An earsplitting yell cut through the control room. “Sharks!” It was Soshi.
Jabba spun toward the VR. Two thin lines had appeared outside the concentric circles. They looked like sperm trying to breach a reluctant egg.
“Blood’s in the water, folks!” Jabba turned back to the director. “I need a decision. Either we start shutting down, or we’ll never make it. As soon as these two intruders see the Bastion Host is down, they’ll send up a war cry.”
Fontaine did not respond. He was deep in thought. Susan Fletcher’s news of the pass‑key in Spain seemed promising to him. He shot a glance toward Susan in the back of the room. She appeared to be in her own world, collapsed in a chair, her head buried in her hands. Fontaine was unsure exactly what had triggered the reaction, but whatever it was, he had no time for it now.
“I need a decision!” Jabba demanded. “Now!”
Fontaine looked up. He spoke calmly. “Okay, you’ve got one. We are not shutting down. We’re going to wait.”
Jabba’s jaw dropped. “What? But that’s—”
“A gamble,” Fontaine interrupted. “A gamble we just might win.” He took Jabba’s cellular and punched a few keys. “Midge,” he said. “It’s Leland Fontaine. Listen carefully . . .”