hangin' to the
Bridge cleared his throat, and recited:
Silver are the ripples,
Solemn are the dunes,
Happy are the fishes,
For they are full of prunes.
He looked up at Billy, a smile twitching at the corners of his mouth.
"How's that?" he asked.
Billy scratched his head.
"It's all right but the last line," said Billy, candidly. "There is
something wrong with that last line."
"Yes," agreed Bridge, "there is."
"I guess Knibbs is safe for another round at least," said Billy.
Bridge was eying his companion, noting the broad shoulders, the deep
chest, the mighty forearm and biceps which the other's light cotton
shirt could not conceal.
"It is none of my business," he said presently; "but from your general
appearance, from bits of idiom you occasionally drop, and from the way
you handled those two boes the night we met I should rather surmise that
at some time or other you had been less than a thousand miles from the
w.k. roped arena."
"I seen a prize fight once," admitted Billy.
It was the day before they were due to arrive in Kansas City that Billy
earned a hand-out from a restaurant keeper in a small town by doing some
odd jobs for the man. The food he gave Billy was wrapped in an old copy
of the Kansas City Star. When Billy reached camp he tossed the package
to Bridge, who, in addition to his honorable post as poet laureate, was
also cook. Then Billy walked down to the stream, near-by, that he might
wash away the grime and sweat of honest toil from his hands and face.
As Bridge unwrapped the package and the paper unfolded beneath his eyes
an article caught his attention--just casually at first; but presently
to the exclusion of all else. As he read his eyebrows alternated
between a position of considerable elevation to that of a deep frown.
Occasionally he nodded knowingly. Finally he glanced up at Billy who was
just rising from his ablutions. Hastily Bridge tore from the paper the
article that had attracted his interest, folded it, and stuffed it into
one of his pockets--he had not had time to finish the reading and he
wanted to save the article for a later opportunity for careful perusal.
That evening Bridge sat for a long time scrutinizing Billy through
half-closed lids, and often he found his eyes wandering to the red ring
about the other's wrist; but whatever may have been within his thoughts
he kept to himself.
It was noon when the two sauntered into Kansas City. Billy had a
The motor was started, and we pushed the plane out into the surf.Page 14
There was a single armlet between her right shoulder and elbow, and a series of them covered her left forearm from elbow to wrist.Page 16
The Ho-lus, or apes, the Alus and myself were the only creatures of human semblance with which she could hold no converse; yet it was evident that her intelligence told her that I was neither Ho-lu nor Alu, neither anthropoid ape nor speechless man.Page 19
And then Ajor took up in earnest the task of teaching me her language.Page 23
So now I took careful aim between its eyes; my right fingers closed firmly and evenly upon the small of the stock, drawing back my trigger-finger by the muscular action of the hand.Page 30
I found them fine-looking specimens of manhood, for the most part.Page 34
Then I heard a movement on the part of the creature near me, and again it touched me, and I felt something like a hairless hand pass over my face and down until it touched the collar of my flannel shirt.Page 35
With difficulty she had reached it, after having been stalked by a cave-lion and almost seized.Page 38
Her sweet voice, now almost inaudible from weakness, implored me to abandon her and save myself--she seemed to think only of me.Page 41
Here we went more slowly, lest we should be set upon by some member of the tribe.Page 47
In view of what I had passed through, I often wondered what chance I had to complete that journey in search of my friends.Page 54
"He is a Kro-lu.Page 55
There were ten of the Band-lu coming for me.Page 60
Whereas he might have condescended to tolerate me as a harmless and interesting curiosity, he now, by the change in his expression, appeared to consider me in a new and unfavorable light.Page 75
As Nobs and I swung along in the growing light of the coming day, I was impressed by the lessening numbers of savage beasts the farther north I traveled.Page 79
She turned to flee with the two of us pursuing her, Nobs with his great fangs bared and I with my short spear poised for a cast.Page 83
Rearing and struggling, he fought for his liberty while Nobs, panting and with lolling tongue, came and threw himself down near me.Page 84
I had a friend who was once in the French flying-corps, and when Ace let himself out, he certainly flew.Page 87
Tyler and Hollis and Short and all the rest of us Americans nearly worked our jaws loose on the march back to the village, and for days afterward we kept it up.Page 90
"I thought you'd do it in the end.