The Call of Kind

Themonthscameandwent.TherewasplentyoffoodandnoworkintheSouthland,andWhiteFanglivedfatandprosperousandhappy.NotalonewasheinthegeographicalSouthland,forhewasintheSouthlandoflife.Humankindnesswaslikeasunshininguponhim,andheflourishedlikeaflowerplantedingoodsoil.

Andyetheremainedsomehowdifferentfromotherdogs.Heknewthelawevenbetterthandidthedogsthathadknownnootherlife,andheobservedthelawmorepunctiliously;butstilltherewasabouthimasuggestionoflurkingferocity,asthoughtheWildstilllingeredinhimandthewolfinhimmerelyslept.

Heneverchummedwithotherdogs.Lonelyhehadlived,sofarashiskindwasconcerned,andlonelyhewouldcontinuetolive.Inhispuppyhood,underthepersecutionofLip-lipandthepuppy-pack,andinhisfightingdayswithBeautySmith,hehadacquiredafixedaversionfordogs.Thenaturalcourseofhislifehadbeendiverted,and,recoilingfromhiskind,hehadclungtothehuman.

Besides,allSouthlanddogslookeduponhimwithsuspicion.HearousedinthemtheirinstinctivefearoftheWild,andtheygreetedhimalwayswithsnarlandgrowlandbelligerenthatred.He,ontheotherhand,learnedthatitwasnotnecessarytousehisteethuponthem.Hisnakedfangsandwrithinglipswereuniformlyefficacious,rarelyfailingtosendabellowingon-rushingdogbackonitshaunches.

ButtherewasonetrialinWhiteFang’slifeCollie.Shenevergavehimamoment’speace.Shewasnotsoamenabletothelawashe.ShedefiedalleffortsofthemastertomakeherbecomefriendswithWhiteFang.Everinhisearswassoundinghersharpandnervoussnarl.

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