When they got to the cargo pod North told the other two to go forward.
"You've got the easy job," he announced, "just fix
your cables and hold her in position, while we get cables on this end,
and hand her down."
2 "It's going to be tricky," Half Moon warned, "getting your cable on
her the way she's swinging around."
3 ''That is my responsibility," put in the hull droid. "I am programmed
and equipped for such tasks. It is my duty to take jobs too dangerous
for organic units."
4 "All right," agreed North, "but use extreme caution. We need you. You
are important to the ship's safety."
5 "Understood," replied the mechanical. They welded down their pulleys,
ran their lines out, and then holding their breath, they watched the
droid fasten the cables to itself and head for the wildly swinging pod.
Twice it tried to maneuver in, and an unexpected change of swing forced
it to back off. But the third time it got ahold, and quickly fastened
the cables to two solid places, then came back down one of the cables
to join North and Thundering Star.
6 North nodded to his companion. "Slow and easy," he warned, "wait 'til
she swings toward us then take up the slack. Don't break the cables."
7 Thundering Star nodded. Slowly, surely they hauled the cargo pod
toward the framework. Finally it hung almost within their goal. Then,
it refused to go any lower. "Damn!" cursed North, "She's hung up!
Droid, take my line while I have a look."
8 Coming around Thundering Star, North looked underneath the wreckage.
"I see the problem," he announced. "A piece of beam is almost cut
through. It's hanging down and catching in the framework. I'm going in
and push it up into the wreckage. You'll be able to haul her down,
9 North started in, but then his safety line reached its limits.
"Damn!" he cursed. "My safety line won't reach!