42 \ 130

“Scuse me,” said Leanders as he distanced himself from the others, into the corridor to receive a shipboard transmission via watch.  Once he was done getting specifics, he rejoined them and smoothly interrupted.  “One of our rocks erupted in a controlled blast. No visual ID and no further pattern.”

“What an intrusion,” said a bemused Raev. “Why not adjourn? I will go with you, Trosper.” The fellow who’d been giving the contractor’s debriefing (sparing Leanders the appearance of actual authority) stepped forward and nodded to Sturlusson.  “We’ll unlink. Bye,” Sturlusson said, striding past him, and Trosper followed his passenger out.

From where she stood, Arcta lifted her hand in farewell, and so did the two new hires. “Bye,” they said. Leanders watched them disappear toward the back beyond the tech platform.  “I’ll go with you,” the researcher said to him.  Arriba nudged Vadr with her shoulder.

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