The Return of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 163

by fear as the two men fought,
had just commenced to give thought to her probable fate now that,
though released from the clutches of a madman, she had fallen into the
hands of one whom but a moment before she had been upon the point of
killing. She looked about for some means of escape. The black mouth
of a diverging corridor was near at hand, but as she turned to dart
into it the ape-man's eyes fell upon her, and with a quick leap he was
at her side, and a restraining hand was laid upon her arm.

"Wait!" said Tarzan of the Apes, in the language of the tribe of
Kerchak.

The girl looked at him in astonishment.

"Who are you," she whispered, "who speaks the language of the first
man?"

"I am Tarzan of the Apes," he answered in the vernacular of the
anthropoids.

"What do you want of me?" she continued. "For what purpose did you
save me from Tha?"

"I could not see a woman murdered?" It was a half question that
answered her.

"But what do you intend to do with me now?" she continued.

"Nothing," he replied, "but you can do something for me--you can lead
me out of this place to freedom." He made the suggestion without the
slightest thought that she would accede. He felt quite sure that the
sacrifice would go on from the point where it had been interrupted if
the high priestess had her way, though he was equally positive that
they would find Tarzan of the Apes unbound and with a long dagger in
his hand a much less tractable victim than Tarzan disarmed and bound.

The girl stood looking at him for a long moment before she spoke.

"You are a very wonderful man," she said. "You are such a man as I
have seen in my daydreams ever since I was a little girl. You are such
a man as I imagine the forbears of my people must have been--the great
race of people who built this mighty city in the heart of a savage
world that they might wrest from the bowels of the earth the fabulous
wealth for which they had sacrificed their far-distant civilization.

"I cannot understand why you came to my rescue in the first place, and
now I cannot understand why, having me within your power, you do not
wish to be revenged upon me for having sentenced you to death--for
having almost put you to death with my own hand."

"I presume," replied the ape-man, "that you but

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