Tradition of the P!ê'p!awiLênoxu, a Clan of the DEna'x*da?xu.
(Told by NEg*ê' and Hâ'nidzEm.)
The DEna'x*da?xu had been attacked by their enemies, and all were killed except ?nâ'lak!ulEm, the son of Ts!atä'i. 1
[paragraph continues] He did not know what to do, and finally he made up his mind to look for supernatural power. He went up the river until he came to the mountain G*â'g*îldEm, on the east side of the river. He rubbed his body with hemlock-branches as he went up the mountain. Finally he reached the lake on the mountain, went into the water and washed himself. There he found the "humming-bird of the water" (k!wâ'k!umt!a), which sucked his blood. He staid in the water four days, until he was only bones and sinews. After four days, while he was sitting by the pond, a Loon came up from the lake. He said, "Oh, my dear! I wish you would become a man, on account of the state in which I am. I am deserving of sympathy. My tribe became mysterious. I am seeking something good. I am seeking supernatural power."
The Loon replied, "What is it that is called man? for am. a man. Come aboard my canoe, that we may go there."
Then he stepped on the back of the Loon, and was aboard his canoe. The Loon said to him, "Just poke me with your finger when you feel that you are exhausted, and that your breath is giving out." Then the Loon dived. He staid under water a long time, until ?nâ'lak!ulEm poked him. Then he emerged. The Loon said, "Can you not stand it any longer?" ?nâ'lak!ulEm replied, "My breath has given out." The Loon told him that he had to try to stay in the water a longer time. Again he dived and went a long distance, longer than before. Then the man poked him, and he emerged again. The Loon said again, "Your breath is too short. You must be able
to stay in the water a longer time. Try your best." Then he dived again, and staid under water a long time. After they had gone quite a distance, the man poked the Loon again, and he emerged. Again the Loon encouraged him, and told him to hold out longer. The Loon dived again, saying, "You must try your best if you want to get what you desire." Again they dived, and came up again at the place where they had first gone into the water.
The Loon had really taken him all around the lake. When he emerged, the Loon said, "You have done well. You have been fortunate. You have obtained what you desired." He advised him to stay by the shore of the lake, and told him to keep up his courage and to stay until he was given what he desired. ?nâ'lak!ulEm did not know that the Loon had taken him to the door of the house where he was to receive his supernatural power. He was sitting there when something emerged from the water. When it was coming up, it made a peculiar noise; then he saw that it was a canoe with paddles on each side, paddling by itself. It was steering to the place where he was sitting. ?nâ'lak!ulEm was afraid. Suddenly the canoe stopped, and he and the crew of the canoe were afraid of each other. He fainted. When he came to, he said, "My dear, welcome! What do you do here, my dear? Are you the reason of my being here, my dear? Are you the reason of my doing this? Do I not want you for my supernatural power?"--"Now you will have supernatural power. Now you will have good luck."
There was a man in the canoe who was the child of
[paragraph continues] Q!ô'mogwê, the chief of the underworld. ?nâ'lak!ulEm was asked, "What do you want to have?" Then he thought, "I wish to have his death-bringer and his canoe." At once a bow was brought out; and the man in the canoe said, "Now, see what is going to happen!" He put an arrow to the bow, and pointed it to one side of the lake. At once it was on fire. Then the man said, "That is the way it does. Now, this will go to you, and also this canoe." Then he was asked, ""'hat is your name?" He replied, "My name is ?nâ'lak!ulEm." Then ?nâ'lak!ulEm inquired, "And what is your name?" The other one said, "My name is Xa'niats!Emg*i?aku, and this shall be your name." He continued, "The whole river of Knights Inlet is full of monsters. Take care when you go down the river!" Then the man who was given the name of Xa'niats!Emg*i?aku went down the river and killed all the monsters. He saved many of the Dzâ'wadEênoxu, who became his slaves. He went on to the Lê'gwî
lda?xu, pulled them into his canoe, and made them his slaves. He married some of them. They had children, and' they increased again in numbers, and they became his tribe.
Now all the tribes went to make war against the A'waîLEla. They came to Ha'nwadê, and there they fought for ten days. The warriors pulled almost all the people into their canoes as slaves, and they only waited for the last ones to be put aboard. Then the A'waîLEla sent for Xa'niats!Emg*i?aku, and asked him to help them. He came at once, going along the other side of the inlet. When he came to the cascade TsExu'la, he came right across; and while he was still in the middle of the water, he began to shoot arrows, which fell down quite close to his canoe. When the people saw this, they shouted for joy, because they thought that he was not a powerful
warrior. They said, "We thought you had supernatural power." But he had been shooting only with cedar-twigs. When he was near enough, he took his supernatural arrow and pointed it towards them; and the people fell into the water like kelp (pâ'pôq!wanê) and were killed with lances. Then the A'waîLEla gave their daughters to Xa'niats!Emg*i?aku to marry, and they made him many presents. For this reason the place is called Qâ'yik!waas, which is just on this side of Ha'nwadê.
Then Xa'niats!Emg*i?aku said, "Now let us make war against the paddling-passages." He meant the people of Knights Inlet. He was accompanied by his brothers, who were sitting in the middle of the canoe. Then they saw something big coming up from the water (wu'ndzêsbâlîs). He shot at it and killed it, and it was transformed into foam. They went on, and came to another place. There a man came up, standing on the back of the flat monster-fish ?nEmxx*â'lig*iû. He shot at it and killed it. Then he said, "Let us go up the river G*iô'x!" and they went along and came to a lake.
There he met a man and his family. They went to his house, and found the children outside. When they saw the canoe coming, they ran in and called their father, who told his children to invite the strangers to come into the house. When they came ashore, they were asked, "Where are you going?" They replied, "We are just paddling about. We heard that there were monsters at this place, and we want to see them." Then they were warned. "Don't go! Nobody returns who goes that way." But they merely said, "Give us something to eat. We will continue our journey." Then the man ordered his children to follow the strangers, to see what was going to happen to them. When they went on, the water was perfectly smooth; and Xa'niats!Emg*i?aku said, "I thought
this was a place of monsters." Then he saw herring jumping in the water, first one, then another. The water began to boil, and became wilder and wilder. He said, "Do you want to frighten me?" Then the herrings became more and more numerous. They jumped over the canoe, and he saw that there was a man in each herring. He tried to shoot them with his four arrows, but they had no effect upon them. They became more and more numerous, and he was drowned.
466:1 Upon being questioned, the narrator gave this name. Those of the other ancestors were not known. Compare the story of Xâ'näts!Emg*i?laku (Publications of the Jesup North Pacific Expedition, Vol. III, p. 123). The story-tellers claimed the account given there to be exaggerated, and said that the name Gwâ'xuma (p. 123, line 36) is that of a place near Dzâ'wadê; Gwâ'wi
lbê?, that of a place near Ha'nwadê. When I asked a friend of the DEna'x*da?xu in regard to this statement, he simply said that the narrators., not being DEna'x*da?xu, were envious, and detracted from the importance of the story.