"Oh, Lawd!" thought Jos; "another o' them 'saint' fellers! I allow not, Senor," he said, relapsing into Tennesseean. "It wur Tom Wurmsee led me; I wuz gwine ter move his truck fur him this arternoon."
"Take me home with you to your house," said Felipe, still trembling with excitement; "we cannot talk here in the street. I want to hear all you can tell me about them. I have been searching for them all over California."
Jos's face lighted up. This meant good fortune for that gentle, sweet Ramona, he was sure. "I'll take you straight there," he said; "but first I must stop at Tom's. He will be waiting for me."
The crowd dispersed, disappointed; cheated out of their anticipated scene of an arrest for horse-stealing. "Good for you, Tennessee!" and, "Fork over that black horse, Jos!" echoed from the departing groups. Sensations were not so common in San Bernardino that they could afford to slight so notable an occasion as this.
As Jos turned the corner into the street where he lived, he saw his mother coming at a rapid run towards them, her sun-bonnet half off her head, her spectacles pushed up in her hair.
"Why, thar's mammy!" he exclaimed. "What ever hez gone wrong naow?"
Before he finished speaking, she saw the black horses, and snatching her bonnet from her head waved it wildly, crying, "Yeow Jos! Jos, hyar! Stop! I wuz er comin' ter hunt yer!"
Breathlessly she continued talking, her words half lost in the sound of the wheels. Apparently she did not see the stranger sitting by Jos's side. "Oh, Jos, thar's the terriblest news come! Thet Injun Alessandro's got killed; murdered; jest murdered, I say; 'tain't no less. Thar wuz an Injun come down from ther mounting with a letter to the Agent."