ere advanced, keeping vigilant watch. El Mochuelo exchanged a few words with Paco and the Tuerto, and then turned to Herrera.
"We are now," said the guerilla, "within a short league of the convent. It is in the valley beyond the mountains in our front. But we are also within less than an hour of daybreak, and if we execute the surprise now, our return to Pampeluna will be scarcely possible. The country in our rear swarms with Carlists; the first shot will bring overpowering numbers against us, and we shall be cut off. Our march has been rapid and fatiguing, and we shall have little chance of escape from fresh and unwearied troops. Hazardous as it may appear to you, Captain Herrera, I have decided to pass the day in the neighbourhood of this spot, and to defer our visit to the convent till nightfall. Under cover of the darkness, and guided by these men," he pointed to Paco and the old sergeant, "our retreat will be comparatively easy, even should the enemy get the alarm, which, as we have no resistance
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