Evidently the duties of hostess lay with crushing weight upon the girl, for her face became stony, her cheeks paled, her eyes glazed; the power of speech completely failed her and she answered Gray with nods or shakes of her head. The most that he could elicit from her were brief "yeps" and "nopes." It was not unlike a "spirit reading," or a ouija-board seance.
All the "hands" had departed to their work, and only the occasional lowing of a solitary milch cow in one of the corrals, and the trampling feet of the horses waiting to be "broken," and the "yeps" of a few mouching dogs, afforded any sign of life outside in the ranch yards. Jim began to grow restive. "Well, boy: I've some 'breaking' to do. Maybe you'll come along. You can talk as we go."