Lassiter looked at the grave and then out into space. At that moment he seemed a figure of bronze.
Jane touched Venters's arm and led him back to the horses.
"Bern!" cried Jane, when they were out of hearing. "Suppose Lassiter were Milly's husband--the father of that little girl lost so long ago!"
"It might be, Jane. Let us ride on. If he wants to see us again he'll come."
So they mounted and rode out to the cattle trail and began to climb. From the height of the ridge, where they had started down, Venters looked back. He did not see Lassiter, but his glance, drawn irresistibly farther out on the gradual slope, caught sight of a moving cloud of dust.
"Hello, a rider!"
"Yes, I see," said Jane.
"That fellow's riding hard. Jane, there's something wrong."
"Oh yes, there must be....How he rides!"
The horse disappeared in the sage, and then puffs of dust marked his course.
"He's short-cut on us--he's making straight for the corrals."
Venters and Jane galloped their steeds and reined in at the turning of the lane. This lane led down to the right of the grove. Suddenly into its lower entrance flashed a bay horse. Then Venters caught the fast rhythmic beat of pounding hoofs. Soon his keen eye recognized the swing of the rider in his saddle.
"It's Judkins, your Gentile rider!" he cried. "Jane, when Judkins rides like that it means hell!"