The Beasts of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 49

the sleeping visitor, nor any singing, nor loud
talking. He was remarkably solicitous lest his guest be disturbed.

Three hours later several canoes came silently into view from up the
Ugambi. They were being pushed ahead rapidly by the brawny muscles of
their black crews. Upon the bank before the river stood the chief, his
spear raised in a horizontal position above his head, as though in some
manner of predetermined signal to those within the boats.

And such indeed was the purpose of his attitude--which meant that the
white stranger within his village still slept peacefully.

In the bows of two of the canoes were the runners that the chief had
sent forth three hours earlier. It was evident that they had been
dispatched to follow and bring back this party, and that the signal
from the bank was one that had been determined upon before they left
the village.

In a few moments the dugouts drew up to the verdure-clad bank. The
native warriors filed out, and with them a half-dozen white men.
Sullen, ugly-looking customers they were, and none more so than the
evil-faced, black-bearded man who commanded them.

"Where is the white man your messengers report to be with you?" he
asked of the chief.

"This way, bwana," replied the native. "Carefully have I kept silence
in the village that he might be still asleep when you returned. I do
not know that he is one who seeks you to do you harm, but he questioned
me closely about your coming and your going, and his appearance is as
that of the one you described, but whom you believed safe in the
country which you called Jungle Island.

"Had you not told me this tale I should not have recognized him, and
then he might have gone after and slain you. If he is a friend and no
enemy, then no harm has been done, bwana; but if he proves to be an
enemy, I should like very much to have a rifle and some ammunition."

"You have done well," replied the white man, "and you shall have the
rifle and ammunition whether he be a friend or enemy, provided that you
stand with me."

"I shall stand with you, bwana," said the chief, "and now come and look
upon the stranger, who sleeps within my village."

So saying, he turned and led the way toward the hut, in the shadow of
which the unconscious Tarzan slept peacefully.

Behind the two men came the remaining whites and a score of warriors;
but the raised

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