Excerpt: ... they crouched knee to knee. Lying on the ground, they struck no less furiously and desperately. All sense of fair play, of sportsmanship, was gone. They struggled to kill and not be killed. Their lungs labored heavily. They began to stagger as they moved. The muscles of their arms lost their resilience. Their legs dragged as though ...Read MoreExcerpt: ... they crouched knee to knee. Lying on the ground, they struck no less furiously and desperately. All sense of fair play, of sportsmanship, was gone. They struggled to kill and not be killed. Their lungs labored heavily. They began to stagger as they moved. The muscles of their arms lost their resilience. Their legs dragged as though weighted. Harrison was, if a choice might be made, in worse case. He was the stronger man, but he lacked the tireless endurance of the other. Watching him with animal wariness, Yeager knew that the man who went down first would stay down. His enemy was sagging at the knees. He could with difficulty lift his arms. He fought only in spurts. All this was true of himself, too. But somewhere in him was that dynamic will not to be beaten that counted heavily as a reserve. The prizefighter called on himself for the last attack. He stumbled forward, head down, in a charge. An aimless blow flung Steve against the trunk of the live-oak. His arms thrashing wildly, Harrison plunged forward to finish him. The cowpuncher ducked, lurched to one side. Against the bark of the tree crashed the fist of the other, swinging him half round. Yeager flung himself on the back of his foe. 147 Human bone and flesh and muscle could do no more. The knees of Harrison gave and he sank to the ground, his head falling in the spring. His opponent, breathless and exhausted, lay motionless on top of him. For a time both lay without stirring. The first to move was Steve. He noticed that the nose and mouth of the senseless man lay beneath the water. By exerting all his strength he pulled the battered head almost out of the water. Very slowly and painfully he got to his feet. Leaning against the tree for support, he looked down at the helpless white face of the man he had hated so furiously only a few minutes earlier. That emotion had entirely vanished. It was impossible to feel any resentment against that bruised and bleeding piece of clay. Steve was...Read Less
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