Forgot your password?  

Resources for students & teachers

James Oliver Curwood
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 197 pages of information about Kazan.
in his effort to get a death-hold on Broken Tooth, Kazan swung like a flash to the right.  The young beavers had not moved.  Astonished and frightened at what they had seen, they stood as if stupefied.  Not until they saw Kazan tearing toward them did they awaken to action.  Three of them reached the water.  The fourth and fifth—­baby beavers not more than three months old—­were too late.  With a single snap of his jaw Kazan broke the hack of one.  The other he pinned down by the throat and shook as a terrier shakes a rat.  When Gray Wolf trotted down to him both of the little beavers were dead.  She sniffed at their soft little bodies and whined.  Perhaps the baby creatures reminded her of runaway Ba-ree, her own baby, for there was a note of longing in her whine as she nosed them.  It was the mother whine.

But if Gray Wolf had visions of her own Kazan understood nothing of them.  He had killed two of the creatures that had dared to invade their home.  To the little beavers he had been as merciless as the gray lynx that had murdered Gray Wolf’s first children on the top of the Sun Rock.  Now that he had sunk his teeth into the flesh of his enemies his blood was filled with a frenzied desire to kill.  He raved along the edge of the pond, snarling at the uneasy water under which Broken Tooth had disappeared.  All of the beavers had taken refuge in the pond, and its surface was heaving with the passing of many bodies beneath.  Kazan came to the end of the dam.  This was new.  Instinctively he knew that it was the work of Broken Tooth and his tribe and for a few moments he tore fiercely at the matted sticks and limbs.  Suddenly there was an upheaval of water close to the dam, fifty feet out from the bank, and Broken Tooth’s big gray head appeared.  For a tense half minute Broken Tooth and Kazan measured each other at that distance.  Then Broken Tooth drew his wet shining body out of the water to the top of the dam, and squatted flat, facing Kazan.  The old patriarch was alone.  Not another beaver had shown himself.

The surface of the pond had now become quiet.  Vainly Kazan tried to discover a footing that would allow him to reach the watchful invader.  But between the solid wall of the dam and the bank there was a tangled framework through which the water rushed with some violence.  Three times Kazan fought to work his way through that tangle, and three times his efforts ended in sudden plunges into the water.  All this time Broken Tooth did not move.  When at last Kazan gave up the attack the old engineer slipped over the edge of the dam and disappeared under the water.  He had learned that Kazan, like the lynx, could not fight water and he spread the news among the members of his colony.

Follow Us on Facebook