The sheriff grinned as he noticed the cant hook on the ground.
Thayer moved forward belligerently, one hand reaching toward a cant hook near by.
Ba'tiste reached for the cant hook, and balancing it lightly in one hand, sought a resting place on the edge of the flume.
Ba'tiste's grip tightened about the cant hook and he rose, squaring himself.
A moment more, and Ba'tiste, with a sudden exclamation, allowed his cant hook to drop to the ground.