I don't think I would have time to give you the attention you'd demand." "I get bored easily. It probably wouldn't be long before I would be tired of you." "Perhaps and perhaps not, I can't afford to take the chance." "You seem confident." "You forget. I was a sailor." "And spacemen have a reputation, eh?" Eloise chuckled. "At that, you might be right.

When he became an instructor at the Academy, he had determined that no cadet would ever be anything but the best, and that, when they blasted off in later years, they could be depended on. He looked at the three cadets and felt a tinge of excitement that did not show on his scowling face. "Yes," he thought, "they'll make spacemen. It'll take a little time but they're good material."

The spacemen continued their slow march through the mist in silence. Once, when Walters stumbled and nearly fell, he roared angrily. "By the craters of Luna, when I get my hands on those two space crawlers, there won't be enough of them left for a trial!" "Yes, sir," said Steve. "But if anything has happened to those cadets, you'll have to excuse ranks, sir, and wait your turn." "Of course!"

He turned back to face the two spacemen, and his voice was hard and cold again. "You are hereby suspended from space flight for twelve Earth months. Any further petition for appeal of this decision will be denied!" "All right! All right, Mr. Big!" snapped Loring. "Does this mean we can't even ride as passengers?"

Rip led the way from the mixing chamber through the heavy safety door into the engine control room. His entrance was met with poorly concealed grins by the spacemen. Halfway across the room Rip turned suddenly and bumped into Sergeant-major Koa. Koa fell to the deck, arms flailing for balancebut flailing against his protective clothing.

He was impressed with everything he had learned about them, but he knew that he had a reputation for being tough and that this reputation usually brought out the best in cadets. Early in his long and brilliant career he had learned that his life depended on the courage and ingenuity of his fellow spacemen.

Spacemen clapped emergency respirators to their faces and spoke unkindly of Rip’s Planeteers in the saltiest space language they could think of. Rip and his men picked up Koa and continued their march to the decontamination room, grinning under their respirators at the consternation around them.

Roger glided the jet boat to a smooth stop on the night side of the planetoid. "How much longer before the reactor units go up?" asked Shinny. Connel turned, thinking he had heard something on the communicators, then answered Shinny's question. "Only four hours," he said. The crew of spacemen climbed out of the jet boat into the still blackness of the night side of the planet.

Landing craft and snapper-boats swarmed to meet them and within an hour after their arrival the Planeteers were surrounded by spacemen, cadets from the platform, and officers and men wearing Planeteer black. A cadet approached Rip and looked at him with awe. "Sir, I don’t know how you ever did it!"

You'd probably be considered a minor, too, in some states. Dealing with you, I could even get into trouble." Nelsen's mouth tightened. "I came to make a proposition and get an answer," he responded. "Thank you for your no. It helps clear the view." "Hold on, Nelsen," J. John growled. "I don't remember saying no. I said 'gall, intending it to mean guts. That's what young spacemen need, isn't it?