Lieutenant Albert Werper had only the prestige of the name he had dishonoured to thank for his narrow escape from being cashiered. At first he had been humbly thankful, too, that they had sent him to this Godforsaken Congo post instead of court-martialling him, as he had so justly deserved; but now six months of the monotony, the frightful isolation and the loneliness had wrought a change. The young man brooded continually over his fate. His days were filled with morbid self-pity, which eventually engendered in his weak and vacillating mind a hatred for those who had sent him here—for the very men he had at first inwardly thanked for saving him from the ignominy of degradation.
Gdje je Paromlin?
He regretted the gay life of Brussels as he never had regretted the sins which had snatched him from that gayest of capitals, and as the days passed he came to centre his resentment upon the representative in Congo land of the authority which had exiled him—his captain and immediate superior.
This officer was a cold, taciturn man, inspiring little love in those directly beneath him, yet respected and feared by the black soldiers of his little command.
It was two weeks later that John Clayton, Lord Greystoke, riding in from a tour of inspection of his vast African estate, glimpsed the head of a column of men crossing the plain that lay between his bungalow and the forest to the north and west.
He reined in his horse and watched the little party as it emerged from a concealing swale. His keen eyes caught the reflection of the sun upon the white helmet of a mounted man, and with the conviction that a wandering European hunter was seeking his hospitality, he wheeled his mount and rode slowly forward to meet the newcomer.
A half hour later he was mounting the steps leading to the veranda of his bungalow, and introducing M. Jules Frecoult to Lady Greystoke.
“I was completely lost,” M. Frecoult was explaining. “My head man had never before been in this part of the country and the guides who were to have accompanied me from the last village we passed knew even less of the country than we. They finally deserted us two days since. I am very fortunate indeed to have stumbled so providentially upon succour. I do not know what I should have done, had I not found you.”
Možda čak i riblji…
“I always feared for the stability of the company,” she was saying; “but it seems incredible that they should have failed for so enormous a sum—unless there has been some dishonest manipulation.”
“That is what I suspect,” replied Tarzan; “but whatever the cause, the fact remains that I have lost everything, and there is nothing for it but to return to Opar and get more.”