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John would learn what he could from the Shadows. Once he had, if they would not let him leave, then he intended to stop the war at its source.

It was a suicide mission. It would fail to destroy the Shadows, just as G'Leel's attempt had failed. John had constructed his own Trojan horse, but this one would not be admitted into the enemy's stronghold. The Eye would never allow a ship as powerful as the White Star to pass. The Shadows would force him to take a shuttle, or send a ship to pick him up.

Galen searched for John's probe in the vicinity of Z'ha'dum, but they hadn't yet arrived. From what he'd seen of the White Star ships, he believed it might be another day before they reached the rim.

He could not allow John to land here. John must fight the war, must win it. John should leave Z'ha'dum to him.

But how could he stop it? What could he do, except kill as many Shadows and destroy as much of their stronghold as possible before John arrived, so there would be no need for John's sacrifice?

That, he could not do. Yet the possibility lingered in his mind, unsettling him, promising him the satisfaction he desired.

He turned his mind away. He had to contact John and warn him, tell him that his plan would fail. An electron incantation with a non-mage was difficult, but could be accomplished, if he was able to forge a connection to John. The Shadows might well detect the attempted communication. He would have only one chance. He would wait until the White Star arrived in the system, for the best possibility of success. Then John would have to listen to him, would have to turn back.

In the meantime, Galen would pursue his task.

He followed the Wurt and their prisoners deeper, fatigue spreading through him. A faint sound echoed down the tunnel, like the
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