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Corwin is in C&C, at the left hand wall panel display. "We've been monitoring (it) for the past
hour, Captain, ever since it entered Babylon 5 space."
SHER - "Distance?"
COR (licks lips) - "A little over 500 klicks. We sent a security bot to check it out. Should be in range by now...signature and configuration - it's like nothing we've seen before. Looks like we've got a first contact situation, Captain."
COR - "Alien vessel coming to relative stop, Captain. No life signs present."
SHER - "Weapons?"
COR - " None that I can tell."
SHER - "Must be a science probe of some kind."
COR - "Getting a signal - recording."
SHER - "Anything you recognise?"
COR - "Negative - just the same pattern of signals repeated over and over."
SHER - "Probably sending us their alphabet and language codes. How long before the system decodes it?"
COR - "It's pretty complex, sir. At least two to three hours, maybe more."
COR - "Computer finished processing their language codes, Commander."
IV - "Can you translate their message?"
COR - "Think so. Standby...." (hand to ear) "It's a recorded message as we thought. The probe was sent to find other life forms and initiate contact."
IV - "So far, so good. What about the rest of the message?"
COR - "It's a series of questions. Physics, quantum mechanics, molecular biology, genetics - apparently it is some (form?Sort?) of intelligence test to determine whether we're sufficiently advanced for contact."
IV - "Well, gee, I'm honoured. So, what do we get if we pass?"
COR - "Cures for every known disease. Technical information centuries beyond our own."
IV - "Why didn't they say so in the first place? Congratulations, Lieutenant, I think we're about to go down in the history books."
COR - (concerned) "There's just one thing. It says if we don't provide all the correct answers within 24 hours, the probe will self destruct with the force of 500,000 megatons - that's enough to vapourise the entire station!"
IV - "Corwin, check these figures again - make sure they came through the translation again. I don't want to get killed because of a typo." She passes a data pad across the techie bowl.
COR - "On it." (scene break)
SHER - "Power up slowly."
COR - "Captain, I've got the transport pilots' association on the link again."
SHER (exasperated) - "Aghhh."
COR - "They want to know when you can meet with them to finish discussions about weapons. They've called five times in the last hour."
SHER - (blah, blah) - meet in seven hours. (Blah, blah)
IV - "Always finding the good in every situation, eh, Captain?"
SHER - "Absolutely. If I didn't, I might end up like you."
IV - "Hey, what's that supposed to mean? ... Did anybody else hear that?" Looks at Corwin. "Did you hear that?"
COR (smirking a little) - "No, Commander."
IV - "I swear if we live through this, someone's going to find their automatic shower preferences reprogrammed for ice water."
IV - "How much time?"
COR - "Three minutes."
IV - "Standing by to transmit." Sheridan has thoughts....
COR - "Two minutes."
Sheridan refuses to send the information. Lots of tension build up and reaction shots - Corwin agape :-)
The probe breaks off and starts to leave.
SHER - "Are there any secure bots in that area?"
COR - "Just one - 5,000 klicks."
SHER - "That's far enough. Relay those answers to the bot, move it closer to the probe and have it standby to transmit."
COR - "Probe is at 3,000 klicks, three thousand four, three thousand six..."
SHER - "Stand by...stand by...transmit!" Ivanova punches button, all shade their eyes at the probe blows.
Another movie! (1350Kb)
IV - "If I live through this job without completely losing my mind, it will be a miracle of biblical proportions."
COR - "Well there goes my faith in the Almighty."
Ivanova glares at him and sighs in exasperation, then tugs at her jacket.
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