The Son of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 166

the most part they followed this well-marked trail along
elephant paths and through park-like groves. It was an ideal trail for
rapid traveling.

Meriem at last became suspicious. Gradually the attitude of the man at
her side had begun to change. Often she surprised him devouring her
with his eyes. Steadily the former sensation of previous
acquaintanceship urged itself upon her. Somewhere, sometime before she
had known this man. It was evident that he had not shaved for several
days. A blonde stubble had commenced to cover his neck and cheeks and
chin, and with it the assurance that he was no stranger continued to
grow upon the girl.

It was not until the second day, however, that Meriem rebelled. She
drew in her pony at last and voiced her doubts. Hanson assured her that
the camp was but a few miles further on.

"We should have overtaken them yesterday," he said. "They must have
marched much faster than I had believed possible."

"They have not marched here at all," said Meriem. "The spoor that we
have been following is weeks old."

Hanson laughed.

"Oh, that's it, is it?" he cried. "Why didn't you say so before? I
could have easily explained. We are not coming by the same route; but
we'll pick up their trail sometime today, even if we don't overtake

Now, at last, Meriem knew the man was lying to her. What a fool he
must be to think that anyone could believe such a ridiculous
explanation? Who was so stupid as to believe that they could have
expected to overtake another party, and he had certainly assured her
that momentarily he expected to do so, when that party's route was not
to meet theirs for several miles yet?

She kept her own counsel however, planning to escape at the first
opportunity when she might have a sufficient start of her captor, as
she now considered him, to give her some assurance of outdistancing
him. She watched his face continually when she could without being
observed. Tantalizingly the placing of his familiar features persisted
in eluding her. Where had she known him? Under what conditions had
they met before she had seen him about the farm of Bwana? She ran over
in her mind all the few white men she ever had known. There were some
who had come to her father's douar in the jungle. Few it is true, but
there had been some. Ah, now she had it!

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