The Coming of the Children of the Shadow

[Int. shot, Mordred Bridge. Smoke fills the air and sparks emit from various consoles.]
Max Damage report!
Thornely Helm sluggish. We've got some response, but don't ask for anything fancy.
Linerva Sensors are out, radar is out. We're blind, sir.
Max Bron?
Bron The main engines are off line, and I'll want to do a complete check on the Fold System before we use it again. We're currently running on batteries and auxiliary thruster controls.
Thornely Great. No wonder she's sluggish.
Srepde All squadrons have reported heavy casualties, but we only lost two Veritechs in the Fold.
Rick We're doing better than I expected.
Bernard Captain, I'm getting a message on a hyperwave carrier. It's not one of ours, but it's not Zentraedi or Invid. Audio only.
Max On speaker.
Female VO ...are on a collision course with us, pull up! This is Babylon 5 Control to unidentified ships. You are on a collision...
[Ext. shot, Mordred, Qistra-Hesp and Dephinar falling towards Babylon 5 station.]
[Opening sequence music.]
Ivanova (VO) The Babylon Project was our last, best hope for peace. It failed. But, in the Year of the Shadow War, it became something greater: our last, best hope for... victory. The year is 2260. The place: Babylon 5.
[Opening sequence.]
[Int. shot, Babylon 5 C&C.]
Title The Coming Of The Children Of The Shadow.
Ivanova ...course with us. Disengage immediately!
[Door to C&C open, Sheridan walks in buttoning his uniform.]
Sheridan What's the commotion?
Ivanova We have three ships coming straight at us, apparently without power.
Sheridan Anyone we know?
Ivanova Doesn't look like it. But they're all of differing designs.
Sheridan Are they on our schedule?
Ivanova No, sir. They didn't even use a jump point. They just... appeared in a flash of liquid light.
Sheridan Liquid light? How long before impact?
Ivanova Forty minutes, unless they change trajectory.
[Sheridan looks at computer screen.]
Sheridan Can we change it for them? Tugs?
Ivanova The small red one, maybe. The blue and the green ones range at one thousand and three thousand meters respectively. We don't have enough tugs for them.
Sheridan Have Zeta Squadron put on stand-by. If these ships get too close before moving off, I want them turned into plasma.
Ivanova Understood sir. Babylon 5 Control to Unidentified Ships. You are still on a collision course with the station. If you do not deviate from your course within the next thirty minutes we will be forced to open fire. Do you read?
[Int. shot, Mordred Bridge.]
Max O'Celc! Communication status!
O'Celc We can receive, but our transmission capabilities are nil at the moment. We're working on it.
Max Bron, the engines?
Bron I have all my men working on in, Captain. We think we can beat the thirty-minute deadline.
Max You think? Never mind.
Bernard Captain? What about the auxiliary thrusters?
Max What about them?
Bernard They're still working. Couldn't we just fire them and keep them fired until we achieve orbit?
Max Bron?
Bron It might work. But I've got to warn you, we'll probably use the last of our reaction mass doing that.
Max Get on it right now.
[Int. shot, Qistra-Hesp Bridge]
Magiso Report!
Siniya Our fold engines are inoperative. Our reaction mass supply is dangerously low. We have no way to modify our trajectory.
Magiso Domillan-yar!
Siniya I recommend the evacuation, then detonation, of the ship.
Magiso This is not the Zentraedi Way. What will our sisters think?
Siniya The Humans have a saying: He who fights and runs away, lives to fight another day. Would you deny the fact that these humans are good fighters?
Magiso No. They may be many things, but cowards they are not. Very well. Evacuate the ship. Execute the first Meltran who questions the order. Maybe this will prompt the others to obey.
[Int. shot, Dephinar Bridge.]
Phsaq Brain?
Brain I am still here.
Phsaq Please ascertain our current readiness status.
Brain All engines are inoperative. The Dephinar is on a collision course with a large artificial object currently orbiting a nearby planet. We are not in Invid explored space. Evacuation is recommended at this time.
Phsaq Negative. An alternative course of action is required. Tseld, Drinth.
[Two comm-screen come to life, showing the squad leaders.]
Tseld & Drinth Commander?
Phsaq You will lead all Gurab and Iigaa squadrons to the outside of the ship. You will congregate as indicated by the Brain. On my command, you will fire your thruster and keep them running until such a time as I say otherwise. Is this understood?
Tseld & Drinth Yes, Commander.
[Ext. shot, Babylon 5 in the background. Mordred is firing all forward lateral thrusters. Quedlunn-rau Armours are exiting the Qistra-Hesp and re-grouping aft and 'above' it. Gurab and Iigaa Invid crafts exit from the Dephinar, congregate left of its main engines and proceed to 'push' the Carrier.]
[Int. shot, Babylon 5 Casino. Garibaldi is sitting at a table drinking mineral water. Londo sees him and approaches.]
Londo Garibaldi, my good friend!
Garibaldi Oh no, Londo. I'm not lending you any money.
Londo I am wounded that you would think me so shallow.
Garibaldi Yeah, right. What do you want, Ambassador?
Londo Rumour has it that three ships are currently outside Babylon-5. Three unidentified ship.
Garibaldi And...?
Londo It is also said that these ships appeared without requiring a jump-point. Is this correct?
Garibaldi I know nothing about it, Ambassador. If you have any question, I suggest you take them to the Captain. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to return to work.
[Garibaldi gets up and leaves. Londo stays seated, staring in mid-air.]
Londo How very interesting.
[Int. shot, Babylon 5 C&C. Ivanova is monitoring the ships. Sheridan enters.]
Sheridan time I'll go have my teeth drilled, it'll be less painful.
Ivanova Tough time with Ambassador Kosh?
Sheridan "Tough" does not even begin to describe it. Every time I meet him I feel like I know less than when I started.
Ivanova "If the answers were easy, the questions would not be worth asking."
Sheridan More Russian wisdom?
Ivanova No. Russian wisdom would be: "Accept your fate, for there is nothing you can do to change it." I'm afraid we Russians are great pessimists.
Sheridan What's the status on our visitors?
Ivanova Five minutes till deadline. The organic-looking ship is being evacuated. The blue-and-white one is trying to modify its trajectory using what looks like auxiliary thrusters. And the red one is being pushed out of the way by fighter-crafts.
[An explosion occurs outside the Station.]
Sheridan What was that?
Ivanova It appears the first ship has detonated, Captain. Small debris on a collision trajectory, but nothing the meteorite defences can't handle.
NBE Sir? We are being hailed.
Sheridan Put it on.
[A console lights up, showing the helmeted face of Magiso.]
Magiso I am Kalidar Magiso, War-Lord of the fifth Queadlunn-rau Battalion of the Zentraedi. Our ship suffered terminal damage. We... request... permission to alight at your station.
Sheridan Commander?
Ivanova I count fifty-eight heavy fighter-sized crafts. There should be enough room in Bay 14 and 15 for the lot of them.
Sheridan Very well. Kalidar Magiso? I am Captain Sheridan, commander of this station. If you follow our instruction, we will guide you to Berthing Docks. But understand - violence will not be tolerated aboard this station or its environ.
Magiso Very well, awaiting your instructions.
[Int. shot, Mordred Bridge.]
Rick Well, how are we doing?
Max We'll miss the station, if that's what you're worried about. We'll even make it into orbit, but we won't be able to break out of it until we get the main engines repaired.
Rick What about the Invid?
Max Good question. Linerva?
Linerva They are also achieving orbit, about a quarter radii behind us. Looks like they're also having trouble with their engines - they're all outside pushing their ship.
Max Why didn't we think of that?
Rick The Qistra-Hesp blown up, the Dephinar right on our tail, and here we are with our ship almost powerless.
Max Still, it could be worse.
Rick Oh yes? How?
[Ext. shot, Jump gate. Freight ship appears, pursued by fighters. The fighters are firing at the freighter.]
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