A certain girl once said something very bad to a frog. Some time afterward she went up to the woods with her little sister, and suddenly her little sister lost her. She had met a fine-looking man and had walked on with him for a long time until they were far off from the village. When her little sister got home they asked her, "Where is your sister?" and she said, "I thought that she had gotten back home." They searched for the girl everywhere but could not find her. They did not see her for a long, long time.
The man that this girl had met was really a frog, which she had married, and she now had two children. To her, however, the frogs looked like human beings. One day this girl said to her children, "Run down and see your grandfather and grandmother. Their house is just in the middle of the village, and you will know it as soon as you see it." So the children went down to the house, but, when they entered it, some one called out, "Look at those little frogs coming into the house." Then their grandmother said, "Put them out." So they were thrown out of doors.
When the children got back to their mother she said, "Did you see your grandmother?" and one answered, "I think it was she. We went into a house," which they described so that their mother knew at once that it was the right one, "and some one called out, saying, 'Look at these frogs.' Then some one else said, 'Throw them out,' and they did so."
Then their mother said, "Go back and try to see her again even if they do throw you out." So the little frogs went down and entered their grandmother's house once more. Again some one called out, "Those little frogs are in here again." But this time their grandfather said, "Bring them here to me. My daughter is missing. These might be her little ones." So he held out his fox robe and they laid the little frogs upon it. The frogs crawled all over his breast and shoulders. Then the frogs were seated in front of their grandfather and were given cranberries. They picked them up one by one with the fore foot and put them into their mouths.
Afterward the frogs started to hop out, and a man followed them with the dishes of food. They hopped straight up to a lake back of the village and jumped in. Then, as the chief had already directed them, the men set the dishes down at the edge and stood watching. Presently the dishes moved out into the lake and sank. All at once they came up again and moved back to the same place.
Then these men returned to the chief and reported everything that they had seen, whereupon he sent them back, saying, "Go back and say, 'Your father has invited you to the house.'" They did so. Then they heard a voice replying, "I cannot come." They reported this to her father, and he told them to take up her marten-skin robes and her other clothing and lay them by the lake. After that she came down and along with her the two high-caste frogs whom she had married. When they had finished eating, all went back.
Now the girl's father thought often and deeply how he should get her back, for he did not know what to do. Finally he said to the village people, "Make a place where the lake can flow out." So all of the people went to work to drain the lake, and the water began flowing out. When the lake was nearly dry they saw this girl, all covered with frogs with the exception of her face, start to flow along with them. They picked her out from the very midst of the frogs and carried her home, but the frogs followed right after her. The house was quite filled with them. Then they killed all of the frogs that were upon her body, but as they did so more climbed up. When they began killing them with human bones, however, they went away. Afterward the girl remained with her father, and the frogs did not bother her any more.
236:a See story 22.