Page by Page Books
Read Books Online, for Free
Under the Andes Rex Stout

Into The Whirlpool

Page 5 of 9

Table Of Contents: Under the Andes

Previous Page

Next Page

Previous Chapter

Next Chapter

More Books

"The old hypocrite!" exclaimed Harry in disgust. "Does he imagine he is playing with us?"

Then there was an imperceptible movement, rather felt than seen, throughout the vast assemblage, and Desiree sank back on her throne of gold with a shudder as the king severed with the knife the black cord of death and laid it on the ground at her feet.

I looked at Harry; his face became slightly pale, but his eyes met mine firmly, speaking of a fortitude unconquerable. Then we again riveted our gaze on the alcove opposite.

An attendant approached from the rear and stood before the golden throne, while the king motioned to Desiree to take up the black cord. For a moment she did not understand him, then she drew back, shaking her head firmly.

The king did not wait to argue the matter, but stooped himself and picked up the cord and handed it to the attendant, who received it with a great show of respect and retired to the rear, where a commotion was created by its appearance.

The judgment was passed, but what was to be the nature of the execution? That uncertainty and the weirdness of the scene gave to the thing an air of unreality that shut out the tragic and admitted only the grotesque.

I have many times in my life felt nearer to death than when I stood on the top of that lofty column, surrounded by the thousands of squatting dwarfs, whose black bodies reflected dully the mounting light from the flaming urns.

We have hundreds more books for your enjoyment. Read them all!

I cannot say what we expected, for we knew not what to expect. Many conjectures entered my mind, but none of them approached the fact. But, thinking that our guide might now return at any moment to lead us below, and not caring to be surprised by an attack from behind on that narrow precipice, I moved across to the rear, where I could keep my eyes on the alcove opposite, and at the same time watch the stone slab which closed the opening to the spiral stairway. A word to Harry and he joined me.

"Perhaps we can open it from above," he suggested.

"Not likely," I answered, "and, anyway, what's the use?"

He knelt down and tugged at it, but there was no edge on which to obtain a purchase. The thing was immovable.

Five minutes passed, during which there was no movement, either in the audience on the stone seats or in the alcove. But there was an indefinable air of expectancy on the faces of the king and those surrounding him, and I kept a sharp eye on the stone slab.

Another five minutes and still nothing happened. Harry called across to Desiree, or rather began to call, for I stopped him with a jerk. It was impossible for her to aid us, and her situation was already sufficiently perilous.

Then, becoming impatient, I decided to try to move the stone slab myself. Kneeling down, I placed the palms of my hands firmly against its surface and pressed with all my weight.

Page 5 of 9 Previous Page   Next Page
Who's On Your Reading List?
Read Classic Books Online for Free at
Page by Page Books.TM
Under the Andes
Rex Stout

Home | More Books | About Us | Copyright 2004