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Tharon of Lost Valley   By: (1879-1958)

Book cover

First Page:

[Illustration: AS EL REY ROSE ON HIS HIND FEET WHIRLING, THAT UNWAVERING MUZZLE WHIRLED ALSO TO KEEP IN LINE]

THARON OF LOST VALLEY

BY VINGIE E. ROE

Author of "The Maid of the Whispering Hills," "The Heart of Night Wind," etc.

ILLUSTRATIONS BY FRANK TENNEY JOHNSON

NEW YORK

DODD, MEAD AND COMPANY

1919

Copyright, 1919

By DODD, MEAD AND COMPANY, Inc.

CONTENTS

CHAPTER PAGE I. The Gun Man's Heritage 1 II. The Horses of the Finger Marks 29 III. The Man in Uniform 52 IV. Unbroken Bread 76 V. The Working of the Law 102 VI. El Rey and Bolt 128 VII. The Shot in the Cañons 157 VIII. White Ellen 187 IX. Signal Fires in the Valley 214 X. The Untrue Firing Pin 247 XI. Finger Mark and Ironwood at Last 277

ILLUSTRATIONS

PAGE

As El Rey rose on his hind feet whirling, that unwavering muzzle whirled also to keep in line Frontispiece

Near them sat a rider on a buckskin horse 38

She talked with Conford who rode beside her and now and then she smiled 104

In fact Courtrey, burning with the new desire that was beginning to obsess him, was working out a new design 131

THARON OF LOST VALLEY

CHAPTER I

THE GUN MAN'S HERITAGE

Lost Valley lay like a sparkling jewel, fashioned in perfection, cast in the breast of the illimitable mountain country and forever after forgotten of God.

A tiny world, arrogantly unconscious of any other, it lived its own life, went its own ways, had its own conceptions of law and they were based upon primeval instincts.

Cattle by the thousand head ran on its level ranges, riders jogged along its trail less expanses, their broad hats pulled over their eyes, their six guns at their hips. Corvan, its one town, ran its nightly games, lined its familiar streets with swinging doored saloons.

Toward the west the Cañon Country loomed behind its sharp faced cliffs, on the east the rolling ranges, dotted with oak and digger pine, went gradually up to the feet of the stupendous peaks that cut the sapphire skies.

Lost indeed, it was a paradise, a perfect place of peace but for its humans. Through it ran the Broken Bend, coming in from the high and jumbled rocklands at the north, going out along the sheer cliffs at the south.

Out of its ideal loneliness there were but two known ways, and both were worth a man's best effort. Down the river one might drive a band of cattle, bring in a loaded pack train, single file against the wall. That was a twelve days' trip. Up through the defiles at the west a man on foot might make it out, provided he knew each inch of the Secret Way that scaled False Ridge.

It was spring, the time of greening ranges and the coming of new calves. Soft winds dipped and wantoned with Lost Valley, in the Cañon Country shy flowers, waxen, heavy headed on thin stems, clung to the rugged walls.

All day the sun had shone, mild as a lover, coaxing, promising. The very wine of life was a pulse in the air.

All day Tharon Last had sung about her work scouring the boards of the kitchen floor until they were soft and white as flax, helping old Anita with the dinner for the men, seeing about the number of new palings for the garden. She had swept every inch of the deep adobe house, had fixed over the arrangement of Indian baskets on the mantel, had filled all the lamps with coal oil... Continue reading book >>




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