he could not. He had lost the fragile peace he'd had since Thenothk. His mind refused to be still, and once again the agitating undercurrent of energy was building, echoed by the ship, the cold inside him growing. He told himself to hold it in just a few hours longer. Then they would reach the hiding place. He could think no further than that.
Still Alwyn's words pursued him. I thought you cared about Isabelle. And about Carvin and all the rest. How can you let their deaths go unavenged?
The memory returned to him. She lay dying. Her neck was tensed, head held up ever so slightly, eyebrows raised. Her cold hands weighed limply against his. And he heard her voice, her breathless, failing voice. My only regret would be... if the fire that I see in your eyes now were to burn your soul to ash in the future.
But the fire would never burn itself out. It was merciless, endless.
He could have saved her so easily. He could have killed Elizar and Tilar with no more than a thought, and she would still be alive, would still be with him. But he had held to the Code when breaking it could have saved her, and he had broken the Code when holding to it could have saved him. Better to die than to become a mass murderer.
At the front of their formation, Herazade opened a jump point to hyperspace. Galen directed his ship toward the orange vortex, and the piece of chrysalis eagerly echoed his command, changed course.
He was reminded, jarringly, of Anna. Anna controlled the Shadow ship, coordinated its systems, just as the piece of chrysalis controlled his ship, coordinated its systems. When Anna had linked with him, he'd shared her thoughts of the machine and how she served it. She had thought of something called the Eye, something that gave her direction. That was the purpose