Chapter Nineteen

On a moon of one of the faraway Dead Worlds, an archaeological team broke into a tunnel that had never been explored before. When the Commander of the system cruiser heard about it, he hurried down to see, because archaeology was his hobby and he loved to visit new found sites. "I thought you were on your way to the Hundredth Year Conference," remarked the leader of the dig as the ship Commander appeared.
2 "I am," he said, "but I've got a couple of hours to spare before my rendezvous with the ship that's going to take me to the conference. Let's see what you've found."
3 The Archaeologist was proud to show his find. "Believe it or not!" he remarked, "after five-thousand years the generating system in this complex is still working, and some of the equipment is still functioning. It looks like some kind of biological warfare unit."
4 They went from room to room looking at the strange but somewhat familiar equipment. In one room was what had to be suspension chambers that were actually still functioning! The ship's Commander took a pair of tongs, lifted one of the vials from the chamber, holding it up. The strange red substance seemed to shimmer in the light. He removed the cap and a pleasant, perfume-like odor reached his nose. The head Archaeologist rushed over and put the cap back on the vial.
5 "Be careful with that!" he insisted. "We have no idea what it is. It could be deadly!"
6 "Nonsense!" argued the ship Commander. "Whatever's in these vials couldn't survive five-thousand years in suspension. Nothing could!"
7 He was terribly, terribly wrong. Even then the tiny messengers of death that he had released from the vial had gotten through the membranes in his nose, entered his bloodstream, and were beginning to reproduce at an incredible rate.

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