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   Chapter 11 No.11

Loderunner By Christina Engela Characters: 5271

Updated: 2018-06-30 12:01


"Really?"

"No – you need to take us to the other planet in that solar system that has rings. In fact it's famous for them."

"Oh. I see." Tim said, looking round. "So what is it, some kind of local trouble?"

"Let's just say we'd like to avoid any Imperial entanglements." Said the older one in a silky voice soaked in innuendo.

"Well that's the trick, isn't it?" He smiled back, thinking of a ballpark figure. "But it'll cost you ten thousand, all in advance."

"Think you can do it?"

"What? Take you and the kid here to an asteroid in the rings of – um, Jupiter?"

"No questions asked…"

"Um, right. No questions asked… Sure, Mister – Jones, was it? No problem."

There was a niggling little feeling right at the back of his mind, where something was going dun-dun-dun-duh-duh-dun and his subconscious was nudging him in the ribs, going wink-wink. This was all starting to look a little familiar somehow.

"Say, you haven't got two droids with you by any chance?"

"No, " Said Jones blankly. "Just the two of us. Why?"

"Oh, no, nothing. Just a funny kind of feeling I had." Said Timaset Skooch, getting up.

"Yes, I had one too." Said Jones. "Sort of like someone walking over your grave, wasn't it?"

"Something like that. Just more like de-ja-vu. Or something."

"If this deal is distasteful to you, I'm sure there are plenty of other ships around who would be willing to take us where we want to go?"

Full of secrecy, Misters Jones and Smith – and Mister No-neck leering over there, still grinning. He had an uneasy sort of feeling about t

els and arms was removing the grounding clamp from the front landing skid. The clamp was also a semi-intelligent piece of hardware, which didn't seem to want to leave. In fact, it seemed the two devices were arguing. Preferring to stay out of it, he left the taxi and went up the ramp, consoling himself that at least he got his blaster back and wasn't going in there unarmed. Perhaps he would find out how intelligent the elevator computer was. If it was really intelligent, it would STFU.

His new lodgings, the Skipper's cabin on Celeste, was roomy but musty smelling. He dropped his bag on the bed. It didn't even bounce, but just landed with a muffled wooden blanketty sound. He pressed on it a few times to test it. The surface gave a little. Anybody hoping for a little bouncy-bouncy there was going to be disappointed. He presumed it was a good bed for people with back trouble. If you didn't already have back trouble, after a while, you would have. A sound at the still open door made him turn. It was Deire, leaning against the doorpost.

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