“By the stars,” Nicephorus moaned. “What are we supposed to do now?”
Drusus laughed. Like everyone, except Gertrude, his voice was modulated by a filter mask. “Calm down. You sound like a schoolgirl whose pigtails have been cut off. The captain’s no fool, and he’ll have tracked us coming down. He’ll kit out one of the other boats with shielding and send it down to pick us up. In the meantime, we need to make for the temple.”
“Shouldn’t we stay near to The Tiger’s Eye?” Gertrude suggested. “The Sun Dancer probably tracked us as we came down. If we leave the crash site they won’t know where we are.”
Several other pirates nodded agreement.
“And if the sun comes up before the rescue boat comes down?” Drusus countered. “It’ll be fifty degrees or more during the day. Do any of you think sitting out in the sun is a good idea?” He gave them a moment to contemplate that prospect, and continued, “Besides, do you want to face the captain without the rhodium? There’s a fortune waiting to be claimed. So what if we’ve lost a bucket of rust? It’s time to plunder a ton of treasure. We’ll occupy the temple and use it to shelter from the sun.”