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Volume 1316
A Graphic Interpretation of
Edgar Rice Burroughs'
A Princess of Mars
James Killian Spratt
Sola Tells Me Her Story . . .
When consciousness returned, 
as I soon learned, 
I was down for but a moment.
I found his weapon piercing my left breast,
but only  through the muscles, 
entering near the center of my chest 
and coming out below the shoulder.


As I had lunged I had turned
so that his sword merely passed 
beneath the muscles, 
inflicting a painful
but not dangerous wound.


Zad was stone dead, 
my sword buried to the hilt
in his green breast. 
Removing the blade from my body,
I regained my own, 
and was greeted with 
a murmur of applause, 
for which I cared not at all.


Bleeding but weak 
I reached my women, 
who patched me up.


Give a Martian woman a chance 
and death must take a back seat. 
Accustomed to such happenings, 
they dressed my wounds, 
applying their wonderful healing 
and remedial agents; 
on Earth, I would have been flat
on my back for days, 
but felt only a slight soreness.


As soon as they were through with me
I hastened back to Dejah Thoris' chariot, 
to find the poor Sola, 
her chest swathed in bandages, 
but little the worse for her encounter with Sarkoja, 
whose deflected blade had 
inflicted only a slight flesh wound.

As I approached I saw Dejah Thoris
lying prone upon her silks and furs, 
her lithe form wracked with sobs.

"Is she injured?" I asked Sola.

"No," she answered, "
she thinks that you are dead."

"So now there is none to polish the teeth 
of her grandmother's cat?" I said, smiling.

"I think you wrong her, John Carter," 
said Sola.

"I do not understand your ways or hers, 
but I think she must care for you deeply, 
to mourn you so. 
Such tears are rare and strange, 
but twice have I ever seen them."

"The first was my mother, 
from sadness, and today Sarkoja, 
from baffled rage, 
when they pulled her from me --"

"Your mother!" I exclaimed. 
"But Sola, child -- 
you couldn't have known --"

"But I did, and my father, too. 
Come tonight and I will tell you of them,
a tale I have never told. 
But come, we must march."

We made an imposing and awe-inspiring spectacle as we strung out across the yellow landscape. Two hundred and fifty ornate and brightly-colored chariots, four hundred mounted warriors, and hundreds of extra animals.

The flashing jewels, the bright rich colors of silks, furs, feathers, and the gleam of polished weapons and harnesses lent a barbaric splendor to the caravan which would have made an East Indian potentate green with envy.

The broad tires of the chariots left no trace on the springy moss of the trackless waste, and but for the occasional squeal of a thoat, the growling of a zitidar, or the low rumble of a green Martian's conversing, infrequent, like distant thunder, we moved in utter silence, like a huge phantasmagoria, a vision in a dream . . .

We might indeed have been the wraiths of the departed dead . . .
Chapter 15 is continued in ERBzine 1316a
Intro | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 15a | 16 | 16a | 17 | 17a | 18 | 19 | 19a | 19b | 20 | 20a | 20b |
| 21 | 21a | 21b |

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