and as the last of them
fell out of range behind, Carthoris dropped the Thuria's nose to a
horizontal plane, as with lever drawn to the last notch, she tore
through the thin air of dying Mars toward the east and Ptarth.
Thirteen and a half thousand haads away lay Ptarth--a stiff
thirty-hour journey for the swiftest of fliers, and between Dusar
and Ptarth might lie half the navy of Dusar, for in this direction
was the reported seat of the great naval battle that even now might
be in progress.
Could Carthoris have known precisely where the great fleets of
the contending nations lay, he would have hastened to them without
delay, for in the return of Thuvia to her sire lay the greatest
hope of peace.
Half the distance they covered without sighting a single warship,
and then Kar Komak called Carthoris's attention to a distant craft
that rested upon the ochre vegetation of the great dead sea-bottom,
above which the Thuria was speeding.
About the vessel many figures could be seen swarming. With the
aid of powerful glasses, the Heliumite saw that they were green
warriors, and that they were repeatedly charging down upon the crew
of the stranded airship. The nationality of the latter he could
not make out at so great a distance.
It was not necessary to change the course of the Thuria to permit
of passing directly above the scene of battle, but Carthoris dropped
his craft a few hundred feet that he might have a better and closer
If the ship was of a friendly power, he could do no less than stop
and direct his guns upon her enemies, though with the precious
freight he carried he scarcely felt justified in landing, for
he could offer but two swords in reinforcement--scarce enough to
warrant jeopardizing the safety of the Princess of Ptarth.
As they came close above the stricken ship, they could see that
it would be but a question of minutes before the green horde would
swarm across the armoured bulwarks to glut the ferocity of their
bloodlust upon the defenders.
"It would be futile to descend," said Carthoris to Thuvia. "The
craft may even be of Dusar--she shows no insignia. All that we
may do is fire upon the hordesmen"; and as he spoke he stepped to
one of the guns and deflected its muzzle toward the green warriors
at the ship's side.
At the first shot from the Thuria those upon the vessel below
evidently discovered her for the first time. Immediately a device
fluttered from the bow of the warship on the ground.
Why didn't he let one of us go with him?" Yes, it was the machine-gun.Page 7
I knew that the thing that had attacked me was some sort of pterodactyl which should have been extinct millions of years ago.Page 8
the base of the cliffs beyond which my party awaited me.Page 13
I put a third bullet into the beast at three paces, and then I thought that I was done for; but it rolled over and stopped at my feet, stone dead.Page 17
The sun was low in the heavens when we came upon a little river which emptied into a large bay at the foot of low cliffs.Page 23
huge bulk through the opening it had now made.Page 27
by no means as much to be feared as the huge beasts that roamed the surface of the earth.Page 33
If the superior force and equipment of my party enabled them to circle the north end of the sea, they might some day come upon the broken wreck of my plane hanging in the great tree to the south; but long before that, my bones would be added to the litter upon the floor of this mighty cavern.Page 34
"Ajor!" I managed to say.Page 42
" I pointed to the women in the pool beneath us.Page 50
As it was, he reached forth and seized me, and though I struggled, he overpowered me.Page 56
I am a stranger here, and--let this sink.Page 57
"No, it is Al-tan who is chief of the Kro-lu of the east," answered Chal-az.Page 67
"Stop!" he shouted.Page 70
Friendless and alone, hunted through the dark labyrinths of this savage community, I seldom have felt more helpless than at that moment; yet far transcending any fear which I may have felt for my own safety was my concern for that of Ajor.Page 74
use both the noose and the honda.Page 76
Whether to search to the east toward the still loftier barrier-cliffs fronting upon the ocean, or westward in the direction of the inland sea was a question which baffled me.Page 83
I had expected a battle royal; but on the contrary I found his taming a matter of comparative ease.Page 89
The party formed for the march, an escort of Galu warriors ready to accompany us.