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Chapter 34
Hari Seldon and Dors Venabili left the University grounds at 0300. Seldon realized that Dors had to be the leader. She knew Trantor better than he did--two years better. She was obviously a close friend of Hummin (how close? the question kept nagging at him) and she understood his instructions. Both she and Seldon were swathed in light swirling docks with tight-fitting hoods. The style had been a short-lived clothing fad at the University (and among young intellectuals, generally) some years back and though right now it might provoke laughter, it had the saving grace of covering them well and of making them unrecognizable--at least at a cursory glance.
Hummin had said, "Theres a possibility that the event Upperside was completely innocent and that there are no agents after you, Seldon, but lets be prepared for the worst."
Seldon had asked anxiously, "Wont you come with us?"
"I would like to," said Hummin, "but I must limit my absence from work if I am not to become a target myself. You understand?"
Seldon sighed. He understood.
They entered an Expressway car and found a seat as far as possible from the few who had already boarded. (Seldon wondered why anyone should be on the Expressways at three in the morning--and then thought that it was lucky some were or he and Dors would be entirely too conspicuous.)
Seldon fell to watching the endless panorama that passed in review as the equally endless line of coaches moved along the endless monorail on an endless electromagnetic field.
The Expressway passed row upon row of dwelling units, few of them very tall, but some, for all he knew, very deep. Still, if tens of millions of square kilometers formed an urbanized total, even forty billion people would not require very tall structures or very closely packed ones. They did pass open areas, in most of which crops seemed to be growing--but some of which were clearly parklike. And there were numerous structures whose nature he couldnt guess. Factories? Office buildings? Who knew? One large featureless cylinder struck him as though it might be a water tank. After all, Trantor had to have a fresh water supply. Did they sluice rain from Upperside, filter and treat it, then store it? It seemed inevitable that they should. Seldon did not have very long to study the view, however.
Dors muttered, "This is about where we should be getting off." She stood up and her strong fingers gripped his arm.
They were off the Expressway now, standing on solid flooring while Dors studied the directional signs.
The signs were unobtrusive and there were many of them. Seldons heart sank. Most of them were in pictographs and initials, which were undoubtedly understandable to native Trantorians, but which were alien to him.
"This way," said Dors.
"Which way? How do you know?"
"See that? Two wings and an arrow."
"Two wings? Oh." He had thought of it as an upside-down "w," wide and shallow, but he could see where it might be the stylized wings of a bird. "Why dont they use words?&quo............
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