The Island of Doctor Moreau HTML version
Alone with the Beast Folk
I FACED these people, facing my fate in them, single-handed now,-- literally single-
handed, for I had a broken arm. In my pocket was a revolver with two empty chambers.
Among the chips scattered about the beach lay the two axes that had been used to chop
up the boats. The tide was creeping in behind me. There was nothing for it but courage. I
looked squarely into the faces of the advancing monsters. They avoided my eyes, and
their quivering nostrils investigated the bodies that lay beyond me on the beach. I took
half-a-dozen steps, picked up the blood-stained whip that lay beneath the body of the
Wolf-man, and cracked it. They stopped and stared at me.
"Salute!" said I. "Bow down!"
They hesitated. One bent his knees. I repeated my command, with my heart in my mouth,
and advanced upon them. One knelt, then the other two.
I turned and walked towards the dead bodies, keeping my face towards the three kneeling
Beast Men, very much as an actor passing up the stage faces the audience.
"They broke the Law," said I, putting my foot on the Sayer of the Law. "They have been
slain,--even the Sayer of the Law; even the Other with the Whip. Great is the Law! Come
"None escape," said one of them, advancing and peering.
"None escape," said I. "Therefore hear and do as I command." They stood up, looking
questioningly at one another.
"Stand there," said I.
I picked up the hatchets and swung them by their heads from the sling of my arm; turned
Montgomery over; picked up his revolver still loaded in two chambers, and bending
down to rummage, found half-a-dozen cartridges in his pocket.
"Take him," said I, standing up again and pointing with the whip; "take him, and carry
him out and cast him into the sea."
They came forward, evidently still afraid of Montgomery, but still more afraid of my
cracking red whip-lash; and after some fumbling and hesitation, some whip-cracking and
shouting, they lifted him gingerly, carried him down to the beach, and went splashing
into the dazzling welter of the sea.
"On!" said I, "on! Carry him far."
They went in up to their armpits and stood regarding me.