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Examining Emma's wound again, Josiah dressed it and bound it with his red handkerchief. "I'll git us something to eat in awhile," he remarked, lying down beside her. "I'm powerful tired, but we best not sleep fer too long; them bodies will be attracting bears soon." Josiah turned his head and looked at Emma. "You ready to let go of that there stick?" He pried it loose from between her teeth and saw that her face was slowly returning its color. "Too bad there wasn't any whiskey," he yawned, throwing the stick a fair distance away and letting it strike a nearby tree. "Would've come in handy fer yer pain."

Then the man fell asleep, and Emma soon followed.

When Emma awoke, the sun was nearly straight overhead the trees, indicating the center of the day. She could smell something cooking, and when she sat up and leaned past the edge of the tree trunk, she saw Josiah sitting beside the fire, eating strips of elk meat with his Bowie knife. As her eyes drifted toward the mutilated bodies not far from where he sat, Emma forced herself to stop, and quickly lay back down on the robe.

Not long after, Josiah appeared with his Hawken in one hand, and some cooked meat in the other.

"Should've known better than to look," he scolded her, tossing the meat onto her lap.

Sitting up, Emma stared at the meat. Her stomach was empty, but the pain in her leg was throbbing once again and it dulled her hunger.

"You ain't been eating too regular," observed Josiah, squatting down and balancing on the balls of his heels. "When I was feeling you last night, you weren't nothing but skin n' bones." He quietly added to himself that her Pa must not have been a very good shot, for his daughter looked as though she had not had a good meal in a long time.

Emma's stomach rumbled at the sight of food, as if reminding her that even if she didn't feel like it, her stomach did. After saying a quiet prayer to herself, Emma took a small bite. Since there was no salt to be had, the meat was bland. Tasteless or not, once Emma started, she quickly devoured the entire strip of elk Josiah had given her.

"You're with a buffaler hunter now," Josiah told her, "an' you won't be going hungry no more."

While Emma rested awhile longer on the buffalo robe, Josiah readied his horses and then carried Emma out to the sorrel mount the young Blackfoot had been riding.

"You sure don't weigh much," he observed, nearly tossing her onto the horse with hardly any effort. Emma reached out to take her horse's reins, but Josiah firmly kept them in his hand. He mounted his horse, secured the lead rope for his packhorse and the older Indian's pony, and they rode away from the Blackfoots' campsite.

Josiah remained quiet as they rode, his thoughts guardedly kept to himself. He was busy thinking things through, and his decision only seemed to grow more certain the longer they traveled in their present Northerly direction. The mountaineer knew his friends were waiting for him back at Jackson Hole, where they would then move on to winter near their spring trapping grounds to get an early start on next year's hunt. This had been Josiah's plan, that is, up until Emma had changed things.

Even though Emma was timidly accepting his presence, Josiah knew she still had yet to truly accept him as he wanted her to-- as her husband. He also knew that finding a parson to officially marry them was not likely. When white mountain men took Indian wives, the marriage ceremony was often performed by the woman's tribe, and not by a white parson. Josiah's problem was, Emma had no tribe, and no parson would join them in marriage, because the groom was half Indian. Since many decent white folk in this part of the country thought the races should never mix, Josiah figured he was on his own.
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