The Son of Tarzan

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 63

however, that Akut kept the boy from rushing into the
midst of the dancing anthropoids--an act that would have meant the
instant extermination of them both, since the hysterical frenzy into
which the great apes work themselves during the performance of their
strange rites is of such a nature that even the most ferocious of the
carnivora give them a wide berth at such times.

As the moon declined slowly toward the lofty, foliaged horizon of the
amphitheater the booming of the drum decreased and lessened were the
exertions of the dancers, until, at last, the final note was struck and
the huge beasts turned to fall upon the feast they had dragged hither
for the orgy.

From what he had seen and heard Akut was able to explain to Korak that
the rites proclaimed the choosing of a new king, and he pointed out to
the boy the massive figure of the shaggy monarch, come into his
kingship, no doubt, as many human rulers have come into theirs--by the
murder of his predecessor.

When the apes had filled their bellies and many of them had sought the
bases of the trees to curl up in sleep Akut plucked Korak by the arm.

"Come," he whispered. "Come slowly. Follow me. Do as Akut does."

Then he advanced slowly through the trees until he stood upon a bough
overhanging one side of the amphitheater. Here he stood in silence for
a moment. Then he uttered a low growl. Instantly a score of apes
leaped to their feet. Their savage little eyes sped quickly around the
periphery of the clearing. The king ape was the first to see the two
figures upon the branch. He gave voice to an ominous growl. Then he
took a few lumbering steps in the direction of the intruders. His hair
was bristling. His legs were stiff, imparting a halting, jerky motion
to his gait. Behind him pressed a number of bulls.

He stopped just a little before he came beneath the two--just far
enough to be beyond their spring. Wary king! Here he stood rocking
himself to and fro upon his short legs, baring his fangs in hideous
grinnings, rumbling out an ever increasing volume of growls, which were
slowly but steadily increasing to the proportions of roars. Akut knew
that he was planning an attack upon them. The old ape did not wish to
fight. He had come with the boy to cast his lot with the tribe.

"I am Akut," he

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