Jungle Tales of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 94

was least looking for such an occurrence, that there is
little wonder he found scant space in his savage heart for love of his
white-skinned foster child, or the inventions thereof. There had been
other times, too, when Tublat had swung helplessly in midair, the noose
tightening about his neck, death staring him in the face, and little
Tarzan dancing upon a near-by limb, taunting him and making unseemly
grimaces.

Then there had been another occasion in which the rope had figured
prominently--an occasion, and the only one connected with the rope,
which Tublat recalled with pleasure. Tarzan, as active in brain as he
was in body, was always inventing new ways in which to play. It was
through the medium of play that he learned much during his childhood.
This day he learned something, and that he did not lose his life in the
learning of it, was a matter of great surprise to Tarzan, and the fly
in the ointment, to Tublat.

The man-child had, in throwing his noose at a playmate in a tree above
him, caught a projecting branch instead. When he tried to shake it
loose it but drew the tighter. Then Tarzan started to climb the rope
to remove it from the branch. When he was part way up a frolicsome
playmate seized that part of the rope which lay upon the ground and ran
off with it as far as he could go. When Tarzan screamed at him to
desist, the young ape released the rope a little and then drew it tight
again. The result was to impart a swinging motion to Tarzan's body
which the ape-boy suddenly realized was a new and pleasurable form of
play. He urged the ape to continue until Tarzan was swinging to and
fro as far as the short length of rope would permit, but the distance
was not great enough, and, too, he was not far enough above the ground
to give the necessary thrills which add so greatly to the pastimes of
the young.

So he clambered to the branch where the noose was caught and after
removing it carried the rope far aloft and out upon a long and powerful
branch. Here he again made it fast, and taking the loose end in his
hand, clambered quickly down among the branches as far as the rope
would permit him to go; then he swung out upon the end of it, his
lithe, young body turning and twisting--a human bob upon a pendulum of
grass--thirty feet above the ground.

Ah,

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