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themselves in front of the cowering Musan Volt. The creature knelt by the window, panting like a cheetah that had just missed its prey. 'The eyes of the Ky'Thain are watching you,' it spat, and then leapt through the open portal.

Vance sprinted forward and leaned out, just in time to see the beast nimbly crawling away down the side of the tower. When he turned, Bakkatt had already picked up Mu-san Volt. The old Drazi stared into Bakkatt's face as though unable to comprehend what had just happened. QCan you hear me?' said Bakkatt. Volt gave no answer; he simply stared towards the open window. Bakkatt slapped him hard. Volt's tough skin absorbed the blow, but it roused him from his stupor. 'Can you hear me?' Bakkatt repeated. Volt simply nodded, his mouth open and eyes wide. 'You will come with us. It is your only chance for survival.'

Volt looked around the room until his eyes came to rest on his two bodyguards, their corpses bleeding on the ground. Volt's nod grew in conviction as he regarded the corpses. Bakkatt grabbed him by the arm and guided him toward the door. Vance followed, quickly glancing back at the window in case of attack. As Bakkatt and Volt left the room, Vance looked at the two sentries. He unbuckled one of their gun belts and strapped it on. The autopistol was a useful weapon to have in a tight corner, and if any more of these Ky'Thain creatures stalked the night, they would need all the firepower they could get.

They reached the door and Bakkatt peered out carefully. Jerklenn and Merreck waited in the shadows; the two remaining sentries were prone and unconscious in a corner. 'They must have heard you inside,' said Merreck. 'We thought it best to secure your exit.'

'Good work,' said Bakkatt, pulling Musan Volt beside him. 'We need to reach
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