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"Well, by the help of either her red gods or devils, she can swim, anyway!" This explosive statement was made one June morning on the banks of the Kootenai, and the speaker, after a steady gaze, relinquished his field-glass to the man beside him. "Can she make it?" he asked. A grunt was the only reply given him. The silent watcher was too much interested in the scene across the water. Shouts came to themthe yells of frightened Indian children; and from the cone-shaped dwellings, up from the water, the Indian women were hurrying. One, reaching the shore first, sent up a shrill cry, as she perceived that, from the canoe where the children played, one had fallen over, and was being swept away by that swift-rushing, chill water, far out from the reaching hands of the others. Then a figure lolling on the shore farther down stream than the canoe sprang erect at the frightened scream. One quick glance showed the helplessness of those above, and another the struggling little form there in the waterthe little one who turned such wild eyes toward the shore, and was the only one of them all who was not making some outcry. The white men, who were watching from the opposite side, could see shoes flung aside quickly; a jacket dropped on the shore; and then down into the water a slight figure darted with the swiftness of a kingfisher, and swam out to the little fellow who had struggled to keep his head above water, but was fast growing helpless in the chill of the mountain river. Then it was that Mr. Maxwell Lyster commented on the physical help lent by the gods of the red people, as the ability of any female to swim thus lustily in spite of that icy current seemed to his civilized understanding a thing superhuman. Of course, bears and other animals of the woods swam it at all seasons, when it was open; but to see a woman dash into it like that! Well, it sent a shiver over him to think of it. "They'll both get chilled and drop to the bottom!" he remarked, with irritated concern. "Of course there are enough of the red vagabonds in this new El Dorado of yours, without that particular squaw. But it would be a pity that so plucky a one should be translated." Then a yell of triumph came from the other shore. A canoe had been loosened, and was fairly flying over the water to where the child had been dragged to the surface, and the rescuer was holding herself up by the slow efforts of one arm, but could make no progress with her burden. "That's no squaw!" commented the other man, who had been looking through the glass. "Why, Dan!" "It's no squaw, I tell you," insisted the other, with the superior knowledge of a native. "Thought so the minute I saw her drop the shoes and jacket that way. She didn't make a single Indian move. It's a white woman!" "Queer place for a white woman, isn't it?" The man called Dan did not answer. The canoe had reached that figure in the water and the squaw in it lifted the now senseless child and laid him in the bottom of the light craft. A slight altercation seemed going on between the woman in the water and the one in the boat. The former was protesting against being helped on boardthe men could see that by their gestures. She finally gained her point, for the squaw seized the paddle and sent the boat shoreward with all the strength of her brown arms, while the one in the water held on to the canoe and was thus towed back, where half the Indian village had now swarmed to receive them. "She's got sand and sense," and Dan nodded his appreciation of the towing process; "for, chilled as she must be, the canoe would more than likely have turned over if she had tried to climb into it. Look at the pow-wow they are kicking up! That little red devil must count for big stakes with them."

Dettagli

Generi Storia e Biografie » Storia: opere generali » Storia: specifici argomenti , Romanzi e Letterature » Romanzi contemporanei , Salute Benessere Self Help » Mente, corpo, spirito

Editore Library Of Alexandria

Formato Ebook con Adobe DRM

Pubblicato 15/09/2019

Lingua Inglese

EAN-13 9781465507891

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