The Monster Men HTML version

Chapter 4. A New Face
As Professor Maxon and von Horn rushed from the workshop to their own campong, they
neglected, in their haste, to lock the door between, and for the first time since the camp
was completed it stood unlatched and ajar.
The professor had been engaged in taking careful measurements of the head of his latest
experiment, the while he coached the young man in the first rudiments of spoken
language, and now the subject of his labors found himself suddenly deserted and alone.
He had not yet been without the four walls of the workshop, as the professor had wished
to keep him from association with the grotesque results of his earlier experiments, and
now a natural curiosity tempted him to approach the door through which his creator and
the man with the bull whip had so suddenly disappeared.
He saw before him a great walled enclosure roofed by a lofty azure dome, and beyond the
walls the tops of green trees swaying gently in the soft breezes. His nostrils tasted the
incense of fresh earth and growing things. For the first time he felt the breath of Nature,
free and unconfined, upon his brow.
He drew his giant frame to its full height and drank in the freedom and the sweetness of it
all, filling his great lungs to their fullest; and with the first taste he learned to hate the
close and stuffy confines of his prison.
His virgin mind was filled with wonder at the wealth of new impressions which surged to
his brain through every sense. He longed for more, and the open gateway of the campong
was a scarce needed invitation to pass to the wide world beyond. With the free and easy
tread of utter unconsciousness of self, he passed across the enclosure and stepped out into
the clearing which lay between the palisade and the jungle.
Ah, here was a still more beautiful world! The green leaves nodded to him, and at their
invitation he came and the jungle reached out its million arms to embrace him. Now
before him, behind, on either side there was naught but glorious green beauty shot with
splashes of gorgeous color that made him gasp in wonderment.
Brilliant birds rose from amidst it all, skimming hither and thither above his head--he
thought that the flowers and the birds were the same, and when he reached out and
plucked a blossom, tenderly, he wondered that it did not flutter in his hand. On and on he
walked, but slowly, for he must not miss a single sight in the strange and wonderful
place; and then, of a sudden, the quiet beauty of the scene was harshly broken by the
crashing of a monster through the underbrush.
Number Thirteen was standing in a little open place in the jungle when the discordant
note first fell upon his ears, and as he turned his head in the direction of the sound he was
startled at the hideous aspect of the thing which broke through the foliage before him.