To Build a Fire by Jack London

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How many fires did the protagonist build in "To Build a Fire"?

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Gretchen Mussey eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The protagonist of Jack London's short story builds three fires on his journey through the Yukon territory. The naive young man builds his first fire after he attempts to eat his lunch but cannot move his lips to bite into his biscuits. When the newcomer realizes that he cannot move his mouth, he builds a small fire to warm himself. The fire melts the ice on his face and allows him an opportunity to eat his lunch.

After stepping through thin ice and getting his moccasins wet, the traveler frantically builds a second fire underneath a tree. The tree begins to sway each time the man breaks branches and twigs off of it until a load of snow falls directly onto his fire. With his second fire extinguished, the man begins to...

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