"It's all up with Henderson!" he cried, as Catherine approached. "He's got the malery, an' he says he's dyin'."
"That's no sign he's dying, because he says so," retorted Catherine.
"He wants to see yeh," panted Waite, mopping his big ugly head. "I think he's got somethin' particular to say."
"Three days; an' yeh wouldn't know 'im."
The children were playing on the floor at that side of the house where it was least hot. Catherine poured out three bowls of milk, and cut some bread, meanwhile telling Kitty how to feed the baby.
"She's a sensible thing, is the little daughter," said Catherine, as she tied on her sunbonnet and packed a little basket with things from the cupboard. She kissed the babies tenderly, flung her hoe -- her only weapon of defence -- over her shoulder, and the two started off.
They did not speak, for their throats were soon too parched. The prairie was burned brown with the sun; the grasses curled as if they had been on a gridiron. A strong wind was blowing; but it brought no com- fort, for it was heavy with a scorching heat. The skin smarted and blistered under it, and the eyes felt as if they were filled with sand. The sun seemed to swing but a little way above the earth, and though the sky was intensest blue, around about this burning ball there was a halo of copper, as if the very ether were being consumed in yellow fire.
Waite put some big burdock-leaves on Catherine's head under her bonnet, and now and then he took a bottle of water from his pocket and made her swallow a mouthful. She staggered often as she walked, and the road was black before her. Still, it was not very long before the oddly shaped shack of the three Johns came in sight; and as he caught a glimpse of it, Waite quickened his footsteps.