The Beasts of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 107

seriously impeded
his progress. It was only with the greatest difficulty that he could
proceed faster than a walk upon the ground, and in the trees he
discovered that it not only impeded his progress, but rendered
travelling distinctly dangerous.

From the old negress, Tambudza, Tarzan had gathered a suggestion that
now filled his mind with doubts and misgivings. When the old woman had
told him of the child's death she had also added that the white woman,
though grief-stricken, had confided to her that the baby was not hers.

Tarzan could see no reason for believing that Jane could have found it
advisable to deny her identity or that of the child; the only
explanation that he could put upon the matter was that, after all, the
white woman who had accompanied his son and the Swede into the jungle
fastness of the interior had not been Jane at all.

The more he gave thought to the problem, the more firmly convinced he
became that his son was dead and his wife still safe in London, and in
ignorance of the terrible fate that had overtaken her first-born.

After all, then, his interpretation of Rokoff's sinister taunt had been
erroneous, and he had been bearing the burden of a double apprehension
needlessly--at least so thought the ape-man. From this belief he
garnered some slight surcease from the numbing grief that the death of
his little son had thrust upon him.

And such a death! Even the savage beast that was the real Tarzan,
inured to the sufferings and horrors of the grim jungle, shuddered as
he contemplated the hideous fate that had overtaken the innocent child.

As he made his way painfully towards the coast, he let his mind dwell
so constantly upon the frightful crimes which the Russian had
perpetrated against his loved ones that the great scar upon his
forehead stood out almost continuously in the vivid scarlet that marked
the man's most relentless and bestial moods of rage. At times he
startled even himself and sent the lesser creatures of the wild jungle
scampering to their hiding places as involuntary roars and growls
rumbled from his throat.

Could he but lay his hand upon the Russian!

Twice upon the way to the coast bellicose natives ran threateningly
from their villages to bar his further progress, but when the awful cry
of the bull-ape thundered upon their affrighted ears, and the great
white giant charged bellowing upon them, they had turned and fled into
the bush, nor ventured thence until he had safely passed.

Though his progress seemed tantalizingly slow

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