If there were soft-nose bullets in her rifle it's because she uses them on game bobcats and mountain-lions. I never thought of it till this minute. That is it." "What I came up to tell you has to do with Dave Sassoon. From what happened to-day in the Gap I thought you ought to know it now. Gale and Duke quarrelled yesterday over the way things turned out; they were pretty bitter.
"Ike Brandon?" the man asked, excitedly, as he reined in. "Say, Ike, that Basco ewe-whacker o' yours is back there a ways and plumb perforated. Some one shore up and busted him a plenty with a soft-nose thirty. We're ridin' for Wallace, and we found him driftin' along in the wagon a while back. I'm ridin' for a medicine man, but I reckon we don't get one in time."
"Who done it?" asked Ike, grimly. The cow-puncher shook his head. "None of us," he said, soberly. "We ain't any too lovin' with sheep-herders, but we ain't aimin' to butcher 'em with soft-nose slugs from behind a rock, neither. We picks him up a mile or two out of Shoestring and his hoss is just driftin' along no'th with him while he's slumped up on the seat. There ain't no sheep with him."
A soft-nose splintered the butt of the cook's rifle and tore a strip of meat from his arm as another fanned his cheek. He dropped to the floor and peered from a crack. The firing had suddenly ceased. He saw a hat moving up a coulee, a mere flash here and there above the sage as the owner of it ran.
For two months he had been saving his money toward a passage home to Ireland and the purchase of a rifle and two thousand rounds of ammunition soft-nose bullets preferred with the pious intention of starting with "th' bhoys" at the very beginning and going through with them to the bloody and triumphant finish.
I found where he had slept in the grass also this," and he drew from his pocket a single rifle cartridge. "Thirty-two-forty caliber, Miguel," he continued, "with a soft-nose bullet. I do not know of one in this county who shoots such a heavy rifle. In the old days we used the .44 caliber, but nowadays, we prefer nothing heavier than a .30 and many use a .35 caliber for deer."
Fingering the hot rifle with close-pressed hands, Gale watched the sky line along the high point of lava. It remained unbroken. As his passion left him he feared to look back at his companions, and the cold chill returned to his breast. "Shore I'm damn glad them Greasers ain't usin' soft-nose bullets," drawled a calm voice. Swift as lightning Gale whirled. "Laddy!
It was either he or I or the life of a woman who never harmed a hair of his head, and a woman I'm bound to protect. He was running when he was hit. If he had got to cover again there was nothing to stop him from picking both of us off. I shot low most of the lead must have gone into the ground." "He was hit in the head." De Spain was silent. "It was a soft-nose bullet," continued Pardaloe.
We had two twenty-four-gauge shotguns in case we met an elephant or anything similarly large and heavy, and the Little Boy proudly carried, strapped to his saddle, a twenty-two high-power rifle, shooting a steel-jacketed, soft-nose bullet, an express-rifle of high velocity and great alarm to mothers.
She did not keep it standing more than half an hour or so before she came out and mounted him. She was well equipped for her enterprise. Jostling the vanity case in her saddle pocket were two boxes of soft-nose, .22-long cartridges for the rifle.