Klassners breathing was audible. It sounded whispery, harsh, labored. I would have wished, though, if we were going to have a collision, he said, it could have taken place between two real stars. A white dwarf is a real star.
No. The dwarf is about to hit Delta Kay. Yes, he said. It is remarkable. Im glad we came. The telescopes revealed the point to be a dull red disk surrounded by a ring of shining gas.
None of us did, Marty. The frequency of such an event anywhere within the transport lanes had been estimated at one every half billion years. And here it was. Incredible. God has been very kind to us.
A streak of white light ripped outward from the dwarf. Looks like a piece broke off, said Urquhart. Not possible, said Klassner. Nothings going to break off a neutron star and float away. It was gas.
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Whats the mass of that thing anyhow? Is it my imagination, or is the sun changing color? The ring around the dwarf is getting brighter. Shortly before midnight they set up a buffet. They wandered around the table, sampling fruit and cheese.
Nancy was a popularizer of science and had produced shows watched by millions. Shed commented that it was nonsense, that she couldnt bring herself to indulge in that particular fantasy when a genuine catastrophe was taking place on the third world, which was home to.
His long, thin hands trembled constantly. The disease was terminal, and there was doubt whether hed survive the year. The medical community was working on it, and a cure was coming. But Warren Mendoza, one of two medical researchers on board, insisted it would be.
Theyd just finished dinner. Impact would take place at 0414 hours ship time. I never expected, said Klassner, turning his gray, watery eyes on Boland, to see anything like this. He was back. It was amazing the way he came and went.
You could look at him and literally see his brilliance. There were times now when it seemed he was on automatic, that no one was behind the wheel. It would not have been correct to say that his gaze had turned vacuous, but the genius.