He got additional speed out of his propulsor, but the tubes swung slowly as he covered more of the distance to his hatch. It seemed he couldn't escape his position of looking up into the mouths of the jets.
"I don't know, boss," the speaker near his ear sounded again. "Maybe he is out there."
"We better not take chances, then," Altman was not hiding the heavy sarcasm in his words. "Blast away!"
Brad kicked sideways, stiffened his arm and hit the wrist jet full force. He shot to one side on a course parallel with the Fleury.
A blinding gusher of raw energy exploded--a cone of blistering, scintillating force that streaked through space between himself and the disabled ship. The aiming was perfect. Had he not swerved off when he did, had he stayed on his original course, he would have been in the center of the lance of hell-power.
As he drifted shakily into the hatch, the Queen wasn't even a dot against the trellis of star traces. But, while he lo