The Monster Men

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 12

less than half a mile from the opposite shore of
the island which was but two miles at its greatest breadth, and two and
a quarter at its greatest length.

At the camp Virginia found that a neat clearing had been made upon a
little tableland, a palisade built about it, and divided into three
parts; the most northerly of which contained a small house for herself
and her father, another for von Horn, and a common cooking and eating
house over which Sing was to preside.

The enclosure at the far end of the palisade was for the Malay and
lascar crew and there also were quarters for Bududreen and the Malay
second mate. The center enclosure contained Professor Maxon's
workshop. This compartment of the enclosure Virginia was not invited
to inspect, but as members of the crew carried in the two great chests
which the professor had left upon the Ithaca until the last moment,
Virginia caught a glimpse of the two buildings that had been erected
within this central space--a small, square house which was quite
evidently her father's laboratory, and a long, low thatched shed
divided into several compartments, each containing a rude bunk. She
wondered for whom they could be intended. Quarters for all the party
had already been arranged for elsewhere, nor, thought she, would her
father wish to house any in such close proximity to his workshop, where
he would desire absolute quiet and freedom from interruption. The
discovery perplexed her not a little, but so changed were her relations
with her father that she would not question him upon this or any other
subject.

As the two chests were being carried into the central campong, Sing,
who was standing near Virginia, called her attention to the fact that
Bududreen was one of those who staggered beneath the weight of the
heavier burden.

"Bludleen, him mate. Why workee alsame lascar boy? Eh?" But Virginia
could give no reason.

"I am afraid you don't like Bududreen, Sing," she said. "Has he ever
harmed you in any way?"

"Him? No, him no hurt Sing. Sing poor," with which more or less
enigmatical rejoinder the Chinaman returned to his work. But he
muttered much to himself the balance of the day, for Sing knew that a
chest that strained four men in the carrying could contain but one
thing, and he knew that Bududreen was as wise in such matters as he.

For a couple of months the life of the little hidden camp went on
peacefully and without exciting incident. The Malay

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