37. The Girl and the Water Spirit
A girl went after water.
She arrived at the water hole.
She had started to fill the water bag with water.
Then something had pulled her into the water.1
Then they searched for her in vain.
And her grandmother, weeping, walked about near the water.
Then the girl came out to her from inside the water.
And some man stood next to her.
Then the girl spoke thus to her:
"Please go home, my grandmother.she said to her.
Do not cry.
Tell my father [and] mother.
All of you come back here tomorrow."
Then, the next day, they came back there.
Then, from inside the water, she came out to them again.
And the man also came out next to her.
"I am happy.
I am living with good people.
For this reason, I do not wish to return to you.
In spite of that, you stay in the vicinity of this mountain.
Then I will help you.
Should you be hungry at any time, I will give you deer.
Nothing can harm you.
Therefore, go back now.
I do not wish to go back among you but I do live with you."
The springs and water courses are believed by the Chiricahua to be inhabited by supernaturals who control them
and are responsible for death by drowning. They are reputed to pull under the water those who anger or insult
them. But supernatural power and many benefits can be secured from them also