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For the thousandth time there rose up in her mind the old Rimrock as she had seen him first a lean, sunburned man on a buckskin horse with a pistol slung at his hip; a desert miner, clean, laughing, eager, following on after his dream of riches. But now, soft and fat, in top hat and diamonds, swaggering past with that woman on his arm!

"I love you, Rimrock; I can't bear to let you go!" She clung to him passionately and with tremulous laughter tugged to draw him back to the divan, but Rimrock stood upright and stubborn. Some strange influence, some memory, seemed to sweep into his brain and make him immune to her charm. It was the memory of a kiss, but not like her kisses; a kiss that was impulsive and shy.

The distinguished man was talking now and Mary was listening to what he said; yet her eyes, that were accustomed to read from the lips, were now free to look about. A swift, unbidden gladness leapt up into them at first as she recognized Rimrock in the crowd; and then, quick as lightning, she saw the other woman and the glad look went out of her eyes.

A big gang of miners were running cuts into the hillside where the first of the ore was to come out and like a stream of ants the workmen and teams swarmed about each mighty task, but still Rimrock Jones remained silent. His eyes opened wider at sight of each new miracle but to Jepson he made no comments.

There was one thing about L. W., he was a poker player of renown and accustomed to thinking quick. He took one look at that roll of bills and waved the money away. "Nope! Keep it!" he said. "I don't want your money just let me in on this deal." "Huh!" grunted Rimrock, "for four thousand dollars? You must think I've been played for a sucker.

They crouched behind the windshield, for Rimrock drove recklessly, and went roaring out across the desert and between the rush of the wind and the sharp kick of the chuck-holes conversation was out of the question. Then they came to the camp, with its long rows of deal houses and the rough bulk of the concentrator and mill; and even this, to Mrs.

"Well, listen to this then," went on Rimrock eagerly, "let me show you what Buckbee can do. I dropped in at his office, after I'd received my roll, and he said: 'Want to take a flier? "'Sure, I said, 'here's a thousand dollars. Put it on and see how far it will go. Well, you can believe me or not, in three days' time he gave me back over two thousand dollars."

"Come out, if you're a man, and prove your title, or by grab, I'll come in there and get you!" He stopped with a grunt for the hard-eyed captain had jabbed him with the muzzle of his gun. "None of that," he said, but Rimrock took no notice his eyes were fixed on McBain.

But now about the mine. I left Mr. Stoddard in the office just biting his fingers with anxiety." "Well, let him bite 'em," returned Rimrock spitefully, "I hope he eats 'em off. If it hadn't been for him, and that Mrs. Hardesty, and all the other crooks he set on, we'd be friends to-day and I'd rather have that than all the mines in the world." "Oh, would you, Rimrock?" she questioned softly.

Say, boys, take on with me I'll double your money; and what's more I'll stand up for my rights!" He looked around at the line of gun-fighters, but their set lips did not answer his smile. Only in their eyes, those subtle mirrors of the mind, did he read the passing reflex of their scorn. "You're scared, you coward," went on Rimrock scathingly as McBain looked warily about.