"The Caballero's Way" is a short story by the American author William Sydney Porter, who wrote under the pseudonym of O. Henry. It was first published in the July 1907 issue of Everybody's Magazine and was collected in the anthology The Heart of the West later the same year.
The story introduces the Cisco Kid, a fast-shooting caballero who murders for sport. Lieutenant Sandridge, a ranger who is after the outlaw, goes to see Tonia, the beautiful girlfriend of the Kid. They fall in love, and Tonia begs Sandridge to kill the Kid in order to ensure their safety. Unbeknownst to the lovers, the Kid overhears their plan. Although a ruthless killer, the Cisco Kid is proud of being a gentleman who knows how to treat a lady. Since it would be against his code of behavior to lay a hand on a woman, he hatches an appropriate counterplan to deal with the situation.
A silent film adaptation of the story was released on April 1, 1914, in the United States. The first sound Western film In Old Arizona (1929) was loosely based on "The Cabellero's Way." The movie, which was nominated for five Academy Awards, portrayed the Cisco Kid as a likeable and charming bandit. The success of In Old Arizona led to more films and also to radio and TV series. The Hollywood version of the Cisco Kid, known as "the Robin Hood of the Old West," became an American pop culture hero. The character has also starred in comics.
Among the most significant works O. Henry: "The Duplicity of Hargraves", "A Retrieved Reformation", "The Cop and the Anthem", "The Gift of the Magi", "The Skylight Room", "After Twenty Years", "Conscience in Art", "The Ransom Of Red Chief", "The Last Leaf", "The Third Ingredient", "Makes the Whole World Kin".