Adventures of Buffalo Bill from Boyhood to Manhood

CHAPTER XVI.
A RIDE FOR LIFE.

ONE day, after Buffalo Billy had been a few months Pony Riding, a party of Indians ambushed him near Horse Creek.

He however, as did his horse, miraculously escaped their foes, dashed through them and went on like the wind.

But the redskins gave hot chase, firing as they ran, yet still without effect.

Billy was well mounted and had not felt fear of them until he saw two of the Indians rapidly drawing ahead of the other, and gaining upon him.

He urged his horse on at full speed with lash and spur, but still the red-skins gained.

Then he saw that they too were splendidly mounted, not on ponies, but large American horses which they had doubtlessly captured from the cavalry.

Nearer and nearer came the Indians, and on Billy pressed at full speed.

Throwing a glance over his shoulder be saw that one of the red- skins, whose feathers proved him to be a chief, was gaining on his comrade, and yet seemed not to be urging the large roan he rode.

"I want that horse, and I want that Injun," muttered Billy, and he quietly took his revolver from his belt.

Nearer and nearer came the chief, and Billy felt his own horse wavering, and knew he was forced beyond his powers of endurance, and fearing he might fail with him, determined to act at once.

Dragging the animal he rode to a sudden halt, and reining him back upon his haunches, he suddenly wheeled in his saddle and fired.

The Indian saw his sudden and unexpected movement, and was taken so wholly off his guard that he had no time to fire, and ere he could raise his pistol, a bullet went crashing through his brain.

He fell back on his horse, that dashed straight on, and was then thrown to the ground, while the rein of the animal was seized by Billy with a force that checked his mad flight.

It was an easy thing for the Pony Rider to spring upon the back of the roan and get away; but he would not give up his own saddle and the mail bags which were attached to it, and, dismounting, he was hastily making the transfer from his own to the red skin's up dashed the second Indian, and firing as he came, sent a bullet through the cap of the youth, knocking it from his head.

The two horses he held began to both pull back in alarm, and for an instant things looked very dismal for the brave Pony Rider; but a second shot from the warrior missed the boy and killed his horse, and this relieved him of that trouble, and instantly he draw his revolver and fired.

Down from his horse fell the red-skin, but only wounded, and as he still clutched his pistol, Billy was forced to give him another shot, which quieted him forever, just as the baud of Indians came in sight.

But the presence of mind for which he was noted did not desert the Pony Rider, and he quickly cut loose his saddle from his dead horse, sprung with it in his hand upon the back of the roan and dashed away once more just as the shots of his foes began to patter around him.

The Indians, however, kept the chase up, and Billy dashed up to the station to find that the stock-tender lay dead and scalped in front of his cabin and the stock had been driven off.

But without an instant's delay the Pony Rider urged the splendid roan he had captured on once more and arrived in safety at Plontz Station ahead of time, and made known what had happened back on the overland trail, and added new laurels to his name.

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