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Dave becomes terribly ill, but refuses to stop pulling the sled. The driver puts Sol-lek in his place, meaning to allow him to run easily behind the sled. Dave cannot stand to see another dog doing his work. He runs into the soft snow beside Sol-lek, trying to resume his usual place, yelping in pain. Finally he falls behind the sled, but at the next stopping-place he once again attempts to resume his place. Finally the driver decides it is kinder to allow Dave to pull, for he will die either way. During his final pull, he often falls and is caught in the traces of the sled. The next morning, Dave is too weak to rise. The team is driven ahead some ways, but they cannot ignore the gunshot that rings out. Buck and everyone else know what the shot means.