Star Wars: The Krytos Trap by Michael A. Stackpole

Star Wars: The Krytos Trap by Michael A. Stackpole

Author:Michael A. Stackpole [Stackpole, Michael A.]
Language: eng
Format: epub
Tags: Fiction, scifi, Star Wars, New Republic, X-Wing
ISBN: 9780553568035
Publisher: Bantam
Published: 2011-10-27T10:27:34+00:00

Wedge looked around the lab set deep in the bowels of the Imperial Palace complex. “So this is where the Krytos virus was developed?”

General Cracken nodded. “You noticed, when you came in, that the place is kept under negative pressure. If the seals are breached, air flows in, not out. It precludes the possibility of pathogens getting out.”

Wedge frowned. “But I thought the Krytos virus could not be spread by air, only by fluid contact—in drinking water or when someone came in contact with bodily fluid from an infected person.”

“That’s absolutely true, but in this lab they were manufacturing a virus that had never existed before. They wanted something that would mutate relatively quickly so it could spread between species. With that sort of thing the chance of a spontaneous mutation that would let it become airborne and still remain infectious is one that must be guarded against.” Cracken led him on through a throng of white-coated lab assistants to a back room where Qlaem was using its hands to enter information into a datapad. A number of droids worked in and around the room, apparently orchestrated by a Verpine droid that looked much like a metal avatar of the Vratix.

Qlaern drew its hands back to its thorax as Wedge entered the room. “Commander Antilles, we are pleased to see you.” The Vratix’s right hand came out and gently brushed Wedge’s cheek.

Wedge stroked the Vratix’s arm in return. “The honor is mine. You know, I expect, that my squadron will be leading the expedition to Ryloth.”

“Yes, of this we are aware. We also know that Mirax will be traveling with you.”

“Right.” The trip to Ryloth from Imperial Center would take five days, and that was a bit long to be trapped in the cockpit of an X-wing. Ten of the squadron’s X-wings would be loaded aboard a modified Rebel Transport, the Courage of Sullust. Wedge would travel with Mirax in the Pulsar Skate, with his X-wing ensconced in the cargo bay that would, if things went as planned, be filled with ryll for the return trip. The X-wings would fly escort out of Ryloth; then they would be loaded aboard another transport after the first leg of the journey, for the rest of the trip to Coruscant.

Airen Cracken patted the Vratix on the shoulder. “As you asked, I have brought Commander Antilles. You have something to tell him?”

“Yes, of course.” Qlaern rested both hands on Wedge’s shoulders. “We have analyzed the virus and various medicinal preparations. Ryll will have some effect against the virus. Its efficacy varies widely. We have been pursuing the reason for this. We have been advised that ryll is classified in a number of different grades by the Twi’leks. Most of the ryll available off Ryloth is of the lowest grade.”

“They don’t export the best, I can understand that.”

“Good. The rarest grade of ryll is known as ryll kor. It makes up approximately three percent of all ryll. The compound contains in it trace elements that appear to work against the virus, but exactly how and why we are not certain.


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