The Mad King

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 127

this strong man and envied him his strength,
which, in a weak nature, is but a step from hatred. There evidently
had been a long pause in their conversation, yet the king's next
words took up the thread of their argument where it had broken.

"You speak as though I had no right to do it," he snapped. "One
might think that you were the king from the manner with which you
upbraid and reproach me. I tell you, Prince von der Tann, that I
shall stand it no longer."

The king approached the desk and pounded heavily upon its polished
surface with his fist. The physical act of violence imparted to him
a certain substitute for the moral courage which he lacked.

"I will tell you, sir, that I am king. It was not necessary that I
consult you or any other man before pardoning Prince Peter and his
associates. I have investigated the matter thoroughly and I am
convinced that they have been taught a sufficient lesson and that
hereafter they will be my most loyal subjects."

He hesitated. "Their presence here," he added, "may prove an
antidote to the ambitions of others who lately have taken it upon
themselves to rule Lutha for me."

There was no mistaking the king's meaning, but Prince Ludwig did not
show by any change of expression that the shot had struck him in a
vulnerable spot; nor, upon the other hand, did he ignore the
insinuation. There was only sorrow in his voice when he replied.

"Sire," he said, "for some time I have been aware of the activity of
those who would like to see Peter of Blentz returned to favor with
your majesty. I have warned you, only to see that my motives were
always misconstrued. There is a greater power at work, your majesty,
than any of us--greater than Lutha itself. One that will stop at
nothing in order to gain its ends. It cares naught for Peter of
Blentz, naught for me, naught for you. It cares only for Lutha. For
strategic purposes it must have Lutha. It will trample you under
foot to gain its end, and then it will cast Peter of Blentz aside.
You have insinuated, sire, that I am ambitious. I am. I am ambitious
to maintain the integrity and freedom of Lutha.

"For three hundred years the Von der Tanns have labored and fought
for the welfare of Lutha. It was a Von der Tann that put the first
Rubinroth king upon the throne of Lutha. To the last they were loyal
to the former dynasty while

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with At the Earth's Core

Page 14
There were many close by which not even the terrific strength of that titanic monster could bend.
Page 18
He had seen me fall before the dyryth, and then he had been seized by a number of the ape-creatures and borne through the tree tops to their village.
Page 23
Whether an instant or an eternity of earthly time elapsed who may say.
Page 26
Ahead of Ghak was Hooja the Sly One.
Page 31
"Merely to raise her hand above her head and drop it in the presence of others is sufficient to release her; but how may you ever find her, you who are doomed to a life of slavery yourself in the buried city of Phutra?" "Is there no escape?" I asked.
Page 34
At my suggestion Perry and I fashioned some swords of scraps of iron which we discovered among some rubbish in the cells where we slept, for we were permitted almost unrestrained freedom of action within the limits of the building to which we had been assigned.
Page 37
They breed them most carefully, and when they are quite fat, they kill and eat them.
Page 46
I have no idea, of course, how long it took me to reach the limit of the plain, but at last I entered the foothills, following a pretty little canyon upward toward the mountains.
Page 47
Beyond was a steep declivity to the shore of a placid, inland sea, upon the quiet surface of which lay several beautiful islands.
Page 61
But, to the best of my knowledge, Perry still lived and it was my duty and wish to be again with him, that we might share the dangers and vicissitudes of the strange world we had discovered.
Page 64
And there I was, unarmed, and, with the exception of a loin cloth, as naked as I had come into the world.
Page 65
To run seemed ridiculous, especially toward that steep and unscalable cliff, and yet I did so, and as I ran I saw Ja, agile as a monkey, crawl down the precipitous face of the rocks, clinging to small projections, and the tough creepers that had found root-hold here and there.
Page 70
" "I see no other way, Ja," I said, "though I can assure you that I would rather go to Sheol after Perry than to Phutra.
Page 80
With a quick thrust through the heart I disposed of the first but my second thrust was not so fortunate, so that before I could kill the next of my victims it had hurled itself against the third, who sprang quickly up, facing me with wide-distended jaws.
Page 91
I know that I wandered for a long time, until tired and hungry I came upon a small cave in the face of the limestone formation which had taken the place of the granite farther back.
Page 92
In size they remind one of a pure bred Hereford bull, yet they are very agile and fast.
Page 103
Then I arose.
Page 106
That would give us a flying start, for the Sarians and the Amozites were both very powerful tribes.
Page 113
there were others in the plot to aid him.
Page 116
And always do these awful questions harass me when I think of David Innes and his strange adventures.