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haven't felt like this in months."

As she went into the kitchen and started coffee, Galen checked the clock. It was 4 a.m. They were all on odd schedules.

Galen followed her into the kitchen, filling her in on all that had happened. The presence of a Shadow on Zafran 8 shocked her. But Tilar's offer to cure her outraged Burell. "How dare he tempt Isabelle with my health. That bastard."

A short laugh escaped Galen. "That was Isabelle's reaction."

Burell's uneven green eyes fixed on him. "I raised her to do good, Galen, even if that good sometimes clashes with the views of the Circle. She is the most precious thing in my life."

Galen felt as if the conversation had taken a sudden turn. It wasn't last night they were talking about; it was the future. "I know." She is precious to me too, he thought, but couldn't say the words aloud.

"I've got it!" Isabelle cried. She shot up from the chair, arms upraised. "I'm brilliant! I'm brilliant!" She bounced over to them, stopping on the opposite side of the counter. She slammed her hand down. "Eureka!" She gave them a huge grin.

"You couldn't," Galen said.

"I did! I've figured it out-well, except for a couple of things, but I know this will work. I know how to understand the transmissions.

"Those probe recordings you sent me helped me figure it out. They were missing some of the harmonics-the probes didn't record the transmissions fully. That helped me start breaking the signal down into different components.

"The only full transmission we have is the one we were in the room to record. My sensors were able to pick up the whole thing, I guess. Or at least enough to work with. I was even able to decode part of it. I realized that the Drakh's words, after he was tranquilized, must have come from the Shadow.
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