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Synopsis by Matthew Murray (mmurray@wsu.edu)

"August 3, 2260. Personal diary. Ten days ago, for the first time, the Shadows began attacking openly." As Ivanova records her diary entry, the Shadows attack Brakiri space. "So far, they've been hitting targets close to the Rim--the minor powers, a few in the League of Non-Aligned worlds. The attacks seem totally random, almost senseless. If we thought it was nuts around here before, this has only made things worse." Morden waits in line in the arrivals area. "We've had to hire more security personnel to keep things calm, make sure the wrong type of people don't get on board. But without our resources back home for background checks, we have to assume there will be lapses." Morden passes effortlessly through security. "Everyone's been handling the stress pretty well, but sooner or later, something's got to give somewhere." Dr. Franklin, alone in a room, injects himself with stims, knocking over a lamp in the process. "Nobody's seen Kosh in almost a week. When the Vorlon goes to ground, I worry." Kosh waits in his quarters. "What's going through his... its mind, I can't even guess. And Londo... Londo is Londo. You never know which way he'll jump next..." Londo is making preparations with Vir for the largest suite on Babylon 5 to be filled with flowers and reserved for Adira, who is returning to the station. "So far, we've got everything more or less under control, as long as nothing else goes wrong." Morden enters his quarters, and at his side appears a group of Shadows.

The Brakiri ambassador tells Sheridan and Ivanova that they cannot fight the Shadows themselves, and asks for help. Sheridan says that he can't help, since they no longer have Earth's support. Sheridan explains that the Brakiri were wrong to have trusted the Shadows, but the ambassador says he felt they were working for, instead of against, the Brakiri. Sheridan tells the Brakiri ambassador that he asked the Gaim ambassador to help the Brakiri, since the worlds near Gaim space would only help if they were involved. The Gaim ambassador refuses, saying that, if they join in the fight, the Shadows will notice them and come after them. Sheridan tries to convince the Gaim ambassador that the Shadows will come after them soon, but the only way the Gaim ambassador will be swayed is if Sheridan can prove that he has power equal to that of the Shadows.

It is another hectic time in MedLab where Dr. Franklin and another doctor, Dr. Hobbs, argue about a patient's condition as he lies in the isolab, victim of a respiratory failure. As they are about to help him, Garibaldi brings in another patient in desperate need of help of his own. The techs in the isolab report that Dr. Franklin's treatment didn't work, yet Franklin insists that they didn't follow his orders correctly. Dr. Hobbs tries to convince him that he may be endangering the patient's life, but her badgering and Garibaldi's persistence get on his nerves, causing Franklin to shout at everyone. The new treatment works on the respiratory patient, and Franklin mumbles out apologies.

Londo is by himself, recalling the time he spent with Adira a couple of years earlier, and the happiness that she brought him. His memories are interrupted by Vir, who has prepared the suite at Londo's behest. Londo tells Vir he will be right there, and departs to inspect it.

As Londo is on his way, however, the corridor suddenly glows with a red light, and his path is blocked by Morden, who tells Londo that they have something to settle. Morden tells Londo that he is disappointed in him, that Lord Refa will no longer respond to Morden's calls, and that the Centauri have pulled back their border campaigns. Morden asks about the deal they made, and insists that the Centauri government must continue their campaign. Londo believes Morden has no interest in the Centauri Republic, and only wants to use them as a distraction. Morden threatens Londo, saying that his associates may turn their eye to the Centauri if Londo stands in the way. "Then we will pluck it out," says Londo. He pushes past Morden and makes his way down the corridor. A Shadow appears and speaks with Morden. Morden insists that they need Londo alive, and that he will find other ways to get what they want.

Garibaldi arrives at Franklin's quarters. Franklin is getting ready to put in more overtime in MedLab. He says he can handle it, but Garibaldi doesn't agree. Franklin insists that his outburst was a one-time thing, but Garibaldi knows it isn't. He tells Franklin that, if he is still having problems with the stims, he can help, but Franklin will not even tolerate the suggestion that he might have a problem. Though Garibaldi tries to help further, Franklin will not listen. Garibaldi tells Franklin that he will leave him alone, but wants him to remember that he gave him a chance, and went to him first. Garibaldi leaves.

Delenn enters the war room to find Sheridan sitting at the table, poring over reports of Shadow attacks. Sheridan says he can't understand the methods the Shadows are using. Delenn tells him that their tactics are the ones they used a thousand years previous to keep the major powers at bay. Sheridan says that their only hope is to organize all the other races into one force, something that has never been done before, and might not even be possible, since they all have their rivalries and agendas, which seem incompatible. Sheridan tells Delenn that they can't score one victory against the Shadow ships, and that, if they could, it might convince the others to join in the fight. Delenn says that that is exactly what they should do, and Sheridan asks how they do that. "I'm sure you'll think of something," she says, and leaves.

"Every day, people around here start talking more and more like Kosh," he says to himself, smiling. Soon, the smile vanishes, and he begins formulating an idea.

Garibaldi searches through the Zocalo until he finds Dr. Hobbs sitting by herself, filling out forms. Garibaldi tells Hobbs that she was right, and that Franklin gave the wrong information to the techs. Garibaldi tells her that he knows everyone in MedLab needs to have blood samples taken regularly and tested, but Dr. Hobbs tells him that the only one with the access needed to see the results is Dr. Franklin. Garibaldi asks her to pull Franklin's files, but she refuses to do so, though she will tell him where the information is. She tells him that she doesn't want to see Franklin hurt. Garibaldi agrees, and hopes it isn't too late. He gets up and leaves, but Dr. Franklin has witnessed their transaction.

Vir is speaking with a vendor in the Zocalo about the various effects needed to complete the welcome for Adira. After he concludes the business, he starts off, but sees that Morden is nearby. Trying to avoid him, he heads off in another direction, only to run into Morden in a corridor outside. Morden asks how he can help, but Vir refuses the offer, hurrying away instead. Morden returns to the Zocalo, and speaks to the vendor, who he convinces to talk about what Vir ordered.

Garibaldi makes his way into Franklin's office, and begins using the computer, but refrains at the last moment from opening the file. Franklin sees him, but Garibaldi aborts at the last minute. Garibaldi tells Franklin that if, on some level, Franklin doesn't know the truth, Garibaldi can't help him. Franklin admits that he ran a test on himself to prove that Garibaldi was wrong, but found enough stims in his blood stream to prove that he was, indeed, addicted to them. He tells Garibaldi how easy it was for him to lose track, but he knows the numbers don't lie. Franklin asks Garibaldi what he intends to do about it. Garibaldi leaves it up to Franklin, who then quietly leaves MedLab.

Sheridan and Kosh walk together down a corridor, with Sheridan explaining his plan. "Nobody wants to fight a war unless they know there's at least a chance of winning. You can give them that hope. As one of the older races, your technology has to be at least as good as the Shadows'. Now, if we can convince your government to send out an expedition to engage one or two of their ships..."

"No," Kosh replies.

"All right, I know you can't take the entire Shadow fleet by yourselves, but if you could beat them at just one fight, it could be the break we'd need to get everyone organized. Then we'd have a real chance. You could do it, couldn't you?"

"Perhaps, but there are still few of us. It is not our time. It is yours. We are not prepared yet." Kosh then begins to move down the corridor, away from Sheridan.

This incenses Sheridan. "Don't turn your back on me! Don't you even try to walk away from me! Just who the hell do you think you are?! Oh wait, I know what you think you are, what you want us to believe. But I don't buy it. For three years now, you've been pulling everyone's strings, getting us to do all the work and you haven't done a damn thing but stand there and look cryptic! Well, it's about time you started pulling your own weight around here!" Kosh turns around toward Sheridan, his eyepiece opening and closing slowly, almost menacingly.

In C&C, a tech reports to Ivanova that there is an energy surge showing up on the sensors. Ivanova asks where it is, but the tech can't tell--it is a non-localized phenomenon.

"I hear you've got a saying," Sheridan continues, "'Understanding is a three-edged sword.' Well, we've got a saying, too, 'Put your money where your mouth is!'"

"Impudent," Kosh says righteously, before turning away again.

"Yeah? Well maybe that's the only way to get through to you. You said you wanted to teach me to fight legends. Well you're a legend, too, and I am not going away until you agree!"

"Incorrect," Kosh intones. His eyepiece glows brightly, and a force throws Sheridan against the wall. "Leave now!" he orders.



"Up yours!" Sheridan is thrown against the wall by another blast from Kosh, which gives Sheridan a cut on his face.

"So, the real Kosh shows his colors at last, huh? You angry now? Angry enough to kill me? Because that's the only way I'm leaving. Unless your people get off their encounter-suited butts and do something, I've got nothing to lose! God, my own government wants to kill me, and if we lose this war, I'm just as dead! Our only chance is to get the other races on board for this fight and right now you're the key to doing that."

"It is not yet time," Kosh tells him.

Sheridan is even more upset now. "And who decides that time? You? You put me in this position. You asked me to fight this damn war! Well, it's about time you let me fight it my way!" Kosh tries to get away again, but Sheridan won't let him go. "How many people have already died fighting this war of yours, huh? How many more will die before you come down off that mountain and get involved? Ships, colonies, whole worlds are being destroyed out there, and you do nothing! How many more? How many more, Kosh? How many more dead before you're satisfied? Huh?"

Kosh hits Sheridan with a very powerful force that throws Sheridan against the wall, but this time he does not let go. "Go ahead," Sheridan invites. "Maybe one more death will help balance out the books. Go on. Get it over with. Save us both the trouble later." Kosh does not agree, and instead lets Sheridan go.

"I will do as you ask," Kosh says, and begins walking away. After a few steps, he turns back to Sheridan. "But there is a price to pay. I will not be there to help you when you go to Z'ha'dum."

"You already said if I go to Z'ha'dum, I'll die."

"Yes, now."

"All right. If that's the trade-off. If you want to withhold your help when the time comes, that's fine. I'll go it alone."

"You do not understand," Kosh tells him. "But you will." Kosh turns away from Sheridan and silently heads down the corridor.

Ivanova reports to Sheridan that the Shadows have been attacking the Brakiri again as Delenn leads the ambassadors from the group of potential allies into the war room. As the Shadows attack the Brakiri, a new jump point opens, through which pass many Vorlon ships, which begin attacking the Shadow vessels, destroying several. Though the Vorlons are not immune to the attacks of the Shadows, they emerge with far fewer casualties as the battle rages on.

Londo and Vir are awaiting Adira's arrival in the cargo bay, yet after the last passenger has left the ship, Adira still is nowhere to be found. A group of medical officers appear from the ship with a body on a stretcher. It's Adira. Dr. Hobbs, leading the team, doesn't know how she died, but Londo suspects he knows--he remembers a recent conversation with Lord Refa, on the topic of poison. Londo instructs Dr. Hobbs to inspect her for poison, and as the body is carried away, Londo begins crying.

The battle concluded, the victorious Vorlon ships enter their jump point and return from whence they came. Meanwhile, Morden receives word from one of his contacts, and seems troubled by what he hears.

Ivanova informs Sheridan that the news of the victory has spread and that every ambassador aboard the station is ready to sign on. Sheridan wants to go to Kosh and thank him, but Ivanova convinces him to go to bed instead, and thank him the next day. However, someone does go to visit Kosh without delay--Morden, who brings his Shadow associates with him.

As Sheridan sleeps, he dreams of his father. "John... Johnny..."

"Dad?" Sheridan says, turning around.

"I don't have much time, son," his father tells him as a great struggle begins in Kosh's quarters. "I want you to know, you were right. I didn't want to admit that. Just pride, I guess. You get--at my age, you get kind of set in your ways. But it had to be done. Don't blame yourself for what happened later." The struggle in Kosh's quarters continues as Morden watches on emotionlessly. Sheridan's father stumbles, apparently very weak.

"Dad, are you... Are you all right?"

"It's too late for me. I'm sorry for what I did before. I knew what was ahead. I guess... I guess I was afraid. When you've lived as long as I have, you... you kind of get used to it. I wish I could have done more for you. There's so much I should have said... And now it's too late. You're right. It's time you begin this war your way." He wrenches in pain again. "I've got to go now, John."

"No, no... don't... Don't leave," Sheridan pleads.

"It's all right, son. See... As long as you're here, I'll always be here."

As the skirmish in Kosh's quarters ends, a pulse of white energy flashes along the station's axis. Sheridan awakes, screaming Kosh's name. Morden leaves the quarters of the Vorlon quietly, leaving nothing behind but the charred, twisted remains of Ambassador Kosh's encounter suit.

Garibaldi explains that, although he searched the quarters with great care, they found no sign of forced entry, and no sign of a body. Garibaldi suggests Kosh might not be dead, but Sheridan and Delenn know better. She says that the Vorlons asked that no one be told of Kosh's death, since such news could destroy the newly-formed alliance. Since Kosh is often not seen for weeks, it will give them time to send a replacement. Sheridan says that Kosh knew what lay ahead, hence the warning he gave. Sheridan feels guilty, believing earlier that Kosh's warning about Z'ha'dum was punishment, rather than what it was--fear. Delenn says that Kosh's encounter suit, and all his other personal effects should be placed in his ship.

Londo tells Morden that Adira's death was caused by poison, and he suspects Morden knows the cause. Morden tells him that the last he heard from Lord Refa, he was very upset with Londo, which would be understandable given the fact that Londo poisoned him. Morden says that Refa said something about "evening the score," but couldn't find out more because Refa stopped talking to him after that. Morden offers that he could have stopped him, had he known about it earlier, but he expresses his most sincere apologies. Londo picks up a piece of jewelry, which he gave to Adira, and muses about it sentimentally. Londo laments that all those die around him, except those who most deserve it. "That is about to change," Londo tells him. "You said that you would go away for as long as I wanted. I no longer want that. All I want now... is revenge. They took from me... the one thing that I have ever truly loved. And you will help me, Mr. Morden, to strike them down. Give me this... and the safety of my people, and let the rest of the galaxy burn. I don't care any more. Will you help me, Mr. Morden?"

"Of course, Ambassador," Morden says, his face displaying concern. "As ever, I am always in your service."

Sheridan arrives in Medlab to meet with Franklin. Franklin says that he feels he hasn't been doing a good job lately, and that he he can't see anything else in the mirror but his job. He says he hasn't lived very much in a long time. He admits to Sheridan that he has been taking too many stims, hiding from the truth about himself. He says that he no longer has the luxury to hide from his own problems, and that he needs to stop lying to himself before someone else pays the price. He informs Sheridan that he is resigning as Chief of Staff of the MedLab facility. Sheridan tries to stop him, but Franklin won't hear of it. The two shake hands, and Franklin leaves quietly, leaving Sheridan alone.

"And then what?" Garibaldi asks.

"And then," Delenn explains, "once Kosh's belongings are loaded into his ship, it will activate itself. The ship was made for him. It was a part of him. In a curious way, it is alive. It cannot live without him." Kosh's ship leaves the station and begins flying away. The ship slowly makes its way toward a nearby star, which quickly envelops it. "So it will grieve, as we do, in its own way," Delenn concludes. "And perform its last duty, in memory of Kosh."

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Last update: June 10, 2018