Tarzan of the Apes

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 126

not more than a speck of moisture.

Again, a minute bit of bark has been upturned by the scraping hand, and
the direction of the break indicates the direction of the passage. Or
some great limb, or the stem of the tree itself has been brushed by the
hairy body, and a tiny shred of hair tells him by the direction from
which it is wedged beneath the bark that he is on the right trail.

Nor does he need to check his speed to catch these seemingly faint
records of the fleeing beast.

To Tarzan they stand out boldly against all the myriad other scars and
bruises and signs upon the leafy way. But strongest of all is the
scent, for Tarzan is pursuing up the wind, and his trained nostrils are
as sensitive as a hound's.

There are those who believe that the lower orders are specially endowed
by nature with better olfactory nerves than man, but it is merely a
matter of development.

Man's survival does not hinge so greatly upon the perfection of his
senses. His power to reason has relieved them of many of their duties,
and so they have, to some extent, atrophied, as have the muscles which
move the ears and scalp, merely from disuse.

The muscles are there, about the ears and beneath the scalp, and so are
the nerves which transmit sensations to the brain, but they are
under-developed because they are not needed.

Not so with Tarzan of the Apes. From early infancy his survival had
depended upon acuteness of eyesight, hearing, smell, touch, and taste
far more than upon the more slowly developed organ of reason.

The least developed of all in Tarzan was the sense of taste, for he
could eat luscious fruits, or raw flesh, long buried with almost equal
appreciation; but in that he differed but slightly from more civilized
epicures.

Almost silently the ape-man sped on in the track of Terkoz and his
prey, but the sound of his approach reached the ears of the fleeing
beast and spurred it on to greater speed.

Three miles were covered before Tarzan overtook them, and then Terkoz,
seeing that further flight was futile, dropped to the ground in a small
open glade, that he might turn and fight for his prize or be free to
escape unhampered if he saw that the pursuer was more than a match for
him.

He still grasped Jane in one great arm as Tarzan bounded like a leopard
into the arena which nature had provided for this primeval-like battle.

When Terkoz saw that it was Tarzan

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