The children cried for honey, and the mothers took little bark baskets into the woods to search for the sweet food. But they returned with empty baskets.
Once there was a flood over all the world. ‘Save us, Manabozho,’ cried the Ox. The Beaver and the Moose and the tricky Raccoon cried for help; so did the Elk and the Wolf, the Fox and the Hopper, and all the rest.
Manabozho heard how the king of the fishes was treating the little fishes. He sent him word that he was to stop, but Me-she-nah-ma-gwai did not obey. ‘Very well,’ said Manabozho; ‘I shall punish this ruler.’
There was silence for several moments, then the Winter Manito laid aside his scepter of ice and said, ‘Thou art welcome.’
The sea serpents were angry with Manabozho because he had killed the king of the fishes. So they determined to have revenge on him.
Just then Ma-Ma, the large Woodpecker, lighted on a tree, and said to the Rabbit: ‘Manabozho, there is only one place where you can hurt the Shining Magician. That is on the crown of his head.’
The Hoopoes decided the other birds were jealous and, rather flattered, gathered round the pools so that they could admire themselves in the water.
One day the Ground Hog and the Badger and the Mole came to the Great White Rabbit. ‘Manabozho,’ they said, ‘we keep making burrows for ourselves in the ground, and hiding there away from the Sun. Why is this?’
The Gray Wolf said: ‘Paupukewis, try to remember that it is not a long tail which makes a good hunter.’
Father Badger persisted that it was more blessed to give than to keep for one's self and that food belonged to all.
Paupukewis was so tricky himself that he thought the old Gray Wolf was going to hurt him in some way. So he kept one eye uncovered, and watched.
As the weather grew colder, many of the animals suffered greatly. But the pine trees and the cedars did not mind the cold. ‘Why are they so happy when we feel so uncomfortable?’ asked the animals. ‘Because they have the secret of fire,’ answered Manabozho. ‘If you can get it from them, you will be warm.’
The animals all said they were willing to follow and help Ojeeb, and begged him to tell them his plan.
Then it was that the gods, fearful for their safety and for the life of every beautiful thing, assembled on the bed of the tranquil River of Heaven whose waters had been dried up.