As soon as it began to blaze, Yagorsha the Story-teller took the cover off the smoke-hole, so the company was not quite stifled. A further diversion was created by several women crawling in, bringing food for the men-folk, in old lard-cans or native wooden kantaks. These vessels they deposited by the fire, and with an exchange of grunts went out as they had come.
Nicholas and all the rest who shared the bench at night, and the fire in the morning, seemed desperately depressed and glum. A heavy cloud hung over Pymeut, for Pymeut was in disgrace. About sunset the women came in with the kantaks and the lard-cans. Yagorsha sat up and rubbed his eyes. He listened eagerly, while the others questioned the women. The old Chief wasn't dead at all.
"You can go there if you like, but I won't go a step! Huh, I say I would cut a purty dash, wouldn't I? setting around amongst chicken-coops, lard-cans, and salt pork for a fool, vain man to look me over and sniff and feel set back because I didn't happen to to come quite up shucks! I don't believe any of you men understand women. Huh! but we understand you all right."