The Beasts of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 59

cut its
heart out before your very eyes. You'll learn what it means to insult
Nikolas Rokoff."

Jane Clayton turned wearily away.

"What is the use," she said, "of expatiating upon the depths to which
your vengeful nature can sink? You cannot move me either by threats or
deeds. My baby cannot judge yet for himself, but I, his mother, can
foresee that should it have been given him to survive to man's estate
he would willingly sacrifice his life for the honour of his mother.
Love him as I do, I would not purchase his life at such a price. Did
I, he would execrate my memory to the day of his death."

Rokoff was now thoroughly angered because of his failure to reduce the
girl to terror. He felt only hate for her, but it had come to his
diseased mind that if he could force her to accede to his demands as
the price of her life and her child's, the cup of his revenge would be
filled to brimming when he could flaunt the wife of Lord Greystoke in
the capitals of Europe as his mistress.

Again he stepped closer to her. His evil face was convulsed with rage
and desire. Like a wild beast he sprang upon her, and with his strong
fingers at her throat forced her backward upon the berth.

At the same instant the door of the cabin opened noisily. Rokoff
leaped to his feet, and, turning, faced the Swede cook.

Into the fellow's usually foxy eyes had come an expression of utter
stupidity. His lower jaw drooped in vacuous harmony. He busied
himself in arranging Lady Greystoke's meal upon the tiny table at one
side of her cabin.

The Russian glared at him.

"What do you mean," he cried, "by entering here without permission?
Get out!"

The cook turned his watery blue eyes upon Rokoff and smiled vacuously.

"Ay tank it blow purty soon purty hard," he said, and then he began
rearranging the few dishes upon the little table.

"Get out of here, or I'll throw you out, you miserable blockhead!"
roared Rokoff, taking a threatening step toward the Swede.

Anderssen continued to smile foolishly in his direction, but one
ham-like paw slid stealthily to the handle of the long, slim knife that
protruded from the greasy cord supporting his soiled apron.

Rokoff saw the move and stopped short in his advance. Then he turned
toward Jane Clayton.

"I will give you until tomorrow," he said, "to reconsider your answer
to my offer. All

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