* June Kashpaw, a Chippewa woman fallen on hard times, wanders through a North Dakota town and finds herself summoned into a bar by a prosperous engineer who buys her drinks.
* After visiting several bars, June and her drunken companion park in his truck on a deserted road.
* When the man passes out, June leaves the truck and wanders out into a snow storm, where she freezes to death trying to walk home.
* Albertine Johnson, a nursing student and June's niece, learns of June's death through a letter from her mother sometime after the funeral.
* Furious that she was not informed in time to attend the funeral, Albertine breaks off communication with her mother.
* Several months later Albertine visits home, having recovered somewhat from her anger over being cut off from the news of her family.
* Albertine is received coolly by family members, and remains an observer as...
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