Mrs. Ellton returned before long, and Landor went back home.
There was now at Grant the prospect of a girl, and for days ahead the bachelors had planned about her. She was Landor's ward,—it was news to them that he had a ward, for he was not given to confidences,—and she was going to visit the wife of his captain, Mrs. Campbell. When they asked questions, Landor said she was eighteen years old, and that her name was Cabot, and that as he had not seen her for ten years he did not know whether she were pretty or not. But the vagueness surrounding her was rather attractive than otherwise, on the whole. It was not even known when she would arrive. There was no railroad to[Pg 14] Arizona. From Kansas she would have to travel by ambulance with the troops which were changing station.
He repeated that he was not there to be questioned, and showed her that he meant it by silence. [Pg 214] Mrs. Lawton gritted her teeth at him as though she would have rejoiced greatly to have had his neck between them. By and by she started once more. "Bill jest told him about it—like a goldarned fool."
They spurred forward unwillingly, thus urged. At sundown they came to the old lake bed and camped there. According to the citizens it was a regular Indian camping-place for the hostiles, since the days of Cochise.
There was another silence, and this time he broke it.