The Mad King

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 23

of that sharp point.

"What do you mean?" he cried. "This is mutiny."

"When I received my commission," replied Butzow, quietly, "I swore
to protect the person of the king with my life, and while I live no
man shall affront Leopold of Lutha in my presence, or threaten his
safety else he accounts to me for his act. Return your sword,
Captain Maenck, nor ever again draw it against the king while I be
near."

Slowly Maenck sheathed his weapon. Black hatred for Butzow and the
man he was protecting smoldered in his eyes.

"If he wishes peace," said Barney, "let him apologize to the
princess."

"You had better apologize, captain," counseled Butzow, "for if the
king should command me to do so I should have to compel you to," and
the lieutenant half drew his sword once more.

There was something in Butzow's voice that warned Maenck that his
subordinate would like nothing better than the king's command to run
him through.

He well knew the fame of Butzow's sword arm, and having no stomach
for an encounter with it he grumbled an apology.

"And don't let it occur again," warned Barney.

"Come," said Dr. Stein, "your majesty should be in your apartments,
away from all excitement, if we are to effect a cure, so that you
may return to your throne quickly."

Butzow formed the soldiers about the American, and the party moved
silently out of the great hall, leaving Captain Maenck and Princess
Emma von der Tann its only occupants.

Barney cast a troubled glance toward Maenck, and half hesitated.

"I am sorry, your majesty," said Butzow in a low voice, "but you
must accompany us. In this the governor of Blentz is well within his
authority, and I must obey him."

"Heaven help her!" murmured Barney.

"The governor will not dare harm her," said Butzow. "Your majesty
need entertain no apprehension."

"I wouldn't trust him," replied the American. "I know his kind."




IV

BARNEY FINDS A FRIEND

After the party had left the room Maenck stood looking at the
princess for several seconds. A cunning expression supplanted the
anger that had shown so plainly upon his face but a moment before.
The girl had moved to one side of the apartment and was pretending
an interest in a large tapestry that covered the wall at that point.
Maenck watched her with greedy eyes. Presently he spoke.

"Let us be friends," he said. "You shall be my guest at Blentz for
a long time. I doubt if Peter will care to release you soon, for he
has no love for your father--and it will be easier for

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