Tucking a wayward strand of curly brown hair back into her bun, she replaced her hat and wrapped the lead lines around the wagon break.
The wagon strained forward.
Cassie leaned forward on the wagon seat, squinting anxiously into the incandescent sunrise.
She watched for soft areas where a wagon might get stuck.
Since each wagon had three teams of horses, that could become time consuming - and time was their enemy.
Pulling his Winchester from a boot attached to the side of the wagon, he walked toward her.
She slapped her hat back on to hide the color in her cheeks and scrambled onto her wagon seat.
He let the wagon pull ahead and crossed behind it, speeding up to reach the seat from the other side.
He gave the horse enough room to walk away from the wagon and then tied the rope to the wagon.
Turning it up side down, she slapped it against the side of the wagon wheel.
She scrambled from underneath the wagon and hastily threw her blankets under the seat.
Then she headed for her wagon to harness the team.
With a final glance at the approaching figures, she dropped from the wagon seat and sauntered over to join the men at the cook fire.
She peered out from under her wagon and found the smiling face of Bordeaux.
Now there's a sight I thought I'd never live to see - someone hitching up your wagon while you're fixin' breakfast.
Bordeaux helped her up on her wagon seat and she smiled down at him.
There was already a sizable gap between her wagon and the one in front of her.
The mule lurched forward and the others followed, jerking the wagon into action.
Bordeaux jumped back as her wagon moved to catch up with the others.
That evening, she climbed from her wagon and beat the dust from her clothes with her hat.
She lifted her canteen from the wagon and took a mouthful.
Grabbing an armful of the hay they had packed around the supplies in each wagon, she dropped it on the sand and the mules eagerly began devouring it.
Pulling her blanket from under the wagon seat, she shook it and checked under the wagon for unwelcome guests.
But instead of helping her into the wagon in the same gentlemanly manner, he grabbed her by the collar and waistband and dumped her in the front of the wagon.
They would find someone to drive the wagon back across the desert.
By the time she reached the wagon, the desert was bathed in moonlight.
He watched her for a few minutes while she crawled under the wagon and pulled her blanket around her shoulders, and then he walked away.
He shrugged and offered her a hand up to the wagon seat.
She picked up the lines and worked her wagon behind the rest.
Cassie, pull your wagon up beside Fritz.
Her rifle was leaning against the wagon, within easy reach, and her whip hung near by.
The Cossack bent forward from under the wagon to get a closer look at Petya.
Perhaps he was really sitting on a wagon, but it might very well be that he was not sitting on a wagon but on a terribly high tower from which, if he fell, he would have to fall for a whole day or a whole month, or go on falling and never reach the bottom.
"What a fine fellow you are, friend!" said the Cossack to a convoy soldier with a wagon, who was pressing onto the infantrymen who were crowded together close to his wheels and his horses.
As often happens, the horses of a convoy wagon became restive at the end of the bridge, and the whole crowd had to wait.
With the soldier, an infantry officer with a bandaged cheek came up to the bonfire, and addressing Tushin asked him to have the guns moved a trifle to let a wagon go past.
The wagon lurched forward again.
Lifting her into strong arms, he deposited her roughly on the wagon seat.
The pace increased until a horse leaped over the wagon tongue and into the circle.
They each went to their assigned wagon and lit a match, tossing it inside the wagon and moving away from the circle almost in unison.
Of course, even a greenhorn could follow the wagon tracks they would leave in the sand.
If one wagon got stuck, the rest would have to stop while one of the other teams was unhitched and added to pull the wagon out.