The Call of the Canyon (Chapter 5, page 1 of 15)

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Chapter 5

Later Carley leaned back in a comfortable seat, before a blazing fire
that happily sent its acrid smoke up the chimney, pondering ideas in her

There could be a relation to familiar things that was astounding in its
revelation. To get off a horse that had tortured her, to discover an
almost insatiable appetite, to rest weary, aching body before the genial
warmth of a beautiful fire--these were experiences which Carley found
to have been hitherto unknown delights. It struck her suddenly and
strangely that to know the real truth about anything in life might
require infinite experience and understanding. How could one feel
immense gratitude and relief, or the delight of satisfying acute hunger,
or the sweet comfort of rest, unless there had been circumstances of
extreme contrast? She had been compelled to suffer cruelly on horseback
in order to make her appreciate how good it was to get down on the
ground. Otherwise she never would have known. She wondered, then, how
true that principle might be in all experience. It gave strong food for
thought. There were things in the world never before dreamed of in her

Carley was wondering if she were narrow and dense to circumstances of
life differing from her own when a remark of Flo's gave pause to her

"Shore the worst is yet to come." Flo had drawled.

Carley wondered if this distressing statement had to do in some way with
the rest of the trip. She stifled her curiosity. Painful knowledge of
that sort would come quickly enough.

"Flo, are you girls going to sleep here in the cabin?" inquired Glenn.

"Shore. It's cold and wet outside," replied Flo.

"Well, Felix, the Mexican herder, told me some Navajos had been bunking

"Navajos? You mean Indians?" interposed Carley, with interest.

"Shore do," said Flo. "I knew that. But don't mind Glenn. He's full of
tricks, Carley. He'd give us a hunch to lie out in the wet."

Hutter burst into his hearty laugh. "Wal, I'd rather get some things
any day than a bad cold."

"Shore I've had both," replied Flo, in her easy drawl, "and I'd prefer
the cold. But for Carley's sake--"

"Pray don't consider me," said Carley. The rather crude drift of the
conversation affronted her.

"Well, my dear," put in Glenn, "it's a bad night outside. We'll all make
our beds here."

"Glenn, you shore are a nervy fellow," drawled Flo.

Long after everybody was in bed Carley lay awake in the blackness of the
cabin, sensitively fidgeting and quivering over imaginative contact with
creeping things. The fire had died out. A cold air passed through the
room. On the roof pattered gusts of rain. Carley heard a rustling of
mice. It did not seem possible that she could keep awake, yet she strove
to do so. But her pangs of body, her extreme fatigue soon yielded to
the quiet and rest of her bed, engendering a drowsiness that proved

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