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organic technology, just as the Shadows did, but he'd been able to find only the most vague information on it. Galen set his sensors to record.

Tentatively, he brought his hand to the wall, ready to pull away at the slightest hint of movement. The surface was hard yet warm, its yellow-green pattern shifting slightly. He detected carbon, silicon, oils, various organic compounds. Beneath the skin, electrical activity traveled along structures that resembled nerves, elastic fibers stretched like muscles, and liquid flowed through a circulatory system. When he'd been connected to Anna, he'd gotten a similar impression of the Shadow ships.

He sensed something more, though, something in the shifting pattern of its skin, an unquantifiable sense of life, and more than that, of intelligence. As if he were in the presence of a sentient creature, and that creature was watching him.

Galen began two new mind-focusing exercises. He had to keep his thoughts calm, disciplined, so he would notice any telepathic probe.

He stepped out of the air lock and found the bottom of the cylinder as hard and firm as the side. He extended his sensors forward, searching. The Vorlons were the ancient enemies of the Shadows. They believed in order, while the Shadows promoted chaos. But did they, too, use innocent beings as central processing units for their ships? He could not tell.

Around him the patterns shifted, studying him. He moved ahead. Time for the Vorlon to let him in or kill him.

Galen stumbled on some unevenness. A ripple propagated through the yellow-green skin beneath his feet and continued ahead, toward the Vorlon ship. The ripple ran not only through the bottom of the cylindrical passage, but all around its circumference, in the shape of a ring. He stopped, puzzled. In
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