They implored us, by
the Holy Virgin, not to go through the Pass.
What was to be done? The officers took counsel; the men looked to
their arms. It was decided to go through. Jack examined his
revolver, and saw that my pistol was loaded. I was instructed
minutely what to do, in case we were attacked.
For miles we strained our eyes, looking in the direction whence
these men had come.
At last, in mid-afternoon, we approached the Pass, a narrow
defile winding down between high hills from this table-land to
the plain below. To say that we feared an ambush, would not
perhaps convey a very clear idea of how I felt on entering the
There was not a word spoken. I obeyed orders, and lay down in the
bottom of the ambulance; I took my derringer out of the holster
and cocked it. I looked at my little boy lying helpless there
beside me, and at his delicate temples, lined with thin blue
veins, and wondered if I could follow out the instructions I had
received: for Jack had said, after the decision was made, to go
through the Pass, "Now, Mattie, I don't think for a minute that
there are any Injuns in that Pass, and you must not be afraid. We
have got to go through it any way; but" - he hesitated, - "we may
be mistaken; there may be a few of them in there, and they'll
have a mighty good chance to get in a shot or two.