Without waiting for an answer, I walked away from the fire. When I cooled down, I thought better of what I'd said to the Kid. Some people have to learn things on their own, if they learn at all. I didn't want to create any tension, especially in a hunting camp, where success depends in large part on the guide's goodwill. Besides, I had to give it to the Kid: his work ethic, horsemanship, cooking and camp skills were top-notch. Whatever his land ethic, he was an even- tempered hand, a competent guide and a good woodsman. If the two of us could dance around our differences, we might yet enjoy a pleasant hunt and get Mark a trophy Dall, to boot.