Moving Picture World, January 13, 1914
THE ADVENTURES OF KATHLYN NO. 2—THE TWO ORDEALS (Special—2 parts—Jan. 12).
Kathlyn quickly recovers from the curious sensation of being forced to occupy an unwelcome throne in compliance with the scheming councilors of a fanatical people. The high priest prepares to go on with the ceremony of marrying her to Umballah, who is the mainspring of all her troubles; but she conserves all her powers of resistance to this proceeding, and with the dominant force of the Anglo-Saxon, for the time cowes the superstitious brown men who hover about the throne. This causes a delay on their part, which she Instantly takes advantage of and the Council of Three, coerced by public spirit, decide that she will be given a week in which to consent to the marriage. Thus ends the sentimental episode in the gorgeous festival of the Durbar. During this horrible week of respite for the captive queen, a high caste native, Ramabai, is charged with murder, and under the law, all his property reverts to the reigning sovereign, including even his wife. In this instance, the wife is a beautiful young person. Pundita, highly educated. Kathlyn at once frees the captive, as far as slavery is concerned; and Pundita, in gratitude, begs to remain with her until she learns the fate of her husband. When Kathlyn hears her story, she orders Ramabai brought before her and declares him Innocent. He, in turn, craves permission to remain in the palace, as the queen’s personal bodyguard. Thus Kathlyn, by fate and force, secures for her personal service, two powerful factors In her favor (who remain with her throughout this series of plays). During this trying period, while Kathlyn has all her wits working to thwart the connivance of the crafty people about her; Bruce, an American sportsman, happens upon the scene from the far interior, where he has been hunting big game, and at once becomes a hero In spite of himself.
Kathlyn pardons Pundita.
Kathlyn still refusing the alliance with Umballah, the council has decreed that she must submit to two ordeals with wild animals. If she survives these, she will be permitted to occupy the throne like Elizabeth of old, as a maiden queen. Bruce, learning of her plight, has managed to communicate with her. and swears himself her life champion. Pundita communicates with Bruce the circumstances of the ordeals. In the first test Kathlyn is dragged to a leopard’s trap, and lashed to the mainstay of the deadfall as a human bait to lure the spotted cat from the depths of the jungle. She is so secured that the heavy door will fall the moment the animal springs upon It. It would seem that there is no hope of escape. The faithful Pundita, however, has informed her that Bruce will not fail to appear at the proper moment. Now comes the stealthy leopard closer and closer to the trap.
At the last moment there is a flash, but It is not the form of the leopard hurtling through the air, but Bruce. Even as the heavy door falls, the famished, frenzied cat is clawing at it, trying to break through. Bruce fires at the animal through the bars and it limps back to the jungle, broken from his fire. While Kathlyn has escaped from the beast by a seeming marvel, for the second time she refuses the request of the Council, to marry the villainous man that dominates them. She is ordered to an amphitheater, where the populace assemble to witness her fate as the refractory leader of their community. Bruce, now more wonderfully resourceful than ever in Kathlyn’s interest, appears before the high priest and the Council and tells them that a miracle will save the Queen from the jaws of the savage lions, biit If they compel her to submit to such a cruel ordeal, the same force will destroy many of the people assembled to witness her death. The impressionable people shrink at this idea: but stern Umballah mocks at him and orders him driven out.
The Council of Three in Session
That same night we see Bruce and Ramabai meet at the bouse of a high caste native. Ramabai is the leader of a band of high minded conspirators, whose object is to uplift the people and secure better government. They lead Bruce to a secluded place where are hidden land-mines, which have been smuggled by Revolutionists into Allaha, In view of impending military troubles. These mines, with electrical appliances for operation, are loaded on elephants, and then, under cover of night, the little band enter the silent and deserted arena of the amphitheater, bury the mines, and connect them with wires leading to a box on the lower amphitheater. The great day comes. The hungry lions are shown in their dens; the populace crowd in the stalls : and then comes Kathlyn, the beautiful captive, regal even in her simple robes of white, who is led into the arena. She walks to the far end, and stands under a canopy designed as a resting place for athletes between their feats. Umballah and the Council are in the royal box. The keeper opens the door, and the famished lions rush into the arena. They see the shining human mark; they crouch their lean, sinewy bodies for the fatal spring. The scene flashes back to the shadowy box where Bruce Is manipulating the push-down of a blasting machine. As be establishes the connection, there is a rush—a roar and the volcano of earth and stone bursts In the arena, leaving in its litter a great gash between Kathlyn and the savage lions. The spectators flee in panic, leaving many dead and wounded. Bruce leaps down from his box into the arena and seizes Kathlyn in his arms, as the scene dims.