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A Day in the Strife

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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."

(scene break)

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."

(scene break)

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!"

(scene break)

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)

movie (2620Kb)

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."

(scene break)

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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The Corwin Homage Page/A Day in the Strife/ Lynne/last modified 29 February, 2000.