...There was a light step inside, and a slender skirted half-silhouette showed behind the others in the doorway; a woman was there listening. Between them drops of water fell from the edge of the porch roof, drilling a line of little puddled holes in the dirt beneath it.
His own left foot in the stirrup ached dully, and the wind pushed at him, gusting from both directions at once, shoving impudently as if taunting him with his inability to find shelter from it.
She looked down at her grandfather in the armchair. "Grandpa...do you think you can put the gun away now?"
Grandpa gave a start, and looked down at the Sharps as if he had never seen it before. Grumbling to hide his embarrassment, he got up and stumped across the room to put it away in the rack.
[Britt] nodded, and looked down at the fire. Again Alice felt that undercurrent of resentment—not at her, but at something she had said—what was it?
The ticking of the clock and the crackle of the fire had made a gentle, homey background; little shimmers of firelight ran up and down the crossed sabres on the wall. Tonight the silence seemed hollow, the clock's ticking a reminder of something; the slant of the sword-blades steeply forbidding above the mantel.
"Go!" yelled Johnny with a vigorous crack splitting his voice at the end, and with a churning and thudding of hooves the two horses launched and sped away. They were side by side for most of the quarter-mile, bits of sod spitting up from under their hooves and deep breaths snorting from their nostrils. The buckskin laid his ears back and flung his long lean body out like a wildcat, and Phil, glancing sideways, saw the brown's nose slip back.
"Grandpa," said Jeff, "what do you do after you've been a soldier?"
Grandpa gazed down at him for a minute, as if he was considering that question for himself. Then he handed him the bag of corn. "Do?" he said. He took one of the staffs from his grandson's hand. "Whatsoever your hand finds to do, boy. Let's go."