Cuentos Clásicos del Norte, Primera Serie

By Edgar Allan Poe

Page 115

hecho mención, y que habían rodado hasta el
medio del aposento. Estaba abierta, y su contenido yacía a un lado en el
suelo. Las víctimas estaban sentadas de espaldas a la ventana; y por el
tiempo transcurrido entre el acceso de la fiera y los alaridos, se
comprende que no notaron su presencia en el primer momento. El golpe de
la persiana pudo atribuirse al viento, naturalmente.

Cuando el marinero alcanzó a mirar adentro, el gigantesco animal había
cogido a Madame L'Espanaye por el cabello, que llevaba suelto como si
hubiera estado peinándose, y blandía la navaja ante su rostro imitando
los ademanes de un barbero. La hija yacía privada de movimiento: se
había desmayado. Los gritos y la lucha de la anciana, durante la cual le
fueron arrancados los cabellos, convirtieron en ira los hasta entonces
pacíficos propósitos del orangután. Con deliberado empuje de su brazo
musculoso separó casi completamente la cabeza del tronco. La vista de la
sangre enardeció su ira convirtiéndola en frenesí. Rechinando los
dientes y echando fuego por los ojos, lanzóse sobre el cuerpo de la
joven e incrustó sus temibles garras en la garganta de Mademoiselle
L'Espanaye reteniendo su aliento hasta que expiró. Sus miradas furtivas
y salvajes fijáronse entonces en la cabecera del lecho sobre la cual
pudo distinguir el rostro de su amo, rígido por el horror. La furia de
la fiera, que no dudaba que su amo llevaba aún el temible látigo, se
convirtió instantáneamente en pavor. Consciente de merecer castigo,
parecía deseosa de ocultar sus sangrientas hazañas y se removía en torno
del aposento en agonía nerviosa de agitación, echando abajo los muebles
y destrozándolos en su ir y venir, y arrancando y tirando al suelo los
cobertores y colchones del lecho. Por último, se apoderó primero del
cuerpo de la hija y lo embutió en la chimenea en la forma en que fué
encontrado; y luego, del de la vieja señora arrojándolo inmediatamente
por la ventana.

Al aproximarse el orangután con su mutilada carga, el marinero se lanzó
despavorido al pararrayos, y precipitándose más que deslizándose hasta
el suelo se apresuró a regresar a su domicilio, temiendo las
consecuencias de aquella carnicería, y prescindiendo con satisfacción,
en medio de su terror, de toda preocupación por la suerte del animal.
Las palabras oídas por el grupo que subía las escaleras eran las
exclamaciones de horror y espanto del francés, mezcladas a los alaridos
demoníacos de la fiera.

Queda muy poco que añadir. El orangután escapó probablemente por el
pararrayos momentos antes del forzamiento de la puerta. Debe haber
cerrado la ventana al salir. Fué capturado después por su mismo

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