The Outlaw of Torn

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 129

follow every detail of the
fascinating drama that was being enacted before them.

"God, what a swordsman!" muttered one.

"Never was such swordplay seen since the day the first sword was
drawn from the first scabbard!" replied Roger de Leybourn. "Is it not
marvellous!"

Slowly but surely was Norman of Torn cutting Peter of Colfax to pieces;
little by little, and with such fiendish care that, except for loss
of blood, the man was in no way crippled; nor did the outlaw touch
his victim's face with his gleaming sword. That he was saving for the
fulfillment of his design.

And Peter of Colfax, cornered and fighting for his life, was no
marrowless antagonist, even against the Devil of Torn. Furiously he
fought; in the extremity of his fear, rushing upon his executioner with
frenzied agony. Great beads of cold sweat stood upon his livid brow.

And then the gleaming point of Norman of Torn flashed, lightning-like,
in his victim's face, and above the right eye of Peter of Colfax was a
thin vertical cut from which the red blood had barely started to ooze
ere another swift move of that master sword hand placed a fellow to
parallel the first.

Five times did the razor point touch the forehead of Peter of Colfax,
until the watchers saw there, upon the brow of the doomed man, the seal
of death, in letters of blood--NT.

It was the end. Peter of Colfax, cut to ribbons yet fighting like the
maniac he had become, was as good as dead, for the mark of the Outlaw of
Torn was upon his brow. Now, shrieking and gibbering through his frothy
lips, his yellow fangs bared in a mad and horrid grin, he rushed full
upon Norman of Torn. There was a flash of the great sword as the outlaw
swung it to the full of his mighty strength through an arc that passed
above the shoulders of Peter of Colfax, and the grinning head rolled
upon the floor, while the loathsome carcass, that had been a baron of
England, sunk in a disheveled heap among the rushes of the great hall of
the castle of Leybourn.

A little shudder passed through the wide-eyed guests. Some one broke
into hysterical laughter, a woman sobbed, and then Norman of Torn,
wiping his blade upon the rushes of the floor as he had done upon
another occasion in that same hall, spoke quietly to the master of
Leybourn.

"I would borrow yon golden platter, My Lord. It shall be returned, or a
mightier one in its stead."

Leybourn nodded his assent, and Norman of Torn turned, with

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