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to transcend himself in three ways: open himself to others, open himself to himself, and open himself to God. In joining with the tech, Galen believed he may have, in his own way, done all three.

He had once hated the universe for having no justice, no order. He realized now how horrible it would be if the universe had those qualities, if it possessed the answers and imposed them on all those within.

But the universe carried not answers, but questions. As the alien deep beneath the surface of Z'ha'dum had said, it was simply seeking understanding, as was he.

Who? What? Why?

He had found the beginning of the answers to those questions as they related to himself. But a whole universe awaited. He turned his mind toward it. He wanted to see it, to feel it.

Who was the universe? What was the universe? Why was the universe?

He didn't believe he'd ever find all the answers. Yet it was not the answers that mattered. It was the search, between the known and the unknown, the light and the dark, through the shadowy territory that was his place, where understanding would be gained. All that could be known, he would know. For each piece of knowledge would generate new questions, and questions, not answers, were the goal: to look at a shooting star, or a dividing cell, or a person, or a universe, and to wonder.

Above that, he could imagine no greater purpose.


Jeanne Cavelos began her professional life as an astrophysicist, working in the Astronaut Training Division at NASA's Johnson Space Center. Her love of science fiction sent her into a career in publishing. She became a senior editor at Dell Publishing, where she ran the science fiction/fantasy program and created the Abyss horror line, for which she won the World Fantasy Award. A few years ago,
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