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At first I thought I was just interested in it because it was the most promising find. But when you took the probe to the cave and I objected, and you told me I'd lost it, I realized the egg had some sort of attractive power. As a telepath, I was the most sensitive to the attraction. I don't know how it worked, over all that distance, through a recording. I thought there might be a subliminal message or signal, and I examined the recording for one, but there was nothing I could find. I've never heard of anything like it. But once I was aware of it, I was able to block it out.

"When we landed on the planet, I think the rest of you started feeling the attraction as well, though it was subtle. Close up, though, the attraction was much stronger. As soon as we got to the site, everyone went to the egg, even though they'd been assigned different duties."

"Wait a second," Anna said, and Donne turned back with impatience.

"You said you discovered the attraction that day I took the probe into the cave, and that you were able to block it. That was almost three weeks ago. You've done nothing but question us about that damned egg and talk about how important and fascinating it is for the last three weeks."

"I needed to know what kind of power it had that could draw me to it from so far away. Once Morden translated the writing on it, I realized it was a trap of

some kind, designed to draw us in. I had to find out how it worked."

"So you encouraged Chang's party to study it."

Donne shrugged and resumed walking.

"They really didn't need any encouragement. The attraction was so strong at that point, even I couldn't look away from it."

Her voice slowed.

"It was a translucent milky white. The letters on its surface formed a grayish pattern that shifted when
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