Saving Light from a Black Sun

Original Airdate: 18 Feb, 2005

"Conceal nothing.
And watch the fools search forever."

Psalms of Koscs
Vedran Archives
Lot 0049

[Town]

VIRGIL [OC]: This is Virgil Vox on the box, soothing your Seefran souls as we wait, wait

[Broadcast studio]

VIRGIL/TRANCE 2: Wait for the demi-century festival of the darkening, when Methus Two goes out.

[Command]

VIRGIL [OC]: For how long? The usual hour?
HUNT: Long enough for me to get a look inside, I hope.
VIRGIL [OC]: Or this time, as we all fear, will it stay dark forever.
HUNT: Not if I can figure out what makes it blink.

[Laboratory]

HARPER: You there, boss? You still in range?

[Command]

HUNT: Not for long, Mister Harper. The second that sun goes dark, we are going in.

[Laboratory]

BEKA: I'm back.
HARPER: I'll make it fast. Here she is, and she's got it. Plucked straight from the altar to our altar.
HUNT [OC]: You're referring to the carbon block, I hope?
BEKA: Yeah, and this had better be good. The minute those paranoid zealots find out that their ceremonial rock is missing
HARPER: It's worth it, it's worth it. You ever hear of an old thief named Horace Fry?
BEKA: Yeah. Lifted Terma Diamondoids. Did twenty years in stir, ended up on some backwater drift tending to his tropical fish.
HARPER: Mmm hmm. But, what happened to the diamondoids?
BEKA: Nobody knows for sure. He ditched them in the Chayson Drift just before he got caught. Bits of them scattered over a hundred light years, probably.
HARPER: Horace knew. Federales never found the swag.

[Command]

HARPER [OC]: Even put the eels to old Mrs. Fry. Tough lady. She kept her lips sealed to the last convulsion.

[Laboratory]

BEKA: Fry left the swag in orbit before he busted out to the Drift. Twenty five year decay rate. Terma was waiting for him when he got out.
HARPER: Smart, but he knew the law would be looking for that.
BEKA: So he hid the goods in plain sight. (penny drops) He sewed the diamondoids into his fish.
HARPER: Precisely. Finger marlins. They live forty years. Much better decay rate.
HUNT [OC]: Harper, you said this would be fast.
HARPER: I'm going as fast as I can. I'm making sure we're all on the same page, boss. You figure it out yet?
BEKA: It's black. It's solid. It's carbon.
HARPER: It's a filing cabinet.
BEKA: Yes. I can see that.
HARPER: All right. We've got an artificial star with a terminal case of the blinks, right?
HUNT [OC]: Beka

[Command]

HUNT: Harper thinks the block contains information about Methus Two.

[Laboratory]

BEKA: Yeah, but the Vedrans never left any information about the system in the archives. I checked.
HARPER: Ah, but did you check a dusty old paperweight made of

[Command]

HARPER [OC]: Ultragrade carbon nanofibres?

[Laboratory]

HARPER: Beka, behold the Vedran finger marlin.
BEKA: Go fish.
HARPER: The Vedrans bound bits of information to the carbon atoms inside this block. I figured out how to break those bonds and access the diagrams. Structural design information for the entire system!
BEKA: I see. You're going to apply heat.
HARPER: Ain't no flies on you, Beka. Boss, do I have your permission to begin potentially damaging extraction of said information?

[Command]

HUNT: It's either now or fifty years from now when Methus Two blinks off again. That's assuming you're finished with your story.

[Laboratory]

HARPER: I thought you'd say that.
(Harper starts attacking the black block with his nanowelder.

[Broadcast studio]

VIRGIL/TRANCE 2: Light your lanterns, gentle folk. Methus Two's

[Saloon]

VIRGIL [OC]: Horn of darkness approaches after a fifty
(There is a big flash of light outside.)

[Laboratory]

(Beka gets up from where she has ducked. Harper's face is caked in thick black soot, apart from where his welder's goggles had been.)
BEKA: That's a good look for you. 
HARPER: Ha, ha.
BEKA: Er.
(There is a new diagram on a monitor.)
HARPER: Oh ho, ho. God bless you, Horace Fry. Ha? Who's laughing now?
BEKA: You've got a little er. Never mind.

[Command]

HUNT: I'm going to take that explosion as good news, because we're going in. Rhade, Trance, ready slipfighter.
(As the Andromeda Ascendant approaches the binary stars, the small one goes dark and reveals its internal scaffolding. They fly in, then the slipfighter leaves and goes ahead.)
RHADE [OC: ]We're clear.
HUNT: Be careful, Rhade.
RHADE [OC]: What fun would that be?
(Andromeda stops at the central mass while the slipfighter heads south.)
HUNT: Okay, let's go where the sun doesn't shine.

[Broadcast studio]

VIRGIL/TRANCE 2: The festival of the darkening. Believers and non-believers, behold.

[Laboratory]

DOYLE: Dylan, Rhade, and Trance went to Methus Two without seeing this?
HARPER: Aw, geez, do I have to explain everything every time we do something? All right. By the time they hauled this thing out for the local fear festival, Dylan had already known for weeks about this once every fifty year blackout, and that he'd only have an hour from the second it got dark to get inside and look around, so he went, on pure instinct.
BEKA: Pure guts.
DOYLE: That's Dylan.
HARPER: Yeah. However, pure brilliance led me to deduce that there's more to this carbon block than meets the eye. It contains a maintenance code I can use to keep the sun down longer.
DOYLE: How long?
HARPER: Three hours. He'll have three hours inside, safe, guaranteed.
DOYLE: Provided there are no surprises.
HARPER: Please don't bite the hand that solders you.
DOYLE: I've wiped way too many of your guarantees off my boots, Harper.
HARPER: Fine. Don't believe me. Believe the Vedrans. It's their maintenance code, their diagrams. Apparently they wrote the block on this stuff.
DOYLE: I see. So the furnace is on the fritz because Methus Two hasn't seen a fix it crew in while.
HARPER: Yes. Transmitting the code, in layman's terms, reduces the sun's luminosity to absolute blackness, opening a portal which in this case is already open. Inside, between the mantle and the core, there's enough free space for a million Andromedas, and you should have more than enough time to repair the damage.
BEKA: We don't even know the extent of the damage. What if we need more downtime?
HARPER: You won't, because there isn't any. Keeping the sun down any longer could cause catastrophic weather conditions throughout the system. That's why they built the three hour failsafe. Besides, how long do you need? You get in, find Dylan, kick out the boiler, and be home in time to give me a massage.
BEKA: There is nothing in the Methus diagrams about a maintenance code.
HARPER: The information I'm getting from this rock is solid.
BEKA: It is not this block I have concerns about, Harper.
DOYLE: Actually, Beka, he's right. The Vedrans designed this system as one immense roadblock to stop the rogue sun and save this planet. If Methus Two is broken, the mechanism fails
HARPER: Thank you. And we are macrocosmic roadkill.
DOYLE: We have no choice but to follow Dylan.
BEKA: Not yet. Harper's not quite finished feeding out the rope.
HARPER: I was getting to it. There is a catch. There always is. The Vedrans used the same architecture inside the sun's core that they used inside all their spaceships, so passages are going to look familiar, very familiar, over and over again. The whole thing's probably designed to lure intruders away from their true path to the fusion reactor, so pay attention.
DOYLE: We could be walking around in circles until the sun ignites.
BEKA: Now, we can go hang ourselves.
HARPER: Ah, ah. Got you something.
(Harper holds out his hand computer. Doyle puts her hand on it and he presses a button.)
HARPER: Now you can go hang yourselves.

[South corridor]

(In Methus Two, but looking just like the Andromeda - well, Harper did say.)
HARPER [OC]: I uploaded the Methus Two designs into Doyle's neuron net.
RHADE: Did you want us to miss you?

[Laboratory]

HARPER: I don't hold false hopes. Just following the boss and Trance's orders. Besides, don't cry about it. At least this way, you'll be able to know where you're going.

[South corridor]

RHADE: You wanted Harper to stay behind?
TRANCE: Well, it felt like the right thing to do, You know, in case there's a problem.
HUNT [OC]: Well, it's in case you need a rescue. Besides

[Command]

HUNT: The Seefrans aren't tech savvy. They'll need Harper's help to get some other plan to save the system.

[Laboratory]

HARPER: Not that you will need rescue, by the way. I looked it all over twice. You're not going to hit any snags or any tangles of any sort. I promise. You'll be fine.

[South corridor]

RHADE: That's brave talk for a guy whose butt is shining a bar stool.

[Command]

HUNT: Communication gets tougher the closer you get to the core, so I'll be acting as your conduit to Harper.

[South corridor]

RHADE: Okay. We're on our way to find the core.
HARPER: Good, because the one thing you

[Laboratory]

HARPER: Do need to worry about is time, so keep your eyes on the minutes.

[Command]

HUNT: We'll be doing that, Mister Harper. Just make sure there's free gwaro when we get back.
HARPER [OC]: Free? Half price.

[Laboratory]

HARPER: For the first round.

[Command]

HUNT: Yeah, I'll pretend I didn't hear that.

[Laboratory]

HARPER: Well, then, let me spell it out for you. I got a bidnes to run, spelled B I D N E S.

[Command]

HARPER [OC]: The girls in the back, they're giving me a hard time
(Hunt cuts him off.)
HUNT: Now, if I could only make sense of this place.

[South corridor]

TRANCE: Rhade? I get this very strong feeling that Dylan has invested all of our hopes in this mission.
RHADE: He's just like every other exile thrown down this hole. He wants to survive. If there's still a Commonwealth, I want to find a way back. So does he.
TRANCE: When hope fills us up, we're easy to deceive. I'm afraid we might miss what's obvious.
RHADE: I don't miss much. That's how I've survived this long.
TRANCE: No. You've already missed something. I don't think that this star is some broken machine. Something alive is inside the core. Or it's at least an expression of some entity's life force.

[Eureka Maru]

(The Maru arrives alongside the Andromeda.)
BEKA: Couldn't wait for us, huh?

[Command]

HUNT: Well, I had to get the party started. There's still two hours and five minutes to burn.

[Eureka Maru]

DOYLE: What route did Rhade and Trance take?
HUNT [OC]: Through a portal at the core's south pole.

[Command]

HUNT: You guys take the north.

[Eureka Maru]

BEKA: Splitting up doubles the risk.
HUNT [OC]: Yeah, but it also doubles our chances of finding the reactor.

[Command]

HUNT: Look, whoever gets there first will make repairs. Other team will harvest deuterium fuel for Andromeda.
DOYLE [OC]: Seems counterproductive to steal fuel from a dying star.
HUNT: If no one can make repairs, at least we'll get out with the ship at full power. Oh, er, when I say it's time to get out

[Eureka Maru]

HUNT [OC]: Get out. I'll be coming fast.
BEKA: You won't have to say that twice. Going in.
HUNT [OC]: Good luck.

[Command]

HUNT: Rhade, Beka and Doyle are inside the core at the north portal.

[South corridor]

(The transmission is poor.)
RHADE: Dylan, change frequencies.
TRANCE: He'll come through again. It's this place. Some spots are more open than others.
RHADE: And I suppose that's determined by the life force you sensed in here? Can't tell yet if it's friend or foe?
TRANCE: Well, maybe it's both in the same body.
(Then a bulkhead closes in front of them.)
RHADE: Hey! I'm leaning towards foe.

[North corridor]

(A bulkhead closes behind Doyle and Beka.)
BEKA: Dylan? We've got problems. Suddenly, the doors have legs.

[Command]

BEKA: Doyle, dig through the diagrams for a pattern. See if there's any part of the configuration that leads to the fusion chamber.

[North corridor]

DOYLE: The core's designs refer to its ability to change its internal configuration.

[Command]

HUNT: Which means our map is useless. Rhade? Trance? Rhade? Damn it!
(Beka and Doyle get trapped between two bulkheads.)

[South corridor]

RHADE: Dylan? Dylan!
TRANCE: Clock is ticking.
RHADE: One hour and fifty three minutes.
(A bulkhead opens to let them continue.)
TRANCE: Time for intuition to lead the way. Rhade? I have a feeling something bad is coming.
RHADE: I could use a hint.
(A very bright light.)

[Laboratory]

(Methus Two reignites. The extra sunlight awakens Harper, who was dozing on his stool.)
HARPER: Dylan? Andromeda? No. This can't be happening.

[Town]

HARPER: No, no, no. No! No, no no, no, no! This can't be happening! No! I promised them. I promised them.
(Then Methus Two goes dark again. Harper grabs a bottle from a bemused reveller, who restarts his 'light the sun' dance.)

[Laboratory]

HARPER: Seefra to Dylan? Seefra to Dylan. Come in, Dylan. I never asked for any of you to come back, you know. Maybe I did a little at first, but I got by. I got by. I made me a beauty. Fabricated some freaks. I did what I had to do to stay alive in this sinkhole. Stinkhole. Three years. But I was going to find my own way out. No Andromeda, no Rommie, no promises. I didn't ask for any of you. I didn't need any of you, and even if I did, I never expected an answer. (to the carbon block) You. You lied to me. You made me believe they'd be safe. What's that? You want a little drinky? Okay.
(He smashes the bottle over the block, and the alcohol bursts into flames. He puts it out then sees the Andromeda's shape on the diagram on the monitor.)
HARPER: It's the Andromeda. This is real time. But, but how? Wait a minute. What if the mantle were strong enough to protect the core from a short burst, then they wouldn't fry. They'd be okay. They'd be alive! They're alive? They're alive! They're alive! Ha ha ha! For now, anyway.
(He kisses the carbon block.)

[South corridor]

(Rhade wakes up.)
TRANCE: The sun flashed. Just not enough to vaporise you.
RHADE: Gear's fried. Without the hand comm, we can't tell how much time we have left.
TRANCE: Roughly seventy two minutes forty two seconds?
RHADE: Roughly. Here's the next question. Our location. How far we are from the chamber?
TRANCE: I got nothing.
RHADE: I'm sure you have a feeling.
TRANCE: This is going to sound strange. Sometimes I'm not where I am, and sometimes I am where I'm not.
RHADE: Here's the only thing that scares me.
TRANCE: Is that you understand me? Kind of?
RHADE: Kind of.
TRANCE: Wish I did.
RHADE: You do. Trance, would you like some company?
TRANCE: What's up ahead, what we're all looking for? I'm the only one who knows the way. No matter what, you must follow me.
(Rhade lights up a glowstick.)
RHADE: I'm your shadow.

[North corridor]

(Beka wakes up.)
BEKA: Doyle? Doyle! Crap.
(With the power torch out of action, Beka uses a glowstick as well.)
BEKA: Hey. Doyle, spark it up. I don't want to leave you here.
TRANCE [OC]: I'm sorry, Beka.
BEKA: Trance, is that you? Are you okay?
TRANCE [OC]: I brought us to Seefra.
BEKA: Hey, are you with Dylan? I need help. Doyle's shut down.
TRANCE [OC]: All those months you spent alone, drifting, starving.
BEKA: Hey, look. You've got to tell Dylan we couldn't find any fuel storage.
TRANCE [OC]: Where would you be without me? Where would you be if I were someone else?
BEKA: Trance, without you, the rest of us would be dead.
TRANCE [OC]: Death is just a matter of time.
(A bulkhead door opens and Cloaked Trance walks across a junction.)
BEKA: Trance? Where the hell are you going? I need help with Doyle. Trance?
(Beka runs after her.)
BEKA: Wait! How much time do we have left? Trance? Trance?
(Two bulkheads trap Beka.)
BEKA: Crap.

[South corridor]

TRANCE: Your hand comm is working.

[Command]

HUNT: Rhade, we've had no luck reaching Harper.

[South corridor]

RHADE: Well, I guess we found a safe spot.
TRANCE: For now.
RHADE: Dylan, we've lost contact with Beka and Doyle. Did the Andromeda sustain any damage?

[Command]

HUNT: None. About the only good news on a really bad day.
RHADE [OC]: I hate to admit it, but I was actually looking forward to this.
HUNT: What, burning to a cinder?

[South corridor]

RHADE: A concrete objective, like the old days. Shooting up bipedal lizards, rescuing exotic women, accepting their sighs as gratitude. No riddles or Paradine puzzles. And look what we get. Trapped in a maze.
HUNT: Well, the only thing we know is that

[Command]

HUNT: We're running out of time.
TRANCE [OC]: There's no hard time on Seefra.

[South corridor]

RHADE: There is in here.
TRANCE: Maybe. For one of us. Promise you'll remember what I said?
RHADE: I fail without you.
TRANCE: Exactly.
(Trance looks over his shoulder. Rhade turns and a bulkhead closes between them.)
RHADE: Damn it! Trance! Dylan, I've been cut off from Trance.
HUNT [OC]: Understood.

[Command]

HUNT: Andromeda, run the Methus Two diagram.
ANDROMEDA [OC]: Aye.
HUNT: Cross-reference it with all Vedran ship designs from Commonwealth years CY 4279 to CY 9785.
ANDROMEDA [OC]: Captain, what are we looking for?
HUNT: Initial operating systems. And luck.

[Broadcast studio]

VIRGIL/TRANCE 2: The festival of the darkening. Dance, you fools, dance.

[South corridor]

RHADE: Trance! Dylan, I'm going to need something to break through. Damn it!
(Rhade kicks the bulkhead and a piece breaks off.)

[Command]

HUNT: That sounded promising.

[South corridor]

RHADE: A piece of the wall just broke and shattered. It's a strange metal.

[Command]

HUNT: Yeah, it's er, it's not metal.

[South corridor]

(The piece of wall leaves soot on Rhade's hand.)
RHADE: The core.
HUNT [OC]: This whole structure

[Command]

HUNT: Is made from carbon. Keep moving, Rhade. You're close.

[South corridor]

(Trance meets her duplicate.)
TRANCE: The flash. You used the star's energy to appear. But you're the only one I sense. Where are the rest of us?
TRANCE 2: Where we are, when we are, nothing but lies told by the senses.
TRANCE: I prefer the lies of living senses to your idea of the truth.
TRANCE 2: There is no room for dissension within the nebula. All must be one. That is not an arbitrary law, Trance Gemini. It is the state of existence. No bodies, no borders, only eternal, undivided essence.
TRANCE: Don't you hear how foolish you sound? If all of us are one, yet I can reject the will of the nebula, then your belief is the lie.
TRANCE 2: For every choice, there is a consequence. Yours is waiting. The only path still open to you.
TRANCE: Then I'm already trapped.

[North corridor]

BEKA: Doyle, can you hear me? Doyle!
(She tries her hand comp. Just static so she thumps it against the bulkhead. It leaves a dent.)
BEKA: Aw, crap. Dylan? Dylan, come in. Rhade?
(Then she notices the dent, and gets soot on her fingers.)
BEKA: It breaks.
(She draws her gun.)
BEKA: Okay, wait. That'd be a very bad idea. No sense incinerating myself before my time.
(So she uses its butt to break down the bulkhead.)

[South corridor]

(A door opens for Rhade, and he sees Trance crossing the corridor ahead of him.)
RHADE: Dylan! I've found Trance.

[Command]

HUNT: Rhade, say again. Comm link is breaking.

[South corridor]

RHADE: Trance! She said to follow.

[Command]

HUNT: Andromeda, show the last locations of the crew.
ANDROMEDA [OC]: Searching. I have them, Captain.
HUNT: Time to go.

[North corridor]

(Doyle reboots and runs towards the thumping noise. They talk through the bulkhead door.)
DOYLE: Beka, is that you making all that racket?
BEKA: Hell, yes!
DOYLE: Are you hurt?
BEKA: No, but I have discovered I'm a girl who does not like to be trapped.
DOYLE: So you left me here, out of juice, defenceless. Serves you right you got trapped.
RHADE: Left you behind? I was chasing Trance. She abandoned us both.
DOYLE: Sure, the synthetic's not worth a believable lie.
RHADE: I am not lying, damn it! How much time do we have?
DOYLE: Not much. Stand back.
(Beka retreats as far as she can and covers her head. Doyle punches though.)
BEKA: Wow. Thanks.
DOYLE: You're welcome. This is carbon.
BEKA: I know. It's a gas can. Let's go.
HUNT [OC]: Rhade? Beka? If anyone can read me, I am on my way in.
(A slipfighter is heading to the core.)
BEKA: The Vedrans used an ancient technology called hydride containment.
DOYLE: They made the walls with carbon nanofibres. All the deuterium is bound to the carbon atoms.
BEKA: Highly stable, and given the size of the core, there's enough heavy hydrogen here to power a dozen Methus Twos.
DOYLE: Well, what now?
BEKA: Contact the others.

[South corridor]

BEKA [OC]: Rhade?
RHADE: Where are you, Beka?

[North corridor]

BEKA: Inside a gas tank, and so are you.
HUNT [OC]: And so am I.

[Core corridor]

HUNT: I'm way ahead of you. Get to the Maru. Use the engines to heat a section of the core and release the deuterium we need for Andromeda.

[North corridor]

BEKA: But Dylan, we won't have time to search for the fusion chamber.

[Core corridor]

HUNT: Look, I want you and Doyle on board Andromeda and ready to bolt with ten minutes left on the clock.
BEKA [OC]: On our way.
HUNT: Hey, Rhade.
RHADE: Dylan? How the hell'd you get here?
HUNT: Yeah. I guessed that the defence mechanism in the maze would employ the same pattern as other Vedran operating systems.
RHADE: You guessed?

[Fusion chamber]

HUNT: Didn't I tell you we were going to get lucky?
RHADE: You did.
HUNT: The fusion chamber. Here's the problem. We're screwed. Diagnostic says the lines running to and from the chamber are clear. There's no blockages to the fuel or heat transfer. That can't be.
RHADE: Adventures were much more fun when it was just bad guys lining up, letting us shoot them.
HUNT: Yeah. No glory in having to think for a living. All right, let's figure this thing out. Heat goes out to free deuterium. Fuel flows back here to feed the fusion reaction. Vedrans like to play hide in plain sight. That fish tank is the furnace.
RHADE: And it's in real bad need of a cleaning.

[Eureka Maru]

BEKA: Once we're out, divert all fuel to the main engines. Run them in the red.
DOYLE: There's a pop-off vent in the core's surface thirty degrees from this portal.
BEKA: Great. Plot the location into the nav net. How are we doing on time?
DOYLE: You really want to know?
BEKA: What I really want is a nap.

[Fusion chamber]

RHADE: You said on the ship and ready to ride with ten minutes to burn. Fourteen minutes. Window's closing.
HUNT: Let's see what you and I can do in four minutes.

[Eureka Maru]

(The Maru lands on part of the core.)
DOYLE: Sealed the cargo hold and purged the interior. Storage available for seven hundred cubic litres of compressed deuterium.
BEKA: Firing thrusters and counter-thrusters. Let's get hot. That's right, drink it up.
DOYLE: We're already at thirty percent capacity. This is great.
(Bang! And the engines shut down.)
DOYLE: I spoke too soon, didn't I?
BEKA: Yeah. The engines have locked up.
DOYLE Can you unlock them?
BEKA: No, I don't think so, but we can continue collecting the gas.
DOYLE: Comm's fried.
BEKA: Don't worry. Dylan will be here. He said he would be.

[Fusion chamber]

HUNT: No, this says the lines are clear. So why would the heat source run so far below ideal capacity?
RHADE: Radiant outflow must be blocked.
HUNT: Then let's run a snake through the drains.
RHADE: Hey, even pulsing at half capacity, this boiler is pumping billions of lumens. If it hasn't cleared the blockage, what will?
HUNT: Maybe a burst at ten times normal output will.
RHADE: Have you ever heard of overkill?
HUNT: Ever hear of last resorts? Look, we survived one flare. I'll take those odds.
RHADE: Once you've primed the pump, We'd better duck, tuck, and roll.
HUNT: Get ready to duck, tuck, and roll.
(They run. Trance enters, then Trance 2.)
TRANCE 2: Why do you worry?
TRANCE: Not for myself.
TRANCE 2: Your friends will be saved. Tarn Vedra will remain outside of the cataclysm, a paradise for the millions fortunate enough to live in this system.
TRANCE: What about the trillions of lives that will end when the Abyss dissolves the three galaxies? Why does the nebula turn its back on them? And why should I?
TRANCE 2: There are no beings. No such thing as lives for them to lead. The only real thing is the energy that fuels them, and energy can never die.
TRANCE: Then I will live to stop you.
(The two Trances dissolve into particles and cause a big flare. Hunt and Rhade run back in to see Trance with her hand on the reactor.)
HUNT: Trance? Trance.
TRANCE: When the clock starts winding down, it's going to get very hot in here, permanently.
HUNT: Well, then, we'd better outrun our shadows.
(All three run as alarms sound.)

[Command]

(Two slipfighters return to Andromeda.)
RHADE: Beka and Doyle are stalled on the core's surface.
HUNT: Open a channel.
ANDROMEDA [OC]: The Maru's communications are down.
HUNT: All right. Let's go get them.
(The Andromeda glides over the Maru.)
HUNT: They're still gathering fuel.
TRANCE: Readings indicate that Doyle and Beka are still on board.
HUNT: The Maru's engines must have seized.
ANDROMEDA [OC]: T minus one minute forty seconds to solar ignition.
RHADE: My priority is the Matriarch, but there's barely enough time to make the portal and save ourselves, let alone anyone else.
HUNT: I'm not leaving anyone behind.
RHADE: Now what?
HUNT: Well, we're going to give them a tow, and we're going to make it quick.
TRANCE: But we don't have
(Hunt gives her a Look.)
TRANCE: Time is relative.
HUNT: Andromeda, bucky cables, now.

[Eureka Maru]

BEKA: Cables.

[Command]

RHADE: Cables secure.
HUNT: Bring them in.

[Eureka Maru]

BEKA: Be gentle with us, guys. Right now, we're a hydrogen hand grenade.

[Command]

ANDROMEDA [OC]: T minus ten seconds to solar ignition.
HUNT: All right. Get us out of here. Feel free to get a push from the solar wind if you have to.
(The Andromeda races on the edge of the fireball.)

[Laboratory]

(Harper's timer runs down to zero.)
HARPER: Guys? Guys? Talk to me. Let me know you're alive. Insult me, for crying out loud.
RHADE [OC]: You're short, and you throw like a girl.
HARPER: Yes! Thank you.

[Command]

TRANCE: Methus Two is at full capacity for the first time since we don't know when.
HUNT: Tap a keg, Mister Harper.
RHADE: Make it a dozen, and invite some ladies. The friendly kind.

[Laboratory]

HARPER: The friendly kind? Rhade, I thought you only liked the kind with mustaches. Throw like a girl.
(He tosses his goggles away and discovers that it is true.)

[Command]

HUNT: You saved million of lives today. And you've given us a fighting chance to escape this system.
TRANCE: It feels like we're free already.
HUNT: Trance, in matters of time and place, and, of course, life and death, I'll never doubt your intuition.
TRANCE: I already knew that.
HUNT: I had a feeling it was obvious.
(Beka and Doyle enter.)
HUNT: Welcome back, ladies.
DOYLE: It's good to be back.
BEKA: Hey, thanks for the lift. Dylan.
HUNT: Beka. Hey, thanks for getting that fuel.
BEKA: Dylan, I think you should know about something that happened on Methus Two, just after it flashed? I saw Trance. She spoke to me, but she definitely wasn't herself. I mean, Doyle was damaged, I needed help, and suddenly Trance becomes this mysterious cloaked figure who shuts up and walks away.
HUNT: She was wearing a cloak.
BEKA: Yeah, and, Dylan I think she deliberately lured me into a trap. I mean, if Doyle hadn't rebooted, I'd be a cloud of gas right now.
HUNT: Come on, Beka. We both know Trance isn't capable of betrayal.
BEKA: Really? Then who was with me inside the sun?
(A cloak is lying on the floor of the fusion chamber.)

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