Posted by jinx on January 28, 1999 at 20:25:54:
A native boy runs to his father and tells him of two beautiful creatures he has seen passing on the road. He wants to catch one and keep it for a pet. His father asks him to describe the creatures, then says he will show the boy how to catch one, but they must hurry. They move to a spot farther down the road and hide in the undergrowth to intercept the creatures. Finally, they see one coming. The boy starts to move, but his father shushes him.
„We must wait for the second one,š he tells the boy. „That way the first one will keep on going down the road and never be the wiser.š
When the second creature comes into view, the old man starts to let out a thin stream of air. The air slips out and surrounds the creature like a web, tying it up into a tight ball of many colors.
„It is beautiful,š the boy breathes. He runs out to catch the creature and bring it home, but as he grasps it, only a shadow of it remains in his hands. The old man calls to him to hurry, and they return to their hut, the boy still carrying his shadow-creature, which now appears as a tightly-woven ball of many colors.
Gradually, other natives begin to appear in the village, carrying the same many-colored shadow-ball, but each ball grows a little fainter and a little smaller.
The boy asks his father why this is so. The old man answers, „This creature cannot be captured whole. Its magic would be more than one man or child could bear. But you have captured the first shadow, the one with the most power. Keep it and use it well.š
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