PART II. The Country of the Saints.
1. CHAPTER I. ON THE GREAT ALKALI PLAIN.
"Pretty things! fine things!" cried the little girl
enthusiastically, holding up two glittering fragments of mica.
"When we goes back to home I'll give them to brother Bob."
"You'll see prettier things than them soon," said the man
confidently. "You just wait a bit. I was going to tell you
though -- you remember when we left the river?"
"Well, we reckoned we'd strike another river soon, d'ye see.
But there was somethin' wrong; compasses, or map, or somethin',
and it didn't turn up. Water ran out. Just except a little
drop for the likes of you and -- and ----"
"And you couldn't wash yourself," interrupted his companion
gravely, staring up at his grimy visage.
"No, nor drink. And Mr. Bender, he was the fust to go,
and then Indian Pete, and then Mrs. McGregor, and then
Johnny Hones, and then, dearie, your mother."
"Then mother's a deader too," cried the little girl dropping
her face in her pinafore and sobbing bitterly.
"Yes, they all went except you and me. Then I thought there
was some chance of water in this direction, so I heaved you
over my shoulder and we tramped it together. It don't seem
as though we've improved matters. There's an almighty small
chance for us now!"
"Do you mean that we are going to die too?" asked the child,
checking her sobs, and raising her tear-stained face.
"I guess that's about the size of it."
"Why didn't you say so before?" she said, laughing gleefully.
"You gave me such a fright. Why, of course, now as long as
we die we'll be with mother again."
"Yes, you will, dearie."