"It couldn't be that bad," I said over my shoulder, trying to convince Jack.

"Did you see her nails?!" Jack spat. "I'd rather die."

We found ourselves in a large dome. A huge tower loomed in front of us. Yang stuck behind us and Yin ascended first. We hustled along, forced to climb the cold, steel ladder high into the dome.

"Maybe she'd just like to watch," I said.

"She likes to watch and participate," said Yang.

I didn't ask how he knew that. I wondered if Yin and Yang had something going on with Nefarious.

I watched for an opportunity, a way out, but none came. I looked down; we were far above now, over half way to the top. I looked at my watch: four minutes left. We had to do something. Jump? A possibility but with those guns trained on us, I didn't want to chance it. No. I had a better idea. It was telekinetic mind-meld time. I whispered a suggestion into Jack's synaptic nether regions, "Now'd be a good time to do that tentacle thing."

His mind-linked to mine. "Geez, Ennis, I can't do it on demand. I have to be--"

"Be what?" I answered telepathically. "You have to be what?"


We were near the top-- Yin was already off the ladder. Now was the perfect moment. Jack was out of my reach with my hands, but not my brain-- 

Mind fuck time!

Jack moaned. It was too easy. Suddenly, Jack transformed, electric appendages grabbing the semi-automatics and copping a feel.

No time for that now! We had to save Great Aunt Emma and Shag Island.

I took a flying leap over Jack and onto roof. 

I heard a hum. The ray was warming up: the center was white hot, shrinking smaller and smaller, concentrating to a point. 

One minute left. 

I had no other recourse-- only thing I could think of to do.

As I threw myself on the ray, I heard Jack yell in back of me, "Nefarious! You win! I'll do it! Stop the ray!"


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