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Main > Native American folktales > Fairy tale "White Feather and the Six Giants"

White Feather and the Six Giants

This White Feather declined, as he preferred to keep the heads as trophies of his victory.

Before going to the giant's lodge, on the sixth morning, he met his old counselor in the woods, standing rooted in the earth, as before. He told White Feather that he was about to be deceived; that he had never known any other sex but his own, but that as he went on his way to the lodge he would meet the most beautiful woman in the world. He must pay no attention to her, but as soon as he caught her eye he must wish himself changed into an elk. The change would take place immediately, and he must go to feeding and not look at her again.

White Feather thanked his kind adviser, and when he turned to take his leave he was gone as before.

He proceeded toward the lodge, met the female as had been foretold to him, and became an elk. She reproached him that he had cast aside the form of a man that he might avoid her.

"I have traveled a great distance," she added, "to see you and to become your wife; for I have heard of your great achievements, and admire you very much."

Now this woman was the sixth giant, who had assumed this disguise to entrap White Feather.

Without a suspicion of her real character, her reproaches and her beauty affected him so deeply that he wished himself a man again, and he at once resumed his natural shape. They sat down together, and he began to caress and to make love to her.

Soothed by her smiles and her gracious manners, he ventured to lay his head on her lap, and in a little while he fell into a deep slumber.

Even then, such was her fear of White Feather, she doubted whether his sleep might not be feigned. To assure herself she pushed his head aside, and seeing that he remained unconscious, she quickly assumed her own form as the sixth giant, took the plume from the brow of White Feather and placed it upon his own head, and with a sudden blow of his war-club changed him into a dog, in which degraded form he followed his enemy to the lodge.

While these things were passing, there were living in an Indian village at some distance, two sisters, the daughters of a chief, who were rivals, and they were at that very time fasting to acquire power, for the purpose of enticing the wearer of the white feather to visit their lodge.

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