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almost as negative presences, almost like holes opening up in my mind. And cold. The sensation has caused me considerable discomfort, though I've been able to partially block it. Down here, though, it's much stronger."

"You've known this the entire time and didn't tell us?" Anna said.

"Would it have killed you to share information? You were planning to kill us all anyway. What difference would it have made?"

Donne's face clenched.

"I needed to see what they were going to do. I needed to see what their plans were. This technology, and this race, pose the single largest threat that telepaths have ever had to face."

"And if we all get killed in the meantime, that just makes your job easier."

"I'd prefer that you destroy them, frankly."

Anna ran her hands up under her hair, dug her fingers into her scalp.

"We're archaeologists, for God's sake!"

She paced off, caught Morden's exhausted gaze, paced back.

"You sensed the egg underground. Then what?"

"I wasn't thinking too clearly, but I realized it might be necessary to leave the planet sooner than planned. I wanted those mice, at least, for Psi Corps to study. I knew Morden had hidden them and figured he'd sent the probe off a cliff. From studying the terrain earlier, I had a good idea of where he'd done it. I was right. By then, the storm was so bad I didn't think I could make it around the outcropping to find you. I decided to go through the caves. That's how I found the others. And the rest you know."

Anna began to walk again.

"When you say you found the others," Anna said, "you mean you found the egg?"

"No. They're not in the egg anymore. Quiet. Turn out your light."

Anna turned off her flashlight and noticed that there was a low level of light in the cave now. Morden was cradling
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