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on her back, and before she could get to her feet, Ivanova swung a most un-karate-like, but nonetheless extremely effective, right cross that caught Trent squarely on the jaw. Trent slumped back, her eyes rolling into the top of her head. Her eyelids fluttered once as consciousness left her.

Bone on bone. Stupid stupid stupid, Ivanova scolded herself as she shook out her fingers. It had provided her momentary satisfaction, but her knuckles were going to be swelling up by the next day.

The next day. Damn, that was overly optimistic of her.

She toggled the comlink back on and said, "Captain ..."

"Susan, what happened?" came Sheridan's concerned voice.

"Doctor Trent turned into one of the pod creatures," she informed him. "She killed Morishi, and was looking to make it two for two."

"My God. Are you hurt?"

She flexed her hand. "Only as hurt as I deserve to be," she said in annoyance. "I'm on my way to the launch bays."

"Good luck, and watch your back," said Sheridan, and the link clicked off.

But Ivanova wasn't finished. She toggled her link back on line and said, "Ivanova to C&C."

"On line," came the brisk response from the omnipresent Corwin.

"Notify Security that I need an arrest team in Dr. Trent's office ASAP."

"Confirmed. There's ... something else, Commander," said Corwin. Ivanova braced herself. As if there wasn't enough going on at the moment. Corwin continued, "We estimate two hours until the energy drain leaves us dead in space."

She rolled her eyes. A half dozen words immediately came to mind, but due to the high stress level of the moment, she setded for the least inflammatory one she could think of. "Nuts," she said. But she couldn't allow herself to go off track. She had enough problems to deal with at that moment. "All
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