Pellucidar

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 16

We must have covered a great many
thousand square miles of territory, and yet we had seen nothing in the
way of a familiar landmark, when from the heights of a mountain-range
we were crossing I descried far in the distance great masses of
billowing clouds.

Now clouds are practically unknown in the skies of Pellucidar. The
moment that my eyes rested upon them my heart leaped. I seized Perry's
arm and, pointing toward the horizonless distance, shouted:

"The Mountains of the Clouds!"

"They lie close to Phutra, and the country of our worst enemies, the
Mahars," Perry remonstrated.

"I know it," I replied, "but they give us a starting-point from which
to prosecute our search intelligently. They are at least a familiar
landmark.

"They tell us that we are upon the right trail and not wandering far in
the wrong direction.

"Furthermore, close to the Mountains of the Clouds dwells a good
friend, Ja the Mezop. You did not know him, but you know all that he
did for me and all that he will gladly do to aid me.

"At least he can direct us upon the right direction toward Sari."

"The Mountains of the Clouds constitute a mighty range," replied Perry.
"They must cover an enormous territory. How are you to find your
friend in all the great country that is visible from their rugged
flanks?"

"Easily," I answered him, "for Ja gave me minute directions. I recall
almost his exact words:

"'You need merely come to the foot of the highest peak of the Mountains
of the Clouds. There you will find a river that flows into the Lural
Az.

"'Directly opposite the mouth of the river you will see three large
islands far out--so far that they are barely discernible. The one to
the extreme left as you face them from the mouth of the river is
Anoroc, where I rule the tribe of Anoroc.'"

And so we hastened onward toward the great cloud-mass that was to be
our guide for several weary marches. At last we came close to the
towering crags, Alp-like in their grandeur.

Rising nobly among its noble fellows, one stupendous peak reared its
giant head thousands of feet above the others. It was he whom we
sought; but at its foot no river wound down toward any sea.

"It must rise from the opposite side," suggested Perry, casting a
rueful glance at the forbidding heights that barred our further
progress. "We cannot endure the arctic cold of those high flung
passes, and to traverse the endless miles about this interminable

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