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Main > Native American folktales > Fairy tale "The Fire-Plume"

The Fire-Plume

He is a very bad-hearted Monedo, and would like to do you harm. Some of the company you will, however, find to be very friendly. A caution for you. When they come in, do you sit close by your wife; if you do not, you will be lost. She only can save you; for those who are expected to come are so powerful that they will otherwise draw you from your seat, and toss you out of the lodge as though you were a feather. You have only to observe my words and all will be well."

Wassamo took heed to what the Old Spirit said, and answered that he would obey.

About mid-day the company began to assemble; and such a company Wassamo had never looked on before. There were Spirits from all parts of the country; such strange-looking persons, and in dresses so wild and outlandish! One entered who smiled on him. This, Wassamo was informed, was a Spirit who had charge of the affairs of a tribe in the North, and he was as pleasant and cheery a Spirit as one would wish to see. Soon after, Wassamo heard a great rumbling and roaring, as of waters tumbling over rocks; and presently, with a vast bluster, and fairly shaking the lodge with his deep-throated hail of welcome to the old Sand-Spirit, in rolled another, who was the Guardian Spirit and special director of a great cataract or water-fall not far off.

Then came with crashing steps the owner of several whirlwinds, which were in the habit of raging about in the neighboring country. And following this one, glided in a sweet-spoken, gentle-faced little Spirit, who was understood to represent a summer-gale that was accustomed to blow, toward evening, in at the lodge-doors, and to be particularly well disposed toward young lovers.

The last to appear was a great rocky-headed fellow; and he was twice as stony in his manners; and swaggered and strided in, and raised such a commotion with his great green blanket when he shook it, that Wassamo was nearly taken off his feet; and it was only by main force that he was able to cling by his wife. This, which was the last to enter, was that wicked Island Spirit, who looked grim enough at Wassamo's wife, who had rejected him, as he passed in.

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