At the Earth's Core

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 59

my weight upon it proved too much for it. It
slipped and I lunged forward. There was nothing to save myself and I
plunged headforemost into the water below.

Fortunately the tank was deep at this point, and I suffered no injury
from the fall, but as I was rising to the surface my mind filled with
the horrors of my position as I thought of the terrible doom which
awaited me the moment the eyes of the reptiles fell upon the creature
that had disturbed their slumber.

As long as I could I remained beneath the surface, swimming rapidly in
the direction of the islands that I might prolong my life to the
utmost. At last I was forced to rise for air, and as I cast a
terrified glance in the direction of the Mahars and the thipdars I was
almost stunned to see that not a single one remained upon the rocks
where I had last seen them, nor as I searched the temple with my eyes
could I discern any within it.

For a moment I was puzzled to account for the thing, until I realized
that the reptiles, being deaf, could not have been disturbed by the
noise my body made when it hit the water, and that as there is no such
thing as time within Pellucidar there was no telling how long I had
been beneath the surface. It was a difficult thing to attempt to
figure out by earthly standards--this matter of elapsed time--but when
I set myself to it I began to realize that I might have been submerged
a second or a month or not at all. You have no conception of the
strange contradictions and impossibilities which arise when all methods
of measuring time, as we know them upon earth, are non-existent.

I was about to congratulate myself upon the miracle which had saved me
for the moment, when the memory of the hypnotic powers of the Mahars
filled me with apprehension lest they be practicing their uncanny art
upon me to the end that I merely imagined that I was alone in the
temple. At the thought cold sweat broke out upon me from every pore,
and as I crawled from the water onto one of the tiny islands I was
trembling like a leaf--you cannot imagine the awful horror which even
the simple thought of the repulsive Mahars of Pellucidar induces in the
human mind, and to feel that you are in their power--that they are
crawling, slimy, and abhorrent, to drag you down beneath

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with The Outlaw of Torn

Page 1
Henry, flushing in mortification and anger, rose to advance upon De Montfort, but suddenly recollecting the power which he represented, he thought better of whatever action he contemplated and, with a haughty sneer, turned to his courtiers.
Page 12
The little Prince was now so terrified that he could but tremble and whimper in his fright.
Page 20
"It is naught, my son.
Page 21
When thou shalt be older, thou shalt go forth and kill them all for unless thou kill them, they will kill thee.
Page 40
On this policy of his toward the serfs and freedmen, Norman of Torn and the grim, old man whom he called father had never agreed.
Page 54
Ah, my boy, why wilt thou not give up this wicked life of thine? It has never been my way to scold or chide thee, yet always hath my heart ached for each crime laid at the door of Norman of Torn.
Page 60
With the wind and rain at their backs, the little party rode rapidly along the muddy road, until late in the afternoon they came upon a white palfrey standing huddled beneath a great oak, his arched back toward the driving storm.
Page 65
It was enough.
Page 66
Norman sent Red Shandy to the outer walls to learn the mission of the party, for visitors seldom came to this inaccessible and unhospitable fortress; and he well knew that no party of a dozen knights would venture with hostile intent within the clutches of his great band of villains.
Page 72
" "It is said that you never lie, Norman of Torn," spoke the girl, "and I believe you, but tell me why you thus befriend a De Montfort.
Page 76
Come, we will seek out my daughter and her mother.
Page 77
I did not, in so many words, say that you are beautiful, but I think it nevertheless, and ye cannot be angry with my poor eyes if they deceive me into believing that no fairer woman breathes the air of England.
Page 87
" It was Mary's turn now to show offense, and.
Page 94
Presently, the man-at-arms found what he sought, and, after tugging with ever diminishing strength, he felt the blade slip from its sheath.
Page 104
The fellow led them to the rear of the castle, where, among the brush, he had hidden a rude ladder, which, when tilted, spanned the moat and rested its farther end upon a window ledge some ten feet above the ground.
Page 107
" "If I told my name, methinks the King would be more apt to hang me," laughed the outlaw.
Page 123
And when they had killed the occupants of the car, they found that Simon de Montfort was not among them, but instead he had fastened there three important citizens of London, old men and influential, who had opposed him, and aided and abetted the King.
Page 127
Methinks thou hast as bad taste in whom thou entertains as didst thy fair lady.
Page 139
"It will be better than I had hoped," he muttered, "and easier.
Page 140
revenge! I have waited long, thou cur of a King, to return the blow thou struck that day, but the return shall be an hundred-fold increased by long accumulated interest.