The true quarry
of any great adventurer
Is the undiscovered territory
of their own soul.
Lady Aenea Makros
"The Metaphysics of Motion" CY 6416
packing a bag.)
BEKA: We haven't been on real leave in months. Don't you want to have
TYR: Define fun.
BEKA: Fun. Me, you, Trance, working together on a mission. No Captain,
no High Guard protocol, and, best of all, lots of profit to go around.
TYR: Well, Beka, as definitions go, I find that one woefully lacking in
BEKA: You want details. Okay. It's a mission I've been planning for
months. During this mission, we will find this thing, and once we've
found this thing, we will be rich and happy beyond your wildest
TYR: Well, now it's much clearer. And what precisely is this thing?
TRANCE: She can't tell you.
BEKA: Why? Why can't I tell him?
TRANCE: Because if you tell him, Tyr will die.
TYR: Then by all means, leave me in suspense.
Tyr will die? Aren't we being a little dramatic?
TRANCE: It's only dramatic until somebody does die.
BEKA: Okay, cut to the chase. You said you come from a bad future? What
TRANCE: I told you. I made a lot of mistakes. So that's why I came
back, to set them right.
BEKA: And this is one of those things?
TRANCE: Not taking Tyr? That's good for everyone, trust me.
BEKA: Okay, but the legend still says we need three people, and since
Harper took Rommie on that educational field trip to Albuquerque Drift,
I'm out of options.
TRANCE: What about Dylan?
BEKA: Not an option.
TRANCE: Who better than Dylan?
BEKA: Dylan's the Captain. If he comes along, it becomes his mission,
his prize, and I've done way too much research on this just to hand it
over to Captain Terrific.
TRANCE: Beka, we need Dylan. According to the FTA clipping service,
there are a lot of other people are after this thing.
BEKA: Bad people?
TRANCE: Bad, good, it doesn't really matter. What matters is if they
get there first and they find it.
BEKA: I know. Trust you. Fine. I'll ask him.
holographic planetary system is on display.)
HUNT: The Engine of Creation?
BEKA: You've heard of it?
HUNT: Well, yeah. I mean, it's a machine that can rearrange space and
time. It can re-ignite suns, create whole planets.
TRANCE: Even raise the dead.
HUNT: And you think we can find it on the planet of Shintaida?
BEKA: That's right.
HUNT: You know, there's just one problem. The Engine of Creation is a
myth. It's like the Holy Grail of ancient Earth, or the Wyverni hordes
BEKA: Or a restored Commonwealth?
HUNT: Ha, ha. No, that's not funny. All right. You really believe that
BEKA: I wouldn't be going if I didn't believe. Think about it, Dylan.
Something like the Engine of Creation, it could do anything. It could
make dreams come true. Even yours.
HUNT: All right. Let's dream.
(Later, in flight.)
TABASCALLI [on monitor]: Shintaida, a planet beautiful in its natural
brutality. Blessed by a dazzling assortment of deadly creatures, and
brilliant under its bloodlit skies.
HUNT: Sounds inviting. So this guy's an expert on Shintaidan
BEKA: Renowned. His expedition left for Shintaida two months ago, armed
to the gills with guns.
TABASCALLI [on monitor]: However, I, Professor Mino Tabascalli, will
brave Shintaida's deadly traps, tame its unseen enemies, and locate its
Temple of Spirits. And at long last, hold in these, my hands, the
legendary Engine of Creation. I will accomplish what hundreds before me
have perished trying to accomplish.
HUNT: And no one has heard from him since.
BEKA: Nope. He never came back.
HUNT: But you have a different plan?
BEKA: My plan is to come back.
HUNT: It's a good plan. A good plan.
TRANCE [OC]: Stand by for slipstream.
Eureka Maru has been set down on the top of a rocky crag. Hunt, Trance
and Beka are following a path through the tropical forest.)
HUNT: Are we there yet?
TRANCE: You know, Beka, we've already covered seventeen kilometres.
Maybe we should call it a day.
BEKA: Captain's orders?
HUNT: Oh ho! I heard that! No, no, look, it's your mission, it's your
call. I'm just getting a little hungry.
BEKA: Considering it. Except this ravine we're walking through,
according to my map, it's called The Eyes of Blood and Peril.
TRANCE: The Eyes of Blood and Peril?
HUNT: Come on, let's just stop here.
BEKA + TRANCE: No!
HUNT: Why? What's wrong with this spot?
(Beka shows him her map.)
HUNT: The Eyes of Blood and Peril. This is a bad spot. Let's put down
BEKA: The Rock of Refuge. Good idea.
HUNT: If you don't mind, I'll take point.
BEKA: Now I remember why I prefer outer space to terra firma. These
rocks are killing my feet.
TRANCE: One more kilometre. We're almost there.
BEKA: Yeah. Just remind me to wear an AG harness next time we go
TRANCE: Note taken. So where's Dylan?
BEKA: He's up ahead, scouting for a campsite. I just hope he's careful.
TRANCE: Oh, he's always careful. He's Dylan.
BEKA: Yeah, you're right. I guess I'm feeling just a little
responsible. It's been almost two years since I've been a Captain of a
mission. I just hope nothing bad happens.
(Clunk click. Beka stands very still.)
BEKA: Something bad just happened, didn't it?
BEKA: This is so embarrassing.
(Hunt examines the object Beka is standing on.)
HUNT: Well, it's some kind of mine.
BEKA: Thank you, Dylan. I'm painfully aware of it.
HUNT: Then you probably know that you shouldn't move.
BEKA: Er, yeah.
TRANCE: Beka, is there anything helpful about mines in the legend?
BEKA: Well, the Shinta call them the Death Rattles.
HUNT: That's helpful.
BEKA: And as far as I know, there's no record of the explosive
TRANCE: That's good. No explosions.
HUNT: She's right. There is no incendiary device here. Looks like a
simple trigger mechanism.
TRANCE: A very old trigger mechanism.
HUNT: But reliable, I am sure. Now, the question is what does it
trigger, And where it triggers from.
(He spots a collection of wicked sharp objects pointing out of the
mouth of a nearby carving.)
HUNT: Trance, could you step back over there, please?
BEKA: Er, wait. Hold on. Here's what we're going to do, okay?
Counterweights. Trance, I want you to get that rock
(Hunt launches himself at Beka, sending them both flying as the needles
are fired at the place where Beka was standing.)
BEKA: Well, that was impressive.
HUNT: Or stupid. Depends on how you look at it.
BEKA: Are you okay?
(Hunt's backpack has a lot of feathered darts sticking out of it.
Probably poison darts.)
HUNT: Huh? Ah. Good thing I didn't pack light.
(Beka removes one.)
BEKA: Here. Souvenir.
HUNT: Thanks. It worked.
(And later still, passing lots of carved rocks or trees.)
TRANCE: This must seem a little strange to you.
HUNT: In what way?
TRANCE: Beka being in charge.
HUNT: Actually, I find it a little educational.
HUNT: Oh, sure. Leadership is hard to define. There's really no right
way, and there's no wrong way. Everyone seems to have their own style.
(They find a printed card on the ground.)
HUNT: Don't step here. Land mine. See? Beka definitely has her own
TRANCE: Yes, she does, but so do you. You treat everything like it's a
game of Go. You always plan your strategy six steps ahead, never lose
sight of the big picture.
HUNT: It's my military upbringing. Strictly by the book. Sometimes it's
my own private book, of course.
TRANCE: Beka, on the other hand.
HUNT: She kind of likes to fly by the seat of her pants.
TRANCE: Yes, but I believe that's what makes her a good slipstream
pilot. And it's also what makes you two such a good team. You complete
HUNT: Then it's a good thing we're on the same side.
TRANCE: More than you know.
BEKA [OC]: Dylan, Trance, better come see this.
HUNT: She must have found the Rock of Refuge. Don't step there.
BEKA: The remains of Doctor Tabascalli's expedition.
TRANCE: Emphasis on remains. They're all decapitated.
HUNT: My god, they never had a chance.
BEKA: They couldn't even get to their weapons.
(Hunt opens one of the boxes. It is empty.)
(She follows them.)
HUNT: The guns are gone.
BEKA: Right. I say we forget the Rock of Refuge. It's badly named.
HUNT: Agreed. Let's get out of here.
TRANCE: Beka? Dylan?
(They turn, drawing their weapons. Three armed people are with Trance,
a man, a woman and a
pale blue skinned version of Trance. The man speaks.)
FLETCHER: Does this belong to you?
TRANCE: Dylan, I'm sorry.
HUNT: It's not your fault, Trance.
FLETCHER: That's right. Blame me. Johann Fletcher. Damned glad to meet
HUNT: Let her go.
DURAN: (the woman) Or what, hot shot? We already slashed the
archaeologists. What's a couple more?
HUNT: Lady, the chances are excellent that my forcelance will kill the
three of you before your brain tells your finger to squeeze the trigger
on your gun.
FLETCHER: I'm pretty sure I'll clip Goldie here first.
HUNT: Well, maybe. But she's already been killed three times that I
know of, and she just keeps coming back to life.
TRANCE: He's right. I do.
HUNT: I'll count to three.
DURAN: He's lying, sweetie.
HUNT: One, two
BEKA: Excuse me.
(Beka puts her gun away.)
BEKA: So how stupid are you people? I'm assuming we're all looking for
the Engine of Creation, am I right?
(The pale blue skinned alien speaks.)
FLUX: Yes, you're quite right.
FLETCHER: Shut up, Flux.
BEKA: That's what I thought. So then, you're familiar with the legend.
BEKA: The legend that says that it takes three people to get the
Engine. So, unless your trio stays intact, you can kiss it goodbye.
FLETCHER: Yeah, but if I kill Goldie, you lose.
HUNT: You know what? I'll count again. One, two, three.
(Trance ducks and the shooting starts. Everyone takes cover behind
large equipment cases, and Trance rejoins Beka and Hunt.)
BEKA: So, counting to three? Kind of tells them when to shoot.
HUNT: That's why I have this.
(Later, campfires have been lit and most people are asleep, except
Flux, who steals Hunt's forcelance, and Trance, who stops him on his
TRANCE: Where are you going?
FLUX: Madame, I don't see where that's any of your business.
TRANCE: Everything is my business.
FLUX: Well, if you must know, I'm following orders. My employers have
demanded that I steal your boss's forcelance.
TRANCE: Well, I'm sorry to tell you, but you've failed. Because if you
had, you'd be lying unconscious on the floor of the camp right now from
the security charge.
FLUX: Would I?
(Trance hits Flux.)
FLUX: But if I don't return with that forcelance, sir's going to kill
TRANCE: Yes, and if you try to get it, I will kill you.
FLUX: Isn't this a sticky wicket? Rock, meet hard place.
TRANCE: Trust me. It's not that sticky. If sir still wants the Engine,
he needs three people, remember?
FLUX: Oh. Bully! So he won't kill me, and you won't.
TRANCE: Provided you tell me how you got here.
FLUX: I was the most dedicated manservant, Trance, always there with a
toasty crisp bath towel, an impeccably placed oyster fork, the choicest
of bons mots. But alas, my employer fell on hard times and traded me to
TRANCE: How much did he sell you for?
FLUX: Well, he was bargaining for his life, actually, but sir killed
him anyway, and took me. Not one to negotiate, sir.
TRANCE: Tell me about him.
FLUX: Sir was an FTA Enforcement wing pilot, and his lover, Duran, was
a Rester terrorist.
TRANCE: So they fell in love and they abandoned their respective
FLUX: Actually, they betrayed both sides and murdered their former
associates. Killing people's the glue that keeps them together, and if
they get the Engine of Creation, they intend to reshape the universe to
serve their infinite whims and perversions.
TRANCE: Then why are you helping them?
FLUX: Well, it tugs on my conscience every now and then, but I am after
all, a dedicated manservant.
TRANCE: You want to know what I think?
FLUX: Oh yes, very much.
TRANCE: I saw your faces when you stumbled across those dead
archaeologists. You were as scared as we were.
FLUX: Yes, but I'm often scared.
TRANCE: I think you three didn't kill those archaeologists. You just
wanted us to believe that to scare us. And I also think that you don't
want anyone else to get hurt over this Engine. Especially yourself. So,
here's what I suggest. You take sir and Duran and head north, and I
will convince Beka and Dylan to go south. That way, they won't be able
to kill each other. And it will just be our secret.
FLUX: I do love secrets.
TRANCE: Well then, I'm glad we had the chance to talk.
(Hunt and Beka are watching all this. Later, a flashlight illuminates a
Pre-Columbian style statue.)
BEKA: The ruins must be around here somewhere.
HUNT: Fletcher and Duran seem to think so.
BEKA: Do you think they really killed those people?
HUNT: No. No, they're bad, but they're not butchers. Just very strange
BEKA: Yeah. He's totally controlling, and she's this sexy shoot from
the hip kind of gal. What could they possibly have in common?
HUNT: Well, Harper always says that opposites attract.
BEKA: That's just his excuse to meet women. Everyone's the opposite of
HUNT: That's true.
TRANCE [OC]: Hey, guys, I found something.
HUNT: After you.
(They join Trance, who is looking down into a valley containing a
massive city carved
out of the rock.)
BEKA: Nice work, Trance.
torches light up the place.)
TRANCE: This place must be thousands of years old.
HUNT: Maybe it's a ceremonial chamber. It kind of gives me the creeps.
BEKA: Guys? I think I just found Doc Tabascalli.
TRANCE: He must have escaped whoever killed his friends.
HUNT: Until they caught up with him here.
TRANCE: Decapitated like the others.
BEKA: That's a big knife.
HUNT: It's not a knife. It's a shuriken. Specifically, that shuriken.
(The one whirling in mid-air in front of a doorway. Beka and Trance
retreat as Hunt extends his forcelance and steps forward. The shuriken
makes its attack and he bats it away.)
HUNT: Er, is this on the regular tour?
BEKA: The legend talks about a whirling guardian of the sanctum.
TRANCE: Well, that is definitely whirling.
BEKA: So this must be the sanctum.
TRANCE: So that's good.
(Another pass and hit.)
HUNT: Yeah, good. This is just fantastic.
(He tries shooting at it. No effect.)
HUNT: Are there any legends about an exit?
(Beka looks at a painted carving.)
BEKA: The answer is here. The Shinta are all about touch and feel.
HUNT: Yeah, they do all their touching and feeling with flying, bladed
BEKA: Trance, can't you use your Guessing Powers for good? I thought
you'd been through this drill.
TRANCE: We never got that far.
(Beka presses several carved squares.)
BEKA: Er, meeney miney moe. Save our asses, now let's go.
(The carving opens a door.)
BEKA: I got it. Trance!
(The shuriken cuts his forcelance in half.)
(Hunt runs for the open door and dives through with the shuriken right
behind him. Beka slams the door shut and the blades slam into it.)
Well, that was fun. So, where are we?
BEKA: Right where we're supposed to be.
HUNT: That's good.
BEKA: According to this, the Engine of Creation should be behind this
TRANCE: All we need is the key.
HUNT: Of course, the key. You didn't happen to bring the key?
BEKA: Three souls turn as one, and the key shall be delivered by the
penitent. So the operative word here is penitent.
(Hunt looks around the room.)
HUNT: Three statues. Three of us.
BEKA: They don't look very penitent to me.
HUNT: It's worth a try.
BEKA: Okay, remember. Turn as one. And go.
(They each turn a statue anticlockwise, and a cauldron full of sand
descends from the ceiling.)
HUNT: Okay, that happened.
BEKA: Tabascalli said something about a stone centre containing the
universe. I think this plug is the key for that panel.
HUNT: The simplest solution is usually right. Pull away, but be
BEKA: And the Engine shall deliver itself to the righteous.
(Beka removes the plug from the base of the cauldron.)
BEKA: And now it's time to deliver to the righteous.
(She puts the plug in a hole below the wall panel. It opens to reveal a
BEKA: I don't believe it.
(Meanwhile, the cauldron is dribbling its contents into a font.)
TRANCE: We must not be righteous enough.
BEKA: Or Fletcher's people got here first.
HUNT: What's that smell? Almond.
BEKA: I think I opened more than the panel.
(Okay, so not sand dribbling into the font and creating the toxic gas.)
TRANCE: It's cyanide.
HUNT: That stuff's not good for you.
BEKA: Son of. This says nothing about cyanide!
HUNT: Well, we'd better make something up.
BEKA: I've got nothing.
(The door won't open.)
TRANCE: Pull the key. Pull the key.
HUNT: Do something. Anything.
(Beka removes the plug from the hole, and the cauldron stops dribbling.
The door opens.)
TRANCE: The simplest solution is usually right, right?
run into the chamber with the plug, and the door shuts behind them.)
DURAN: That's far enough.
FLETCHER: The Engine. Give it to us now.
BEKA: That's funny. I was just going to say the same thing.
DURAN: Drop the attitude, sweetie.
BEKA: Excuse me?
(Flux grabs Trance.)
TRANCE: Ow! Ow! Hey! Hey!
FLUX: I hope you'll be a trifle more cooperative.
FLETCHER: Give us the Engine.
HUNT: Does it look like we have it?
DURAN: You lie to us, she's dead.
BEKA: This is ridiculous. What do you think, it's in my purse?
(Gunfire all around them. The locals enter. They look like Japanese
with war paint.)
(Their leader looks like a woman but has a very deep voice.)
SHINTA: Agutor enscara teh. Agutor enscara teh! U teh enamehka teh!
BEKA: Drop your weapons.
DURAN: Are you out of your mind?
HUNT: I think it's best if we do what she says.
SHINTA: Miun gora teh.
BEKA: You're welcome.
grilled window in the door, graffiti on the walls.)
HUNT: Beka, we'll get out of this in one piece. We always do.
BEKA: This is so different.
HUNT: Well, it is, because we've been in worse situations before.
BEKA: Yeah, we have. But those situations were all your responsibility.
HUNT: Excuse me?
BEKA: I'm not blaming you. I'm just saying, you're our Captain, you're
our leader, and you got us out of them. That's one thing I'm starting
to realise I really like about being your First Officer. Whenever
things go wrong, not my fault.
HUNT: Is that supposed to make me feel better?
BEKA: I'm just saying, until now, I had forgotten how much I hate it
when plans go to hell on my watch. Not that it happens that often, of
HUNT: Of course.
TRANCE: Hey, guys, look at this.
(A chalk image of three characters reaching up to a pole in the sky.)
BEKA: In heaven now are three.
HUNT: So then, that's supposed to be the Engine?
BEKA: That? It should be bigger than that.
TRANCE: Shinta guards coming this way.
(Two guards with guns enter, then a third points a spear at Trance.)
HUNT: They want you, Trance.
BEKA: No! Trance?
TRANCE [OC]: Beka, it's all right. I'll be
BEKA: Right. They can't separate us. We have to be three.
GUARD: Whematu. Gopa.
(Beka puts her hands up and leaves.)
HUNT: I'm going, I'm going.
Duran and Flux are also present.)
SHINTA: Mekto oringa shintaida. Teh lo turanga ahmin bahta lo shinta s
BEKA: (sotto) She's probably saying, that group has three, this group
has two. Let's kill them. A lot.
HUNT: I hope you're wrong.
SHINTA: Eskarpay imohtempe teh agorra. Lo turangay issah meha. Iss
mishamikan kumarentaka izinyanga.
BEKA: Excuse me.
SHINTA: Teh venz inzinyanga.
BEKA: Pardon me? Shinta lady. I'm sure what you're saying is very
important. The only problem is that we don't understand you.
HUNT: I'm pretty sure that he does.
(Flux has been whispering to Duran. His skin now looks very white,
rather than blue.)
SHINTA: Koto hava mo teh?
FLUX: Lo manoshe mogatesco. Farane teh kanoska.
SHINTA: Hari shan.
FLETCHER: What's she saying?
FLUX: Er, she wants me to explain the contest to them.
HUNT: This should be interesting.
FLETCHER: You do what I say, Flux. You work for me. Not one word.
SHINTA: Hari shan.
(The Shinta puts her sword to Flux's throat.)
FLUX: All right, all right, all right. Maybe only just a couple of
words. Ahem. Apparently, the only reason they haven't killed us, as
they did the others, is that our respective trios appear to fit the
prophesied profile of the legendary chosen three.
BEKA: In heaven now are three. But what have they done with Trance?
FLUX: So now we must submit to the contest of fire and pain.
HUNT: Is that anything like spin the bottle?
FLUX: The winner will be crowned by destiny to take the Engine of
SHINTA: Ahranga teh no!
FLUX: She wants a volunteer from each side.
BEKA: To do what?
FLUX: Hmm. To volunteer
(Flux is dragged away by guards.)
FLUX: Hey, I didn't volunteer! I don't even like volunteering.
DURAN: Hey! Hey! Bring back our third! It's supposed to be three, not
HUNT: I don't think we're volunteering for the tribal talent show.
BEKA: It's my mission, my head. I volunteer.
DURAN: So do I.
BEKA: Aw, geez. Catfight.
HUNT: No, I, I volunteer.
HUNT: Beka, let me do this.
FLETCHER: Then I volunteer too.
HUNT: Can't have too many.
DURAN: Get off me, Fletch. I can take him.
FLETCHER: No. Don't give me any lip.
HUNT: It's never easy.
of tribal chanting outside.)
BEKA: I thought we'd agreed that this was my mission. That means I make
the decisions, especially the life and death ones. And now that they've
I'm more responsible than ever.
HUNT: I have followed every one of your orders since we've been down
BEKA: Like hell you have.
BEKA: When I was standing on that mine, I had a way out of the problem.
Counterweights. But no, you hurl yourself at me and be the hero.
HUNT: I wasn't trying to be a hero. I just thought my way was quicker.
BEKA: And out there, just now?
HUNT: So I volunteered for the stupid contest.
BEKA: Look, Dylan, I think we both know that whatever this contest is,
it'll start bad and end worse. I should be the one fighting, not you.
HUNT: Beka, I was only trying to help.
BEKA: Yeah, well, saving my life when I should be saving yours is not
HUNT: See, I know what this is about. I wasn't your first choice for
this mission. Trance had to talk you into asking me. Come on, I'm
right, aren't I?
BEKA: Yeah, well, I can't manipulate you like I can manipulate Tyr.
HUNT: I think Tyr might have something to say about that.
BEKA: Look, Dylan, for reasons that I can't get into right now, you've
become very er, or fairly. Do you know what I'm saying?
BEKA: You've become important to me.
HUNT: Careful, I might start to like you.
BEKA: I just don't want to be responsible for losing you.
HUNT: I'm not planning on losing.
BEKA: That's not what I meant.
HUNT: I know. Whatever happens out there tonight, I know that deep down
inside I really was your first choice. Right?
TRIBE [OC]: Orintah ko!
(And silence falls.)
HUNT: That must be shinta for show time.
and Fletcher are brought out at weapon point. Beka and Duran are
sitting with the Shinta leader in her box. The combatants are given a
choice of spear or sword.)
HUNT: Your choice, Fletcher. I'm an expert with either one.
FLETCHER: I'm a swordsman, myself.
HUNT: Yeah. All guys think that.
(Hunt is given the spear, then both are given small round metal
HUNT: No one has to die here.
SHINTA: Orintah ko, leeka drohma!
FLETCHER: Oh, I'm guessing someone has to die.
(Two guards are chained in front of the doorways.)
FLETCHER: They must be the out of bounds.
HUNT: Don't go out of bounds.
SHINTA: Arga tor enscara teh.
HUNT: Couldn't we just settle this with a nice game of Go?
(Flames leap up around the perimeter when one of them gets close. They
decide to attack the two guards instead, but get beaten back into the
middle of the arena. Hunt and Fletcher start fighting each other.
Fletcher knocks the spear out of Hunt's hand.)
DURAN: Score one for my team!
BEKA: Bite me.
DURAN: Kill him, baby!
BEKA: Get up, Dylan. Get on your feet!
(After a few blows with the shields, Fletcher drops his sword and Hunt
picks it up. Dropping his shield, he goes at Fletcher double handed.)
DURAN: Come on!
BEKA: Is there anything you like more than watching your boyfriend
DURAN: Yes. Watching him kill.
(Hunt knocks the shield out of Fletcher's hands and they struggle for
the sword. Hunt gets the blade at Fletcher's throat.)
HUNT: If you don't want to die, work with me.
FLETCHER: Work with you? You're trying to kill me.
HUNT: If I was trying to kill you, you'd be dead by now.
(Duran enters the arena and jumps on Hunt's back. Flames shoot out of
BEKA: Hey! That's cheating.
(Beka gets into the arena and takes on Duran.)
BEKA: You are not getting my Engine.
DURAN: We'll see about that.
(The two pairs start slugging it out.)
Flux enters the room where Trance is watching the contest.)
FLUX: Care if I join you?
TRANCE: No. I was just getting used to your phony accent, Flux.
FLUX: Looks like I'm not the only one with a new look, Trance Gemini.
We thought we'd lost you.
TRANCE: And that's why you're here. That's why they're here.
FLUX: Well, someone has to retrieve the Engine of Creation. It doesn't
really matter who.
TRANCE: It does matter. Maybe not to you or to our people, but it
matters to the Engine.
(Beka gets too close to a guard, and they fight. Duran grabs the sword
from the floor and Beka gets the guard's spear, which has a labrys on
the end as well as a sharp point. Another guard slams his weapon down
between Hunt and Fletcher to separate them as they roll on the floor.)
TRANCE: Do you see this? The Engine is doing this. It will only deliver
itself to the right people.
FLUX: We're the right people.
TRANCE: No, they are. I just hope that they realise it in time.
(Beka and Duran swing their new weapons at each other. Hunt floors
Fletcher with a drop kick and picks up his spear again. He puts it at
Fletcher's throat then steps away and drops it.)
TRANCE: That's right, Dylan. Show the Engine you're worthy.
FLUX: Ooh, interesting move. I didn't even see that one coming.
knocks Duran down and points her weapon at her head, then steps away.)
SHINTA: Amin gaia!
(Guards pull Duran up and march her away.)
DURAN: Get your hands off me. It's our Engine. Let me finish this
(Guards pick Fletcher up and take him away. The crowd don't sound very
They've done it. Dylan and Beka have won.
FLUX: Well, like I said, someone has to retrieve the Engine. We all
know what happens next.
TRANCE: Some of us better than others.
FLUX: Come with me. Your brothers and sisters would love to know what's
become of you.
TRANCE: No. My place is here with my friends.
FLUX: Your place is with us. Don't forget whose side you're on.
TRANCE: I never have. I never will.
FLUX: You can't defy us forever, Trance.
TRANCE: No. But I can dream, can't I? Even if it's just for a little
er, I don't know what's going on, but it sure beats fire and swords.
(The Shinta enters through one door, Trance from the other. Guards
carry in a long box.)
SHINTA: Lima koh ha ta say remba.
TRANCE: And the Engine shall deliver itself to the righteous. By
refusing to destroy, they are worthy to create. In other words, you
BEKA: So what the hell happened to you?
TRANCE: They just took me off the board for a while. I believe they
were afraid I'd help you cheat.
HUNT: I don't cheat.
TRANCE: Yes, and that's why you've won, both of you, together.
(The Shinta steps aside, and the guards open the fur lined box. It
contains a metre long metal pole with a perspex cog and metal pin
socket on one end, and a smaller cog on the other.)
HUNT: The Engine of Creation.
(Beka takes it out of the box and quickly lowers it to the floor.)
BEKA: So er, it's heavier than it looks.
HUNT: You know what? I'll bet it takes three.
(They pick it up together, and the guards cheer.)
This doesn't seem right. I have no idea what it's made of, but the
sensors claim that it could weigh up to three galaxies.
BEKA: Well, we definitely carried it in here.
HUNT: What do you think, Trance?
TRANCE: I think your guess is as good as mine.
HUNT: Whenever she says that, I never believe it.
BEKA: What do you believe?
HUNT: Oh, Beka, I don't know. When I was a kid, my dad told me a story
about the Engine, how a famous Vedran archaeologist found it at an
excavation site in Kepora Ven. She studied it and discovered that it
was older than the universe itself. That it actually created the
universe, and then it made her a god.
BEKA: And she went crazy, right, and almost destroyed everything in
HUNT: Until the last moment, when she came to her senses and turned the
Machine against itself.
BEKA: Splitting it into five pieces, which the Vedrans then scattered
across the stars. What if that story's true? What if this is just a
fragment of the Engine?
HUNT: Well, then we went to an awful lot of trouble to find a fragment.
BEKA: Maybe it still works.
HUNT: Come on.
BEKA: Well, a fifth of anything that can reset the universe and make
dreams come true? Come on, it's got to be good for something.
HUNT: All right, let's try it. Make a wish. Ready?
(They put their hands on the Engine, close their eyes and wish.)
BEKA: No. You?
TRANCE [OC]: We're approaching Andromeda. Prepare for docking.
BEKA: Well, maybe it is worthless, but you know, it did make me realise
HUNT: What's that?
BEKA: We make a pretty good team, Cap'n Hunt.
HUNT: This made you realise that? Well then, I'm thinking maybe it does
make dreams come true.
(They walk away from the Engine, and the perspex bits pulse briefly.)