“Suits me,” says Dutton. He stands. “Before turning in, shouldn’t we file for a code name?”
“Yeah, good idea,” says Stone, sipping his nutrition supplement.
“NINE OVER FOUR OVER EIGHT, OVER ONE SIX SEVEN POINT TWO NINE,” says an announcement. “AUTO CHECK IN GRADE. AUTO CHECK IN GRADE.”
Stone starts typing on an TeleType machine.
WILDFIRE TO CENTRAL CODES
The computer returns:
Hall starts looking at the sheaf of old teletype messages next to the terminal.
HAVE ISOLATED ORGANISM WISH CODING
The Teletype responds:
MESSAGE FROM CENTRAL CODES FOLLOWS
OPENING NEW CATEGORY
CODE FOR YOUR ORGANISM WILL BE ANDROMEDA
CODE WILL READ OUT ANDROMEDA STRAIN
“Why Andromeda?” asks Dutton.
“Andromeda’s our constant – -” begins Leavitt.
“Stone?” interrupts Hall, tearing off a part of the long sheaf of paper.