Upon arriving in Mexico City, Dorantes sold Estevánico to Antonio de Mendoza, the Viceroy of New Spain. He attempted to return to Spain, but when the ship he boarded had to return to port, he decided to build a life for himself in New Spain.
In 1532, Andrés Dorantes de Carranza, his Moorish slave, Estevánico, and fellow explorers, Alonso del Castillo Maldonado, and Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca, were the last survivors of the Pánfilo de Narváez expedition. They had no choice but to cross Mexico on foot. One day, the group came to a crossroads. When a debate arose as to which route they should take, Estevánico put on a pair of spectacles, and selected the path favored by Cabeza de Vaca. He explained to the others how he'd found the eyewear on guard duty two nights prior, and that the eyewear could give the wear clues as to the best course of action. The other three wore it in turn, and were amazed and concerned by the device. While Castillo worried that the eyewear might be a trick of the Devil's, Cabeza de Vaca disagreed, pointing out that Satan wouldn't need to go to such lengths. However, Dorantes decided that Estevánico should use the eyewear exclusively, on the off-chance they were somehow a Satanic trap.
They continued on. While they were on the correct path, they couldn't move very fast. They frequently came to Native villages, where, thanks to the eyewear, they had success as healers. The Spaniards also preached Christianity to the natives. Dorantes was particularly passionate about his preaching. With Estevánico as their "compass", they made contact with Spanish soldiers in New Spain, near Culiacán, in 1636. Upon their contact with the Spanish, the group tacitly agreed to say nothing of the eyewear. The group then made their way to Mexico City. Not long after their arrival, Dorantes sold Estevánico to New Spain's Viceroy, Antonio de Mendoza, to pay off some debts. Dorantes ordered Estevánico to leave the eyewear before moving on to Mendoza's household. Estevánico took it anyway, assuming correctly that Dorantes would say nothing.