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Okay, we’ve reached the final chapter, where ERB will tie up all of the loose ends, so let’s get on with it.That was a fine argument Jane came up with, but at the end of the next book she will change her tune. Of course, from Rokoff’s point of view, this is just another example of the Devil’s Luck, where good intentions only lead to greater evil. And this is a lesson ERB wants his readers to learn, for evil never sleeps and no good deed goes unpunished.
XXVI: The Passing of the Ape-Man
The next morning they set out upon the short journey to Tarzan’s cabin. Four Waziri bore the body of the dead Englishman. It had been the ape-man’s suggestion that Clayton be buried beside the former Lord Greystoke near the edge of the jungle against the cabin that the older man had built.
Jane Porter was glad that it was to be so, and in her heart of hearts she wondered at the marvelous fineness of character of this wondrous man, though raised by brutes among brutes, had the true chivalry and tenderness which one only associates with the refinements of the highest civilization.
They had proceeded some three miles of the five that had separated them from Tarzan’s own beach when the Waziri who were ahead stopped suddenly, pointing in amazement at a strange figure approaching them along the beach. It was a man with a shiny silk hat, who walked slowly with bent head, and hands clasped behind him underneath the tails of his long, black coat.
At sight of him Jane Porter uttered a little cry of surprise and joy, and ran quickly ahead to meet him. At the sound of her voice the old man looked up, and when he saw who it was confronting him he, too, cried out in relief and happiness. As Professor Archimedes Q. Porter folded his daughter in his arms tears streamed down his seamed old face, and it was several minutes before he could control himself sufficiently to speak.
When a moment later he recognized Tarzan it was with difficulty that they could convince him that his sorrow had not unbalanced his mind, for with the other members of the party he had been so thoroughly convinced that the ape-man was dead it was a problem to reconcile the conviction with the very life-like appearance of Jane’s “forest god.” The old man was deeply touched at the news of Clayton’s death.
“I cannot understand it,” he said. “Monsieur Thuran assured us that Clayton passed away many days ago.”
“Thuran is with you?” asked Tarzan.
“Yes; he but recently found us and led us to your cabin. We were camped but a short distance north of it. Bless me, but he will be delighted to see you both.”
“And surprised,” commented Tarzan.
A short time later the strange party came to the clearing in which stood the ape-man’s cabin. It was filled with people coming and going, and almost the first whom Tarzan saw was D’Arnot.
“Paul!” he cried. “In the name of sanity what are you doing here? Or are we all insane?”
It was quickly explained, however, as were many other seemingly strange things. D’Arnot’s ship had been cruising along the coast, on patrol duty, when at the lieutenant’s suggestion they had anchored off the little landlocked harbor to have another look at the cabin and the jungle in which many of the officers and men had taken part in exciting adventures two years before. On landing they had found Lord Tennington’s party, and arrangements were being made to take them all on board the following morning, and carry them back to civilization.
Hazel Strong and her mother, Esmeralda, and Mr. Samuel T. Philander were almost overcome by happiness at Jane Porter’s safe return. Her escape seemed to them little short of miraculous, and it was the consensus of opinion that it could have been achieved by no other man that Tarzan of the Apes. They loaded the uncomfortable ape-man with eulogies and attentions until he wished himself back in the amphitheater of the apes.
All were interested in his savage Waziri, and many were the gifts the black men received from these friends of their king, but when they learned that he might sail away from them upon the great canoe that lay at anchor a mile off shore they became very sad.
As yet the newcomers had seen nothing of Lord Tennington and Monsieur Thuran. They had gone out for fresh meat early in the day, and had not yet returned.
“How surprised this man, whose name you say is Rokoff, will be to see you,” said Jane Porter to Tarzan.
“His surprise will be short-lived,” replied the ape-man grimly, and there was that in his tone that made her look up into his face in alarm. What she read there evidently confirmed her fears, for she put her hand upon his arm, and pleaded with him to leave the Russian to the laws of France.
“In the heart of the jungle, dear,” she said, “with no other form of right or justice to appeal to other than your own mighty muscles, you would be warranted in executing upon this man the sentence he deserves; but with the strong arm of a civilized government at your disposal it would be murder to kill him now. Even your friends would have to submit to your arrest, or if you resisted it would plunge us all into misery and unhappiness again. I cannot bear to lose you again, my Tarzan. Promise me that you will but turn him over to Captain Dufranne, and let the law take its course – the beast is not worth risking our happiness for.”He saw the wisdom of her appeal, and promised. A half hour later Rokoff and Tennington emerged from the jungle. They were walking side by side. Tennington was the first to note the presence of strangers in the camp. He saw the black warriors palavering with the sailors from the cruiser, and then he saw a lithe, brown giant talking with Lieutenant D’Arnot and Captain Dufranne.Which is, of course, the premise in Tarzan and the Jewels of Opar, the fifth book in the Tarzan saga, and a book well worth reading if you enjoyed the evil high priestess, La. She has some very steamy moments with Tarzan in that adventure.
“Who is that, I wonder,” said Tennington to Rokoff, and as the Russian raised his eyes and met those of the ape-man full upon him, he staggered and went white.
“Sapristi!” he cried, and before Tennnington realized what he intended he had thrown his gun to his shoulder, and aiming point-blank at Tarzan pulled the trigger. But the Englishman was close to him – so close that his hand reached the leveled barrel a fraction of a second before the hammer fell upon the cartridge, and the bullet that was intended for Tarzan’s heart whirred harmlessly above his head.
Before the Russian could fire again the ape-man was upon him and had wrested the firearm from his grasp. Captain Dufranne, Lieutenant D’Arnot, and a dozen sailors had rushed up at the sound of the shot, and now Tarzan turned the Russian over to them without a word. He had explained the matter to the French commander before Rokoff arrived, and the officer gave immediate orders to place the Russian in irons and confine him on board the cruiser.
Just before the guard escorted the prisoner into the small boat that was to transport him to his temporary prison Tarzan asked permission to search him, and to his delight found the stolen papers concealed upon his person.
The shot had brought Jane Porter and the others from the cabin, and a moment after the excitement had died down she greeted the surprised Lord Tennington. Tarzan joined them after he had taken the papers from Rokoff, and, as he approached, Jane Porter introduced him to Tennington.
The Englishman looked his astonishment in spite of his most herculean efforts to appear courteous, and it required many repetitions of the strange story of the ape-man as told my himself, Jane Porter, and Lieutenant D’Arnot to convince Lord Tennington that they were not all quite mad.
At sunset they buried William Cecil Clayton beside the jungle graves of his uncle and his aunt, the former Lord and Lady Greystoke. And it was Tarzan’s request that three volleys were fired over the last resting place of “a brave man, who met his death bravely.”
Professor Porter, who is in his younger days had been ordained a minister, conducted the simple services for the dead. About the grave, with bowed heads, stood as strange a company of mourners as the sun ever looked down upon. There were French officers and sailors, two English Lords, Americans, and a score of savage African braves.
Following the funeral Tarzan asked Captain Dufranne to delay the sailing of the cruiser a couple of days while he went inland a few miles to fetch his “belongings,” and the officer gladly granted the favor.
Late the next afternoon Tarzan and his Waziri returned with the first load of “belongings,” and when the party saw the ancient ingots of virgin gold they swarmed upon the ape-man with a thousand questions; but he was smilingly obdurate to their appeals – he declined to give them the slightest clue as to the source of his immense treasure. “There are a thousand that I left behind,” he explained, “for every one that I brought away, and when these are spent I may wish to return for more.”The next day he returned to camp with the balance of his ingots, and when they were stored on board the cruiser Captain Dufranne said he felt like the commander of an old-time Spanish galleon returning from the treasure cities of the Aztecs. “I don’t know what minute my crew will cut my throat, and take over the ship,” he added.So endeth The Return of Tarzan. But that is just half of our project. Tarzan’s failure to get rid of Rokoff when he could – he had a hell of a self defense argument when Rokoff tried to shoot him – will end up haunting Tarzan and Jane’s happiness in the upcoming months. The honeymoon is bound to be short-lived. See you next time for the first chapter of The Beasts of Tarzan.
The next morning, when they were preparing to embark upon the cruiser, Tarzan ventured a suggestion to Jane Porter.
“Wild beasts are supposed to be devoid of sentiment,” he said, “but nevertheless I should like to be married in the cabin where I was born, beside the graves of my mother and my father, and surrounded by the savage jungle that always has been my home.”
“Would it be quite regular, dear?” she asked. “For if it would I know of no other place in which I should rather be married to my forest god than beneath the shade of his primeval forest.”
And when they spoke of it to the others they were assured that it would be quite regular, and a most splendid termination of a remarkable romance. So the entire party assembled within the little cabin and about the door to witness the second ceremony that Professor Porter was to solemnize within three days.
D’Arnot was to be best man, and Hazel Strong bridesmaid, until Tennington upset all the arrangements by another of his marvelous “ideas.”
“If Miss Strong is agreeable,” he said, taking the bridesmaid hand in his, “Hazel and I think it would be ripping to make it a double wedding.”
The next day they sailed, and as the cruiser steamed slowly out to sea a tall man, immaculate in white flannel, and a graceful girl leaned against her rail to watch the receding shore line upon which danced twenty naked, black warriors of the Waziri, waving their war spears above their savage heads, and shouting farewells to their departing king.
“I should hate to think that I am looking upon the jungle for the last time, dear,” he said, “ were it not that I know that I am going to a new world of happiness with you forever,” and, bending down, Tarzan of the Apes kissed his mate upon her lips.”
And now, as promised, I will give a brief commentary on how ERB dealt with themes in a very subtle manner because of censorship. It is hard for most modern readers to understand what a savage mind Tarzan was raised with. We all remember the example when Tarzan needed weapons after he survived being tossed into the ocean. His first thoughts were to murder a man and steal his weapons – that was his natural instinct. But his noble nature and the subtle influence of civilization, caused him to rationally think out the wrongness of killing someone to gain what they have with no other reason for killing him. He figured out rightly that it is only right to kill someone if they really deserve it. This is why he felt justified in his plan to kill Rokoff regardless of what it may look like to a civilized person into law and order.
That was apparent at the time, but it is not so apparent when it comes to rape, that is forcing a female into sexual intercourse against her will. Fortunately, Tarzan will come to similar conclusions, but it worth seeing how ERB accomplishes this in order to truly see his genius when it came to the censors.
In the book, Tarzan of the Apes, we learn that Tarzan is the child of Lord and Lady Greystoke, who were killed by a tribe of great apes when Tarzan was just a babe, and instead of killing the baby too, Kala, the she-ape, took him up as her own baby, who had tragically died a short time before. Raised by the tribe of Kerchak, Tarzan fought his way to the top, and roamed at will the wild jungle, learning that there were other humans besides himself, who were different in skin color – his name “Tarzan” means “white skin” in the language of the apes – until he came across a group of white people, also marooned and living in the cabin his dead father had built. This was Professor Archimedes Q. Porter, his daughter, Jane, the professor’s secretary, Samuel T. Philander, Jane’s black maid, Esmeralda – the African-American comedy character – and William Cecil Clayton, the heir of Lord Greystoke. Tarzan becomes extremely infatuated with them, helping them from behind the scenes, actually stalking the young blonde woman, Jane Porter, to observe her every move, falling madly in love with her.
In Chapter 18, “The Jungle Toll,” when everyone was outside of the cabin, Tarzan snuck inside and wrote Jane a love letter. He has just finished expressing his love in a letter – even though he didn’t speak Enlish ast the time, he had taught himself to read and write English from the English primerr his parents had bought for him – when he is stopped by a woman’s scream in the jungle.As he stood, straight as a young Indian, by the door, waiting after he had finished the message, there came to his keen ears a familiar sound. It was the passing of a great ape through the lower branches of the forest.The men conduct a futile search. In the next chapter, “The Call of the Primitive,” the story switches to the great ape, Terkoz’s, point of view. Terkoz is a big rival of Tarzan’s, bearing him a long grudge. Besides, he has not managed to get along with his own tribe either.
For an instant he listened intently, and then from the jungle came the agonized scream of a woman, and Tarzan of the Apes, dropping his first love letter upon the ground, shot like a panther into the forest.
Clayton, also, heard the scream, and Professor Porter and Mr. Philander, and in a few minutes they came panting to the cabin, calling out to each other a volley of excited questions as they approached. A glance within confirmed their worst fears.
Jane and Esmeralda were not there.
Instantly, Clayton, followed by the two old men, plunged into the jungle, calling the girl’s name aloud. For half an hour they stumbled on, until Clayton, by merest chance, came upon the prostrate form of Esmeralda.
He stopped beside her, feeling for her pulse and then listening for her heartbeats. She lived. He shook her.
“Esmeralda!” he shrieked in her ear. “Esmeralda! For God’s sake, where is Miss Porter? What has happened? Esmeralda!”
Slowly Esmeralda opened her eyes. She saw Clayton. She saw the jungle about her.
“Oh, Gaberelle!” she screamed, and fainted again.
By this time Professor Porter and Mr. Philander had come up.
“What shall we do, Mr. Clayton?” asked the old professor. “Where shall we look? God could not have been so cruel as to take my little girl away from me now.”
“We must arouse Esmeralda first,” replied Clayton. “She can tell us what has happened. Esmeralda!” he cried again, shaking the black woman roughly by the shoulder.
“Oh, Gaberelle, I want to die!” cried the poor woman, but with eyes fast closed. “Let me die, dear Lord, don’t let me see that awful face again.”
“Come, come, Esmeralda,” cried Clayton.
“The Lord isn’t here; it’s Mr. Clayton. Open your eyes.”
Esmeralda did as she was bade.
“Oh, Gaberelle! Thank the Lord,” she said.
“Where’s Miss Porter? What happened?” questioned Clayton.
“Ain’t Miss Jane here?” cried Esmeralda, sitting up with wonderful celerity for one of her bulk. “Oh, Lord, now I remember! It must have took her away,” and the Negress commenced to sob, and wail her lamentation.
“What took her away?” cried Professor Porter.
“A great big giant all covered with hair.”
“A gorilla, Esmeralda?” questioned Mr. Philander, and the three men scarcely breathed as he voiced the horrible thought.
“I thought it was the devil; but I guess it must have been one of them gorilephants. Oh, my poor baby, my poor little honey,” and again Esmeralda broke into uncontrollable sobbing.From the time Tarzan left the tribe of great anthropoids in which he had been raised, it was torn by continual strife and discord. Terkoz proved to be a cruel and capricious king, so that, one by one, many of the older and weaker apes, upon whom he was particularly prone to vent his brutish nature, took their families and sought the quiet and safety of the far interior.
But at last those who remained were driven to desperation by the continued truculance of Terkoz, and so it happened that one of them recalled the parting admonition of Tarzan:
“If you have a chief who is cruel, do not do as the other apes do, and attempt, any one of you, to pit yourself against him alone. But, instead, let two or three or four of you attack him together. Then, if you will do this, no chief will dare to be other than he should be, for four of you can kill any chief who may ever be over you.”
And the ape who recalled this wise counsel repeated it to several of his fellows, so that when Terkoz returned to the tribe that day he found a warm reception awaiting him.
There were no formalities. As Terkoz reached the group, five huge, hairy beasts sprang upon him.
At heart he was an arrant coward, which is the way with bullies among apes as well as among men; so he did not remain to fight and die, but tore himself away from them as quickly as he could and fled into the sheltering boughs of the forest.
Two more attempts he made to rejoin the tribe, but on each occasion he was set upon and driven away. At last he gave it up, and turned, foaming with rage and hatred, into the jungle.
For several days he wandered aimlessly, nursing his spite and looking for some weak thing on which to vent his pent anger.
It was in this state of mind that the horrible, man-like beast, swinging from tree to tree, came suddenly upon two women in the jungle.
He was right above them when he discovered them. The first intimation Jane Porter had of his presence was when the great hairy body dropped to the earth beside her, and she saw the awful face and the snarling, hideous mouth thrust within a foot of her.
One piercing scream escaped her lips as the brute hand clutched her arm. Then she was dragged toward those awful fangs which yawned at her throat. But ere they touched that fair skin another mood claimed the anthropoid.
Here’s the first hint of what Terkoz was up to. Watch how ERB frames it for his late Victorian readers. We learn that his mood change was sexual in nature.The tribe had kept his women. He must find others to replace them. This hairless white ape would be the first of his new household, and so he threw her roughly across the broad, hairy shoulders and leaped back into the trees, bearing Jane away.
Esmeralda’s scream of terror had mingled once with that of Jane, and then, as was Esmeralda’s manner under stress of emergency which required presence of mind, she swooned.
But Jane did not once lose consciousness. It is true that that awful face, pressing close to hers, and the stench of the foul breath beating upon her nostrils, paralyzed her with terror; but her brain was clear, and she comprehended all that transpired.
With what seemed to her marvelous rapidity the brute bore her through the forest, but still she did not cry out or struggle. The sudden advent of the ape had confused her to such an extent that she thought now that he was bearing her toward the beach.
For this reason she conserved her energies and her voice until she could see that they had approached near enough to the camp to attract the succor she craved.
She could not have know it, but she was being borne farther and farther into the impenetrable jungle.
The scream that had brought Clayton and the two older men stumbling through the undergrowth had led Tarzan of the Apes straight to where Esmeralda lay, but it was not Esmeralda in whom his interest centered, though pausing over her he saw that she was unhurt.
For a moment he scrutinized the ground below and the trees above, until the ape that was in him by virtue of training and environment, combined with the intelligence that was his by right of birth, told his wondrous woodcraft the whole story as plainly as though he had seen the thing happen with his own eyes.
And then he was gone again into the swaying trees, following the high-flung spoor which no other human eye could have detected, much less translated.
At boughs’ ends, where the anthropoid swings from one tree to another, this is most to mark the trail, but least to point the direction of the quarry; for there the pressure is downwards always, toward the small end of the branch, whether the ape be leaving or entering a tree. Nearer the center of the tree, where the signs of passage are fainter, the direction is plainly marked.
Here, on this branch, a caterpillar has been crushed by the fugitive’s great foot, and Tarzan knows instinctively where that same foot would touch in the next stride. Here he looks to find a tiny particle of the demolished larva, ofttimes not more than a speck of moisture.
Again, a minute bit of bark has been upturned by the scraping hand, and the direction of the break indicates the direction of the passage. Or some great limb, or the stem of the tree itself has been brushed by the hairy body, and a tiny shred of hair tells him by the direction from which it is wedged beneath the bark that he is on the righ trail.
Nor does he need to check his speed to catch these seemingly faint records of the fleeing beast.
To Tarzan they stand out boldly against all the myriad other scars and bruises and signs upon the leafy way. But strongest of all is the scent, for Tarzan is pursuing up wind, and his trained nostrils are as sensitive as a hound’s.
I really enjoy that phrase, “the leafy way,” the arboreal highways through the upper terraces of the jungle forest. I really don’t know how ERB knew how great apes read the spoor of their quarry, but I imagine a lot of this is what he learned in the 7th Cavalry vis-a-vis the Apaches, and pure imagination, which is wonderful to behold.There are those who believe that the lower orders are specially endowed by nature with better olfactory nerves than man, but it is merely a matter of development.The first revenge is on Tarzan, the second one is to rape Jane, since she is Tarzan’s woman. There will be a lot of grudge in his imagined copulation.
Man’s survival does not hinge so greatly upon the perfection of his senses. His power to reason has relieved them of many of their duties, and so they have, to some extent, atrophied, as have the muscles which move the ears and scalp, merely from disuse.
The muscles are there, about the ears and beneath the scalp, and so are the nerves which transmit sensations to the brain, but they are under-developed because they are not needed.
Not so with Tarzan of the Apes. From early infancy his survival had depended upon acuteness of eyesight, hearing, smell, touch, and taste far more than upon the more slowly developed organ of reason.
The least developed of all in Tarzan was the sense of taste, for he could eat luscious fruits, or raw flesh, long buried with almost equal appreciation; but in that he differed but slightly from more civilized epicures.
Almost silent the ape-man sped on in the track of Terkoz and his prey, but the sound of his approach reached the ears of the fleeing beast and spurred it on to greater speed.
Three miles were covered before Tarzan overtook them, and then Terkoz, seeing that further flight was futile, dropped to the ground in a small open glade, that he might turn and fight for his prize or be free to escape unhampered if he saw that the pursuer was more than a match for him.
He still grasped Jane in one great arm as Tarzan bounded like a leopard into the arena which nature had provided for this primeval battle.
When Terkoz saw that it was Tarzan who pursued him, he jumped to the conclusion that this was Tarzan’s woman, since they were of the same kind – white and hairless – and so he rejoiced at this opportunity for double revenge upon his hated enemy.To Jane the strange apparition of this god-like man was as wine to sick nerves.Okay, we are in the realm of consent here. Tarzan first sees her as a willing prisoner, but now she has become unwilling. He is not happy with this.
From the description which Clayton and her father and Mr. Philander had given her, she knew that it must be the same wonderful creature who had saved them, and she saw in him only a protector and a friend.
But as Terkoz pushed her roughly aside to meet Tarzan’s charge, and she saw the great proportions of the ape and the mighty muscles and the fierce fangs, her heart quailed. How could any vanquish such a mighty antagonist?
Like two charging bulls they came together, and like two wolves sought each other’s throat. Against the long canines of the ape was pitted the thin blade of the man’s knife.
Jane – her lithe, young form flattened against the trunk of a great tree, her hands tight pressed against her rising and falling bosom, and her eyes wide with mingled horror, fascination, fear, and admiration – watched the primordial ape battle with the primeval man for possession of a woman – for her.
As the great muscles of the man’s back and shoulders knotted beneath the tension of his efforts, and the huge biceps and forearm held at bay those mighty tusks, the veil of centuries of civilization and culture was swept from the blurred vision of the Baltimore girl.
When the long knife drank deep a dozen times of Terkoz’ heart blood, and the giant carcass rolled lifeless upon the ground, it was a primeval woman who sprang forward with outstretched arms toward the primeval man who had fought for her and won her.
He did what no red-blooded man needs lessons in doing. He took his woman in his arms and smothered her upturned, panting lips with kisses.
For a moment Jane lay there with half-closed eyes. For a moment – the first in her young life – she knew the meaning of love.
But as suddenly as the veil had been withdrawn it dropped again, and an outraged conscience suffused her face with its scarlet mantle, and a mortified woman thrust Tarzan of the Apes from her and buried her face in her hands.
Tarzan had been surprised when he had found the girl he had learned to love after a vague and abstract manner a willing prisoner in his arms. Now he was surprised that she repulsed him.He came close to her once more and took hold of her arm. She turned upon him like a tigress, striking his great breast with her tiny hands.Well, maybe that is more clear than I originally had thought. Tarzan intends on taking Jane as his woman whether she likes it or not. It is interesting to see the thought processes which change his mind. Jumping ahead to Chapter 20, “Heredity,” we find Tarzan carrying Jane to the amphitheater of the great apes. Jane has relaxed in her fear of being taken captive by Tarzan, musing on the passing jungle as he races through the leafy way. She convinces herself that Tarzan will not harm her, not really realizing what he is up to yet.
Tarzan could not understand it.
A moment ago and it had been his intention to hasten Jane back to her people, but that little moment was lost now in the dim and distant past of things which were but can never be again, and with it the good intention had gone to join the impossible.
Since then Tarzan of the Apes had felt a warm, lithe form close pressed to his. Hot, sweet breath against his cheek and mouth had fanned a new flame to life within his breast, and perfect lips had clung to his in burning kisses that had served a deep brand into his soul – a brand which marked a new Tarzan.
Again he laid his hand upon her arm. Again she repulsed him. And then, Tarzan of the Apes did what his first ancestor would have done.
He took his woman in his arms and carried her into the jungle.As Tarzan moved steadily onward his mind was occupied with many strange and new thoughts. Here was a problem the like of which he had never encountered, and he felt rather than reasoned that he must meet it as a man and not as an ape.Aha, he finds that he is acting just like an ape instead of like a man, and he feels that that isn’t right. Tarzan is not a sociopath.
The free movement through the middle terrace, which was the route he had followed for the most part, had helped to cool the ardor of the first fierce passion of his new found love.
Now he discovered himself speculating upon the fate which would have fallen to the girl had he not rescued her from Terkoz.He knew why the ape had not killed her, and he commenced to compare his intentions with those of Terkoz.After his enlightening moment, he takes her to the amphitheater, gets food for her, attempts to speak with her, makes a shelter for her, and then comes the big moment when it is time for bed.
True, it was the order of the jungle for the male to take his mate by force; but would Tarzan be guided by the laws of the beasts? Was not Tarzan of the Apes a Man? But what did men do? He was puzzled; for he did not know.
He wished that he might ask the girl, and then it came to him that she had already answered him in the futile struggle she had made to escape and to repulse him.It was growing dark now, and so they ate again of the fruit which was both food and drink for them; then Tarzan rose, and leading Jane to the little bower he had erected, motioned her to go within.Okay, the point I was attempting to make is that ERB could have colored the narrative from the moment Terkoz lusted after Jane until the moment Tarzan started acting more out of love than lust, if he had wanted to be salacious, a criticism most directed at the writers of pulp fiction. ERB managed to the convey the same emotions in a very sophisticated manner that is gentle and kind but at the same time just as full of passion and meaning. In other words, he doesn’t make you feel dirty while reading the story. See you next time.
For the first time in hours a feeling of fear swept over her, and Tarzan felt her draw away as though shrinking from him.
Contact with this girl for half a day had left a very different Tarzan from the one on whom the morning’s sun had risen.
Now, in every fiber of his being, heredity spoke louder than training.
He had not in one swift transition become a polished gentleman from a savage ape-man, but at last the instincts of the former predominated, and over all was the desire to please the woman he loved, and to appear well in her eyes.
So Tarzan of the Apes did the only thing he knew to assure Jane of her safety. He removed his hunting knife from its sheath and handed it to her hilt first, again motioning her into the bower.
The girl understood, and taking the long knife she entered and lay down upon the soft grasses while Tarzan of the Apes stretched himself upon the ground across the entrance.
And thus the rising sun found them in the morning.