5. CHAPTER V - THE INDOMITABLE
"Give 'm a chance," Matt counselled. "Turn 'm loose for a spell."
The other looked at him incredulously.
"Yes," Matt went on, "I know you've tried to, but you didn't take a
"You try it then."
The dog-musher secured a club and went over to the chained animal.
White Fang watched the club after the manner of a caged lion
watching the whip of its trainer.
"See 'm keep his eye on that club," Matt said. "That's a good
sign. He's no fool. Don't dast tackle me so long as I got that
club handy. He's not clean crazy, sure."
As the man's hand approached his neck, White Fang bristled and
snarled and crouched down. But while he eyed the approaching hand,
he at the same time contrived to keep track of the club in the
other hand, suspended threateningly above him. Matt unsnapped the
chain from the collar and stepped back.
White Fang could scarcely realise that he was free. Many months
had gone by since he passed into the possession of Beauty Smith,
and in all that period he had never known a moment of freedom
except at the times he had been loosed to fight with other dogs.
Immediately after such fights he had always been imprisoned again.
He did not know what to make of it. Perhaps some new devilry of
the gods was about to be perpetrated on him. He walked slowly and
cautiously, prepared to be assailed at any moment. He did not know
what to do, it was all so unprecedented. He took the precaution to
sheer off from the two watching gods, and walked carefully to the
corner of the cabin. Nothing happened. He was plainly perplexed,
and he came back again, pausing a dozen feet away and regarding the
two men intently.
"Won't he run away?" his new owner asked.
Matt shrugged his shoulders. "Got to take a gamble. Only way to
find out is to find out."