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The flames popped, and Josiah could almost taste the roasting grouse he had snared earlier that afternoon. He bit into the tasty fowl as soon as it was cool enough to touch, and then settled back to enjoy a full belly and a warm fire. All that was missing was a woman to share his robe.

Emma. She had been on Josiah's mind for much of the day, and now that night had descended over the land, he found it harder to not think of her incessantly. He could close his eyes and feel her beside him, and a grin would spread across his chiseled face.

Hugging his rifle close, Josiah shut his eyes and soon fell asleep. His dreams were of the woman with long golden hair and soft white skin that he would be returning to tomorrow.

The next morning, Emma found herself shivering beneath the blankets on the buffalo robe. She had been so exhausted the night before, that she had accidentally let the fire burn out while she slept. Emma knew she was in trouble, for now that the fire was out, she had no way of re-lighting it again.

"God," she pleaded, "I don't know what to do, but my eyes are upon Thee!" As soon as the words left her mouth, God answered by reminding her of how Josiah lit their campfires. Smiling, Emma looked at the rifle lying beside her.

Unlike Josiah, she had no dedicated flint for building a fire, but she did have the flintlock on her pa's old shotgun! Instead of gunpowder, Emma carefully placed a little dry tinder in the rifle's pan. Quietly saying a prayer, she cocked back the hammer and then pulled the trigger. The flint sent a few sparks into the pan, causing her tinder to momentarily glow with an ember or two. Emma's joy was short-lived, however, for the tiny embers were rapidly extinguished by the wind.

Undaunted, Emma went to the cold campfire and dug about the ashes for any bits of wood that might have turned to charcoal. She was rewarded with a tiny fragment buried at the bottom of the fire, where oxygen had not gotten to the wood. It was not very good charcoal, but it was all Emma had so she placed it in the rifle's pan and tried again. The crude charcoal caught spark, but it was all Emma could do to keep it from going out. She shielded the embers with her hand and was able to coax a flame from her smoldering bit of charcoal and dry tinder. Lighting one end of a twig, Emma carried her precious flame to the lifeless campfire and she soon had a proper fire going!

Triumphantly, Emma sat beside the fire and warmed herself against the chilly air. "Thank you, God!" she exclaimed in great relief. "Thank you."

When Emma finally ventured from the fire, the cold wind caused her to quickly retrieve one of the warm blankets from the buffalo robe. She wrapped it about her shoulders as she would a shawl and then set about gathering more wood for the fire. When she had collected more wood than she could possibly use, Emma took her pa's shotgun to the buffalo robe to keep guard. There was little left to do but pray, wait for Josiah's return, and keep a careful watch for animals who might want the now dried meat.

Josiah cast a watchful eye to the clouding sky, as his horse headed back to the camp where he had left Emma. There was a sharp bite in the air that told Josiah snow was on its way. Maybe he wouldn't see white today, but it wouldn't be long now until he did.

Urgently, Josiah drove his horse onward, until he at last saw the small spiral of Emma's campfire in the distance. Something in his chest began to pound hopefully. At the thought of tussling Emma again, he quickened his pace.

This time, there was no relief on Emma's face as he rode into camp. She was calm, even cool at his return and showed very little emotion.
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