Many had gone down on both sides, but by far the greater havoc had been
wrought in the ranks of the guards of Issus. I could see messengers
running swiftly through the audience, and as they passed the nobles
there unsheathed their swords and sprang into the arena. They were
going to annihilate us by force of numbers--that was quite evidently
I caught a glimpse of Issus leaning far forward upon her throne, her
hideous countenance distorted in a horrid grimace of hate and rage, in
which I thought I could distinguish an expression of fear. It was that
face that inspired me to the thing that followed.
Quickly I ordered fifty of the prisoners to drop back behind us and
form a new circle about the maidens.
"Remain and protect them until I return," I commanded.
Then, turning to those who formed the outer line, I cried, "Down with
Issus! Follow me to the throne; we will reap vengeance where vengeance
The youth at my side was the first to take up the cry of "Down with
Issus!" and then at my back and from all sides rose a hoarse shout, "To
the throne! To the throne!"
As one man we moved, an irresistible fighting mass, over the bodies of
dead and dying foes toward the gorgeous throne of the Martian deity.
Hordes of the doughtiest fighting-men of the First Born poured from the
audience to check our progress. We mowed them down before us as they
had been paper men.
"To the seats, some of you!" I cried as we approached the arena's
barrier wall. "Ten of us can take the throne," for I had seen that
Issus' guards had for the most part entered the fray within the arena.
On both sides of me the prisoners broke to left and right for the
seats, vaulting the low wall with dripping swords lusting for the
crowded victims who awaited them.
In another moment the entire amphitheatre was filled with the shrieks
of the dying and the wounded, mingled with the clash of arms and
triumphant shouts of the victors.
Side by side the young red man and I, with perhaps a dozen others,
fought our way to the foot of the throne. The remaining guards,
reinforced by the high dignitaries and nobles of the First Born, closed
in between us and Issus, who sat leaning far forward upon her carved
sorapus bench, now screaming high-pitched commands to her following,
now hurling blighting curses upon those who sought to desecrate her
The frightened slaves about
It was now but 140 degrees, although we had penetrated to a depth of nearly four miles.Page 6
Already the heat was sufficient to give me a foretaste of the hereafter.Page 7
Would it stop at this point again, or would it continue its merciless climb? .Page 8
I was very young--I did not want to die.Page 9
" "You mean to say that we turned back in the ice stratum, David? That is not possible.Page 16
Tired at last of playing with my clothing the creatures threw it to the ground, and catching me, one on either side, by an arm, started off at a most terrifying pace through the tree tops.Page 29
Halts were now more frequent, but I did not wish to speak to Dian until I could see from the expression of her face how she was receiving my apologies.Page 53
The largest that I entered was divided into two floors and eight apartments.Page 58
My hands were resting upon a small piece of granite which formed a part of the wall, and all.Page 62
Chance carried me to the very beach upon which I had discovered Ja's canoe, and a short time later I was scrambling up the steep bank to retrace my steps from the plain of Phutra.Page 68
But it was worth the effort if the opportunity ever presented itself.Page 74
" The guards in whose hands I now found myself, upon hearing that I had returned of my own volition to Phutra evidently felt that it would be safe to give me liberty within the building as had been the custom before I had escaped, and so I was told to return to whatever duty had been mine formerly.Page 78
Gradually I worked it toward me until I felt that it was within reach of my hand and a moment later I had turned about and the precious thing was in my grasp.Page 83
After what seemed an eternity we reached the outer door which leads into the main avenue of Phutra.Page 93
There was no time to be lost, scarce an instant in which to weigh the possible chances that I had against the awfully armed creature; but the sight of that frightened girl below me called out to all that was best in me, and the instinct for.Page 94
"Look at me, Dian," I pleaded.Page 97
He must have.Page 100
Up he came at last, almost roaring in his rage and mortification; but he didn't stay up--I let him have a left fair on the point of the jaw that sent him tumbling over on his back.Page 101
Occasionally I glanced at her, thinking that the sight of her tearing at raw flesh with her hands and teeth like some wild animal would cause a revulsion of my sentiments toward her; but to my surprise I found that she ate quite as daintily.Page 116
Constantly my eyes scanned the blinding waste of sand for the rocky cairn beneath which I was to find the wires leading to Pellucidar--but always was I unsuccessful.