two more of the plant men charged, the warrior, who was now
prepared by the experiences of the past few minutes, swung his mighty
long-sword aloft and met the hurtling bulk with a clean cut that clove
one of the plant men from chin to groin.
The other, however, dealt a single blow with his cruel tail that laid
both of the females crushed corpses upon the ground.
As the green warrior saw the last of his companions go down and at the
same time perceived that the entire herd was charging him in a body, he
rushed boldly to meet them, swinging his long-sword in the terrific
manner that I had so often seen the men of his kind wield it in their
ferocious and almost continual warfare among their own race.
Cutting and hewing to right and left, he laid an open path straight
through the advancing plant men, and then commenced a mad race for the
forest, in the shelter of which he evidently hoped that he might find a
haven of refuge.
He had turned for that portion of the forest which abutted on the
cliffs, and thus the mad race was taking the entire party farther and
farther from the boulder where I lay concealed.
As I had watched the noble fight which the great warrior had put up
against such enormous odds my heart had swelled in admiration for him,
and acting as I am wont to do, more upon impulse than after mature
deliberation, I instantly sprang from my sheltering rock and bounded
quickly toward the bodies of the dead green Martians, a well-defined
plan of action already formed.
Half a dozen great leaps brought me to the spot, and another instant
saw me again in my stride in quick pursuit of the hideous monsters that
were rapidly gaining on the fleeing warrior, but this time I grasped a
mighty long-sword in my hand and in my heart was the old blood lust of
the fighting man, and a red mist swam before my eyes and I felt my lips
respond to my heart in the old smile that has ever marked me in the
midst of the joy of battle.
Swift as I was I was none too soon, for the green warrior had been
overtaken ere he had made half the distance to the forest, and now he
stood with his back to a boulder, while the herd, temporarily balked,
hissed and screeched about him.
With their single eyes in the centre of their heads and every eye
turned upon their prey, they did not note my
Henry, flushing in mortification and anger, rose to advance upon De Montfort, but suddenly recollecting the power which he represented, he thought better of whatever action he contemplated and, with a haughty sneer, turned to his courtiers.Page 3
How he had left France and entered the service of John of England is not of this story.Page 4
" The young woman did as she was bid, and when she had taken her place and turned to face him the boy threw the ball to her.Page 9
Toward this enchanting spot slowly were walking the Lady Maud and her little charge, Prince Richard; all ignorant of the malicious watcher in the window behind them.Page 32
An occurrence which befell during one of the boy's earlier visits to his new friend rather decided the latter that no arguments he could bring to bear could ever overcome the bald fact that to this very belief of the boy's, and his ability to back it up with acts, the good father owed a great deal, possibly his life.Page 45
Norman of Torn could not have translated this feeling into words for he did not know, but it was the far faint cry of blood for blood and with it, mayhap, was mixed not alone the longing of the lion among jackals for other lions, but for his lioness.Page 48
"An' speaking of the Devil," said the Baron, "how think you he will side should the King eventually force war upon the barons? With his thousand hell-hounds, the fate of England might well be in the palm of his bloody hand.Page 59
As the horse fell, with a terrible lunge, tripped by the stout rope, Bertrade de Montfort was thrown far before him, where she lay, a little, limp bedraggled figure, in the mud of the road.Page 62
This was at one side, and as it stood ajar she could see that it led into a small room, apparently a bedchamber.Page 71
"He will not go far, My Lady Bertrade," he said.Page 73
But that it was pure happiness just to be near her, sufficed him for the time; of the morrow, what use to think! The little, grim, gray, old man of Torn nursed the spleen he did not dare vent openly, and cursed the chance that had sent Henry de Montfort to Torn to search for his sister; while the followers of the outlaw swore quietly over the vagary which had brought them on this long ride without either fighting or loot.Page 74
" "Dares Norman of Torn enter the castle of Simon de Montfort--thinks he that I keep a robbers' roost!" cried the fierce old warrior.Page 76
"My Lord Prince," he cried.Page 77
No, you may not be angry so long as I do not tell you all this.Page 83
Between priest and petticoat, it be all but ruined now.Page 105
" The outlaw pretended that he did not see the hand.Page 112
When the rising sun shone through the narrow window, it found Joan de Tany at peace with all about her; the carved golden hilt of the toy that had hung at her girdle protruded from her breast, and a thin line of crimson ran across the snowy skin to a little pool upon the sheet beneath her.Page 117
And then Norman of Torn took the man by the neck with one powerful hand and, despite his struggles, and the beating of his mailed fists, bent him back upon the table, and there, forcing his teeth apart with the point of his sword, Norman of Torn rammed the King's message down the knight's throat; wax, parchment and all.Page 124
Instantly the tide turned, and it was by only the barest chance that the King himself escaped capture, and regained the temporary safety of Lewes.Page 138
"Keep the ring, Norman of Torn," she said.