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\Studyworld\ Studyworld Studynotes \ Call of the Wild, The:
Chapter Three - Part Two

One morning, Dolly suddenly goes mad. Buck, having never seen a dog go mad before, is shocked to hear her wild howl, and see her spring at him. Instinctively, he realizes that he is in danger. He instantly runs from her, and she follows close behind, frothing at the mouth. The pair runs wildly away, but after hearing Francois's call, Buck loops his path back to camp. Putting his faith in the man, Buck races past his master. Francois's ax lands squarely on Dolly's crazed body, instantly killing her. Before Buck can recover from his frantic run, Spitz seizes his opportunity and leaps upon him. Exhausted, Buck is at first defenseless, and Spitz manages to tear his flesh to the bone in two separate places. Francois again comes to the rescue, however, giving Spitz the worst whipping his life. Perrualt suggests that Spitz will kill Buck some day, but Francois says that he has been watching Buck, and he suspects that, one day, the dog will finally fully tire of Spitz, lash out, and kill him. At any rate, from that day on, it is war between the two dogs. Spitz is threatened by Buck, the only dog from the Southland he has seen survive and actually prove his worth. More than survive, he has prospered. Spitz realizes that a clash for leadership is inevitable. Buck also knows the battle is coming. He has developed a pride in his work, a pride in his place in the team, and leadership has become a natural desire. Spitz's pride is what prevents him from acquiescing to Buck's eventual call to lead, and causes him to lash out to prevent him from advancing. Buck begins to openly challenge Spitz's leadership. One morning, when Pike hides from the team, it is Buck who punishes him, stunning Spitz and pushing him off his feet. Pike takes the opportunity to leap at Spitz, and Buck joins in. Francois attempts to break up the fight by whipping Buck, but the dog refuses to relent. The man must them resort to the butt of the whip, which finally tames him. Spitz, meanwhile, sets about punishing Pike. In the following days, Buck asserts his superiority again and again, though he must do it while Francois is not around. Spurred by Buck's insubordination, the other dogs join in. Only Dave and Sol-leks stay the course; the rest of the dogs bicker. Francois keeps a close eye on Buck and Spitz, well aware that a fight to the death is coming.
When the team reached the town of Dawson, the fight has yet to happen. Buck is amazed to see dogs there doing all the jobs that horses performed in the Santa Clara Valley. He encounters are few more dogs from the South, but the majority of the dogs are of the wolf-like variety. Nevertheless, Buck delights in joining in on their nightly howls. Their song is an ancient one, a sad, mournful song of pain, recalling the lives and fears of generations. Buck's participation is a sign that he has become a primitive dog, a dog of the wild.
A week later, the team sets off on an urgent journey, a trip that Perrault has decided will be a record one. Though they make good time, the team is not in sync, having been led in mutiny by Buck. Spitz can no longer lead the team, and the dogs take full advantage of it. They openly disobey the lead dog, and even begin to fight among each other. All except Dave and Sol-leks embroil themselves in battles. Francois becomes frustrated and is ready to pull out his hair. HE is well aware that Buck is the lead troublemaker, and does his best to keep order, but is unable to succeed. Buck, meanwhile, too clever to get caught red-handed, thoroughly enjoys his uprising. One day, while at a camp with a few other teams, the group comes across a rabbit, and they all run after it. Buck is at the head of the pack, lunging after the running animal. He experiences a thirst for blood, an insatiable desire to kill the rabbit and bathe his face in its blood. Sounding a wolf cry, he feels most alive in his quest to kill, most alive living in the manner of his ancestors. He is described as "going back into the womb of Time." Spitz, meanwhile, has left the pack, and found a way to cut off the rest of the group. He reaches the rabbit and squarely clamps his jaws on its back, killing it instantly. The rest of the pack roars with delight, but Buck does not join in. Instead, he leaps on Spitz, and the two dogs tumble, snapping and snarling. Buck realizes that the time has come for their fight to the death. Oddly, he does not feel like the battle is anything new; rather, the fight stems from an "old" feeling, a latent desire that has now become familiar. Spitz is an experienced fighter, and Buck has trouble with him. As he tries again and again for Spitz's throat, he is greeted with the tearing of his own flesh. Eventually, Spitz's coat is pristine, while Buck's is coated in blood. The giant circle of dogs tightens around them. Winded, Buck is almost defeated, but regains himself and uses his cunning instinct to snap one of Spitz's legs. The dog tries to continue the fight, but falls, defeated. He is surrounded by the pack of dogs, just as his own victims had been surrounded. Buck stands alone as the other dogs pounce. Spitz disappears from view. Buck is the proud new leader, the successful dominant one, and is very pleased with his first kill.

Browse all Studyworld Studynotes

Historical Context
Main Characters
Points to Ponder
Did You Know
Plot Summary
Chapter One - Part One
Chapter One - Part Two
Chapter Two - Part One
Chapter Two - Part Two
Chapter Three - Part One
Chapter Three - Part Two
Chapter Four - Part One
Chapter Four - Part Two
Chapter Five - Part One
Chapter Five - Part Two
Chapter Five - Part Three
Chapter Five - Part Four
Chapter Six - Part One
Chapter Six - Part Two
Chapter Six - Part Three
Chapter Six - Part Four
Chapter Seven - Part One
Chapter Seven - Part Two
Chapter Seven - Part Three
Chapter Seven - Part Four


 

 



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