Roughing It

“The time’s up, now, aint it?”

“No, you keep still. Do you want to take any chances with these bloody savages?”

Presently Mike said:

“Now the time’s up, anyway. I’m freezing.”

“Well freeze. Better freeze than carry your brains home in a basket. Maybe the time is up, but how do we know?—got no watch to tell by. I mean to give them good measure. I calculate to stand here fifteen minutes or die. Don’t you move.”

So, without knowing it, I was making one joker very sick of his contract. When we took our arms down at last, they were aching with cold and fatigue, and when we went sneaking off, the dread I was in that the time might not yet be up and that we would feel bullets in a moment, was not sufficient to draw all my attention from the misery that racked my stiffened body.

The joke of these highwayman friends of ours was

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