Therefore Trampas spoke. “Your bet, you son-of-a–.”
The Virginian’s pistol came out, and his hand lay on the table, holding it unaimed. And with a voice as gentle as ever, the voice that sounded almost like a caress, but drawling a very little more than usual, so that there was almost a space between each word, he issued his orders to the man Trampas: “When you call me that, SMILE.” And he looked at Trampas across the table.
Yes, the voice was gentle. But in my ears it seemed as if somewhere the bell of death was ringing; and silence, like a stroke, fell on the large room.

Owen Wister
Owen Wister (1860-1938) American novelist
The Virginian (1902)

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Added on 16-Apr-08 | Last updated 16-Apr-08
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