Once upon a time, four monsters lived on the
earth. They were horrible monsters. They loved to catch the People and
eat them. This did not make them very popular with the People.
Whenever the monsters approached, all the People ran away.
One night, a monster stomped up to the wickiup of
Child of Water and his mother. Before his mother could stop him, Child
of Water challenged the monster to a contest.
"Here are the rules," said Child of
Water. He carefully explained that he would be on one side and the
monster would be on the other. Both sides would have a chance to shoot
four arrows at each other, at the same time. Whichever killed the
other first would get all the food. "Do you accept these rules
and promise to obey them?" chanted Child of Water, in the way of
the people. Child of Water was only a very small boy. But he knew the
chant was binding. It was a promise that must be kept.
"I'll play your silly game," laughed
the monster. "First I'll shoot you full of arrows. Then I'll eat
you, your mother, and all your food!" Just thinking about this
satisfying treat had the monster smacking his lips hungrily.
As both fighters took their positions, Child of
Water leaned down and picked up a turquoise blue rock. The rock was a
gift from the gods, a thing of protection. But Child of Water did not
know that. While he was looking at his rock, the monster quickly shot
four arrows at Child of Water. This was against the rules, but the
monster did not care. Much to his surprise, all the monster's arrows
missed Child of Water. Quickly, before the monster could do anything
else against the rules, Child of Water shot an arrow at the monster.
The arrow pierced the monster's heart and killed him dead.
By then, everyone had gathered around. It was
obvious that the Devil Dancers were among them. What a noise they made
that night rejoicing!
The next day, Child of Water's mother bore a hole
in that lucky blue rock. She strung it into a necklace. Ever after,
Child of Water wore the blue rock around his neck for love and luck.
Over time, Child of Water found many blue rocks. He made a wonderful
necklace for his mother, to keep her safe as well.
As time went on, and as Child of Water grew
taller, each monster came to challenge him. Each time, wearing his
lucky blue rock, each monster's arrows missed Child of Water. But
Child of Water's arrows killed each monster, every time, until all the
monsters were gone.
As all Apache children know, it is a wise thing
to hunt for turquoise blue rocks. If you find one, you too might
find yourself some luck.