Warlord of Mars

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 2

from the
Pedestal of Truth beside the Throne of Righteousness in the Temple
of Reward, from the very spot where I had stood a year before when
Zat Arras pronounced the sentence of death upon me.

As I spoke I stepped forward and laid my hand upon the shoulder of
Carthoris where he stood in the front rank of the circle of nobles
about me.

As one, the nobles and the people lifted their voices in a long
cheer of approbation. Ten thousand swords sprang on high from as
many scabbards, and the glorious fighting men of ancient Helium
hailed Carthoris Jeddak of Helium.

His tenure of office was to be for life or until his great-grandfather,
or grandfather, should return. Having thus satisfactorily arranged
this important duty for Helium, I started the following day for
the Valley Dor that I might remain close to the Temple of the Sun
until the fateful day that should see the opening of the prison
cell where my lost love lay buried.

Hor Vastus and Kantos Kan, with my other noble lieutenants, I left
with Carthoris at Helium, that he might have the benefit of their
wisdom, bravery, and loyalty in the performance of the arduous
duties which had devolved upon him. Only Woola, my Martian hound,
accompanied me.

At my heels tonight the faithful beast moved softly in my tracks.
As large as a Shetland pony, with hideous head and frightful fangs,
he was indeed an awesome spectacle, as he crept after me on his
ten short, muscular legs; but to me he was the embodiment of love
and loyalty.

The figure ahead was that of the black dator of the First Born,
Thurid, whose undying enmity I had earned that time I laid him low
with my bare hands in the courtyard of the Temple of Issus, and
bound him with his own harness before the noble men and women who
had but a moment before been extolling his prowess.

Like many of his fellows, he had apparently accepted the new order
of things with good grace, and had sworn fealty to Xodar, his new
ruler; but I knew that he hated me, and I was sure that in his heart
he envied and hated Xodar, so I had kept a watch upon his comings
and goings, to the end that of late I had become convinced that he
was occupied with some manner of intrigue.

Several times I had observed him leaving the walled city of the
First Born after dark, taking his way out into the cruel and horrible
Valley Dor, where no honest business could

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