Long ago a caribou was standing in a little lake. The sun had forced him to it. Since it was hot in early spring, the mosquitoes were bothering him. While the heat held him there, a little fish swam up to him. "What's the matter with you?" it said to the caribou, laughing.
"When it's really hot, the mosquitoes bother me, so I'm not in very good shape."
"From what you say, your antlers are not much use to you. If you were a fish like me, things wouldn't be so bad for you now."
At this the caribou, who was unhappy in the first place, became even angrier at what was said to him. While the little fish was still in the water, he thrust his antlers down. Saying, "This is what I have antlers for, you know!" He took off. Up on the mountain where he figured it was hot, he carried the little fish, still alive, upon his antlers, and walked upward. Where he figured it was really hot, he lay down, and since there were no mosquitoes up there, he was quite comfortable. A breeze always blows on high mountains, so that there are no mosquitoes. "Now is everything well for you?" he asked the fish. "This is the reason I have antlers, be sure!" he said, and laughed hard.
"Now indeed I know why you have antlers. I won't laugh at you again. Put me back in the water."
"I have put you there to dry; why should I put you back in the water?" he said, and settled back down comfortably.
"Have pity on me! I fear my poor children will die; put me back in the water!" But the caribou paid no attention to what he said. "If you don't put me back in the water, you're really going to be in trouble!" he told the caribou. Saying, "Let it rain, let it rain," he began to sing. While he was still singing, it began to rain hard. "Let it rain still more!" he said, and it began to rain even more. Then, as it rained very much, all the rivers rose and flooded. "Now put me back in the water," said the fish, but the caribou didn't answer him. Meanwhile, it continued to pour. Later on, the sun did not even appear, as it happened. During the dark of night the water came down in sheets. All the valleys eventually filled up with water. At first the caribou was not afraid, but after a while he started feeling nervous and climbed up higher. Though he kept going higher every now and then, the water kept rising up to him before he knew it. He ascended a mountain which he thought reached right up to the sky, but still the water rose up to him. Finally all the very highest mountains disappeared. The caribou just started off to one side, swimming, but he soon drowned. "You are bad with your antlers, but I can be that way too; that's how I am."