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ON THE TRAIL.

the rest of the night. Somehow or other, I felt that the neighborhood was unhealthy for us.

The gambling saloon was lighted by three powerful oil lamps: two over the faro-table and one over the bar. Jo stationed himself at the bar while Bent and Charlie went to the table: I walked about the room trying to play the indifferent among the twenty or thirty men scattered about. Suddenly about 10 o'clock Charlie began disputing with the banker: they both rose, the banker drawing a big revolver from the table drawer in front of him. At the same moment Charlie struck the lamp above him and I saw him draw his gun just as all the lights went out leaving us in pitch darkness.

I ran to the door and was carried through it in a sort of mad stampede. A minute afterwards Bent joined me and then Charlie came rushing out at top speed with Jo hard after him. In a moment we were at the corner of the street where we had left our ponies and were off: one or two shots followed; I thought we had got off scot free; but I was mistaken.

We had ridden hell for leather, for about an hour when Charlie without apparent reason pulled up and swaying fell out of his saddle: his pony stopped dead and we all gathered round the wounded man:

"I'm finished", said Charlie in a weak voice, "but I've got my money back and I want you to send it to my mother in Pleasant Hill, Missouri. It's about a thousand dollars, I guess".

"Are you badly hurt?" I asked.

"He drilled me through the stomach first go off" Charlie said pointing, "and I guess I've got it at least twice more through the lungs: I'm done".

"What a pity, Charlie!" I cried, "you'll get more than a thousand dollars from your share of the cattle: I've told Bob, that I intend to share equally with all