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weapons at the ready. Galen had no time to search through frequencies for static, but he felt certain the Shadow would be with them.

The Drakh and Brown entered, but Tilar held back, looking up at the hotel with suspicion. He was probably accessing the sensors in his chrysalis to search for anything unusual. Isabelle had told him that Burell had a long-standing relationship with the manager.

Back in the lobby, Cadmus had begun to shake. "Can I help you?" he asked the Drakh and Brown.

Isabelle's voice boomed within the confined shield, echoing and reechoing. It was another message from the Shadow to the Drakh.

They are hiding beside this Human.

The Drakh was no longer within three feet of the amulet. He wasn't even within three feet of Isabelle. Yet still the transmission held her.

The Drakh approached the desk, his weapon aimed at Cadmus. His brown-and-black striated body was massive, and he walked with an odd stiffness, as if movement were not his natural condition. Cadmus glanced nervously toward the doorway. Tilar stood just outside the threshold, watching the others.

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