The Ice King whirled about and screamed, “I go now, but I shall come again. Look for me next winter. I will show you then which of us is the stronger.”
The Indian hunted and fished all summer, but when autumn was near he began to think of the threat of the Ice King. “He will keep his word,” said the Indian, “and I must get ready to fight him.”
The Indian placed his wigwam among the trees, where it was well sheltered from the winds. Near it he heaped up a large pile of dry wood. Then he caught some large fish and tried out their fat so that he might have plenty of oil. He made thick clothes for himself out of the skins of animals. During the summer he had gathered much wild rice, and now he dried meat. While he was getting ready, the weather was becoming colder.
At last all was done, and the Indian said, as he sat by his blazing fire, “Let the Ice King come. I am ready for him.”
That night the Ice King froze the little pools of water. After a few days the lakes and rivers were frozen. It was very cold.
One night when the Indian was sitting by his fire, the Ice King stepped to the door of the wigwam. He walked boldly to the fire and sat down opposite the Indian.
How cold the Ice King’s breath felt! It nearly put out the fire. The poor Indian shivered, but he said to himself, “The Ice King shall not conquer me.” He jumped up and threw dry wood on the fire. Then he poured oil upon the wood. The fire blazed up. The Indian put on more wood and more oil. The fire roared and crackled.
The Ice King began to feel too warm. He moved back a little way. The fire became hotter. The Ice King moved farther back. He began to sweat and to grow smaller and weaker. Then he cried out, “My friend, I am conquered. Let me go! Oh, let me go!”
The Indian arose and pushed the fire back from the Ice King. Then he took his trembling hand, lifted him up, and led him to the door of the wigwam.
As the Ice King passed out he said, “You have conquered me twice. You shall always be my master.”
Ever since that time men have been masters of the Ice King. When his cold breath blows, they make the fires warmer and their clothing thicker. [Footnote: Adapted from “The Ice Man” in Legends of the MicMacs, published by S. T. Rand; permission to use given by Helen S. Webster, owner of copyright.]
“Good-by, little one,” said Mrs. White Paw, the goat, to her daughter.
“Do not go, mother, I am afraid to stay here alone,” cried little Nanny.
“But I must get my dinner or you will have no milk for your supper,” said her mother.
“There is nothing to fear but the prowling wolf. Bar the door when I am gone; then he can not get in. Do not open the door unless you hear this password, ‘Cursed be the wolf and all his race!’”