White Mountain Apache - Captured
One time some ba-tci were out on a war party looking for our people. They came up from near t'usila-'edilguj (Cutter Wash, just above Rice) and traveled north near where our people were living around tl'uk'a-gai (Fort Apache region). There the ba-tci saw a boy and girl gathering seeds together. They ran at them, but only caught the girl. The boy got away. The ba-tci took the girl back with them to t'usila (Cutter Wash).
The boy went to his home. Then he asked his mother to fix up enough food for two days. She cooked up a lot of old time food for him, seeds and other things and put them in a sack made of the skin of a small deer. Then he started off to that place where the ba-tci had caught the girl. From here he trailed them south, down to near t'usila-. He got there in the evening about dusk and went into the ba-tci camp. Here he met one old woman. He spoke with her.
"It looks as if no one was here, grandmother," he said. There were no ba-tci there but that old woman. The old woman said, "All the people have gone to the place where they are dancing." Then the boy said, "I have been out hunting all day and I am hungry." Now the old woman cooked some stew for him and he ate it. Then she gave him a good Mexican blanket, all striped in colors, for the night and told him to return it to her in the morning.
The boy left her and when he got out in the brush a way, he stripped, left his clothes there with the blanket, and only took his quiver on his back and his bow. Then he painted his body all over with white, and around his eyes he painted a black circle. This was so the ba-tci could not recognize him. Then he started off for the place where they were dancing. He could hear a drum over there and he went towards it. All the ba-tci were there. The boy stepped out and started to dance around by himself. The ba-tci, when they saw him painted up the way he was, started to holler. [When an individual shows off by dancing before a crowd, applause is voiced by shouts and calls of the spectators.] The boy kept right on dancing. Some of them said, "Oh, he is such and such a man," and they called a name. He kept right on dancing. At the end of the song he sat down and rested. Then he was dancing again. The ba-tci were talking among themselves and wondering who this was dancing there. He looked like a stranger all right. The boy kept looking around all the time and finally he saw her. A lot of people were there. Then he knew it was his girl for sure; she was his sweetheart. He took a little rock and wet it; then he threw it at the girl and hit her. The girl picked the stone up. "This stone is wet," she said. The boy came near and whispered to her, "This is me, here, my cross-cousin." [Marriage with a distantly related cross-cousin was very frequent.] The girl said, "You can't do anything to help me; they keep me tied with a rope all the time and at night they sleep on the other end of it so I won't get away." The boy took his knife and threw it to the girl. "Here is my knife," he said. Then the boy told her, "When you cut the rope go out in the brush and hide there and wait for me, way over at that place." The girl cut the rope and threw the knife back to the boy who stuck it in his belt and started to dance again.
Then the ba-tci said among themselves, "That man is not one of us." They were getting ready to take him. He sung for a little while and then he sneaked off in the brush to the place the girl was waiting for him. He told her to go ahead, and he ran back to where they were dancing again, which he should not have done. There he shot one arrow at the ba-tci. They hollered, "That man who was dancing with us doesn't belong here at all," and everyone scattered from the dancing place. The boy ran back to the girl and they started off for home together.
They traveled up to the northeast as fast as they could. Just before they got to tse-na-dje-he [The name for a shrine made of piled up rocks. It is also a place name in this tale.] the girl gave out. But they managed to get to tse-na-dje-he all right. Here they cut some poles and laid them against tse-na-dje-he and then laid more rocks over the poles. They crawled in under and hid there. The ba-tci were following them from where they had run away. The boy and girl sat in that place and made a prayer to tse-na-dje-he. Pretty soon the ba-tci came up. They had trailed the two this far, but could not find the tracks any further. They were looking all around for the tracks, in the canyon and on the ridge. There was a whole crowd of them gathered there on the trail. Some of the ba-tci boys started to sing. They sang that they were lonesome for the girl who had gone away. "You are gone away now back to your home," [A love song.] they sang. The girl and boy inside tse-na-dje-he were holding up one of the poles, and the girl started to shake this now so that one end of the pole shook a little. The ba-tci said, "That girl is far away now so we might as well go on home." They started back. As soon as they were gone, the boy and girl crawled out and started on their way again.
The two finally got back to where their people were living. Then the other people said, "You didn't go down there to get that girl for nothing. You might just as well marry her now." The boy said, "I never had it in my mind to marry this girl. I just brought her back because she looks nice and she always talked well with me. I don't want to hear you people talking that way any more." This way the boy did not marry that girl.
Told by Francis Drake
[This story usually follows 'How Gila Monster Got His Name.']
Taken from Myths and Tales of the White Mountain Apache by Grenville Goodwin, 1934
Long ago they say. There were 'inda [A term for White People at present, but originally meaning enemy. It is still used in the latter way as in this tale and sometimes used to refer to inhabitants of prehistoric ruins.] living at nit'egutci (old San Carlos), lots of them. Then the 'inda started off from where they lived. Then the 'inda came to Dewey Flats, and they lived there. This way there are still the remains of their houses at Dewey Flats to this day. You can still see where there was a great house at that place, and this biggest house belonged to their chief. Then one time the 'inda started off from that place and went northward. They were headed north to where our people were living at that time. With our people was living one good looking young man. There was also a beautiful and good girl. This boy and girl were great friends together.
The 'inda came there and surrounded our people and tried to get them. But the people all scattered out in the brush and got away safely. Only one girl got caught and this was the good looking one who was the friend of the boy. Then the 'inda started off with this girl to kinte-ldas'an (broad houses standing, Dewey Flats). [These are the large group of prehistoric ruins at Dewey Flats, on the Gila river. The name of the place refers to the ruins.]
After the 'inda had gone, all the people came together again and only that one girl was missing. The boy who was her friend felt very badly about this, so he told his mother, "Grind up some corn for me. I am going on a journey. Tie the corn meal up in a package." Then his mother did as he said, and in the morning he put the corn meal in his pouch and started off. When he got near Dewey Flats he sat down on the opposite side of the river and watched. He could see the 'inda on the other side of the river and they were dancing.
Then he got close to where they were dancing and made ready for what he was going to do. He took some die-c (a white earth paint) and painted it all over his face. Then he tied his hair up on the top of his head in a knot with some grass. Now he took his quiver with the arrows in it and stuck it in his belt on one side and on the other side he put his bow.
It was dark now and he crossed over to where the 'inda were. There were lots of them there, lined up round the fire where the dancing was going on. The boy went close to them. In the firelight they saw him and because it was dark they thought he was one of them. There was one girl dancing there and it was the girl who had been captured. This was why the boy had come to that place, so that he might help the girl. The 'inda when they saw him, said, "Make way for him; there he is coming now; let him dance." It was a custom with these 'inda for one man to go out and dance by himself, and that was why they said to make room for the boy.
That girl was standing right behind where he was dancing, with her hands tied behind her to a stake. Now the boy who was dancing had a knife of obsidian with him in his moccasins. The captured girl was a good girl, with a good dress on. There were jingles on the dress. The boy started to dance and now he sang a song: "Open up, open up, make room," he sang in his song. He kept on dancing round about and danced in front of the chief's house, then he danced close to the chief. He had not yet seen the girl that he was looking for and that was why he was dancing around looking for her. He wondered where she could be. Then as he was dancing he came close to the girl and saw her. As he danced he said to her, "Are you the one?" but he was careful not to look at her. The girl heard him and said; "I am the one." Then while he was still dancing he said to her; "There is room for you to get away while I keep on dancing." But the girl told him, "I am tied up here. How can I run away ?" So he threw the obsidian knife to her and told her; "Cut the rope and when I dance back you start to run away." He said this because he had it in his mind to shoot the 'inda chief who was standing there.
Then the girl said, "I have cut the rope off all right." All this time the two had been careful not to let the 'inda see that they were talking together, so the boy kept on dancing. Then the boy said to the girl, "All right, come on and follow me." He turned and shot the 'inda chief with his bow and arrow. The rest of the 'inda got scared and ran away. Then the two started to run for the river and got across it. The 'inda chased after them with torches in their hands, but the two got away. After they had gone a way the girl said, "I am tired because I have these heavy clothes on." So the boy told her to take them off and she did. This way they were able to travel better. The 'inda followed them till they lost their tracks, and then they gave up and went back to their home.
All the relatives of the girl who had been captured, thought she had been killed by the 'inda and they were crying and mourning for her. Then the boy and the girl got close to their home again, after their escape. The boy told the girl to go straight back to her home and this way she returned to her relatives safely. All the girl's relatives were very glad that she was back again. Then her father and mother talked about what had happened, and that boy. They thought that now the boy had brought her back, he would marry the girl and so they went to the boy's camp to get him. But when they got there the boy said, "No, I am not going to marry her."
Maybe the 'inda who captured the girl were ba-tci. 
1 This sentence was in answer to a question as to whether the Apaches Mansos were involved or not. This tale together with the stories of "Grasshopper Loses His Leg," "How Gila Monster Got His Name," and the part in the creation myth told by Bane Tithia about the binda-yeiya-ni fleeing southward to nifegotci-and na-ye'nezyane taking refuge under Turtle's shell form a closely associated group of mythical events. In them are concentrated most of the few allusions in White Mountain mythology to prehistoric peoples and ruins. In one tale at least, the Mexicans and Apaches Mansos are described as the inhabitants of prehistoric ruins. There is possibly some confusion here of those two peoples and prehistoric enemies of some kind.
Told by Bane Tithla.
Submitted By Wolf Walker