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12. BEAD-SPITTER (7, 10)

A man who spit out beads lived in a certain place, and two women set out to visit him because they wanted beads. By and by they came within sight of a pond. A Night Owl was there picking up leaves in the water in order to find a sabia he had lost. Then they said to him, "Where is Bead-spitter's house?" And he answered, "On this little trail." They went on and reached a house which was really that of Owl. After they had been there for some time Owl started off while his sister kept watch of them. He went to Bead-spitter's house to dance. Then the two women followed to look at him. When Owl, who was dancing with animal entrails tied around his neck, saw them coming, he pretended that something had gotten into his eye and was paining him, and he stopped dancing. He threw the entrails on the ground. Then he ran away. But the women stayed at that house, the house of Bead-spitter.

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After that Owl started from home and arrived during the night at the house of Bead-spitter. He took a sharp deer horn, placed the point against Bead-spitter's ear, and struck it. He drove it deep into Bead-spitter's ear, and it killed him. Then the women wept. He was a chief and when day came the people told Owl the news. Owl and all of his family came to look. They came wailing.

After that the people said, "Let us see who will be the first to kill a white deer. The first to kill one shall have these two women." Owl wanted them and he went away and killed a white dog, but the girls' brother killed a white deer. Next they said, "The first to kill a white turkey shall have these two girls." So several of them got into a canoe and started for the other side of the ocean where the white turkeys lived. By and by they reached the other side and landed. Then the girls' brother killed a white turkey. But the others had said, "When you hear a shot, come back quickly to the canoe," so, when they heard the shot, they came back to the canoe on the run, got into it, and started back. Before the man who had killed the turkey got there they were far out, but, when he came, he shot at the canoe and broke it. Some of the people were drowned, but Owl, holding on to pieces of the canoe, drifted on and got ashore. The youth remained, meanwhile, on the other side of the ocean. He traveled along close to the shore, but Big Man-eater, who wanted to kill him, followed his trail. His dogs were tigers (panthers). The boy climbed up into a tree and the panthers could not find him. They hunted about everywhere in vain. Finally Big Man-eater became angry and killed and ate them. Then he threw their bones into a riddle and sifted them. He whistled, all came back to life, and he sent them after the young man again.

The youth had started off aimlessly. Traveling on, looking about him, he saw two girls bathing in the river. They took him home and married him, but their mother wanted to kill him. When they lay down on the bed a snake lay under it watching all night. When the old woman approached intending to kill him it hissed. The next night a white crane watched. It stayed in the same place and was awake when she approached. The third night the crane watched again.

The fourth night a big earthen pot kept guard. About midnight the old woman got up, seized a stick, and struck it. She broke the pot in pieces.

Next day the youth went out with his bow and arrows. He shot forty parrakeets, 1 roasted them, tied them together, and, took them with him. He went to the shore of the ocean with them and began calling out. He called to the different creatures in the ocean to come to him. The alligator came out of the water first, but he

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said, "You are not the one I want." Next the long snake came out and he said, "It isn't you." The third time he called there came up a snake with long horns (tcinto såktco, "snake crawfish"), and the youth climbed upon it and sat on its back. He took his roasted birds with him. Then he started to recross the ocean. He would throw a piece of roasted meat in front and the snake would go forward toward the ocean, seize it, and eat it. After it had finished it, it would begin to sink under the water, but he would throw another piece of meat in front of it and it would go on. After his meat was used up, he would shoot an arrow on ahead, and the snake, thinking it was more meat, would start after that. Then the youth picked up his arrow and shot again, and the snake started on again. The fourth time the snake brought him to the bank and, picking up his arrow, the boy jumped ashore.

As the young man climbed the bank the sand kept caving in and carrying him down again, but he persevered and got out. He started on and reached his home. When he arrived he saw his grandmother sitting on the floor, and he said to her repeatedly, "I am come," but she answered, "Some crow is always telling me lies." She seized a scratching stick and beat about her in the endeavor to hit him. When she did not believe him, he drew his bowstring across her eyes and they were both opened. "Where are my sisters?" he said to her, and she answered, "They are the wives of Owl, but they do not like him."

Then he took his arrows and started on. When he got to the place the two women were pounding corn, while Owl sat near making an ax handle. Then the youth went around to the trail on which they went to get water. While he stood there his sisters came for water and he concealed himself. After they had passed he stuck an arrow up in the trail and concealed himself once more. Now, when they came back, one of the girls said, "This looks like our brother's arrow," but the other answered, "He whom you mention has long been dead." But presently he stood out and made a noise and they saw him. When they saw him they were very glad. He said to them, "Get water and fill up the pot and put it on the fire. When the water boils and Owl is looking, say, 'Look! Look!' Throw his children into it and run away." After they had spent some time getting water, they filled the pot full, made a fire, and brought the water to a boil. Then they took the children, said, "Look! Look!" threw them into it, and ran off. Owl said, "I will beat you to death," and ran after them, but in mid-course he saw the brother of his wives standing before him. He tried to say, "I don't want to hurt them," but the youth shot and killed him. Then he took his two sisters and they went home together to their grandmother.


127:1 The identity of these birds is somewhat uncertain.

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