The girl strode boldly
through the vast forest with a wild, pantherish gate. She was swarthy of
skin, with a wealth of ebon tresses clustered about her slim shoulders.
Her eyes were deep dark pools, dark-fringed and mysterious. She had little
in the way of clothing for the heat of Pellucidar is always sub-tropical
at best. Her breasts were superb and massive, her hips sturdy, as she strode
through the wild with pantherish grace.
The woman’s name was Nasheema, and
she was the former mate of Borak, Cid of the Korsars--though recently she
had fallen out of the Cid’s favor. For Borak had taken a girl from the
tribe of Nu-al, and jungle princess named Jahlanna, whom he had fallen
in love with. Nasheema, naturally had grown intensely jealous of the savage
princess-girl. She had, in fact, nearly succeeded in revenging herself
upon the her royal rival when the Cid’s then second-in-command, Mogor,
had intervened, and borne off the princess, doubtless to satisfy his apish
Hah! To the haughty Nasheema
that seemed a worthy fate for the stuck-up jungle princess. But to her
great surprise and dismay, Borak still refused to take back. He had become
obsessed, it seemed, with the voluptuous jungle girl. And this only furthered
Nasheema’s rage against him of course. When she had dared to bodily attack
the Cid, calling him a cowardly slurrel, and worse, he had sentenced her
to die in the arena, at the slavering jaws of a hungry zorag. A zorag is
a primitive walking whale of the Eocene, which scientists of the 21st century
know as the ambleocetus. Its sleek-furred body is nearly twenty feet in
length, and it possesses lightning quickness, as well as the monstrous
jaws of a crocodile.
Nasheema had been bound and masked
at the beast’s mercy. She had been determined to embrace death as bravely
as she might. But death did not come for her as expected. For a handsome,
red-haired fair-skinned man had leapt to her rescue. The man was not a
Korsar, that much was in evidence. Officially he was a prisoner of the
Cid at the time. But Nasheema had fallen in love with him, and made up
her mind to lead him and his fellow prisoners out of the city of Korsar.
This much she had accomplished
with a fair amount of ease. But they had run afoul of an army of Sarians
staging an attack upon the Cid’s fortress. The red-haired stranger and
the others and made peace with the mammoth-warriors, but Nahseema fearing
her fate as a woman of Korsar had fled.
But she had not forgotten the
red-haired warrior, and the courage he had shown in saving her from the
zorag. So in secret, the girl of Korsar followed the mighty caravan when
they had left Korsar, going in a northerly direction toward the Frozen
Sea near the boreal pole. She kept to shadows of the forest, not daring
to show herself.
She did not
know how to make the red-haired warrior love her, but she must find a way…
It was sometime after that that she
realized that she herself was being trailed.
The girl’s ears were very sharp, and
she could detect the sounds of stealthy pursuit. It was sometime after
that that the mighty caravan settled down for one of the rest periods.
When they made camp, Nasheema, using cunning of her own, circled about
unobtrusively to spy on whoever it was following her.
Peering through the fronds and
creepers, she saw him. To her surprise she saw that her pursuer was a sagoth.
And not just any sagoth, but Mogor! How had the gorilla-man gotten here?
And what had become of the cave-princess the hulking beast-man had borne
Whatever the reason, Nasheema was determined
to find out why the brute was tracking her.
The sagoth was casting about on the
trail, examining the girls’ small prints. “Now, my comely Korsar wench,”
the sagoth was saying, “Where did you disappear to?”
In that instant, Nasheema through
her right arm about the sagoth’s bull-neck in a hook, and raised her Korsar
dagger, a crescent of razor-edged steel, to his throat. “Here, you foul-smelling
“That is correct, you dull-witted
primate,” she said, as she kept her dagger leveled at Mogor’s throat. “It
is Nasheema of the Korsar who now holds you captive!”
Mogor, in spite of the
proximity of her blade, laughed coarsely. “So I am your captive now am
I, little she-tarag? I figured it was you from the scent. But why is not
Borak’s favorite back in Korsar at the feet of her master.”
“Nasheema is no man’s master!” she
At that moment, Mogor, having a beast’s
quickness took advantage of the outburst, and knocked the blade from her
grasp. Nashemea gave a sharp cry. The gorilla-man then flung her over his
Nasheema now lay prone. Mogor towered
above her. Quick as a cat, the girl twisted and retrieved her knife, held
it up defensively, her eyes fairly spitting flame. “Do not come closer.”
But Mogor did not make any move.
He only stood over her, a look of puzzled amusement on his face—if that
were in fact possible for his leathery visage. “I do not care to mate with
a she-jalok such as you.” he said.
“You don’t?” Nasheema cried.
She was surprised that she was almost offended by the remark—especially
as Mogor was merely a smelly beast man who did not even qualify as human.
“I do not. A she-jalok
like yourself is not the type for Mogor. I prefer a mate who will not attempt
to scratch my eyes out.”
“No…of course not. You prefer
spoiled, pouty-faced savage princess girls! Whatever happened to her anyway?”
“She is gone—winged
men bore off to the dead world!”
‘Winged Men?! The
Dead World?” Nasheema smiled contemptuously. “I believe then, that Mogor
has drunken far too much rum!”
“Believe what you will,” Mogor
told her. “But the princess is gone. Mogor must seek a new mate. He can
never return to his people. And he would need wings to reach the Dead World.”
Nasheema got to her feet, not
taking her gaze form the gorilla-man. “Well, don’t get any ideas about
me! I am finished with Borak and the Korsars, and am off to seek adventure
on my own.”
“You mean Borak has tired of you,”
Mogor laughed. “And you cannot return to the Cid.”
“Shut up!” she cried. ‘I should cut
your throat, beast-man, for daring to speak thus to me!”
‘Why should I not speak
to you as I wish, my little she-tarag! You are no longer Borak’s favorite!”
“Oooohhh!” Nasheema fumed. “Just
take care that you not follow me, beast-man!”
With that the haughty girl turned
and strode languidly away, heavy hips shifting sturdily.
In spite of his words to the
contrary, Mogor admired the Korsar girl’s lithe and sturdily rounded figure
as she strode into the forest with catlike grace. And too, she was fiery
and full of life! He liked that in a woman, he decided. No, the Korsar
strumpet was not Jahlanna. But she wasn’t bad, now that he thought about
it—especially since the Cid was no longer there to claim her.
Once Nasheema had gotten far enough
ahead, he began unobtrusively, to follow her.
As for Nasheema, she suspected
Mogor of following, and she kept aware. If he was, she decided, and he
made a move on her, this time she would- slit the smelly pig’s throat.
Unfortunately for her, the moment
she stepped into a clearing, a stunning sight met the eyes of the Korsar
girl. It was apparent at once that Mogor was not the only “pig” she had
to concern herself with at the moment.
At the opposite end
of the clearing the emerged from the tangle of vines and ferns there emerged
a monstrous head belonging to an even more monstrous beast. As it shouldered
into full view, Nasheema could see that it was nearly the size of small
elephant, its high humped back eight feet above the turf. But it was obviously
a type of gigantic wild swine. The monstrous head sported hippo-like jaws
form which blunt, heavy, yellowish tusks protruded, two on each side, curling
massively over the upper jaw. It had a blunt, pig-like snout, small, piggy
eyes and ears, and a mane-like ridge of black bristles running from between
the burly shoulder blades over and down the massively humped back.
The thing grunted thunderously at her,
and pawed the earth with one hoofed forelimb, preparing to charge.
Nasheema recognized the beast
as a Borha, a long extinct cousin of modern-day swine, which science knows
as the archeotherium , a bovid-sized wild pig of the Miocene.
They are terribly ferocious
and dangerous, are the borha, though gigantic themselves, they are capable
of besting even creatures much larger then they in combat due of their
insane fighting fury. They are omnivorous, more often than not subsisting
on plant material, but they are unlikely to pass up the opportunity for
fresh meat, should it present itself. They are also terribly ill-tempered,
and are offtimes known to attack and kill for no other seeming reason than
their unreasoning fury.
Whether the beast was consumed
at the moment by hunger, or merely ill-temper, it was obvious to the Korsar
girl that it was about the charge. And she screamed, just as the living
incarnation of primordial fury bore down upon her like a hill of thundering
meat, tusks, slavering jaws and rampaging muscle.
But in flash so quick that it
even left the gaze of the Korsar girl astonished, a muscular, glossy-black-furred
form, clutching a blade-tipped spear, landed on the turf between her and
It took her split-second to recognize
it as Mogor. The sagoth had lept to her rescue, risking his own life in
the face of this overwhelming adversary.
Mogor ducked quickly beneath
the borha’s slashing tusks, and brought up the spear ramming up and through
the monstrous jaws, pinning them together.
The super-swine squealed thunderously.
Mogor rolled to one side. With a speed and celerity peculiar to his kind,
the sagoth seized up the astonished Korsar girl and raced to and up the
nearest tree, with as much ease as his close cousins.
He sat Nasheema on a branch.
The Korsar girl clutched at him as she watched with wide, dusky eyes the
gigantic super-boar, as it squealed and roared below, thrashing about in
a made attempt to rid itself of the spear. Leaking blood and gore, it finally
collapsed in a crimson welter, staining the thick grasses therefrom.
It was several moments
before either the girl or her rescuer spoke.
said, “You killed it…you risked your own life to save me from the borha.”
“I must retrieve my spear.”
Mogor said flatly. He pushed Nasheema’s arms form him and sprang down to
the grassy turf. He pulled his spear free of the borha’s jaws and examined
it, satisfied that it was unbroken.
Nasheema landed beside him. “Why
did you save me?” she asked.
“I do not know.” said the sagoth.
“I do not favor you for a mate, and you have shown you have no liking for
me. Perhaps I just have a liking for roasted borha flesh over a wood fire.”
“I see.” said Nasheema. “It does seem we
now have plenty of that.”
“Since you and I are alone in the wilderness,”
said the girl, “and since it is obvious that neither of us can return to
our homeland for fear of the Cid’s wrath, it is better that we help each
other as survival is of chief importance to us both. You have just proven
Mogor grunted. “I suppose you are correct,
They set at once to butchering the
borha’s carcass. As the think was nearly elephantine in bulk, they only
needed a small measure of it, and left the rest to the jungle scavengers.
Before long hyeanodons, ever-opportunistic, were ripping away at the carcass,
and leather-winged scavengers had descended en masse upon it.
Nasheema and Mogor made
camp in a glade not far from there, where they roasted the flesh of the
archeotherium. As prehistoric pork, it was not at all bad tasting.
As they prepared to settle in
for their sleep period, Nasheema drew herself close to Mogor. He wasn’t
so bad—for a beast man. In fact, he was very strong very brave, fully capable
of providing her protection. Mogor put his own arm about her. Them they
began touching and fondling…..
It was sometime later,
long after their “sleep” was over, and they had set off into the vast Pellucidaran
wilderness, that Mogor and Nasheema happened upon a vast basin, part of
of a long extinct volcanic crater, filled with luxuriant forests and plains.
A mighty herd of tandors grazed below. And form the shimmering blue of
a vast lake, and long-necked lidi waddled ponderously onto shore.
Nasheema was clinging to
Mogor…and him to her. “it is a beautiful sight.” She said.
“Yes,” said Mogor. “I believe
it is just what we are looking for—full of game, and far out of the sight
of hostile tribes.”
“It is where our children
and our children’s children shall live.” She said.
“Indeed it is” said Mogor,
thinking of the powerful, new race soon to spring forth form his loins.
Pellucidar was filled with such strange, half-human races tucked away in
its vast regions. How did they all originate? Perhaps, some did, in just
Arms around one another, Mogor and
his new mate made their way into the placid valley below.