"Shore, Jim, they work hard an' buy 'em with real silver pesos," replied Ladd, sarcastically.
"Do any of you see Rojas?" whispered Thorne.
"Nix. No dandy bandit in that outfit."
"It's too far to see," said Gale.
The horsemen halted at the corrals. They were orderly and showed no evidence of hostility. They were, however, fully armed. Belding stalked out to meet them. Apparently a leader wanted to parley with him, but Belding would hear nothing. He shook his head, waved his arms, stamped to and fro, and his loud, angry voice could be heard clear back at the house. Whereupon the detachment of rebels retired to the bank of the river, beyond the white post that marked the boundary line, and there they once more drew rein. Belding remained by the corrals watching them, evidently still in threatening mood. Presently a single rider left the troop and trotted his horse back down the road. When he reached the corrals he was seen to halt and pass something to Belding. Then he galloped away to join his comrades.
Belding looked at whatever it was he held in his hand, shook his burley head, and started swiftly for the house. He came striding into the room holding a piece of soiled paper.
"Can't read it and don't know as I want to," he said, savagely.
"Beldin', shore we'd better read it," replied Ladd. "What we want is a line on them Greasers. Whether they're Campo's men or Salazar's, or just a wanderin' bunch of rebels--or Rojas's bandits. Sabe, senor?"