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Native American Legends

Coyote and the Fawns

A Sia Legend

One day when he was traveling around, Coyote met a deer with two fawns. The fawns were beautifully spotted, and he said to the deer, "How did you paint your children? They are so beautiful!"

Deer replied, "I painted them with fire from the cedar."

"And how did you do the work?" asked Coyote.

"I put my children into a cave and built a fire of cedar in front of it.

Every time a spark flew from the fire it struck my children, making a beautiful spot."

"Oh," said Coyote, "I will do the same thing. Then I will make my children beautiful."

He hurried to his house and put his children in a cave. Then he built a fire of cedar in front of it and stood off to watch the fire. But the children cried because the fire was very hot. Coyote kept calling to them not to cry because they would be beautiful like the deer.

After a time the crying ceased and Coyote was pleased. But when the fire died down, he found they were burned to death. Coyote expected to find them beautiful, but instead they were dead.

Then he was enraged with the deer and ran away to hunt her, but he could not find her anywhere. He was much distressed to think the deer had fooled him so easily.

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