Old River King





"Although, I am compelled to admire a creature whose awesome power is matched by its cunning."
Jerah expresses grudging admiration for the Old River King[src]

The Old River King is a massive crocodile that terrorizes a village near Branan and Saphira's campsite in volume two of the Son of Samson comic. The desperate villagers hire an Egyptian crocodile hunter named Jerah to exterminate the reptile, but even with Branan's help, Jerah has no luck defeating the beast.

Leaving Branan to set up their campsite alone after she's granted her slaves Mesha and Eber their freedom, Saphira decides to stroll down to the riverbank to freshen up. To her great surprise, a gang of men jump out of the bushes and grab her, dragging her away from the water's edge. Hearing Saphira's screams for help, Branan runs down to the riverbank and routs the men who dared touch Saphira. Jerah begs Branan to quit fighting and explains that the men only seized Saphira to prevent her from stepping into the crocodile-infested waters.

Jerah then shows Branan and Saphira the huge wooden trap the hunters constructed to catch the animal. The next morning, the campsite gathers around the trap to see if it caught anything the night before, only to find the contraption utterly demolished and the lamb used for bait nowhere in sight. Disgusted at the men's joking about the dead lamb, Saphira storms off. Minutes later, Branan follows the sound of Saphira's screams and discovers that the Old Rivers King has chased her up a nearby tree.

Jerah's men attempt to spear the creature, but its scaly armor is apparently impervious to penetration. As the beast retreats to its lair in the river, the crocodile hunters manage to lasso one of its legs. To prevent the reptile from returning to the water, Branan grabs onto the beast's tail and halts the animal in its tracks. The Old River King shakes Branan off its tail and returns nonchalantly to its watery domain.

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