The Return of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 190

passed me they were going toward the morning, upward
along the edge of the water."

"When was this?" asked Tarzan.

"Half a moon since."

Without another word the ape-man sprang into the trees and fled like a
disembodied spirit eastward in the direction of the forgotten city of
Opar.




Chapter 24

How Tarzan Came Again to Opar


When Clayton returned to the shelter and found Jane Porter was missing,
he became frantic with fear and grief. He found Monsieur Thuran quite
rational, the fever having left him with the surprising suddenness
which is one of its peculiarities. The Russian, weak and exhausted,
still lay upon his bed of grasses within the shelter.

When Clayton asked him about the girl he seemed surprised to know that
she was not there.

"I have heard nothing unusual," he said. "But then I have been
unconscious much of the time."

Had it not been for the man's very evident weakness, Clayton should
have suspected him of having sinister knowledge of the girl's
whereabouts; but he could see that Thuran lacked sufficient vitality
even to descend, unaided, from the shelter. He could not, in his
present physical condition, have harmed the girl, nor could he have
climbed the rude ladder back to the shelter.

Until dark the Englishman searched the nearby jungle for a trace of the
missing one or a sign of the trail of her abductor. But though the
spoor left by the fifty frightful men, unversed in woodcraft as they
were, would have been as plain to the densest denizen of the jungle as
a city street to the Englishman, yet he crossed and recrossed it twenty
times without observing the slightest indication that many men had
passed that way but a few short hours since.

As he searched, Clayton continued to call the girl's name aloud, but
the only result of this was to attract Numa, the lion. Fortunately the
man saw the shadowy form worming its way toward him in time to climb
into the branches of a tree before the beast was close enough to reach
him. This put an end to his search for the balance of the afternoon,
as the lion paced back and forth beneath him until dark.

Even after the beast had left, Clayton dared not descend into the awful
blackness beneath him, and so he spent a terrifying and hideous night
in the tree. The next morning he returned to the beach, relinquishing
the last hope of succoring Jane Porter.

During the week that followed, Monsieur Thuran rapidly regained his
strength, lying in the shelter while Clayton hunted

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