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trust in their wisdom now."

Galen moved closer, lowering his voice. Elric fought the urge to look away from the intensity of his gaze. "I nearly used my spell of destruction on Elizar, when he attacked us. I don't know what it would have done. I don't know if it would have killed him, or all of us." His lips parted with an odd eagerness, almost as if he wished it had killed them all.

Then Galen's gaze fell, and his mouth tightened in a way Elric recognized. He was doing a mind-focusing exercise, struggling to regain his detachment, his stillness.

"You did well not to use it. The dangers are too great. And it may be that Elizar hoped to provoke you into casting the spell. Perhaps he believed he could somehow survive it and discover its secret." Elric hesitated to go further, yet he realized Galen's commitment to the Circle then was the key to his acceptance now. "You followed the Circle and the Code in that most terrible hour. Do not fail them now."

When Galen looked up, his face was composed, still. Yet his voice revealed the acute need behind his words. "Can there be no justice for Elizar, then?"

Fury rose up in Elric at the hurt that Galen had sustained, and he spoke through clenched teeth. "I vow to you, Galen, that if Elizar survives this war, we will find him, and we will kill him."

Blaylock stopped beside them, and Elric tried to hide his anger, nodding silently in greeting. Galen did not need this intrusion. Yet Blaylock would want to be certain of both Elric's and Galen's loyalty.

"You have done well, Galen," Blaylock said. "Elric has trained you to be a skilled mage. The information you brought may save us all. I hope you will rest now. We will depend upon your help to reach our hiding place safely."

Galen's voice had gained the stillness
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