The Son of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 132

in sight of the little animal and knew. The kid was tethered
to a stake beside the waterhole.

Meriem paused in the branches of a near-by tree and scanned the
surrounding clearing with quick, penetrating eyes. Where was the
hunter? Bwana and his people did not hunt thus. Who could have
tethered this poor little beast as a lure to Numa? Bwana never
countenanced such acts in his country and his word was law among those
who hunted within a radius of many miles of his estate.

Some wandering savages, doubtless, thought Meriem; but where were they?
Not even her keen eyes could discover them. And where was Numa? Why
had he not long since sprung upon this delicious and defenseless
morsel? That he was close by was attested by the pitiful crying of the
kid. Ah! Now she saw him. He was lying close in a clump of brush a
few yards to her right. The kid was down wind from him and getting the
full benefit of his terrorizing scent, which did not reach Meriem.

To circle to the opposite side of the clearing where the trees
approached closer to the kid. To leap quickly to the little animal's
side and cut the tether that held him would be the work of but a
moment. In that moment Numa might charge, and then there would be
scarce time to regain the safety of the trees, yet it might be done.
Meriem had escaped from closer quarters than that many times before.

The doubt that gave her momentary pause was caused by fear of the
unseen hunters more than by fear of Numa. If they were stranger blacks
the spears that they held in readiness for Numa might as readily be
loosed upon whomever dared release their bait as upon the prey they
sought thus to trap. Again the kid struggled to be free. Again his
piteous wail touched the tender heart strings of the girl. Tossing
discretion aside, she commenced to circle the clearing. Only from Numa
did she attempt to conceal her presence. At last she reached the
opposite trees. An instant she paused to look toward the great lion,
and at the same moment she saw the huge beast rise slowly to his full
height. A low roar betokened that he was ready.

Meriem loosened her knife and leaped to the ground. A quick run
brought her to the side of the kid. Numa saw

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