The drone’s radar sensors did nothing to help the mood, either. It was barely able to show outlines, which at least kept Tobias from crashing into the sides; but the deeper the drone got, the worse the shaft seemed. It was… off-kilter, like parts of it had been pushed out of line, but not all at once. And at the bottom was rubble, tumbled and settled. The drone carried a radar sophisticated enough to pick up anything man-sized or larger (in happier times, it had been used for moonquake emergency response calls), and as it drew closer to the bottom automated request were made to Tobias to start scanning for biological material.

He was hesitant to let it — the radar sweeps weren’t triggering a response (And just what’s supposed to be responding? asked a voice in his head), but Tobias felt an instinctive reluctance to try anything more intrusive — when he realized that there was another issue. The drone was starting to react sluggishly, like it was getting caught up on something. Only slightly at the moment, but it was definitely reacting.