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December 26, 2002
Nick looked where Charlie was pointing. ‘It just looks like a bit of rag.’

‘Yes, it does,’ Charlie said enigmatically. He leaned out over the barrier again to peer at the humanalogue’s back. ‘There are more fragments behind him, and I think his spine is actually lumpy. I guess we’re too late.’

‘Too late? What do you mean?’

‘Someone has already gutted this warlog for his crystalline matrix, and then stuffed him with cotton waste. It makes sense when you think about it. Humanalogue spare parts are valuable commodities. They’re not doing anyone any good locked in a display case.