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his brain back on? Galen didn't think Blaylock would have returned to this place just to play dead.

A more likely possibility, which cycled endlessly through Galen's mind, was that Blaylock had purposely injured himself. Blaylock had said Kell induced a heart attack to avoid revealing information. Had Blaylock, perhaps, induced a stroke? The locations of the gathering place and the hiding place were in his keeping. And Blaylock might have felt some need to protect Galen, to give him the chance to pass along the information they'd gained.

That would mean Blaylock had sacrificed himself for Galen, just as she had done. Galen could not accept that. He could not live with that. No more would die for him, unless he wanted them to.

As he approached the mouth of the alley, he pressed himself against the wall. Then, at last, he could rest another moment. He wrapped a hand around his side, struggling to catch his breath.

From across the alley, G'Leel appraised him. "You look like death."

Galen gazed out on the demolition site. It was a great open area of brown rock, surrounded on all sides by high buildings, the tallest the City Center. The Joncorp factory had once stood here, and soon would again, if G'Leel's information was accurate.

The ground was flat, except for a vast, irregularly shaped hole that had been excavated out of the rock. The excavation began just a short distance from the alley where they stood and covered about half of the empty lot. Galen couldn't see how deep the hole was, but he remembered that the Shadow ship had been carving some sort of trench in the ground. Anna must have blasted out this entire area.

A large group worked at the far end of the lot, where Anna had crashed. Pieces of wreckage were being hauled up on cranes and cleared
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