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finger. "But I can tell you that she recorded a message to be sent to an address on the Narn homeworld, and then canceled it."

Isabelle put a hand on his arm. "That's very useful. You're managing the stress incredibly well. I'm sure you don't need our help at all. But we're glad to offer it."

Cadmus' moustache shifted, and Galen assumed he was smiling. "Isabelle, would you tell my future?"

"Hold my hands."

He took her hands. She bowed her head and closed her eyes. When her eyes opened, Galen could see the moment in Cadmus' face. She captured him completely. His nervous gaze fixed on her, and his face relaxed, losing its self-consciousness, its momentary concerns. All that remained was hope. It seemed a terribly intimate contact.

"You have always known that you are different, that others depend on you. You have difficult weeks ahead. You will face the most severe trial of your life. When you do, something will rise up within you that you never knew you had, a bravery and strength of character that have lain deep within you. You will stand up for what is right. You will defend your place and your people. You will behave with nobility. From that moment forward, your life will change. The bravery will remain with you, refusing again to be buried. It will bring you success, prosperity, and love."

Isabelle's voice was brilliantly modulated. Stress, rhythm, and repetition combined with striking power to create an almost hypnotic effect. Isabelle maintained eye contact for several more seconds, giving him that knowing smile. He smiled with her. Gently she released him and pulled slightly back.

"I couldn't ask for better than that, I suppose," Cadmus said, straightening self-consciously. His eyes resumed their nervous activity. "Let me show you to a table in
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