soon permit her to reduce the number by one at least. Then
things happened with such amazing rapidity that I can scarce comprehend
even now all that took place in that brief instant.
The three rushed me with the evident purpose of forcing me back the few
steps that would carry my body over the rail into the void below. At
the same instant the girl fired and my sword arm made two moves. One
man dropped with a bullet in his brain; a sword flew clattering across
the deck and dropped over the edge beyond as I disarmed one of my
opponents and the third went down with my blade buried to the hilt in
his breast and three feet of it protruding from his back, and falling
wrenched the sword from my grasp.
Disarmed myself, I now faced my remaining foeman, whose own sword lay
somewhere thousands of feet below us, lost in the Lost Sea.
The new conditions seemed to please my adversary, for a smile of
satisfaction bared his gleaming teeth as he rushed at me bare-handed.
The great muscles which rolled beneath his glossy black hide evidently
assured him that here was easy prey, not worth the trouble of drawing
the dagger from his harness.
I let him come almost upon me. Then I ducked beneath his outstretched
arms, at the same time sidestepping to the right. Pivoting on my left
toe, I swung a terrific right to his jaw, and, like a felled ox, he
dropped in his tracks.
A low, silvery laugh rang out behind me.
"You are no thern," said the sweet voice of my companion, "for all your
golden locks or the harness of Sator Throg. Never lived there upon all
Barsoom before one who could fight as you have fought this night. Who
"I am John Carter, Prince of the House of Tardos Mors, Jeddak of
Helium," I replied. "And whom," I added, "has the honour of serving
been accorded me?"
She hesitated a moment before speaking. Then she asked:
"You are no thern. Are you an enemy of the therns?"
"I have been in the territory of the therns for a day and a half.
During that entire time my life has been in constant danger. I have
been harassed and persecuted. Armed men and fierce beasts have been
set upon me. I had no quarrel with the therns before, but can you
wonder that I feel no great love for them now? I have spoken."
She looked at me
He could in cold blood have married this girl for the wealth he knew that she would inherit; but the thought that she was to be united with such a THING--"Lord! It is horrible," and his mind pictured the fearful atrocity which was known as Number One.Page 25
Now before him, behind, on either side there was naught but glorious green beauty shot with splashes of gorgeous color that made him gasp in wonderment.Page 26
It is true that Number Thirteen knew nothing whatever of personal combat, but Number One had but little advantage of him in the matter of experience, while the former was equipped with great natural intelligence as well as steel muscles no whit less powerful than his deformed predecessor.Page 27
Here was a problem indeed.Page 28
The man only half sensed, in a vague sort of way, the meaning of the tell tale color and the quickly averted eyes; but he became suddenly aware of the pressure of her delicate body against his, as he had not been before.Page 30
Number Thirteen turned in surprise at the cry, and sensing a new danger for her who lay in his arms, he set her gently upon the ground behind him and advanced to meet his assailant.Page 47
Sing looked quickly up at his companion.Page 58
" "My God!" groaned the stricken man; and then his eyes again falling upon the silent giant in the doorway, "Out of my sight," he shrieked.Page 61
None of them knows.Page 63
The excitement of the conflict was telling upon the malformed minds of the spectators.Page 71
"There must be some way to save her.Page 72
"What in the world would he want of that enormous and heavy chest?" "He might have thought that it contained treasure," hazarded von Horn, in an innocent tone of voice.Page 74
"Help! Help!" she called.Page 79
If you will return me to him you may keep the chest, if that is what you wish.Page 90
The head hunters had been engaged in collecting camphor crystals when their quick ears caught the noisy passage of the six while yet at a considerable distance, and with ready parangs the savages crept stealthily toward the sound of the advancing party.Page 102
The ferocity with which he had fought before paled into insignificance beside the mad fury with which he now attacked the three terrible creatures upon him.Page 120
The girl had been watching him closely as he stood silently thinking after her last words.Page 122
The girl read part of the truth in his heavy eyes and worn face, and tried to force him to take needed rest, but she did not guess that he had not slept for four days and nights.Page 124
"Oh, Bulan," she cried, "you must not say that.Page 131