I feared the consequences, but I could not refuse him, for he did not understand why we should not want to eat a great deal. The result was that with happiness and stomach ache I could not sleep, and before morning was going out to vomit. Even at the danger of seeming not to appreciate Emuk's hospitality, I was constrained to decline to eat any breakfast.
Men less inured to cold and privation would surely have succumbed. They were making their final fight when at last they stumbled into Emuk's tupek. Kumuk sat down and cried like a child. It was two weeks before any of them was able to do any physical work. They looked like shadows of their former selves when I saw them at Whale River.
This was beyond the zone of Emuk's wanderings, and Sam went several miles astray in his calculations, which, in view of the character of the country, was not to be wondered at, piloting as he did without a compass. However, we were soon set right and passed again into the rolling barrens, with ever higher hills with each eastern mile we traveled.
When the three Eskimos left us in the shack they started at once in search of Emuk's tupek. The storm that raged for two days swept pitilessly across their path, but they never halted, pushing through the deep- ening snow in single file, taking turns at going ahead and breaking the way, until night, and then they stopped.
Once or twice we turned over, but the drivers never lost their hold of the komatik or control of the dogs. It was dark when we reached Emuk's skin tupek and were welcomed by a group of Eskimos, men, women and children. Iksialook was of the number, and he was so worn and haggard that I scarcely recognized him. He had seen hardship since our parting. The people were very dirty and very hospitable.