The Highgrader (Chapter 6, page 1 of 11)


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Chapter 6

Verinder's man, Biggs, who had been a fascinated spectator of the Wild West sports at Gunnison, was describing them to Fisher, maid to Lady Farquhar and general buttoner-up-the-back to the entire feminine contingent of the party.

"What do you mean when you say a horse bucks?" she wanted to know.

"'E throws down 'is 'ead and 'e throws up 'is 'eels and you cawn't remain," he explained, without entire originality.

"Fancy now!"

"Consequence is the rider lands himpromptu on terra firma, so to hexpress it."

"Dear me. But doesn't it make him dusty, Mr. Biggs?"

"A bit."

"Couldn't Captain Kilmeny ride one of the bronchos?"

"I've 'eard that the captain is a crack rider, none better in the harmy, Miss Fisher. 'E could ride the blawsted brute if it wouldn't 'ide its bloomin' 'ead between its legs."

Moya, patrolling the willow walk in front of the Lodge, took this in with a chuckle.

It was a still night, save only for the rushing waters of the river. The lamps of the sky had all been lit and were gleaming coldly millions of miles away. The shadowed moonlight in the trees offered a stage set to lowered lights.

The thoughts of the girl had drifted to speculation about the transplanted countryman of hers whose personality had come to interest her so greatly. He had challenged her trust in him and she had responded with a pledge. He had not explained a single one of the suspicious circumstances against him. He had not taken her into his confidence, nor had he in so many words declared his innocence. She was glad he had told her nothing, had demanded her faith as a matter of course. It was part of her pride in him that she could believe without evidence. All the world would know he was not guilty after he had shown his proofs. It would be no test of friendship to stand by him then.

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