Still on the trail, the men face ever increasing danger. They have an 80 mile stretch without water and the weather has turned with the onset of winter. Joshua Deets' encounter with a group of young Indians leads to tragedy. Similarly, Gus is severely wounded in an encounter with Indian warriors. He is rescued by mountain man but has to have his right leg amputated. By the time Call catches up with him, it's too late as Gus refused to let the doctor amputate his other infected leg. His dying wish is to be buried in Texas and Call promises to take him home. Newt knows that Call is his father but that's something Call has never acknowledged. He does began to test the boy and leaves him in charge after he proves his mettle. In the spring, Call begins his 3,000 mile journey home, keeping his promise to his friend.