“Well, anyway we had the adventure we started out to get,” laughed Bobby, “and a little more of it than we expected.”
“Yes, and a nice haul of wolf pelts to boot,” added Skipper Ed.
“We were lucky they didn’t get us,” said Jimmy.
“Yes,” agreed Skipper Ed, “lucky—the kind of luck we were talking about tonight. That is, the luck of the Almighty’s bounty and protection. We did the best we could, according to our lights, to protect and help ourselves, and so He helped, and brought us safely back, none the worse, and perhaps a little the stronger and better and richer in experience than we were an hour ago.”
“It was a corking good adventure, anyhow!” broke in Bobby. “That sort of thing just makes me tingle all over! Somehow when I get out of a mess like that I feel a lot bigger and stronger and more grown up. It was great fun—now that it’s over.”
“You’re a natural-born adventurer,” laughed Skipper Ed. “You should have lived in the old days, when men had to fight for their life, or went out to find and conquer new lands.”
“Well, I’m glad it’s over,” Jimmy shuddered—“the run from the wolves—and that they’ve gone. I didn’t have time to feel much scared out there, but I’m scared now of what might have happened. I don’t like to get into such fixes.”
“Well, it’s over, and all is well, and we’re none the worse for it. Now drink your hot tea, lads,” counseled Skipper Ed. “We’ve work to do before we sleep.”
They ate their hardtack biscuit, and sipped the hot tea silently for a little, listening the while to the snug and cheerful crackle of wood and roar of flames in the big box stove.
“Now,” said Skipper Ed finally, “we’ll haul the wolves into the porch, and make them safe, for the dogs are like to tear at them, and injure the pelts.”
The following morning the carcasses of five additional wolves were discovered at the place where they had first fired upon the pack. Two of the dogs, mangled and torn by wolf fangs, were dead, and three others were so badly injured that for a long time they were unfitted for driving. But the others had discreetly decided that it was better “to run away and live to fight another day,” and were none the worse for their scrimmage.
Bobby, of course, ran over to Abel’s cabin to tell the great news of the battle, and Abel and Mrs. Abel must needs return with him to assist in removing the pelts from the animals, and to spend the day with Skipper Ed and his partner. And a merry day it was for all of them, for wolf pelts could be traded at the mission store for necessaries. And none of them gave heed or thought to the danger the pelts had cost, save to give thanks to God for His deliverance; for dangers in that land are an incident of the game of life, and there the game of life is truly a man’s game.
THE FISHING PLACES