Fortune once again favored me by the slightest of margins, for when I opened the door in the prospector's outer jacket I saw that we had missed coming up through the bottom of an ocean by but a few hundred yards.
As I stood dreaming beside the giant thing that had brought me safely through the earth's crust, my travel-ing companion, the hideous Mahar, emerged from the interior of the prospector and stood beside me.
Then, too, she must have been impressed by the wondrous mechanism of the prospector which had bored its way from world to world and back again.
Could I find my way back to the prospector with its priceless freight of books, firearms, ammunition, scien-tific instruments, and still more books--its great library of reference works upon every conceivable branch of ap-plied sciences?
I reentered the prospector and fetched a compass without.
Moving a considerable distance from the prospector that the needle might not be influenced by its great bulk of iron and steel I turned the delicate instrument about in every direction.
Now I felt I might start out upon my search with some assurance of finding my way back again to the prospector.
And so, after locking the door in the outer shell of the prospector, I set out upon my quest.
How long I wandered toward the south I do not know, for shortly after I left the prospector something went wrong with my watch, and I was again at the mercy of the baffling timelessness of Pellucidar, forging steadily ahead beneath the great, motionless sun which hangs eternally at noon.
"We may stop here, and die of asphyxiation when our atmosphere tanks are empty," replied Perry, "or we may continue on with the slight hope that we may later sufficiently deflect the prospector from the vertical to carry us along the arc of a great circle which must eventually return us to the surface.
I put my nose to the intake pipe through which samples were to have been taken during the passage of the prospector through the earth, and my fondest hopes were realized--a flood of fresh air was pouring into the iron cabin.