devouring two and three of the slaves, there
were only a score of full-grown men left, and I thought that for some
reason these were to be spared, but such was far from the case, for as
the last Mahar crawled to her rock the queen's thipdars darted into the
air, circled the temple once and then, hissing like steam engines,
swooped down upon the remaining slaves.
There was no hypnotism here--just the plain, brutal ferocity of the
beast of prey, tearing, rending, and gulping its meat, but at that it
was less horrible than the uncanny method of the Mahars. By the time
the thipdars had disposed of the last of the slaves the Mahars were all
asleep upon their rocks, and a moment later the great pterodactyls
swung back to their posts beside the queen, and themselves dropped into
"I thought the Mahars seldom, if ever, slept," I said to Ja.
"They do many things in this temple which they do not do elsewhere," he
replied. "The Mahars of Phutra are not supposed to eat human flesh,
yet slaves are brought here by thousands and almost always you will
find Mahars on hand to consume them. I imagine that they do not bring
their Sagoths here, because they are ashamed of the practice, which is
supposed to obtain only among the least advanced of their race; but I
would wager my canoe against a broken paddle that there is no Mahar but
eats human flesh whenever she can get it."
"Why should they object to eating human flesh," I asked, "if it is true
that they look upon us as lower animals?"
"It is not because they consider us their equals that they are supposed
to look with abhorrence upon those who eat our flesh," replied Ja; "it
is merely that we are warm-blooded animals. They would not think of
eating the meat of a thag, which we consider such a delicacy, any more
than I would think of eating a snake. As a matter of fact it is
difficult to explain just why this sentiment should exist among them."
"I wonder if they left a single victim," I remarked, leaning far out of
the opening in the rocky wall to inspect the temple better. Directly
below me the water lapped the very side of the wall, there being a
break in the bowlders at this point as there was at several other
places about the side of the temple.
My hands were resting upon a small piece of granite which formed a part
of the wall,
With scarcely a parting glance I turned my eyes again toward Mars, lifted my hands toward his lurid rays, and waited.Page 10
With their single eyes in the centre of their heads and every eye turned upon their prey, they did not note my.Page 15
But as.Page 27
The banth is a fierce beast of prey that roams the low hills surrounding the dead seas of ancient Mars.Page 52
Panic reigned in an instant.Page 68
The Holy Therns are the gods of Barsoom.Page 71
The walls were smooth and appeared to be composed of a black, basaltic rock.Page 76
Scarcely had the door of the car closed behind us than we were slowing up to stop at the landing above, so rapid was our ascent of the long shaft.Page 87
" "Your father is dead?" I asked.Page 103
They are massacring all within the amphitheatre.Page 106
One might think you two master and pupil, or father and son.Page 110
Let us go.Page 114
The swifter craft are seldom equipped with large buoyancy tanks, since the added bulk of them tends to reduce a vessel's speed.Page 127
At that moment I caught another glimpse from the corner of my eye of the.Page 133
I saw that he was going down, but ere he fell I snatched the girl from his back and swung her to a place upon my own thoat, behind me, where she clung with her arms about me.Page 148
We four and the hundred loyal ones followed behind him, nor was a hand raised to stay us, though glowering eyes followed our triumphal march through the temple.Page 149
The board, according to red Martian custom, was triangular, for there were three in our family.Page 168
In so far as I knew she might be already dead, for I did not know the exact date on which she first viewed Issus.Page 185
"She sent me under guard to this room just before the fighting began within the temple halls.Page 190
"The blacks have fired the temple," he cried.