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Mavericks
written by "Raine, William MacLeod, 1871-1954"
... of the cot, where she had crouched. "Come!" she told the cattleman imperiously, and led the way from the cabin in a hurried flight for the porch shadows. They had scarcely reached these when another half-clad figure emerged from the house, rifle in hand, and plunged across the road into the cacti. He, too, headed for the scene of the now intermittent shooting. "Now!" cried Phyllis, and gave her hand to the man huddled beside her. She led him into the dark house, up the stairs, and into her room. He would have prolonged the sweet intimacy of that minute had it been in his power; but, once inside the chamber, she withdrew her fingers. "Stay here till I come back," she ordered. "I must show myself, so as not to arouse suspicion." "But tell me—what does it mean?" demanded Buck. "It means we're trying to save your life. Whatever happens, don't leave this room or let yourself be seen at the window. If you do, we're lost." With that she was gone, flying down the stairs to show herself as an apparition of terror to learn what was wrong. She heard the returning warriors as they reached the door of the log cabin. They had thrashed through the live-oak grove and found nothing, and were now hurrying back to the prison house, full of suspicions. "He's gone!" she heard Phil cry from within. Came then the sound of excited voices, and presently the shaft of light from a kerosene lamp. Feet trampled in the cabin. Phyllis heard the cot being kicked over. This moment she chose for her entrance. "What in the world is the matter?" she asked innocently, from the doorway. "He's got away—we've been tricked!" Tom told her furiously. "But—how?" "Never mind, Phyl. Go back to your room. There may be trouble yet. By God, there will be if we find him, or his friends!" her father swore. Another figure blocked t...

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