Long, long ago, there lived on Twin Mountain, Áhaiyúta and his younger brother, with their grandmother. They had a large flock of Turkeys of which they were very fond, but were not so attentive to them as they should have been. Said the grandmother to the boys, late one morning: "Let your poor Turkeys out, for they will starve, poor birds, if you do not let them out oftener."
"But they will run away, grandmother," said the two boys, who did not fancy herding them much of the time.
"Why should they run away?" asked the vexed grandmother, who had a sorry enough time managing the two heedless boys. "Rest assured they will come back when roosting-time comes, for such is their custom."
So the Twain ran down and reluctantly let their Turkeys go. The Turkeys were many-dirty old hens, piping, long-legged youngsters, and noisy old
[1. This term refers to the two Gods of War, Áhaiyúta and Mátsailéma, who, as has been seen in previous tales, were accounted immortal twin youths of small size.]
cocks; but they were all more noisy when they were let out, and not long was it before they were straying far beyond the border of woods and toward Háwikuh.
Not long after noon the flock of Turkeys strolled, gobbling and chirping, into the valley north of Háwikuh where many of the people of that pueblo had corn-fields. Some young men who were resting from their hoeing heard the calls of the Turkeys, and, starting up, saw across the valley a larger flock than they had ever been wont to find. Of course they were crazy. They started up and ran as fast as they could toward the pueblo, calling out as they went what they had discovered, so that all the people in the fields began to gather in. As soon as they came within the pueblo, they sought out the Priests of the Bow and told them what they had discovered.
Very quickly ran the priests to the tops of the houses, and they began to call out to their people: "Ye we would this day make wise, for our sons tell us of many Turkeys in the valley over the hill; so hasten ye to gather together good bows and arrows, boomerangs, and strings, that ye may be made happy and add unto your flocks and make more plentiful the plumes in your feather boxes."
In a very short time the people were rushing out of their doorways all prepared for the chase,
[1. Háwikuh, or Aguico of the Spaniards, a pueblo now in ruins across the valley northwestward from Ojo Caliente, the southwestern farming town of the Zuñis.]
and they ran after the young men and leaders as though in a race of the kicked stick.
Now, the sage-bushes and grasses grow tall to this day in the valley north of Háwikuh, and so they grew in the days long, long ago that I tell of. It thus happened that the poor Turkeys who were racing after grasshoppers, and peeping, and calling, and gobbling, did not know that the Háwikuh people were after them until they heard some old hens calling out in alarm from behind. Even then they were unable to get away, for the people were around them shouting and hurling crooked sticks, and shooting sharp arrows at them in all directions. Soon they began to fall on every side, especially the long-legged young ones, who so tangled their legs in the grasses that they could not keep up with their mothers, and were easily overtaken by the hunters of Háwikuh; and the old hens who stayed behind to look after the young ones were no better, and the cocks who stayed back to look after the old hens were even worse off, for the people sought them most because their feathers were so much brighter.
So it happened in a very short time that more than half the flock were killed and others were falling when a half-grown Long-leg started as fast as he could alone toward Twin Mountain.
It was growing late, and Áhaiyúta and his younger brother and their old grandmother were on top of their house shading their eyes and watching for the return of the Turkeys, when they saw the solitary young Long-leg coming, all out of
breath and his wings dragging, over the hill below Master Cañon.
"Ha!" said the younger brother; "look! there comes a Long-legs,--and what is he shouting?--Jump up, brother, jump up! Do you hear that?"
"I-wo-loh-kia-a-a-a!" called the Turkey, so that they could just hear him; and as that means "Murder! Murder!" you may think to yourself how much they were excited; but they were not so much alarmed as the old grandmother, "for," said they, one to the other, "it is nothing but a youngster, anyway, and they are always more scared than the old ones."
Nevertheless, they hastened down to meet him, and as they approached they saw that he was terribly frightened, so they anxiously waited until he breathed more easily and would stand still; then they asked: "What is it? Where is it? Why do you come alone, crying 'Murder, Murder!'"
"Alas! my fathers," exclaimed the Turkey.
Alas! I, alone, am left to tell of it; ere I left they were thrown down all around me."
"Who did this?" angrily demanded the boys.
"The people of Háwikuh," exclaimed the Turkey, glancing apprehensively around.
"Ha! we shall yet win back our loss," ejaculated the boys to one another; and then they turned to the Turkey. "Are they all murdered and gone?" they asked.
"Yes, alas! yes; I alone am left," moaned the young Turkey.
"Oh, no!" broke in the elder brother, "' there
will yet many return, for this is but a Long-leg, and surely when he could save himself others and older ones could." Even then they heard some of the Turkeys calling to one another, out of breath over the low hills. "U-kwa-tchi!" ("Didn't I tell you!") exclaimed Áhaiyúta, and they started toward the mountain.
One by one, or in little bunches, the Turkeys came fleeing in, scared, weary, and bedraggled; and the boys knew by this, and that only a few after all returned, that the Long-leg had not been for nothing taught to fear. They betook themselves to their house. There they sat down to eat with their grandmother, and after the eating was finished, they poked little sticks into the blazing fire on the hearth, and cried out to their grandmother: "Tomorrow, grandmother, we will gather fagots."
"Foolish, foolish boys!" croned the old grandmother.
"Aye, tomorrow we will gather sprouts. Where do they grow thickest and straightest, grandmother?"
"Now, you boys had better let sprouts and war alone," retorted the grandmother.
"But we must win back our losing," cried the boys, with so much vehemence that the grandmother only shook her head and exclaimed: "A-ti-ki! (" Blood!") Strange creatures, my grandchildren, both!" whereupon the two boys poked one the other and laughed.
"Well," added the grandmother, "I have warned
you; now act your own thoughts";--and the boys looked at her as earnestly as though they knew nothing of what she would say. "Fine warriors, indeed, who do not know where to look for arrow-sticks! But if you will go sprouting, why, over there in the Rain-pond Basin are plenty of sprouts, and then north on Scale Ridge grow more, and over in Oak Cañon are fine oak-sprouts, more than ten boys like you could carry, and above here around Great Mountain are other kinds, and everywhere grow sprouts enough, if people weren't beasts passing understanding; and, what's more, I could tell you boys something to your advantage if you would ever listen to your old grandmother, but--"
"What is it? What is it?" interrupted the boys excitedly, just as if they knew nothing of what she would say.
"Why, over there by the Rain-pond Basin lives your grandfather--"
"Who's that? Who's that?" interrupted the boys again.
"I've a mind not to tell you, you shameless little beasts, another word," jerked out the old grandmother, sucking her lips as if they were marrowbones, and digging into the pudding she was stirring as though it were alive enough to be killed,--"just as though I were not telling you as fast as I could; and, besides, anything but little beasts would know their grandfather--why, the Rainbow-worm, of course!"
[1. One of the "measuring-worms" which is named the rainbow, on account of his streaked back and habit of bending double when travelling.]
The Rainbow-worm our grandfather, indeed!" persisted the boys; and they would have said more had not their grandmother, getting cross, raised the pudding-stick at them, and bid them "shut up!" So they subsided, and the old woman continued: "Yes, your grandfather, and for shame! You may sit there and giggle all you please, but your grandfather the Rainbow-worm is a great warrior, I can tell you, and if you boys will go sprouting, why, I can tell you, you will fare but with poverty the day after, if you do not get him to help you, that's all!"
"Indeed," replied the boys, quite respectfully.
"Yes, that I tell you; and, moresoever, over there beyond at the wood border, in a pond, is your other grandfather, and he is a great warrior, too."
"Indeed!" exclaimed the boys, as though they did not know that already, also.
"Yes, and you must go to see him, too; for you can't get along without him any more than without the other. Now, you boys go to sleep, for you will want to get up very early in the morning, and you must go down the path and straight over the little hills to where your grandfathers live, and not up into the Master Cañon to gather your sticks, for if you do you will forget all I've told you. You are creatures who pass comprehension, you two grandchildren of mine."
So the two boys lay down in the corner together under one robe, like a man and his wife, for they did not sleep apart like our boys. But, do you
know, those two mischievous boys giggled and kicked one another, and kept turning about, just as though they never dreamed of the morning. Then they fell to quarrelling about who could turn over the quicker.
"I can," said the elder brother.
"You can't I can! No, you can 't!"
"Yes, I can, and I'll show you"; and he was about to brace himself for the trial when the old grandmother strode over with her pudding-stick, lifting it in the air, with her usual expression of "Blood! my grandchildren both," when they quieted down and pretended to sleep; but still they kept giggling and trying to pull the cover off each other.
"Stop that gaping and fooling, will you? And go to sleep, you nasty little cubs!" cried the irritated old woman; and laughing outright at their poor old grandmother, they put their arms around each other and fell asleep.
Next morning the sun rose, till he shone straight over the mountain, but still the two boys were asleep. The old grandmother had gone out to water her garden, and now she was sitting on the house-top shading her eyes and looking down the trail she had told the boys to follow, to see them come out of the shadow.
After she had strained her poor old eyes till they watered, she grew impatient: "Did I ever see such boys! Now they've gone and played me
another trick. They'll rue their pranks some day." Then she thought she would go down and get some mush for breakfast. As she climbed down the ladder, she heard a tremendous snoring. "Ho, hot" exclaimed the old grandmother; and striding across the room she shook the boys soundly. "Get up, get up! you lazy creatures; fine sprouters, you!"
The boys rolled over, rubbed their eyes, and began to stretch.
"Get up, get up! the day is warmed long ago; fine warriors, you!" reiterated the old woman, giving them another shaking.
The boys sat up, stretched, gaped, rubbed their eyes, and scratched their heads--the dirtiest little fellows ever seen--but they were only making believe. Their arms were crusty with dirt, and their hair stood out like down on a wild milkweed after a rain-storm, and yet these boys were the handsomest children that ever lived--only they were fooling their old grandmother, you see.
"You'd better be down at the spring washing your eyes at sunrise, instead of scratching your heads here with the sun shining already down the skyhole"; croaked the old woman.
"What! is the sun out?" cried the boys in mock surprise; but they knew- what time it was as well as the old crone did.
"Out! I should say it was! You boys might as well go to sleep again. A fine bundle of sticks you could get today, with the sun done climbing up already"
So the boys pretended to be in a great hurry and, grabbing up their bows and quivers, never stopped to half dress nor heeded the old woman's offer of food, but were jumping down the crags like mountain goats before the old woman was up the ladder.
"Atiki!" exclaimed the grandmother; "these beasts that cause meditation!" Then she climbed the terrace and watched and watched and watched; but the boys liked nothing better than to worry their old grandmother, so they ran up Master Cañon and into the woods and so across to Rain-pond Basin, leaving the old woman to look as she would.
"Uhh!" groaned the old woman; "they are down among the rocks playing. Fine warriors, they!" and with this she went back to her cooking.
By-and-by the boys came to the edge of the basin where the pod plant grew. Sure enough, there was the Rainbow-worm, eating leaves as though he were dying of hunger-a great fat fellow, as big as the boys themselves; for long, long ago, in the days I tell you of, the Rainbow-worm was much bigger than he is now.
"Hold on," said the younger brother. "Let's frighten the old fellow."
So they sneaked up until they were close to the grandfather, and then they began to tickle him with a stalk. Amiwili--that was his name--twitched his skin and bit away faster and faster at the leaves, until Áhaiyúta shouted at the top of his voice, "Ha-u-thla!" which made the old man jump and
turn back so quickly that he would have broken his back had he a back-bone.
"Shoma!" he exclaimed. "It's my grandchildren, is it? I am old and a little deaf, and you frightened me, my boys."
"Did we frighten you, grandfather? That's too bad. Well, never mind; we've come to you for advice."
"What's that, my grandchildren?" looking out of his yellow eyes as though he were very wise, and standing up on his head and tail as though they had been two feet.
"Why, you see," said the boys "we had a big drove of Turkeys, and we let them out to feed yesterday, but the fools got too near Háwikuh and the people there killed many, many of them; so we have decided to get back our winnings and even the game with them, the shameless beasts!"
"Ah ha!" exclaimed old Amiwili. "Very well!" and he lay down on his belly and lifted his head into the air like a man resting on his elbows. "Ah ha!" said he, with a wag of his head and a squint of his goggle. "Ah ha! Very well! I'll show them that they are not to treat my grandchildren like that. I'm a warrior, every direction of me--and there are a great many directions when I get angry, now, I can tell you! I'm just made to use up life," said he, with another swagger of his head.
"Listen to that!" said Mátsailéma to his brother.
"To use up life, that's what I'm for," added
the old man, with emphasis; "I'll show the Háwikuhkwe!"
"Will you come to the council?" asked the two boys.
"Shuathla," swaggered the old man--which is a very old-fashioned word that our grandfathers used when they said: "Go ye but before me."
So the boys skipped over to the pool at the wood border. There was their old grandfather, the Turtle, with his eyes squinted up, paddling round in the scum, and stretching his long neck up to bite off the heads of the water-rushes.
"Let's have some fun with the old Shield-back," said the boys to one another. "just you hold a moment, brother elder," said Mátsailéma as he fitted an arrow to the string and drew it clean to the point. Tsi-i-i-i thle-e-e! sang the arrow as it struck the back of the old Turtle; and although he was as big as the Turtles in the big Waters of the World now are, the force and fright ducked him under the scum like a chip, and he came up with his eyes slimy and his mouth full of spittle, and his legs flying round too fast to be counted. When he spied the two boys, he cursed them harder than their grandmother did, but they hardly heard him, for their arrow glanced upward from his back and came down so straight that they had to run for their lives. "Atiki! troublesome little beasts, who never knew what shame nor dignity was!" exclaimed the old fellow.
"Don't be angry with us, grandpa," said the boys. "You must be deaf, for we called and
called to you, but you only paddled round and ate rushes; so we thought we would fire an arrow at you, for you know we couldn't get at you."
"Oh, that's it! Well, what may my grandchildren be thinking of, in thus coming to see me? It cannot be for nothing," reflected the old man, as he twisted his head up toward them and pushed the scum with his tail.
"Quite true, grandfather; we've started out sprouting, and had to come to our grandfather for advice."
"Why, what is it then?" queried the old Shield-back.
"You see, we have a flock of Turkeys--"
"Yes, I know," interrupted the old man, "for they came down here to drink yesterday and broke my morning nap with their 'quit quit quittings!'"
"Well," resumed the boys, "they went toward the Háwikuhkwe, and the shameless beasts, that they are, turned out and killed very nearly all of them, and we're going to even matters with them; that's why we are out sprouting."
"Ah ha!" cried the old man, paddling up nearer to the bank. "Good! Well, that's right, my grandchildren; you show that you are the wise boys that you are to come to me. I'm a great warrior, I am, for though I have neither bow nor arrow, yet the more my enemies have, the worse for themselves, that's all. You two just wait until tomorrow," and he stretched his head out until it looked as though he kept a snake in his shell.
"Will you help us?" asked the boys. (They knew very well he would like nothing better.)
"Of course, my grandchildren."
"Will you come to the council?"
"Of course, my grandchildren two. How many will be there?" called the old fellow.
"The house shall be as full as a full stomach," retorted the boys, jousting each other.
"Thluathlá!" gruffly said Etawa, for that was the Turtle's name.
So the boys started for Oak-wood Canon, and, arrived there, soon had a large bundle of branches cut down with their big flint knives, and four stout, dry oak-sticks. They shouldered their "sprouts" and started home, and, although they had bundles big enough to almost hide them, they trotted along as though they had nothing. On their way they picked up a lot of obsidian, and went fast enough until they were near their home, and then they were "very tired"--so tired that the old grandmother, when she caught sight of them, pitied them, and hurried down to stir some mush for them. She buried some corn-cakes in the ashes, too, and roasted some prairie-dogs in the same way; so that when those two lying little rascals came up and seemed so worn-out, she hurried so fast to get their food ready that it made her sinews twitch.
When the boys had eaten all they could and cracked a few prairie-dog bones, they fell to breaking the sprouts. They worked with their stone chips very fast, and soon had barked all they
wanted. These they straightened by passing them through their horns I and placed them before the fire. While the shafts were drying, they broke up the obsidian, and. laying chips of it on a stone covered with buckskin, quickly fashioned them into sharp arrow-heads with the points of other stones, and these they fastened to the ends of the shafts, placing feathers of the eagle on the other ends, until they had made enough for four big bundles. Then they made a bow of each of the four oak-sticks, and stood them up to dry against the wall.
As it grew dark they heard something like a dry leaf in a little wind.
"Ah said one to the other," our grandfather comes"; and sure enough presently Amiwili poked his yellow eyes in at the door, but quickly drew back again.
"Kutchi!" said he, "your fire is fearful; it scares me!"
"The grandfather cometh!" exclaimed the boys. "Come in; sit down."
"Very well. Ah! you are stretching shafts, are you?" said the old Worm, crawling around behind the boys and into the darkest corner he could find.
"Yes," replied they. "Why do you not come out into the light, grandpa?"
[1. Fragments of mountain-sheep horn are used to this day by the Zuñis for the same purpose. They are flattened by heat and perforated with holes of varying size. By introducing the shaft to be straightened, and rubbing with a twisting motion the inner sides of the crooked portions, they are gradually straightened out, afterward to be straightened by hand from time to time as they dry before the fire.]
"Kutchi! I fear the fire; it hurts my eyes, and makes me feel as the sun does after a rain-storm and I have no leaves to crawl into."
"Very well," said the boys. "Grandmother, spread a robe for him in the corner." Then they busied themselves straightening some of the arrows and trying their bows. just as they were pulling one toward the entrance way, they heard old Etawa thumping along, and immediately the old fellow called out: "Hold on; don't thump me against one of those sticks of yours; they jar a fellow so!"
"Oh, it 's you, is it, grandfather? Well, we 're only trying our new bows; come in and sit down." So the old fellow bumped along in and took his place by the fire, for he did not care whether it was hot or cold.
"Are the councillors here?" asked he, wagging his head around.
"Why, certainly," said the two boys; "and now our council is so full we had better proceed to discuss what we had better do."
When the old Turtle discovered that the boys had been playing him a joke, he was vexed, but he didn't show it. "Amiwili here?" asked he. "Tchukwe! We four will teach those Háwikuhkwe!"
"Yes, indeed!" croaked the Rainbow-worm.
"Well," said the boys, "at daybreak tomorrow morning, before it is light, we shall start for Háwikuh-town."
"Very well," responded Amiwili. "Come to my place first, and let me know when you start."
And," added Etawa, "come to my place next and let me know. When you boys get to Háwikuh and alarm the people, if they get too thick for you, come back to my house as fast as you can, and you, Mátsailéma, take me up on your back. Then you two run toward your other grandfather's house. I'll show these Háwikuhkwe that I can waste life as much as anybody, even if I have no arrows to shoot at them."
"Yes," added the Rainbow-worm, "and when you come up to my house, just run past me and I'll take care of the rest of them. I'm made to use up life, I am," swaggered he.
"And I," boasted the old Turtle. "Come, brother, let us be going, for we have a long way to travel, and our legs are short." So, after feasting, the two started away.
As soon as they had gone, the two boys went to their corner and lay down to rest, first filling their quivers with arrows, and laying their water-shield out on the floor. They were presently quiet, and then began to snore; so their old grandmother went into another room and brought out a new bowl which she filled with water. Then she retired into the room again, and when she came out she was dressed in beautiful embroidered mantles and
[1. The kia-al-lan, or water-shield, is represented in modern times by a beautiful netting of white cotton threads strung on a round hoop, with a downy plume suspended from the center. This, with the dealings of Áhaiyúta and Mátsailéma with arrows of lightning, and the simile of their father the Sun, leaves little doubt that they are, in common with mystic creations of the Aryans, representatives of natural phenomena or their agents. This is even more closely suggested by the sequel.]
skirts and decorated with precious ornaments of shell and turquoise.
The noise she made awoke Áhaiyúta, who punched his younger brother, and said: "Wake up, wake up! Here 's grandmother dressed as though she were going to a dance!"
Then the younger brother raised his voice to a sharp whisper (they knew perfectly well what the old grandmother was intending to do) What for?"
"Here!" said the old woman, turning toward the bed. "Go to sleep! What are you never-weary little beasts doing now? For shame! You pretend you are going out to war tomorrow!"
"Why are you dressed so, grandmother?" ventured the younger.
"What should I be dressed for but to make medicine for you two? Now, mind, you must not watch me. I shall make the medicine and place it in these two cane tubes, and you must shoot them into the middle of the plaza of Háwikuh as soon as you get there. That will make the people like women; for the canes will break and make the medicine fly about like mist, and whomsoever gets his skin wet by it, will become no more of a warrior than a woman. Go to sleep, I say, you pests!"
But the boys had no intention of sleeping. To be sure, they stretched themselves out and slyly laid their arms across their eyes. The old grandmother did not notice this at first. She began to wash her arms in the bowl of water. Then she
rubbed them so hard that the yepna ("substance of flesh") was rolled off in little lumps and fell into the water. This she began to mix carefully with the water, when Áhaiyúta whispered to the other: "Brother younger, just look! Old grandmother's arms look as bright as a young girl's. Look, look!" said he, still louder, for the other had already begun to giggle; but when the old woman turned to talk sharply at them, they turned over, the rascals, as dutifully as though they had never joked with their poor old grandmother. Soon they were indeed sleeping.
Then the grandmother proceeded to fill the canes with the fluid, and then she fastened these to the ends of two good arrows. "There!" she exclaimed, with a sigh; and after she had chanted an incantation over the canes, she laid some food near the boys and softly left the room, to sleep.
The boys never minded the things they had to do in the morning, but slept soundly until the coming of day, when they arose, took their bows and quivers, knives, war-clubs, arrows, and water-shield, and quietly stole away.
It was not long ere they approached the house of Amiwili. He was fairly gorging the leaves of all the lizard plants he could lay hold of, and already looked so full that he must have felt like a ball. But he munched away so busily that he wouldn't have looked at the boys had it been light enough.
"How did our grandfather come unto the morning?" asked they.
"Thluathlá!" ("Get out!") was all the old Worm vouchsafed them between his cuds; and they sped on.
Soon they reached the home of the old Turtle. This old grandfather was more leisurely. "You will return at the height of the sun," said he. "Now mind what I told you last night. I'll wait right here on the bank for you."
"Very well," laughed the boys, for little they cared that they were on the war-path.
By-and-by they neared the town of Háwikuh. It was twilight, for the morning star was high. The boys sat down a moment and sang an incantation,--the same our fathers and children, the Ápithlan Shíwani, sing now. Then the younger brother ran round the pueblo to scout. Two or three people were getting up, as he could see, for nearly everybody slept on the roofs, it was so warm.
"Iwolohkia-a-a!" cried he, at the top of his voice; and as the people were rousing he drew one of the cane arrows full length in his bow, and so straight and high did he shoot, that it fell thl-i-i-i-i! into the middle of the plaza, splitting and scattering medicine-water in every direction, so that the people all exclaimed, as they rubbed their eyes: "Ho! it is raining, and yet the sky is clear! And didn't some one cry 'Murder, murder!'"
When Áhaiyúta's arrow struck, it scattered more medicine-water upon them, until they thought they must be dreaming of rain; but just then Mátsailéma shouted, "Ho-o-o! Murder!" again,
and everybody started to hunt bows and arrows. Then the boy ran to the hiding-place of his brother in the grass on the trail toward the wood border, and just as he got there, some of the people who were shouting and gabbling to one another ran out to see him.
"Ha!" they shouted, "there they are, on the northern trail."
So the Háwikuhkwe all poured down toward them, but when they arrived there they found no enemy. While the people were looking and running about, tsok tsok, and tsok tsok, and tsok tsok, the arrows of Áhaiyúta, and Mátsailéma struck the nearest ones, for they had crawled along the trail and were waiting in the grass. They never missed. Every man they struck fell, but many, many came on, and when these saw that there were only two, their faces were all the more to the front with haste. Still the two boys shot, shot, shot at them until many were killed or wounded before the remainder decided to flee.
"Come, brother, my arrows are gone," said the younger brother. "Quick! put on the water-shield, and let us be off!" Now, the people were gaining on them faster and faster, but Áhaiyúta threw water like thick rain from his shield strapped over his back, so that the enemies' bow-strings loosened, and they had to stop to tighten them again and again.
Whenever the Háwikuhkwe pressed them too closely, the water-shield sprinkled them so thoroughly that when they nocked an arrow the sinew
bow-string stretched like gum, and all they could do was to stop and tighten their bow-strings again. Thus the boys were able to near the home of their grandfather, the big Turtle, now and then shooting at the leaders with their warring arrows and rarely missing their marks.
But as they came near, the people were gathering more and more thickly in their rear, so that Mátsailéma barely had time to take his grandfather--who was waiting on the bank of the pond--upon his back.
"Now, run you along in front and we'll follow behind," said old Etawa, as he put one paw over the left shoulder and the other under the right arm, and clasped his legs tightly around the loins of Mátsailéma so as to hug close to his back.
"Grandfather, kutchi! You are as heavy as a rock and as hard as one, too," said the younger brother. How can I dodge those stinging beasts?
"That 's all the better for you," said the old Turtle, loosening his grip a little; "take it easy."
'They're coming! They're coming!" shouted Áhaiyúta from ahead. "Hurry, hurry, brother younger; hurry!" But Mátsailéma couldn't get along any faster than he could.
Presently the old Turtle glanced around and saw that the people were gaining on them and already drawing their bows. "Duck your head down and never mind them. Now, you'll see what I can do!" said he, pulling into his shell.
Thle-e-e, thle-thle-thle-e-e, rattled the arrows
against old Etawa's shell, and the warriors were already shouting, "Ho-o-o-awiyeishikia!"--which was their cry of victory,--when they began to cry out in other tones, for tsuiya! their arrows glanced from old Turtle's shell and struck themselves, so that they dropped in every direction. "Terror and blood! but those beings can shoot fast and hard!" shouted they to one another, but they kept pelting away harder and faster, only to hit one another with the glancing arrows.
"Hold!" cried one in advance of the others. "Head them off! Head them off! We're only shooting ourselves against that black shield of theirs, and the other loosens our bow-strings."
But just then Áhaiyúta reached the home of his other grandfather, Amiwili. Behold! he was all swollen up with food and could hardly move--only wag his head back and forth.
"Are you coming?" groaned the old fellow.
"Quick, get out of the way, all of you! Quick, quick!"
Áhaiyúta jumped out of the way just as Mátsailéma cried out: "Ha hua! I can run no farther; I must drop you, grandfather,"--but he saw Áhaiyúta jump to one side, so he followed, too.
Old Amiwili reared himself and, opening his mouth, waah! weeh! right and left he threw the lizard leaves he had been eating, until the Háwikuhkwe were blinded and suffocated by them, and, dropping their bows and weapons, began to clutch their eyes from blindness and pain. And old Amiwili coughed and coughed till he had blown nearly all
his substance away, and there was nothing left of him but a worm no bigger than your middle finger.
"Drop me and make your winnings," cried the old Turtle. "I guess I can take care of myself," he chuckled from the inside of his shell; and it was short work for the boys to cast down all their enemies whom Amiwili had blown upon, and the others fled terrified toward Háwikuh.
"Ha, ha!" laughed the two boys as they began to take off the scalps of the Háwikuhkwe. "These caps are better than half a flock of Turkeys."
"Who'll proclaim our victory to our people?" said they, suddenly stopping; and one would have thought they belonged to a big village and a great tribe instead of to a lone house on top of Twin Mountain, with a single old granny in it; but then that was their way, you know.
"I will! I will!" cried the old Turtle, as he waddled off toward Twin Mountain and left the boys to skin scalps.
When he came to the top of the low hill south of Master Cañon, he stuck a stick up in the air and shouted.
"Hoo-o! Hawanawi-i-i-i!" which is the shout of victory; and, not seeing the old woman, he cried out two or three times.
"Hoo-o! Iwolohkia-a-a!" which, as you know, means "Murder! Murder!" The old woman heard it and was frightened. She threw an old robe over her shoulders, and, grabbing up the fire-poker, started down as fast as her limping old limbs
would let her, and nearly tumbled over when she heard old Etawa shout again, "Iwolohkia!"
"Ha!" said she; "I'll teach the shameless Turkey killers, if I am an old woman;" and she shook her fire-poker in the air until she came up to where the old Turtle was waiting.
Here, just as she came near, the old Turtle pretended not to see her, but stood up on his legs, and, holding his pole with one hand, cried out "Hoo-o! Hawanawi-i-i-i!" which was the shout of victory, as I told you before.
"What is it?" cried the old woman, as she limped along up and said: "Ah! ahi!" ("My poor old legs!")
"Victory!" said the proud Turtle, scarcely deigning to look at her.
Who has this day renewed himself?" she inquired.
"Thy grandchildren," answered the old Turtle.
"Have they won?" asked the old woman, as she said: "Thanks this day!"
"Many caps," replied the Turtle.
"Will they celebrate?"
"Who will purify and pass them?" asked the granny.
"Why, you will."
"Who will bathe the scalps?
"Why, I will."
[1. The ridiculousness of the dialogue which follows may readily be understood when it is explained that each office in the celebration of victory has to be performed by a distinct individual of specified clans according to the function.]
Who will swing the scalps round the pueblo?"
"Why, you will."
"Who will adopt them?"
"Why, you will."
"Who will bring out the feast?
"Why, you will."
"Who will be the priest of initiation?
"Why, I will."
"Who will be the song-master?"
"Why, I will."
"Who will be the dancers?"
"Why, I will."
"Who will draw the arrows and sacrifice them?"
"Why, I will."
"Who will strive for the sacrificed arrows?"
"Why, I will."
"Who will lead the dance of victory?"
"Why, I will."
"Who will be the dancers?"
"Why, I will."
"Who will go to get the women to join the dance?"
"Why, I will."
"What women will dance?"
"Why, you will."
"ho will take them to preside at the feast of their relatives-in-law?"
"Why, you will."
"Who will be their relatives-in-law?"
"Why, you will."
"Who will be the priests of their Father Society?"
"Why, I will."
And they might have talked that way till sunset had not the voices of the two boys, singing the song of victory, been heard coming over the hill. There they were, coming with two great strings of scalps as big as a bunch of buckskins.
"Oh! poor me! How shall I swing all those scalps round the pueblo?" groaned the poor old woman as she limped off to dress for the ceremony.
"Why, swing them," answered the old Turtle, as he stretched himself up with the importance of being master of ceremonies.
So the boys brought the scalps up and the old Turtle strung them thickly on a long pole.
So day after day they danced and sang, to add strands to the width of the boys' badges. And the old Turtle was master-priest of ceremonies and people, low priest, song-master, and dancers; sacrificer of arrows and striver after the arrows. He would beat the drum and sing a little, then run and dance out the measure; but it was very hard work.
And the old woman was mother of the children and sisters, and their clan, and somebody's else clan, matron of ceremonials, and maidens of ceremonials-all at the same time;--but it was very hard work, consequently they didn't get along very well.
That's the reason why today we have so many song-masters and singers, dance leaders and dancers, priests and common people, father clans and mother clans, in the great Ceremony of Victory.
Thus it happened with Áhaiyúta and Mátsailéma and their old grandmother, and their grandfathers the Rainbow-worm and the old Turtle. That is the reason why rainbow-worms are no bigger than your finger now, because their great grandfather blew all his substance away at the Háwikuhkwe. That's the reason why the great Turtles in the far-away Waters of the World are so much bigger than their brothers and sisters here, and have so many marks on their shells, where the arrows glanced across the shield of their great grandfather. For old Etawa was so proud after he had been the great master of ceremonies that he despised his old pond, and went off to seek a new home in the Western Waters of the World, and his grandchildren never grew any bigger after he went away, and their descendants are just as small as they were.
And thus shortens my story.