The Gods of Mars

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 103

face of Mars, yet within the past four days I had
found both whites and blacks in great multitudes. Could it be possible
that in some far-off corner of the planet there still existed a remnant
of the ancient race of yellow men?

My reveries were broken in upon by a low exclamation from the boy.

"At last, the lighted way," he cried, and looking up I beheld at a long
distance before us a dim radiance.

As we advanced the light increased until presently we emerged into
well-lighted passageways. From then on our progress was rapid until we
came suddenly to the end of a corridor that let directly upon the ledge
surrounding the pool of the submarine.

The craft lay at her moorings with uncovered hatch. Raising his finger
to his lips and then tapping his sword in a significant manner, the
youth crept noiselessly toward the vessel. I was close at his heels.

Silently we dropped to the deserted deck, and on hands and knees
crawled toward the hatchway. A stealthy glance below revealed no guard
in sight, and so with the quickness and the soundlessness of cats we
dropped together into the main cabin of the submarine. Even here was
no sign of life. Quickly we covered and secured the hatch.

Then the boy stepped into the pilot house, touched a button and the
boat sank amid swirling waters toward the bottom of the shaft. Even
then there was no scurrying of feet as we had expected, and while the
boy remained to direct the boat I slid from cabin to cabin in futile
search for some member of the crew. The craft was entirely deserted.
Such good fortune seemed almost unbelievable.

When I returned to the pilot house to report the good news to my
companion he handed me a paper.

"This may explain the absence of the crew," he said.

It was a radio-aerial message to the commander of the submarine:


"The slaves have risen. Come with what men you have and those that you
can gather on the way. Too late to get aid from Omean. They are
massacring all within the amphitheatre. Issus is threatened. Haste.

"ZITHAD"


"Zithad is Dator of the guards of Issus," explained the youth. "We
gave them a bad scare--one that they will not soon forget."

"Let us hope that it is but the beginning of the end of Issus," I said.

"Only our first ancestor knows," he replied.

We reached the submarine pool in Omean without incident. Here

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