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Volume 4994

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.

"Greystoke you're in my way -- and I won't bungle the job like the other fellow did!"

Black John in the entrance of the tent of Lord Greystoke took in the whole situation. The inefficient treacherous secretary had done only half his job. He had secured the papers, but he had bungled the murder of Greystoke. Under the care of Mary his Grace had an excellent chance of being on his feet again, though sorely wounded. Tarzan was not there and by that same token Black John's assurance rose high. He smiled insultingly as he thought how wise he had been to take the papers from the secretary and, after setting him adrift in the jungle, to return to the camp. It was the crowning opportunity and he fingered the knife at his belt thoughtfully.

Mary read what was in hi mind and she flung herself between Lord Greystoke and the renegade to protect him. Black John had his eyes fixed on Mary and did not see Bobby slide quietly and unobtrusively out of the tent, then disappear on a run into the jungle.

Black John reached his hand, like a claw, and toward Mary who drew back. Greystoke struggled helplessly to protect the girl.

"Leave him unharmed -- and I will go with you!" dared mary.

Black John laughed with nasty assurance. "You'll go with me anyhow!"

He made a quick move to encircle the girl with his arms, but Mary was quicker. She seized the knife from his belt and at the same time eluded his embrace. As she backed away, but not far from Greystoke she poised the knife dangerously close to her own breast over her rapid-beating heart.

"Take me -- and leave him!" she defied. "Or I will die!"

Black John's eyes narrowed and his voice assumed its trickiest suavity. He agreed to do what she wished but his expression showed that there ws some mental reservation. He took a step toward her, but the girl halted him, making him keep his distance. He stopped and at last they came to an agreement. She slowly started ahead after a sad look around at what he was leaving and Black John followed closely, still crafty and menacing. Greystoke tried to rise up and stop the girl but he was too weak.

Along the jungle trail with Black John directing her, Mary proceeded still carrying the knife. Now and then she glanced back over her shoulder at Black John following her but not too closely. His attitude was watchful and ready for whatever opportunity might arise.

Suddenly -- Mary's foot sank into a hole in the path and her ankle turned with a sharp pain. Before she could gain her balance Black John had leaped. It ws just what he was waiting for . He flung his powerful arms about her pinning her arms to her sides and rendering the knife in her hand useless. He almost crushed her in his embrace until she cried with pain and her grasp of the knife relaxed. The moment the knife fell to the ground Black John made a sudden shift, grasping her wrist in his powerful hand and reached with his other hand down for the knife on the ground.

The moment his fingers clasped over the knife, he lifter her up, swung about and carried her struggling back toward the camp. She fought like a young tigress at first but the slender girl ws no match for the hardened adventurer. She fought more and more weakly, seemed almost ready to faint from her struggles and her high-pitched emotions. Black John looked down at the weakened girl with eager eyes as he carried her along toward the camp.

Mary was limp and lifeless by the time Black John got his fair burden back to Greystoke's camp.

Fretting and worrying over the safety of the girl and wracked by the pain from his wound Greystoke tried to raise himself up as he heard a noise outside, hoping it was Tarzan. Instead it was Black John with Mary swooning in his arms. Greystoke fell back, closed his eyes. He felt that this was the end.

Black John laid Mary on a pallet of brush in the tent and looked down and over her with eyes full of evil passion. Then he turned an saw Greystoke regarding him furtively. He swung about and strode toward the wounded nobleman, his hand seeking the hilt of his knife.

"I'll finish you first, my lord," gritted Black John with mock deference to royalty. "Then I'll make her mine!"


From Universal Weekly 1928

Chapter Fourteen: Facing Death

The explosion of the mine laid by Black John in the stream works havoc in the little party. Mary and Tarzan are thrown against a log senseless while Lord Greystoke and Bobby, hurled on the bank of the stream, appear to be dead. Just as Mary is regaining consciousness she realizes that Black John is near her ransacking Tarzan's treasure box. Before she can cry out and arouse Tarzan, Black John forces her out of the stream. He threatens to leave Bobby, who is still breathing, to die unless she promises to marry him. Lord Greystoke, still dazed is forced along with the others and finally taken aboard his own yacht by Black John, who tells the Captain that he is the authentic heir.

Meanwhile, Tarzan regains his wits and is frantic when he discovers his friends have disappeared -- after hours of searching he makes his way to the coast and seeing the yacht at anchor in the bay, seizes a canoe and is soon stealing on board. Just as he is making his way below he hears a cry from Mary. He finds Mary the unwilling victim of Black John's love making. A fierce battle follows -- Black John forces Tarzan up to the deck where the sea men, mistaking Tarzan for an enemy, aid Black John in his fight until Tarzan is thrown into the sea.


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