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would by no means consent to it, considering that to do so would
put us in their power if they were treacherously disposed. We kept our independence, therefore, and had our weapons ready for any emergency, while preserving the most friendly relations. We also continually visited their caves, which were most remarkable places; though whether made by man or by Nature we have never been able to determine. They were all on the one stratum, hollowed out of some soft rock, which lay between the volcanic basalt, forming the ruddy cliffs above them, and the hard granite which formed their base. The openings were about eighty feet above ground, and were led up to by long stone stairs, so narrow and steep that no large animal could mount them. Inside they were warm and dry, running in straight passages of varying length into the side of the hill, with smooth gray walls, decorated with many excellent pictures done with charred sticks and representing the various animals of the plateau. If every living thing were swept from the country, the future explorer would find upon the walls of these caves ample evidence of the strange fauna, the dinosaurs, iguanodons, and fish lizards, which had lived so recently upon earth. Since we had learned that the huge iguanodons were kept as tame herds by their owners, and were simply walking meat stores, we had conceived that man, even with the primitive weapons, had estab lished his ascendancy upon the plateau. We were soon to discover that it was not so, and that he was still there upon tolerance. JT was on the third day after forming our camp near the Indian caves that the tragedy occurred. Challenger and Summerlee had gone off together that day to the lake, where some of the natives, under their direction, were engaged in harpooning specimens of the great lizards. Lord Roxton and I had remained in our camp, while a number of the Indians were scattered about upon the grassy slope in front of the caves, engaged in different ways. Suddenly there was a shrill cry of alarm, with the word "wopu" resounding from a hundred tongues. From every side men, women, and children were rtishing wildly for shelter, swarming up the stair cases and into the caves in a mad stampede. Looking up, we could see them waving their arms from the rocks above, and beckoning to us to join them in their refuge. We had both seized our magazine rifles, and ran out to see what the danger could be. Suddenly from the near belt of trees there broke forth a group of twelve or fifteen Indians, run ning for their lives, and at their very heels two of those frightful monsters which had disturbed our camp and pur sued me upon my solitary journey. In shape they were like horrible toads, and moved in a succession of springs; but in size they were of an incredible bulk, larger than the largest elephant. We had never before seen them save at night, and indeed they are nocturnal animals save when disturbed in their lairs, as these had been. We now stood amazed at the sight; for their blotched and warty skins were of a curious, fish like iridescence, and the sunlight struck them with an ever varying rainbow bloom as they moved. We had little time to watch them, however; for in an instant they had overtaken the fugitives and were making dire slaughter among them. Their method was to fall forward with their full weight upon each in turn, and leav ing him crushed and mangled to bound on after the others. The wretched In dians screamed with terror; but were helpless, run as they would, before the relentless purpose and horrible activity of these monstrous creatures. One after another they went down, and there were not half a dozen surviving by the time my companion and I could come to their help. But our aid was of little avail, and only involved us in the same peril. At the range of a couple of hundred yards we emptied our magazines, firing bullet after bullet into the beasts; but with no more effect than if we were pelting them with pellets of paper. Their slow, reptilian natures cared nothing for wounds, and the springs of their lives, with no special brain center, but scattered throughout their spinal cords, could not be tapped by any modern weapons. The most that we could do was to check their progress by distracting their attention with the flash and roar of our guns and so to give both the natives and ourselves time to reach the steps which led to safety. But where the conical explosive bullets of the twentieth century were of no avail, the poisoned arrows of the natives, dipped in the juice of strophanthus and steeped afterward in decayed carrion, could succeed. Such arrows were of little avail to the hunter who attacked the beast, because their action in that torpid circulation was slow, and before its powers failed it could certainly overtake and slay its assailant. But now, as the two monsters hounded us to the very foot of the stairs, a drift of arrows came whistling from every chink in the cliff above them. In a minute they were feathered with them, and yet with no sign of pain they clawed and slobbered with impotent rage at the steps which would lead them to their victims, mounting clumsily up for a few yards, and then sliding down again to the ground. But at last the poison worked. One of them gave a deep, rumbling groan and dropped his huge squat head on the earth. The other bounded round in an eccentric circle, with shrill, wailing cries, and then lying down writhed in agony for some minutes before it also stiffened and lay still. With yells of triumph the Indians came flocking down from their caves and danced a frenzied dance of victory round the dead bodies, in mad joy that two more of the most dangerous of all their enemies had been slain. That night they cut up and removed the bodies,?not to eat, for the poison was still active, but lest they should breed a pestilence. The great reptilian hearts, however, each as large as a cushion, still lay there beating slowly and steadily, with a gentle rise and fall, in horrible independent life. It was only on the third day that Continued on page 16 With His Badge of Authority in His Hand sad s Train of Wide-Eyed Indian Girls Behind Him.