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"Some of my mountain friends practice bathing," grinned Josiah, "but not me. Blackfoot don't git dirty!"

Suddenly struggling not to choke on her food, Emma couldn't help but laugh.

Seeing she understood his joke, Josiah grinned broadly. "I'll bathe if you want me to, Emma. Maybe, it'll stop yer whimpering at night."

Emma's smile slowly faded. "I don't whimper," she protested.

Choosing to disagree in silence, Josiah resumed his meal.

The next morning, Josiah set about chopping logs to make a table for their cabin. After cutting the logs down to the right length, he then split them in half, giving one side a flat surface for the tabletop. After assembling the roughly hewn table, Josiah made two split-bottomed chairs, and then carried his new furniture into the lodge.

Letting Emma decide where she wanted the table, Josiah returned to his ax to make a wooden plate and a water bucket. The plate was simply made by splitting a log down both sides, and then chopping it down to a square and carving out a center for food.

The bucket, however, took him a little more time to make. Josiah hollowed the center of a log by burning out its interior, creating a large cup-like container. Then he added a rope handle to carry it by. It was crudely fashioned, but it was watertight and would suit Emma's needs just fine.

When Josiah presented the bucket to Emma the next day, she put a blanket about her shoulders, and then walked through the snow to draw water from the creek.

As Emma carried the full bucket back to the cabin, Josiah was readying to split railing for the horse corral.

"You going to bathe?" he called to her curiously.

"If you call a wet cloth, bathing!" she exclaimed with a laugh.

Hopeful that Josiah's curiosity would not cause him to follow, Emma went into the cabin, closing the door firmly behind her.

Setting down her bucket, Emma looked at the reflection staring back at her from the surface of the water. Could that dirty woman possibly be her? Her hair was filthy, her face smudged, and for all Emma knew, she probably smelled. With a groan of dismay, Emma shut her eyes and turned away from the terrible reflection. "I'm glad no one back home can see me like this!" she sighed in disgust.

Just then, the cabin door opened as Josiah entered with an armful of firewood.

"That water's going to be mighty cold," he explained, stoking the fire. "You'd best heat some in the kettle, before you bathe."

"Thank you," nodded Emma.

"What's the matter?" frowned Josiah. "Thought you was eager to get clean."

"Do I... smell?" wondered Emma.
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