Steve, Jackie and AMNOZ had no idea what “shvoot” meant, but the approaching pack of wild dogs gave it a sense of urgency. That and the gestures from the man who had appeared in the hatch of the structure convinced them to climb up there. Unfortunately, the only way to get up was by climbing on top of AMNOZ. He was pretty complacent about it, though, of course, he could not climb on top of himself to reach the opening.
As the yelping and howling grew louder, Jackie bounded on top of AMNOZ and then into the access hatch on the underside of the
structure. Steve was hesitant, but the arrival of the wild dog pack seemed to provide the motivational message he needed. Somewhat less
gracefully, he clambered on top of AMNOZ and kicked and flailed as Jackie and the strange man struggled to haul him up just as AMNOZ was
engulfed in teeth, fur, noses and … well, mainly teeth. Fortunately, even these near starving animals had little interest in the old
office furniture and electronics that made up AMNOZ.
Inside the structure, Jackie and Steve regained their composure enough to regard the strange mix of sterile looking technology and
jury-rigged gadgetry that surrounded them and their host. “Holy crap!” whispered Steve.
The strange man cocked his head slightly and drummed his fingers on his temple. “Sprechen sie deutsch?” he asked.
“Spre-what?” Jackie asked. “Who are you?”
The strange man poked his temple again. “Early 21st century? U.S. English?”