The men had tasted blood, and like the tiger, they thirsted for more. There were glaring eyes on all sides, and the countenances of some exhibited an animal ferociousness hideous to look upon. The half-robber discipline that hitherto ruled in the band seemed to have completely departed, and the authority of the chief to be set at defiance.
Their partisans chiefs, half-soldier, half-robber, did us more harm than the regulars, and mercy was never given or asked between them and us. Me and Rube Pearson worked mostly together. We had 'fit' the Indians out on the prairies for years side by side, and when Uncle Sam wanted men to lick the Mexicans, we concluded to go in together.
Probably it was the denseness of its forests, the abundance of water, and its central position, more than its guardian Nats, that made it for so many years the last retreating-place of the half-robber, half-patriot bands that made life so uneasy for us. But the Nats of Popa Mountains are very famous.
Perhaps no frontier is so rich in these tales as that between Spain and France, where the mountainous recesses of the Pyrenees offer secure retreats to the half-robber who drives the contraband trade, as well as safe routes for the transportation of his merchandise.
The half-robber discipline, voluntary at the best, had vanished under the levelling-rod of a common suffering, and I trembled to think "`It clars a leetle, out tharawa! "It was the voice of the trapper, Garey, who had risen and stood pointing toward the East. "In an instant we were all upon our feet, looking in the direction, indicated.