The lodgers themselves were for the most part "transients," sailors lounging about shore between two voyages, Swedes and Danes, farmhands, grape-pickers, and cow-punchers from distant parts of the state, a few lost women, and Japanese cooks and second-boys remaining there while they advertised for positions.
"Let me there a minute, can't yuh?" and "Get up off my coat!" were painfully frequent. Happy Jack struggled blindly with a refractory red tie, which his face rivaled in hue and sheen for he had been generous of soap. Weary had possessed himself of the glass and was shaving as leisurely as though four restive cow-punchers were not waiting anxiously their turn.
"You noticed that his gentleman's agreement with Le Sangre? I've made him detest fighting with the idea that only brute beasts fight men argue and agree." "I've noticed that he never has trouble with the cow-punchers." "They've seen him box," chuckled Elizabeth. "Besides, Terry isn't the sort that troublemakers like to pick on. He has an ugly look when he's angry." "H'm," murmured Vance.
By this time I would have been accepted as one of the rest of the outfit, and all strangeness would have passed off, the attitude of my fellow cow-punchers being one of friendly forgiveness even toward my spectacles.
Raidler took a quart bottle of whisky from his medicine cabinet. "Here, take him this," he said. Thus was instituted the reign of terror at the Solito Ranch. For a few weeks McGuire blustered and boasted and swaggered before the cow-punchers who rode in for miles around to see this latest importation of Raidler's. He was an absolutely new experience to them.
He had foreseen trouble when the gamblers got together, and attempted to force the race through, and had gone to collect the cow-punchers and others who had been induced to bet on Hatrack. Ted stood his ground patiently, waiting until a decision should be handed down by the judges before declaring himself.
A highly competent young person is Johnny and a cow-puncher of parts. Most of the Cañon guides are cow-punchers accomplished ones, too, and of high standing in the profession. With a touch of reverence Johnny pointed out to us Sam Scovel, the greatest bronco buster of his time, now engaged in piloting tourists. "Can he ride?" echoed Johnny in answer to our question.
The other cow-punchers allers allow it's because Sim turns out that aborigine over by Antelope Springs. Now sech a eepisode, properly elab'rated, might feed your attention an' hold it spellbound some. "Son, if I was to turn myse'f loose on, great an' little, the divers incidents of the trail, it would consoome days in the relation.
A masked man covered them, in each hand a six-shooter, and at his summons the arms of the cow-punchers went instantly into the air. Nora gave an involuntary little scream of dismay. "Y'u don't need to be afraid, lady. Ain't nobody going to hurt you, I reckon," the masked man growled. "Sure they won't," Mac reassured her, adding ironically: "This gun-play business is just neighborly frolic.
The fact was that he did not know just why he had taken the gun or what he intended to do with it. After all, it was none of Montoya's business, yet Pete did not wish to offend the old man. He wanted to hear more about gun-fights with the cattlemen. "Well, seein' it's you, señor," Pete adopted the grand air as most befitting the occasion, "I'm packin' this here gun to fight cow-punchers with.