xt77sq8qc89f https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt77sq8qc89f/data/mets.xml Wraxall, Lascelles, Sir, 1828-1865. 1866  books b92-60-27078078 English Ward, Lock, and Tyler, : London : Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. Backwoodsman, or, Life on the Indian frontier  / edited by Sir C.F. Lascelles Wraxall, bart. text Backwoodsman, or, Life on the Indian frontier  / edited by Sir C.F. Lascelles Wraxall, bart. 1866 2002 true xt77sq8qc89f section xt77sq8qc89f 

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            EDITED BY






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     172, ST. JOHN STREIT, k.C.























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XXI. LOST IN THE MOUNTAINS.. . . . . . . . . 253












  XXX. THE PURSUIT . . . .

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                     CHAPTER I.
                  MY 8ETTLEMENT.
My blockhouse was built at the foot of the mountain chain
of the Rio Grande, on the precipitous banks of the River
Leone. On three sides it was surrounded by a fourteen feet
stockade of split trees standing perpendicularly.  At the
two front corners of the palisade were small turrets of-the
same material, whence the face of the wall could be held
under fire in the event of an attack from hostile Indians.
On the south side of the river stretched out illimitable
rolling prairies, while the northern side was covered with the
densest virgin forest for many miles.  To the north and
west I had no civilized neighbours at all, while to the south
and east the nearest settlement was at least 250 miles distant.
My small garrison consisted of three men, who, whenever
I was absent, defended the fort, and at other times looked
after the small field and garden as well as the cattle.
  As I had exclusively undertaken to provide my colony
with meat, I rarely stayed at home, except when there was
some pressing field work to be done. Each dawn saw me
leave the fort with my faithful dog Trusty, and turn my
horse either toward the boundless prairie or the mountains of
the Rio Grande.
  Very often hunting kept me away from home for several
days, in which case I used to bivouac in the tall grass by the


side, of some prattling stream.  Such oases, though not
frequent, are found here and there on the prairies of the Far
West, where the dark, lofty magnolias offer the wearied
traveller refreshment beneath their thick foliage, and the
stream at their base grants a cooling draught. One of these
favourite spots of mine lay near the mountains, about ten
miles from my abode. It was almost the only water far and
wide, and here formed two ponds, whose depths I was never
able to sound, although I lowered large stones fastened to
upwards of a hundred yards of lasso.  The small space
between the two ponds was overshadowed by the most
splendid magnolias, peca-nut trees, yuccas, evergreen oaks,
c., and begirt by a wall of cactuses, aloes, and other prickly
plants. I often selected this place for hunting, because it
always offered a large quantity of game of every description,
and I was certain at any time of finding near this water
hundreds of wild turkeys, which constitute a great dainty in
the bill of fare of the solitary hunter.
  After a very hot spring day I had sought the ponds, as it
was too late to ride home. The night was glorious; the
magnolias and large-flowered cactuses diffused their vanilla
perfume over me; myriads of fireflies continually darted over
the plain, and a gallant mocking-bird poured forth its dulcet
melody into the silent night above my head. The whole of
nature seemed to be revelling in the beauty of this night, and
thousands of insects sported round my small camp fire. It
was such a night as the elves select for their gambols, and
for a long time I gazed intently at the dark blue expanse above
me. But, though the crystal springs incessantly bubbled up
to the surface, the Lurleis would not visit me, for they have
not yet strayed to America.
  My dog and horse also played around me for a long time,
until, quite tired, they lay down by the fire, side, and all three
of us slept till dawn, when the gobbling of the turkeys
aroused us. The morning was as lovely as the night. To
the east the flat prairie bordered the horizon like a sea; the



dark sky still glistened with the splendour of all its jewels,
while the skirt of its garment was dipped in brilliant carmine;
the night fled rapidly toward the mountains, and morn
pursued it clad in his festal robes. The sun rose like a
mighty ball over the prairie, and the heavy dew bowed the
heads of the tender plants, as if they were offering their
morningthanksgiving for the refreshment which had been
granted them. I too was saturated with dew, and was
obliged to hang my deerskin suit to dry at the fire; fortu-
nately the leather had been smoked over a wood fire, which
prevents it growing hard in drying.   I freshened up the
fire, boiled some coffee, roasted the breast of a turkey, into
which I had previously rubbed pepper and salt, and finished
breakfast with Trusty, while Czar, my famous white stallion,
was greedily browzing on the damp grass, and turned his
head away when I went up to him with the bridle. I hung
up the rest of the turkey, as well as another I had shot on
the previous evening, and a leg of deer meat, in the shadows
of a magnolia, as I did not know whether I might not return
to the spot that evening, saddled, and we were soon under
weigh for the mountains, where I hoped to find buffalo.
  I was riding slowly along a hollow in the prairie, when a
rapidly approaching sound attracted my attention. In a few
minutes a very old bnffalo, covered with foam, dashed past
me, and almost at the same moment a Comanche Indian pulled
up his horse on the rising ground about fifty yards from me.
As he had his bow ready to shoot the buffalo, the savage
made his declaration of war more quickly than I, and his first
arrow passed through my game bag sling, leather jacket and
waistcoat to my right breast, while two others whizzed past
my ear. To pluck out the arrow, seize a revolver, and dig
the spurs into my horse; were but one operation; and a second
later saw me within twenty yards of the Redskin, who had
turned his horse round and was seeking safety in flight. After
a chase of about two miles over awfully rough ground, where
the slightest mistake might have broken my neck, the




Indian's horse began to be winded, while Czar still held his
head and tail erect. I rapidly drew nearer, in spite of the
terrible blows the Redskin dealt his horse, and when about
thirty paces behind the foe, I turned slightly to the left, in
order, if I could, to avoid wounding his horse by my shot. I
raised my revolver and fired, but at the same instant the
Indian disappeared from sight, with the exception of his left
foot, with which he held on to the saddle, while the rest of
his body was suspended on the side away from me. With
the cessation of the blows, however, the speed of his horse
relaxed, and I was able to ride close up. Suddenly the Indian
regained his seat and urged on his horse with the whip; I
fired and missed again, for I aimed too high in my anxiety
to spare the mustang. We went on thus at full gallop till
we reached a very broad ravine, over which the Indian could
not leap. He, therefore, dashed past my left hand, trying
at the same moment to draw an arrow from the quiver over
his left shoulder. I fired for the third time; with the shot
the Comanche sank back on his horse's croup, hung on with
his feet, and went about a hundred yards farther, when he fell
motionless in the tall grass. As he passed me, I had noticed
that he was bleeding from the right chest and mouth, and
was probably already gone to the happy hunting-grounds.
I galloped after the mustang, which soon surrendered, though
with much trembling, to the pale face; I fastened its bridle
to my saddle bow, led both horses into a neighbouring thicket,
and reloaded my revolver.
  I remained for about half-an-hour in my hiding-place,
whence I could survey the landscape around, but none of the
Indian's comrades made their appearance, and I, therefore,
rode up to him to take his weapons. He was dead. The
bullet had passed through his chest. I took his bow, quiver
and buffalo hide, and sought for the arrows he had shot at
me as I rode back. I resolved to pass the night at the ponds,
not only to rest my animals, but also to conceal myself from
the Indians who, I felt sure, were not far off. I was not



                      THE MUSTAKNf.                    5
alarmed about myself, but in the event of pursuit by superior
numbers, I should have Trusty to protect and might easily
lose the mustang again.
  I reached the springs without any impediment, turned my
horses out to grass in the thicket, and rested myself in the
cool shade of the trees hanging over the ponds. A calm,
starry night set in, and lighted me on my ride home, which
I reached after midnight. The mustang became one of my
best horses. It grew much stronger, as it was only four
years old when I captured it; and after being fed for awhile
on maize, acquired extraordinary powers of endurance.


                     CHAPTER II.

                  THE COMANCHES.
T=E summer passed away in hunting, farm-work, building
houses, and other business, and during this period I had fre-
quently visited the ponds. One evening I rode to them again
in order to begin hunting from that point the next morning.
If I shot buffaloes not too far from my house, I used to ride
back, and at evening drove out with a two-wheeled cart,
drawn by mules, to fetch the meat and salt it for the probable
event of a siege As I always had an ample supply of other
articles for my garrison and cattle, and as I had plenty of
water, I could resist an Indian attack for a long time. Large
herds of buffalo always appear in the neighbourhood, so soon
as the vegetation on the Rocky Mountains begins to die out,
and the cold sets in. They spread over the evergreen prairies
in bands of from five to eight hundred head, and I have often
seen at one glance ten thousand of these relics of the primeval
world. For a week past these wanderers had been moving
southwards; but, though their appearance may be so agree-
able to the hunter in these parts, it reminds him at the same
time that his perils are greatly increased by their advent.
Numerous tribes of horse Indians always follow these herds
to the better pasturage and traverse tie prairie in every di-
rection, as they depend on the buffalo exclusively for food.
The warmer climate during the winter also suits them better,
as they more easily find forage for their large troops of horses
and mules.
  At a late hour I reached the ponds, after supplying myself
en route with some fat venison. Before I lit my fire, I also
shot two turkeys on the neighbouring trees, because at thir


season they are a great dainty, as they feed on the ripe oily
peca-nuts. I sat till late over my small fire, cut every now
and then a slice from the meat roasting on a spit, and bade my
dog be quiet, who would not lie down, but constantly sniffed
about with his broad nose to the ground, and growling sul-
lenly. Czar, on the contrary, felt very jolly, had abundant
food in the prairie grass, and snorted every now and then so
lustily, that the old turkeys round us were startled from their
sleep. It grew more and more quiet. Czar had lain down by
my side, and only the unpleasant jeering too-whoot of the owl
echoed through the night, and interrupted the monotonous
chorus of the hunting wolves which never ceases in these parts.
Trusty, my faithful watchman, was still sitting up with raised
nose, when I sank back on my saddle and fell asleep. The
morning was breaking when I awoke, saturated with dew;
but I sprang up, shook myself, made up the fire, put meat on
the spit and coffee to boil, and then leapt into the clear pond
whose waters had so often refreshed me. After the bath I
breakfasted, and it was not till I proceeded to saddle my horse
that I noticed Trusty's great anxiety to call my attention to
something.   On following him, I found a great quantity of
fresh Indian sign, and saw that a large number of horses had
been grazing round the pond on the previous day. I examined
my horse gear and weapons, opened a packet of cartridges for
my double-barrelled rifle, and then rode in the direction of the
Leone. I had scarce crossed the first upland and reached the
prairie when Czar made an attempt to bolt, and looked round
with a snort. I at once noticed a swarm of Comanches about
half a mile behind me, and coming up at full speed. There
was not a moment to lose in forming a resolution-I must
either fly or return to my natural fortress at the springs. I
decided on the latter course, as my enemies were already too
near for my dog to reach the thicket or the Leone before them,
for though the brave creature was remarkably powerful and
swift-footed, he could not beat good horses in a long race.
  I therefore turned Czar round, and flew back to the ponds.



A narrow path which I had cut on my first visit through a
wall of prickly plants led to the shady spot between the two
ponds, which on the opposite side were joined by a broad
swamp, so that I had only this narrow entrance to defend.
The thicket soon received us. Czar was fastened by the bridle
to a wild grape-vine; my long holster-pistols were thrust
into the front of my hunting-shirt; the belt that held my
revolvers was unbuckled, and I was ready for the attack of
the savages. Trusty, too, had put up the stiff hair on his
back, and by his growling showed that he was equally ready
to do his part in the fight. The Indians bad come within
a few hundred yards, and were now circling round me with
their frightful war-yell, swinging their buffalo-hides over their
heads, and trying, by the strangest sounds and gestures,
either to startle my horse or terrify me. I do not deny that,
although used to such scenes, I felt an icy coldness down my
back at the sight of these demons, and involuntarily thought
of the operation of scalping. I remained as quiet as I could,
however, and rr-olved not to expend a bullet in vain. The
distance was gradually reduced, and the savages came within
about a hundred and fifty yards, some even nearer. The
boldest came within a hundred and twenty yards of me, while
the others shot some dozen arrows at me, some of which
wounded the sappy cactuses around me. The savages con-
tinually grew bolder, and it was time to open the ball, for
attacking is half the battle when engaged with Indians.
  I therefore aimed at the nearest man-a powerful, stout,
rather elderly savage, mounted on a very fast golden-brown
stallion-and at once saw that the bullet struck him: in his
fall he pulled his horse round towards me, and dashed past
within forty yards, which enabled me to see that the bullet
had passed through his body, and he did not need a second.
About one hundred yards farther on he kissed the ground.
After the shot the band dashed off, and their yell was aug-
mented to a roar more like that of a wounded buffalo than
human voices. They assembled about half a mile distant,



held a short consultation, and then returned like a whirlwind
towards me with renewed yells. The attack was now seriously
meant, although the sole peril I incurred was from arrows
shot close to me. I led Czar a few paces in the rear behind
a widely-spreading yucca, ordered Trusty to lie down under
the cactuses, reloaded mv gun, and, being a bit of Indian
myself, I disappeared among the huge aloes in front of me,
pulling my stout beaver hat over my eyes. I allowed the
tornado to come within a hundred and sixty paces, when I
raised my good rifle between the aloes, pulled the trigger,
and saw through the smoke a Redskin bound in the air, and
fall among the horses' hoofs. A dense dust concealed the
band from sight, but a repetition of the yells reached my ear,
and I soon saw the savages going away from me, whereon I
gave them the contents of the second barrel, which had a good
effect in spite of the distance, as I recognised in the fresh
yells raised and the dispersion of the band. The Indians, ere
long, halted a long way off; but after awhile continued their
retreat. I understood these movements perfectly well: they
wanted to give me time to leave my hiding-place, and then
ride me down on the plain. Hence I waited till the
Comanches were nearly two miles off, and watched them
through my glass as they halted from time to time, and looked
round at me. I was certain that we now had a sufficient
start to reach the forest on the Leone wi-hout risk. My
rifle was reloaded, and my pistols were placed in the holsters.
I stepped out of my hiding-place and mounted my horse, which
bore me at a rapid pace towards my home. The enemy scarce
noticed my flight ere they dashed down from the heights after
me like a storm-cloud. I did not hurry, however, for fear of
fatiguing Trusty; but selected the buffalo paths corresponding
with my direction, thousands of which intersect the prairies
like a net, and at the end of the first mile felt convinced that
we should reach the forest all right, which now rose more dis-
tinctly out of the sea of grass. So it was: we dashed into
the first bushes only pursued by five Indians, where I rode


THE sl[iRmriSr.


behind some dwarf chestnuts, dismounted, and prepared to
receive my enemies. They remained out of range, however,
and in a short time retired again.
  My readers will naturally ask why some thirty Indians
allowed a single hunter to emerge from his hiding-place, and
why they did not compel him to surrender by a short siege
The Comailches are horse Indians, who can only effect any-
thing when mounted, and hence never continue a pursuit
into a thicket. They never undertake any martial exploit
by night; and, moreover, the Indian, when he goes into ac-
tion, has very different ideas from a white man; for while
the latter always thinks he will be the last to fall, every
Redskin believes that he will be the first to be hit. At the
same time, these tribes set a far higher value on the life of
one of their warriors than we white men do, and they often
told me that we pale-faces grew out of the ground like
mushrooms, while it took them eighteen years to produce
a warrior. The tribes are not large; they consist of only
one hundred and fifty to three hundred men; they have
their chief and are quite independent of the other clans,
although belonging to the same nations.  The Comanches,
for instance, reckon thirty thousand souls, spread over the
whole of the Far West. In consequence of the many
sanguinary wars which the different tribes wage together,
it is frequently of great consequence to a clan, whether it
counts ten men more or less, and hence the anxiety felt by
the savages about the life of their warriors. The Northern
Indians have assumed many of the habits of the white men,
and are advancing gradually towards civilization; they nearly
all carry fire-arms, wear clothes, till the ground, and their
squaws, children, and old men, live in villages together. Our
Southern Indians are all at the lowest stage of civilization,
are generally cannibals, have no home, follow the buffalo,
on whose flesh they live, and have assumed none of our cus-
toms. At times they may get hold of a horse-cloth or a
bit, which they have taken from a hunter or stolen from




a border settlement, but in other respects they are children
of nature; they go about almost naked, and only carry
weapons of their own manufacture. Their long lance is a
very dangerous weapon, owing to the skill with which they
use it; and the same is the case with their bows, from which
they discharge arrows at a distance of fifty yards, with such
accuracy and force, as to pierce the largest buffalo. The
lasso (a plaited rope of leather) is another weapon which they
employ with extraordinary skill; they throw the noose at
one end over the head of an enemy, then gallop off in the
opposite direction, and drag their captive to death. There
are but very few foot Indians in the South; they generally
live in the mountains, as they are always at war with the
horse savages, and would be at a disadvantage on the plains;
but they are by far the most dangerous denizens of these
parts, as the most of them are supplied with fire-arms, and
try to overpower their enemy treacherously at night. The
Weicos form the chief tribe of these foot Indians, and are
pursued both by the mounted Redskins and the white bor-
derers like the most dangerous of wild beasts: on their
account I have often spent the night without fire, and have
been startled from my sleep by the whoot of the owl, which
they imitate admirably, as a distant signal to one another.
In the conduct of the horse Indians there is something open
and chivalrous, and I never hated them for chasing me; we
contended for the possession of the land, which they cer-
tainly held first, but which nature assuredly created for a
better oblject than that a few wild hordes should use it for
their hunting and war forages. It always seemed to me an
honourable contest between civilization and savageness when
I was attacked by these steppe-horsemen, and I never felt
that blood-thirsty hatred which beset me when I noticed the
Weicos and Tonkaways creeping about like vipers. I more
than once all but fell victim to their cunning, and it is
always a pleasant memory that I frequently punished them
severely for it.



                     CHAPTER III.
               A FIGHT WITH THE WEICOS.
As I mentioned, my fort stood on the south side of the
Leone river, and in front of it lay one of the richest and
most fertile prairies, which ran to the bank of Mustang Creek,
a small stream running parallel to the Leone, beneath the
shade of lofty peca-nut trees, magnolias, cypresses, and oaks,
to join the Rio Grande. The prairie between the Leone and
this stream was about five miles broad; and often, when I
had spent the day at home, I rode off to pass the night there,
in order to shoot at daybreak as much game as my horse
could comfortably carry, and be back to breakfast. I had
found, in a coppice close to the stream, a small grassy clear-
ing, where Czar was always comfortable. Around it stood
colossal primamval oaks and magnolias, in whose shade many
varieties of evergreen bushes, such as myrtle, laurel, and rhodo-
dendron, formed an impenetrable thicket, as they were inter-
twined with pendant llianas and vines the thickness of my
body. In this thicket I had built a sort of hut of buffalo
hides, in which I hid away a frying-pan, an old axe, and a
coffee-pot. At this spot I passed many a hot summer night,
for I found there a cool, quiet bed, which the sun never
reached, for myself and my faithful companions, and ran no
risk of being betrayed by my camp-fire and disturbed by
the Indians.
  After one of these hot days, I rode Czar out of the fort, and
Trusty, released from the chain, sprang joyfully at my horse's
head, delighted at getting into the open country again, and
the prospect of fresh deer or buffalo kidneys. We went
slowly toward the thickly-wooded bank of the creek, which



bordered the prairie ahead of us like a purple strip, through
large gay fields of flowers, with which the prairie is adorned.
Blue, yellow, red, and white beds, in the most varied hues,
succeeded each other, and filled the air with the sweetest and
most fragrant perfumes. Wherever the eye turned it fell on
herds of deer, that were sheltering themselves from the burn-
ing sun under isolated elms and mosquito trees, and rose on
our approach to be ready for flight. Further on grazed many
herds of migratory buffaloes, from which the prairies at this
season are never quite free, and, here and there, antelopes were
flying over the heaving sea of grass and flowers. As I rode
along, my eye was certainly rejoiced by this abundance of
game, but I did not change my direction on that account,
because I was not any great distance from the thickets in
advance of the forest on Mustang Creek, where I could
approach the game with much less trouble. These wooded
intervals, which run for about a mile into the prairie, consist of
dwarf plum-trees, four feet in height, partly separate, partly
in clumps, which are closely interlaced with wild vines, but
always leave small openings between, and here and there are
overshadowed by a densely-foliaged elm.  You are obliged
to wind between these clumps till you reach a broad open
grassy clearing, which extends between these thickets and the
high woods on Mustang Creek.
  I had hardly reached these advance woods, ere I saw a very
large stag standing in the shadow of an old elm-tree, driving
away the flies with its antlers, and feeding on the fine, sweet
mosquito grass, which is much more tender in the shade than
when it is exposed to the burning sunbeams. The beautiful
creature was hardly sixty paces from me, and I seized my
rifle, which was lying across the saddle in front of me. In a
moment Czar, who was well acquainted with this movement,
halted, buried his small head in the grass, and began seeking
the green young shoots which are covered by the dry withered
stalks. I shot the deer, and as I saw that it could not go
far I allowed Trusty to catch it, which always afforded him



great delight. I rode up, threw the bridle before dismount-
ing over the end of a long pendant branch, and then dragged
the deer into the shade to break it up, and cut off the meat I
intended to take with me. I bad knelt down bv the deer
and just thrust in my bowie knife, when Trusty, who was
sitting not far from me, began growling, and on my inquiring
what was the matter, growled still more loudly, while looking
in the direction behind me. I knew the faithful creature so
well that I only needed to look in his large eyes to read what
he wished to tell me. They had turned red, a sure sign of
his rising anger: but I believed that wolves were at band,
which were his most deadly enemies, because he bad fared
badly from their claws now and then before I could get up
to free him from his tormentors. I ordered Trusty to be
quiet, as I heeded the dangers which bad beset me for years
much less than I had done at the beginning of my border-
life, and bent down again over the deer, when Trusty sprang,
with furious barks, toward the quarter where he had been
looking. I quickly rose, and on turning round saw two per-
fectly naked Indians, armed with gulns, leap out of the tall
grass about sixty yards from me, and dash away like antelopes.
My first step was to seize my rifle, which was leaning against
the tree, but the savages took an enormous bound over one
of the clumps of plum-trees, and disappeared from sight. In
a few minutes I had unfastened Czar, and rushed after the
Indians through the many windings between the close-grown
bushes. They had gained a great start, and had increased it
by leaping over clumps, which I was compelled to ride round;
still I kept them pretty constantly in sight, and reached the
open prairie in front of the creek, at the moment when the
savages had crossed about half of it. I gave Czar a slight
touch of the spur, and urged him on with the usual pat on his
powerful hard neck; he leaped through the grass as if he
hardly touched the ground, and I was obliged to set my hat
tightly on my head for fear of losing it, for the pressure of
the atmosphere was so great that I could hardly breathe.



The Indians ran like deer, but the distance between us was
speedily lessened, and I was only sixty yards behind them,
when they were still fifty from the forest. I stopped my
horse, leaped off, aimed with my right-band barrel at the
savage furthest ahead, and dropped him. In the meanwhile
the other Indian reached the skirt of the wood, and sprang
into the shade of an old oak, at the moment when the bead
of my rifle covered him. I fired and saw him turn head over
heels. At this moment Trusty came panting over the prairie,
who had remained behind as I had leapt over some clumps
which he was obliged to skirt; he saw the first Indian leap
out of the grass, like a hare which has been shot through the
head, and his legs seemed too slow for his growing fury; a
loud shout urged him on still more, and in a few seconds he
and the savage disappeared in the tall grass. A frightfully
shrill yell, which echoed far and wide through the forest,
proved that the Indian was feeling Trusty's teeth, and the
heaving grass over them showed that it was a struggle for life
or death. Loading my rifle detained me for a few minutes
at the spot whence I had fired; then I ran up to Czar, who
had strayed a little distance, and rode to the battle-field.
The contest was over; the savage was dead, and Trusty's
handsome shaggy coat was spotted with blood. He was
standing with his fore paws on his enemy, and tearing out
his throat. A dog like Trusty was invaluable to me, and for
my own preservation I dared not assuage the creature's
savageness; besides, the man was dead, and it was a matter of
indifference whether the buzzards devoured his body or Trusty
tore it piece-meal. In the meanwhile I fastened the dead
man's short Mexican escopeta, hunting-pouch, and necklace
ato my saddle; then I called Trusty off, mounted Czar, and
rode back to my deer, as I did not dare venture into the
forest, where a large number of these Weicos were very pro-
bably lying in ambush. The two had come down from the
mountains to the banks of Mustang Creek, whither the great
quantity of game of all descriptions had attracted them; on



hearing my shot, they crept up unnoticed, had got within.
distance of me, and in a few seconds would doubtless have
settled me, had not my faithful watcher scented them, or
remarked their movements in the grass.
   On coming within sight of my deer, I saw that a dozen
 buzzards had collected, some on the trees, others circling
 slowly in the air, and watching with envious glances three
 wolves, which had already begun greedily to share my
 deer. Although I hardly ever expended a bullet on these tor-
 mentors, I was annoyed at their impudence, for though they
 saw me coming, they did not interrupt their banquet. I
 shot one of them, a very old red she-wolf, took the loins and
 legs of the deer, hung them to my saddle, and rode home to
 pass the night.
   My dogs inside the fort announced to th