The Minbari Civil War comes to its fiery conclusion. Bester returns to the station to make an offer to an increasingly desperate Alexander. Sheridan is compelled to act against Earth after receiving horrible news from Ivanova.
- Bruce Boxleitner as Captain John Sheridan
- Claudia Christian as Commander Susan Ivanova
- Jerry Doyle as Michael Garibaldi
- Mira Furlan as Ambassador Delenn
- Richard Biggs as Dr. Stephen Franklin
- Stephen Furst as Vir Cotto
- Bill Mumy as Lennier
- Andreas Katsulas as Ambassador G'Kar
- Peter Jurasik as Ambassador Londo Mollari
- Jeff Conaway as Security Chief Zack Allan
- Jason Carter as Marcus Cole
- Patricia Tallman as Lyta Alexander
Special Guest StarEdit
- Regular characters who appear in this episode are John Sheridan, Susan Ivanova, Michael Garibaldi, Delenn, Zack Allan, Lyta Alexander and Lennier.
Michael Garibaldi is roused at a very early hour by a message from William Edgars. He wants Garibaldi to get a package through the station without drawing attention. Garibaldi complains but Edgars notes it is part of the job. He also notes the packages are highly-sensitive medical biotech that would draw the attention of rival companies: thus the need for secrecy. Garibaldi gets to the point. When can they meet face to face? Edgars is evasive.
On Minbar, Delenn and Lennier observe wounded members of the Religious Caste. Conditions are grim, and the Warrior Caste has them surrounded. If they do not surrender by tomorrow, they will destroy the city and all within.
Lyta Alexander is in a dilemma. With the Vorlons gone, she lacks a source of income to stay on the station. However, since she is considered a rogue by the Psi Corps, no one wants to hire her as a commercial telepath.
Aboard a warcruiser, Neroon meets with Shakiri, current leader of the Warrior Caste. Shakiri notes how much the Religious Caste hates Neroon for his apparent double-cross. It is their naivete that has brought the Minbari into so much trouble, so now it is time for their strong, directed leadership. And if cities and people fall, so be it. The cities can be rebuilt and the lost people reincarnated. Death, Shakiri notes, "is simply a release from our obligation."
Security Chief Zack Allan is working hard at customs check-in when he notes Garibaldi with a package. Before he can pursue, though, a guard brings Alfred Bester. They exchange sarcastic barbs before Bester explains he is on official Psi Corps business which does not involve anyone on the Babylon 5 staff. Allan finally catches up to Garibaldi in the Zocalo, but he denies ever having a package. He also deflects Allan's concerns about working for Edgars.
On Minbar, Delenn summons Lennier to deliver a message. After careful consideration, the Religious Caste have agreed to surrender. The Warrior Caste may select the time and place. Lennier notes the heaviness of Delenn's words; he realizes the decision had not been easy.
Commander Susan Ivanova continues to broadcast news of defections from the Voice of the Resistance. Alexander is watching this news when Bester approaches. He reveals that he has come for her. He realizes she is vulnerable now that the Vorlons are gone, but he has not come to capture her. Knowing she carried potential genetic secrets from the Vorlons, he proposes an offer instead: rejoin the Psi Corps as a "deep cover agent" with none of the normal rigors and rules. This would allow her to rejoin the Corps in the most tenuous sense, but just enough to regain legitimacy. In exchange, upon natural death, she would submit her body to the Corps for further study. He provides the necessary forms for her and then leaves to let her consider.
Having received the notice of surrender, Neroon proposes the surrender take place planetside at the Temple of Varenni, an important focal point in the days before Valen. Shakiri approves, noting both the vast symbolism and the fact the temple also contains equipment capable of broadcasting throughout the planet. They will hold the surrender as soon as they arrive. However, Shakiri then notes that Delenn will need to be discretely killed after the surrender, to prevent another uprising.
Allan comes in to see Alexander. Has come to inform her she needs to move to smaller quarters. She protests but appreciates the news coming from someone familiar in Allan. He then offers a discrete job: scan Garibaldi. Alexander refuses on privacy concerns. Allan realizes her morals matter more than money, so he drops it.
She eventually goes to Garibaldi herself. She tries to get him to hire her since he seems less interested in clean backgrounds. He notes he could use a lookout and it would annoy Bester at the same time. But then, Bester himself appears, stopping the conversation. The situation deteriorates rapidly after Alexander catches Bester scanning Garibaldi. He chases and causes a scene that gets him taken away by security. Alexander passes a knowing glare at Bester as she leaves.
At the Temple of Varenni, Delenn hands Lennier a scroll containing instructions should she not survive the day. Then, she steps into the center of the temple and officially declares the surrender of the Religious Caste. But then, she reveals a surprise. She also knows about the history of the temple. The surrender was merely to end the open warfare. Instead, they will settle their war the way the Castes did before Valen came. Here, before all witnessing and all those watching through the broadcasts, she invokes the laws of the Ancients. From the temple's ceiling, the Starfire Wheel, the method used to determine leadership before Valen, activates. Delenn steps into the Wheel's beam of energy and insists Shakiri join her inside.
Shakiri refuses at first but then Neroon notes he is acting like a coward. Urged by both of them, Shakiri joins Delenn in the Starfire Wheel. As the beam intensifies, however, Shakiri soon flees. Neroon then reveals to Lennier that this had been his and Delenn's plan all along: to reveal Shakiri as a coward and shame the Warrior Caste. However, contrary to the plan, Delenn was not leaving the Starfire Wheel after Shakiri. Lennier reveals she intends to sacrifice herself as proof of her devotion. Shocked, Neroon enters the wheel, lifts the barely-conscious Delenn, and passes her to Lennier. Still inside the beam, Neroon then reveals the calling of his heart: his heart belongs to the Religious Caste. He asks his people listen to Delenn just before the Starfire Wheel incinerates him.
Back on Babylon 5, Garibaldi gets another overnight call from Edgars. He firmly tells Garibaldi not to take on Alexander. He does not want telepaths in his employ: not even indrectly. Meanwhile, Bester records a personal log, noting things moving as planned with Garibaldi. He is growing increasingly distant from his former friends on Babylon 5. He also notes that he received a bonus out of the deal: Alexander back in the fold.
Despite the burns she received from the Starfire Wheel, Delenn insists on conducting business on the Valen'Tha as soon as possible. She needs to direct her people before more uncertainty unfolds. With broadcasters set to transmit all across the planet, Delenn steps into the Grey Council's chamber and announces the process of rebuilding will begin today with the reforming of the Grey Council. But as she "summons the Nine," she introduces a significant change. Where the Council once had three of each Caste as a sign of balance, the new Council has two Warriors, two Religious, and five Workers. In a remarkable gesture, she is ceding power to the Worker Caste, noting that in the continual disagreements between the Warrior and Religious Castes, the Worker Caste had been caught in the middle. Now, with majority rule, the humble Worker Caste can do what they do best: to build and shape the future, with the Warrior and Religious Castes still present to lend their voices and advice. She then steps out of the light in the center of the chamber, declaring it vacant in memory of Neroon and reserved for "one who is to come." She bids the new Council to "judge wisely and well" before leaving.
Sheridan answers the door to his quarters only for Ivanova to storm in fuming and cursing. She eventually reveals the source of her rage: a data crystal containing video footage from a ship near the Proxima III jumpgate. Without warning or provocation, two Earthforce Omega class destroyers opened fire and destroyed a convoy containing ten thousand refugees from the planet. Sheridan understands her fury and quietly rages himself. This is the last straw; the atrocities must be answered. He orders Ivanova to rally all available forces. It's time to assume the offensive and take the fight to President Morgan Clark, "and God help anybody who gets in our way."
"And . . . Well, there's just no delicate way to say this. I want your body."
"What! Are you out of your mind?"
"Heh, that's a very funny question to ask a telepath, since we spend so much of our time in other peoples' minds. I don't want it now, Lyta, just when you are not . . . using it anymore, after . . . your passing."
- – Alfred Bester and Lyta Alexander
Chronologically the events of Thirdspace take place during the events of this story, in June 2261.
|Babylon 5 Season 4 "No Surrender, No Retreat"|
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