The Origin Of The Supernatural Being At KwanwacAt the Gitwilgoats Village was a very beautiful woman who was the daughter of the chief and he kept her under very close watch. Whenever she went about she was always accompanied by chosen companions and at night when she went to sleep her sleeping place was above that of her parents so that it was impossible for anyone to meet her. she was very much wanted by all the chiefs and those were all refused as the chief felt that they we're not good enough for his daughter. Foreign princes came from the Stikline and others from more distant places, but they we're all refused. Each one returned to his own place very disappointed.
One day a very large canoe came below the village and in it was a very handsome young prince accompanied by a number of young menwho were his complanions. They landed below the Gitwilgoats villageand when teh Gitwilgoats saw teh canoe, they went down and brought the handsome young man and his companions to the house of the chief. The young man then told the chief, "I have come to gamble with you." The Gitwilgoats chief made preparations to gamble and the young visiting prince got his gambling equipment out, and a mat was spread upon which they were to gamble. The young prince then took out his red ochre bag and began to decorate his face. The princess who was watching him from her sleeping place where she always stayed, saw the beautiful red ochre and she sat and wanted some of this, so she sent one of her attendants saying, "Tell the prince that I want some of that red ochre." The attendant went to where teh prince sat saying, "My mistress wants some of your red ochre." The prince took his red ochre and gave it to the attendant saying, "Tell your mistress I shall sleep with her tonight." "That will not be possible as my mistress is too carefully gaurded," the woman replied. "I have asked you to tell your mistress I shall sleep with her tonight." So the woman took the red ochre bag to her mistress and said, "When he gave this to me, he told me he was going to sleep with you tonight." "It is well if he can do so," the princess replied.
That night thiis stranger and the Gitwilgoats kept on gambling, neither winning nor losing, as the stakes passed from one side to the other; and this continued away into the night until it became time to retire to rest. That night when all in the house were asleep, the princess felt someone coming and laying with her and they played a while and had sexual intercourse together and when they had finished the prince said to the princess, " I have come to take you with me. For a long while I have heard of the stubbornness of your father in not wanting you to became wife, so my father, who is a great chief, has sent me to fetch you to my country. Come, we will go there now." So without anymore being said, the princess arouse from her sleeping place and followed the young prince out and they went down the beach and she saw that the canoes were waiting. So she got in with the young prince and immediately the canoes began to move very swiftly and the woman heard a whistling sound, so she asked the prince, "what noise is that?" "oh, that is the sound of the paddles." he replied. They had paddled for a long while when the princess saw ahead of them a very large village. They landed below this village and everywhere the princess went she heard a whistling sound. They went up and went into a very large house and the young woman saw sitting at teh rear of the house a large man and woman. There were many other people in the house, and everybody started to move around very swiftly and everybody was busy. The prince took the young woman to where the great chief sat and said, "I have returned with what you sent me for. This is her." "She is indeed beautiful and her father was right in refusing all that wanted to marry her. Spread a mat so that my daughter may sit near me," the chief called out. At once a slave came forward with a mat for her and the prince to sit on. As she did so, she felt someone ***** her arm and then a small voice spoke out, "it is I. Do you have any fat or wool with you? If you have, give it to me, so that you may save yourself. It is the land otter people who have taken you. The chief was vexed at your father for always refusing all that wanted to marry you, so they decided to bring you here and be the wife of his son. If you have any fat or wool you will be alright. You see all those old people who are slaves, they are people who have been taken by the land otter people, who are all supernatural." The princess had in her possession a lumo of mountain goat kidney fat which they used on their faces and breasts as a cosmetic, she gave this to the little mouse woman who also took her wool ear ornaments and disappeared.
The woman soon became pregnant and gave birth to a boy and a girl and she was very happy, as was the chief who took the children and trained them. Everyday he took them and stretched them and soon they became full grown; and every day they would go out with the rest of the household, and at night they always returned with fish and game of some kind so that there always was a great quantity of food. Sometimes the hunters would come in with salmon or halibut or seals and when they returned they were in human forms. One day the Mouse Woman came to the princess and said, "The great chief has invited all the monsters; they will give you certain powers and you may be as one of them." So the prince one morning said to his wife, "Today many strange beings are coming to see you and my father has invited them and the food is what you providedwhen you came here." So one after another the great monsters arrived, and they came in as if they were at teh own abode. Some were very ferocious, others very mild, but each came in and took their place and teh great land otter chief said, "I have called you here to see my daighter that you may know her and recognize her." So then the slaves rolled out the huge balls of fat, as the mous woman had enlarged the small portion of fat the young princess had, and this was given to each of the guests. The woolen earrings the princess had given the Mous Woman were also a huge pile of wool and this was distributed to teh guests. When all had finished they all gave a murmur of approval and then they all went out.
The Woman, on walking about, recognized where she was. It was at Kwaexlth (Dundas Island) she was being kept. She did not see any canoe and she wondered where they were. She was very lonesome and she wanted to see her own people. She was thus weeping when her husband came to their sleeping place. "Why do you weep, my wife?" "I am lonesome to see my mother and father and my family".
"That is not difficult, look over teh waters and you can see your father's village from where you stand." the woman looked over accross the waters and seh saw her father's village. Then her husband said, "Soon I shall return you and your children and I shall become a permanent monster abode. I shall have my children pack me across the Kwanwac where I will be known as the Monster Kwanwac." Next day, the prince became a flat rock and his wife the princess carried him down adn place it on the back of her son who had became a land otter; and the girl also helped her brother, she too was an otter. They swam away with the large rock and landed at Kwanwac and put the stone down adn it became a large boulder and is still there.
Then the brother and sister otters, the children of the princess, came back for their mother. They told her, "You will cling close to us and although you may hear strange sounds do not look out, as then we wiill all be lost." the woman got onto the back of her son and daughter and they swam away with her. She heard strange sounds and she remembered not to look out and they landed safely not far from her village. She told her children, "You wait here until I go see if your grandfather is still alive." She went to the village and entered her father's house and when they saw her come in, they thought she was a ghost. She had been thought dead and the people were about to bathe themselves in urine when the woman spoke, "It is I and my two children are nearby, I will go for them and bring them here as I did not know whether you were alive." She had been gone many years. She brought her two children.
There was at this time a famine in the land and there was very little food and everymorning while the people slept, the two children of the princess would go out and bring in salmon and halibut and seals and once they brought two whales. Their grandfather was very wealthy thus they became very wealthy and they had plenty. Their father who always helped them is still at Kwanwac. The mother died and when she did the two children went away and they were never seen anymore. The people knew that they were supernatural beings and always when their grandfather had seals and sea lions brought below his house, he knew these were from his grandchildren.
JeanRuss 18-21, F 2 Responses 3 May 1, 2012