The Monster Men

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 49

can have an opportunity to restore his enfeebled
mentality. Come, Virginia! Come with me now. We can go directly to
the Ithaca and safety. Say that you will come."

The girl shook her head.

"I do not love you, I am afraid, Doctor von Horn, or I should certainly
be moved by your appeal. If you wish to bring help for my father I
shall never cease to thank you if you will go to Singapore and fetch
it, but it is not necessary that I go. My place is here, near him."

In the darkness the girl did not see the change that came over the
man's face, but his next words revealed his altered attitude with
sufficient exactitude to thoroughly arouse her fears.

"Virginia," he said, "I love you, and I intend to have you. Nothing on
earth can prevent me. When you know me better you will return my love,
but now I must risk offending you that I may save you for myself from
the monstrous connection which your father contemplates for you. If
you will not come away from the island with me voluntarily I consider
it my duty to take you away by force."

"You would never do that, Doctor von Horn!" she exclaimed.

Von Horn had gone too far. He cursed himself inwardly for a fool. Why
the devil didn't that villain, Bududreen, come! He should have been
along to act his part half an hour before.

"No, Virginia," said the man, softly, after a moment's silence, "I
could not do that; though my judgment tells me that I should do it.
You shall remain here if you insist and I will be with you to serve and
protect both you and your father."

The words were fair, but the girl could not forget the ugly tone that
had tinged his preceding statement. She felt that she would be glad
when she found herself safely within the bungalow once more.

"Come," she said, "it is late. Let us return to camp."

Von Horn was about to reply when the war cries of Muda Saffir's Dyaks
as they rushed out upon Bududreen and his companions came to them
distinctly through the tropic night.

"What was that?" cried the girl in an alarmed tone.

"God knows," replied von Horn. "Can it be that our men have mutinied?"

He thought the six with Bududreen were carrying out their part in a
most realistic manner, and a grim smile tinged his hard face.

Virginia Maxon turned resolutely toward

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