c ommand to deal one blow for revenge. 'rhe m a n on his r ight, hacked iu the shin by the boot, doubled up with exquisite pain, and, losing his balance, over the bluff just before Jack fol lowed him clost:. At the same instant, Buffalo Bill saw the Indian toss him the gu11, and seem to leap after it. The gun, tossed longwise, not hurled, would have alighted ou the shelf at Bill's foot, so dextrous was the cast, but he was afraid to lose it, and that the shock might explode it. He stooped and caught it in both hands. Then he arose, armed. Not 011e of those on the opposite shelf had observed this singnlar act. But they liad seen the Crow spring ont of the ambush. Mad fellow that he was, he caught the rope which was tightening as Jack dropped, not with his liancl, but with the edge o f his trenchent knife. He severed it clean, and passing forward with the im petus of his leap, they heard the echoes of the canyon awake with the war-whoop of the Crow. "Whoo-oo-ec !" yelled Buffalo Bill, iu answer.
20 TtlE BUf'F /\LO BILL STORIES. "By the great horn spoo11, you have d one it clean! He may be smashed or drowned, but he'll not die h11ug." The bandits shrank from the fatal edge where one of their number l;ad been precipitated to avenge the victim. Alone, spite of the rifle which be uow per ceived, as by magic, in the grasp of Buffalo Bill, their leader stepped to the rim. ] 11st then the two bodies fell. That of the red man, for he had calculated the curving fall like a scholar, went straight into a pool where the t o rre11t temporarily widened and 110 doubt deepene d. He splashed into the pellucid basin and was gone But it was not in him that the baffied Briton was interested. Texas Jack, bound and trussed, was falling into the torrent, too, and he co!dd npt hope fur the escape which might reward the redski n for his fearless plunge. In fact, he fell l ike a Jump. "Curses on them, all!" cl'ied the looker-on. "A friend was iu waiting-he has saved him." It was true. Wild Rill, a clew to the approaches to the cavern, had set 011t to get up to it by following the bed of the torrent threading the g1111y. When lie arrived, t h e fall of tile vine instructed him that affairs were likely to be lively above. He en sconced himself in the rocks, and anxiously abide d the subsequent incidents. Iu the bandits he took 110 interest. He did not off\:!r his shoulder to break the shock of either Slim Sim, Frank, or the bandi t whom Jack had trippe d. But it \vas a differt::nt matter wiie11 he saw the chief leap 011t from the hiding-place, and cut .lack from the lasso. The Judian came up, unhurt from his
THE BUFFALO BILL STORIES. 21 interfere with our schemes, so help me, I will add ome lead to their ballast, which will make them sail teadier for the future." The trL : went 011 at a hard gallop, a trifle less wiftly than before, as caution might be needful. Tom rode in the van, as lte was the best scout. wrhcy 'have 5et fire to '30Uletldng,)) he called out, eturning to the troop. "It is the s 'tation or the coach, r both." "They have go11e," said Captain Chillturn, using is pocket field-glass, "they have set fire to the hut, hich bnrns slowly, and retreated." "Be wary, sir," said the ever-prudeut 1\mnoil ,om. "The red beggars always retreat-they fight est when going b:ick 'ard." "Bah!" said the Englishman, eager for a brnsh, 'come ou, lads. And you, Tom, nobody's holding ou back. '' Indeed, all clapped the <;:me! spurs to the horses, ml rushed like an avalanche 11pon the scene. It was one of bloodshed and pitiful misery. Before the fired log-and-frame house lay two butch ered bodies. One was that of Gnthrie, the station agent. The ther was an Indian. Guthrie was dead, stuck full of arrows. The In ian, with the cat-like hold on life of his r a ce, still reathed, but his wounds, with shot and knife, were 10rtal. Though not merciful usually, Chillturn, ho had never before seen seal ped victims, waved lis haud for one of tbe men \Vho had dismounted to low out the palpitating wretch's brains. "Put out the fire next thing," he ordered. 'l'he fire put out, a couple explored the simple nterior; the plunderers had taken out every stick. !'.. few keepsakes which Guthrie 11ad brought over 'rom old Scotland were wautouly smashed and dis gured. "Burn an Injin, anyhow," said Tom; "I on'y ish they had stayed round convenient, so we could ave fired in to them." While his men were digging with an old spade and l1eir knives, a grave for each of the victims, and ne, a :Mexican, whittling off the broken fence rosses to. mark the places, Tom, as the expert i11 In ian lore, scrutinized the ground. "They are Sioux, mostly," continued Tom, not orry to show that he was useful to have about the ind; "see how careful they were in stepping about hen they tortured the poor fellow, not to break the urning sticks. That wonld be a bad omen." He left tlie spot, and went all round the house. t the north side he stopped aud examinetl some arks made by a knife and smeared with blood. "Here you are, captain, plain as books--" :md e pointed to a sort of picture. "This is the main body, bnt there is a party or two so out, which are to call here to see how they are getting on. This tells who were here and whither they are next going." "Who are they, 'the11 ?" "Well, just what I said, Sioux. The chiefs are Old Prairie Rear, Martotiuta, and his adopted son, Rmi ning Eagle. 'I'liey call Bear the Old Woman, Wem seena, because he has been paralyzed since scalded by fnt spilled over l1im in a drnuken shivaree at a sol dier-feast. They have to tie him in the liigh Mexican saddle, and I cou Jd show you that a horse was led 11p to the con11cil, and that one 011 foot stood at the bridle. Without alighting, then, he presided at the discussio11 and the torture.'' "And the precious scamps over whom Running Eagle aud this cripple reigu ?'' "Oh, they are a bad Jot, refugees, wild young men, fugitives from all tribes, who have not accepted the reserva tious. They have grown to form a race by themselves, the Bad People, and, you bet high, they are a bad crowd to !mock elbows with, out here or in the foothills." 'rhe lie:1tenant spoke solemul y, and his captain had no desire to jibe, for a11 the bandits' countenances were likewise grave. "In fact," said Fly Frank's successor, "no one will dig their graves if we collide with them?" "Nary grave, captain." "All right, we will take back any plunder they may carry, if we meet. Where do you cipher out they have gone, for I would rather we had the course clear for our stopping the Deadwood coach?'' His lieutenant studied the pictme once more. "They have gone south and east but--Ah, this indicates they will retmn." "Look at that, now," cried the leader, so that all the rustlers could hear him, "they will ride into our lines. If they return, laden with plunder, why, \lie will pluck them of every feather; and it will be our policy, for this territory is not wide enough for two of a kind to cavort withi11." For the first time, the robbers did not wear a glad air. At present, tliough, the coach was to be waylaid. A third of the party might hide in the shadow of the little injured hut; another detachment could hold off at a distance, ready to gallop at a sig11al; while tlie remainder could ambush at a 111111dred vards in a clump of planted cottonwoods. -Tom a11d his captai11 remained by tlle house. "The co ach is lale," said .t11e latter, nervously; as he co11sulted a watch, which he 11ad smuggled into tlie country. ''\Ve shall look fools if the Indians have gone farther along au cl cut us out of the job by going through it.'' "I ca1111ot say," returned 'rom, using the other's field-glass; "but lay low, fellows, here a're the Iujins." It \Vas in vain that the Englishrna11 stared and with
22 THE BU ff ALO BILL STORIES. the glass, also; be saw absolutely nothing on the liue of desert and sunny sky. he said, after a pause, '"the wind is get ting up. I see the sand spinning to the southeast.'' "Yes, the Sioux are all the spinning; they are kicking up that dust The coach is grinding along in the dust, and they :;ire trying to conceal themselves behind it in an imitation of a sand storm. But if old Clint Burdsall is dri vin ', as is likely, they won>t throw no dust into his peep::rs-he will see through that they are ho s tiles. Then lie will put the bronchos through at a hill-to-split gait." Not only did a long streaming cloud of sand arise, but a more dense and rounder one as well; this to tlie novice might have been taken for one of those dust spouts which career over the plains and disperse as mysteriously as they are raised and hurried on by a sudden blast. "That rolling cloud is the coach," said Turmoil. "It is a race now betwixt and between the Sioux and the stage. We hold the casting vote. Are we to let the men of our color go under, oind drive off the winners, or sail in and knock spots out of the reds?' 1 In a 111ome11t Chillturn had resolved 011 the course. "Tom, and boys,,, he said to those within earshot; "I take it that you :;ill know my game. To pile up some wealth and go 011 a grand hurrah. To pile up in these days, one must be very l11cky or very plucky. We.must be unsparing to all lm t those of our band. Buzzards do not eat buzzards, but they devom all other living things. Let the reds destroy all in that coach aud enjoy what they appre ciate. Their we will come in for our share-the c oa ch. '' "The coach?> repeated Tom, thiuking the 0ther had gone mad. "Are we goiug tu rnn the stage line for a living?" "One trip, my dear boy," said Chillturn, laying his hand on the other's sho11lder familiarly an "l don't care to say before Tom," stammered the man, a black-bearded giaut, but who was abashed as a sch o ol boy. "Well, I will tell it, since it was my errand. He slipped into yom letter to your good old mother ill! the Lehigh Valley, who tells her neighbors that he boy is prospecting for gold out West, a bank draft on the Natioua1 of Philadelphia for a thousand dol lars. I kind of 1rnew you were sickening with that venom, for which there is no cure, and I hate to have a v:oman suffer.,' "Yon did this, captain, onawares ?" "He did that, Tom," said Duse11b11ry, and then, surprised at his ow11 emphasis, he retired to the ambuscade without waiting to be dismissed. To:n turned eloquent eyes on his commanfler, who showed hiu1self in an entirely new light. Chillturn kuew wdl ho w to handle these men, who w::re rough and liard, and bad, too, but had som e weak spots in their heart. He held 0._ 1is hand, aml, as Turmoil gripping it, bent over it, be fancied a hot tear fell on the back .
f THE BU ff /\LO Bill 23 "What's your orders, captaiu ?" said 'rom, rising rnd drawing himself up in the saddle, like a soldier :ea dy to charge on a desperate mission. "I want to make myself solid with those Indians, "or the coach, which they would cut to strips, and, rerliaps, burn, is useful to a conceit of mine. I want c o carr; out of Goldeena in it girl whom you saw n the affray, pleading for tlie life of Frank. Mucl1 good that did him-a villain who carried poisoned l teel, by which the los s of so useful a man as you has come abon t." I He paused as if hesitating to confide too much of l1is secret, even to oue who, he said, wa s abont to But assured, he went on: "To buy the prize from 'the red s I am wanti11g to ask you to lay down your life where it will do us the m ost g o od. You must die, Tom-and what matters a sun shining on y ou oue day more or less?" "Not a jot. You have made my mother's old age eren e, and here goes for a dash at the red devils-I ill snatch the totem from the sac red guard, and ou shall ha\ e it." "This rs the plot, then. Let them stop the coach, nd kill all upo n and in it-it will be butcher's work pared us. As they are all engaged, it will be easy for you to ride at the reserve where the tribal emblem held. As you bear it away, we will ride after and etween you and those who chase. \Ve will recover t, a11d barga in for its return." "If I have the strength in me, I will clo it," said urmoil, quietly. "The fact is, I fe el wors e since on to1d me what was the matter.'' "That often happens. I swear that if my heart's lood would hea1 you, they might stab me and inject t into your veins. \'ou are a trump, Tom, aud I ope Dusen bury, who is some kin of yours, wi11 rove to be of your bone and blood also." "Dolph is my father's brother's son, and a brick. have been out here three years longer than he, and lie is not my mate for, prairje sign, but he will arn. Let me speak to him about home and mother fore I pass in my checks.'' 1'he captain held his field glass before bis eyes as e men conferred. "How I p1ay with these fools," he said to him f. "The man was likely to live longer than L But 1 ave scared him into being a hero of selfsacr ifice the band. Without a little artifice, the Buzzards ou ld go all to piece s." e was interrupted by a call from his men. The o sand clouds had brokeu into three-two coming to flank the central one. Out of this emerged the ving specks, which were the six horses drawing e Deadwood coach. "They come, they come!" 'I am ready for the dash," said Tom, j'umping down to tighten tbe girths and almost inst:,antly springing up again. "Is-ball leave my 111ark 011 some of them before lam rubbed out." CHAPTER VIII. SCOUTS ON THE REVENGE 1'RAIL. From the south Buffalo Bill's band approached the party of Bad People returning to overtake the Dead wood coach and repeat by the little station on a larger scale the mnrders of that morning. saw the coach pass on the dusty road before they came ou the unmistakeable traces of the red s kins. The Crow was to the fore, as his race can see farther and read changes in the natural features even better than our hunters. After crossing the creek and the Cheyenne, he fell back, and b y signal called in the others, who were fanned ont. "We can go no fnrther," he said, illustrating by laying twigs of wiilow on a .flat rock "A band is in om path. The others have gone on, and I should not wonder if they do not intend to strike tbe coach at the h alting place in the long stretch of desert.'' "Yellow-hair Bob's, yes," said Good Heart. ''This band has spare horses, sto len or brought along, to put women prisoners on." "Oh, y ou think they know of l a dies in the stage? Tbat is odd, for, excep t that foolish Judge Mou11trose bringing h is daui;:hter out here, I should not look for other women to be risked.'' ":'.\1aybe some singers for the saloons in Dead wood," said Marshal Bill, dryly. "What is it, chief?" aske d Buffalo Bi' ll, seeing that the Crow had not said his say. ''The spare horses are what we want.'' "He is right. Here goes then for this band, and to mount ourselves Certainly, we have no cha11ce set afoot with the whole of that regiment on good nags." 'l' he y kept nigh the cuach road, and now and then crossed it when it took a circuit. "These fellows have been not at all backward in showing their trail," remarked Bill, pointi11g to a broad trail of mounted iuen. "Aud look, where one of them has i.Jee11 tlirown, and they have not troubled to pick him np," said Texas. ''Him dead,'' said the Crow. All hastened to the spot where a man and his pony were stretd1ecl dead; but the white rneu receded in disgust. The man was a slender youth, stripped to bis under garments, and his head had not only been taken off with a cln111sy stroke or two of a coarse
24 THE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES.. knife, but replaced by that of his horse...:._that animal's neck was adorned \vith the human head. "What mockery! the red devils! What harm had this boy done them?" "Look!" exclaimed the Crow chief, pointing to white objects intermingled witlJ blue and yellow ones, the sand. "The papers which "Letters," said Texas Jack, runuing to pick np some of the scattered e11velopes, which had been broken open, but in cases which retained the letter within. "It was a pony rider," said Buffalo Bill, with a sharper pani! tha n his companions, for he had been in that arduous and dangerous business w lien a boy. "Even the Buzzards
THE BUFF ALO BILL STORIES. 25 Crow's warwhoop had meant "hair," though the whites might despise such trophies. He wheeled and galloped back, but a discharge froni Buffalo Bill's revolver killed his horse as well as himself. He pitched off, a11d, falling on the one he had retnnied for, knocked the last breath out of liis body. Ancther l1orse, entangled with a fallen rider, had also to be shot, as it was hurt. 'l'hc others :vere captured by Texas Jack, who mounted one and circled the flyaways so as to round them and head them back. Being American horses, they had no fear of the white men like the m nstaugs, and were thus made prisoners. They were ready to go. The Indian wavered, and finallv said: I ',Go on. Let me destroy the w e apons. It is the rule to leave no weapons on the line of retreat.'' When he joined his companion:;, he had some fresh scalps at his belt. He still had blood in his eye, and no one passed any remark. They had a bigger task yet 011 hand. CHAPTER IX. RUN DOWN. Buffalo Bill's force was not a large one, but a picked one. It had been picked from the best men in Goldeena for a Trail of Revenge. The Buzzards had rnn off all the horses, many laden down with plunder, and the three scouts, the Crow Indian and the volunteers had to all go on foot. But they had taken the trail of the Buzzards from their cavern a:1d followed it for a couple of days, Buffalo Bill cutting off miles hert: and there throug h his knowledge of the country. When the Indians had left their horses to capture the stage coach t h e scouts had quickly gotten posses sion of the animals, as has been seen. T h ese horses mounted all of the Trailers, and, led by .Buffalo Bill, the charge was made, and just in to save the coach. The Indians were struck with amazement. The attack on their own horses was so wholly un xpected in the very minute of their success, the fire of the scouts so terrible, the cliarge, led by Buffalo ill, so irresistible, that the Indians were shot down y dozens. The few who survived the charge scattered in all directions wliile the coach rolled past in a cloud of dust. In the meantime the Buzzards, led by Chillturn, were approac hing at a rapid pace. Their leader did not know what to make of the new turn affairs l1ad taken, and before he could -dis tinguish in the cloud of dust he was close upou the great scout and his followers. "Get _that coach on its way, for there are women in it," cried Buffalo Bill to his Goldeena allies. "We've got the redskins going, so there lies our game," he cried, pointing to the outlaws. "Come, men, and no mercy)" Like a wbirlwind, the with Buffalo Bill leading the center, Wild Bill the left, and Texas Jack the right, were upon the amazed Buzzards, who were taken by surprise and were seized with terror at beholding those w horn now they had every cause to fear. There was a fearful crash, the deadly rattle of rifles and revolver s, clash of steel, cries and shouts and the battle was wou. It was a red end for the outlaws, aud they covered tile ground all about, dead and dying, only a few escaping death. All t heir horses and booty were captured, and the victory was complete. The stage, with its passengers, drove on in safety, and in it were Miss Mountrose and her maid, for Mr. Mountrose had very quickly decided to leavt: the b\.1rned town and its misery, bloods hed and horrors behind him, so had taken the first coach Eastward. Buffalo Bill searched the plain for the body of Baron Chillturn, the Demon Man-Killer, as hi:J out law band had named him. But, wounded, or dead, Chillturn was not ai1il Buffalo Bill said in a voice strangely revengeful: "Some day I will find him, for he cannot escape, yes, and when he dies I will be there!" T o -day Goldeena is a thriving place, bnt held 111 reverence by its citizens will ever be the name of Buffalo Bill. 'l'HE END. Next week's i s sue (No. 41) will contain, "Buffalo Bill at Painted Rock; or, After the Human Buzzards." Chill turn and many of his horrible band es caped, but Buffalo Bill finally hunted them to their death at Painted Rock. Read about it as published for tlie first tiine in next week's issue.
PRIZE ANECDOTE DEPARTMENT In a week you will read the names of the winners of this contest. You know all abo1.it the new con test we announced last week. If you want to refresh your memory you will find a list of prizes and foil dirtctions ort pag-e 30. Here a re s ome of the late arrivals in Contest No. 2. They aie well worth reading. Nearly Drowned Twice. (By Edwin Then, Minn.) THE FIRST TIME. One fine afternoon last summer my brother, some other boys aud myself went out to Lily J,akc, about one mile from our home, to t!ake a swim. My brother was in the water all'eady, and I came in after him, walking in the water until I came up to my knees. Then I dive. When I came up again I couldn't touch bottom. I called to my b1other, who came just as I sank under the first time. When I came up again my brother gave me a push, and swam after me; when I came up again he gave me another push and swam after me again. He gave me one more push, and I could touch bottom. I got 011t of the watel' as soon. as I cottld, and dressed myself, and ran home as fast as my legs would me. I tell you I witl never go nea1 that place again. I found out afterward that. this lake is known to be a very dangerous Jake as there are places of unknmyn depth, which go stt'aight do .wn. Some persons have beell
THE BU Ff /\LO BILL STORIES. 27 came. I h a d hard l y got on the trestle when the train came around the Point. I started across for the other side; bnt I i t was of no u s e. I crawled throug h t h e t ie s ancl put my gun (my chum and I were going hunting) length wise across the two ties. I had crawled through and h eld onto the barrel of it. In a short time the train c n m e thundering over me. H o t cinders and a shes burned my face, head and hands . I tried to climb up and get 011 top of the trestle but I was s o we a k I was unable to do so. The n I yelled a s hard as I could. I coul d stand it no longer. All grew blank and I thought I was "'Oln g at the rat e of 5 txty mile s an hour on a m erry-go-'round. Then my grip loosened and down I went to the rocks in the swift current below jus t a forty-foo t fall s When I came to I was lying on a pile of straw in m y chum't1 barn. My chum and a lot of workmen we r e standing near. They told m e they had heard me yell, and had caught me with a rope just as I was goin g over the falls. In a Runaway. (By Keith Brown, Boston, Mass.) It was in the summer of 1893 in Wheeling, \Ye s t Vil'g 1nia. I was a sked to go for a ride in a pony cart. \Ve were riding along '"'hen the pony b ecame scared. at an engine that w as coming up the track. He started off and ran down the street When we gol down the s treet fl little farther the cart upset and I was thrown out. There was a man and girl with me. Whe"' I was thro-n n out I struck the pavement on my head. I was taken into a hous e my head bleeding terriblJ'. The blood wns washed off and I was taken home in a carriage When I g o t home it was found tha t my collarbone was broken and one of ruy legs sprained and cuts all over me. I carrie d my arm in a sling for months afterward. But I got well so that I could use it again. In a Runaway Car. (By Algernon Clark, New York.) It was on a hot afternoon in sunny July j u s t before the three forty-five express train was due, that I thought I would like to s e e how the brakes on n coal car work. I went over to the coal shed and saw an empty c oal c a r standing on a trestle running up to a height of twenty feet. I got in this empty car and turned off the brakes, and she starte d down hill at a terrific rate of speed. 'fhe switch at the lower end of the grade was open and the car, with me trying to stop it, ran rig h t on to the main track jus t as the ex press came !\long and would have crashed into my car had not a friend of mine signaled the engineer of the expr ess to stop. When it did stop my car was three feet a way from the locomo tive of the express Then I got out of my car and had this friend of mine drive ten miles to my home in the mounta i n s. I have seen all J. care to see about air brnkes or any other brakes. A Wheelmans Story. ( B y George Nord1in, St. Paul, Minn.) Two or three years ago I spent much of m y time riding a wheel. In all my experience as a wheelman I hav e h a d the good fortune to have only one narrow escape from injury in an accident ; but I hav e certainly never wished fo r a repeti tion of it. One day as I was returning home lat e in the afte1noon I turned into a narrow s treet, intending thereby to shorten the distance materially. I w a s rirling slo,Yly, for I was tired, having just finished n Jong Rpin dow n to the river. lirivers with their teams were r eturning .home, their day'8 work over, and I had to turn aside for more than one of them. As I reached the middle of the block a large wagon came along directly in my path, and so close to the curb that I mu6t necessarily turn to the l eft to get out of its way I steered out toward the center of the street atid was very much surprised to see a second wagol'l come up from behind the other and run up alongside right in my way. The street '115 narrow, as I lrnve said, and the two teams blocked it up. For a second I was in doubt as to what I should do ; something made me turn my head to look back over the part of the street I bad just passed. Ye gods? A heavy wagon wa:> coming from that direction, too, and I was midway b etween the t" o teams! The latter would collide, and I--'fhe bare thought made cold sweat come to my forehead. The drivers of both teams appeared to be trying to stop their horses, bttt they were now almost upon me. I beaded my wheel straight for the sidewalk and pedaled away. It seemed an age! I could feel the horses' warm breath and their-Jus t then my front tire struck the curb and I threwmvself and wheel forward on the stone sidewalk just as the two teams came together right behind me! Everything seemed in a whirl for a few seconds, but I was conscious of the fact that I had been saved from horrible injury, perhaps death. -As I sat up I saw the drivers yelling and trying t o back their teams. Luckily, the horses had escaped with a few bruises after bumping together with considerable force. I sc1amble d to my feet, and to my surprise and delight found b o t h the wheel and mys elf to be uninjured. I was shaken up, my clothes torn, and considerably bruised, it is true, but, nevertheless, I thought I had come out of it all in prett.Y good shape. I brushed off my clothes and nibbed a couple of sore spot11. Then I mounted my wheel and rode home, thankful to Provi dence for m y narrow escape. Crippled for Ufe. '-. (By Arthur Fausnacht.) One day two boys and I made up our minds to run away, so we met at the school house and went to the railroad and boarded a freight. We were riding along for about ten miles when l began to dance around on the top of .a box car. I danced too near the edge when I lost my balance. The freight w a s small and we were going pretty fast. I fell down and the suction drew both my legs under the car, and cut both my legs off abov e the knees. I was knocked unconscious. An hour later the track walker came along and found me. I bad m y address in a notebook which I carried. He sent me to the hospital, where they fixed me up all right. I go to school in a little carriage, which I propel with my hands. An Experience with a Raccoon. (By Albert Kellogg, Providence, R. I.) In the fall of 1000 I was invited by my friend, David Brown, to spend my 'l'hanksgiving yacation at his house. 'fhe second night after I was at his house, Dave asked me to go raccoon hunting with him that night, so about eight o'clock we started, each of us armed with a heavy club and accompanied by a mongrel dog, called Jack. After traveling about two hours we heard the clog barking about a quarter of a mile away. We ran, or rather stumbled, along until we could dimly s ee, by the light of the moon, a emall open space ahead and in this space stood a 11lender maple tree. At the foot of this tree sat the dog barking furiously. Looking up, we could see u large black object about half way out and wedged in a fork of the tree. I ran to the tree and b e gRn shaking it with all my might. The first thing I knew I heard limbs breaking in all directions, and before I could jump out of the way Mr. Connie came tumbling down on my head and knocked me down. Jac k jumped in and we three went rolling on the ground together. Instead of trying to run away, the coon seemed to want to etay and fight it out. He snarled and growled and bit me twice in the leg. At last he got hold of my inist and would not let go. I was pretty well frightened. "Kill him,'' I yelled. "Take him away." Ahout this time Mr. Coonie thought he would make n break for liberty, s o he dashed across the space and out of sight with tl1e dog. at his heels. Dave followed and to1d me to come as
28 THE BUFF f\LO BILL STORIES .. soon as I could. I lay on my back several minutes trying to recollect where I was. When I got up I found I could not move my wrist and my face was covered with blood. I start.ed to go iu the direction I heard the dog barking, and met Dnve coming back. He said the coon had gone into a ledge, and that it was impossible t0 get him out. I went to the nearest doctor, who was three miles away, and had the broken bone in my wrist set. He also p11t some courtplaster on my face, and I then drove home in his buggy. That night I got all the coon hunting I ever want to see. J\ Close Call. (By F. A. Marville, Jlfat'o11t twenty feet a way from the bolit, but still on land. I arose and feeling a heat in my face, I chanced to look down and then I !law that my clothes were afire. I t1ied to beat the flames out with my hands, but found that they were horribly burned.
THE BU Ff l\LO BILL STORIES. 29 Just then I heard somebody call out, "Jump into the river." So, a way I went, the wind fanning my flam111g clothes, burn ing them through in several places. I dived into the water as quickly as I could and as soon as I st1 uck the water a cloud of steam arose from it, looking a s thot1gh the flames were very angry at hadng to give uR their vic. tim, but I \Yas not the only one. My two friends 'Nigger" and Eg$.ie'' (their right names being William Suamely and Edward Griffey) were in the same fix. I dragged myself out as best I could and looked at myself and found that I was fearfully burned about the head and limbs. I was taken home and kept to my bed for nearly a month. I am now as well as ever. In a Cistern. (By George Sherod, Iowa.) One clay my grandmn was having a new floor put in her kitchen and I was running across the floor anrl over a board that lay over the cistern. 'fhe board broke and I went in. When I came np they tried to get me up, but I sank again. My grandma put a ladder down, and she came down the ladder and caught me by the collar as I came up the third time. I have always thought how lucky I was not to get drowned. Saved from a Watery Grave. (By Willi a m Crnse, Philadelphia.) came off the !!hip with me. One night while I slept he stole my money, and I was left in a strange country without a i;ent. After twelve days of hardship I got work on the steamship Augusta Victoria. We were three days at sea when one night I was standing on deck by the rail. I did not see the dark figure approaching me. It was the thief, who, thinking I would tell the captain, was going to t(irow me ov01:board. All at once I felt strong a1ms grasp me and felt myself going over. I struggled desperately, but of no use. I felt myself going, and throwing out my hands, grasped a rnpe hanging on the side, and hung there. For fully ten minutes I hung there, u single slip meaning dt:ath. I cried for help till I felt myself slipping by degrees. I was just about to give up when help came and I was rescued by a steward. I got here safely and never saw the man afterward. I\ Hunt in the Mountains. (Ily Clark Bishop, Wyoming.) spring we had some nice weather nnd not much work to do on the ranch, so my father and I thought we would go to the mountains and hunt for deer and elk. We had to go about sixty miles north before we could find many deer or elk. Well, we got. there nil right and made ou1 camp in a place where there were Jots of lnrge pines and nenr a little mountain stream where the quaking aspen timber was thick. The second day we were there \Ve killed three deer. I killed one and father the other two. He sent me to carol? to get the pack horse to carry them on, and when I got within about I an<1 a couple of comrades were playing in Fairfift.y of camp, I wns sttrprised.to see a.n old bear and two. mount Park, and in coming home we were passing a pond. We ,, cttbs eattng sugar out of our mess ktt. I tried to get a shot at sat down on the edge, and a boy pas,ing accidentally pttshed the old bear, bnt sh_e saw me and starte? to run, and so I shot me in and I could not swim, nor coul
30 THE BUFF J\LO BILL STORIES. puff the lamp went out. Then there was a tall scramble between Will and I to find matches to relight the lamp. When it was lit we looked at each other with pale faces uod gasped, "What was that?" Before we could move again came that terrible sound, nod again the light went out. We did not stop to relight it, but both the door. As we opened it that moan, rattle and bang sounded above our heads, and we ran, and fell to the bottom of those three flights of stairs, where we met George just coming in at the street door with the cider. He looked at us a moment acd snid, "Whnt on enrth is the matter with you fellows?" And when we told him he bttrst into a loud laugh: "Come ou upstairs and I will show you the ghost,'' he said. We followed slowly after him, and went up in the garret, where we found the ghost. It wa s an open trap door in the roof, with a long chniu fastened to the middle of it and hang ing down. When the wind blew through the open tnrp it made the moaning sound, and also caused the chain to rnttle, and the door to slam back against the wall. The same cttrrcnt of air swept down the garret stairs, and through the transom over the door of George's room and blew out the light. Will and I .felt foolish over our fright, but we concluded we would have to go home, so we bade George good-night. /\ Cold Plunge. (By Harry Dersb, Pa.) It was in the winter of 1900. Rain! rain! Wottld it ever stop raining? That was the question I askecl m yself, as I sat at the window watching the Manatawny Creek overflow its banks. Large cakes of ice and large logs nnrl boards were floating down with the swift current caused by the rain. Hn!f an hour later the rain I went out in the yard anrl got a hook and a wash line. 'l'hcn I went over next door and got three friends to go along, and try to catch the logs and boards that were floating clown the creek. So we started for the bridge that spans the creek a half a square below 011r home. Two oft.he boys had the same kind of hooks thnt I did Will, the had a long pole with a hook on the end. We were on the bridge about five minutes when Will got. hold of a log that pulled his pole out of his hand into the creek. Then we all ran down below the bridge and tried to catch it. A s it was several yards from shore, I ran down below the rest, and stood on a wharf, that i s used for a swimming place in the summer. It is built. out over the creek, the water is nbout ten feet deep straight down from the wharf. I leaned out to catch the pole with my hand, not having my hook wit.h me, as it went by, when I overbalanced myseli and fell headlong into the creek. The other boys saw me fall and came running to my aid, but all knowing I was a good swimmer, were not very much afraid of my being drowned, I tried to catch hold of the edge of the wharf, but just as I had hold, a large cake of ice hit me on the head, and stunned me, but only for an instant. But in that instant it had knocked my hold loose, and was forcing me down to the dam not one hundred yards below. Now we e all frightened, for if I went over the dam I would surely bt ,'..illed or drowned. I tried to swim to shore and got there at 1 A nearly played out. My friends caught hold of my hands and dragged me on shore. I rested a few minutes and then we started for home, where I could change my clothes. When I had changed we walked along the bank and found the pole lodged against a tree, so Will got his pole again. But I wouldn't go through my adventure again for a hundred poles. ANOTHER PRIZE CONTEST! MORE H I LI G ADVE T RES SPALDINC CATCHERS' MITTS, INFIELDERS' CLOVES, BASEBALi.. BATS AND LONC DISTANCE MECAPHONES ARE THE1 PRIZES THIS TIME. HERE IS THE PLAN You know what exciting stories of hairbreath escapes and thrilling experiences yon have been reading in the BUFFALO BILL WEEKLY lately. You want to rea d more like them, don't you? Wetl, send them in. You have a splendid chance for the splendid prizes we offer in this contest. You have all had some narrow escape. Some dangerous adventure in your lives. Write it up just as it happened. We offer a handsome prize for the most and best written anecdote sent us by any reader of BUFFALO BILL WEEKLY. Incident, of course, must to somet9-mg that happened to the write!' himself, and it must also be strict.ly true. It makes no difference how short the articles are, but no contribution muat be longer than 500 words. THIS CONTEST WILL CLOSE MAY I Send in your anecdotes, boys. We are going to publish all of the best ones during the of the contest. ===HERE ARE THE PRIZES:=== THE THREE BOYS WHO SEND US THE BEST ANECDOTES will each receive a first-class Spalding Catcher's Mitt. Made throughout of a s pecially tanned and selected buckskin, strong and durable, soft and pliable and extra weil padded. Has patent lace back . THE THREE BOYS WHO SEND THE NEXT BEST ANECDOTES will each receive a Spalding s Infielder's Glove. Made throughout of selected velvet tanned buckskin lined and correctly padded with finest felt. Highest quality cf workmanship throughout. THE TEN BOYS WHO SEND THE NEXT BEST ANECDOTES will ach receive an Al Spalding Leaiue Baseball Bat, Made of the very best selected stcond growth white ash timber grown on high land. No swamp ash is used in making these bats. .Absolutely the best bat made. THE TEN BOYS WHO SEND US THE NEXT BEST ANECDOTES will each receive a Spalding '1Long Distance'' Megaphone. Made of fireboard, capable of carrying the sound of a hUman voice one mite and in some instances, two miles, More fun than a barrel of monkeys. TO BECOME A CONTESTANT FOR THESE PRIZES cut out the Anecdote Con test Coupon. printed herewith, fill it out properly and send it to BUFFALO BILL WEEKLY, core of Street & Smith, 2;8 William St., New York City, together with your anecdote. No anecdote will be considered that does not have this coupon accompanying 1t. Coupon Buffalo Bill Weekly Anecdote Contest PRIZE CONTEST NO. 3. Date ............................. Name ......................................... City or Town .......................... State .............. ....... Title of Anecdote .............................
r BlJFf l\LO Bill STORIES (LARGE SIZE.) Containing the Only Stories Authorized by Hon. WILLIAM F. CODY (HBuffalo Bill"). 13-Buffalo Bill's Boy Bravo Pard; or, On the Texan Terror's Trail. 14-Buffalo Bill's Saddle Sharps; or, The Pledged Pards of the Pony Express. 15-Buffalo Bill's Unknown Ally; or, The Brand of the Red Arrow. 16-Buffalo Bill's Pards in Gray; or, On the Death Trails o.f the Wild West. 17-Buffalo Bill's Death Deal; or, The Queen of Gold Canyon. 18-Buffalo Bill at Graveyard Gap; or, The Doomed Driver of the 19-Buffalo Bill's Death Grapple; or, Shadowed by Sure Shots. 20-Buffafo Bill in the Nick of Time; or, The Lost Troopers. 21-Buffalo Bill in the Valley of Doom; or, Crossing the Dead Line. Bill's Race for Life; or, The Attack on the Wagon Train. S 23-Buffalo Bill on the Trail of the Renegades; or. The Masked Marauders. P.I Bili's Lone Hand; or, Fighting Bandits and Redskins. 25-Buffaio BHl's Warning; or, Malo, the Mexican's Death Deal. 26-Buffalo Bill and the Prairie Whirlwind; or, The Three Avengers. 27-Buffalo Bill Entrapped; or, The Phantom of the Storm. 28-Buffalo Bill in the Den of the Ranger Chief; or, One Chance in a Thousand. 29-Buffalo Bill's Tussle with Iron Arm, the Renegade; or, Red Snake, the Pawnee Pard. '30-Buffalo Bill on the Roost Trail; or, The Redskin Heiress. 31-Buffalo BiWs Peril; or, Going fit Alone in Dead Man's Gulch. 32-Buffalo Bill in Massacre Valley; or, The Search for the Missing Ranger. 33-Buffalo Bill in the Hidden Retreat; or, The Captives of Old Bear Claw5. 34-Butfalo Bill's Disappearance; or, The Stranger Guide of the Rio Grande. 35-Buffalo Bill's Mission; or, The Haunt of th0e Lone Medicine Man. 36-Buffalo Bill and the Woman in Blac!(; or, In League with the Toll-Takers. 37-Buffalo Bill and the Haunted Ranch; or, The Disappearance. of the Ranchman's Daughter. 38-Buffalo Bill and the Danite Hidnapers; or, The Green River Massacre. 39-Buffalo Bill's Duel; or9 Among the Mexican Miners. 40-Buffalo Bill and the Prairie Wolves; or, Hunting the Bandits of Boneyard Gulch. Back numbers always on hand. If you cannot get them from your newsdealer, five cents a copy will bring them to you, by mai4 postpaid. STREET & SMITJI, Publishers, 238 STo9 NEW YORK CITY. ...... ---------------.......
75 Solid Gold Watches GIVEN AWAY Not Gold Filled Watches Not Gold Plated Watches BUT ABSOLUTELY Solid Gold Watches WARRANTED UNITED STATES AS.SAY. FULL PARTICULARS IN NUMBER 20. BOYS OF AMERICA. Now Running in "Boys of America" .R: Corking, Up=io=Date Story ERRIWELL Entitled .. The Fanious Yale Athlete, The All=Star Athletic Club; OR. The Boys Who Couldn't Be Downed NO BOY CAN AFFORD TO MISS THiS FASCINATING STORY. The wonderful record of the AU-Star Athletic Club, their bitter. rivals, their battles on the ice, in the gymnasiurn. on the snow, in the r; rink, the plots of their ene:rnies. etc., are just a few of the features of this retnarRable story, throbbing with enthusiasun and exciternent. Don't miss No. 20, BOYS OF AMERICA, coniaining the opening instalhnent of this great story.
.. CONTENTS The Physical M a n The Muscles and Muscle Buildin g The Lungs and the Science of Breath-ing. Indoor Exercises and Home Gymnastics Eating and Drinking for Health Diet Cures and Anti-Drug Remedies The Value of Baths and Mass a g e. How to Dress for Health and B ea uty. W a lking and Runnin g Swimming a nd Bicy cling Physical Health \ I Culture 1 r I (ILLUSTRATED) A Popular Manual of B odily E xercises and llome O ym nastics for Male and Female. BY PROF. FOURMEN All Newsdealers 10 cents If sent b y m ail, 3 c ents additional for postage. )'." Street & Smith PUBLIS HERS 238 William Street New York THE book is regul a tion size pro fusely illu s trat e d b y full-page photo-engravin gs, showing the different exercises by male a nd female models posed especially for this work. Exercises and home gymnastics will do more for bea uty of face, form and good health than all the medicine eve r invented. Read list of c ont e nts.