As a sparkling reptile rushed against a stranger swimming in a pond in the middle of a marshland in the Pal-ul-don border region, it seemed to the man that this must indeed have been the vicious end of a tricky and perpetually dangerous journey.
Although his chances of survival seemed slim and hope diminished, he still did not intend to throw it in without resistance. He grabbed his knife and waited for the attacking reptile. The beast resembled nothing of the living thing he had seen before, though in a few respects it was possibly more of a crocodile than anything else he knew.
As this horrible surviving representative of some ancient and extinct species ran away from him with his jaws wide open, the man suddenly realized perfectly how futile it was to try to stop this mindless rush or a small knife to pierce the leather armor. The creature was now almost grabbing him, and whatever defense he was thinking, he had to make an immediate decision. In the next blink of an eye, there seemed to be only one option for striking death, and he chose this almost in the same way as the great reptile leaned directly over him.
Greedily like a seal, he plunged his head above that invading body and at the same time turned his back to push his knife to the soft, cold surface of the weasel body, a shaky reptilian momentum quickly taking it over him; and then, with strong pulls, he swam beneath the surface a dozen feet before rising. As he glanced, he saw a resolved monster meandering wildly in pain and rage on the surface of the water behind him. It twisted in death cramps, judging that it was not trying to chase him. And with the screaming glow of the dying ghost, the man finally reached the other side of the water’s back, again to undertake an almost superhuman budding, the same thing over the last slurry that separated him from Pal-ul-don’s firm crust.
It took more than two hours for him to drag his now exhausted body in a tough, stinking mud, but eventually, rancid and starving, he dragged himself into a hollow soft grass. A hundred yards away was a river that, kneeling down from distant mountains, emptied into a swamp, and after a short rest he went to the brink of it, sought the Pacific backwater, took a bath, and washed mud and slime from his weapons, equipment, and loincloth. Another hour was spent in the hot sun, wiping, polishing, and oiling the enfield, though little but haylocks were available to dry it. It was evening before he had verified that his precious weapon had been secured from the harmful effects of soiling and moisture, and then he got up and went again to look for traces,
Would he rediscover a trail that, having led him into the swamp, had disappeared there from his trained senses as well? Unless he rediscovered it on this side of an almost impenetrable barrier, he had to consider his long hike to be fruitless. And so he searched along the moss-covered border of the standing water for signs of an old path that would have been invisible to your eyes or mine, even if we had immediately followed his author with his hocks.
* * * * *
Stepping into the graffiti, Tarzan imitated as closely as he could remember Tor-o-don’s method and appearance, but until the blink of an eye when he stood next to such a huge predator giant, he still understood his fate as the creature gave no sign, threatening, or anything else. It just stood there, watching him with his cold reptile eyes, and then Tarzan raised his wand and commanded the “vhi-uu!” fluttered the griffinly across his face.
The creature glanced aside at his side, outright reaching him, and then turned away quite as if he were under the patronage of Tor-o-don. Turning behind it as if he had seen the Primitive man run, Tarza ran up along his wide tail, sat on the back ridge, and again, imitating Tor-o-don, would pound it with the sharpened tip of his wand. Thus, encouraging it forward and directing it with blows from both sides, he caused it to step down the gorge towards the valley.
The first thing in his mind had just been to find out if he was in any way able to subjugate those big monsters to his will, realizing that this possibility was based on his only hope of escaping his captors soon. But once sitting on the back of an unsurpassed knight, the ape felt a new leap; it reminded him of the day of his childhood, when he had first crouched the elephant Tantor on his broad head, and this, together with that sense of domination that had always been a delicacy for the ruler of the jungle, made him decide to put his newly acquired power into useful practice.
Pan-at-li, of course, had already gotten to safety or derailed. At least he could no longer do any service to the girl, while below the Kor-ul-gryf was the soft-green valley of A-lur, the City of Light, which had been his aspiration and goal since he had viewed it from the shoulder of the Pastar-ul-pull.
Whether its shimmering walls kept the secret of his lost spouse, he could not even guess; but if Jane lived at all within the borders of Pal-ul-don, she must have been in the care of the Hondons, because the black men of this forgotten world did not take prisoners. And so he would go to A-luri, and how more effectively than on the back of this nook and the terrible giant hand so reverently crippled by the races of Pal-ul-don?
The region through which he traveled shone with the rampant beauty of tropical vegetables. Thick, succulent grass grew high on both sides of the trail, and in between was an open park-like forest or a small sky of dense jungle, where trees curved over the road and tentacle vines hung in thick loops from branch to branch.
At other times, it was difficult for a monkey man to get his restless leader to obey, but in the end, however, it was always sufficiently afraid of a relatively gentle swarm of squabbles and became obedient. Late in the evening, as they approached the confluence of the river they were watching with another one, apparently flowing from near Kor-ul, the monkey spotted a small number of Hodons on the opposite hill as they emerged from the little jungle thicket. At the same time, they saw him and his huge horse. At Kotva, they stood with their eyes in great amazement, and then, at the behest of their master, turned to the shelter of the nearby forest.
The monkey man only saw them as soon as possible, but still managed to notice that they were accompanied by waz-dons, no doubt prisoners taken on a patrol trip to such a village in Waz-don, of which Ta-den and Om-at had told him.
Hearing their hustle and bustle, Gryf had moaned frighteningly and set out to chase, even though there was a river in between; but by whispering and whispering fiercely, Tarzan had managed to steer the animal back on the path, though it was then for a long time juro and even more laborious to control.
As the sun set near the peaks of Western Hill Law, it became clear to Tarzan that his intention to appear in A-luri on the back of a gryph could certainly not materialize, for the stubbornness of the great creature reached every moment, no doubt because its wide stomach required food. The ape wondered if the Tor-o-dons were in any way able to hook their creatures into the dirt for the night; but when he did not invent anything about it, he decided that he had to trust the possibility of finding it tomorrow morning.
The question now arose in his mind as to what would have befallen their relationship as he landed on the ground. Would it return between the hunter and the prey, or would the fear of the sword still dominate the carnivore’s natural instinct? Tarzan pondered the matter, but when he could not forever remain on the back of the gryf and preferred to do a final test on the matter during a bright time, he decided to act immediately on the spot.
He didn’t know how to stop the creature, his only wish until now had been to rush it forward. Experimenting with his wand, however, he found himself making it stand by reaching forward and brushing its picky muzzle. Nearby grew deciduous trees from which the monkey would have taken refuge; but it was in his mind that if he oitis would cling to the trees, it could give the impression in Gryf’s mind that a being commanded all day was afraid of it, in which case he would hardly have to restrain his beast.
So when Gryf stopped, Tarzan slipped to the ground, carelessly slamming the creature onto the plate as if to say goodbye, and walked indifferently away. There was a gloomy roar from the beast’s throat, and without looking at Tarzan, it turned and stepped into the river where it stood, drinking for a long time.
Convinced that Gryf was no longer a threat to him, the monkey, encouraged by his own hunger, took the bow from his shoulders and, choosing a handful of arrows, went cautiously in search of the game, the proximity of which brought him evidence of the river’s lower bank.
Ten minutes later he had killed his prey, again a kind of Pal-ul-Don antelope, all species of which Tarzan had been accustomed to call deer since childhood, because in that little primitive book that had been the basis of his breed his youth up to the smallest bush in the hunting lands.
Cutting himself a thigh roast, he deposited it in a nearby tree and, throwing the rest of the carcass on his shoulders, trotted back to the place where he had left the gryph. The big creature was just rising from the river when Tarzan spotted Inha’s cries when he spotted it. Elukka looked in the direction of the sound, at the same time releasing the rubbery rumble with which it responded to its master’s call. Twice Tarzan repeated his rumors before the animal slowly moved towards him, and when it was a few steps away he threw at it the carcass of a deer, which it began to greedily tear.
– If nothing restrains it from being called, – the monkey said as he returned to the tree where he had hidden his share of the prey, – then it could be caused by the knowledge that I would supply him with food. – But when he finished his meal and settled comfortably for the night amidst the branches swaying high, he largely did not think he would appear the next day in A-luri on his prehistoric horse.
Waking up early in the morning, Tarzan dropped lightly on the ground and went to the river. Undressing his weapon and lumbar garment, he stepped into the cold water of the little spring and, after his refreshing bath, returned to the tree to enjoy for breakfast another batch of Bara, a deer, adding to the meal fruits and berries that grew nearby in abundance.
After the murmur, he returned to the ground and, raising his voice to learn a strange rumor, called the gryff in case he would get its attention; but though he waited a while and cried many times, there was no answer until he was finally compelled to conclude that he had last seen his huge horse yesterday. And so he turned his face towards A-Luri, relying on his new language skills, great powers, and innate intelligence. As sure as you would venture into the main street of the neighboring town, Tarzan stepped into the Ho-Don town of A-Luri. The first to notice his suspicions was a small child playing in the gate vault of a walled house. “No tail! No tail!” cried the little one, throwing a stone at him, and then it suddenly muted his eyes, realizing that this creature was anything but a lost Khonite warrior. Undeterred, the child turned away and fled, screaming in the yard of his home.
Tarzan prolonged his journey well, realizing that the fate of his plan would soon be resolved. And he didn’t have to wait long, for at the next turn of the winding street he encountered a Hdon warrior. He saw a sudden wonder in the latter’s eyes, immediately followed by a look of suspicion, but Tarzan addressed him before the man had time to do any crochet.
“I am a guest in another country,” he said; “I want to address Ko-Tania, your king.”
The man stepped back, lowering his hand to the head of the knife. “There will be no strangers to the gates of A-Luri,” he replied, “other than enemies or slaves.”
“I will not become a slave or an enemy,” Tarzan said. “I’m coming straight from Jad-ben-Othon. Look!” and he reached out his hand to see how much they differed from his own, and then turned to show him his taillessness, for this was the basis of his plan, when he had come to think of the quarrel between Ta-den and Om-at, in which waz-don was claimed Jad-ben-Otho to be long-tailed, with the Hoon equally ready to fight to strengthen the taillessness of his God.
The warrior’s eyes widened, and they had a look of fearful reverence, though there was still doubt. “Jad-ben-Othon!” he yelled, and then, “It is true that you are neither ho-don nor waz-don, and it is also true that Jad-ben-Otho has no tail. Come,” he said, “I will take you to Ko-tan. create, for this is something that no ordinary warrior should interfere with. Follow me, ”and still groping the handle of his knife and keeping a careful eye on the monkey from the side, he guided the newcomer through the streets of A-Luri.
The city spread over a wide area. At times, the building groups were quite far apart and then again quite the same. There were numerous mighty groups, apparently mined from larger municipalities and often ascending a hundred feet high and more. As they progressed, they encountered many warriors and women, but no attempt was made to disturb him when it emerged that he was being guided to the king’s palace.
They finally arrived at a large cluster of buildings that held considerable territory; the western façade gave a wide blue lake and was apparently carved out of natural rock. This group of buildings was surrounded by a much higher wall than what Tarzan had already seen. His guide took him to the gate, in front of which waited a dozen warriors; these had stood up and formed a barrier across the entrances when Tarzan and his entourage appeared from around the corner of the palace wall, for he had then gathered in his convoy such a group of curious that the guard might have thought that a riot was going on.
After the guide told his story, he was led to Tarza’s yard, where he was arrested while, among other things, the warrior apparently entered the palace to inform Kotan. After a quarter of an hour, a huge warrior appeared, followed by several others, and as they approached, everyone looked at Tarzan with great curiosity.
The team leader stood in front of the monkey man. “Who are you?” he asked; “and what do you want from King Ko-tan?”
“I am a friend,” replied the ape man, “and I’m here Jad-ben-Othon from
Pal-ul-methadone as a guest of Ko-Tan.”
It seemed to work for the warrior and his companions. Tarzan saw the latter whispering to each other.
“How do you get here,” said the speaker, “and what do you want from Ko-tan?”
Tarza’s straightening to the fullest. “Enough!” he shouted. “Should the transmitter of Jad-ben-Othon submit to the treatment that might be accorded to the wandering waz-don? Take me immediately to the king, or the wrath of Jad-ben-Othon will fall upon you.”
The monkey wondered a little in his mind how far he could continue his unauthorized posture, so he amusedly curiously awaiting the outcome of his claim. However, he did not have to wait long, as the tone of the interrogator changed almost oitis. He pale, gave a worried look at the eastern sky, and then held out his right palm toward Tarzan, lowering his left to his heart as a common sign of kindness to the peoples of Pal-ul-don.
Tarzan stepped back fiercely back as if to map a polluting hand, pretending to be in horror and disgust.
“Stop”! he shouted; “Who would dare to touch the holy personages Jad-ben-Othon a messenger? Only as a special Jad-ben-Othon popularity can actually king of all to get me this honor. Hurry! Even now, I’ve been waiting too! What kind of reception confer any A-Lurin ho-dons of my father’s son!”
At first Tarzan had liked to take part in Jad-ben-Otho himself, but had come to think that it might be embarrassing and somehow boring to have to constantly present divinity; according to the continual success of his plan, it had suddenly hit in his head that the prestige of the son of Jad-ben-Othon would be far greater than the ordinary transmitter from God, while still giving him some leeway in his deeds and appearances, and solemnity than from an older and greater God.
This time the effect of her words appeared immediately and pregnant in all those who were nearby. As one man, they shuddered backwards, and the speaker was jerking in horror. Originally miserable, he defended himself when the lull in fear allowed him to use his voice.
“Grace to the old Dak-lot para, oh Dor-ul-Otho!” he exclaimed. “Step before me, and I will show you where King Ko-tan trembling awaits you. Aside, larvae and worms,” he commanded, pushing his warriors to the right and left to form an alley for Tarzan.
“Come!” shouted the monkey rudely; “go ahead, and let these other clubs follow.”
Now, once frightened, Dak-lot did as ordered, and Monkey Tarzan was led to the palace of the king of Pal-ul-don.