The Son of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 42

is being blown in the other direction,
and so I bent my ears and eyes down wind where my nose cannot travel."

"And you found--nothing?" asked the lad, with a laugh.

"I found Numa crouching in that clump of bushes where the tall grasses
grow," and Akut pointed.

"A lion?" exclaimed the boy. "How do you know? I can see nothing."

"Numa is there, though," replied the great ape. "First I heard him
sigh. To you the sigh of Numa may sound no different from the other
noises which the wind makes among the grasses and the trees; but later
you must learn to know the sigh of Numa. Then I watched and at last I
saw the tall grasses moving at one point to a force other than the
force of the wind. See, they are spread there upon either side of
Numa's great body, and as he breathes--you see? You see the little
motion at either side that is not caused by the wind--the motion that
none of the other grasses have?"

The boy strained his eyes--better eyes than the ordinary boy
inherits--and at last he gave a little exclamation of discovery.

"Yes," he said, "I see. He lies there," and he pointed. "His head is
toward us. Is he watching us?"

"Numa is watching us," replied Akut, "but we are in little danger,
unless we approach too close, for he is lying upon his kill. His belly
is almost full, or we should hear him crunching the bones. He is
watching us in silence merely from curiosity. Presently he will resume
his feeding or he will rise and come down to the water for a drink. As
he neither fears or desires us he will not try to hide his presence
from us; but now is an excellent time to learn to know Numa, for you
must learn to know him well if you would live long in the jungle.
Where the great apes are many Numa leaves us alone. Our fangs are long
and strong, and we can fight; but when we are alone and he is hungry we
are no match for him. Come, we will circle him and catch his scent.
The sooner you learn to know it the better; but keep close to the
trees, as we go around him, for Numa often does that which he is least
expected to do. And keep your ears and your eyes and your nose open.
Remember always that there may be

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