The Earthman

the camp. He took his amateur photography seriously and, like any tourist, he was fascinated by the rugged scenery; there was nothing comparable to this on any world in the civilized galaxy. To get the back lighting that he wanted, Tchassen would cheerfully have given up any number of meals. As a matter of fact, he wasn't aware that it was noon until he heard the jet blast of the supply ship as it came in on the transit beam.

Tchassen saw the ship spin out of control as the beam went haywire. The robot plunged into the heart of the station and the earth shook in the catastrophic explosion of the nuclear reactor. The commissary, the communication center, the supply sheds and the row of patrol ships vanished in the rising, mushroom cloud. Concussion threw Tchassen violently to the ground. His camera was smashed against a boulder.

The Captain picked himself up unsteadily. He took a capsule from his belt pouch and swallowed it—a

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