Commissar Ciaphas Shae is told to allow members of the Berian Constabulary to enter and search the ship, but sees them off. They retreat to gather more men – but Shae sees that cannon are already being brought into position to fire on the ship.
After an interrogation in which Blackstone threatens Ilana – Walker’s fiancée, and the person he cares about most in the world – Walker is left shaken and doubting himself. But Shae turns things around, and Blackstone starts to talk.
Blackstone reveals that The Mage Conspiracy are attempting to overthrow not just the Aristocracy of Ber, but are set to strike at the leaders of all the major powers – backed by Commissars and King Aodhan! When confronted, though, about the Four Mages falsifying the information from the memory sphere, he avoids answering…
The Affirmative leaves the harbour safely, but is pursued by two Berian ships, the Interceptor and the Swiftrunner. They close and board, but are fought off. However, one of the marines on the ship recognises Walker from a previous life, and concentrates all of her effort on trying to kill him.
Gladness Malach sustains a moderate wound in the battle, and Walker receives a serious wound to the shoulder.