Alicia wrung her hands below the table. Her palms were sweaty. She wanted to ask, was Nina involved with the fire?
“They made arrests. The Presidio soldiers hauled off two fellows,” Harris said. “Everyone saw what happened. I can tell you one thing—those boys will be lucky if they get a trial.” He spoke like an upstanding citizen full of official news.
“Two of who? Was anyone hurt?” Alicia’s breakfast grew cold on her plate.
“I don’t know why they didn’t arrest that trapper, too. At least they got Nina’s thieving brothers,” Clara said. “She better not show up here.”
“The ruined hides were worth thousands of dollars. I didn’t know the Mission made that much money. I’m in the wrong business.” Harris stuck out his cleaned plate. “Is there more breakfast?”
“Oh, no you don’t. You have work to do.” Clara spoke in a tone Mama used with Papa. “That dock needs to look perfect when Tío Salvador gets here. You are the man for the job.”
It sounded to Alicia like her sister was trying to keep Harris busy and away from the house. What did she have in mind? He left with an extra piece of toast, and Clara turned to Alicia.
“Leave all this stuff on the table and get your boots on. Don’t ask me questions. Just meet me in the garden with a pail and dish towel.” Clara had some sort of plan, and it included Alicia.
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