That explained the wild rumors, about aliens and assassins and other wild things.

Again typing, because there was no air left in her lungs to make the question: “How did Dr. Quiria die?”

“Suicide.” The database’s tone was cool, chilly. “Dr. Quiria had volunteered for many experiments to find a cure. Dr. Burton oversaw the procedures.”

That explained the marks, then, and the appearance of murder. He must have been truly desperate, to turn himself over to those butchers.

Ashtar’s fingers trembled on the keys. “Where is Dr. Burton?”

“Dome D, in his lab.” A pause, as data was collated. “He is alone in the complex.”

“No guards?”

“He has been abandoned by his guards.”

There was only one other thing that she could ask. “Am I infected?” she whispered in a breathy rasp.

A pause. “Insufficient data to determine at this time.”

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