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There was a certain Chilkat chief belonging to the GânAxA'dî whose house stood in the middle of the village. One morning his daughter, a very lively girl, went out of doors and stepped upon something slimy. "Ugh," she said, "those dirty people throw their slops out right where a person may step into them." What she stepped on was the skin of a fish called L!AL!, which is taken in Chilkat river.

The girl thought no more about this, but toward midnight a young fellow appeared to her as if in a dream and said, "I am in love with you," whereupon he sat down at the head of her bed. Although the girl had rejected many suitors, she took a liking to this youth at once and married him. This was against the will of her father, but she was his only girl and was very wilful, so he let her have her own way.

The youth was very industrious, working at all times and hauling down wood for them. From him they learned how to haul wood. It was well on toward spring, but it was dry, and the ground was

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frozen hard. Every day the young fellows in that village played ball, and the girl's husband, who was a very powerful fellow, kept throwing the ball farther and farther up river every time they played. At last they became so angry that they caught him and tore his clothes off. Then they saw that his skin was covered with blotches. He was really the L!AL! who had appeared to the girl like a young man. Then they said, "Look at his body all in blotches. The idea of that girl having such a fellow after she had refused high-caste people like herself."

Now the youth continued to sit day after day where his clothes had been torn off, and although people went to call him every day, saying that his wife wanted him to come back, he would not answer a word. Finally his wife went out herself and said, "You better come home," but he answered, "Tell your father to tie your house down very firmly and block. up every aperture even to the smoke hole."

That night the L!AL! started off up Chilkat river, and a long time afterward they noticed that the river was going dry. They wondered what was causing it, but it was really due to the L!AL!, who had grown to be a monster and was lying right across the stream higher up. Very early one morning, however, they heard a terrible roar, for the L!AL! had left the place where he had been lying and the ponded water was coming down. It washed away the entire village except the house belonging to his wife's father.

Next: 78. The Woman Who Married a Tree