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THE ROMANCE OF TARZAN II
Tarzán, El Hombre Mono
Continued from Part I
The Spanish Book of the Film
Translated to English
by Ward Orndoff
While the inquiries continued in the vicinity of the native village, an unsuspected peril threatened the searchers.
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WARD ORNDOFF TRANSLATION
Continued from Part I: ERBzine 7141
The blacks, whipping themselves into a frenzy of hatred due to the death of one of their own, prepared to do battle against their fancied enemies. They treacherously attacked Porter and his friends who, surprised by the unexpected attack in the depths of the jungle, readied a defense....
Jane remained in the cabin, and in her soul awakened a world of unfamiliar emotions, thinking of the strange being of such savage beauty who had saved her from the lion earlier.
Tarzan had discovered that attack of the blacks and, leaping from tree to tree with tremendous agility, arrived at the native village and there commenced to set fire to their huts. And, more concerned with the preservation of their property than their warlike triumphs, the blacks abandoned the battle to run to their houses that the fire was destroying.
Jane had left the cabin, intending to join her friends and alarmed by the shots, but the blacks, seeing her as they retreated, decided to seize her, following her in a wild race from which she was freed by the intervention of Tarzan who, lifting her like a feather, carried her away through the treetops.
At the first contact with that unknown, enchanting being, the jungle man shuddered with the sensations of violence and sweetness. And Jane, although her heart felt filled with that fiercely beautiful man, trembled before him with an instinctive fear that paralyzed her blood.... A baseless fear on Jane's part, because a sensitivity only attributable to the heritage of centuries of civilization told Tarzan that it was vile to force the affection of a woman... and he kissed the hands of the innocent creature with religious unction.
Seeing her tremble in his arms, he handed her his knife, and that action restored to Jane the trust in Tarzan that he had seen lost in the gaze of the sweet woman. And despite the sinister noises of the jungle during the long night, Jane felt reassured under Tarzan's vigilance.
The explorers, meanwhile, had searched for Jane and were beginning to lose hopes of finding her.
Tarzan returned with his sweet burden to the cabin the next morning.... And as the two talked, expressing to each other the emotions of their souls, the explorers returned....
No one had any doubt now that that giant was Tarzan, the son of Lord Greystoke.
They surrounded the man, who was speaking in English like them, asking him a thousand questions....Tarzan answered them all, filled with an intoxicating joy, especially by the presence of Jane....
The anthropometrist Starck compared Tarzan's fingerprints and those of the child described by Binns and there could not be the slightest doubt that they were the same person.
They were, then, standing before Tarzan, the true heir of the Greystokes! They informed him of the great news, whose history Tarzan already knew through Binns' tales.
… she felt reassured under Tarzan's vigilance
And William saw with indignation how he was losing his fortune... and also Jane, for she was demonstrating a special predilection for the king of the jungle. Laughing, he said in an aside to Jane, "It's not that I have such great overriding respect for the qualities of my kin, but, come on! It's a bit much to imagine that that savage could be my cousin."
"There is not much family resemblance, that is true; but no doubt it is because yours come from the maternal line," said Jane mockingly.
William left the cabin.... But he did not know that the vengeance of the blacks was terrible. The natives, the fires in their village extinguished, returned to their former pursuit, determined to avenge themselves on the whites.... And upon seeing William alone they rushed toward him, entering the forest and threatening him with their sharp spears.
From the window Tarzan and the searchers had witnessed that, and professor Porter moaned, horrified, "We have to save him! He is my daughter’s future husband!"
Tarzan was noble at heart.... He armed himself with his knife and headed into the jungle after the blacks. And after an extremely rough fight in which he broke the backs of several of the savages, he managed to free William Clayton. The latter was almost swooning with terror....
They reached the top of a hill and from there Tarzan saw how other the natives were approaching the cabin and beginning to fire arrows at it. He understood that the situation of the woman and her friends was dire and rushed to their aid.
… threatening him with their sharp spears
Many years earlier Lord Greystoke had made a tunnel specifically to have an escape route in case of danger. Tarzan knew of its existence and, entering it, after leaving William, reached the cabin, and by using it they were all able to escape in the direction of the beach.
Upon finding themselves free, Tarzan, fearing that the blacks would pursue the explorers, went to confront them with the aim of disorienting them and preventing the attack.
But this time the fight was unequal.... Several arrows pierced his body and took their toll on his vigorous physique.... Crawling, he was able to climb a tree and there he waited for dawn, with the goal of rejoining his new friends.
William, now recovered, rejoined Jane and the other searchers later, still showing signs of a frightful panic. "Now that we are on the beach... we should leave at once," he exclaimed, "before those accursed blacks eat us alive...."
"Oh, we must wait for Tarzan," protested Jane. "He will return! -"
"It is useless to wait, because he will not return!" said William, lying. "I just saw him dead...!"
The girl persisted but William gave such assurances that he had seen Tarzan dead that everyone decided, sadly, to return to the yacht.... A sad epilogue to the expedition!
And the yacht picked up the fugitives and Jane's body.... Her heart had remained in the jungle... with Tarzan!
… they were all able to escape…
The next morning, Tarzan awoke and called the elephant, who carried him to the beach on his trunk... And Tarzan saw the ship which slipped through the sea like a white seagull in the distance.... The elephant was more devoted than the men whose lives he had saved! The explorers had abandoned him!
The yacht continued on its way toward England.... Jane insisted that they return to the jungle.
"Why should we return, Jane?" said William, happy to have rid himself of Tarzan, who would have taken the woman and the fortune from him. "Didn't I tell you that I saw him dead when I rejoined you? The natives did away with him."
Then he persisted in his amorous intentions, but she rejected him. She could not remove the memory of her courageous friend from her mind!
And Tarzan, enamored with Jane, had thrown himself blindly seawards, in search of another beach where there might be a vestige of civilization. He arrived exhausted at a distant island where the Catholic mission of Chepri was located.
Father Raul, a French missionary, attended him solicitously, dressing him and offering his house to him. And that care restored Tarzan to his usual self, but his thoughts were on the other side of the ocean where Jane had gone....
And one day, he escaped, furtively, to go, without a fixed route, in search of his love.... He had been swimming for several hours when he saw a ship and climbed aboard.
He fought with several men who were terrified by the size of the giant, but upon seeing him, the captain took him into his service, telling him that men with strength such as his were needed aboard.
William, Vancouver and their friends, upon reaching another African port, embarked on another vessel, saying goodbye to the Porters, who continued on their journey to California on their yacht. And in possession of their conclusive data, the lawyer Vancouver returned to Greystoke to continue his efforts in favor of the legitimate heir. He did not believe Tarzan was dead, despite William's assurances.... He was filled with a strange hope....
Weeks later, Ana advised her son to go to America to marry Jane Porter before, by some chance, Tarzan happened to show up and spoil everything.
Vancouver visited the widowed countess.
Father Raul, a French missionary, attended him solicitously…
"These fingerprints," he said, "establish beyond a doubt that the man called Tarzan is the son of Lord Greystoke. Thus, as long as there is no real proof of his death, you are no more than a simple tenant," he added, looking at William.
"That is all very well," said William, "but I saw Tarzan dead. And as long as he is not resurrected, quite a difficult thing, I will continue to be Lord Greystoke and rule this house."
And a few days later he set out for America, accompanied by the lawyer Vancouver, who did not want to let him out of his sight.
And meanwhile, Tarzan was still on the steamship that had picked him up and just happened to be conveying him to America....
In California, near the Mexican border, sprawled the great ranch of the Porters.
Jane had not forgotten Tarzan. She had resigned herself to the belief that he had died, but she never stopped thinking about the giant of the jungle. One day she received a letter from Vancouver:
There can be no doubt of any kind as to the identity of the ape-man,
who is none other than the true Lord Greystoke, as shown by the fingerprints.
If Tarzan had not died, he would have regained the title and assets
that his cousin William now improperly enjoys.
A month later William and Vancouver arrived at the ranch.
William talked to the girl alone. "My journey has one particular objective: I would simply like to know if I should or should not bury my hopes that you love me...."
She did not respond.... She loved Tarzan.... Tarzan was dead....
"El Diablo," an escaped thug, had been prowling around the Porters' home for some days. "Porter is a millionaire," he told some men from his band, "and if we kidnap the girl, she will be worth a good ransom to us."
"El Diablo" planned his abduction.... And set out for a cantina, known by the name of "La Boca del Diablo (The Devil's Mouth)," a place among the worst in the world. The main attraction of the place was La Belle Odine, a lovely dancer.
With the passage of the weeks, Tarzan had disembarked in California and for several days had been wandering toward the south, nourishing himself on fruit and the results of his hunting. A single idea obsessed him: to find Jane. He had reached the Mexican settlement near where Porter had his ranch.
One night the ape-man entered the Devil's Mouth tavern. Upon seeing "La Belle Odine" on the platform, he thought she was Jane, and in an irresistible impulse ran toward her and lifted her like a feather, to the stupefaction of all....
… a place among the worst in the world…
But the hallucination dissolved instantly. There were no traces of dissipation and licentiousness on Jane's face.... And La Belle Odine was amazed at the being who had held her in his arms for an instant and whose gaze had a flash of ferocity.
El Diablo and the others present, after needlessly rushing Tarzan, made peace with him and invited him to have a drink. For the first time the savage was going to enjoy the poison of alcohol.... He took that potion and it burned his insides.... Then he sat down at a table, accompanied by Odine, and spent a long time talking with her.
El Diablo and his men left.... The Porters' ranch was nearby.... They kept watch on the garden.... They saw Jane strolling alone and, approaching her, gagged her, taking her to the tavern. They took her up to a room by a concealed stairway.... Jane defended herself bravely, crying out desperately....
And Tarzan, from his table, heard that beloved voice and got to his feet, giving that terrible cry that made the beasts of the desert flee. Oh, Jane was there! Jane!
He went up to that room and in a few moments freed Jane, who, upon seeing Tarzan, embraced him emotionally, mad with bliss, and their lips kissed each other, proclaiming the love that their hearts felt....
Then he left the cantina with the woman in his arms... and La Belle Odine watched them depart, trembling with jealousy. She had liked that man so much! And El Diablo, infuriated, cursed them all vehemently. In vain they tried to follow them.
Tarzan, with his companion, had climbed into the trees as he had done on that unforgettable day when they lost themselves in the tangled African jungle.
Tarzan arrived at the Porter ranch and his presence caused an incomparable gamut of emotions: full of enthusiasm on the part of the lawyer, pessimism and fury in William, who saw his fortune escaping him.... And to him whom he had already given up for dead!
El Diablo with his followers, among them La Belle Odine, discussed the best means to again carry out their plan and deal with the colossus.... Odine, who wanted to see that man, with whom she had become enamored, said, "It won't be easy to kill that modern Samson! You run the risk of dying at his hands.... But I can be Delilah.... I can make him love me.... And then...."
And she evoked the biblical episode that she wanted to repeat.... In reality, what she wanted was to feel herself clasped in Tarzan's arms again....
Two weeks spent in an elegant hotel had not succeeded in making Tarzan anything other than an imprisoned beast....
Porter and Vancouver went to visit him, accompanied by another gentleman, Lord Shiffen, a bankrupt noble who would be his educational tutor. And for several days Tarzan had to submit to the torture of becoming civilized.
Jane was hopelessly in love with Tarzan, but William attempted to sprinkle that affection with discord. "I adore you enough," he said to her, "to wait until you have had your fill of that man that they say is my cousin, as brutish as the wild man of Borneo."
"He has a great heart!" said she.
"He does! Naturally! It is as gigantic as the rest of him! But imagine for a moment... you, married to him... and in a dining salon in high society that you frequent...." And he painted a grotesque picture of that almost wild man amongst the dapper habits of the greater world.
… she evoked the biblical episode…
"Oh, be quiet! Be quiet, for the love of God! Let me be," she said, doubtful.
The plan of El Diablo and La Belle Odine was pursued.... William had forged a relationship with them, wanting to get rid of Tarzan once and for all.
La Belle Odine had rented a luxurious dwelling under the name of Countess Sherzi. She sent a card to Tarzan, begging him to visit her.
Tarzan headed there at the appointed hour, surprised to see Odine surrounded by such luxury.
"You are in my own house," she said tenderly. "The cantina is well below the ambiance in which I have always lived...." She gazed at him sweetly, languidly.
El Diablo, followed by one of his men, entered the residence.... He was jealous...!
"How dare you enter without being announced?" she shouted.
El Diablo hurled himself at Tarzan, but the latter grabbed him by the neck and almost killed him.... Tarzan left the house.
The next day Tarzan, with his tutor and Jane, went to visit the zoological park and to see the gorillas and orangutans imprisoned in their cages; he tried to free them, breaking the bars of one of the enclosures and having to be contained by numerous persons who thought they were facing an escaped madman.
Jane suffered unspeakably before his conduct.... She reproached him sweetly. "Is it a crime to want to free my friends from their prison?" asked Tarzan.
That night a cocktail party was held in the Rexis Hotel. Tarzan, the Porters and William were there, among others. Tarzan was extremely bored.... He disliked everything about this world! He saw that Jane was displeased as if she abhorred his primitive habits.... Tarzan did not know how to comport himself in society....
"Are you bored here, my dear cousin?" said William. "Let's go somewhere else."
They were together on the balcony.... Suddenly, in front of the hotel, some individuals gagged a beautiful girl a next to an automobile.... It was Odine, and the men who were staging the "attack" to trap the unwary Tarzan were some of El Diablo's men. "It looks like they're trying to kill a poor woman!" said William.
"Ahhhhh!" roared Tarzan with that jungle cry.... And leaping between the elegant ladies and gentlemen who were in the salon, to their general stupefaction, he raced out to the street.
Jane sighed.... And that man was to become her husband? She loved him... but... and his education?
Tarzan reached the street and with two blows put the aggressors out of commission.... He lifted the woman and saw that she was Odine, the Countess Sherzi.
Tarzan did not know how to comport himself in society.
"Twice they have attempted to kill me.... Would you take me to my house?" she said.
Tarzan agreed.... And once in it the woman dreamed of subduing the terrible giant with the chains of love.... She embraced him, brought her lips close to his, but Tarzan retreated in fear.
"You cannot be my mate," he told her. "In the jungle we only have one."
And he left there as Odine writhed in desperation and exclaimed: "He is the first man I have loved with true passion!"
Tarzan returned to the hotel, and had to explain to Jane that he had gone to save a woman....
Jane experienced a strange jealousy that his cousin William took care to nourish with his perverse insinuations.... And that, combined with the savagery of the young man, made her commence to feel displeased with the primitive man....
For two days Jane did not want to see Tarzan... but that night she invited him to accompany her to the opera.
… to the stupefaction of all…
Meanwhile, too late, La Belle Odine was beginning to realize that there was no way to turn back from the path to betrayal she had taken, and despite the fact that she loved Tarzan, she found herself forced to obey El Diablo in everything.
That night as Tarzan was waiting in the hotel for Jane, La Belle Odine telephoned the colossus. "Come quick!" she told him. "They're trying to force my door to kill me!"
Tarzan repeated his terrible cry and left.... Oh, he had to save that woman, victim of a strange persecution!
Tarzan's tutor told Jane, who arrived shortly afterwards and asked for Tarzan, "He rushed out of here like a madman! Oh, he is incorrigible! A woman's voice called him on the telephone!" Jealousy wounded him to the core.... Ingrate!
Meanwhile, Tarzan had arrived at Odine's house where a trap was being laid. The dancer saw him enter and smiled....
Odine, unable to resist the love that the man inspired in her, said, "Clayton and El Diablo have paid me to lure you here so that they could kill you. Go, for the love of God!"
The door opened and three fellows, among them El Diablo, fell upon Tarzan, possessed with a demonic fury.... Tarzan, warned in time by the woman, fought desperately.
One of the henchmen tried to fire a shot at Tarzan but Odine, grabbing the weapon from him, fired at him and left him dead.
Tarzan seized El Diablo by the neck and felt like squeezing it tightly and breaking his bones.... But at that moment he recalled some of the lessons that the missionary Raul had given him, those moral precepts that prohibited killing.... "Why can't I kill you? Why am I so weak?" he said to himself.
And he let go of the man because he heard an evangelical voice in his heart saying, "Thou shalt not kill...!"
Odine tried to keep him at her side, but Tarzan loved Jane too much to think of another woman.
Jane, disgusted, jealous over what had occurred, notified Tarzan of the breaking off of her relationship with him. And the poor boy felt the most tragic grief of his life.
The newspapers took notice of that event, attributing all of the guilt to Tarzan. Naturally, how could a fine woman like Jane marry a barbarian from the jungle?
Vancouver, the lawyer, was in a foul temper. "But Jane, do you love him or not?" he said.
"He never loved me!" she responded evasively. "If he did, he wouldn't have gone to another woman!"
And grieving, his spirit shattered by disillusionment, Tarzan returned to the simple heart of the jungle. But the savagery, the exalted ferocity that he had put into his calls to the brutes, was gone from his voice forever.
Civilization had produced such a radical change in him that his jungle companions, who feared him and loved him, now felt that he was no longer one of them.
Tarzan seized El Diablo by the neck.
And they walked away without listening to his calls, and even Tantor the elephant abandoned him. And he shut himself up in the cabin, the memory of Jane serving to make the ice of his sorrows more bitter.
And back on the Porter ranch, William tried to renew his amorous relationship with Jane. He might have succeeded if Jane had not received an unexpected visitor one day: La Belle Odine. "They have told me that you broke up with Tarzan because of another woman," said Odine.
William had entered the room and, startled, heard his accomplice's intervention. "And what has that got to do with you, madam?" said Jane.
"I am the other woman...! And there is the man who paid me to compromise Tarzan in your eyes." She indicated William, who hung his head, humiliated.
"Tarzan!" sighed Jane. "And I thought he was guilty."
"Idiot!" said Odine. "If a man like that loved me so, I would go to the ends of the earth to find him."
"And I have lost him for doubting him! But where is Tarzan now? I hope he will forgive me!"
"He has returned to the jungle."
Jane made a resolution. She would return to Africa, she would go and find the man she loved.
La Belle Odine departed, her conscience unburdened, and William, ashamed of his conduct, realized he had ended up losing the match forever....
Odine tried to keep him at her side.
A month later, Tarzan was still immersed in his endless melancholy in the cabin. Before him always floated the vision of his beloved, made of the mists of illusion; when he tried to touch it, it dissolved into space. But a day came when the image was corporeal and tangible and had a human voice.
Jane went to look for him in the hut. "I have returned to you, my Tarzan, to live with you in your jungle," she said.
He, thrilled, caressed her and kissed her tenderly, and answered: "This is no longer my jungle! If you want to, I will return to your world, to ours. I have been given enough lessons to know it now!"
"But always at your side, Tarzan."
And for those two beings who loved each other madly with a pure love, the golden light of peace began to glow.
THE ORIGINAL ENGLISH VERSION OF
THE ROMANCE OF TARZAN
Is Featured in ERBzine 0504
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