Warlord of Mars

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 126

of the north, rubbing
elbows with the blacks of the First Born who had come under my
friend Xodar to help in the search for me and my princess. There
were savage, green warriors from the dead sea bottoms of the south,
and a handful of white-skinned therns who had renounced their
religion and sworn allegiance to Xodar.

There was Tardos Mors and Mors Kajak, and tall and mighty in his
gorgeous warrior trappings, Carthoris, my son. These three fell
upon Dejah Thoris as we entered the apartment, and though the lives
and training of royal Martians tend not toward vulgar demonstration,
I thought that they would suffocate her with their embraces.

And there were Tars Tarkas, Jeddak of Thark, and Kantos Kan,
my old-time friends, and leaping and tearing at my harness in the
exuberance of his great love was dear old Woola--frantic mad with
happiness.

Long and loud was the cheering that burst forth at sight of us;
deafening was the din of ringing metal as the veteran warriors of
every Martian clime clashed their blades together on high in token
of success and victory, but as I passed among the throng of saluting
nobles and warriors, jeds and jeddaks, my heart still was heavy,
for there were two faces missing that I would have given much to
have seen there--Thuvan Dihn and Thuvia of Ptarth were not to be
found in the great chamber.

I made inquiries concerning them among men of every nation, and at
last from one of the yellow prisoners of war I learned that they
had been apprehended by an officer of the palace as they sought to
reach the Pit of Plenty while I lay imprisoned there.

I did not need to ask to know what had sent them thither--the
courageous jeddak and his loyal daughter. My informer said that
they lay now in one of the many buried dungeons of the palace
where they had been placed pending a decision as to their fate by
the tyrant of the north.

A moment later searching parties were scouring the ancient pile in
search of them, and my cup of happiness was full when I saw them
being escorted into the room by a cheering guard of honor.

Thuvia's first act was to rush to the side of Dejah Thoris, and I
needed no better proof of the love these two bore for each other
than the sincerity with which they embraced.

Looking down upon that crowded chamber stood the silent and empty
throne of Okar.

Of all the strange scenes it must have witnessed since that long-dead
age that had

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