The Land That Time Forgot

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 73

them from our "apartment," as Lys called it. Neither men nor women wore
any sort of clothing or ornaments, and they all seemed to be about of
an age; nor were there any babies or children among them. This was, to
us, the strangest and most inexplicable of facts, but it recalled to us
that though we had seen many of the lesser developed wild people of
Caspak, we had never yet seen a child or an old man or woman.

After a while they became less suspicious of us and then quite friendly
in their brutish way. They picked at the fabric of our clothing, which
seemed to interest them, and examined my rifle and pistol and the
ammunition in the belt around my waist. I showed them the
thermos-bottle, and when I poured a little water from it, they were
delighted, thinking that it was a spring which I carried about with
me--a never-failing source of water supply.

One thing we both noticed among their other characteristics: they never
laughed nor smiled; and then we remembered that Ahm had never done so,
either. I asked them if they knew Ahm; but they said they did not.

One of them said: "Back there we may have known him." And he jerked
his head to the south.

"You came from back there?" I asked. He looked at me in surprise.

"We all come from there," he said. "After a while we go there." And
this time he jerked his head toward the north. "Be Galus," he

Many times now had we heard this reference to becoming Galus. Ahm had
spoken of it many times. Lys and I decided that it was a sort of
original religious conviction, as much a part of them as their instinct
for self-preservation--a primal acceptance of a hereafter and a holier
state. It was a brilliant theory, but it was all wrong. I know it
now, and how far we were from guessing the wonderful, the miraculous,
the gigantic truth which even yet I may only guess at--the thing that
sets Caspak apart from all the rest of the world far more definitely
than her isolated geographical position or her impregnable barrier of
giant cliffs. If I could live to return to civilization, I should have
meat for the clergy and the layman to chew upon for years--and for the
evolutionists, too.

After breakfast the men set out to hunt, while the women went to a
large pool of warm water covered with a green scum

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