He held their lives in his hands.
Earth was doomed. Only ten people of every 3,000 would be taken to Mars to begin a new colony. For the rest, there awaited only death.
Bill Easson was a nice, pleasant, straightforward guy. But as on of the pilots for the Mars expedition, he had to handpick the ten who would accompany him. Mobs surged through the streets, murder and mayhem was rampant . . . and the names on Easson's list changed again and again.
He had to stay alive, get out of the city with his passengers, and get them to Mars on an untested ship.
And the authorities had given him only a 60 percent chance.