Babylon 5 S2E20 Script

The Long, Twilight Struggle (1995)

[instrumental music]

Ah, Londo.

Good to see you again.

And you, Refa. You look well.

Exciting times, Mollari.

They fire the blood and the mind.

Leave us.

Refa...the emperor?

Is out among his people basking in their almost-sincere adulation.

He has left things here in the hands of his court which can function just as well without him as with him.

Sometimes better.

A point that I'm sure has not been lost on him.

I will only say he appreciates his position and ours.

And yours.

You have been much in our thoughts lately.

'We know this has been a hard time for you. Our work here--'

Has cost me the life of one friend already.

How many more do you have lined up? Hmm?

What has happened in the past is unfortunate, Londo.

But for the sake of our people we must learn from our mistakes and move on.

Lord Refa, I have come a long way and I am tired.

Is there a reason I have been summoned here, now?

Indeed there is. I have good news.

The war which began six months ago is about to end sooner than any of us could have hoped.

'And you, Londo Mollari'

'will be the architect of our victory.'

[instrumental music]


Hello, dear friend.

[man laughing]

That's funny. What?

I'm picking up an energy surge from the planet below.

You sure? Of course I'm sure.

Take a look for yourself.

Commander was afraid something like this might happen again one of these days.

Something like what?

Station 3 to Commander Ivanova.

[water running]

[instrumental music]

[device beeping]

Yes?

Captain, I just wanted to let you know we're picking up some unusual signals from the planet below.

Ivanova?

Ivanova? 'Hello, captain.'

I do hope I'm not inconveniencing you but I think we should talk.

(male narrator) The Babylon Project was our last, best hope for peace.

A self-contained world, five miles long located in neutral territory.

A place of commerce and diplomacy for a quarter of a million humans and aliens.

A shining beacon in space all alone in the night.

It was the dawn of the Third Age of mankind.

The year the Great War came upon us all.

This is the story of the last of the Babylon stations.

The year is 2259.

The name of the place is Babylon 5.

[theme music]


[music continues]

I've been watching you for quite some time, captain.

And I thought it was time that I introduced myself.

My name...is Draal.

How do you do?

I-I'm fine. Fine.

Good.

You don't have any idea who I am, do you?

Unless there's another Draal who could do what you just did you're the Minbari who took custody of the planet we're orbiting.

Ah, captain, you do not take custody of a planet.

The planet takes custody of you.

It chose me...when the one who lived in the heart of the machine lay dying.

Since then, it has nourished me, returned to me my youth and appearance of 30 years ago.

I am but a steward, a guardian here for a short while and then gone, a humble..

I can come back after you've finished dressing.

No, no, it's fine.

I wouldn't wish to be an inconvenience.

You're not. I've been--

A humble guardian of the great and terrible secrets that have been entrusted to my care.

You were saying?

I've been wondering... if you'd ever make contact.

I've read the reports about what happened and after a while I began to wonder if you were real or not.

Quite real, captain.

I'm here to invite you down for a visit.

A visit?

Well, y-yes, if..

I suppose. When?

Whenever is most convenient for you.

And whenever is most convenient for you is as soon as possible, trust me.

Ah, wait. Uh..

What about your planet's defenses? How do I contact you?

Details, details.

Oh, and you can bring one other. You'll know who.

(G'Sten) 'The war does not go well for us, G'Kar.'

Our outposts and colonies at Shi, Dross and Zok have all been conquered.

In the last seven days we have lost all contact with our holdings in that sector.

So, we must assume that they have fallen as well.

G'Quan..

The Centauri have pushed us back further than we have ever been for 30 years.

Their forces are closing in on us in every direction.

War leader G'Sten, I don't understand.

I'd heard none of this during my weekly briefings.

The Kha'Ri is trying to perpetuate the belief that we are holding our own. We're not.

Then there is no hope.

There's always hope.

[chuckles]

At least that's what I tell myself when I awaken in the middle of the night and the only sound I can hear is the beating of my own desperate heart.

We have one chance.

We have located the supply world for the Centauri main force.

Here, at Gorash 7.

It's heavily guarded but open to attack if we commit the bulk of our forces for one all-out strike.

'Many of our ships will not return' but if we strike hard enough, we can cut their supply line.

'An attack like this should make them think'

'that we are launching a new offensive' that perhaps they have underestimated our forces.

Their entire campaign has been cautious.

This should make them pull back and re-examine their strategy.

And with luck, this will buy us time to bolster our lines of defense.

Exactly. If we make them pay for every inch of space we can wear them down, prolonging the war beyond their capacity to fight it.

The Centauri want a quick victory.

They don't have the stomach for prolonging the war.

There is a danger, G'Sten.

Drawing off our forces like this will leave Homeworld with only a skeleton defense.

I know, but if we go on fighting the way we have been sooner or later Homeworld will fall.

We must change our strategy quickly.

Even in our worst projections, we will always have enough surviving ships to effectively defend Homeworld.

They will only be gone for a little while.

The window of vulnerability is very small.

I pray you're right, G'Sten.

I wish I were going with you.

Your place is here, G'Kar.

We will need alliances support...even sympathy.

In the final analysis, your work here could be more important than a fleet of ships.

But how could I go off without saying goodbye to my favorite nephew?

Your father would be very proud of you, G'Kar.

Be well.

And you, G'Sten.

[instrumental music]

Captain, here you are. I was looking for you.

Uh, this isn't a good time, ambassador.

I'm in kind of a hurry. I know.

He appeared to me as well.

Well, perhaps we should continue if you are in such a terrible hurry.

Perhaps we should.

You are sure that your information is correct, hm?

Of course.

We intercepted a coded transmission from the Narn Strategic Command. One of their flagships.

They intend to strike at Gorash 7.

It could be misinformation.

An attempt to draw off our main force while they strike elsewhere.

Yes, I have heard this from others in the Centaurum but I don't think so.

It has just the right ring of desperation to be true.

Took some doing but I managed to convince some of our generals that the message is genuine.

Enough for what is necessary.

Then you're going to be waiting for them at Gorash 7, yes?

No. What?

Are you mad?

They will destroy our supply lines.

Not if your forces are there waiting for them.

My forces?

And where will all your generals be during this? Hm?

Launching a full assault on the Narn Homeworld itself.

Great Maker!

You can't be serious. Of course, I'm serious.

Refa, any force attempting to invade Narn would be up to its neck in blood. Its own.

We have no intention of invading Narn.

Flattening it, yes. But invading it?

'We will be using mass drivers.'

By the time we are done, their cities will be in ruins.

We can move in at our leisure.

Mass drivers?

They have been outlawed by every civilized planet.

These are uncivilized times.

We have treaties. Ink on a page!

'This one move will end the war in days instead of months' and save thousands of Centauri lives.

We only require your assistance and that of your allies.

Listen to me, Refa.

My allies have begun to worry me.

Reports I have received. Their sheer strength..

Yes, they are very powerful, which is what we need.

I don't understand your reluctance, Londo. reluctant.

I just feel that things are moving too quickly.

They threaten to spin out of control.

Nonsense. We know exactly what we're doing and now is not the time for doubts, Mollari.

'We are here because of you.'

'It's a little late to back out now.'

Londo, everything depends on your cooperation.

At this very moment, a dozen of our largest battle cruisers are standing by in hyperspace waiting for your decision.

'If you wish to serve our people, how better to do so'

'than to end this war quickly.'

Gloriously!

With a minimum of Centauri blood.

Alright.

I will bring my associates into this the last time!

We are Centauri.

If we are to seize our destiny, we must do it ourselves.

After this, no more.

After this, there will no longer be a need.

Huh. Thank you, Londo.

Cheer up.

By the time you return to Babylon 5 the war will be over and the Narns will be at our feet.

And this time, we will keep them there.

We still have to be sure this message what it appears to be.

Of course it is.

Do you think I would not recognize my old teacher?

To be fair, Delenn, he didn't exactly look the same as he does in the station records.

No. He looks stronger, more fit just as he did when he was my mentor.

But there's always the chance that someone might send a bogus message.

But why?

Well, how about to get the both of you in a ship headed for the planet which, if we remember our last warning would end up with you being shot down, lasered or otherwise scattered all over the landscape.

Draal would never do that. I know him too well.

(Michael) Yeah, well, that was before he went into that machine running the planet. Who knows what he's like now?

And that's assuming he's the one who sent the message in the first place.

Captain, we just finished our scan of Epsilon 3.

The message came from three miles inside the planet's surface. It's genuine alright.

Well, that settles it then.

He's made the invitation, and I don't see how I can say no.

I mean, we're next-door neighbors, and he's right it's about time we got to know each other.

I'd feel a lot more comfortable at this situation if you'd let me send a security team with you.

He told me I could only bring one other..

...and that I would know who he was referring to.

I'm ready to depart whenever you are, captain.

Ah, Mollari, I was just about to send for you.

Go ahead, gentlemen.

It's time to go. Go? Where?

'To the Narn Homeworld, of course.'

I've reserved a place for us aboard the Valerius.

It leaves within the hour.

'We will be at the head of the fleet' to personally oversee our victory.

Come, Londo. Destiny awaits.

[instrumental music]

(John) 'Beginning atmospheric insertion.'

Confirmed, Shuttle 1, you're clear for de-orbit.

(John) 'Thanks, C and C. Be back in a few hours.'

[indistinct chattering]

You wanted to see me, doctor? Yes.

Excuse me. Can you help?

Thank you.

We had another group of refugees come in from the front lines this morning from your colony on Dross.

Agricultural specialists. Civilians.

A few soldiers. The usual mix.

Are they...alright?

Mostly.

There's something that I thought you should know.

One of the refugees said that he was captured and interrogated by the Centauri and they kept asking the same questions over and over again.

Seems that they wanted to know as much as possible about your Homeworld's defense system.

I'm not surprised.

Eventually, they will have to turn their eye toward Narn itself.

Yeah, that's just it.

He said their questions seemed unusually urgent.

And one more thing.

The only reason that this batch of refugees got out is because the Centauri warships pulled out before they finished securing the planet.

Centauri don't work that way. They're very thorough.

I know.

In the final days of our last war the Minbari bypassed several of our colonies.

They went right past our colonies on Mars and Io because they were ready to hit Earth itself.

I would like to speak with this Narn.

I'm afraid that's not possible.

I don't want to panic anyone, ambassador but I thought you should know.

Yes.

Thank you, doctor.

[instrumental music]

(John) 'You're sure you know where you're going?'

Of course. I have an excellent memory.

You're positive?

Abso-fragging-lutely, damn it.

Since our last discussion I have been studying your use of language. Uh, do you approve?

Well, we'll talk about that later.

Uh, left or right?

Left. I believe.

Good Lord.

I may not go home.

G'Kar, this is hardly enough information.

You know the Centauri! You know how they operate!

Attack, neutralize, secure move on to the next target.

Why would they withdraw from Dross before finishing the job?

I don't know. Perhaps they encountered heavy resistance.

Well, they might regroup, but they wouldn't leave.

G'Sten, listen to me.

If there's even a chance they mean to attack Homeworld..

The mission is too far along to stop it without proof.

With a little more time, I.. 'There's no time.'

We're about to launch. G'Sten!

I'm sorry, G'Kar. I have to go.

I'll finish this conversation when I return.

Draal?

We're here.

Did you think I hadn't noticed, my old friend?

You've changed.

I like it.

Captain, I have watched you since your arrival.

At first, I wasn't sure about you.

But your decisions have been wise your attitudes commendable and your patience vaster than mine would have been under similar circumstances.

Thank you. I'm not finished yet.

Oh, sorry.

Since taking up residence in the heart of this machine I have explored its secrets, learned and discovered that I can look into distant worlds.

See and hear things you cannot begin to imagine.

Along the way..

...I've learned some things captain.

The loss of your wife.

'I know Delenn has told you about the coming darkness.'

And lately I've learned about your role in shall we say, a conspiracy of light aimed at your own government?

I don't know what you're talking about.

Yes, you do. Please, captain, don't worry.

Your secret is safe with me.

They would have to dig down three miles into the surface of this planet to learn what I know and no one who tried would survive the attempt.

'And now I have seen enough.'

I said a year ago that this place was to be left alone until the time was right.

That time has arrived.

Now that I know the full capabilities of this place I am prepared to place them at your disposal.

Are you proposing an alliance?

One of the first.

There will be more to come.

This has been a hard and trying year for you, Captain Sheridan.

'It might be helpful for you to know that you are not alone.'

And that in the long, twilight struggle which lies ahead of us..

...there is the possibility of hope.

[intense music]


[music continues]

Warleader G'Sten to fleet ships. Stand by to attack.

Status? No enemy ships detected.

We're.. Just a minute. I'm picking up a disturbance.

Picking up four, possibly five ships, unknown configuration.

Moving toward us on attack vector.

Can we initiate jump?

Not until the jump engines can recharge.

Then we have no choice.

Alert all ships. Prepare to attack.

[music continues]

[intense music]

Fire energy mines!


[music continues]

[indistinct chanting]

[indistinct chanting]

[music continues]

[indistinct chanting]

[alarm blaring]

A direct hit. Damage to all sectors.

How much longer until we can jump?

Jump engines on line.

Get us out of here. Alert the fleet.

We must escape while we can.

Initiating jump point.

[music continues]

Jump points falling apart. Energy fields collapsing.

Pull back! Pull back!

It's too late!

[music continues]


[instrumental music]

(Draal) 'Needless to say I think it would be unwise' to inform your government of our alliance.

I'm inclined to agree.

Is it difficult to be alone here, Draal?

I'm never alone.

My thoughts are always among the stars.

And I've heard that there are a few others living here who maintain the great machine, I speak with them from time to time, they're quite interesting.

There is one in particular who.. Oh.

Draal, are you alright?

I am picking up distress calls. I'm..

In Valen's name.. What is it?

Captain, you must return at once. They will need you.

It's time you introduced him to the others.

Please, captain, go now. Quickly.

I will be here if you need me.

I need a moment. Alright.

Now that you have come out of hiding I hope to see you more often, old friend.

That much seems certain.

Valen go with you, Delenn.

And with you, my friend.

So much to do, so little time. We must get to work.

Zathras! Zathras!

Hmm..

Never around when he's needed.

Garibaldi, we've got trouble.

So, what else is new? I mean major.

We just got the word, the Centauri have begun an all-out offensive against the Narn Homeworld.

'Started about an hour ago.'

Oh, no.

Is there any word on how it's going?

Not yet, we got an early relay from an Earth listening post.

But word's gonna be hitting the station any time now.

When that happens, it's gonna be riots and blood in the streets.

Alright, I'll need authorization to lock down the station.

You got it.

I'll have my people close off traffic between levels break up any group larger than five.

I recommend you post a general alert telling anybody without urgent business to stay inside their quarters until this thing is over.

It's already recorded, it'll go out on the station monitors as soon as the word hits.

This is it, Michael. The balloon's going up.

We interrupt this program with this late-breaking story.

Officials in Earth Dome confirm that the Centauri Republic

'has begun a devastating'

'frontal assault on the Narn Homeworld.'

'Reports continue to come in alleging that'

'the main Narn fleet has been neutralized'

'and that Narn is completely encircled by its enemies.'

'Neither government has yet confirmed nor denied'

'these reports, though some messages'

'relayed from Narn seem to corroborate the stories'

'of massive destruction and death.'

'For the latest developments on this story, we take..'

[growls]

[intense music]

[alarm blaring]

What's the situation?

We've got mass riots all over the place.

Garibaldi's men are doing what they can.

We've closed off all sections. 'Good.'

Escort Ambassador Delenn to her quarters.

See to it she arrives safely.

Captain. It's alright.

Now go on.

Any word about the attack? Just rumors.

They say the Centauri are using mass drivers.

I can't believe they'd resort to planetary bombardment.

Yeah, right now, I'd believe just about anything.

[dramatic music]


[music continues]


(male #1) 'With the planetary bombardment in its fourth day'

'the Narn government continues in its refusal to surrender.'

'Minbari, Vorlon, Earth and other governments'

'have filed official protests with the Centauri Republic'

'for their use of mass drivers against'

'the civilian population.'

'But so far, the protests have had no effect.'

Although communication with the Narn Homeworld is difficult at best, due to the continued attacks, word has reached ISN

'of cities utterly destroyed, hundreds of thousands of'

'casualties, the total elimination of power and water'

'over most of the Narn planetary surface.'

'Most of their major cities have fallen'

'food shipments have stopped'

'the planetary economy has collapsed'

'and medical treatment is virtually non-existent.'

Government analysts predict that unless the Narn government surrenders soon their entire infrastructure will be totally destroyed.

'To quote Senator Ronald Quantrell'

'"They're being bombed back into the Stone Age."'

Off.

(G'Kar) Then there's no other way?

If the bombardment continues in a few more days we won't be able to keep them out anyway and hundreds of thousands more will die.

We have no choice but to surrender.

What about our people here? I don't know.

It will depend on the terms of the surrender.

With luck, the Centauri will be feeling generous. If not--

Either way, I'll return home on the next shuttle.

I should be there. 'No.'

If you come back here you will only be killed.

You are the only one of the Kha'Ri who is still safe.

I should be with my family. I understand how you feel.

But if you want to save them, you have to listen to me.

I've to go soon, I don't know how much longer we can keep this channel open.

The power keeps going out.

Before that happens, I have a message for you from the Kha'Ri.

It is probably the last message they will ever send..

...and the hardest thing I have ever asked you to do.

[intense music]

Ambassador?

Captain Sheridan, I..

I've been instructed by my government to come to you..

...and ask for..

[inhales deeply]

...sanctuary.

[music continues]

Mr. Garibaldi.

I've arranged for around the clock security until this is over.

Thank you.

Could you tell Captain Sheridan that I wish to convene a meeting of the Babylon 5 Advisory Council and the League of Non-Aligned Worlds as quickly as possible?

I have an announcement to make.

Fine.

Fine.

A little over five standard hours ago..

...the conflict which began with the Narn declaration of war..

...came to an end.

The Narn regime has offered complete and unconditional surrender.

[indistinct chattering]

The terms imposed by the Centauri Republic are as follows..

One, the ruling body known as the Kha'Ri will be disbanded and its members subject to arrest and trial for the commission of war crimes against the Centauri.

Earth requests the right to send observers to these hearings.

That request is denied.

Two.

To prevent further acts of terror by the Narn against our people from this day on, the penalty for the murder of any Centauri by any Narn will be the execution of 500 Narns.

[slurring]

'Including the perpetrator's own family.'

[growling]

Three, a provisional ruling council appointed by my government will take up the responsibility of rebuilding a more civilized Narn government as a colony of the greater Centauri Republic.

Is there anything else?

Yes.

Just...one thing.

Because the Narn Homeworld is now a protectorate of the Centauri Republic, reserve the right to determine who can speak for Narn.

As a result, Ambassador G'Kar may no longer represent the Narn in any official capacity whatsoever.

'His appointment as ambassador'

'to Babylon 5 is hereby withdrawn.'

And as the only member of the Kha'Ri still at large Citizen G'Kar..

...will return to Narn for trial.

I'm afraid that's not possible.

Prior to this meeting Ambassador G'Kar asked for sanctuary on Babylon 5.

As it is within my province to make such decisions, I agreed.

Surrender by all members of the Kha'Ri is stipulated in the Narn-Centauri agreement.

Oh, I'm sure it is, but I didn't sign that agreement, ambassador.

Neither did Earth.

As cosponsor of Babylon 5, the Minbari government supports this decision.

The neutrality of this station applies even to the wishes of the Centauri.

'Citizen G'Kar may remain here for as long as he chooses.'

(John) 'Face reality, Ambassador Mollari.'

If your government is serious about all these rules you're going to need someone here whom all the other Narn will recognize as credible.

If this is your decision..

...then I cannot stop you.

Nevertheless, at this moment G'Kar is no longer an official representative of Narn and must be removed from this council.

We will wait until-- Now!

[intense music]


No dictator...no invader..

...can hold an imprisoned population by force of arms forever.

There is no greater power in the universe than the need for freedom.

Against that power, governments and tyrants

'and armies cannot stand.'

The Centauri learned this lesson once.

[music continues]

We will teach it to them again.

Though it take a thousand years..

...we will be free.

[music continues]

(male #1) 'And dancing in the streets as Centauri Emperor Cartagia'

'declared a weeklong public celebration'

'to commemorate the recapture of the Narn Homeworld.'

'In related news, the Centauri Republic today'

'announced plans to annex several smaller worlds adjacent'

'to Narn space declaring them protectorates of the Republic.'

'While government spokesmen insist that the Centauri'

'do not have any expansionist plans'

'beyond retaking the Narn Homeworld'

'others in Earth Dome are less sure.'

G'Kar, I know we've had our..

...problems in the past..

...but I can't imagine going into the council chambers and not seeing you there.

Straight, tall, ready to argue with anyone about anything.

I don't know, I...I don't think I want to go the next... 10 years..

...without your insight.

Or your words.

For what it's worth..

...every resource that I have every...contact..

...any way that I can help you win back your planet..

...it's yours.

The last time I offered someone my hand..

...we were at war 24 hours later.


[device beeping]

Sheridan. 'Captain.'

'Ambassador Delenn has asked to see you.'

'She's in the conference center.'

Be right there.

[indistinct chattering]

Is it someone's birthday and I wasn't informed?

Most of these people have come to meet you for the first time.

Some of the others you already know.

They have come to pledge themselves to you.

Well, I-I don't understand.

They call themselves Rangers.

They've been coming through the station now for sometime carrying information on the war, other things.

They have sworn their lives, their fortunes and their blood to help fight the coming darkness.

Have you known about these... Rangers all this time?

Most of it.

I found out about it about eight, nine months ago.

And you didn't tell me?

Why? Because I promised a friend.

Captain...John.

You see what is happening all around us.

The Great War is nearly upon us.

Now that the Narn, Centauri conflict has finished the next wave will come soon, even more deadly.

There must be one fortress of light to stand against the darkness.

That place is this place.

It must be protected at any cost.

Until now, the Rangers assigned to this area have been under my direct command.

I now transfer equal authority to you.

And like them, I will stand by you in the days ahead.

Well, I don't quite know what to say.

For the last year..

...things haven't exactly been going our way.

I started to wonder if it would ever get better.

I think it just did.

Tell the other Rangers, the ambassadors..

...everyone in this... army of light..

...that Babylon 5 stands with you.

Tell them..

Tell them that from this place, we will deliver notice to the parliaments of conquerors that a line has been drawn against the darkness and we will hold that line..

...no matter the cost.

[instrumental music]

[theme music]