Shoe-Bar Stratton - Chapter 35
文章來源:未知 文章作者:enread 發布時間:2021-02-24 07:34 字體: [ ]  進入論壇
Vaguely1, as of a sound coming from far distances, the crack of a revolver-shot penetrated2 to the girl's numbed3 brain. It did not surprise her. Indeed, it roused only a feeling of the mildest curiosity in one whose nerves had been strained almost to the breaking-point. When Lynch, with a hoarse4 cry, toppled back against her, she merely stepped quickly to one side, and an instant later she was on her knees beside Stratton.
"Buck5!" she sobbed6. "Oh, Buck!" clutching at him as if from some wild fear that he would topple into the abyss.
Hands suddenly put her gently to one side, and some one dragged Stratton from his dangerous position and supported him against an upraised knee. It was Bud Jessup, and behind him loomed7 the figures of Sheriff Hardenberg and several of his men.
Mary's glance noted8 them briefly9, incuriously, returning anxiously to the man beside her. His eyes were open now, and he was sucking in the air in deep, panting gulps10.
"How yuh feelin'?" asked Bud briefly.
"All right--get my breath," mumbled11 Buck.
"Yuh hurt any place?" Jessup continued, after a brief pause.
"Not to speak of," returned Stratton in a stronger tone. "When I first jumped for the cuss, I hit my head the devil of a crack, and--pretty near went out. But that don't matter--now."
His eyes sought the girl's and dwelt there, longingly12, caressingly13. There was tribute in their depths, appreciation14, and something stronger, more abiding15 which brought a faint flush into her tired face and made her heart beat faster. Presently, when he staggered to his feet and took a step or two toward her, she felt no shame in meeting him half way. Quite as naturally as his arm slipped around her shoulders, her lifted hands rested against the front of his flannel16 shirt, torn into ribbons and stained with grime.
"For a little one," he murmured, looking down into her eyes, "you're some spunky fighter, believe me!"
She flushed deeper and her lids drooped18. Of a sudden Sheriff Hardenberg spoke19 up briskly:
"That was a right nice shot, kid. You got him good."
He was standing20 beside the body sprawling21 on the ground, and the words had scarcely left his lips when Lynch's eyes opened slowly.
"Yes--yuh got me," he mumbled.
Slowly his glance swept the circle of faces until it rested finally on the man and girl standing close together. For a long moment he stared at them silently, his pale lips twitching22. Then all at once a look of cunning satisfaction swept the baffled fury from his smoldering23 eyes.
"Yuh got me," he repeated in a stronger voice. "Looks like yuh got her, too. Maybe yuh think you've gobbled up the ranch24, likewise, an'--an' everything. That's where yuh get stung."
He fell to coughing suddenly, and for a few minutes his great body was racked with violent paroxysms that brought a bright crimson25 stain to the sleeve he flung across his mouth. But all the while his eyes, full of strange venomous triumph, never once left Stratton's face.
"Yuh see," he choked out finally, "the ranch--ain't--hers."
He paused, speechless; and Mary, looking down on him, felt merely that his brain was wandering and found room in her heart to be a little sorry.
"Why ain't it hers?" demanded Bud with youthful impetuosity. "Her father left it to her, an'--"
"It wasn't his to--to leave. He stole it." Lynch's voice was weaker, but his eyes still glowed with hateful triumph. "He forged the deed--from--from papers--Stratton left with him--when he went--to war." He moistened his dry lips with his tongue. "When Stratton was--killed--he didn't leave--no kin--to make trouble, an' Thorne--took a chance."
His voice faltered26, ceased. Mary stared at him dumbly, a slow, oppressive dread27 creeping into her heart. Little forgotten things flashed back into her mind. Her father's financial reverses, his reticence28 about the acquisition of the Shoe-Bar, the strange hold Lynch had seemed to have on him, rose up to torment29 her. Suddenly she glanced quickly at Buck for reassurance30.
"It isn't so!" she cried. "It can't be. My father--"
Slowly the words died on her lips. There was love, tenderness, pity in the man's eyes, but no--denial!
"Ain't it, though?" Lynch spoke in a labored31 whisper; his eyes were glazing32. "Yuh thinks--I'm--loco. I--ain't. It's--gospel truth. Yuh find Quinlan, the--the witness. No, Quinlan's dead. It's--it's--Kaylor. Kaylor got--got-- What was I sayin'." He plucked feebly at his chap-belt. "I know. Kaylor got--a clean thousand for--for swearin'--the signature--was--Stratton's. Yuh find Kaylor. Hardenberg ... thumbscrew ... the truth...."
The low, uneven33 whisper merged34 into a murmur17; then silence fell, broken only by the labored breathing of the dying man. Dazed, bewildered, conscious of a horrible conviction that he spoke the truth, Mary stood frozen, struggling against a wave of utter weariness and despair that surged over her. She felt the arm about her tighten35, but for some strange reason the realization36 brought her little comfort.
Suddenly Hardenberg broke the silence. He had been watching the girl, and could no longer bear the misery37 in her white, strained face.
"You think you've turned a smart trick, don't you?" he snapped with angry impulsiveness39. "As a matter of fact the ranch belongs to him already. The man you've known as Green is Buck Stratton himself."
Lynch's lids flashed up. "Yuh--lie!" he murmured. "Stratton's--dead!"
"Nothing like it," retorted the sheriff. "The papers got it wrong. He was only badly wounded. This fellow here is Buck Stratton, and he can prove it."
A spasm40 quivered over Lynch's face. He tried to speak, but only a faint gurgle came from his blood-flecked lips. Too late Hardenberg, catching41 an angry glance from Buck, realized and regretted his impulsive38 indiscretion. For Mary Thorne, turning slowly like a person in a dream, stared into the face of the man beside her, lips quivering and eyes full of a great horror.
"You!" she faltered, in a pitiful, small voice. "You--"
Stratton held her closer, a troubled tenderness sweeping42 the anger from his eyes.
"But--but, Mary--" he stammered--"what difference does--"
Suddenly her nerves snapped under the culminating strain of the past few hours.
"Difference!" she cried hysterically43. "Difference!" Her heart lay like a cold, dead thing within her; she felt utterly44 miserable45 and alone. "You--My father! Oh, God!"
She made a weak effort to escape from his embrace. Then, abruptly46, her slim, girlish figure grew limp, her head fell back against Stratton's shoulder, her eyes closed.


1 vaguely BfuzOy     
  • He had talked vaguely of going to work abroad.他含糊其詞地說了到國外工作的事。
  • He looked vaguely before him with unseeing eyes.他迷迷糊糊的望著前面,對一切都視而不見。
2 penetrated 61c8e5905df30b8828694a7dc4c3a3e0     
adj. 擊穿的,鞭辟入里的 動詞penetrate的過去式和過去分詞形式
  • The knife had penetrated his chest. 刀子刺入了他的胸膛。
  • They penetrated into territory where no man had ever gone before. 他們已進入先前沒人去過的地區。
3 numbed f49681fad452b31c559c5f54ee8220f4     
v.使麻木,使麻痹( numb的過去式和過去分詞 )
  • His mind has been numbed. 他已麻木不仁。 來自《簡明英漢詞典》
  • He was numbed with grief. 他因悲傷而昏迷了。 來自《現代英漢綜合大詞典》
4 hoarse 5dqzA     
  • He asked me a question in a hoarse voice.他用嘶啞的聲音問了我一個問題。
  • He was too excited and roared himself hoarse.他過于激動,嗓子都喊啞了。
5 buck ESky8     
  • The boy bent curiously to the skeleton of the buck.這個男孩好奇地彎下身去看鹿的骸骨。
  • The female deer attracts the buck with high-pitched sounds.雌鹿以尖聲吸引雄鹿。
6 sobbed 4a153e2bbe39eef90bf6a4beb2dba759     
哭泣,啜泣( sob的過去式和過去分詞 ); 哭訴,嗚咽地說
  • She sobbed out the story of her son's death. 她哭訴著她兒子的死。
  • She sobbed out the sad story of her son's death. 她哽咽著訴說她兒子死去的悲慘經過。
7 loomed 9423e616fe6b658c9a341ebc71833279     
v.隱約出現,陰森地逼近( loom的過去式和過去分詞 );隱約出現,陰森地逼近
  • A dark shape loomed up ahead of us. 一個黑糊糊的影子隱隱出現在我們的前面。
  • The prospect of war loomed large in everyone's mind. 戰事將起的龐大陰影占據每個人的心。 來自《簡明英漢詞典》
8 noted 5n4zXc     
  • The local hotel is noted for its good table.當地的那家酒店以餐食精美而著稱。
  • Jim is noted for arriving late for work.吉姆上班遲到出了名。
9 briefly 9Styo     
  • I want to touch briefly on another aspect of the problem.我想簡單地談一下這個問題的另一方面。
  • He was kidnapped and briefly detained by a terrorist group.他被一個恐怖組織綁架并短暫拘禁。
10 gulps e43037bffa62a52065f6c7f91e4ef158     
n.一大口(尤指液體)( gulp的名詞復數 )v.狼吞虎咽地吃,吞咽( gulp的第三人稱單數 );大口地吸(氣);哽住
  • He often gulps down a sob. 他經常忍氣吞聲地生活。 來自辭典例句
  • JERRY: Why don't you make a point with your own doctor? (George gulps) What's wrong? 杰瑞:你為啥不對你自個兒的醫生表明立場?有啥問題嗎? 來自互聯網
11 mumbled 3855fd60b1f055fa928ebec8bcf3f539     
含糊地說某事,嘰咕,咕噥( mumble的過去式和過去分詞 )
  • He mumbled something to me which I did not quite catch. 他對我嘰咕了幾句話,可我沒太聽清楚。
  • George mumbled incoherently to himself. 喬治語無倫次地喃喃自語。
12 longingly 2015a05d76baba3c9d884d5f144fac69     
adv. 渴望地 熱望地
  • He looked longingly at the food on the table. 他眼巴巴地盯著桌上的食物。
  • Over drinks,he speaks longingly of his trip to Latin America. 他帶著留戀的心情,一邊喝酒一邊敘述他的拉丁美洲之行。
13 caressingly 77d15bfb91cdfea4de0eee54a581136b     
  • His voice was caressingly sweet. 他的嗓音親切而又甜美。
14 appreciation Pv9zs     
  • I would like to express my appreciation and thanks to you all.我想對你們所有人表達我的感激和謝意。
  • I'll be sending them a donation in appreciation of their help.我將送給他們一筆捐款以感謝他們的幫助。
15 abiding uzMzxC     
  • He had an abiding love of the English countryside.他永遠熱愛英國的鄉村。
  • He has a genuine and abiding love of the craft.他對這門手藝有著真摯持久的熱愛。
16 flannel S7dyQ     
  • She always wears a grey flannel trousers.她總是穿一條灰色法蘭絨長褲。
  • She was looking luscious in a flannel shirt.她穿著法蘭絨裙子,看上去楚楚動人。
17 murmur EjtyD     
  • They paid the extra taxes without a murmur.他們毫無怨言地交了附加稅。
  • There was a low murmur of conversation in the hall.大廳里有竊竊私語聲。
18 drooped ebf637c3f860adcaaf9c11089a322fa5     
彎曲或下垂,發蔫( droop的過去式和過去分詞 )
  • Her eyelids drooped as if she were on the verge of sleep. 她眼瞼低垂好像快要睡著的樣子。
  • The flowers drooped in the heat of the sun. 花兒曬蔫了。
19 spoke XryyC     
n.(車輪的)輻條;輪輻;破壞某人的計劃;阻撓某人的行動 v.講,談(speak的過去式);說;演說;從某種觀點來說
  • They sourced the spoke nuts from our company.他們的輪輻螺帽是從我們公司獲得的。
  • The spokes of a wheel are the bars that connect the outer ring to the centre.輻條是輪子上連接外圈與中心的條棒。
20 standing 2hCzgo     
  • After the earthquake only a few houses were left standing.地震過后只有幾幢房屋還立著。
  • They're standing out against any change in the law.他們堅決反對對法律做任何修改。
21 sprawling 3ff3e560ffc2f12f222ef624d5807902     
adj.蔓生的,不規則地伸展的v.伸開四肢坐[躺]( sprawl的現在分詞 );蔓延;雜亂無序地拓展;四肢伸展坐著(或躺著)
  • He was sprawling in an armchair in front of the TV. 他伸開手腳坐在電視機前的一張扶手椅上。
  • a modern sprawling town 一座雜亂無序拓展的現代城鎮
22 twitching 97f99ba519862a2bc691c280cee4d4cf     
  • The child in a spasm kept twitching his arms and legs. 那個害痙攣的孩子四肢不斷地抽搐。 來自《現代漢英綜合大詞典》
  • My eyelids keep twitching all the time. 我眼皮老是跳。 來自《現代漢英綜合大詞典》
23 smoldering e8630fc937f347478071b5257ae5f3a3     
v.用文火燜燒,熏燒,慢燃( smolder的現在分詞 )
  • The mat was smoldering where the burning log had fallen. 燃燒的木棒落下的地方墊子慢慢燃燒起來。 來自辭典例句
  • The wood was smoldering in the fireplace. 木柴在壁爐中悶燒。 來自辭典例句
24 ranch dAUzk     
  • He went to work on a ranch.他去一個大農場干活。
  • The ranch is in the middle of a large plateau.該牧場位于一個遼闊高原的中部。
25 crimson AYwzH     
  • She went crimson with embarrassment.她羞得滿臉通紅。
  • Maple leaves have turned crimson.楓葉已經紅了。
26 faltered d034d50ce5a8004ff403ab402f79ec8d     
(嗓音)顫抖( falter的過去式和過去分詞 ); 支吾其詞; 蹣跚; 搖晃
  • He faltered out a few words. 他支吾地說出了幾句。
  • "Er - but he has such a longhead!" the man faltered. 他不好意思似的嚅囁著:“這孩子腦袋真長。”
27 dread Ekpz8     
  • We all dread to think what will happen if the company closes.我們都不敢去想一旦公司關門我們該怎么辦。
  • Her heart was relieved of its blankest dread.她極度恐懼的心理消除了。
28 reticence QWixF     
  • He breaks out of his normal reticence and tells me the whole story.他打破了平時一貫沈默寡言的習慣,把事情原原本本都告訴了我。
  • He always displays a certain reticence in discussing personal matters.他在談論個人問題時總顯得有些保留。
29 torment gJXzd     
  • He has never suffered the torment of rejection.他從未經受過遭人拒絕的痛苦。
  • Now nothing aggravates me more than when people torment each other.沒有什么東西比人們的互相折磨更使我憤怒。
30 reassurance LTJxV     
  • He drew reassurance from the enthusiastic applause.熱烈的掌聲使他獲得了信心。
  • Reassurance is especially critical when it comes to military activities.消除疑慮在軍事活動方面尤為關鍵。
31 labored zpGz8M     
adj.吃力的,謹慎的v.努力爭取(for)( labor的過去式和過去分詞 );苦干;詳細分析;(指引擎)緩慢而困難地運轉
  • I was close enough to the elk to hear its labored breathing. 我離那頭麋鹿非常近,能聽見它吃力的呼吸聲。 來自辭典例句
  • They have labored to complete the job. 他們努力完成這一工作。 來自辭典例句
32 glazing efbb002113a7b05827a36cd681ab6eb5     
n.玻璃裝配業;玻璃窗;上釉;上光v.裝玻璃( glaze的現在分詞 );上釉于,上光;(目光)變得呆滯無神
  • You should ensure against loss of heat by having double glazing. 你應裝雙層玻璃以免散熱。 來自《簡明英漢詞典》
  • You should ensure yourself against loss of heat by having double glazing. 你應該裝雙層玻璃防止熱量散失。 來自《簡明英漢詞典》
33 uneven akwwb     
  • The sidewalk is very uneven—be careful where you walk.這人行道凹凸不平—走路時請小心。
  • The country was noted for its uneven distribution of land resources.這個國家以土地資源分布不均勻出名。
34 merged d33b2d33223e1272c8bbe02180876e6f     
(使)混合( merge的過去式和過去分詞 ); 相融; 融入; 漸漸消失在某物中
  • Turf wars are inevitable when two departments are merged. 兩個部門合并時總免不了爭爭權限。
  • The small shops were merged into a large market. 那些小商店合并成為一個大商場。
35 tighten 9oYwI     
  • Turn the screw to the right to tighten it.向右轉動螺釘把它擰緊。
  • Some countries tighten monetary policy to avoid inflation.一些國家實行緊縮銀根的貨幣政策,以避免通貨膨脹。
36 realization nTwxS     
  • We shall gladly lend every effort in our power toward its realization.我們將樂意為它的實現而竭盡全力。
  • He came to the realization that he would never make a good teacher.他逐漸認識到自己永遠不會成為好老師。
37 misery G10yi     
  • Business depression usually causes misery among the working class.商業不景氣常使工薪階層受苦。
  • He has rescued me from the mire of misery.他把我從苦海里救了出來。
38 impulsive M9zxc     
  • She is impulsive in her actions.她的行為常出于沖動。
  • He was neither an impulsive nor an emotional man,but a very honest and sincere one.他不是個一沖動就魯莽行事的人,也不多愁善感.他為人十分正直、誠懇。
39 impulsiveness c241f05286967855b4dd778779272ed7     
  • Advancing years had toned down his rash impulsiveness.上了年紀以后,他那魯莽、容易沖動的性子好了一些。
  • There was some emotional lability and impulsiveness during the testing.在測試過程中,患者容易沖動,情緒有時不穩定。
40 spasm dFJzH     
  • When the spasm passed,it left him weak and sweating.一陣痙攣之后,他虛弱無力,一直冒汗。
  • He kicked the chair in a spasm of impatience.他突然變得不耐煩,一腳踢向椅子。
41 catching cwVztY     
  • There are those who think eczema is catching.有人就是認為濕疹會傳染。
  • Enthusiasm is very catching.熱情非常富有感染力。
42 sweeping ihCzZ4     
  • The citizens voted for sweeping reforms.公民投票支持全面的改革。
  • Can you hear the wind sweeping through the branches?你能聽到風掠過樹枝的聲音嗎?
43 hysterically 5q7zmQ     
ad. 歇斯底里地
  • The children giggled hysterically. 孩子們歇斯底里地傻笑。
  • She sobbed hysterically, and her thin body was shaken. 她歇斯底里地抽泣著,她瘦弱的身體哭得直顫抖。
44 utterly ZfpzM1     
  • Utterly devoted to the people,he gave his life in saving his patients.他忠于人民,把畢生精力用于挽救患者的生命。
  • I was utterly ravished by the way she smiled.她的微笑使我完全陶醉了。
45 miserable g18yk     
  • It was miserable of you to make fun of him.你取笑他,這是可恥的。
  • Her past life was miserable.她過去的生活很苦。
46 abruptly iINyJ     
  • He gestured abruptly for Virginia to get in the car.他粗魯地示意弗吉尼亞上車。
  • I was abruptly notified that a half-hour speech was expected of me.我突然被通知要講半個小時的話。
TAG標簽: face truth eyes