The Mad King

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 204

stormed and
raged and threatened, he was immediately packed off under heavy
guard back toward Lustadt.

Captain Ernst Maenck was more fortunate. He reached the capital of
Lutha in safety, though he had to hide on several occasions from
detachments of troops moving toward the north. Once within the city
he rode rapidly to the house of a friend. Here he learned that which
set him into a fine state of excitement and profanity. The king and
the Princess Emma von der Tann were to be wed that very afternoon!
It lacked but half an hour to four o'clock.

Maenck grabbed his cap and dashed from the house before his
astonished friend could ask a single question. He hurried straight
toward the cathedral. The king had just arrived, and entered when
Maenck came up, breathless. The guard at the doorway did not
recognize him. If they had they would have arrested him. Instead
they contented themselves with refusing him admission, and when he
insisted they threatened him with arrest.

To be arrested now would be to ruin his fine plan, so he turned and
walked away. At the first cross street he turned up the side of the
cathedral. The grounds were walled up on this side, and he sought in
vain for entrance. At the rear he discovered a limousine standing in
the alley where its chauffeur had left it after depositing his
passengers at the front door of the cathedral. The top of the
limousine was but a foot or two below the top of the wall.

Maenck clambered to the hood of the machine, and from there to the
top. A moment later he dropped to the earth inside the cathedral
grounds. Before him were many windows. Most of them were too high
for him to reach, and the others that he tried at first were
securely fastened. Passing around the end of the building, he at
last discovered one that was open--it led into the east transept.

Maenck crawled through. He was within the building that held the
man he sought. He found himself in a small room--evidently a
dressing-room. There were two doors leading from it. He approached
one and listened. He heard the tones of subdued conversation beyond.

Very cautiously he opened the door a crack. He could not believe
the good fortune that was revealed before him. On a couch lay the
Princess Emma von der Tann. Beside her her father. At the door was
Lieutenant Butzow. The bishop and a doctor were talking at the head
of the couch. Pacing up and down the room, resplendent in

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