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THE ROMANCE OF TARZAN I
Tarzán, El Hombre Mono
The Spanish Book of the Film
Translated to English
by Ward Orndoff
Continued in Part II: ERBzine 7141
I have amended the wording in this translation to reflect the words displayed on-screen in Tarzan of the Apes (the 1918 film), where the differences were simply a matter of word choices and did not impact the meaning of what was written in the Spanish booklet. For the most part, the first film and the Spanish prose adaptation of the second film (presumably also in Spanish) are quite consistent; the few apparent exceptions are noted below.
The dates in the prose adaptation of Romance are not consistent with those in the first film (or the first book). I have left the dates of 1895 (at the beginning, prior to the Claytons' departure for Africa) and 1907 (Tarzan as a boy) as quoted in the Spanish prose adaptation, despite the fact that this would mean that most of the events in the film would take place during World War I. But Tarzan of the Apes the film says Clayton is summoned regarding the mission to Africa in 1886. (Apes the book says that the Claytons departed England in May 1888. There has been some theorizing that this date is deliberately misleading, but that is what Burroughs wrote.)
Also, at the beginning of the story, the prose adaptation of Romance says that Clayton's mission to Africa is to "suppress the blacks," whereas Apes the film says his mission is to "suppress Arab slave trading in British Africa." In the original novel (per my early G&D reprint), Burroughs says that his mission stems from the fact that another European power is recruiting inhabitants of a British West African colony for their native army, and natives of the British Colony have complained about it. I left this translation as is for now, but my personal preference would be to change it to be consistent with Apes the film. For one thing, both the book and the first film are more socially acceptable nowadays.
The booklet uses the terms "count" and "countess" (and "los condes," which translates as "count and countess" in this case) almost exclusively when referring to Lord and Lady Greystoke, including when someone is talking to, or about, about Lord or Lady Greystoke. In Chapter 19 of the book Tarzan, Lord of the Jungle, Tarzan states, when asked, that he is a viscount, so the title is not inaccurate; but Burroughs never made use of the term elsewhere in the series to the best of my knowledge. Spain (and France) tend to use "count" more frequently, whereas the British tend to use "Lord" as a form of address, from what I understand (I'm no expert). Apes the film calls him Lord Greystoke when describing his mission. In my opinion, the odds are that "Lord" and "Lady" were used in the original English version of the film, and the change to count and countess was made either when it was translated into Spanish for the Spanish version of the film, or for the Spanish prose adaptation. So for the most part, I have changed count and countess to Lord and Lady in this translation.
The other Spanish novelizations of authorized Tarzan films Iíve found to date are:
Tarzan the Ape Man (30s) (as Tarzán de los monos)
Tarzan and his Mate (as Tarzán y su compañera)
Tarzan and the Amazons (as Tarzán y las Amazonas)
New Adventures of Tarzan (as Nuevas aventuras de Tarzán)
Tarzan and the Green Goddess (as Tarzán y la diosa)
Tarzan the Fearless (feature film version) (as Tarzán y las fieras)
Tarzanís Magic Fountain (as Tarzán y la fuente mágica)
Tarzan vs. the Mau Mau (a.k.a.Tarzan Istambulda) (as Tarzán contra el Mau-Mau)~Ward Orndoff
John Clayton, Lord Greystoke, was, in 1895, one of the most distinguished members of the Colonial Ministry. Married to a beautiful woman named Alice, he divided his love between her and his career in the civil service. One day the British government commissioned him with a dangerous mission to the coast of Africa; it was desired to suppress the tribes of blacks, and Clayton was selected to undertake a mission to study the matter.
THE ORIGINAL ENGLISH VERSION OF
THE ROMANCE OF TARZAN
Is Featured in ERBzine 0504
THE ROMANCE OF TARZAN I
Tarzán, El Hombre Mono
The Spanish Book of the Film
Translated to English by Ward Orndoff
Alice embarked with him for Africa despite the fear that it represented and the state of the lady who would shortly learn the mysteries of motherhood.
Cecil Clayton, the count's cousin and the current immediate heir to his title and his legacy, had two incurable passions: his exotic attire and whiskey. He frequently visited the largest bar in the district, an establishment that enriched its proprietor, Claude Moran.
Young Ana Moran worked as a barmaid in her father's establishment; his right arm, she was, in addition, a treasure coveted by the count's cousin. Cecil often bantered with Ana, hopelessly enamored with the piquant creature.
One day he told her that he now regarded himself as the true Lord Greystoke, the most powerful man in the region.
"May you not be mistaken, Cecil!" said Ana. "There are many savages in Africa, and, consequently, the lives of your cousins are in danger. I toast the future Lord Greystoke!"
Cecil laughed after draining a cup of liquor and said, "You, Ana, are the most delectable girl in the land! I need a woman like you!"
"I may be everything you say, but you would not marry me. A waitress in a bar!"
"A toast to your health, Ana, to the health of my future wife! Do you still doubt that I will marry you?"
Ana paid him for his promises with a kiss. Oh, if that were to come to pass! From barmaid to great lady in a leap right out of a novel....
And meanwhile, Lord and Lady Greystokes had reached Africa. Before setting out en route to their destination on another steamship, the couple completed their little library according to the expectations of Alice, in whose body the new life of her little son was growing.
"Perhaps our son will learn how to read from these books before our difficult mission is finished," said Alice. And she was ecstatic, contemplating those first children's reading books.
The next day they embarked on the brigantine "Fuwalda," whose captain had made his ship into a little fiefdom, in which he exercised the power of a tyrant.
Binns was an honorable sailor without family, without friends, and he had focused all his attentions on a dog. During the journey, Alice treated the intelligent animal with great fondness and that was translated into gratitude and affection in Binns' breast.
Days passed.... Under a cloudless sky the sea slept in solemn calmness...
The perverse instincts of the captain were unleashed against Binns' poor little dog, which he kicked fiercely.
The crew, tired of being treated brutally, decided to rebel. "We have to put an end to this tyranny! Not a day more will our cowardly meekness last!" And they rushed at him across the deck, cornering him with gunshots.
But the man defended himself well and perhaps he would have been victorious without the intervention of the pacifist Binns, who, armed with a club, crawled stealthily toward the captain and knocked him senseless.
Lord and Lady Greystoke, frightened by the mutiny, had locked themselves in their cabin.
The revolt successful, one of the crewmen said, "Now it's the passengers' turn!" They headed threatening toward their berth.
Binns intervened on their behalf. "I ask you for mercy for them! Grant me the life of those innocents, worthy of respect and love for their kindness."
The mutineers hesitated, but finally agreed to spare their lives... They would not, however, remain on board. They would be put ashore on the coast and abandoned to their fate.
And that is what they did, leaving them alone on a deserted beach, in the heart of the dark, unexplored jungles.
As their sole hope, Binns murmured to them before leaving them, "When I get to England, I will let the authorities know they need to send you well-organized relief."
Lord and Lady Greystoke were left on the deserted beach... and watched the brigantine sailing ship shrink in the distance, like a last hope.
The first thing that overwhelmed them upon finding themselves on the coast, listening to the roars of the leopard and the lions, was a sense of helplessness.
Ah, what a terrible abandonment! But the count and countess were undaunted and the husband constructed, in a few days, in the depths of the jungle, a cabin to shelter them from the ferocious animals that prowled by night in search of prey.
And meanwhile, on the brigantine steamship, sick of his despicable companions who incited barbaric clashes at the slightest pretext, Binns decided to flee and go in search of the Claytons and entrusted his boat to the waves....
After long hours, Binns, exhausted, was able to gain the coast of Africa, but at a location many miles from his friends. He had made landfall in the region of the Tuaregs, Arab traffickers of human flesh who had ravaged the Dark Continent for many years.
Binns walked on without being seen by anyone, until he drew near a distant village of peaceful, hospitable natives, who lived the life of nature in all its plentitude. Those good people amicably helped the unfortunate white...
But the Tuaregs were preparing an assault on the encampment of the peaceful blacks, and that night they launched the attack, setting fire to the village and taking its denizens prisoner.
And Binns suffered the same sad fate as the defeated blacks. Joined in pairs by yokes, the poor victims were guided by blows under the torrid sun or among the stinking swamps, falling many times never to rise again....
And the fate of poor Binns could not have been more terrible....
In England, Ana, the barmaid, had married Cecil Clayton and installed herself in Greystoke castle, the modesty of her paternal home forgotten among its grandeur.
"The mysterious designs of life!" the woman said to herself. "Who would have figured I would have reached such an elevated position?"
Months later, the periodicals published this notice:
The brigantine "Fuwalda" of the ship-owners Hoke, Janes and Cia,
aboard which were traveling Lord Greystoke and his wife, is believed lost.
An English ship has found a lifeboat on the high seas with the name "Fuwalda."
There is no news of the captain, the crew or the passengers, nor if there are survivors.
That news pleased Cecil and his wife greatly. They were going to inherit.... "Congratulate me, my husband!" said Ana. "At last the former barmaid is Lady Greystoke."
Ana gave birth some time later to a boy, whom she regarded as the future heir of the count.
And off in the African jungle, Lord and Lady Greystoke had also seen their little son born in the interior of the humble cabin.
Weeks and months passed without Binns coming to save them. The couple despaired of being able to escape from that desolate land, lost to civilization.
One day a great ape, a creature bearing a mockery of a likeness to a human being, showed up, aggressive, at the aristocrat's cabin... And the count had to fight desperately against the anthropoid until he managed to plunge his knife into its hairy chest.
A frightful situation! The beasts constantly stalked them, hanging around the cabin. And would they never manage to leave there?
Alice, severely affected by the unhealthy climate and the emotional toll, departed from the world when the child of their love, her adored Tarzan, was barely a year old. The viscount awakened to the body of his wife. He cried.... Why had his sweet companion left him? That day was to be a tragic one for him.
Kala, a she-ape, the mate of Kerchak, knowing of the existence of the son of Lord and Lady Greystoke, of that little nipper of just a few months of age, went furtively by night to the cabin with the aim to stealing it.... She entered the hut....
The beast Kala was carrying in her arms the body of her baby, which she placed in the cradle where little Tarzan was sleeping, gathering him up and fleeing hurriedly with her prize.... She left her little dead infant to suckle a child of a race that Kala had never seen but that bore a vague similarity to her own.
The viscount, who was crying beside his wife's body, became aware of the abduction and hurled himself at the other apes that had accompanied Kala. But the terrible anthropoids fought him until they killed him with their hairy hands and claws....
And the cabin awoke the next day under the sun with a spectacle of horror.... Lord and Lady Greystoke, dead, next to each other, and in a little cradle, the body of the little ape, the daughter of Kala. The little boy, Tarzan, had been carried to the heights of the trees, to be nursed by her.
The years passed. We are in 1907. At Greystoke castle, Cecil Clayton's offspring has been raised in princely luxury. The child, named William, knew all the exquisite care of an overly spoiled childhood.
Cecil, the father, has just died, and the widowed countess was, therefore, peacefully enjoying the title and the inheritance.
And meanwhile, Tarzan, that child of the jungle, the son of Lord and Lady Greystoke, whose life had truly been that of an ape, living with them, assimilating their habits and achieving their extraordinary agility, turned ten.
Raised among the tribe of great apes, despite the difference of his skin, he did not consider himself superior in beauty to the apes, his companions. But one day, like the genteel mythological Narcissus, he saw his handsome white man's face reflected in the mirror of a lake, and the thought manifested itself for the first time in his human brain.
Kala, the she-ape, dearly loved this child of another race, who had replaced for her the little one taken from her by death. And Tarzan responded to that instinctive love with a filial affection as deep as that which he could have had for Alice, his mother. Naturally, separated from Alice since the age of one, he was unaware of anything related to his true life and believed himself to be of the race of the apes.
Meanwhile, victim of the hatred of the Tauregs toward the English who fought against slavery, for ten years poor Binns had suffered the hardships and toil that brought him a premature old age.
Tarzan knew no lullabies other than the roars of the ferocious beasts, nor any joy other than that of climbing the trees in the tangle of the jungle.
One day Tarzan approached a peaceful native tribe and, seeing the vestments, although rudimentary in their simplicity, of the people, from the depths of his mind, unformed as yet, rose a secret, urgent desire: to be clothed! And taking possession of a waist cloth that a black had left while he was bathing in the river, he covered himself modestly with it....
Tarzan, to whom intelligence was exhibiting itself like a slow awakening, leaping from tree to tree, happened one day upon the cabin in which, completely unknown to him, he had first seen the light of day. He was astonished to discover the bones of Lord and Lady Greystoke and the skeleton of Kala's son, and without understanding it, he noticed, nevertheless, essential differences between them, incomprehensible to his undeveloped mind.
He leafed through a book that was on the table: a children's book that his parents had bought for him. There were some vignettes, and Tarzan laughed as he contemplated reproductions of the apes and then of men, strange apes he thought, who resembled the blacks he had seen in the tribe.
He then picked up a knife and, without meaning to, gave himself a deep scratch in his skin.... He guessed quite quickly that that leaf of steel could turn him into the master of the jungle beasts. He soon had occasion to use it....
Just a few days later, Kala was attacked by a lion and Tarzan, going to her aid, tested the utility of his weapon, staining the sharp blade with the blood of his fierce enemy.
Far from there, after ten years of horrible torture, Binns managed to escape, outwitting the vigilance of the Tauregs. Upon finding himself free of his pursuers, he immediately tried to orient himself toward the region where he had left Lord and Lady Greystoke. And at last, after a long, painful journey, Binns caught sight of the cabin that was the cradle of Tarzan and the tomb of his parents.
It was deserted.... But he saw, horrified, two skeletons on a bunk of sorts. How awful! He did not doubt that they were those of the Claytons. "I wonder if they died a thinkin' old Binnsey broke 'is promise to 'em!" he sobbed.
His eyes then focused on the imprint of an small hand on a tablet of paper. Tarzan had wiped his injured hand on it when he discovered the knife. "That's a child's fist as made that!" he cried. "It must be their young 'un! I couldn't keep my word to you, Ma'am, until too late, but I'll find this kid o' yours and take 'im back to England!" Plunged into a strange weakness, he collapsed to the floor. He wanted to rest, to sleep....
Suddenly Tarzan entered with the knife in his hand. Upon seeing Binns, a strange being to him, he had an impression of fear mixed with a craving to kill. And as he was launching himself, fearfully, with his invincible weapon, toward Binns, the latter opened his eyes and his lips stammered some strange words of endearment. Why did he like him? Who was that boy?
Ah! Tarzan experienced a strange thrill. What new unknown feelings did the imploring, loving voice awaken in his sleeping soul to render the knife in the hands of the little savage harmless? And instead of attacking him, he aided him, somehow guessing that the man was similar to him and different from the apes....
And, nursed by Tarzan to returning strength, Binns taught the eager boy his slight knowledge of the printed word. Binns no longer doubted that the latter was the boy he sought and whose mind was awakening to the kiss of learning....
But when Tarzan was about to leave the jungle in the company of his first human friend who was going to take the proof of his identity to Europe, Fate intervened again. The Tauregs pursued them incessantly, following their footsteps. They considered themselves lost... Tarzan could have escaped by leaping from limb to limb, making it impossible for them to catch him. But Binns lacked that ability....
"Escape if you can, kid," said Binns. "I'm off across the jungle to the coast, then back to England to look up yer folks." They said goodbye to each other, embracing.... And as Tarzan climbed a tree, Binns entered the jungle, sensing that the ferocious Tauregs were snapping at his heels.
Fortunately for him, thanks to his having hidden himself in the tangled underbrush, he managed to lose the Tauregs and headed off toward the sea in search of some other shore where he could orient himself and search for a means of saving Tarzan once and for all.
And the latter, the poor boy, had to resign himself to remaining in the jungle, where he was once again greeted by the arms of Kala. The latter scolded him in her own way for his absence.... What did he mean by spending all that time without appearing among the tribe?
After indescribable tribulations, Binns managed to reach Greystoke manor, where his tale was met with nothing but apparent incredulity. "I've come from Africa," he told Ana.... "The young heir is there.... You can find him in -"
"What young heir?" said Ana, trembling, horrified at the possibility that her son William might be stripped of his title.
"The son of Lord and Lady Greystoke," continued Binns. "His parents died and the boy is still there, among the beasts...."
Thinking of her son and fearing that the man's tale might be true, with which she would lose the regal splendor of her present life, Ana made a decision. At that very moment she telephoned Dr. James Murray, milk brother of the former barmaid and director of a private sanatorium.
"I have had news from Africa," she said as Binns listened emotionally. "John Clayton, my husband's cousin, has left a son... Alive, thus the true Lord Greystoke...." And then, as a perfidious smile appeared on her lips, she added, "But first of all, we must concern ourselves with remedying the misfortunes of the old man who has brought me the news... and then we will concern ourselves with the child...."
She hung up the device and invited Binns to follow her to the sanatorium. "My brother the doctor will protect us," she said composedly, "and the heir will be found...."
"Milady, I can never thank you enough for your good wishes!" responded Binns.
They arrived at the sanatorium. Once in the doctor's office, Anna, dropping her mask, exclaimed smilingly and looking at Binns, "The good doctor will keep you here until your mind gets back to health; because now... you are crazy!"
"Crazy? I saw the kid with me own eyes!" He was unable to say more... they gagged him.... They took him to a cell, putting a straitjacket on him.... They were going to lock him up there for the rest of his life!
Ana and her son had nothing to fear....
Ten more years passed. Raised like the beasts in the heart of the impenetrable jungle, Tarzan did not fear anything.... He knew how to fight against the lion and the leopard and to overcome the obstacle of the elements.... An elephant was his friend, and on the back of his trunk they went from one side of the jungle to the other....
Tarzan was essentially the king of the jungle.... When he defeated some enemy, he gave a prodigious cry, very strange, terrifying, that daunted all the other inhabitants.
As a contrast with this strength, back in Greystoke castle, engendered by an alcoholic and born of a woman without spiritual qualities, William Clayton was mentally a degenerate; at twenty years of age he had not yet done anything useful. Zizi, a maid in the castle, awakened the sole quality that could be acknowledged in William: his propensity for love affairs.
One day Zizi handed him a little piece of paper that said: "I will wait for you at four in the ironing room."
And William entertained himself alone at the prospect of the meeting that would soon take place. The maid was beautiful!
The widow Greystoke arrived and showed him an invitation.
Ana Clayton, Lady Greystoke has the honor of inviting you to the reception that will take place on the 23rd day of September at ten at night in Greystoke castle to present the distinguished Miss Jane Porter.
"This reception will give me the opportunity to ask on your behalf for the hand of Jane Porter and to very shortly announce your wedding."
William made a grimace of indifference.... He had little desire to marry!
Shortly afterwards they welcomed the visit of Jane and her father, Professor Archimedes Porter. a passionate disciple of Darwin and one of the highest ranking members of the "Link" scientific mission, recently arrived from California, where he had his residence.
After the customary greetings, Professor Porter commenced to explain his theories. "Every day I find myself more and more in agreement with Darwin. Human beings are nothing more than evolved apes...."
William, despite the fact that Jane was a beautiful girl, was impatient because it was about to strike four and he had an appointment with the maid. He excused himself rudely and left, leaving Jane snubbed and surprised.
The girl felt humiliated and induced her father to curtail the visit.... And although the countess insisted that they stay longer, the Porters departed at once.
William headed to the ironing room. Another maid, Blanche, was by the door.... The young man gave her a penny to leave, and the servant did so after a scoffing look at the coin....
But the maid thought that a penny would not buy more than ten cents of silence, something very expensive due to its great scarcity.
And when the countess asked for William, Blanche responded, "I haven't seen him! Perhaps milady should look upstairs... in the ironing room, for example."
The countess went there and saw William embracing Zizi. The two got to their feet, nervously.
"Are you crazy, William?" roared the mother, as Zizi left the chamber and remained listening behind the door. "Do you realize that if old Binns were to talk, we would be ruined? And to give up Jane's millions for a maid?"
"Calm down, mother," responded the young man, smiling. "I will marry the millions...!"
Zizi had heard that.... She knew the whole story. And she smiled fiercely.... Unfortunately for her, the countess, not daring to leave Zizi without an accommodation, and fearing that she would divulge the past in revenge, sent her to Doctor Murray's sanatorium.
And from there, fate labored in favor of Tarzan, in the form of the dispatch of a servant and the loyalty of a friend. And Zizi aided Binns in his escape from the health facility.
The night arrived for the reception in honor of Jane Porter at Greystoke castle.... Among those invited was Morgan Starck, eminent anthropometrist, famous for his efforts on the digital studies of Doctor Bertillon, a powerful aid to criminology. Also present was John Vancouver, lawyer and former advisor of the late Lord and Lady Greystoke.
Ana went over to Vancouver and said to him, "I received your letter, Mr. Vancouver. What gives you the right to oppose my mortgaging the castle?"
"Your rights, milady, are not proven. Until the deaths of John Clayton and his probable heirs are admitted by the Court, you cannot dispose of the family assets."
futre"This very night I expect to announce the betrothal of my son to an heiress of millions; then, when the wedding takes place, our economic burdens will be over."
Meanwhile, William was declaring his "passion" to Jane. "My mother fancies that your fine qualities will make me happy. Grant me your love and it will fulfill her desires, which are mine as well...."
Jane did not feel a whit of affection for the fellow. And she replied, disdainfully, "Oh, it is impossible to decide so lightly about a union that would be for life...! Wait a little, William...! I want to properly know the man to whom I have to entrust my future."
Binns had arrived at the castle, having himself announced to the countess. They had him go to an adjoining room, and Ana shuddered upon observing that individual, who seemed to have risen from the grave.
Gazing at her with a look of fierce hatred, Binns, who had been transformed into a poor old man, shouted at her, "Now you won't be able to lock me up like a madman, before I shout out the truth to yer noble rich friends."
The shouting attracted the attention of several people, and Porter, Vancouver and Starck entered the room. Binns repeated his accusations before them all.
"He's crazy!" cried Ana defensively.
"No, no I'm not crazy... you know I'm not...! Ye're tryin' to steal what belongs to Lord Greystoke, who is alive in Africa!"
Those words caused an enormous sensation.... Vancouver, especially, stared at the countess furiously. What did that statement mean?
William entered and his mother addressed him in a low voice, explaining what was going on, and told him, "Offer to search for the heir...! That way they won't suspect our ambition!"
Ana then went ahead and added, "Gentlemen, I do not understand a word this man is saying. He's a crazy old man, and I fear his madness still lingers on.... But so that you can see our noble intention, my son is prepared to leave for Africa in order to discover the truth of the matter."
"Agreed!" said Porter. "We will take William on our yacht... and I will take advantage of this situation to broaden my studies of the apes...."
Binns got to his feet; he attempted to defend himself against the charge of his supposed madness, but a heart attack paralyzed his tongue.... He fell heavily, dead, as the countess and her son smiled triumphantly. Everything was going their way!
They embarked for the unexplored regions of Africa....
During the voyage, Professor Porter expressed his enthusiasm for the exploratory expedition. "To study the ape in its free state, will shed light on the history of our ancestors," he was saying to William.
The latter became agitated.
"You talk as if I were proof of Darwin's theories," he exclaimed.
"Oh, I wouldn't go that far!"
And meanwhile, life proceeded as usual in the jungle.
From time to time the blacks of the native tribe waged fierce assaults against the apes.... In one of those "raids," Kala, the she-ape who had nursed Tarzan, fell, mortally wounded, struck by a poisoned arrow.
Tarzan's immense pain at the death of Kala manifested itself in the form of ferocious rage, and he swore vengeance. She was the only mother he had ever known!
And arriving at the spot where the "murderer" had taken refuge, he killed him, stabbing him with his invincible knife. Then the jungle shuddered with his terrible cry.
And the natives commenced to feel a superstitious fear toward that strange white being....
After a long voyage, the English expedition reached the African shores and the cabin so painstakingly described by old Binns.
And that hut was found by the excursionists, who were William, Jane and her father, the lawyer Vancouver and the anthropometrist Starck, along with a sizeable escort. Tarzan had seen them approaching the cabin. He wrote something on a piece of paper and stuck it to the crude door.... Then he went and hid among some shrubbery to watch what those mysterious white people were doing.
The explorers read the note on the door with astonishment: This is the house of Tarzan, killer of beasts. Touch not the things that are Tarzan's. Tarzan watches!
"Binns did not lie," said Vancouver. "Here we have very eloquent proof."
They entered the cabin.... They discovered the skeletons of the count and countess.... Then they leafed through a little book of memories.... The last page said:
Friday 7. Alice died this morning. Our poor little boy is crying for nourishment.... What shall I do?
"These are indisputable proof that this house was inhabited by Lord Greystoke and his wife," said Vancouver.
Porter ended up discovering the body of Kala's son and exclaimed after examining it: "On the other hand, with regards to Lord Greystoke's little son, Binns was not so truthful.... This is the skeleton of an ape!" And the fervent disciple of Darwin devoted himself to comparing his osseous discovery and the skull of the woman.
Tarzan, hidden among the bushes, had seen the travelers enter the hut, and had, with as much admiration in his soul as from his eyes, his first sight of a woman....
Starck had discovered the childish impressions of Tarzan's fingers on the tablet of paper. After examining them, he exclaimed: "Gentlemen, there is no doubt that there was a boy here...! These digital impressions are precious for our objective, because they do not change from infancy to old age; they tell us that an infant existed here."
The explorers left the cabin to search for additional evidence.
The only ones remaining in the hut were Jane, her maid and William, who, with all that had happened, was in an appalling mood.... William was besieged by sensuality and by aspirations for the rich American heiress. And once he was alone with her and the servant, he tried to kiss his future bride.
"Ah, Mr. Clayton!" she said, rejecting him. "I'm disappointed with you...!"
"Come now!" he responded. "You're not angry; you and I are to be married before long." And seized by a fresh burst of passion, he tried to grasp her in his arms again, taking her toward the window.
The explorers were far away.... Tarzan, from the exterior, had just witnessed the scene.... He saw the woman fighting ferociously with a man and a strange instinct forced him to go to her defense. He thrust his powerful arms between the bars of the window and grabbed William, who felt the anguish of asphyxiation under that grip. After shaking him, he hurled him away and, smiling fiercely, disappeared back into the jungle.
Jane and the servant gave cries of horror, while William uttered a curse. Who could that strange figure, half seen for an instant, strong as a giant of legend, have been? William, with a revolver in his hand, left the cabin furiously, wanting to avenge himself upon the one who had attacked him.
And Jane, after her initial impression of terror, what intimate joy, what deep gratitude she held toward the providential, enigmatic hand that had defended the privileges of her modesty?
And Tarzan, the ape-man, with the shyness of the primitive, hid in the shadows, not daring to approach Jane, but captured by the magnetism of the woman, kept constantly near her, seeing but unseen.
William, meanwhile, was prowling furiously through the jungle and, upon sighting a black from the inoffensive native tribe, fired at him with his revolver, killing him. Absurd vengeance, that would soon bring grave consequences!
The crime committed, William escaped, heading back in the direction of the cabin....
New perils stalked Jane and the maid.... A beautiful and imposing lion began circling around the cabin, crouching and giving enormous leaps against the door, scenting the proximity of human flesh.
But Tarzan was watching.... And his knife that had made him the king of the jungle put an end to the life of the fierce enemy after a thrilling battle, witnessed by the two women with their hearts in their throats and marveling at the same time at that white being that seemed to be from another world.... The lion dead, Tarzan vanished upon realizing that people were coming....
It was the explorers; William had returned as well.... Upon seeing the body of the lion, everyone asked what had occurred.
"It was killed by a giant white man, dressed only in skins about his waist," said Jane. "He must be the man we seek."
"When we find this man, I am sure we will end this mystery," said the lawyer.
And they got ready to continue searching for Tarzan....
Continued in Part II: ERBzine 7142
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