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He must stop Elizar and Razeel from using his spell, must end whatever plans they had for rebuilding their order. And he must kill Morden, so no more mages would be tempted to leave the hiding place. If his destruction had any positive purpose, it was to stop the mages from doing any more damage.

Of them all, of course, he had done the greatest damage.

Finally he understood why. Before he'd received the slightest bit of Shadow tech, he had been drawn to violence, and with the tech, his ability to kill had been perfected. Elric had said he wasn't a monster, but Elric didn't know how hard he had to work, every single moment, to retain control. The brilliant heat of destruction wanted to pour out of him, and he wanted it to pour out of him.

He was who he was.

Before him, Circe lay with eyes closed, her skin a purple streaked with crusted red. Though her bleeding had stopped, her rasping breath had grown more congested, more labored. Gowen had lain Galen's coat on her, and he remained bent over her, healing her.

The coat had come from Elric, and Galen found his gaze turning toward that blackened figure, who lay half-exposed in his tattered robe, his ruined body looking cold and abandoned.

Circe had tortured him, had killed him, and now here she was, receiving healing from Gowen. Galen wanted to crush her. The equation was so simple, only a single term. She had to pay for what she'd done.

A warm rush of well-being was spreading through him already, in anticipation of casting the spell, and he realized, as he visualized his mind as a blank screen, prepared to impose the equation upon it, that if he cast the spell, he would never be able to stop. He wanted so much to strike back at something, anything, everything.

With a start he realized he'd lost his exercises-he
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