Thuvia, Maid of Mars

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 70

the Heliumite; and yet, so
sincere had been the manner and the words of the bowman, so much
the fighting man did he seem, but Carthoris could not find it in
his heart to doubt him.

The outcome of the matter was that he gave the naked odwar leave to
accompany him, and together they set out upon the spoor of Thuvia
and Komal.

Down to the ochre sea-bottom the trail led. There it disappeared,
as Carthoris had known that it would; but where it entered the plain
its direction had been toward Aaanthor and so toward Aaanthor the
two turned their faces.

It was a long and tedious journey, fraught with many dangers. The
bowman could not travel at the pace set by Carthoris, whose muscles
carried him with great rapidity over the face of the small planet,
the force of gravity of which exerts so much less retarding power
than that of the Earth. Fifty miles a day is a fair average for
a Barsoomian, but the son of John Carter might easily have covered
a hundred or more miles had he cared to desert his new-found comrade.

All the way they were in constant danger of discovery by roving
bands of Torquasians, and especially was this true before they
reached the boundary of Torquas.

Good fortune was with them, however, and although they sighted two
detachments of the savage green men, they were not themselves seen.

And so they came, upon the morning of the third day, within sight
of the glistening domes of distant Aaanthor. Throughout the journey
Carthoris had ever strained his eyes ahead in search of Thuvia and
the great banth; but not till now had he seen aught to give him
hope.

This morning, far ahead, half-way between themselves and Aaanthor,
the men saw two tiny figures moving toward the city. For a moment
they watched them intently. Then Carthoris, convinced, leaped
forward at a rapid run, Kar Komak following as swiftly as he could.

The Heliumite shouted to attract the girl's attention, and presently
he was rewarded by seeing her turn and stand looking toward him.
At her side the great banth stood with up-pricked ears, watching
the approaching man.

Not yet could Thuvia of Ptarth have recognized Carthoris, though
that it was he she must have been convinced, for she waited there
for him without sign of fear.

Presently he saw her point toward the northwest, beyond him.
Without slackening his pace, he turned his eyes in the direction
she indicated.

Racing silently over the thick vegetation, not half a mile behind,
came a score of fierce green

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