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I thought he might be lost. I asked if he needed help. He asked if I needed help. It was strange. I was in a hurry, so I left him behind." Galen's hungry eyes absorbed the image. "Who is he?"

"His name is Morden. I believe he is a servant of the Shadows. If you ever see him, you must inform me at once. Do not approach him."

"What was he doing at the convocation?" Isabelle asked.

"He was observing us, searching for allies, searching for ways to divide us. He asked questions of many of us. He asked, 'Why are you a techno-mage?' and 'What do you want?' " Elric hoped that Morden's search had been fruitless. The techno-mages must remain united, or they would fall.

Galen and Isabelle exchanged a look, and in that look Elric saw that they had grown closer. Unfortunately, there was nothing to be done about that now. That was the least of his concerns.

"We just had a conversation like that," Galen said.

The Shadows knew that Galen could be their greatest enemy, or their greatest ally. He was in a position of grave danger. And there was nothing more Elric could do to help. Galen must face his trial.

"This conversation was with Morden?" Elric asked.

"No." Galen's hesitation told Elric the answer was not one he would want to hear. "With Tilar."



* * *



For the better part of two days, Galen and Isabelle had sat at the table in the Strauss lounge, telling fortunes, monitoring probes, and searching for information. They had told many fortunes, they had witnessed incredible feats of drinking and dexterity, but none of the Narns had approached them. Galen thought that he and Elizar had been all too right in their fear that people had lost their respect for the mages.

He and Isabelle had adopted some of the trappings common to Narn fortune-tellers
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