• Nick Richards

Chapter 4: The Duke's Children - Part Six

The Candell was carrying two electrically run armored vehicles. One was only large enough for four riders, the other could carry up to 16. Both were designed for all terrain, ran quietly, were armored against weapons, and could carry lots of supplies for both the crew and for trading with locals. With the nearest town at least 10 kilometers away, Jendi ordered the small vehicle to be deployed out of a ramp from the ship, and to be outfitted with equipment and food. The plan was to move as quietly as possible to just within sight of the town, and then park the vehicle in a hidden location as they walked into town.

Jendi, Vialon, Grif and Tinno climbed into the vehicle and Grif drove it away from the ship. They rode over uneven grass-covered ground. Soon the trees thinned out and they were on a plain that stretched to the horizon. Tinno pointed forward and to the left and they could see what appeared to be an outcrop of something that soon resolved itself into a town image.

“There does not appear to be any place to hide the vehicle,” said Vialon.

“No, there really doesn’t,” said Jedi softly. “So let’s go with my first idea. What do we know of these people? They are loyal to the Duke, are they not? Or at least he thinks they are. But with the state of communication on this planet, let alone physical travel, what are the chances they have had much direct contact with the Duke’s people recently?”

“Not likely,” said Tinno.

“Right, so let’s use that to our advantage.”

“How so?” asked Vialon.

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