Previously: Not finding any highwaymen on their sweep troubled all.
Then again—it IS a big desert.
They rode at a leisurely pace and spread-out a little more than they usually ride, and quieter—with no singing.
Meanwhile—at the mine-site…
Eight riders emerged from hiding in the mine and set-out to do what highwaymen do.
What we don’t know, GENTLE READER, is which way they are heading (don’t let the illustration fool you)…
Chapter 8—Fort Justice—Episode 8…On a high-point overlooking the trail…
They picked their location well and were watching and waiting. They could see for miles in both directions and were nearly invisible from the trail.
Although the day started out cool the heat seemed to increase by the minute—but they seemed not to notice—years on the desert accounted for that.
They were patient—years as highwaymen accounted for that. They frequently let potential victims pass; they were successful because they picked their quarry carefully and seldom engaged heavily armed travelers unless the financial reward made it worth the risk.
Caleb Smith and his long-time partner, Carson James had been at this since the war, and were quite well-off as a testament to their skill in selecting targets.
If you remember, GENTLE READER, our heroes were ambushed a few episodes ago—the men who ambushed them were never found.
For good reason—Smith, James, and company took care of that—all were now buzzard-bait. Or they would be if they hadn’t been buried where they fell.
Smith and James were not about to leave any evidence behind.
The mine was not their only hideout; there were four others. Each well-equipped with provisions.
There is still more about these two men—both are respectable, wealthy citizens of Loco Nevada who owned a very-successful silver mine.
Why, exactly, are they outlaws?
To be continued…