Warlord of Mars

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 123

gazing at her in unconcealed and stupefied wonderment.

A wan smile touched her lips--it was not the cruel and haughty
smile of the goddess with which I was familiar. "You wonder, John
Carter," she said, "what strange thing has wrought this change in
me? I will tell you. It is love--love of you," and when I darkened
my brows in disapproval of her words she raised an appealing hand.

"Wait," she said. "It is a different love from mine--it is the
love of your princess, Dejah Thoris, for you that has taught me
what true love may be--what it should be, and how far from real
love was my selfish and jealous passion for you.

"Now I am different. Now could I love as Dejah Thoris loves, and
so my only happiness can be to know that you and she are once more
united, for in her alone can you find true happiness.

"But I am unhappy because of the wickedness that I have wrought. I
have many sins to expiate, and though I be deathless, life is all
too short for the atonement.

"But there is another way, and if Phaidor, daughter of the Holy
Hekkador of the Holy Therns, has sinned she has this day already
made partial reparation, and lest you doubt the sincerity of her
protestations and her avowal of a new love that embraces Dejah
Thoris also, she will prove her sincerity in the only way that
lies open--having saved you for another, Phaidor leaves you to her

With her last word she turned and leaped from the vessel's deck
into the abyss below.

With a cry of horror I sprang forward in a vain attempt to save the
life that for two years I would so gladly have seen extinguished.
I was too late.

With tear-dimmed eyes I turned away that I might not see the awful
sight beneath.

A moment later I had struck the bonds from Dejah Thoris, and as her
dear arms went about my neck and her perfect lips pressed to mine
I forgot the horrors that I had witnessed and the suffering that
I had endured in the rapture of my reward.


The flier upon whose deck Dejah Thoris and I found ourselves after
twelve long years of separation proved entirely useless. Her
buoyancy tanks leaked badly. Her engine would not start. We were
helpless there in mid air above the arctic ice.

The craft had drifted across the chasm which held the corpses of
Matai Shang, Thurid, and Phaidor, and now hung above a low

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