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Chapter 4 The Resurrection of Jimber-Jaw by Edgar Rice Burroughs

The plane was so absolutely beyond Jimber-Jaw's conception that he couldn't even ask questions about it. I think anyone else in the world, under similar circumstances, would have been terrified when we finally took off from that lonely Siberian forest. The whir of the propeller, the roar of the exhaust, the wild careening of the take-off must have had some effect on Jim, but he never showed it by so much as a bat of an eyelid. He had all the appearance of a blasé young man of today.
I had given him an old suit—breeches, field boots, and a leather coat. He was smooth shaven now. After watching us scrape our jowls every day, he had insisted first on being shaved and then learning to shave himself. The transformation had been most astounding—from Man Mountain Dean to Adonis with a few snips of the scissors and a few passes of the safety-razor!

When I looked at him and thought of the civilization that he was about to crash for the first time, I felt sorry for Lilami. Pretty soon she would be scarcely even a memory. But I didn't know Big Jim—then.

Well, we finally got to Moscow; and there was the devil to pay about our unexpected passenger. No one believed our story. I can scarcely blame them. But what got me sore was their insistence that we were all spies and counter-revolutionists and Nazis and Fascists and capitalists and what-have-you that is anathema in Red Russia.

Of course, Jim had no passport. We tried to explain that they weren't issuing passports in the Pleistocene, but we got nowhere. They wanted to shoot us; but the American ambassador came to our rescue, and they compromised by shooing us out of the country and telling us to stay out. That suited me. If I never see a Comrade again, that will be far too soon for Pat Morgan.

After our experience in Russia, Stade and I decided to keep our mouths shut about Jim's genesis and antecedents. This was Stade's suggestion, and I confess I was rather surprised to hear him make it. The good doctor had never been adverse to publicity, and here was the greatest chance in the world for him to beat his own drum. Think of the scientific kudos that would shower down on him!

But Stade wasn't interested in that, he said. He suddenly went coy on me—began to talk of the difficulties of establishing absolute scientific proof and all that rot. Suggested we'd better wait a while—allow our colossus to orient himself. He'd leave Jim in my care for a time, since important business was waiting for him in Chicago.

I shrugged and agreed.

We arrived in America shrouded in a pall of silence. As a matter of fact, we smuggled Jim into the old U.S.A., and after that we had to keep our mouths shut about him. What else could we have done? After all, there is no Pleistocene quota.

When we got home, I took him to my place in Beverly Hills; and told people he was an old friend—Jim Stone from Schenectady.

He had been greatly impressed by the large cities he had seen. He thought skyscrapers were mountains with caves in them. As intelligent as he was, he just couldn't conceive that man had built anything so colossal.

It was a treat taking him around. The movies were as real to him as death and taxes. There was a caveman sequence in one we saw, and Jim really showed signs of life then. I knew he was having difficulty in restraining himself. He was just honing to crawl into one of those prop caves. When the heavy grabbed the leading lady by the hair and started to drag her across the scenery, Big Jim hoisted himself into the aisle and started for the screen. I grabbed him by the coat-tails, but it was a lap dissolve that saved the day.

Yep, Jim and I had fun....

One night I took him to the wrestling matches at the Olympic. We had ring-side seats. The Lone Wolf and Tiny Sawbuck (237 pounds) were committing mayhem on one another inside the ropes. It seemed to get Jim's goat.
"Do you call those great warriors?" he inquired. Then, before I could do anything about it, he vaulted over the ropes and threw them both into the third row.

The Lone Wolf and Tiny Sawbuck were sore, but the audience and the promoter were one hundred percent plus for Jimber-Jaw. Before the evening was over, the latter had signed Jim up to meet the winner, and a week later our survivor of the Stone Age stepped into the ring with Tiny Sawbuck.

I'm still laughing. Tiny is famed as a bad hombre. He knows all the dirty tricks that the other wrestlers know and has invented quite a few of his own. But he didn't have an opportunity to try any of them on Jim. The moment they met in the center of the ring, the man who lived in the day of the mammoths, picked him up, carried him to the ropes, and threw him into the fourth row. He did that three times, and the last time Tiny stayed there. You couldn't have hired him to come back into that ring.

About the same thing happened in boxing. I had been giving Jim some preliminary instruction in the manly art of acquiring cauliflower ears. By this time he was well known as a wrestler. Every Wednesday he had gone to the Olympic and ruined a few cash customers by throwing opponents at them. That was all he ever did. He never wrestled, never made any faces, never gave the other fellow a chance. He just picked him up and threw him out of the ring, and kept on doing it until the other man decided to stay out.

The fight promoter approached me. "Can he box?" he asked.

"I don't know. He can't wrestle, but he always wins. Why don't you find out? I have one thousand bucks that says he can put any of your white hopes to sleep."

"You're on," opined the promoter.

The following Tuesday the fight came off. I cautioned Jim: "Don't forget," I admonished him, "that you're supposed to box, not wrestle."

"I hit?" Jim inquired.

"Yes, you hit—and sock him hard."

"Okey-doke," rejoined the man from the old Stone Age. "Bring 'em on!"

They shook hands and retired to their corners; then the bell rang. The white hope came charging out like the Light Brigade at Balaklava, and he got just about as far. Big Jim swung one terrific right that he must have learned from the cave-bear and the white hope was draped over the upper rope. That was the end of that fight. Others went similar ways: then the cinema moguls noticed Jimber-Jaw.

One night, while we were still negotiating for a movie contract, we went to see a preview. Lorna Downs was the star. The moment she came onto the screen, Jim sprang to his feet.

"Lilami!" he cried. "It is I, Kolani."

The heavy was insulting Lorna at the time. Jim leaped toward the screen just as Lorna made her exit into the garden. Without a moment's hesitation he tried to follow her.

It wasn't so much the damage he did to the screen as the hurt to the theater manager's pride. He made the mistake of trying to eject Jim by force. That was a mistake. After they had gathered the manager up from the sidewalk and carried him to his office, I managed to settle with him and keep Jim out of jail.

When we got home, I asked Jim what it was all about.

"It was Lilami," he explained.

"It was not Lilami—it was Lorna Downs. And, what you saw was not Lorna herself—just a moving picture of her."

"It was Lilami," the big fellow said gravely. "I told you that I would find her."

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