Demetrio relates that he was born in Limon, "right in the heart of the Juchipila canyon". He had a family, a house, and a patch of land. Everything was going fine until one day, when he went to town, he got into an altercation with a man named Don Monico, and "spit on his beard because he wouldn't mind his own business". Don Monica went to the Federals to form a posse to capture Demetrio; they "said that (he) was a Maderista and that (he) was going to rebel". Demetrio fled to the hills, and was eventually joined by Anastasio, another friend on the run from the law, and eventually, others came too.
One day, Cervantes suggested that the outlaw band should join Natera's men, who were forming ranks to capture Zacatecas, near Juchipila. Demetrio did not like the idea; he only wanted to be left alone so that he could eventually go home, but the others urged him to take his men and join the revolution. Cervantes flattered Demetrio, saying that he had a "true, lofty, noble mission" which he did not recognize. He pointed out that the revolution, which was "bound to win", was meaningless if it was undertaken so that only "a few rascals (could) get rich and everything else stay(ed) the same as before". Cervantes said that they, and Demetrio in particular, were "the tools Destiny makes use of to reclaim the sacred rights of the people", and that like "Villa and Natera and Carranza", they should be "fighting against tyranny itself...for principles, to defend ideals" (Part 1, Chapter 13).