The second in yet another multivolume work of action-based sf from Chalker. In book #1, a curious structure was found on an uninhabited remote world containing (in some sort of suspended animation) a pair of what could only be described as demons--nasty, taloned, horned beings that figure not only in Earth cultures but in nearly every society in the three galactic empires: the Exchange, the Mycohl, and the Mizlaplan. Accidentally awakened, the demons brutally slaughtered the scientific team sent by the Exchange to study them. Here, small rescue teams from each of the empires arrive. Fighting each other, fearing the demons, and trapped together in the erstwhile tomb, they take the only way out, pursuing the monsters through an interdimensional gate. Competent pulp adventure, but beyond the fast-paced action, there isn't much. Chalker's prose is clumsy, his characters mostly one-dimensional, and, for all their outward differences, the aliens speak and behave altogether too much like their human companions. Passing nods to Dante's Inferno do little to raise the literary stakes.