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4. CHAPTER IV : A GREEN MAN'S CAPTIVE (continued)
And again, during her flight from the temples of the Holy Therns with Tars Tarkas, Jeddak of Thark, she had seen them, with their weird and ghostly inmates, the great white apes of Barsoom.
She knew, too, that many of them were used now by the nomadic tribes of green men, but that among them all was no city that the red men did not shun, for without exception they stood amidst vast, waterless tracts, unsuited for the continued sustenance of the dominant race of Martians.
Why, then, should they be bringing her to such a place? There was but a single answer. Such was the nature of their work that they must needs seek the seclusion that a dead city afforded. The girl trembled at thought of her plight.
For two days her captors kept her within a huge palace that even in decay reflected the splendour of the age which its youth had known.
Just before dawn on the third day she had been aroused by the voices of two of her abductors.
"He should be here by dawn," one was saying. "Have her in readiness upon the plaza--else he will never land. The moment he finds that he is in a strange country he will turn about--methinks the prince's plan is weak in this one spot."
"There was no other way," replied the other. "It is wondrous work to get them both here at all, and even if we do not succeed in luring him to the ground, we shall have accomplished much."
Just then the speaker caught the eyes of Thuvia upon him, revealed by the quick-moving patch of light cast by Thuria in her mad race through the heavens.
With a quick sign to the other, he ceased speaking, and advancing toward the girl, motioned her to rise. Then he led her out into the night toward the centre of the great plaza.
"Stand here," he commanded, "until we come for you. We shall be watching, and should you attempt to escape it will go ill with you--much worse than death. Such are the prince's orders."
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