close to him, he changed and became a crown-bird. He too, the pursuer, changed and became a marabou. They went on and on (thus). They arose, they escaped, and were approaching Auta's town. When he saw that he (seeker of magic) had almost caught him, he changed and became a shallala}^ He too, the pursuer, became a chada. Then they came and perched on the tree (under) which Auta's brothers were (playing) draughts. Now (see) they had alighted together. There was the fugitive, there was the one (who) wanted to catch him, so he Auta changed and became a draught, and fell down to where his brothers were playing.^* He too, the pursuer, changed and became a man, and said to the brothers, — " Give me my draught ! " Then they said, — "Ah, whence have you brought a draught?" Then he said, — "Ah, you count indeed and you will see that there is (a certain) one too many." So they counted and said, — "Truly, see there is one too many. Come and take (it) yourself." ^^ He put out his hand to take it, when the draught became a scorpion and stung him. Then he (seeker of magic) changed (into) a snake, and was going to swallow the scorpion. As he was about to swallow him, he (the scorpion) became a large speckled snake. When the snake saw that the large speckled snake was too big for him, and he was not able to swallow (him), he (simply) looked (at it). Then he, Auta, who had changed into the large speckled snake, said, — " Here, let us arise and become men." They arose and became men, and then Auta said, — " Is it on account of the twelve slaves whom I took from (in the place of) your master (the father of your house) that you are following me ? " Then he (seeker of magic) said, — "Well, I am living with the chief. He knows I seek magic. Now, shall another magician come and take his property?" He (seeker of magic) said, — "Now, if I had not followed you, the chief would have said I (was) a traitor. That is what caused me to follow you." Auta said, — "Very well. Start and go home." He said, — " Oh no, I do (shall) not know
^^ Said to be a large bird ; also challala. Why the pursuer should change into a small bird is not clear. Perhaps the shallala is really even smaller.
^^/.£., in the hollowed board.
15 Or "Take your thing." Teffi abinka means "Go away with your business," or something like that.