The Men from U.N.C.L.E. looked curiously at the stone sarcophagus. "I wonder what T.H.R.U.S.H. wanted with this?" Illya Kuryakin wondered. He peered at the object and prodded it idly with his pistol.

"Unfortunately, you shot the man who could have told us," Napoleon Solo pointed out, gesturing towards the white-coated body that lay on the floor. He turned and looked at a notice on the wall above the mysterious sarcophagus. "It says 'Store until 2004'," he read out. "It must be a really long-term project."

"Perhaps this gem has qualities suitable for a laser cannon?" Illya suggested. He tapped at the gem. Something within the sarcophagus shifted. A spray of vapor shot out and enveloped his head. He coughed and waved his hand in front of his face.

"Gas!" Napoleon snapped. "Get out of there, Illya."

Illya backed away hurriedly. "I don't smell anything," he said, "apart from a slight mustiness. And I don't feel any ill effects."

"We'd better get you checked out by the medical team anyway," Napoleon said. He pulled his pen from his breast pocket and extended its aerial. "This is Solo. Open Channel D."

- 0 - 0 - 0 - 0 - 0 - 0 -

The commander of T.H.R.U.S.H. Central stared in amazement at the two U.N.C.L.E. agents who had penetrated the complex. One was familiar enough. The sharp suit, the sleekly brushed hair, the air of cool amusement and the leveled pistol. Napoleon Solo. The other was a figure so exotic that it was impossible to believe that he could work for the United Nations Command for Law Enforcement.

The agent wore a close-fitting suit that appeared to be made of maroon and blue leather. His hair was blue, his lips had a bluish sheen, and even his forehead was mottled with blue. His eyes glittered like blue crystals.

"Get them!" the commander ordered. Guards leaped to obey. Men with machine-pistols opened fire at the U.N.C.L.E. agents and Napoleon Solo dived for cover. His pistol poked out from behind a computer console and barked twice. A guard fell.

The other agent ignored the guns. Bullets ricocheted from his leather suit. His head swiveled in an eerily avian fashion and then he blurred into action. He closed with a guard and punched the T.H.R.U.S.H. man hard enough to send him crashing through a pane of bullet-proof glass. The leather-clad agent ripped a sub-machine gun from an attacker's hands and snapped it in two. He punched, kicked, and grappled to the ground the remaining guards. Napoleon Solo stood up, brushed a speck of dirt from his lapel, and walked through the shattered glass screen into the control room.

"Your game is up," he said. "T.H.R.U.S.H. has been crushed once and for all."

The other man followed. He sneered at the computer banks. "T.H.R.U.S.H. I remember them when they were lower than the archaeopteryx," he said, and punched a hole in a computer and ripped out its data tapes.

"Who are you?" the T.H.R.U.S.H. man gasped.

Napoleon Solo smiled. "U.N.C.L.E. agents Napoleon Solo," he said, "and Illyria Kuryakin."