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Now he was in the same position she had been.

But she had known what to choose, and with that realization, now so did he. She had chosen death for Burell, and he must choose death for her. She would never forgive him if he chose otherwise. Besides, if she were here, he knew what she would say. If he accepted Morden's offer, it would ruin the entire plan of the universe.

But perhaps the plan could include his death as well.

"I decline the offer."

Morden regarded him with a slight frown, and Galen waited for the attack to come. He would not defend himself. He would not fight.

"I wonder," Morden said, "whether you'll be able to live with that decision." He turned and began to walk back down the hall with those same hard, measured footsteps.

Galen called after him. "Why don't you kill me?" The rage, the heat, began to spread out from him, no longer able to be contained. How could he be left here, left with nothing?

He conjured a fireball, hurled it at the wall to Morden's left. It exploded in flame.

Morden flinched and kept walking.

"Why don't you kill me?" he yelled. He conjured another. It burst into flames to Morden's right.

Morden continued.

"Why don't you kill me?" Fire blazed across the ceiling above Morden's head.

Morden stopped, turned, his body silhouetted in flame. Though he spoke in a normal tone, the words carried down the empty passage to Galen.

"Because you are already one of us."

With that, he turned and continued down the passage, eventually turning at the branch in the corridor, disappearing. The lights up and down the hall went out, leaving Galen with darkness and flames.

The heat left him. He panted, suddenly feeling he had made a horrible error in attacking Morden.

What had Morden meant?

As the flames slowly
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