Sei sulla pagina 1di 240

ENT E R E D AT S T A T IO NE R S


H A LL

CO P Y R IG H T , 190 5
! Y W ILL IAM J LO N G
A L L R IGH T S R E S E R V E D
w hy andh ow t h ey dot hem ! w hy, fo i
r nst an e, t h e c
b ig A rc t i cwolf spares t h e b ull car i b ou that at tac k s
h im w ant o nly ; w h y th e wi ld go ose h as no f ear at
hom e ; w hy t h e baby seal s are wh i t e at b i rt h ; h ow
t h e salm o n cl i mb t h e f all swh i c h th ey c anno t j ump ,

and w hy t h ey h ast en b ac k t o t h e sea wh en t h ey

are hurt ; h o w t h e whal e sp eak s w i th o ut a v o ice ;


'

andwh at m ak es t h e fi sh er co nf use h i s t r ai l or l eav e,

b esi d e it a t emp t i ng bai t for y ou when y ou are f ol


l owi ng h im ,
all th ese and t went y m o
— re cur i ous
t h i ng s are wai t i ng t ob e seen andu nd er st o od at t h e
end o f t h e t rai l .

Th e r ead er w h oh as no t foll owed su ch t rai l sb ef or e


wi ll ask at onc e H ow m any of th ese t h i ng s are
,

t r ue ? E v ery sm all est i nc i d ent r ec o r d ed her e is as


t r ue as c ar ef ul and acc urat e o b servat i on can m ak e
it. In m o st o f t h e fo ll owi ng chap t er s as in all p rev i
,

ous v ol um es wi ll b e f o
, und th e d i r ect r esul t s of my
ow n exp er i enc e am ong ani m al s andin th e few c ases
where as stat ed pl ai nly in t h e t ex t I h ave used
, ,

t h e exp er i enc e o f ot h er andwi ser m en I h av e t ak en,

t h e fac t s fr o m fi rst hand and accurat e ob server s


-
,

and h av e t h en si ft ed t h em c ar ef ully soas t oret ai n


only t hose t hat are in my ow n m i nd wi thout a qu es
t io n as t ot h ei r t r uth In t h e l o
. ng st o ry of Way ee
ses t h e Wh i t e W o lf for ex ampl e in wh i ch for
, ,
-

t h e gr eat er i nt erest I h av e put t h e sep arat e fac t s

i ntoa m or e or l ess c onnec ted b i ograp hy ev er y ,


i nc i d ent in th i s wolf s l if e fr om h is grasshopp er


h unt i ng t ot h e c unni ng c ar i b ou chase and fr om ,

t h e den in t h e r o c k st ot h e m eet i ng of wolf andch il


d ren on t h e st or m swep t barr ens is m i nut ely t r ue
-
,

t of ac t and is b ased sq uarely up o


,
n my o wn o b ser

vat i on and that of my I nd ians .

In o ne case o nly t h e st o
, ry of K Opseept h e S alm on ,

hav e I v entur ed t om ak e an exc ep t i on t oth i s r ul e


of ab sol ut e acc uracy For y ear s I hav e f oll o
. wed
andwat ch ed t h e salm o n fr o m t h e sea t ot h e head
sp r i ng s o f his o w n r i ver and b ac k ag ai n t ot h e sea ,

and all th at p ar t o f h is st o ry is ent i r ely tru e t ofac t


b ut b ey o nd t h e b r eak er s and b eneat h t h e t i d e no

inan h as ev er f o ll owed or seen h im I w as obl ig ed .


,

th er ef o re ei th er t oom i t that part of h is l i f e or t o


!

p i c t ur e it as b est I c ould from i m aginat i on and t he


r ec o rd sof t h e salm on hat ch er i es andd eep sea t rawl -

e rs I cho se f or t h e st or y s sak e t h e l att er c our se



.
, , ,
andt h i s p art of t h e record h as l it t l e val ue b eyond
a p urely l i t erary o ne
. It is a guess at p r o babl e
t r ut h and no
, , t l ik e t h e rest o f t h e bo ok a rec ord
,

of c arefu l ob ser v at i on .

I f t h e r ead er fi ndh im self oft en wonderi ng at t h e


courage or gent l eness or i nt ell i g enc e of t h ese free
fol k of t h e wi ld erness that need not t roubl e or
,

p uzzl e h im for an i nstant H e is not giv i ng human


.

t r ai t s t ot h e b east s b ut i
, s si mply fi nd i ng as all do,

fi nd w h owat ch ani m al s cl o sely m any t h i ng s wh i c h


,

awak en a symp ath et i c r esp o nse in h i s ow n h eart ,

andwh i c h h e u nd er st and s m o re or l ess cl early in


, ,

p r ec i sely t h e sam e w ay t hat h e und er stand s h im


self and hi s o w n ch i ld r en .

It is no t ch oi c e b ut nec essi t y wh i c h l ead s us


, ,

t oth i s w ay o f lo ok i ng at ani m al s and of t ry i ng t o


und erst and t h em I f w e h ad a d ev el op ed ani mal
.

p sych ol og y b ased up on t h e assump t i on t hat l i fe


in o ne c r eat ur e i s essent i ally d i ffer ent fr om l if e in
ano th er and t h at t h e i nt ell ig enc e i n a wo lf s head ’

, ,

fo ri nst anc e is o
,
f a rad i cally d i ff erent ki nd fro m the
sam e i nt ell ig enc e i n t h e h ead o f so m e oth er ani m al
wi t h t w o l egs i nst ead of four th en w e m ight use
,
our k no
wl ed g e t o und er stand what w e see upon
th ese t rai l s. ! ut t h ere is nosuch p syc h o l og y and ,

t h e assump t i o s a gr o
n i t self i undl ess o ne Nat ur e .

is o f o ne p i ec e and c o
,
nsi st ent t hr ough o ut The .

d rop is l ik e t h e oc ean t hough it b ears nosh i p s on


,

it s b o so m ; t h e t ear on a ch i ld s ch eek b reak s t h e


l i ght i nt o g l or i ous c ol or as d oes th e rai nb ow on


,

t h e sp ray o f Niagara ; and t h e law t hat h o ld s t h e


m ountains fast sl eep s in t h e heart of every g rain of
sand o n t h e seasho re Wh en w e w i sh t om easur e
.

t h e i nt er st ell ar sp ac es w e seek nonew c el est i al uni t ,

b ut apply c o nfid ent ly o ur o w n y ar d st i c k ; andt h e

chem i st ry that analyzes a baby s f ood serv esequally ’

w ell f o r th e sat ell i t es o f Jup i ter Th i s is b ut an


.

anal o gy t ob e sure b ut it ser v es t og ui d e us in t h e


, ,

r ealm of c onsci ous l i fe wh i ch al so seem s of one


,

p i ec e andund er one law I nsp ired wri t er s of every


.

age hav e so ugh t t o c o mpr eh end ev en god s and


ang el s by t h e sam e h um an i nt ell ig enc e that th ey

appl i ed t ot h e ant s and t h e c o ni es andf o rt h e sam e


,

r eason that th ey p ossessed b ut one m easur e of


,

l i fe Lov e andhat e fear andc ourage j oy andgr i ef


.
, , ,

p ai n and pl easure want and sat i sfac t i on t h ese


, ,

t h i ngs wh i ch m ak e sol arg e a p art of l i fe are fou nd
, ,

in ani mal s as well as in m en d i ff er i ng m uch in de


,

gree b ut not at all in ki nd from t h e sam e f eel i ngs


in o ur o w n h ear t s ; and w e m u st m easure t h em i f ,

w e are t o und erst and th em at all by a c o


.
, mm on
st and ard .T ocall a th i ng i nt ell ig enc e in o ne c rea

t ur e and r efl ex ac t i o n ano


n i t h er o r t oS p eak o
,
f the

sam e t h i ng as l o v e or ki nd ness in one and bl ind


i mp ul se in t h e other is t ob e bl ind er our selves t han
,

t h e i mp ul se wh i ch is supp o sed t ogo vern ani m al s .

U nt i l t h er ef o
, re w e have som e new ch em i stry t hat
,

Wi ll i g no r e at om s and at om i c law and som e new


,

p sychol ogy that ignor es ani m al i nt ell ig enc e al t o


g eth er or r egar d s it as und er a rad i cally d i ffer ent
,

law fro m our ow n w e m ust apply what w e k now


,

of our selves and our ow n m ot iv es t o t he sm all er


andweak er l iv es t hat are in so m e d i st ant w ay ak i n
t oour own .

T oc ov er our ow n bl i nd ness and l ac k of o


b serva
ti on w e oft en m ak e a my st ery and h oc us p oc us of -

ani m al l i f e by usi ng t h e wo rd znszznc t t oc over it


' '

all ; as i f i nst i nc t wer e t h e my st er i ous and excl u

si v e p ossessi o n o f t h e ani m al s and no


, t a comm on
h eritag e wh i ch w e sh ar e wi th th em in l arg e m eas
ure . It is an unm eani ng wo r d at b est for noone
h as t o ld us exc ep t in t h e vaguest w ay w hat ih
, ,

st inc t is o r has set t h e l i m i t wh er e i nst i nc t end s


,

andc o nsc i ou s int ell igenc e b eg ins o rh assho


, wn h ow
f art h e pr i m ary i nst i nc t s of a ch i ld d iff er fr o m t hose
of any o th er ani m al O n t he o
. ther hand o ne w h o
,

wat c hes anim al s cl osely and sympath et i cally m u st


j ud ge f rom what h e sees that t he m o t i v es wh i ch

g ov ern an ani m al s act i on are oft en v ery m u ch lik e


our ow n t h e d i fferenc e b ei ng that t h e ani m al s m o


,

t i ve is mo re sim pl e and nat ural t han ours andthat ,

am o ng t h e h igh er o r der s t h e g reat er part of an


ani mal s l if e

play i ng worki ng seeking food mak
, , ,

ing d ens o utwi tt i ng ot her ani m al s avoid i ng t rap s


, ,

and enem i es is d i r ec t ed no
— t by a bl i nd i nst i nc t

b ut by a v er y w i d e awak e int ell i genc e A ndt h i s ih


-
.

t elligence b egi ns by t h e use o f nat i ve p o wers andis


st rengt h ened by t h ei r dai ly o c c up at i on ; is enc o uri

ag ed and d ev el o p ed by t he m oth er s t rai ning and


ex ampl e as sh e l ead s h er l i t t l e o nes i nt ot h e wo rld ,

and is p erf ect ed by t h e ani m al s o w n exp er i enc e


wh i ch h e rem emb er s in t h e face of new p robl em s


— p reci sely as w e do A w i ld ani m al s l i f e m ay
.

i nd eed b e far b el ow our s b ut h e l i ves mu ch in


,

t hat pl easant b o r d er l and b etween th ought andf eel


-

ing wh er e w e soo f t en fi nd our selv es in our q ui et


m om ent s and there is noearthly need t om ak e a
,

my st ery of h im by t al ki ng vaguely of i nst i nct si nc e ,

so m u ch o f h is l i f e c o rresp ond s t oour ow n and


b ec om es i nt ell igi bl e t ous th e m om ent w e lay asi d e
our p r ej ud i c e or h ost i l i t y and wat ch h im wi t h a
p at ient and f r i endly i nt er est .

I m ak e no cl ai m what ev er t h at ani m al s reaso n

or t h i nk or f eel as m en and wom en do I h av e .

wat ch ed th em t ool ong for that and si tt i ng b esi d e


t h e b eav er s v i ll ag e i n t h e st i ll tw i l igh t of t h e wi l

d erness I fi nd enough t o occ upy ey es and m i nd


wi thou t m aki ng any c omp ari son wi th t h e unqu i et
c i t i es of m en faraway ! ut her e b efore m e is a l i f e
.

t ob e u nd er st o od b ef o r e it can b e d escr i b ed a l i fe
,

,

no t an aut o m at on wi t h it s ow n j oy s andf ears it s


, ,

ow n p robl em s and it s ow n i nt ell igenc e ; and t h e


,

only c o nc ei vabl e w ay f o r m e t ou nd er st and it is t o

p u t m y self f or a m o m ent i n it s pl a c e and lay up o n

it t h e m easure o f th e o nly l i f e o f wh i ch I hav e any


direct knowl ed ge or under standing w h i ch is my ,

ow n A ndt h i s far f rom b eing v i si onary o


.
,
r h yp er

sensi t i v e as t h e m ak er s o
, f m echani cal natural h is

to ry would hav e us b el i eve is t h e only rat i onal , ,

indeed t he only p ossi bl e w ay of und erstand ing any


,

ani m al ac t i o n.

S owh et her o
, ne l ook s f or t h e fac t s of anim al l if e
or for t h e m ot ives wh i c h gov er n it t he read er m ay ,

foll ow th ese t rai l s as I fi r st foll owed t hem wi th t h e


, ,

i dea of seeing w i th h is ow n ey es andund er stand i ng


wi th h is ow n heart H e wi ll see m any thi ng s that
.

hedo esno t und erstand andso wi ll l i st enwi t h r esp ec t


,

t oN oel and O ld T o mah w h of o r fift y seaso


, ns and

m ore have l i ved cl ose t ot h e Wood Fol k And h e .

wi ll fi nd at t h e end of ever y t rail a real ani mal as ,

t r ue t ol if e as I am abl e t osee andd escr i b e it aft er

many y ears of wat chi ng in t he wi ld erness .

W ILLIA M J LO NG . .

S T A M F O RD Co
, mm ,

Jan ua ry 905
, I .
W A Y E E S ES TH E ST RONG O NE

HE O D W OL F S CH A L E N GE
T L

L

W HERE T HE T R A I L E GI N S !

NO E L AN D MOO K A
T HE W A O F T HE W OL F
Y

T HE W H I T E W OL F S H N T I N G

U

T R A I S T H A T CR OSS I N T H E S No
L w

IN Q E ST O F W A
U O NK T HE WI L D
PT

P Q A M T HE FI HER
E U S

T HE T R A I L O F T HE C NN I N G O N
U E

O UT F T HE D EEP S
O

MA W CK O F T
T O ICE ER G S
HE !

W HERE T HE S A L MO N J M P U

T HE S TO R O F KO
Y P S EE P
E w ere b eat i ng up the S trai ts t oth e
L abr ad or wh en a gr eat g al e sw oop ed
d ow n on us and dr ove us li k e a sc ared wild
duck i nto a Cl ef t in th e m ou ntai ns wh ere
,

t h e br eak er s r oar ed and th e seal s b ark ed on

t h e bl ack r o ck s and t h e r eef s b ared their


t eet h on ei th er Side lik e th e l ong j aw s of
,

a w olf to snap at us as w e p assed


, .

In o ur fligh t w e h ad pick ed up a fi sh er

m an -
snatch ed him o ut of h i
s helpl ess punt
as w e lu ff ed in a sm oth er of spr ay and ,

dragg ed him ab oard lik e an enorm ou s frog


, ,

at t h e endo f th e j ib sh eet — and it w as h e


w h o no w st o od at th e wh eel of our li t tl e
sch o oner and took h er c areening in t h rough
th e t ickl e o f H arb or W o e Th ere in a d eso
.
,

l ate rock b ou nd refug e on th e N ewf ou ndl and


,
-

c oast th e Wild D uck sw u ng t oh er anch or


, ,

v eeri ng ner v ou sly in th e t id e rip t uggi ng ,

imp at i ently and cl anki ng h er ch ai ns as if ’

eag er t o b e o ut ag ai n in t h e t ur m o il A t .

su nset t h e g al e bl ew i t self o ut and presen tly ,

th e m o on w h eel ed full and Clear ov er th e


d ark m ou nt ai ns .

'

N oel my big I ndi an w as curl ed up asl eep


, ,

in a c arib o u Ski n b y th e f or em ast ; and the


cr ew w ere all b el ow asl eep ev ery m an gl a , d —

in his h e ar t t ob e o nc e m ore saf e in a snug


h arb or All ab ou t us st r etch ed th e d esol ate
.

w astes of sea and m ou nt ai ns ov er which ,

si l ence and d ark ness br o od ed as ov er th e ,

fir st great ch aos N ear at h and w ere th e


.

bl ack roc k s eter nally w et and sm oki ng w i t h


,

th e fo an d g al b y ond t ow r d t h i
'

g e ; e e e e c e

b erg s p al e c old gli tteri ng lik e spire s of


, , ,
S i lver in th e mo onligh t ; far aw ay lik e a
,

vagu e sh ad ow a h andful of li ttl e g ray h ou ses


,

clung lik e b arnacle s to th e b ase Of a gr eat


b are hill wh ose f oot w asin th e seaandwho se
head w avered am ong t h e cloud s of h eaven .

Not a ligh t sho ne not a sou nd or a Sig n


,

of l if e cam e from th ese lit tl e h ou ses who se


,

sh ell s cl o se d aily at t wilight ov er the lif e

wi thi n w eary wi th th e d ay s w ork O nly


,

.

t e do
h g s w ere restl ss th ose st range crea
e —

t ure s th at sh el t er in o ur h ou ses and sh are


our bread yet live in anoth er w orld a dumb
, , ,

sile nt l o
, nely w o rld shut out f rom ours by
imp assabl e b arri ers.

For h ours th ese unc an ny d ogshadpuzzled


me a sc or e of vici ou s h u ngry b r ut es that
, ,

d rew th e sl edges in wi n ter and th at picked


up a vag ab ond livi ng i n th e idl e summ er by
hu nti ng rabbi ts and r aidi ng th e fi sh erm en s ’

fl ak esandpig p ens andby c at chi ng flound ers


-

i n the sea as th e t id e ebb ed V ent ure am ong


.

them wi t h f ear in y o ur
h eart and th ey would
fly at your leg s and
t h roat lik e w ild b east s;
b ut t w irl a big st ick j au ntily or b etter still
,

g o qui et ly o n y ou r w a y wi t h o u t c onc er n a
,
nd
th ey w ould Skulk asid e and w atch y ou hun
'

r
g y il o u t of the c o rn er s of t h eir surly ey es ,

w h ose lid s w ere red and blo od sh ot as a m as


ti ff s Wh en th e m oon r ose I not ic ed th em

fli tti ng ab ou t lik e wi t ch es on th e l onely shor e ,

mil es aw ay fr om th e h aml et ; now Si tting on


th ei r tail s in a sol em n Circl e ; now h ow li ng
all t o g eth er as if d em ent ed and an on l i sten
,

ing i ntently in th e v ast Sil enc e as if th ey ,

h eard or sm ell ed or p erh ap s j u st f el t th e


presenc e of S ome u nk now n thi ng th at w as
hidde n from hum an senses A nd wh en I .

p addl ed ash ore tow at ch th em one ran swiftly


p ast wi th out h eedi ng m e h is nose out
,

st retch ed h i
, s ey es green as fo xfi re i n th e

m oonligh t whil e th e oth ers vani sh ed lik e


,

sh ad o w s am ong th e bl ack r ock s each i ntent


,

on his u nk now n qu est .

Th at is why I h ad c om e up from my warm


bu nk at mid nigh t t osit al one on th e t aff rail ,

li steni ng in th e k een air to th e h ow li ng t h at


m ad e m e shiver spi te of m yself and w atch!
, ,

ing in th e v agu e m oo nlight tou nd er sta nd if


and u nnat u ral , se ttli ng ov er th e gl oomy l and
lik e a wi di g Sh eet
n n -
.

A s th e unkn own howl t r embl ed


f ai ntly
in th e air N o el w h o h ad Sl ep t u ndi st urb ed
,

th r o ugh all th e cl am or of th e dogs sti rred ,

u neasily by th e f orem ast A S it deepe ned


.

and swelled i nto a r oar th at fill ed all th e


nigh t h e t h r ew off th e carib ou ski n andc am e
aft t o wher e I w as wa tch i ng al o

ne D as .

W ayeeses I k now dat h w ulf ; he f oll ow


.

one t ime oh l ong l ong while


, , ,

ago h e wh i sp er ed A nd t aki ng
, .

my m ari ne gla sses he stood


b eside me watching i nt ently .

Th ere w as an othe r l ong


p eri od of w aiti ng ; our ey es
grew we ary fill ed as th ey w er e wi t h Sh ad ow s
,

and unce rt ain tie s in th e m o onligh t and we ,

t ur ned o ur ea r s t o the h ill s w ai ti ng wi th


,

st r ai ned sil ent expect ancy fo


,
r th e Ch alle nge .

S udd enly N oel p oi n t ed upward and my eye


caugh t som ething m ovi ng swif tly on t he crest
of th e moun tai n A sh ad ow wi th th e Sli nk
.

ing t ro t of a wo lf glid ed al ong th e ridge


'

b et w ee nus and th e mo on Ju st i n fron t of.


Th ete rr b l e h ow!
i of the g reat
wh te wol f
i
us it stopped l eaped up on a big rock tur ned
, ,

a po i nted n ose up toth e sky sh arp andcl ear ,

as a fi r to p in t h e m oo n light an d — 000000 0 ,

ow w o
-
w wo w / th e terrible h o
-
wl of a gr eat
white wolf t umbl ed d own on th e h u sky d og s
and set th em h o wli ng as if p osse ssed No .

d oub t now of their que er actio ns which h ad


puzzl ed m e for h ou rs p ast T he wild wolf .

h ad c all ed and th e t am e wolv es w ak ed t o


answer B efore my dull ear s had he ard a
.

rumor of it th ey w ere crazy wi th th e excit e


m ent Now ev ery c hord in th eir wild h eart s
.

w as t w angi ng i t s t hrilli ng answ er t o th e

l ead er s summ ons and my ow n h eart awoke


and t h rill ed as i t nev er did b ef o re t oth e c al l


of a wild b east .

For an h ou r or mo r e th e oldwolf sat th ere ,

ch alle ngi ng h is d egener ate m ates in every


Sil ence calli ng th e t am e t o be wild th e
, ,

b ou nd t ob e free agai n and li steni ng gr av ely


,

t o th e w aili ng an sw er o f th e d o g s which ,

refu sed wi th gr oaning s as if draggi ng th em


,

selves aw ay fr o m ove rm aster i ng te mp tati on .

Th en th e Sh ad ow vani shed from th e big


rock onth e mou nt ai n th e h uskies fled aw ay

,
wildly fr om th e Sh ore and only th e sob of
,

th e br eak er s br o k e t h e still ness .

Th at w as my fir st (and N oel s l ast ) Sh ad ’

ow y glimp se of W ayeeses th e huge whi te


w olf whi ch I had c om e a th ou sand mil es


over l and and sea to st udy All ov er th e .

L ong Rang e of th e nort h er n peni nsul a I fol


l ow ed him guid ed som etim es by a r um or
,

a hu nter s st o ry or a p ostm an s f ri gh t caugh t


’ ’

far i nl and in wi nt er and h uddli ng cl o se by


h is fi re wi th his d o gs t hr ough the l ong


wi nter nigh t — and agai n by a t rack on th e
sh o re of som e l onely u nnam ed p ond or th e
, ,

sigh t o f a h erd o f c arib o u flyi ng wildly from


so m e un seen d ang er H ere is t h e wh i te
w olf s stor y l ear ned p artly from m
.

,
u ch w atch
ing and f o ll owi ng h is t rack s al one but m ore ,

fr om N oel th e I ndi an h u nte r in endl ess ,

t ramp s o v er th e hill s and c arib ou m ar she s


a n d in l ong
! gl

qui et t alk s in
t h e fi r el i gh t
b e si d e t h e
salm o n riv ers .
Th ere in t h e d eep Sh ad ow wh er e noey e
,

migh t n otic e th e m ov em ent th e old w olf


,

sh o ok off th e d elici ou s sl eepi ness t h at still


li ngered in all h er big mu scle s Fi rst S h e .

Spr ead h er Sl end er f ore p aw s w or ki ng th e


,

to es t ill th ey w ere all wid e aw ak e an


-
d b ent,

h erb ody at t h e Sh o
'
u ld ers til l h er deep ch est
to uch edth e ear th Next a hi nd leg stret ch ed
.

out St raigh t andtense asa b ar andw astak en


,

back agai n in nerv ou s li ttl e j erk s At th e .

sa m e t im e sh e yaw ned migh tily wri nkli ng ,

h er n o se andSh o wi ng h erredgum s wi th t h e
bl ack fri ng es a nd th e l o ng wh i t e f ang s t h at

could r each a d eer s h ear t in a Si ngle snap



.

The n sh e l eap ed up on a great r ock and sat


up straigh t wi t h h er bu shy t ail curl ed cl ose
,

abou t h erf o re p aw s a savag e p owe rful n obl e


, , ,

l ooki ng b east p eeri ng d ow n grav ely over t h e


,

gree n m ou ntai ns t oth e Sh i ni ng sea .

A m om ent b ef ore th e hill side h adapp eared


utt erly l ifele ss sost ill and rugged and d eso
,

l ate t h at one mu st n ot ic e andw elc ome th e


st i r of a mo u se or gr ou nd squirr el in
th e m o ss Sp eaki ng o
,
f lif e t h at is gl ad
and fre e and
vigorou s even in th e d eep est soli tud es; y et
no w so qui etly did th e o
,
ld w o lf app ear ,

so p er f ec tly did h er r o ugh g ray c oat bl end


wi th th e rough g ray rock s th at th e hill sid e
,

seem ed j u st as te nantl ess as b efor e A st r ay .

wi nd seem ed to m ov e th e m osses t h at w as ,

all O nly wh er e t h e mou ntai ns o


. nc e Sl ep t

no w th ey seem ed wid e aw ak e -
Keen eyes
.

saw ev er y m o vi ng thi ng fr om th e b ees i n


,

th e blu eb ell s t othe Sl o w fi shing b o ats faro


-
ut

at sea; sh arp ear s t h at w er e c o ck ed lik e a


c olli e s h eard ev ery chi rp and trill andr u stl e

and a no se t h at u nd er stood everything w as


h oldi ng up every vagr ant breez e andsearch
ing it for its me ssag e Fo . r th e cub s w er e
comi ng out for th e fi r st t im e topl ay i n th e
big world and nowild m oth er ev er l ets t h at
,

h app en wi th ou t first t aki ng i nfi ni te prec au


ti ons th at h er li tt l e ones b e no t mo l ested nor
m ad e afraid .

A fai nt breez e from th e w est st rayed ov er


th e mou nt ai ns and i nstantly th e o ld w o lf
turn ed h er sensi t ive nose t o qu estion it .

Th ere on h er right and j u st ac ross a d eep


,

ravm e wh er e a t o rrent w ent l eapi ng dow n to


th e sea in hu dred fo ot
n -
j ump s a g r eat stag ,

c arib ou w as st andi ng still as a st one on a


, ,

l of ty pi nnacl e l ooki ng d ow n over th e m arvel


,

ous p ano ram a sp read wid e beneat h h is feet .

E very day Megaleep c am e t h ere tol ook and ,

th e o ld w o lf in h er d aily hu nt s o f ten crossed


the d eep p at h which h e h adw or n th rough th e
m oss from th e wid e t abl e l and sov er t he ridge
-

tothi sSightly pl ac e wh ere h e c o u ld lo ok d ow n


curi ou sly at th e c omi ng s andgoi ngs of m en
on the sea ! ut at thi s season whe n sm all
.

g ame w as abu nd ant — and i nd eed at all sea


so ns wh en no t h u nger driv en — t h e w o
-
lf Was
p eac eabl e andth e caribou w ere not mol ested .

I nd eed th e big stag k new w ell wh ere th e old


wolf de nned E v ery east wi nd br ough t
.

h er m essage toh is no st ril s; but secure i n

h is ow n st r eng th andin th e g ener a l p eac e


which pr evail s in th e summ er tim e am ong -

all l arg e anim al s o f th e no rt h h e c am e ,

d aily tol ook dow n on th e h arb or and


w ag his c ars at th e fi shing bo ats which h e -


,

could nev er u nd er sta nd .

S t range neighb or s t h ese t h e g r im savag e


, ,

m oth er w olf of th e m ou nt ai ns hiding h er ,

m
you ng in d en s of the r ock s and the wary
, ,

m ag nific en t w and erer of t he b r oad c ar ib ou


b arren s; but th ey u nd erstood e ach o th er and ,

nei th er w o lf nor c arib ou h ad any fe ar or


h ostil e i nten t one fo r t he other A nd t hi s
.

is not st range at all as migh t be supp o


, sed
by tho se who thi nk anim al s are gover ned
by fear on one ha nd and savage cru el ty on
the o t he r but is one of th e c omm on est th i ng s
,

to b e fou nd by th ose who f oll ow fai thfull y


the n o rt he r n t r ail s
.

W ayeeses h ad ch osen h er den well on ,

the edge of th e u ntrodd en soli tud es— six ty


mil es as the cr ow es th at st retch nor th
fl i —

war d from H arb or W eal toH arb or W oe It .

w as j u st u nder th e ridge in a su nny h o


, ll ow
am o ng th e rock s o,
n th e sou th er n sl op e of
the great mou ntai ns T h e earl ie st sun shi ne
.

fou nd th e pl ac e and w arm ed it bri ngi ng ,

f ort h the blu eb ell s fora c arpet whil e in every


,

d ark h oll ow th e snow li ngered all summ er


l ong m aki ngd azzli ng whi te p at ch es on th e
,

m ou ntai n ; and u nd er th e high wa te rf all s ,

th at l ook ed from th e h arb or like bit s of silver


ribbon stretch ed over the green wo od s the ,
ic e clu ng toth e rock s i n fantast ic kn ob s and
.

g argoyl es m aki ng cold d eep p ool s for th e


, ,

t ro u t to pl ay in S o it w as bo th c ool and
.

warm th ere and w h atever th e w eath er th e


,

gau nt oldm oth er w olf c ould alw ays fi ndj u st


t h e righ t Sp o t t o Sl eep aw ay th e af ter noon .

B est of all it w as p erfec tly saf e ; for th ough


from th e d oor of h er den S h e c ould l ook
.

d ow n on th e old I ndi an s c abi n lik e a pebble


on th e sh ore so steep w ere th e bill owi ng


,

hill s and so imp assabl e th e r avi nes t h at no


hum an f oot ev er t rod th e pl ac e not even in ,

au t um n wh en th e fi sh erm en l ef t th eir b o ats


at anch o r in H arb or Weal andc amp ed i nl and
on th e p ath so f th e big carib ou h erd s .

Wh eth er or not t h e fath er w olf ev er k new


wh er e h is cub s w ere hidd en only h e him self
c ould tell H e w asan e norm ou sbru te p ow er
.
,

ful andcu nni ng b ey ond m easure th at h au nted


,

th e l o nely t hi ck et s and p ond s b ord eri ng th e


great c aribou b arr ens ov er th e ridge and ,

t h at k ep t a Sile nt w at ch wi thi n h o
, wli ng dis
t anc e o
, ver th e den wh ich h e never saw !
.

S om etim es t h e m oth er w olf m et hi m on h er


w and er ing s andth ey h unted t ogeth er Of ten .
he b rough t th e gam e h e h ad c augh t a fox ,

o r a y ou ng goose ; and Som et im es wh en S h e


hadh un ted in v ai n he m et h er as if h e h ad
,

u nd erst ood he r n eed fr om a di stance andled ,

h er to wh ere h e had buri ed t w o o r t hr ee


of th e rabbit s th at sw arm ed i n the t hick ets .

! ut spi te o f the att en t i on andth e i ndi ff er ent

w atch which h e k ep t h e neve r v en t ured near


,

th e d en which h e c o
, uld h av e f ou nd easily
e nough by foll owi ng th e mot h er s track ’
.

The old sh e w olf would h av e fl ow n at his


-

t hr oat lik e a fury h ad h e Sh o w ed his h ead


over th e top of th e ridge
-
.

T h e reaso n for t h i s w as si m pl e enough t o


th e sav ag e o ld m o th er t h o
,ugh th ere are
so me thi ng s ab ou t it th at m en do not yet
unde rsta nd W olv es lik e c atsandf oxe s and
.
, ,

i nd eed lik e m ost wild m al e anim al s h av e an


,

at ro ci ou s w ay of killi ng th ei r ow n you ng
wh en they fi nd th em unprotec ted ; so th e
m othe r anim al se ar ch es out a den by her self
and r arely all o w s th e m al e t oc om e near it .

S pi te of thi s be astly h abi t it mu st b e said


h onestly of th e old h e w olf th at h e
-

sh o w sam arvelou sgen tlen esst oward s


h is m ate H e r un s at the sl i gh test Sh ow of
.

t e eth fr o m a m oth er w olf h alf hissize andw i ll ,

stand meekly a snap o f th e j aw so r a c r u el gash


o f th e t e r ribl e f ang s i n h is fl ank with o ut de
f endi ng him self E v en our h ou nd s seem to
.

h av e i nh eri ted som ethi ng of t hi s primi t ive


w olf t rai t for th ere are seasons wh en u nl ess
, ,

urged on by m en t h ey will not t roubl e a


,

m oth er w olf or fox M any tim es i n th e early


.
,

Spri ng w h en f ox es are m ati ng andag ai n l ater


,

wh en th ey are h eavy wi th young and incap a


b le o f a h ard run I h av e caught my hou nd s
,

tro tt i ng m eekly aft er a mo t h er fo x sni flfing


,

he r t rail indi ff erently and sit t i ng down wi th


h ead s tur ned asid e wh en She stop s for a
momen t t ow atch and y ap at t hem di sd ai n
fully A nd wh en you c all th em they c om e
.

Sh am efaced ; though i n win te r tim e whe n -


,

r u nni ng th e same fox to death they pay no ,

mo re h eed t o y ou r c all tha n to th e c row s


cl amori ng over t h em But we mu st r e tu r n
.

toWayeeses Si tt i ng over her d


, en o n a great

g ray rock t ryi ng every breeze searching ev ery


,

mo
,

vem ent h arki ng toev ery chirp andr u stl e


,

b efore b r i ngi ng h er cub s out i n to th e w or ld .


over all h armo ny of the w orld b rooded a
t he

sil ence t o ogreat t obe di st u r bed S u nligh t .

andSh ad o w snow andice gloomy ravine s and


, ,

d azzling m ou ntai n t op s m ayfl ow ersandsi ng


,

ing bi r d sandru st li ng wind sfill ed all th e eart h


wi th c ol or andmov em ent and mel ody F r om .

und er th ei r v ery feet gr eat m asses of rock ,

to ssed and t umbl ed as by a gi ant s pl ay


stretch ed d o w nward s t o wh ere th e g r een


w ood s b egan and roll ed in v ast bill ow s t o
th e h arbor which sh o
, n e and sp arkl ed i n th e
sun y et seem ed nobigg er th an th ei r mothe r s

p a w . Fi shi ng b oat s wi t
-
h Shi n ing s ail s h ov
ered o ver it lik e drag on fl ies goi ng and
,
-
,

c omi ng from the li ttl e h ou ses th at Sh el t ered


tog eth er u nder the oppo si te mou nt ai n lik e a ,

clu st er of gray to ad st ool s by a t ow eri ng pin e


st ump .M ost w onde rf ul mo st i nt ere sti ng of
,

all w as the l i ttl e gray b ut o n th e Sh or e alm ost ,

u nd er th ei r fe et wh ere li ttl e N oel and th e


,

I ndi an childre n pl ayed with th e tid e like fi d


dler crab s or pu sh ed bravely out tom eet t h e
,

fi sh erm en in a b obbi ng nu tsh ell For w olf .

cub s are lik e c olli es in t hi s t h at th ey seem,

t oh av e a natu r al i n ter e st pe r h ap s a natural


,
k i nship wi t h m an andnex t toth eir ow n ki nd
,

no thi ng ar o u ses t h ei r i nterest lik e a group of


children pl ayi ng .

S o t h e lit tl e cub s t o ok th eir fir st glimp se


of the big w orld of m ou ntai ns and sea and
,

su nsh i ne and child ren pl ayi ng o


,
n t h e sh ore ,

and the w o rld w as al tog et h er toow ond erful


.

fo r lit tl e h ead s toc o mprehe nd N ever th el ess.

one pl ai n impressi on r em ai ned th e sam e th at ,

y ou se e i n t h e e ar s a n d no se a nd s t umbli ng
f eet andw aggi ng tail of ev ery puppy dog you -

m eet on th e st reets t h at t hi s brigh t w orld


,

is a f am ou s pl ace j u st m ad e a purp o
, se fo r -

li ttl e ones t o pl ay in S i tt i ng on th eir tail s


.
'

in a so l em n row th e w olf cub s b ent thei r


h ead s and inted th ei r no se s grav el y at th e
sea The r e i
. t w as all silv e r and blu e and
,

b ou ndl ess wi t h t i ny whi te sail s d anci ng over


,

it wi nki ng and fl ashi ng lik e entangl ed bi ts o


, f
su nshin e ; and Si nc e th e eyes o f a cub lik e ,

th o se o f a li t tl e child c anno t j udg e di stance s


, ,

one stret ch ed a paw at th e near est sail mil es ,

aw ay tot ur n it o
, ver andm ak e it goth e oth er
w ay .Th ey turn ed up th ei r he ad s sid ewi se
andbli nk ed at th e Sky all blu e andc alm and ,
i nfi ni te wi th whit e cloud s saili ng ove r it like
,

swans o n a limpid l ak e ; ando ne st ood up o n

h is hi nd leg s and r each ed up bo t h p aw s lik e ,

a ki tten t o pull dow n a cl o


, ud to pl ay wi th .

Th en the wi nd stirred a f eat he r near th em ,

th e whi t e f eat he r of a pt armig an which th ey


had eate n y esterd ay and f o
, rg ett i ng t h e big
w orld and th e sail and th e cloud t he cub s
to ok to pl ayi ng with th e fe ath er ch asi ng and
,

wor ryi ng andt umbli ng ove r e ach ot h er whil e


,

th e g au n t o ld mo t her w o lf l ook ed d own f r om


her r ock andwatched and w as sati sfied .
OW N on th e Sh ore th at sam e
,

brigh t Ju ne af tern oon li ttl e


Q

,
.

N oel and h is si ster M ook a w ere goi ng on


w ond erful sl edge j our ney s m eet i ng w ol v es
,

and p o l ar b ears and c arib ou and all sorts of


adv ent ures m o
, re wo nd erful by far th an any
t h at ev er cam e to im agi nat i on ast rid e of a
rocki ng h or se Th ey h ada rare t eam of d og s
-
. .

C aesar and W olf and Gr ouch and th e rest ,

-
fi ve o r Six u neasy crab s which t h ey h ad

c augh t and h ar nessed toa ti ny sledge m ad e


from a curved r oot anda sh i ngl e ti ed t ogeth er
wi th a bit of sea k elp A nd wh en th e cr ab s
-
.

scurri ed aw ay o ver th e h ard sand w avi ng


,

29
t h ei r cl aws wildly No el and M ook a would,

cap er al ong sid e cracki ng a lit tl e whip and


,


cr y i ng H i hi Ca esar ! , H iya W olf ! H i
, , ,

hiy a hiy a yeeee l — and th en shrieki ng wi th


, ,

l augh ter as th e Sl edge ov er t ur ned and th e


c rab s took tofighti ng and scrat chi ng i n th e
tangl ed h ar ness j u st lik e the h u sky d o
, gs i n
wi nt er M ook a w as t ryi ng tou ntangl e th em
.
,

d anci ng abou t tok eep h er b are toe s andfi n


ger s aw ay fr om the nippi ng cl aw s wh en sh e ,

j ump ed up wi t h a yell th e bigg est c r ab h ang


,

ing toth e endo f her fi nger .

O w ee ! ow eeeee ! C aesar bit m e S h e ,

w ail ed Th en She stopp ed with fi nger i n


.
,

h er m ou th whil e Cmsar scrambled h eadl ong


,

i ntoth e t id e ; for N oel w as sta ndin g on th e


b each p oi nti ng at a brown sail far down in
th e d eep b ay w h er e S o u t he ast Brook c ame
,

si nging f r o m th e green wilde r n ess .


O hé M o oka ! the re s f ather and Old ’


T om ah c om e b ack from salmo n fi shi ng .



L et s go me et um little b r oth er said

, ,

M ook a, her bl ack eyes d anci ng ; and in a


wi nk c rab s andsl edges w er e forgot ten T he .

oldpu nt w as off i n a Sh ak e the t atter ed sai l ,


ad
n bird c all bl ossomi ng bluebell and
and
shi ni ng star alik e t umbl ed ash o
,
re and w ent
h u r ryi ng up th e brook spl ashi ng t hrough
,

th e sh all o w s d ar ti ng lik e kingfi sh ers over


,

the p o i nt s andj umpi ng lik e wild g oat s from


,

r ock tor ock In an h our th ey w er e farup th e


.

m ount ai n l yi ng sid e by Sid e on a great fl at


,

rock l ooki ng across a d eep impa ssabl e vall ey


,

ando v er t wor ou nd ed hill top s wh er e th e scrub


,

Spru ces l ook ed like pi ns on a cu shio n t oth e ,

b are rugged hill sid e wh ere Megaleep st ood


,

out lik e a watchm an ag ai nst th e blu e sky .


D o es he see us li ttl e broth er ? w his
,

p ered M ook a quiv eri ng wi th exci teme nt and


,

pa nti ng from t he rapid climb .


S ee us? sarti n li ttl e Si st er ; b ut t h at o
, nly

m ak e him w ant p eek um some more said ,

th e li ttl e hu nter A nd r ai sed c arele ssly on


.

his elb o ws h e w as t elli ng Mook a h ow M ega


le ep th e car ib o u t r u sted only his nose and ,

ho w h e w at ch ed and pl ayed peek abo owi t h


any thi ng whi ch h e could no t smell andh o , w

in a sno w storm
N oel w as off now lik e a b rook b abbli ng ,

a d eal of carib ou l ore which h e had l ear ned


f rom Old T om ah th e hu nter wh en M ook a , ,

wh ose restl ess bl ack eyes w ere always w an


d ering seiz ed his arm
, .

H u sh br oth er andl ook oh l ook ! th ere


, , , ,


on th e big rock !
N oel s ey es h ad al re ady caugh t th e I ndi an

trick of seei ng only wh at t h ey l ook for and ,

soo f sep arati ng an anim al i nstantly fr o m his


surr o u ndi ng s h ow ev er w ell h e hid es Th at
,
.

is why th e wh o l e hill sid e seem ed sudd enly


to v ani sh spruc es and h ar ebell s sn o
, w fi elds ,
-

and drif t i ng whi te cloud s all gr o upi ng th em


selv es lik e th e u nno
, t i c ed f r am e of a pi c t u r e ,

ar o u nd a g rea t gr ay rock with


a hug e sh aggy S h e w o lf k eepi ng
-

w at c h ov er it si l en t al e r t
, , ,

m oti onl ess .

S om et h i n g st i r r ed in th e
Sh ad ow of th e oldw olf s watch ’

to wer t ossi ng and eddyi ng and


,

gr owi ng sudd enly qui et as if th e ,

w i nd w ere pl ayi ng am ong de ad oak le aves


T h e k een y o ung ey es saw i t i nst ant ly dilat ,

ing wi t h su r pri se and exci t em ent Th e n ex t .

i nstant t hey had clutc h ed each o th er s a rm s ’


.
00000 ! fr om M ook a
.


C ub s; k eep still ! from N oel .

A nd shri nki ng cl o se t o th e rock u nd er a

fri endly dw arf spruc e t h ey lay st ill as t w o


rabbi ts w atch i ng wi th r ou nd ey es eag er but
, ,

un af raid th e anti cs of three brow n w olf cub s


,

th at w er e ch asi ng th e fli esand t umbli ng ov er


so m e i nvi sibl e pl aythi ng b ef ore th e d oor of
th e den .

H ardly h adt h ey mad e th e di scov ery wh en


the o ld w o lf Slipp ed d ow n fr om th e rock and
sto od foran i nstant ov er h erlit tl e o nes Why
.

th e pl ay sh o uld st op now whil e th e b reez e


,

w as still th ei r c omrad e andt h e su nshi ne w as


bright er th an ev er or why th ey Sh ould ste al
,

aw ay i nto th e d ark den m o r e Sil ently th an


th ey h ad com e n one of th e cub s c ould tell
, .

Th ey fel t th e or d er andth ey ob ey ed i n stan tly .

and t h at is alway s th e wo nd er o f
w atchi ng littl e wil d thi ng s at play .

The o ld m o ther w o lf vani sh ed am ong


th e r ock s and app eared agai n higher
on th e ridg e tur ni ng her h ead un easily
,

t otr y ev ery breez e andru stl e and

m ov i ng Sh adow Th en She
.
w ent que st i ng i ntoth e sp r uce w ood s f eeli ng
,

b ut no t u nd erstandi ng som e sub tl e excite


m ent in th e air th at w as not th ere b efore
-

and o nly th e t w o I ndia n childre n w ere left


k eepi ng watch ov er th e gr eat wild hill sid e .

For over an h our th ey lay t h er e exp ec t


antly b ut n o
, thi ng st irred n ear th e den ; th en

t h ey to o slipp ed away sil ent ly as th e lit tl e


,

wild thi ng s and m ad e th ei r Sl ow w ay dow n


,

th e brook h and in h and in t h e d eep eni ng


,

shad o ws S c ar cely h ad t h ey gone wh en th e


.

bu sh es stir red and th e oldsh e w olf th at had


-
,

b een rangi ng ev ery ridg e andv all ey si nce sh e


di sapp eared at th e u nkn own al arm glid ed ,

ov er th e sp ot wh ere a mom ent b efore M ook a


andNo el had b een w at chi ng S wif tly sil ent ly
.
,

She f oll ow ed th eir step s; fou nd th e oldtrail s


c oming up and th e fresh t rail s r etur ning ;
t h en sur e at l ast th at no d ang er t hr eat ened
,

h er o w n l i t tl e o ne s S h e l o
, ped away up th e
hill andover th e topm ost ridge toth e c arib ou
b arre nsandth e thicke ts wh ere y ou ng rabbi ts
w ere already sti rri ng ab ou t in th e t wilight .

Th at nigh t in t h e c abin u nd er th e cli ff s


, ,

Old Tom ah h ad to r ehea rse agai n all th e


w olf l ore l ear ned in six ty y ears of hu n t i ng

ho w fo
,
r t u nately for th e d eer th ese enorm ou s
,

w olves h ad nev er b een abund ant and w ere


no w v er y rar e a few h avi ng b een sh o
, t and ,

m ore p oi soned in th e star vi ng t im es andth e ,

r est h av i ng v ani sh ed myst eri ou sly as w olv es


,

do for som e u nk nown r eason B ears which


, .
,

are easily t rapp ed and Sh o t and w h o se ski ns

are w o r th each a m ont h s w ages toth e fi sh er


m en st ill h o
,
ld t h eir ow n and ev en i nc rease
on t h e great i sl and ; wh il e th e wolves onc e ,

m or e num er ou s are Sl owly vani shi ng th ough


, ,

t h ey are nev er h u nt ed and no t ev en Old


T om ah him self could set a t rap cu nni ngly
eno ugh t o c at ch one The old hu nter t old
.
,

whil e M ooka and N oel h eld th eir br eath s


and dr ew cl o ser t oth e ligh t h o
, w o nc e wh en ,

h e m ad e his c amp al o ne u nd er a cli ff o n th e


l ak e sh ore seven hug e w olv es whi te as
, ,

the snow c am e raci ng sw ift and


,

sil ent o v er th e ic e straigh t at th e


fire which h e h ad b ar ely t im e t o
ki ndl e ; h ow h e Sh o t
553
2

t w o andth e o
, th ers ,

k seizi ng the fi sh h e
(g !
hadj u st caught t hr oug h th e ic e for h is ow n
supp er v ani sh ed o
, v er th e b ank ; andh e c ould
no t say even no w wh eth er th ey m eant him

h arm orno A gai n ash e t alk ed andth e grim


.
,

oldf ac e ligh ted up at t he memo ry th ey saw ,

him crouch ed wi th his Sl edg e d og s by a bl az


-

ing fi re all the lo ng wi nt er nigh t andar o , u nd


him in th e d arkne ss blazi ng p oi nt s of ligh t ,

t h e ey es o f wolve s fl ashi ng b ack t h e fi religh t ,

and g au nt whi t e f o rm s fli tti ng ab ou t like


shad o ws d rawi ng n earer andnear er wi th ev er
,

growing bold ne ss til l th ey seized his l arg est


do g
— t h ough t h e bru t e lay s o near t h e fire
th at h is h ai r si ged
n — and whi sk ed it aw ay
wi th an app alli ng ou tc ry A nd still agai n
.
,

whe n T om ah w as l ost thr ee d ays in th e


i nterior t h ey saw him wand eri ng wi t h his
,

p ack over e ndl ess b arre ns and thr ough


gl oomy spru ce w ood s and ne ar h im all th e
,

t im e a y o u ng w olf th at f oll ow ed his step s


quie tly wi th h alf fri endly i nterest ; and cam e
,
-

non eare r day o r night .

All t h ese t hi ng s and ma ny m ore th e chil


dren h eard from Old T om ah and am ong all ,

h is hu nt i ng exp erie nc es and th e sto ri es and


l egend s which h e t old t h em t h er e w as not
one t om ak e th em afr aid For t h e horribl e
.

st o ry of Red R idi ng H ood is not k now n


'

am o ng t h e I ndi ans w h o k no
, w w ell h ow
u ntru e th e t al e is t o w olf nature and h ow ,

f ooli sh it is t o f righ ten children wi t h fal se


st ories o f wo lv es and b ear s mi srepr esent
,

ing t h em as sav ag e and bl o od thirsty bru tes ,

wh en in tru t h t h ey are b ut Shy p eac e l ovi ng


,
-

anim al s wh o
, se o nly m o tive to w ard m an ,

exc ept wh en c raz ed by w o u nd s or h u ng er ,

is one o f childi sh curi o si t y


. All t h ese f ero
ci ous anim al stori es h av e th eir origi n in
oth er c en turi es and in di stant l and s wh ere ,

th ey m ay po ssibly h av e b een t ru e b ut m o , re
prob ably are j u st as f al se toanim al nat ure ;
fo r th ey seem t o r efl ec t no t th e Shy anim al
t h at m en glimp sed in th e w o od s b ut r ath er
,

th e b o ast i ng s o f som e h u nter who alw ays


,

m ag nifi es his ow n pr ai se by i ncr easi ng the


f eroci ty of th e gam e he has kill ed or else
.

,
.

t h e pur e I m ag i nat io n of so m e anci ent nurse


w h o t ri ed t oi ncr ease h er sc an t au t h o ri t y by
f righ teni ng her children wi th ter ribl e tale s .

H ere c er tai nly th e I ndi an at ti t ud e of ki nship ,


t h eir ne ck s
, fl edh ow li ng und er b ed s and
t abl es .A nd wh en M oo k a and N oel w ent
f earfully with th ei r m oth er toth e li ttl e w in
dow — for th e m en w ere far aw ay on a c ari
b o u hu nt —
t h ere w er e gau nt wh i te w olves ,

five or Six of th em fli tt i ng r estl essly ab ou t in


,

th e m o onligh t scr atchi ng at th e crack s and


,

ev en rai si ng th em selv es on th ei r hi n d l eg s
to lo ok i n at th e lit tl e wi nd ow s .

M ook a sh iv ered a b it wh en S h e remem


b ered the u nc anny sc en e and felt agai n th e
,

st ro ng pr essu r e o f h er mo th er s arm s h olding



4

h er cl ose ; b ut Old T o m ah bru sh ed away h er


fears with a smile and a w ord as h e h ad
.

alw ays d o ne whe n as li ttl e childr en th ey h ad


, ,

sh o w ed fea r at the t hund er or th e gal e or


th e c ry of a wild b ea st in th e nigh t ,

till th ey h ad gro w n to
l ook up on all N ature s ’

phe nom ena as hidi ng a


smile as ki ndly as th at

of Old T omah him self ,

w h oh adafac ewri nkl ed

andt erribly grim tob e ,

su r e b u t w h oc o u l d
,

(

a “
g
smil e andtell ast ory soth at ev ery child t ru sted
him T h e w olvesw ere hu ngry starvi ng h un
.
,

r
g y ,
h e sa id ,an d w ant ed o nly a d og o r one ,

of th e pigs A nd M ook a r em emb ered wi th a


.

bright l augh th e t w oli t tl e u nruly pig s th at


h ad b een t a k en i nl and asa h ostage t of ami ne ,

andt h at mu st b e c ar efully gu ard ed fro m th e


t eet h o f h u ngry pr o wl ers for th ey w ould soon
,

b e ne ed ed to k eep th e children th em selv es


fr om starvi ng E v ery nigh t at early su nset
.
,

wh en th e tr ees b egan t ogroan and th e k een


wi nd s from th e m ou ntai ns c am e w hi sp eri ng
t h ro ugh t h e w ood s th e t w opig s w er e tak en
,

i nto th e snug kitch en wh ere wi th th e d og s


,

they slep t socl ose toth e stove th at sh e c ould


alway s sm ell p o rk a fryi ng Not a hu sky dog
-
.

t h er e but w o uld h av e kill ed andeaten one of


t h ese li ttl e pig s if h e c o uld h av e c augh t him
ar o u nd th e c or ner of the h ou se af ter nigh tfall ,

th o ugh you w ould nev er h av e su sp ec ted it if


y o u had seen t hem so cl ose t og et h er k eep

ing each o th er wa r m aft er th e fi re w ent o ut .

A nd b esid es th e d o gs and th e w olve s th ere


w ere ly nx es— big rou nd h ead ed sav age l ook
,
-
,
-

ing cre atu res— that cam e pr o wli ng out of th e


d eep w ood s every nigh t hu ngry for a taste
,

of th e li ttl e pig s; and now and th en an enor


m ou s p ol ar b ear th at h ad l and ed from an
,

i ceb erg w ould Shu ffl e swif tly and f earl essly


,

am ong the h andful of li ttl e c abin s le avi ng ,

h is gr eat f o otprint sin every y ard andt ear i ng


t opi ece s as if m ad e o
,
f st r aw th e h eavy lo
, g
p ens t o which some of th e fi sh erm en h ad
f ooli shly confid ed th eir pig s or Sh eep H e .

ev en ent ered th e w o od sh ed s and r umm aged


ab o u t af ter a st ray fi shb one or an old seal
Ski n bo ot m aki ng a g reat rowdyd ow in th e
,

still night ; and o nly th e sm ell o f m an o r th e ,

r ep ort of an old gun fir ed at him by som e


brave w oman out of th e h alf op en wi nd ow-
,

k ep t him fr om pu shi ng h is enorm ou s w eigh t


ag ai nst th e v ery d o ors o f th e c ab i ns .

Thi nki ng of all th ese thi ng s M ooka for ,

g o t h er f ear s of t h e whi t e w olv es r em e


,mb er
ing wi t h a ki nd o f symp athy h o w hungry all
t he se Shy pr o wl ers mu st be to l eav e t h eir
ow n hau nts wh ence th e rabbi ts an
,

seal s h ad va ni sh ed and ,

ve nture b oldly i n to th e
y ard sof m en AS for .
N oel ,
h e rem emb er ed wi th regret t h at he was
to o sm all at th e t im e t o use the l ong bow
which h e now c arri ed on his rabbi t andgoose
h unt s; andas h e t o ok i t from th e w all thrum ,

mi ng its ch ord of c ar ib ou sin ew andfi ngeri ng


the Sh arp edg e of a lo ng arr ow he w ash opi ng ,

fo r j u st such ano t h er wi nt er l ongi ng tot ry ,

his Skill and st reng t h o n so m e of the se mid


night prowl ers a ly nx p erh ap s not tobegi n
, ,

to ol arg ely on a p o l ar b ear S oth ere w as no


.

fear at all but only an eager w ond er wh en


, ,

t h ey fo ll owed up the br ook nex t day tow at ch


at th e w o lf sden A nd ev en wh en No el f ou nd

.

a t rack a ligh t ov al t r ack larger b ut m or e


, ,

Sl end er th an a d og s in some m oi st sand clo se



,

b esid e thei r ow n f ootp r i nts and evid ently fol


l owi ng th em th ey rem emb ered o nly th e you ng
,

w olf t h at hadf oll ow ed T om ah and pre ssed on


th e m o re eag erly .

D ay af ter day they r etu r n ed t ot h eir w atch


t ow er on th e flat r ock u nd er t he dw arf ,

Spruc e at the head of th e br ook and lyi ng ,

there side by sid e t h ey w at ch ed the pl ay o f


th e you ng w o lf cub s E v ery day th ey grew
.

m or e int erest ed as the spir it of pl ay ent ered


i nto th em selves u nd er standi ng the gl ad ness
,

of th e wild r ough andt umbl e wh en one o


- -
f
th e cub s lay in w ai t fo r an o t h er and l eap ed
up on him f rom ambu sh ; u nd erst andi ng also
som et hi ng of t he f eeli ng o f th e gau nt o ldS h e
wolf as She l ook ed d own gravely f r om he r
g ray rock w atchi ng her g row ing y oungsters .

O nc e they b rough t an old Spy gl ass which-

they h ad b orr owed fr om a fi sh erm an and ,

t hrou g h its sea dimme d l ense s t h ey m ade


-

out t h at one of th e cub s w asla rge


.

r t h an th e
other tw o wi th a droop at th e t ip of h is right
,

ear like a p o
, i n ted l eaf t hat h as b een cr eased
Sh arply be t w ee n th e fi ng ers M ooka cl aim ed
.

that wolf i nstan tly for h er ow n as if th ey ,

w er e watching th e hu sky puppi es andby h is ,

brok en ear said S h e Sh ould k now him agai n


whe n he grew t o be a big w olf if he Should


,

ever f oll ow h er as h is f ather perh ap s h ad


,

followed Old T om ah ; but Noel t h i nking of


,

h is b ow and h is l o ng ar r o w with the Sh arp


p oi nt th ough t of t h e w i n ter nigh t l ong ago
,

and h o p ed th at h is t w ow olv es w ould kn ow


en ough to ke ep aw ay wh en th e p ack cam e
agai n fo
, r he did no t see any w ay t or ec o g niz e
Watc hi n g he r growmg

youn g s te r s
h er enemy m an cam e out t om eet t h em . For
ones wh ose t r ail S h e k new
t h ese t w o li ttl e , ,

the old S h e w olf lik e m ost m othe r animal s


-
,

in th e pr esenc e of children f elt nof ear no , r

en mity what ever ! ut th ey w atch ed h er


.
!

den and her o w n litt le on es th at w as su r e,

enough ; and why sh o uld any one w atch a


den except t oenter som e t i m e and d estroy ?
Th at is a que sti on which no m other wolf
c ould ev er answ er ; for th e wild anim al s ,

u nl ik e d og s and bl ue j ay s and m en mi nd ,

st ric tly th eir own bu si ness andpay noat ten

ti on to othe r animal s T h ey h ate al sotobe


.

w at ch ed ; forth e t h ought of watchi ng alw ay s


sugg est s t oth eir mi nd s th at which f o llow s ,

th e hu nt t h e ru sh th e wild br eak aw ay and


, ,
-
,

th e r un fo r lif e H adsh e no
. t h erself w at ch ed

a hundred t im es at the r abbi t s f o rm th e ’

fox s runw ay th e d eer p at h th e wild goose


, ,
-

n est ? Wh at c ould S h e exp ec t for he r ow n


lit tle ones t h eref ore wh en th e m an cub s
, , ,

b ei ngs of l arger r each and unkn own p ower ,

cam e d ail y t o w atch at h er den ?


All thi s u nansw er ed puzzl e mu st h av e
pa ssed th rough th e old w olf s h ead as sh e ’
t r o tted up the broo k aw ay fr om th e I ndi an
cabi n i n th e t wiligh t Wh en in d oub t t ru st
.

your f ears — th at is w olf wi sd om i n a nut


sh ell ; and t h at ma r k s th e di ff erenc e betw een
a wolf and a carib ou for i nstanc e wh i ch in
, ,

d oubt t ru sts h is n ose or his curi osi ty S o .

th e o ld wolf t ook coun sel of h er f ears for h er


li ttle one s and th at night car ri ed th em one
,

by one i n h er m out h as a c at c arri es h er


,

ki t t ens mil es aw ay over r ock s and ravi ne s


,

andSp r uc e thick ets t oano , th er den where no


h um an eye ever l ook ed upo n th ei r pl ay .


S h all we See them ag ai n lit tl e broth er ?
,

said Mo o ka wi stfully wh en t h ey h ad cli mb ed


,

to t h ei r wa t ch t ower fo-
r th e third tim e and

seen nothi ng A nd N oe l m ad e c o
. nfid ent

answ er

Oh yes we see um agai n lil si ster
, , , .

W ayeeses got um w a nd eri ng foot ; go


w ay o ff lo ng w ay s;

bimeby c ome b ack


on same t rail H e .

j like I

u s

j u n l i ke
,

u m ol d
c amp b est Oh y es sa r ti n w e see urn ag ai n
.
, , .

But N oel s ey es l ooked far aw ay as he Spok e


and in h is he art he w as thi nki ng o f his b o w

andh is long ar r o w wit h th e sh arp point and


,

of a mo onli t night wi th whi te sh ape s fli tt ing


noi sel essly ove r th e snow and scr at chi ng at
the d oor of th e li ttl e c abi n
.
N E W expe r i ence hadc ome tothe lit tle
wolf cub s in a Si ngl e nigh t — the ex ,

e rience o f f ear F or w ee k s t h ey h adl ai n hid


p .

in the d ar k den o r pl ay ed fearle ssly in th e


,

bright su nshi ne gu ard ed and k ep t at ev ery


,

m om ent day ornigh t by th e gau nt oldm oth er


, ,

w olf th at w as t h eir only law th eir only com ,

pani on A t tim es t h ey lay for h ours hu ngry


.

andr estl ess l o ngi ng t ogoo


,
ut i ntoth e brigh t

w orld yet ob eyi ng a st ro nger wi ll th an th eir


,

ow n even at a di stance For onc e a wild


, .
,

m other in h er ow n d umb w ay h as bidd en h er


53
li tt l e ones lie still t h ey rarely stir fr om t he
,

sp o , t r efu si ng ev en t ob e dragged aw ay fro m


th e nest o rd en k no
, wi ng w ell th e pu ni shm ent
in st o re if S h e r etur n and fi nd t h em ab sent .

M oreover i t is u sel ess to di ssimul ate togo


, ,

out and pl ay and t h en to b e sl eepi ng i nno


c entl
y wi t h th e cub s wh en t h e old w o lf s

Sh ad ow d ark ens th e ent ranc e No c onc eal .

m ent is p ossibl e from w olf s no se ; b e f ore


S h e ent er s th e d en th e m o th er k now s per

fectly all t h at h as h app ened Si nc e sh e w ent


aw ay . S o th e d ays glid ed by p eac efully
b et ween Sl eep and pl ay th e cub s t ru sti ng
,

ab so l utely in th e str eng th and t end ern ess


th at w atch ed ov er th em th e m oth er building
,

th e cub s futu r e o

n th e f ou nd ati on of th e t w o
i nsti nc ts which are st rong in ev ery wild
creat ur e b or n i nto a w orld of d ang er — th e ,

i nsti nct to lie still and let nat ur e s c ol or ’

ing hid e all d ef ensel ess li t tl e o nes and th e


,

i nsti nct t o ob ey i nstantly a str ong er will


th an th eir ow n .

Th er e w as nof ear as y et only i nsti nc tive


,

w ari ness; for f ear c om es l argely from oth ers ’

ex ampl e from al arm s and excit eme nt and


,
su spiciou sly am ong the Spruc e bra nch es; a
star tl ed bird chirp ed and w hirr ed aw ay o ut

of t h eir p ath ; th e brook r oared am ong th e


r ock s; a big salm on j ump ed and t umbl ed
b ack wi th r esou ndi ng Spl ash and j ump ed ,

agai n as if t h e o t ter w ere af ter him Th er e .

w as a sudd en sh arp cry th e first and l ast


,

v oic e of a h are wh en th e w easel ri ses up


in fr o nt of him ; t h en sil enc e and th e fi tful
,

ru stl e of h is m oth er s p ad s m ovi ng steadily


iftly o v er dry l eav es A ndall t h ese sou nd s


.

of the wild er ness nigh t sp ok e toth e li ttl e cub


of som e new thi ng of sw ift f eet th at f oll ow
,

and o f som ethi ng u nk now n andterribl e th at


w ai ts for all u nw ary wild t hi ng s S o fear .

w as b o rn
.

T he l o ng j o ur ney end ed at l ast b efore a


d ark h ol e in t h e hill sid e ; andth e sm ell of h is
moth er th e only famili ar t hi ng
,

in h is fir st strang e pilgrim ag e ,

greeted th e cub from th e rock s


on eith er sid e ash e p assed in out
of th e starligh t H e w as drop ped
.

wi th ou t a sou nd in a l arge r den ,

on som e fre sh g ath ered l ea


-
v es
and d ead gra ss , and lay th ere all al o
v ery ne,

still wi t h t h e new f eeli ng t r embli ng all o


,
ver
him A l ong h our passed ; a seco nd cub w as
.

l aid b esid e him and t h e m oth er vani sh ed as


,

b efore ; another h our andth e w olf cub s w er e


,

all t ogeth er agai n wi t h th e m ot he r feedi ng


t h em Nor did any of th em k now wh ere
.

th ey were no ,
r why th ey h ad c o m e nor th e ,

lo ng l ong w ay th at led b ack to wh ere th e


,

t rail b egan .

N ex t day wh en th ey w ere c all ed out to


pl ay t h ey saw a di ff erent and m ore gl oomy
l and scape a ch aos of g rani te rock s a f or est
, ,

of ev ergreen the wh it e plu ng e and rolli ng


,

mi st of a m ou ntai n t orrent ; but noSilv er sea


wi t h fi shing b oats drifti ng over it lik e cl oud s

-
,

in th e sea o ver th eir h ead s andnogray h ut ,

wi th children ru nni ng ab ou t lik e ants on


th e di stant sh o re A nd as t h ey pl ay ed th ey
.

b egan for th e fir st tim e to imi tate th e old


m oth er k eepi ng gu ard over th em Si tt i ng up ,

of ten towatch and li st en and sift th e wi nd s ,

t ryi ng tou nd er stand wh at f ear w as andwhy ,

t h ey h ad b een t ak en aw ay fr o m th e su nny
hill sid e wh ere th e world w as somuch bigger
andbright er t h an h ere ! ut h om e is wh ere
.

o
m h rt e is — th at for t u nately is al sot ru e of
, , ,

t h e littl e W o od Folk w h o u nd erstand it i n


,

t hei r o w n savage w ay fo r a sea son — and in ,

t h eir w o nd er at th ei r new surr o u ndi ng s t h e


m em ory of the old h om e gradu ally fad ed
aw ay . Th ey nev er k new wi th wh at endl ess
c are th e new den hadbe en ch osen ; how t h e
m ot h er in th e days wh en S h e k new She w as
,

w atch ed h ad search ed it out and w atch ed


,

ov er it and put h er n ose toev ery ridg e and


r avi ne and b rook sid e day af ter day t ill S h e
-
, ,

w as sure t h at nof o ot sav e t h at of th e wild


thi ngs h ad touch ed th e soil w i thi n mil es of
th e pl ace Th ey felt o
. nly a gr eat er wild ne ss a ,

d eep er solitud e andth ey never forg ot t h ough ,

th ey w er e u nm ol ested th e st range feeli ng th at


,

w as b o r n in t h em on th at fi rst t errif y i ng nigh t


j ou r ney in th ei r m oth er s j aw s ’
.

S oo n th e f ood th at w as b r ought h ome at


d aw n — th e rabbit or gr ou se or th e bunch of ,

rat s h angi ng by th eir tail s wi t h which t h e


,

m oth er suppl em ented t h eir midd ay dri nk of


m i l k be cam e alt ogethe r too sc an t tosati sfy
t eh ir cl am or ou s app et i tes; and in th e brigh t
af ter no ons and th e l ong summ er t w iligh ts
th e m o th er ledt h em f o r th on sh or t j our neys
to h u nt fo r th em selv es . No big carib ou
or cu nni ng fox cub as one migh t supp ose
, ,


b ut “
rats and mic e and such sm all d eer
w ere t h e limi t of th e m oth er s ambi t i on for’

h er little o nes Th ey b eg an o n st upid grub s


'

t h at o ne c o uld fi nd asl eep u nd er stones and


roots and th en on b eetl es t h at scrambl ed
,

away bri skly at th e fir st al arm and th en , ,

when th e su nshi ne w as brigh test on ,

grassh opp er s lively w ary fell ows


, ,

t h at zipp ed and buzz ed aw ay j u

wh en you w ere su re you had


th em andth at ge nerally l and ed
,

from an astoundi ng j ump faci ng in


di ffere nt dir ec t i on lik e a fl ea so as
, ,

ready f or y our nex t m ov e .

It w as ast o ni shi ng h o w quickly th e cub s

l ear ned th at g am e is not t o b e pick ed up


tam el y lik e huckl eb erri es andch ang ed th ei r
, ,

st yl e of h u nt i ng
— cr eepi ng i nst
, ead of t r ot
t i ng O p enl y so t h at ev en a p o rcupi ne mu st
no t ic e them hiding b ehi nd r o
, ck s andbu she s
and t uf ts of g r ass till th e preci se m om ent
cam e and th en le api ng wi th th e sw oop of a
,

g osh awk on a ptarmig an A w olf th at c annot


.

cat ch a grassh opp er h as nobu si n ess h u nti ng


r abbi ts— thi s se em ed to b e t h e u nc onsciou s
m ot ive th at led t h e old m oth er ev ery su nny ,

a f ter no on toignor e th e thick et s wh er e g ame


,

w as hidi ng pl en tifully and t ak e h er cub s t o


t h e d r y sun ny pl ai ns o
,
n th e edg e o f the
carib ou b ar re ns Th ere for h ours at a time
.

th ey hu nted elu sive grassh opp ers r u sh i ng ,

h el ter sk elt er over th e dry m oss l eapi ng up


-
,

tost rike at th e flyi ng gam e wi t h t h ei r p aw s

like a kit ten or snappi ng wildly t oca tch it


,

in t h ei r m o u th s and comi ng d ow n wi th a
b ack bre aki ng wriggle t o ke ep th em selv es
-

from tumbli ng ove r on th eir h e ad s Th en .

on ag ai n with a d roll expressi on and nose s


,

sh arp ened lik e excl am at i o n poi nts to find ,

ano th er grassh o pper .

S m all bu si ness i nde ed andoften ludi cr ou s ,

thi s pl ayi ng at g rassh opp er h u nti ng S o it .

seem s tous; soal so p erh ap s tot h e wi se o


, ,
ld
m ot h er which k new all th e w ay s of gam e
, ,

from crick ets to carib ou and from grou nd


Sparr ow s towild geese ! ut pl ay is th e first
.

great educ at or , t h at isas tru e of anim al sas


of m en — and toth e cub st h ei r rough h el ter
,

Sk el ter aft er h oppe r s w as as exciti ng as a


stag hu nt tothe p ack as full o f surpri ses as
,

th e wild ch ase thr o ugh the sof t sn ow afte r


a litter o f lynx kitt en s A nd th o ugh t h ey
.

k new i t not they we r e l ear ni ng thi ngs every


,

hou r of th e su nny pl ayful af ter noons th at


,

they would rem ember andfind u seful all th e


d ays of thei r life .

S o th e fu nny lit tl e hu nt w ent o n the ,

m oth er w atchi ng g ravely u nd er a bu sh wh ere


sh e w as i nc o nspicu o u s and th e cub s full of
, ,

ze st and i nexperie nce mi ssi ng the flying tid


,

bi ts m or e oft en th an they swall ow ed them ,

until th ey l ear ned at l ast to l oc at e all game


accurately b ef o re chasi ng or al armi ng it ; and
th at is th e r ul e l earned f r om hu nt i ng g r ass
,

ho ppe rs whi ch a w olf foll ow s ever afterw ar d


,
.

E ven after t h ey knew j u st whe re th e grass


h oppe r w ashidi ng w atchi ng th em af ter a
,

j ump and l eap ed up on him swiftly from a


,

di stance h e of ten got aw ay whe n t h ey lif ted


,

t h eir p aw s to eat him For th e gra ssh o


. ppe r
w as not d ead u nd er th e ligh t paw as th ey ,

supp o sed b ut o
,
nly pr essed i nto t h e m o ss

w ai ti ng for h is ch anc e to j ump Th en t h e .

cub s l ear ned anoth er l esson ! to h old t h ei r


gam e d ow n wi th b oth p aw s pressed cl osely
to g eth er i nser t i ng th eir noses lik e a w edg e
,

andk eepi ng ev ery crack o f esc ap e sh u t t igh t


u nt il t h ey h adth e slipp ery m or sel saf e u nd er
t h ei r b ack teeth A nd ev en th en it w as d eli
.

ci ously fu nny t o w atch th ei r expressi on as


t h ey ch ew ed O p eni ng th eir j aw s wide as if
,

sw all o w i ng arabbi t snappi ng t h em Sh ut agai n


,

as th e grassh o pp er wiggl ed ; andal way s wi th


a do ub t in th eir cl ose set ey es a qu esti oni ng
-
,

t wi st o f h ead and ear s as if th ey w ere no


, t
qui te sur e wh eth er or not t h ey w ere really
eat i ng him .

A noth er suggest iv e t hi ng c am e out in


th ese hu nts which you mu st notic e wh eth er
,

y o u w a t ch w olv es or c oy ot es o r a d en o f
fo x cub s . Th ough nosou nd cam e from th e
w at chful o ld m o th er th e cub s seem ed at
,

ev ery i nst ant und er ab so lu te c ont r ol O ne .

w ould ru sh away p ell m ell af ter a h opp er


-
,

m i ss him andt umbl e aw ay agai n t ill h e w as ,


cub s w ould rem emb er the l esson and every ,

free w olf w ould curb his hunger ob eyi ng the


,

sil ent Sig nal t o ea se th e gam e and f o ll ow


Sl owly whil e the l ead er raced u nseen through
th e w o od s toh ead th e gam e and lie in am
bu sh by th e di stant ru nw ay .

F rom gra ssh oppe rs t h e cub s t ook tohu nt


ing th e w o od mic e t hat n est ed in th e dry
-

m oss and sw arm ed on th e edges of every


thick et Thi s w as k eener h u nti ng ; for th e
.

wood m ou se m ov es like a ray of light and


-
,

alw ay s m ake s at l east o ne fal se st ar t tom i s

l ead any t h at m ay b e wa t chi ng for him .

Th e cub s so on l ear ned t h at wh en T ookh ees


appear ed and dodged b ack again as if fright ,

ened i, t w as no t b ec au se he h ad seen t h em ,

but j u st b ec au se h e always app ear s that w ay .

S o they c r o uched and h id lik e a c at and


, ,

wh en a gray str eak Sh ot over th e g ray m oss


and va ni shed i n a tuft o f grass th ey l eaped
for th e sp ot — and alway s f ou nd it vac ant .

For T oo kh ees alway s doubl es o n hi s t rail o r ,

burrow s for a di stance u nd er th e m oss and ,

nev er hid es wh er e h e di sapp ear s I t t ook


.

th e cub s a l o ng wh i le to fi nd that o ut ; and


t h en th ey w ould creep and w atch and li st en
t ill t h ey c o uld l ocate th e gam e by a st i r
u nd er the mo ss and p ou nc e up on it and
,

no se i t out fr om b etw ee n th eir p aw s j u st as ,

th ey h add o n e wi th th e g rassh opp er s A nd .

wh en they c r u nch ed it at last lik e a ripe pl um


u nde r t h ei r teeth i t w as a d elici ou s tidbi t ,

worth all th e t roubl e th ey h ad t ak en to


g e t it .F o r y ou r w olf ,u nlike t h e fe r oci ou s ,

g r a ndm o t h er-
e at i ng cr eatur e of t h e nur s ery ,

is at h ear t a p eac eabl e fell o w m ost at h om e


,

and m o st h appy wh en m o u se h unting .

There w as anoth er ki nd of thi s m ou se


ch asi ng which fu r ni sh ed b ett er sp ort and
m ore j uicy mouthful s to th e you ng cub s .

H e re andt h ere on th e Newfou ndl and mou n


tain s the snow li ngers all summer l ong I n
.
.

ev ery nort he r n h ollow of the hill s y ou see ,

from a di stance whi te p atch es nobigger t h an


,

y our h at Sp arkli ng in th e sun ; b ut wh en you


climb t he r e af ter b ear or c ar ib ou y ou fi nd
, ,

great snow fi elds acres in ex tent and fr om


-
,

t en toa hu nd red feet d eep p ack ed clo se and


,

h ard wi t h the pressure of a th ou sand wi nter s .

Oft en whe n it rai ns in th e valley s andr ai ses


,
th e salmon rivers tom eet y our exp ect ati ons ,

a t hi n c o veri ng of new snow c over s t h ese


whi te fi eld s; and th en if y ou goth ere you
, ,

will fi nd the new p ag e wri tten all over wi th


th e f eet o f bi r d s and b east s T h e mic e esp e
.

ci ally l o ve t h ese sn ow fi elds for som e un


-

k now n reason All al ong th e edg es y ou fi nd


.

t h e d elic ate l ac elik e t r ac ery w hich Sh o


,
ws
wh er e li ttl e f eet h av e g one on bu sy errand s
or pl ay ed t o g eth er in th e m oonligh t ; and if
o u w at ch t h e r e awhil e y o u w ill su r ely see
y
To okh ees c om e out of th e m ossandsc am p er
acr o ss a b it o f sno w and div e b ack t oc over
u nd er th e m oss ag ai n as if h e enj oy ed th e
,

f eeli ng of th e c old snow u nd er his f eet in


th e sum m er su nshi ne H e h as t u nnel s t h er e
.
,

to o g oi ng d ow n t osolid ic e w h ere h e hid es


, ,

t hi ng s t o k eep w hich w o uld sp oil if l ef t in


th e h eat o f h is den u nd er t h e m o ssy sto ne ,

and wh en f o od is sc arc e h e draw s up on th ese


cold st or ag e r oom s; b ut m ost of his summ er
-

sno w j our ney s if one m ay j udge from watch


,

ing h im and fro m f oll owi ng his t rack s are ,

tak en fo r pl ay o r co mf ort j u st as th e bull


,

c arib ou c om es up to lie in th e snow wi th ,


the str ong sea wi nd in his f ace t o escap e
,

th e fli es which sw arm in t h e thi ck ets b el o w .

Owl and h awk fox and w easel and wildc at


, ,

all th e pr o wl er s of th e day and night h av e


l ong Since di sc ov er ed t h ese g ood h u nti ng
ground s and l eav e th e pri nts of wi ng and
cl aw over t h e r ecord s of th e w ood mic e ; b ut -

st ill T o okh ees ret ur ns ledby his l ov e of th e


,

sno w fi elds and thrives and multipli es spi te


-
,

of all his enemi es .

O ne m o onlit nigh t t h e old w olf took


h er cub s tot h e edg e o f o ne o f t h ese snow
fi elds wh er
, e th e eag er ey es so on notic ed
d ark st reak s sh oot i ng hith er and yon ov er
th e b ar e whi t e surf ac e .A t first th ey
ch ased th em wildly ; but one migh t as w ell
try to c atch a m oonb eam which h as not ,

so m any pl ac es t o hid e as a w o od m ou se -
.

Th en rem emb eri ng th e grassh opp ers th ey


, ,

crouch ed and crep t and so c augh t a few .

M eanw hil e old m oth er w olf lay st ill in hid


ing c o
,
nt enti ng h er self wi th snappi ng up th e

g am e t h at c am e t oh er I nst ead of ch asi ng it


,

wildly all over th e snow fi eld T h e ex ampl e


-
.

w as no t lo st ; fo r imi tati o n is strong am ong


i ntellig ent anim al s and m ost of wh at th ey
,

l earn is due Simply t ofoll owi ng th e m oth er .

S oon th e cub s w ere st ill one lyi ng h ere und er


,

Sh adow of a bu sh a noth er th ere by a gray


,

r ock th at lif ted its h ead out of t he snow .

A S a d ark st r eak m o v ed nervou sly by one of


th ese hidi ng pl ace s th ere w ould b e a ru sh
-
,

a snap t he pcfi appdzap o


, f j aw s cru nchi ng a
d elici ou s m orsel ; th en all qui et agai n wi th ,

o nly gr ay i nnoc ent l ooki ng sh ad ow s r esti ng


,
-

so f tly on the snow S oth ey m oved g radu


.

ally al o ng t h e edg es o f th e gr eat white fi eld ;


and n ex t m o r ni ng th e t rack s w ere all th ere ,

pl ain as d ayligh t telli ng th ei r Sil ent story of


,

g ood hu nt i ng .

T ov ary t h ei r di et t h e m o t h er now to ok
t h em d o w n t oth e Sh ore to h u nt am ong th e
r ock s for duck s egg s Th ey w ere th ere by

.

th e h u ndred s sc attered al ong t h e l onely b ay s


,

j u st abov e h igh w ater li ne wh er e th e eid ers


-
,

h adth eir nest s .

A t fi rst old m other wolf showed th em


w h ere t o l o ok and wh en S he h ad f ound a
,

cl utch of egg s w ou ld divid e t h em fai rly ,

k eepi ng t h e h u ngry cub s in ord er at a li ttle


di stance and b r i ngi ng each one his Sh are ,

w h ich h e ate wi th out i nt erf ere nc e Th en .

wh en t h ey u nd erstood th e t hi ng t h ey scat
t ered nimbly t oh u nt fo r th em selves andt h e
,

real fun b eg an .

N ow a cub p oki ng his nose i ndu str i


,

ously i nto ev ery cr anny and und er ev er y


thick bu sh w ould find a great r oll of d own
,

pluck ed from th e m ot h er bird s b reast and


sc rapi ng th e t o p o ff c ar efully wi t h h i
s paw ,

w ould fi nd five or Six l arg e p al e green egg s


-
,

which h e gobbl ed d ow n Sh ell s duckli ng s


, ,

and all b ef o
, re anoth er cub Sh ould sm ell th e
good fi nd and cap er up t osh are it Ag ai n .

he would be star tl ed out of h is wit s as a l arge


brown bird whir red andflu t t ered aw ay
from u nde r his ver y n ose S i t ti ng on
.

his t ail h e would watch h er wi t h c o mi


c al r egret and l o ngi ng t ill S h e tum

bl ed i nt oth e tid e anddrift ed swiftly


aw ay o ut o f d anger ; t h en remember
,

ing w h at h e c ame fo r he w o
,
uld tu r n
andf o llo w h er t rail b ack tothe n est
out of whi ch sh e h adst ol en
at his appr o ach and fi nd
,
th e egg s all w arm for breakfast A nd
h is .

wh en h e h ad eaten all h e w anted h e w ould


t ak e an egg in his m ou th and ru n ab ou t un
easily h ere andth er e lik e a d
, og wi th a b one
wh en h e thi nk s he is w at ch ed t ill h e h ad
,

m ad e a sad cri sscross of h is t rail and f ou nd


a sp o t wh er e no ne c ould see him Th er e h e
.

w ould dig a h ol e and bury his egg and go


b ack for m ore ; and on his w ay w ould m eet
ano th er cub ru nni ng ab o u t wi t h an egg in
his m o u th l ooki ng for a sp ot wh ere noone
,

w ould not ic e h im .

Fr om mi c e andegg s th e y ou ng cub s t ur ned


t o r abbi t s and h ares; and th ese w er e t h ei r

st apl e f ood ev er af ter w ard wh en oth er g am e


w as sc arc e and th e w o od mi ce w ere hidd en
-

d eep u nd er th e wi nter snow s saf e at l ast for


,

a lit tl e seaso n fr om all th eir enemi es H ere .

fo r th e fir st tim e th e f at h er w o lf app ear ed ,

c omi ng in qui etly one l ate af ter noo n as if h e,

k new as h e prob ably did j u st wh en h e w as


, ,

need ed . B eyond agl ance he p aid noattent i on


wh at ev er to th e cub s only taki ng his pl ac e
,

opp osi te th e m oth er as th e w olves st ar ted


abr east in a l o ng li ne t ob eat t h e t hick et .
e nd of th e li ne rarely hunting them selve s
, ,

but dr awi ng the ne arest cub s atten t i on t o ’

any g am e th ey h ad di sc o v er ed and th en ,

mo vi ng Sile ntly to one Sid e anda littl e ah ead


to w at ch the r esult Wh en th e cub r u sh ed
.

and mi ssed and th e st art l ed r abbit we nt fl y


,

ing away whi rli ng t ol eft o


,
r r ight as rabbi ts

alw ay s do t h er e w o
, uld b e a ligh t ni ng ch ange
at th e endo f the li ne A te rr ific r u sh a snap
.
,

of t e l o g j aw s lik e a st eel t r p
h n a — th en t he ,

old w olf w ould to ss b ack th e rabbi t wi th


a brok en b ack for th e cub t o fini sh him .

Not till th e cub s first and t he n the m oth er


, ,

had sati sfi ed th eir h u ng er would the oldhe


w olf h unt for him self Then h e would dis .

app ear andt h ey would not see hi m fo r d ays


,

at a time u nt il fo o
, d w as scarce and they
needed him o nc e m ore .

O ne day wh en t h e cub s were hung ry and


,

f ood scar ce bec au se of th ei r p ersi st en t hu nt


ing n ea r th e den the m o ,th er brought th em
t o th e edge o f a d en se thi ck et wh er e rab
bi t s were ple ntiful e nough but where th e ,

cover w as sothick th at t hey could not f oll ow


th e f rightened game for an i nst ant The old .
he-w olf h ad app eared at a di stanc e andth en
vani sh ed ; andth e cub s t rotti ng alo ng b ehi nd
,

th e m o th er k new no
, thi ng o f wh at w as c o m
ing o r wh at w as exp ec ted o f them Th ey.

lay i n hidi ng o n th e lee Sid e o f th e t hick et ,

each o ne cr o uchi ng und er a bu sh or r oot ,

wi th th e m oth er off at one sid e p erfec tly hid


den as u sual .

Pr esently a r abbit app ear ed h o ppi ng al ong


,

in a cr azy w ay and ran plump i nt oth e j aw s


,

of a wolf cub whic h l eaped up as if out


,

of the g round and pull ed d ow n his gam e


,

from th e very t op of th e high j ump which


Moktaq ues alway s giv eswh en he issudd enly
st art l ed. A n oth er and anoth er rabbit ap
p ea re d my st er i ou sly a n d d o
,ubled b ack i nt o
th e c o v er b ef ore t h ey c ould be caugh t T he .

cub s w ere fill ed wi th w onder S uch hu nti ng


.

w as nev er seen b ef o r e ; for rabbit s st i rred


abro ad by day andran rig h t i nt ot h e h u ngry
,

m ou th s i nstead of ru nni ng away .

Th en Sli nki ng al ong lik e a Sh ad ow


,

andst o ppi ng t ol ook b ack andsni ff


the wi nd app eared a big r ed fo
,
x

t hat had be en Sl eepi ng away th e


after n oon on top of a st ump in th e ce nter of
t h e t hick et
.

T he o ld m o th er s ey es b egan t o bl az e as

Eleem o s dr ew near Th er e w as a ru sh swif t


.
,

andsudd en ast h e Swo o p of an eagle ; a sh arp


c all t of oll ow as th e m oth er s l ong j aw s cl osed
'

over th e sm all of th e b ack j u st as th e fox


,

t ur ned tol eap aw ay Th en sh e flu ng th e par


.

alyz ed anim al b ack lik e a fl ash ; th e y o u ng


w olv es t umbl ed in upon him ; and b ef ore h e
k new w h at h ad h app ened Eleem os th e S ly
O ne w as st ret ch ed o
, ut st r aigh t wi t h o
,
ne cub

at h is t ail and ano t h er at hi s t hr oat t ug ,

gi ng and w or r yi ng and grumbli ng d eep in


th ei r ch ests as th e lu st of th ei r fi rst figh ti ng
sw ep t o ver th em Th en i n v agu e vani shi ng
.
,

glimp ses th e old h e w olf app eared qu ar ter


-
,

ing swif tly Sil ently b ack and f o


, ,
r th thr ough
t h e t hick et d rivi ng ev ery livi ng thi ng d o
, wn
wi nd towh er e th e cub s andth e m oth er w ere
w ai ti ng torec ei v e it .

Th at one l esson w as enough for th e cub s ,

th o ugh years w ould p ass b ef ore th ey c ould


l ear n all th e fi ne p oi nts of thi s b eat i ng th e
bu sh ! to k now alm ost at a gl ance wh ere th e
As the m o the r s lo n g j aws lo se do ve r

c

the s m a ll of the ba k
c
game wh eth er g r ou se or h are or fox or luci
,

vee w as hidi ng in t h e c o
,
v er and t h en for
,

one w olf todriv e it sl ow l y or swif tly as th e


,

c ase migh t require whil e t he oth er hid be sid e


,

th e m o st lik ely p at h o f esc ap e A f amily


.

of gr ou se m u st b e coax ed al ong and nev er


see wh at i s drivi ng t h em el se t h ey will fl it
,

i ntoa t r ee and b e l ost ; wh il e a c at mu st be


star t l ed o ut o f h er wi ts by a sw if t ru sh and,

sent fly i ng aw ay b ef o r e sh e c an m ak e up h er
st upid mi nd wh at th e ro w i s all ab o ut A.

fo x alm o
, st as cu nni ng as W ay eeses him self ,

mu st be m ad e toth i nk t h at som e dog enemy


is sl o wly puzzli ng out h is c old t rail ; while
a mu squ ash search i ng fo r b ak e appl es o
-
,
ra

be aver g oi ng i nl and t oc ut w ood for his w in


t er suppli es o f b ark mu st no
, t b e driv en b ut
,

be f o ll ow ed up sw if tly by th e p ath or c anal


by which he h as v ent ured aw ay fr om th e
fri endly water .

All t h ese and m any m or e thi ng s mu st be


l ear ned sl ow ly at th e exp ense of m any fail
ures esp eci ally wh en th e cub s t ook t o h u nt
,

ing alo ne andth e o ld w o lves w er e not t h er e


t oSh o w th em h ow ; b ut th ey nev er forgot the
pri ncipl e t augh t in t h at first r abbi t drive ,

t h at t w ohu nter s are b et ter th an o ne too ut

wit any gam e wh en th ey h u nt i ntelligent ly


t ogeth er Th at is why you so of ten fi nd
.

w olves g oi ng in p airs; and wh en you study


t h em o rf o ll ow th eir track s you di sc ove r th at
th ey pl ay c on t inu ally i nt oeach o th er s h and s

.

Th ey seem toSh are th e sp oil as i ntelligently


as th ey c at ch it the wolf t h at l i es b esid e
,

th e ru nway andpull s dow n the g ame givi ng

up a p orti on gl adly to th e c omp ani on t h at


b eats th e bu sh and rar ely i nd eed is th ere
,

any t rac e o f qu arreli ng b et w een t h em .

Like th e eagl es— wh ich h av e l ong Si nc e


l ea r ned th e adv ant age of h u nting in p ai rs
and of sc outi ng for g am e in si ngl e file
t he w o lve s whe n h u nti ng d ee r on th e O p en
,

b arr en s where it is di fficul t to c onc eal th ei r


advance al ways t r avel in fil es one f oll owi ng
, ,

clo se b ehind th e oth er ; soth at seen fr om in


,

Jig f r ont wh ere th e gam e is w atchi ng t w oo


! ,
r
th r ee wolve s will appe ar like a lone ani
m al t r otting acr o ss th e pl ain . Th at
al arm s the gam e far l ess at first ; and
no t u n til the d eer sta rt s away doe s
di sapp eared Sh oot i ng ah ead in great sil ent
, ,

b ou nd s whil e the cub s w ai ted wi th ears


,

c ock ed and noses quiveri ng as if a sil ent


,

c omm and h ad b een u nd erstood .

T h e sil enc e w as i ntense ; no t a so u nd not ,

a sti r in t h e qui et w o od s whi ch seem ed tob e


,

li steni ng wi th th e cub s and t obe fill ed wi t h


th e sam e th rilli ng exp ec t at i o n S udd enly
.

th e sil enc e w as bro k en by h eavy plu nges far


ah ead em sfi
, éump éump andt h er e bro ke
forth such an uproar of y ap s and h owl s as
the cub s h ad nev er h eard b ef ore I nstant ly .

t h ey br o k e aw ay on t h e trail j oi ni ng t h ei r
,

shrill y elpi ng s to th e cl am o r so di ff ere nt


,

f rom th e ord i nary st eal thy w olf hu nt and ,

fill ed wi th a nam el ess exci t em ent which th ey


did not at all u nd erstand till th e r eek of
carib ou p oured i nto th eir h u ngry nostril s;
wh ereup on th ey y elp ed l oud er th an ever .

! ut they did no t b egi n t o u nd erstand th e

m att er t ill t h ey c augh t glimp se s of gray


b ack s b ou ndi ng hi th er and yon i n th e
u nd erbru sh whil e th e tw o grea t w olv es
,

rac ed easily on ei t h er Sid e y appi ng Sh arply


,

to i ncrease th e exci teme nt and guidi ng t h e


,
r l d f ooli sh d eer as surely as intelli
sta t e , ,

gently as a p air of c olli es h erd a fl ock of


,

frigh tened Sh eep .

Wh en th e cub s br ok e out of th e d en se
cov er at l ast t h ey f ou nd th e t w oold wolves
Si tti ng qui etly on t h eir t ail s b ef ore a r ugged
w all of rock s th at st retch ed away on ei th er
h and at th e b ase of a g reat b are hill In .

fr ont of th em w as a you ng c ow c arib ou ,

thr eat eni ng savagely wi th h o r ns and h oof s ,

whil e b ehi nd h er c ow ered t w o h alf grow n-

faw ns crowd ed i nt o a crevice of th e rock s .

A ng er rath er th an f ear bl azed out in the


, ,

m oth er s mild eye s Now S h e tur ned swift ly



.

topre ss h er exci ted y o u ng one sback agai nst


th e Sh el teri ng w all ; no w She whirled wi th a

savage gru nt and charged h eadl o ng at th e

w olves which m erel y l eap ed aside and sat


,

d ow n sil ently agai n t o watc h th e gam e till ,

th e cub s r ac ed o ut and h o v ered u neasily


ab o u t w i th a th ou sand qu esti ons i n every eye
and ear and t wi t chi ng no st ril
. w .

T h e re aso n fo rt
w as n ow p l ai n

e n ou g h
U p to t hi s tim e th e c arib ou h ad b een let
sev er ely al o ne t h o
, ugh th ey w ere v ery nu
m ero us sc at ter ed t hr o
, ugh th e d ense c overt s
in ev ery v all ey and o n ev ery hill side For .

W ay eeses is no w ant on kill er as h e is so ,

of ten r epresented t o b e b ut stick s t o sm all


,

gam e wh enev er h e c an fi nd it and l eav es ,

the d eer u n m ol ested A s for h is m otiv e


.

in t h e m at ter w h o Sh all say si nc e no o


, , ne

u nd er stand s th e h alf of wh at a w olf d oes


ev ery d ay ? Perh ap s it is a m er e m att er o f
taste a pref er enc e f o
,
r th e sm all er andm o re
j uicy t idbi t s; m ore lik ely It Is a c ombi na
ti on of i nst i nc t andj udgm ent w i th a p ossibl e
,

ou tl ook for t h e fu t ure u nu su al wi t h b east s


of prey T h e m om ent th e y ou ng w olv es
.

t ak e t o h arryi ng th e d eer — as th ey invari


ably doi f th e m o th er w o lf b e not wi th th em
t h e c arib ou l eav e th e c ou nt ry T h e h erd s .

b ec om e m oreov er so wild and su spici ou s


, ,

af ter a v ery li ttl e w o lf h u nti ng th at t h ey are


exc eedi ngly d iflic ult o f appr o ach ; and t h ere
I S noli v i ng th i ng on ear th not ev en a whit e
,

w olf or a t r ai ned gr ey h ou nd th at c an t ire or


,

ov er tak e a st ar t l ed c arib ou T h e swi ngi ng


.
the easi est m atte r in th e w orld for an old
w olf t oh am st ri ng one of th e sl ow fawn s or ,

th e m othe r c ar ib ou h er self as sh e hovered


in th e r ear t o d ef end h er y o u ng ; but th ere
w er e other th ought s in the Sh aggy gray h ead
t h at h ad seen so much h u nt i ng S o th e .

m oth er w olf drove th e d eer slowly puzzli ng ,

th em m o r e and m ore as a c ollie di st ract s


,

th e h erd by h is y appi ng o ut i nto the O p en


,

wh er e he r cub s might j oi n i n th e h u nti ng .

The wo lves now drew b ack all sav e th e ,

m oth er which advanc ed h esi tati ngly t owh ere


,

t h e c aribou st o od wi t h l ow er edh ead watch


ing ev ery m o ve S udd enly th e cow ch arged
.
,

soswif tly furi o


, u sly th at th e oldw olf se em ed
,

alm o st c augh t and t umbl ed aw ay wi th t h e


,

broad h oof s st riki ng savag ely at h er fl ank s .

Far th er and fart h er th e c arib ou dr ove h er


enemy r ou sed now to fr enzy at the w olf s
,

n ear ness andapp arent c ow ardic e Th en S h e .

whirl ed in a p ani c and ru sh ed b ack toher


l it tl e ones only to fi nd th at all the ot h er
,

w olves as if frigh tened by h er furi ou s


,

charg e had dr awn f arth er b ack fr om


,

th e c r an ny i n the r o ck s .
Ag ai n old S h e w olf appr oach ed c au
th e -

ti ously andagai n the c arib ou plu nged at h er


,

andfoll o w ed her l ame retreat wi th h eadl ong


fury A n el ectric sh ock seem ed sudd enly
.

tot o uch th e h uge h e w olf Like a fl ash h e


-
.

l eap ed in on th e fawn s O ne quic k snap of .

th e l ong j aw s with the t er ribl e f ang s ; th en ,

as if th e wh o l e thing w ere a bit of pl ay h e ,

l op ed aw ay easily wi th th e cub s circli ng to ,

j oi n the m oth er w olf which st rangely enough


,

did not ret ur n to th e attack as th e carib ou


ch arged b ack d rivi ng th e cub s and t he old
,

he wo
-
lf aw ay lik e a fl ock of Sh eep T he .

c oast w as now cl ear not an enemy in th e,

way ; and th e m oth er c arib ou wi th a trium ,

ph ant bl eat toh er f aw ns t o f ollow pl u nged ,

b ac k i nt oth e w ood s w h enc e sh e h adc om e .

O ne f awn o nly f oll ow ed h er T h e oth er .

to ok a step or tw o sank to his k nee s and


, ,

roll ed over on h is Sid e Wh en th e w olves .

dr ew near qui etly with ou t a trac e of th e


,

feroci t y or th e h owli ng cl am or wi th whic h


such sc ene s are u su all y pi ctured th e gam e ,

w as qui te d ead o ne quic k snap o


,
f th e o ld
w olf s t eeth j u st b ehi nd th e fore l egs h avi ng


pi erc ed the heart more su r ely t h an a hu nte r s ’

bull et A nd the moth er c ar ibou plu ng i ng


.
,

wildly aw ay t h rough the bru sh wi th the


st artl ed f aw n j umpi ng at h er h eel s c o uld,

no t kn o w th at h er m ad fligh t w as needl ess;


th at th e t erribl e enemy w h ich h ad sp ar ed

h er and let h er go free h ad no need no r

d esire to foll ow .

T h e fat au t umn h ad now c om e wi th it s


abu nd ant fare and th e c arib o
, u w ere not
agai n m o l ested Fl ock s of gr ou se and ptar
.

migan cam e out of th e thic k cover ts in ,

w hich th ey h adb een hidi ng all summ er and ,

b egan topluck th e b erri es of th e O p en plai ns ,

wh ere th ey c ould easily be w aylaid and


c aught b y th e gr owi ng w olf cub s Pl over .

cam e in h ord es sw eepi ng over th e S tr ait s


,

from t he L abrad or ; and wh en th e w olv es


surr o u nd ed a fl ock of th e qu eer bi rd s and
hi tch ed nearer and near er si nki ng th ei r gray
,

b odi es in th e yi eldi ng gr ay mo ss till


th ey l ook ed l ik e w eath er wor n l ogs
-
,

th e h u nt ing w as full o f
ten se exci tem ent th o , ugh
and nearer t h ey w oul d c om e t ill a swif t ru sh
,

out of th e grass sent th em off h eadl ong ,

spl ash i ng and qu acki ng wi th crazy cl am o r .

! ut o ne o r t w o alw ay s st ay ed b ehi nd wi th

th e w o lv es t opay th e pric e of cu r i osi ty .

Th en t h er e w er e t h e y ou ng g eese which ,

gath ered in imm ense fl ock s in th e sh all ow


b ay s pr ep ari ng and drilli ng for th e au tum n
,

fligh t L at e in th e af ter noon th e oldmother


.

w olf wi th her cub s w ould st eal d ow n through


th e w o od s hidi ng and w at chi ng t h e fl ock s
, ,

andf o ll ow i ng th em steal thily as th ey m ov ed


al o ng th e sh ore A t nigh t th e great fl ock
.

w ould appr oach a sand bar w ell out of t h e


-
,

w ay o f ro ck s and bru sh and ev erythi ng t h at


migh t hide an e nemy and go t o Sl eep i n
,

cl ose lit tl e f amily gr oup s on th e ope n sh or e .

A s t h e night d ark ened f our Sh adows w o uld


l engt h en out fr om t h e n ear est b an k of sh ad
ow s creepi ng onward to th e sand b ar wi th
,
-

th e sl o w pati ence of th e h our s A r u sh a.


,

st ar tl ed é o zzé a ter rific cl amo r o f wi ngs and


th r o at s and smi t t en w at er . Th en th e f our
sh ad o ws w o uld ri se up fr om th e sand and
t r ot b ack t othe wood s each with a bu r d en
,
on its Sh ould ers and a sp arkl e in th e cl ose
set eye s o ve r th e poi nt ed j aw s whic h w ere
,

cl osed on th e neck of a goo se h oldi ng it ,

tight l est any ou tc ry esc ape totell t h e star


tled floc k wh at h ad h app ened .

B eside s thi s abu nd ant gam e th ere w ere


other g ood thi ngs to eat andth e cub s rar ely
,

di ned of th e same di sh twic e in successi on .

S alm on and big sea t rou t swarm ed now in


-

every Sh allow o f t h e cl ear b r o ok s and aft er


, ,

Sp aw ni ng th e se fi sh were m uch w eak ened


,

and co uld easily be c aught by a li t tl e c un


ni ng . E very day and night th e t id e ebb ed
and fl o wed and every t id e l ef t its c ontrib u
,

ti on in wi ndro w s of d ead h erri ng andc apli n ,

wi t h scat tered cr ab s andmu ssel s for a r eli sh ,

lik e pl um s in a puddi ng A wolf had only


.

totr o t fo r a mile o r t w oal ong th e t id e li ne

of a l onely b each p , icki ng up th e good thi ng s


w hi ch th e sea h ad br ough t him and th en ,

g o b ack t o sl eep o r pl ay sa t i sfi ed A nd if
.

W ayeeses wa nted g am e totry his m et tl e and


cu nni ng th er e w ere t h e big fat seal s barki ng
,

on th e bl ack r ock s and h e h ad only to cut


,

b etw een th em andth e sea andthr ow him self


up on th e l arg est seal as th e h erd fl oundered
p ond erou sly b ack tosaf ety A w olf r arely .

grip s and h old s an enemy ; h e snap s and l ets


g o
, and sn ap s ag ai n at e v e ry sw if t ch anc e ;
b ut h er e h e m u st ei th er h o ld f ast or l ose his
bi g g am e ; and wh at b etw een h oldi ng and
l etti ng go as th e seal s whirl ed w i t h b ared
,

teeth and snapp ed vici o u sly i n turn as they ,

scr ambl ed away t oth e sea th e w o lves h ada


,

liv ely t im e of i t Of ten i nde ed Spi te of th r ee


.
,

or f ou r w olv es a big seal w ould t umble i nto


,

t he t id e wh er e th e Sh ar k sf o
, ll ow ed h is bl oody
t r ail and so on fi ni sh ed him .

N ow for th e first t im e t h e w olve s led by ,

t h e ri ch abu nd anc e b eg an tokill m o


, re t han
t h ey need ed fo r fo od and to hide it away ,

lik e th e squirrel s in anticip at io n of the c om


,

ing wi nt er Li k e th e blu e and the A r c ti c


.

f ox es a strange i nst i nct t o store t hi ng s


,

seem s t o sti r dimly at tim es wi thi n t h em .

O cc asi on ally i nst ead of ea t i ng and sl eepi ng


,

af te r a kill the cub s led by the mo th er w olf


, , ,

w ould hu nt h alf of th e
day and ni g h t
we an d c ar r y all
!

,
or t he pil es of c apli n which t h ey c ach ed un
der th e sand on th e Sh ore w ere th e w and er
,

ing h erd s o f c arib o u — Spl endid old st ags


,

w i t h m assiv e antl er s andl ong l egged inq uis


,
-
,

it ive f aw ns tr o tt i ng a f ter th e Sl e ek c o ws ,

wh ose h ead s c arri ed sm all p oi nted h or ns ,

m or e d eadly by far th an th e stag s cumb er ’

so m e antl ers Wh erever th e w olves w ent


.

t h ey cro ssed th e t rail s o f th ese w and erer s


sw armi ng o ut o f t h e th ick ets so
,
m et im es by
tw os andthrees andagai n in st raggli ng end
, ,

l ess li nes c onv ergi ng up on th e vast op en


b ar rens wh ere th e carib ou g ath ered toselect
th eir m ates for anot h er y ear Wher e th ey
.

all c am e fr o m w as a mystery th at filled th e


cub s h ead s wi t h constant w ond er D uri ng

.

t h e summ er y o u see littl e o f th em — h er e a


,

co w w i th h er f aw n h idi ng d eep in th e c o v er ,

t h er e a big st ag st andi ng o ut lik e a w at ch

m an o u the m o u ntai n t op; b ut wh en th e


early autum n c o m es th ey are everywh ere ,

crossi ng riv ers and l ak es at regul ar p oi nt s ,

and f o ll ow i ng de ep p ath s whi ch th eir anc es


t or s h ave f oll ow ed for
!

tl ess generat i o ns .
The c ow s and faw ns seem ed g entl e and
h arml ess enough t h ough th ei r v ery numb er s
,

fill ed the y ou ng w olves wi th a c er tai n aw e .

Af ter th eir fir st l esson it w ould h ave b een


easy e no ugh for th e cub s t oh ave kill ed all
th ey w anted andtogrow fat and l azy as th e
be ars which w ere now st u ffi ng th em sel v es
,

b efore goi ng off t osl eep for th e wi nter ; b ut


th e o ld m o th er w olf h eld th em firmly in
ch eck for wi th pl enty of sm all gam e ev ery
,

wh ere all w olv es are mi nd ed togo qui etly


,

ab o u t t h ei r ow n bu si ness andlet th e c arib ou


f oll ow th eir ow n w ay s Wh en Oc tob er c am e
.

it br o u g h t th e big st ag s i nt o th e op en ,

spl endid imp o , si ng b easts wi t h sw o


, ll en neck s
and fi er ce red ey es and l o ng whi te m anes

t ossi ng i n th e wi nd Th en th e w olv es h ad
.

t o st and asid e ; fo r th e st ag s r oam ed o v er


all th e l and p awi ng t h e m o
, ss i n fury b ell o
,
w
ing th ei r h o ar se ch all eng e and ch argi ng lik e
,

a whirlwi nd upon e v ery livi ng t hi ng th at


crossed th ei r path s .

Wh en th e m oth er w olf wi th h er cub s at,

h eel saw one of th ese big furi esat a di stanc e


,

sh e would ci r cle p r ud entl y to av o id him .


Agai n as the cub s h u nt ed r abb i t s th ey
, ,

w ould he ar a c rash of bru sh and a furi ou s


ch all enge as some qu arrel some st ag wi nded
th em ; and t h e m oth er wi t h h er cub s gath
er ed cl o se ab o ut h er w ould watch al ertly for
his h eadl o ng ru sh A S he ch arged out t he
.

w olv es w ould scatte r and l eap nimbly asid e ,

th en S it d own on thei r t ail s in a sol em n circl e


and w atch as if st udyi ng the strang e b east .

Ag ai n and agai n h e w ould ru sh up on th em ,

only to fi nd th at he w as fi g h t i ng th e wi nd .

Madas a h or n et h e w ould si ngl e out a cub


,

andf o ll ow hi m h eadl ong through bru sh and


br ak e t ill som e sub tl ew ar ni ng thrill ed th r ough
h is m ad ness t elli ng h im to h eed his fl ank ;
,

t h en as h e whirl ed h e would fi nd th e sav age

oldm oth er cl ose at h is h eel s he r wh i te f ang s


,

b ared and a d angerou s fl ash in h er eyes


as sh e saw t h e h am stri ng so ne ar so easy
,

t o r each . O ne spri ng and a snap and th e


,

rampi ng m aste rful st ag w ould h av e b een


,

h elple ss as a rabbi t his t end ons c ut cl eanly


,

at th e h o ck a noth er snap andhe mu st c om e


d ow n Spi t e of his g reat p ower and b e f ood
, ,

fo r t h e gro w i ng cub s th at sat on t h eir tail s


w ould stand in th e oldw olf s path di spu t i ng

wi t h l ow er ed fr ont th e righ t of w ay H ere


.

th e ri g ht o f w ay m ea nt a g o od d eal for in
,

ma ny plac es on th e high pl ai ns th e scrub


Sp r uc esg row sot hickly th at a m an c an easily
walk over th e t op s of th em on his snow sh oes -
,

andth e o nly p o ssibl e p assage in summ er t im e -

is by m eans o f t h e num er o u s p at h s worn


t hro ugh th e sc r ub by t h e p assi ng of anim al s
fo r u nt o ld age s S o one or th e oth er of
.

the tw oSpl endid bru tes t h at now appr oach ed


e ach oth er i n th e nar r ow w ay m u st tu r n asid e
or b e b eat en d own u nd erf oot .

Q ui et ly steadily t h e old w olf w ould c om e


, ,

on till almo st wi thi n spri ngi ng di stanc e wh en ,

he w ould stop and lif t h is great h ead w rink


,

ling his ch op s toSh ow th e l ong white f angs ,

and rumbli ng a w ar ni ng d eep i n his m as


si v e ch est
. The n th e c arib ou w ould l ose his
ne r ve ; h e would stamp and fi dget and blu s
ter and at l ast b egi n t o clrc le n er v ou sly
, ,

c rashi ng h is w ay i nt o the scrub as if for


a c h ance to tak e his enemy in th e fl ank .

Wh er e up on t h e old w olf w ould t rot qui etly


alo ng th e p ath p ayi ng nom ore heed t oth e
,
i nterrup ti on ; whil e th e y ou ng bull w ould
st and w o nd eri ng h i
, s bo dy hidd en i n the
scrub and h i s he ad thru st i nto th e n ar r o w

path to l ook af ter h is st r ange adve rsary .

A noth er time as th e oldw olf r a nged along


,

th e edg es o f th e b ar r ens wh er e the ca ri


bo u h erd s w er e g ath eri ng h e w o
, uld he ar the
ch all eng e of a huge stag and th e w arn i ng
crack of t w ig s and th e t hu nd er of h oof s as
th e bru te ch arg ed . S till th e w olf trotted
qui etly al ong w at chi ng fr om th e c or ners of
,

h is ey es t ill t h e st ag w as up o n h im wh en he
,

spr ang ligh tly asid e and let th e ru sh g o

h arm l essly by S i tt in g on h is tail he w ould


'

w atch th e c arib ou clo sely — and who could


t ell Wh at w as passi ng b ehi nd t ho se cu nni ng
ey es th at gl o w ed st eadily l ik e c oal s unruffl ed
,

as yet by th e pa ssi ng wi nd s but r eady at a


,

r ough breath t obre ak out in fl am es of fi re ?


Ag ai n and agai n th e stag w ould ch arge ,

g r owi ng m ore furi ou s at every failure ; and


ev ery tim e th e w o lf l eap ed asid e h e l ef t a
t err ibl e g ash in his enemy s n eck or Sid e

pu ni shi ng him cru elly for h isb ullyi ng a t tack ,

e t st r ang ely r efu si ng to kill as h e might


y ,
hav e do ne or t ocl ose on th e h am stri ng wi th
,

one swif t snap th at w ould h av e put th e big


bru te out of th e figh t f orever A t l ast k n ow .
,

i ng p erh ap s from p ast exp eri ence th e use


le ssn ess of pu ni shi ng or of di sputing wi t h
thi s m adm an th at f el t now ound si n h is rag e ,

th e w o lf would l op e aw ay to c over f oll ow ed ,

by a vict or i ou s bugle c r y t h at r ang over the


-

w i d e b arren andech oed b ack f rom th e mou n


tai n Side Th en th e wolf w ould circl e back
.

steal th ily and put h i s no se d ow n i n t o t he


stag s h o of m ark s for a lo ng d eep sni ff and

-
, ,

go qui etly on h is way ag ai n A w olf s nose .


n ev er f orgets Wh en h e fi nd s th at trail w an
.

d eri ng wi th a sco r e of oth ers ove r th e snow ,

in the bi tter d ay s t o com e wh en th e pac k


are starvi ng W ay eeses will k now whom h e
,

is f o ll owi ng .

Be side s t h e c aribou t here we re othe r th i ng s


to r o u se th e cub s curio sity and give them

so m ething plea sant to do b eside s eati ng and


Sl eepi ng Wh en th e h unt er s m oon ro se full
.

and cle ar o ver th e wo od s filli ng all anim al s


,

w i th strang e un r e st th e p ack w ould ci rcl e the


,

great ha rbor trotti ng si le ntly alo ng no se to


, ,
p at h ; t onigh t th e f ox es w ere y appi ng
b ut
an answ er all ar o u nd t h em and som etim es a
,

few adv entur o u s d ogs w ould sc al e th e m ou n


t ai n s sil ently t osi t o n th e r o ck s andj oi n in
t h e wild w o lf ch oru s and not a w olf st irr ed
,

t om o l est th em All w ere mor e or l ess l u na


.

ti c and k new no
, t wh at t h ey w er e d oi ng .

Forh ourst h e unc anny c omedy w ould dr ag


i tself on i nt oth e t en se m id nigh t sil ence th e ,

w aili ng cry gr owi ng m or e d em ented and


h ear trendi ng as th e sp ell of anci ent d ay s fell
ag ai n up o n t h e d eg ener at e hu ski es . Upo n
th e l o nely m o u nt ai n top s t h e m oon l ook ed
d ow n still and c old and saw up on ev ery
, ,

pin nacl e a dog or a w olf each wi th his


,

h ead tur ned up at the Sky h ow li ng h is


,

h eart out D ow n in th e h aml et sc attered for


.
,

mil es al ong D eep A rm and th e h arb or


sh o re sl eep ers st irred u neasily at th e
,

clam or th e w om en cl u t chi ng th ei r
,

b abi es cl ose th e m en cur si ng t h e


,

crazy brut es and v owi ng all sor ts of


e ance on th e m orr ow The n.

th e w o lv es w ould Slip
away lik e sh ad ow s i nto
the vast upland b ar rens and the d og s re st
, ,

l ess as wi tch es wi th some unk now n exci te


me nt w ould run b ack towhi ne and scratch
,

at th e d o or s of t h ei r m asters c abin s

.

S oon t h e big snowfl ak es were whirli ng i n


th e air bu sily w eaving a so
, ft whi t e wi nd
ing Sh eet fo
-
r t he au t um n wh ich w as passi ng

aw ay A nd t r uly it h ad b een a good tim e


.

fo r th e w o lf cub s as for m ost wild anim al s;


,

and th ey h ad grown l ar ge and st r o ng wi th

t heir fat f eedi ng and wi se wi t h th eir m any


,

exp eri ence s The d uck s andg eese vani shed


.
,

d rivi ng sou thward ah ead of th e fi erce au t um n


g ale s and only th e l ate br ood s of h ardy
,

eid ers w er e l ef t fo r a li ttle se aso n H erri ng


.

and capli n h ad l o ng Si nc e drift ed aw ay i nto

u nk now n d ep th s where th e t ide s flow ed end


,

l essly over th em and brough t n ev er a one


ash o re H ares andp tarmig ans turn ed whi te
.

t o hid e o n t h e sno w so that w olf and fox


,

w ould p ass cl ose by wi th ou t seeing t h em .

W ood mic e pu sh ed t hei r wi ndi ng t u nn el s and


-

m ad e th eir v aul ted pl ay r oom sd eep u nd er the


drifts w h ere none migh t m ol est nor m ak e
,

th em af raid ; and all g am e grew w ary and


wild l ear ni ng fr om exp er i enc e as it always
, ,

d oes th at o nly th e ke en c an survive the fall


,

h un t ing
. S othe l o ng wi nter with its sn o
,
w
and ice and itsbi tte r cold andits grim th r e at
of fam i ne settl ed h eavily ove r H a rb or W e al
,

and th e L o ng R ange whe r e Wayeeses mu st

find his l i vi ng.


H R E A T E NING as th er noth ern

winte r w as wit h its st er n ord er to the


,

bird s to d ep ar t and to th e be ast s to put on


,

thei r thick fu rs and to the littl e folk of the


,

snow t oh id e t h em selves i n white c oat s and ,

t o all livi ng thi ng s to watch well the way s

t hat th ey took i t could bri ng no t er r o


, r to (it)
W ay eeses and h er p ow erful y ou ng cub s .

Th e gl ad ness o f lif e w as up on them wi t h,

none of its p ai ns or a nx i et ie s or f ear s as ,

we k now them ; and th ey r oll ed and tum


bled ab out in th e first d eep snow wi th the U
ab and o n o f yo u ng foxes fill ed with w ond er
,

5
10
at the st range b l anket that covered the r ou gh
106
pl ac es of e ar th sosof tly andm ad e thei r ligh t
771? M178 W011?
f oot step s m ore noi sel ess t h an b ef ore For to .

be n o i sele ss and i nc onspicu ou s, and so i n


h arm ony wi th h is sur roundi ng s is th e first ,

de sir e of ev ery cr eatu re of th e v ast soli t ud es .

M eeti ng th e w olv e s now as th ey r oam ed


,

wild and f r ee ove r th e great range one ,


w ould h ardly h ave r ecog niz ed th e lit tl e


brown cr eat ure s th at he saw pl ay i ng ab ou t
th e den wh er e t h e tr ail b eg an T he cub s
.

were al re ady n obl e l ooki ng bru tes l arger


-
,

t h an th e l argest hu sky do g ; an d t h e p ar e nt s

w ere tall er wi th l onger l eg s andm ore mass


,

ive h ead s and p o w erful j aw s th an any gr eat


,

t imb er w o-
lf A t rem end ou s vi tali ty th r ill ed
.

in th em fro m nose t opaw tip s Thei r g re at


.

b odie s as they lay quiet in the sn ow with


,

h ead s rai sed and hi nd l eg s b ent u nd er them ,

w ere like pow erful e ng i ne s tranquil u nd er


,

eno rmou s pr essure ; andwh en th ey ro se the


m ovem ent w as like th e quick snap of a st eel
Spri ng I nde ed h alf th e ordi nary m oveme n ts
.
,

of W ayeeses are soquick th at th e ey e c an


no t fol l ow them O ne i nst an
. t a wo lf w ould
t h e t w ol arg er
cub s ranged on th e oth er sid e
I08
of th e m ou ntai n b eat i ng th e bu sh and h u nt
7 1? M170 Va
,

l/5
ing i nto each o t h er s m o u th as t h ey h ad

b een t r ai ned t o do; while th e big h e w olf -

h u nted succ essfully by him self as he had ,

d one for y ears S c attered as they w er e th ey


.
,

still k ep t tr ack o f each oth er f aithfully and ,

in a c asu al w ay l ook ed af ter one anoth er s ’

need s Wh er ev er h e w as a w o
. lf seem ed to ,

k now by i nst i nc t wh er e h is f ell ow s w ere


hu nti ng m any mil es away W h en in d oubt .

h e h ad o nly t o m o u nt th e high est hill and


give t h e r allyi ng cry wh i ch c arri ed an enor
,

m ou s d i stanc e in th e still c old air t o bri ng ,

th e p ac k swif tly andsil ent ly ab o u t him .

A t time s whe n th e cub s w ere hu ngry afte r


,

a t w oday s fast th ey w ould h ear f ai nt and


-
, ,

far away th e food c r y y apy apy o


, o o/y apy ap
,
- - -

y 0 000 00 / quiveri ng und er the s t ar s in t h e

ten se ea rly m o r ning air andwould d art away


-
,

to fi nd g am e f r e shly killed by one of the


old wolv es awaiti ng them Agai n at night .
,

fall a cub s h unti ng c ry 00000 ow ow 00000


,

, .
-
,

0111 a d eep almo st mu sic al ho o


,
t wi t h t w o

sh o rt ba rk s at the e nd would come Si ngi ng ,


d ow n from the upl and s; and th e wolve s ,

l eavi ng i nstantly th e g am e th ey were f oll ow


ing w ould h asten up to fi nd th e t w o cub s
,

h erdi ng a c arib ou in a cl ef t of t h e rock s ,

a yo u ng carib ou t h at h ad l ost h is m oth er at


t h e h and s o f the h u nt ers and th at did no
,
t

k now h ow tot ak e ca re of him self A ndone .

of th e cub s w ould h old him t h ere sitti ng on ,

h is tail in fro nt o f the c arib o u t o prev ent


his esc ap e while th e o
, th er cub c all ed th e

w olves away from th ei r ow n h u nti ng t oc om e


andj o i n th e f east .

Wh eth er thi s wer e a c onsci ou s att empt


t oSp ar e the g ame o r t oal arm i t as lit tle as
,

need be i t IS i mpo ssible to say


, C ert ai nly
.

the w o lve s k now b ette r app aren tly than m en


, ,

t h at p er si stent h u nti ng d estroy s i ts o wn o b


c t andth at caribou esp eci ally w h en m uch
j e , ,

al arm ed by d o g s or w olv es or m en will t ak e,

th e al arm quickly and the sc atter ed h erd s


, ,

m ov ed by a comm on impul se of d anger ,

will t r ail far aw ay t o oth er range s Th at .

is why th e w o ,lf u nli k e th e le ss i n telligent


dog hu nts alw ay s in a Sil ent st ealthy un
, , ,

ob t ru sive w ay ; and why h e st op s h u nti ng


andg o so
es aw ay t h e i nst ant hi wn hu ng er is
1 10
sat i sfi ed o r ano th er w olf kill s enough for all
7 12 M176 Wo
.

lf fs
'

A nd t h at is al soth e pr ob abl e r eason why h e


l et s the d eer al one as l ong ash e can fi ndany
oth er g am e .

Th i s same i nt elligent provi si on w as Sh own


in a noth er curi o u s w ay Wh en a w olf i n
.

his wid e r a ngi ng f o u nd a g ood h u nting


ground whe re sm all gam e w as pl ent iful h e ,

would snap up a r abbit Sil ently in th e t w i


ligh t and the n gofar away p erh ap s toj oin ,

th e o th er cub s in a g amb o l or tofollow th em


,

t oth e cli ff s over a fi shi ng vill ag e and set all


th e d o
, gs t o h owling By day he w ould lie
.

cl ose in som e thick c over mil es aw ay f r om


,

his h u nti ng gr o-
u nd At twilight h e w ould
.

st eal b ack and h unt qui etly j u st l o ng e nough


,

t oget h is gam e and t he n t r o


, t aw ay ag ai n ,

l eavi ng th e c ov er as u nh arri ed as if t her e


w ere not a w olf in th e wh ol e n eighborhood .

S uch a good h u nti ng grou nd c ann ot l ong


-

r emai n hidd en from othe r p r owlers i n the


wild er ness; andW ayeeses who w as k eepi ng
,

h is di scov ery to him self w o uld soon c ross


,

the trail of a c ert ain old fox r et urni ng day


w arily to fi nd the p ath by which Eleem os
1 12
u su ally came out on h is nigh t s h u nti ng ’

7 179 M176 Va
.

l/5
When h e fou nd th at out Wayeeses w ould
d ar t away i n th e l ong rolli ng g all op th at ,

c arri es a w olf swiftly ov er the r ough est c ou n


try wi t h ou t f at igu e I n an h our or t w ohe
.

w ould be b ac k again w i t h anoth er w olf .

Th en Eleem os d ozi ng away in the wi nter


,

su nsh i ne would hea r an u nu su al r ack et in


,

the scrub b ehi nd h im — som e h eavy anim al


,

bru shi ng about h eedl essly andsni ffi ng l oudly


at a c o ld trail Now olf c er tai nly fo r a w olf
.
,

mak es no noi se S o Eleem os would get


.

down from h is warm r oc k and Slip aw ay ,

st o pping t o l ook back and li sten j au nt ily to


the clum sy b r u te b ehi nd him t ill he ran ,

pl ump i nt o t h e j aw s of th e oth er w olf th at


w as watchi ng al ert and Sil ent b esid e the
r u nw ay .

When th e snow s w ere de ep and sof t the


w olv es to ok t o h unti g t e lynxe s bi g
n h —
, ,

savage lo ng cl aw ed fighter s that sw arm i n


,
-

th e i nt e r i or of Newf ou ndl and andpl ay h avoc


with th e sm all game For a si ngl e ly nx .

th e w o lv es h u nted in p air s tr aili ng th e big,


p rowl er steal thily and ru shi ng upo n him
from b ehi nd wi t h a fi erce uproar to st artl e
th e wi ts Out of hi s stupid h ead andsend h im

off h eadl ong as cats go befor e he k n ew w h at


, ,

w as afte r him Away h e w ould goi n mighty


.

j ump s si nk i ng sh oulder d eep of ten ind eed


, ,

up t oh is tuf ted ears at ev ery plu nge Afte r


, .

hi m rac ed th e w olve s ru nni ng ligh tly and


,

taking adva ntag e o f th e h ol es h e h ad m ad e


in the so f t sn ow t ill a swift snap in h is fl ank
,

b rought U pw eekis up w i th a feroci ou s snarl


totear i n pi eces h i s pursu ers .

Th en b eg an as sav age a bit of fighti ng as


the w o od s ever witne ss t eeth ag ai nst t al on s
, ,

w olf cu nni ng ag ai nst c at f erocity Crouch ed .

in the snow Spi tti ng and snarli ng h is t eeth


, ,

b ared androu nd eyes bl azi ng andl ong cl aw s


achi ng to cl o se in a d eath grip U pw eeki s ,

w ai ted imp ati ent as a fury for th e ru sh H e .

is an ugly figh t er ; b ut h e mu st alway s get


cl ose g rippi ng h is enemy wi th t eet h and
,

f ore cl aw s whil e th e hi nd cl aw s get i n th eir


d eadly w or k kicki ng d ownw ard in p owe rful
,

spasmodi c bl o w s and rippi


ev erythi ng before t h em .
dog w ould r u sh in now t or n to
and b e
pi ec es; b ut not so th e w olve s D anci ng .

ligh t ly ab ou t th e big ly nx th ey w ould watch


th eir ch anc e t o l eap and snap some t im es ,

av o idi ng t h e bl ow of the swif t paw wi th


it s t errible cl aw s and Som et im es catchi ng
,

it on th eir h eavy m anes; but always a lo ng


r ed m ark sh ow ed on th e ly nx s Silver fu r as

the w olves t eet h click ed wi t h the voice of


a st eel trap and th ey l eaped aside wi th out


seri o u s i nj ury A S th e big cat g rew bli nd
.

i n h is fury th ey w ould seiz e t h ei r ch ance lik e


a fl ash and l eap tog eth er ; o ne p air o f lo ng
j aw s w ould cl ose ha r d on t he Spi n e b ehi nd
th e tufted e ar s; another p ai r would grip a

hi nd leg while th e w olv es sprang ap art and


,

braced t oh old Then the figh t w as all ove r ;


.

and th e m o ose bi rd s i n p ai r s c am e flit ti ng


, ,

in sil ently t o see if th er e w er e no t a few


u nc onsidered t rifl eS of th e feast fo r them to
di sp ose of .

Occ asio nally at nigh tf all t h e w olv es h u nt


, ,

ing cry w o uld r i ng out of the w ood s as one


of th e cub s di sc ov ered t hree or f our of th e
l y nx esgrowli ng h orribly ov er som e gam e th ey
w olv es h ot on his tr ail b efor e h e had t ak en
a do z en j ump s Wh ereupo n he to ok toan
771? M178 Vo
.

l/5
oth er t ree and th e gam e b eg an again .

Wh en th e night w as exceedi ng c old


and o ne w h o h as no t f elt it c an h ardly

im agi ne th e bi tt er killi ng i n tensi ty of a nort h


,

e r n mid igh t i n F bru ry


n e a — th e w o lv es in ,

st e ad o f go i ng away w ould w ait u nd er t h e


,

tree i n which th e lynx h ad taken r efuge and ,

th e Sil ent app alli ng d eath w atch beg an


, A -
.

ly nx th ough h eavily furred ca nnot l ong


, ,

r em ai n exp osed i n th e i nt ense c old wi th ou t


movi ng M oreover he mu st grip the branch
.

on which h e sit s m or e or l ess firmly wi t h his


cl aw s t o k eep from f alli ng ; and th e te nse
,

mu scl es which fl ex th e l ong claw s tod r iv e


,

them in to the w ood soon gr ow we ary and,

numb i n th e bi tter fr ost T he w o lves m ean


.

while tr ot about t o k eep warm ; whil e th e


stupid cat Sit s i n o ne sp o t Slowly peri sh i ng ,

and nev er t hi nk s o f ru nni ng up and d o wn


th e tr ee t o ke ep him self aliv e The feet .

gr ow be numb ed at l ast p owerl ess to h old ,

on any l onger and th e ly nx tumbl es off


,

i nto the w olve s j aw s; or el se k nowi ng th e


,
The is l ent appalli n g death
,

w at h b e g an
c

At wh en not near the scrub t h ey
tim es, ,
12 0
w ould burr ow d eep i ntoa great d r ift of snow
7712 M176 Vo
0
l/5 and sl e p i n th e w arm e t ki nd
e s of a ne st ,

a trick t h at the h u sky d o gs wh ich are but


,

w olv es of y est erd ay still rem emb er Li k e


, .

all wild anim al s th ey f elt the c o


,
mi n g of a
st orm l ong b efore th e fi rst white fl ake s be
g a n t o wh irl i n the ai r ; and wh e n a gr e a t
st orm thr eatened t h ey would lie dow n to
sl eep in a ca ve or a c r an ny of the r ock s and
, ,

let t h e drif ts pil e so ft and warm over them .

H ow ev er l ong th e st o rm th ey neve r stir r ed


,

abroad ; p ar tly for th ei r ow n c omf ort p ar tly ,

b ec au se all g am e li es hid at such tim es and


it isp ractic ally imp o ssibl e ev en fo , r a wo lf ,

tofi nd it Wh en a w olf h as fed full h e c an


.

g o a w eek wi t h ou t eat i ng and su ff er no gr e a t

di sc omf ort S o W ayeeses w ould lie cl ose


.

andw arm whil e th e sn o w piled deep a r ound


him and th e g al e raged over the sea and
m ou ntai ns b ut p assed u nfel t and u nhe ed ed
,

over his h ead Th en wh en th e st orm w as


.
,

ov er h e paw ed his w ay up t h rough th e d r if t


,

and c am e o ut i n a new bright w o rld


, ,

ere the g am e wi th ,
app etit es sha rpen ed by th e l ong f ast w as ,

al ready sti rr i ng bri sk ly in every cov ert .

Whe n M arch c am e the bitt ere st m ont h of


,

all fo r the Wo od F olk ev en W ayeeses w as


,

of t en h ar d pressed to find a livin g S mall .

gam e grew sc ar ce a nd v ery wild ; th e car ib ou


h ad w ande r ed fa r away too t her ranges; and

th e cub s would dig fo rho u r s afte r a m ou se ,

or st alk a snowbird or wait wi th endl ess pa


,

tienc e fo r a red squi r rel to st o p his ch atter


and c o m e d ow n to search u nder the snow
fo r a fir c o ne th at h e h ad hidd en th er e in

the g o od autum n day s A ndonc e wh en th e


.
,

h u ng er with i n w as m o re nippi ng t h an th e
e ag er cold wi th out one of th e cub s found a
,

b ear sl eepi ng in h is w i nt er den am ong th e


rock s Wi th a Sh arp h u nti ng cry t h at sa ng
.
,

lik e a bull et over th e froz en w ast es h e c all ed


,

t h e wh ol e p ack ab ou t him Whil e the rest lay


.

in hiding th e o ld h e w o
-
lf app r oach ed w ar ily
and sc ratch ed Mo ow een out of his den and ,

th en ran aw ay t oen t ic e th e big brut e i nt oth e


op en gr ou nd wh ere the p ack rolled in up on
,

him andkill ed him in a t erribl e figh t b ef ore h e


had fai r ly sh ak en the sl eep out of his eye s .
Old T om ah t h e t r app er w as abroad now
, , ,

taki ng advant a e of th e sprin’ hun ger T h e


”? M 78

f j
i
.

I 1
wo lves of t e n c o ssed h i s snovS h o e tr ail o r -
,

f oll ow ed it swif tly tosee whi the r it led For .

a wo lf l i k e a farm dog is nev er sat i sfi ed till


, ,

h e k no w s the w ay s of every livi ng thi ng th at


crosse s h is range F oll owi ng th e broad trail
.

W ay eeses would fi nd h ere a t r app ed anim al ,

str uggling d esp er at ely with t h e cl o g and th e


cru el grippi ng teeth th ere th e fl ayed car
,

c ass of a ly nx or an otter andyond er th e leg ,

o f a do g or a pi ec e of c arib ou me a t h u ng

by a c ord over a ru nw ay wi th th e snow dis ,

t urb ed ben eath it W h ere th e d eadly t rap w as


hidde n O ne gl anc e or a sni ff at a dis
.
,

t ance w as enough for th e w olf Lynx es do


,
.

no t go ab o u t th e r ange wi th ou t th ei r Ski ns ,

and me at d o es no t nat ur ally h ang o n trees;

soWay eeses k no wi ng all th e w ays of t he


,

w ood s w ould ig nore th ese b ai ts ab sol ut ely


, .

N everth ele ss h e f oll owed the snow Sh oe t rail s -

until he k new wher e every unn at ur al thi n g


lay h idd en ; and no m att er how h u ngry h e
w as o
,
r ho w cu nningly th e o ld I ndi an hid
his d evic es o r ho, w eve r d eep th e new snow
W
I? Mlle
12 4
plain recc r

tw o h w u
d n l e s o
fi lj fooih
t n
o

1 vg
o ow m y ; ootin
w ul ,
,
na— b} co sh !

.

Mus be m ore c ome soon pretty q uic k now ;


el se he d on h ow l dat w ay Gu ess m ebb e ol


’ ’
.

I nj un b etter st ay in h ou se nigh t s A ndh e .

t rail ed w arily b ack t ohid e h im self b ehi nd a


rock andw at ch t ill d ark in front of h is li ttl e
co mmo o

sze .

Old T om ah s Sl eep w as sou nd as u su al


th at night ; so h e c ould not see th e five


sh adow s th at st o l e out of the wood s no r ,

h ear th e light f ootf all s t h at ci r cl ed his camp ,

no r f eel th e brea th so f t as an eddy of wi nd


,

in a Spruc e to p t h at whi,ffed a t the c r ack


u nd er h is d oor and drif ted away agai n .

Next mor ni ng h e saw the t rack s and u nd er


sto od th em ; and ash e t r ail ed aw ay through
th e st ill w o od s h e w as w onde ri ng i n h is ,

sil ent I ndi an w ay why an o ld wolf should


,

alw ay s b r i ng Malsunsis the cub fo r a go od


, ,

l ook and a sni ff at any thi ng th at h e is t o


av o id ever afte r .

Wh en all el se f ail s follow th e ca r ibou ,

th at is th e law which gov er ns th e w olf in


th e hu ngry d ay s; but befor e t h ey cro ssed
th e m ou ntai ns and f oll ow ed t h e l ong v all eys
to th e far sou thern r ange s th e w ol ve s w ent
b ac k toth e hill s wh ere the t r ail beg an for a
, ,

mo re exciti ng and d ange r ou s ki nd of h un t


ing . T h e p ack had h eld cl o ser togethe r o f
l ate ; for the old wol ve s m u st of ten Sh are
eve n a sc ant fo x o r rabbit with th e hun gr y

and i nexp eri enced y o u ng sters Now wh en


.
,

f am i ne drove them t ot h e v ery d oors of the


one e nemy tobe f eared only th e wi sest and
,

w ari est oldw olf w as fi t tol ead th e fo ray .

T h e li ttl e fi shi ng vill ag e w as buri ed un


der drif ts and almo st de se rt ed A few m en
.

li ngered tow atch th e b oat s and h ou ses; b ut


th e f amili es h ad all g o ne i nland t o the
win ter tilt s fo r w ood and Sh el t e r By nigh t
.

the wolve s w ould com e st eal thily t o p rowl


am o ng the d eser ted l anes; and the fi sh er
m en asl eep in th eir clothe s u nde r c aribou
,

skin s o r sitti ng cl o
, se by the st o ve be
hi nd b arred d oors w ould k now nothin g of
,

the h uge g aunt f o


, rm s th at fl itt ed noi sele ssly
past t h e fro sted wi nd ow s If a pig w ere left
.

in h is pen a sudd en t erribl e squ eali ng w o uld


break out on the still night ; and whe n th e
fi sh erm an ru sh ed out the pen w ould be
empty wi th n ot hi ng wh at ever to accou nt
771? M178 Va
,

l/5 for piggi e s di sapp earance For to th eir un



.

trai ned eyes ev en the track s of the w olves


w ere c overed up by t h ose of th e num erou s
big h u ski es I f a c at prowl ed abroad or an
.
,

u neasy cl og scratch ed to b e let out th ere ,

w ould b e a squ all a y elp andt h e c at w o


, , uld
no t co m e b ack and t h e dog w ould n ev er
,

scr atch at th e d o or t o be let in again .

O nly wh en nothi ng st irred in the vill age ,

wh en th e d ogs and ca ts h ad b een Spiri ted


away and wh en not ev en a rat st ol e fr om
,

u nd er th e h ou ses to g naw at a fi sh b one ,

w ould the fi sh erm en k now of th eir bi g Sil ent


vi sit or s Th en th e w olves w ould gathe r on
.

a sno w drif t j u st out sid e th e vill age andrai se


-

a h owl a frigh tful wail of f ami ne and dis


,

app o i ntm ent t h at m ad e th e air shudd er


, .

F r om wi thi n th e hou ses th e d og s an sw ered


with m ad cl am or A do or w ould op en to .

Show fir st a l ong se al gun th en a fi sh erm an , ,

t hen a f o ol dog th at da r ted b etween th e


fi sh erm an s l eg s and cap ered aw ay kiy iing

- -
,

a ch allenge to th e u nive rse A sil ence ten se


.
,
r u nning al ong sid e sh outing H i—é z
th e m en
'

I 28
and cr acking t h ei r whip s th ey c o uld still
7 16 M176 M 113 see over t h ei r Sh ould ers t h e w o
,

,
l v es foll ow
,

i n g ligh tly cl ose b ehi nd ; but wh en th ey


ru sh ed b reathl ess i nto th eir h ou ses and ,

g r abbed t h ei r gu ns and ran b ack on the


,

t rail th er e w as not hi ng to be see n For t h e


,
.

wolves quick as light to f eel th e presence


,

of d anger were al ready far aw ay t ro tti ng


, ,

swif tly up th e fr o zen arm of th e h arb or fol ,

lowi ng anoth er Sl edge tr ail wh ich c ame d own


th at m orni ng fr om th e wild er ness .

Th at same night th e w olves app ear ed


sil en t ly in t h e li t tl e lodg e far up th e S o ,u th
east Bro ok wh er e in a sh el tered h oll ow of
,

t h e hill s th e fi sh erm en s f amili es we re sleep


ing aw ay th e bi tter win ter H er e fo ro ne l o


. ng

nigh t t h ey watch ed and w ai ted i n va i n ; fo r

ev ery livi ng th in g w as saf e i n th e t ilt s b ehi nd

b ar red d oors I n the m or ni ng li ttle N oel s


.

ey es ki ndl ed as h e saw the wolv es t rac k s;


andwh en th ey came b ack ag ai n the til t s were


w atchi ng A S th e lop eared cub d art ed afte r
.
-

a cat th at shot lik e a ray o f mo onlight u nd er


a c abi n a wi nd o , w ope ned noi sele ssly and ,
g ing a b owstr i ng t w anged its Sh arp wa r n
!

ing in the t ense sil enc e W i t h a y elp the


.

w olf t or e th e arrow from his sh ould er Th e .

w arm bl ood f oll ow ed th e b arb andh e l app ed


,

it e age r ly in h is h u ng er T h en as the da nge r


.
,

sw ept ove r him h e gav e the t r ai l c r and


,
y
d art ed aw ay D o ors b anged op en h ere and
.

t h ere ; d o g s b ark ed to cr ac k th ei r throat s;


seal gu n s r o ared out and sent th ei r h eavy
echo es crashi ng lik e th u nde r am o ng th e hill s .

S ile nc e f ell agai n ov er th e l odge ; and t h er e


we re left only a few frigh tened d og s wh ose
no ses had already t o ld t h em ev erything a ,

few fi sherme n w h o w atch ed and li st ened ,

and o ne I nd i an boy with a lo ng b o w in hi s

h and andan arr ow ready on th e st ri ng who ,

t rail ed away wi th a li t tle girl at his Sid e t ry


ing t opuzzl e o ut t h e trac k o f one w o lf t h at
lef t a drop of bl ood h er e and th ere on the
snow i n th e sc ant m o onligh t .

Fa r up on t h e hill sid e i n a li ttle ope ni ng


of th e w ood s the scat t er ed p ack c am e t og eth er
ag ai n A t th e fir st upro
. ar so u nb earabl e t o
,

a Silenc e l o-
vi ng anim al th ey h adv ani sh ed i n
,

five di ff eren t d irec ti ons; y et so sub t l e so ,


perf ec t is th e i nst i nct which h old s a wolf
family t og eth er th at th e old m ot h er h ad
sc arc ely e nt ered th e gl ad e al o ne and sat

d own to wait and l i sten wh en the ot her


w olv es j oi ned h er sil ently Malsunsis th e
.
,

big cub scarcely f el t his w ou nd at fir st


, ,

fo r th e arr o w h ad but gl anc ed t hrough th e


th ic k ski n and fl esh and h e h ad to
, rn i t
out with ou t di fficul ty ; b ut the old h e w olf -

limp ed p ai nfully and h eld up one f ore leg ,

pi erc ed by a seal sh ot as h e l op ed aw ay
,

ov er th e snow .

I t w as th ei r fi r st r o u g h experie nc e wi th
m en and pr o
,
bably th e one f eeli ng in every
sh ag gy he ad w as o f puzzled w o nd er as t o

ho w andwhy it h ad all h app en ed H i th ert o


.

they h adavoid ed m en wi th a cer tai n aw e or ,

w atch ed th em curi ou sly at a di st anc e t rying ,

t ounderstandt h ei r superi o
. r way s; andn ev er
a ho stil e f eeli ng fo r t h e m ast er s of the wood s
h ad f o u nd pl ac e i n a w olf s b re ast Now

.

m an h ad sp o k en at l ast ; his voic e w as a


bru tal c omm and to b e g one and curi ou sly,

eno ugh th ese pow erful bi g bru tes any one ,

of which c ould have pull ed dow n a m an


f ac e f ami ne and th e wild er ness alo ne
th e
I32
.

S oth e p ack sw ept o n as if t h ei r f eet w ould


7716 M176 Vo
,

l/5
n eve r t ire and th e tw o w ou nd ed w olv es
,

c rep t i ntoth e scrub and lay d ow n tog eth er .

A strange t err ibl e feeli ng st ol e swiftly


,

ov er the c ov ert wh ich h ad alw ay s h i th er to


,

b een a pl ace of rest and qui et c ont ent T h e .

cub w as licki ng h is wound sof tly wh en h e


l ooked up i n sudd en al arm and th er e w as th e
,

gre at he w olf l ooki ng at h i m hu ngrily wi th


-
,

a frigh tful fl are in h is gree n eye s T h e cub .

m oved aw ay st artl ed andtri ed to soothe h is


w ou nd ag ai n ; but the u ncanny f eeli ng w as
str ong up o n him st ill and wh en h e tu r ned
,

his h ead ther e w as th e big w o lf which h ad


,

crep t f or war d till h e c ould see th e cub b ehi nd


a twi st ed sp r u c e r oot wat chi ng him st eadily
,

with th e sam e h orribl e stare i n h is u nbli nk


ing eyes T he h ackl es r o se up o n t h e cub s

.

n ec k anda gr owl r umbl ed i n h is de ep che st ,

fo r h e k new no w wh at it all m eant T he .

sm ell o f bl ood w as i n th e air andth e o , ldh e


w olf th at h adsoof ten Sh ared h is kill t osav e
,

th e cub s w as no , w g oi ng cr az y in h is awful
hu nge r An oth er m om ent and t here w ould
.
have bee n a te rri b le duel i n the scr u b ; b ut
as th e wolve s sp r an g tothe ir feet and f ac ed
eac h o th er so me de ep u nk now n feeli ng st i r red
,

wi thi n them andth ey tur ned aside T he old .

w olf t h rew h im self d own h eavily faci ng aw ay ,

fr om th e t empt at i on and the cub slipp ed


,

asid e to fi nd ano th er den out of Sight and ,

sm ell o f the hu g e le ad er l est the sc ent o ,


f
bl ood Sh ould ov erc om e th em again andcau se
th em tofly at each oth er s t h roats in unc on ’

t rollable fu ry.

Next m orni ng a qu eer thi n g happ ened ,

but not u ncomm on u nd er th e circum st anc es


am o ng w o lv es and h u ski es T h e cub w as .

lyi ng mo tio nl ess his head on his p aw s h is


, ,

eye s w i d e op en wh en somethi ng st i rred


,

near h im . A r ed squirrel came sc amp eri n g


t hr ough th e scrub br anche s j u st u nd er th e
t hick c o at i ng o f snow th at fill ed all th ei r
to p s S l owly car efully th e y ou ng w olf g at h
.
,

er ed hi s f eet u nd er him t ense as a b o ,


w stri ng .

A s the squi rr el whi sk ed overh ead th e w o lf


l eap ed l ike a fl ash caught him and cru sh ed
, ,

him w i th a si ngl e gr ip Th en wi t h the sq uir


.

rel in hi s mou t h h e m ad e h i s w ay b ack


t owh ere th e big l eade r w as lyi ng h is h ead ,

on his p aw s his ey es tur ned aside S l owly


, .
,

w arily the cub approach ed wi th a f r i endly


,

twi st of h is ears and he ad t ill he laid the ,

squirrel at the bi g w o

lf s v ery no se th en ,

drew b ack a st ep andlay with paw s exte nded


and t ail thumpi ng th e l eav es w atchi ng till ,

the tidbit w as seized raven ou sly andcru shed


andb o lt ed i n a si ngl e mou thful N ext i nst ant .

b oth w ol ves sp rang t o t hei r fe et and m ad e


t h ei r w ay o ut o f the scrub t o geth er .

They t ook up th e t rail of th e p ack whe r e


th ey h ad l ef t it and f oll ow ed it ten h ours
, ,

the cub at a swif t trot th e old w olf l op i ng


,

al ong on th ree l eg s Th en a rest and for


.
,

wa r d agai n Sl owe r and sl ow er ni ght afte r


, ,

day i n ever faili ng streng th till on the edge


-
,

of a g r e at b arren th ey stopp ed as if st r uck ,

trembli ng all ov er as th e r eek of game p oured


i nt othei r st arvi ng n ost r il s

To owe ak now to kill or tof oll ow th e fle et


car ib ou th ey lay d own i n th e snow wai t
,

In
g, t heir ea r s c ock ed th
, ei r n oses qu esti on
ing every breez e fo ri t s go od n ew s Left to .

them selve s t h e trail mu st end here for th ey ,


whi th er t h e gam e or th ei r new m ate s w ere
c alli ng t h em Wh en the summ er c ame th er e
.

w as an o t h er den o n th e high hill o verl ooki ng


the h arb or where th e li ttl e bro w n cub s c ould
,

lo ok d ow n wi t h w ond er at th e Shi ni ng sea and


the sl ow fi sh ing b oats andth e children pl ay
-

ing o n th e shor e ; but th e w olv eswh ose


trail beg an th ere w er e fa r aw ay ov er
the mou ntain s f oll owi ng th eir ow n
,

w ay s wai ti ng forth e c ri sp h u nti ng c r y


,

th at sh ould bri ng th em ag ai n t oge th er .

Ml

i
fai nt t r ac e w as l eft of the lon g r aquette s w as
c augh t up by t h e g al e andwhirl ed aw ay wi t h
a h ow l of exul tati on B efore th em as th ey
.

ran ev ery trail o f wo lf andc arib ou andsnow


sho e and ev ery di st ant l andm ark h ad van
, ,

ish ed; th e w o rld w asb ut a ch aos of m adroll


ing sno w cl oud s; and b ehi nd th em — Th eir
sto u t li t tl e h ear ts t rembl ed as they saw not
a v estig e o f th e t r ail t h ey h ad j u st m ad e .

With th e great w orld i tself t h eir ow n li ttl e


,

track s as f ast as th ey m ad e th em w er e sw ept


, ,

andbl o tt ed o ut o f exi stence Lik e t w osp ar


.

r ow s th at h ad dropp ed bli nd ed and b ewil


d ered on th e vast pl ain out of th e snow
cl oud th ey h uddl ed tog eth er with ou t one
,

fri endly Sign to tell t h em wh ence th ey h ad


c om e or whith er t h ey were goi ng W or st .

of all th e i nst i nct of dir ecti on which of ten


,

guid es an I ndi an th rough th e still fog or


th e d ark est nigh t seem ed b enumb ed by t h e
,

c old and th e t umult ; and not even Old


T om ah him self c ould h av e t old nor th or
so uth in th e bli ndi ng st o

rm
.

S till th ey ran on brav ely b endi ng t oth e


,

fi er c e bl ast s he adi ng th e wi nd as be st t h ey
,
could till M ook a t r ippi ng a second t ime in
, ,

a li tt l e h oll ow wh ere a b r ook ran de ep u nd er


t h e sn o w and k nowi ng now th at th ey we r e
,

b ut wand er i ng in an endle ss circl e seized ,

N oel s arm and repe ated he r qu esti on



A re w e l o st li ttle br ot he r ?
,

A nd N o el l ost and b ewild ered b ut g rip


, ,

pi ng his bow in h is fu r mitt en and pee r i ng


h ere and th ere lik e an old hu nt er th roug h
, ,

the w h ir li ng fl ak es and r olli ng gu st s to


c at ch som e l andm ar k some l of t y crag or ,

lo w tr ee li ne t h at h eld steady in the mad


-

d ance of th e wo r ld still m ad e c onfid ent In ,

di an answ er !

N oel not l ost ; N oel r i g h t h ere C amp .


l ost little Si ster
, .


Can w e fi nd um li ttl e bro t he r ? ,

Oh y es w e fi nd um Fi nd um bimeby
, , .
,

pretty soon quick now af te r storm , .


But st orm l ast all nigh t and it s sOon ,

d ark Can w e r est and not f reez e ? M ooka


.


tired and— andfright ened l it tl e br oth er , .

S ar ti n w e rest build um comm oosze and



'

sl eep j us l ik e b ear In hi sden Oh yes sa r t i n



.
, ,


w e r est g o od said N oel ch eerfully
, .

A nd th e wol ves li ttl e brot h er ? w h is
,

p ered M ook a l ooki ng b ack t imidly i nt oth e


,

wild w aste out of whi c h they h ad come .


N ever m i nd h w olves; n othi ng h ints in
st o rm li ttl e si ster C om e on we mu st fi nd
, .
,


um w ood s now .

For one bri ef m om ent th e li t tl e hu nter


sto od wi th uptur ned f ac e whil e M ook a,

b ow ed h er h ead sil ently andth e great st orm


,

r oll ed u nh eeded over th em S till h oldi ng .

his lo ng bo w he stret ch ed bo t h h and s to


th e Sky in t h e m u te app eal th at K eesuo luéé ,

t he Gr eat My stery wh o m w e c all God would ,

u nd erstand b et ter th an all w ord s Then .

t ur ni ng t h ei r b ack s to th e g al e th ey drift ed

swif tly aw ay b efore i t lik e t w o wi nd bl o


, wn -

l eaves ru nni ng to k eep fr om freezi ng and


, ,

h oldi ng each ot h er s h and s t igh t l est th ey


sep ar at e and b e l o st by t h e w ay .

T h e sec ond wi nter h ad c om e seali ng up ,

th e gl o omy l and t ill it rang like ir on at th e


to uch th en c ov eri ng it d eep wi t h snow and
,

p ol i shi ng its mu te white face wi th h oar fr ost -

and h ail dri ve n o nward by th e fierce A r c t ic


prowli ng fox w ere t h e rec ord s of w olves
,

c auti ou s f eet ; andth at th ey w er e nol ong er


b eati ng th e t h icket s for gr ou se and rab
bit s b ut m ovi ng swiftly all t ogeth er for th e
,

edg es o f t h e v ast b arr e ns wh er e t he carib o u


h erd s w er e feedi ng A n oth er glanc e — b ut
.

h ere we mu st hav e the cu nni ng ey es of Old


Tom ah t h e hu nt er — would hav e t old th at
tw o o f t h e t rail s w er e tho se o f en ormou s

w olv es which ledth e pack ; t w o o th ers w ere


pl ai nly cub s th at h ad not yet l ost the cub
t ri ck o f fr o licki ng i n th e soft snow ; while
th ree oth ers w ere j u st w olv es big andpow er
,

ful brut es th at m oved as if on st eel Spri ng s ,

and t h at st ill h eld to the o ld pack b ec au se


t h e tim e h adno t y et c om e for them t oscatter
fin ally t oth eir sep ar at e w ay s and he ad new
p ack s of t h ei r ow n i n the g reat soli t ud es .

O ut fro m the w ood s on the oth er Sid e of


the b ar r en cam e t w osnow Sh oe t rail s which
-
,

adv anc ed with Sh o r t step s and r est ed ligh tly


on th e snow as if th e m ak ers of th e trail s
,

w ere li tt l e p eopl e wh ose weight on th e sn ow


sh oe s m ad e h ar d l y m or e im
p ressi on th an th e broad p ad s o f
Moktaq uesthe r abbit T h ey followed steal th
.

ily the windi ng r ec ord s of a sc ore of ca rib ou


that h ad wand ered like an eddyi ng wi nd all
ove r the b arre n st opping h ere and th ere to
,

paw great hole s i n th e snow for th e c ari


bo u mo ss that c o ve r ed all the e arth be ne ath .

O ut at th e end of the t r ail two I ndia n c h il


dren a g irl and a boy st ole al ong wi t h
, ,

no i sel ess st ep s sc anni ng the wid e wa ste s


,

fo r a cl o ud o mi st
f — th e froz en bre ath that
h ove rs ove r a h erd of c arib ou — or pe eri ng
k ee nly i nt oth e edg es of the w ood s for v agu e
wh i te Shap es movin g lik e Sh ad ow s am ong
t h e t ree s S o they m o
. ved on swiftly Sile ntly
, ,

till th e boy stopped with a start l ed exclam a

ti on wh ipped out a lo ng a rr ow wi th a barbed


,

ste el p o i nt and l aid it r e ady ac r oss h is b ow


, .

Fo r at h is feet w as anoth er light trail th e ,

t rail of a wolf p ack that c r o


, ssed hi s o wn,

mov i ng str aight and sw i ft acro ss th e b arren


t owa r d the un seen c aribou .

Ju st i n f ront as the b oy st opped a Slight


, ,

motion b r oke th e eve n whi t e su rf ac e th at


str etch ed aw ay Sil ent and lifel ess o n ev er y

sid e — a m o
, ti on so fai nt and nat ural th at
N oel s k een ey es sw eepi ng the pl ai n andthe

edg es o f th e di st ant w o od s n ev er not ic ed it


,
.

A vagrant wind which h ad b een wand eri ng


,

and m o aning all m o r ni ng as if l ost seem ed ,

t o st i r th e sno w and set tl e to r est agai n .

! ut no w wh ere th e pl ai n seem ed m o
,
st emp t y

andlif el ess sev en gr eat wh i t e w o


,
lve sc rou ch ed
d ow n in the snow i n a lit tl e h ollow th ei r p aw s ,

ex tend ed th ei r hi nd l eg s be nt like powerful


,

Spri ng s b eneath th em th ei r h ead s r ai sed c au


,

tiously soth at only t h eir earsandey esShow ed


ab ove th e rim of th e li ttl e h oll ow wh ere th ey
h id S oth ey lay t ense al er t r eady wat chi ng
.
, , , ,

wi th e ager i nq ui si t iv e e y es th e t w ochildr en
,

draw i ng steadily n earer th e only Sig n of life ,

in th e wh o l e wid e d esol a te l and sc ap e


,
.

Foll ow b ackth e tr ail o


f th e snow sh oes -

no w whil e th e w o
,
lves are w ai ti ng and i t ,

l ead s you ov er t h e gr eat b arr en i nt o the


gl oomy Spruc e w ood s; b ey ond t h at it cr osse s
t w om o re b arrensandst retch es of i nterve ni ng
f orest ; th en up a gre at hill and d ow n i ntoa
vall ey wh er e the l odg e lay hidd en buri ed
, ,

d eep unde r Newfou ndla nd snow s .


S othe new life b eg an pl ea santly en ough ;
b ut as t h e wi nter w o re aw ay and provi
si o ns gr ew scarc e and g am e v ani sh ed from

t he c o ver t s th ey all felt th e f earful pi nch


,

of f ami ne E very m or ni ng now a c onfu sed


.

circle of track s in th e snow Sh ow ed wh ere


th e wild pr o w lers of th e w ood s h ad c om e
and sni ff ed at th e v ery d o ors o f the t il ts i n
thei r raveni ng hu nger .

No el s f athe r and Old T om ah w ere far


aw ay trappi ng i n th e i nteri o
, , r ; and t oNoel
wi t h h is snares and his bow and ar row s f ell
th e pl easant t ask o

f supplyi ng the f amily s
n eed wh en th e stock of dri ed fi sh m el ted
aw ay . O n thi s M arc h m or ning he h ad
st art ed wi t h M o oka at dayligh t t o cr oss the
m ou ntai ns t o som e great b arren s wh ere he
h ad fo u nd track s and k new th at a few h erd s
of c arib ou were st ill f eedi ng T he sun w as
.

dimm ed as it rose and th e sun dogs gave


,
-

mu te w ar ni ng of th e c omi ng st orm ; b ut the


cupb oard w as emp t y at h ome and ev en a
,

li ttl e hu nt er thi nk s first of t he gam e h e is


f oll owi ng and l ets t h e st orm t ake c are of
i tself S othey hur ri ed on u nheedi ng
.
,
N oel
w i th his b ow and a rr ow s Moo k a w i th a l i ttle
,

b ag cont ain i ng a l oaf and a few d ri ed cap


lin — pe eri ng u nd er ev ery b r u sh pile fo
,
r th e

Sh ini ng eyes of a r abbi t and picki ng up


,

one bi g grou se and a few ptarmigan am ong


th e bowld ers o f a great b ar e hill sid e O n .

the edg es of th e gr eat b arren und er t h e T op


G all ants th ey f ou nd th e fresh t r ack s of feed
i n g carib ou andwe r e foll owi ng e agerly wh en
,

th ey ran plump i nt ot h e wolf t rail .

Now by every law of the ch ase th e gam e


b el onged to th ese earlier hu nter s; and by
every p o w er i n th ei r g au nt f ami sh ed b odi es
,

th e w o lv es m eant t o h ave it S o said the


.

trail E v ery steal th y advance i n S i ngle file


.

ac ross th e O p en every sw i ft r u sh over th e h ol


,

low s t h at might hide th em from ey es watch


ing b ack fr o m th e di stant w oods Sh owed ,

the w olves pu rp ose cl ear as d aylight ; and


h ad N o el b een w i ser h e would h av e r ead a

w arni ng from the snow and t ur ned asid e .

But h e o nly drew h is lo ngest k ee nest arrow


,

and p r e ssed o n mo re eag erly th an b efore .

T h e two tr ail s h ad cro ssed each o th er at


l ast B eginni ng ne ar togeth er one on th e
.
,
m ou ntai ns the oth er by t he sea th ey had
, ,

f oll owed t h ei r sep arate d evi o u s w ays now ,

far ap ar t in th e gl ad b right summ er no w ,

d raw i ng t og eth er in th e m oo nligh t of th e


wi nter s ni ght A t tim es th e m ak ers of the

.

trail s h adw atch ed each oth er in secret shyly , ,

i nqui si t iv ely at a di stance ; but alw ay s f ear


,

or cun nin g h ad kept th em ap ar t th e b oy ,

wi th h is k e en h u nter s i nt erest baffled and


wh etted by th e bru tes w ari ness and th e’

wolves dr awn t o th e supe rio r b ei ng by th at


sub t l e in st i nc t t h at on ce m ad e g l ad h unt i ng
d og s and c olli es of th e wild rangers of t h e
pl ai ns and th at still l ead s a w olf to f oll ow
,

and w atch th e d o i ng s of m en wi t h i nten se


cu ri osi ty Now th e trail s h ad m et fairly in
.

t h e sno w anda few step s more w ould bri ng


,

th e b o y a nd the w o lf f ac e t oface .

N oel w as st eali ng alo ng w ar ily h is a rr ow ,

r eady on th e st ring M ooka b esid e him w as


.

w atch i ng a f ai nt cl oud of mi st th e b reath


,

of carib ou th at bl urr ed at tim es th e d ar k


,

t ree line in th e di st ance wh en o


-
ne o
,f t ho se
my steri ou s w arni ngs th at b ef all th e hu nt er
M zlcfi eeg eesooéé t h e st o
rm ! said N oel
'

Sh arply ; and wi t h out anoth er w ord th ey


t u r ned and h urri ed b ack o n t h ei r o w n t rail .

In a Sh o rt h alf h ou r th e w orld w ould be


-

swall o w ed up in ch aos T o b e c augh t out.

on th e b arrens m eant t o b e l ost ; and to


be l o st h er e wi t h out fire and Sh el ter m eant
d eath sw if t and sure S oth ey ran on h op
, .
,

ing to strik e t h e w o od s b efo r e th e bliz z ard


burst up on th em .

T h ey w ere scarcely h alf w ay t o sh el ter -

wh en th e whi te fl ake s b egan t owhirl arou nd


th em . Wi t h st art li ng t errible swift ness th e
,

f amili ar w orld v ani sh ed ; th e guiding t r ail


w as bl o tted o ut and no thi ng b ut a w o lf s ’

i nst i nct c ould h av e h eld a straight course


in th e bli ndi ng fury o f t h e st orm S till th ey .

h eld on br av ely tryi ng in v ai n tok eep th ei r


,

direc t i on by th e eddyi ng wi nd s till Mook a ,

stumbl ed twic e at th e sam e h o ll ow ov er a


hidd en brook and th ey k new th ey w ere run
,

ni ng bli ndly in a ci rcl e o f d eath F r igh tened


.

at th e di sc o v ery th ey tur ned as th e c aribou


,

do k eepi ng th ei r b ack s steadil y toth e wi nd s


, ,

anddrif ted Sl o wly aw ay d own th e l ong b ar ren .


Hour af ter h our t h ey st ruggl ed on h and
,

in h and wi th out a th ought of wh ere they


,

w ere g oi ng T w ic e M ook a f ell and lay still


.
,

but w as dr agged toh erf eet and hu r ri ed on


w ard agam The li ttl e hu nter s ow n st re ngt h
.

w as alm o st go ne wh en a low moan ro se


,

st eadily ab o v e th e h ow l and h i ss of the gale .

I t w as th e Spruce w ood s b end i ng th eir t op s ,

to the bl ast and gro ani ng at th e str ai n .

With a wild wh oop N oel pl ung ed f orw ard ,

and th e nex t i nst ant th ey w ere saf e within


th e w o od s All arou nd them the fl akessifted
.

st eadily Sil ently d o


, wn i ntoth e th i ck c ove r t ,

whil e the st orm p assed wi th a great r oar ov er


th ei r h ead s .

In the lee o f a lo w branch ed sp r uce th ey


-

st opp ed agai n as th ough by a comm on im


,

p ul se whil e N oel lift ed h is h and s T h ank s


,

.
,

th ank s K eesuolué/z ; we c an t ak e c are of our


,


selve s no w th e brave lit tl e h ear t w as Si ng
,

ing und er the up stretch ed arm s Th en th ey .

tumbl ed i nt o the snow and lay for a m o


ment ut terly r el ax ed l ike two t ired animal s
, ,

in th at b ri ef delici o u s rest which f ollow s a


,

t errible struggle w i th th e storm and c old .


First t h ey ate a li ttl e of thei r bread and
fi sh tok eep up t h eir spirit s; t h e n — for the

sto r m t h at w as up o n t h em m igh t l ast fo r

d ay s— they set ab ou t prepari ng a shel ter .

W i th a li ttl e searc h wh oopi ng toe ach oth er


,

l est th ey st ray away th ey f ou nd a b i g dry


,

stub t h at so m e gal e h ad snapped off a few


f eet abov e th e snow Whil e M ook a scu rri ed
.

ab o ut c oll ec t i ng birch b ar k and armful s of


,

dry br anch es N oel took off h is snow shoe s


,
-

and b eg an wi th o ne of th em tosh o ve! aw ay


th e sno w i n a semi ci rcl e arou nd th e b ase of
t h e st ub I n a sh ort h alf h our he h ada d eep
.
-

h ol e th ere wit h th e snow b ank ed up arou nd


,

i t toth e h eigh t of his h ead N ext wi t h h is .

k nife he cut a lot of light p ol es and sc r ub


spruc es and sti cki ng th e bu t ts in h i
, s sno w
b ank l aid th e t op s like the st ick s of a wig
, ,

W am , firmly agai nst the big st ub A few .

armful s o f spruce bough s sh i ngl ed o v er t hi s


roof and a few mi nu te s w ork shoveli ng
,

sno w th i ckly up o n th em to h old th em i n


place and to m ake a w arm c ov eri ng ; th en
a d oor way or r at h er a narr ow t u nnel j u st
, ,

b eyond th e stub on th e straight Sid e of th e


some w i sp s of b ir c h b ark to use when t hey
should w ak e cold and sh i ver i ng and find
, ,

thei r little fi re g one out and the bi g stub


l osi ng its ch eery gl ow T h en they lay down
.

t o r est and th e night and th e st o


,
rm r oll ed
on u nh eed ed .

T ow ard s m or ni ng th ey f ell i nt o a h eavy


sl eep ; fo r th e bi g stub b egan t o burn mor e

fre ely as th e wi nd ch anged and they need


,

no t stir ev ery h alf h o -


ur to f eed th eir li t tle
fi re and k eep fr o m freezi ng It w as bro ad
.

d aylight th e storm h ad c eased and a w ood


, ,

peck er w as h amm eri ng l oudly on a hollow


sh ell o v er t h ei r h ead s when th ey st arted up ,

w ond eri ng v agu ely whe re they were Th en .

whil e No el br ok e out of the com moosze which


'

w as fairly buri ed u nd er th e sno w tofi nd out


,

wh ere he w as M ook a r ebuilt t h e fi re and


,

pl uck ed a p tarmigan and set it to t oast i ng


wi t h th e la st of t h eir b r ead ove r th e c oal s .

N o el cam e b ack soon with a ch eery wh oop


t o tell the l i ttl e c o ok th at th ey h ad drif ted
b efore th e storm d own th e wh ol e l eng th of
t h e g reat b arr en and w er e c amped no
, w o n
th e opp o sit e Sid e j u st u nd er th e high est ridge
,
o f the T o p G a ll ant s Th er e w as not a t r
. ack
on th e barrens h e said ; not a Sign of w olf or

carib ou whi ch h adprob ably w ande red de epe r


,

i nt oth e wo od s for Shelte r S o th ey ate th ei r .

br ead toth e l ast c r umb and t he ir bird to the


l ast b one and givi ng up all t h ought of h u nt
, ,

ing st art ed up the big b arr en h eadi ng fo


, r ,

th e di st ant l odge wh ere th ey h adl ong si nce


,

b een gi v en up for l ost .

Th ey h adcr ossed th e b arren anda mil e of


t hick w o od s b eyond wh en th ey ran i nto the
fresh t rail of a d oz en c arib ou Foll owi ng it .

swiftly t h ey c am e to th e edg e o f a much


sm all er b arren tha t t h ey h ad cro ssed y es

t erday and saw at a gl anc e that th e t r ail


,

st retch ed st raight ac ro ss it Not a carib ou .

w as in Sight ; but t h ey might n ev erth el ess

b e fe edi ng o r rest i ng in th e w o
, od s j u st
b eyond ; and for th e li ttl e h unters to Sh ow
t h em selve s no w in the o p en w ould m ean
th at th ey w o uld b ec om e i nst antly th e target
fo r every k een eye t h at w as wa t ch i ng t h e

b ack t rail S o they st art ed w ar ily to circle


.

th e b ar r en k eepi ng j u st wi thi n the fri nge o


,
f
wood s out of Sight .
Th ey h ad g one scarc ely a h u ndred step s
wh en N oel w hipp ed out a l ong arrow and
p oi nted sil ently acr o ss th e O p en Fr o
. m th e
w oo d s on th e oth er Sid e th e caribou h ad
b rok en out of a d oz en tu nnel s u nder th e
'

Spruc es and c am e tr ott i ng b ack in th ei r old


,

t rail s st raigh t d o
,
w n W i nd t owh ere t h e li ttl e
-

hu nters we re hidi ng .

T h e d eer w er e ac ti ng qu eerly — no
, w plun
gi ng away wi t h th e h igh awkwar d j umps
,

th at c aribou use wh en st art l ed ; no w swi ng


ing o ff o n t h eir sw if t t irel ess r ack andb ef o
, ,
re
t h ey h ad settl ed to t h eir st rid e h al ti ng sud

d enly tol ook b ack and w ag th ei r ear s at th e


t r ail
. For Megaleep is full o f curi osi ty as a

wild tu r key and a


, l way s st op s to get a l i ttl e
entert ai nm ent o ut o f ev ery new t hing th at
d oes not t h reaten h im wi th i nstant d eath .

Th en out of t h e wo od s b ehi nd th em trotted


fi ve whi te wolv es — no , t h u nt i ng c er tai nly !
,

fo r wh en ev er t h e c arib o u stopped t ol ook t he


w olves sat d ow n on th eir tail s and yawn ed .

O ne lay d o wn and roll ed ov er and ov er in


th e so f t sn ow ; another ch a sed and c ape red
af ter his o w n bru sh ,
hu nters wh en M ook a clu t ch ed h is arm h er
, ,

eye s snappi ng wi t h exci tem ent h er finge r


,

p oi nti ng Sil ently b ack on th eir ow n trail A .

vagu e Sh ad ow glid ed swif tly am ong th e t rees .

A n enorm o u s whi te w olf app ear ed vani sh ed


, ,

c am e n ear them again and crouch ed d own


,

u nd er a low spruc e branch w aiti ng .

Agai n th e t w o trail s had c rossed i n th e


snow . T h e big w o lf as he app eared h ad
thru st h is nose i nt o th e snow sho e t r ack s
-
,

and a sni ff or t w o t old him ev erythi ng ,

w h o h ad p assed and h o, w lo ng ag o and ,

wh at th ey w ere d oi ng and h ow far ah ead


,

t h ey w ere no w w aiti ng ! ut th e carib o


. u
w ere c omi ng coax ed al ong m ar vel ou sly by
,

the cub s and th e old m oth er ; and the great


Sil ent w olf th at h ad l ef t th e p ack pl ayi ng
,

wi th th e gam e whil e h e circl ed the b arren


at to p sp ee d,
now t ur ned t o t h e b u si ness
in h and wi th no t h o ught nor fear of h arm
f rom th e tw ochildren wh om h e h adw atch ed
b ut y est erd ay .

Not so N oel T he fi re bl az ed out in his


.

eyes; the l ong b ow sw u ng t oth e w olf b end ,

ing like a st eel spri ng and th e f eath ered


,
Shaft of an arrow lay cl ose agai nst th e boy s ’

che ek B ut M ooka cau g ht h is a rm


.

L ook N oel his ear! Malsunsis my l i t


, , ,


tle w o lf cub sh e b r eathed excitedly A nd
, .

N oel with a g reat wo nde r in his eye s Sl acked


, ,

his bow wh il e h is th o
, ught s j ump ed faraway
t oth e d en on t he m o u nt ai ns whe r e th e t rail
b ega n and to th ree little cub s pl aying like
,

kit tens wi th th e gr assh opper s and t h e cloud


Sh adow s; for th e great w olf that lay sostill
nea r th em h i s ey es fix ed in a steady glow
,

up on th e c omi ng c arib ou h ad one ear be nt ,

Sh arply fo rwa r d lik e a le af th at h as b ee n


,

c r e ased b etween th e fin ger s .

Aga i n Mooka broke the t ense Sile nce i n


a lo w whi sp er Ho w m any w o
. lf t r ail s you
see y est er d ay li tt l e b r othe r ?
,


S even said N oel who se ey es alre ady
, ,

h ad th e cunni ng o f O ld T o m ah s t ou nd er ’

st and ev ery t hi ng .

The n wh er e t othe r wolf ? O nly Six he r e ,

b reath ed Mo ok a l ooki ng timidly all a round , ,

f eari ng to find th e steady gla r e of gr een


eyes fixed upo n th em fr om the Shad ow of
ev ery t hick et .
N oel st i rred u neasily S om ewh ere cl ose at
.

ha nd an o th er h uge w o lf w as w aiti ng ; and a


wh ol esom e f ear f ell up on h im wi th a Shive r
,

at t h e t h ough t of h ow n ear h e h ad come in


his exci tem ent tobringi ng th e wh o l e savag e
p ac k sn arling about his ears .

A snort of al arm cut sh or t h is t hi nking .

The r e at th e edge of th e wo od not tw enty


,

feet aw ay sto od a c aribou p oi nti ng h is e ars


, ,

at the child ren whom he h adalm ost stumbl ed


ove r as he ran t hi nki ng only of the w olve s
,

b ehi nd The l ong bow sprang b ack of i tself ;


.

an ar row bu z z ed lik e a w asp and buri ed it


self d eep in t h e white ch est . Lik e a fl ash a
seco nd arr o w f oll ow ed as th e st ag tu r ned
away and with a j ump o
, r t w o h e sank to
h is k n ees as if tor est awh il e in the sno
, w.

B ut M ook a sc arc ely saw t h ese thi ng s .

H er ey es w ere f ast en ed on th e great white


w olf whi ch sh e had cl aim ed for h er own
wh en h e w as a t oddli ng cub H e lay still
.

as a sto ne u nd er th e tip o f a be ndi ng


Sp r uce branch h is eyes f oll owi ng eve ry
,

moti on of a y ou ng bull c arib ou which t hree


of the w ol ves h ad singl ed out of th e h erd
and w ere now guidi ng surely st r ai g ht to
h is hidi ng pl ac e -
.

T h e sno r t and plu nge of the smitt en an i


m al startl ed thi s y o u ng st ag and he tu r ned
a side f r om his c our se L ik e a sh ad ow the bi g
.

w olf th at Mo ok a w as watchi ng ch anged his


place soas to he ad th e gam e while two of ,

th e pac k o n th e open ba r re ns S lipped around


th e c arib o u andtu r ned h im b ack again t othe
w ood s A t th e edge of the cov er the stag
.

st o pp ed for a l ast look p oi n t in g h is e ars fi r st


,

at N o el s ca r ib o

u which now lay v ery still in
,

th e sn o w t he n at the w olves which with quic k


, ,

i nsti nc t h adsingl ed him out of the h er d k now ,

i ng in some subtle w ay h e w as w atched from


b eyond and w h ich g ath ered about him in a
,

circle sitt i ng on th ei r t ail s and y awni ng


, .

S l owly Sil en tly Mooka s w olf c rept f or ward


,

pu shi ng his gr eat b ody t hroug h th e sn ow .

A terrific ru sh a quick snap u nd er the stag s


,

che st j u st b ehi nd th e f ore l eg s where th e ,

h eart lay ; th en th e big w olf l eaped a sid e and


sat d o wn qu i etly ag ai n tow atch .

I t w as soon fi ni sh ed The stag pl unged .

aw ay set tl ed i nt ohis l o
, ng rack slow ed dow n ,
t oa swayi ng , w eak eni ng t rot Af ter him at
.

adi stanc e glid ed t h e big w o lf l appi ng eag erly


,

at th e crim so n t rail but h o


, ldi ng him self wi t h
t r em end o u s will p ow er from ru shi ng in h ead
l ong and drivi ng th e gam e which might
,

r u n for mil es if t oo h ar d pressed T h e st ag .

san k to h i s k nees; a Sh arp y elp r ang like a

pi stol sh ot th r ough th e st ill w ood s; th en th e


-

p ack roll ed i n like a whi rlwi nd and it w as ,

all ove r .

C r eeping n ear on th e t rail th e li t tl e h u nter s


crouch ed u nd er a low Spru ce w at chi ng as if
,

f ascin ated th e wild f east of th e w ol ves N oel s .


bo w w as r eady i n hi s h and ; but l uckily th e

Sight of t h ese h ug e p ow erful bru tes over


,

wh elm ed him and drove all th ough ts of kill


ing o ut of h is h ead . M ook a pluck ed him by
the sl eeve at l ast and p oi nted sil ently h om e
,

w ard s It w as surely time togo for the big


.
,

g est w olf h ad already st retched him self and


w as licking his p aw s while th e t w o cub s
,

wi th full st om ach s w er e rolling over andov er


andbi t ing each o th er pl ayf ully in th e sno w .

S il ently th ey st ol e aw ay st oppi ng only to


,

tie a rag t o a p oi nt ed stick whi ch t h ey ,


! ut I w as f ra i d out t her e l i t tle S i st er

, ,

confe ssed N oel b r avely H er e we can climb


.

t ree ; good ch anc e Sh o ot um with my arr ow s


m 517 011

.

177
Lik e t w ofrigh tened rabbi ts th ey crouch ed
u nd er th e fir stari ng b ack with wild rou nd
,

ey es o v er the trail f eari ng every i nst ant t o


,

see th e savag e p ack br eak o ut of th e w o od s


and c o m e h owli ng af ter t h em But only th e .

si ngl e big wolf app eared trotti ng qui etly,

al o ng in t hei r f oot step s W i thi n b ow sh ot h e


'

sto pped wi th h ead rai sed l ooki ng li steni ng , ,

i ntently T h en as if he h ad seen th em i n
.
,

t h eir hidi ng he tur ned asid e circl ed wid ely


, ,

toth e l eft andenter ed the w o


, od s far b el ow .

Ag ai n t h e t w o lit tl e hu nters h u rr i ed on
through th e Sil ent snow fi lled w ood s a
,
-
,

strange di squi et ud e sett li ng up o n t h em as

th ey f elt t h ey w ere f oll ow ed by u nseen f eet .

S o on th e f eeli ng grew toost r ong t o r e si st .

N oel with h is b ow r eady anda st range chill ,

t ri ckli ng lik e c old w ater al ong his Spi ne w as ,

hiding b ehi nd a tree watchi ng the b ack t rail ,

when a low excl am ati on from Mo ok a m ad e


h im tur n Th ere b ehi nd t h em not ten st ep s
.
,

aw ay a h ug e whi te w olf w as sit ti ng qui etly


,
on h is t ail w atch i ng th em with ab sorb ed
, ,

Sil ent i nt e nt ness .

F ea r and wo nd er and swift mem ori e s of


,

Old T om ah and th e w olf th at had f ollowed


him wh en h e w as l ost sw ept ove r N oel i n a
,

flood H e r ose swiftly the long b ow ben t


.
, ,

and agai n a d eadly arrow cuddl ed softly


agai nst h is cheek ; but th er e w er e doubt s
and fear s in h i s eye t ill M o oka caugh t his
arm wi th a glad littl e l augh

My cub littl e brother S ee h is ea r and
, .
,

oh his t ail ! W atch um t ail li t tl e brother


, , .

For at the fir st m ov e th e big w olf sprang


al ertly t oh is feet l ooked d eep int oMookas
,

eyes with that i n tense p enetra t ing li gh t


,

which serv es a wild anim al to read y ou r


very t hough t s andi n stantly h is g re at bu shy
,

t ail w as w avi ng its friendly gr eeting .

I t w as i nd eed Malsunsis t h e cub Bef ore , .

th e great st o r m br ok e he h ad crouched wi th
the p ack in th e h o llow j u st i n fro nt of the
littl e hu nters; and although the w olves we re
h u ngry it w as wi t h feelings of cu r i osi t y only
,

t h at they w atched th e children w h ose emed ,

to the powe rful b r ute s h a rdly mo re to be


fear ed t h an a c oupl e of snow bi r d s h opping
ac ross the v ast b arr en ! ut t h ey w er e chil
.

dr en of m en th at w as enough forth e white


wo lf p ack s wh ich for un told y ear s h adnev er
,

b een k now n to m ol est a m an T hi s m or n .

ing MalsunS IS h ad ag ai n cro ssed t h ei r t rail .

H e had se en t h em lyi ng i n w ai t for th e c ari


bo u t h at h i s o w n p ack w ere drivi ng ; h ad

seen N o el smi te th e bull andW as fill ed with


,

w ond er ; but h is ow n bu si ness k ept him still


i n hidi ng Now well fed and good natured -

but mo
.
, ,

r e cu r i ou s th an ever h e h adf oll owed


,

th e t r ail o f th ese li t tl e f olk to l earn som e


t hi ng abou t t h em .

M ooka as S h e w atch ed h im w as brim full


of an eag er ness whic h sw ep t aw ay all f ear .

T om ah say s w olf and I nj u n hu nt j u st


,

alike ; k eep ver still ; d on t t roubl e g am e


’ ’


c ept w h en h e h u ngry sh e whi sp er ed

, S ays .

to o K eesuo
, luéfi m ad e us fri end s f o re whi te ’

m an c o m e sp oil um ev erythi ng Das wh at


, .

Malsunsis say now wid h ees tail and ey es;


o nly w ay h e c an t alk um l i ttle br oth er N o
, .
,

no — for N o el s b ow w as st ill st r ongly b ent


y ou mu s t not sh oot M als u n


. sis t hi nk
t r otted out ag ai n in th e sam e di rec t i on ; and
N oel t aki ng th e sub tl e hi nt as an I ndi an
, ,

alw ay s d o es b o re steadily to th e righ t t ill


,

th e gr eat ridg e b ey o nd which th e L o


, dge
w as hidd en l o om ed ov er th e tree t op s A nd
,
-
.

t ot hi s d ay h e b eli ev es— and it is im po ssi

b e o
l , f r I h a ve tri ed to di ssu,a d e him — th at
th e w o lf k new wh er e th ey w ere g oi ng and
tri ed i n his ow n w ay t o Sh ow th em .

S o t h ey climb ed th e l o ng r idg e t o th e

summi t and fr o ,
m th e d eep vall ey b eyond
t h e sm o k e of th e L odg e r ose up to guid e
th em Th ere th e w olf stopp ed ; and t h ough
.

N oel whi stl ed and M ook a call ed ch eer ily as ,

t h ey w o uld to one of th eir ow n hu skie s th at


they h ad l ear ned to l ove Malsunsis w ould ,

g o n o f ar ther H e sat
. t h er e o n th e r idge ,

h is t ail sw eepi ng a circl e in th e sn o w b ehi nd


him h is ear s c ock ed toth e fri endly call and
,

h is ey es f o ll owi ng ev er y st ep of th e littl e
hunt ers till th ey v ani sh ed in th e wood s
,

b el ow Th en h e tur ned to follow h is ow n


.

w ay in th e wilde r n ess .
lik e Sl eepy ey es or rest in soft wi ndi ng
,

sh ad o w s lik e th e f eat u res and wri nk l es of a


great w eath er b eat en fac e S il ence brood s
-
.

over it t aking vi sible sh ap e i n th e fo rm of


,

a solit ary w ood s r aven th at h angs mo ti on


l ess high i n air on sabl e ou t st retch ed wi ngs .

NoS i gn of life m oves on the t ranquil face


of the ea r th o r water ; nosound break s the
restful still ne ss save the che eping of you ng
pl ove r h idi ng i n the g ray mo ss and a low ,

surg e like a so
, und in a d ream d r ifti ng i n
,

over di stan t w ood s f rom where th e w aves


break r ank s on th e u nnam ed sh oal s A nd .

here — u nexp ec tedly as g ood t hing s come


,

at l ast — w as th e end o f my l o ng que st to


fi nd th e h o me of W apt onk the wild g oose .

E ver si nce childh ood I had sought h im .

In th e spri ng he h ad alway s called to me


from the high he avens; and somethi n g in
t h e r ing o f h is bugl e call so
-
methi ng i n the
,

sigh t o f th at living ar r o w he ad d r ivi ng ste ad


-

i ly n ort hward as if the h eav en s th at bound ed


,

me co uld not c ontai n so free a Spiri t and ,

so m ethi ng p er h ap s i n th e impul se of h iswild


he ar t wh i ch called h i m fa r aw ay f rom the
field s of m en and whi ch fou nd an answ er in
,

t h e h eart of th e bo y who w atched h im till


h e v ani shed in the blue and wh o had to
,

stay o n th e fa r m whil e hi s soul w as aw ay t o


t h e wilde rne ss— all the se sight s andso u nd s
and u nk nown l o ngi ng s h ad bou nd me fa st

t oW apto nk th e Wild and mad e m e reso


, lve
some day to foll o w h im andfi nd out what it
w as th at call ed him n o rt h ward wh en brook s
were f r ee and big w ood s buddi ng and th e
Spri ng impul se w as i n th e h ear t of all l ivi ng
thi ng s .

La ter W aptonk h ad called t o m e agai n


from th e sam e h eave ns; but now th e arrow
he ad p oi nted sou thw ard and the fligh t w as
,

alt o ge th er di ff erent T h e li n es of the wedg e


.

wav ered andw ere of te n b r ok en ; i t h eld cl oser


toe ar th and w as l ess c ert ai n in its m agnifi
cent onw ard ru sh ; andth e cl ear full thro at ed -

bugl e call s th at h ad t h rill ed th e b oy s h eart


-

wi th th ei r Spri ngtim e cl angor gave pl ac e to


a cu ri o u s c ommu nicativ e ch atter in whi ch ,

alm o st every not e r o se at th e end t o a fal

setto . Now and th en a st ro ng cl ear n ote, ,

de epe r and m or e pe remp tory w ould sound


,
at th e h ead of th e w edge and i nstantly th e
,

wings w ould c ackl e an answer andswi ng i nt o


b ette r li ne ; b ut th e c r y had l ost much of its
o
j y a n d u tt e r fr eed o m, a s t h e flight h ad l ost
its pow er andswift c er tai nty .

I did not k now t h en i n th e autum n d ay s


, ,

t hat t he se w er e m o stly y ou ng bird swhich h ad


nev er bef o re f oll ow ed th e l ong t rail ; th at at
th e h ead o f eve ry wedge w as o ne o f the o ld
bird s poi n t i ng out th e h eadl and s by which
,

th ey sh ap ed t h eir c our se ; t h at the flight w as


l ess cer tai n b ecau se th e gosli ngs had not yet
reached th ei r full p owe r and m u st r est by
the way ; and th at th e cry w as l ess stirri ng
b ec au se Spri ng nolonger c all ed them aw ay
by its th r obbi ng love l if e and by th e swe et
hom e memori es of qui et nest i ng pl ac es i n
the far N ort hl and R athe r w ere t h ey d ri v en
.

away f rom t h e th i ng s th ey l ov ed ; and now


th e securi ty o f t h e gre at fr ee l o
, nely wilde r
,

ne ss mu st give pl ace to co nst ant wa t chful

ne ss i n a h o st ile la nd wh ere d anger lurk ed


,

and r o ar ed o ut upon th em fr o m ev ery p oi nt


andbay andf eedi ng gr o -
und Nowo nd er th e
.

flight w av ered ; now ond er th e y oung voic es


wh at h e want ed wi th all h is h eart Th er e .

would be a r u sh am ong th e f owl s sq uawki ng ,

and quacking o f h ens and duck s and o ne,

wild cl ari on y ell from th e old grayl ag goose


as sh e fou nd h er self i n Ch anc ery T h en th e
.

boy w ould sco ot and dodge aw ay t oth e big


p ond i n t h e w ood s wi t h th e old mu sk et at
,

t r ail and t h e o ld gray g o ose g ripp ed t igh t


u nd er his elb ow éoné éoné zng h er r esent

-
,

m ent b ut sen sibl e enou gh as all g eese ar e


, ,

wh en you t ak e them righ t .

N ext sce e
n i
n t e li t tl e co
h m edy — a boy ,

hidden in th e gr ass and bu sh es of a l on ely


poi nt sca nni ng t h e h eav ens as if at any m o
,

m ent t h ey migh t O p en and let w ond er s fall ;


and i n fro nt o f h im an o ld gr ay g oose wi th ,

one f oot anch ored to a bri ck swimming ,

ab o u t and tip t il ti ng h er t ail t o the ski es


-

as sh e Spl ash ed and pr o b ed th e b ott om for


root s g abbling t oh erself lik e a wh ol e fl ock
,

of gee se I n h er wo nd er and d elight at h er


strang e su r rounding s .A nd wh en at
la st the wild geese c ame and out ,

of the Sky c ame t umbling down


the stir ri ng cl ango r how th e
'

,
c ent u ri es of d ome st ic servi t ud e fell aw ay from
th e old graylag lik e a u sel ess g arm en t ! Tug
gi ng at th e stupid brick with ou tst ret ched
,

neck andquiv eri ng wing s sh e recog nized h er

ow n p eople and sent up a wild cry to c all


th em d own to sh are h erl onelin ess perh ap s ,

w h ok now s? t oc o m e andt ake her aw ay wi t h


t h em. Th en the boy huggi ng h im self and
,

h olding his brea th and l ovi ng th e old goose


supr emely fo r h er h elp w o
, uld lie still as a
sto ne only h i
, s ey es m o vi ng t o f oll ow th e
flight of th e wild bi rd s andsee if t h ey w ould
c ome d ow n t oh is biddin g .

Gene rally the w edge k ep t steadily on ,

st raigh t and t r u e to its course ; b ut ev ery

h ead w as b ent to bugl e d ow n an answ er


t o th e c ap t ive T hen th e b oy s he art w as

.

t ouch ed in tu r ning away from th e high flight


towa t ch h i so ld grayl ag . B eat i ng h er use
l ess wi ng s st r uggli ng afte r he r ki ndred as
,

far as th e anch o r st ri ng w ould all ow S h e


,

w ould c all and c all and all th e wild ness of


,

t h e lonely N o r thl and w as in h er app ealing


summon s . L ong af ter th e cl angor h addi ed
aw ay t o a f ai nt c r ackl e and vani sh ed in
imme asu rabl e di stanc e S h e would sit li sten
,

ing wi th neck up stre t ched h eari ng and i n , ,

he r h eart answ er ing the c all which had died


,

away o n the b o

y s le ss sympatheti c ear s .

Af ter that t he re w as nomore j oy ou s gab


blin g from G rayl ag S h e w ould swim ab ou t
.

Sil en tly now p ecki ng ang r ily at the restrai n


,

ing stri ng no , w rai si ng he r he ad t ol ook and


li st en for her wild ki ndred t ill twiligh t f ell,

sadly o n th e p o nd and S h e w o uld go h ome


mut e and p assive u nd er th e b oy s arm agai n ’
.

O ne stormy day gr eat luck h ead ed t o w ard s


th e b o y and m ade his he art j ump at the
th ought of at l ast m eeti ng th e gray w and er e rs
of th e uppe r air th at h ad so of ten set his
h ea rt a l ongi ng A g rea t g ang of wild gee se
-
.
,

flyi ng l ow er th an u su al with th e sid es of


,

thei r wedge broke n by th e sl eet and irregu


lar f ro m wea r i n ess passed n ear the p ond on
,

thei r souther n migrat i on Th ei r fai nt con .


,

fu sed honki ng r ou sed all th e w ild l ong i ng I n


the heart of Old G rayl ag S ometh ing tooi n .

thei r c all which sh e seemed to u nd erst and


, ,

m ad e her sure they w ould c om e t hi s tim e ,

and that S h e w ould know at la st what the


sudd enly ce ased andd ow n t h ey c am e r ou nd
, ,

andar o und in a b eau t iful spi ral as i f slidi ng


,

d own on an I nv i si bl e wi nding st aircase Fol .

l owing th e big l ead er c am e th e l ong m ag nifi ; ,

c ent li ne whi ch swu ng in a c ompl et e cu r ve


,

ab o v e him and h alf arou nd th e circl e agai n ;


all wi t h set wi ng s and o u tst retch ed neck s ,

glidi ng w h eeli ng cur v i ng steadily d ow nward


, ,

in p erfec t o rd er andp erf ec t si l enc e .

It w as m arv el o u s th e grac e th e preci si on


, , ,

th e impr essive sil enc e o f t h e stately pro c es

si o n do w n the spi ral stairc ase of t he wi nd s ,

andth e b o y f org ot t h e h u n t er in h is i nte n se

w ond er and admir at i on O ne by one th e


.

gr eat bird s dropped t h e i r bl ack w ebb ed fe et


and slid gent ly al o ng j u st over t h e surf ac e
for a bri ef m om ent and th en d ropp ed wi th
.

a quie t r estful spl ash i nt o t h e w ater


, An .

i nstant l ater th ey h ad swu ng toge th er anda


lo w eager ch at t er b egan am o
, ng th em .

Now Old Grayl ag al on e h ad b een u nim


pressed by th e w ond erful d esc en t for oth er ,

t hi ngs w er e st irri ng wildly in h er l o n ely


h ear t All th e whil e t h ey w ere c omi ng
.

d ow n so sil ent and st at el y she k ep t up an


, ,
When he W n ds dow n the i n v s b l e s ta r as e
i i i i c

of the W lndS
a
'

ti n pan A t ug a plu ng e a flu r ry of
.
, ,

W i ngs ; th e a nch or st ri ng sn appe d and away


sh e we nt h alf flying h alf r un ni ng ov er the
, , !

wat er and pl ung ed in am ong th e wild bi rd s


,

i n a smothe r of spray I n an i n stant sh e w as


swallow ed up in a de nse c ir cl e o f g ray b ack s


'

and sl end er bl ack n ec k s with wh it e ch eek


patche s and the wh ole fl oc k drew swif tly
,

away i nt o o p en w ater c ackli ng and j abb er ,

ing sof tly wi t h th en asal éoné a éoné of Old


- -
,

G r ayl ag sou ndi ng i ncessa ntly ab ov e th e


h u sh ed ch at ter of h er wild ki ndred .

L at e t h at day af te r w aiti ng l ong c old


, ,

hou rs i n t he vai n hop e th at t h ey w ould c ome


ne ar my hidi ng pl ac e I pu sh ed out sadly in
-
,

a l eaky oldt ub of a bo at tocat ch th e Wid ow


D u nkl e s goo se T he flock took al arm whil e

.

I w as yet far aw ay ; Sl anted he avily up—wi nd


t o th e tree t o p s wh ere wi th muc h c alli ng
-
,

andan sweri ng th e y o u ng bird s fell i ntoli ne ,

and th e w edge bore aw ay swif tly seaw ar d .

Afte r t h em w ent Old G rayl ag h eartb rOkefi ,

be ati ng h er he avy w ay ov er th e w ater call ,

ing and calli ng agai n to th e flock th at h ad


no w becom e o nly a
Conf u sed tangl e of wild v oic es ov er th e tree
top s S t r aigh t to th e Sh ore sh e w ent and
.
,

acr oss a littl e w i ld m ead ow still follow ,

ing th e fl o ck W he n I caught he r She w as


.

w addling brav ely th rough th e w ood s st op ,

pi ng an on to call and li sten ; but sh e m ade


no re si stance wh en I tuck ed h er u nde r my

elbow and c ar ri ed he r h o m e andSlipped her ,

u nob served i n th e d arkn ess i nt oh er accu s ,

to m ed pl ac e in th e Wid o w D u nkle s duck ’

c oop .

Th at w as th e neare st I ev er cam e in b oy

h ood d ay s to a cl ose acqu ai nt ance wi th


W aptonk the Wild ; but alw ays in the f all


h is voic e r ou sed th e h u nte r as noo th er sound
eve r did ; and alw ays in th e spri ng his cla ng
ing j uézlafe arou sed t h e l ongi ng i n th e boy s
'

h ear t t of oll ow af ter him and fi nd out wh at


it w as in the wild l onely N orth th at c all ed
,

him L at er as a hu nter I grew acqu ai nt ed


.
, ,

wit h m any of h is win ter w ays w atch ed him ,

feedi ng on th e Sh oal s or st anding for sleep


on the l onely sand b ars and th rilled toth e
,

ru stling swe ep of his broad win gs as he


swu ng i n ove r my dec o ys .
The t rai ned gee se which were of ten u sed
d esc enda nt s of su ndry wi ng tipped or
-

w ou nd ed bird s th at had b ee n saved to b reed


in cap tivi t y — w er e ve ry di ff er ent fr o m Old
G rayl ag Wh en th e ho nk of wild gee se w as
.

he ard and th e l ong wedge w avered ove r the


p ond th ese t rai ned bird s w ould be loo sed t o
,

ci r cle f ar out f rom sh or e and with wild


clam or c all d ow n th ei r wilde r ki nsf olk Th en
.

sl o wly cau t i ou sly as if th ey k new well the


, ,

t re acher o u s w ork th ey w ere d oi ng t hey , .

w ould l ead th e wild bird s in t owar d s th e


bli nd till wi t hi n r ange of t h e hidd en gu nners ,

wh en t h ey w ould sc atter sudd enly and r u sh


aside toget o ut of th e w ay ; and th e d ec oyed
and w o nd er i ng g eese w o uld be l ef t op en to
th e mu rd er ou s fi re o f th e co nceal ed h u nter s
.

A n evil work it seem ed tom e in which I


, ,

am gl ad to rem emb er I to ok no p art be


yond t hat of wat chi ng wi th i nte nse i nte rest ,

and wo nderi ng at th e cun ni ng pat i ence wi t h


which th e old pot h unte r had trai ned his
-

wild c onfed era tes .

W atchi ng th ese t rai ned d ecoy s one day ,

it w as h ard t or ealize th at t h e bi rd s w er e b ut
me sam o
he co ng us i
n his m i
g r at ion s giv i n g ,

wid e bert h to everythi ng th at has th e le ast


sembl anc e t o m an o r m an s i nv ent i o n and

never letti ng you get withi n rifle shot i f his -

wary senti nel s c an d etec t y ou r app roach will ,

f eed from your h and aft er h e has be en a few


hours i n you r coop ; andhisd esc end ant s will
t ake a perman ent and c ont ent ed place i n you r .

bar n yard I n th e spring wh en th e migra


-
.
,

t ory fever stirs wi thi n him h e will answ er ,

t h e cl arion call o f h is f ell ow s in th e sky and


Spread wid e h is wi ng s t o j oi n th em ; but
t h at p asse s sp eedily and h e turn s b ack to
,

y ou r dooryard andseem s c ont ent ev en with


th e clipped wi ng which k eep s him t he r e
whil e h is b r oth ers and ki nsf olk fad e aw ay
in th e cold bl u e di st ance C ase s h av e b een
.

known in which a w ou nded goo se h avi ng ,

be en kept all wi nte r h as flown aw ay with a


,

passing flock i nto the u nkn own N or th du r


Sp ri ng migratio n and retu r ned
,

th e next f all t othe same b arn y ar d -


,

b ri ngi ng he r bro od wi th he r A nd .

sowith the t u r k ey s tha t r ange o ur

fi eld s; th ey are d esce ndant sof bird s


rm
I/ Q
J N /n

h w
th at b ut y esterd ay w ere r angi ng th e w ood s
as wild and u nappro ach abl e as wilde r ne ss
ravens .

T h e first g reat le sso n I l ear ned i n t h e

year s of foll owi ng t h e wild g oose as a h un


ter w as o ne o f tr em end o u s r esp ect for his
w ari ne ss and i ntellige nce T o c all a p erson
.

a g oose would be an ex aggerated c ompli


m ent or a bit of pu r e fl attery if one but
, ,

u nd er stood wh at h e w as sayi ng Wh erev er .

h e feed s in t h e o p en W aptonk h as his senti


,

nel s p o sted o n t h e highe st p o i nt of ob se rva


ti on— wi se o ldbi r d s th at k now th ei r bu si ness
— and it i s nex t to impo ssibl e t o appr o ach

a fl ock withou t being det ec ted O nce it w as


.

eno ugh to l ead a c ow sl owly t ow ard s wh ere


th e bird s were f eedi ng o n th e st ubbl e and

k eep y our self h idd en on th e f art h er sid e of


th e gr azi ng a nimal ; b ut no w W apt o nk l o ok s
k eenly u nd er eve ry c ow t osee if she h ave
an ex t ra p ai r o f l eg s o r no and soo
, ther de
vi c es mu st be i nven ted only t o b e quickly
,

f at h om ed by W aptonk s nimbl e wit andth en


c ast asid e wi t h th e o th ers as u sel ess thi ngs .

O n th e c o ast he still li st e ns t oth e v oi c e of


h is ki nd com es t o t h e t rained dec oys;


and
ando n th e pr ai ri es a deep pi t wi t h w o u nd ed
bi rd s ti ed to stak es all ab out it andhonking
to thei r f ell ow s will som etim es b ri ng him
ne ar e no ugh for a quick sh ot ! ut th ese .

u nfa ir advant age s are i n th em selve s a c on


feS S IO n o f m an s failu r e ; Si nc e by h is o

wn

wit and aid ed by m ode r n firearm s h e is


no lo nger abl e t o c o nt end with th e w i t o f a
g oose .

E l sewh ere esp eci ally i n the great wh eat


,

fi elds o f the S o uthw est t here is a hum orou s


,

c onfessi on of m an s imp otenc e and Wap


to g oose cav

nk s sup er iori t y in the qu eer

”—
alry , ho rseme n th at go sh ooti ng and
sh o u ti ng abou t t o f r igh te n away from the
growi ng wh eat th e th r ongi ng th ou sand s of
wild gee se th at c an not be ci rcumvented or
de stroyed A nd t he m ost r idiculou s thi ng
.

in the whol e proce edi n g is that th e goo se


c avalrym an mu st fume and f ret unde r the
th ought th at the ex aspe ra ti ng bi rd s und er
st and h im p erfectly Th ey f eed and g abble
.

aw ay se r e nely p ayi ng nomo r e seri o


, u s h eed
t o him th an t o any o the r scar ec r ow until
,
whi te m an and h is d evi ce s T he n old and
.

y oung alike ad li ttl e f ear of an


h m — as,

th ey have littl e now i n th ei r wild n or th er n


h om e —and met him with only the ordi
,

na r y wild c rea t ur e s watchful ness; but i n a


few sea son s they le ar ned b ett er and no


, w th e

chief c onc er n o f the o ld bird s on the so u th


e r n migrati on is to k eep th e y ou ng w ell .

aw ay from thi ng s th at a re d ang ero u s For.

t unat ely fo r th e y o u ng goose h is parent s


,

alw ay s l ead th e fl o ck of whi ch he is a p a rt ;


and from th em and fro m the old l ead ers;

t r ai ned in th e sch ool of l ong exp eri ence h e ,

sp eedily l ea r n s t o shift fo r him self and t o

mak e h is ow n w ay i n a w orld of wi t s .

All t h ese and m any m ore t hing s the b oy


l ear ned as he f oll owed Waptonk with th e
hu nter s; but still h ischi ef qu est ion rem ai ned
u nan sw ered F rom b ook s andb aym en alike
.
,

f r om explo r ers and th e shr ewd o ldpo t hunter


-

of th e Middleb oro p ond s he he ar d always



,

t h e same st o r y ! h ow the h onki ng wedge


might be called dow n t o d ecoy s and h ow
th e w ar y bi rd s m
,

igh t be t olled or trapp ed or


outwitt ed and kill ed ; b ut what Wapto nk
a
w as s a livi ng creature what th ough ts w ere
,

in h is h ead and wh at f eeli ng s i n h is h eart


wh en h e w as far fr om m en in his ow n h om e
,

where h e c ould be him self — th at pr obl em ,

no body answ ered S om ethi ng to be kill ed


.
,

ra th er t h an a livi ng thi ng t obe k now n and


u nd ersto od w as wh at m et th e b oy at ev ery
,

t ur n and hu sh ed h i s qu est i ons And alw ay s.

in th e spri ng whe n th e wild c all o


,
f th e wid e
v oy agers fl oat ed d ow n from t he blu e h eav ens ,

and th e b o y s eyes f oll owed eagerly th e ru sh


of t h e great livi ng w edge sw eepi ng n orth


w ar d to l ove and liber ty some t hi ng new ,

andst r ange y et f amili ar as th e Spri ng o


,
r

th e su nri se sti rr ed and aw o


, k e in th e b oy s ’

he art and mad e him lo ng to foll ow .

Tha t is no stra nge expe rie nce I thi nk , .

S om ethi ng stirs i n th e h eart s of m ost


men and sw eep s th e ye ar s away and
,

m ake s th em b oys ag ai n wi th th e
,

impul se to wand er and to do


Spl endid thi ng s far away whe n ,

th e fir st j ubil ant t r umpet cl ang o r


of th e wild goo se com es d own to
t h em i n th e spri ng twilight .
It w as nosurp ri se, th eref ore but o nly the
,

fulfilm ent of m any y ears of qui et expect ancy ,

wh en I cr ep t out of th e low Sp r uc es away up


in th e no r th er n p eni nsul a of N ewf oundl and ,

andfo u nd t h e endof my l ong qu est A sub .

du ed ch atter of wild v oi c es h ad c alled to me


so f tly ab ove th e ste ady murmu r of the ri v er
as I sto l e t h rou g h th e w ood s to the salmon
po ol in th e early Ju ne mor ning F oll owing .

the sou nd s wh ich seem ed v ery n ear at fi r st


, ,

but which f ad ed aw ay like a will oth e wi sp -



- -

whe n I tri ed t ofi ndt h em th ey ledme away


,

from th e riv er and out of th e big wood s to


where an u nk now n b arren lay j u st aw ake
u nd er th e su nri se greet i ng t h e i ntrud er w i t h
,

th e sil ent qu est i o


,
ni ng l ook of the wild er ne ss .

A nd th ere cl o se at h and i n a little fl ash et


'

, ,

w as W apto nk t h e W ild w ai t i ng qui etly as


,

if he had al w ays expect ed me .

S t ill and secret as my app roach h ad been ,

wi t h t hat curi ou s u nc on sci ou seff ort toe fface


him self th at m ark s th e g oi ng of a m an o r
an anim al alo ne in the gre at wild er ne ss ,

W apt onk h ad b een wa tchi ng me fo r some


mome nt s befo r e I saw h im H e w as r e stin g
.
I d rew ne ar qui et ly and sat d own on th e
sh o re whil e Waptonk swu ng easily b ack and
,

forth on a sh ort b eat i n front of me A s the .

mi nute s p assed and I m ade noh ostile sou nd


or m ov em ent th e Short p atrol i ncreased its
,

swi ng till it c o vered an i rregul ar h alf circle


w h o se c ent er w as a poi nt on th e f arth er Sh or e ;
and I k new th en wh ere I sh o uld fi ndh is n est
and g ray m at e Prese ntly he beg an t ot alk
.
,

— a curiou s lo w g abbl e O ut of the g rass


.

and m o ss o n th e p o i nt r ose a h ead and l ong


d ark n eck to l ook at m e st eadily N ear it .

we r e low Ch eepings and whi stli ngs wh ere ,

th e go sli ngs h ad b ee n h idi ng i n sile nce till

th e d ang er pa ssed by .

I ro se at thi s h avi ng f ound h is sec ret and


, ,

m ad e my w ay r ou nd the p ond wit h imm ense


,

cau t io n b ec au se of th e qu aki ng b og sandb ot


to m less bl ack mud th at lurk ed u nde r my f eet
at ev er y step . W aptonk stopped h ispat rol to
watch m e a m om ent then f oll owed cl osely
, ,

k eepi ng j u st ab re ast of m e as I mad e my slow


wa y al o ng th e tre ach erou s shor e W. he n I
d oubl ed th e endof th e li t tl e p ond and d rew
near t o wh ere his nestling s w ere h idd en
'

,
Waptonk tur ned toth e sh ore andh urried t o
h is m ate ah ead o f me A mo
. m ent h e stood
over h er reassu ri ngly b endi ng to i nt ertwine
,

h is neck wi t h h er s andt orub his ch eek so f tly


over h erwi ngswi th agesture th at c ould m ean
only a c aress H is h ead b ent low er st ill t o
.

to uch for an i nstant th e gosli ngs th at w ere


hidi ng in th e m oss; t h en h e l ef t t h em abrup tly
and ru sh ed t o wh ere l w as st andi ng w atch
ing th e am azi ng scene anddr ew up d efi antly
, ,

squ arely acr o ss my p at h .

A n i nvo lu ntary t h rill of admir ati on ran


over m e as I l ook ed d ow n at him st andi ng
th ere so st r o ng and c o nfid ent r eady t o de
,

f end h is ow n .

Yo u Spl endid f ell o w ; you
br ave k nigh t if ev er t h er e w as one am ong
,


th e f eat h ered fo lk l I k ep t sayi ng tomy self .

! ut I w ant ed t ot est him f art h er and esp e


,

ci ally I w anted to see all t h at w as hidd en


in th e gray m o ss; soI
star t ed f o r wa rd ag ai n
cau t i ou sly
.

At th e fi r st st ep a

l igh t ni ng t ransform a
t i on s w e p t ov e r
W aptonk Big as h e w as h e r u ffled all h is
.
,

f eathers and h alf Sp read h is great w i ngs t ill


he lo oked t wi ce his own siz e andf orm idable ,

e nough tosc are any p r owl er A noth er step ; .

th en h is ey es fl ash ed and l ower i ng h is h ead


,

andblack n eck clo se toth e g rou nd h e r u shed


st r aigh t at m e hi ssi ng lik e f o
, r ty snake s and ,

wi th a g aspi ng t errifyi ng c ackl e in h is th r o at


, ,

as if h is r ag e w er e ch oki ng him .

It w as m ag nific ent thi s swif t change from


,

qui et dig ni ty toragi ng d efi ance of an enemy


t en t im es his siz e T h e fi erce hi ssing go
. t
i nt omy n erv es Spi te of myself andm ad e me
, ,

w ond er if any wild anim al li vi ng c onstantly, ,

as anim al s do o, n th e thi n edg e o f fligh t and


p ani c c ould st and up agai nst th e t er r ifying
,

sou nd fo ra mo m ent I rememb er ed t h e time


.

wh en as a lit tl e b oy I h ad bee n sou ndly


, ,

drubb ed and be at en out of t he b ar n yar d by -

an irate o ld gand er and w at ch ed no


, w th e
great wi ng s with a lively m emory of what
bl ow s they c ould d eal Lik e a m an c augh t
.

i n a faul t I h ad ab solut ely no d efense ; for


,

W apton k w as o n h is o w n gr o u nd and I h ad ,

no bu sin ess wh at ev er i n m eddli ng with h i s



affairs T o t h row my self upo n him th ere
. ,

f ore and by bru t e f orc e to ov erc om e the


,

no bl e f ell ow d ef endi ng h is li ttl e one s w as ,

out of th e qu esti on ; as pl ai nly I mp ossibl e


as to ro b a bird s ne st o r t o b eat a child

.

! ut supp o se N o el my big I ndi an Sh ould


, ,

ch anc e th at w ay on his p erp et u al qu est for


!

new b eav er gr o u nd ? I c ould see th e qu eer


squi nt in h is ey e and th e gri n o n hi s w rin

kl ed fac e as h e wat ch ed m e h oppi ng ov er


th e b o g s wi th th e old gand er nippi ng at my
,

h eel s andspanki ng m e wi t h h is broad wi ng s


as h e ch ased me gl o ri ou sly out of h is b aili
wick Th at Was t oomuch ev en for th e sak e
.
,

of encou r agi ng W apt onk as h e d eserved ; so


i nstead of ru nni ng aw ay I sank d ow n qui etl y
i n t h e m oss w ai t i ng h alf hum or ou sly t ot ak e
,

my m edici ne and fully exp ec ti ng t o get it



good and pl ent y .

Q ui te near m e h e stopp ed h is h ead d ow n ,

cl ose toth e grou nd h is t ongu e b ent up lik e


,

a sp r i ng i nt oth e ro of of his m ou th hi ssi ng ,

vigor ou sly and w atchi ng m e keenly out of


h is bright ey es t osee t h e e ff ec t o f his dem
onstration It fl ash ed up on m e i nst antly why
.
he bri stl ed his f eath ers and r ai sed h is wi ngs ,

whil e h e c ar ri ed h is neck and h ead d own


cl ose t oth e gr ou nd l ike a bi g snak e T he
, .

wi ng s his only w eap ons w ere h alf rai sed for


, ,

a bl o w ; but t h e fi erc e hi ssi ng yet h arml ess


-

he ad would surely h old th e att en t io n of any


att acki ng anim al j u st as an owl snap s his
be ak to f right en y ou and k eep y ou r eyes
aw ay from his d anger ou s cl aw s u ntil h e g ets
t h em i ntoyo u u nexp ect edly A ny wild ani
.

m al if h e w er e br av e eno
, ugh t oattack w o uld ,

natur ally av o id the snak elik e hi ssi ng andl eap


over it f or th e l arger b ody only t ob e m et by
,

a sti ngi ng bl o w in th e fac e from th e p ow er


ful wi ng s I f the d elic ate nec k w er e c arr i ed
.

high any ani m al w ould nat urally l eap for it


, ,

and W apt o nk s fight would be o v er alm ost


b ef ore he c ould strik e a bl ow A s i t is W ap


.
,

t onk c ar ri esh ism ost vul n erabl e p oi nt as cl ose


t o th e g r o und as p ossible as a Ship c arri es
,

her m ag azi ne bel ow th e w ater li ne and by -


,

scari ng an anim al with hi s sn ak elik e hi ss h e

g et s a f air ch anc e touse h is w eap ons andso ,

tak es c are o f him self spl en


didly again st all p rowl ers .
ste adily acr oss th e Sh ore wi t h a funny e ff ec t
,

of c arryi ng th ei r k nee s up cl ose t o t h eir


sh o uld ers and glid ed ea sily i ntoth e fr i e ndly
,

w aters Th ere w as an oth er low call from


.

the gray m ate ; t he n Waptonk th ough h e


,

h ad no t tur ned h is h ead no r tak en hi s k ee n

ey es fo r an i nstant fr o m my fac e t urned


,

swif tly asid e and th rew him self i nto th e

w at er A pu sh or tw o fr om h is p ow erful
.

w eb s and he w as fl oat i ng safely fa r b ey ond


,

my reach still l ooki ng b ack at me al ert ly


,

over h is should er as h e surged away .

T h e li ttl e f amily glid ed swif tly al o ng th e

p ond Sh or e th e m othe r l eadi ng t h em and


,

talki ng toth em r ea ssuri ngly . B et wee n th em


and m e h o v ered Wapt onk sw ing ing b ack
,

and f o r th on his watchful p atrol t ill they


,

di sappe ared from Sigh t ; t h en he glid ed


Sil ent ly af ter them i nt o a muddy l agoon
wh er e th e treach erou s b ogs for
b ad e any h u m a n
f oot to f oll ow .
An h our l ater th e li ttl e wild family stol e
shyly o ut of th e h av en wh er e th ey h ad h i d
den and f ound m e si tti ng q ui et ly j u st wh ere
,

I h ad first app eared If t h ey w ere surpri sed


.

or u ne asy th ey g av e nosig n of th eir feeli ng s


,

b eyond a brigh t i nqui si t ive l ook b ut sw am


, ,

Sl owly p ast m e and climb ed th e b ank wh ere


it w as w or n h ar d by t h eir f eet and star ted
,

acr o ss th e b arr en o n th eir d ay s f o ragi ng’


.

For h our s I foll ow ed th em k eepi ng out o,


f
sigh t as much as p o ssibl e w at ch i ng w i t h
,

k eenest i nt erest t h ei r f eedi ng and di scipli ne ,

and no ti ng esp eci ally th e c r ud e b egi nni ngs


of t h at w edge f orm at i on wi t h which th ey
would l ater m ak e th eir first l ong fligh t sou th
wa rd ah ead of the au t um n gal es .

Wh er ev er th ey w ent W aptonk th e big


, ,

gand er w as near th em h over1ng on th e out


, ,
'

ski rt s o
,
r w at chi ng o v er th em k eenly from
ev ery li t t l e hill ock th at c om mand ed a wide r
vi ew of th e great b arren H e ate b ut li ttl e
.
,

and app arently o nly i ncid ent ally H is wh o


. le
bu si ness seem ed tob e togu ard his li ttl e fl ock
whil e th e m ot h er led th em ab out tof eed Or ,

t rain ed t h em to t h e pe rfec t di scipline t hat


is the w onder of all t h ose who h ave eve r
,

w atched wild g ee se A nd whe n at midd ay


.

the feeding w as d one and the go sli ng s w er e


,

su nni ng th em selves o n th e b ank o f an oth er


fl asb et u nd er t h e m oth er seye W aptonk t ook

Wi ng and bo re aw ay swiftly ove r the w ood s


andm arsh estoth e o cean ; as if in h iscramp ed
life h e w anted room andex er ci se or p erh ap s ,

j u st a glimp se of th e wid e sea which h e ,

l ov ed as all othe rs do w ho h ave onc e f el t


,

th e Sp ell o f its b oundl essmyster y Forwithi n


'

t h e hour h e w as b ack ag ain as u su al stand


, ,

ing gu ard over h is ow n .

L ater as I ret ur ned day af ter day towa t ch


,

th e gray voy ager s t ha t h adsol o ng att ract ed


m e I saw a rare bit o f W apt o nk s c are and

sag aci ty O ne o
. f th e g o sli ng s mo re he ad ,

st r ong t h an the o th er s in wa nderi ng aw ay


,

from th e l ead er over a tre ach er ou s bit of


bo g la-
nd found him s elf st ogg ed i n some s o f t

m ud th at h e at tempt ed t oc ross tooh u rr iedly


and car el essly . H e fl oundered d esp er at ely
fo r a mo m ent c all ed Sh arply and then lay
, ,

p erf ec tly quiet wi th wi ng s ex tend ed on th e


mud t o k eep h im self from si nki ng d eep er .
t i ngl e in my h idi ng i ncreasi ng th e strong
,

d esire t h at r arely l eav es m e t o u nd er stand


wh at p asses in the h ead s and h ear ts of th e
W ood F olk T h e m oth er w ent tothe c are
.

le ss one and br ough t him b ack t owh ere th e


fl ock w er e w ai t i ng Th en standi ng in th e
.

m id st o f h er bro od sh e seem ed to b e talk


ing tot h em fir st in a low ch atter t h en in a
, ,

st r ang e sil ent c o mmu nic ati on i n which not ,

a mu scl e m o v ed but in which every n eck


,

w as rai sed in th e at t i t ud e of t en se at t ent ion .

A m om ent l ater th e fl oc k w asm ovi ng acr oss


th e b ar r en ch eepi ng whi stli ng feedi ng as
, , ,

b ef ore .

L ate in th e af t ern oon as I w atch ed by th e ,

h om e fl ash et th er e w as anoth er sce ne al t o


,

geth er di ff erent ; and h ere w ere m any thi ngs


th at a m an c ould not b e exp ected t o u nd er
stand t h o
, ugh I saw and admired th em often
eno ugh A s th e sun sank and th e p oi nted
.

Sh adow s of the Sp r uc es c ame cre epi ng out


acro ss th e b arr en th e li ttl e flock cam e w an
,

d eri ng b ack as is th e cu stom wi t h wild ge ese


, ,

t o sp end th e night by the n est wh er e th ey

w e re b or n and t o Sl eep c on tent edly u nd er


,
th ei r m oth er s wi ng s whil e the old g ande r

kept w atch and ward in th e d ark ness For .

W aptonk is m ore of a l and bird t h an any of


th e duck s T h e f o
. r war d set of h isl egs sh ow s
t ha t N at ure i nte nd ed him t owalk as w ell as

swim ; andh e will n ev er sl eep in t h e w ate r if

h e c an fi nd a saf e and qui et Sp o t torest on


th e sh o re
.

A t sigh t of th e famili ar pl ac e th e li ttl e


family th at I h ad w atch ed all day l ong sud
denly st o pp ed th eir h u ngry w and eri ng and
cam e ru nni ng i n a cl ose gr oup h ead s all up
,

andwhi stli ng to tumbl e d o


, w n th e sl ope and
t hrow t h em selv es wi t h gl ad spl ash es i ntoth e

frie ndly w at er which w as all agl ow now wi th


,

th e sple nd o rs of th e sun se t Th ere t h ey d rank


.

and w ash ed t h em selve s and pl ay ed to


, ge t h er
in li t tl e rac es and sc uffles and ,

st opp ed t h ei r pl ay tostre tch t hei r


n ecks d ow n to th e oozy b ottom
fo rr oot s th at they had ov erl ook ed ,

or for ear th and peb


bl est oaidth ei r dige s
tio n
. T h e n as t h e
Shad ow s l ength ened
th ey glid ed toan op en sp ot on t he b ank to
preen andgabbl e sof tly ; whil e th e big p arent
bird s t h ei r ow n preeni ng fi ni sh ed as th ey
,

w atch ed th e pl ay of th eir li ttl e ones w ent ,

from one to anoth er r ubbi ng th em t end erly


,

w i th their whi te ch eek s ch at t er i ng over each


,

one in t urn andi n twenty li ttl e i nd escrib abl e


,

way ssh owing t h eir fond ness th eir gl adn ess


al so th at th e l ong good day w as d one and
th ey w er e safe at h om e o nce m ore .

Per h ap s thi s w as all im agi nat ion ; but ,

ev en so a m an mu st l o
, ok in h is h eart not ,

in th e p sych o l ogi es or nat ural hi st ori es if ,

h e wo uld u nd er st and h alf of wh at th e W ood


Fol k are d oi ng H ere b efore my eyes w as
.

a little f amily t h at h ad c om e b ack i n th e


su nset af ter much w and eri ng and so
, m e dan
g e r
, t o t h e one sp ot in t h e gr eat wild er ne ss

th at t h ey k new w ell wh er e life b egan for


,

the g osli ngs and wh ere each f amili ar t hi ng


,

se emed to w elc o me them and m ak e t h em


c l at h o m e Over th em
.

st o od t h e p ar ent s ,

st r o ng and w at chful

agai nst th e w o rld b ut ,


of t hru sh es w ere ri ngi ng t he A ngelu s; ne are r
a sol i t ary v esper sp arrow h idde n i n th e gray
-
,

m oss w as S i ngi ng his hym n to th e even


,

ing ; an u nkn o w n call fl oat ed d ow n f r om th e


di st ant hill s; a fox b ar k ed i n an swe r ; whil e
th e riv er h u sh ed its r o ar as the n ight f ell
and w ent Si ngi ng d o wn on its way to the
sea A nd to all t he se sound s and toev ery
.
,

w av e of ligh t and p assi ng Sh adow and rest


l ess wing of the eddyin g pl ove rs ,

th e y oung bi rd s r e spond ed i n st antly


wi t h low ch eep sandwhi stl es d raw
,

ing n ear er and n ear e r t o geth er to


f eel a l ast touch of th ei r p ar ent s ’

white ch eek s; wh il e I lay


and watch ed them my self
,

d rifti ng aw ay i nto th at d eli


ci ons bord er land of
-

f e e l i n g and se n se
imp r e ssion i n which
th e you ng bird s liv e

so c o nstantly wh ere all co nsci o


, us
th ough t v ani sh es and one bec om es
alive in every nerve and fi ngert i -
p
t othe Sight sandsound s andsubtl e
h arm oni es of th e w orld For N at u r e rev eal s
.

no t o nly her self but so


, me b eau t iful and fo r
gott en p art of a m an s ow n soul whe n sh e

find s him respon siv e in th e wild er ne ss .

S l owly the gl ory d eepen ed andf ad ed and ,

t h e cr im son flu sh th at h adsp r e ad wid e ov er


th e gr eat b ar r en c ame cr eepi ng back i ntoth e
we st out of whi ch it h ad c ome Af ter it .

c ame th e sil enc e hu shi ng th e g osli ngs chat


,

ter and th e bird s hym n ; and o nly th e r ive r


w as l eft si ngi ng to i t self th r ough th e li st en


ing w o od s Ove r the va st pl ai n came again
.

t h e sea wi nd swi ngi ng its f r ag rant c en se r


-
,

f rom which fell now only heavy and d r ow sy


odors; and th e fl eecy mi st s t h at I had se en
r i se at d awn settl ed sof tly ag ai n to c over the

sl eepi ng earth lik e a gar me nt I c ould no


.

long er see th e bird s t h at I had foll owed all


t he l o n g su nny day ; but wh ere the li ttl e
,

family st o od a soft gray sh ad ow bl u rred the


open sho r e ; and f rom it cam e now and th en
a sleepy i nqui sit i v
, e peep as some l i t tl e one
sti rr ed un easily and then a d eep quie t an
, ,

sw er to t ell him tha t all w as w ell and th at ,

h e w as no t alone in th e d ark ness .


T hat w as my first r eal me eti ng w i th W ap
t onk my fir st answer t oth e qu esti on which
,

h ad alway s b een in my h ea rt and wh ich


,

neith er th e b o ok s nor th e h u nters c ould


answ er as t o wh at h e w as lik e 1n h i
,

s own

l and wh ere the gu ns and d ec oys of m en


,

might not ente r A nd I w as sati sfied per


.
,

fec tly sat i sfied as I tur ned aw ay in the


, ,

twilight ac ro ss th e wild b ar r e n to wh ere


my li ttl e t ent by th e salm on
riv er w as wai ti ng
.
U A M th e fi sh er th e C u nnin g O ne
,

S imm o call s him who f o ,ll ow s y our


sn ow Sh oe t rack but n ever crosse s it is one
-
,

of th e Sh ado w s of th e big wo od s A d ark .

shad o w i nd eed toth e W ood Folk for w h er ,

ever h e goe s d eat h foll o w s cl ose b ehi nd h im ;


'

and a sh adow t oy o u r ey esalsofor wh en you


,

dosee him u nexp ec t edly after much w at ch


, ,

ing and p ati ence h e d arts up th e hill sid e


, ,

l eapi ng andd odgi ng v ani shi ng andappear i ng


,

andv ani shi ng ag ai n like o


, ne o f th e sh ad o ws
th at the sunbe am s are ch asi ng wh en a bri sk
wi nd drives th e cl oud s away and th e wo od s
are fill ed wi t h ru stli ngs and u nc er t ai nt i es .

l J l