People begin their preparations to leave Babylon 5: G'Kar and Lyta Alexander to explore the stars, Garibaldi and Lise to take over Edgars Industries on Mars. But before that happens, Number One comes aboard, bringing with her one last twist of fate.
- Bruce Boxleitner as President John Sheridan
- Jerry Doyle as Michael Garibaldi
- Mira Furlan as Ambassador Delenn
- Richard Biggs as Dr. Stephen Franklin
- Bill Mumy as Lennier
- Tracy Scoggins as Captain Elizabeth Lochley
- Stephen Furst as Vir Cotto
- Jeff Conaway as Security Chief Zack Allan
- Patricia Tallman as Lyta Alexander
- Peter Jurasik as Ambassador Londo Mollari
- Andreas Katsulas as Ambassador G'Kar
- Regular characters who appear in this episode are John Sheridan, Michael Garibaldi, Delenn, Stephen Franklin, Lyta Alexander, Zack Allan and G'Kar.
- This episode marks the final appeance of Lyta. Patricia Tallman was supposed to reusme the role in a flashback sequence in Crusade's "The Path of Sorrows", but couldn't make it due to scheduling problems, forcing a rewrite of her character.
- This episode also marks the final appearance of Denise Gentile, who portrays Lise Hampton-Edgars.
There is a small commotion at Babylon 5 customs. A woman is having trouble getting through because her passport is not recognized by Security Chief Zack Allan. The woman, Tessa Holloran, patiently explains that the passport is Mars-issue; as an independent planet, Mars is entitled to produce its own credentials. Just then, Dr. Franklin happens upon them. He recognizes the woman as former Number One of the Mars Resistance and vouches for her. Zack lets her through at his word. Franklin comments that he never knew her name back then so didn't know she was coming. Tessa explains that she's come looking for Michael Garibaldi.
Garibaldi is retching and complaining, as he typically does when he's trying to dry out from alcoholism. Lise answers the door and is pleased to see Franklin. Tessa gets straight to the point. There is a contract out for their lives.
Tessa elaborates. When Mars declared independence, various firms with ties to Earth scrambled to cover up their corruption for fear of falling under the scrutiny of an independent Mars government eager to investigate their exploitation. Michael and Lise become involved because Lise is the legal owner of Edgars Industries, one of those firms with ties to Earth. While Lise was not privy to her late husband's shady business, she would be interested in sweeping them clean. Since Michael would be the kind of person who could help with that, he's targeted, too. The hit is to be done by a currently-unknown assailant before the two depart for Mars. At this, Franklin asks Michael what's going on.
The Narn idol worship of G'Kar continues to increase along with his aggravation. He can't help but look at the crowd with a combination of disgust and regret. His current destination is Lyta Alexander's cell. He has come to make an offer; both of them have a need for isolation: she because her telepath powers are too dangerous for her to keep company, he because of his presence only fuels the idol worship. He offers to take her with him on a journey of exploration, far away from any Narn or Human. But when Lyta brings up the fact she was offering the Narns telepath DNA, G'Kar realizes she's still suspicious of everyone around her: reinforcing the fact she needs time away from humans. As he leaves, he bids her consider the mental obstacles she keeps in her mind.
In his office, President Sheridan confers with Zack and Franklin, and Zack comes up with an idea. Michael and Lise will be covertly moved to temporary quarters. Since G'Kar intends to leave in a few days, he decides to use that time to hold a going-away rally for all of them: forcing the hitman into a known window of opportunity where security will be ready for him. Garibaldi is mildly impressed at Zack's thoroughness, and Sheridan compliments Michael for teaching him so well. Now Sheridan pops the question about him leaving Babylon 5. Michael comes clean; he knows he can't be placed in a position of trust within the Alliance anymore, so instead he's going to marry the woman he's known on and off for 15 years and instead go into the private sector running Edgars Industries with Lise. Sheridan doesn't push it and instead tells Michael to let them take care of him for once.
A man joins a guard in a transport tube. Alone inside, the man suddenly knifes and kills the guard, taking his Link and replacing it with a replica.
The dead guard is found later, and Franklin has it taken to Medlab for an autopsy. He and Zack discuss motive. As the act was done cleanly and quickly, Zack suspects a professional, but as the guard was new with a clean record, a reason for his death escapes them.
In his quarters, the hitman disassembles the Link and tries to bypass its security protocols, but Links are built to resist such efforts; he can't access the security channels yet.
Sheridan greets Tessa in his office, and she reveals the other reason for her visit. Earth has been engaged in stalling tactics for the past year: withholding accounts, limiting supplies, delaying recognition, and so on. The incident at customs was just the latest example of the red tape Mars has to fight as it tries to establish its sovereignty. Tessa fears Earth is doing this on purpose: trying to stir civil unrest so as to make Mars beseech Earth for assistance. Sheridan says the Alliance can help in this matter; he offers to set up a diplomatic office for them at the new ISA headquarters on Minbar. There, they'll be able to establish accounts and contacts that don't involve going through Earth, allowing them to truly act independently. His only condition is that she wait for a few days. He has an idea...
The hitman finally bypasses the security locks and accesses the security channels. He routes the audio feed to an earpiece.
As G'Kar looks on the preparations for his going-away rally with mild disgust, another Narn approaches, asking why he's leaving. G'Kar explains that he does not wish to lead, and Narn attitudes prevent them from heeding his wisdom. The idol worship is causing Narns to do stupid things, so he is going to go away until the fervor dies down. Then the Narn reveals that he's the one who's been making the statuettes of G'Kar. G'Kar seethes and breaks the figure, telling the Narn in no uncertain terms to "go home."
Zack meets Franklin in Medlab and is going through the dead guard's personal effects when something makes him pause. The guard's "Link" is stuck to the box. Since Links use a genetically-coded adhesive, it shouldn't stick like that. Suddenly, Zack understands the motive; the killer took the Guard's Link so as to hack it and eavesdrop on security channels. It must be the hitman sent for Michael and Lise. He quickly leaves for the Station House.
As the rally is about to begin, the hitman checks his earpiece and, confirming it is still receiving the security channels, leaves to commence his job.
Hundreds of Narns gather for G'Kar's going-away rally. Zack and the hitman pass each other without recognition, but Zack is aware the hitman is present. Sheridan takes the time to offers praise and well wishes to both Michael amd G'Kar. As he talks, Zack signals the Station House through a secure channel. He knows the hitman is using the dead guard's Link, so he sets up a little surprise. The Station House transmits a loud sound to that one Link. The hitman grunts in pain and has trouble taking aim with his PPG. In time, guards spot the hitman and arrest him. But at the same moment, the Narn who approached G'Kar earlier declared that G'Kar has abandoned his people. He raises his own gun. Zack notices and shoves G'Kar out of the way. The Narn's shot misses G'Kar but hits Lise in the shoulder.
Franklin treats Lise's PPG burns in Medlab. G'Kar regrets not being able to help, but Michael explains about the hitman; the accident was just an unfortunate coincidence. As Franklin reports that Lise is stable but now has to recover on her own, Michael wonders what he can do in the meantime...and then realizes something.
Outside, Zack catches up with Michael wanting to talk about the Narn. Michael instead wants to talk about the hitman. He wants five minutes alone with him; Zack knows it's against regs and begs him to reconsider.
He takes the hitman to see Lyta. The hitman is familiar with anti-scanning techniques, but Lyta eventually slips through and learns his client: the EI Board of Directors. Michael thanks Lyta, and she reminds him of their deal: set up a shadow account in two years, and she'll break Bester's mind block; otherwise, what happened to the hitman will happen to him.
As G'Kar packs his belongings, Sheridan comes to see him. He'd been hoping G'Kar would stay at least until Delenn returned, but after what happened earlier, G'Kar realizes he should leave sooner rather than later. He'd already acquired a gently-used long-range survey ship: ideal for a sojourn among the stars. So instead, the two reminisce, and Sheridan says he'll miss G'Kar, but then G'Kar notes that even as people go, a part of them stays behind. He suggests someday to go to a quiet part of the station to hear the echoes of all that passed through it. Then G'Kar admits that he, too, will miss Babylon 5. They warmly shake hands one last time and exchange final partings. It is at this point that G'Kar calls Sheridan by his first name John, surprising him before he leaves. G'Kar then goes to the BabCom station to dictate a message.
Michael is stirred awake as Lise regains consciousness. It is an encouraging sign that Lise is recovering. He offers to get doctors to help with her pain some more and then leaves to find a minister; not for Last Rites, he assures her, but so they can get married there and now.
As G'Kar waits at the docks, guards bring Lyta to him. He insists she be released from her shackles, but Lyta obliges on her own. The guards quickly leave, and Lyta admits that she could've taken the shackles off at any time. She didn't not only because it kept the guards quiet but also because wearing them for so long made her start to feel a little kinky. G'Kar admits he looks forward to facing the unknown. He sees adventure; she sees another book. As Zack quietly watches, G'Kar and Lyta board their ship and set out for the frontier.
Back on Mars, the Board of Directors of Edgars Industries learn there is a call for them; it's Michael. He reports that Lise is recovering...and that he knows they sent the hitman meant to kill both of them. Mr. Paretti notes that Chief of Security Gregory Fitch had claimed responsibility for that hit...in a suicide note. Michael doesn't buy it and starts noting how each of the remaining five Directors has some dirty little secret they wouldn't want revealed to the world. After all, digging out these kinds of secrets was the reason he was to be killed, he notes. Paretti demands to know how he came to know this. He reveals his replacement as head of ISA Covert Intelligence: Tessa Holloran. The board is stunned to learn the infamous Number One is now in a position that will leave them, as she puts it, "skinned alive." As she leaves, Michael reveals that was only part one: intended to get them out of the company. To ensure they don't attempt any sort of revenge, he reveals a check for 500,000 credits drawn from the company account (which he can access now that he's married Lise) to be deposited tomorrow morning in an undisclosed account; if he or Lise die of anything other than natural causes, the money will be used to take out hits on each of them; 100,000 credits a head is well over the going black market rate, so the board knows there will be takers. Michael expects their resignations on his desk by the time they arrive on Mars...or else.
Franklin and Tessa talk over dinner in the Zocalo. Each is rather surprised at the sudden turn of events. With Tessa now head of Covert Intelligence, she can actually do more good for Mars by uncovering all the corruption. It seems ironic that Tessa will be moving here just as Franklin is about to leave to take up his new post on Earth. The two of them talk about what happened between them on Mars and come to the mutual conclusion that what happened there can stay there. Much as they like each other, they both know they're workaholics and otherwise lousy when it comes to relationships. Understanding that, neither of them can hold regrets or hard feelings. They wish each other the best of luck and part ways amicably.
Delenn returns from Minbar, reporting that the compound will be ready within a week. Hearing that makes Sheridan start to reminisce. The old guard is starting to leave. Delenn asks if Michael had left yet, but as it turns out she'd arrived just in time to say goodbye. Lise goes ahead so Michael can spend a final moment in private. Michael thanks Sheridan and Delenn for supporting him for the last four years; with his real family dead, they and the others were the closest thing he had had to a family for a long time. He also recalls his rather sour prediction he'd end up "face-down somewhere in Brown Sector". For the first time, he's glad that didn't happen. He actually looks forward to the future and a family he can call his own. He hugs Delenn and gives Sheridan a warm handshake and hug. They exchange best wishes as Michael boards the shuttle for Mars. Now Delenn admits that she too can feel the growing emptiness, and they will be next. So she makes a suggestion. Why don't they take a final walk...down the entire five-mile length of the station?
"I believe when we leave a place, part of it goes with us and part of us remains."
"Go anywhere in the station, when it is quiet, and just listen. After a while, you will hear the echoes of all our conversations, every thoughts and words we've exchanged."
"Long after we have gone our voices will linger in these walls, for as long as this place remains."
"But I will admit that the part of me that is going, very much will miss the part of you that is staying."
- – G'Kar
- The Terry Jones timeline printed in Across Time and Space, has the events occurring on September 1st - 5th, 2262.
- The I. Marc Carlson timeline, also printed in Across Time and Space, has the events occurring in December.
- Last Rites are a Catholic and Orthodox tradition, not practiced by Protestant churches including Baptists. Though it is possible that the First Baptist Church of Mars does things differently.
|Babylon 5 Season 5 "Wheel of Fire"|
|<<< Previous Season "No Compromises" "The Very Long Night of Londo Mollari" "The Paragon of Animals" "A View from the Gallery" "Learning Curve" "Strange Relations" "Secrets of the Soul" "Day of the Dead" "In the Kingdom of the Blind" "A Tragedy of Telepaths" "Phoenix Rising" "The Ragged Edge" "The Corps is Mother, the Corps is Father" "Meditations on the Abyss" "Darkness Ascending" "And All My Dreams, Torn Asunder" "Movements of Fire and Shadow" "The Fall of Centauri Prime" "Wheel of Fire" "Objects in Motion" "Objects at Rest" "Sleeping in Light"|
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