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Volume 4987

Novelization by Arthur B. Reeve
Followed by summaries of the serial
From an original serial produced by Universal Pictures Corporation,
by special arrangement with Edgar Rice Burroughs
Author of Tarzan of the Apes, The Cave Girl, etc.
ERB Text, ERB Images and Tarzan® are ©Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc.- All Rights Reserved.


Crouching with his knife ready as the lion emerged blinking from the shadows set to spring, Tarzan quickly straightened himself up to his full height, uttering a peculiar hiss. Still snarling the lion shrank back as though in subjection. He knew and feared Tarzan.

Black John had not been prepared to see the king of beasts slink away from Tarzan. But with a low order of cunning the renegade me the emergency. Under cover he rushed Mary and Bobbie into another of the huts.

Through the village reverberated the bull-ape roar of Tarzan.

"Tarzan! Tarzan!" screamed Mary, answering. "Tar---"

Black John's grimy hand over her mouth smothered Mary's cry. She broke from the renegade, crouching back. "You thought to trap Tarzan. But even the beasts of the jungle are his best friends -- and fear him!" She suddenly recollected, gave the shrill bird call.

Rampaging through the village Tarzan heard. He scattered the natives like so many leaves in the wind. From hut to hut he tore until suddenly he heard the muffled bird-call issuing from one of them. He hurled himself headlong against the thatched wall of the hut. As he crashed through, arms tensed, the fury of battle in his eyes he confronted Black John.

Whatever he might be Black John was no coward. With desperate courage he met the attack of Tarzan. But he was no match for the giant strength of the infuriated jungle king. Tarzan lifted him bodily like a log and flung him to the ground. Before the crumpled villain could even begin to get himself together Tarzan had leaped after him, planed his foot on his neck and drawn  his knife prepared to dispatch him as he had hundreds of jungle enemies in winning his kingship.

Mary uttered a cry of horror. "No, Tarzan, No!"

No one but Mary could have stayed his hand. Tarzan desisted and turned away just in time to meet an onslaught of fanatical natives with long spears. He grappled the foremost as Mary flung her body between the attackers and Bobby. Uttering his call Tarzan broke the spear blade from its shaft.

The echo of his call had hardly died before there came an answering roar from the lion.

"Numa!" cried the panic-stricken natives. "He comes to aid his friend, Tarzan!"

The last of the natives had fled and Black John was struggling in his daze to rise when Mary ran to Tarzan. "Quick!" she pleaded, "Before they return."

Tarzan smiled, reached down, swung Bobby to his shoulders then with his free arm about her he hurried the girl into the jungle.

Again Tarzan sought refuge in the lonely hut in the heart of the jungle. This time he had a purpose.

Tarzan did not have to know the word mystery or what it meant. His very actions now intrigued Mary and Bobby as he  made them wait on one side of the hut while he dug until he had upturned a stone with which the floor was paved. He reached down, took something out of the hole under the stone, then as he rose he handed a small rusty steel box to Mary.

"Long ago," he explained, "I was found here by Toka of the ape People. Toka cared for me. And so I grew. One day when I was playing on the floor I dug up this box."

Mary opened the box. From it she took carefully a paper yellow with age. Almost the first thing her eyes fell on was the name, Earl Greystoke, your father --"

Puzzled, Tarzan did not understand. He had taken the paper from Mary's hand when he interrupted her with child-like directness, reaching over for the photograph of the general.

"Earl Greystoke -- God? Bigger than Tarzan?"

Mary studied both the photograph and the papers he had showed her. "No, Tarzan," she repeated patiently. "Lord Greystoke is not God. But these papers prove you his son and heir."

the jungle man seemed bewildered. "Him -- God -- bigger than Tarzan?" he reiterated. the idea seemed to worry him.

"No, Tarzan," repeated Mary. "Lord Greystoke was not God. He was your father. These papers prove that you are his son." She tried to simplify the idea as much as she could.

Tarzan was tired of these things that he did not understand. He swept the box and the papers aside impatiently. There was one thing which he did understand. he swept the box and the papers aside impatiently. There was one thing which he did understand and that loomed all-important in his  mind just now. "Tarzan a big god -- himself -- and you -- Tarzan's she!"

He started toward Mary. It was elemental  love-making It was ownership, possession. Mary was pleased and startled, even frightened as the giant Tarzan came closer. It gave her a thrill to have him feel that way and yet, instinctively, she moved away from him.

"Oh, look! They've followed us."

Love-making refined or elemental meant nothing to Bobby. He had been at the window. Suddenly his sharp eyes had spied an unnatural motion in the jungle. It was one of the savage villagers crouching, peering through, spear poised a the hut.

No sooner had Tarzan disappeared with Mary and Bobby than Black John, now recovered, went back to his scheming. He had gathered the returning villagers about him urging them that after all his magic was greater than Tarzan's. He had harangued them until he had them worked up into a high state of passion -- in the absence of Tarzan. "Come with me," he shouted. "Save our White Queen!" It had not taken much to lead them out on the warpath again, as he brandished a  most deadly looking spear.

Already Black John and his renegades had ambushed the hut. Mary recoiled as she saw them slinking in the jungle. But Tarzan turned swiftly and took her bodily into his arms as he shoved little Bobby back of them for protection. His every instinct urged him to fight for what was  his own.

Mary struggled but it was not to get away; it was to restrain him from striding forth to force the combat.

"No, no! Tarzan -- they will kill you!"

Even Tarzan noticed that. It was fear for him not for herself. Bobby had pulled the door shut and a bar on the outside had dropped locking it. Mary was proud of Tarzan's strength and fearlessness but the moment he let her down she flung her own arms around him, holding him. "No, Tarzan! Black John's spearmen are all about us!"

There were still some of the natives who felt the terror of Tarzan in his presence. It was different from defying him when he was absent and they were safe in the village. "Tarzan is more mighty than your magic," faltered one doubter.

Black John sneered. My magic is more mighty than Tarzan! Surround the hut, before I strike you dead!" Black John was an opportunist. His eye happened to catch gathering clouds on the horizon, "Why, even the storm gods obey my magic!" he shouted.

Mary was having more trouble than ever to restrain Tarzan inflamed with the insolence of Black John in even thinking he might cross the will of Tarzan. "I am Tarzan," he thundered. "No one can take you from me!"

With devilish ingenuity Black John was setting fire to a bunch of dried grass tied to the head of a spear. AS it burst into flame he cast it through the air like a wide-flaming meteor until it struck in the thatch of the roof of the cabin scattering far and wide a shower of sparks.

It was only a few moments before the thatch was a flaming mass spreading fast in the rising wind.

Mary snatched up the precious papers Tarzan had showed her and thrust them in her bosom.

The hut was almost entirely in flames as Tarzan, Mary and Bobby ineffectually fought the stifle. Flames and smoke were licking up hungrily behind them as Tarzan burst open the door. The moment he did so a veritable rain of spears slithered at the hapless three. Tarzan took Mary in his arms. There was no going back Ahead was the tribe now worked into a state of fanatic fury.


From Universal Weekly 1928

Chapter Seven: The Leopard's Lair

Tarzan senses their peril. He whirls and grapples with their menacing foes. A vicious fight ensues. Mary and Bobby flee. Black John attempts to capture them, but Bobby outwits him and they escape. When Tarzan overpowers his foes the patriarch of the tribe is awed. He asks Tarzan to be chief of the tribe in place of Black John. Mary persuades Tarzan to accept and the ceremonial rites are set for that night. While the ceremony is in progress Black John steals the sleeping Bobby. Mary discovers that the boy has vanished and tries to reach Tarzan, but she is not allowed to enter the ceremonial chamber.

While Black John sleeps in his secret hiding-place in the jungle, Bobby steals Tarzan's papers from him. Black John wakens and pursues the boy into the jungle. When the ceremony is over, Mary tells Tarzan that Bobby has disappeared. Tarzan leads the tribe in search of the lost child. Bobby takes refuge in a leopard's cave to escape his pursuer. The leopard returns and makes ready to leap upon the terrified boy. Tarzan is told by a monkey, whose language he understands, where to find Bobby. While he speeds to the rescue, Mary is followed and seized by Taug, the ape, who carries her off.


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