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The Glow of a Worm inside a Child's Eye (Cover Art)

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Chapter 85 - The Glow of a Worm inside a Child's Eye[]


Her methods were...


...disturbing. She made actual notes, on a flimsy foldbook, strings of equations as she worked, then input data by hand.

"Why like that?" Nelson asked, peering over her shoulder.

"Jump does funny things to computers." she answered, "I can run tighter margins doing it this way...besides, it's how I learned growing up. for a run like this? gotta be nickel-firm reliable, you do not want your important foreign diplomats spread across five dimensional space in a fractal pattern because some programmer thought it was worth it to round to the hundredth decimal."

"The ship you came on..."

"The Tabby? what about her?"

"Is it...live?"

"Salvaged." she said bluntly, "Rebuilt back in the thirty twenties by the Sithers-Deen co-op for the old Duke, and then, kept around for the new Baroness...why?"

"It is a Caspar, quiaff?"

"I guess...sure. All I know is that the core's been refurbished, and that she's the Baroness's normal ride-Her Ladyship's rater crews on board most of the time."

"Rater?"

"Baroness Elizabeth's ten jumps shy of her Pathfinder Patch-ten jumps, and one unexplored system short. I reckon she'll be able to finish her logbooking once the Archon decides she's adult enough to allow to go haring off into the deep black."

"and you?"

"I have business interests here at home." the Coxswain said, "I like having decades of solid data to work with, and blind jumps give me bad feelings, not an explorer hey? Her Ladyship wants to be and it's an open secret that if this war hadn't happened, she'd be out looking for new frontiers with the time she's got left, maybe even make a try at Perdition's Run."

half of that made no sense. "Time she has left?"

"She's got the familys curse. Hides it pretty well, but everyone in the Guard knows Her Ladyship's living shortened time. Cholmann's syndrome or that's the scuttlebutt, makes you a genius, then it kills you like a dog. Star stories say at the end of Perdition's run, there's a being so advanced it can maybe cure it."

"You do not believe in these stories, quineg?"

"Fairy tales are for children...okay, your drive looks good, charge levels are good, coordinates set...Shall we?"

"Shall we what?" he asked.

"Initiate the jump?" she inquired.

He looked to the Star Commodore, who checked with her own navigation officer, then nodded.

"Please, do so."

[dIsCoNTiNuItY.............]


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