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of your life. It is the test of what you are. A techno-mage or a traitor. One who kills, or one who does good. One in control, or one consumed by chaos. One who brings darkness, or one who brings light."

Galen's voice rose. "How can I bring light, when you keep us in darkness! You're keeping something important from us. Some secret of power that would help us fight the Shadows. If the mages knew, they would want to stay and fight. But you won't tell them. You're lying to us! Manipulating us! Haven't you learned anything from Kell? Secrets are killers!"

Galen broke off, panting, looking as shocked as Elric was to find himself yelling. Those gathered outside the meeting room, including Ing-Radi, were staring at them.

Elric had thought Galen could handle the move to their new home, with his support. Yet Galen was crumbling. If only they had not been the ones to find Kell's body. If only he had been free to help Galen settle in, rather than occupied with his duties to the Circle. Yet Galen had seen Kell, had faced Alwyn and the rest of the mages alone, and he had been pulled from his own private hiding place before he was ready to deal with reality, his emotions still raw.

And even now, Elric had no time for him.

"You are out of control," Elric said.

"I know," Galen said, his face bare. His shivering had grown more violent. "I can't stop it."

Although Elric's face and chest were hot, his back was cool. Elric realized the heat was coming from Galen, radiating from him like a furnace.

Elric searched for the words that would help him reassert control. "Then think of the last time you lost control, and how much you regretted it. Think of how much you owe the mages, and how grateful you were that you were given a second chance. Think of your tribute to Wierden,
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