The Son of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 13

into the box with the handsome boy, who,
doubtless, would be terror stricken by proximity to the shaggy,
powerful beast.

When the time came, therefore, for the ape to return from the wings in
reply to an encore the trainer directed its attention to the boy who
chanced to be the sole occupant of the box in which he sat. With a
spring the huge anthropoid leaped from the stage to the boy's side; but
if the trainer had looked for a laughable scene of fright he was
mistaken. A broad smile lighted the boy's features as he laid his hand
upon the shaggy arm of his visitor. The ape, grasping the boy by
either shoulder, peered long and earnestly into his face, while the
latter stroked his head and talked to him in a low voice.

Never had Ajax devoted so long a time to an examination of another as
he did in this instance. He seemed troubled and not a little excited,
jabbering and mumbling to the boy, and now caressing him, as the
trainer had never seen him caress a human being before. Presently he
clambered over into the box with him and snuggled down close to the
boy's side. The audience was delighted; but they were still more
delighted when the trainer, the period of his act having elapsed,
attempted to persuade Ajax to leave the box. The ape would not budge.
The manager, becoming excited at the delay, urged the trainer to
greater haste, but when the latter entered the box to drag away the
reluctant Ajax he was met by bared fangs and menacing growls.

The audience was delirious with joy. They cheered the ape. They
cheered the boy, and they hooted and jeered at the trainer and the
manager, which luckless individual had inadvertently shown himself and
attempted to assist the trainer.

Finally, reduced to desperation and realizing that this show of mutiny
upon the part of his valuable possession might render the animal
worthless for exhibition purposes in the future if not immediately
subdued, the trainer had hastened to his dressing room and procured a
heavy whip. With this he now returned to the box; but when he had
threatened Ajax with it but once he found himself facing two infuriated
enemies instead of one, for the boy had leaped to his feet, and seizing
a chair was standing ready at the ape's side to defend his new found
friend. There was no longer a smile upon his handsome face. In his
gray eyes was an

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