Tarzan the Terrible

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 127

would prevent Mo-sar from insisting upon his
claims to the throne, for, next to Ja-don, Mo-sar was the most powerful
of the chiefs and while Ko-tan looked with fear upon Ja-don, too, he
had no fear that the old Lion-man would attempt to seize the throne,
though which way he would throw his influence and his warriors in the
event that Mo-sar declare war upon Ko-tan, the king could not guess.

Primitive people who are also warlike are seldom inclined toward either
tact or diplomacy even when sober; but drunk they know not the words,
if aroused. It was really Bu-lot who started it.

"This," he said, "I drink to O-lo-a," and he emptied his tankard at a
single gulp. "And this," seizing a full one from a neighbor, "to her
son and mine who will bring back the throne of Pal-ul-don to its
rightful owners!"

"The king is not yet dead!" cried Ko-tan, rising to his feet; "nor is
Bu-lot yet married to his daughter--and there is yet time to save
Pal-ul-don from the spawn of the rabbit breed."

The king's angry tone and his insulting reference to Bu-lot's
well-known cowardice brought a sudden, sobering silence upon the
roistering company. Every eye turned upon Bu-lot and Mo-sar, who sat
together directly opposite the king. The first was very drunk though
suddenly he seemed quite sober. He was so drunk that for an instant he
forgot to be a coward, since his reasoning powers were so effectually
paralyzed by the fumes of liquor that he could not intelligently weigh
the consequences of his acts. It is reasonably conceivable that a drunk
and angry rabbit might commit a rash deed. Upon no other hypothesis is
the thing that Bu-lot now did explicable. He rose suddenly from the
seat to which he had sunk after delivering his toast and seizing the
knife from the sheath of the warrior upon his right hurled it with
terrific force at Ko-tan. Skilled in the art of throwing both their
knives and their clubs are the warriors of Pal-ul-don and at this short
distance and coming as it did without warning there was no defense and
but one possible result--Ko-tan, the king, lunged forward across the
table, the blade buried in his heart.

A brief silence followed the assassin's cowardly act. White with
terror, now, Bu-lot fell slowly back toward the doorway at his rear,
when suddenly angry warriors leaped with drawn knives to prevent his
escape and to avenge their king. But Mo-sar now took his stand beside
his son.

"Ko-tan is dead!" he cried. "Mo-sar is king! Let the loyal warriors of

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