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As he walked, his arms swung, and Galen could find no difference between the movement of the left and the right. He hoped that meant Elizar's recuperation was progressing quickly.

They met, and Elizar embraced Isabelle. Galen recognized the same anxious intensity that he had noticed in Elizar at the convocation. Elizar released her and took her hands, staring into her eyes. "Isabelle. I am truly sorry for your loss. I know that in the past I've been critical of Burell. I apologize. That was Kell's influence. I realize now how brave she was to defy the Circle and carry on her work, at all costs. And I realize how brave you are for continuing that work."

Isabelle looked shaken. "Thank you."

"Galen, good friend." Both of Elizar's arms rose to encircle him. "I wish the circumstances of our meeting were better."

"Your arm," Galen said, amazed.

Elizar flexed it. "Yes, I am much improved. Ing-Radi did better than she knew."

Seeing Elizar whole again lifted a great burden from Galen. He smiled. "It's good to see you well."

"And so our friendship need not be clouded by anger or guilt."

"Are you alone?" Isabelle asked.

"Razeel accompanied me. She's preparing the ship for departure. It's waiting at the next promenade." He pointed the way, toward a wide passage that connected the promenades, and they headed toward it. "I've seen no suspicious off-worlders. The port records show no ship has arrived in the last eight days. You picked a place with very little activity, so anything unusual would be apparent. I think Razeel is the strangest thing they've seen here in some time."

Galen remained vigilant anyway, but few people walked the passage, and those who did wore workers' coveralls and had the weary step of locals. The passage was lined on one side by shops,
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