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Some sort of tracking device?"

Galen said nothing.

Fed snatched the ball in mid-bounce. "I'm sorry about Elric. He was a great mage."

"Yes."

"I hear Morden put Circe up to it, promised her power if she would join the Shadows. Everybody's talking about it." Fed paused, tossing the ball from one hand to the other. "I saw Morden when I was on Babylon 5. Slimy character." He looked over at Galen. "I hear you're going to kill him."

That was all the others were being told of his task. "The mages must know that Morden can give them nothing."

Fed studied the ball in silence, uncharacteristically thoughtful. Then his beard shifted with a crooked smile. "I put together those disguises for you, like you asked." Fed jerked a thumb toward the door, where a suitcase sat beside Galen's smaller valise. "They-may not quite be to your taste. But I guarantee you won't be recognized."

"And the gun?"

"I got you one of Tzakizak's specials. It's silent, very powerful, and won't show up on any weapon scan. But... I don't understand what you need it for."

Of course Fed didn't understand. Galen was a weapon himself; why would he need another? "Thank you," he said.

Fed's eyes narrowed in humor. "You better hurry back. Somehow I got drafted to take over your job. I'm not looking forward to sitting alone in a room all day."

An image came to him of the smoke-filled observation room, its walls running with molten metal. He forced it away.

The door opened, and Blaylock and Herazade entered.

"Thank you, Fed," Herazade said. "Please excuse us."

Galen stood, and Fed stood with him. "You know," Fed said, "our group of initiates hasn't done very well. We can't afford to lose any more."

"Good-bye, Federico."

Fed slapped him on the back. "Be keeping an eye on you.
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