Gateway to the Classics: The Red Indian Fairy Book by Frances Jenkins Olcott
The Red Indian Fairy Book by  Frances Jenkins Olcott



As for little Star-Boy, soon after his mother died, his grandparents died too, and he was left alone, poor and neglected. And though he was very beautiful of form, his face was disfigured by a long and ugly scar. So the people called him Scar-Face.

As he grew older, the scar showed more plainly, and the people of the camp laughed at him, and mistreated him in every way. But he was brave of heart, and, when he became a man, he was a great hunter.

Now, the Chief of his tribe had a lovely daughter, and every young man who saw her, wished her for his lodge. But she was proud, and would marry no one. Scar-Face, too, loved her, but dared not tell her so, because he was ugly.

But one day he found her by the river, pulling rushes for baskets, and he drew near, and spoke. "I have no wealth or pemmican. I live by my bow and spear. Yet I love you. Will you dwell in my lodge and be my wife?"

Then the Chief's daughter laughed, and looked at his scar. "Yes," she said, "I will marry you—but not until you remove that scar from your face!"

Poor Scar-Face was greatly mortified by her unkind words, but his heart was hopeful, and he hastened away from the river. He went to the lodge of an old Medicine Woman, who dwelt far away on the broad green prairie. And he begged her to remove the scar from his face.

"That I may not do," said she, "for it was placed there by the Sun. He only can remove it."

"And how may I reach the abode of the Sun?" asked Scar-Face.

"Take these moccasins and pemmican," said the Old Medicine Woman, "and travel to the Big Sea Water. Sit down on its shore, and wait three days, then shall you learn how to reach the Sun's abode."

So Scar-Face thanked her for her kindness, and taking the pemmican, and putting on the moccasins, he hastened and crossed the trackless prairie. Day after day he climbed mountains, or passed through wide forests. At last he reached the Big Sea Water. He sat down on the shore, and waited three days, and on the third day, when the Sun was sinking below the distant edge of the Sea, he beheld a shining trail that led to the Sun's abode.

Scar-Face rose up rejoicing, and travelled along the trail, and soon found himself in the Sky Land, standing before the lodge of the Sun. All night he hid himself outside the lodge, and in the morning the Moon came home from wandering through the Sky, and the Sun left the lodge to light the Earth.

When the Sun saw Scar-Face, he did not know that the young man was his grandson. As he perceived that Scar-Face had come from the Earth Country, he was about to slay him with his burning rays. But the Moon pitied the youth, and urged her husband to spare his life.

Then Morning Star came forth from the lodge, and knew his son. He led him inside, and the Moon fed and clothed Scar-Face. And after that he lived happily with his father and grandparents in the shining lodge. And each day he hunted with Morning Star. But the Sun warned them both not to go near the Big Sea Water, for two monster birds dwelt there, who were waiting to kill Morning Star.

One day when Scar-Face and his father were hunting as usual, they forgot and drew near to the Big Sea Water. Then the two monster birds swooped down, uttering savage cries. They tried to kill Morning Star, but Scar-Face slew them both with his arrows, and so rescued his father.

Then the grateful Sun removed the scar from the young man's face, and placed two raven-plumes in his hair. Morning Star gave him a magic flute, the sweet song of which would win for Scar-Face the love of the Chief's daughter. After that the Sun sent him back to Earth along the trail of the Milky Way.

Scar-Face hastened to the camp of his people. He played on the magic flute; and the Chief's daughter heard its sweet song, and joyfully followed him. He took her with him to the shining lodge of the Sun in the distant Sky Land. And there each morning Scar-Face and Morning Star travel together through the Sky.

 Table of Contents  |  Index  |  Home  | Previous: The Star Bride  |  Next: Ahneah the Rose Flower
Copyright (c) 2005 - 2023   Yesterday's Classics, LLC. All Rights Reserved.