Thuvia, Maid of Mars

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 23

the centre of the plaza Thar Ban saw the figure of a red woman.
A red warrior was conversing with her. Now the man turned and
retraced his steps toward the palace at the opposite side of the
plaza.

Thar Ban watched until he had disappeared within the yawning
portal. Here was a captive worth having! Seldom did a female of
their hereditary enemies fall to the lot of a green man. Thar Ban
licked his thin lips.

Thuvia of Ptarth watched the shadow behind the monolith at the
opening to the avenue opposite her. She hoped that it might be
but the figment of an overwrought imagination.

But no! Now, clearly and distinctly, she saw it move. It came
from behind the screening shelter of the ersite shaft.

The sudden light of the rising sun fell upon it. The girl trembled.
The THING was a huge green warrior!

Swiftly it sprang toward her. She screamed and tried to flee;
but she had scarce turned toward the palace when a giant hand fell
upon her arm, she was whirled about, and half dragged, half carried
toward a huge thoat that was slowly grazing out of the avenue's
mouth on to the ochre moss of the plaza.

At the same instant she turned her face upward toward the whirring
sound of something above her, and there she saw a swift flier
dropping toward her, the head and shoulders of a man leaning far
over the side; but the man's features were deeply shadowed, so that
she did not recognize them.

Now from behind her came the shouts of her red abductors. They
were racing madly after him who dared to steal what they already
had stolen.

As Thar Ban reached the side of his mount he snatched his long
radium rifle from its boot, and, wheeling, poured three shots into
the oncoming red men.

Such is the uncanny marksmanship of these Martian savages that three
red warriors dropped in their tracks as three projectiles exploded
in their vitals.

The others halted, nor did they dare return the fire for fear of
wounding the girl.

Then Thar Ban vaulted to the back of his thoat, Thuvia of Ptarth
still in his arms, and with a savage cry of triumph disappeared
down the black canyon of the Avenue of Quays between the sullen
palaces of forgotten Aaanthor.

Carthoris' flier had not touched the ground before he had sprung
from its deck to race after the swift thoat, whose eight long legs
were sending it down the avenue at the rate of an express train;
but the

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