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Chapter 5 The Resurrection of Jimber-Jaw by Edgar Rice Burroughs

Lorna Downs was in the east making a personal appearance tour in connection with her latest release. Jim wanted to go after her. I explained that he had entered into a contract to make pictures and that he would have to live up to his agreement. I also told him that Lorna would be back in Hollywood in a few weeks, so he reluctantly agreed to wait. Meanwhile we moved into movie circles, and thus came a new phase in Jim's career. He suddenly became a social lion. Men liked him and women were crazy about him.
The first time he went to the Trocadero he turned to me and asked, "What kind of women are these?"

I told him that, measured by fame and wealth, they were the cream of the elect.

"They are without shame," he said. "They go almost naked before men. In my country their men would drag them home by the hair and beat them."

I had to admit that that was what some of our men would like to do.

"Of what good is a mate in your country?" he asked. "They are no different from men. The men smoke; the women smoke. The men drink; the women drink. The men swear; the women swear. They gamble—they tell dirty stories—they are out all night and cannot be fit to look after the caves and the children the next day. They are only good for one thing, otherwise they might as well be men. One does not need to take a mate for what they can give—not here. In my country such women are killed. No one would want children from them."

The ethics, the standards, and the philosophy of the Stone Age did not fit Jim to enjoy modern society. He stopped going out evenings except to pictures and fights. He was waiting for Lilami to return.

"She is different," he said.

I felt sorry for him. I didn't know Lorna Downs, but I would have been willing to bet she was not so different.

At last Lorna came back. I was with Jim when they met. It was on a set at the studio. It was in the middle of a scene, but when he saw her he walked right off the set and up to her. Never before have I seen so much happiness and love reflected in a man's face.

"Lilami!" he said in a voice tense with emotion, and reached for her.

She shrank back. "What's the idea, big boy?" she demanded.

"Don't you know me, Lilami? I'm Kolani. Now I have found you we can go away together. I have searched for you for a long time."

She looked up at me. "Are you his keeper, mister?" she demanded. "If you are, you'd better take him back to the college and lock him up."

I sent Jim away, and then I talked to her. I didn't tell her everything, but enough so that she understood that Jim wasn't crazy, that he was a good kid, and that he really believed that she was the girl he had known in another country.

He was standing a little way off, and she sat and looked at him for a few moments before she answered; then she said she'd be nice to him.

"It ought to be good fun," she said.

After that they were together a great deal. It looked very much as though the movie belle were falling for the cave man. They went to shows together and dined in quiet places and took long drives.

Then, one afternoon she went to a cocktail party without him. She didn't tell him she was going; but he found it out, and along about seven o'clock he walked into the place.

Lorna was sitting on some bird's lap, and he had his arms around her and was kissing her. It didn't mean a thing—not to them. A girl might kiss any one at a cocktail party—that is any one except her husband. But it meant a lot to Jimber-Jaw of 50,000 B.C.

He was across that room in two strides. He never said a word; he just grabbed Lorna by the hair and yanked her out of the man's lap; then he picked the fellow up and threw him all the way across the room. He was the original cave man then, and no mistake.

Lorna struck down his hands and slapped his face. "Get out of here, you big boob," she screamed. "You tank-town Romeo—get out and stay out. You're washed up. I'm through with you."

Jim's fingers balled into a fist but he didn't hit her. The repressed fury drained out of his face and his shoulders sagged. He turned without a word, stalked away. That was the last time any one ever saw him—until this morning.

Pat Morgan raised his hand, signal to the waiter for another pair of highballs. He stared across the table at me without expression, shrugging.
"That's the story of Jimber-Jaw," he said. "Take it or leave it.... I could see by your face when I was telling it that you were thinking what I used to think: That Stade took advantage of my grogginess—maybe even hypnotized me—to make me believe that I saw something in that Siberian hut which never happened.

"That's possible. He might have picked up some wandering dumb Kulak, put the evil eye on him, drugged him up—yes, it could have happened that way. But I don't believe it."

He tapped the newspaper that told in screaming headlines of the discovery of the body of Jim Stone. The story told of Stone's quick rise to fame, of his disappearance, of the finding of him that morning, an apparent suicide.

"But the whole story isn't there," Pat Morgan said. "The police called me in to identify the corpse, and it was Big Jim all right. They found him in the frozen-meat room of a cold storage warehouse—been there for weeks, apparently. He was resting on his side, face against his arm, and I've never seen a man, alive or dead, more peaceful.

"Pinned to the lapel of his coat was a scrawled note addressed to me. The police couldn't make head nor tail of it, but as far as it was concerned it spoke volumes. It said:

"I go to find the real Lilami.

And don't thaw me out again.


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