Tarzan the Terrible

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 122

its
opposite side in darkness, since the only cresset the room contained
was upon their side of the partition.

Faintly from beyond the wall Jane heard a voice calling, but whose it
was and what the words she could not distinguish. Then she saw Lu-don
jerk upon another thong and wait in evident expectancy of some
consequent happening. He did not have long to wait. She saw the thong
move suddenly as though jerked from above and then Lu-don smiled and
with another signal put in motion whatever machinery it was that raised
the partition again to its place in the ceiling.

Advancing into that portion of the room that the partition had shut off
from them, the high priest knelt upon the floor, and down tilting a
section of it, revealed the dark mouth of a shaft leading below.
Laughing loudly he shouted into the hole: "Return to thy father, O
Dor-ul-Otho!"

Making fast the catch that prevented the trapdoor from opening beneath
the feet of the unwary until such time as Lu-don chose the high priest
rose again to his feet.

"Now, Beautiful One!" he cried, and then, "Ja-don! what do you here?"

Jane Clayton turned to follow the direction of Lu-don's eyes and there
she saw framed in the entrance-way to the apartment the mighty figure
of a warrior, upon whose massive features sat an expression of stern
and uncompromising authority.

"I come from Ko-tan, the king," replied Ja-don, "to remove the
beautiful stranger to the Forbidden Garden."

"The king defies me, the high priest of Jad-ben-Otho?" cried Lu-don.

"It is the king's command--I have spoken," snapped Ja-don, in whose
manner was no sign of either fear or respect for the priest.

Lu-don well knew why the king had chosen this messenger whose heresy
was notorious, but whose power had as yet protected him from the
machinations of the priest. Lu-don cast a surreptitious glance at the
thongs hanging from the ceiling. Why not? If he could but maneuver to
entice Ja-don to the opposite side of the chamber!

"Come," he said in a conciliatory tone, "let us discuss the matter,"
and moved toward the spot where he would have Ja-don follow him.

"There is nothing to discuss," replied Ja-don, yet he followed the
priest, fearing treachery.

Jane watched them. In the face and figure of the warrior she found
reflected those admirable traits of courage and honor that the
profession of arms best develops. In the hypocritical priest there was
no redeeming quality. Of the two then she might best choose the
warrior. With him there was a chance--with Lu-don, none. Even the very
process of exchange from

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