Scarcely had the American uttered the name of Joaquin when all drew their revolvers. Firing started on both sides with great confusion. Five of Joaquin’s men had fallen from their horses and two of the Americans had been killed when, at a signal from their chief, the bandits threw themselves on the enemy and began a hand to hand fight in which strength and valor must be the winners. In the midst of shouts and curses were heard the voices of the leaders who were encouraging their men, while at the same time fighting with the ferocity of tigers. Wounded, bloody, but always brave and never discouraged, Murrieta ran from one side to the other, in the midst of the tumult, and was seen everywhere. When one of his men began to lose heart, he encouraged him; as a result, he was victor over his adversary. Nevertheless, the Americans fought desperately. For a moment they had the advantage over their opponents, and would have been victorious if the invisible spirit which accompanied the Mexican chief everywhere had not come to his rescue. After having discharged the contents of his revolver upon the enemy, Jack Three Fingers had laid aside his weapon and begun using his dagger, with his usual ferocity. He struck pell-mell, and sometimes, blinded by the sight of blood, he did not even see where he struck, wounding some of his comrades and their horses.
After Joaquin had shot down one of the most obstinate Americans and he could calmly survey the battlefield, he saw that nine of his men had met death. Of the enemies, but one remained alive, and he was the gigantic and robust Arkansaw, who was fighting desperately with Jack Three Fingers. The American, who was a sturdy fellow, was giving more blows than he received, which increased the wrath of Jack. Joaquin and the others of his band, wounded and blood-soaked, weak with fatigue, remained quiet spectators of the fight, confident in the strength and dexterity of their comrade. Lurching from side to side, with their horses covered with