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   Chapter 14 No.14

Bypass Gemini By Joseph R. Lallo Characters: 5611

Updated: 2018-01-19 12:02


The better freelancers took a hybrid approach to their deliveries. Standard operating procedure called for a dead sprint toward a star system or asteroid cluster, then a drop down to conventional speeds to weave through it. Anyone tracking someone doing that on sensors would more often than not lose them among the other ships and space rocks. Anyone following directly would have to slow down and take the same route. At that point, it was just a test of who was the better pilot--the very fact that attracted Lex to the business to start with. While they were tied up in whatever mess he picked to hide in, he'd gun it to the next thicket.

The popular parlance had dubbed it "Sprints and Jukes." It was like a needle hopping from haystack to haystack.

Right now, he had to find the right haystacks and the paths between that didn't intersect corporate space, wouldn't get him killed, and would get him to Tessera V in six days. It didn't leave much room for error.

He tapped and swiped his way through the various stellar maps, downloaded some fresh data, and pushed the whole mess into his flight computer. Before long, he'd found a crooked, zigzag path that seemed mostly survivable, and set a course for the first sprint. All that remained was to make it out of the cluttered star system before shifting to FTL speed. He took the opportunity to finish getting out of the monkey suit and into the flight suit. It was just a reinforced and airtight jumpsuit with sealed boots and gloves, but aside from being marginally more comfortable, it could couple with a helmet and keep him from popping like a ripe tick in the event of a sudden change in cabin pressure. That sor

to dock directly, and very few had access. This man was among them.

Fingers tapped out a long sequence of digits on an access screen, then swiped their prints for authentication. A screen read off a list of connection steps. A moment later, a voice crackled across the com speaker in the ship.

"William Trent, " said the voice, a terse introduction that managed to communicate with remarkable clarity how much of a waste of time he considered the call to be.

"Agent Fisk reporting. I found the leak, " said the mysterious ship's pilot.

"About time, " Trent barked.

"There's a problem, " warned Fisk.

"What is it?" fumed Trent, murder in his tone.

"It may not have been contained. I did a trace on network activity. She did some research. Freelancers."

Fisk spoke in short, precise bursts, like machinegun fire. He delivered exactly what information needed to be delivered with the sort of efficiency only found in soldiers and butlers.

"Damn it!" Trent replied.

"Narrowed it down to one. Found surveillance of a hand-off. Package contents unknown. It looks like he is off-planet already."

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