Tarzan the Terrible

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 141

further into
the interior and now there was an element of revenge in their motives,
since it must have been apparent that she could no longer be of any
possible military value.

Bitter indeed were the Germans against that half-savage mate of hers
who had cunningly annoyed and harassed them with a fiendishness of
persistence and ingenuity that had resulted in a noticeable loss in
morale in the sector he had chosen for his operations. They had to
charge against him the lives of certain officers that he had
deliberately taken with his own hands, and one entire section of trench
that had made possible a disastrous turning movement by the British.
Tarzan had out-generaled them at every point. He had met cunning with
cunning and cruelty with cruelties until they feared and loathed his
very name. The cunning trick that they had played upon him in
destroying his home, murdering his retainers, and covering the
abduction of his wife in such a way as to lead him to believe that she
had been killed, they had regretted a thousand times, for a
thousandfold had they paid the price for their senseless ruthlessness,
and now, unable to wreak their vengeance directly upon him, they had
conceived the idea of inflicting further suffering upon his mate.

In sending her into the interior to avoid the path of the victorious
British, they had chosen as her escort Lieutenant Erich Obergatz who
had been second in command of Schneider's company, and who alone of its
officers had escaped the consuming vengeance of the ape-man. For a long
time Obergatz had held her in a native village, the chief of which was
still under the domination of his fear of the ruthless German
oppressors. While here only hardships and discomforts assailed her,
Obergatz himself being held in leash by the orders of his distant
superior but as time went on the life in the village grew to be a
veritable hell of cruelties and oppressions practiced by the arrogant
Prussian upon the villagers and the members of his native command--for
time hung heavily upon the hands of the lieutenant and with idleness
combining with the personal discomforts he was compelled to endure, his
none too agreeable temper found an outlet first in petty interference
with the chiefs and later in the practice of absolute cruelties upon
them.

What the self-sufficient German could not see was plain to Jane
Clayton--that the sympathies of Obergatz' native soldiers lay with the
villagers and that all were so heartily sickened by his abuse that it
needed now but the slightest spark to detonate the mine of revenge

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