They’d gone two-thirds of the way to Spacegate 3 when
Lanyon noticed they were getting some attention. A forbidding
Tellurian walked quickly across the floor toward the office
they’d just left. As Lanyon reached the door of Spacegate 3, he
heard a shout. He threw the door of the Spacegate open and
moved inside out of the way. The released prisoners piled in after
him. Over their shoulders he saw one guard rush from the office
and take aim with a pistol. He pulled Halron through the
doorway into the open air of the Tellurian dusk and fired his
rator. The Tellurian fell and now the final three prisoners, the
Argonians, ran through the door. A bolt of light struck the edge
of the door, and a burst of smoke burned Lanyon’s eyes. He
threw the door closed.
The Selenian ship, an oval vessel on six spidery legs,
stood steps to the left. Dorendo fiddled with the guidor, and with
painful slowness a door on the ship began to open. Lanyon
peeked through the window of the Spacegate door. Two guards
were tending to their fallen companion. When Lanyon looked
back at the ship, the door opened and a set of stairs descended
from the doorway. When the stairs touched the ground, the
prisoners rushed up them. The Argonian with the weapon knew
enough to crouch alongside the stairway, his weapon aimed at the
door. Lanyon moved toward the stairs, his hand on Jophena’s
shoulder. “Get up those stairs,” he ordered.
Suddenly, like a clap of thunder, the spacegate door flew
inward off its hinges. Lanyon ducked and felt Jophena’s hand
wrenched out of his as the bouncing door careened along the
floor and glanced off her. He turned and fired his rator through
the open doorway.
Jophena lay on the ground, eyes closed, a gash in her
forehead spilling blood down her face.