"Lemme that glass," suddenly said Jim Lash. "I'm seein' red, I tell you....Well, pore as my eyes are they had it right. Rojas an' his outfit have left the trail."
"Jim, you ain't meanin' they've taken to that awful slope?" queried Ladd.
"I sure do. There they are--still comin', but goin' down, too."
"Mebbe Rojas is crazy, but it begins to look like he--"
"Laddy, I'll be danged if the Greaser bunch hasn't vamoosed. Gone out of sight! Right there not a half mile away, the whole caboodle--gone!"
"Shore they're behind a crust or have gone down into a rut," suggested Ladd. "They'll show again in a minute. Look sharp, boys, for I'm figgerin' Rojas 'll spread his men."
Minutes passed, but nothing moved upon the slope. Each man crawled up to a vantage point along the crest of rotting lava. The watchers were careful to peer through little notches or from behind a spur, and the constricted nature of their hiding-place kept them close together. Ladd's muttering grew into a growl, then lapsed into the silence that marked his companions. From time to time the rangers looked inquiringly at Gale. The field glass, however, like the naked sight, could not catch the slightest moving object out there upon the lava. A long hour of slow, mounting suspense wore on.
"Shore it's all goin' to be as queer as the Yaqui," said Ladd.