Tarzan of the Apes

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 112

work? Your shoulder's not hurt so all-fired bad as
that," said Tarrant, the sailor who had before spoken.

"Not by a damned sight," replied Snipes, fingering the butt of his
revolver nervously.

"Then, by God," replied Tarrant, "if you won't take a shovel you'll
take a pickax."

With the words he raised his pick above his head, and, with a mighty
blow, he buried the point in Snipes' brain.

For a moment the men stood silently looking at the result of their
fellow's grim humor. Then one of them spoke.

"Served the skunk jolly well right," he said.

One of the others commenced to ply his pick to the ground. The soil
was soft and he threw aside the pick and grasped a shovel; then the
others joined him. There was no further comment on the killing, but
the men worked in a better frame of mind than they had since Snipes had
assumed command.

When they had a trench of ample size to bury the chest, Tarrant
suggested that they enlarge it and inter Snipes' body on top of the
chest.

"It might 'elp fool any as 'appened to be diggin' 'ereabouts," he
explained.

The others saw the cunning of the suggestion, and so the trench was
lengthened to accommodate the corpse, and in the center a deeper hole
was excavated for the box, which was first wrapped in sailcloth and
then lowered to its place, which brought its top about a foot below the
bottom of the grave. Earth was shovelled in and tramped down about the
chest until the bottom of the grave showed level and uniform.

Two of the men rolled the rat-faced corpse unceremoniously into the
grave, after first stripping it of its weapons and various other
articles which the several members of the party coveted for their own.

They then filled the grave with earth and tramped upon it until it
would hold no more.

The balance of the loose earth was thrown far and wide, and a mass of
dead undergrowth spread in as natural a manner as possible over the
new-made grave to obliterate all signs of the ground having been
disturbed.

Their work done the sailors returned to the small boat, and pulled off
rapidly toward the Arrow.

The breeze had increased considerably, and as the smoke upon the
horizon was now plainly discernible in considerable volume, the
mutineers lost no time in getting under full sail and bearing away
toward the southwest.

Tarzan, an interested spectator of all that had taken place, sat
speculating on the strange actions of these peculiar creatures.

Men were indeed more foolish and more

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