Ĉe la koro de la tero

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 36

murdinton de supera estajxo, kaj mi
supozas, ke pro tio la sagotoj sentis sin plene rajtigitaj fari la
tutan procedon kiel eble plej malkomforta kaj dolora al ni.

Ili pikis nin per siaj lancoj kaj batis nin per siaj hakiletoj pro la
plej malgrandaj provokoj kaj ecx neprovokite. Ni travivis tre
malagrablan duonhoron, gxis oni fine pelis nin tra malalta enirejo en
grandegan konstruajxon, kies mezon okupis granda areno. Benkoj
cxirkauxis tiun liberan spacon je tri flankoj, kaj je la kvara
trovigxis amasoj da grandaj rokegoj sur deklivo, kiu altigxis de la
antauxo supren gxis la tegmento.

Komence, mi ne povis konstati la celon de tiu rokamasego, krom eble
prezenti rustikan kaj pitoreskan fonon por la scenoj prezentotaj en
la areno antaux gxi, sed baldaux poste, kiam la lignaj benkoj
preskaux jam plenis de sklavoj kaj sagotoj, mi ekvidis la uzmanieron
de la rokegoj, cxar tiam la maharoj komencis vice enpasxi la
konstruajxon.

Ili marsxis rekte trans la arenon al la rokoj cxe la alia flanko, kie
ili elvastigis siajn vespertajn flugilojn kaj suprensxvebis trans la
altan muron cxirkaux la areno kaj faris sin komfortaj sur la rokegoj.
Ili estis do la rezervitaj, logxiaj segxoj por la regantaro.

La rampuloj trovis la nesxlifitan suprajxon de granda roko tiel
komforta, kiel ni la molecon de remburita braksegxo. Tie ili pigre
kusxis, palpebrumante per siaj hidaj okuloj kaj sendube
interparolante en sia lingvo de la sesa sentumo kaj kvara dimensio.

Unuafoje mi vidis ilian regxinon. Sxi malsimilis al la aliaj per
neniu trajto, kiun miaj Teraj okuloj povis percepti, cxar cxiuj
maharoj fakte aspektas identaj al mi, sed sxi transiris la arenon
nur, post kiam sxiaj regnaninoj jam okupis lokon, antauxirite de
dudek grandegaj sagotoj, la plej grandaj, kiujn mi iam vidis, dum cxe
sxiaj flankoj anaspasxis po unu granda tipdaro, kaj postiris sxin
dudek pliaj sagotaj gardistoj.

Cxe la bariero, la sagotoj suprengrimpis la apikajxon per vere
simieca lerto, dum malantaux ili la aroganta regxino sxvebis alten
per la flugiloj, kun siaj du timindaj drakoj ambauxflanke, kaj
sternis sin sur la plej granda rokego el cxiuj, precize en la mezo de
tiu amfiteatra flanko rezervita por la dominanta raso. Tie sxi
ekkauxris, tiu regxino plej malbela kaj neinteresa, kvankam sendube
tute konvinkita pri sia beleco kaj die donita regorajto, same kiel la
plej fiera monarko de la ekstera mondo.

Kaj tiam komencigxis la muziko--muziko sensona! La maharoj ne povas
auxdi, do la tamburoj kaj fifroj kaj trumpetoj de Teraj orkestroj
estas al ili nekonataj. La "orkestro" konsistas el pli ol dudek
maharoj. Ili marsxis en vico al la centro de la areno, kie la
estajxoj sur la rokoj povis spekti ilin, kaj tie ili

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