The Efficiency Expert

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 93

in the area of the International Machine
Company's plant on West Superior Street. As he moved along he counted
the basement windows silently, and at the fifth window he halted. Just a
casual glance he cast up and down the alley, and then, kneeling, he
raised the sash and slipped quietly into the darkness of the basement.

At about the same time Jimmy's landlady called him to the telephone,
where a man's voice asked if "this was Mr. Torrance?" Assured that such
was the fact, the voice continued: "I am the new watchman at the plant.
There's something wrong here. I can't get hold of Mr. Compton. I think
you better come down. I'll be in Mr. Compton's office--" The message
ceased as though central had disconnected them.

"Funny," thought Jimmy, "that he should call me up. I wonder what the
trouble can be." But he lost no time in getting his hat and starting for
the works.

Although the Lizard knew that there was no danger of detection, yet from
long habit he moved through the plant of the International Machine
Company with the noiselessness of a disembodied spirit. Occasionally,
and just for the briefest instant, he flashed his lamp ahead of him, but
though he had never been in the place before he found it scarcely
necessary, so minute had been his instructions for reaching the office
from the fifth basement window.

The room he sought was on the second floor, and the Lizard had mounted
the steps from the basement to the first floor when he was brought to a
sudden stop by a noise from the floor above him. The Lizard listened
intently. No, he could not be mistaken. Too often had he heard a similar

Some one was tiptoeing across the floor above. The Lizard was in the
hallway close beside the stairs when he realized the footsteps were
coming toward the stairway, and a moment later that they were cautiously
descending. The Lizard flattened himself against the wall, and if he
breathed his lungs gave forth no sound.

If one may interpret footsteps--and the Lizard, from the fund of a
great experience, felt that he could--those descending the stairway
from above him might have been described as nervous and repressed; for
at least they gave the Lizard the impression of one who desired to flee
in haste and yet dared not do so, for fear of attracting attention by
the increased noise that greater speed might entail.

At least the Lizard knew that those were the footsteps of no watchman,
but whether it be guardian of the law or fellow

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with Out of Time's Abyss

Page 1
The other men, now safely ensconced upon various branches, watched the race with breathless interest.
Page 9
He insisted that he was already a dead man, for if the thing didn't come for him during the day he would never live through another night of agonized apprehension, waiting for the frightful end that he was positive was in store for him.
Page 12
For three days the party marched due south through forests and meadow-land and great park-like areas where countless herbivorous animals grazed--deer and antelope and bos and the little ecca, the smallest species of Caspakian horse, about the size of a rabbit.
Page 27
sanctuary for him, since the stern laws of the Wieroos forbade altercations within such walls.
Page 29
Stepping to the second door he pushed it gently open and peered in upon what seemed to be a store room.
Page 34
"Now bear him to the Blue Place of Seven Skulls," directed the chief Wieroo, "and one take the word of all that has passed to Him Who Speaks for Luata.
Page 38
" Was there a way out? What did this poor thing know? "Who are you and how long have you been here?" Bradley suddenly demanded.
Page 40
No Wieroos come up from the beginning--all are born of the Wieroo fathers and Galu mothers who are cos-ata-lo, and there are very few of the latter owing to the long and precarious stages of development.
Page 41
" He laughed, a cackling, dry laugh.
Page 49
Even though you bring into the world a female Wieroo, your fate will be the same if you do not escape him, while with me you shall have life and food and none shall harm you.
Page 52
"There are half a dozen of them coming up; but possibly they will pass this room.
Page 54
It was almost in a spirit of resigned hopelessness that he quietly accompanied his captors through various chambers and corridors toward the heart of the temple.
Page 60
"It seems more than any ordinary fear of the harm they can do you.
Page 67
The circumstances that had thrown them together, the dangers through which they had passed, all the weird and horrible surroundings that had formed the background of his knowledge of her had had their effect--she had been but the companion of an adventure; her self-reliance, her endurance, her loyalty, had been only what one man might expect of another, and he saw that he had unconsciously assumed an attitude toward her that he might have assumed toward a man.
Page 69
Bradley splashed about for a few minutes in the cold pool early each morning and after a time the girl tried it and liked it.
Page 73
"What is that?" she whispered.
Page 74
"Stay here," he whispered.
Page 75
"Drop those guns!" came in short, sharp syllables and perfect German from the lips of the newcomer.
Page 81
"Oh, Tan!" she exclaimed.
Page 82
"We found him and sent him home with his bride; but I was kept a prisoner here.