When Big Man-eater and his wife were living on the other side of the ocean Big Man-eater got into his canoe. and came across. At the same time a young girl who was living with her three brothers was sent after water. She set out, and when she reached the water Big Man-eater was there in his canoe and he had with him some pretty little puppies which she liked. "Come here and look at them," he said, and she started to go. But when she got into the canoe and was looking at the puppies he put out to sea with her. He brought her to his wife on the other side of the ocean.
Next day Big Man-eater went hunting and hunted about all day but came home without having killed anything. He said to the girl, "Cut off a piece of your body and roast it for me," but instead his wife cut off a piece of her flesh and gave it to the girl, who roasted it and gave it to him and he ate. Next day he went hunting again. He hunted all day, but came back without having killed anything. He said to the girl, "Cut off a piece of your body and roast it for me," and, as before, his wife cut off a piece of her flesh and gave it to her; she roasted it and gave it to him and he ate.
Next day, when Big Man-eater went hunting again, his wife said to the girl, "If you stay here, he will devour you. He has caused me grief by eating me nearly up. Run away. Run along upon this good trail and return and then run along. upon this other good trail and return." After she had defecated close to the house she ran along upon every trail and returned. The woman had given her four ripe huckleberries, four blackberries, [and four pieces of cane]. She also gave her some mud. "Run along upon this old trail," she said. "When he has nearly come up to you, throw down a huckleberry and go on," she said. "The next time he has almost caught you do the same thing. The next time throw down a blackberry and go on. After that throw down the mud and go on," she said to her.
Big Man-eater came back before it was late and called out "Woman!" "Hā," said the excrement lying there. The next time he called "Woman!" it said "Hā" again. Next time he went to look and found only the excrement. He did not know which way she had gone. He asked his wife repeatedly, but she said, "I can not see at all. She is somewhere about."
Then Big Man-eater said, "She has run away from me." He hunted for his chunk stone and, not finding it, asked his wife, "Where did you put that thing?" "I can't see at all," she answered. Then he hunted for it all over the inside of the house. By and by he found it down under the bed.
Then he took it and placed it in one of the good trails. It ran off out of sight and he followed it. It stopped and he said, "Why do you stop here?" Then he took it and set it down in another trail. It ran on and was gone. He started after it. After a while it stopped again and when he got there he said, "Did I tell you to stop here?" He took it, placed it in another trail, and it ran on. When it stopped and he came up to it, he said, "Why do you stop here?" He took it, carried it back, and put it down in an old trail, when it ran off and disappeared.
Following it, he went on, went on, went on, and after a while came to where there were lots of ripe huckleberries which he stopped to eat. He stayed there for sometime and then said, "I will comeback here and eat again." He started ahead once more. After he had gone on for a time longer he came to a place where cane grew thick. The chunk stone stopped. Then he took it, walked on, and reached the other side of the canebrake. He put it down and it ran on. He followed it until it came to a boggy place where it stopped. Then he took it and walked on slowly until he got through. 1 He put it down and it ran off out of sight, and he followed it.
When he had nearly overtaken the woman, she called to her people, "Elder brothers, elder brothers, I am nearly caught." They heard her, and, taking their bows and arrows, went to meet her. 2 When Big Man-eater and the roller had nearly come up with her they shot at him repeatedly with their arrows, but he did not die because they did not know how to kill him. Then a red bird came flying and perched upon a tree near by, saying, "Tåkho'lho tåkhol'ho, if you hit him in the ankle and head, he will fall down." So they got sticks, one got a cooking paddle, and all hit him and knocked him down so that he died along with the chunk stone. The girl went into the house.
After that they wanted to burn Big Man-eater's body. They gathered sticks, and kept piling them on it. The next day they continued putting more on. It burned slowly until nothing was left but ashes. Then they took a sifter and put the bones into it. When they sifted, some fell through. What did not fall through they tossed up into the air, saying, "You will be blackbirds," and many blackbirds flew away. They picked up more ashes and threw them up, saying," You will be bees," whereupon the ashes turned into bees which flew away.
132:1 In the complete version of the story four huckleberries, four blackberries, and four pieces of cane wore evidently thrown down in succession. The pieces of cane wore a fourth gift of the old woman, and that is why cane is mentioned here, though not noted in my original story when the gifts were enumerated. Four, however, satisfies the story requirements of the Alabama.
132:2 No attempt is made to explain how the woman could return from the other side of the ocean by land.