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Sam ran away to the Catskill Mountains with only a flint and steel, an ax, and forty dollars. At first he wanted to go home, but remembered how crowded it was in New York. However, Sam got used to living alone in the woods so he stayed there. For his food, he hunted by setting traps, and made a fishing pole to fish with. He even burnt out the inside of a tree so he could live in it, and stole a female falcon from it's nest, trained it, and named it Frightful. Sam had a few unexpected visitors while he was there, Bando a lost tourist, Matt a reporter, and his dad, who came to see how he was doing.
Sam felt like he was back in the city, for now he had a guest tree, where people would sleep when they visited. Sam thought it ruined the whole point of running away in the first place. One day Sam heard his fathers voice and went running to greet him. When he got to him, he realized his whole family was there. Since Sam didn't want to go home, they brought home to him. This is because Sam's mother took it seriously when the newspapers described her as a bad mother for letting Sam run away. Sam's father brought wood to build a house for the family. Sam didn't like this idea at all. He was about to protest, when his mother told him that he could do whatever he wanted when he turned eighteen. Until then, Sam's mother would take care of him.