that of habitual gloom that had
pervaded her, to an almost human expression of contentment and delight.
Our trip through the earth's crust was but a repetition of my two
former journeys between the inner and the outer worlds. This time,
however, I imagine that we must have maintained a more nearly
perpendicular course, for we accomplished the journey in a few minutes'
less time than upon the occasion of my first journey through the
five-hundred-mile crust. Just a trifle less than seventy-two hours
after our departure into the sands of the Sahara, we broke through the
surface of Pellucidar.
Fortune once again favored me by the slightest of margins, for when I
opened the door in the prospector's outer jacket I saw that we had
missed coming up through the bottom of an ocean by but a few hundred
The aspect of the surrounding country was entirely unfamiliar to me--I
had no conception of precisely where I was upon the one hundred and
twenty-four million square miles of Pellucidar's vast land surface.
The perpetual midday sun poured down its torrid rays from zenith, as it
had done since the beginning of Pellucidarian time--as it would
continue to do to the end of it. Before me, across the wide sea, the
weird, horizonless seascape folded gently upward to meet the sky until
it lost itself to view in the azure depths of distance far above the
level of my eyes.
How strange it looked! How vastly different from the flat and puny area
of the circumscribed vision of the dweller upon the outer crust!
I was lost. Though I wandered ceaselessly throughout a lifetime, I
might never discover the whereabouts of my former friends of this
strange and savage world. Never again might I see dear old Perry, nor
Ghak the Hairy One, nor Dacor the Strong One, nor that other infinitely
precious one--my sweet and noble mate, Dian the Beautiful!
But even so I was glad to tread once more the surface of Pellucidar.
Mysterious and terrible, grotesque and savage though she is in many of
her aspects, I can not but love her. Her very savagery appealed to me,
for it is the savagery of unspoiled Nature.
The magnificence of her tropic beauties enthralled me. Her mighty land
areas breathed unfettered freedom.
Her untracked oceans, whispering of virgin wonders unsullied by the eye
of man, beckoned me out upon their restless bosoms.
Not for an instant did I regret the world of my nativity. I was in
Pellucidar. I was home. And I was content.
As I stood
The waves were running to tremendous heights, and the Coldwater was not designed to meet such waves head on.Page 6
There was no finer operator in Pan-America than he.Page 8
Not three minutes after his reappearance at my side the Coldwater suddenly commenced to lose headway.Page 13
I was not long in ascertaining a possible explanation of my depression, for, though we were plainly visible from the bridge of the aero-submarine and to the hundreds of men who swarmed her deck, the ship passed directly above us, not five hundred feet from the water, and sped directly westward.Page 30
The useless destruction of any of these poor creatures was the farthest idea from my mind.Page 31
He, too, collapsed, and I was alone with the astonished girl.Page 33
"I do not care where you are from," she explained, "if you are not from there, and I am sure you are not, for the men from there have horns and tails.Page 36
If you won't let me go as far as your camp with you, then I'll wait here until they come in search of you.Page 38
" "Which is Buckingham?" I asked.Page 47
For a mile from the arch there was only a riot of weeds and undergrowth and trees covering small mounds and little hillocks that, I was sure, were formed of the ruins of stately buildings of the dead past.Page 50
Then I turned to meet the renewed attack of the savage foe.Page 53
With the lions still padding back and forth beyond the closed door, Victory and I crossed the room to one of the windows.Page 54
I could not account for it.Page 61
But some time thereafter she sat in silence, apparently deep in thought.Page 63
And as there had been no other cities along the river up to that point, the devastation was infinitely greater than time alone could have wrought.Page 64
8 Delcarte and Taylor were now in mid-stream, coming toward us, and I called to them to keep aloof until I knew whether the intentions of my captors were friendly or otherwise.Page 70
Then he summoned an orderly, and gave some instructions.Page 76
Menelek was a rather gross-looking man, well past middle age, but he carried himself with an air of dignity befitting one descended in unbroken line from the Prophet--as was his claim.Page 81
It seemed ages that I stood in the shadow of that doorway, in the ill-lit corridor of the palace of Menelek XIV.