The school year is over, and Junior is back on the reservation, which is beautiful. There are pine trees everywhere, and Junior remembers a day when he and Rowdy were nine or ten, and they decided to climb the tallest tree over by Turtle Lake. The tree was over one hundred feet tall, and they could have died, but they "weren't afraid of falling that day". Their original intent was to go swimming in Turtle Lake, which in itself was an extremely scary undertaking because of the weird legends that surrounded it, but as it was, they ended up climbing to the top of the highest tree.
Looking back, Junior can't believe they did that, just like he can't believe that he survived his first year at Reardan. He misses his friends from school; he has already written Penelope "three love letters", and to his amazement, Gordy wants to come to the rez and "stay for a week or two". And most surprising of all, Rowdy comes to the house to visit!
Rowdy says he is visiting because he is bored, and he and Junior go out to shoot some hoops. Junior asks Rowdy again to come to Reardan with him next year, but Rowdy declines. He tells Junior that he read a book about how Indians used to be nomadic, moving around "in search of food and water and grazing land". Rowdy doesn't think Indians are nomadic anymore, except for Junior. He says he always knew that Junior would leave in search of his dreams, and that he is happy for him.
Junior will always "love and miss (his) reservation and (his) tribe". He prays they will forgive him for leaving, and that he will forgive himself. He cries a little as he wonders about the future. Then he and Rowdy play ball, without keeping score (Chapter 29).