The Return of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 42

without disloyalty to her I tell you that I do not
love her, nor does she love me. For an instant we were the victims of
a sudden madness--it was not love--and it would have left us, unharmed,
as suddenly as it had come upon us even though De Coude had not
returned. As you know, I have had little experience of women. Olga de
Coude is very beautiful; that, and the dim light and the seductive
surroundings, and the appeal of the defenseless for protection, might
have been resisted by a more civilized man, but my civilization is not
even skin deep--it does not go deeper than my clothes.

"Paris is no place for me. I will but continue to stumble into more
and more serious pitfalls. The man-made restrictions are irksome. I
feel always that I am a prisoner. I cannot endure it, my friend, and
so I think that I shall go back to my own jungle, and lead the life
that God intended that I should lead when He put me there."

"Do not take it so to heart, Jean," responded D'Arnot. "You have
acquitted yourself much better than most 'civilized' men would have
under similar circumstances. As to leaving Paris at this time, I
rather think that Raoul de Coude may be expected to have something to
say on that subject before long."

Nor was D'Arnot mistaken. A week later on Monsieur Flaubert was
announced about eleven in the morning, as D'Arnot and Tarzan were
breakfasting. Monsieur Flaubert was an impressively polite gentleman.
With many low bows he delivered Monsieur le Count de Coude's challenge
to Monsieur Tarzan. Would monsieur be so very kind as to arrange to
have a friend meet Monsieur Flaubert at as early an hour as convenient,
that the details might be arranged to the mutual satisfaction of all

Certainly. Monsieur Tarzan would be delighted to place his interests
unreservedly in the hands of his friend, Lieutenant D'Arnot. And so it
was arranged that D'Arnot was to call on Monsieur Flaubert at two that
afternoon, and the polite Monsieur Flaubert, with many bows, left them.

When they were again alone D'Arnot looked quizzically at Tarzan.

"Well?" he said.

"Now to my sins I must add murder, or else myself be killed," said
Tarzan. "I am progressing rapidly in the ways of my civilized

"What weapons shall you select?" asked D'Arnot. "De Coude is
accredited with being a master with the sword, and a splendid shot."

"I might then choose poisoned arrows

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