To my delight he understood and answered me in the same jargon.

"What do you want of my spear?" he asked.

"Only to keep you from running it through me," I replied.

"I would not do that," he said, "for you have just saved my life," and with that he released his hold upon it and squatted down in the bottom of the skiff.

"Who are you," he continued, "and from what country do you come?"

I too sat down, laying the spear between us, and tried to explain how I came to Pellucidar, and wherefrom, but it was as impossible for him to grasp or believe the strange tale I told him as I fear it is for you upon the outer crust to believe in the existence of the inner world.

To him it seemed quite ridiculous to imagine that there was another world far beneath his feet peopled by beings similar to himself, and he laughed uproariously the more he thought upon it. But it was ever thus. That which has never come within the scope of our really pitifully meager world-experience cannot be -- our finite minds cannot grasp that which may not exist in accordance with the conditions which obtain about us upon the outside of the insignificant grain of dust which wends its tiny way among the bowlders of the universe -- the speck of moist dirt we so proudly call the World.

So I gave it up and asked him about himself. He said he was a Mezop, and that his name was Ja.

"Who are the Mezops?" I asked. "Where do they live?"

He looked at me in surprise.

"I might indeed believe that you were from another world," he said, "for who of Pellucidar could be so ignorant! The Mezops live upon the islands of the seas. In so far as I ever have heard no Mezop lives elsewhere, and no others than Mezops dwell upon islands, but of course it

-68-

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At the Earth's Core
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page v
  • Contents vii
  • Prolog 1
  • Chapter I - Toward the Eternal Fires 3
  • Chapter III - A Change of Masters 14
  • Chapter IV - Dian the Beautiful 33
  • Chapter V - Slaves 44
  • Chapter VIII - Freedom 54
  • Chapter VIII - The Mahar Temple 61
  • Chapter IX - The Face of Death 68
  • Chapter X - Phutra Again 82
  • Chapter XI - Four Dead Mahars 90
  • Chapter XIV - The Garden of Eden 115
  • Chapter XV - Back to Earth 121
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