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Full Online Book HomeLong StoriesUnwise Child - Chapter 22
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Unwise Child - Chapter 22 Post by :traffic-tart Category :Long Stories Author :Randall Garrett Date :May 2012 Read :2335

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Unwise Child - Chapter 22

Captain Sir Henry Quill scowled and rubbed his finger tips over the top of his shiny pink pate. "Your evidence isn't enough to convict, Golden Wings."

"I know it isn't, Captain," admitted Mike the Angel. "That's why I want to round everybody up and do it this way. If he can be convinced that we _do have the evidence, he may crack and give us a confession."

"What about Lieutenant Mellon's peculiar actions? How does that tie in?"

"Did you ever hear of Lysodine, Captain?"

Captain Quill leaned back in his chair and looked up at Mike. "No. What is it?"

"That's the trade name for a very powerful drug--a derivative of lysurgic acid. It's used in treating certain mental ailments. A bottle of it was missing from Mellon's kit, according to the inventory Chief Pasteur took after Mellon's death.

"The symptoms of an overdose of the drug--administered orally--are hallucinations and delusions amounting to acute paranoia. The final result of the drug's effect on the brain is death. It wasn't my blow to the solar plexus, or the sedative that Pasteur gave him, or Vaneski's shot with a stun gun that killed Mellon. It was an overdose of Lysodine."

"Can the presence of this drug be detected after death?"

"Pasteur says it can. He won't even have to perform an autopsy. He can do it from a blood sample."

Captain Quill sighed. "As I said, Mister Gabriel, your evidence is not quite enough to convict--but it is certainly enough to convince. Therefore, if Chief Pasteur's analysis shows Lysodine in Lieutenant Mellon's body, I'll permit this theatrical denouement." Then his eyes hardened. "Mike, you've done a fine job so far. I want you to bring me that son of a bitch's head on a platter."

"I will," promised Mike the Angel.

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Captain Sir Henry Quill, Bart., stood at the head of the long table in the officers' wardroom and looked everyone over. The way he did it was quite impressive. His eyes were narrowed, and his heavy, thick, black brows dominated his face. Beneath the glow plates in the overhead, his pink scalp gleamed with the soft, burnished shininess of a well-polished apple. To his left, in order down the table, were Mike the Angel, Lieutenant Keku, and Leda Crannon. On his right were Commander Jeffers, Ensign Vaneski, Lieutenant Commander von Liegnitz, and Dr. Morris Fitzhugh. Lieutenant Mellon's seat was empty. Black
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Mike the Angel stepped into the cargo air lock of the _Brainchild_, stood morosely in the center of the cubicle, and watched the outer door close. Eight other men, clad, like himself, in regulation Space Service spacesuits, also looked wearily at the closing door. Chief Multhaus, one of the eight, turned his head to look at Mike the Angel. "I wish that thing would close as fast as my eyes are going to in about fifteen minutes, Commander." His voice rumbled deeply in Mike's earphones. "Yeah," said Mike, too tired to make decent conversation. Eight hours--all of them spent tearing down
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