A good story is built around plausible dramatic conflict, and this one has it -- however arbitrary. Paladin has to locate a man who's won $600K in the New Orleans lottery, and -- don'tcha know it -- he's a soldier who's under siege by Indians and (get ready) has only three days to claim the prize.
At this point we have to start wondering whether this is a story or a concoction. (It's by Irving Wallace, so I lean toward the latter.)
To save themselves, the soldier and his party decide to show the lottery ticket to the Indians, hoping they'll believe it's the first page of the promised treaty (oh, brother) and the full treaty will be supplied in several days.
Naturally, the Indians are deceived, but don't have the decency to return the ticket (which they presumably need as proof, should anything go wrong).
This plays like "Rocky & Bullwinkle", with Boris Badenov having to give up something valuable to save his life. That's funny; this isn't, because it reads too much a Terribly Clever hotch potch of unrelated situations that have been created by the writer, not the characters. As we would say a half century later, it's not organic.
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