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tentacles whipping through the air to engulf you and you cannot. . .

"Keep it away!" screamed Rogers.

Everyone in the Zocalo was looking, trying to locate the origin of the alarmed shrieks, then looking at each other as if to confirm for themselves that it was, indeed, ol' boring Rogers who had completely lost his mind.

He clawed at the air, battling back something only he could see. One of the other merchants tried to rouse him, to free him from the grip of what was clearly a nightmare, except that Rogers 's eyes were wide open. It was as if he were looking into thin air and responding to some invisible creature.

He could smell it, feel the tentacles wrapping around him, see the eyes searing their gaze into him. "Keep it away!" he shrieked again. "Keep it away! It knows we're here! Don't you hear me? Don't you understand? It knows we yre here! It's looking at us!"

In the room of Leo Rosen, Leo's eyes opened halfway, though he was still deep in his alcoholic haze. He saw something that did not make a lot of sense: it appeared to be Sheila, draped over a couch, sleeping, her bosom rising and falling softly. She was making that soft whistling sound that she always had back when they had slept together.

He was certain he was dreaming.

And as he drifted in a sort of limbo between sleep and wakefulness, he sensed something long and wet, something with sucker cups caressing him like a lover....

... And he did not run screaming from it. Instead, he took comfort in it, and it helped ease him back to sleep.



Chapter 11



The control room was lit by a single light, by which Dr. Trent was reading her reports and analyses. But one of the sheets in particular kept drawing her back, over and over: the sheet with reproductions of the hieroglyphs copied
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