The Pearls That Were His Eyes

Original Airdate: 22 Jan, 2001

Wealth is too Precious
to be entrusted
to the Rich.

Anonymous Kalderan Proverb,
circa CY 500

[Command]

(Hunt enters.)
ROMMIE: Captain on deck!
(Trance turns and salutes. Beka continues to sit cross-legged in the slipstream chair.)
BEKA: I'll alert the media.
TRANCE: It means we're supposed to stand at pretension.
HUNT: At ease, Trance. I think it's a little late in the game to restore the military protocols.
ANDROMEDA [on viewscreen]: I'm sorry, Dylan. Some of my systems have reverted to defaults.
HUNT: Harper?
HARPER: Excuse me. After the number of scrapes we've been through, it's a wonder she's working at all.
HUNT: Don't worry, Rommie. As soon as we dock at El Dorado Drift, we'll pick up parts and you'll be as good as new.
HARPER: What he said. El D. She's got everything we need. Wine, wiring, and women.
BEKA: All I care about is news, weather and sports. And that should be coming' in right about now.
(Pages of news flash up on the viewscreen.)
BEKA: Yes! Civilisation.
TRANCE: Mail call!
HARPER: It's already here, courtesy of your friendly neighbourhood space traveller's aid. But I don't know why you're so excited. It's always just bills for Beka, or epistles from Rev Bem's spiritual pen pals. All you and I ever get is junk.
TRANCE: I know, and it is so great! Because you can buy your own moon, or you can make millions without ever leaving the comfort of your own homeworld.
REPORTER [OC]: Collection of CEO Sam Profit.
HARPER: Oh, here's breaking news, Trans-Galactic is er, merging with Quantum. Economists were taken by surprise.
TRANCE: Get out of here! I own shares in Quantum.
ROMMIE: You do? How many?
TRANCE: Three.
BEKA: Well, don't count your dividends before they hatch. The Free Trade Alliance still has to give its approval.
HARPER: Please, the Free Trade Alliance never met a monopoly it didn't like.
HUNT: I only have one question. What are we talking about?
ROMMIE: Analysing. Trans-Galactic Shipping and Quantum Express are two of the largest private cargo carriers in the sector. Their consolidation would
BEKA: Would force small operators out of business by red-lining business and undercutting costs. How is a little guy supposed to compete against someone like Sam Profit?
HARPER: Trans-Galactic's uber big kahuna. Put him in a fish tank with piranhas, pray for the piranhas.
TYR: I'm sure that's all very interesting, but may we discuss the weather?
TRANCE: I didn't know you liked the weather. I could tell you everything you ever wanted to know about cumulus clouds. They form really high in the atmosphere.
TYR: The only time the weather concerns me is when it threatens my health and well-being. Today, for instance.
HUNT: A class-seven solar storm. It's headed right for us. Looks like we better make those repairs quick.
HARPER: I know. I know! More work for me. Hey, er, boss? You know a guy named Sid Barry?
BEKA: Yeah, he was my father's business partner. Why?
HARPER: You got a message from him, marked Extremely Urgent.
BEKA: Bring it up.
SID [on viewscreen]: Hello Rebecca. It's Sid. Your Uncle Sid. I hate to come to like this, but I need to see you. There's an attached file with contact information.
(Someone pounds on Sid's door.)
SID [on viewscreen]: I'm not going to beg you, Rebecca, but we both know your dad owes me one. I guess I'm calling in my marker on the Valentine family, huh? I hope to see you soon.
(Message ends.)
HUNT: Sounds like he's in trouble.
HARPER: I uh hope it's not too serious. That message is over three years old.

[Eureka Maru]

HUNT: Three years, Beka. You don't even know if he's still on Difta Five.
BEKA: I know, I know.
HUNT: And the odds. And the odds of finding him at all are like really, really small.
BEKA: You know, if you don't want me to go, why don't you just say so?
HUNT: I don't want you to go.
BEKA: Damn. I didn't think you'd just say so.
HUNT: We haven't got much time before the storm hits, and we need the Maru to carry supplies.
BEKA: One of Andromeda's pods can handle it.
HUNT: Our pods aren't designed for moving cargo. Okay, they are, but you speak Drift, and it's been a long time since I've bought anything.
BEKA: Blood of my blood, Dylan. That's what my father used to call me. All my life, he never asked me for one thing. Now he's gone, and if I can pay back a debt for him, I don't see how I have a choice.
HUNT: Solar storm hits in five days. Can you be back by then?
BEKA: I'd better be. Can't trust you to fly us out of class seven storm.
HUNT: We'll be here. Good luck.
(Hunt leaves. The Eureka Maru leaves Andromeda. Later -)
COMPUTER: Autopilot engaged.
(Beka is walking and reading a flexi when she notices a new dangling cable. She pulls it.)
TRANCE: Oh!
(Trance lands on the decking.)
BEKA: Let me guess. Dylan asked you to keep an eye on me.
TRANCE: Well, actually, Dylan wanted to send Rev Bem along, but then he changed his mind because he thought he needed the Rev for the storm, so he wasn't going to send anyone, and I didn't want him to worry, so I decided to sneak on board and here I am now. Are you mad at me?
BEKA: Huh? How can I be mad, Trance? I don't even know what you're talking about.
TRANCE: Oh.

[Command]

(Hunt reads a flexi.)
HUNT: Don't worry, I'll look after her. Love, Trance.
HARPER: So?
HUNT: So now I'm worried.
HARPER: They're both big girls. They can take care of themselves. Besides, we have plenty to worry about right here. I say we prioritise the picotransducers, nanothrusters, and an AP solenoid valve.
TYR: We can agree on the thrusters and the valve, but we also need photon bombs, and we need to refit our pulse plasma guns and point defence lasers.
BEM: Isn't this a lot of wishful thinking? How are we going to pay for all of this?
HUNT: Technically, that would be the Quartermaster's job.
TYR: We don't have a Quartermaster.
HARPER: Are you saying we don't have any money?
HUNT: Oh, we have plenty of currency, it's just that none of it's current.
HARPER: Okay. I can get most of this stuff, but we'll have to rig for a fast getaway.
BEM: Harper.
HUNT: Harper, we're not going to steal anything.
BEM: Thank you.
TYR: Well, what would you suggest?
HUNT: There's an old Earth custom, Tyr. It's called a garage sale.
TYR: What's a garage?

[City]

(Skyscrapers so tall the penthouses are above the cloud level. Trans-Galactic is the tallest of them all. Down on the wet, gloomy street -)
TRANCE: Ewww.
BEKA: Yuck. I hate planets. How could anyone live like this?
TRANCE: Well, didn't your people evolve on a planet?
BEKA: Yeah, the smart ones left as soon as I got a chance.
(A man wearing dark goggles bumps into them.)
BEKA: Hey!
(Beka starts to draw her gun. The man lifts his goggles to reveal tiny pinpoint pupils, then he walks away.)
BEKA: Brain dead flash fryers.
TRANCE: Is that fun?
BEKA: What fun?
TRANCE: Squirting drugs into your eyeballs, because it seems like humans really enjoy poisoning themselves.
BEKA: Well, it's not really that simple, Trance. Flash is a synaptic enhancer. It makes you stronger, better, faster. Dad always said it made a great solution if you don't make it your problem. Okay, so this is Avenida Nuevo Ciudad. This is supposed to be the place.
(Trance checks her forearm computer.)
TRANCE: Ninety four, ninety two, ninety. Right there. But I think we're too late.
(There's just a pile of junk.)
BEKA: Sid's address but no Sid. Oh, great.

[Cargo bay]

(Harper picks up a soccer ball.)
HUNT: The light fixtures in the crew cabins can go. Sports equipment stays.
TYR: We need weapons, not toys.
HUNT: We need a crew that hasn't gone crazy from lack of recreation. Oh, anyone who touches my basketball hoop answers to me personally.
BEM: Oh, the drift trader that you're meeting is called Grask. Now he's a Chichin.
HUNT: Oh, great.
BEM: Yes, they never buy what they can steal.
TYR: They're scum. They eat their own young. I'll thank you to see that he comes nowhere near me.
BEM: Mmm. Probably a good idea.
(Tyr leaves.)
HUNT: Yeah, make a note of that.
(Harper takes green plates from a reluctant Rommie.)
ROMMIE: Oh, that's ceremonial china from the Than ambassador.
HARPER: Really? Sounds like a spool of superconductor wire to me!
BEM: Perhaps you should not watch this.
ROMMIE: If I don't keep my eyes open, he'll probably sell the
HARPER: Rommie. Rommie. Would I hurt you? Hey, whoa. Where are you going with all this good stuff?
(One item of the good stuff is a silver photo frame with a picture of an officer and his lady.)
HUNT: That stays.
HARPER: What'd I do?
ROMMIE: Personal effects of the crew.

[City]

(A group of beefy men wearing dark goggles leave a strip club.)
BEKA: Hey, I'm looking for a guy.
MICK: Lucky you. You just found one.
BEKA: A specific guy.
(She pulls up Sid's picture on her forearm comp.)
BEKA: His name's Sid Barry. You ever seen him?
MICK: I'm not your type? You know what they say. Once you try bio-engineered, you never go back. (He moves closer, checking them out.)
WILLIE: I think she's into older men.
(Mick walks behind Trance.)
MICK: What about you, sweetness? Are you into older men? Or are you just into her?
TRANCE: Watch the tail.
WILLIE: You know, grape's my favorite flavour.
TRANCE: Beka, are they cannibals?
WILLIE: Come here, baby. Give me some sugar.
(Beka draws her forcelance and extends it.)
MICK: What the hell is that?
BEKA: Sugar cane.
(Mick gets thumped on the head, Willie jabbed in the solar plexus, another gets his feet stomped and a fourth swung into a handy stack of oil drums.)
BEKA: Trance, your left. Other left!
(A man gets the lance across his windpipe. Mick surrenders.)
MICK: You want him? The guy in the picture. I know where you can find him.

[Trans-Galactic office]

(The lift deposits them straight into an office, complete with desk, padded chair and carpet.)
TRANCE: Oh wow, this is amazing. That's real wood.
(Sid enters behind them.)
SID: Rebecca?
BEKA: Sid!
SID: Look at you, with your blond hair! I hardly recognised you.
(They hug.)
SID: What are you doing here?
BEKA: I got an old message. I thought you needed help.
SID: Oh. Oh, that. Well, that's kind of complicated.
WOMAN [OC]: Mister Profit, line three.
BEKA: Profit? You work for Sam Profit?
SID: Well, not exactly. I, I am Sam Profit.
(There is a portrait of him on a wall. Beka's jaw hits the floor.)

[Penthouse suite]

(Still in the Trans-Galactic building, up above the clouds.)
SID: This is it.
TRANCE: Wow! Is this your room?
SID: Not at all, my dear. It's your room. And yours too. Fit for a princess. Her daddy's little princess.
BEKA: I still don't get it. How can you be Sam Profit?
SID: You really had no idea?
BEKA: The word shocked comes to mind. Amazed. Dumbfounded.
SID: So why'd you come all this way?
TRANCE: She came here to help you.
BEKA: I came here to help Sid Barry. Remember him?
SID: I'm still Sid.
BEKA: Not from where I'm standing. When I was a kid, you and my dad would stand around and complain about the big shipping companies. Now you're the one buying up the trade routes and forcing out people like us.
SID: Curse the big companies all you want, but big companies get things done.
BEKA: And small operators don't?
TRANCE: You know, why don't I, er, walk around. Okay, this is me leaving.
(Trance goes exploring.)
SID: It's all about moving things, kiddo. People, cargo. The more things move, the more they connect. And the more they connect, the safer the universe gets.
BEKA: And the richer you get.
SID: Money is not a disease. It's the cure. Let me ask you something. What was your father after his whole life?
BEKA: Redheads. The big score.
SID: Exactly. And this is it! He may not have admitted it, but this is what he was after. This is what he wanted. What we wanted. But you know what, enough about me. Is there anything you want?
TRANCE: Beka? Chocolate!
BEKA: I don't know. This is not what I was expecting.
SID: Hold that thought.
(Sid has a sort of hands free phone attached to his neck, hidden under his rollneck sweater.)
WOMAN [OC]: Mister Profit, time for your Quantum run.
SID: Well, Quantum waits for no man. I've got to get back to the office.
(A man enters and unfolds a massage table.)
BEKA: By the way, you look a little tense. I hear Rutger has great hands.
(Sid leaves. Trance examines Rutger's hands.)
TRANCE: Oh yeah? What's so great about them?
BEKA: Trance, do not let him buy you off with a back rub. This is Sam Profit we're dealing with.
TRANCE): I think you're just cranky from the gravity. Why don't you just think of this as a way of decreasing his corporate resources. Now, let's start with the tail.

[Cargo bay]

(A lipless alien is examining a large funnel. He speaks with a bit of an Eastern European style accent.)
GRASK: Is this receptacle hematite or onyx?
HUNT: I think it's black plastic.
GRASK: Oh, too bad. It might have had value.
HUNT: This microsensor might have had value too, if you hadn't removed the fuel cell.
GRASK: Removed? No, not removed! Never removed. Leeshka. My apprentice. The brains of a snivlet. I should know better than to let him prepare a shipment.
HUNT: Ah. Well, in that case let's have a look at the parts you packed yourself.
GRASK: Yes!

[Penthouse suite]

(Next day, or at least much later, because Trance is in pyjamas, eating fruit and drinking juice.)
TRANCE: This is so great! This is even better than the Andromeda.
(Beka enters in singlet and shorts, but still the combat boots, after a shower.)
TRANCE: And you know what? I think that this orange juice is real. I bet they had to import it all the way from Rigel.
SID: Infinity, actually. Wow! You look great.
BEKA: Thanks.
TRANCE: Oh! Er, you know, I left some bubbles in the tub. I should probably use them.
(Trance leaves.)
SID: Cute kid. Kinks all worked out?
BEKA: Yeah. Not bad.
SID: Look, I, er, I'm sorry I haven't had much time. Things have been really insane. Truth be told, you couldn't have come at a worse time. Speaking of which, why are you here? I mean, not, not that I'm not happy to see you.
BEKA: I told you why I'm here. I thought you were in trouble.
SID: Oh, yes. Well, I guess I've grown cynical in my old age. It's just the timing of your arrival is, is so surprising. Tell me about Ignatius. I'm really sorry that I missed his funeral.
BEKA: You didn't miss much. Eject cargo pod, yes, no.
SID: Oh. He deserved better. You know my biggest regret? That he didn't live long enough to share this with me.
BEKA: He would've liked that.
SID: Yeah. He didn't talk about me at the end, did he?

BEKA: He was pretty sick. You know how it is when they get like that.
SID: Did he leave any messages, anything?
BEKA: You're fishing, Sid.
SID: You know what? Your father had some data that belonged to me. He probably saved it on a disc or buried it in the Maru's database. Did he ever mention anything like that to you, ever?
BEKA: Not that I know of. What kind of data was it?
SID: Oh, nothing really. Just personal journals, visual records, that sort of thing. Perhaps you could look for it. It would mean a lot to me. And as a matter of fact, and I always intended to do this, if you could help me, I, er, I might be able to return the favour.
BEKA: In what way?
SID: Do you know what your dad always wanted, more than anything? To leave you with an inheritance. Enough C money so you could do anything you wanted.
BEKA: Well, he left me the Maru.
SID: That's hardly what he wanted. What do you say I make up the difference? How about er. Well, how does ten million guilders sound to you?
BEKA: Ten million?
SID: Ten million. I see your memory being jogged already. If you find the files, I need them unopened. Oh. In the meantime, you should have some fun. Unlimited credit, courtesy Trans-Galactic. Anything you want, it's on me.
(Sid tosses a disc to Beka.)

[Command]

(Harper is doing repair work while Tyr lounges in the slipstream chair.)
ROMMIE: A little to the left.
(Spark!)
ROMMIE: Perfect.
HARPER: I aim to please.
BEM: Magnificent.
TYR: I wish you would stop looking for beauty in things that want to kill us.
BEM: The storm has no intent. It simply is.
TYR: Can we evade it?
BEM: If the neutrino damper is working properly, we should have an excellent margin for safety.
(More sparks. Rommie falls over as things power down.)
HARPER: Rommie!
HARPER: Circuit overload. I think we can safely say, the damper's defective.
TYR: Dylan to Command. The lizard stabbed us in the back.

[Nightclub]

(Something's not right here. We can hear their conversation over the music. Most of the other clubbers have dark goggles.)
TRANCE: You know, for a while there I thought you were going to sit in the suite and sulk all night and live on bread and water.
BEKA: Okay, you're right. That's the best time I've had in a long time.
TRANCE: Oh, yes! To Uncle Sid!
BEKA: To Uncle Sid! You know, Trance, what I could do with ten million guilders?
TRANCE: Oh, you could buy lots of drinks with umbrellas in them.
BEKA: More like fix up the Maru. Pay off my dad's debts. I could kick back, relax for a change.
TRANCE: So, why don't find that whatchamacallit Sid wants and give it to him?
BEKA: See, that is the problem. Personal journals and video diaries are not worth that kind of money. Sid is up to something.
TRANCE: You know, I think he's kind of sweet.
BEKA: You know, you shouldn't drink. It impairs your judgement.
TRANCE: I'm still trying to figure out this whole poisoning yourself for fun thing. I think I like it.
BEKA: Come on, Trance. We have to check out the Maru.
TRANCE: Hey. Exactly where on the body is the moneymaker located?

[Eureka Maru]

(Trance has found a photograph.)
TRANCE: Beka! Is this you?
BEKA: Mmm, when I was six.
TRANCE: You had red hair!
BEKA: My dad thought having one hair colour was boring, so he designed these nanobots for me. I can make my hair whatever colour I want.
TRANCE: Oh, can you do purple?
(Beka closes her eyes and shakes her head. Her hair turns light purple.)
BEKA: You should see plaid.
(The hair turns blonde again.)
BEKA: Trance, go seal the airlock.
TRANCE: Why?
BEKA: Someone else has been through these files.
TRANCE: Huh?
BEKA: Seal the hatch. We're leaving.
(Too late.)
MICK: Ah, don't be so hasty. You still owe me that kiss.
BEKA: You want a kiss? Kiss this!
(Beka hits him in the crotch, then his friend drops down behind them.)
BEKA: Trance!
(Willie grabs Beka by the hair and Trance gets tasered.)
MICK: So, where were we?
SID: Not on my time, Mick! You should have just taken the money, Rebecca. It would've made it a lot easier for the both of us.
(Mick tasers Beka.)
(Later, Beka and Trance are tied up back to back.)
SID: I've had enough of this bull. I know why you came here.
BEKA: I told you, to help you. My mistake.
SID: You came answering a three-year old message two days before my takeover of Quantum? I don't think so. Now where are those files?
BEKA: Even if I knew what the hell you were talking about, which I don't, why do you think I'd tell you now?
Sid (nods): Somebody's made you a better offer, haven't they? Who is it? Is it Quantum? Spacerunners?
TRANCE: I'm beginning to think your dad's friend is a criminal.
SID: Oh, please. It's her father who's the criminal. You haven't told your friend here the story of your life? Well, it's rather sort of romantic in a pathetic sort of way. You and your brother, raised like wolves, by a flash-fried drug runner.
BEKA: That's not true. My father never used flash.
SID: The trust of a child runs deep. Your father never used flash? Let me tell you something. Your father and I practically invented flash.
MICK: The lab rats still found nothing, boss. We need those codes.
SID: You heard the man.
BEKA: Drop dead.
SID: It's not my life that's on the line here, Rebecca.
(Mick and Willie taser Beka and Trance.)

[Penthouse suite]

(There are now bars on the windows as Beka is pushed in through the doors. She has a cut lip at the very least.)
TRANCE: Beka. Beka, are you all right? What did they do to you??
BEKA: Nothing. I walked into a door.
TRANCE: Well then, please sit down. Good girl. Stay.
(Trance sniffs a decanter marked Vodka, then takes it and a cloth over to Beka.)
BEKA: Oh, Trance, I'm not really in the mood for a cocktail right now.
TRANCE: Disinfectant. So, did you tell the door what it wanted to know?
BEKA: I can't tell them anything. I don't know anything. Obviously my dad had something Sid wants very badly.
TRANCE: Well, if your father was a drug runner, and Sid was his partner, I would assume
BEKA: Get one thing straight. My father was not a drug addict.
TRANCE: Well, I never said that he was. I said he was a drug runner. That's not the same thing, is it?
BEKA: No, I guess not.

[Control room]

HUNT: Slipfighter fuel cells charged. O2 is at eighteen percent.
ANDROMEDA [OC]: Check, and check.
BEM: Going someplace?
(Hunt is startled.)
HUNT: Oh! Rev, I wish you wouldn't do that. Besides, you are early. Confession's not supposed to come until after I commit the crime.
BEM: I never took you for a man who flees from the consequences of his decisions.
HUNT: I'm not fleeing. I just have to run an errand.
BEM: Mmm hmm.
HUNT: Want to come?
BEM: Most definitely. Don't tell me. You've got a plan.
HUNT: Okay, I won't.
BEM: He always has a plan.

[Trans-Galactic office]

(Sid's heavies push Beka into his executive chair, now in the middle of the room.)
SID: Let me get this straight. You're not trying to blackmail me, you don't know what's on the coded data and you've never seen it.
BEKA: Right, right, and right again. You pick this stuff up fast.
SID: I wish I could believe you, Rebecca. I really do.
BEKA: But you don't, so let's get on with the torture, is that it?
SID: It doesn't have to be this way, Rebecca. I pride myself on being able to make a deal with anyone, and I mean anyone. Now, I'm going to give you one more chance. Name your price, give me the data, and we'll just pretend this never happened.
BEKA: I don't want your money.
SID: So that's it, huh? My money isn't good enough for the daughter of Ignatius Valentine. Maybe you want something else. Is it revenge? You blame me for what happened to your father?
BEKA: Should I?
SID: You know, I think you think of him as some sort of hero, out there all alone, fighting the corporate oppressor, coming home with tall tales and trinkets. Who do you think bought those trinkets? Your father was either hung over and forgot, or some hooker rode him in port. Do you know what he used to call you?
BEKA: Blood of my blood.
SID: Try my little ball and chain.
BEKA: That's not true.
SID: He used to tell me that you were not worth the cost of fuel.
(Beka tries to attack Sid, but the heavies push he back into the chair.)
SID: Well, you really are the daughter of Ignatius Valentine, more's the pity.
(Sid holds up an eyedropper bottle full of milk.)
SID: Flash. It's the ultimate edge. You'll love it. Five milligrams today, five milligrams tomorrow, and the next day, you will be selling your first born, for just one milligram more.
(Beka's head is locked into a frame, eyelids held open. Sid administers the drops. Flash!)

[Penthouse suite]

(Beka is thrown into the room. Beka is hyper.)
BEKA: It's okay, I'm cool. Take this down, and log a time and date because we might get out of here, Sam Profit is going down! And he's going down so hard he's going to create another gravity well in this sector. Just let me at him. Just let me at him. Six feet, I can jump six feet.
TRANCE: Beka! What?
(Beka has pinpoint pupils.)
TRANCE: Flash.
BEKA: I don't drink, did you know that? I don't drink. I don't squirt, I don't snort, I don't inhale, I don't. I've been straight edge all my life, all my life, because I'm my daddy's little girl, and I don't want to be like my daddy. Here I am, I'm streaking like a freaking comet. You can't stop me. You can't stop a Valentine with a head full of steam. Believe me, I know. I tried. Blood of my blood, Trance. What if it's in my blood? What if I can't stop?!
TRANCE: Okay, Beka, please, just try and slow down, all right? Inhale and exhale. Inhale, exhale.
BEKA: Don't treat me like a child! I am not a child, you are! Or are you? How old are you, Trance? I don't even know. I don't anything about you. Where you're from, who you're working for, why you're purple? You working for Sid? Trance? Trance? Are you working for Sid? You're working for him, aren't you? Aren't you, Trance? Trance! Are you, Trance?
(Beka starts shoving Trance around.)
TRANCE: Beka, stop it! Please, Beka, stop it.
BEKA: No, no, I can do purple.
TRANCE: Okay, Beka, you're angry, and it's totally fine to be angry, but please be angry at him!
BEKA: I know, I know, I know. I know. Trance. Trance, we have to get out of here. I know where it is.
(But the door won't open for her.)
TRANCE: All right, come away. It's okay.

[Command]

(Andromeda shudders and shakes as Tyr enters.)
TYR: Where is he?
HARPER: I'm sorry, Captain Hunt has stepped away from his desk. Please leave a message after the tone from the funny little guy. Beep!
(Tyr lifts Harper off his feet.)
TYR: Are you amused? We have at best eight hours before that storm reduces us to component parts, and Dylan has disappeared.
HARPER: I don't know. Ask Rev Bem, maybe he knows.
TYR: He's missing too!
(Tyr leaves.)
HARPER: Try decaf.

[Penthouse suite]

TRANCE: Back to normal? You okay?
BEKA: I will be. Robbed of my superpowers, I will have to rely on mere human ingenuity. Oh, how are we going to get out of here?
(Trance is at a computer console.)
TRANCE: Let me think. Er, how about this one?
(A section of the window bars rises.)
TRANCE: Yeah!
(Willie enters.)
WILLIE: Sorry, sweetie. The room don't come with a view.
(Beka flattens him. Trance strangles his companion with her tail.)
MICK: Oh, I've been waiting for this.
(Mick points Beka's forcelance at her, and gets a big energy shock.)
BEKA: It's personalised to my own DNA, moron. Let's get the comm. gear and let's get them out of here.

[Command]

(The big swirly purple storm has reached Andromeda.)
HARPER: Did I mention I'm not having fun yet?
TYR: Nor I. Ship! I'm assuming command. Engage thrusters and take us out of here.
(Tyr gets into the slipstream chair as Hunt and Bem enter with Grask.)
HUNT: Permission to come aboard, Captain Anasazi. How often do you get the chance to get up close and personal with a class seven solar storm? It's a once in a lifetime experience, don't you agree?
GRASK: You can't keep me here. I'm a highly respected businessman.
HUNT: Not on my ship, you're not.
GRASK: You must understand, I have to get back to the warehouse. My employees will steal me blind.
HUNT: Oh, I do understand. I understand that honesty and integrity were casualties of war, and while I may not approve, for the record, I don't approve, right now, my bad day is your bad day. Enjoy the view.
BEM: Welcome to our humble abode.
GRASK: Keep that cannibal away from me!
HARPER: Ah, cannibal? No. See, he doesn't eat his own kind. Chichin, however
BEM: When their whining exceeds a certain decibel level, I find it very difficult to control my lower nature.
HUNT: How much longer before the storm reaches its peak?
TYR: I wouldn't crack open any epic novels if I were you.
HUNT: We might be able to hold together. Of course, it'd be a lot safer if we had a working neutrino damper.
GRASK: A damper? You need a neutrino damper? What a coincidence. I can get you a damper. A beautiful brand new damper you will be proud to call your own.
HUNT: You don't say.
(Shudder, sparks.)
GRASK: This way.

[Trans-Galactic office]

(Sid is in a meeting when Mick enters.)
MICK: Boss?
SID: I'm busy, Mick.
MICK: I know. We've got a problem. The blonde tased me and the purple girl disabled the security grid. They barricaded themselves in the room.
SID: Excuse me, gentlemen. (to Mick, sotto) Listen to me. I want you to do exactly as I tell you.

[Penthouse suite]

(Beka is working on a small device with her knife.)
BEKA: Trance, when did we leave the Andromeda? How long have we been away?
TRANCE: I'd say this makes five days, but sometimes I lose count when I'm unconscious.
BEKA: I was afraid of that. I told Dylan I'd be back by now. Probably thinks I ditched him.
TRANCE: Beka, I can hear them! They're outside. Hurry up!
BEKA: I just need one more minute.
TRANCE: I don't think we have another minute.
(KaBOOM! goes the door. Mick and his boys enter with very big weapons.)
MICK: Give it up girls, there's no way out of here.
BEKA: Wrong again.
TRANCE: Right. What?
(Beka activates her device.)
BEKA: Hold your breath.
(Beka and Trance jump out of the unbarred window.)
(The heavies go to look out.)
MICK: That was easy.
(The Eureka Maru ascends into the sky.)
MICK: Boss? Worked just like you said.

[Observation deck]

TYR: I'm wondering if she's coming back.
HUNT: What makes you say that?
TYR: Well, you've spent the last three months helping her upgrade her ship. You've armed it, you've rebuilt its engines and computers. I think it's quite possible she may have taken advantage of your generosity and gone back into business for herself.
HUNT: Because that's what you would do.
TYR: Not after warning you.

[Eureka Maru]

TRANCE: So is this the point where he starts shooting at us?
BEKA: Well, I'm betting he won't kill us until he finds that data.
TRANCE: Which we have?
BEKA: Okay, here's what I remember. My dad and Sid were partners. They built the Maru together. They were always planning and scheming about getting rich until this one deal. This was going to be the big score, the best deal ever. And then, I don't know, it fizzled somehow. Dad and I went to Sigma Gamma One to meet Sid, and as soon as we got there, we just turned right around and left. No money, no cargo, no Sid. As far as I know, that's the last time they saw each other.
COMPUTER: Autopilot engaged.
BEKA: I'm betting whatever Sid's looking for has something to do with that trip.
TRANCE: Well, he would've found the Eureka Maru's log by now, wouldn't he?
BEKA: Yeah, if it was in the logs.
(Beka pulls out one of her own hairs.)
TRANCE: What are you doing?
BEKA: Remember when I told you that my dad made nanobots for my hair? He did it as soon as we left Sig Gamma One. (She lays the hair across a plate and slides it into the console.)
BEKA: Sid didn't even notice.
TRANCE: He hid his secret in your hair?
BEKA: My dad may have been an addict, but he knew his nano-tech. If I'm right, these little robots did a heck of a lot more than change my hair colour. They recorded Sid's missing data on a molecular level, in zeros and ones, all adding up to this.
(A recording of an event.)
BEKA: Sigma Gamma One docking station.
IGNATIUS [OC]: Sid. Sid, are you there?
BEKA: Daddy.
(There are bodies floating in the vacuum and zero gravity.)
TRANCE: Oh.
IGNATIUS [OC] They're dead. They're all dead.
BEKA: Yeah. Oh.
(Sid enters the picture in a spacesuit.)
IGNATIUS [OC]: Oh, Sid.
SID [on monitor]: You think they'd just wave through a ten ton shipment of flash?
IGNATIUS [OC]: Sid, what have you done??
SID [on monitor]: I did what I had to do, as always. You talk like a man whose hands are clean.
IGNATIUS [OC]: I'm a thief, I'm a smuggler. I am not a murderer!
SID [on monitor]: Well, you are now.
(Flash! and we go live to Trans Galactic.)
SID [on screen]: You're watching it, aren't you?
BEKA: Sid. What did you do?
SID [on screen]: And you really never saw it? You really didn't? Huh. Paranoia. Kind of gets to you when you're in my line of work.
BEKA: When you're a murderer?
SID [on screen]: Oh, it wasn't supposed to happen that way, Rebecca. Honestly. Somebody must've tipped off Sigma customs. You know the punishment for drug smuggling on Sigma Gamma One? They chop you up for spare parts. I had to protect myself, protect us both. And then your father, he had the gall to blackmail me.
BEKA: With the recording.
SID [on monitor]: He was so pathetic. He never asked for much, just a few guilders here and there, a spare part or two, but there was always that recording hanging over my head. And then, then he fried himself on flash and I figured it was all over, until I decided to buy my way into Trans-Galactic.
BEKA: You were worried that I'd start using the tape against you.
SID [on monitor]: I have always had a soft spot for you, Rebecca, and I figured that we could come to an arrangement. That's when I sent you that message. But you never responded. And then three years later, you show up on my doorstep? What was I supposed to think?
BEKA: You thought I'd ruin your deal.
SID [on monitor]: You know, a ruined deal is one thing, but to lose one's life? Sentiment only goes so far. My feeling is, when it comes to destroying evidence, nothing beats a sun.
TRANCE: A sun?
(There is a bright light shining through the bridge windows. An alarm sounds.)
BEKA: Disengage autopilot!
COMPUTER: Authorisation denied.
SID [on viewscreen]: I helped build the Maru, remember?
TRANCE: A little help here!
SID [on viewscreen]: I'm sorry, Rebecca, but I've had my fill of Valentines.
TRANCE: Incoming.
BEKA: It's not going to do you any good, you know. You're too late. You think that was the only hair on my head? Back in the suite, I beamed the log to the Freelance Courier Co-op. By now it's on its way to every law enforcement agency in the quadrant. Open immediately upon my death.
SID [on viewscreen]: You're bluffing. You couldn't afford the courier fees.
BEKA: I know, but you can. Unlimited credit, remember? If anything happens to me, and I mean anything, you are front page news in three galaxies.
SID [on viewscreen]: Not bad, kiddo. Not bad at all.
BEKA: Runs in the family.
SID [on viewscreen]: All right, here's the deal. I let you live, and you sit on that recording, and nobody ever sees it, because if it ever sees the light of day, I have nothing to lose.
BEKA: Your secret's safe as long as I'm alive. So you'd better wish me a long and healthy life.
SID [on viewscreen]: Why wouldn't I? After all, what are uncles for?
(Transmission ends.)
TRANCE: It's responding!
BEKA: Good! Get us out of here.

[Corridor]

TYR: Dylan, she is thirty six hours late. And I simply don't see why you should keep a bargain when she doesn't.
ANDROMEDA [on monitor]: An incoming communication for you, Dylan.
HUNT: Put it through.
BEKA: This is the Eureka Maru, requesting permission to land, Captain Hunt sir.
HUNT: Affirmative, Eureka Maru. You're late.
BEKA: Yeah, I know.
TRANCE: We know.
HUNT: Glad to have you back.

[Observation deck]

(Beka is staring into space when Trance enters.)
BEKA: You know, whenever I think about my father, I picture him at the end. I try not to, but I still do. It was hard. I have to just remember that those were just a few years in a long life. When I was a kid, when he was young, he was the best, Trance. He was smart, and funny, and tough, and brave. He could make me laugh until my sides hurt. No matter how dark things got, and no matter how long the odds, he always, always came up with a plan. The right plan. I wish you could've met him Trance.
TRANCE: Yeah, me too. But, you know, that's okay, because I know his daughter. Blood of his blood, Beka.
BEKA: Blood of his blood.

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