Page:Biagi - The Centaurians.djvu/262

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The Centaurians

upon Centauri soil. He has some mighty scheme, or he would never take the trip over the Great Ocean at his age. He greatly surprised us, heralding his approach just twelve hours ahead with gigantic flaring images of himself across a midnight sky, but we gave him a royal welcome.

"Centauri is with your friend, the famous Sheldon, in the Ocsta Mountains; he has been apprised of the King's visit and is expected any moment. Benlial has been with us two days, the guest of Alpha Centauri."

"What's the mysterious motive back of the King's visit?" I asked.

"The unification of the white race," answered Mike.

"So you told me before," I snapped; "how does he intend to accomplish it?"

"Marriage," was the monosyllabic reply.

God! A sudden weakness came over me, and my head sank heavily upon the back of the chair. Mike turned aside, his action irritated me and, impatiently, I bade him continue with his news and omit nothing.

"The King wishes the hand of Alpha Centauri in marriage for his son, Prince Benlial. They are all Benlials, you know," Mike explained. "Should the marriage take place the Vespas and Centauris are one, but never in the history of the Great Family have the feminine members mated. They are divine, and all, at a certain age, are with much pomp and festivity, publicly wedded to the Sun. Alpha Centauri became the bride of the Sun ten