Solomoriah wrote:"What do you make of that?" asked the Captain, wonderingly.
"Perhaps their own 'war council'?" Will says half to himself.
Mak wrote:"That must be the Immigration and Naturalization Tent," remarks Artie. "We'd best have our passports handy."
"Artie!" said Lily, obviously irritated. "This is no time for jokes!"
"I rather suspect he's right," said Monday. "Captain, I think they are waiting for us."
"Lord knows I'd love to send a delegation down, but who? I surely can't go myself, procedure you know, Captain remains with the ship and all that. I'd like to send Leftenants Briggs and Mansel, but it wouldn't be prudent to send down two out of three of our remaining qualified helmsmen into an unknown situation. Oh, of course, I'm qualified too, but still you see my point."
"Send me," said Monday. "I'm experienced at high-level negotiations, and I'm not essential to the ship. I'll ask Will here to join me, he seems to be a keen judge of people."
"All your experience at negotiations won't be worth much," said Catherine Burton. "I rather doubt they speak your language. Whereas I have made a special study of African languages."
"Miss, I'm afraid we can't send a woman into such a situation," said Captain Pelton.
"Oh, dear," said Dr. Burton quietly.
"A woman!" said Catherine, turning on the Captain. "I'll have you know, sir, I can outshoot, outrun, and outthink any man on this ship! And I'll bet I can take your Mister Thornton here in a wrestling match, and it doesn't bother you a bit to send him into 'such a situation!'"
"Miss Burton," said Monday, "I'd be delighted to have you with us."
"Very well," said the Captain, though it was obvious it was NOT "very well" at all, "you may go. Also..."
Suddenly, a shot rang out!
Rosisha wrote:Lars smiles grimly, "Mr. Brandon," He begins, "How interesting to see you here." He levels his gun right at him, and continues to use the door and wall as a shield. "Why don't you step down, get out of that parachute, and put your hands high so that I don't get nervous. One wrong move and I shall send your soul to hell with little concern for my own." His gun is steady, his voice even. He smiles politely at Brandon and never lets the pistol waver. He crouches low, his combat experience evident.
Slowly Brandon turned, raising his hands. "Don't shoot, Simon." As he released the undogged doors, the left-hand door swung slowly open, pushed by the wind of the ship's passage. Then Brandon smiled, and simply fell backward through the open door.
Lars fired at Brandon, just before he fell through the door. He was sure that he had hit his target, but could not tell how badly Brandon was hurt.
"Bloody hell!" came an exclamation from the kitchen. Turning, Lars saw the head cook looking at him.
"Leftenant, I'd say that was on B deck," said the Captain. "Get down there, settle the matter. Be careful!"