The creature flinched and fell to the ground.
It couldn’t get back up. It lay there writhing, shrieking mournfully, grasping for traction.
“The shield’s down!” Jeska yelled in the distance.
The creature continued to shriek as Daniel left it behind.
It would get back up, and when it did, he hoped to be long gone or, at least, better armed.
He had considered trying to kill it, but — given what happened last time — he figured he’d have better luck with a pistol.
He rushed through that vast room, a cavernous warehouse packed with a limitless supply of the same two worthless items.
Relief flooded him when he reached the Afterthought, the lone ship in the visitor's bay, and saw Jeska standing on the lift plate.
Her face made him smile, and he stepped onto the plate next to her.
“Up,” he said quickly.
The ship’s system got the message and began raising the lift plate.
“Thank the Gods,” she said as the plate moved toward the Afterthought belly.
"Shields," Daniel said. And the shield generator began the slow process of re-initializing the energy barrier.
Daniel and Jeska stood side by side, quiet for a moment.
"Is it dead?" she asked.
"Kep," she cursed.
"It won't be back for a while, though," he said, hoping his words were true. "When it does, the shield should keep it out."
"Maybe," she said.
"No, the shield is one of the few good things on this ship," he lied. "It'd keep out a sigma cannon from Alitma himself."
She laughed. She always saw right through him, and he knew it.