Babylon 5 S4E5 Script

The Long Night (1997)

(John) Captain's personal log.

We're almost ready to strike.

The next few days will either mark the beginning of a new age or the death of everything we've worked for.

[instrumental music]

We just got a report from a ship passing through Sector 900 on the edge of Vorlon space.

I suppose it was inevitable with the Vorlons attacking Shadow bases all over the place and wiping out whole colonies where Shadows have influence.

They were bound to strike back.

It's like two giants fighting in a sandbox.

They don't even care who's getting stepped on anymore.

How bad is it?

Oh, see for yourself.

'This used to be a colony that was supporting the Vorlons.'

What is that? 'Unknown.'

At first we thought maybe it was a dust cloud figured they were being bombed from space.

Then it began moving.

'Before that cloud got there, whatever it is..'

...there were two million sentients living on that planet.

They're all dead now.

You know, I used to think that the Vorlon planet killers were scary.

But now..

...I don't even know what I'm looking at.

We couldn't get a reading on it.

(John) 'Giants in the playground.'

[intense music]

(Londo) 'You all know why we are here.'

What happens in the next little while will determine the fate of Centauri Prime.

Homeworld will stand or fall depending on what we do here in the next 17 hours.

Mollari, we shouldn't move hastily.

No, we shouldn't.

Unfortunately, we have no other choice.

No one in the royal court was willing to stand up and prevent a madman from taking the throne until it was too late.

Don't blame us for this, Mollari.

Prime Minister Malachi could've stopped him..

...but Malachi is dead, thanks to your friend Lord Refa.

You were part of it all along.

Refa never told me his plans for Malachi and he has paid the price for his actions.

I made sure of that.

Still, when I die there will be a reckoning, but it will have to wait.

What matters is what we do now!

There has to be another way.

I wish there was.

But with the Shadows' vessels based on Centauri Prime and the Vorlons coming, we don't have any time.

We must get their ships off of the Homeworld before the Vorlons arrive.

(Londo) 'And they will not leave as long as Cartagia is alive' which is why I have lured him here.

Away from the royal court, he is vulnerable.

Londo-- There is no choice!

By the end of this day, either Cartagia is dead or Centauri Prime will be destroyed.

[instrumental music]

(Lennier) It was the year of fire.

(Zack) The year of destruction.

(G'Kar) The year we took back what was ours.

(Lyta) It was the year of rebirth.

(Vir) The year of great sadness.

(Marcus) The year of pain.

(Delenn) And the year of joy.

(Londo) It was a new age.

(Franklin) It was the end of history.

(Susan) It was the year everything changed.

(Michael) The year is 2261.

(John) The place, "Babylon 5."

[theme music]

[music continues]

[instrumental music]

You're far away again.



How is it out there?

Oh, we just had ten more ships join the fleet.

It's the biggest thing I've ever seen.

Hell, no one's ever seen a thing like this before.


When you consider that six months ago half of them were fighting each other it''s amazing.

And you brought them together.

You should be proud. Yeah.

You know, all my life, I have dreamed of going into battle commanding a fleet like this.

Now we're gonna do it.

No matter how it ends up, we're gonna go down fighting.


...that's what I was thinking about.

I don't want you with the fleet

'at least not at first.'

Don't you dare. Susan--

There's no way in hell you're leaving me behind!

Not this time.

I'm not asking you to stay behind.

But there's something I need you to do.

You were looking for more of the First Ones when you found the Vorlon fleet.

'I need you to finish what you started.'

John, we looked everywhere and came up empty.

I mean, maybe there just aren't anymore left.

Lorien says there are.

He can help you find them.

Look, we need every resource we can get.

If we can have some of the First Ones on board we have a chance.

If not..

It's funny, you know? This morning, I remembered a story that I hadn't thought about in years.

I was ten.

My father was away on business and my mother was..

She'd been in the sleepers for so many years.

The damned Psi Corps control freaks wouldn't leave her alone.

You know, it's the same refrain over and over again.

"Sleepers or prison. Sleepers or prison."

I was downstairs. I was playing with my dolls.

I know. It's hard to believe.

But even I played with dolls once upon a time.

Seems like a lifetime ago.


...she came downstairs and she just..

...watched me play.

She had the strangest look on her face like she was trying to burn that moment into her mind so she would never, ever forget it.

And so I asked her if she'd play with me and she said, uh, "Of course, Susatchka, but..

"...I want you to wait

"for me next door at Cousin Magda's house.

I'll come for you soon."

And so I went..

...and I waited, and I waited and it got dark, and my father came home and then some other men showed up.

And then my father told me that my mother had gone away.

It wasn't until later that I found out that she took her own life.

That she had come down to watch me play so that she could have one perfect memory.. take with her into heaven.

Whenever someone has told me that they would wait for me..

...or come for me.. hasn't come true.

I can't do that anymore, John.

Not unless I'm sure.

What do you want me to do?

I want you to make me a promise..

...not as my friend, not as my commanding officer..

...from one soldier to another.

Don't protect me.

Don't hold me back.

I want you to promise me that I will be there with the fleet at the end.

No matter what happens.

[dramatic music]

I have just enough trust left in me to believe you.


You'll be there.

When do you want me to leave?

As soon as possible.

Lorien's already been notified.



...I don't think I, I ever told you what a good friend you've been.

'And how proud I am of you.'

[music continues]

I just, uh..

Well, before you left, I-I..

...I just thought you should know.

Thank you.

Goodnight, captain.

Goodnight, commander.

[music continues]

[all laughing]


Mollari! Mollari, here.

Come away from the window. You're missing all the fun.

There was too much fun, majesty.

I, I needed a break. 'Uh.'

Isn't it amazing what they've done here?

It's almost identical to the throne room back home.



I wanted you to know..

...I have decided to take you with me.


A God must have a high priest must he not?

And when the Shadows rise from the ashes of Centauri Prime and reward my loyalty with Godhood I want you to be the first one in my temple.

I haven't decided where to build it yet, but--

Then you will not be on Centauri Prime when the Vorlons come?

Of course not. You and I will watch from a distance.

We'll head back as soon as we've finished with G'Kar's execution and then..


[all laughing]

You see?

Phoo! Phoo!


You'll excuse me, majesty.

But I have to go and check on some arrangements.


Great maker.

Your eye.


My eye offended him.

Doesn't matter.

I can see things now..

...that were invisible to me before.

An empty eye..

...sees through to an empty heart.

Your execution has been set for later today.

Cartagia will parade you before your people humiliate you.

Use you to strip away their last hope.

And then..

'...then he will kill you.'

At least that is the plan.

My people are in place.

Your chains have been weakened the palace guards bribed.

His personal guards cannot be bribed.

That is where you come in.

'You need only to distract them for a few moments.'

We will take care of things from there.

Can you do it?

Your heart is empty, Mollari.

Did you know that?

I know..

...that your heart will be dead soon..

...if you do not act as I have instructed you.

'G'Kar, remember..' not harm him.

If you touch him, your people will suffer..

'...and never be set free.'

Leave him to us.

[dramatic music]

[knocks on door]

[man screaming]

[intense music]

Humor is such a subjective thing.

'Don't you think, Mollari?'

[music continues]

[knocks on door]


You have it?

Good. There wasn't a problem?

You weren't seen?

I don't think so.

Uh, I kept checking, but as far as I could tell nobody was even trying to follow me.

Mm-mm, that is why I sent you.

Everyone knows that you are incapable of doing anything really dangerous or subversive.

Oh, that's good.

I-I don't know about incapable.

They always overwrap these things.

You have to be a magician to open it.

I mean, you know, if-if I put my mind to it I mean, I-I-I suppose I mean, it's just that you know, once, I did take--

Vir. Oh, yes.

Take the compliment for what it is, hmm?


(Londo) Very nice.

Good workmanship.

They give you any instructions?

Yes, the dose of neural toxins is very small completely undetectable, okay.

But because it is so small it has to be delivered directly into the target. Okay.

You-you couldn't just put it in his food. It wouldn't work.

It wouldn't get past his tasters anyway.

Go on.

You must place it right here between his hearts and then press that button.

'The toxin will paralyze his neural system'

'which will cause his heart to stop.'

And then when you pull it out.. organic sealant will cover up the wound.

Uh-uh, you won't be able to see it unless you knew what you were looking for and we hope that they won't be.

How fast does the poison work?

Very quickly. He said almost instantaneously.

Almost? Eh!

How fast is almost?

Time enough for him to stagger back into the main room and cry out, "Londo killed me!" Hmm?

Or maybe just enough time for him to say

"Londo killed, ah!"

Maybe he won't even get that out.

I mean, he'll just maybe go

"Lon, ah!"

Or maybe he'll just be totally delirious and-and say everything backwards and say

"Kill Londo! Ah!"

I-I was just making a-a play on the..

Well, it's time.

They're going to parade G'Kar before the leaders of some local towns to encourage cooperation, yes?

We must be there.

[dramatic music]

[indistinct chatter]

They must not see you are afraid.

Be strong.


[indistinct chatter]

Ah, our guest is almost here.

Now, you will watch and see the justice of Cartagia.

'Swift, but fair.'

'Tempered by wisdom, yet unwavering in retribution.'

Remember what you see here today for it is the stuff of legends.

Just to be on the safe side I had his chains replaced by my personal guards.

The others looked weak.

Citizen G'Kar, you stand accused of acts of violence against the Centauri Republic directing insurrection against our lawful rule.

You are charged with murder, sedition, treason, terrorism and an assortment of other charges listed on the docket.

The penalty for these crimes is death by vivisection.

How do you plead?

[intense music]

How do you plead?

You cannot break those chains.

They are made of solid kirrilium.

[music continues]

[G'Kar grunting]


[indistinct chatter]

Majesty, this way. Hurry, hurry.

Completely irresponsible.

The chains weren't properly secured.

I can't have it getting out. They'll have to be killed.

All of them killed! Majesty.

Incompetent behavior!

Absolutely incompetent.

Be quiet!

Quiet? Quiet?


You would tell the stars to darken on a whim?

What, would you tear down the mountains because their height offends you?

Who are you?

Where were you?

Where were you when my destiny was written in those stars?

[intense music]

Where were you when the Gods themselves shined down upon me?

Huh? You dare to speak to me?

No, you can burn.

You can burn with Centauri Prime.

You can burn with the rest.

Burn with the cities, burn with the temples burn with all of them!



I was to be a God, you understand?

A God. The emperor has collapsed.

We think it is his heart.

Hurry, we need a doctor.

[indistinct chatter]

We have just come from his majesty's bed.

The emperor.. dead.

(male #1) 'I personally supervised the royal physician.'

There is nothing to be done.

It is as if his hearts just gave out.

The emperor believed in heeding the wisdom of the Gods.

Well, twice, the emperor of the Centauri Republic has died while acting in relation to Narn.

Emperor Turhan while trying to make peace and now Cartagia.

'I believe Cartagia would say' that this is a sign from the Gods.

A sign to leave this place forever.

I concur.

We have taken our revenge for the war.

Outside there is nothing but rubble.

There is nothing to be gained here.

And there is much to be done back home.

We have three days to correct the emperor's misjudgment about the Shadow vessels now based on Homeworld.

Yes. We must act quickly.

Cartagia has no heirs and there's no clear line of ascension.

Nor do we have time to appoint a new emperor.

I therefore nominate Londo Mollari of the house Mollari to the position of prime minister.

I can think of no one more qualified to deal with this threat to planetary security.

Does this have your blessing?

(all) Yes.

We are yours to command..

' minister.'

[intense music]

[intense music]

I've finished compiling the latest attacks by the Shadows and the Vorlons.

They continue to target support facilities and colonies that have taken sides.

It's all hit-and-run stuff.

When they come in with just enough firepower to protect their planet killers then blow everything to hell then jump out again.

Perhaps they're doing what we're doing.

Building up their forces for one big assault.

Exactly. I've received--

In the meanwhile, they're using these attacks to keep the other side off-balance, soften them up.

What I don't understand is why don't they don't just attack the other side's Homeworld?

Well, in the interim-- 'Lorien tells me..'

(John) 'There are rules of engagement'

'between the two sides.'

The Shadows said basically the same thing..

...but what are the rules?

Uh, you were saying something, Lennier?

Yes, I was about to..

[beeping] Yes?

(female #1 on radio) 'Captain, we've got a signal coming in'

'for Ambassador Delenn.'

'It's from White Star 14.'

I ordered several ranger ships to the areas where some of these attacks have taken place to see if they could get more information.

Put it through, please.

[dramatic music]

(Ericsson) 'Entil'Zha, we found a colony under attack by Shadow forces.'

The Shadow planet killer has just appeared.

We've sent down a probe to investigate.

Show me.

[intense music]

In Valen's name..

Scanners indicate the missiles have penetrated the surface of the planet..

...burrowing straight down.

Ten miles.

Twenty. I don't believe it.

They're nearly through to the molten core of the planet.

Wait, they've stopped. It's..


Ericsson, what was that?

Electromagnetic pulse coming from the surface.

We caught a piece of it.

'The missiles have detonated'

'near the planet's core.'

'Thermonuclear reaction.'

Thousands of megatons times thousands of missiles.

'The planet's core is breaking up.'

'We're registering massive tectonic movement' atmospheric disruption.

It's falling apart from the inside out.

In another ten-twelve hours there won't be anyone left alive down there.

Anyone wanna tell me how the hell we're supposed to stop that?

We are outclassed, boys and girls.

If we at least knew where either side was gonna hit next, we--

That is what I've been trying to say.

Our ships have seen the bulk the Vorlon fleet massing in hyperspace.

And based on their movements we've calculated where they will strike.

It's in the report.

Sector 70 by 12 by 5.

Well, there's only one inhabited planet in that sector.

It's Coriana VI.

Lennier, there are over six billion people on that planet.

I know.

Ericsson, keep this frequency open.

I'll need to talk to you later.

I may be asking a great deal of you and your crew.

Convene the league worlds. We'll meet here in an hour.

And make sure they've seen this before we start.

It'll scare the hell out of them.

[knocks on door]

(Londo) Vir?

Vir, where are you?

Come on, we have to go.

[glass shatters]

We do not have time for games, Vir.

The ship is waiting.

I was toasting Emperor Cartagia.

And since he wasn't here..

...I drank for him.

And then, I couldn't be rude so I had to drink with him.

And so, first it was me drinking for him..

...and then him drinking for me..

...and then I kind of got into this kind of cycle.

And then here comes Cartagia his glass broke and, well, maybe it was my glass, actually.

Would you like some? Because you know what?

I think this is Cartagia's glass after all so it'd be quite appropriate, don't you think?

You're drunk.

Well.. Absolu.. Positi..

Oh, you betcha.

I figured it always worked for you, Londo.

Look, let me, let me ask you something.

How much more before I can look in the mirror and not see myself?

Because I keep looking..

...and I'm always there..

...and right now, I..

...don't wanna see me.

You're behaving like a fool.

You did what was necessary.

You've saved the lives of millions of our people.

'He had to be stopped.'

'He--' Don't you understand it?

I've never done anything like this before.

I close my eyes, and I always see his face!


Don't you know that all I ever wanted was just a good job.

Small title, nothing fancy.

A-a-a wife I could love, and..

...maybe even one that could..

...actually love someone like me.

I never wanted to be here.

I never wanted to know the things that I know or to do.. do the things that I've done.

I know.

I know, Vir.

I never wanted you in that hall.

I never wanted you to..

I remember when you first arrived on Babylon 5.

You were so..

...full of life, innocent.

I was not kind to you.

I treated you poorly.

'I think that I did that'

'because I was envious of you.'

Envious that you had come so far..

...and were still..

...innocent in your way.

You still believed.

I, on the other hand..


I cannot tell you that your pain will ever go away.

'I cannot tell you that you will ever forget his face.'

I can only tell you that it was necessary.

You may have helped to save our people.

You did a hard thing.

But you still have your heart and your heart is a good one.

'You would not be in such great pain otherwise.'

That means there is still hope for you.

And for that..

...I find I still envy you.

[dramatic music]

[fireworks bursting]

What's that?


Yes, they've learned that we are leaving..

...and that soon Narn will be free.

For my part, good riddance.

It was always more trouble than it was worth.

I'm sure it will cause me problems back home but I gave G'Kar my word.

Set them free in return for his help.

I will keep my promises.

My honor is all I have left.

I still need you, Vir.

'There is much work to be done back home'

'if we are to save Centauri Prime.'

The ship leaves shortly.

Drink your last drink.

Meet me there.

[music continues]

What was it all for, I wonder?

What was any of it for?

[intense music]

Look, I don't know any more than you do, alright?

Where is Sheridan? I figured he'd be back by now.

The natives are getting restless.

I'm sure he is deciding what to say to them.

Good luck.

[indistinct chatter]

May I have your attention?

By now, you have all seen the same reports we have.

You know what we're facing.

The Vorlons are going to hit Coriana VI.

We can't allow that.


I had hoped to go against them at a time and place of our choosing.

But with six billion lives at stake..

...we don't have that luxury anymore.

So we're going to launch our counter offensive.

Phase one will require one-third of our fleet.

Their job will be to slow down the Vorlon advance and buy us a little time.

You'll receive your targets in priority order.

You hit them hard, you hit them fast, and get out.

And you don't have to destroy the target odds are you won't be able to anyway.

But you'll tie up their resources long enough to get our forces in position.

We will then gather the entire fleet outside the orbit of Coriana VI.

That is where we will draw the line against the Vorlons.

You spoke of a second phase.

Alongside our fleet we will have several of the First Ones.

We've been in the process of locating them for some time now.

How many we'll have I do not know.


...there is an invitation we have to make.

I want the Shadows there as well.

The Shadows? No.

Now, they've been dancing around each other now ever since this turned into a shooting war.

Taking out support systems colonies, destroying supply lines.

They've been avoiding direct confrontation and I think I know why.

It's the other reason for delaying the Vorlon advance.

We are going to force the issue by making sure the Shadows are there when the Vorlons come out.

If they want Armageddon then by God, let's give it to them.

Well, how?

If, as you say they have avoided direct confrontation.. is doubtful that they will come simply because we ask them to.

I know.

So we'll have to try another way.

[instrumental music]


I'm re-encoding this message every ten seconds, so have your system keep up with us.

I don't wanna be intercepted.

Ericsson, a little while ago I said that I might be asking a great deal of you and your crew.

I've just sent four more ships to rendezvous with your position.

Once they arrive, you will proceed to enter Shadow space.

Your target is a small base on Dorak VII.

I know the one, sir.

But, captain, it's only ten light-minutes from one of their main staging areas.

They'd be able to counter attack almost instantly.

We're aware of that.

We're transmitting a file to you on a subchannel.

Now, that file contains information about a secret base we've established near Coriana VI.

'Most of the fleet will be there'

'when it goes online in three days.'

'But, Ericsson, if this information'

'falls into the hands of the Shadows' they will launch an attack against that base just before it becomes operational.

Don't worry, sir. We won't let it fall into the wrong hands.

[indistinct chatter]

You misunderstand me.

We want it to fall into their hands.

We want them in the Coriana System in three days.

We're planning a little party for them.

But, Ericsson..

...if this information comes too easily they won't believe it.

We need them to believe it's real.

Real enough to fight for, real enough to..

You're not a married man, are you, Ericsson?


No, sir, I'm not.

Well, there's that at least.

What about the other four ships?

They won't have anything of value.

You'll provide cover, allowing them to escape.

Your ship has the only copy of this file.

Ericsson, billions of lives are counting on this.

If there were any other way--

(Ericsson) 'Understood.'

We'll put up a good fight.

If there's anything that you or your crew need anyone you want us to get a hold of--

'They're Minbari, captain.'

They knew what they were signing on for.

So did I.

We've finished receiving the file.

Captain.. long before the other ships get here?

Ten, maybe twelve hours.

Then we'd better get ready.

You can count on us, sir.

We'll get it done.

I know you will.


In Valen's name.

In Valen's name.

[dramatic music]

[indistinct chatter]


Why are you celebrating?

We drove them away.

They knew they could not enslave us forever and we drove them off through strength.

Is that what you think?

Try to understand.

The strength that defeated the Centauri is not from weapons or arms.


You are tired. You're hurt.

You're not seeing this as we do.

I see, G'Lorn.

I see better than you can imagine.

When you've rested

'we will thank you properly, as is your right.'

There will be celebrations in the street, G'Kar.

Your name will be a blessing to any who speak it.

And then, then, G'Kar you will lead us against our oppressors.

You will be the instrument of our vengeance.

With you directing us we will finally destroy the Centauri.

You have just tossed someone off that throne.

Would you put another in his place so quickly?

The Kha'Ri spoke with many equal voices not the one voice of a single leader.

We need strength to lead us fire to forge us.

We saw that in the Centauri learned that from them.

Then you have learned the wrong lessons.

I will not take the throne.

If the Kha'Ri is restored I will take my place among them, but that's all.

I did not fight to remove one dictator just to become another myself!

But the Centauri are-- Are a lost people!

They are to be pitied.

They are already on a course for self-destruction.

They do not need help from us.

We need to redress our wounds help our people rebuild our cities.

We must strike back!


'I never thought you a coward, G'Kar.'

We suffered and died during their occupation.

Where were you?

What have you endured?

[intense music]

What have I endured?


What have..


What have I..

What have I..

[intense music]

(Ericsson over speaker) 'Target destroyed.'

'Shadow vessel still coming after us.'

'Engine's damaged.'

'Weapons system at 30 percent.'

'Get away while you can. We'll cover you.'

'They're coming in!'

'Ericsson to rest of White Star fleet.'

'Can you receive?'

'We need help.'

'Is anyone there?'

'We can't let them take us alive.'

'Isil'zha, veni.'

'In Valen's name.'

[radio static]

Is it..

It's over.

The Shadows took the bait.

There's no turning back now.

No. The attacks on Vorlon targets have begun.

The rest of the fleet is waiting for us.


Then we should go.

(John) Captain's personal log.

Final entry.

We're going into the heart of the fire.

On one side the Vorlons on the other, the Shadows..

...and us in the middle.

Whether any of us will ever come back..

...I don't know.

When I took command of Babylon 5 I found a note on my desk.

Someone had left it there for me.

It was a poem by Tennyson.

I still remember the last part of it.

"Though we are not now that strength

"which in old days moved earth and heaven

"that which we are, we are.

"One equal temper of heroic hearts

"made weak by time and fate

"but strong in will

"to strive

"to seek

"to find..

...and not to yield."

[dramatic music]

[theme music]