Tex curled the left side of his lip and made a clicking noise. He squeezed his right knee into Red’s side directing him to turn left. The snow had melted, and the melt seeped into the ground causing the crick to overrun its banks. Everywhere Red stepped was a mire of mud and muck. In places, Red sank deep into the mud, water rose to his knees and threatened to submerge Tex’s stirrups. Red stepped high, moving deliberately without panic. Tex had felt hesitation in Red’s steps as they slogged forward and knew they’d best turn back. They gained nothing by going further.
The grass was growing, his cattle were hungry, and the feed was running low. Still, he couldn’t turn cattle into this field. Cows might be fine, but many had calved, and a calf wouldn’t survive in this water-sodden land. If they survived the birthing, the calves would succumb to the persistent wet and cold. Cows weren’t God’s brightest creatures so Tex would spend his time keeping them safe.
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