Katia Santiago and Tomás Darquin snuck between incomplete walls and the light beams of street lamps on their way into a construction site left alone in the Martian night. Darquin did his best to focus on the subtle reverberations from recycling pumps under the roads and rock of Syria Planum, meditating on the dull rumble against the soles of his boots and his bare fingertips. It made Katia’s job easier, one less mind to keep track of, fewer thoughts to camouflage.
Katia brushed the gossamer edges of his mind, little more than mechanical rhythms and a muted green air of relaxation, now and again while she scanned ahead for Psi-Cops. They were far from the Psi-Corps residential areas, but the patchwork of concrete and steel they were hiding in was still part of Syria Planum’s Teeptown.
She did her best not to think about that. It only inspired a numbing sense of shame–that she’d ever been a part of Psi-Corps and, in her own eyes, had now ruined everything in more ways than she could count. She’s abandoned her children, terrified them, abandoned them again, and lured her friends and comrades into danger.
Now that their hiding place was secured and they were safe, Katia put her back up against a freshly made wall and sighed with despair, grinding her teeth as she shed a tear despite herself. Damn fool, she thought.
“Is the coast clear?” Darquin’s voice in Adronato startled her. “I said, is the coast clear?”
Katia quickly brought her hand up to hide the fact that she’d been crying. “Yeah. Just us here.”
“How ya holding up–”
Darquin held his breath a moment and sat back to reach into his backpack. Katia thought she could sense a burnt corona of apprehension or resentment in him for a moment, but his mind was already on the next thing, inspiring a surreal echo that she used to hear when she was just a child coming to grips with her telepathy.
“Okay, as long as you’re not tired.” Darquin fished out his datapad, mumbling to himself as he compared it with their surroundings. “Yeah, good. We’re in a good spot here. There’s a sewer junction a few meters down that way, the shuttle bay 10 meters or so over there, a clear view of that sewer cover over there… a whole mess of air shafts already installed here, by the looks of it. And all these walls are in the way of everything else.”
Katia nodded, looking around, assessing the situation. “Someone would have to walk right up to us to see us here. Now what?”
Darquin passed the datapad to her. “What route do you think Kim and Morgan are going to be using?”
She balled herself up tight, her back to the wall. “How should I know?”
“Well, I just figured there’d be a contingency plan. You know, mapped-out escape plan or-”
“I know, I know, we should have.”
“Aw, come on.” Darquin gave his face a long, arduous rub as if wiping off a thick layer of mud, bracing himself against his knees. “Look, I didn’t mean it like that.”
“Yeah, I know,” she answered gently, blushing. “Sorry, I’m just… going crazy. It’s all blown up in my face.”
He only nodded, turning away from her, ready to let the whole thing go. He didn’t need any more explanation, maybe didn’t want any.
She thought about scanning the area again, then gave up on it quickly. Casting around like a lighthouse would’ve brought the Psi-Corps down on them before long. “Are you sure we are going to be able to catch them in time from here? What if they come from different direction?”
Darquin shrugged, not even bothering to pretend he had a plan. “I’ll think U2 real loud. Who else is gonna know it’s me?”
Sighing, she leaned back against the wall of the incomplete building. “True. But you’re sure this is going to work? Getting us off this rock?”
“We’ll make this work, like we always do.” He offered her a grin with only a hint of confidence.
Katia chuckled quietly to herself. “Hopefully a little less battered and bruised than usual.”
A genuine smile flashed across Darquin’s face as he looked away, concentrating. More confident now in her ability than she was earlier that night, Katia opened her mind slightly like the slats of a magic lantern. As she peered out, snatches of the music from Darquin’s mind marched in like a raucous street parade:
Manic despite the sweet angelic chimes underneath, with a bass guitar reducing itself to an all-consuming atonal drone that battered the insides of Katia’s head, an electric guitar sang out in a high voice, dropping to a lower note before it went back to the start and hooked upward into a jubilant phrase. Simple, loud, unassuming, full of the ambitious innocence of adolescence.
“Interesting song,” she said to him.
“It’s… some of their early stuff.” His eyes still distant, he wore an evil grin. She began to get the feeling that she was at the periphery of a private joke. Then a voice in the phantom distance of his mind called out, “One, two, three, four!” and started the cacophony again from the top.
“Well, we should come out about the right place at least.”
Morgan’s only answer to Kim was a disgruntled snort. She looked like a drowned rat and felt just as bad. The consolation of being in a sewer system cleaner than anything on Earth wasn’t much against the fact it still included water. They had taken the underground service routes, cut deep into the Martian rock, suited up against the worst extremes of heat and cold…but it didn’t do much against the water. Their paths ran as often as not with the rivers of water that crisscrossed toward reclamation plants. Airlocked passages built to trap all that precious moisture made it alternately a dripping steam bath and an icy fog that would have put England’s worst to shame.
“You’re alive, aren’t you?” Kim asked as inspected the maintenance door lock. The suits they had worn were in a storage locker now, built inside the curved wall of the sewer tunnel junction. Getting rid of the other signs of their passage was proving more difficult. Kim smoothed back steam-dampened hair, wringing it out with one fist.
“Are you sure?”
“Yeah, because you’re still complaining.” Kim punched a few numbers into the keypad and directed her to the exit hatch with a flourish as it opened. “After you.”
Morgan only growled and went in first. Feeling like an overworked lion tamer, Kim went through and closed the hatch behind them. A hallway lay before them, a cramped tech station leading to the streets of the colony and, not far along, the shuttle transit point.
Kim opened the door and peered through a sliver out at the streets awaiting the Martian dawn outside. “I hope she got through. I don’t know how we’ll find her otherwise.”
Morgan said nothing, keeping her pessimism to herself. Things looked bleak enough without her dumping common sense into the mix.
Kim strode out into the street and silently crossed to the next corner, her eyes searching all around. As she flattened herself against the corner and looked around it to make sure no one had seen her, she turned an ear upward. Somewhere among the minds dulled by sleep and private distractions, an odd snatch of music slid in and out of her awareness. She threw a sideways glance to Morgan as her friend joined her. Morgan didn’t seem to notice it; her senses were the most reliable whenever Kim and Morgan were in a crisis together, so Kim took this as proof that there was no sound. And yet Kim heard it… or rather, felt it. If Darquin had been with them, she would’ve expected it. His mind was like a jukebox. Strange, she thought, to pick up such a thing when he should have been light-years away. She looked around again.
“Yeah.” She barely acknowledged Morgan, focusing on everything except the two of them. “Let’s go this way.”
Kim turned around and went down an alley without a second thought. If it had been anyone else, Morgan would’ve demanded an explanation first, but this time, for this one friend, she followed into musty darkness.
Kim stopped at the other end of the alley to survey the area for the source, hoping she’d know it if she saw it. She half-wished she could reach out to it and find the person behind it, but Psi-Cops could then home in on her as if she were a firefly in the dark. Instead she walked out into the street, tracking the aural impression as best as she could, passing two techs on their way to an early-bird shift. She looked back to Morgan, who was watching at the mouth of the alley. Kim gave the all-clear, receiving a glare from her friend in response and a gesture asking whether Kim had gone completely nuts. Kim told her with a wave of her head to keep up, choosing to ignore the whole issue.
She kept all her senses wary as Morgan met up with her against the next building. So far nothing, not even a sign of danger. Impatient, Kim bit her lip and stretched her mind outward as she set a few tentative steps into the next road. Morgan said nothing and kept watch, clamping down on her own telepathic presence as she felt Kim’s mind reach out past them.
Inside the fragments of a building site, sitting next to Darquin as he occasionally tapped his fingers lazily against his legs, Katia yawned with fatigue. She could feel the Martian dawn drawing closer. “What is taking them so long?” she murmured.
Darquin shrugged. “You know what they say–no battle plan survives contact with the enemy.”
“Yeah, that is what I am afraid of.”
Katia straightened and sat up to keep herself alert. If there was anything approaching them, she couldn’t feel it through the rock music curtain being thrown up by Darquin’s meditations. Memorizing songs and little rhymes had often helped telepaths shield themselves when they were younger, less experienced. But for a normal, Darquin was doing it very well. She was even beginning to enjoy it, mumbling pieces of it before she knew it.
“We can wait another ten minutes, I suppose–”
“–then we’ll need to work out a search pattern.”
She perked up, sliding her feet forward till she was resting on the balls of her feet. The pause in his consciousness provided a useful window for her mind, but only if she reached for it now. Her only concern was whether they were far enough from the shuttle to avoid being detected by the Psi-Cops.
Morgan followed Kim into the street, keeping watch while Kim sought out her goal. When Kim stopped dead in the middle of the road, Morgan only had a moment to stop herself and avoid trampling her.
Again, Kim seemed oblivious. Katia? Where are you?
Further up the way, behind the retaining wall.
Kim nodded, seemingly to herself. “Found her.”
Morgan said nothing and continued her vigilant watch of the Martian streets. Now that they had an idea of where to go, it was the perfect time to get caught.
Kim led them midway across the street and into another alley, the first of a series between them and their destination, homing in as best as she could. Katia… is there someone with you?
She felt Katia chuckling, a feather-like wisp of amusement running through their telepathic link. You mean you can’t hear Darquin with me? He’s projecting loud enough!
Kim climbed over a short wall blocking the end of the last alley and hesitated a moment, trying to believe even as the music in Darquin’s head seemed to bellow.
If you walkaway, walkaway, I walkaway, walkaway...I will follow
Kim blinked. He is here? I’ve been hearing it the last couple minutes. But he’s supposed to be with the others, rendezvousing with the Phoenix! Anxious to find out for herself, she walked straight for the construction site with Morgan in tow.
Long story, we can discuss it once we get away from this area. You may want to hurry, and block yourself.
Okay. See you in a bit. Kim ground her teeth and turned to Morgan. “Meg, Darquin’s here too. Am I really than incompetent at covering my trail?”
Morgan let herself snort instead of laugh. “Only to some, Cyfeilles.”
Katia crawled closer to Darquin and whispered, “I think I have her.”
“Any requests?” Darquin said with a grin.
She shook her head, listening for movement. “Just wanted to know where we are.” She said nothing for a while, then grinned widely at him. “She wants to how and why you’re here.”
“Um, a medium-sized bird told me.”
Her whisper came slightly shrill with amusement and mock indignation. “I call Major Ryan a little large than a medium-sized bird!”
“Not to me, he’s not a general yet.” Darquin winked and quickly turned back to his psychic noise.
She shook her head at him and saw, out of the corner of her eye, two hunched shadows coming around one of the walls in front of them. When she turned back to him, her tone was more serious. “With Mars practically free now… do you think Psi-Corps can lock down outgoing traffic like they used to?”
“Maybe,” he said grudgingly, “if they moved on it fast enough. Then we could always start a galactic incident.”
“Haven’t we already?” Morgan chimed in.
Katia and Darquin turned as Kim and Morgan joined them, safe and sound if a bit moist. Katia sniffed at the mildewy scent around them, but Darquin gave her a quick warning glance to play it safe.
“No, let’s try to avoid that, shall we?” Kim said slowly, then shook her head, looking down at Darquin. “You don’t like to be predictable, do you, Tomás?”
Grinning, he gave her a comical shrug.
Kim found herself smiling, first at him. Regardless of the danger behind and ahead of them, she felt oddly pleased. She couldn’t remember ever using her telepathic power so freely and with such success. If they weren’t in so much trouble, she’d have been tempted to regard the moment as a milestone.
Katia smiled at them wearily, relieved. “You have no idea how glad I am to see the two of you.”
Kim and Morgan crouched down beside them. “So, plans?” Kim asked.
As Katia glanced at him, Darquin reached into his backpack. “Okay, we need a Plan B…. Y’know, I never did return my Earthforce colors. We could sail in under a false flag.”
Kim picked up on her thoughts quickly. “I don’t think Earthforce is so popular around here right now.”
“They never really were, you know,” Katia said, shaking her head.
“Then we got a problem,” Darquin said. “The transport tube that connects the dome with the launch bay is locked, and the few access tunnels going in there will be too small for more than a few of us to go in at a time.”
Morgan nodded with a sigh. “Between that and all of us in there at once? If the Psi-Cops can’t hear all that crawling around inside the walls, they’ll pick us out or see one of us before we all get across. They could just hit the thrusters and fry us.”
“Couldn’t we just hack into the transport tube system to bring the car so we can go inside?” Kim said.
“There are Psi-Cops waiting for us at the shuttle,” Katia said, stepping in quickly.
Morgan swore under her breath in her native tongue.
“They must’ve seen the shuttle and decided to take it when they couldn’t find it on the roster or something,” Darquin said. “Okay, we can’t go in quietly. Let’s go in loud–fake a hull breach on the launching pad and go in while they’re busy with the evac.”
They all looked at each other in silence. Morgan held her breath. Kim sat down, considering their options. And now that leaving Mars together and alive seemed plausible, Katia couldn’t bear to contemplate leaving her children behind again.
“I’m a self-confessed dome rat, so I’ll say it,” Morgan said. “Some things you don’t play around with.”
“We don’t have to cause a hull breach. All we have to do is tell the computers to spin some stupid red lights and tell everyone in the shuttle to get nervous ‘n’ bail.”
“So,” Kim added, “set off the alarms and we just….” She waved her hand outward in an arc. “Leave.”
Morgan shrugged. “Ie, I guess.”
“And hope like hell the authorities don’t notice?” Katia said.
“Who cares?” Darquin said. “We’re not Psi-Corps. They’re the ones with stuff to hide.”
“True,” Kim answered, wearing a twisted grin. “Well, no time like the present. Shall we do this before the whole dome wakes up?”
Morgan went to one end of the wall where the others had been sitting, watching while they caught up to her. She nodded to them the all-clear and led them down the street.
“I’ll hack into the transport tube and call the car over,” Darquin said. “We can probably get away with getting the rest of you in there by the time the alarms go off.”
“I don’t like the idea of separating again,” Katia said gently.
“I’m open to ideas.”
Kim and Morgan exchanged glances with Katia until Morgan spoke up. “Splitting up may be safest. Two set the alarm, two secure the shuttle.”
Katia nodded. “Okay.”
Darquin answered with a casual nod. “Yeah, I can deal with that. Who’s for shuttle duty?”
“Either me or Katia should stay here with you,” Kim said. “We’ll be better than a comlink between two groups.”
“Good idea, then we can all react as fast as they can, that way.”
Kim nodded at Katia. “And you’re better in a mind fight, so you’d better take shuttle duty.”
Quickly, she gave Morgan an apologetic glance. Katia blinked, trying not to look at either of them. She still knew what Morgan thought of her after all that had happened between them. Focused on the job at hand, Morgan didn’t seem to react one way or the other.
Darquin stepped in before all the evasions of eye contact turned into a full-blown distraction. “Whatever we do, we need in. Fast, no matter what happens.”
Morgan simply nodded, left it at that.
Kim loosened up the muscles in her neck. “Done, then. Let’s go.” She quickly gripped Meg’s shoulder as she passed her.
Darquin took the lead, silently heading straight for the door of the transport tube, paying no apparent mind to the guard standing watch, mumbling lyrics as the others followed far behind. Before the guard could react, Darquin grabbed him by the shoulder of his black uniform and smashed their heads together with a grunt. As the guard went down in a heap, the others ran in.
“We’re clear, let’s go–and you were damn lucky,” Kim muttered at him.
Darquin shrugged, pulling the panels off the door controls, pinching wires together. “I already had a headache, so I figured–”
“Never mind. Okay, transport car’s on the way.”
She peered over his shoulder at the tangle of wiring. “Anything looking good?”
Darquin gingerly dug his fingernails into a crack inside the access plate and revealed an inboard readout. “I think I found part of the problem.” He gave her a wink and plucked out a few choice circuits.
Kim couldn’t help but smiling a little, the first real smile she’d felt like making all day. She turned and leaned casually against the wall, blocking some of his work with her body, her eyes watching everything behind him.
Morgan and Katia took their places in the front of the transport tube entrance, waiting for the doors to open. Katia braved a glance at Morgan, wary as Morgan turned to her.
Katia nodded at her, resisting the desire to run back into town for Kayla and Kira. “Let’s get this over with.”
The doors hissed as the seals were opened, revealing the cylindrical face of the car. Morgan and Katia bolted into the car and kneel on the floor as the doors slid shut behind them, the seals hissed together, and the car flew down the tube into the launching pad.
Morgan marched out of the car as soon as the doors opened again. Katia moved quickly to keep up, letting the car slink back into the transport tube. Passing over fuel tubes and power cords, even their loudest footfalls hidden underneath the rumble of idling engines, they approached the shuttle with as much aplomb as they could muster. Katia walked along with an air of superiority she’d adopted when she was back in Earthdome, to keep people from stopping her. Morgan moved with similar ease, sporting a weariness that wore down her gait. She’d gotten used to walking through Earthforce launching areas long ago.
Katia let her mind brush the hull of the shuttle and gestured at Morgan to come closer so they could whisper at each other. “One teep and two others inside.”
Morgan nodded and boldly went to the shuttle’s entry hatch.
Katia sent out a rapid flash of a thought to Kim. Ready.
Orange light burst into the shuttle bay and alarms began to wail methodically. The entry hatch slid apart and let one of its occupants stick his head out into the pandemonium. From behind, Morgan slapped her fingers against his neck and tightened to form a sleeper hold. Katia rushed in as the man dropped, drawing her PPG and aiming a life-draining spike of pain into the telepathic mind she’d felt. Before the Psi-Cop had a chance to respond, he collapsed into a dark heap on the deck of the shuttle. The Earthforce guard moved to charge her until she leveled her gun at him.
“I wouldn’t if I were you, not if you knew the day I’ve had. Nighty night.”
His eyes rolled into the back of his head as he hit the ground. She started transferring her unconscious guests outside as Morgan ran into the pilot’s seat and began a flight check.
As Katia dragged the Psi-Cop down the loading ramp, footfalls rang against the floor of the launch bay. Katia brought her PPG around until she saw Kim and Darquin stepping out of the transport car. She let her shoulders droop as she lowered the gun, relieved that she didn’t have to test her marksmanship after all.
Kim turned quickly to Darquin as they ran to help her. “You go in and help get us ready for launch.”
Darquin nodded and went into the shuttle, taking the co-pilot seat as soon as he saw Morgan at the helm. Kim and Katia ran in shortly afterward and closed the hatch.
“We have a seal,” Kim called out.
Katia nodded to her. “How quickly can we get this thing powered up?”
Morgan checked the readouts one more time. “Most of the pre-flight’s already done. Take-off status any minute now.”
Darquin started strapping himself into the co-pilot chair, wildly snapping buckles into place. “Good deal. First chance you get, let’s floor it. How’s it look?”
“Good so far.”
Katia sat down, very tense, every movement an effort as she realized she was leaving her girls here on Mars. Once she locked herself into a jumpseat, her hands immediately formed into fists in her lap. She couldn’t stop thinking about her daughters.
With an inward sigh Kim dropped into the nearest acceleration chair, waiting for the overhead restraint cradle to fall over her shoulders as she snapped her seatbelts on. As she did, she caught a glimpse of Katia in the seat across from her, knuckles white. Kim’s first chance to relax for the last standard day…. She didn’t want to leave things as they were now, but there was no alternative. Feeling like a traitor, Kim turned away from her in mind as well as in body, closing her mind to Katia’s turmoil and shame, and let her head fall back.
Morgan looked over her shoulder, into the passenger section. “Katia. Seatbelt.”
“Already done,” she growled back, glaring for a moment.
“I just didn’t want to splatter you,” Morgan said, smiling.
Kim did her best to ignore the bickering of the two women and cleared her throat. “Have they figured us out yet?”
Morgan leaned out of her chair to look out at the hangar outside. “Not yet, but it won’t be long.”
The muted darkness of the coming dawn replaced the orange lights of the launch bay as the shuttle was lifted to the Martian surface and tilted nose-up to the sky. As gravity tore at her, she planted her hands like claws firmly against the arms of her chair. Part of her refused to leave flesh and blood behind a second time. As far as her children and the Psi-Corps were concerned, she was a mother to no one. She glanced out a porthole to face the truth. The surface of Mars was tearing away from them. The darkness of the void rolled in and blocked her view of even that. The roar of the engines died with the final strands of atmosphere outside. A single tear fell across Katia’s face like a failed comet. Kayla, Kira… she had already lost them.
Life finds a way.
Hearing Morgan in her mind, Katia looked up at her, meeting her eyes in the reflection of the canopy against a backdrop of stars. Unsure, Katia simply nodded in acknowledgment. Morgan’s reflection held no expression, nodding slowly before looking down to the controls.
“How long until we reach the jumpgate,” Katia asked gently.
“A couple minutes if we go now,” Darquin answered. “I’m waiting as long as I can before I set the jumpgate sequence. I think we have a good enough lead, though.”
Kim exhaled loudly. Her first thought was to contradict him; the Psi-Corps and her brother Nathan held the lead from the very start. But instead she held her tongue and decided to focus on what they had.
Katia sat up. “Do you think we can make it to the jumpgate before anyone else comes after us?”
“If they even do,” Kim added.
“I think we’ll make it.” Darquin stopped and waited to make sure Morgan could say one way or the other since she was running the helm. Confident, he removed his restraints, letting them rise in freefall, and showed everyone the data crystal between his fingers. “And once we do, they won’t know where to start looking. Jumpgate codes courtesy of Major Ryan.”
Morgan smiled at him and the data crystal in his hand. “Ie.”
“Cool, you know ‘im, too?” he said.
“He always had a good rep among the enlisted, even before the war.”
Kim let herself drift into relaxation, stretching and crossing her legs out in front of herself. The weight of guilt remained, giving freefall of a tinge of falsehood. She absently dragged her rolling cloud of dark hair behind her to tie it at the base of her neck, trying not to think anymore. “Hyperspace is a big place,” she offered.
“I knew Edward would come through,” Katia said half to herself. Her thoughts were lost in images of Psi-Cops, arms outstretched, evil grins worthy of masked childhood Psi-Corp guardians, wanting to snatch her out of the shuttle.
Darquin let himself float over the co-pilot’s chair like an imp. “Well, I helped,” he offered in a pathetic voice, pretending at wounded pride.
As he slid across the air into the passenger area, Katia gave him a slight smile. “And I thank you for that… since I am almost sure I wouldn’t be here right now if it weren’t for you.”
Kim looked on through half-closed eyes, determined to eventually drift into sleep, no matter how unlikely it seemed as more time passed. Morgan followed their reflections in the canopy, apparently immersed in the cockpit controls.
“Always glad to help,” Darquin said to Katia. “And they won’t win the next round. We got the edge now.”
“Katia?” Kim looked up long enough to get her attention. “Should get some rest, Katia — everyone. It’s a long trip to Babylon 5.”
Katia snorted, frowning. “Yeah. Sleep. I’m sure we all need some of that.”
Kim watched her turn away, toward the stars rolling across a porthole. With a shrug, Kim decided to let it be and leaned back in her seat.
“Katia….” Everyone nearly turned around when Darquin spoke up. “I’m not sure how much it’ll help, but we still have a chance–when it’s a good time to go back. If they change their security, move to a new location… we’ll have people watching.”
She nodded to him in a half-hearted effort to act as if she believed him, exhausted, dejected, unable to fight the tears as they came. “But… I won’t take them unless they’re willing. I refuse to be a party to the kidnapping and traumatizing of my daughters! It’s over. They’re gone.” She stared out at the stars again, and her tears moved out as if to join them. “I was foolish to think I ever had them in the first place.”
“Then we try it from a new angle, dammit,” Darquin said. “Help them find the info they’ll need. Watch their backs when they need it.” He offered her as warm a smile as he could manage. “That’s what moms do, right?”
Katia smiled at him through fresh tears, caught between hope and despair. “I suppose it is.”
“Hey.” He let himself float in front of her so he could better face her, batting hovering teardrops aside with his free hand. “Look, maybe it’s just me, but we’ve gone too far to lose hope now.”
“I just wish I could see that….”
Darquin took her by the shoulders. “Let me do that. Maybe we can all do it for you.”
He threw Kim and Morgan secretive glances, silently begging for support. Just as he’d begun to suspect that he was in over his head, he could see Morgan nod from the pilot’s seat. Kim opened one eye and nodded gently. “We’ll be around,” she said.
Katia nearly gasped. She looked everyone in turn, realizing only now how much support they were actually ready to give. “Thank… thank you.”
Darquin aimed a grateful, relieved smile in Morgan’s direction and spun carefully in place to give Kim the same before he launched himself with a gentle kick back into the cockpit. As he returned to the co-pilot chair, he drew out from his memory a live performance of the song he’d played for them earlier. The music was more muted, muffled by air and cheers in the thousands, the song’s final words echoing.
I will follow I will I WILL Iyyyyy WILLLLLL
He slipped the crystal in his hand into the data reader in the navigational console and waited till the crystal brightened with activity. “Computer, access data port and run Calico file. Activate jumpgate sequence–destination, Babylon 5.”
(C) 1999 Tamara Friese, Leslie McBride, Joe R. Medina and Alida Saxon. All rights reserved.