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He was the first Horseman to die. Victor was the commander of the Ultranationalist military forces on the ground in Russia. He committed suicide before he could be captured in the sixteenth mission, The Sins of the Father. He was the second Horseman to die. He was thought to be dead 15 years before the main events of the game, having been shot by Lieutenant Price and Captain MacMillan during an assassination attempt in Pripyat, Ukraine.

He was the third Horseman to die. Sign In Don't have an account? Start a Wiki. Repelling the audacious hand, Marguerite spoke tran- quilly of her existence during the last months. You know that I am now living with mama, and mama is a lady of the old regime who does not understand our tastes. I have been to the theatres with my brother. I have made many calls on the lawyer in order to learn the progress of my divorce and hurry it along. Do you want to?

I pity the poor man! So good The lawyer assures me that he agrees to everything and will not impose any obstacles. They tell me that he does not come to Paris, that he lives in his factory. Our old home is closed. There are times when I feel remorseful over the way I have treated him. It is cruel but it is human. We have to live our lives without taking others into consideration. It is necessary to be selfish in order to be happy. The remembrance of the husband had swept across them like a glacial blast. Julio was the first to brighten up. The very idea, a woman in divorce proceedings!

I have not been to a single chic party since you went away. I wanted to preserve a certain de- corous mourning fiesta. How horrible it was! It needed you, the Master! Memories of the previous months were passing before their eyes, visions of their life from five to seven in the afternoon, dancing in the hotels of the Champs Elysees where the tango had been inexorably associated with a cup of tea. THE TRYST 31 She appeared to tear herself away from these recollec- tions, impelled by a tenacious obsession which had slipped from her mind in the first moments of their meeting.

Tell me all. People talk so much. Do you really believe that there will be war? Don't you think that it will all end in some kind of settlement? He did not believe in the possibility of a war. That was ridicu- lous. Ours is not the epoch of savages. I have known some Germans, chic and well-educated per- sons who surely must think exactly as we do. An old professor who comes to the house was explaining yes- terday to mama that wars are no longer possible in these progressive times. In two months' time, there would scarcely be any men left, in three, the world would find itself without money to continue the struggle.

I do not recall exactly how it was, but he explained it all very clearly, in a manner most delightful to hear. Society life paralyzed.

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No more parties, nor clothes, nor theatres! Why, it is even possible that they might not design any more fashions! All the women in mourning. Can you imagine it? And Paris deserted. How beautiful it seemed as I came to meet you this after- noon! No, no, it cannot be! Next month, you know, we go to Vichy. Mama needs the waters. Then to iJiarritz. After that, I shall go to a castle on the Loire. And besides there are our affairs, my divorce, our marriage which may take place the next year.

No, no, it is not possible. My brother and others like him are fool- ish enough to dream of danger from Germany. I am sure that my husband, too, who is only interested in seri- ous and bothersome matters, is among those who believe that war is imminent and prepare to take part in it. What nonsense! Tell me that it is all nonsense. I need to hear you say it. The possibility of their approaching marriage brought to mind the object of the voyage which Desnoyers had just made. There had not been time for them to write to each other during their brief separation.

The joy of seeing you made me forget all about such things. In his purse he had a check for that amount. Later on, they would send him further remittances. A ranchman in Argentina, a sort of relative, was looking after his affairs. Marguerite appeared satisfied, and in spite of her frivolity, adopted the air of a serious woman. With your four hun- dred thousand and what I have, we shall be able to get along.

I told you that my husband wishes to give me back my dowry. He has told my brother so. But the state of his business, and the increased size of his factory do not permit him to return it as quickly as he would like. If he only were not so commonplace! Have you seen them? Desnoyers had been to his father's home before start- ing for the ChapeUe Exp-iatoire. A stealthy entrance into the great house on the avenue Victor Hugo, and then up to the first floor like a tradesman. Then he had slipt into the kitchen like a soldier sweetheart of the maids.

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His mother had come there to embrace him, poor Doiia Luisa, weeping and kissing him frantically as though she had feared to lose him forever. Close behind her mother had come Luisita, nicknamed Chichi, who always surveyed him with sympathetic curiosity as if she wished to know better a brother so bad and adorable who had led decent women from the paths of virtue, and com- mitted all kinds of follies. Then Desnoyers had been greatly surprised to see entering the kitchen with the air of a tragedy queen, a noble mother of the drama, his Aunt Elena, the one who had married a German and was living in Berlin surrounded with innumerable chil- dren.

She is going to make a little visit to our castle. And his Aunt Elena had stationed herself at the door with a dramatic air, like a stage heroine re- solved to plunge a dagger into the tyrant who should dare to cross the threshold. Marguerite also spoke of Senor Desnoyers. A terrible tyrant of the old school with whom they could never come to an understanding. The two remained silent, looking fixedly at each other. Now that they had said the things of greatest urgency, present interests became more absorbing.

More immedi- ate things, unspoken, seemed to well up in their timid and vacillating eyes, before escaping in the form of words. They did not dare to talk like lovers here. Every minute the cloud of witnesses seemed increasing around them. The woman with the dogs and the red wig was passing with greater frequency, shortening her turns through the square in order to greet them with a smile of complicity. The reader of the daily paper was now exchanging views with a friend on a neighboring bench regarding the possi- bilities of war.

The garden had become a thoroughfare. The modistes upon going out from their establishments, and the ladies returning from shopping, were crossing through the square in order to shorten their walk. The little avenue was a popular short-cut. Besides, some of her personal friends who had met her in the crowded shops but an hour ago might be returning home by way of the garden.

Go away? Paris had become a shrunken place for them nowadays because Marguerite refused to go to a single place where there was a possibiHty of their being surprised. In another square, in a restaurant, wherever they might go — they would run the same risk of being recognized. She would only consider meetings in public places, and yet at the same time, dreaded the curiosity of the people. If Marguerite would like to go to his studio of such sweet memories! Where could they be more comfortable? Besides, weren't they going to marry as soon as possible? What a complication for my divorce if he should surprise us in your house!

The engineer had accepted the facts, consider- ing them irreparable and was now thinking only of reconstructing his life. You will hunt a more favorable place. Think it over, and you will find a solution for it all. They had abandoned their seats, going slowly toward the rue des Mathurins.

Julio was speaking with a trembling and persuasive eloquence. No, now. They had only to call a taxicab. They would believe that no time had elapsed since their first meetings. How ashamed I would be to meet him again! How could that com- rade who knew all about their past be an obstacle? If they should happen to meet him in the house, he would be sure to leave immediately. More than once, he had had to go out so as not to be in the way. His discre- tion was such that he had foreseen events. Probably he had already left, conjecturing that a near visit would be the most logical thing.

His chum would simply go wandering through the streets in search of news. Marguerite was silent, as though yielding on seeing her pretexts exhausted. Desnoyers was silent, too, con- struing her stillness as assent. They had left the gar- den and she was looking around uneasily, terrified to find herself in the open street beside her lover, and seeking a hiding-place. Suddenly she saw before her the little red door of an automobile, opened by the hand of her adorer. And she climbed in hastily, anxious to hide herself as soon as possible.

The vehicle started at great speed. Do you believe that we will be able to marry? Tel] me again. I want you to encourage me. The mason wished to make an architect of his son, and Marcelo was in the midst of his preparatory studies when his father suddenly died, leaving his affairs greatly involved. In a few months, he and his mother descended the slopes of ruin, and were obliged to give up their snug, middle- class quarters and live like laborers. When the fourteen-year-old boy had to choose a trade, he learned wood carving.

This craft was an art related to the tastes awakened in Marcelo by his abandoned studies. His mother retired to the country, living with some relatives while the lad advanced rapidly in the shops, aiding his master in all the important orders which he received from the provinces. The first news of the war with Prussia surprised him in Marseilles, working on the decorations of a theatre.

Marcelo was opposed to the Empire like all the youths of his generation. He was also much influenced by the older workmen who had taken part in the Republic of '48, and who still retained vivid recollections of the Coup d'Etat of the second of December. A long-haired, consump- tive scudent was carrying the flag. Scarcely had the friends of peace entered the rue Cannehiere with their hymn and standard, when war came to meet them, obliging them to resort to fist and club.

The day before, some battalions of Zouaves from Algiers had disembarked in order to reinforce the army on the frontier, and these veterans, accustomed to co- lonial existence and undiscriminating as to the cause of disturbances, seized the opportunity to intervene in this manifestation, some with bayonets and others with un- girded belts. Marcelo saw the innocent student, the standard-bearer of peace, knocked down wrapped in his flag, by the merry kicks of the Zouaves. Then he knew no more, since he had received various blows with a leather strap, and a knife thrust in his shoulder; he had to run the same as the others.

That day developed for the first time, his fiery, stub- born character, irritable before contradiction, even to the point of adopting the most extreme resolution. The Emperor might arrange his affairs as best he could. If he stayed, he would in a few months be drawn for the soldiery. Desnoyers renounced the honor of serving the Emperor. He hesi- tated a little when he thought of his mother. But his country relatives would not turn her out, and he planned to work YQvy hard and send her money.

Who knew what riches might be waiting for him, on the other side of the sea! Good-bye, France! Thanks to his savings, a harbor official found it to his interest to offer him the choice of three boats. One was sailing to Egypt, another to Australia, another to Mon- tevideo and Buenos Aires, which made the strongest ap- peal to him?

But that day the wind blew from the sea toward France. He also wished to toss up a coin in order to test his fate. Finally he decided upon the vessel sailing first. And he accepted these words with a fataU istic shrug. The millionaire Desnoyers never forgot that trip to America — forty-three days navigating in a little worn- out steamer that rattled like a heap of old iron, groaned in all its joints at the slightest roughness of the sea, and had to stop four times for repairs, at the mercy of the winds and waves. He felt a little ashamed when he heard that the nation was now self-governing, defending itself gal- lantly behind the walls of Paris.

And he had fled! Months afterwards, the events of the Commune consoled him for his flight. If he had remained, wTath at the national downfall, his relations with his co-laborers, the air in which he lived — everything would surely have dragged him along to revolt. In that case, he would have been shot or consigned to a colonial prison like so many of his former comrades. So his determination crystallized, and he stopped think- ing about the affairs of his mother- country.

The neces- sities of existence in a foreign land whose language he was beginning to pick up made him think only of him- self. The turbulent and adventurous life of these new nations compelled him to most absurd expedients and varied occupations. Yet he felt himself strong with an audacity and self-reHance which he never had in the old world. In Buenos Aires, he again worked as a woodcarver. The city was beginning to expand, breaking its shell as a large village. Desnoyers spent many years ornament- ing salons and fagades. It was a laborious existence, sedentary and remunerative.

But one day he became tired of this slow saving which could only bring him a mediocre fortune after a long time. He had gone to the new world to become rich like so many others. He worked farms in the forests of the North, but the locusts obliterated his crops in a few hours. He was a cattle-driver, with the aid of only two peons, driving a herd of oxen and mules over the snowy solitudes of the Andes to Bolivia and Chile. In this life, making journeys of many months' duration, across interminable plains, he lost ex- act account of time and space.

Just as he thought him- self on the verge of winning a fortune, he lost it all by an unfortunate speculation. And in a moment of failure and despair, being now thirty years old, he be- came an employee of Julio Madariaga. He knew of this rustic millionaire through his pur- chases of flocks — a Spaniard who had come to the coun- try when very young, adapting himself very easily to its customs, and living like a cowboy after he had ac- quired enormous properties. The country folk, wishing to put a title of respect before his name, called him Don Madariaga.

Your lack of silver may be smelled a long ways off. Why lead such a dog's life? Trust in me, Frenchy, and remain here! I am growing old, and I need a man. Nobody can get along with Don Madariaga. We have lost count of his overseers. He is a man who must be killed or deserted. Soon you will go, too! That is the way I like a man. The family consisted of his wife Misia Petrona whom he always called the China and two grown daughters who had gone to school in Buenos Aires, but on return- ing to the ranch had reverted somewhat to their orig- inal rusticity.

Madariaga's fortune was enormous. He had lived in the field since his arrival in America, when the white race had not dared to settle outside the towns for fear of the Indians. He had gained his first money as a fearless trader, taking merchandise in a cart from fort to fort. He had killed Indians, was twice wounded by them, and for a while had lived as a captive with an Indian chief whom he finally succeeded in making hh staunch friend.

With his earnings, he had bought land, much land, almost worthless because of its insecurity, devoting it to the raising of cattle that he had to defend, gun in hand, from the pirates of the plains. Then he had married his China, a young half-breed who was running around barefoot, but owned many of her forefather's fields. They had lived in an almost savage poverty on their property which would have taken manv a day's journey to go around.

Afterwards, wher th. To get posses- sion of vast tracts and populate it with blooded stock became the mission of his life. At times, galloping with Desnoyers through his boundless fields, he was not able to repress his pride. They say that further up the country, there are some nations about the size of my ranches. Is that so? The Frenchman agreed. The lands of Madariaga were indeed greater than many principalities. Just imagine it, Frenchy; — Don Madariaga, the First.

The worst of it all is that I would also be the last, for the China will not give me a son. She is a weak cow! Every one knew of Madariaga by name, although very few had seen him. When he went to the Capital, he passed unnoticed be- cause of his country aspect — the same leggings that he was used to wearing in the fields, his poncho wrapped around him like a muffler above which rose the aggres- sive points of a necktie, a tormenting ornament imposed hy his daughters, who in vain arranged it with loving hands that he might look a little more respectable.

One day he entered the ofiice of the richest merchant of the capital. He might explain his errand to one of the em- ployees, he could not waste his time on such small mat- ters. But the malicious grin on the rustic's face awoke his curiosity. The supercilious merchant sprang from his desk, and obsequiously of- fered him a seat. That was the most glorious moment of his existence. In the outer office of the Directors of the Bank, the clerks offered him a seat until the personage the other side of the door should deign to receive him. But scarcely was his name announced than that same di- rector ran to admit him, and the employee was stupe- fied to hear the ranchman say, by way of greeting, "I have come to draw out three hundred thousand dol- lars.

I have abundant pasturage, and I wish to buy a ranch or two in order to stock them. No vagabond ever passed by the ranch without being rudely assailed by its owner from tlie outset. But no more of your yams! Everybody was robbing him! The following day he spoke of a large sum of money that he would have to pay for having endorsed the note of an acquaintance, completely bankrupt.

His luck is worse than mine! It was not because of the loss of the meat. But they might at least have left the skin! And he would rage against such wickedness, al- ways repeating, "Lack of religion and good habits! He was ca- pricious, despotic and with the same paternal instincts as his compatriots who, centuries before when conquer- ing the new world, had clarified its native blood.

Like the Castilian conquistadors, he had a fancy for copper- colored beauty with oblique eyes and straight hair. When Desnoyers saw him going ofif on some sudden pretext, putting his horse at full gallop toward a neighboring ranch, he would say to himself, smilingly, "He is going in search ot a new peon who will help work his land fifteen years from now. Almost every year, some woman from a great dis- tance, dirty and bad-faced, presented herself at the ranch, leading by the hand a little mongrel with eyes like live coals. She would ask to speak with the pro- prietor alone, and upon being confronted with her, he usually recalled a trip made ten or twelve years before in order to buy a herd of cattle.

Patron, that you passed the night on my ranch because the river had risen? It is better for him to grow to manhood by your side than in any other place. One more, and offered with such simplicity! Why must it neces- sarily be his? But his wavering was generally short-lived. In time there would be a bit of land and a good flock of sheep for the urchin. These adoptions at first aroused in Misia Petrona a little rebellion — the only ones of her life; but the cen- taur soon reduced her to terrified silence.

A woman who has only given me daughters. You ought to be ashamed of yourself. It was supposed to be for his horse, but it was used with equal facility when any of his peons incurred his wrath. One day, the man receiving the blow, took a step backward, hunting for the knife in his belt. I was not bom in these parts. I come from Corrientes. Then you are right ; I cannot beat you. Here are five dollars for you. There were so many that confusion often reigned.

The Frenchman admired the Patron's expert eye for his business. It was enough for him to contemplate for a few moments a herd of cattle, to know its exact num- ber. He would go galloping along with an indifferent air, around an immense group of horned and stamping beasts, and then would suddenly begin to separate the different animals.

He had discovered that they were sick. With a buyer like Madariaga, all the tricks and sharp practice of the drovers came to naught. His serenity before trouble was also admirable. A drought suddenly strewed his plains with dead cattle, making the land seem like an abandoned battlefield. Everywhere great black hulks. In the air, great spirals of crows coming from leagues away. At other times, it was the cold; an unexpected drop in the thermometer would cover the ground with dead bodies. Ten thousand animals, fifteen thousand, perhaps more, all perished!

Now, the thing to do is to save the skins! Their bones whitened the earth like heaps of snow. The peon- citos little peons went around putting the skulls of cows with crumpled horns on the posts of the wire fences — a rustic decoration which suggested a procession of Grecian lyres. He loved to race around his immense fields when they were beginning to turn green in the late rains. He had been among the first to convert these virgin wastes into rich meadow-lands, supplementing the natural pasturage with alfalfa.

Where one beast had found sustenance be- fore, he now bad three. One morning Desnoyers saved his life.

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The old ranchman had raised his lash against a recently arrived peon who returned the attack, knife in hand. From this day I shall speak to you as I do to my family. Certain personal favors, nevertheless, immediately began to improve his position.


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He was no longer allowed to eat in the administration building, the proprietor insist- ing imperiously that henceforth Desnoyers should sit at his own table, and thus he was admitted into the in- timate life of the Madariaga family. She was used to rising in the middle of the night in order to oversee the breakfasts of the peons, the distribution of biscuit, and the boiling of the great black kettles of coffee or shrub tea.

She looked after the chattering and lazy maids who so easily managed to get lost in the nearby groves. In the kitchen, too, she made her authority felt like a regular house-mistress, but the minute that she heard her husband's voice she shrank into a respectful and timorous silence. Upon sitting down at table, the China would look at him with devoted submission, her great, round eyes fixed on him like an owl's. Desnoyers felt that in this mute admira- tion was mingled great astonishment at the energy with which the ranchman, already over seventy, was contin- uing to bring new occupants to live on his demesne.

The two daughters, Luisa and Elena, accepted with enthusiasm the new arrival who came to enliven the monotonous conversations in the dining room, so often cut short by their father's wrathful outbursts. Be- sides, he was from Paris. The girls had a parlor with a few handsome pieces of furniture placed against the cracked walls, and some showy lamps that were never lighted. The father, with his boorishness, often invad- ed this room so cherished and admired by the two sis- ters, making the carpets look shabby and faded under his muddy boot-tracks.

Upon the gilt centre-table, he loved to lay his lash. Samples of maize scattered its grains over a silk sofa which the young ladies tried to keep very choice, as though they feared it might break. Near the entrance to the dining room was a weighing machine, and Madariaga became furious when his daughters asked him to remove it to the offices.

He was not going to trouble himself to go outside every time that he wanted to know the weight of a leather skin! A piano came into the ranch, and Elena passed the hours practising exercises with desperate good will. She might at least play the Jota or the Pericdn, or some other lively Spanish dance! This younger daughter whom he dubbed La Roman- tica, was the special victim of his wrath and ridicule. Where had she picked up so many tastes which he and his good China never had had?

Music books were piled on the piano. In a corner of the absurd parlor were some wooden boxes that had held preserves, which the ranch carpenter had been made to press into service as a bookcase. Pure lies! Hot air! He would have to read its contents to him since he did not permit even his family to touch these records. And with his spectacles on the end of his nose, he would spell out the credentials of each ani- mal celebrity. He only lacked the power to talk. He's the one that's stuffed, near the door of the parlor. The girls wanted him thrown out. Just let them dare to touch him!

I'd chuck them out first! He had never been there, but he had used the cable in order to compete in pounds sterling with the British owners who wished to keep such valuable stock in their own country. Don't you think so, Frenchy? Luisa, the elder daughter, called Chicha, in the South American fashion, was much more respected by her father. He could not admit that the pale, modest girl with the great black eyes and smile of child- ish mischief bore the slightest resemblance to the re- spectable matron who had brought her into existence.

The great fiesta for Chicha was the Sunday mass. It represented a journey of three leagues to the nearest village, a weekly contact with people unlike those of the ranch. A carriage drawn by four horses took the senora and the two seiioritas in the latest suits and hats arrived, via Buenos Aires, from Europe. At the sug- gestion of Chicha, Desnoyers accompanied them in the capacity of driver. The father remained at home, taking advantage of this opportunity to survey his fields in their Sunday solitude, thus keeping a closer oversight on the shiftlessness of his hands. He was very religious — "Religion and good manners, you know.

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During the Sunday lunch the young ladies were apt to make comments upon the persons and merits of the young men of the village and neighboring ranches, who had lingered at the church door in order to chat with them. What those shameless fellows really want are the dollars of old Madariaga, and once they had them, they would probably give you a daily beating. They wanted to see Don Julio on the most absurd pretexts, and at the same time improved the opportunity to chat with Chicha and Luisa. At other times they were youths from Buenos Aires asking for a lodging at the ranch, as they were just passing by.

If he doesn't move on soon. I'll kick him out! This silence, of late, had persisted in an alarming manner, in spite of the fact that the ranch was no longer receiving visitors. Madariaga appeared abstracted, and all the family, including Desnoyers, respected and feared this taciturnity. He ate, scowling, with lowered head.

Suddenly he would raise his eyes, looking at Chicha, then at Desnoyers, finally fixing them upon his wife as though asking her to give an account of things. The only notice that he ever took of her was to give an ironical snort when he happened to see her leaning at sunset against the doorway, looking at the reddening glow — one elbow on the door frame and her cheek in her hand, in imitation of the posture of a certain white lady that she had seen in a chromo, awaiting the knight of her dreams.

Desnoyers had been five years in the house when one day he entered his master's private -office with the brusque air of a timid person who has suddenly reached a decision. What for? Bjt Desnoyers did not quail before the insults. He had often heard his Patron use these same words when holding somebody up to ridicule, or haggling with cer- tain cattle drovers. Do you suppose that I do not know why you are going? Do you sup- pose old Madariaga has not seen your languishing looks and those of my dead fly of a daughter, clasping each others' hands in the presence of poor China who is blind- ed in her judgment?

It's not such a bad stroke. By it, you would be able to get possession of half of the old Spaniard's dollars, and then say that you had made it in America. No, siree! Here no- body commands but old Madariaga, and I order you to stay. Ah, these women! They only serve to an- tagonize men. And yet we can't live without them! He took several turns up and down the room, as though his last words were making him think of some- thing very different from what he had just been saying. Desnoyers looked uneasily at the thong which was still hanging from his wrist.

Suppose he should attempt to whip him as he did the peons? Be careful what you say, for love is blind and deceitful. I, too, when I married my China was crazy about her. Do you love her, honestly and truly? Well then, take her, you devilish Frenchy. Somebody has to take her, and may she not turn out a weak cow like her mother! Let us have the ranch full of grandchildren! And as though he considered it necessary to explain his concession, he added — "I do all this because I like you ; and I like you because you are serious. At his wedding Desnoyers thought much of his mother.

If only the poor old woman could witness this extraor- dinary stroke of good fortune! But she had died the year before, believing her son enormously rich because he had been sending her sixty dollars every month, taken from the wages that he had earned on the ranch. Desnoyers' entrance into the family made his father- in-law pay less attention to business. City life, with all its untried enchantments and snares, now attracted Madariaga, and he began to speak with contempt of country women, poorly groomed and inspir- ing him with disgust.

He had given up his cowboy attire, and was displaying with childish satisfaction, the new suits in which a tailor of the Capital was trying to disguise him. When Elena wished to accompany him to Buenos Aires, he would wriggle out of it, trumping up some absorbing business. His fortune, managed by Desnoyers, was in good hands. Nobody can make a fool of him!

According to the spontaneous declaration of Madariaga, he had, from the very first day that he had dealings with Desnoyers, perceived in him a nature like his own, more hard and firm perhaps, but without splurges of eccentricities. Their only disagreements were about the expenses established by Madariaga during his regime. Since the son-in-law was managing the ranches, the work was costing less, and the people working more diligently; — and that, too, without yells, and without strong words and deeds, with only his presence and brief orders.

The old man was the only one defending the capri- cious system of a blow followed by a gift. He revolted against a minute and mechanical administration, always the same, without any arbitrary extravagance or good- natured tyranny. Very frequently some of the half- breed peons whom a malicious public supposed to be closely related to the ranchman, would present them- selves before Desnoyers with, "Senor Manager, the old Patron say that you are to give me five dollars. Ah, Frenchy, you are like all the rest of your countrymen? Once you get your claws on a penny, it goes into your stocking, and nevermore sees the light of day, even though they crucify you.

Did I say five dollars? Give him ten. I command it and that is enough. It was a good thing to have it well under- stood that the ranch still belonged to Madariaga, the Spaniard. This Karl Hartrott would assist him in the bookkeeping. Desnoyers accepted the situation, and in a few days felt increasing esteem for the new incumbent.

Although they belonged to two unfriendly nations, it didn't matter. There are good people everywhere, and this Karl was a subordinate worth considering. He kept his distance from his equals, and was hard and inflexible toward his inferiors. All his faculties seemed concen- trated in service and admiration for those above him. Scarcely would Madariaga open his lips before the Ger- man's head began nodding in agreement, anticipating his words. If he said anything funny, his clerk's laugh would break forth in scandalous roars.

With Desnoyers he appeared more taciturn, working without stopping for hours at a time. As soon as he saw the manager entering the office he would leap from his seat, holding himself erect with military precision. He was always ready to do anything whatever. Unasked, he spied on the workmen, reporting their carelessness and mistakes. This last service did not especially please his superior officer, but he appreciated it as a sign of interest in the establishment.

The old man bragged triumphantly of the new acqui- sition, urging his son-in-law also to rejoice. These gringoes from Germany work well, know a good many things and cost little. Then, too, so disciplined! I am sorry to praise him so to you because you are a Frenchy, and your nation has in them a very powerful enemy.

His people are a hard-shelled race. His country was far away, and so was Germany. Who knew if fhey would ever return! Who can compete with such people!

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You, Frenchy, you are like me, very serious, and would die of hunger before passing through certain things. But, mark my words, on this very account they are go- ing to become a terrible people! Just see how they treat those under them! He insists that he comes of a great family, but who knows anything about these gringoesf. All of us, dead with hunger when we reach America, claim to be sons of princes.

The Fourth Horseman: Part 2

He had also introduced him on an equal footing in his home, but only that he might give piano lessons to his younger daughter. The Romantica was no longer fram- ing herself in the doorway — in the gloaming watching the sunset reflections. At the end of the hour the German, accompanying himself on the piano, would sing fragments from Wagner in such a way that it put Madariaga to sleep in his armchair with his great Paraguay cigar sticking out of his mouth. Elena meanwhile was contemplating with increasing interest the singing gringo. He was not the knight of her dreams awaited by the fair lady.

He was almost a servant, a blond immigrant with reddish hair, fat, heavy, and with bovine eyes that reflected an eternal fear of disagreeing with his chiefs. He belongs to a great family. Othei things were vexing him in those days. But during the evening, feeling the necessity of venting on somebody the wrath which had been gnawing at his vitals since hi? He had carried a sword as a lieutenant. He would yield first place to the gringoes for the invention of machinery and ships, and for breeding priceless ani- mals, but all the Counts and Marquises of Gringo-land appeared to Mm to be fictitious characters.

If you had, you wouldn't come over here to play the gallant to women who are. What in the devil did you do in your own country that you had to leave it? How can you humiliate him so just because he is poor? It appeared that for some months past Mada- riaga had been the financial guarantor and devoted swain of a German prima donna stranded in South America with an Italian opera company. Madariaga had joyously expended upon this courtesan many thousands of dollars. The last adventure of his life! Desnoyers sus- pected his abdication upon hearing him admit his age, for the first time.

He did not intend to return to the capital. It was all false glitter. Existence in the coun- try, surrounded by all his family and doing good to the poor was the only sure thing. And the terrible centaur expressed himself with the idyllic tenderness and firm virtue of seventy-fi. After his scene with Karl, he had increased the Ger- man's salary, trying as usual, to counteract the effects of his violent outbreaks with generosity.

That glorious boast had brought to his mind the genealogical trees of the illustrious ancestry of his prize cattle. The German was a pedigreed fellow, and thenceforth he called him by that nickname. Seated on summer nights under the awning, he sur- veyed his family around him with a sort of patriarchal ecstasy. In the evening hush could be heard the buzzing of insects and the croaking of the frogs.

From the distant ranches floated the songs of the peons as they prepared their suppers. It was harvest time, and great bands of immigrants were encamped in the fields for the extra work. Madariaga had known many of the hard old days of wars and violence. Upon his arrival in South America, he had witnessed the last years of the tyranny of Rosas. He loved to enumerate the different provincial and na- tional revolutions in which he had taken part. But all this had disappeared and would never return. These were the times of peace, work and abundance. And yet we all live in peace.

In Europe, we would have probably been in a grand fight by this time, but here we are all friends. But I also believe that we live so peacefully because there is such abundance that everyone gets his share. How quickly we would spring to arms if the rations were less than the people! Men are taken for what they are worth, and mingle together without thinking whether they came from one country or another. Over here, fellows do not come in droves to kill othef fellows whom they do not know and whose only crime is that they were born in an unfriendly country.

Hur- rah for Peace, Frenchy, and the simple life! Where a man can live comfortably and runs no danger of be- ing killed for things he doesn't understand — there is his ifeal homeland! Ve sing of liberty, Wa'll ne'ew betray our fellow-man. A few days afterwards Desnoyers re- called bitterly the old man's illusion, for war — domestic war — broke loose in this idyllic stage-setting of ranch life. Madariaga was chasing Karl, knife in hand, stumbling over everything that blocked his way.

Only his son-in-law dared to stop him and disarm him. Let me go, I tell you! Let me loose that I may kill him. He had accepted the Frenchman as a husband for his daughter because he was to his liking, modest, honest. But this singing Pedigreed Fellow, with all his airs! He was a man that he had gotten from. And the Frenchman, though knowing perfectly well what his introduction to Karl had been, pretended not to understand him. As the German had, by this time, made good his es- cape, the ranchman consented to being pushed toward his house, talking all the time about giving a beating to the Romantica and another to the China for not having informed him of the courtship.

He had surprised his daughter and the Gringo holding hands and exchanging kisses in a grove near the house. Very firmly and with few words, Desnoyers brought the wrangling to an end. While her brother-in-law pro- tected her retreat, the Romantica, clinging to her mother, had taken refuge in the top of the house, sob- bing and moaning, "Oh, the poor little fellow! Every- body against him! Finding that he had not yet recovered from the shock of his terrible surprise, he gave him a horse, advising him to betake himself as quickly as pos- sible to the nearest railway station.

Although the German was soon far from the ranch, he did not long remain alone. In a few days, the Roman" tica followed him. Iseult of the white hands went in search of Tristan, the knight. This event did not cause Madariaga's desperation to break out as violently as his son-in-law had expected. For the first time, he saw him weep. His gay and re- bust old age had suddenly fallen from him, the news having clapped ten years on to his four score. Like a child, whimpering and tremulous, he threw his arms around Desnoyers, moistening his neck with tears.

That son of a great flea. It has all been because of m; very, very great sins. Karl gazed at him like a faithful hound trusting in his master. These trying interviews were repeated on all his trips. Some afternoons, he would have a horse saddled, going full gallop toward the neighboring village. But he was no longer hunting hospitable ranches. He need- ed to pass some time in the church, speaking alone with the images that were there only for him — since he had footed the bills for them.

Whenever he suggested legalizing the situation and making the necessary arrangements for their marriage, the old tyrant would not let him go on. One day the Frenchman approached him with a certain air of mystery. You see it, right here. That bandit has a son, while you, after four years of marriage.

I want a grandson! Suddenly China died. The poor Misia Petrona passed away as discreetly as she had lived, trying even in her last hours to avoid all annoyance for her husband, ask- ing his pardon with an imploring look for any trouble which her death might cause him. Elena came to the ranch in order to see her mother's body for the last time, and Desnoyers who for more than a year had been supporting them behind his father-in-law's back, took advantage of this occasion to overcome the old man's resentment.

She may remain on the ranch, and that shameless gringo may come with her. The Ger- man was to be an employee under Desnoyers, and they could live in the office building as though they did not belong to the family. He would never say a word to Karl. But scarcely had the German returned before he began giving him orders rudely as though he were a perfect stranger. At other times he would pass by him as though he did not know him.

Upon finding Elena in the house with his older daughter, he would go on with- out speaking to her. I prefer Celedonio's. After seven years of marriage, the wife of Desnoyers found that she, too, was going to become a mother. Her sister already had three sons. But what were they worth to Madariaga compared to the grandson that was going to come? It shall be named Julio, and I hope that it will look like my poor dead wife.

His desires were fulfilled. Luisa gave birth to a boy who bore the name of Julio, and although he did not show in his somewhat sketchy features any striking re- semblance to his grandmother, still he had the black hair and eyes and olive skin of a brunette. This was a grandson! In the generosity of his joy, he even permitted the German to enter the house for the baptismal ceremony. When Julio Desnoyers was two years old, his grand- father made the rounds of his estates, holding him on the saddle in front of him.

He went from ranch to ranch in order to show him to the copper-colored populace, like an ancient monarch presenting his heir. A certain mental failing- was beginning to be noticed in the old man. His mother had taught him that he was an Ar- gentinian, and his father had suggested that she c4so add Spanish, in order to please the grandfather. But his son-in-law pursued the even tenor of his way, shrugging his shoulders.

And he instantly held out his hand while his grand- father went through his pockets. Karl's sons, now four in number, used to circle around their grandparent like a humble chorus kept at a dis- tance, and stare enviously at these gifts. In order to win his favor, they one day when they saw him alone, came boldly up to him, shouting in unison, "Down with Napoleon! If you say that again, I'll chase you with a cat-o-nine tails. The very idea of insulting a great man in that way! And in order to pour the vials of his wrath out on someone, the old plainsman would hunt up Celedonio, the best of his listeners, who invariably re- plied, "Yes, Patron.

That's so, Patron. Besides, they are so like their father, so fair, with hair like a shredded carrot, and the two oldest wearing specs as if they were court clerks! They don't seem like folks with those glasses ; they look like sharks. By the time he was eight years old, Julio was a fa- mous little equestrian. The "peoncito," proud of his title, obeyed the master in everything, and so learned to whirl the lasso over the steers, leaving them bound and conquered.

Upon making his pony take a deep ditch or creep along the edge of the cliffs, he sometimes fell under his mount, but clambered up gamely. Desnoyers finally had to drag his son away from the baleful teachings of his grandfather. It was simply use- less to have masters come to the house, or to send Julio to the country school. So when the boy was eleven years old, his father placed him in a big school in the Capital.

The grandfather then turned his attention to Julio's three-year-old sister, exhibiting her before him as he had her brother, as he took her from ranch to ranch. She was dressed like a boy, rode astride like a man, and in order to win her grandfather's praises as "fine cowboy," carried a knife in the back of her belt. The two raced the fields from sun to sun, Madariaga following the flying pigtail of the little Amazon as though it were a flag.

When nine years old she, too, could lasso the cattle with much dex- terity. What most irritated the ranchman was that his family would remember his age. He received as insults his son-in-law's counsels to remain quietly at home, becom- ing more aggressive and reckless as he advanced in years, exaggerating his activity, as if he wished to drive Death away.

He accepted no help except from his harum-scarum "Peoncito. There's still enough life in me to make those who are waiting for me to die, so as to grab my dollars, chew their disappointment a long while yet! Karl, needing protection, constantly shadowed the Frenchman, improving every opportunity to overwhelm him with his eulogies.