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Who is your Favourite Guest Rebel?

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Transcript - Ep2 Space Fall


by Terry Nation
Directed by Pennant Roberts

(c) 1977 by the British Broadcasting Corporation. Series created by Terry Nation. This is a complete dialogue transcript for research purposes, and is not for sale under any circumstances.
Format (c) 1993 by Jonathan Day and Micky DuPree.
Format for Horizon (c) 2020 by Jackie Emery

Dramatis Personae
Roj Blake ----------------Gareth Thomas
Jenna Stannis-----------Sally Knyvette
Vila Restal----------------Michael Keating
Kerr Avon-----------------Paul Darrow
Olag Gan-----------------David Jackson
Captain Leylan----------Glyn Owen
Raiker---------------------Leslie Schofield
Artix-----------------------Norman Tipton
Teague-------------------David Hayward
Krell-----------------------Brett Forrest
Nova----------------------Tom Kelly
Dainer--------------------Michael MacKenzie
Garton--------------------Bill Weston
Selman-------------------David Ryall (non-speaking)
Wallace------------------Clinton Morris (uncredited)

Background Artists (uncredited)

[The London flies through space. Earth can be seen, but it is small and distant]

Blake looks out the window at the receding Earth and Moon.

ARTIX:----------- Attitude stable, trajectory firm.
RAIKER:--------- Systems check.
ARTIX:----------- We have full function on all navigational systems.
RAIKER:--------- Confirmed.
ARTIX:----------- We have full function on all communication systems.
RAIKER:--------- Confirmed. Power status?
ARTIX:----------- Full function, course is set, we have a clear on Mars beacon.
RAIKER:--------- [To Leylan] We have a go confirmation on all systems, sir.
LEYLAN:--------- Thank you, Mr Raiker. Set hyperdrive speed, Time Distort Five.
RAIKER:--------- Time Distort Five. [He operates a control]

[Exterior shot of London as the main drive activates]

RAIKER:--------- Five and running [checks his wrist chronometer].
LEYLAN:--------- Lock in full auto. [Gets up] I thought maintenance was supposed to have fixed that high-dee shift vibration.
RAIKER:--------- That's what they said.
LEYLAN:--------- That's what they always say. They don't bother. Nobody bothers any more. [To Artix] You'd better identify us to Space Security.
ARTIX:----------- Yes, sir. [Into comms system] This is Civil Administration Ship London. We are in transit from Earth to Cygnus Alpha, transporting prisoners to the penal colony. We have Federation clearance for direct flight, authority number K-Seven-Zero-One. Transmission ends.

[Raiker checks an electronic clipboard. Artix picks up a hand-held sound system, and puts a headphone to his ear. Leylan notices and walks over to him]
LEYLAN:--------- Still studying for your commander's credentials, Artix?
ARTIX:----------- Yes, sir. I don't want to spend the rest of my life on old tubs like… I, I mean...
LEYLAN:--------- [Smiling] I know what you mean.
ARTIX:----------- I'm sorry, sir.
LEYLAN:--------- I'm going to my quarters. Anything I should know?
ARTIX:----------- Yes, there's a report of some meteorite activity about eighteen hours ahead ship-time. Space Met says it should have cleared our course well before we reach it.
LEYLAN:--------- Well, keep an eye on it anyway. [To Raiker] And Mr Raiker, give the prisoners the usual pep talk and assign them their duties.
RAIKER:--------- My pleasure.

[Leylan and Raiker exit the Flight Deck and walk down corridor]
LEYLAN:--------- Oh, and, er, use the highest level of suppressants in the prisoners' rations. I like 'em docile.
RAIKER:--------- Yes, sir.
LEYLAN:--------- Er, Mr Raiker?
RAIKER:--------- Sir?
LEYLAN:--------- There's a female prisoner on our manifest.
RAIKER:--------- I'd noticed that, sir.
LEYLAN:--------- Yes... well... er, be discreet.
RAIKER:--------- Yes, sir.

[Raiker enters]
RAIKER:--------- I'm Sub-Commander Raiker, and I think there are a few things you should know. [Walks up and down the row of prisoners while speaking]. The voyage to Cygnus Alpha will take approximately eight months ship time. During this period, you will obey every order and instruction that is given you. There is a punishment scale for infractions, which starts with long periods of confinement in your launch seat and ends with the Commander's right to order execution. If you have any complaints, I don't want to hear them. Understand this clearly: you have no rights whatsoever. None. Questions? [To guard] Open it up.

[Guard places his hand on a blue sensor plate. The bulkhead slides back to reveal an open area with tables and bunks]

RAIKER: --------- [To prisoners] This is the limit of your world from now on. It has mess facilities, sleeping bays, recreation area. Sort out amongst yourselves how you use it. There are other rules, but you'll find out what they are when you break them. That's all. Clear your harnesses, you're at liberty to move.

[The prisoners stand up and move into the other section, apart from Blake who is still restrained in his seat]

RAIKER:--------- [To Blake] What have we here? Not a troublemaker, I hope?
BLAKE:---------- I didn't hear an order.
RAIKER:--------- You didn't hear an order, sir. [Shouts] SAY IT!
BLAKE:---------- I didn't hear an order... sir.
RAIKER:--------- That's better. What's your name?
BLAKE:---------- Blake.
RAIKER:--------- So you're Blake. Well, made quite a name for yourself a few years back. Quite the celebrity. Something of a comedown for a leader of men, isn't it? Molesting kids?
BLAKE:---------- The charges were false.
RAIKER:--------- [sarcastically] Oh yes, of course. Well, let me tell you something, Blake. As far as I am concerned, you are just another piece of cargo. Remember that and you might just survive the journey. Do you understand?
BLAKE:---------- I understand... sir.
RAIKER:--------- Good. You're learning. [To guard at control panel] Let him clear.
[Guard activates control and Blake’s restraints are released]

VILA: ------------ [To Jenna and Nova] Do you think this is a good time for me to tell them I suffer from flight sickness?
NOVA:----------- I don't think they'll be very sympathetic.
JENNA:---------- I expect they'll find a cure for it, though. A permanent one, probably.

[Raiker enters and stands behind Jenna]
VILA:------------ They amputate your head.
RAIKER: -------- [To Jenna, putting his hand on her shoulder] Come with me.
JENNA:---------- [To Vila] Here goes.

[Raiker and Jenna move away to the far end of the room]
RAIKER:--------- What's your name?
JENNA:---------- Jenna Stannis.
RAIKER:--------- Unfortunately, Jenna, there are no special facilities for female prisoners. But if you should find things difficult, I might be able to arrange something more comfortable.
JENNA:---------- That's very considerate of you.
RAIKER:--------- Why make it hard on yourself?
JENNA:---------- Why indeed? [She whispers something to Raiker. He slaps her face]
RAIKER:--------- You'll come round! I can be very persuasive.

[Jenna returns to Vila and Nova, passing Avon, who takes a note from his top pocket and sits at a table close to them]
JENNA:---------- [To Vila and Nova] That one's going to enjoy giving us a hard time.
VILA:------------ And you've improved his mood no end! Why couldn't you be nice to him?
JENNA:---------- He's not my type.
VILA:------------ You can't afford to be choosy now.
JENNA:---------- Why else would I be talking to you?
VILA:------------ Thanks!
JENNA:---------- Pleasure. [To Avon, referring to note] What have you got there?
AVON:----------- [Studying the note] Nothing.

[Blake enters]
BLAKE:---------- [To Vila] Do you know how those door panels work?
VILA:------------ No, not that type.
AVON:----------- It's simple enough. All authorised personnel have their palm prints filed in the computer. The blue sensor plate reads the print. If it conforms, the computer opens the door.
BLAKE:---------- Neat.
AVON:----------- Most computer-based functions are.
VILA:------------ Blake - Kerr Avon. When it comes to computers, he's the number two man in all the Federated worlds.
NOVA:----------- Who's number one?
VILA:------------ The guy who caught him. [To Avon] You've got nothing to be ashamed of. Do you know, he came close to stealing five million credits out of the Federation Banking System.
BLAKE:---------- What went wrong?
AVON:----------- I relied on other people. Why all the questions? Or is it merely a thirst for knowledge? [Puts note away]
BLAKE:---------- Not exactly. Having defined the problem, the first step towards a solution is the acquisition of data. You should know that.
AVON:----------- Define the problem, then.
BLAKE:---------- How to avoid spending the rest of our lives on Cygnus Alpha.
VILA:------------ That may not be a problem. I've heard a rumour that these prison ships don't actually go all the way to Cygnus. They wait until they're in deep space, and then quietly dump you out of an airlock.
AVON:----------- You're a fool.
JENNA:---------- They are on a fixed price contract. They get paid the same whether we get there or not. And hyperdrive running is expensive.
VILA:------------ So they dump us and save themselves a trip.
BLAKE:---------- [To Avon] Could it be altered?
AVON:----------- What?
BLAKE:---------- The running log. Could the readings be faked?
AVON:----------- Only by a top-line technician. Nobody on this ship could do it.
BLAKE:---------- Except you.
AVON:----------- Naturally. [He walks away]
JENNA:---------- Was it wise to put that idea into his head?
VILA:------------ What idea?
BLAKE:---------- Oh, he's bright. He'd already thought of it.
VILA:------------ What? What?
JENNA:---------- He fixes the log, the crew dump us, pocket the profit, and set him free.
VILA:------------ That's immoral. The cold-hearted murdering... let's kill him now before he can do it.
BLAKE:---------- [To Jenna] How much do you know about this type of ship?
JENNA:---------- Not a lot. Converted deep space freighter. Early mark hyperdrive which needs re-stressing by the feel of things. Whole lot should have been scrapped ages ago.
BLAKE:---------- Could you pilot it?
JENNA:---------- I expect so. Why?
BLAKE:---------- Well, once we've taken this ship, we'll need a pilot.

[Exterior shots of the London travelling through space, indicating passage of time]

LEYLAN:--------- There shouldn't be anything there at all. It's empty space. Nothing orbits through it, no marked space wrecks, no navigational hazards, nothing.
ARTIX:----------- Well, there's something there now, and our course takes us right through it.
LEYLAN:--------- Hmm.

[There is a build-up of sound, and the ship seems to be hit by something]
[Raiker enters]
RAIKER:--------- What's happening?
LEYLAN:--------- Full spectrum shock waves. We had one about ten minutes ago but that was only scale two. What was the reading on that one?
ARTIX:----------- Seven.
LEYLAN:--------- Right, put all sections on standby, turbulence alert.
ARTIX:----------- [Into intercom] All sections on standby, all sections on standby. Turbulence alert, turbulence alert.
LEYLAN:--------- [To Raiker, while Artix is speaking] Put up the deflector shields, there's some debris too.
RAIKER:--------- Deflectors out. Where's the blast coming from?
LEYLAN:--------- Somewhere in that top right hand sector.
RAIKER:--------- That's total void.
LEYLAN:--------- Not now, it isn't. [To Artix] Show him.

[Artix presses buttons. A screen above the main flight position lights up, showing two blobs curving towards each other]
RAIKER:--------- I've never seen anything like that before. Can you increase magnification?

[Artix hits more buttons. The screen now shows several blobs]
ARTIX:----------- We're at the limit now.
RAIKER:--------- What sort of range?
ARTIX:----------- We're about five subsecs on the high-dee grid.
RAIKER:--------- Anything coming in on the communicators?
ARTIX:----------- No, static right across the range.
RAIKER:--------- I suppose it could be some sort of meteorite collision.

[Two blobs collide. The screen is flooded with light]
RAIKER:--------- What the hell was that?!
LEYLAN:--------- I think it's a damn great space battle. Two fleets, maybe more.
ARTIX:----------- We haven't got any heavy combat stuff in this section, have we?
LEYLAN:--------- Well, they're not Federation ships, and that's not our battle. I want a new course. Take us round it, with a three subsec margin from the outer limits of the action.

[Build-up of sound. Ship rocks from another shock-wave]
LEYLAN:--------- Reading?
ARTIX:----------- Scale nine.
RAIKER:--------- Shift course now, and we'll be taking those blasts broadside. They'll smash the guts out of us!
LEYLAN:--------- Better that than run into the middle of a war. [To Raiker] Manual control, Mr Raiker. [To Artix] Put the ship on full emergency, all crew to operational stations.
ARTIX:----------- [Into intercom] Full emergency, full emergency. All crew to operational stations. All crew to operational stations.

[Blake crawls though the narrow channel. The ship lurches from another shock-wave. Blake continues to a small panel, taps it three times, waits and taps three times again]

VILA:------------ [To Gan] Keep an eye on me as well, will you?
JENNA:---------- [Whispers something to Nova]
VILA:------------ Hey, Dainer, got a little trick to show you.
DAINER:-------- Have you?
VILA:------------ Now watch very, very closely, right? Right? Now watch carefully, watch carefully... And a one…
DAINER:-------- Right, yeah.
VILA:------------ And a two...
DAINER:-------- Yeah.

[Jenna whispers to other prisoners. They get into position around the panel. As a camera monitors the compartment, Vila distracts Dainer while the other prisoners screen Blake as he emerges from the access channel]

VILA:------------ Watch carefully now…
BLAKE:---------- [To Jenna] I got past both the metal grilles this time. It'll work if only I can get him to do it.
JENNA:---------- He's through there.

[Avon sits reading a note. Blake approaches and sits alongside him]
BLAKE:---------- If you had access to the computer, could you open the doors?
AVON:----------- Of course. Why?
BLAKE:---------- Just wondered how good you really were.
AVON:----------- Don't try and manipulate me, Blake.
BLAKE:---------- Now why should I try and do that?
AVON:----------- You need my help.
BLAKE:---------- Only if you can open the doors.
AVON:----------- I could open every door, blind all the scanners, knock out the security overrides, and control the computer. Control the computer and you control the ship.
BLAKE:---------- Then I do need your help. There's a service channel, runs the whole length of the ship. Every other compartment has an inspection hatch. The last one opens onto the computer section.
AVON:----------- Give me one good reason why I should help you.
BLAKE:---------- You're a civilized man, Avon. On Cygnus Alpha that will not be a survival characteristic.
AVON:----------- An intelligent man can adapt.
BLAKE:---------- Or recognise an alternative.
AVON:----------- I already have one.
BLAKE:---------- A private deal with the ship's crew to fake the running log? You've had four months to think about that. And it didn't take you that long to work out that they would have to kill you afterwards to keep you quiet.
AVON:----------- Whereas you are offering me safety.
BLAKE:---------- I'm offering you the chance of freedom.
AVON:----------- Generous, considering mine will be the most important job.
BLAKE:---------- You'll do it, then.
AVON:----------- When?
BLAKE:---------- Now.

[Jenna and Vila enter. Build up of the noise that leads to impact. Jenna and Vila hurriedly get into launch seats]

[The ship is shaken]
LEYLAN:--------- Damage report!
ARTIX:----------- [Into intercom] All sections report damage, all sections report damage.
VOICE:---------- Section Two. Er, Port deflector shields buckled, sir.
VOICE:---------- Section Four. The outer hull has been punctured astern.
LEYLAN:--------- Auto-repair circuits.
RAIKER:--------- They're sealing it.
LEYLAN:--------- Mr Artix?
ARTIX:----------- Vision panels have cut out. But I'm getting blind readings, and an echo from something big... and pretty far off. I can't identify it without a scan.
RAIKER:--------- Could it be a ship from the battle fleet?
ARTIX:----------- It's a long way out from the centre of the action, seems to be drifting. Well, my guess that it's something being pushed along in the shock-waves. It's running parallel to us.
LEYLAN:--------- Keep a check on it. And start working on those vision panels.

[Build-up of sound]
RAIKER:--------- Here we go again.
[Ship rocks under another shock-wave]

JENNA:---------- A couple more like that and we won't have a ship to take over.
BLAKE:---------- Call in Vila.

[Jenna walks to door to living quarters]
JENNA:---------- [To Blake] And Gan and Nova.
BLAKE:---------- Are there any others?
JENNA:---------- The rest are doped to the eyeballs.
VILA:------------ Perhaps we should get on with it do you think maybe?
GAN:------------ Maybe. Don't be so nervous, Vila.
VILA:------------ Nervous? I'm not nervous. Just... poised for action, that's all.
AVON:----------- You've got an army of five, Blake. Five and him! Do you still think you can take over the ship?
BLAKE:---------- If you do your bit.

[Hissing sound from the other side of the compartment. Foam oozes through cracks in the wall]
VILA:------------ What's that?
JENNA:---------- Sealing gel. If the outer hull gets punctured this stuff floods into the section and blocks it up. It goes solid in seconds. We must have been holed in that last turbulence.
VILA:------------ Gan, what about waiting...
BLAKE:---------- No. These blast waves are our best chance. The crew have their hands full just running the ship. [To Avon] Are you ready?
AVON:----------- Yes.
BLAKE:---------- [To Vila] Make it good, Vila.
VILA:------------ Gan?
[Vila and Gan approach the guard]

BLAKE:--------- [To Avon] We'll be ready in exactly fifteen minutes. Will that give you enough time? [Avon nods] Knock out those scanners and open the doors. We'll do the rest. Good luck.
AVON:---------- [To Jenna] Luck has nothing to do with it.

VILA:------------ You look as if you could do with a drink.
DAINER:-------- I'm always thirsty, Vila.
VILA:------------ Now I want to show you a little trick here. Right, Gan. You know this one.
DAINER:-------- Now, I'll watch carefully this time.
VILA:------------ Right, now watch carefully, watch the old piece of cloth, right? And a one...
DAINER:-------- Never works first time.

[Jenna signals to Nova, who lets Avon into the service channel]

VILA:------------ And a two... One more chance for you, right? Are you watching carefully now?
DAINER:-------- Yeah, right.
VILA:------------ One... two... three… [Vila pulls the cloth away to reveal a full glass]
DAINER:-------- Now, that's better.
VILA:------------ Not bad, is it, eh? One for you...

NOVA:----------- [To Blake] How will we know when he's made it?
BLAKE:---------- The light on the scanner. When that goes off, we're on our way.

VILA:------------ ...one for me.
DAINER:-------- You drink it first.

[Avon crawls along until he reaches the hatch to the computer room. He quietly opens the hatch, and looks inside. He sees the technician (Garton) working at the computer. Garton doesn’t notice him. Avon re-closes the hatch, and waits in the access channel]

[Another guard enters and Dainer leaves]

GAN:-------------[To prisoner] Stay here.
VILA:------------ [To Jenna and Blake] He should have made it by now.
JENNA:---------- You think he's been caught?
BLAKE:---------- No, there would have been an alarm. [Looks at the access hatch] I'd better get in after him.
VILA:------------ You can't do that. If it all starts happening while you're in there, who's going to get this lot moving?
JENNA:---------- Well, he's right.
BLAKE:---------- All right, you go then.
VILA:------------ Me? Uh, I'd be glad to, it's just that I've got this problem with confined spaces. There's a medical name for it.
JENNA:---------- Cowardice?
NOVA:----------- I'll go. Well, let me do it. I haven't done anything yet.
VILA:------------ I'm quite prepared to go, it's just that I don't want to let anyone down because of my, uh, complaint.
NOVA:----------- I want to help.
VILA:------------ What do you think?
BLAKE:---------- All right, let's get him in there.
VILA:------------ Gan, let's try it with this one.

[Garton is working at the computer. Avon reopens the hatch and bursts into the room. He punches Garton in the stomach.]

LEYLAN:--------- Here it comes again. Hang on.

[Nova crawls along. There is a build up of sound, and the ship is hit. Nova covers his ears and screams. Three punctures form in the hull beside him. Nova tries to cover them them with his hands. Nozzles pour out sealing gel and the bulkheads slam shut. The section is flooded with foam]

NOVA:----------- [Trapped, as sealing gel fills the section] Help, help!

[Garton is unconscious. Avon approaches the computer and picks up a tool ]

LEYLAN:--------- Damage?
DAINER:--------- Three hull punctures, sir. They‘re all sealed and solid.
LEYLAN:--------- OK. Carry on. [To Artix] What was the force?
ARTIX:----------- Down to nine again. It's reducing.
LEYLAN:--------- Not before time. Where's that echo?
ARTIX:----------- It's practically on top of us! We're on a collision course!
RAIKER:--------- Get those scans fixed! Come on, move it!

AVON:---------- [Examining the computer] Prison compartments... scanners...
[He touches the tool against a component, producing sparks.]

[The scanner stops]
JENNA:---------- Off.
BLAKE:---------- Here we go. [To one of the other prisoners] Ready.
JENNA:---------- Come on Avon... [Notes guard] He's spotted it. Gan!

[Gan grabs the guard by the throat and overpowers him]

BLAKE:---------- [Mutters to himself] Oh, come on Avon. The door. Come on.

[Avon is at the computer. Garton regains consciousness and attacks him. They fight.]

BLAKE:---------- Bring the guard. [To guard] Open the door. [To others] Put his hand on the door.

[Gan holds the guard’s arm. Jenna tries to unclench the guard's hand]
GAN:------------ Look, we only need the hand. If you want to stay attached to it, do as you're told.

[The guard opens the door. The prisoners exit]

Avon and Garton continue to fight. Avon defeats him and knocks him out. Avon then returns to the computer and opens the doors]

[The door opens, apparently of its own accord]
ARTIX:----------- All checks complete, the fault must be in the computer.
LEYLAN:--------- [To Raiker] Get down there, Mr Raiker.
[Artix and Raiker leave]

[Blake leads, carrying the guard’s gun. Gan follows, still holding on to the guard. Other prisoners follow behind]
BLAKE:---------- Spread out and find the armoury. Jenna?
JENNA:---------- What?
BLAKE:---------- Let's find the computer room.

RAIKER:--------- All the doors are open.
ARTIX:----------- Well, perhaps that last shock-wave did more damage than we thought. It looks like the whole system's been disrupted.
RAIKER:--------- Let's find out.

[Blake and Jenna arrive at a junction. Raiker and Artix arrive junction through the other corridor]
JENNA:---------- Blake, watch out!

[Blake and Jenna take cover outside the computer room. Blake and Raiker trade shots]

AVON:----------- [At door to computer room] Blake!
BLAKE:---------- [To Jenna] Now!

[Blake fires at Raiker as he and Jenna dive into the computer room]

BLAKE:---------- [To Avon] Close the door. Come on, quickly!
[Avon operates a control on the computer. The door shuts]

[Raiker moves in front of the door and signals Artix past. Artix tries unsuccessfully to open it]
RAIKER:--------- Get up to the flight deck. Tell the old man what's happening.
[Artix runs back up the corridor. Raiker presses alarm button.]

AVON:----------- Now what?
JENNA:---------- Cripple the ship.
BLAKE:---------- We've got all the bargaining power we need. Use it!
AVON:----------- [To Jenna] Excuse me. [She moves away from the computer]

[The instruments go dead. Artix enters]

LEYLAN:--------- [To Artix] What the hell's going on?
ARTIX:----------- The prisoners have escaped, sir, and they've got hold of the computer.
LEYLAN:--------- What? Come on!
[They leave the flight deck together]

[Vila, Gan and other prisoners]
VILA:------------ Find the armoury, he says. I don't even like guns.

[Two guards turn the corner. Gan seizes their gun arms]
GAN:------------ Grab the guns!

[Vila and a prisoner each take a gun. Dainer and another guard arrive]
GAN:------------ Stay right there, or we'll kill them. Drop your guns!

[Vila drops his gun. Dainer shoots the other armed prisoner, then covers Gan]

DAINER:-------- [To Gan] Move and you're dead.
[Gan stands up. The prisoners raise their hands]
GAN:------------ Vila!
VILA:----------- I got confused.
DAINER:------- [To the prisoners] Hands on your heads. Now move. Single file.

[Raiker is waiting. Leylan and Artix arrive]
LEYLAN:--------- They're still in there?
RAIKER:--------- Yes, sir.

[Leylan takes a communicator from a bracket by the door]

[The communicator sounds. Blake takes it from the wall bracket]

LEYLAN:---------- [Into communicator] This is Commander Leylan. If you come out immediately and surrender yourselves, you will be treated leniently.

LEYLAN:---------- [continues VO] If not, my men will blast their way in and you'll suffer the consequences.
BLAKE:----------- Those are your terms?
LEYLAN:---------- Yes.
BLAKE:----------- These are mine: You will hand over all your weapons to my men. Whilst we hold the computer, the ship is helpless.

BLAKE:----------- [continues VO] It will remain that way until you agree. You will then fly this ship to the nearest habitable planet where the prisoners will disembark.

BLAKE:----------- Any attempt by your men to break into this room and we'll destroy the computer. Totally. That's all. [He replaces the communicator in its bracket]
LEYLAN:--------- [VO] Now, Blake. Blake, listen to me very carefully.

LEYLAN:--------- There is something large travelling very near us, and we've been running blind. We may be on a collision course. You're putting everybody's life at risk.
BLAKE:----------- [VO] Better make up your mind quickly, then.

[Leylan replaces the communicator in its bracket. Dainer shoots an approaching prisoner. Other guards arrive]
LEYLAN:--------- Dainer!
DAINER:--------- Sir?
LEYLAN:--------- He wasn't armed.
DAINER:--------- We were lucky. They couldn't find the armoury. We've got most of them back to their quarters, we're just mopping up now.
LEYLAN:--------- So I see, Dainer.
DAINER:--------- Some of our men have been injured, sir.
LEYLAN:--------- And the prisoners?
DAINER:--------- We've killed six.
LEYLAN:--------- Six?
DAINER:--------- [Glancing at body] Seven. In the course of quelling a riot and protecting the ship, sir.
LEYLAN:--------- Very well. Carry on, Dainer.
DAINER:--------- Thank you, sir. [He leaves]

RAIKER:--------- [To Leylan] I can get them out of there, sir.
LEYLAN:--------- How?
RAIKER:--------- I want a free hand to take whatever action I think necessary. Do I have your permission, sir?
LEYLAN:--------- All right.
RAIKER:--------- [To Dainer and other guards] Come on! [They leave]

[Avon is tying the technician’s hands]
JENNA:---------- What do you think they'll do?
BLAKE:---------- Their time's running out.
JENNA:---------- So's ours.
BLAKE:---------- We have less to lose.
AVON:----------- You may have, but I value my life.
JENNA:---------- Assuming they do land us somewhere, what then?
BLAKE:---------- Find a way of getting back to Earth.
JENNA:---------- Back to Earth?
BLAKE:---------- Yes. That's where the heart of the Federation is. I intend to see that heart torn out.
AVON:----------- I thought you were probably insane.
BLAKE:---------- That's possible. They butchered my family, my friends. They murdered my past and gave me tranquilised dreams.
JENNA:---------- At least you're still alive.
BLAKE:---------- No! Not until free men can think and speak. Not until power is back with the honest man.
AVON:----------- Have you ever met an honest man?
JENNA:---------- [Looking at Blake] Perhaps.
AVON:----------- Listen to me. Wealth is the only reality. And the only way to obtain wealth is to take it away from somebody else. Wake up, Blake! You may not be tranquilised any longer, but you're still dreaming.
AVON:----------- You don't really believe that.
JENNA:---------- No, but I'd like to.
BLAKE:---------- Yes. Well, you asked me what I was going to do and I've told you. What you do is up to yourselves.
AVON:----------- Right. A new identity, a job in the Federation Banking System. Three months with their computers, I could lift a hundred million credits and nobody would know where they went. Then let anyone try and touch me.
BLAKE:---------- And the rest?
AVON:----------- Have the same chance as I have.
BLAKE:---------- You don't really believe that.

[The communicator beeps. Blake takes it from the wall]

[The prisoners are standing with their hands on heads.]
RAIKER:--------- [Into communicator] Blake? Blake. Switch on your vision panel, scanner thirty-four. There's something I want you to see.

[Blake nods to Avon who adjusts a control. Screen shows Gan and Vila with hands on heads]

RAIKER:--------- [VO] You have a clear view of our little assembly, Blake?
BLAKE:---------- We see you.
RAIKER:--------- [On screen] Then lock off the scanner and keep watching.
[Avon adjusts control. On screen, Raiker shoots one of the prisoners]

RAIKER:--------- [VO] I'm going to kill one of your friends every thirty seconds, starting now. [On screen] I'll stop when you give yourselves up, or I run out of prisoners.
BLAKE:---------- Raiker! Listen to me!

BLAKE:---------- [VO] Raiker, damn you, those men are unarmed!
RAIKER:--------- The talking's over, Blake.
BLAKE:---------- Let me talk to Leylan!

[Raiker replaces the communicator, and cuts Blake off]

BLAKE:---------- Raiker! [Shouts] Raiker!

[Raiker looks at his wrist chronometer, then shoots another prisoner]

BLAKE:--------- Open the door.
AVON:---------- You're throwing away our only chance.
BLAKE:--------- Open the door!

[Avon complies. The door opens. Leylan, Artix and Dainer are outside]

LEYLAN:-------- Hands on your heads. Stand where you are.
BLAKE:--------- Raiker's switched off... Tell him we're coming out - and quickly!

[Leylan nods. Artix hurries away. Leylan, Teague and Dainer enter the computer room. Teague unties the technician.

[Artix enters and whispers to Raiker. On screen, Raiker heads for the exit, then stops and shoots another prisoner. Leylan sees this]
LEYLAN:-------- Move it.
[Blake, Avon and Jenna put their hands on their heads, and exit the computer room]
BLAKE:--------- Commander, your first officer is guilty of murder. I demand that this incident is fully reported in your log.
LEYLAN:-------- Now don't tell me how to run my ship, Blake. Everything that happens here is logged and filed with the Flight Authority, and they'll take whatever action they deem necessary.

[Raiker, Artix and guard arrive]
RAIKER:-------- You could have won, Blake. All you needed was guts.
BLAKE:--------- I'll settle for yours!
[He lunges for Raiker, but is held by Dainer and another guard. Raiker punches Blake in the stomach]

RAIKER:-------- Take them back. Put them in close confinement. Not the girl. She and I have some unfinished business. [To Jenna] Or did you think I'd forgotten?
LEYLAN:-------- Mr Raiker! Have you gone completely mad? [To the guard] Put her with the others. [To Artix] Mr Artix, get a technical squad in there. I want that computer fully functional in ten minutes.
ARTIX: --------- Yes, Sir. [He hurries away]
LEYLAN: ------- Mr Raiker! This time you went too far. There'll be an official inquiry.
RAIKER:-------- Naturally, Sir. And I'm sure you'll confirm that I was acting with your full authority. There were other officers present who heard you give me permission to do what was necessary.
LEYLAN:-------- Everything that was said and done by everybody - including me - will be in my report.

[Jenna, Blake and Avon are secured in seats by restraints]

JENNA:--------- How do you feel?
BLAKE:--------- Sick.
AVON:---------- So you should. What a fiasco. You could take over the ship, you said, if I did my bit. Well, I did my bit, and what happened? Your troops bumble around looking for someone to surrender to, and when they've succeeded, you follow suit.
JENNA:--------- What do you think they'll do to us?
BLAKE:--------- Something unfriendly.
JENNA:--------- For a while, I really thought we'd made it.
BLAKE:--------- It was my fault.
AVON:---------- We know.
BLAKE:--------- I'll try and do better next time.
AVON:---------- We had one chance. You wasted it. There won't be a next time.
JENNA:--------- In which case, you can die content.
AVON:[Smiles] Content?
JENNA:---------- Knowing that you were right.

[The control panels start to light up]

RAIKER:-------- We have power back, Sir.
LEYLAN:-------- About time.

[Artix enters]
ARTIX:---------- We have normal functions on all systems. They're phasing them in now.
LEYLAN:-------- Have we got scan yet?
ARTIX:---------- Not yet.
LEYLAN:-------- Get me a blind reading on that echo.
ARTIX:---------- It's very close.
RAIKER:-------- These readings have got to be wrong.
ARTIX:---------- We've got the scan back.
LEYLAN:-------- Right, get me a picture.

[View of the Liberator]

RAIKER:-------- I don't believe it!
LEYLAN:-------- Take us in as close as you can, Mr Raiker.
RAIKER:-------- Yes, sir.
ARTIX:---------- Where could it have come from?
LEYLAN:-------- I've never seen a ship like that before in my life. She seems to be drifting, Mr Raiker. Maintain this distance.
RAIKER:-------- Right, sir.
LEYLAN:-------- Try and make contact, Mr Artix - sound and vision.
ARTIX: [Into communicator] This is Civil Administration Ship London, out of Earth bound for Cygnus Alpha. Please identify yourself.

[There is only static from the communicator]

[Exterior Liberator with the London alongside]

RAIKER:-------- I reckon she was involved in that space battle we picked up. She got caught in the big blast, and the crew were either killed or got out in the life rockets.

[Scanner shows detail of the side of the Liberator]

LEYLAN:-------- It's possible. No visible sign of damage, though.
RAIKER:-------- No sign of life, either.
LEYLAN:-------- Hmm. Well, if she's been completely abandoned...
RAIKER:-------- We could put on a boarding party. You know how much that ship would be worth in prize money if we could get her to a Federation planet? Millions of credits. Millions!
LEYLAN:-------- Leave a skeleton crew on her. We could do that.
RAIKER:-------- It's got to be worth a try.
LEYLAN:-------- Yes it has. [Into communicator] Ahh, Section Four? Stand by to run out a transfer tube. Wallace and Teague?
LEYLAN:-------- Kit out with your survival units. I'll be with you in a minute. [To Raiker] Right. Take us in as close as you can and keep us there.
RAIKER:-------- Yes, sir.

[Leylan and a guard enter Section Four. Wallace and Teague are ready]
LEYLAN:-------- Good.
KRELL:--------- Transfer tube ready, sir.
LEYLAN:-------- All right. Begin extension.

[Exterior London. Transfer tube extends towards the Liberator, and clamps itself into place]

KRELL:--------- Locked on, sir. Air pressure established.

[Inner airlock door slides open]
LEYLAN: -------- Now, keep your communicators open at all times. I want a full report of conditions inside that ship. If there is anyone alive over there, I want you to make peaceful contact. Weapons are only to be used as defence. Understood? [Wallace nods]
TEAGUE:-------- Sir.
LEYLAN:-------- All right, in you go.

[Wallace and Teague enter the airlock. The door shuts behind them]

LEYLAN:-------- All right, open airlock. [Krell reaches for the control panel. Leylan picks up the communicator]

TEAGUE:[Into communicator] Starting along the transfer tube now, sir.
[Wallace and Teague walk along tube to the hatch.]

TEAGUE:[VO] -- We're against the hull. It is a hatch entrance. I'm about to operate the remote lock activator.

TEAGUE:-------- No response, circuit one. No response, circuit two.

TEAGUE:[VO] -- No response, circuit three.

[The hatch starts to slide open]

TEAGUE:-------- No! Wait! It's opening. There's a powerful light source from somewhere. We're going in now.

LEYLAN:-------- Krell? Get kitted up and stand by to give backup if it's needed.

TEAGUE:[VO]-- We're in some sort of a cylinder. Type of airlock, I think. It's turning. It's fantastic, sir! I... I don't believe it!
LEYLAN:-------- What is it? What's happening?
TEAGUE:[VO]-- Well, we've come out into what must be some sort of a flight deck I think, but it's like nothing I've ever seen before.
LEYLAN:-------- Well, describe it later. Now, now - give me life support readout.
TEAGUE:[VO] - Pressure normal. Minimal radiation. Breathable oxygen atmosphere.
LEYLAN:-------- Good, good. Now, is there anybody on board?
TEAGUE:[VO] - Not that we've seen so far, but… uh, ah! I'm sorry, what was that?
LEYLAN:-------- I didn't speak.
TEAGUE:[VO] - Somebody did... somebody said something ah...
[Hiss of static from the communicator]

LEYLAN:-------- Teague! Report! Wallace! [To technician] Where the hell is that backup man?
KRELL:---------- Ready sir.
LEYLAN:-------- Right. Get across there as fast as you can.

[Krell enters airlock]
LEYLAN:-------- Right. Open airlock.

[Raiker and Artix are checking the controls]
LEYLAN:[VO]-- Raiker, let Artix take the ship. Get down here.
RAIKER:-------- Right, sir.
[Raiker exits. Artix sits in Raiker’s vacated seat]

[Krell walks down the transfer tube and through hatch]

[Raiker enters]
KRELL:[VO]---- I'm in the airlock... and it's turning. I'm inside. The design is strange to me. All the flight control positions are empty.
LEYLAN:-------- All right, all right. Now, now don't move. Now, just look around and tell me what you see.
KRELL:[VO]---- What? I heard something.
LEYLAN:-------- What is it?
KRELL:[VO]---- It's whispering – shh! Yes... yes, I hear you... Davor. What are you... What are they doing to you? No. No! NO!

[Burst of static from the communicator]

LEYLAN:-------- Krell! Krell! Answer me! Krell! Now, listen to me, Krell. If I have no signal from you within three minutes, I'm withdrawing the transfer tube. Three minutes!
RAIKER:-------- Wait! We can't give up that easily. That ship's worth a fortune.
LEYLAN:-------- Looks like I've already lost three men. I'm not risking any more of my crew.
RAIKER:-------- Then use prisoners. They've got nothing to lose. Use Blake and the other two. Let them take the risks. Why not?
LEYLAN:-------- We might save the other three.
RAIKER:-------- Right. At least we'll have tried.
LEYLAN:-------- Right. Get them equipped and bring them down here.

[Artix studies the controls, and heads for the communicator]

LEYLAN:[VO]-- Leylan.
ARTIX:--------- I don't know if this is significant sir, but I'm picking up a specific focused energy field close by. I presume it's the other ship?
LEYLAN:[VO]-- Is it constant?
ARTIX:--------- Well, that's the odd thing. There've been two violent discharges, right off the scale. But after each, the source dropped back to constant.

LEYLAN:-------- Thank you, Mr Artix.

[Blake, Jenna and Avon enter, followed by Raiker and a guard]
LEYLAN:-------- I hope Mr Raiker's made it clear to you that you can refuse to do this.
BLAKE:--------- Oh, yes. He's also made it clear that summary execution is one of our options. We chose the other.
LEYLAN:-------- Well, if you're successful, I promise that I'll get your sentences quashed.
AVON:---------- And if we're not?
RAIKER:-------- Then you'll have no more problems, anyway.
JENNA:--------- What is it that we have to do?
LEYLAN:-------- Find out what's happened to my men, and see if it's safe to send a boarding party across.
BLAKE:--------- All right.
JENNA:--------- I've had worse offers.
LEYLAN:-------- Good.
BLAKE:--------- Do we get weapons?
RAIKER:-------- I'll toss them into the airlock - once you're inside.
BLAKE:--------- Very wise.

[Blake and Jenna approach the hatch]
BLAKE:--------- All right, open the hatch.
LEYLAN:-------- Open hatch.

[Krell, foaming at the mouth, staggers out of the airlock. He tries to strangle Raiker, who overpowers him]
RAIKER:-------- Get him out of here!
[Two guards drag off Krell]

JENNA:--------- What do you suppose did that to him?
AVON:---------- That's what we're supposed to find out. Execution may have some appeal after all.
BLAKE:--------- Let's go.

[They enter the airlock. Raiker throws in three guns, before the airlock door closes]
LEYLAN:-------- Right. Open it up.

[Blake, Avon and Jenna walk along the transfer tube. A body is lying by the hatch. Blake checks it. Jenna gestures to carry on. They step over the body and through the hatch.]

[Leylan waits in silence]

[Blake, Jenna and Avon enter and look around]
JENNA:--------- Beautiful!
AVON:---------- Look at that instrumentation.
JENNA:--------- A ship like this could go anywhere!

[Avon sees another body]
AVON:---------- This one is dead also.

[There is a strange noise. A glowing sphere appears at the front of the flight deck]
JENNA:--------- What is it?
BLAKE:--------- I don't know.

[Close-up Jenna’s eye as she stares at the sphere. She sees a blonde woman surrounded by three Federation troopers. The woman is screaming.]

[Close-up Avon’s eye as he stares at the sphere. He sees a fair-haired man silently repeating, "Avon"]

[Close-up Blake, holding his head]
BLAKE:--------- You're dead. Those tapes are forgeries. You're dead!

[Avon and Jenna move towards the sphere]
BLAKE:--------- No, no. Get back!
[Blake pushes Jenna aside. He grabs Avon, but Avon pushes him away]
AVON:---------- I must go to him.

[Blake knocks him over. Jenna starts to reach for the sphere again. Blake shoots the sphere. Jenna screams]
JENNA:--------- What was it?
BLAKE:--------- I don't know.
JENNA:--------- I saw my mother. It was so real. Then something terrible, a nightmare. But it was my mother.
AVON:---------- I saw my brother. It used him like bait. I had to go closer.
BLAKE:--------- And if you had, it would have killed you. No, that thing took an image out of your minds, a memory, and then projected it back at you as though it were real.
JENNA:--------- But why didn't it affect you?
BLAKE:--------- It did, but somehow I knew it wasn't real. Ha. [To Avon] Seems I can recognise dreams.
LEYLAN:[VO]-- Blake. Are you all right?
BLAKE:--------- Yes! We're all right. But we're still checking.

LEYLAN:-------- Stay in contact, Blake.
RAIKER:[To a technician] Get me a survival unit.
LEYLAN:-------- What are you going to do?
RAIKER:-------- They're still alive. I'm going to make sure they don't get any ideas about staying over there.
LEYLAN:-------- Raiker!
RAIKER:-------- Yes, sir.


[Blake and Jenna continue exploring the flight deck. Avon sits at one of the consoles]
AVON:---------- Blake! This would account for what happened to the crew.
BLAKE:--------- What is it?
AVON:---------- Life rocket launch control - it's been operated.
JENNA:--------- But why?
BLAKE:--------- Maybe that thing drove them out.
AVON:---------- I imagined it was some kind of defence mechanism.
BLAKE:--------- [To Jenna] Could this ship operate under her own power?
JENNA:--------- I don't see why not.
BLAKE:--------- But could you pilot her?
JENNA:--------- Eventually I might just be able to make her start and stop.
BLAKE:--------- You've got two minutes, no more. [To Avon] Help her Avon.
AVON:---------- What are you going to do?
BLAKE:--------- Check the outer hatch in case someone decides to try and join us.

RAIKER: [To technician] I want a boarding crew kitted out and ready to follow me over.

[Blake is trying to close the hatch. Raiker approaches along the Transfer Tube. He sees Blake and fires, hitting Blake in the shoulder. Blake falls and Raiker fires again.]

JENNA:--------- Shall we risk it?
AVON:---------- Why not?
[Jenna operates a control]

[The hatch closes, with Blake inside.

The ships move apart.

[Raiker tries to cling on to the tube, but tumbles out into space]

[Blake enters, rubbing his shoulder]
AVON:---------- What happened?
BLAKE:--------- Slight disagreement with Raiker. And then the hatch closed.
JENNA:--------- We're on our way.
BLAKE:--------- Follow the London to Cygnus Alpha. Then we can free the rest of the prisoners. [To Avon] With a ship like this and a full crew, then we can start fighting back.


Title artwork by Iain Robertson, courtesy of Dave Thomas


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