Jungle Tales of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 79

supplicating hands
toward him and pouring forth from her mutilated lips a perfect cataract
of words, not one of which the ape-man comprehended. For a moment he
looked down upon the upturned, frightful face of the woman. He had
come to slay, but that overwhelming torrent of speech filled him with
consternation and with awe. He glanced about him apprehensively, then
back at the woman. A revulsion of feeling seized him. He could not
kill little Tibo's mother, nor could he stand and face this verbal
geyser. With a quick gesture of impatience at the spoiling of his
evening's entertainment, he wheeled and leaped away into the darkness.
A moment later he was swinging through the black jungle night, the
cries and lamentations of Momaya growing fainter in the distance.

It was with a sigh of relief that he finally reached a point from which
he could no longer hear them, and finding a comfortable crotch high
among the trees, composed himself for a night of dreamless slumber,
while a prowling lion moaned and coughed beneath him, and in far-off
England the other Lord Greystoke, with the assistance of a valet,
disrobed and crawled between spotless sheets, swearing irritably as a
cat meowed beneath his window.

As Tarzan followed the fresh spoor of Horta, the boar, the following
morning, he came upon the tracks of two Gomangani, a large one and a
small one. The ape-man, accustomed as he was to questioning closely
all that fell to his perceptions, paused to read the story written in
the soft mud of the game trail. You or I would have seen little of
interest there, even if, by chance, we could have seen aught. Perhaps
had one been there to point them out to us, we might have noted
indentations in the mud, but there were countless indentations, one
overlapping another into a confusion that would have been entirely
meaningless to us. To Tarzan each told its own story. Tantor, the
elephant, had passed that way as recently as three suns since. Numa
had hunted here the night just gone, and Horta, the boar, had walked
slowly along the trail within an hour; but what held Tarzan's attention
was the spoor tale of the Gomangani. It told him that the day before
an old man had gone toward the north in company with a little boy, and
that with them had been two hyenas.

Tarzan scratched his head in puzzled incredulity. He could see by the
overlapping of the footprints that the beasts had

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