The passengers rocketed through space in luxury. But they never went below decks because rumor had it that Satan himself manned the controls of The Hell Ship.
l. As Gene stared, the old man talked in his ear.
"Supposed to be perfectly shielded, and maybe they are. But something gets out. I think it happens in the jet assembly. A tiny trickle of high pressure steam crosses the atomic beam just above a pinhole that leads into the jet tube. It's exploded by the beam, exploded into God knows what, and the result is your jet. It's a wonderful drive, with plenty of power for the purpose. But I think it forms a strong field of static over the whole shell of the ship, a kind of sphere of reflection that throws the emanations back into the ship from every point. Just my theory, but it explains why you get these physical changes, because that process of reflection gives a different ray than was observed in the ordinary shielded jet."
Gene nodded, asked: "Can I look at the jet assembly?"
"Ain't no way to look at it! It's sealed up to hold in the expanding gases from that exploded steam. Looking in this periscope is what changed my eyes. Only othe
The crew of the ship is never let off-board because they've all been mutated horribly by atomic drive. Except that radiation doesn't mutate that way. Anyway, it's a tyrannical captain running a poisonous ship story, and a fairly good one. The women even get to help.