Mr. Morden. You don't believe that, do you?"
Morden's fist came away from his mouth, burrowed its way into his pocket. "No, of course not."
He was lying.
He believed it, or at least hoped it. Had the Shadows used that hope against him when, seven months later, he'd arrived on the rim?
There was no way to know.
Galen dissolved the image.
He'd been certain that Morden was a willing, enthusiastic agent of the Shadows. Still he believed it. But now that he'd thought of Anna, he couldn't get the comparison out of his mind. He'd seen no hope of restoring her, but even so he'd wanted to try.
If he could separate Morden from the Shadows, block the signal exciting the implant, perhaps even destroy the implant, could he free Morden? He didn't know how long it would take for the chemical influence of the Shadows to dissipate.
Even when it did, what would he find? Most likely, someone who took joy in the deaths of others, regardless of any manipulation. Could there be any other outcome?
"Oh shit," G'Leel said. She pointed to the image in the air before them.
Alwyn had appeared out of the darkness of Down Below to block Morden's path. He was swaying.
G'Leel bolted for the door. Galen ran after her, holding the probe's image in his mind's eye. The probe was stuck to the corridor wall several feet behind Morden, showing Morden's back, and beyond him, the intoxicated Alwyn.
"What do you want?" Morden said, his voice smooth, threatening. He set down his bags.
"I'm the one you didn't get yet. The one still standing," Alwyn said.
Galen and G'Leel raced down the corridor. Alwyn was too far away. He was either going to ruin Galen's plan, or get killed, or both, before they ever reached him. The idea that Morden might be some innocent victim seemed ridiculous