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"Pull out where?" she demanded, turning her skid into a barely controlled spin that had the effect of killing her forward velocity. Her attacker, perhaps made overconfident by the appearance of the backup force, roared by too fast for more than a wild shot in her direction. Coolly, Mara blew him out of the sky. "In case you've forgotten, some of us don't have enough computing power aboard to calculate a safe hyperspace jump."

"I'll feed you the numbers," Aves said. "Karrde-"

"I agree," Karrde's voice came from the Escort Frigate. "Get out of here."

Mara clenched her teeth, glancing up at the second Star Destroyer. She hated to turn tail and run, but she knew they were right. Bel Iblis had shifted three of his ships to meet the new threat, but even equipped with ion cannon, three Dreadnaughts couldn't hold down a Star Destroyer for long. If they didn't disengage soon, they might not get another chance-

Abruptly, her danger sense tingled. Again she threw the Z-95 into a skid; but this time she was too late. The ship lurched hard, and from behind her came the hissing scream of superheated metal vaporizing into space. "I'm hit!" she snapped, one hand automatically slapping cutoff switches as the other grabbed for her flight suit's helJet seals and fastened them in place. Just in time; a second hiss, cut off almost before it began, announced the failure of cabin integrity. "Power lost, air lost. Ejecting now."

She reached for the eject loop : and paused. By chance-or perhaps last-second instinct her crippled fighter was aimed almost directly at the first Star Destroyer s hangar entry port. If she could coax a little more power out of the auxiliary maneuvering system :

It took more than a little coaxing, but when she finally gripped the eject loop again she
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