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away. The near end of the lot was unoccupied.

Galen couldn't tell whether the large hole contained an entrance to the complex of underground tunnels where Blaylock was held, but his guess was it did. That could be the easiest way in.

"What are they doing over there?" G'Leel asked.

It was time to risk detection, Galen decided. They'd probably be spotted as soon as they entered the tunnels anyway. "Want to take a ride?" he asked.

"On what?"

Galen visualized the equation for a flying platform, and the tech echoed it, eager, at last, to act. The platform pushed against his feet. He conjured an equation of motion, glided over to her.

"How the hell are you doing that?"

He extended the platform beneath her feet, and she grabbed at him for balance. "Hold on," he said. "We're going to move quickly."

She took hold of his belt.

Equation of motion, equation of motion. They shot out from the alley across twenty feet of open space, dropped straight down into the excavation. She grabbed him with both arms and spat a curse in Narn.

Perhaps a hundred feet below them was a smooth, dull black surface. It ran in gentle, graceful contours. It had been buried here, in the ground. Anna had unearthed it. Galen slowed their descent and turned the platform so he could observe the strange, spiky object that had been revealed.

"What the-" G'Leel said.

"You remember the ship you described to me once? As black as space, and bristling with arms. It moved as if alive."

"That's it," G'Leel said. "What's it doing in the ground?"

"I don't know. The Shadows must conceal their ships until they're needed. The one I destroyed last night was cutting this one free." They had demolished the Joncorp factory to reach it.

He resumed their rapid descent, directing them down
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