Story Hour: Beyond Babylon 5


Episode 18: The Blackest Heart, part 1.
August 12th 2258.

Guest Stars:

Scott Bakula as Captain Jake Cunningham.
Julianna Margulies as Doctor Marissa Fletcher.

Tantalus station is going to be the site of a Mutai tournament among the resident aliens, and Ethan is given the job of making sure the event goes safely and as quietly as it can. Not too pleased as having such an activity on his watch, but also knowing that the aliens won't be pleased if he sticks his human nose in recruits Rathenn as his voice.

Ethan wants to speak with the organiser of the event so they head to the quarters of the Muta-Do. They are met at the entrance to his quarters by a Brakiri assist named Nakir. Nakir invites them in and introduces the Muta-Do, an ageing Hyach. Ethan explains that while the fight will be taking place in the opened levels below away from populated levels of the station, it will be televised across the station for all to watch and that he will have security there to make sure everything goes smoothly. The Muta-Do says that such precautions are unnecessary but fair. They discuss the tournament and eventually leave.

The next morning, Nakir comes to Ethan in his office and says that someone left a data crystal in a package outside his door this morning. When Ethan puts the crystal in the player it shows a silhouetted figure (no details visible) speaking through some kind of voice scrambler. The figure on screen advises Nakir to throw his fights or else he dies. Nakir is concerned for his life but also he cannot not fight in case he is shamed. He refuses to throw his fights either. Ethan calls Rathenn down to the office to see what he makes of it. Rathenn watches the screen and his keen hearing picks up the quiet hum of Minbari engines in the background.
Nakir is sent back to his quarters and told to go about his business while they investigate.

Rathenn runs the security tapes of that corridor earlier that day. He soon finds one of the station security walking down the corridor and placing the package outside Nakir's door and then walking off. Ethan runs the records and learns his name is Douglas Hetherington. He calls Douglas into his office and asks him why he put the package there. Douglas says that he has not been on that level all day. He's been in the enginerring areas since last night. Rathenn performs a surface scan and learns that Douglas is being honest. Ethan plays the crystal again and Douglas is shocked to see himself on the screen. Ethan sends him back to work but he is not to speak of this until the matter is cleared up.

Ethan has the idea that perhaps some illicit betting is going on and maybe its connected to that. Rathenn is not sure but agrees to help investigate. While Ethan goes down to the seedier side of the station to check into it, Rathenn runs ship records but cannot find any Minbari vessels having been here in the last three weeks. he begins to worry that perhaps the Shadowsouled have reared themselves again. He contacts Shinchiro and asks him to look into the situation as well since he is an unknown on the station.

None of the legitimate bookies in the Zocalo are taking bets yet since no fights have been announced, so Ethan heads down. As he enters a bar he almost walks into Shinchiro walking out. Shinchiro makes his excuses and leaves. Ethan speaks to the barkeep and is directed to a guy in the corner as someone who takes bets. Ethan proves to have less tact than his predecessor and ends up in a barfight. At the end of it, Ethan interrogates the bleeding and bloodied bookie than a Minbari named "Rathenn" put a sizeable bet on Nakir. Ethan pays for the damage and heads back uptop.

During this time Rathenn has been down to the engineering section to look about. Concerned that something may he been planted he looks around and asks the engineers if they have seen anything unusual. None of them has and one says "not since you were down here this morning." Rathenn scans his mind and sure enough sees himself down here talking to the engineer. He now changes his mind... this could be someone with a changeling net!

Rathenn returns to his quarters where Shinchiro is waiting for him. He learns that Rathenn has been seen putting large bets on the fight across the station. He thanks Shinchiro and gives him a few credits for his help. Ethan then turns up and explains the same. On a station this size how do they catch this person before someone gets hurt?

Cutscene: A gathering of lowlife's in the dark underbelly of the station, including the guy that Ethan beat up. Rathenn stands at the head of the room and looks them all over.
"Well done. The first stage of the operation is underway."

To be Continued...


After a short break for summer, we have the 2nd part of this story on Friday. Look for the update shortly after. :D

Edit: Finally... after that summer break, we're back. :roll:


The Blackest Heart part 2.

Guest Stars:

Scott Bakula as Captain Jake Cunningham.
Julianna Margulies as Doctor Marissa Fletcher.
Joss Ackland as Eldrin.

Next morning, the day of the Mutai, Rathenn and Ethan are discussing the situation in their office. They are definitely convinced that the criminal behind all this is using a Changling Net to cover their tracks and throw suspicion on Rathenn, though they cannot figure out why. Firstly, Nakir is no champion fighter and not worth the investment in forcing him to throw a fight. Second, why Rathenn’s appearance? Its true that he’s a visible face around the station and known by the staff but he is a memorable figure. Wouldn’t it be better to pretend to be a regular tech or security guard? Ethan goes back to speak with Nakir and asks him again if there’s any reason why someone would blackmail him. Nakir has no idea, leaving Ethan frustrated.

They use the station monitors to seek out other Minbari on the station and find three visitors, all of whom check out and Rathenn is convinced that they are not responsible or involved. A check of records and manifests show that there has been no Minbari ship since Delenn’s arrival at the beginning of the month.

Eventually while watching the monitor recordings from the bar where Ethan had his bust up yesterday with the bookie, they spot a new Minbari (who know one seems to know) talking to a known low-key smuggler and free trader, Jack Hawkins. This Minbari isn’t recorded as being on the station and so Rathenn contacts Minbar for any ID on the man. He comes back as a free trader whose ship vanished in a supposed “hyperspace accident” over six months ago, presumed dead. Rathenn continues to watch the tape and sees Hawkins meet up with a half-dozen other men (all known traders, one or two if a dodgey past). He tries lip reading them but doesn’t make much out… something about “ducks,” and either “communication” or “desecration.”

Rathenn checks to see where he was “seen” last by the engineer and finds that it was the communication level of the engineering section. His fears begin to mount. He contacts Shinchiro and asks him to keep another eye out in the bars and downbelow in case he can pick anything up from the locals.

Rathenn and Ethan then decide to check Jack Hawkin’s quarters. When they get no answer, Ethan uses his security code to allow access. Inside they find Hawkins dead of an energy weapon burn to his chest, and an open packing crate. The packing material has been spread around but Rathenn guesses that it could hold two small cubic objects (he spent a good while examining the packing materials). With this in mind they report to the captain and then split up. Ethan heads down to the Zocalo to look for the mysterious Minbari while Rathenn checks in with Doctor Fletcher. Rathenn asks if she has had anyone in showing signs of having used a changeling net for a while but so far no.

Rathenn then contacts Delenn and sends her a message saying that he has a fear that a Shadowsouled may be on the station. He receives a message from Shichiro saying that he has a lead and will report back soon. With no further clues right now, both Rathenn and Ethan sort out making sure that the Mutai will go ahead without a scratch. During this Ethan receives a report that there has been a shooting down in engineering. The victim is being taken to medlab.

When they reach medlab they find the victim is Shichiro. He’s unconscious but under the skilful care of the medlab team will be fine. Ethan heads down to check out the area, while Rathenn prepares to probe Shinchiro’s mind. What he sees is some of the traders talking and then heading out. Shinchiro follows them down into the engineering area and to a quiet corner room. There they meet with an ashen skinned Minbari who hands one of the men the controller for the changeling Net, who heads out. The other seven men reveal that each has a almost clear cubic object to the Minbari who nods seemingly pleased. Shinchiro must have made a noise as the men look up. Everything goes black for him. Rathenn stays here in Medlab for now.

Ethan listens to what Rathenn informs him and then they make their way to one of three possible rooms that Rathenn saw in his friend’s mind. The tech’s that Ethan ropes into helping search locate one of the cubes attached to the communications rely but it seems dead. Ethan treats it as though it could be an explosive and has the techies try and remove it. They do so with ease. After checking it the techies inform them that the devices are relays themselves, un-powered except when connected to the main station relays. They guess that a signal would be directed to them from inside the station and then these devices would transmit it elsewhere without the message appearing in the Com logs. Ethan sets his teams to work finding the remaining six cubes.

Informed of this situation Captain Cunningham orders all ships to hold their positions and orders all communication traffic to be killed, internal as well as external. Ethan and Rathenn realise that this means only security signals are active but they also go through the same internal relays. Not prepared to take chances, Ethan orders even the security channels closed for the time being. The station goes quiet.

Thankfully the teams are successful in recovering the seven relay cubes, but as they breath a sigh of relief, the station is rocked by a small explosion. When the communications are brought back online, they find that the Mutai has been the site of an explosion. All other concerns forgotten the station personnel react to help the dying. Forty or so dead, and a handful wounded. Investigation finds the body (what’s left of it) of one of the traders, in his hand lies the destroyed remains of a Changeling Net. Medical examination reveals that he was planted with explosives and they were detonated when the first fight started. Rathenn fears that this was a rather nasty distraction and that it may be too late to find the mysterious Minbari.

Checking the quarters of the other conspirators, they are found shot dead in their rooms. Their ships are impounded and examined. The only clue being a brief log entry on one ship saying that he had been paid handsomely to transport some communication gear aboard Tantalus from Earth without security or customs being any the wiser.

What this was really all about may not be known… yet!

Final Cutscene: Four days later. We see security officer Douglas Hetherington walking unchallenged through customs and into a quiet corner of the upper engineering area. He shifts form into a techie and then opens up a hidden compartment that seems to lead into a small vessel of some kind. From the outside we see a pod (much like the one used in the Gathering pilot) but black and spider-like. The pod detaches from the station hull and fades away into the darkness.


Oh boy, with work and a new child (not mine, one of the players) in the galaxy, we haven't had a lot of time to continue B5. That changes tonight. Look for a report either later tonight or tomorrow.

The Athena Strain starts tonight. :)


The Athena Strain – Part 1.
August 22nd 2258.

Guest Stars:

Scott Bakula as Captain Jake Cunningham.
Julianna Margulies as Doctor Marissa Fletcher.

Shortly after coming on duty, Rathenn and Ethan are called to the Captains office for a new assignment. For the past several weeks Dr Fletcher has been assisting a Dr Karlson in his virology research, and he has now been called back to Earth. Captain Cunningham has been asked to ensure that Karlson and his research reach Earth safely and quickly. Since Karlson has not met either Rathenn or Ethan, they are perfect for a little undercover bodyguard duty. Karlson and his assistant Emily Talson, have had seats booked onboard a liner, the Athena, for tomorrow morning. Cunningham has arranged two bunks in their cabin as well for the characters.

After accepting the task, they check through available records about Karlson but find nothing to make him appear suspect. He is a brilliant scientist with many awards to his credit. His assistant is the daughter of the owner of Talson Pharmaceuticals and is a respected bio-chemist herself.

The next morning the characters join the queues to board the Athena. Shortly before they reach the boarding hatch there is a commotion behind them in the line. A Centauri collapses, dragging a couple other passengers down with him. When security get to him he is already dead. Ethan makes his way to a com unit and informs Medlab. He asks that Dr Fletcher contact him aboard the Athena to report the cause of death, just in case there is something going that might be relevant to their flight or mission.

Once in their cabin they say their hellos to their fellow passengers, Dr Karlson, Dr Talson, and a Narn named V’tath. The flight gets underway and with only a little light conversation between the five of them, they settle down for the trip to Earth.

After an hour, Captain Morrison bursts into their cabin and asks for Karlson. He then proceeds to inform the doctor that he has received an emergency call from Tantalus station with regards to the experiment he was performing. It seems that the sample containers he is transporting are unstable and that they need to be jettisoned right now! Karlson pulls out a case from beneath his bunk and opens it up. Inside are several viral containers that have started to crack and melt. Its too late! Karlson pales and informs the captain that its too late, the virus is airborne and is most likely now in the Athena’s air supply. Morrison asks what the virus is and Karlson explains that it is a sample of Volinian Plague. V’tath enters a rage and attacks Karlson. In his anger he yells that Volinian Plague is lethal to his people. It takes Morrison and Ethan to pull him off the doctor.
Morrison orders the Narn to be taken to the medical bay, and asks Karlson what can be done. Karlson says that there is a simple cure and it should be easy to make it onboard the ship. Morrison assigns Ethan and Rathenn to assist him in his work. The captain also orders all escape pods locked just in case the passengers learn of this and a panic ensues.

Once in medical, Doctor Karlson informs Ethan, Rathenn and Chief of Security Greenburg, that in most species Volinian Plague takes several days to take affect, but in the Narn it only needs a few hours, so time is of the essence. As they work on a cure, Captain Morrison contacts Tantalus and reports the situation. He is informed that due to quarantine laws the ship cannot return to an inhabited system and is redirected to a holding point in Sector 49.

It does not take doctor Karlson long to fabricate a cure for the plague and he injects V’tath with it. Instead of curing the plague, it has the opposite reaction and begins to spread through his system faster. Karlson is at a loss for what to do. Rathenn asks what his research was, and Karlson says that Volinian Plague is a dead virus but as with all such bacteria there is always some kept in case of resurgence. The samples he was working on must have been corrupted in the copying process and has mutated into something else. It will take more than the facilities onboard the Athena to find a cure. He hopes they can reach Earth soon before the other passengers learn of it.

Ethan uses the ships computer and checks the ships cargo manifest in case there is anything down in the hold that might help. Nothing really shows up but he asks the Captain for permission to go and check. With no other option Morrison agrees. There are a few surprises in some of the crates - wrong contents mainly, but one item might be useful. In a crate marked analysis materials is an industrial disintegrate, used for destroying waste from construction. If push comes to shove they can destroy any infected dead with this machine. Not a popular idea but acceptable given the circumstances.

As the day moves on, V’tath dies from the illness, and is for the time being dumped into an empty cargo crate in the hold. Word comes back from Tantalus to Rathenn that the Centauri who died onboard Tantalus just before departure was a member of House Lurshan, recently affiliated with House Refa until their houses had a falling out. Most likely an assassination as Dr Fletcher found traces of Fildreeni poison in the dead Centauri’s hearts. It may not be connected to what’s going on aboard the Athena but they never know. The next task is to check if there are any Centauri onboard, and there are. A diplomat heading to Earth with his entourage. Rathenn pays them a brief visit on the pretence of being a fellow first class passenger. He only gets to meet the diplomatic aide but its enough for him to scan the Centauri’s mind and learn that he at least knows nothing of any assassination attempt.

As the days first flight comes to an end, Morrison receives confirmation that several other Narn on the ship have reported feeling unwell.

To be continued…


The Athena Strain - Part 2.

By morning the Narn passengers are dead, and the characters have the unenviable job of storing them in empty crates until rescue arrives. They then access the computer records for details of their new destination - Sector 49 and learn that prior to the construction of the Babylon 5 station, this was the closest EA outpost to the Centauri Republic. Its only facility was removed shortly after B5 went online. Ethan fears that the outpost might be covert and still operational, which is why there are redirected there. Not much they can do right now though.

Upon arriving through the Jump Gate at Sector 49 they are met by the Hyperion cruiser Viscount, whose captain orders Morrison to move the Athena away from the jump gate and to hold position until a medical frigate arrives. The Viscount’s captain cannot give any specific details on the ETA of the medical frigate, a small oversight that has the characters worried. They wonder whether the EA intends to let them die then clean up the mess, or just blast them into dust and put it down to an accident with the jump gate. Thankfully for the moment, they are not being shot at.

Instead the ship suffers an accident in engineering. Coolant from the engines floods engineering, killing the chief engineer. Ethan and Rathenn don space suits and follow the repair teams in. It takes them some time to bring the situation under control, and despite Ethan’s growing concerns, it looks to Rathenn like a genuine accident. It will take several hours to recharge and contain the damaged parts of the ship.

As the day wears on, the passengers begin to get concerned, and the meagre security onboard have their hands full keeping calm. Some passengers complain that the ship isn’t moving and demand to know why. Rathenn and Ethan discuss this with Captain Morrison and they decide to inform the passengers that there has been an accident in engineering and that the Viscount is here to offer technical help and repairs. It seems to work for now. However, during this time the Centauri diplomat onboard has his aide raid the kitchens for food and then seals himself in his quarters. Ethan takes charge of this and orders the air supply to his room cut off. After almost an hour, the game is up and the food is returned. Since his quarters on the ship fall under a little used corner-case in diplomatic immunity he cannot be charged for detained for this action, but Ethan is going to keep an eye on him.

Before they retire to bed, Rathenn plants a tracking program into the Athena’s computers, allowing him to monitor what is happening on the bridge.

Both are awoken several hours later by two explosions that rock the ship. As they clamber from their beds and check the bridge link, they find the Athena and Viscount under attack from a Centauri battlecruiser. The Athena is trying to make its escape to the jump gate while the Hyperion desperately keeps the larger ship busy. The Athena has suffered minor damage to the hull but she escapes.
At this time the two characters come clean with Captain Morrison and reveal who they are. Morrison asks if they plan on charge of his ship, but they say no. Their responsibilities are to ensure the current crisis is averted and that everyone gets out of this alive. The Athena needs her captain to do this. Morrison sets cause for a small system just off the usual hyperspace routes.

Once they arrive Morrison fills them in on the altercation. The Centauri vessel arrived through the gate and ordered the Athena and the Viscount to stand down. They cited a little known and never before used clause in the Earth-Centauri treaty that gives them jurisdiction over any viral or medical threat to the Centauri Republic. Thankfully, the Viscount refused, though it started a shooting match. Out here, they should not be found.

Rathenn has the idea of taking a shuttle into hyperspace through the jump gate, and transmitting a message to Tantalus from there. Since everyone is looking for the Athena, they won’t be looking for a transmission from a smaller shuttle. They contact Tantalus and learn that the remaining botched samples and the cure that Doctor Fletcher was working on were seized by the EAS Anubis, which arrived early this morning. Rathenn remembers the Anubis as the ship that tried to fire on them several months ago during their time on Adellie 14-Beta. They also learn that the EA has put out an order specifically warning that the Athena is a designated plague ship and will be fired upon if it enters any EA system. The Centauri and the Narn have also launched a number of warships to locate the Athena, so Cunningham warns them to lay low and be careful until help can arrive.

Following that conversation, they send a message to Roland Anderson seeing if he can help. He can't promise anything but will try to quietly call in a few favours.

Rathenn then contacts Delenn onboard Babylon 5 and informs her of the situation, and asks if there is anything that the Minbari Federation can do to assist. She is unsure what she can do since this matter is nothing to the Minbari, but she is eventually able to pull some strings and have a Minbari cruiser head to another system closer to the Minbari borders to deliver medical supplies. That’s the best that she can do.

On the flight back to the Athena, Rathenn locates a data crystal in his pocket which is not his. Playing it through the shuttles computers it contains technical readouts of Minbari warships. Such information cannot be allowed to fall into human hands so Rathenn copies the crystal but implements a few changes to make it worthless. Back onboard the Athena he checks the security logs for the journey and eventually spots a Brakiri bumping into him just before he boarded the liner. They locate him, wait for him to go to the bathroom and then Ethan interrogates him for information. Intimidation and a little telepathy is all it takes for the Brakiri to own up and say that he was paid by a black contact (a client whose identity is never revealed) to pick up the crystal at Tantalus and have it transported to Earth. Once there it would be picked up by someone else. Rathenn gives him the “doctored” crystal and tells him to do his job. Puzzled, the Brakiri takes the crystal and returns to his seat.

The Athena departs for another minor system just to be sure. Looking over the star charts, Ethan suggests that Sigma 957 might be a good choice, but something tells Rathenn that that would not be a good idea. So, they divert to another system.

The following morning as they head up to the bridge to speak with the Captain, they arrive on time just as a Narn cruiser enters the gates, its weapons locking onto the Athena!

To be continued…!

Edit: Missed a small bit. Reminded by one of the players.


Fantastic news! I have a third player lined up in the wings to join the game. Next chapter is tomorrow night so I'm have to find a way to get him involved.

Don't know what he's going to play as yet, but he'll either be a passenger on the Athena or possibly a member of her crew. Will have to see.


Okiday, look for the next update in a day or two (busy work schedule next couple days).

Our new player rolled up a Minbari (religious caste) Agent (5th level) with plans to take Anla'shok Ranger next level. We discussed the character and he wants to be a Ranger in training who has undertaken his training throughout his prior 5 levels.

He felt a little over his head I think but picked up the game quite quickly.


The Athena Strain - Part 3

As the Narn cruiser sped through the gates, the captain contacts the Athena and demands that she stand down and prepare to send over as many survivors as possible in their shuttles. When asked why, the captain responds that they will be taken to a secure Narn facility to be treated. Neither of our heroes believe this and so to buy time they ask if they can transport the dead Narn over first. The Narn captain agrees.
Greenbridge gets on the internal communications to the engineering teams and tells them to play with the power, make it look like the shuttle bays are having troubles, and vent some of the coolant as well. Really make it look like the Athena is in a bad way... which isn't far from the truth.

While they talk to Captain Morrison on the bridge, the Minbari delegation arrive and offer one of their number, Keeno, to assist. Since he hasn't been seen with Greenbridge or Rathenn they agree to his aid, and ask him to monitor the passengers for signs of trouble. Keeno heads down to second class.

A routine scan of the Narn vessel shows signs of damage to their powercore and this gives Rathenn an idea. Heading down to the shuttlebay he uses his computer to create a zombie program in the shuttle communications. Once the dead are aboard, the shuttle launches. When it reaches the Narn vessel and they tie their computer into it for docking, the program activates and shuts down the Narn ship. The Athena moves off at limited speed. The Narn have just enough power to fire their main guns once which punch a hole in the side of the already stricken freighter and then it goes dark. The Athena pours on the power and through the jump gate.

Keeno heads back to the bridge and informs Rathenn and Greenbridge that there are small groups who might be trouble. Rathenn and Captain Morrison believe that it may be time to inform people of the real situation. They decide to do this in small groups, and let the reality seep in slowly. This method actually works - proof that letting people know the truth is better than keeping them in the dark. Greenbridge also asks Lord Topa to assist in this and help calm any desperate people down.

Then the bad news comes in. That last shot from the Narn struck the mess and the refrigerators destroying nearly all the remaining food. The Athena now has less than 4 days food if they ration it. But thats not all, venting the engine coolant back there means that after this flight the Athena won't be able to make another jump into Hyperspace. Navigation shows a small uninhabited system - Omega/Beta 3374 - not too far from their current course and it may be a safe spot to try and wait out the rescue from there. With a nod of agreement all around the pilot locks onto the new beacon and changes course.

Omega/Beta 3374 is a nasty system compossed of a thin outer edge asteroid field. two massive gas giants and a single almost uninhabited frozen world. Distant scans show that there is water on the innermost world though the atmosphere may be irradiated, but at least they can get fresh water. Greenbridge has an idea, and asks if the ships engines could handle the gases found in the gas giants atmosphere as a temporary coolant? The chief engineer agrees but theres no safe way to collect it. Greenbridge suggests flying the Athena into the upper atmosphere, open the venting system and allow the flight of the ship to draw the gases in. No one on the bridge wants to risk flying the Athena into the gas giants atmosphere, so Greenbridge volunteers. Even Rathenn takes a moment to pray.

Settling into the pilots seat Greenbridge sets course for the nearest gas giant and swings her around to find the best descent angle. The Athena bounces and buffets as the hull screetches in protest. The rotating habitat sections burn red and chunks of metal and hull plating are ripped from the ships already battle-damaged superstructure. Crew and passengers alike strap themselves in fearfully. The pull of the gas giant is immense and the hull buckles as she is slowly pulled down. Greenbridge opens the vents and the gases are pulled into the engine core. At the last possible moment, he hits the engines to full and roars from the dark clouds back into space, trailing a path of cast off metal and microdust.
The bridge crew applaude!

Over the next 24 hours they send shuttles down to the surface of the frozen world near the core of the system to collect fresh water. Sadly it is at this time that the first non-Narn casualties come in. As they did with the Narn, the bodies are placed in the hold. Dr Karlson takes blood samples from everyone again to check the condition of the virus as it spreads through them. Greenbridge and Keeno are both suffering, though there is no trace of the virus in Rathenn's blood. No one can figure out why but Karlson wonders whether Ratheen's telepathic abilities might be an explaination.

The flight through the gas giants atmosphere was not entirely a success. Down in the hold a cannister of unstable gases lays dented from the impacts and shaking after that flight. Mid-morning it explodes, taking the main cargo hold with it. Another hole erupts in the skin of the Athena. Security tracking shows what happened before the explosion, but this makes Rathenn think that there may still be a saboteur onboard.

Later that day, the Athena's sensors show the jump gate in use. A single starfury comes through. Faces drop, fearing that this is a scout for another military vessel. When communications are recieved from the pilot of the fighter wishing to dock, permission is granted. When the fighter gets closer a black omega symbol is revealed on its hull. Ratheen and Keeno head down to the docking bay to welcome the pilot onboard. The pilot introduces himself as Bosworth, a psicop. He claims that he was sent by their mutual friend back on Earth. Mr Anderson? They still don't trust him and Rathenn gives him a stern warning when he detects Bosworth scanning Keeno. In his defence he needed to know the situation onboard but agrees not to scan anyone else without permission. They escort him up to the bridge but Rathenn refuses to leave him alone. Greenbridge is unhappy at his presence onboard but so long as Rathenn is around to keep him in check. Bosworth does indeed try to scan a member of the crew and recieves a hard shove in the back from Rathenn for his troubles.

Bosworth says that he has a destination in hyperspace of a facility that can cure the virus and get everyone back on their way. If the Athena heads there the PsiCorps can sort the situation. Greenbridge lies and says that the Athena isn't going anywhere in her present condition. Rathenn suggests using the shuttles. May take longer but it would also be more manageable. Bosworth isn't happy about this saying that its a 12 hour round trip but if thats how it is he has no other choice. Greenbridge departs down to the passenger areas and asks for volunteers. None of the aliens step forward though Lord Topa and his entourage are easily convinced. Once they have enough loaded onboard, Bosworth takes the pilot seat and says he'll be back for the rest later with more shuttles. The shuttle departs and heads through the gate.

Rathenn and Keeno attempt to gain access to Bosworth's Starfury. They break in but are unable to break the encryption on his computers. All they can learn is that he came from a specific location deep in hyperspace. Suddenly warning klaxxons fire!

A Centauri warcrusier jumps from hyperspace almost ontop of the Athena. Boarding pods are dropped onto the hull. Security rush to repel boarders. Greenbridge meets up with Keeno and together with two other security personnel they fight to contain the boarding party. Rathenn heads to the bridge. The firefight is brief and only Keeno and a wounded Greenbridge survive. The second boarding party are dealt with by ship security. Attempts by the bridge to contact the Centauri vessel are met with orders to "stand down and allow yourselves to be boarded!"

The jumpgate flares a huge Explorer Ship cruises through the gate. The captain offers assistence to the Athena but stops his ship short of the confrontation. He informs the bridge of the Athena that the medical facilties onboard his vessel are equipped to handle the number of survivors the Athena has, if they can get away from the Centauri. When that information is passed onto the Centauri they still refuse to allow the vessel to leave, and move back to target the Athena's engines.

The gate flares again, and a Hyperion cruiser appears on the scanners. The captain of the Hyperion informs that Centauri that the Athena is an Earth Alliance vessel and any attempts to open fire or board her will be met with deadly force... treaty or no treaty. His threat is cut short as another jump point appears, this time directly above the Centauri! The damaged Narn crusier roars down opening fire at the Athena but striking the Centauri vessel.

Rathenn orders the pilot to get the hell out of here and the Athena roars into life towards the Explorer ship. The Hyperion opens fire on the Narn but the T'Loth cruiser's lasers cut the Primus in half and then the ship swings round beneath the Hyperion, its guns now tracking the Athena! Rathenn orders everyone to hold onto something! Another jump point forms alongside the T'Loth and a Minbari cruiser emerges, its precise beams slicing through the engines and power core of the Narn vessel. The T'Loth powers down and enters a spin. The Minbari captain offers his apologies for the late arrival but they had moved from their prior position.

Over the next few hours the surviving passengers and crew of the Athena are transported over to the Explorership and put through a rigourous medical program, but several days later everyone is cured and flown on to their destination. Greenbridge and the others ask the captain of the Hyperion if, now that their job to see Karlson to Earth is over, he would fly them back to Tantalus. He happily agrees considering the rough couple weeks they have just had.


Meanwhile deep in Hyperspace, onboard a PsiCorps mothership we see Topa and the other passengers taken from the Athena asleep in crytubes. Bosworth is talking to another PsiCop.
"Its a shame that we couldn't recover the others, but these twenty or so will have do. At least Project Tarsier will have a few more test subjects."



Episode 20: Cast The First Stone.
September 20th 2258.

Guest Stars:

Scott Bakula as Captain Cunningham.
Julianna Margulies as Dr Marissa Fletcher.
Morgan Freeman as Captain Elias Mobuto.
Rutger Hauer as Martin Warrington.

(Please note, this was pretty much an on-the-fly scenario hence it doesn't flow as well as prior stories)

Upon returning to the Tantalus station after their adventure on the Athena and subsequent quarantine, Rathenn and Greenbridge find quarters for Keeno, and then report to the captain. After a debrief on current situations aboard the station, mainly involving Raider activity in the area and the imminant arrival of a new XO, they go about their duties.
When a distress call comes in from the prison transport Heimdall, Greenbridge jumps into a starfury to assist Alpha Flight and the EAS Pegasus. They reach the transport just as the Raiders begin a final assault. Riding fire, Greenbridge takes out a couple and tries to grapple the remains of a disabled Delta-V, but the other Raiders shoot it out from under him rather than have one of their number captured.

Meanwhile back on board Tantalus, Rathenn runs the records of what or who is onboard the Heimdall. Most are dangerous criminals, but one name flags up with a Earthdome warning: Martin Warrington - a notorious Free Mars terrorist who has been serving time on a Drazi colony for the past couple years. When he brings this to the attention of Captain Cunningham, station security are warned to be on alert as the prisoners will have to be transferred to Tantalus pending repairs to the Heimdall. The cells are emptied of any non-dangerous prisoners in preperation.

When the Heimdall and escort arrive through the gate, shuttles are dispatched to remove the prisoners and crew from the transport and into a secured landing area. Greenbridge orders that the prisoners be taken to the cells two at a time, with a three man escort. While this may take time, its the easier way of handling such a large prisoner transference. Warrington will be taken last.

Captain Cunningham retires for the evening and asks Rathenn to take charge in C&C to oversee everything while Greenbridge handles the prisoners.
At this time, Keeno encounters Shinchiro in the market area who accuses of him of being "his replacement." Keeno doesn't know Shinchiro and assumes his a drunk and manages to calmly make an escape from the confrontation.

At long last the last prisoner is placed in the cells, and they can relax. That is until another distress call goes out, from a League trader attacked by Raiders. Rathenn orders the Pegasus out to assist. Only a couple hours later, another call comes in from a Vree medical transport whose engines have failed and it is adrift in hyperspace. Rathenn and Greenbridge confer and although they are concerned that this could be a trap to lure more of the fighters away from the station, they cannot in all good conscience leave the Vree out there if it is a genuine call. They dispatch Alpha Flight and a couple shuttles to locate the stricken ship and tow it back to the station. Just to be on the safe side, Rathenn puts half of Beta Flight out, cycling them every few hours just in case.

In the market area Keeno overhears a conversation between three men discussing Martin Warrington.. One man wants finish him for his actions, and he pays the other two to help. Keeno contacts Greenbridge and informs him. When Greenbridge arrives, he takes the three men to one side and informs them quite bluntly that Warrington will be punished for his crimes against Earth and that taking matters into their own hands is not the way to do it. When the ringleader refuses to see sense, Greenbridge threatens to put him in the cell with Warrington and let it end as it will. He doesn’t go through with his threat and turns them loose.

Later, Keeno sees one of the three men sitting at a bar nursing a number of really serious injuries. When he enquires what happened, the guy shrugs and says that his mate beat him up out of rage for being stopped by security. Keeno convinces him to press charges, which he does. The ringleader is dragged in and this time Greenbridge goes through with his threat and places him in the cell with Warrington overnight.
In the morning when they come to check on him, Martin Warrington is dead and the ringleader admits to doing his duty as promised. Greenbridge realises that he has been set up to get him in here with Warrington and pulls the three men together. The ringleader is held over for trial and the other two told to get off the station before Greenbridge does something he’ll regret.

Later, Alpha Flight arrives towing the Vree ship and Rathenn is pleased that he made the right call. Greenbridge holds the prisoners here for two more days until the Heimdall is repaired and ready to roll. After the brief trial the ringleader behind Warrington’s murder is sent to Earth onboard the Heimdall with the others. Both Greenbridge and Rathenn are amassed that he actually arrives!


Mark Dunder

Just wanted to bump this up so I could find it easier. :D :D

Could also post this as a story to the B5 fan fiction forum.

I have been watching the original show on DVD from the first episode. Had missed a lot of it when it first ran.

My favorite line so far is: "...don't give away the home planet." Very funny.


I have the last two sessions to post up when I can find the time to put it to file. Look for that sometime over the next week.


Episode 21: Snowball - Parts 1 & 2.
November 20th 2258.

Guest Stars:

Bill Mumy as Lennier.
Ed Wasser as Mr Morden.

Events on Tantalus have been all too quiet for a while now, a sure sign that trouble is on its way. Sure enough the Rangers contact Keeno and direct him to make passage to the Lort homeworld, a distant world known as Vartas II, to investigate what might be the stirrings of Shadow influence there. He asks Rathenn to accompany him and together they book passage on a liner posing as traders.
When their transport reaches Vartas II they disembark on an orbiting station and encounter a young female Lort who calls herself Gul. Its her duty to welcome and advise off-worlders since so many of them otherwise fall afoul of Lort culture. Convinced that she is not out to fleece them they agree to take her as guide and pay her by the day. Gul explains the more unusual cultural differences and Rathenn comes to realise that the Llort don't resist telepathic scanning for the same reasons they engage openly in all deals.
As they descend to the planet's surface in a passenger shuttle, they see that the Burrow they are approaching is deep in its winter season. A thick blizzard envelopes the shuttle as it pushes through the cloud layer hurtling down to the surface. Gul explains that over recent years the weather on the planet has begun to get worse - summers too warm and winters too cold.
Upon docking in a subterranean hanger they find that passage into the main Burrow City is via huge mole crawlers. The trip is fairly short and they soon reach a arrival/departure station crowded with llort and a few other alien races. They make their way to a small bar and begin to ask Gul questions about events here. She explains that although its peaceful there are four political groupings vying for control of their society. Before she can explain any further, they comes the sound of gunfire and screams from down the tunnels.

Rathenn, Keeno and Gul push their way down the tunnel past fleeing civilians and into a meeting/trading hall. A Llort lays dead seated at an open computer terminal. Rathenn checks the body and sees that he was knocked out with a blow to the head and then shot at point blank range with an energy weapon. Keeno tries to give pursuit to the killers, but loses them in the crowds filling the tunnels. Gul identifies the deceased as Gathermaster Vusk, a rather important local figure. Rathenn notes some odd notes on the computer terminal and downloads them, to his portable computer. Part of the list are a number of names of other important local Llort, three of whom are already dead in recent weeks.
Next step they decide is to visit the next individual on the list, Warden Fal. Upon arriving at Fal's offices, it takes some diplomacy and bluffing to get an audience but they do succeed at a brief meeting. Fal is rather blunt with them and says that although he has only just been informed of Vusk's death, he blames it and the other deaths on agents of Gathermaster Dero though he doesn't explain why. A brief surface scan by Rathenn suggests rivalry between the two on political grounds rather than any real suspicion.
Gathermaster Aso is much easier to see, and Gul explains that his guild is powerful and no one would dare try to murder him for fear of the retaliation of his entire guild. Aso is more than happy to talk to them and they enjoy a lengthy conversation. Aso is most concerned with the growing crisis in the southern plains beyond the city. The environmental issues are one thing but he fears that the tribes who normally grow, harvest and then bring food to the cities are in fact stockpiling most of it for themselves. Aso thinks that the recent assassinations are a result of a bigger expansion of this problem, and he gives them a new name to investigate - Kulmay. Kulmay, he says, controls the largest granery outpost and oddly it is the only one not affected by the awful weather conditions. He doesn't recommend going out there though as Kulmay has a real dislike of off-worlders and Aso fears they would dissapear if they went out there.
The last person they need to speak too from the list is Gathermaster Dero. Dero is an odd one for a Llort as he has had so much contact with humans that he has started dressing like them. Dero grets them in his office dressed in a sharp business suit and walking with the aid of a finely crafted walking stick. At their request he explains the political leanings of the other Llort who had been killed and his opinions of them. Oddly, Dero just seems to be a nice politician, which confuses both Rathenn and Keeno. Dero feels that whoever is behind all this is trying to destabilise the Llort economy. They withold food and then flood the market. The economy takes a serious hit from this and his people are forced to support raider activity and piracy to regenerate the markets. Sounds like a perfect plan for the Shadows to direct the Llort against their neighbours, Keeno thinks.

After their meeting with Dero, Rathenn accesses the planetary computer network and locates the autopsy reports. Only one record of a previous deceased Llort on the list is located and it identicates poison of Centauri origin.

Gul arranges some basic quarters for them for the night and in the morning they decide to pay a small visit to Kulmay's granery. They rent a shuttle and fly through the thick snow until they reach the Granary. They perform a flyby which draws the attention of Llort on the surface who appear armed with energy rifles. Keeno is already concerned that if they go down there they will be killed so they perform one more pass and then return to base. On the way they pass several other graneries whose heat exchangers seem almost blocked with vegetation, and they realise that Kulmay's was relatively free of the vegetation. Gul calls it riaj, and says its a native weed that thrives in winter by growing around the heat exchangers. Has to be cut away ever free weeks or it blocks them, but its been worse the last couple years. They land the shuttle at the one of these graneries and Rathenn collects a sample.

Upon landing they contact Dero and ask if its possible to use a local science facility. Dero agrees since anything they can learn that helps deal with the current problems. While Rathenn works on the plant sample, Keeno heads out with Gul to talk to anyone in the shadier side of the burrow in search of information.

After several hours Ratheen learns that the Riaj cutting he is studying has been heavily genetically modified. It has been engineered now to reflect sunlight in summer thus in great enough quantities it could cause the summer months to suffer green-house effects. It then spreads by spores. Checking weather patterns Rathenn realises that the engineered breed of riaj came from the vacinity of Kulmay's granery! As a final experiment, when Rathenn opens his mind in the vercinity of the riaj sample, he senses shadow technology at work within it!

Keeno has little luck learning much but what he does is quite interesting. It seems that in recent months Llort from the remote burrows have been dropping off more than just food to the trade tables - they have been bringing in energy weapons and just leaving them on tables. Looking around, Keeno finds a narn pistol. Using his off world contacts he is able to check the serial code and learns that it is one of a number sold to Earth by the Narn during the Earth-Minbari war.
He also learns from his asking questions around the burrow that they are not the only off-worlders to have contact with Dero of late. He has been in talks with a human. Keeno gets a fair description of the man and heads back to Rathenn.

They now have proof that Vartas II is the target of Shadow activity, but what to do? First they spend a few hours trying to match the description of Dero's visitor but with no luck, so they contact him and quite freely are giving the name of a human diplomat. Checking that name they find that the ID matches a deceased baker from New York on Earth. Suspicious Rathenn forwards the record to Delenn on Babylon 5 requesting any information they have on this man.

As they ponder what their next move should be, the news of Fal's death comes across the news. His shuttle was brought down in the souther plains by a freak storm front, no survivors. Time to rent another shuttle it seems. When they reach the site of the crash they can barely see due to the storm, but this was definately no crash. The shuttle shows definate blast points from heavy weapons. Using his computer and scanners, Rathenn curiously identifies the fading energy patterns in the hull fragments. Fal's shuttle was shot down by another ship... a Narn ship!

When they get back there is a message waiting for them from Lennier. The man in the file is known to them as an agent of the Shadows. his name is Morden.

Both Rathenn and Keeno agree that the situation needs to come to an end, and right now. They pay Gul more than her share and let her go just in case she should get hurt. They then approach the Llort police and explain that they believe the Kulmay Granery is stockpiling food and may well be behind the recent deaths of the officials. It takes some quick thinking and fast talking but they get a patrol to go with them via mole crawler to the Kulmay granery. There is a brief firefight with the guards at the crawler station and Ratheen extracts from the mind of one guard that Kulmay has a telepath with him who orchestrates a lot of what is going on.

Pushing further into the burrow they encounter the rest of the defences, including Kulmay and his telepath. Rathenn keeps her locked in telepathic battle while Keeno and the other Llort shoot it out. Eventually, Rathenn forces the issue and the telepath collapses from the strain. Leaping into battle, Keeno takes on Kulmay in brutal melee before taking him down. With their leaders down the fight goes out of the others and they surrender.

Sure enough a search of the burrow finds whole storage areas full of stockpiled food and fresh water. Rathenn reaches into the mind of the telepath and sees an alien outpost on the planet's surface and not too far away. Parked along side is a narn transport - its hull black and glistening. Now they know where to go, Rathenn and Keeno pull on cold weather gear and head out across the plains to this alien outpost.

Surrounded by a zone where the weather does not affect it, they find the base. Thankfully the narn ship is not here. Scouting the area, they find one way in and burst in. A strange alien, not unlike a wrinkly Vree or Streib, works at a serious of lab benches and computer. It ignores them even when they talk to it and interfere with the computers. They assume it to be somekind of Shadow slave race probably programmed to perform its duties rather than deal with outsiders.
Rathenn specifically looks for an antidote to the riaj weed and finds a container of chemical designed to remove the engineered strain, which he takes for the other burrows. Keeno uses the computers to set the base to self-destruct and then they run. Behind them the base evaporates in a ball of green flame.

Not wanting to hang around much longer they had the riaj weedkiller over to Dero and depart.

Closing cutscene:

On a distant world with red skies, in the heart of a small city sits Mordan and a narn woman sharing a meal.
"The outpost on Vartas II has been destroyed." she says.
"It doesn't matter. My associates are happy with the results. Its a good start."
"And what of the Minbari?" the narn enquires.
"They aren't a problem. They can't stop what we started on Vartas. Plus, theres more worlds out there."
Morden smiles and finishes his cup of coffee.



Episode 22: Spy In Our Midst.
December 29th 2258.

Guest Stars:

Jurgen Prochnow as Roland Anderson.
Michelle Rodriguez as Alison fernandez.
Brenden Gleeson as David McCollugh.
Fisher Stevens as Rasheed Isanda.


Ed Wasser as Mr Morden.

There is a slight discrepency in this story with established canon, but for dramatic impact it was included.

Christmas onboard Tantalus has come and gone, and now everyone is preparing for the Earth New Year. Rathenn and Keeno are talking in Rathenn's office and trying to avoid the over happy humans. The door opens and Roland Anderson walks in. Theres a nervous pause and then Rathenn asks whats brings him in person to Tantalus? Anderson informs them of the attack on a Narn outpost in Quadrant 37, and they nod having heard of it on ISN. Anderson's clients want some information from a secret facility beneath the surface of the planet before the Narn can recover it. At first they are not too happy about this but Keeno notes that they can sue the exercise to investigate the attack on the planet and they agree to go. They are surprised to learn that this time Anderson is coming with them. Whatever is down there must be important.

An hour later they report to Bay 12 and are reunited with the rest of Anderson's crew. The reunion is cut short when Anderson shows up and hurries them onboard. No time for talk. Once in space, Anderson explains that the Liberty is only the first stage of the trip, they will be meeting up with another faster ship that can safely fly through narn space. Rathenn takes a note of the bridge displays and sees that they are flying into the Sh'lassan Empire... completely the wrong direction. But he holds his tongue and waits to see what happens.

When they arrive after several hours, they meet up with a narn police cutter and move to that ship. Rathenn takes notes of the co-ordinates just in case something happens and the Liberty becomes salvage. He also surface scans the Narn and learns that the crew are pirates and hired mercenaries, and that they probably stole this ship at gunpoint. Great! The cutter enters hyperspace almost immediately this time heading towards Narn space.

The crew are unresponsive to their questions and so they just watch and wait. After entering narn territory they drop out of hyperspace several times and the narn captain uses a cover story that they are hunting raiders who attacked a transport a few jumps back to bluff their way unopposed through a region of space that is now on high alert. They are boarded once but inform the boarding crew that the passengers are survivors of the raid and are allowed on through the lines.

Quadrant 37 itself is a very different story. When the ship exits the jumpgate they are dissapointed to see several cruisers scouring the system for any clues. Despite their cover story they are told to patrol the system for the attackers. Rathenn comes up with a clever idea. He directs the crew to move the ship closer to the planet as though they were going past it to check another empty area of space and then uses his excellent computer skills to direct a false SOS from a region of space past the main crusier. The larger vessel takes the bait and departs orbit to investigate. Once in the planet's shadow they turn about and head down to the surface, skimming the barren icy wastes to the landing point.

Everyone kits up in cold weather clothing and resperators, as well as climbing equipment. The narn captain suits up as well and joins them. Anderson now tells them that the facility lies below the ice and so should have been spared the attack. It does mean crossing the ice fields and down a crevasse to reach it, so they had better be prepared for hard time.
Crossing the ice field is no picnic and when they reach the crevasse there are grave misgivings from everyone. Despite a set of steps carved in the ice wall, the raging storm around them will make the climb far more dangerous. They tie the rope around themselves and climb down.
Half way down, Keeno's foot slips and he tumbles over the side, followed by Rathenn and David McCollugh! Only Fernandez has the reflexes to push it and hold them from taking everyone else with them. After such a close call they are much more cautious in the decent.

At the bottom they the entrance to the facility, its door open and blocked with ice. The tracks of some kind of animal are visible and Anderson warns them to be careful. Weapons are drawn just in case.
Inside the facility is a serious of tunnels now caked in ice. The animal tracks are visible in the fresh ice and snow, and the party decide to avoid those tunnels for now. After several minutes they scent smoke in the air and find the body of a narn soldier and his campfire, both now dead. Gripped in the narn's hands is a copy of the Book of G'Quan. Against all Narn tradition he has scribbled a warning into the front of the book. It warns about a security weapon preventing him from getting in and he is resigned to his fate.

Rathenn takes the book and they head on. Down the corridor they find the security door mentioned in the book. On the floor before the door is a metal plate. Rathenn bends down and uses his object reading powers to decern the code for the door. Satisfied he stands up and speaks the code. The door slides open to reveal a security station. It has been abandoned but it has power. Keeno closes the door behind them and activates the security camera, allowing them a view back down the ice corridor.

Opening the door beyond Anderson is almost hit by a shot fired from the darkness beyond. A cry of panic and alarm accompanies the blast. Keeno quickly activates the lights in that room, and illuminates a central power station. A narn in an engineers outfit hides behind a support beam. It takes a few quick words to discourge him and get him to come out. He explains that he's been down here for the past couple days since the attack and doesn't know what happened. As everyone spreads out to check doors and computer terminals. the power cuts and there is a cry from Anderson. Rathenn calls out for everyone to stay put and Keeno finds the light controls. With light restored, Anderson lays dead before the narn captain, her knife in his back!
There is confusion and accusations, mostly directed at the two narn. Rathenn calms everyone down and tells them to check the computers and the other rooms for whatever it was that they were supposed to be looking for while he and Keeno check Anderson. Rathenn performs his object reading and senses Rasheed plunging the knife into Anderson.
Everyone emerges from their rooms or turns back from the terminals. As Rasheed emerges saying that he hasn't found anything of note, Rathenn scans him rather painfully - Rasheed drops to his knees clutching his head! In his mind he sees Rasheed in a meeting with Morden, and then more recently him downloading something from a narn computer onto a data crystal.

Angered, Rathenn informs the others that Rasheed is the killer. Fernandez points her gun at him and demands to know why. Rasheed responds by saying that he recieved a better offer from others. Keeno takes the data crystal from his pocket and says that they should be going now. They have what they came for and lost too much.
"What about him?" Fernandez asks.
"Whatever you want." replies Rathenn, and they walk out.
The next thing they hear is a PPG firing.

As they exit the frozen tunnels the group are forced to hide as a narn commando squad burst into the tunnels. Once they are past, they head out and climb back up the treacherous stairs to the surface. Fernandez contacts their ship and orders a pick up and immediate evacuation from the planet.

As they exit the atmosphere, the pilot dodges falling debris from one of the cruisers. Then from nowhere appears a vast black spider-like vessel. its purple energy beams eviscerate another narn warcruiser, then turns to the little ship trying to flee to the jumpgate. Everyone straps themselves down, except for Rathenn who stands at the window gazing out at the Shadow Cruiser.
"Not this time..."
His eyes turn black and he focuses his mind onto the living ship before him. A battle wills occurs and the cruiser shrieks as it is forced down. As the cutter shoots through the gate and into hyperspace, Rathenn collapses into his chair exhauted.


Tantalus station. C&C. Everyone is watching the ISN feed as EarthForce 1 approaches IO.
Inside the communications station, a clear and yellow box suddenly comes to life transmitting a static signel through space. It is joined by signels from other boxes spaced throughout the Earth Alliance.
Everyone watches horrified as Earth Force 1 explodes in front of their eyes!

Two days later everyone is onboard Tantalus saying their goodbyes. Rathenn has copied the crystal, which is a report of the attack that destroyed the colony all those days ago. Alison insists on keeping the original so she can take it back to Andersons associates. Keeno forces the issue and Alison grudgingly admits that Anderson and her team work for IPX.


End of Season 1.


"Next Time" spoilers for next season:

An attractive woman in a business dress shakes hands with Rathenn and Keeno.
"Its good to meet you. I'm Roland Anderson's replacement."

A crawler carries our characters across an airless alien landscape. The driver turns to them and says, "the wreckage of Earth Force One is just over the next ridge."

and finally,

A man in an EarthForce uniform stares out of a window at a large green alien ship.
"My god, I haven't seen one of them for a long time. Thats a Dilgar cruiser!"



Beyond Babylon 5.
Season 2: Into The Crucible.

It was the Earth year 2259, and the darkness was moving again.
Against a backdrop of galactic conspiracy and war, the forces of light were preparing.
We were there, unseen, moving through the shadows waging our own war with the ancient enemy.
We were out there, on the front lines.
We were…. Beyond Babylon 5!

Rathenn Mayan, Religious Caste Minbari, Telepath 5/Vorlon Agent 1.
Keeno, Religious Caste Minbari, Agent 5/Ranger 1.
Ethan Greenbridge, Human, Soldier 4/Officier 1.


Episode 2.01: The Cold Equations.
January 5th 2259.

Guest Stars:

Claudia Christian as Lt. Commander Susan Ivanova (voice only).
Richard Biggs as Doctor Stephen Franklin.
Bill Mumy as Lennier.
Peter Jurasik as Londo Mollari.
Macaulay Brunton as Jack/Garibaldi’s Aide.
Kate Beckinsale as Valerie Grey.

With Ambassador Delenn in a cocoon and things heating up throughout the galaxy, Lennier asks Rathenn and Keeno to come to Babylon 5 to be apprised of recent developments.

The game stats in the middle of things. An explosion onboard the Robinson which throws them from their beds. A klaxxon sounds and the captains voice comes over the intercom telling all passengers to make their ways to the escape pods. Our characters grab their gear and rush out to the nearest escape shuttle. A handful of other passengers and one steward have arrived to escape via this shuttle. Once aboard the shuttle is launched… into the swirling void of Hyperspace! Behind them the Robinson explodes. The pilot gets to a safe distance and scans for other survivors, but it looks like the shuttle passengers are the only survivors. Steward Lockwood does her best to calm everyone down though its obvious that she is in a state of shock and panic herself. What Rathenn does learn from her after claming her down is that Raiders attacked the liner though continued scans of Hyperspace find no sign of any other vessels. The pilot holds position as close to the wreckage as he dare and uses the thrusters to hold position. He is sure that when the liner never arrives at B5 that the station will dispatch a rescue team but since they weren’t scheduled to arrived for another 12 hours, its going to be close with the air supply.
Introductions are made among the half dozen passengers. Theres some hostility between the only Narn and one of the two Centauri passengers. Another passenger seems to become paranoid when Rathenn admits to being a telepath.

Due to Steward Lockwood’s panic and stress, it falls to Rathenn and Keeno to keep everyone calm. One of the passengers, who calls himself Twitch, communicates telepathically with Rathenn and implies that one of the passengers is a thief, and another entertaining murder, though he just nods back into the cabin when pressed as to whom. The paranoid passenger, Alice, still clutches her case tightly and casts nervous glances at Rathenn. Keeno has to intercede to prevent the Narn and Centauri from killing each other. Its going to be a long flight if this keeps up.

After a short rest, Rathenn joins Al on the bridge. He notices that an important engineering display has been turned off. Al hadn’t noticed and flips the screen back on. What it reveals is unusual energy readings from the engines. Rathenn quietly slips back to the engineering section and finds that someone has tampered with the engines. When the engines shut down they will explode, and the only way to repair the engines is to turn them off. Catch 22. While looking this over, Rathenn becomes aware that he is not alone. He pulls up the floor hatch to the storage area below the floor and finds a Pak’ma’ra stowaway. His communications device is broken, so Rathenn brings him up front and has Keeno begin to repair the device.
Once repaired, the stowaway admits to hitchhiking on ships in order to see the galaxy. He was in there some time before the explosions that rocked the Robinson and remembers smelling humans enter. He doesn’t recognise the smell on any of the passengers or crew currently on the shuttle.

Tired, everyone falls into fitful and uneasy sleep. Keeno decides to sit next to the old Centauri nobleman whose health seems to have worsened since they escaped the doomed liner. He tells Keeno that he has foreseen this moment of his death and requests Keeno do a final task for him. He tells Keeno a code and directs him to collect something from the assay office onboard Babylon 5, and take its contents to ambassador Mollari. He then breathes his last. As Keeno closes the old mans eyes and stands up, he notices that the other Centauri nobleman is watching him most intently.

Several hours later, the rescue team arrives from Babylon 5 in the form of a Starfury flight and a handful of shuttles. Rathenn thanks them for their rather quick arrival and warns them about the engine problem. The lead pilot says that C&C received an anonymous message informing them of the destruction of the Robinson. The shuttle connect to theirs and re-supply them with air.

They are then escorted back to Babylon 5 where C&C are warned of the tampering of the engines. The shuttle docks in Bay 4 and everyone is quickly moved out, through customs and into MedLab.

From a brief talk with Doctor Franklin they learn what happened to Mr Garibaldi, and wish Franklin good luck with reviving him. They also learn that Twitch was flagged as wanted by Psi Corps, though he managed to escape into the station before security could detain him.
Their next stop is security, where Garibaldi's aide questions them over the events surrounding the Robinson. They are honest and admit that they never saw any Raiders so its possible it was a bomb rather than an attack. Oddly he asks if they saw any Minbari vessels in the area, which they honestly deny. He lets them go at which point the station is rocked by a small explosion and the intercom calls for repair crews to report to bay 4. Looks like the shuttle went up anyway.

From here they pay a visit to Lennier, who informs them what Ambassador Delenn has done and what she learnt from the Vorlon, Kosh, before she did it. Lennier says that Delenn wanted them to know about upcoming plans should the Shadows begin moving again. He explains about a construction plan to build a new and secret fleet of ships to assist the Rangers in the coming war. When the time comes, she wanted to ensure that Rathenn and Keeno recieved their own ship should their missions warrent it. After the conversation they decide to head to the assayer's office.

On the way Keeno notices the Centauri nobleman following them. So when they reach the assayer's office, Rathenn goes in to collect whatever is being held and Keeno hides and watches. The Centauri does not approach, but holds his distance, waiting.
What Rathenn finds in the safe deposit box several sheets of paper with seemingly random numbers, an old model PPG, a set of identicards, a wallet with a significant amount of money in various currencies and a holocube. He stashes this items on his person and departs, joining up with Keeno. Once out of the offices, the nobleman approaches and says that what they are no involved with is a purely Centuari affair and is none of their concern. He demands that whatever they have found be handed over to him. They refuse, saying that these items are bound for Londo Mollari - an old friend in fact, and if he has any problems to take it up with him. Angered and humiliated, he storms away.

Before they give the goods over to Mollari however, they spend a couple hours trying to decipher the numbers on the paper. Even their computer cannot determine any pattern. So, Rathenn makes a copy of all the papers and they try the holocube. The image is from the early days of the Earth Alliance depicting the assassination of senator Lee Crawford. Again, running the code through the computer reveals nothing.

After their investigations, they head down to speak with Mollari.
At first Vir insists that the Ambassador is busy, but when Londo learns who is at the door he invites them in. He is rather drunk and continues to thank them for helping him with "The Eye."
When they hand everything over, Londo seems none the wiser until Keeno gives him the codeword that the dying Centauri said. Londo pauses to think and then remembers what it was about. He offers a reward but they decline, just doing their part to aid the great and might lion of the galaxy!

Only a half hour after they leave Mollari's quarters, and about the time they book their flight back to Tantalus, Vir contacts them and says that Ambassador Mollari has been robbed. It seems that he left to go to a council meeting and another Centauri robbed him of the papers. The description of the thief matches that of the Centuari nobleman, so they do a little snooping and find his quarters. Inside they find him dead, close range shot to the head with a PPG.
Asking around they do manage to find someone who saw a human male emerge from the quarters only a short while before. Rathenn contacts security to report the murder. A search of the room does not turn up the stolen items. The figure that whoever it is will try and get off station before security can get too far with the investigation. They head down to the docking bays and scout around. They find the body of a man matching the description laying dead behind a pile of packing crates. He too has been shot at close range with a PPG. Still no sign of the stolen goods. They report this to security and are told that they had better leave before anymore people turn up dead.

They are forced to apologise to Mollari who seems to take it fairly well considering. As they prepare to leave their quarters for the transport, they recieve a visitor. An attractive human woman arrives with the missing items. She gives them the name "Valerie Grey" and happily hands the items over, saying that she has copies and therefore no need of the originals. She is fairly forthcoming with answers to their questions. Valerie explains that there are agents and operations throughout the galaxy who would love to get their hands on these items for various reasons. She says she is with the good guys, hence giving them back and ensuring they bad guys don't get away with it. She hopes that in the future they can work together again. With that she leaves.


End cutscene:

San Diego Wastelands - 1 week later.
A figure in a full NBC suit walks into a cave-like room, and starts to strip off the suit. We see that it is Valerie. From off camera another woman appears dressed in a Psi Cop uniform. Valerie hands over the copies and the two of them turn and walk off through a door marked "Bureau 13."


Episode 2.02: Initiation.
January 22nd 2259.

Guest Stars:

Russell Crowe as Michael Haversham.
Andreas Katsulas as G'Kar.
Caitlin Brown as N'Toth.

Our heroes have been back aboard Tantalus for only a couple weeks when they recieve a message from a Michael Haversham on Babylon 5. Haversham works for Autumn Shipping International, and through his superiors he has heard of Keeno and Rathenn, and would like to meet them regarding some work, if they are interested. They remember some reference to ASI when they were on B5 last time and so agree to pay a visit and investigate.

When they meet Haversham in his office aboard B5 they get straight down to business. ASI has come into possession of a number of atmospheric processor units which the company wishies to sell to the Narn. However, ASI bought these from the Centauri and if they know their source the Narn won't buy them. Since Keeno and Rathenn have had some dealings with the Narn in the past he leaves it up to them to find a market. He gives them a minimum that the cells must go for but otherwise leaves it purely in the hands of our heroes.

At first they decide to speak with G'Kar but they are a little too honest in their dealings and he has them thrown out of his quarters. Keeno makes contact with his aide, N'Toth, and appeals to her better nature. They arrange a meeting and she directs them to G'Vel, one of the Regime's agents on the station. If its done below the radar, he might be willing to buy the cells. Rathenn is left with the impression that the Narn want these badly but are too proud to just accept anything. With this in mind he does some research and learns that a handful of Narn colonies undergoing terraforming have suffered because of faulty cells supplied by the Centauri Republic. They rent some space in medbay and perform some tests on the cells they have, and find that they are substandard but not bad enough that they will cause a problem to the Narn.

Their next stop is stalking Downbelow for G'Vel. It takes a few hours, and few choice words and a handful of credits, but a meeting is arranged. G'Vel is happy to pay more than the asking price on the insistance that the two Minbari can deliver the goods themselves to the relevant colonies. After some discussion they agree and pay for a small group of traders to deliver the goods. Since they need to return to Tantalus they travel part way with them to ensure that the traders are not attacked or vanish.

Both Haversham and the Narn Regime are pleased with the result. Rathenn and Keeno get paid and are offered further work with ASI.


Episode 2.03: Any Sufficently Advanced Technology.
January 29th 2259.

Guest Stars:

Michelle Pfeiffer as Theresa Cross.
Edward Woodwood as Alwyn.
Michelle Rodriguez as Alison Fernandez.
Jerry Doyle as Michael Garibaldi.

Our characters are reunited with Alison Fernandez when she arrives on Tantalus with a new employer. Theresa Cross is Roland Anderson's replacement, and she has come to the station in the hopes that they will continue their work for her. Cross says that she has a job in the offering now but they must be prepared to return to B5 right away. She tells them of the recent visit to that station by a gathering of TechnoMages. They have since left the station but reliable contacts inform her that one of their number left a piece of advanced technology aboard and she wants it for study. The problem is that this item is in the hands of a underworld thug named Frankie the Rat (who Rathenn has had dealings with in the past) and he is putting it up for auction in a few days.

They depart the next day on the fasted transport they can get, and reach B5 a couple days later. Straight away they made contact with old friend Michael Garibaldi to explain their presence on the station and secure his aid if needed. They then made sure to scour the right bars to find where this auction was being held. Seems only pre-approved individuals were being allowed in so they sought out a couple of Frankie's men and bribed them to let them in when the auction started.

At the alloted time, they made their way into Downbelow and were waved through by the bribed guards. Opening his mind, Rathenn sensed some slight Shadow influence which he guessed from his time with the Vorlons, might be the staff but it was too faint to say where. Others arrive for the auction and the bidding begins. Frankie steps out with a staff and shows it off as bids are placed. Rathenn bids constantly, driving the price up, both to Frankie's pleasure and the irritation of the other bidders.
Then everything goes dark and Alwyn appears in a flash, demanding that the staff be handed over to its rightful owner. Frankie orders his men to shoot the TechnoMage down. The bidders run for cover as Frankie's men try to take down Alwyn. The Mage casts a spell and the podium where Frankie stands explodes. Rathenn dives for the staff, which he grabs from the dead man's hand and realises that its a plastic fake. Keeno draws his fighting staff and knocks the thugs down. Between Kenno and Alwyn, they either drive off or knock down the thugs.

There is an uneasy truce between the three as Rathenn explains why they are here. Alwyn agrees to give them the staff, less a few enchantments and additions (don't want Earth getting a hold of Mage technology), if they help recover it. Rathenn slaps awake one of the thugs and tears into his mind. Frankie's second had recieved a better offer, stolen the real staff and was headed to the docking bar to leave with it. The chase was on.

Using secret ways, the three of them traverse the length of the station and find the hanger where the criminals were boarding a shuttle. Alwyn descended the hanger into darkness and the two Minbari dropped down and made their way to where the men were. A brief fight, where Keeno was wounded by random PPG fire, later and they had the second and the staff. Alwyn dissapears for a few minutes and returns with the staff. He has removed most of the tech from it, leaving nothing that will really further the EA in anyway. They hand the thugs over to security and with the staff depart.

As their ship heads through the gate they are accompanied part way by a pinnace with golden dragons on its wings.