"Lucy's outside. Maybe ye'd better let her take ye home!"
"Oh, ask her to come in," she cried, feeling the need of a woman perhaps more than at any time in her life, and now fearful of another sort of tragedy. She was not sure of how much this newcomer had seen, but his look at Tusk was eloquent of one thing: that if these men were left alone the building would receive its first stain of human blood. She wanted to spare her schoolhouse this. It was her boast that no life should go out by violence beneath its roof: for it had long been a recognized custom in wilder regions of this country for men to choose the wayside schools, the scattered churches or crossroads stores as places from which to usher obtrusive neighbors into eternal rest.
"Wall, she can't do that," the newcomer thoughtfully replied, "seein' as how she's my ole mare. But ye mought take her 'n' go home. Me 'n' this feller'll watch yo' school!"
Looking from one to the other, weighing the chances of outwitt