Paul stopped in a little open space, and looked around all the
circle of the forest. Everywhere it was the same-just the curving
wall of red and brown, and beyond, the blue sky, flecked with tiny
clouds of white. The wilderness was full of beauty, charged with
the glory of peace and silence, and there was naught to indicate
that man had ever come. The leaves rippled a little in the gentle
west wind, and the crisping grass bowed before it; but Paul saw no
living being, save himself, in the vast, empty world. The boy was
troubled and, despite his life in the woods, he had full right to
be. This was the great haunted forest of Kain-tuck-ee, where the
red man made his most desperate stand, and none ever knew when or
whence danger would come. Moreover, he was lost, and the forest
told him nothing; he was not like his friend, Henry Ware, born to
the forest, the heir to all the primeval instincts, alive to every
sight and sound, and able to read the slightest warning the
wilderness might give. Paul Cotter was a student, a lover of books,
and a coming statesman. Fate, it seemed, had chosen that he and
Henry Ware should go hand in hand, but for different tasks.
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