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The rancho, when of limited dimensions, is termed ranchito, and may be seen with walls of different materials, according to the district or country. The one which gave shelter to the fugitives differed from all these, having walls of split slabs, set stockade fashion, and thatched with a sedge of tule, taken from a little lake that lay near.
I readily accepted his invitation, wishing to see as much as I could of so original a character, and before starting I purchased a bottle of rum, which made his eyes sparkle so that I thought his name Lucero rather an appropriate one. His rancho was about two miles from the store, and our ride thither was about as strange a gallop as I ever took.
She arrived the morning before the christening, and no one thought to tell her that Estenega was to be godfather. The house was full of girls, relatives of the young mother, gathered for the ceremony and subsequent week of festivities. Benicia, my little one, was at the rancho with Ysabel Herrera, and I was staying with the Alvarados. So many were the guests that Chonita and I slept together.
I'm from the Kitchen Rancho, over toward the Tehachapi. They call me Tehachapi Hank. At yer service, ma'am." Jerkline Jo's red lips were straight. She was indignant. A sense of defeat almost overwhelmed her. Such a situation had not even remotely occurred to her. In a wave of despair the realization swept over her that she had attempted something of which she knew nothing.
It contains about four thousand acres of first-class wheat or corn land; the remainder is composed of excellent pasturage; there are only a few thousand sheep, and a few cattle and horses on this rancho. It has for several years been cultivated by Morehead and Griffith, under a private arrangement with the owner.
She thought, too, of John Haydon of the Star ranch the big, smiling, serene-eyed man who seemed to bring a breath of romance with him each time he visited the Rancho Seco. Haydon would help her, she knew, and she would go to him in the morning. Her father had trusted Haydon, and she would trust him.
So far as any one can see, they're gettin' just as good land as Paloma Rancho; and the folks we've sold to are castin' dark looks at one Tweet. As if I was to blame! Two fellas that hadn't paid in much have jumped their contracts with us, and are takin' up claims. If many more pull stuff like that say, somebody'll be in bad!
"We didn't cross in a cattle boat," she flashed back at him, dimpling mischievously. "Nor did I go as the Queen of the Rancho, or of the Roundup, or even of the Wild and Woolly Outlaw Band." He flushed with mortification. "I am only too well aware, Miss Knowles, how you must regard me." "Oh, I do not regard you at all as yet," she bantered.
But, though he did not bring the family mansion, Truesdell did bring something in the way of a family inheritance that was more lasting than brick or stone. He brought one end of the Truesdell-Curtis family feud. And when a Curtis bought the Rancho de los Olmos, sixteen miles from the Cibolo, there were lively times on the pear flats and in the chaparral thickets off the Southwest.
He had talked for some time with Gage, waiting until Barbara Morgan recovered slightly from the shock she had suffered. Then when he had told her that he intended to accompany her to the Rancho Seco and she had offered no objection he had gone on a quest for her pony, finding him in the stable in the rear of the Eating-House.