Tiger wakes cold and hurting finding himself laying on river rocks. The hut and garden vanished, the Miller gone. Tiger alone licks his paw and growls about his hurts. The Tiger climbs the roughed mountains slowly for his paw aches horribly. He limps along on three legs until he finds a cave. Humiliated, vanity and revenge, greed smothered and selfish banished. He will be lucky to live three weeks without food and water.
Tiger finds a cave in the sun while cool inside. Sitting in the entry, he could watch the animals and trees. No one talks or notices to him. Several days go by, Tiger alone and ready for his death. Then Tiger watches hiking up along the path a young woman, who looked exactly like Bear Maiden, the one that married the Heavenly Prince. She watches Tiger as she sneaks slowly by as if he would pounce on her.
If his paw did not hurt, he would eat her. She resembles the Bear Maiden with dark hair, dark eyes, and the same sturdy build. Tiger hasn't heard her voice. The maiden stops and sits on a rock far away and studied him while he observed her.
Later that evening the maiden comes again; she stands way down the path from his cave and holds up a bowl. Tiger sniffs the raw meat, yummy delicious meat. The maiden is afraid to come up forward; she leaves the bow on the ground. Tiger waits until she is out of sight and smell and slowly with great pain crawls to the bowl and eats. Maybe he will have time to heal his paw
Every day for a week, then two or three weeks for a long time, the maiden brings either a big chunk of meat and bowls of rice with water. Each day she inches closer and closer. Tiger let her not growling, or showing his teeth; until the maiden looks him in the eyes. She is not afraid. Tiger never twitched his tail, he never raised paws, and he did not growl; he is grateful for the food.
One day she brings a great big piece of meat; Tiger chews on it very quietly, not too greedy, not too vain. The maiden speaks, "My husband was in the great wars; he was a general when my Father died. My Father gave me the pottery shops from my Grandmother, Bear Maiden."
Tiger stops his chewing, and glances at the maiden's face; She is the granddaughter of Maiden Bear? He does not move only listens.
"The clay deposits were to care for my family. I had many studios. That this time there were more battles and my husband did not come home to help me with the studio or the children. I let the studios go one by one and lost the clay deposits; so I had money to attend him, who is angry, moody and cruel to us." The maiden looks into the tree; tears covered her eyes.
Tiger moves his head wanting to hear more.
The maiden says, "I have to go. I'll come back tomorrow with another bowl of meat and rice. Tiger, your paw heals."
She hiked down the mountain. Tiger licked his hurt paw; he knew it was so much better. He walks to the creed for his water, thinking so this is a cub of the bear.
Again the cub comes the next evening with a nice chunk of meat and rice, which she sits down beside Tiger. "While you heal my husbands getting better when he first came, I bitched at him and gripped at him. I scolded he had to help me. He did nothing, but regretting and pouting. He had to do something now we lost my Grandmother's gift. You know what he did; he pushed my meals away and left and sat on a rock. Every day, he sits on a rock. That first time you saw me, I went to talk to the shaman that lives up on the top of the mountain."
Tiger studies the maiden and makes a small growl; he reaches his head and rubs her arm. He wants her to pet and scratch him. The maiden does saying, "You're one big cat, tremendously huge that could eat me."
Curiously, Tiger looked at the maiden. He was a cat, the King of the Beasts of the ruled the Forests and the Guard of the West in the Heavens and honored by Shiva.
Stroking Tiger, the maiden says, "You are a Royal beast from the Heavens, Grandmother talked of a grand Tiger, and the Tiger Spirit of the West. No, you are not that old."
Tiger desires to hear more about himself, only not able to speak to the maiden his shamanistic magic gone because of his evil revenge.
The maiden continues, "So you saw me walk up the hill. I went to the Shaman about my husband and his lack of love for us. The Shaman told me that for my husband to heal I would have to get a whisker from a real tiger."
At that, the maiden scrutinizes Tiger with respect. "Tiger I know you're powerful, as well I know you can walk if you want to. I know you can eat me if you wanted to but we're friends. You've healed, you're more gentle, kind, and loving. I need one thing from you one tiny thing."
Tiger detects a plea in her eyes and voice, "I need one whisker?"
Tiger puzzled observes the maiden. "Yes, one whisker. The shaman said if I got a whisker from a live tiger he could mix a potion that would cheer my husband, so he wanted to be with us.
With that tiger tilted his head back very gently, very worldly, very pleasingly and the young maiden cut a whisker with her knife.
"Tiger, I'll be back. I'll tell you what happened," says the maiden, as she runs up the mountain path. Very soon the maiden comes back with crying and approaches Tiger who waits.
"Tiger, I'll tell you in a minute. She sits over on a big rock and cries and sweeps. Tiger stands and walks to the big rock and maiden. He rubs up against her, and she puts her arm around him.
"That shaman took your whisker and threw it in the fired, saying I didn't need a potion. If I could approach a beastly tiger, if I could be kind and patient, if I could tame a tiger, that is huge, greedy, furious, a violent animal."
Tiger conveys a sympathetic look. Yes, he could be those evil things and was. Yes, he is affectionate, he is loyal any does respect and honor for those who respect and honor him.
"The shaman said I could heal my husband." The maiden stands, "I'll be back, don't go anywhere. I'll bring you some more meat."
Returned the next day the maiden had the bowl of food meat. "Tiger, I'll feed you as long as needed, now not as often. I'm tending to my husband not pushing. I'm kind to him and patient. I tell him I love him. His children are sweet to him with hugs. This work, as with you. He recognizes at us."
About a week later, maybe two or three weeks, Tiger having a good life in his cave saw the young maiden with her husband. She came up to the cave. Tiger let her hug and rub him. He liked this raising his head for more. The husband stands back Tiger can smell his fear. Tiger looks at the healed husband and licks his healed paw. Tiger admires at the maiden, and he gives a respect growl.
"I know you like it here, Tiger. My husband has a commission to tend the Maple Forest. We will make lacquer boxes. Come with us."
Tiger laid down and rested his head on his healed paw.
"Tiger, if you want, visit us. We will be there. I'll recognize you by your face markings and the love I have for you. Tiger, be careful, very careful, and watchful for men who hunt you."
With that said, Tiger studied the maiden and her husband as they walk together down the mountain much like the Heavenly Prince and the Bear Maiden. She is the grand cub of the Bear Maiden as caring and loving, loyal, full of life and trusting.
A few days later sitting in a Sacred Pine tree, Tiger watches their carts loaded and with three cubs happy and merrily walking down the road. The maiden's cubs wave to Tiger. The Maple Grove is close to the Palace of the Heavenly Prince. He will visit; in the meantime, Tiger stretches out on a high branch of the Pine and takes a nap in the warm sun.
Check SOURCES at the Bibliography for 'Hurt, Angry Tiger':
© This version 'Hurt, Angry Tiger' is mine as told at the Asian Art Museum in the Korean Gallery, 2002 -2012.
There are only 2,000 Tigers left in our world and causes great sadness for this mightiest of earthly beasts! ~~~~~~~~~~ from millions.
😋 I Hoped you enjoy the segue of the stories about Tiger as a character in Korean History more than 4,500 years ago. Please leave a ⭐️ vote and a comment to make telling better.
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ASIAN STORIESHistorical Fiction
Daily in April will be posted a written story: 'How Dragons Shaped China'; the Hindu Ramayana from SITA's point of view; and from Korea, 'Taming of Tiger'; from my days of telling verbal stories at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco. These tradi...