Red Saunders

Henry Wallace Phillips
Red Saunders

The Project Gutenberg EBook of Red Saunders, by Henry Wallace
Phillips This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and
with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away
or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at
Title: Red Saunders
Author: Henry Wallace Phillips
Release Date: April 29, 2004 [EBook #12196]
Language: English
Character set encoding: ASCII

Produced by Al Haines

His Adventures West & East
Henry Wallace Phillips


A Chance Shot
Reddy and I were alone at the Lake beds. He sat outside the cabin,
braiding a leather hat-band--eight strands, and the "repeat" figure--an
art that I never could master.
I sat inside, with a one-pound package of smoking tobacco beside me,
and newspapers within reach, rolling the day's supply of cigarettes.
Reddy stopped his story long enough to say: "Don't use the 'Princess'
Slipper,' Kid--that paper burns my tongue--take the 'Granger'; there's
plenty of it."
Well, as I was saying, I'd met a lot of the boys up in town this day, and
they threw as many as two drinks into me; I know that for certain,
because when we took the parting dose, I had a glass of whisky in both
my right hands, and had just twice as many friends as when I started.
When I pulled out for home, I felt mighty good for myself--not exactly
looking for trouble, but not a-going to dodge it any, either. I was
warbling "Idaho" for all I was worth--you know how pretty I can sing?
Cock-eyed Peterson used to say it made him forget all his troubles.
"Because," says he, "you don't notice trifles when a man bats you over
the head with a two-by-four."
Well, I was enjoying everything in sight, even a little drizzle of rain
that was driving by in rags of wetness, when a flat-faced swatty at Fort
Johnson halted me.
Now it's a dreadful thing to be butted to death by a nanny-goat, but for
a full-sized cowpuncher to be held up by a soldier is worse yet.
To say that I was hot under the collar don't give you the right idea of
the way I felt.
"Why, you cross between the Last Rose of Summer and a bobtailed
flush!" says I, "what d'yer mean? What's got into you? Get out of my
daylight, you dog-robber, or I'll walk the little horse around your neck
like a three-ringed circus. Come, pull your freight!"
It seems that this swatty had been chucked out of the third story of
Frenchy's dance emporium by Bronc. Thompson, which threw a great
respect for our profesh into him. Consequently he wasn't fresh like
most soldiers, but answers me as polite as a tin-horn gambler on
Says he: "I just wanted to tell you that old Frosthead and forty braves
are some'ers between here and your outfit, with their war paint on and

blood in their eyes, cayoodling and whoopin' fit to beat hell with the
blower on, and if you get tangled up with them, I reckon they'll give
you a hair-cut and shampoo, to say nothing of other trimmings. They
say they're after the Crows, but it's a ten-dollar bill against a last year's
bird's-nest that they'll take on any kind of trouble that comes along.
Their hearts is mighty bad, they state, and when an Injun's heart gets
spoiled, the disease is d--d catching. You'd better stop awhile."
"Now, cuss old Frosthead, and you too!" says I. "If he comes
crow-hopping on my reservation; I'll kick his pantalettes on top of his
"All right, pardner!" says he. "It's your own funeral. My orders was to
halt every one going through; but I ain't a whole company, so you can
have it your own way. Only, if your friends have to take you home in a
coal-scuttle, don't blame me. Pass, friend!"
So I went through the officers' quarters forty miles an hour, letting out a
string of yells you might have heard to the coast, just to show my
respect for the United States army.
Now this has always been my luck: Whenever I made a band-wagon
play, somebody's sure to strike me for my licence. Or else the team
goes into the ditch a mile further on, and I come out about as happy as
a small yaller dog at a bob-cat's caucus.
Some fellers can run in a rhinecaboo that 'd make the hair stand up on a
buffeler robe, and get away with it just like a mice; but
Continue reading on your phone by scaning this QR Code

 / 53
Tip: The current page has been bookmarked automatically. If you wish to continue reading later, just open the Dertz Homepage, and click on the 'continue reading' link at the bottom of the page.