The Monster Men

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 92

the ocean far below
in the remarkable manner that news travels in the wild places of the
world.

So it was that as Bulan advanced he found the long-houses in his path
deserted, and came to the larger river and turned up toward its head
without meeting with resistance or even catching a glimpse of the
brown-skinned people who watched him from their hiding places in the
brush.

That night they slept in the long-house near the bank of the greater
stream, while its rightful occupants made the best of it in the jungle
behind. The next morning found the four again on the march ere the sun
had scarcely lighted the dark places of the forest, for Bulan was now
sure that he was on the right trail and that the new river that he had
come to was indeed the same that he had traversed in the Prahu with
Barunda.

It must have been close to noon when the young giant's ears caught the
sound of the movement of some animal in the jungle a short distance to
his right and away from the river. His experience with men had taught
him to be wary, for it was evident that every man's hand was against
him, so he determined to learn at once whether the noise he heard came
from some human enemy lurking along his trail ready to spring upon him
with naked parang at a moment that he was least prepared, or merely
from some jungle brute.

Cautiously he threaded his way through the matted vegetation in the
direction of the sound. Although a parang from the body of a
vanquished Dyak hung at his side he grasped his bull whip ready in his
right hand, preferring it to the less accustomed weapon of the head
hunter. For a dozen yards he advanced without sighting the object of
his search, but presently his efforts were rewarded by a glimpse of a
reddish, hairy body, and a pair of close set, wicked eyes peering at
him from behind a giant tree.

At the same instant a slight movement at one side attracted his
attention to where another similar figure crouched in the underbrush,
and then a third, fourth and fifth became evident about him. Bulan
looked in wonderment upon the strange, man-like creatures who eyed him
threateningly from every hand. They stood fully as high as the brown
Dyak warriors, but their bodies were naked except for the growth of
reddish hair which covered them, shading to black upon the face and
hands.

The lips of the nearest were raised

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