Schulers Books Online

books - games - software - wallpaper - everything

Bride.Ru

Books Menu

Home
Author Catalog
Title Catalog
Sectioned Catalog

 

- The Rainbow Trail - 1/57 -


This e-text was created by Doug Levy, _littera scripta manet_

Transcriber's note:

In the original text the words "canyon" and "pinyon" are spelled in the Spanish form, "canon" and "pinon", with tildes above the center "n"s. Since the plain text format precludes the use of tildes, I've changed these words to the more familiar spelling to make them easier to read. --D.L.

THE RAINBOW TRAIL, a Romance.

by ZANE GREY.

CONTENTS.

FOREWORD

CHAPTER.

I. RED LAKE.

II. THE SAGI.

III. KAYENTA.

IV. NEW FRIENDS.

V. ON THE TRAIL.

VI. IN THE HIDDEN VALLEY.

VII. SAGO-LILIES.

VIII. THE HOGAN OF NAS TA BEGA.

IX. IN THE DESERT CRUCIBLE.

X. STONEBRIDGE.

XI. AFTER THE TRIAL.

XII. THE REVELATION.

XIII. THE STORY OF SURPRISE VALLEY.

XIV. THE NAVAJO.

XV. WILD JUSTICE.

XVI. SURPRISE VALLEY.

XVII. THE TRAIL TO NONNEZOSHE.

XVIII. AT THE FOOT OF THE RAINBOW.

XIX. THE GRAND CANYON OF THE COLORADO.

XX. WILLOW SPRINGS.

EPILOGUE

FOREWORD

The spell of the desert comes back to me, as it always will come. I see the veils, like purple smoke, in the canyon, and I feel the silence. And it seems that again I must try to pierce both and to get at the strange wild life of the last American wilderness-- wild still, almost, as it ever was.

While this romance is an independent story, yet readers of "Riders of the Purple Sage" will find in it an answer to a question often asked.

I wish to say also this story has appeared serially in a different form in one of the monthly magazines under the title of "The Desert Crucible." ZANE GREY. June, 1915.

THE RAINBOW TRAIL

I. RED LAKE

Shefford halted his tired horse and gazed with slowly realizing eyes.

A league-long slope of sage rolled and billowed down to Red Lake, a dry red basin, denuded and glistening, a hollow in the desert, a lonely and desolate door to the vast, wild, and broken upland beyond.

All day Shefford had plodded onward with the clear horizon-line a thing unattainable; and for days before that he had ridden the wild bare flats and climbed the rocky desert benches. The great colored reaches and steps had led endlessly onward and upward through dim and deceiving distance.

A hundred miles of desert travel, with its mistakes and lessons and intimations, had not prepared him for what he now saw. He beheld what seemed a world that knew only magnitude. Wonder and awe fixed his gaze, and thought remained aloof. Then that dark and unknown northland flung a menace at him. An irresistible call had drawn him to this seamed and peaked border of Arizona, this broken battlemented wilderness of Utah upland; and at first sight they frowned upon him, as if to warn him not to search for what lay hidden beyond the ranges. But Shefford thrilled with both fear and exultation. That was the country which had been described to him. Far across the red valley, far beyond the ragged line of black mesa and yellow range, lay the wild canyon with its haunting secret.

Red Lake must be his Rubicon. Either he must enter the unknown to seek, to strive, to find, or turn back and fail and never know and be always haunted. A friend's strange story had prompted his singular journey; a beautiful rainbow with its mystery and promise had decided him. Once in his life he had answered a wild call to the kingdom of adventure within him, and once in his life he had been happy. But here in the horizon-wide face of that up-flung and cloven desert he grew cold; he faltered even while he felt more fatally drawn.

As if impelled Shefford started his horse down the sandy trail, but he checked his former far-reaching gaze. It was the month of April, and the waning sun lost heat and brightness. Long shadows crept down the slope ahead of him and the scant sage deepened its gray. He watched the lizards shoot like brown streaks across the sand, leaving their slender tracks; he heard the rustle of pack-rats as they darted into their brushy homes; the whir of a low-sailing hawk startled his horse.

Like ocean waves the slope rose and fell, its hollows choked with sand, its ridge-tops showing scantier growth of sage and grass and weed. The last ridge was a sand-dune, beautifully ribbed and scalloped and lined by the wind, and from its knife-sharp crest a thin wavering sheet of sand blew, almost like smoke. Shefford wondered why the sand looked red at a distance, for here it seemed almost white. It rippled everywhere, clean and glistening, always leading down.

Suddenly Shefford became aware of a house looming out of the bareness of the slope. It dominated that long white incline. Grim, lonely, forbidding, how strangely it harmonized with the surroundings! The structure was octagon-shaped, built of uncut stone, and resembled a fort. There was no door on the sides exposed to Shefford's gaze, but small apertures two-thirds the way up probably served as windows and port-holes. The roof appeared to be made of poles covered with red earth.

Like a huge cold rock on a wide plain this house stood there on the windy slope. It was an outpost of the trader Presbrey, of whom Shefford had heard at Flagstaff and Tuba. No living thing appeared in the limit of Shefford's vision. He gazed shudderingly at the unwelcoming habitation, at the dark eyelike windows, at the sweep of barren slope merging into the vast red valley, at the bold, bleak bluffs. Could any one live here? The nature of that sinister valley forbade a home there, and the, spirit of the place hovered in the silence and space. Shefford thought irresistibly of how his enemies would have consigned him to just such a hell. He thought bitterly and mockingly of the narrow congregation that had proved him a failure in the ministry, that had repudiated his ideas of religion and immortality and God, that had driven him, at the age of twenty-four, from the calling forced upon him by his people. As a boy he had yearned to make himself an artist; his family had made him a clergyman; fate had made him a failure. A failure only so far in his life, something urged him to add--for in the lonely days and silent nights of the desert he had experienced a strange birth of hope. Adventure had called him, but it was a vague and spiritual hope, a dream of promise, a nameless attainment that fortified his wilder impulse.

As he rode around a corner of the stone house his horse snorted and stopped. A lean, shaggy pony jumped at sight of him, almost displacing a red long-haired blanket that covered an Indian saddle. Quick thuds


The Rainbow Trail - 1/57

    Next Page

  1    2    3    4    5    6   10   20   30   40   50   57 

Schulers Books Home



 Games Menu

Home
Balls
Battleship
Buzzy
Dice Poker
Memory
Mine
Peg
Poker
Tetris
Tic Tac Toe

Google
 
Web schulers.com
 

Schulers Books Online

books - games - software - wallpaper - everything