thought occurred to him, a second layer of blackness flowed out over him and Morden. Then he knew what he must do. Another layer, and another, and another. He told the machine people to do the same, but they didn't have the ability.
He and Morden raced deeper, layer after layer covering them, faster and faster, closing them in a thick cocoon of blackness.
In the cavern above, the tiny brilliant sun crashed through the skylight.
Then there was light.
For a moment, everything flashed a white so white that it seemed reality had been stopped, erased. The cavern was overwhelmed by it, consumed by it. From Galen's position deep within the pit, the opening of the Eye appeared a blinding disk. A sheet of sun cut down through the machine people, turning them into brilliant pale figures all around him. The light penetrated even through the layers of his cocoon, so that for one, frozen moment, he and Morden found themselves staring at each other.
Then the shock wave boiled out, and as the Eye screamed, he screamed with it, the agony of Z'ha'dum filling them, the explosion blasting through towers, ripping through stone, roaring down tunnels, raging through channels and shafts and chambers, hurtling outward, melting, incinerating, disintegrating.
The wave of destruction stormed down through the pit with crushing pressure and searing heat. In a foaming rush one after another of the machine people was blown apart, and at the same time, with each explosion, he was blown apart, the pain an overwhelming blur of sensation broken only by the tech's tortured wail resounding inside him.
Z'ha'dum was dying; the Eye was dying; he was dying.
As the blast rushed deeper it seized his cocoon, pressure squeezing around him, heat sinking through layer upon layer of Shadow skin