The Son of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 116

least of all. He is great and noisy. I can hear him, or see
him, or smell him in time to escape; but any moment I may place a hand
or foot on the little bug, and never know that he is there until I feel
his deadly sting. No, I do not fear the jungle. I love it. I should
rather die than leave it forever; but your douar is close beside the
jungle. You have been good to me. I will do as you wish, and remain
here for a while to wait the coming of my Korak."

"Good!" said the man, and he led the way down toward the flower-covered
bungalow behind which lay the barns and out-houses of a well-ordered
African farm.

As they came nearer a dozen dogs ran barking toward them--gaunt wolf
hounds, a huge great Dane, a nimble-footed collie and a number of
yapping, quarrelsome fox terriers. At first their appearance was
savage and unfriendly in the extreme; but once they recognized the
foremost black warriors, and the white man behind them their attitude
underwent a remarkable change. The collie and the fox terriers became
frantic with delirious joy, and while the wolf hounds and the great
Dane were not a whit less delighted at the return of their master their
greetings were of a more dignified nature. Each in turn sniffed at
Meriem who displayed not the slightest fear of any of them.

The wolf hounds bristled and growled at the scent of wild beasts that
clung to her garment; but when she laid her hand upon their heads and
her soft voice murmured caressingly they half-closed their eyes,
lifting their upper lips in contented canine smiles. The man was
watching them and he too smiled, for it was seldom that these savage
brutes took thus kindly to strangers. It was as though in some subtile
way the girl had breathed a message of kindred savagery to their savage
hearts.

With her slim fingers grasping the collar of a wolf hound upon either
side of her Meriem walked on toward the bungalow upon the porch of
which a woman dressed in white waved a welcome to her returning lord.
There was more fear in the girl's eyes now than there had been in the
presence of strange men or savage beasts. She hesitated, turning an
appealing glance toward the man.

"This is my wife," he said. "She will be glad to welcome you."

The woman came down the path to meet them.

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