Further Adventures of Eut-le-ten

The Two Blind Squaws

First, Eut-le-ten saw two blind and ancient squaws preparing simple food for their repast, and when it was all ready they began to help each other to the food, not hearing Eut-le-ten who quietly watched until impelled by thoughts of mischief or of jest, took the food away from them.

Soon each old squaw accused the other of taking all the food and giving none, and angrily they talked and quarrelled much, each upbraiding the other for a misdeed of which neither was guilty, while Eut-le-ten stood by enjoying their discomfiture. Presently he spoke however, and at the sound of his young voice they stopped their noise, and ceased to wrangle more about the food. Instead they asked him to tell from whence he came, and who he was, and what had brought him there.

"I am a being from the lower world, and I have come to ask from Nas-nas-shup, the love of one, of whose great charms long tales are told among the young men of the world below." Thus Eut-le-ten answered the questions put by the old squaws, and when they heard his words, they were alarmed, and warned him to desist from his bold quest which was full of peril, as many men had found before, for none had yet returned who dared essay to win the daughter of Nas-nas-shup. Eut-le-ten would not be turned away from his resolve by any craven fear of perils or of dire calamity. Had he not killed the witch E-ish-so-oolth, and also her much dreaded chehah man? But before he left to go upon his quest, he asked the aged squaws what he could do to make amends for playing tricks at their expense.

"Oh stranger, give us sight, that we may see," they said, "for we have long been blind."

Eut-le-ten then bored a little hole into each eye of both the ancient squaws, and when they saw the pure white light of day after their long darkness, they were overjoyed, and thanking Eut-le-ten, they told to him the secrets of the house of Nas-nas-shup. They gave him charms to overcome the fire, in which he would be made to stand alone, and last, a stone of wondrous power to break the spikes which were set round the resting place of her he sought to win.

Next: The Four Terrors Guarding the House of Nas-nas-shup

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