Jungle Tales of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 100

own
grass rope, leaving his hands free but securing the knots in such a way
that the ape-man could not reach them. The hyenas slunk to and fro,
growling. Bukawai hated them and they hated him. He knew that they
but waited for the time when he should be helpless, or when their
hatred should rise to such a height as to submerge their cringing fear
of him.

In his own heart was not a little fear of these repulsive creatures,
and because of that fear, Bukawai always kept the beasts well fed,
often hunting for them when their own forages for food failed, but ever
was he cruel to them with the cruelty of a little brain, diseased,
bestial, primitive.


He had had them since they were puppies. They had known no other life
than that with him, and though they went abroad to hunt, always they
returned. Of late Bukawai had come to believe that they returned not
so much from habit as from a fiendish patience which would submit to
every indignity and pain rather than forego the final vengeance, and
Bukawai needed but little imagination to picture what that vengeance
would be. Today he would see for himself what his end would be; but
another should impersonate Bukawai.

When he had trussed Tarzan securely, Bukawai went back into the
corridor, driving the hyenas ahead of him, and pulling across the
opening a lattice of laced branches, which shut the pit from the cave
during the night that Bukawai might sleep in security, for then the
hyenas were penned in the crater that they might not sneak upon a
sleeping Bukawai in the darkness.

Bukawai returned to the outer cave mouth, filled a vessel with water at
the spring which rose in the little canyon close at hand and returned
toward the pit. The hyenas stood before the lattice looking hungrily
toward Tarzan. They had been fed in this manner before.

With his water, the witch-doctor approached Tarzan and threw a portion
of the contents of the vessel in the ape-man's face. There was
fluttering of the eyelids, and at the second application Tarzan opened
his eyes and looked about.

"Devil-god," cried Bukawai, "I am the great witch-doctor. My medicine
is strong. Yours is weak. If it is not, why do you stay tied here
like a goat that is bait for lions?"

Tarzan understood nothing the witch-doctor said, therefore he did not
reply, but only stared straight at Bukawai with cold and level gaze.
The hyenas crept up behind him. He heard

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