Michael tries to clear his name for causing Sheridan's capture, and Ivanova is forced to engage in a risky battle against Clark's most powerful destroyers.



Guest Starring



Cast Notes



Dr. Stephen Franklin is talking with Capt. Sheridan in his quarters, seemingly much relieved of his return to Babylon 5 after his time being tortured on Mars. Franklin asks how Sheridan escaped captivity. Sheridan mentions the Mars Resistance, but Franklin starts asking for specifics. Sheridan hesitates. In reality, Sheridan is still on Mars. Having failed with intimidation, his interrogators are now using induced hallucinations to try to make him confess. But strict secrecy combined with just enough mental acuity result in Sheridan saying nothing of value. One of the interrogators suggests threatening Sheridan's father, David, but the head (who Sheridan perceives to be Franklin) notes they'd lose either way; either he gains resolve by targeting David's killers or he'll perceive them as spineless. It's not cooperation they need but conversion, and to do that, they need to make him submit. Only then can they undermine the Earth Alliance Resistance. The head adds a drug to a cup of coffee and convinces Sheridan to drink it.

Elsewhere on Mars, Michael Garibaldi wanders through an industrial area. As footsteps approach, he draws a PPG. The man turns out to be a member of the Mars Resistance whom he'd sent to tell them he wants a meeting to try to clear his name. Suddenly, other members of the Resistance surround him and knock him out.

Act I

Garibaldi is brought before the rest of the Resistance, his face covered by a hood. Number One appraches along with Franklin and Lyta Alexander. Number One offers a PPG to Franklin since it was his man Michael betrayed. Instead, Franklin insists on hearing Michael's side of the story first. Removing the hood, Franklin tells Michael to start talking. He immediately mentions Alfred Bester, telling as much of the story as he could recall: how Psi Corps and Bester stole him from the Shadows and then programmed him to be a mole so as to infiltrate an anti-telepath conspiracy. Trouble is, he has no proof. He offers to take them to where Sheridan is being held, but no one believes him. Then he notices Lyta and immediately asks her to scan him. Lyta explains the Resistance only tolerates her as a person; they don't like telepaths. Still, Franklin admits the idea amounts to something; it would clarify the story and give him that one chance to clear his name. But Number One tries to shoot him instead. Franklin shoves her hand and deflects the shot while Lyta uses a PPG rifle to get everyone else to stop. Garibaldi insists she scan as deep as it takes to get to the truth. Finally, deep down, Lyta uncovers the memories. She tells everyone Michael is right: he was strung up, and to prove it, she projects both those and some of her own nastiest memories into Number One. She finally relents.

Meanwhile, in the vicinity of Beta IX, Cmdr. Ivanova, now at Fleet Command aboard White Star 2, continues with the advance of the Earth Alliance Resistance. They have cornered two loyalist destroyers: the Damocles and the Orion, and she delivers their now-standard ultimatum: surrender and answer for fheir crimes or be destroyed. The destroyers decide to turn and fight. Ivanova insists they stick with Sheridan's MO and let the enemy strike first. Once that happens, the fleet responds swiftly: the White Star fleet quickly outmaneuvering the destroyers so as to target their engines and weapons. Soon, both ships are crippled and heavily damaged and Marcus notes evacuation orders being given. He also wonders why Ivanova wants to take the time to pick up the survivors, and she explains they have to be thorough. Once Clark is deposed, his supporters will disappear into the population. They need to send the message that people who use the law to commit atrocities must answer for their crimes. Furthermore, each engagement usually results in defectors who swell their ranks.

Using some old contacts from his old Mars days and his loyalist publicity, Garibaldi locates Sheridan's prison: Fort Walters in Solis Planna. But anything beyond that they'll have to improvise. Number One notes they've set up some ways in, but once they're inside, Garibaldi, Alexander, and Franklin will be on their own.

Act II

Back on Babylon 5, Lennier finally locates Delenn and delivers some very disturbing news. The Advisory Council and League of Non-Aligned Worlds have convened...without her knowledge. Immediately she heads for the Council Chamber, only to learn that Londo has just raised a motion. Extremely cross, Delenn insists on knowing why no Human or Minbari was told of this vote: a serious breach of B5 diplomatic protocol. Londo, however, was expecting this. Her presence satisfies the protocol, allowing him to call a vote; it passes unanimously. Before Delenn gets mad, Londo, G'Kar, and Vir explain that the motion was in response to Sheridan's capture. Everyone in chambers felt this called for a response and a show of support, so they've voted to assemble a fleet to support the Earth Alliance Resistance. They didn't want Delenn to know about the vote so as to keep any personal feelings she may have out of it: keeping the vote neutral. Finally understanding, Delenn stands in silent gratitude.

Michael, Stephen, and Lyta are led through an underground tunnel by a Resistance fighter. It's nervous business. The area they're travling is under shoot-on-sight protocols, and continued excavation by EarthGov is increasing the instances of Marsquakes in the area, raising the risk of a cave-in. Despite Lyta's doubts, Michael is confident Sheridan is still alive; he has to be alive if the loyalists want to deconstruct him. The Resistance fighter leaves them a short distance later as they reach the edge of Fort Walters.

Aboard White Star 2, Marcus and another Ranger bring in an officer from the Damocles: Duty Officer David Eisensen. He reveals that some of the defectors they have been receiving are in fact spies for the Clark regime. Because of this, Clark knows their next major target will be Mars, and most of the defected Earth destroyers will be gathering in Sector 300. Clark intends to ambush them there, and he's not taking chances. He's deploying new, advanced destroyers: never seen before and totally loyal to Clark. Outside, Susan and Marcus discuss their options. If they go around the ambush, the defectors will be wiped out, destroying the vital apperance of Earth liberating itself. Their only option is to spring the ambush themselves. Whatever this unknown force may be, the White Stars would be most capable ships against them.

Michael, Stephen, and Lyta try to sneak their way into the compound, but two guards soon corner them and they're forced into a fight. Although the guards are killed, Garibaldi takes a knife to the back.


Stephen quickly performs field surgery on Michael's stab wound. The knife missed vital organs but still left a bleeding mess. Once Lyta hides the bodies and Stephen closes the wound, they press on, using their old Earthforce uniforms.

Ivanova informs Capt. James aboard the Agamemnon of the plan. He protests the plan as dangerous, but Ivanova insists it's the only way. The Earth ships are more important now becuase they represent Earth. James acknowledges the plan and agrees to wait. Marcus suggests now would be a good time to get some rest. She's been working herself to exhaustion lately, and she needs to be fresh when the battle begins. After Marcus threatens to nag her about it, she acquieses.

Michael and company finally reach the prison cells. Michael manages to use his notoriety and a little fast talking to get past the checkpoint. The guards at the cell, however, are much more stubborn, and they have to use a combination of telepathic pain from Lyta and some punches to subdue them. Choice words during the exchange allow Lyta to obtain the passcode for the cell. They open the cell and find Sheridan, half-conscious and heavily drugged. They quickly work to free him while Garibaldi tries to relax a bit as his stab wound is bleeding through his uniform.

Despite her known discomfort when it comes to Minbari beds, Ivanova is roused by Marcus having managed to sleep for four hours. Sector 300 is 45 minutes away. Before she heads for the bridge, though, she calls him to task on something. He had once said something to her in Minbari as she slept. She remembered it and learned enough Minbari to translate it, hinting that she no longer believes what he said to her was just "a greeting".

Michael and company emerge from the cells with Sheridan, and before the checkpoint can sound an alarm, he and Stephen gun them down. Sheridan, despite his daze, picks up a PPG from one of the guards and unloads nine shots into another one struggling to get back up: finally able to vent some of his frustration.

Act IV

The White Star fleet arrives at Sector 300. They can't pick up anything but figure the only way to spring the trap is to jump out of hyperspace. Sure enough, soon after they emerge, a number of Earthforce destroyers jump out in response. The appearance of these Advanced Omega class destroyers fill Ivanova with dread. Their hulls appear covered with a creepy, rippling, and very familiar pattern. Marcus confirms her fears. The hulls are semi-organic: grafted with Shadow technology. Ivanova is amazed Earth had been able to adapt Shadow technology so quickly after securing a Shadow vessel. It also raises the stakes since Shadow technology can be a match for a White Star. Captain Jake Thompson soon hails them. Grimly, Ivanova decides to announce her intentions to him very clearly. Very elaborately identifying herself, declaring herself "death incarnate", she opens fire and begins the Battle of Sector 300. The destroyers launch Starfuries and defend themselves. Ivanova notes the White Stars hold a speed advantage over the destroyers, so she decides to mob them. Groups of several White Stars single out loyalist ships: destroying them and then moving to the next one before too much fire can be focused on them. But with the Shadow augmentation, their cannons are very powerful, and damage is mounting. Finally, as the remaining destroyers try to surround them, the fleet outraces them and then turns around and fires on them en masse. Despite the risk of a collison, and with White Stars falling one by one, she insists the fleet be destroyed to the last to prevent reinforcements. The White Stars ultimately succeed and destroy the entire loyalist fleet, but even as the last one is hunted down, debris from the destroyers collides with White Star 2's bridge. Despite the danger, Marcus clambers out from the massive debris, extrricates Ivanova from under several beams, and carries her to a shuttle. They escape just before White Star 2 explodes.

Act V

A ships jumps out of hyperspace and links up with a Sharlin. There, Sheridan is finally reunited with Delenn. The joy of the reunion is short-lived, however, as he knows what happened to Ivaonva.

In the medical wing, Ivanova is gravely wounded: her neck held in a brace. At Marcus' insistence, her bed is level. Hearing Sheridan, Ivanova opens her eyes. She realizes she likely doesn't have a lot of time, but she can be satisfied he is free and that, in spite of the odds against her, she cleared the way for him. Clark's trump card is gone, and only Mars and Earth are left now. Under these circumstances, she tells Sheridan not to hold any regrets for her. She knew and accepted the risks and will accept her life as the price for this important victory. Before Sheridan goes, however, she conveys one last request.

For the first time in nearly three years, Sheridan returns aboard the Agamemnon. At Ivanova's request, and with permission from Capt. James, Sheridan will lead the final leg of the liberation campaign from his old command.

Memorable quotes

"The truth speaks for itself. I'm just a messenger."

Lyta Alexander

"Politics and Morality on the same side? That doesn't happen every day, Delenn."

Vir Cotto

"I don't watch TV. It's a cultural wasteland filled with inappropriate metaphors and an unrealistic portrayal of life created by the liberal media elite."

Earthforce guard

"Who is this? Identify yourself."
"Who am I? I am Susan Ivanova, Commander, daughter of Andrei and Sofie Ivanov. I am the right hand of vengeance, and the boot that is gonna kick your sorry ass all the way back to Earth, sweetheart. I am death incarnate and the last living thing that you are ever going to see. God sent me."

Capt. Jake Thompson and Cmdr. Susan Ivanova

DVD release

This episode, along with the other episodes from season four, has been released on DVD with extensive special features.

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